My thoughts on Social Media

I like to keep an eye on the chats (discussions) in Goodreads on all kinds of topics and one that struck me recently was a chat I saw about social media. The author wrote up his experience with Facebook promotions. He explained how he promoted, spending quite a bit I might add, and got himself heaps of new ‘likes’ but without a single book sale. He researched it and found that the majority of the ‘likes’ came from “click farms” which are based in other countries, in his case, India. He was very unhappy with his experience and titled his write-up “Beware the Lure of Social Media”. Having that experience would have pissed me off too so I understand his viewpoint. I would strongly suggest to anyone who is going to shell out some jing for promotion that they do their due diligence using Google and any other source that is not the person or entity selling you the promotion. Then hopefully you will have a better experience.

My thoughts? Here’s what I added to the discussion.

 I LOVE to read and I am a HUGE fan of many amazing authors. As an author, I took a look at social media from my viewpoint as a reader/fan.

Do I want the authors I love and adore to be constantly pinging me (whether it be on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram etc.) on their book? No. I have already started following them for some reason – I already know about or have read their book. I want to know where their next signing is. What they’re working on now. What inspires them? What makes them tick? What makes them mad? What things interest them? And, when a new book is coming out, they had better let me know too!

I am actually more interested in THE PERSON. I think a lot of readers are. So my thought is: use the social media to BE social. Readers will go to your website or amazon or Goodreads to find out more about your book(s). But to find out more about you? What better way than to share on social media. 🙂


Steampunk Writing Exercise

I have been reading some steampunk novels as of late (Colleen Gleason’s Stoker & Holmes series and Lindsay Buroker’s Dragon Blood series) and so I was pleased when the mood struck me during writers exercises with my amazeballs writers group ISG (Ink Slingers Guild) and my own steampunk story came into fruition. I may never do anything with these exercises but then again, maybe I will give them more life later down the road. Either way, I wanted to share. I hope you enjoy!

(At every ISG meeting we undertake at least one writing exercise where three members each pick one word and we then have five minutes to compose a story that must include those words.)

#1 (The 3 words: Curly, Accomplished, Technology)

Solora stared at the curly metal wire hanging from the bottom of her steam bike. She had only recently learned to ride and hadn’t anticipated the silly thing would break down on her first ride out of the city. The sun beat down on her dark hair and her face shimmered, the sweat not quite beading up. Her goggles hung heavily around her neck as she stood. The road stretch before and behind her, the trees hanging overhead and only barely keeping the heat at bay.

Kicking the bronze metal of the rear engine, she cursed. Here she was an accomplished expert in food technologies, famous in her own right and she was stuck in the middle of nowhere with a stupid displaced curly wire.

She got on her knees again and looked beneath the bike.

“You look like you need some help,” a low drawl came from behind.

Solora’s head swung up, narrowly missing the heavy kickstand.

“Do you think so?,” she shot at the man who stood inappropriately just wearing just slacks and a tee. He lifted his muscled shoulders and his lips curled into a smile.

“Just thought I’d check, but if you don’t need me…”

Solora sighed. “Fine, yes, I seem to have broken down.”


#2 (The 3 words: Iris, Ink, Tube)

He was kneeling down now and she barely noticed the beautiful iris lining the road with that backside on display. He chuckled, bringing a frown to her smooth skin.

“What it is?” she asked?

“One of your steam tubes broke and the wire is supposed to be holding it up.”

“Do you know how to fix it? I can pay you.”

He stood, his blues eyes flashing in the bright sun.

“I can fix it but you won’t be going anywhere until we can order in another tube,”

“How long will that take? I’m in a terrible rush.”

“I should be able to have it by the end of the day…tomorrow.”

“Tomorrow! No. No that can’t be. Is there anyone available to drive me the remaining way to Augustine?”

The man leaned against a nearby oak tree, folding his arms across his chest and looking at her inquisitively. Solora went to speak again when a lock of her inky hair took that moment to fall directly into her mouth.


#3 (The 3 words: Eagles, Reflection, Campus)

Solora spat out the lock of hair that had blown into her mouth. The man’s irritating smile got slightly wider.

“I must get to the campus in Augustine. Do you have a car?”

His lips pierced as he seemed to muse over the questions. Solora thought she might burst at his casual demeanor when there was so much to be done. So many things to be prepared and she was still several hours from Augustine. She was about to speak again when she caught a fleeting reflection in the bronze of her steam bike. She glanced into the sky in time to see two Eagles flying overhead. Time slowed for a just a moment as she had the opportunity to admire their beauty before they disappeared behind a treetop. She turned back to the man who hadn’t moved but now had a long strip of grass hanging from his full lips.

“Please.” Solora said.

“Name’s Manny,” he said and held out a hand.

“Solora,” she said and took his hand. It wasn’t too hot and wasn’t too cold. And her small hand seemed to fit snuggly inside.

“I’d be pleased to give you a ride to Augustine, Miss Solora. But I insist you join me at the cottage for lunch. And of course, so I can change into something more appropriate.”


And because it seems appropriate, I give you a picture of my hubbie and I.


Steampunk couple

Steampunk couple

Colleen Gleason – The Gardella Vampire Hunter series

Ok, so I’m a little starstruck. I secretly hope that one day, someone feels the same way about me as an author. I read a five book series within two weeks. That meant I read later than I should, that I took one day and did nothing but read and that my family received the fasted meals and conversations that I could get away with while I burned through these books.

I give you…the Gardella Vampire Hunter series by Colleen Gleason (To get it, go HERE and scroll down a bit. Plus at this writing, the first book is FREE on Amazon.)

Book 1: The Rest Falls Away
Book 2: Rises the Night
Book 3: The Bleeding Dusk
Book 4: When Twilight Burns
Book 5: As Shadows Fade

I tend to write by the seat of my pants. I follow the character around and write what I see them doing or saying. Sometimes they get into trouble, sometimes they find love and sometimes I make them go back and start over again because I have no idea what just happened.

I am in the middle of co-writing a book with the amazing Rhiannon Matlock and we’ve planned out the majority of what’s to come which gives a beautiful time line to work from. I aspire to just get close to what Colleen Gleason has done with the Gardella Vampire Hunter series and the planning she must have put into it. She has twists and turns and fun and drama and romance and stuff that makes you cry and morn a deep loss – all of it written by this one truly amazeballs person who came up with this stuff, planned it out and wrote it down for the rest of us to enjoy. And enjoy I did.

So I posted about it. I reviewed it on Goodreads and Amazon. I followed her on FB. I followed her on Twitter and then tweeted about the awesomeness. And then she tweeted me an acknowledgement. I LOVE that. I have only had that happen one other time and that was by another amazeballs author, Kevin Hearne.

I noticed that she had a appearance coming up and would be doing a book signing. In MI. Not only is it really cold there, it’s really far away from me basking in my one week of nice “winter” weather here in Florida. So I am wondering, where can I get a hold of some signed books? I want. So I tweeted a question on that. And while I waited for a response – I notice that she followed me back. SQUEE!! I feel like a rock star. I wonder if she’d ever vacation in Florida and need a place to stay? I could probably find a place for my daughter to live for a few days. <joke honey!>

Anyway, so she answers with the great news that she’d be happy to send sign books (which ones do I want and where are they going so she can figure out price etc.) so I tell my family that this is what I need for Christmas. Sure enough, my son rises to the occasion and the SIGNED books are en route. **YAY!**

Anyway, just want to say READ THIS SERIES NOW. Because it’s fun and adventurous and you need it.

Thank you.

Surprising Emotion:: YA Books by Heather Gunter

NOTE: Emotional chickness following. You have been warned.

I recently picked up YA Novel “Love Notes” by Heather Gunter. I saw it listed in my BookBub email and it looked like a cute young adult romance featuring a girl with low self-esteem finding happiness. You won’t know it by meeting me now but when I was a teenager, I had some very down years with low self-esteem, just knowing that I was not smart and wouldn’t ever really fit it. I was shy and would steer clear of any confrontation – just couldn’t stand up for myself. I once had a bully follow me home after school, I was on my bicycle, and she actually came along side me and kicked my bike. Of course, me and the bike came crashing down though surprisingly I came out ok. She and her posse laughed and called me names and left. I hurried home and never said a word.  So the book blurb spoke to me. I read it in one sitting, a few hours with a cup of tea snuggled in my bed.

Turns out the book wasn’t just about a teen with low self-esteem but about a teen who experienced verbal abuse on a daily basis. Real nasty stuff that made my skin boil. I really did understand. I also really understand the value of a good friend. I was really lucky to have some good friends as a nerdy kid and later found some amazing, supportive friends that I still have to this day. I found a couple in the mix as I went that didn’t really fit the bill, hiding in plain sight while being a verbal abuser of those around. Those ones get kicked to the curb when I find them but I can honestly say I have some of the best friends a girl could have now and quite a few of them. (**Thanks guys, I love you**)

The book really hit a chord with me emotionally as I am sure you can tell. So I, of course, had to pick up book two in the series. “Heartstrings”

Um, yeah, read this one in one morning. The second book featured a girl who had been raped. Now I have actually experienced date rape but when it happened to me, I was so shocked that I didn’t struggle, it really was a surreal moment. He dropped me off at home and I never spoke to him again. Luckily for me, it was not my first time and he wasn’t a brutal, pain lusting freak, no he was just a horny asshole who pushed himself on a shy girl who was caught off guard. I’m so not that girl anymore and it was a sucky moment in my life but it did not have the effect on me like the emotion and broken heart effect that I read in the book “Heartstrings”.  Honestly, I can’t even tell you how many times I had to wipe the tears away so  I could keep reading.

Then at the end, the author shares that she wrote her own story, surviving rape, into the character and you really could feel it. I cried again after I read that. So I just wanted to shout out to all you ladies, and I am sure there are men too that quietly have had horrid experiences like this, you are survivors – not victims and I for one am proud for each and every one of you who has dusted off your knees, given the finger to the past and moved on to create a future that makes you happy. **Well done.**


Free Book from the Ink Slingers!

Hi, all! My writers group, the Ink Slingers Guild recently came out with a book of very short stories called The Death of Jimmy. The ebook is now available for free on Goodreads! Get the download and check it out! Reviews are welcome!!



Priceless by Shannon Mayer

All right, I found a new addiction, as in author I love and stay up too late reading…

Those of you who know me, know I am very disciplined as far as my schedule goes. I am a cranky bitch when I’m tired or when I need to eat. It’s just one of those annoying things about me.  I would like to be one of those people who can forget about eating until dinner. Me? I would either keel over from low blood sugar or rip your eyes out. Both options suck, therefore I eat at least six times a day and make sure my ass is in bed and lights out before midnight.

I started reading Priceless by Shannon Mayer mid-last week. I picked it up through BookBub (which if you’re not subscribed to, I recommend highly).

And couldn’t put it down.

Bad Lisa! I forced my kindle down on “school nights” but Friday and Saturday? Stayed up. Needless to say, I bought all the remaining books in the series. I burned through Book 2 (Immune) between yesterday and today and started Book 3 (Raising Innocence) today. Sigh. So good. [What chores? Oh, you wanted dinner? What’s wrong with cereal? Damn, do I have any clean underwear?]

If you like books like the Mercedes Thompson series by Patricia Briggs or the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris, then I really think this series will be up your ally. I’m not going to explain what it’s about, you can check it out here though and then go buy it at Amazon.

Further, Mrs. Mayer inspires me to be a better writer. Have more fun with my characters. And a lot of other things. I even followed her blog which I rarely do. So go now. To Amazon and get a hold of Priceless. And enjoy the ride. xo

The Ink Slingers Guild presents our new book!!

Hi, all!

The anthology (book of short stories) that my writers group, the Ink Slingers Guild, has been slaving over for months is now released!! It’s called The Ink Slingers Guild presents INTO THE ABYSS!

Here’s the cover:


Here’s the description:

The Ink Slingers Guild is a group of like-minded individuals who come together for support and encouragement. Since its inception the Ink Slingers have continued to expand membership, filling their ranks with some of the best and brightest up and coming authors of our time.

This, the Ink Slinger’s second anthology, is aptly named Into the Abyss. As with the first anthology, Beyond the Threshold, this collection of short stories is based on one of the writing exercises done at every ISG meeting. The exercise is to have three members each pick one word. Members have five minutes to compose a story with the chosen words. As with any creative outlet, members take each other into new worlds the way only writers can.

The words that were chosen this year were: Gravity, Innocuous & Perilous.

Each story is a journey created just for you, so sit back and enjoy as the Ink Slingers welcome you Into the Abyss!

And you can get a copy by clicking here!

Buy it, Buy it, Buy it!! Help support these eleven writers (including moi!) and after you enjoy visiting our worlds, please post a review on Amazon! Thank you and cheers!!

New book out!

I can’t believe I didn’t post this right away – I think I was so shocked that I actually clicked the “Publish” button that I forgot to talk about it. I know some people talk up their releases like crazy but on this one it was more the ‘get it done and up’ and then hurry on to the next one. See, that was Book One. Book Two is about halfway written and when you reach the end of Book One, you’re going to want Book Two pretty quick (at least I sure hope so!) and so I need to work on it NOW.

I was so pleased to be able to call it a done and work on the next thing that it didn’t reach my blog.  So here is it!

The Guardians (Book One Gargoyles Den)

Witching Hour Publishing  is proud to release “The Guardians” Book One of the Gargoyles Den series. Enjoy!

Coming Soon: The Guardians Book One

It’s coming…and I’m super exited.  It will be available in the next few weeks!!

The Guardians

The Guardians by Lisa Barry

Ink Slinger’s Guild – Book of Short Stories

I have not posted lately but I have a very good reason! I mentioned earlier that I decided to open a publishing company. The deed is finally done. [happy sigh]. My first project as Witching Hour Publishing is the book of short stories by my writer’s group, The Ink Slinger’s Guild. Ten members have worked hard to put together a story that is 10,000 words or less. The story has to include either word or meaning of three words: supernatural, castaway and door. Everyone got the words in and I am happy to say, created some absolutely wonderful stories! What a good time!

Okay, and I have to admit, I have one in there too.

So for the next two evenings I will be preparing the formatting of the book (I should say continuing to prepare!). I am hoping to get it up on Kindle by the end of Friday night.  I have learned quite a bit since this evolution started and I will definitely be sharing as soon as I have a little breathing room. Once this book is up, I need to sort out the hard copy details and get that rolling and then I’ll get back to you with what I have learned in this process.

I love to write and I am finding that I love this publishing process too. All in all, I am a happy girl.

Here’s the book cover:

I’ll report back soon!