Thursday, July 19, 2018

HELP ME WITH BOOK 4 OF THE KINDRILY SERIES?


Besides all the heartwarming emails from fans asking for more Kindrily stories, the universe has also been giving me signs lately that I should probably create a book 4. I want to keep my readers happy and I don’t like to ignore signs from the universe, but I’ve been perplexed about a fourth book ever since I released Fighting For Infinity. So, who better to turn to for help than my wonderful readers?

*SPOILER ALERT! If you haven’t read all three of my Kindrily books, LOOK AWAY. Seriously, I’m about to give spoilers galore here, so don’t ruin it for yourself. Stop reading.*

 What should book 4 be? 

Do I back up a bit and tell Krista and Carson’s love story?
(I’m tempted because it would be so much fun and many readers love Carson and Krista. But some of the timeline would overlap with what has already happened, just from a different POV. Not sure if readers would enjoy that or hate it.)

Do I start where we left off and keep telling the story from Maryah’s POV?
(I worry this would be too much of a drastic change because her voice would change SO much now that…well, you know. See? I’m still trying to keep this spoiler free.)

Do I continue onward from Nathan’s POV along with another (different) narrator?
A honeymoon book has been a very popular request and while that would be very fun indeed, *blushes* I don’t think it would be enough for a whole book. I may possibly offer that as a bonus short story or novella later down the road. (Hang in there, ladies!)

I’ve already started a story that takes place almost eighteen years after FFI ends. But I feel like jumping ahead that far would be unfair. There’s so much that happens between “now” and then.

I’ve also toyed with the idea of a secondary couple turning to our beloved Kindrily for help. Anyone remember James and Lilian? They were the couple from Marcus’s kindrily who Dedrick had mind-controlled and they were helping him with his evil plight. My imagination has been brewing with a whole big story about them that could turn into another book or two. I could tell that story from Nathan’s POV along with Lilian’s.

I’ve even got a spinoff series idea based on Edgar’s patients. If I go this route, it wouldn’t be a book 4 to the current series, but it would feature many of your favorite characters from The Kindrily. And, of course, there would be lots of magic, reincarnation, supernatural abilities, and romance.

HELP! Do you see my dilemma? It’s so hard to choose!

And instead of choosing one and working on it, I’ve gone and started a whole new and different book idea which I LOVE (and I hope you will too) but deep down I know that I also need to return to my Kindrily peeps. So many more stories are waiting to be told from their world, I just don’t know where to start.

I’m open to suggestions. Let’s discuss. You can comment below or on my FB page in the comments of this post. https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKaren/

Tell me, what should be written in the stars next?
I’m hoping to make a decision by the end of this weekend so I can start plotting next week. 
Please and thank you!

Thursday, July 12, 2018

I JOINED THE 500 CLUB and it's fabulous!


Good grief, look at that. I haven’t blogged since October 13th. Shame on me. 

I didn’t even blog when Sacred Seas came out in November. Eek. So, in case anyone missed it, I released the third and final book in my Sea Monster Memoirs trilogy. Yay! *throws belated confetti.*
I sort of took a break from writing for several months after releasing Sacred Seas, but now, I’m back and operating at full-steam ahead!

I decided to post an update about how and why I’m feeling so productive in case it can help other writers out there. While on a writing retreat last month, I read this post on The 500 Club by Randy Ingermanson.

If you are a writer, want to be a writer, used to be a writer, and/or beat yourself up for not finishing your story or not consistently writing every day (like I did) then you MUST read this. Seriously, it was a gamechanger for me.

I joined The 500 Club on June 10th. (SPOILER ALERT! There’s no actual club to pay for or join. Just go read the article!) I have written a minimum of 500 words every day since committing. Every day. That means I’ve officially been writing EVERY day for over a month. Through good times and bad, while on vacations, when not feeling well, even one night when I was exhausted and REALLY wanted to pass out in bed and excuse myself from writing my 500 daily words, but I didn’t. I stayed up the extra twenty minutes that it took me to write my minimum of 500 words and I slept peacefully because I didn’t let myself down. I kept my streak going.

After a month of doing this (it’s SO doable) I feel a million times better about myself and my productivity. I’m an actual writer again. My word counts keep climbing on my current two projects and my brain consistently churns with ideas for scenes, conversations, details, etc. It’s fabulous. I forgot how great it feels to consistently be in creative mode, but wow, it’s exhilarating to be in that mode again. Each day, my story grows. Little by little, crappy scene that needs editing by crappier scene that needs editing, but it grows. I can edit and revise crap. I can’t edit and revise a blank page.

Two of my writing partners, Meg and Marie, are also in the club. We check in with each other via text each day. We’ve learned that Meg likes to be rewarded with GIFs of Ryan Gosling. (Actually, we all do.) It’s encouraging to see one of them say they finished their words for the day. Also, I like to give them grief if they slack off and vice versa. Whatever works, right?

So, I’m still here, I’m still writing, and I will be contributing more books to the world in the near future. Lately, my focus has been a standalone novel that’s a supernatural romance. The MCs are adults (no YA this time) but I’m hoping my readers will enjoy it since it’s still my usual themes of star-crossed lovers in a magical setting.

Also, I’m dabbling in additional books for The Kindrily series. I’m having such a hard time figuring out which other couple’s story to tell first. So many great options. #authorproblems

And, finally, I hope to finish Sea, Stars, and Beyond. My trio of short stories from my three YA series. For some reason short stories are so much more difficult for me than writing full-length novels. But I promise, I’m working on it.

I’d love to hear how YOU are doing. What’s new and exciting in your world?

Friday, October 13, 2017

The Kraken is Coming!

Hello! *dusts off blog*

After years (decades? It sure feels that long) of working on the final book in my Sea Monster Memoirs series, Sacred Seas is finally a completed and edited story. YAY! *throws shimmering starfish confetti*

Edits are done. Formatting awaits. And then, it will be time to unleash the kraken into the world(s)! (That last sentence is a big hint for what's in store for you in book 3.)

I've debated on whether or not to plan the release for months from now in order to build up promotion time. However, I feel that's unfair to the readers who have been waiting for YEARS. (I'm so, so sorry for the wait.)

Therefore, in a very non-traditional way of doing a book release, I'm going to release Sacred Seas as soon as it's ready. I'm predicting mid November but if it's ready earlier than earlier it shall be.

Let's face it, it has been a LONG time since Dangerous Depths released, so you may need a refresher read to remember what the heck happened. (I needed a refresher read and I'm the author.) So, I'll be hosting a (re)read along party on Facebook starting Oct 18th. I will be rereading Tangled Tides during week 1, and Dangerous Depths during week 2. (Feel free to start reading earlier if you'd like.)

During those two weeks I'll be answering questions, chatting with readers, swooning over Treygan, and giving away lots of fun prizes: ebooks, signed paperbacks, sea creature themed treasures, and more.

Be sure to join the Facebook event by clicking HERE so you don't miss out on the fun.  

If you'd like to help spread the word about the FB party and Sacred Seas FINALLY releasing soon...
1.) I would love you forever
2.) You'd be entered to win an ebook (probably a day or two before anyone can buy it) PLUS a signed paperback. And I'll throw in some fun mermaid paraphernalia as an extra thank you.

To enter use this lovely Rafflecopter box below.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

https://www.facebook.com/events/181025595791871/


Thursday, February 9, 2017

How Karen Will Get Her Groove Back

Oh, where to start.

First and most importantly, I am truly sorry for disappearing for a year. Truly and deeply. That's mainly an apology to my readers, but also to myself.

Some of you might remember that back in February of last year I found myself a part-time job in an attempt to bring new energy to my writing and, hopefully, renew my creativity. Yay. Peachy. Except the job immediately turned full-time and then some, so I ended up putting almost all of my time and energy into that instead of keeping my writing a priority. I kept telling myself that "I'd get back to writing next week--when things at work slowed down." Except next week never came because things never slowed down.

As of today, I'm officially back. The universe showed me sign after sign after sign that I needed to return to my passion and refocus on the work that nourishes my soul. I needed to return to the people (real and fictional) whom I love so dearly: my readers, my characters, my family, my friends, my Dream Team of people who help(ed) with my books. Oh, and let's not forget, myself.

I lost my way for a while. (Don't we all?) But I did learn some important life lessons and I acquired some new treasured friends, so while a lot of time and productivity on my books was lost, the job paid off in priceless other ways. However, I'm now back on my writerly path with a renewed love and appreciation for the work I do as an author. I'm ready to travel forward fully equipped with all I've learned during this past year.

I'm also excited to finally make good use of the beautiful and amazing gift that my Prince Charming/Peter Pan had built for me. I introduce to you, my writing room! *throws confetti*  Check out the custom built cabinets, reading nook, cork boards, desk, etc...

And the heartwarming and inspirational note written on my new whiteboard that I read over and over...
And yes, the space doubles as a guest room. My desk folds down, Murphy Bed gets lowered and voila! My office becomes a cozy sleeping space for guests. Squishy especially loves the reading nook and makes great use of my pillows...
So, as of today, I am starting to catch up on messages, projects, and everything else book and writing related. To give you an update of where I am with my future releases:

I AM working on Sacred Seas. The rough draft does exist, I have my editor's notes, and I'm improving and revising it. I'm on page 99 of 385. It was being worked on very slowly, but now I will be able to give it the time and attention it deserves. However, I refuse to release it until I'm proud of it and confident that it's good enough for my readers. It's the final book of a trilogy. It has to be the best it can be. I won't ask my readers settle for less. I won't settle for less. I will announce a release date as soon as I'm sure of one.

The new and improved audiobook of Tangled Tides is currently awaiting approval from ACX. But it is done and I'm excited to share it with you very soon.

There WILL be another Kindrily book. I already wrote the opening chapter (at least the opening for right now) and I made lots of scene notes over this past weekend. My Kindrily characters are eagerly trying to get my attention because they have more stories to be told. I look forward to returning to their world and sharing more of their soul mate magic with you.

Sea, Stars and Beyond (my collection of bonus short stories from each of my series) is also on my Must Complete Soon list. Again, my editor read it and made notes, so it is coming along, but it still needs work before releasing it to my beloved readers. It's just not good enough yet.

That's it for now. It feels really good to be back. I hope you will reach out and let me know you're doing too. Comment below, message me on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, email me or send Harry Potter's owl to deliver me a message. (A visit from Hedwig would be my preferred method, but I'll take what I can get.)

The bottom line is this: I've missed you. I'm sorry for falling off the grid. I hope you forgive me, and I will do better moving forward.

And now, time for more coffee...

Monday, March 14, 2016

Pot o' Gold Giveaway Hop!

The Pot o' Gold Giveaway Hop is Coming – All Day on St. Patrick's Day!
 Pot o' Gold giveway Hop
19 amazing authors have come together to give away $100 in gift cards to Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, & Starbucks – plus eBooks, swag, and even more great prizes! I'm giving away a $5 Starbucks gift card plus winner's choice of any of my ebooks.
Just visit any of the following Facebook pages from midnight to midnight, Eastern time on Thursday, March 17th. Then hop to the next author on the list for more chances to WIN!
Don't forget to give the pages a LIKE – and check out their books. 
You might find your next great read!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Keep Swimming

A lovely reader emailed me yesterday to see how I was doing with Sacred Seas. She mentioned not seeing any recent updates on my blog, which reminded me that I have a blog. Ha. I have become a victim of our instant gratification society and post all of my updates on Facebook and/or Instagram because it's fast and easy. Sadly, it never occurred to me that some readers aren't on those sites (and I respect them for that) so I need to blow the dust off of my blog and post something.

Updates...

The third and final book in my Sea Monster Memoirs series has taken WAY too long. I was stuck, uninspired, afraid of disappointing readers with a grand finale that didn't seem so grand, and kept pushing it aside. I even wrote a whole different novel and started a new series while procrastinating on Sacred Seas.

http://amzn.to/23t2Kqo
The new book, Virtual Arcana, released in early 2015. I love it. I love the characters. It even ties into my Kindrily series. Awesome, right? Nope. The few reviews it did receive were positive, but much to my dismay, it flopped and has been flat-lining ever since. *sad sigh*

As you can imagine, the failure of Virtual Arcana did not help my worries about Sacred Seas. I still wrote stuff, but it all felt like crap. I worried the writer in me was broken. And I was afraid that even if I did finish Sacred Seas, no one would read it.

Then, in October, Moby, my dog of 15+ years, passed away and my heart broke into a million pieces. The last thing I wanted to do was write magical love stories when I was crying every day over my lost child. (Yes, she was my child. A furry one, but still.)

Cue the New Year when we all swear to do better, be better, work harder, etc. I kicked my butt back into gear and finally started writing some words I didn't want to delete.

As of today, Sacred Seas is hovering around 52k. Only 30k so or more to go before I have a full first draft. Looks like I'm going to actually release the kraken after all. Let's hope I can make it worth the wait. I'm shooting for a release date of sometime this Spring. I think the only author who has taken longer than me to write the next book in a series is George R.R. Martin. At least I'm in phenomenal company, right? My apologies for the long, long wait.

For my Kindrily fans:
1.) Go read Virtual Arcana. (Please. For the love of chocolate, someone read it. lol. No, seriously. ) A few Kindrily peeps make some guest appearances in a faraway future. (And if you write a review I'll love you forever.)
2.) Get excited about the fact that all three books will soon be available as audiobooks, and the narrating team is doing an amazing job. I'm so excited to share them with you.
3.) Hang tight because it's not over. Once I'm finished with Sacred Seas, I'm going to write a companion novel with all of your beloved characters. And then I'm going to write a second companion novel. More is coming!

I can't promise that I'll remember to blog regularly. But I can promise that when I have a new release or big news, I'll send out a newsletter. (No spammy stuff, I swear.) If you don't want to miss my important stuff, be sure to sign up for my newsletter. I always offer a giveaway too!

I hope you're all having a happy, healthy, productive new year so far. Let's all keep swimming!

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* Author Karen Amanda Hooper*

Write. Read. Imagine. Create. Learn. Love. Live. Repeat.