Jul 312013

pogo stick2The Summer Splash Blog Hop 2013 is over once more and I like to thank everyone who hopped by and subscribed to my blog!

This morning I had my neighbour pull the names of the three lucky winners out of a hat. They can expect an email from me soon.

I am not finished blog hopping this summer, as at the end of August I will participate in the Indie Block Party hop. This promises to be fun hop for authors and readers to get to know each other and their current works in progress. It starts on the 19 August and I will post more info about it soon!

Talking about current works in progress, I had an interesting days writing yesterday. As part of my first round of editing, I completely rewrote the final two chapters of my book. This involved some on the fly research on Facebook about electricity substations and some moaning on my part about how difficult the life of an author is. As a punishment, a friend set me the mini-challenge to work the word ‘Octopus’ into the last chapter, which I am happy to say, I managed to do.

The first round of editing is now finished and save for a quick read-through in the next few days, the manuscript will be off to my beta readers! Of course, that’s when the big test starts. I am looking forward to hear their comments.

In the meantime, I have to seriously start thinking about how to market the book. Always an interesting challenge.

Picture via subsciption to iClipArt

Jul 262013

splashlogoWelcome to my blog! Why don’t you join the blog hop and win some great prices!

What is a blog hop? Click on the blog hop image and it will take you to the main Summer Splash Blog Hop page. Here you will find over 40 authors, who are all giving away amazing stuff! Click on their links to enter their contests and come back to the hop page for the next link and a chance to win great prices!

Entering my contest is simple – just subscribe to my blog! Three lucky subscribers will be picked out of a hat to win a copy of my narrative travelogue Time Zones, Containers and Three Square Meals a Day.

Subscribe to my blog (including the confirmation email) and go hopping! The Summer Splash Blog Hop runs from 26th – 29th July.


UPDATE! The Summer Splash Blog Hop 2013 is now closed. Thanks everyone for dropping by! it ws great fun! I will announce the winners of my contest in a few days.


Jul 222013

greatideaThe past few weeks I have had lots of fun with creating a world for my new series. Of course the series is set in York, England, which already exists, but Emily (my main character) lives in a fictional neighbourhood.

I used to live in York myself, and therefore had quite a good idea what Emily’s neighbourhood should look and feel like.

In one way it is picturesque and cosy.

  • Close to the city centre
  • Narrow streets with Victorian terraced houses
  • Old wooden shop fronts
  • A green with a cricket field

In another way it is busy and lively.

  • Traffic lights
  • Busses
  • People on bikes
  • Shoppers

These two ideas I joined together in a board on Pinterest, so that readers can also get an idea where Emily lives. So, please feel free to take a look at Emily’s World and let me know what you think!

Jul 182013

Celebrate2A few weeks ago, Bol.com, one of the largest web shops in the Netherlands, announced the new feature that enables self-publishers to upload their paperbacks and ebooks directly to the website, not unlike KDP and CreateSpace do for Amazon.

For years I have been waiting for this possibility, as Amazon doesn’t allow Dutch language books and Smashwords is difficult to use for Dutch buyers. Most of my books are written in English, but I do have one Dutch translation that I am keen to sell to the Dutch public. For the above reasons, it hasn’t taken off yet, so you can understand that, although the ebook market is still small in the Netherlands, I jumped at the opportunity to get my ebook on to Bol.com.

Today it has all gone through and Tussen containers en tijdzones, is now for sale as ebook on Bol.com!
To celebrate this fact the paperback copy of the book is now on special offer for limited time only. Please visit my Dutch Website for the details.
Anyone interested in buying the ebook on Bol.com can do so via the following link: Tussen containers en tijdzones.
The English version of the ebook is now on sale at Bol.com as well. For that please check Time Zones, Containers and Three Square Meals a Day.

Another reason to celebrate is that the editing of my new book is nearing its completion. After a weekend of pulling out my hair in despair that it was going nowhere, I yesterday saw the light and now feel that the book is ‘coming together’.
My beta readers better get ready!

Jul 102013

cameraI have been working hard all weekend on the Homework my illustrator gave me to come up with a look and bio for my main character, Emily. Of course, I already had a vague idea what she looks like, but putting it all down on paper is not easy.

As luck would have it, I came across a blog post about how to use Pinterest as an aid for writing and marketing your book, in particular with regards to visualising a look of a character or place.
Until now, I had steered clear of Pinterest, mostly because I feel that there are already too many forms of social media and it is an impossibility to participate in all of them. However, the blog post made it sound interesting enough for me to check it out.

On Pinterest you can create ‘boards’, which are basically collages of pictures based around a theme of your own choosing. Other Pinterest members can follow your board and see what sort of pictures you post, excuse me, pin to it.

It seemed that it is possible to have three ‘secret boards’ on Pinterest, which only you can see, until such time that you make them public. The writer of the blog post used these secret boards to collect pictures of what she thought her character looked like, such as hairstyle and clothes, but also hobbies, likes and dislikes. As a marketing tool, she would then make the board public, so that her readers could get an idea of the character and interact.

Seeing as I have to build interest for my new series, this Pinterest approach didn’t seem like too bad an idea. Specially as I had to think about Emily’s looks anyway.
Therefore, I created three secret boards and one public one about York, the main setting of the series. On top of that, I added an extra page to my website, where I left some fun info about the new series. A bit scary, as making them public, will mean I have to use them in the book, but also fun as people finally get to know more about the new book.

Please check out my New Page or have a look through my York Pictures on Pinterest and let me know what you think!