I'm very excited to announce that my books from the Shakespeare's Witch series will now be available at Local Flavors, a wonderful shop located at 8767 So. 700 E. in Sandy, Utah. This is a fun shop where you can get a terrific sandwich, a cup of coffee, fresh produce and products from locals. Say "Hi" to Chris for me when you visit!
Quest for Shakespeare
I've been eyeball deep into research and uncovered a terrific new source: "Quest for Shakspeare" by Joseph Pearce. Published by Ignatius Press in San Franscisco, this book came out in 2008. I couldn't put it down, and if you love research, you'll find lots of interesting detail with referenced sources that address both the issue of proving Shakespeare's Catholicism and confronting detractors of the theory. More importantly, Pearce embeds his research with heartfelt insights into the motives and emotional responses to the historical events of this period. Shakespeare, Pearce points out, was a man of great intelligence who was sensitive to the plights of his fellow Englishmen, passionate in his beliefs and dedicated in his efforts to address the political injustices common throughout his life. This is a time that is too often sanitized by historians. Yet, we can't truly understand Shakespeare or his work without understanding his world. I'm still digesting much of this book. I've no doubt it will inform my continued study of Shakespeare and his immortal works.
Thanks to my dear friends at UtahRWA who taught me how to offer an occasional free book! At least I made it in time for Halloween! All kindle users: Click on the link Shakespeare's Witch on Halloween to download the complete book at no cost!
For my friends who ordered early and paid full price - "The Queen's Puppets" is coming along and I promise you will also get my first kindle copy free next year.
For friends who purchased the hard copy of Shakespeare's Witch - get one for your kindle as well!
Nook owners - I can't launch Shakespeare's Witch on Barnes and Nobel for another month - but it's coming!!!
It'll be a great night to read a witch story!
BTW, for my writer friends out there, I learned at conference that the more I include a search phrase in my material, the better chance of it coming up at the top of the search engine choices.
Post Utah RWA Convention Report
Wow! Where to begin. What an awesome event the Utah RWA was! Loved rubbing shoulders with our amazing authors. The classes were exceptional. The food was fabulous. The pitches were interesting. My first booksigning was everything I could have asked for.
So I'll end up spending several posts going over what I learned, but for right now I want to thank my dear friends for coming up to help usher in what I can now officially call my career.
I'm a writer! I have books to sell and people are buying them! I'm learning how to market and I know my writing will continue to develop.
As I dreamed, Lynn Kurland was present at the signing; the woman who first told me to join Utah RWA, which helped me walk the steps that took me through the journey. My fellow authors surrounded me. My friend and the woman who's encouraged me to move forward, Lisa, came as a rabbit! My dear sister kept me focused and kept inventory. Thank you all! You are so very dear to me.
Thanks to everyone who participated in my first book bomb! Hope you enjoy the book...
I'm scheduled for a book-signing next Sunday (10/6/13) at the Olympus Ranch Retirement Community, It's at 974 East 5600 South in Murray, Utah. It seems appropriate that my first should be there since so many friends have listened to my writer stories! Plus, they're just fun folks to be around!
I have successfully uploaded all versions of my Shakespeare's Witch series and today I'm launching "Never Quenching Fire" in digital, print and large print. It's also available in the lending library for Amazon Prime members. Google me, J.D. Steffensen, or 'Never Quenching Fire' for a direct link.
The fun part is that anyone buying today will be participating in my 'book bomb,' which is a marketing scheme designed to push a writer's ratings up on Amazon. This is my first ever, so I'm curious to see how it plays out. Let me know if you run into any hitches.
I'll report the numbers back tomorrow!
Thanks in advance to you all!
Help! Should I go with a pen-name?
I'm hitting the deadline and need to decide what name I'll publish my Shakespeare's Witch series under. Many of my writer friends are using pen-names. I thought I'd go with J.D. Stevens. J.D. for Jodee (get it?) and Stevens would be a shortened, easier to remember and spell derivative of my true name. But when I surfed the web yesterday I was surprised to see how far my Jodee Steffensen name had gone to establish me as an author.
Such a dilemma!
Why a pen-name? First, it's gender neutral and men hesitate to read work by female authors (sorry guys, but research has found it to be true.) Second, historical authors often use their initials. I guess it gives them more gravity. Third, authors use different pen-names for different genres thinking it helps clarify which genre the reader is purchasing. Fourth, it may compensate for a name that's difficult to remember and/or spell.
All of these arguments apply to me.
So dear reader (whoever you are), send me some comments. Do you prefer J.D. Steffensen (not much of a change), J.D. Stevens (easy to remember but completely new in terms of establishing a marketing platform), or just stick with Jodee Steffensen as author for the Shakespeare's Witch series.
Feedback VERY much appreciated!
Time for Lavender
It's official. This July has been the hottest on record and I've spent much of it sipping ice tea from my back yard. BUT these last two weeks have been extra special. My lavender's in bloom and so I've been able to add a touch to my mints.
If you've a mind to do this, I highly recommend it. Lavender is known for it's relaxing effects. Did you know it is also an antibacterial? That means it good for you on several levels.
When you work with lavender, don't forget what a power this herb is! I've learned to add only a couple of dried sprigs to my six cup pot. Too much and Lavender can be extremely bitter. The fragrance is what I enjoy the most, and it doesn't take much to bring the aroma out.
BTW - This picture is just for show. Add your lavender to the hot water when you add your tea and/or mints. I also add sweetener, lately that's been stevia which I can also harvest from my garden. Did I say it was a wonderful summer?!!! It has been immensely enjoyable harvesting my own herbs and using them.
Big Day for my Books!
It was a big day for me! One of my last for the summer, and one that marked a wrap up of lots of work. I successfully completed breaking my Shakespeare's Witch book into three parts, found some great editors, learned how to post on Create Space and to create bookcovers using BookCoverPro. I've also started looking at marketing strategies and today ordered bookmarks and business cards. I have five books being reviewed in Create Space and I've ordered one proof. I'm so excited! I can't wait to start gifting them out!
Based on some advice I received from another historical writer, I've divided Shakespeare's Witch into three parts. Readers can order parts individually or get the entire book. Everything will be offered in print and e-book form. I'm on schedule to have everything ready for sale on Amazon by September 1st, 2013. I love the idea that they're coming out in 2013 - so appropriate for a "witch" series!
Thanks to everyone for your patient support. I promise, book 2 will not take nearly so long!!!
Dear Friends - I'm trying to tie down possible covers for my book. Part I, "Never Quenching Fire," has two looks and I'd love to know what you think. I'm still learning how to set up 'polldaddy', so in the meantime, comments to this post will have to do. The two options are below. Which one would make you want to buy the book? If you can think of suggestions, I'm getting better at setting up the design.
Thanks for your help!!!
Historical and Romance Writer, Amateur Herbalist, and Seeker of adventure, new knowledge and all things good!
Hobbies? I've adored cats all my life. I came to love Shakespeare when I was introduced to him in college. I developed an interest in herbs when a dear friend was diagnosed with cancer. I learned about the complex politics of Shakespeare's world when another friend gave me a book, "Shadow Play," by Clare Asquith.