D. F. Krieger

Monday, January 28, 2013

Must Read Monday: Sex Club Secrets

A sexy read full of thrilling threesomes and plentiful plot!

Click to buy! Only $1.99

Ella is in love with her best friend Kade. But her love has not been returned, and when bisexual Kade shows no signs of becoming romantic towards her, she decides to call a halt on her unrequited love and accept an invitation to a celebrated Melbourne sex club.

Kade is distressed when the woman he is beginning to see as more than a friend decides to visit Secrets before he can tell her how he feels. He follows her into the club and witnesses her at play with the enigmatic Anteros, a sexy god-like man who seems to know exactly how to satisfy her innermost cravings. But Anteros also feeds the hidden desires within Kade. How can he admit his feelings for Ella when he's not sure he can commit with his whole heart?

Anteros is one of the erotes, an aspect of Eros and the ancient Greek god of requited and unrequited love. He has heard the call of these would-be lovers and intends to show them that friendship can sometimes be the best place to kick start a lasting romantic relationship.

But love cannot flourish unless it is returned, and how will he convince Kade – a man who occasionally enjoys other men – that he can be true to the woman he loves? What will happen to this couple when the night ends and they return to the real world outside the door of Secrets?

Has one of the gods of love finally taken on a challenge he cannot fulfill?

This was one of the sexiest reads I've had the pleasure of seeing in awhile. Between the stunning sex scenes and the emotional dynamics of the characters, I was hooked. Each individual felt like a real person, with real needs and hang ups, not just a character on paper. I became emotionally invested in the relationship and by the time everyone got their happy ending, I was smiling.

I also liked that though I've read the previous book in the series, I was able to follow along without feeling like I was missing out. Each book works just as well as a stand alone as it does a part of the series. This is very important to me as with my memory issues, I'm not always able to remember important things from previous books and I can become lost. Not so with these.

The end of the book makes it more than evident another book is coming along in the series, and I'll admit it, I squee'd just a little. That makes this a Must Read! ~ D. F. Krieger

For my review of the sequel, Aphrodite Calling, please go here.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Writer Wednesday: Format or Die!

Guidelines aren't really guidelines. They're more like a set of rules, really...You know, written in stone, with the first being "Thou shalt not ignore the following information." I am going to look like the bad guy here, but let me tell you something important. As an author and as an editor, I have some advice to give anyone who ever wants to submit to any publishing company in the world....

Adhere to the guidelines!!!!!

As an author, I remember reading, rereading, and then checking every single bit of a publishing company's submission page in an effort to make sure I crossed every "T" and dotted every "I" exactly how they wanted. I knew then, and even though I'm multi-published I still know now, that being published is a privilege. It's insanely important to follow formatting guidelines whether you like it or not. If the font they want is vastly different from what every other pub wants, then you save the file under a different name like "Author Name_Story Title_Publishing Company Name" (unless they tell you to send the file with a specific name format, then you do it their way.

The point is, yes it can be a little difficult to remember how publisher A wants it compared to publisher B, but think of it this way; you are begging them to buy your stuff. You aren't going to buy a product that's been presented badly, so why do you expect the publishing company to do so.

Think of it like this: You are at a restaurant. You see a photo in the menu of a really nice meal that looks simply delicious (blurb) and you order it...but when you get it the food is misshapen, mixed together, and totally unappealing (manuscript improperly formatted.) Disappointed? You bet. Frustrated? Damn right! Now, do you eat it anyway, or do you send it back? Well, if it looks salvageable you might pick through and eat it, but you're still going to be disappointed as you eat it, aren't you? Otherwise, you might either just walk out or send it back (rejection).

 Okay, so I'm switching to my editor hat now. Cue the fire and brimstone! When our guidelines specifically say, "If you don't format it according to these really easy expectations, we will reject your manuscript," then by god format the friggin' manuscript accordingly. When I get manuscripts where the author obviously hasn't even tried to follow guidelines (or even put any effort into researching how a manuscript should look) then my first thought is, "They don't really care whether they get published or not." I get mad. That's right, you heard me. I actually get so mad I have to disappear to one of my gaming consoles and mass murder goblins or some other monster because if not I'll risk my job by shooting back a snarky e-mail.

I received one the other day though that takes the cake. And I quote, "I did not format according to your guidelines because I wanted to be sure you wanted the manuscript first." What the fuck, sir? Really? Wow, my opinion of you just dropped in the major negative. If you aren't going to put forth the effort to do something as simple as formatting, well then I guess I don't feel like putting forth the effort to reading it. How's them apples?

And for the love of any god that might care, please, please if your publisher says to send in the full manuscript and not partials on their sub page, don't send them freakin' partials! When I receive a manuscript, nothing makes me angrier than either getting a query letter or getting only a few chapters (this does not apply to my in-house authors who I already have a working relationship. I know you girls are reading this and I bet your eyes just went wide with an "OMG, I bet I've made her mad at me," look. *snicker* No worries, you are all safe.)

Before I turn into a snorting, foaming, wild animal I'll end this rant. Please, if nothing else, take away the following lesson: Format according to your publisher or risk being rejected. ~ D. F. Krieger

Monday, January 14, 2013

Must Read Monday: Last Kiss Goodnight

For the first time in a long time, I decided to browse the book section at my local Wal-Mart last night. It's been too long since the last time I've read something for pleasure, and simply because I wanted to. In no way do I know this author, nor did I edit this book, but oh I wish I did and had!

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Gena Showalter ignites a thrilling new paranormal series with this breathtaking tale of a warrior enslaved by desire, and the woman who frees his soul.

THE SWEETEST TEMPTATION . . .

Black ops agent Solomon Judah awakens caged and bound in a twisted zoo where otherworlders are the main attraction. Vika Lukas, the owner’s daughter, is tasked with Solo’s care and feeding. The monster inside him yearns to kill her on sight, even though she holds the key to his escape. But the human side of him realizes the beautiful deaf girl is more than she seems—she’s his.

THE ULTIMATE PRICE . . .

Vika endures the captives’ taunts and loathing, hoping to keep them alive even if she can’t free them. Only, Solo is different— he protects her. But as hostility turns to forbidden romance, his feelings for her will be used against him . . . and he’ll be put to a killer test.
Amazon Buy Link.

Barnes and Noble Buy Link.

 ~ D. F. Krieger

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Writer Wednesday: (Don't) Burn, Baby, Burn

It's happening everywhere and many aren't aware until they are slumped in a corner, rocking and singing happy songs. It could be you next, or that person you chat with all the time on Facebook. It could be your mentor, your publisher, your crit partner.

Burnout has become a major epidimic and the problem is, many of us are to blame. Even I fell prey recently. This post won't be full of it's usual snark or witty remarks. I'm trying to call to attention a very serious issue that I'm seeing happen to lots of authors, and it worries me.

What has this got to do with you all and Writer Wednesday? Taking care of yourself and staying healthy, both mentally and physically. These are important in any field, but sometimes we don't realize it applies to us. It's so easy to get caught up in hype. Here are some common types of burnouts:

* The Hopper: This writer writes about his or her writing when they aren't writing. They are constantly making guest appearance on blogs, or joining in on blog hops. If you are visiting more than one blog a week, or blog hop, and it isn't to celebrate something special, you may need to step back and realize you are putting yourself on the stage too much. Many people won't read more than a couple posts about you because guest posts tend to repeat the same information, and it becomes redundant.

* The Critiquer: Have a story scene you aren't to sure of and want a second opinion? This writer always has time to read other people's work. Always. Send it their way, and they will return it immediately. Oh yeah, and they'll crit for that person, and that person, and that person. Many critiquers suffer burn out because they are so busy editing everyone else's work that by the time they get around to theirs, they've no creative juice left. Why is it so hard for them to say no? Because it's hard to say no to friends and they don't want to let you down. Dear Critiquer...learn to become more selfish. No is not a bad word, nor will it cause you to lose friends.

*The Promo-Whore: Yes, you have a book out. How could we not know you have a book out? You've posted about it yesterday, the day before, and have for the past week. Your social media wall is nothing but links to your book, posts about your book, or what people have to say about your book. You've posted about your book in all your social media groups, including ones whose genres are different from your book...but since you are a member in that group it must be okay to post your book there too. Well, no, it isn't. People join a paranormal reading group because they are interest in paranormal books. If your book isn't that genre, don't post it there. Same for GBLT reading groups, BDSM reading groups, etc. When you post your guest blog, or a totally unrelated blog period, in that group, you just look like a douche. Know what happens? People learn to ignore you so sales go down, not up. That's where promo-whoring gets you; less sales, not more.

*The Backlister: While we are all aware that backlists help an author sell more, there is such a thing as too much. I'm not talking about having wrote too many books, but when you are killing yourself because you are pushing out 2 or more books a month and annihilating any social life because, "I have to finish my book," then you are taking it too far. A book a month isn't unreasonable. Two books a month isn't too bad, but more than that and I want to know if you are even showering. Okay, if it's 10k shorties or something like that, I'm not going to look at you funny. But if you are writing multiple 30k plus books a month, I'm going to start wondering about your social life, your cleanliness, and your sanity. There is no rush to get those books out and if there is because of a deadline, you need to stop and learn to ask for time, and to write at a healthier pace. There is a reason they say the flame that burns the brightest sputters and dies the quickest. Don't let it be you.

*The Multitasker: This is the sin I was guilty of. Many of you saw me stutter and stumble by the end of November and I have no one but myself to blame. When someone asked me to do something, I gave a confident nod and said, "Sure, I can do that." People told me they were proud of me, praised me, and cautioned me. It wasn't until my health gave out and I ended up on bedrest for two weeks that I realized I'd pushed myself too far. I knew I was pushing the edge emotionally, but I kept telling myself, "When I get this, this, and this finished, then I'll take a week long vacation." Except the list kept growing. It was all stuff I could have said, "Can it wait until I get some breathing space?" or "I'm sorry but my workload is just too full right now." I am lucky in that my husband, my boss, and my authors are fantastic, understanding people and when I finally waved the white flag, they agreed to help me stand back up instead of being angry with me that I wasn't continuing to work myself to death for them. Many popped me on the rear and said "I told you so," and those are the best friends you could ever ask for. How can you tell if you are a multitasker? If you are working so much that you fear walking to the bathroom because you really have no time for a pee break, if you go to bed and have insomnia because you are worried that the time spent sleeping (or trying to sleep) could be better used to do X project, if you don't want to even go to grocery shop because you really need to work, if you are neglecting your health because those few moments you tear yourself away from work are given to the kids/pets/household then you are working too much. Stop it! Otherwise you'll end up sick, looking around at all the things you missed while you were in a workaholic fog, and saying, "My gods, what have I done?"

The best advice I can give is actually two pieces:
Learn to say no.
Learn your limits.

The things that you think are so important now...maybe, just maybe they aren't as important as some of the things you are taking for granted. Writing is great. Being an author is great. Having your family and your health? That's more important. ~ D. F. Krieger