To Stand Alone Or Not To Stand Alone…

So I decided to shake up the release schedule, just a bit. I’ve pushed Stone Cold Knockout back to August so that I can focus on finishing up a stand alone novella called Flower in the Desert.

Love this colorful cover!

Why, you may ask?

The short answer is that I don’t want to rush SCK, which is the first novel in my new House of Pain series. The first book in a series is always the most read, and it is also often the deciding factor on whether people will continue to read the other books in the series or not. So for that reason, I’m taking my time on it. I’m letting it marinate. But it’s gonna be REAL GOOD, I swear.

Which brings me to Flower in the Desert. I’m a (teeny-bit) scared to publish another stand alone because my last stand alone, The Burning One, was such a flop. Full disclosure- The Burning One is my worst selling title by far, despite the fact that it’s gotten decent reviews. I also think it’s my best plotted book so far and the characters are really interesting, but hey, I’m biased.

I contribute low sales to several factors:

1) The Heroine is British-Indian, not black.The Hero is black, not white. BW/WM is the most popular romantic pairing in IR, currently. Also, she’s 35 and he’s 26 when the book starts out. The age difference might turn some readers off.

2) It’s a rock-star romance, which means there’s drug use and some kinky sexual stuff going on. Not everyone’s cuppa.

3) It’s a stand alone! Stand alones are tricky. Even though reviewers often decry cliffie endings, romantic series still rule the day. I am hoping that a tie-in with Kiss of Life will maybe convince readers to give this one a shot. Originally, Cee was supposed to be introduced in Kiss of Life, and then have his own spin-off, but I kind of jumped the gun on his story. Oopsie!

4) Price. I’ve pretty much kept The Burning One at $2.99 because I didn’t have anything else at that price point, now that the St. James Family books are $3.99. I played around with it at $0.99, and it did sell better, but not good enough to warrant keeping it that low and not making money. However, once SCK comes out, I might drop the price permanently. It is a full novel though, not a novella, so I feel kind of weird having it at $0.99. However, the more books I have out, the more I can play around with price in the future.

So why might Flower in the Desert be different? Well, first of all, it’ll be permanently priced at $0.99! That’s exciting! It’s also a different genre, romantic suspense. Lastly, the Heroine, Ruby, is black and the Hero, Jase, is Native American. I’ve been wanting to write a Native American hero for awhile. I told you guys in an earlier post about my love for the old western romances of yore. Unfortunately, they aren’t really in vogue right now. Flower in the Desert is kind of a throwback to those old romances, but set in modern times. Ruby and Jase have to lean on each other to survive in the unforgiving desert of the Grand Canyon. I’m having fun writing it, that’s for sure.

So look for Flower in the Desert soon! I’ll have a blurb up later this week. 🙂

 

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Mid-Year Book Release Update

Sooo summer is upon us (in the Northern Hemisphere, that is) and I’ll admit I’m not writing as much as I should… It’s so nice out and there’s so much to do and blaaaaaah blah blah.

What I’ve been doing instead of writing…

However, I assure you Stone Cold Knockout is coming, slowly but surely. I’m about two-thirds of the way through and I’m working on it everyday, bit by bit. I’m hoping for a June 25th release date, but I think that might be a little optimistic. It’s looking more like late June/early July.

Other book news:

I’m working on a novella about a rescue in the Grand Canyon featuring a Black Woman/Native American Man pairing that I hope to have out in July. I’m also working on a DARK (we’re talking scary dark) erotic novel that I’m going to put out under another pen name in July. Maybe I’ll tell you what it is, if you ask nicely. Tee hee!

Next, I hope to have Kiss of Life out in September and a short novella featuring Holland St. James out around the same time as well. As you may remember, Holland is Vivica’s brother and Annata and Toni’s cousin, and he showed up last in Kiss of Ice. The novella will set up the last book in the St. James Family Series, Kiss of Night, which will be out in 2015.

Lastly, I’m still planning book one in my new suspense series, A Devil Named Dixon, for November. I’m still in the brainstorming stages for it, but I am super excited about it.

Whew! That was a lot of info. Hope everybody is having tons of fun in the sun!