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It’s getting closer

The Sorcerer’s Spell is up on Netgalley for those of you who are interested in reviewing it. Marketing told me that they had 40 requests in the first day, which is a lot apparently. It’s quite exciting!

I have some great marketing stuff with iBooks, but unfortunately I haven’t been able to get it to work on WordPress. Probably it’s my tech savviness, awesomeness not!

The Sorcerer’s Spell – Dani Kristoff

In other news, Spiritbound, the prequel to Bespelled has been accepted for publication so expect to see that in the new year. I love this story so much. Grace and Declan getting in on. I’m nearly finished the first draft of the sequel Invoked. This story has proven to be a bit troublesome.

When I get back from the UK I’ll be starting on The Changling Curse, the next installment in The Sorcerer’s Spell. It’s going to be more werewolf. You will know what I mean when you read, the Sorcerer’s Spell. (BTW this is listed as erotica).

I have a stack load of edits to do for the other me at the moment and I’ll be working on those while travelling in the UK.

While in the UK I’ll be at Loncon 3. I’m not on any panels or anything, but I’ll be hanging and I’ll have postcards for the books. I’ll also be at British Fantasy Convention in York in September.

And I should mention I’ll be signing in August at the ARRA book signing that is to be held as part of the Romance Writers of Australia conference in Sydney.

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Cover love-The Sorcerer’s Spell

So I have it finally, the cover for The Sorcerer’s Spell put together by the team at HarperCollins Australia. The Sorcerer’s Spell will be out with Harper Impulse, but I believe it is called AusImpulse on 1 August.

Like wow, that’s so fast but seems so slow, which is ridiculous to think. Traditional publishing can take 18months to 2 years from acceptance to publication. Digital is so much quicker. And yet I find I’m full of impatience. I must be a product of this modern world as I seem to be wanting it and wanting it now.

Anyway here is the cover. There are preorder links at the bottom of the page. It’s categorised as erotica so it is a hot, hot paranormal romance. A bit about the cover. This is a story where one woman is body swapped by a sorceress, hence the two faces.  in the image. Also the cover has to stand out as a thumbnail. Let me know what you think.

Thesorcerersspellcover

 

Publisher page here

Pre order at various places

https://itunes.apple.com/au/book/the-sorcerers-spell/id847666414?mt=11

https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Dani_Kristoff_The_Sorcerer_s_Spell?id=MJkaAwAAQBAJ

http://www.amazon.com.au/The-Sorcerers-Spell-Dani-Kristoff-ebook/dp/B00J7GIAPK

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/c/dani-kristoff

And it’s cheap. Less than a cup of coffee.

 

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Back from the RT Convention in New Orleans

I’m back. I’m jetlagged but doing okay. I’m still in the process  of catching up with the laundry. I’m sure the universe will be a safer place when all my underwear is clean.

RT was amazing. It was big. It was daunting. It was chaos and fun. New Orleans was a melting pot of cultures and excitement and I’d go back again one day.

I shopped…a lot. I did tours. I stayed at a fabulous Bed and Breakfast called the Canal Street Inn. (link below) and as it was in mid town I had to take the cable car every day and that was an interesting experience. I got to see some of the real New Orleans, although a lot of tourists ride the cable car or street car.

When I’m more settled I’ll put up some photos.

Highlight of the tours for me was the night swamp tour with Cajun Encounters. The guide was great. The rest of the people on the boat were so funny, I laughed my head off. I got way to close to an alligator but I took the photo anyway. The sound of the swamp was amazing at night.

I hung with Keri Arthur a lot. We have similar shopping tendencies and we walked heaps. It was so much fun. We may be dangerous together when it comes to shops. I met some readers, mostly in queues for things. An hour in a queue can learn you a lot about someone. I gave out some Aussie souvenirs and postcards with Bespelled on them.

Here is the link to the Canal Street Inn. It was so wonderful. The Innkeeper is Monica and she was very helpful. The breakfasts were different each day, introducing elements of southern cuisine like grits. There was even some nice red wine in the evenings if I was home. Link.

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Round up-April

Things have been pretty hectic on the personal front, particularly over Easter where my mother almost died and our cat died. We are devastated by the loss of our little cat. He was ginger, so friendly and pretty. My mother has picked up and has developed a different personality after a stroke. My mother has been bedridden for a few years, but it is really, really hard to see someone you love just fade away a bit at a time.

I had a birthday in April. Yes, I’m bull headed!

A few things on the cards for me in May. I am heading to the USA on the 10th of May, making a beeline to New Orleans and the RT Convention. My first! So if you are going to be there and you see me, do say hi. I’m excited to be going to New Orleans, but sadly in the knowledge that I can’t eat fish as I appear to have developed an allergy.

I’m waiting on the cover of The Sorcerer’s Spell to make an appearance and as it hasn’t I won’t be able to bring bookmarks etc to the RT Convention.  On the other hand, there have been some lovely reviews of Bespelled lately, some on Goodreads and another on Amazon. I’ll put the links down below.

I’ve been writing sporadically lately, mostly because of what’s happened with my mother. When emotional stuff happens, my head fills up with a kind of gunge and it takes a while for it to clear and to be able to think again. This time I really thought she was going and it was a confronting experience to say goodbye, to grieve and accept. Of course, my mother turned that on it’s head, which is also a bit destabilising to say the least!

On the writing front I’m working on a third story in the Bespelled world called Invoked. I’m not sure how it’s going to turn out. It has more world building in it (across the series)  but it is also a bit darker than the other two. We’ll have to see.

I also have to knuckle down and get started on The Changling Curse, which is the sequel to The Sorcerer’s Spell. This one is going to be a bit more on the erotica side. I’m saying this because The Sorcerer’s Spell is listed as erotica. I shouldn’t be surprised. It was rather hot!

Meanwhile, I can’t believe how fast this year is going. It’s May already and with me being away in New Orleans, the month is going to go very fast. I’m hoping to finish the first draft of Invoked in May. It was meant to be April, but enough said. I’ll be writing on the plane I think.

Here are the links to the reviews. Thank you  lovely reviewers. It feels amazing when someone likes what you’ve done and really gets it. If you read Bespelled don’t forget to drop me a line. I need pick me ups these days with family illness’s etc.

The first review is here on the Amazon.com site.

The second I found on Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/911419129?book_show_action=true&page=1

 

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A break and enter interview with Ainslie Paton

 

Consider this interview a break and enter.


I break in and steal your know how. Consider this a hit and run. I want what you have. So put up.

 

Ainslie I’ve read ( I almost wrote stolen) Floored, which floored me utterly. Sorry bad pun.

Floored

 

Like with Grease Monkey Jive you really get into the characters’ heads, make them so three dimensional I think about them afterwards and wonder  how they are doing. The only other time that’s happened to me was when I read IT by Stephen King.

 

So spill. How do you do it? I’m not leaving here until you give me a hint, the low down, the how to, the…well how the bloody hell do you do it?

I wish I could give you satisfaction in a Rolling Stones kind of way. I fear I’m going to disappoint.

 

I assume I only do what everyone else does. I try to be in a character’s head in a hardline kind of way. But the how, hmm, you got me. I don’t have detailed character bios, I don’t interview them or do anything clever and useful that I could pass on. I frequently forget what colour eyes and hair I give them.

 

In my day job I have to be good at reading people, good at anticipating what they’re thinking, what they’ll do from very little information, perhaps that’s helping me now.

 

I often think I don’t go deep enough, that I don’t create enough distinction between characters. I’m always refining to try to create the points of distinction between various characters book to book. It has to be more than just their back story, it’s down to words and gestures and that applies to secondary characters as well.

 

So you have Will in Detained, who is a total control freak and Fetch in Floored, who has that tendency but is so aware of it he mitigates it with humour and he never shuts up unless he’s brooding.

 

Will’s sidekick is Bo, loyal and shy, with a fierce streak. Fetch’s boss is a guy called Stud, a quintessential tough guy. After Fetch I wrote a guy called Mace who is so taciturn he barely talks at all. He was a huge challenge to get on the page, because he had very little dialogue and I love writing dialogue. In writing Mace I was ensuring I didn’t write Fetch again, because he was so much fun it was tempting to simply write him again and again.

 

I have a great beta reader team and like you, they want characters who live off the page. They seriously hammer me if I have a character do or say something they think unworthy of them. I rely on them to keep me and my imaginary friends honest.

 

In terms of secret sauce, maybe that’s it, very good beta readers who know how to wield a whip.

 

 

Next, secret. How do you make your books so long and still keep me entertained. I usually don’t read long books unless there’s magic, vampires, a few worlds to fall into and out of and so on.

 

 

I think that goes back to a warped equation of value. I was always a huge reader, but I didn’t have a champagne budget, so I’d go for the biggest books for the least money on the assumption they’d tell a sweeping, engrossing story and keep me entertained for longer. I was such a cheapskate I never read short stories because what was I going to do with that next hour.

 

I suspect I’m trying to emulate that, which is probably awkwardly old fashioned in the ebook era when pricing is different and it’s often harder to tell at point of purchase what the length of a book is.

 

But I’ve just dodged the question in politician style. I guess the answer is I like a big canvas and I tend not to write the more common tropes which can be a useful shorthand. Without the romance standards and without a world build I have to write long hand, deep character and unexpected storyline to sustain interest.

 

Again the beta readers help. Our rule is that they stop reading when a story bores them. That way I know where it’s gone off the track and can come back and redefine what’s happening on the page so it carries the story forward with enough pace and pathos to hold interest.

 

 

You don’t write explicit sex scenes (I hope that’s not a spoiler) and yet I could feel every touch every look that Sean gave Cait. I reckon you had me all set up and panting for an explicit sex scene, but I wasn’t disappointed with what you did give me. Two things. How do you do that? And why do you do that?

 

Really! Fantastic. You’re right, I don’t. But only because I don’t think I can! It’s a comfort and competence thing rather than anything else. But it’s also a bit of a resistance to the notion that sex is a thing for bodies and beautiful ones at that. I like it to be a thing for brains which means approaching it differently.

 

And have I mentioned competence? I’m always worried about being too purple and so inexplicit you might miss what’s going on. Bad sex awards, yeah I could be a candidate if I’m not careful.

The current manuscript pairs two folk who lust after each other but are such a bad idea they don’t act for the entire story. There is probably only one sex scene in the 100K odd that’s planned. Remains to be seen if I can keep the tension between them high enough that readers don’t simply lose interest and fall asleep and that talks to your next question.

 

 

Please don’t let me leave empty handed.

 

Last secret. How come I have to stop living while I read your books?

 

Isn’t that the best kind of read, absorbing to the point it takes over. Yes!

 

I always wanted to be able to do what my favourite authors do for me, but I think it’s hard work and then a good measure of luck for it to comes off.

 

My beta readers complain of the same thing and when they do I know I’ve got something. They’ve just read a manuscript for me and gave it a solid good, not great. No one complained of not getting enough sleep. Alarm bells rang all over the place for me. So on that particular story, it’s back to the drawing board big time.

 

I’m really hopeless at sharing secrets aren’t I? I promise I’m not holding back. I just don’t have any secrets. It’s just me and the blank page, and too much coffee and not enough exercise, hour after hour, day after day. Yawn, I’m boring myself!

 

Well darn. I’m not a good crim. It was a nice try but I’ll have to do surgery to get what she’s got.

The blurb to Floored is below. I couldn’t resist reading it.

 

They’re a car crash waiting to happen…so why do they keep crashing into each other?

From the moment Fetch gets knocked off his Harley, crawls into Driver’s car and offers her an obscene amount of money to drive him from Sydney to Perth — no questions, no names, no chit chat — they’re stuck with each other. By the time they arrive, they’re stuck on each other.

It’s lust at full throttle, with no seat belts. It could be more, but he’s a fake and she’s a liar.  They’re both neck deep in crime, and only one of them is on the right side of the law.

Available from http://www.escapepublishing.com.au/product/9780857991492

Ainslie is on the web

@ainsliepaton

http://ainsliepaton.com.au/

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The ‘edits’ have arrived

Edits from your publishers can be an exciting development in the life of an author. The fact that a book is closer to getting published is more real as the edits are a crucial stage in the getting the final product ready to  launch into the world. It’s also the first time that someone else has gone over your story and the underlying prose in great detail. It can be daunting to see your work picked apart.

After signing the contract, the big job is getting your edits in on time. Usually the contract specifies a time allowed for edits or if you are lucky your editor looks at the schedule and gives you a bit more time. My edits arrived yesterday and as yet I haven’t had a chance to look at more than the first page. The panic hasn’t quite hit me yet. Tonight I have to got to night class so I won’t be home until late. I do get the feeling though that my life has to rearrange itself so I can get the edits done. Until I do a read through I’m not going to know whether they will take up days and days or I’ll be able to breeze through them. And I’m going to the ARRA awards in Sydney on Saturday so I won’t get a full day at them until the weekend after. Oh and now I look at my calendar and I’ve booked myself into a workshop!

I shall go away now and contemplate my life and my need to do edits.

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Round up

The lovely people at Love Reading Romance have been so kind. They’ve done a lovely review, put up an excerpt of Bespelled and invited me to do a guest post. I wrote about ‘Living vicariously through writing’.

You kind find the guest post here.

The review is here. Thank you so much. Love Reading Romance. And the  thoughtful excerpt is here.

Tsana also interviewed me reviewed Bespelled over at Tsana Reads blogs here. And the interview is here.

Also I have a new photo thanks to the lovely Cat Sparks.

I like the first one better. I’m happy for votes.

Author shot Dani Kristoff

Author shot Dani Kristoff 2

Simon Petrie

WRITER, TIME TRAVELLER, INVETERATE LIAR

Pirates of the Burley Griffin

A schedule bears the same relationship to reality as Astrology

Sisters of the Pen

All about writing

Ian McHugh

science fiction and fantasy writer

The Escapades

The Escape Publishing Blog

Fantasy Writers on Retreat

A number of fantasy writers get together to write for two weeks

Madison Woods

Where Fantasy and the Wild Ozarks Meet

UnderHill and Deeper Still

The Journal of Fantasy Writer Paul Brandon

The Nocturnalist

The blog of author Matthew Farrer

Glitter Rose

The Carmine Island collection by Marianne de Pierres

Sarah Cawkwell's Blog

"The difference between fiction and reality is that fiction has to make sense." -- Tom Clancy

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