Helpless in the holidays!

Relaxing view

I may be alone in this, but as much as I adore the thought of school holidays, with lie-ins and endless dreamy days dipping my hand into the sea, as I happily devour a melting ice-cream whilst the children frolic in the surf; it never quite turns out this way!

So far, I have had a house full of small giggling people, which is fabulous, but my lazy walks along the sand have turned into tackle mum head first onto the beach, then fleece her for an ice-lolly and the family picnics in the park have turned into me being a taxi service while my children meet their social circle. I had kind of decided that at least I could sit and write while I wait for them, sipping a fragrant cappuccino no less….but this doesn’t go to plan either and I end up with a thimble full of mud-coloured tea, in an uninspiring field, while they ride their bikes around the periphery.

coffee

I’ve been trying to fit my work and writing into the school holidays and have found that I’m not writing nearly as much as I’m used to. I absolutely love taking my notebooks everywhere I go and enjoy the hustle and bustle of people outside, but this doesn’t translate into words on paper during these certain weeks.

Considering my job travels well and my children are pretty easy going, I think I might have to resort to lists, to become more time efficient. The problem is that i’m easily distracted by the possibility of a cheese and tomato sandwich in the park, while the children play on the slides. Being a tad scatty, I would probably leave the list on the swings and remember it when I got home.

After being soaked by water balloons and having grabbed one of the huge slightly over-iced biscuits that we made today, I think I might have to resort to slinking into my office for an hour or two before bedtime and have some fun writing the next section of my latest manuscript, before the small giggly people decide what they would like to do tomorrow, or I fall asleep at my desk!

heart biscuit

10 Things My Blog Taught Me

Interesting article on blogging by Jacqui Murray.

A Writer's Path

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by Jacqui Murray

When I started this blog three years and 586 posts ago, I wasn’t sure where to take it. I knew I wanted to connect with other writers so I used that as the theme. Now, thanks to the 430,000+ people who have visited, I know much more about the ‘why’. Yes, it’s about getting to know kindred souls, but there is so much more I’ve gotten from blogging. Like these:

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Gripping reviews.

Book reviews from readers are so important to an author, as this is often how others choose which genre or story to read next. It could be the difference between a book lover picking up a new title up to buy, or moving on to another read.

I often say that writing a lovely review is like handing an author a rainbow. Knowing someone has enjoyed your writing makes you feel like all of the hours writing manuscripts and typing up notes are worthwhile. A review only takes a moment to write, but it is really appreciated by the author (especially if it’s from someone who loved the book!) and is often something they refer to again and again, or use in marketing.

Here are a couple of customer reviews for Babe Driven, Love’s Child and Finding Gina. If you are looking for a new Summer read, below is the link for my books, where you can see an array of other reviews:

Summer reads.

Portable e-book reader with two clipping path for book and scree

Portable e-book reader with two clipping path for book and scree

Portable e-book reader with two clipping path for book and scree

Lizzie Chantree Finding Gina review Twitter Ad

 

Love's Child TwitterAd quote

Inventive writers!

Today is my chance to welcome you all to the RRBC book and blog block party!

Blog Party 1

This month, The Rave Reviews Book Club, or RRBC, has decided to throw a book and blog party. I hope that by now you have visited many other blogs in the party and some of you may have already won prizes! Anyone is eligible to win a prize. You don’t have to be part of the book club to win. To be in with a chance of winning some great prizes, leave a comment on my blog page today (15/08/2016) and RRBC will select the winners. Winners will be notified on my blog and via email. To see everyones comments today, click on the comment box at the top of this blog page.

My Prizes today: 

1st prize: A £20 or $25 Amazon voucher.

A week of tweet support from my Twitter account @Lizzie_Chantree (Writers: You don’t need a Twitter account as I can still promote your books/blogs/websites etc.) If you don’t have a book to promote, but do have a Twitter account or a business, I can promote your account/business, to hopefully find some new followers or customers.

The first prize winner will also gain a mention on my networking hour #creativebizhour and on my Instagram page. We have over 17.3M timeline views and 22K RT’s in 1 hour some weeks on #creativebizhour and we are often trending.

Prize 2: A £15 or $20 Amazon voucher and a day of tweet support from my Twitter account @Lizzie_Chantree.

Prize 3: A £10 or $15 Amazon voucher and a day of tweet support from my Twitter account @Lizzie_Chantree.

Number of prizes for today’s lucky winners: 3  
Prizes from: Location. London. England.
Winner list: (1) £20 Amazon Gift Card w/a week of Tweet Support (JAN HAWKE), (2) £15 Amazon Gift Card w/a day of Tweet Support (MIRANDA L.); (3) £10 Amazon Gift Card w/a day of Tweet Support (D. E. HOWARD).

 Lizzie Chantree books magic quote

Let’s party! 

I am looking forward to introducing you to my work, but realise you have probably seen a lot of blogs and discovered some great books already on this tour. I can only hope you are still full of energy and are ready for another party!

Before I became an author, I started my career by inventing things, (picture a mad inventor with pencils sticking out of her hair!) so I thought I would introduce you to my first invention and tell you about some writing related innovations that I have found, just for fun.

Runaway Spray Twitter Ad

My first invention is called Runaway Spray. Runaway Spray is an instant ‘ladder’ or ‘run’ stop spray for stockings and tights. It is the size of a lipstick, not tested on animals and easy to add to any handbag. I invented this product when I was 17 and had such an amazing time learning all about patents, product design and wholesale and retail for the high street. Not book related, but very handy all the same! Great for looking smart at a book signing. I often refer to the business skills I learnt from this time in my life in my novels, as they all involve creative businesses. Babe Driven is a successful chauffeur company with stunningly gorgeous women drivers, company espionage and sizzling beaches. Love’s Child has a warehouse centre for delinquent children as the main setting, run by an ex-boxer who is hiding a secret that can affect the whole of humanity. Finally, Finding Gina has an fledgling events business and a cosy coffee shop, run by a vain young woman with ‘issues’. Gina is someone who is just passing through the town, but her arrival affects everyone.

Back to extreme inventiveness! Here are some gadgets that have been inspired by writers. In 1973, Martin Cooper made the first public cell phone call from a hand held device. Afterwards he acknowledged that he had been inspired by the script of Star Trek, to develop the technology. Rockets, satellites and tablet computers all started in the minds of creative authors, who helped innovators to discover new product ideas. I didn’t get my inventive idea from a book, but from an orange and a lilo, that’s another story altogether!

Some inventions have sprung from the imaginations of creative writers who have no expertise in design, but have an imagination that can think beyond the here and now. These writers, in turn, inspired those with the technical knowledge, to create actual products from science fiction novels.

Script writers bought us voice-controlled robots like R2-D2 in Star Wars and voice responsive computer, Hal, in A Space Odyssey. In the 1950-60’s Bell Labs designed it’s first computer which recognised digits. IBM then developed a machine that could recognise 16 words. By the turn of the century, consumer electronics were starting to use this technology. Apple worked with specialists to develop the Siri software. A Space Odyssey also had astronauts looking at rectangular screens, which look remarkably like iPads. Writer Arthur C Clarke described touchscreen computers as ‘news pads’, which could also be similar to e-readers.

book quote blog2

Comic book hero Dick Tracy by Chester Gould, was able to talk to his parter via a 2 way radio watch. Did this evolve into the modern smartwatches?

In 1998, Mark Twain wrote a short story and described a phone system to share information over the world wide network.

In 1887, novelist Edward Bellamy mentioned a credit card in his book, Looking backward. He used the term ‘credit card’ as a means of paying for a citizens dividend from the government.

Do you think you might have dreamt up a new innovation that could benefit the world, in your last book, poem, or blog, without realising it? I found it really interesting to discover that inventors and authors had such a connection!

Portable e-book reader with two clipping path for book and scree

Introducing my books:

Babe Driven

Babe Driven cover wordpress

Driving straight out of trouble and into paradise! 

Harriet’s crazily successful business idea is under serious threat, and the danger seems to be coming from inside her own family. She whisks her sister and her friends away to an exotic location to try and work out whose side they are on. It’s time to start damage limitation.

When the girls arrive at the glorious villa owned by Harriet’s maverick business partner Nikki, they find a gorgeous band and their sexy lead singer Max staying next door, out to entice their new neighbours into all kinds of trouble.

This isn’t a holiday for Harriet and she can’t afford to be distracted. She has to sell her business idea to the powerful resort owner, the elusive Mr Grant, while she is there, or she may not have a business to go back to. Harriet will have to choose between family and friends, business or pleasure. For someone who stays out of the limelight, even though her new company is the hottest ticket in town, she’s going to have to avoid the front pages of every newspaper if she wants to survive the ride!

Book links:    Amazon.co.uk        Amazon.com

Review: 5 stars

Babe Driven TwitterAd quote

Babe Driven, book trailer, click here.
 Love’s Child 

Love'sChild

Power, deceit and betrayal, all in the name of love! 

Jemima Trent is desperate to have a designer baby to keep up with her socialite friends, reconnect with her work-obsessed husband, Lucas, and regain some respect from her domineering father, but the number of women able to conceive each year is in decline and no one seems to know why.

Dr Cole believes that the answer can be found in a warehouse full of delinquent teenagers, where David Love and his beautiful girlfriend Tilly, have been hitting the headlines for turning youngsters’ lives around. Dr Cole’s violent and callous employer will stop at nothing to discover the reason behind their success and why girls at the warehouse are able to fall pregnant.

Jemima finally tries to step out of her father’s shadow, but discovers they are more alike than she could ever imagine. David and Tilly race to protect a secret they have held for years, that could have a bearing on family life for generations to come. An action packed love story, with powerful men and formidable women.

Lies, deceit and betrayal, all in the name of love!

Book links:   Amazon.co.uk     Amazon.com

Review:   5 stars

Love's Child TwitterAd quote

Love’s Child book trailer, click here.
 Finding Gina
Finding Gina by Lizzie Chantree

Can a sprinkling of stardust overcome a past full of demons?

Gina had traversed the breadth of the country in her little campervan to try and find everyone on her grandmother’s list, before her father drunk himself into an early grave. She lent down and pulled the battered and worn journal from her bag and opened it to the latest page. The neatly written names were etched onto her heart and she was determined to visit every single one and compensate them in some way. Her family’s debt had to be repaid.

Toby, heir to Bluebell Manor, couldn’t believe his luck when a flame haired beauty arrived at his door. Just when he thought all hope was lost! Looking for somewhere to stay for the night, Gina’s decision to turn left on a country lane, might have greater consequences than she could ever realise.

Lewis read another provincial story about a ‘guardian angel’ who had been helping families across the country and his reporter’s nose began to itch. He was sure that if he could track down the girl they were talking about, he would unearth an even bigger story. He just had to work out how to locate her and then find out what it was that she was running from!

Book links:   Amazon.co.uk     Amazon.com
Review: 5 stars
Finding Gina Twitter Ad 2
Finding Gina book trailer, click here.

I hope you have enjoyed today’s party. Thank you for stopping by🙂

Join me on some great social media sites:

Twitter: @Lizzie_Chantree

Facebook: Facebook.com/LizzieChantree

LinkedIn: Lizzie Chantree

Pinterest: Lizzie Chantree

Instagram: Lizzie_Chantree 

To see everyones comments today, click on the comment box at the top right hand side of this blog page.

Don’t forget to continue the party with the next hosts! 

Today:

Dreamless Roads/Jan Hawke

Sparta Reconsidered/Helena Schrader

The rest of the tour:

https://ravereviewsbynonniejules.wordpress.com/back-to-school-book-blog-block-party-line-up/

Images: Istock

Book cover design: Lizzie Chantree

Meet author Lizabeth Scott!

Cover as iPad

You Promised Me Forever Nominee!

Nominate You Promised Me Forever for Amazon Kindle Scout!

Blog by author Lizabeth Scott:

IT’S HERE! This project has been a labor of love and I’m so excited to share it with you. Below you’ll find a brief description of Nic and Will’s story. If you find it intriguing, keep scrolling to find out how to read the first 5,000 words right now!

You Promised Me Forever teaser 1

BOOK DESCRIPTION: As a young child, Nicole didn’t understand why her parents left. She awaited their return until she grew old enough to understand they never would.

William, the boy next door, made her feel safe and loved and later hurt her in the worst possible way.

Broken and questioning everything, Nicole moves to Alaska to heal and forget about the love she’ll never have.

William broke Nicole’s heart right along with his own. Now he wants a second chance. But will Nic ever love and trust him again?

Teaser 6 without sign lower text

Will’s character may seem familiar to you. He was actually introduced in the Royal Vow Series, Sweet Destiny. King SuMartra entrusted Will with the safety of Queen Mari.

 

 

Nominate You Promised Me Forever for Amazon Kindle Scout!

WANT MORE? Nominating a book for Kindle Scout is easy to do! Click on the “Nominate You Promised Me Forever” link beneath the book trailer, and it will take you to an Amazon page for You Promised Me Forever. Once there you’ll be able to find out a bit more about the creation of the book as well as read the first 5,000 words.

If you like what you read and would like to read the story in its entirety, then click the ‘Nominate Me’ button! That puts You Promised Me Forever on your dashboard. At the end of my 30-day campaign if my book is still on your dashboard, and it’s selected by Amazon to be part of the Kindle Press, then you’ll get a free copy before it’s released to the public!

If you love the preview, please share!

Nominate You Promised Me Forever for Amazon Kindle Scout!

Thank you,

Liz

bio pic2

Author Links

Subscribe: http://bit.ly/1QkElux

Website: http://www.lizabethscottbooks.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LizabethScottAuthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LScottBooks

Blog: http://lizabethscottauthor.blogspot.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lizabethscottauthor

Tumblr: http://lizscottbooks.tumblr.com

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lizabeth

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8122729.Lizabeth_Scott

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Lizabeth-Scott/e/B00UK8AGG0/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Nomination Link: https://kindlescout.amazon.com/p/3BSZV412L6849

5 writing tips.

Here are a few of my writing tips:

Tip 1: Read everything you can! A great way to learn more about a genre, what works and what doesn’t, is by reading a really wide variety of books by different authors.

read

Tip 2: Apparently, a reader often connects with the first character they meet in a book, so don’t wait too long to introduce them. I was told by a bookseller that they had just received a book from a publisher, which began with the viewpoint of one main character in the first print run and then changed to start with the viewpoint of the second main character, in the next print run, to see if this was true!

Tip 3: Write what you would like to read yourself. You are more likely to enjoy the writing experience if the endless re-reads when writing a manuscript, are on a topic you are interested in.

Tip 4: Don’t panic in the middle of your story, when things often slow down in momentum. Either walk away and have a change of scenery for a short while to clear your mind, or write through the pain! I was given a great tip when I began writing, which was to JUST WRITE IT! You can’t edit a blank page, but you can always go back and edit something you have written.

Coffee notebook

Tip 5: Another tip I was given early on, was to build my characters in depth and to think about:

What they might like to eat? Do they eat smoked salmon and caviar, or chip sandwiches with gherkins?

Do they always wear the same things? Do they stalk about in super skinny jeans and tight t-shirts, or prance around in frou-frou pastel dress with sparkles?

What they smell like? Do they wear perfume or have smelly armpits and bad breath!

Do they have unusual physical attributes that make them stand out? Like pink hair, a stoop, rainbow tattoos, big teeth or a stunning smile.

pink hair

All of this conjures a clearer mental image of the characters in your story.

 

Ebook cover design.

Design elements.

Since I published my first book, I have really enjoyed the process of designing my book covers. Having a history in graphic design has been so beneficial, but it has been a learning curve about what typefaces work, how they can be read on book sites and what works for my own author brand or genre of writing.

The book cover for my first novel, Babe Driven looks like this:

Babe Driven cover web

 

I chose the colours because the story is set abroad and I wanted the cover to reflect holidays and women having fun. My main character Harriet runs a chauffeur business with gorgeous drivers in sports cars, so I added her image to the cover in a red car. She also has a uniform for her staff of black shirts with a hot pink trim, so this was incorporated too. Harriet is smiling, which I hope makes people want to discover what she is happy about! Her character is strong, but really likeable and I wanted her to seem friendly, but glamorous. Overall, I really enjoyed designing this cover and it does translate well at small sizes.

The book cover for my second novel, Love’s Child:

Love'sChild.jpg

I wanted this book cover to have a strong graphics feel, so that it would stand well next to the cover of Babe Driven. I used the strong base colour of bright blue in the text and behind the buildings and the same hot pink for details. The main character in this book is a boxer, called David Love. He runs a warehouse where he supports local families from a troubled and run down area, to stay strong and unite as a community. The people at the warehouse have a secret and when the rest of the world try to find out what it is, David has to fight to keep them and their secret safe. The piercing eyes of the man on my book cover are quite fierce but draw you in at the same time. David will do anything to protect his community, but at what cost to his personal life? I was looking for an image that portrayed strength and would appeal to my readers.

The book cover for my third novel, Finding Gina:

Finding Gina by Lizzie Chantree

Once again I used the same underlying colours of a strong blue and pink to link the book covers, but added an accent colour of bright red as my main character Gina, has bewitching red hair. I wanted the book to have a swirling magical feel, as Finding Gina is a mystical romance novel. I also decided to include an image of a camper van, as this is how Gina travels around the country. Her family has a secret past and in the book, she races to unlock the mystery surrounding her family before a journalist uncovers it for her and destroys her life forever.

 

 

Free ebook for you today!

Finding Gina Twitter Ad 2

Grab your copy for magical romance novel, Finding Gina. My new ebook is free to download from Amazon between 20th-24th July 2016. 

Download your copy here:

Finding Gina. Free ebook: Amazon.co.uk

Finding Gina. Free ebook: Amazon.com

Finding Gina. 
Can a sprinkling of stardust overcome a past full of demons?

Gina had traversed the breadth of the country in her little campervan to try and find everyone on her grandmother’s list, before her father drunk himself into an early grave. She lent down and pulled the battered and worn journal from her bag and opened it to the latest page. The neatly written names were etched onto her heart and she was determined to visit every single one and compensate them in some way. Her family’s debt had to be repaid.

Toby, heir to Bluebell Manor, couldn’t believe his luck when a flame haired beauty arrived at his door. Just when he thought all hope was lost! Looking for somewhere to stay for the night, Gina’s decision to turn left on a country lane, might have greater consequences than she could ever realise.

Lewis read another provincial story about a ‘guardian angel’ who had been helping families across the country and his reporter’s nose began to itch. He was sure that if he could track down the girl they were talking about, he would unearth an even bigger story. He just had to work out how to locate her and then find out what it was that she was running from!

Book reviews:

Format: Kindle Edition

A really great romance read. This book has humour and romance and kept me guessing the whole way through. Lizzie Chantree is fast becoming my new favourite author!
The main character Gina is running from her past, but discovers her future along the way. The other characters are just as interesting and I especially loved reading about Tom, the gorgeous baker who works at the tearoom and Lewis the intrepid reporter. The tearoom’s owner, Rachel is quite mean, but even she grew on me as the story progressed. She is quite a character! This would make a great holiday read and once I picked it up, I couldn’t put the book down until I had read the last page.

Format: Kindle Edition

Really love the story, thought the characters were well written. Read the story from cover to cover in one night – couldn’t put it down! Would recommend this book to anyone.
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

I read this authors last two books and although I usually read thrillers, I was recommended these books and have really enjoyed them!
This story is about a girl discovering more about her past, while someone else is trying to do that for her. She is travelling around the British countryside, finding people who have been conned by her grandmother, in order to repay them in some way. A journalist reads about a girl doing good deeds and sets off to find her.
I won’t say what she discovers about herself as this would ruin the story for other readers, but it was a riveting read from start to finish. The authors style of writing draws you in from the first page and she adds humour to the story which always makes me want to read more. A jolly good read!
Format: Kindle Edition

I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I’ve read the other books written by this author and although they all follow a very different storyline and theme l thought they were really cleverly written so l was eager to read Finding Gina. I wasn’t disappointed! Would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys something lighthearted and enchanting.
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

Loved this mystical story about a girl called Gina who is trying to help people who have been hurt by her grandmother. This is a love story, but it’s also about someone coming to terms with their past. Gina misses her mum and her dad is a drunk, who meddles with her life until she is forced to move out. The story hints at magical abilities and leaves you wanting to read a sequel to find out how Gina develops her new found skills. The men in the book are pretty gorgeous and the writing is humorous and entertaining. I really enjoyed this sweet book and would recommend it to friends.

Finding Gina TwitterAd quote

Promoting your free book.

Lizzie Chantree 3 books Twitter Ad

The art of promotion.

I am getting used to promotion for my books and running a free book promotion can be quite daunting. I published my first book at the end of 2013 and have just published my third at the start of 2016. During this time I have learnt about different forms of connecting with readers, but the Amazon free book days do still seem to be popular.

With my first novel Babe Driven, I ran a free book promotion before realising that it was a good idea to have another book ready for print, so that your new customers could buy the next book, if they enjoyed the first! My second free book promotion was successful and sales of Love’s Child grew.

For Love’s Child, I decided to try a paid free book promotion and this was amazing. My book shot up to #1 in the free book download chart in it’s category and I had thousands and thousands of downloads. This did result in additional sales of  Babe Driven too.

While I’m planning a book promotion for my third book, Finding Gina, I came a cross some sites that show many places to list your upcoming free book promotion and thought I would share them with you. A few on the first list are no longer available, but many are very low cost or are free to place your book on their site. It does take a lot of work to list them, but if you have one sheet prepared for your books, which has all of the book details on it, then it is fairly easy to cut and paste them each time. I have listed below the details I write for each book on a promotion plan. Many book site Facebook pages like you to list your book only on the day of your promotion, so check out their policies first. The author Marketing Club does have some paid sites listed that will submit your book to up to 45 free book sites for you for a small fee. If you are to busy to register with the individual sites yourself, then this might be a time saving option.

My promotion for Finding Gina begins on the 20th of this month, so I will let you know how this goes. I will also tweet about the promotion from my own Twitter page @Lizzie_Chantree and my Facebook page Lizzie Chantree

Another idea I had was for having merchandise printed for competitions, but I will let you know more about this on a different blog when I have some samples to show you.

If you have any great free book promotional ideas to share, please let me know:)

110+websites to submit your KDP select free days, article via Andrew Butcher’s blog.

120 places to promote your free ebook.

The Author Marketing Club.

My free book promo sheet for each book includes:

This may seem time consuming, but saves time when listing your book on hundreds of sites.

Book title.

Book sub-title.

One sentence description.

Three sentence description.

Book blurb.

1 chapter.

Amazon or other store book ASIN number.

Book links.

Social media links.

Website links.

Author page links.