Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Turning Points

Remember: Promo won’t do you a bit of good if you don’t have something to sell!
So…pages FIRST!
**The motto of 1st Turning Point

HANK: If you don't know of her, I'm betting you will soon. Ann Charles is the co-creator and co-owner of the phenomenally successful and incredibly educational, a website for both unpublished and published writers, where nearly fifty authors, reviewers, and PR consultants teach, share, and learn all
about promotion. It's a constantly updated, endlessly interesting source of inspiration and experience. (Read this first, then go. Click on "articles" when you get there.)

Ann's also had other champagne moments this year, one of which was winning the coveted Daphne Award for Excellence in Mystery and Suspense for her manuscript.
(Whoo hoo.) (That's not actually it, at left, but you get the point.)
(And of course, since WRITE FIRST is our writing mantra here at JRW, we're thrilled to find that the promotion pros, like Ann, think we're on the right track.)
And now, because storytelling is what she does, Ann is giving Jungle Red the scoop on her success. They say you can only learn from experience. Now, luckily for us, Ann shares hers.

Author Up!
by Ann Charles

Let me tell you a little story about why I have the privilege of hanging out today with the brilliant ladies of Jungle Red Writers...

Once upon a time I wanted to write a book and get it published. You’re familiar with this yarn: Author writes a book, author naively believes it is stellar and worthy of a spot on all bestseller lists, author is rejected, author returns to keyboard with egg on her face (I prefer mine scrambled with ketchup, please). Author tries again, and again, and again; running head-first into that same brick wall until either it falls down, or she does.

A few years ago, I had an epiphany about this cyclical tale and the throbbing lump on my forehead—the section that explained how to climb up and over the brick wall was missing. Suddenly, I had a new mission: I would find this missing piece of information. I became obsessed, scouring bookshelves for a hidden codex that might reveal helpful hints, digging for clues on successful authors’ websites, studying the career moves of my role models. Two restraining orders and a night in solitary confinement later, I realized something very important: I needed to write my own climbing instructions.

Now, some of you may not be as thickheaded as I was and figured this bit out long ago, but that’s not the way I tumble. While I usually learn best from my own screw-ups, which explains my first marriage and divorce, this time I learned from studying, analyzing, and experimenting; and that is exactly what it has taken for me to climb as far up this wall as I have, brick by brick, one hand over the other.

Four years ago, I took my first class on marketing. Since then, I have read widely on the subject of promotion and marketing for both fiction and non-fiction authors, co-designed a website dedicated to sharing knowledge about this important half of an author’s career, and snatched up every nugget of wisdom and ounce of advice offered.

These days, I try to share things I’ve learned about conquering that wall and making the jump to success, to help fellow authors gear up and scale their own walls. With this goal in mind, let me throw you five lines to help you climb.

1. Dig In: Success is not guaranteed with a contest win or a publishing contract. It’s developed over time in small bits and pieces, usually includes a fair share of cuts and bruises, often leaves a scar behind, and can only be found in authors who, like Roberta, Jan, and Hallie, are too diligent, persistent, and focused to give up and take a seat on the sidelines.

2. Be Yourself: My path to success is not the same as Hank’s, nor Rosemary’s or Rhys's. Don’t try to mimic the success of others, because you’ll fail. You’ll end up angry, depressed, and throwing darts at the book covers of the same authors who might otherwise lend you a hand when you need it.

Also, don’t lose sight of what’s important in your definition of success. For example, one aspect of my “success” is determined by landing workshop opportunities and venues. I want to help other authors because it makes me happy, so for me happiness=success. Your definition of success may include selling 20,000 copies of your ground-breaking, futuristic, romantic mystery, Killer Love-Monkeys from the Planet Enigma. Your goals and efforts should focus on targeting and hooking your audience with the hope that they’ll buy the sequel. Giving workshops might send you off on a time-wasting tangent, unless you’re speaking to rapt audiences at Planet-of-the-Apes conventions.

3. Think Entrepreneur: My friend and fellow mystery author, Polly Iyer, once told me, “You will succeed because you refuse to fail.” I like to think of Polly as a fortune-teller, but in truth, if she is right, it’s because I see myself as an entrepreneur first and an author second. The books I write are my “products.” After I have a new product in hand, Ann the Entrepreneur has to figure out how to market and sell the book/series, secure future opportunities, and keep the stockholders (aka my family) happy. In my sleuthing, I’ve found that this entrepreneurial concept is common amongst the most successful authors.

However, there is a dark side to this insight—entrepreneurs don’t win “World’s Best Mother” and other similar awards. The path to success is long and hard, full of potholes and family interventions. You have to make your writing career a priority in your life, and at the same time continue to shower your family with love and attention...or at least drizzle on them semi-regularly. A lot of authors struggle to balance it all. You need to practice multi-tasking on a regular basis and keep those balancing muscles in shape.

4. Make a Plan: Writing to get published requires time and dedication, as I’ve already mentioned. You have to really want to succeed; be determined, stubborn, and patient, but your odds are improved if you work with a career plan. What’s a career plan? It’s a document in which you think long-term and plan your successes out on paper far into the future, placing targets out there into the ether to aim toward. Your future is unwritten. A career plan is where you start to map it out, making sure you at least know which way is north.

5. Get Big: I heard something on television recently that struck home: In Hollywood, success is in the franchise. Think about James Patterson, Stephen King, and J.K. Rowling—they are franchises in their own right. You know their names, not all of the titles of their books (unless you’re a diehard fan). Start thinking about how you can make your name and books into a franchise. Don’t focus on marketing one of your books, think about how you will market you, the fabulous author of these wonderful books, to your fans—old and new. You have to reach the masses. Books alone won’t do it. Think big. No, BIGGER than that.

Now, you have several lines of rope to get started up that wall, so stop slamming head-first into it and start using your noggin for less painful purposes.

I challenge you to “Author Up!” What are you doing to scale your wall to success?
* * *

Thanks to the successful women of Jungle Red Writers for letting me hang out for a day; and special thanks to Hank Phillippi Ryan for inviting me to blather on in the first place.

Ann Charles is an award-winning author who writes romantic mysteries that
are splashed with humor. She recently won the 2010 Daphne du Maurier for
Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. She has also been a Romance Writers of
America Golden Heart finalist, as well as a Pacific Northwest Writers
Association Literary Contest finalist. A member of Sisters in Crime and
Romance Writers of America for many moons, she has a B.A. in English with an
emphasis on creative writing from the University of Washington. She is
currently toiling away on her next book while her agent works on selling her
manuscripts. When she is not dabbling in fiction, she is penning
writing-related articles or standing on her workshop soapbox, sharing what
she has learned over the years about the craft and self-promotion. Visit her
at, or read her weekly mom-related antics at

******TOMORROW: the Scoop on the e-zine SPINETINGLER. And just a tidbit of a quote from the editor-in-Chief: "And if he wants the writer banned for life, I'm fine with that."
And that's just the beginning.


  1. Good article, Ann. I especially identify with the message of following your own path. Many of us have wasted a lot of time trying to do things the "right" way. Ah, but eventually we see the light. :)


    PS: I thought quiche made you happy.

  2. Anne, wonderful article! Love your books. Love your articles. I have read 410 books in the past year and your (unpublished) book was among the five I liked best.

    As your friend, co-worker and President (I actually prefer the word "Tsar") of your fan club, I can attest that you are a champion multi-tasker and also my idol.


  3. Oops. Ann, not Anne.

  4. Hi Ann and Hank!

    Thank you for the fabulous tips! I love what your friend Polly said about refusing to fail. You really do have to develop a bulldog determination to make it in this business.

    And, yes, I'm still working on my career plan, so no beady-eyed looks! :)


  5. Hi Ann,
    Thanks for visiting and what a great piece. And it couldn't have come at a better time for me. I just delivered the manuscript for next year's book and I have to kick back into Entrepreneurial gear. It's a business.
    That said, I'm enough of an old hippie to believe there's some positive karmic payback for writers who help and inspire others whether it's with workshops, advice or a few kind words.

  6. Hi Ann, it's so nice to have you visiting here! We are thrilled with all your success and sure we'll hear a lot more about you, the brand, in the future. You are certainly correct that success isn't defined by the first win. or the second or third....

    Tell us a little more about your workshops. And then how how you can possibly fit all this into one day!

  7. Very nice, Ann. I like your five points. Marketing courses should be required for anyone wanting a career in the arts. I'm hoping to read your book soon.

    Polly is my real muse. She keeps me on track too. She's an excellent write as well as a great person to have in your corner.

  8. Hi, Ann - Congratulations and welcome! We're so happy to have you here.

    Great advice. I especially like your advice: be yourself.

    Entrepreneurship -- I get exhausted just thinking about it. But the authors I admire somehow manage to do it all the time while churning out books.

  9. Fabulous, Ms. Charles. Thanks for all the tips. I think we intrinsically know them, but your list is a keeper. I particularly like ...

    Remember: Promo won’t do you a bit of good if you don’t have something to sell!
    So…pages FIRST!

    So you know where I'll be :)

    Congratulations on all your successes! I particularly love the Daphne award ;)

  10. Thanks for the excellent article. So many writers hide their heads in the sand about the business side of the publishing industry. That's like going into a game expecting to win but refusing to study all the available rules.

    Refuse to be marginalized.

    Ellis, Polly makes a good muse. :-)

    Suzanne Adair

  11. Thank you, Ann! Wonderful article! It's so important to remember we have actually long term goals/careers beyond "just" getting the book out!

    Well said, and evenly balanced.

  12. Great Article, Ann. Can't wait to get my autographed copy of Nearly Departed! Robin Weaver

  13. I love the site, Ann! And I love your advice--think like an entrepreneur, think big, and be yourself. All wonderful tips for the pre-published (and the published).

  14. Ann--so great to see you! Tell us about your Daphne manuscript, okay? What did the judges love about it?

    Hey, everyone!What a lovely group this morning!

  15. Looks like that business degree will come in handy after all! That marketing class I took was my favorite.

  16. Ann,
    This is an outstanding article, informative, and inspiring. Being your own person (in your writing) is most significant and important. Thank you for sharing your insights.

  17. Welcome, Ann.
    You have made exactly the point I try to make when I speak to writers. Don't think ahead to how you're going to make the bestseller list. Write the very best book that's in you. And when you're done, write an even better one.
    Obviously promotion is a necessity these days and it's becoming easier with visibility on the web, but some writers can spend all day promoting when they should be revising.

  18. Fun article, Ann! Congrats on your Daphne win. You know how excited I was for you. I can't wait to see what path you end up taking. I have a feeling you are going to take the publishing world by storm.

    Hank - Thanks for having Ann on. I'm looking forward to seeing you at Bouchercon.

  19. Good Morning All!

    Sorry I'm tardy, I had an early morning WebEx for my day job, so I've been up to my ears in learning new software already this morning.

    Thanks for all of the positive discussion going on. I love this subject, and I get energized by sharing thoughts on writing and promo and planning with authors.

    Also, thanks to all who have dropped by and left fun comments. I'll address the individual questions shortly (need to run out for more coffee first--A Toffee Nut Latte awaits, yum!).

    Ann C.

  20. Hi Ann. All writers need to know your steps to success. You're a good example of how to market your brand. Thanks for sharing your story with the rest of us. What an inspiration!

    Misty Evans
    Heart-stopping danger...undercover intrigue.

  21. Every author needs to hear this. I don' t think the walls will ever go away, no matter where we are at in our career. These are excellent, motivating tips and they'll help me face that next wall with fierce determination. Thanks, Ann!
    @Jody, we may have to arm wrestle for that fan club spot. :}

  22. Okay, I'm coming to life again thanks to Starbucks.

    Roberta said, "Tell us a little more about your workshops. And then how you can possibly fit all this into one day!"

    I have been giving workshops for a few years now, mostly local, but I'm doing more online and spreading a wider net these days. I have different workshop partners--I like to teach with my writing buddies because it's a lot of fun giving them in pairs, plus I think two brains can sometimes offer more than one brain. Standing up in front of a group of people is easier when your friends are standing there next to you, too.

    I give workshops on platform development and career building with Jacquie Rogers and Wendy Delaney. I give workshops on plotting for pantsters and plotters, making your writing "golden" (as in prepping for the RWA Golden Heart contest), and spicing up your subplots with romance with Wendy Delaney. I also am trying to land a couple of workshops on writing while raising kids (time management strategies) and on what having a career coach can do for you and how to get started with one with my career coach, Amber Scott.

    Whew! Okay, where are these workshops? Online (as I mentioned), plus in the Pacific Northwest in person. In a little over a week (Sept. 18th), I have the honor of tagging on to the end of Chris Roerden's workshop with an hour on adding romantic subplots to your stories.

    For a list of where I am and when and what I'm going to be jabbering about, check out my Workshops webpage:

    As for how I fit everything into one day, I keep a lot of to-do lists around. I may be a right-brained pantser when it comes to story telling, but on the business side, I'm list-happy and goal-driven. I am part of a weekly goals group with some motivating author friends and I also check in with Amber, my career coach, almost daily.

    I also only need to sleep about 5-6 hours a night, and those extra hours between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. when everyone else is in bed come in handy.

    I'm a plate spinner by nature, never content to sit still and only focus on one thing. It can drive my family nuts, but put to good use, it helps me get things done.

    Thanks for asking, Roberta.
    Ann C.

  23. Regarding my new teddy bear, aka the Daphne award:

    Hank said, "Tell us about your Daphne manuscript. What did the judges love about it?"

    My Daphne-winning manuscript is titled Nearly Departed in Deadwood. It's a romantic mystery with humor and paranormal elements--I know, a huge genre mix, right? On top of that, I'm kind of quirky on the page, so you can imagine my surprise when when my book won the Daphne. I entered with the hope of getting to be a finalist and receiving wonderful feedback. Winning was beyond my wildest dreams. I still just sit around and smile when I think about that. One of these days I'll stop carrying the award around in my purse. ;)

    A short blurb on my book:

    Little girls are vanishing from Deadwood, South Dakota. Fearing her daughter might be next, single mom, Violet Parker, is desperate to find the monster behind the abductions.

    With her savings dwindling and just three weeks left to sell her first house or lose her Realtor job, Violet must convince her only buyer to stop rejecting the vintage homes she shows him as if they’re haunted. So when a handsome jeweler hires her to sell his century-old, Victorian masterpiece, she’s ecstatic…until she sees the dilapidated dwelling.

    Short on time and long on worry, she refuses to give up her dream of a fresh start in Deadwood. But with a malicious coworker trying to get her fired, a secret admirer sending her creepy messages, and a sexy, dark-eyed stranger hiding skeletons in his closet, Violet could end up as one of Deadwood’s dearly departed.

    As for what the judges loved about my manuscript that helped me to win the Daphne I would have to say the most common comment was that they loved my "voice"--that it's unique and different, and that it made them want to read the rest of the book. The irony in this is that I thought it would be my "voice" that would keep me from winning. My opening chapters (I submitted the first two) got a lot of in-line raves from the judges. They really liked the way I pulled them into the story and they found the heroine's predicament and the stumble into the mystery believable. Finally, my dialogue was a winner with them, with comments about it being fun and snappy.

    So, if someone was to ask me for my advice on what they need to do to win the Daphne, I'd say to write a book you love to read, then test it on other readers to make sure you aren't the only one in love with the book. In one of my workshops I talk about the benefit of having a test group for your books. For example, before my book goes to an editor, I probably have twenty different readers go through it, one is my agent who looks at the marketability of different parts of it, some readers are line editors, some look for consistency, some focus on plot and subplot and make sure I didn't leave any plot threads hanging. I ask lots of questions--it's like your high school English class all over again, but I give better grades and free coffees in exchange for answers.

    Thanks for asking, Hank!
    Ann C.

  24. Hi Ann,

    Good advice clearly and succinctly written. Thanks for sharing. See you at Emerald City.


  25. I really enjoyed this Ann:) Love the advice on being "you"'s something we keep telling ourselves all our lives, and yet we seem to have a hard time doing it:) So, this reminder was good for me at this time.

    I've printed out the five steps to remember (My short term memory is iffy at the moment!)

    Great information:)


  26. Just back from a shoot--and look at all I missed! SO great to see you all.

    What's Emerald City, Judith?

    And give a shout to our Rhys, whose new book ROYAL BLOOD is now available! More on that later this week..

    Ann, your ms. sounds wonderful. Cannot wait to read it. ANd when it sells, you'll come talk about it here, right?

  27. I really enjoyed the interview, Ann, and I'm also a Polly fan. But if we keep telling folks about her, everyone will want a bit of her. Hmm. Is there enough Polly to go around???

    I too have learned from head banging that there is no golden parachute into publishing. You have to scale the wall by yourself, and then there's another mountain. Multi-tasking is a bit of touch and go, some days more going and less touching, but that's life.

    Congratulations on your success to date, Ann. You are certainly charting a bright course.

  28. HI Ann,
    Great article. I love the advice to be yourself. You never see that and its so important!!

    Thanks for sharing it on Jungle Red.

  29. I'm usually better at keeping up with individual comments (Laurie Schnebly is my role model here), but my dang day job keeps getting in the way. ;) I'm going to do some quick one-line responses in case you guys are checking back.

    Jacquie--"Niche rhymes with quiche, which is a tasty food, and eating that makes me happy." ;)

    Jody--You are wonderful and always make me smile. You also wrap presents better than anyone I've ever met. You could teach Martha Stewart a thing or two, I bet.

    Tracey--You feel my beady-eyed look, do you? You should. :) I'm waiting for that email from you when you tell me that you have a solid Career Plan drafted and you are busy following it.

    Rosemary--Good luck kicking back into Entrepreneurial gear! That often involves some grinding noises from my head and a little smoke from under the hood. I hope you're right about karma, I like to think along those lines, too.

    Ellis--I agree about marketing courses required, whether we like it or not. Polly is wonderful! She always makes me chuckle and I look forward to seeing her published soon!

    Hallie--I know what you mean about getting exhausted just thinking about all there is to do. I'd love to do so much more, but unless I take up hard core drugs, I'm stuck with the limited hours in a day. Thanks for having me on your site!

    Donnell--Maybe now that you are taking a break from running the Daphne contest you'll really be able to dig back into writing and building your empire. I love the Daphne award, too! ;)

    Suzanne--"Refuse to be marginalized": great quote! I may need to add that to my wall of quotes. Thanks for stopping by!

    Susan S--Thanks for hanging out and letting me stand by and take notes as you venture out into the publishing world. I'm on your heels!

    More in another minute...Ann C.

  30. More replies...

    Robin--I'm going to be sending you a copy soon, as promised. I think we need to do an exchange, though. I want to read, too!

    Meredith--Thank you for joining us today and I'm glad you like the site. I'm also glad you enjoyed reading the tips.

    Melissa--I'm glad you liked Marketing, because you'll be ahead of the curve if you embrace those ideas and soak up more. Many new authors who I've noticed are making tracks have a background in publicity and marketing. They have a leg up from the start (which works well with my "wall" metaphor--ha!).

    Norman (aka Dr. Squawk)--Thanks for stopping over and saying, "Hi!" You are always an inspiration with you determination to learn new things.

    Rhys--Congratulations on the new book now available. Good luck on promoting it and making it into a huge success. Thanks for the welcome and having me here.

    Joelle--Congrats on your soon to be released book, Skating Around the Law. I can't wait to read it. You're such a wonderful friend and mentor. I appreciate everything you've shared without hesitation. You are an inspiration. :)

    Misty--Hi! It's great to see you over here. You're not such a bad example of brand, yourself. In fact, I have my eye on you, watching and learning. You go girl! I love how well things are going for you.

    Amber--Thanks for stopping by and cheering me on. I couldn't have asked for a better career coach and friend. It's kismet, woman. Here is too floppy hats, sunglasses, poolside loungers, and salt-rimmed margaritas.

    Okay, a few more and I'm caught up...

  31. Loretta--I'm with you on short term memory glitches. I'm in constant need of lists and calendars now, and I still feel like things are slipping through the cracks. What we need are clones. Although some days a monkey might suffice for me. ;)

    Hank--"Emerald City" is Emerald City Writers Conference, a wonderful conference here in Seattle put on by the local RWA chapter. I'd love to come back and chat some more after the book is out there for the public. I have some crazy marketing and promo schemes planned. It would be fun to check in on how things are going after I get them rolling.

    Maggie--A fellow Polly fan, excellent. She's wonderful and funny. I'm not surprised so many folks know and love her. Good luck multi-tasking and scaling the wall! Thanks for the congrats.

    Jan--Being yourself is so critical, I'm learning. I write under a pseudonym, so this is kind of ironic. However, I find that if I just let my smile lead the way, be nice, really listen and converse with others on a personal level, NOT talk at everyone, everything works out for me. I think one of the best parts of this journey is the friends I've made and am making. They make the rejection sting so much less. Thanks for stopping by.

    Okay, a break for now. Thanks again all for the comments!

    Ann C.

  32. Ann, What a wonderfully helpful article. You are always so full of advice and motivation. You are going to take the publishing world by storm very soon...Because what you put out in the world comes back at you a hundred fold.

    It's time for you to reap the benefits of all you do. :)

  33. Hi Ann,

    Great tips. You really got me thinking about how I'm marketing myself. Thanks for sharing such great info.

  34. Just backc from a speaking engagement-- and wow! Gerri! How wonderful to see you! (I'm lucky enough that Gerri and I often get seated next to each other--Russell and Ryan. Love it.)

    Oh, Emerald City sounds great. Maybe I can attend some day. Love to.

    Mantra for the day: There's never enough Polly to go around! (I'm a huge fan, too...)

    What a fabulous day, you all! You have me on the verge of tears. what a wonderful community. Ann, you're amazing. Thank you. And cannot wit to hear what happens next. See you at FTP.

  35. And hey, Jacquie! You get a special all have a truly stellar site. Thank you!

  36. Ann, I'm catching up late -- but LOVED the chance to read about your Deadwood story, along with the five great tips. Thanks!

    Laurie, honored at being your "reply" inspiration :)

  37. Gerri--Thanks for your positive outlook. You always show me ways to keep my chin up and plow onward. Plus, you share the things you've learned with me and that's invaluable. (FYI everyone who is reading, Gerri has been one of my role models in this business for over a decade. She's a smart business woman and great author. Watch her, she's really going to do amazing things!)

    Joleen--Thanks for stopping by! You are building, building, building. I always love your 1st Turning Point posts. You come at promotion in a fresh way and are great about sharing the results of your experiments.

    Laurie--It's wonderful that you stopped by and said "Hi." You're an incredible commenter on your posts, giving almsot as much in your comments as you do in your lessons. There is a real lesson there for me. I'm paying close attention.

  38. Thanks, Hank. What a nice thing to say.

    And I do hope you and the other Jungle Red authors make it to Emerald City. It's a blast! You could see Ms. Charles in action--what a sight to behold! Just kidding. Well, sorta.

  39. I'm never offline, but I was yesterday, and look what I missed. One of the best things about being involved with the Daphnes was meeting Ann (Donnell, Jean, and Wendy, too). This talented woman is a dynamo, and being around her made me feel lazy. I'm thrilled to call her my friend. When she makes it, which she will, she'll still know who her friends are. No high horses for her, unless they're in Deadwood.

  40. Hey Polly! Welcome..and yeah, since you weren't here, we just talked about you! Hope to see you soon..

    And Ann, yes, love to hear your "crazy marketing and promo schemes"! Do tell..

  41. Hi, I'm back again. You just can't get rid of me, huh? Kind of like a bed bug. ;)

    Polly--You're right. No high horses for me. My family keeps me grounded, and my roots keep me humble. Success is a group effort for me, and I'd be nowhere without my friends, family, and teachers along the way.

    Hank--You said to tell a little about my, "crazy marketing and promo schemes." Well, I'm in the planning mode now, writing up a fun marketing plan and coming up with promo material for the Deadwood series. I'm very fortunate to have a few Aces up my sleeve. The first is my brother. He's an artist whose style meshes well with my books ( We are working together on several promotional materials and ideas of how we can lure folks visibly at book signings in unusual venues, such at the big, annual Sturgis Biker Rally in the Black Hills held every August (800,000+ bikers/tourists rolling in every August who might love a story about the setting the enjoy coming back to every year). Having the ability to work one-on-one with an artist who can add all kinds of visual effects to my marketing and promotional efforts offers incredible possibilities.

    Another Ace I have is my own publicist/saleswoman who works for free with the promise of payback when books begin to sell. She's an ex-saleswoman who lives in Deadwood and is paving the way for me to work hand-in-hand with the Chamber of Commerce and local businesses to help promote and sell my book. She's already drummed up a lot of interest in my series with lots of potential relationships with the local tourist-related businesses (Deadwood is a big gambling town now with a huge number of tourists visiting every year).

    My agent is another Ace. She lives in L.A. and has ties in with the film industry. I'm not thinking a Deadwood movie here, rather all of the networking she is ready to ramp up to help promote and market. Again, lots of possibilities here.

    So, I plan to hit several targeted areas to start, using a rifle instead of a shotgun when I shoot. I'm trying to think BIG here, even thought I'm taking more precise aim at the get-go.

    These are just a few of the avenues I am exploring and taking for promotion and marketing. I have a growing fan base already that I've acquired through sharing my writing. They are all ready to saddle up and ride into battle with me. I owe them way too many coffees. I'll be maxing out a credit card to pay them all back, I'm sure. :)

    Thanks for asking!

    Ann C.

  42. Argh, bedbugs. Don't even say the word!

    But why, dear Ann, would you think we'd ever want you to go away?

    And I'm proud to be in that fan base! See you soon....and keep us posted, okay? Come to Boston!