Friday, 11 April 2014

Teresa Gabelman

Teresa Gabelman is the international bestselling author of the Protectors Series; paranormal romance with a twist. A Readers Choice Awards Nominee at the 2013 Indie Romance Convention, Teresa is currently on a blog tour and stopping by Red Lorry’s Journey for an interview with yours truly.

Hi Teresa,

Many thanks for stopping by and giving me the chance to interview you. I have to say it’s an honour; I am such a huge fan of you and your Protectors Series. As one indie author to another, your success is truly inspirational.

Thank you so much! It has been a blast for sure and meeting so many new friends has been by far the best part!

Q) I’ve interviewed a lot of indie authors, but you are by far the most successful. What do you think it is about your books that makes them so popular with the readers?

A) I think Damon just hit a cord with some readers who thankfully spread the word. I have to have humor in my books along with sexy alpha males. I write what I like to read without tons of description. In all honesty when reading I pass over a lot of the description. I like commentary between the characters and put a lot of that in my books. With the following the books in the series I really listened to the readers by talking personally with them and reviews. I’m still learning, but I do listen to my readers because they are the one’s investing their time and money into my books so I want to give them what they like. I write for me also, but most of my readers read what I like to read so it works out great! Yay!

Q) The Protectors series is about a time when humans and vampires are trying to live in harmony with each other. Many people think that in the wake of the Twilight Saga, the vampire genre has been done to death. What do you say to this?

A) I think there is so much more to come in the vampire genre by awesome authors both Indie and traditional. There are so many different avenues you can go with them vampires or paranormal in general. I’ve read the Twilight books and enjoyed them. I’ve seen the movies. Is it my favourite, no it’s not, but fist pump to the unknown author, Stephanie Meyer, who gained such a following and readership. I don’t care who it is, but anyone who can make it in this business has my respect.

Q) Damon as book #1 in the Protector series. How long did it take you from coming up with the initial concept to seeing it through to publication?

A) Well, I was working full time so I would say about a year. My confidence was the major hold up. My friend, Kelly, who reads all my stuff read it and was shocked. When I told her I was writing a book I think she thought ‘yeah, right.’ HA!

Q) And talking of publication, as a successful independent author—for those who don’t know, this means Teresa publishes her own books and doesn’t go through a publishing house—what made you choose the independent route?

A) I tried to go through publishing houses before my son was born about 19 years ago. It was a western romance, not even vampire. LOL! Of course I got rejection after rejection. Then my son was born and I stopped to be a mom and worked outside the home full time. My husband actually heard about Amazon’s KDP program for self-publishing and we looked into it. A week later I started writing Damon which was self-published in 2011.

Q) Is there any part of the independent publishing process that you really don’t enjoy? If so what is it, and why?

A) Honestly for me there hasn’t been a downside. I enjoy it all so far!

Q) What advice would you give to indie authors who are just starting out and perhaps finding the whole experience a little overwhelming?

A) Never ever give up. If it’s what you want to do understand that it will be overwhelming at times, disheartening at other times, but to have someone read what you wrote and like it is a feeling that is so totally awesome. Of course, not everyone is going to like what you write, but that’s okay because for one that doesn’t like it there will be three or four that do. It’s so worth it if that’s your dream. Dream it, live it!!!

Q) Back to the Protectors. We’re four novels into the series (Damon, Jared, Duncan and Sid), and
word on the street is we’re about to get a novella featuring Adam. Your website has revealed that afterward, the next story is going to be Slade—my favourite so far—and then Sloan. But at this moment, how many more books do you plan on releasing in the Protectors series overall?

A) All of the above is correct, but there will be new Warrior’s introduced so Sloan may not be after Slade. Sloan will definitely be the last book in the series so it depends on the readers. If they want new books with the new Warrior’s then I will write them. 

Slade was only supposed to be a small part, but everyone fell in love with him, me included, so he is now getting his own book. LOL! (Hurray! Lorraine claps her hands, Slade is most definitely her favourite Protector so far).

Q) Do you have a favourite Protector or couple from the series, and conversely, are there any of them who drive you crazy?

A) Sid drives me nuts, but I love him. I don’t really have any faves because I love them all in different ways. Now the females I love Nicole with Jill coming in a close second because they are both bad ass women. 

Finally, for your top five, I’ve got two for you—cheeky, I know.

1) For the author in you, what are the top five words that you always find yourself including in your work?

1. Bro
2. Sexy
3. Shut
4. up
5. Sid ;)

2) What are your top five favourite ‘popcorn’ movies?

1. The Green Mile.
2. The Lost Boys.
3. P.S. I love you.
4. The Shining.
5. Princess Bride.

Teresa Gabelman, thank you so much for joining me for a spell on Red Lorry’s Journey.

Thank you so very much Red Lorry’s Journey for hosting. It is wonderful people like you who make this journey special for me and it is so appreciated. Hugs!!!

Teresa Gabelman 

Teresa Gabelman's website

All images are courtesy of Teresa Gabelman.

You can find my reviews of all the books (so far) in Teresa's brilliant Protectors Series on the Goodreads links below:

  1. Damon
  2. Jared
  3. Duncan
  4. Sid

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Mystery Guest stop by on Blog Tour - Don't miss it!

Top Secret!

Now, I don't like to be a tease ... well, okay, I do. But on April 11th I will be welcoming an international best-selling and independant author on to Red Lorry's Journey to talk about all things word. From her amazing novels--of which I am a HUGE fan--to how she decided the independent route was the right path for her. 

The author will be joining me as part of her International Blog Tour. And whether you're a reader or a writer you don't want to miss this: Red Lorry's Journey, April 11th. Miss it, miss out!

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

The Plight if the Indie Author

When I set out to write my novel, I did it because I had a story to tell and wanted to share it with the world. I spent hundreds of hours formulating my plot, developing my characters and then editing it all back down to within an inch of it's life. I appointed an independent proofreader and enlisted several advance copy readers with the aim of making sure it wasn't a barrow full of dung.

I researched agents and publishers of the paranormal genre, and sent dozens of submission enquiries; receiving, on average one reply for every eight letters sent. A disheartening activity if ever there was one.

I wanted to write, damn it! I didn't want to invest all my time and energy into the thankless, nay, pointless task of submitting. My first novel is just the tip of the iceberg; all the time more and more ideas and characters are piling up in my head, demanding I tell their tale.

Independent publishing seemed like the answer to my problems. Invest the time, a little bit of money and find ways to objectively assure yourself of the quality, before putting it out there for all the world to read.

Except it doesn't quite work like that.

Since joining the growing ranks of independent authors, all pushing our masterpieces on the reading populous, I've discovered it can be even more distracting than sending out ream after ream of submissions letters and getting no reply.

When you turn indie, although you're master of your own rudder, you lack the publishing house crew to help you navigate the murky waters of the publishing world.

The Old Man and The Sea, photo by by Jaci XIII

You wanted control of your book? Congratulations, you got it! And everything else that goes with it; overnight you've become more than just an author; now you're an editor, publisher, marketeer, PR guru, spokesman and teaboy.

In order to attract the readers you have to circulate. No posh frock required, no canapes to nibble. This is virtual circulation. You join author groups, indulge in book swaps, become a member of so many social networking sites that you can also add P.A. to that impressive list of roles above, just to keep track. Heaven knows I am the worst at keeping track!

You'd sell you soul for a star in order to increase your rating, and you try without success to embrace the bad reviews when they appear; telling yourself and anyone else who'll listen that, 'Hey, that's what it's all about'. Knowing that you either need to develop a thicker skin, or quit.

And then you look back at why you gave up on chasing the traditional publishing route and ask yourself why? What's different? You may not be throwing all your energies into submitting anymore. But virtual circulation is just as much of a distraction from your true calling of writing, as ever those subs were.

But then I think again ...

As an indie author I have much more appreciation for what goes into making a book. It is indeed more than just a story. Each copy you sell, even if you give it away, has a little bit of you inside it.

You get to move in circles with people who understand what you've been through, and who are usually more than willing to impart a little bit of learned wisdom into ways to work smarter and reach out to more readers.

And as for those books swaps. What a privilege! Authors are inviting you with trusting, open arms to read the fruits of their labours with the aim of getting one of those stars. No soul sale required, just honesty, integrity and occasionally a little bit tact.

Indie authoring may be looked down upon by some, but from the inside looking out, with a group of peers around me who I now consider 'virtual' friends, I'm a better, more patient, and more accepting person for it.

It's not the easy option, not by a long shot. And my books may not be thrust mindlessly onto the shelves of every bookshop out there. I've had to work hard for every review I've received, for every star that decorates my ratings; and I wear them like a badge of honour. Becoming an indie author, long after I left the comfort of state education has been one of the most educational and sociable experiences of my life!

Friday, 14 February 2014

Is that the time?!

Hey Everyone,

I'm sorry I've been away so long. Did you miss me?

OddvillePress_v2_i01I've been working hard recently getting The Oddville Press relaunch edition ready for it's big release, which incidentally is today. I'm so proud of the work my team put in to getting us published, and you know we have some fantastic talents in our magazine.

Please check out issue 1, vol II, here.

I've also been working hard on editing Soul Reflection, ready for going to my wonderful proofreader. But even though that's a few months away, what with Sarah being so shy, it's proving difficult. Every time I get so far and then bam! She locks herself in the bathroom. But I think I know her weakness, and I'll get her out soon.

The other great news for Soul Reflection is that I have a talented young photographer lined up to create my cover, using a bespoke piece of jewellery, created specially for Archer and Sarah's story. And if we're lucky I'll have some swag to give away around the release date, in the shape of that very necklace. Ooooh!

Sales of Soul Reunion are doing okay. Reviews are building nicely. I need to get better at marketing, I really do. But when you love the creation so much, it's hard to put it down and stand on internet-street corners soliciting your self to potential readers. Like most indie authors, it makes you feel a bit ... grubby. That's why we need you lovely readers to spread the word for us, through word of mouth and blinding reviews.

And finally ... I wanted to give a shout out to fellow paranormal romance author I've recently discovered. This is totally unsolicited by the way - her books have just blown me away. Serioulsy, they've held me captive for the last three days as I've read them one after another, after another. And having finished the last one today ... I'm lost. I'm hoping the next book is coming soon, and I've got my fingers crossed for who I'd like the main character to be. But I think you'll see just how much I think of her when I say her books put me in mind of the brilliant Blackdagger Brotherhood, by J.R. Ward.

If you want to know more please check out my reviews on Goodreads

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Blog Shout Out: Opinionated Cupcakes

I thought I'd stop by a little earlier for once to share something with you all.

Last week I posted in Review Seekers on Facebook that I was looking for reviews for Soul Reunion. The post got a couple of likes, but otherwise all seemed quiet. Then, on Saturday I got an e-mail from a reviewer saying they would like to read and review my novel. Wonderful!

I emailed straight back with a copy of the book and waited ...

Yesterday, only two days later, I was delighted to receive an e-mail back telling me how much they had enjoyed my book and that they would be sharing reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.  Even better, this lovely reviewer also has a blog where she and a friend share book reviews.

Opinionated Cupcakes is that blog. And I'm here to share it with all of you, because there's nothing more important to an author, especially an Indie Author such as myself, than finding someone who is not only willing to read your book and take a chance on an unknown, but also to take the time to write up a fair and honest review and then share it with the world in the hope of attracting more readers for you.

You can read Rinny's review of Soul Reunion here, on Opinionated Cupcakes

I'd like to say a massive thanks to Review Seekers for a great page on Facebook, but I'd like to give an even massiver (new word alert!) thanks to Rinny from Opinionated Cupcakes, for taking a chance on my novel, and then providing me with the most wonderful review. It's reviews like yours, Rinny, that let me know I'm on the right track with my writing. So, thank you!

If you're an author and looking for a review, please do check out Opinionated Cupcakes