Tag Archives: self-publishing

#Author #Interview with Bella Andre #thesullivans author

sullivan tour badgePlease enjoy this interview with Bella Andre, New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of the contemporary romance series, The Sullivans. Then read on to learn how you can win huge prizes as part of this blog tour, including special romantic swag baskets for each book, an iPad Mini, Kindle Fire, Nook Color, and Kobo eReader, and Amazon and iTunes gift cards!

 Interview with Bella Andre

about her writing habits and success

1. Tell us about writing and publishing your very first novel. What were your expectations when you first waded into the self-publishing pond? Is there anything you would do differently if given another chance?

I honestly had no expectations other than some of my loyal readers would finally get a chance to read my book – and that was enough for me. Meeting so many new readers and fans has been icing on a cake I had no idea was being served.

2. You’re an icon in the indie publishing community. Your success is something we all aspire to. What do you believe has been the greatest contributing factor to the success of your novels?

Thank you, that’s lovely to hear. I’ve so enjoyed self-publishing these past couple of years, and I’ve been lucky to have the most wonderful fans with me every step of the way. There are so many things that go into success, but I think my focus and determination – along with the best readers in the world – have been the biggest factors.

3. What was your reaction when you first found out you broke onto the New York Times and USA Today best-sellers’ lists? How did you celebrate?

Actually, it’s kind of a funny story. I was on my way to the RWA National conference last summer and was sitting in the airport in Albany, New York when I found out I had three books on the USA Today bestsellers list. I called my husband and we had a mini celebration on the phone. I flew into Atlanta where I was switching planes for Anaheim, and when we landed I turned on my phone and checked my email. An agent (not mine, I was agentless at the time) had emailed me with the title “CONGRATULATIONS, New York Times!” That was when I found out I also had three books on the New York Times bestseller list…and I started crying. On the airplane. With a very conservative woman sitting next to me. She must have thought I was losing it, because she promptly turned her back on me. :) Of course I called my husband and cried happy tears some more. That night when I got into Anaheim, all of my closest writing friends came up to my room and we celebrated. It was AWESOME!

4. You’ve recently shared some very exciting news—Harlequin MIRA has optioned the print rights for The Sullivans in a record-breaking seven-figure deal. Congratulations! How did this transpire? And how does it affect your writing and publishing plans?

Thank you, I’m beyond thrilled about it and Harlequin have been a dream to work with. They are so incredibly enthusiastic about putting The Sullivans out in paperback in English all over the world, with a simultaneous launch in the US, the UK, Canada and Australia starting this June and going back-to-back each month with the first eight books through April 2014.

My ebook sales numbers for the self-published Sullivan series had been growing bigger and bigger in the year since I’d started publishing the series, and I knew a print-only deal was going to happen soon. When so many Sullivans hit the New York Times and USA Today all at once, that was when the publishers started calling and making offers. I truly feel that Harlequin is the *perfect* publisher for my sexy, emotional contemporary romance Sullivan series.

Because I retained all of my ebook, audiobook, foreign translation and film/TV rights, I am continuing to put out my Sullivans, and other future books, as self-published ebooks and audio books. I have released seven Sullivan ebooks so far and the eighth (ALWAYS ON MY MIND, Lori Sullivan’s story) will be out this spring…and I have a great idea for a brand new series that I hope to start writing this year as well. I have licensed the series in Brazil, France and Portugal so far, and the first two books are already big bestsellers in Brazil, which is very exciting.

5. You write fast! Not only do you produce several novels per year, you produce several well written, polished novels per year. What is your writing process like? Do you have any advice for other wordsmiths struggling with productivity?

Thanks for the great compliment. I work so hard on my stories to make sure they’re emotional and fun and sexy and that they take my readers out of their lives for a little while. I write every day, everywhere, no matter what. I don’t wait for inspiration or a muse to come calling. Fortunately, my favorite thing is writing. In fact, today as I was sniffling over my keyboard during a really emotional scene between my hero and heroine, I was thinking how very happy it made me to be able to write books all day…and to know that I have the best fans in the world waiting to read them!

6. In the early days, what did you do to market your books? Would you recommend these strategies to writers in today’s market?

I took a really personal approach. Because I had started digital publishing in response to my readers who had emailed asking me for books, whenever I released a book, I individually emailed each and every single reader to let them know about it. Now, thanks to Facebook and Twitter, I can interact with my readers in other ways that let me spend more time on actually writing, and I recommend doing anything that puts you in touch with your readers.

7. How has making it big changed your approach to writing and marketing your work? Has it changed your approach?

I truly believe that my fans want me to spend more time writing and less time gabbing. :) So I always err on the side of writing…and then once I’ve met my page count goals for the day, I go onto twitter and Facebook and answer emails.

8. You’ve connected with a large international fan base. Do readers abroad respond differently to your novels than those in the USA? Which countries in particular have fallen in love with your work?

I’m having a love affair with my Brazilian readers, and I also love love love my Australia/New Zealand, UK and Canadian readers as well! They’re so passionate and supportive of The Sullivans – but I’ve been really fortunate to find readers everywhere have been kind and amazing.

9. You attend a lot of conferences. Recently, you delivered the keynote address at the 2012 Book Expo America. How have conferences contributed to your writing career?

Conferences are an amazing opportunity to stay abreast of what’s happening in the business. I get incredible value out of networking in the lounge and hearing what people are up to and what ideas they have. The thing is, I truly love this business and everyone I’ve met had been wonderful…so it’s really not work at all for me. In fact, going to a conference and meeting with people is always such fun.

10. My, you are a busy bee! How do you find balance between writing, publishing, and promoting your books and the rest of your life? Any tips for the rest of us?

Give up sleep and sanity…and have an awesome husband who is happy to take care of absolutely everything non-book-related in your life! :) But seriously – get a good team behind you. I have a team of beta readers, editors, proofers and digital file producers, I work with great bloggers, and I also have the love and support of my family. Everyone thinks “indie publishing” means being independent, but it’s not the case at all. While you get to be charge of your own career and your own vision, you also work with tons of great people to put your book out there!

fall in love

The Sullivans are on tour with Novel Publicity. Follow along for your chance to win amazing prizes. We’ve got special romantic swag baskets for each book, an iPad Mini, Kindle Fire, Nook Color, and Kobo eReader, and Amazon and iTunes gift cards. WOW!

You’ll also get introduced to this amazing contemporary romance series via excerpts as well as interviews with and guest posts from New York Times and USA Today best-selling author, Bella Andre. You’ll definitely want to learn more about the family that has captured the world’s heart.

All the info you need to join the fun and enter to win amazing prizes is RIGHT HERE. Remember, winning is as easy as clicking a button or leaving a blog comment–easy to enter; easy to win!

To Win the Prizes:

  1. Purchase any of the Sullivan ebooks by Bella Andre for just $4.99 (optional)
  2. Enter the Rafflecopter contest on Novel Publicity (go here)
  3. Visit today’s featured social media event (that’s where the HUGE prizes are)

About The SullivansIn this sexy, emotional and funny contemporary romance series, each member of the Sullivan family will eventually find true love…usually where he or she least expects it.

Get the eBooks via Amazon USAmazon UKBarnes & Noblethe iBookStore, or the Kobo Store.

Audiobooks are also available for the first five in the series (with more coming soon). Plus, keep an eye out for paperback editions coming from Harlequin Romance starting Summer 2013.




Filed under authors, books, contests, Facebook, interviews, published, Writing

Dirty Dozen Weekend

Heart Over Mind smashwordsAbout Heart Over Mind: This is a paranormal romance, with light sex. This post is sexual and is for use by persons 18 and over.

A Life Changed Forever

Nala Arpaia, psychiatrist, lives a boring, routine life…until her knight in tight blue jeans comes to whisk her off to a family castle full of fabled creatures. It’s like something out of a book, all the way down to the life or death situation she finds herself in. As the last member of the most powerful blood line to ever exist, Nala is now the final mark of Broncestan Milivak, who’s goal is world domination.

Nala has to master her powers if she wants to save the free world. All she really wants…is her protector Gabriel.

Stubborn to the Core

Gabriel Ricardo’s job as head Graida, a magical bodyguard, is his life. He eats, breaths and sleeps work. When his boss, head Elder Elam Korbin gives Gabriel the task of retrieving his niece, Nala, Gabriel’s all business. Until, he meets the psychiatrist. Things go down hill from there. This case isn’t like any other. Illusions, magic, and attempted kidnap he can handle. The presence of the strong, and irresistible attraction he feels for the doctor he can’t. As things get dangerous, Gabriel has to force his mind to focus on the case, and not the lust burning him alive.

Unable to Resist…

As Broncestan’s attacks get stronger, and more dangerous, Nala finds it more important than ever to experience the kind of relationship she’d always wanted, but never had. Seeing Nala suffer at the hands of a power-hungry Damned soul, Gabriel realizes keeping his distance isn’t working. Soon, they give in to the passion and proclaim their love. Just when things are supposed to work out, things hit rock bottom again.

Their Future Looms in the Balance…
Will they ever be able to defeat Broncestan and enjoy a relationship together or are they doomed to live their lives alone and miserable?

And now…for the twelve sentences…

“Nala, you have to stop.”

She heard the strained words and felt the strength of his hands at her waist, but kept going.

“In a minute.”

She could feel it building. Her breath came in pants as the first ripples started.

“Open your eyes.”

She obeyed his command. Her eyelids felt heavy as she forced them to open against the pleasure. When Gabriel started to glow a pale white, Nala gasped. She looked at her own hands in surprise. She was glowing too.

“Gabriel, what’s happening?”

You can find Heart Over Mind e-book at Smashwords, or Amazon  for paperback. For a limited time only, Heart Over Mind, the ebook version, is only $0.99. Don’t wait. Offer expires soon.

One lucky commenter can win a free copy of the e-book version. Just follow my blog, like my fan page, and the Dirty Dozen Weekend fan page, then post a comment! Hope you enjoy.

Feel free to check out Sara’s website for free short story reads of all genres and her upcoming projects. Don’t forget to sign the guest book.

Check out other participating authors at http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Weekend-Dirty-Dozen/251564698227203.


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Guest Post with Gracen Miller

Today, I have the author of “Pandora’s Box”, Gracen Miller. She just celebrated a birthday yesterday so I hope this gets a good turnout. Kind of like a day-after celebration. Everyone be sure to send her your belated best.



Where do authors get their ideas for a story? I take mine from everyday stuff a lot of times. A song lyric can serve as inspiration. Other times a vague comment by a friend will spawn creativity. But I get my
best stuff from my dreams. Or nightmares as some would call them.

 Pandora’s Box was spawned from a nightmare. Yes, a nightmare!  My nightmares can be disturbing, stuff that is so troubling I won’t voice them for fear of giving them power. One such troubling nightmare, the villain in the Road to Hell series was using infants as target practice. That dream left me with a very sick feeling in my gut. It took me days to shake off that particular nightmare and I won’t
give it life in any story. However, I do love some of my nightmares because they jump-start my Muse with creativity.

 Who would love to go demon hunting with Sam and Dean Winchester? Supernatural fan wouldn’t love a dream with the boys, right? The only way that dream could get better is if the Winchester actually
stepped foot into my house. In this particular dream, the boys were at my house trying to save me from getting eaten by a ghost, which turned into a demon. You know how dreams are, the parameters change randomly and it makes total sense in the dream! In the beginning of the dream, we were in an unrecognizable house and by the end of the dream in my current one. And this made total sense in the dream!

LOL The ghost/demon didn’t worry me even though Sam and Dean kept telling me it should. I reminded them over and over again that ghosts visit me all the time and I knew how to handle them. Easy-peasy stuff. They were soooo not needed, except for as eye-candy. Never turn away prime eye-candy, that’s my motto. 😉 Anyway, Dean was upset, calling me a stubborn chick…I don’t remember saying thanks to that quip, but I do remember taking it as a compliment! LOL 

I told the ghost/demon to leave. In response, my subconscious altered the parameters. The paranormal monster now targeted my children, wanted to steal their soul or possess them—I’m not sure which
really, all that mattered was that they were the new aim. FYI, in mother lingo that means: Game-freakin’-on! I’m rolling up my sleeves and I will hunt it down and kill it slowly for even turning
its murderous eyes on them! *smiles sweetly*  

Furious and ready to kill the ghost/demon, I demanded directions from the Winchesters on how to annihilate this sucker that endangered my babies! Dean was being snarky, calling me sweetheart and reminding me that I should let the professionals handle it. You know, I really didn’t like Dean-dream’s attitude! He was this close *demonstrates with forefinger and thumb clamped together* from
getting smacked upside the head!!  

He and I were going at it when I woke up. I came out of that nightmare angry and terrified. It took me a few moments of blinking in the dark room to realize it was just a dream. My kids were okay,  slumbering across the hall in their beds. When that reality set in, I was a bit miffed about not getting the opportunity to kill the creature or smack Dean. I hate the way dreams end without any finality to them. It’s like watching a romance movie where one of them dies at the end…. You’re vested, only to be disappointed at the end!  

 But I got to thinking…the worst nightmare any parent can endure is when their child is harmed. Especially when it’s something you cannot control nor do anything about. The absolute helplessness of this is crushing. I’ve endured this type of debilitation with my eldest son when he began to suffer grand mal seizures. Nothing I could do but twiddle my thumbs and watch while he endured them. We finally found the magical pill that controlled them and he outgrew them—whew!—but we were ultimately unable to help.

 The nightmare got me to thinking “what if”…

What if a mother was faced with something supernatural tormenting her child? What if doctors couldn’t help? What if she had no idea what she should do? What if it’d plagued her entire life without her knowledge? How would she react? How could she battle an unknown entity when she had no knowledge of the supernatural world? Wouldn’t she require help, guidance, and a teacher….anyone with experience to help her?

 Ultimate question…How far would she go to save her son and how reckless would she become? I’m the daughter of a Baptist preacher, so using demons and fallen angels as the foundation for the story was natural. Giving the heroine the same background was right, too. Yet, her relationship with her parents was volatile and she no longer believes in God.

 That’s how Pandora’s Box was conceived. My nightmare spawned characters that are so real-to-life in my head, I don’t question their chatter any longer. I love each of them—even the villain—as if they were
my own children. Their world unravels in my mind like I’m peeking through eyes into a very real world. The hardest part of this story was coming up with the heroine’s name. lol

 Leave a relevant comment (not just a ‘please enter me in the contest’) for a chance to win a skull cameo ring, but PLEASE leave your email address so I can contact you if you’re the winner!!! All rules must be followed in order to be eligible to win.

 Thanks for inviting me to join the blog hop, Sara, and to all of you for venturing out to read my post!



Where you can stalk me—not really!—but I would love to meet and interact with you:

 Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/gracen.miller

Road to Hell series FB Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Road-to-Hell-series/112564408814796?ref=ts

Website: www.gracenmiller.com

Blog: http://madisonroadtohell.blogspot.com/


Pandora’s Box Blurb:

 Where does the road to Hell begin?

 What happens when your son turns homicidal overnight and your husband disappears on his way to work? Do you cower in fear or fight for your life? Madison Wescott fights against the odds. Distrustful of a God she doesn’t believe in, she finds herself face-to-face with a world she didn’t know existed and discovers her own soul is darkened with demonic connections.

 With good intentions? Or by demonic design?

Phoenix Birmingham bursts into Madison’s life in a whirlwind of sarcasm and sexual appeal. A hero for the masses—and for her jaded heart—but few will ever know the sacrifices he has made or the sacrifices to come. Discovering her entire life has been influenced by multifaceted paranormal beings, Madison is determined to defeat the apocalyptic blueprint fate has decreed, but only one man dares to challenge the supernatural forces manipulating them. Even with Phoenix’s aid, can destiny be denied? Or will demonic design prevail while they pay the crucial price with their souls?

 In a small, sleepy Alabama town the battle for mankind’s liberty has begun…

 Pandora’s Box Excerpt:

Pandora's Box
Pandora’s Box

She nodded and watched as he doused gauze with antiseptic. “Dr. Nix at your service,” he said with a grin, two adorable dimples charming her where words failed.

Madison rolled her eyes, and tipped her head to the side to give him better access. He brushed her hair off her neck, back behind her shoulder. Such a simple gesture, yet it felt terribly personal. The air grew thick and sticky with her awareness of him. She shifted in her seat and crossed her legs.

Madison stared into his eyes. Green, she thought, his eyes were green, gorgeous and intense, with ridiculously long eyelashes women would fantasize about. If they didn’t, they should. A flicker of compassion, concern, and something else she couldn’t identify flashed in his eyes.

Ready?” he asked.

 The husky tenor of his voice forced her gaze to shift to his mouth. Nice, sexy lips, designed for kissing. She gave a mental shake but couldn’t resist wondering how his mouth would feel on hers.


Humor deepened his voice, a touch of a smile tilted the edges of the lips she’d been fantasizing about, and she realized she still stared at them.

“You ready?” he asked again, and her eyes widened in embarrassment over her foolish stupor.

 She swallowed hard. “Yeah.” She whispered past the lump in her throat and forced her vision to lock on the wall over his shoulder. Good God, what was wrong with her? Her pulse throbbed like crazy, and she felt woozy. Loss of blood! Must be why she reacted that way. No other explanation made sense.

Even though the antiseptic stung like hell, the gentle touch coming from such a gruff man surprised her. “It’s not bad,” he said, dabbing the blood away. “Just a nick.”

 Well, she could nix the blood loss theory. Exhaustion and stress were the only other excuses she could come up with. “I’ve suffered worse.”

Her voice sounded off, kind of hoarse. She tried to clear her throat delicately, but he must have noticed her unease, because his perceptive eyes met hers. Again, she thought she caught the edge of concern reflected in their green depths.

This isn’t the first time he’s attacked you?”

No. It’s the first time he’s tried to seriously kill me, though.”

She sighed as she closed her eyes, ready to give up fighting, the sudden tears threatening to fall. Okay, woozy and acting strange because of strain…not because of him. Seriously, as far as first impressions went, she wasn’t impressed.


 Want to take the adventure with me on the road to Hell and discover how Madison answers each of my questions above? Pandora’s Box is available in e-book format at the following online stores:

Decadent Publishing: http://www.decadentpublishing.com/product_info.php?products_id=326&osCsid=197c7ca45f989e3b22059c5b92c9475d


 Barnes & Noble:




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