Bonne Anniversaire, Lavender!

So I just realized something this past Christmas – while I was busy doing all the crap you do for the holidays – that I’ve been writing romances under the name Lavender Parker for three years! Time flies when you’re having fun (and having crippling creative blocks, but I digress…)

pokemon

Although it’s a bit past the official three year marker, I decided to do a lil wrap-up of the past three years for myself and you, my poor starved readers. So without further ado, here’s some musings on my past writings and future writings as well:

Favorite Book (so far): The Burning One

This is difficult, but I think my favorite overall is still The Burning One. It’s my biggest flop, sales-wise, but I still love the unusual story. Especially near the end of the book, when the story shifts to South America and Cee and Indira really have it out at Indira’s farm in the middle of nowhere. It’s a strange, slightly controversial story but I’m happy I wrote it. To me, it’s one of the most interesting stories that I’ve written and explores the dark and shady areas of psychology and grief, as well as romance.

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KISS OF LIFE Update

As you might know, I planned to release Vivica and Niko’s story this month. As you might not know, some shizz happened and my mind took me creatively in another direction… so I’m pushing Kiss of Life back to the end of November.

Pray for Mojo...

Pray for Mojo…

This year has been crazy in terms of writing. Other than a ridiculously long break between Kiss of Fire and Flower in the Desert (four months, ugh. Never again), I’ve been releasing a book a month. It’s a fast pace and sometimes I can keep up and sometimes I can’t. Some books come easily (The Burning One) and other books are a fight to the death (Stone Cold Knockout). I’m hoping that Kiss of Life won’t fight me. I’m so excited to have all the St. James gang together in one book!

I’ll admit it – the pressure is stressing me out and it’s kind of frying my brain. Unfortunately, I did it to myself! Next year, there’s no way I’m going to take that long of a break in between releases. It’s haunted me ever since 😦

So look for Kiss of Life in November! I’ll let you know my release date when I have it.

As for those wanting to know my dark erotica pen name… you can PM me on Facebook and I’ll give it to you 🙂

Author Chat with Lavender August 30th @7

On August 30th, 2014, I’ve been invited to do an author chat with the lovely ladies at Violette Dubrinksy’s Fantasyland.

If you’re a current member, you can join the event and ask me all the questions you want. If you’re not a group member, you can join! Easy peasy.

I’m excited to answer your questions!

Also, if you want to ask me questions another way, you can also ask me here on Goodreads.

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. 🙂

 

2014 Book Release Schedule!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Lift a frosty mug of green beer and take a gander at my 2014 Book Release schedule! Stone Cold Knockout

January 14th – Breaking the Ice (St. James Family Bonus Novella) – Available Now!

February 15th – The Burning One, a standalone novel – Available Now!

March 20th – Kiss of Fire (St. James Family: Book Two)

Early Summer- Kiss of Ice (St. James Family: Book One) Audiobook (currently in production)

Mid-Summer- Stone Cold Knockout (House of Pain #1)

Late Summer- A standalone novella or a St. James Family Bonus Novella

Mid-Fall – Kiss of Life (St. James Family: Book Three)

Winter – A Devil Named Dixon (Dirty Rotten Dixons #1) – this release is a VERY tentative! A new BWWM series.

Yay! I’m super excited about 2014! Can’t wait to get writing.

On a Kiss of Fire note, it is now in final editing/proofing stages. It WILL be out on March 20th, so look for it on that day!

New Cover Art for THE BURNING ONE

So, I decided to update the cover art for The Burning One, because I felt like the first cover didn’t really get across what the book was about. I think this new artwork is a lot more eye-catching. Woot! I feel good about it. It should be live on Amazon by the end of the day. Very exciting.

When I decided to write The Burning One as a stand-alone, I didn’t realize how difficult it would be to market it! It’s a rock-star romance (such stories usually involve drug-use, multiple partners, and other wild and crazy scenarios) which hasn’t really gotten a hold in the Interracial/Multicultural romance niche. Stories about billionaires still rule in our little corner of romance, but I’m going to keep chipping away at that as much as I can. Otherwise, it’s going to get stale, and we can’t have that! Interracial/Multicultural romance is my jam and I love that superstar writers like Dez Burke, Theodora Taylor, Kenya Wright, and Violette Dubrinsky are trying to take the niche in new directions and to new heights.

Anyway, back to writing Kiss of Fire now… see y’all on March 20th 🙂