Thursday, June 30, 2016

Tweet Your Book

Twitter provides an excellent way to get your book out before the public. But if you've never been on twitter or written a tweet, here are a few tips.

1. Project a professional image by careful selection of your handle
(twitter name), your photo and your biography. Keep the handle short but not silly. Some writers might use their first and last name followed by author or an abbreviation like bks. for books. I used a photo of myself taken at one of my launch parties at a friend's house. I'm sitting on a nice sofa and holding a copy of my first romantic suspense novel Hiding. In a brief bio, I included my education, past jobs related to writing, and a list of my published
works. Also, include some personal likes and/or dislikes, hobbies,
favorite foods, pets etc. that give the reader a peak at your personality.

2. 140 characters and hash tags: Remember when you finished that first manuscript and were then asked to give a synopsis in 500 words or less? Now think even shorter. Now you're counting letters. Tweets are short. Make sure your title and the website where readers can order your book are included. Use photos of your cover or perhaps the beach with the words: Looking for a great summer read to attract attention. I didn't even know what a hash tag was when I started, but they are short words or initials
that alert readers looking for certain topics. #romance #suspense
or in the case of my publisher #TWRP is short for The Wild Rose Press.

3. Build followers by following others with similar interests such as other authors or other readers. Thank those who follow you and retweet their tweets. And don't spam your followers by constantly hawking your lastest book. Use some tweets to put out neat quotations or to praise others or to start discussions. 

Now visit and get started.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Complex Characters

Most writers spend a great deal of time fleshing out the hero and heroine giving them flaws and virtues, conflicting likes and dislikes, turning them into real and complex people. But sometimes there is a tendency to spend less time on secondary characters making them one dimensional and maybe even stereotypical.
     James Scott Bell in his article "The 5 Cs of Writing the Great Thriller Novel" written for The Writer's Digest advises: "Look for ways friends can become enemies or betrayers." This can create undercurrents and secondary themes. Bell suggests a character grid.

                    Susan                Marcus              Robert               Carmel





Then fill in the blanks.

                   Susan                                                              Carmel
Susan                                                            Is jealous of the attention Marcus gives Carmel.
                                                                      (Susan is secretly attracted to Marcus.)

Robert       Knows Marcus has an illegitimate child

Many times creating characters who are opposites gives many opportunities for both humor and conflict. Think of Felix and Oscar on The Odd Couple or The female Salvation Army worker and the gambler in Guys and Dolls.

Friday, June 24, 2016

In this post, I'd like to introduce an up and coming author, Elva Cobb Martin. She is the president of the S.C. Chapter of American Christian Fiction Writers which meets once a month in Anderson, SC. A former school teacher and graduate of Anderson University and Erskine College, she has written for the Christian magazines: Decision, Charisma, and Home Life. Her Bible study, Power Over Satan is available on
    She is currently under contract for two romance novels. Summer of Deception, is scheduled for a 2017 release by Prism Book Group. The setting of the story is a tea plantation near Charleston, SC. Her historical romance, In a Pirate's Debt, also scheduled for a 2017 release will be available through Lighthouse Publishers of the Carolinas. A mother and grandmother, she resides with her husband Dwayne and a lovable mini-dachshund named Lucy in Anderson, S.C. She also leads an internet prayer task force praying for a Great Awakening.
    You make connect with her on her web site: or visit her blog at

To purchase Power Over Satan: How to Discern and Defeat the Enemy's Plans Against You go to book page on Amazon: