Interview over at The Write Connexion

A quick note: Gabi Coatsworth, the author behind our locally-based writing blog, The Write Connexion, did an interview with me last week and it’s live right now. I had a great time answering her questions  — Gabi knows how to write a good question — so head over to the Write Connexion and check it out.

While you’re over there, poke around. Gabi collects information that is useful for both readers and writers. If you live in my area of the world (Connecticut), the blog can be quite a resource.

Also, I’m kind of geeking out because the creator of Authorgraph (the service that allows authors to autograph e-books) left a comment, and mentioned a new Authorgraph app, which would be very helpful for me during book signings when someone buys a book through his or her phone or reader. Oh Authorgraph, I love that service. I’d I could sign more books through it (hint hint people with my e-book.

Return of the Post-It Note book-signing! (And authorgraph.)

books, Eagle & Arrow

This Post-It could be yours.

To celebrate my release date, I’m hosting a second week-long virtual book-signing! If you buy The Eagle & The Arrow e-book and want it autographed, I will happily sign it for you. How, you ask? Magic? Well, kind of.

There are two ways for me to do this: one way is through Authorgraph, a free service that allows readers who bought an e-book to request a signed page that is emailed to them. If you want an authorgraph go to the site, and click “request authorgraph” and the site will send you a page with my signature and a message to you and you alone. It’s a free service. Did I mention that it’s free? I’m also going to be doing this live from my iPad at events with wi-fi.

The other way I can sign your e-book is by Post-It Note.

Yes. Post-It Note. Allow me to explain:

Last year, when Beware the Hawk was launched, it was e-book only. Someone asked how I could sign her book if it was an e-book. And then it hit me:

I realized that I don’t need to have a physical book to have a signing. In fact I don’t even need to be in the same room with everyone to have a signing.

Instead of signing books in person, I told readers to send me their addresses. In return, I sent them Post-Its, so that they could stick those babies on their Kindles/Nooks/phones/tablets while they were reading my book. And that’s what I’m doing again.

If you buy an e-book and you want an autograph on a special yellow Post-It Note, send your mailing addresses to annjoconnell<at>gmail<dot>com. (Just until June. 18. Or until my Post-Its run out. I have a lot though. Just sayin’.)Then keep an eye on that mailbox.

Next up this week? A virtual reading on YouTube. I’d better put on some make-up or something.

A list of the links that have been posted to The Eagle and the Arrow, so far.

The Eagle and the Arrow is released today! Links to the book are trickling in.

Here are the links that have been posted so far:

The e-book, on Amazon

The paperback on Amazon

And let us not neglect Barnes & Noble, which has the e-book on NOOK

The e-book on Smashwords.

I’m waiting for the publisher’s website to post the book as well. Also, check it out on Goodreads (another giveaway – this time of The Eagle & The Arrow –  is happening soon.)

Do you know of a great book reviewer? I want to know.

Eagle & The ArrowThis is a crowd-sourcing kind of post. I want you guys to tell me where to send my book.

Yesterday I started sending review copies of The Eagle & The Arrow to a few fantastic book reviewers with whom I have relationships, and also to an elite group of super-readers. (I like to call them The Resistance. Because why not.)

But now it’s time to open things up and start sending review e-copies of my book to reviewers I don’t know. So I thought I’d open this up here: Do you know of, or really like a book review site to which I should be sending The Eagle & The Arrow? Or are you a book reviewer (for this effort, I’m looking for people who write reviews for either book review sites, blogs or publications)? 

Let me know. Leave a comment with the name of the site or shoot me an email or tweet me or Facebook message me and tell me where you think I should send my review copies. Or fill out this form (I’m all about options):

You send me a recommendation and I will send an e-book galley to that site. I will write them a note and mention you by name and tell them that you loved them so much that you recommended them to me.

So tell me, who should I be emailing? I want to know.

(Even more) Blood and seashells

So the other day I posted about how I spent my Monday night up to my elbows in fake blood in our bathtub for the sake of my career.

I took several photos for the cover of my e-short story about a killer sea god. Now the fake blood stains are finally fading from my palms, but I have another problem: I don’t know which photo to choose for the cover.

So because you all rock and probably have exquisite taste, I want your help. I’ve put four of these photos up on Facebook.*  Head over there and tell me which one you like best.  I trust your input.

And while you’re there, please like me. When you have strange hobbies like I do, it’s good to know that you’re liked.

*It’s currently an untitled album because Facebook is freaking out and won’t let me edit the album, but bear with me.

Fake blood & fro-yo: this is what happens when I try to self-publish.

denying the sea, ebook

Like House of Cards promo art, but with a mollusk.

So this evening was my husband’s night out with the boys, and as usual, when he left the house looked normal and I was full of project ideas.

When he came home, there was sand and fake blood all over the bathroom, the house was a disaster, and I was holed up in my office with a carton of fro-yo. For art.

It’s a testament to either my husband’s character or to my insanity that he didn’t bat an eye. In fact, he didn’t even ask why the bathroom looked like Quentin Tarantino had just filmed a scene there. He’s that used to this kind of thing.

But you might want to know, so I’ll tell you.
I recently got the bright idea to self-publish two already-published stories with Amazon’s Kindle Direct. The stories are not doing me any good just sitting around in my computer, so why not?

Apparently, however, you need to have a cover for such things. Since I probably won’t make enough money off these stories to cover the cost of a graphic artist, I thought I’d try to come up with a cover myself.

One of the stories is about a killer sea god. (Thus the fake blood and sea shells.) The other story is about a creepy lady who conveniently has an ice cream addiction. (Thus the half a carton of frozen yogurt I consumed.)

The result of my photo shoot? A bathroom that looks like a triple homicide was committed in it, a blown diet and a few okayish photos (but not of the fro-yo, because I ate most of that.) I think the photo in this post is probably the best. It doesn’t show how my fingers are now dyed the color of Mikhail Gorbachev’s birthmark.

I will keep you posted on the progress of the short stories, but at the moment, I’m not sure when they will  be coming out. This is mostly because of the cover art. Despite the fact that the bathtub might now be permanently pink, I still think I need better photos.

Might it be a good idea to hire an artist? It might. But only if that artist is willing to work for fro-yo.

Name my protagonist!

I’m looking for a little help from my readers. And as usual, it will take the form of a contest.

My book, Beware the Hawk, features an unnamed protagonist, because I really love not naming first-person narrators. Which works well sometimes but not always.  It worked well for the original novella, but what if the character were to appear in other stories? She won’t be able to get through another storyline unnamed. I’ve been calling her Pink in private, but that’s not a real name. You know, like Jane, or Bob, or Ponyboy.

That, dear readers, is where you come in.

I want you to name my protagonist.

I already have some suggestions on my Facebook page, and I got one via text message this morning, but I need so much more than three suggestions.

Here’s how it will work.

Beware The Hawk novella

Faceless and nameless. For now.

I will be taking name suggestions (I’m looking for both first name and last name) via email, comment section, tweet and the aforementioned Facebook page. Also,  if you happen to see me in person, you can slip me a note with a name written on it. The virtual suggestion box will be open until I appear on Enders Island in Mystic, Conn. to read from the book on Thursday, July 19.

I will then pick a handful of the best names and post them, along with the names of those who suggested them. There will follow a week of  voting both on Facebook and here. I will however, announce the winner in private to the finalists, because I want the general readership to be surprised. (Although anyone capable of basic math and reading of poll results will probably be able to figure it out.)

The winner will have named Pink. Any other stories she appears in, she will bear the name you gave her. And you will get a free, signed copy of the very first new work she appears in.

The fine print (You should definitely read this.)

Ahem… The winner will not be entitled to royalties or other earnings. Just naming rights. And I do get some creative wiggle room, such as spelling or adding a middle name if necessary, because I am the author. Also, I can’t promise that just because I write a new Beware the Hawk book/story/screeenplay/graphic novel that anyone will want to publish it or that they will publish it in what you or I would consider to be a timely fashion. (Read: pronto.)

UPDATE: One name per entrant please! Pink’s only one woman!

So, what are you waiting for?

Send me some names!