Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Social Media and the Modern Author

I received an email from my publishers the other day that began by chatting about what they're planning to do to promote Why Kings Confess, but then quickly progressed to what they want me to do. And what they want me to do, of course, is have more of a presence on social media. Not nearly enough people "like" me.

It's times like this that I wish I were a Victorian-era author.

I can't do Twitter. I just can't. It would be wonderful if I could, but my brain simply doesn't think in clever little sound bites. Fortunately, they're okay with that (some publishers actually put in their contracts that authors are required to Tweet!). But that still leaves Facebook and Goodreads. And I am not nearly as active as I "should" be on either.

I'm supposed to post on Facebook at least once a day. But I'm only supposed to mention my books every 4-5 posts because we wouldn't want people to think that I'm actually, you know, doing this solely to promote my books.

I'm also supposed to post new info on Goodreads every couple of days, but even that isn't enough; I need more of a Presence. Evidently Presence requires going to at least one other author's page a day and posting a comment while casually identifying myself as the author of, ahem, that series that I don't want to look like I'm trying to promote even though of course everyone knows that's exactly what I'm doing. Seriously?

So, be warned: I will be putting up blog posts much more frequently. I apologize in advance if it becomes annoying. I will also be posting on my Facebook page at least once a day. If I can think of anything to say. Suggestions for what to post are welcomed (earnestly intreated...begged on hands and knees....) But I won't be commenting on other authors' Goodreads pages simply as a way to promote myself. Call me an old-fashioned girl.

Oh, and please "like" me at Get your friends to like me. Your mom. Your cousins. Your book club. Your sewing group. Your fellow prison inmates. Whatever.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Enough Already!

Yes, I know our winter hasn't been cold by almost anyone else's standards. But for New Orleans, this is miserable.

Last week's freezing blast effectively cut off the city: the Causeway over the lake, the long elevated spans through the swamps of the I-10, I-55, and I-12, and the bridges over the river were all closed. And now they're talking about doing it again tomorrow. Schools and universities are all closing, which is rather amazing to those of us who went to school up north and remember trudging through blizzards, but I guess it's all relative. They're saying we might even get snow, which would actually be rather nice. I mean, I already have a dead garden, so we might as well have snow!

Kitten Update: I mentioned in the comments section of the last post that Banjo was having trouble; he was having some sort of seizures and wasn't able to swallow food, and I was afraid maybe we were looking at the end. But he's rallied and is back to normal (or at least, he's back to his normal). So while it's worrisome and I'm having to accept that he is not going to be an old cat, for the moment he's still with us. His sister, Scout, is doing great. Both are getting amazingly big.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

WHY KINGS CONFESS Receives a Starred, Boxed PW Review!

I've just heard that the Publishers Weekly review of Why Kings Confess is out, and it's a starred, boxed review complete with a picture of the book's cover! Wow.

I haven't actually seen it yet, but I'm told it reads, in part, “The past casts a long shadow in Harris’s best Regency whodunit yet…Harris  melds mystery and history as seamlessly as she integrates developments in her lead’s personal life into the plot.”

Needless to say, my editor is very excited. I'll let you know when I receive the entire review. Oh, and that's a picture of one of the cover flats I received this past week. So I should be getting the actual books soon.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Oranges and Lemons

"Oranges and lemons, say the bells of St. Clements..." It's the beginning of an old English nursery rhyme and singing game, and it kept echoing in my head on Sunday while I was harvesting my citrus crop ahead of our Big Freeze. In a good year, I can leave the fruit on the trees all winter and simply wander out to pick some whenever I need it. Last year I had freshly picked and squeezed orange juice every morning until the fruit finally ran out in March. Not this year, alas. I've packed my fridge, and the fridge at my mom's old house, and the rest is going into bags for friends.

At the same time, I'm also dealing with another sort of lemon. Anyone who has read this blog for long has heard me whinging about my LG Katrina Klunkers. In the last few months, I've finally given up and replaced both my refrigerator and my hot water heater. Well, the Saturday before Christmas (as we were leaving for the airport to pick up a friend coming in to spend the holidays with us!), my dishwasher made a sound like a rocket taking off and then crashing back to earth, and quit. And then, the day after Christmas, I was typing up some plotting notes for Sebastian #11 when my range suddenly started shrieking and flashing all its lights (I wasn't even using it at the time), and also died. So I now have a new dishwasher, and the range is supposed to be delivered this afternoon (fingers crossed). The timing, needless to say, was lousy. But maybe I could send a bag of lemons to LG?

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Happy New Year!

Hope everyone had a good holiday season. My editor had planned to get the revision letter for Who Buries the Dead to me before Christmas, but to my relief she did not. So I've simply been relaxing, enjoying my family, taking care of sick cats and handicapped kittens, and occasionally giving some thought to the plot of what will be Sebastian #11.

I've decided my only resolution this year is, Stay Sane. I'm hoping that one will be doable.

Those of you in the States, stay warm. They're predicting a low of 21 here tomorrow night, which might not sound bad to those facing subzero temperatures in the double digits, except, my poor plants! I'm off to cover up gardenias and palms, and harvest my citrus crop now...