Spring Cleaning, Maintenance & Updates

Arial Burnz - VIP Club MaintenanceAs usual, I try to do some spring cleaning on my website, delete inactive or spammy-looking accounts and other such tedious and boring webmistress maintenance on the technical side of the site.

New Mailing List Features!

This year, I’m updating my site to handle mailing list directly through my site instead of through MailChimp. MailChimp has been good to me, but as I near the 2000 member mark on my list, the monthly costs are a bit out of my budget right now. I will, instead, be using a fabulous plugin called “Newsletters” by Tribulant Software. These guys are great and their product is much more affordable.

Possible Repeat E-mails – SORRY! :\

eReader-BBB01HOWEVER, switching over to this new system is not only taking some time (I have to recreate all of those nifty automatic e-mails that go out when you reach those milestones in your VIP Club subscription), but it might create a few hiccups. I am working with Tribulant to be sure there are as little of those as possible, but be forewarned…you might get some repeat e-mails. I apologize in advance!

FREEBIES Will Be Attached!

The good news is, I’ll be gaining some really nifty features, like being able to attach your freebies right to the e-mails that go out. No more downloading for you and no more coupons. So those great desktop wallpapers and background images for your phones, as well as the free eBooks members get…you don’t have to look any further than your inbox!

This also means that if I have a story I want to put into the Kindle Unlimited program, I won’t be violating Amazon’s contract conditions anymore. Nice benefit for me and for those of you who love Kindle Unlimited.

jack-aideen-promoNew Novella this Winter!

I’ve just written my own version of the Jack Frost story…but this certainly isn’t for children. (To the right is a sneak peek at the characters!) This 25k-word spin-off is from Midnight Eclipse, in that it features one of the Elemental Nurseries – what the vampires Rasheed, Ammon and Mikhail (former Vamsyrian Council Members) call their little prisons for the Elementals. The elder vampires are breeding these witches and mages for their magical powers in hopes of eventually producing a spirit elemental – one who has power over the dead. 

The novella is titled “Frostbitten Hearts” and is the story of baby Jack, all grown up. If you read Midnight Eclipse, you might remember the cusper infant who was born between the two signs of Pisces and Aquarius, giving him the ability to wield both air and water. It is about 25 years after the end of Book 4, and Jack is in love with our heroine, Aideen, who is a fire witch. Unfortunately, the two of them are literally ripped from each others’ arms at the beginning, when Jack and many other elementals escape the nursery. It only gets more tense after that! I’ll be making an announcement of the cover reveal and release dates once I have more solid information. Right now, look out for its release in November for this holiday season and some excerpts leading up to the release!

BBB05_titleunknownBook 5 Updates!!

 YES! I’m working on Midnight Savior! I was pretty stressed about how I was going to fit all those wonderful pieces I’ve been aching to put into this story, because nothing seemed cohesive: Jack the Ripper, putting Christabelle (Davina’s name in this novel) in the path of the killer, working in the prophecy, adding some real twists and turns and surprising elements that I hope will make you gasp, giving Cordelia, her now-husband Peter, and Malloren larger parts, and working in a sub-plot to include not only Angus Campbell…but the new character I introduced at the end of Book 4 – Kahli, the Goddess of Darkness!! Jesse and the ex-Council members will be making cameo appearances, too.

I think most of my die-hard readers know I love many, many layers to my plots and work to ensure everything I mention in the stories doesn’t have just one purpose, but as many functions as possible to push my story along and support it…but I also labour not to be too confusing with all these goodies.

east-london01This story is set in Victorian London, during the time Jack the Ripper stalked the streets of the East End – specifically Whitechapel – in 1888. Oh, the research I had to do for this baby! And the things I’ve learned – and are still learning – about the horrors the people of the East End experienced. What a terrible time to be poor! Charles Dickens, Jack London and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (to name just a few) wrote in detail about the atrocities of the time in their many tales. Jack London, the American author, even went “under cover” as a vagabond to learn first hand about the life of these crowded, dirty and violent streets. I’ll have a lot of interesting and even gruesome facts to share in my author notes once this book is out, so don’t skip that section. I’ll be referencing many wonderful books of the time and some of the shocking facts will be revealed in the story itself. If you think I’ve put Broderick through hell over the last several novels in the series, wait ’til you see what I’m putting poor Davina through. *groan* Many of you will hate me, but all will turn out well in the end. I do, after all, love a happy ending!

Illustrated_Police_News_-_Jack_the_Ripper_2And just as a side-note, I’m going to do my best to use the English spelling of words throughout the novel as much as possible, if not entirely (provided my editor and I don’t miss anything). Things like “mobilize” and “organize” will be spelled “mobilise” and “organise”. Delightful spellings like colour and parlour and even saviour, which means I’ll be changing the spelling of the title. I think it will go a long way in bringing in the flavour of the setting as well as the time period.

So, when will it be out, I hear you all asking. I can’t give you a date yet, but suffice it to say I do hope to get it published before the summer is over. SQUEEEEE!!! And with some recent studying I’ve been doing of my craft – a writer NEVER stops studying or developing his/her skills – I hope to be writing much faster and will (cross my fingers) pump out FULL-LENGTH novels much faster than at my 1-or-2-books-a-year rate. Don’t hold me to that, but I’m doing my damnedest to write my stories as quickly as I can without sacrificing quality all so I can feed you ravenous monsters! LOL I do love how quickly you devour my books! Many of you expressed that you’re not too thrilled with the idea of me writing shorter stories, that you’d much rather have the longer novels. I heard you and I am endevouring to deliver!

2015 1st Quarter Drawing Delays

One final note: The 1st quarter drawing has been delayed due to my computer being in the shop. I’m working off my sllloooooooooowwwww laptop these days AND it doesn’t have the information I need for all those extra entries you all have earned for the drawing – those people who forwarded on my VIP Club e-mails to tell friends about me. If you aren’t a member of my VIP Club, now is the time to join! Not only do you get a bunch of vampire freebies, but if you sign up today, any of the e-mails you forward to your friends will not only earn you extra entries for this drawing (hopefully taking place by Friday) but those same extra entries will count in the 2nd quarterly drawing, so you’ll be doubling your entries. that goes for current members AND new members. So JOIN TODAY and start sending out those e-mails to your friends (be sure to copy or blind-copy me on those) and they could also win a chance at the $50 gift card I give away each quarter. Don’t worry, I won’t use their e-mails to add them to my list. They have to join on their own. I just use them for the drawing.

Thank you all for your patience and constant encouragement! Remember to please review the books you’ve read – mine or anyone else’s. It’s a great way to show your favourite authors your appreciation. Until the next post…

Hugs,

Arial 😀

Midnight Conquest – NOW AVAILABLE ON AUDIBLE!

BBB01_audiobook_withheadphonesOMG!!! SQUEEEEEEEEEEEE!!! I’m so excited (can’t you tell?) that the first book in my series, Midnight Conquest, is now available in audiobook format! *Arial throws confetti*

For those of you who do not have an Audible account, you’re missing out on enjoying fabulous audiobooks!! It’s only $14.95 per month and you get a credit each month. 1 credit buys 1 audiobook. I usually save up my credits and then splurge on sales they have – buy one get one free happens a LOT. So books that are normally $25, you only get them for $14.95 because you can spend your credits on them. It’s AWESOME! And then they have GREAT sales for audiobooks that are sometimes less than $5 – members only sales. So audiobooks really can be affordable!

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD MIDNIGHT CONQUEST TODAY!!!

If you’ve been waiting to read audiobooks but thought they were too expensive…think again! And if you’re joining for the first time now, PLEASE consider making Midnight Conquest one of the books you get with your free credits when you join! You’ll actually help me and David earn a little commission for all the hard work we’ve done for free to get this book up and running. 

Promo Codes for Prizes

The book just became live a day or two ago and I was waiting for the codes before I made the announcement. But I still haven’t heard back from Audible yet. For those of you who have won an audiobook in recent promotions, I’m working on it! I promise!! As soon as I have those codes, I’ll send you a message with instructions on how to claim your audiobook. Thank you for your patience!!

Hot for the Holidays Sale!!

I just sent out a newsletter announcing a multi-author sale that’s happening all this week! Don’t miss out on the deals from BESTSELLING Paranormal authors!!! Here’s the link to the newsletter in full: http://eepurl.com/bdQM-H

BBB01_audiobook_withheadphonesHEAD’S UP

I’ll be having a release day party for the audiobook version of MIDNIGHT CONQUEST in a couple of weeks. I’ll make the announcement next week once I’ve locked down a date and my guests. Be sure to become a VIP member to get those announcements.

Toodles!!!

Wolf Pack Link Correction – OOPS!

facepalmI just sent out a mailing list newsletter and learned from some of my members that the links to the Wolf Pack 4000 Member Bash event on Facebook were not working. I just realized that the event doesn’t seem to be available to those who are not members of the Wolf Pack. If you’d like to be a member, it’s FREE!! Just CLICK HERE to join!!

I can’t send out another e-mail via my mailing list today. I’ve reached my limit, so I’ll send out the correction tomorrow. The giveaways are open until Friday, so people should still be able to participate.

Sorry for the inconvenience and confusion!

Hugs,

Arial 😉

Bonded By Blood #Playlist and #SALE!!!

Midnight Eclipse - Book 4 of the Bonded By Blood Vampire ChroniclesMidnight Eclipse will be on sale for 99 CENTS at Amazon only – February 4-14 – in celebration of St. Valentine’s Day!!! Woot! If you haven’t bought my latest release, now’s the time to pick it up! SAVE THE DATE!

It MIGHT end up being on sale February 3rd – depends on when Amazon does the update. I just put it on sale and it takes anywhere from 12-48 hours for changes to post. So check Amazon tomorrow to see if the new price has posted.

Bonded By Blood Playlist

I also just created a page with a list of the songs from the CD Fallen by Evanescence. Along with the clips of the songs (can’t post the whole song due to copyright), I’ve posted the lyrics to the music AND notes describing how each of these songs apply to my characters.

SPOILER ALERT!

Be advised that reading the notes I make about the songs will reveal spoilers to many of the books in the series, including the ones I haven’t written yet! So if you haven’t read any of my books, I wouldn’t advise reading the notes…unless you like spoilers. CLICK HERE to see the Bonded By Blood Playlist.

I’ll be adding new music as I find it – like the complete songs I’m using for the audiobooks and a song I’ve picked out I’m titling “Davina’s Song”. I’ll keep you posted!!

Enjoy!!!

Midnight Conquest – Audiobook Almost Here!

Midnight Conquest - AudiobookAudiobook Production Almost Done!

SQUEEE!!!! The audiobook for Midnight Conquest is almost done. We had some delays over the holidays and since I’m producing it myself (with the assistance of my fabulous narrator, David Monteath), the delays were due to me and holiday schedules. As some of you  may have heard, Sony Pictures Entertainment was hacked just before Thanksgiving and my husband is in one of the key departments responsible for getting the company’s computers back up and running again. Holy bananas, what a freakin’ nightmare! He’s been working 12 hours a day, six days a week since the hack and only had Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s days off, with an isolated day or two here and there either working from home or off of work. Well, unfortunately, it took it’s toll on him and he’s been home sick for the last two and a half weeks. Our household was pretty much turned upside down because of this cyberattack. Fuckers. Pardon the language, but geez.

Anyway, we’re back on track again and almost done with the final edits of the audiobook. My apologies to those who have been waiting for their prizes, where I’ve awarded this audiobook in some recent promotions and events. It’s coming! I promise!!

To give you a taste of the audiobook, I’m now releasing (below) the 5-minute sample that will be on Audible once the audiobook is live. You’ll get to hear David’s AWESOME Scottish accent and Broderick MacDougal will finally have a voice!!!!! Cross your legs, ladies, so you can bear the heat!! I’ve been swooning over here listening to the hunky Scottish Vampire I’ve been writing about for so many years. Just so you know, the quality you’ll get when you get the actual audiobook will be better. I had to take the quality down just to get it to upload and play on my site. Enjoy!!! Drum roll…..

BBB01 Sample

 

The music, titled “Celtic Flame” by Stathum Summers at AudioJungle, is what you’ll hear at the beginning of each chapter. I hope it lends some Scottish atmosphere to the novels. Click on the title of the song to hear the whole version. I hope to be posting some other music on my site for a soundtrack to my books.

You may notice the cover above says, “New Adult Version.” As a reminder, I’ve edited the text of the book for a “softer” version of the sexual encounters, so…unfortunately…you won’t be getting all the glistening-folds details you’d get in the full eBook/printed novel. I did this to not only save my poor narrator from having to read the erotic scenes (LOL), but also to open my books to a younger audience. Instead of this being the X-rated version of my novels, the audiobook will be the NC-17 version, so parental discretion is still advised. 

I hope you enjoy this sample of the upcoming audiobook. Again, thank you all for your patience!! I’ll keep you posted on the progress.

Woo hoo!!! Please leave comments below! I’d love to hear what you think.

Cheers!

Arial 😀

Nicholas Sparks Gets Divorced – Love is Dead?

Nicholas Sparks - TMZ.com photoIs Nicholas Sparks Divorce the End of True Love?

Of course it isn’t the end of true love! But you’d think it was if you listened to all the Twitter chatter about Mr. Sparks’s separation and pending divorce with his wife of 25 years. I’m just flabbergasted at the drivel that people are spewing because this bestselling romance novelist’s marriage didn’t work. Here are some of the ridiculous quotes flashing around the Twittersphere and I don’t want to put the author credits because they just don’t deserve the attention – but you can do searches on Twitter for them yourself if you’re interested.

  • “PSA: I was just informed that nicholas sparks got a divorce so basically love is dead”
  • Nicholas Sparks is getting a divorce and love is officially dead.”
  • “Nicholas Sparks is getting a divorce?! There’s no hope for love :(“
  • Nicholas Sparks got a divorce this week so basically there’s no hope for any of us”

I could continue, but I’m sure you get the point.

Reality Check

As a romance novelist myself, and having been through two divorces AND now in a very successful and healthy relationship, I think I have a pretty solid soap box on which to stand. Since this is my website, I’ll take the liberty of climbing on top of said makeshift podium and pontificate. TRUE LOVE IS NOT DEAD. I know because I’m living it. MUCH of the romance in my books is based on the true love principles I’m sharing in this article. I’ve said many times before, my husband is the heart that beats within Broderick MacDougal, the main character in my Bonded By Blood Vampire Chronicles.

How bloody absurd it is that people are taking this leap just because Nicholas Sparks had problems in his love life! BUT it highlights how unrealistic people are about love today. I’ll make a couple of important points I’ve learned the hard way through the years: Continue reading

No More eBooks!

At least not here on my own website. As I mentioned before in previous VIP Club announcements and website posts, I am no longer selling my eBooks through my website. All eBooks are sold through the major online retailers and here are the buttons to my author pages on each of those sites:

amazon_kindle_squaresmashwords_48x48iTunes-Apple-button-48x48B_N_Nook_squarekobo_square

Midnight Conquest is FREE through each of those retailers. I’ll be sending out a VIP Club newsletter in the new year as well to make this announcement.

VIP Club Benefits

But what VIP Club pricing???

No worries!! All my VIP Club members will still have access to special pricing through Smashwords coupons! VIP Club members will now get 25% off all my eBooks (which still equates to $1 off). CLICK HERE for a complete list of Smashwords Coupon Codes (you MUST be logged into this site to access the link). All VIP Club e-mail notifications and Freebie pages have been updated to reflect the new codes. If I missed something, please let me know in the comments below. Thanks!

Pre-release Options?

Since I am releasing my books through Amazon first and then other retailers after the 90-day exclusivity period, I cannot make the books available for pre-order through my website. Not only will it violate my Amazon contract, but it’s an administrative nightmare. The latest release with pre-orders was so much more trouble than it was worth. But hey…I gave it the ol’ college try. Thank you to those who participated!

HOWEVER, as VIP Club members, you will get the announcement FIRST as to WHEN my new releases we be FREE. Since I’ll be using the KDP Select program, I’m taking advantage of the 5 free Kindle promo days and VIP Club members will be informed FIRST as to when those days are happening! If you’re not a VIP Club member now, be sure to SIGN UP. I’m hoping BBB-Book 5 will be out in the Spring 2015 and you’ll be able to get it for $0…IF you’re a member and are informed!

Audiobook – Midnight Conquest

I swear, the audiobook is coming!!!! Due to the business of the holidays and all hell breaking loose with the Sony Pictures Entertainment hack (my husband is a current employee and I’m an ex-employee), I just did not have time to finish up the editing on my first audiobook. Some of you have won copies of Midnight Conquest. Don’t worry! I haven’t forgotten about you. They’ll be coming in January!! I’ll make the announcement in an upcoming newsletter. Thank you in advance for your continuing patience.

I wish you all a very HAPPY NEW YEAR!

That’s my two pence…

Arial 😀

 

Winners Announced for the Midnight Eclipse Release Tour

Throwing in the Towel - YUM!TIME FOR A REVEALING!

First let me thank everyone who participated in the Midnight Eclipse Book Release Tour! All the tweets that went out to increase my exposure were invaluable in helping me get the word out about my books. Thank you!!!

I did make an announcement of the winners for the tour in my newsletter yesterday to all my VIP Club members – along with announcing the quarterly winner (see widget to the right) – but I completely forgot to mention the bloggers who also won the incentive drawings. My sincerest apologies!!! So many blogger participated (see link above for list of participating websites) and two winners were selected for $20 Amazon Gift Cards. They were…

CONGRATULATIONS!!! Be sure to visit their blogs and show some lovin’!

Bonded By Blood - Vampyre MaskWhen we first pulled the names for the winners of the prizes below, we e-mailed them directly through the e-mails they provided when they entered. Some people did not claim their prizes for the Midnight Eclipse tour, so we picked new names. When I announced this in my newsletter yesterday, a bunch of people contacted me, asking if they were the ones that didn’t respond.

Suffice it to say that if you entered your e-mail for the drawing, that is the e-mail we would have used to contact you for your prize and we sent several messages. Unless those messages went into your spam folder, you probably would have known if you were contacted. However, IF you check your spam folder now and find out you DID miss out on winning your prize, then forward the winning announcement e-mail to me and we’ll take it from there. Unfortunately, we might have to work out a different prize, though. Just sayin’!

Bonded By Blood Vampire Coaster SetBelow are the list of prizes given out and the names of all the winners. This list includes the winners who DID claim their prizes and the new names chosen, so it’s all inclusive. The only people that need to contact me are the ones who won the signed book copies. All the rest should have their prizes by now.

  • Midnight Conquest Character Reveal Tour & Books 1-3 Book Blast
    • $10 Gift Card – Lisa Miller
    • 1 set of coasters – Vicki Hancock
    • 1 Signed Set of books 1-3 – Rebecca Ray
  • Midnight Captive Character Reveal Tour
    • $10 Gift Card – Robbie Bauldree
    • 1 mask – Maari Hammond
    • 1 Signed set of books 1-3 – Melissa Snow
  • Midnight Eclipse Book Tour
    • $100 Gift Card – Amber Snyder
    • 1 box of books 1-4 signed copies – Ann Waters

CONGRATULATIONS!!! Everyone who won the signed copies needs to contact me with a snail-mail address AND what you would like inscribed on your copies (e.g., who am I making them out to?).

Midnight Eclipse Book Tour Schedule – #Giveaways!

Midnight Eclipse - Book Tour with Literati Author ServicesFor your convenience, I’ve posted the complete schedule of bloggers who are hosting my new release, Midnight Eclipse. I will try to update the links as I get them, but some of the posts aren’t going live or I’m having problems finding them.  By the way…for those of you who are bloggers…PLEASE put a search widget on your site! It’s near impossible for authors to find our posts when you don’t have that search function. Thank you!!

Tour Schedule

Continue reading