A New Year…

I hope 2016 is off to a great start for you.  It’s off to a busy one around here, and I don’t just mean where writing is concerned.  Hubby and I are up to our necks in kitchen projects, and although we are hoping for a happy outcome, right now we’re a bit sore, achy, and quite possibly high on paint fumes.  It’ll be interesting to see how the paint fumes  affect my writing…

Got a few updates for you:

  1. There’s a chance that Amazon Encore will be putting the ebook version of The Bargain on sale on January 30th, so if you’re thinking of buying the book, you might want to hold out a few more days and see what happens to the price.  Fingers crossed…
  2. I just found out that WordPress has not been alerting me to comments that folks have left on this website, so I apologize for late responses.  Any time you have a question or comment, please do feel free to send me an email at christinesfeldman@gmail.com, and if you’ve had any trouble receiving your free ebook, be sure to check your spam folder.  (Sometimes the email ends up there.)
  3. There’s new cover art on the way for my Heavenly Bites novellas!  Seemed like it was time for an update.
  4. I’m close to wrapping up a draft of The Bloodline, a novelization of one of my screenplays that placed in screenwriting contests on both coasts.  Still needs some polishing, but it’s getting there…
  5. I’m just about ready to dive into my next contemporary story.  Looking forward to some love and laughter!  🙂

Take care out there, and if you’re an East Coaster, I hope you’re bundled up nice and warm!

It’s Official!

While folks all around the country are sharing pics and news about their little ones’ first day back at school, I’m sharing news about my own little baby–namely, my upcoming romantic comedy It Happened One Night.  Release Day is official:  September 29th.  Yay!

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The book’s all set to go for release on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, and–if I don’t fall down the formatting rabbit hole first–should be ready soon on Smashwords for distribution on iTunes, Kobo, and other ebook retailers.  Fingers crossed that I don’t pull out all my hair in the process…

Hope everyone has a great start to the school year!  🙂

Cover Reveal

Summer’s been a busy time for me.  How about you?  But in addition to several non-writing-related projects, I’ve been plugging away at another romantic comedy since I had so much fun writing Winging It.  (Hopefully you had fun reading it.)  I hope to be able to have it out by the end of August, but we’ll have to see…

Anyway, I thought I’d share the cover art and book blurb with you today, so here goes:

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Who has time for dating these days?  Certainly not struggling entrepreneur Paisley Jameson, who has way too much on her plate to pay any real attention to her shriveling social life.  And not mechanic Joe Spencer either, who has a lot on his mind with both the family business and family in general.  But neither can say no to the beloved mutual acquaintance who wants to set them both up on a blind date.

Which is too bad, because they both kind of wish they had said no when they show up for the dinner date and realize they’ve met before–and not under happy circumstances.

But fate seems determined to prove that they’re not so wrong for each other after all, because in spite of the intentions of both Paisley and Joe to nip this whole unfortunate blind date thing in the bud and go their separate ways, events transpire to keep them together for an evening involving muggers, foot-chases, and even a high-speed trip to the ER–

And that’s all before dessert.

Dating:  it’s not for wimps…

And there you have it.  Okay, off to finish writing the latest chapter…

Welcome Back To The Fetal Position

For those of you who don’t already know, my go-to position whenever I have to tackle formatting issues for my ebooks is the fetal position.  A true classic, it really seems to lend itself to that particular activity and comes quite naturally to me in times of technology-induced stress.  It sure did this weekend!

Hard to type that way, though…

But anyway, I soldiered on because I’m hoping to make my books available on more than just Amazon and Barnes & Noble, and what’s cool about Smashwords is that an author can upload a manuscript to the Smashwords site, and then Smashwords will churn out appropriate digital versions that meet the technical requirements for a lot of online book vendors.  Like iTunes, Kobo, etc.  The only thing the author has to do is format his or her manuscript to Smashwords specifications.  Piece of cake, right?

Dang, my body almost went into “fetal lockdown mode” just at the memory.

But my books appear to have made it through the first phase of the approval process, the automated part; now I just have to wait for an actual human being to tell me if I screwed anything up.  Could take several days.  I predict much chocolate and ice cream will be consumed during that waiting period.  By me, at least.  I don’t know about the folks at Smashwords.

But while there’s a lot of stress involved with this particular side of writing sometimes, it’s alleviated a little bit when one wakes up to see a review like the one I got this morning from my first Smashwords sale:

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“I came across this book by chance and found the description intriguing. After enjoying the sample, I quickly purchased the entire story. Being a writer myself, it usually takes a lot to pull me away from my own work, but Playing Cupid did so with surprising ease…”

For those of you who would like to read the entire review (I’m talking mostly to my mother here, I know), click here.

And now I’m off to find chocolate…

In With The New…

A new year often means new choices, new resolutions, and all sorts of wonderful changes. For me, though, not so much.  Generally speaking, I fear change, unless we’re talking about the monetary kind in the form of coins and such.  Then I only fear it if someone is flinging it at me with great force.  Not that that happens to me often, and quite frankly I’m starting to think that the extra money would be worth it if it did.  So feel free to hurl away!  Checks and all major credit cards, too.

But as stuck in my ways as I am, I do realize that a little change now and then is good for a writer’s productivity–especially after the holiday season when all the hustle and bustle have taken their toll on said writer’s daily writing habits.  So I figured January is a good time to play around with some new ideas and see if I can’t put a little ZAP back into my creativity.  Thanks to the internet, I’ve found all sorts of things to try!

Some are easier than others to put into practice, of course.  For example, it’s true that my productivity would probably improve leaps and bounds if I followed one suggestion and tossed our television set out the front window, but my husband doesn’t seem nearly as interested in that prospect as I am whenever I mention it, and even though I’m one of those few people who don’t really care one whit about watching the Superbowl, The Blacklist is supposed to be starting up again after all, and I do care a whit about that.  Quite a few whits, actually.  (Is Red Lizzie’s dad after all, or isn’t he…?  I must know!)

Tweaking my writing schedule seemed more doable and certainly easier on our window panes.  Or at least it did until my alarm went off in the wee hours of the morning to mark the start of it, and I considered throwing it through the window.  Bleh…  Perhaps I’ll keep tweaking.

It’s awfully chilly in our house in those same wee hours, too, and typing with cold hands isn’t fun, so I thought starting a roaring fire in the wood stove before I settled in to write was a brilliant move on my part.  All cozy and conducive to churning out plot points.  Turns out, though, that I’m not very good at starting roaring fires.  But if you want a fire that coughs, wheezes, and feebly sputters out after three minutes, I’m your gal!  So I don’t get many words down on paper that way, but on the plus side, I think all the sitting down and getting right back up again to stir the coals is doing wonderful things for my thighs.

My most recent experiment in habits that might improve my writing focus has been finding something to provide appropriate background noise, which is not as simple as it might sound.  Lots of writers say they like to write with music on in the background, but I find that hasn’t worked too well for me.  If it’s songs I know and like, the temptation to get up and boogie around my living room is sometimes too much for me to resist.  (Ask my neighbor across the street, she’ll tell you.  And she’ll probably tell you to tell me to please close my blinds, too.)

I tried listening to a movie soundtrack that was mostly instrumental to counteract that effect–Lord of the Rings!  Yay!–but that only seemed to lead to hobbits popping up in my contemporary mystery that I’m currently working on, and it really didn’t help the plot at all; neither did the elves.  Go figure.  And then of course there was that time my husband heard me cry, “For Frodo!” and hurried in to find me perched on the arm of the sofa with my pencil wielded above my head like a sword.  It was awkward.  We didn’t make eye contact for a week after that one.

But I’ve hit upon a CD that seems to be just the ticket:  thunderstorm!  Not with music, just with thunder and, well, storm sounds.  It seems to set the mood for the dark and dreary house in my story with the added bonus of being quiet enough that it doesn’t send my beagle cowering under the cushions, which is what she does during real thunderstorms.

It’s been a win-win so far!

Well, except for the effect that the sound of accompanying rainfall has on my bladder, but hey, nothing’s perfect.

Better Than Christmas Morning!

Okay, maybe not BETTER than Christmas morning, but for a writer, Release Day is pretty dang close.  Can’t sleep the night before, bound out of bed bright and early in the morning, and wake up one’s poor significant other by shouting, “It’s here!  It’s here!”  I’m so glad my hubby is patient.  🙂

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Anyway… It’s here!  It’s here!  Release Day for All’s Fair in Love and Weddings!  It’s finally gone live on Amazon here, and it’s already garnered some lovely reviews.  Check them out at these blogs:

Bookworm Nation

Aleksandra’s Corner

Tome Tender

GenGen’s Book Blog

They certainly put a smile on MY face.  And on that note… Happy Release Day to all, and to all a good night!

And So Ends The Summer…

Summer is winding down to a close now, and with it, the prep for the release of my most recent work-in-progress, All’s Fair in Love and Weddings.  Whew!  It’s been a busy couple of months…

But it was all worth it, because my book is just undergoing a final polish for things like typos and accidental gender switches (pronouns, not the characters) and is now officially…[drumroll]…available for pre-order on Amazon!  Woo hoo!

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The formal release date is September 30th, and if you would like to check it out for yourself, click on the Amazon link here.

Now please excuse me while I get back to relentlessly hunting for typos…

Coming Soon…

After a somewhat chaotic summer, I finally finished my first solid draft of All’s Fair in Love and Weddings–and it turned out to be somewhere between two and three times as long as I expected it be originally.  How did that happen?  Guess I’m wordier than I thought.

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So once I get a chance to do some tweaking and polishing up–and yes, that is the highly technical terminology for it–I plan to chase down a couple of beta readers and sit on them until they promise to give me thorough feedback.  Once I let them up and they do a read-through, this baby’ll go live on Amazon.  Yay!  I’m SO looking forward to it!  There’s a certain thrill that goes along with pressing that little “Publish” button…

And then, of course, there’s the upcoming September 15th release of the Crimson Romance book bundle that my first novel, Coming Home, is in, so I’m pretty excited about that, too:

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There’s even an official link for it now right here, although the very pretty cover art isn’t up yet.

Good golly–I guess it’s about time to get busy on the next project…  🙂

Coming In September…

Who doesn’t love a sale?  Or books?  Or better yet, a sale on books?  On September 15, that’s exactly what Crimson Romance will be offering, specifically a 99-cent book bundle on Amazon containing 10 of their contemporary romances under the collection title of Love in a Small Town:

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Isn’t it purty?

In case you hadn’t noticed, the third book from the left is one of mine… ahem.  [coughs discreetly]  Coming Home will be one of those 10 sweet small-town love stories, and I’m thrilled to see it alongside the works of so many other Crimson writers I respect.  So thrilled, in fact, that I just had to tell someone, so I’m telling YOU.  🙂  Don’t you feel you special?  You should, because you are special.  Very special.  And I’m not just saying that to kiss up to you and get you to buy my book.  Also, you look very pretty today.

Anyhoo, just thought I’d share the good news…

Happy Tuesday!

And In Other Writing News…

Happy Monday!  I hope everybody’s summer is off to a great start.  Mine got off with more of a gasp and a wheeze, resulting in a delay in finishing All’s Fair In Love And Weddings, but hopefully things will start going smoothly soon.

Fingers crossed…

In the meantime, here’s the current opening excerpt of the book in which our heroine Prue first encounters our hero…

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Excerpt:

Prudence Collier’s first thought as she stood in the drizzling rain and stared down at the smoke rising from her borrowed car’s engine was that this certainly didn’t bode well, did it? As far as signs and portents went, if one believed in those sorts of things—and Prue usually felt it couldn’t hurt—this was hardly the most auspicious one with which to begin her trip. Disconcerting might be a better way to describe it. Maybe downright ominous. And of all the weeks when she could have used something more promising than ominous, this was the one.

“This baby? Purrs like a kitten. Sure, she’ll get you where you need to go,” her friend Jacob had assured her when Prue had raised an eyebrow at the sight of the car. It looked, after all, like little more than spare parts he’d scavenged from a wrecking yard and welded together—which, knowing Jacob, he might very well have done. He’d patted the hunk of metal then, and Prue could have sworn she heard something clunk to the ground immediately after that. She ought to have handed him back his keys then, but beggars couldn’t be choosers, and this was the kind of thing one was left with when time was short and one’s bank account balance was small.

Taking a deep breath at a time like this was supposed to be helpful, so Prue tried that. Then she tried another, and another. Nope, nothing. There was no crystal-clear epiphany about what course of action to take. Her car—or rather, Jacob’s car—was still smoking just as much as ever from mysterious places only now she felt lightheaded from overdoing her oxygen intake. So much for that idea.

She glanced at her watch and resisted the urge to kick the old jeep’s tires. Now what? Another ten minutes, and she’d miss the ferry. Sure there would be another one later, but showing up an hour behind schedule was exactly the kind of thing she didn’t want to do when she saw Natalie again. Same old Prue, she could hear her sister’s voice say in her head, cool and disapproving. Nothing’s changed.

Only Prue had changed. At least, she hoped she had, and she was not going to waste this chance to prove it. Nat’s invitation had been an unexpected but very welcome olive branch, and Prue had every intention of seizing it with both hands. She just had to get to the right island first.

Well, there wasn’t a lot of other traffic on the St. Thomas roads today, but maybe she could hitch a ride with someone else the rest of the way to the ferry. Failing that, she could always try running for it, but even though she had packed lightly, her one bag was not exactly small. She, however, was, and she was not likely to set any sprinting records while dragging her luggage behind her.

She frowned at the jeep. What the hell, she thought then with a shrug, and she kicked one tire anyway.

At least the rain was sputtering out. Downpours rarely lasted long here on the islands. Prue could say that with some degree of confidence because her family had made annual pilgrimages to the Virgin Islands since she was old enough to remember, and although she’d stopped coming along for the ride right around the time she’d dropped out of college during her freshman year, at her current age of twenty-six that was still a hefty number of family vacations she had under her belt.

But she had not been invited along on those in several years, which was largely her own fault. And that, she thought, was why she was not going to let a broken-down junk heap cost her this one. No offense to Jacob’s car.

So Prue left Jacob a voicemail message to let him know where the smoking remains of his vehicle sat safely off to the side of the road and then hauled her purse and her bag out of the jeep with the intention of setting off on foot. As she did so, the email from her sister that she’d printed out only two days earlier fluttered to the floor, dislodged by her movements. As wedding invitations went, it was hardly the most formal, and it made her suspect she’d been a last-minute invite, but she was so happy to get it at all that she didn’t care. Her older sister was getting married, and she actually wanted Prue there to help her celebrate it. The water might not be under the proverbial bridge yet, but maybe it was getting close.

Thrusting the email back into her bag, Prue swung it over her shoulder and locked up the car despite the fact that potential car thieves would probably just find the prospect of stealing the vehicle offensive. She then got just two steps away from it before the rain began to drizzle again. Frowning, she reached into her bag to feel around for a hat before remembering that she hadn’t packed one.

Swell. Well, that was the kind of thing that happened when someone packed in a hurry. And then just as she was wondering if she was ever going to catch a break today, another jeep—this one a rental, she noticed—slowed as it passed her and then pulled over to the side of the road.

“Need some help?” the driver called through an open window, and when Prue put her hand up to shield her eyes from the raindrops and caught sight of the speaker, she thought that as far as breaks went, this particular break was one a girl could really take a liking to…