Jingle Book Blog Hop and Giveaway

The-JingleBook-Blog-Hop

To help get you into the holiday mood, I’m participating in the Jingle Book Blog Hop, hosted by Fire & Ice Book Promos.  Join me on this hop around the internet as fellow writers and bloggers share their ideas on Christmas Spirit.  There is also a Jingle Book Blog Hop Grand Prize giveaway where you can win a $25 Amazon Gift Card (see the ‘Enter to Win’ link below).

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Christmas Spirit

Christmas is a great time of year whether you are religious or not. What better time to don the holiday spirit and spend time with friends and family? With our hectic lives and busy schedules, it might not always be easy to get into the swing of things, so here’s a few ways to kick things off.

Watch a Christmas movie. There are plenty to chose from including:

  1. A Christmas Story
  2. The Polar Express
  3. Elf
  4. National Lampoons Christmas Vacation
  5. How The Grinch Stole Christmas
  6. A Charlie Brown Christmas
  7. A Christmas Carol
  8. It’s A Wonderful Life
  9. Miracle on 34th Street (my personal favourite – the original 1947 version)
  10. The Santa Clause
  11. Home Alone
  12. Frosty the Snowman
  13. Rudolf the Red-nosed Reindeer
  14. White Christmas.

Call a friend or loved one. Say hi to someone you haven’t spoken with for a while. Maybe they need help getting into the spirit too.

Read a Christmas themed book. You can’t go wrong with classics like How the Grinch Stole Christmas or A Christmas Carol, no matter what age you are. For the younger set, one of my favourites is Auntie Claus by Elise Primavera.

aunty claus

Decorate! Ornaments, Christmas cards, popcorn strings, lights, garland. Visit the dollar store if you’re on a budget.

Send out Christmas cards or email greetings. You have to send a letter to get a letter, my Gramma used to say. What better way to get into the holiday spirit than to lift someone else’s? And, who knows? You may just get a card in return.

Buy a countdown/advent calendar. Did you know they have ones with chocolate in them? They even have ones with alcohol (check out this Whiskey Advent Calendar)! I realize it’s already partway through December, but think how much fun it will be to catch up!

Listen to Christmas music. Yes, I know the malls are filled with muzak, but there are a lot of great Christmas songs out there.  Here’s a few to listen for:

  • Merry Christmas Everybody – Slade
  • Wonderful Christmastime – Paul McCartney
  • I Wish it Could be Christmas Everyday – Roy Wood and Wizard
  • Walking in the Air – Aled Jones
  • Do They Know it’s Christmas? – Band Aid
  • I Believe in Father Christmas – Greg Lake
  • Rocking Around the Christmas Tree – Brenda Lee
  • White Christmas – Bing Crosby
  • Happy Christmas (War is Over) – John Lennon
  • Sleigh Ride – Pentatonix
  • Step into Christmas – Elton John
  • Mistletoe and Wine – Cliff Richard
  • Mary’s Boy Child/Oh My Lord – Boney M.
  • Fairytale of New York – Pogues and Kirsty MacColl
  • A spaceman came Travelling – Chris De Burgh
  • Last Christmas – Wham!
  • All I Want For Christmas is You – Mariah Carey
  • Jingle Bells – Bing Crosby (other versions exist too)
  • Christmas Lights – Coldplay

Be generous. Donate time or money to those in need. Volunteer at your local food bank or soup kitchen. Give to a local charity that collects to help make Christmas better for those less fortunate.

Say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays to everyone you meet. Even if they don’t celebrate, they will probably return the greeting with a smile, and you should too!

Bake some treats. We all have a favourite treat that we only make on special occasions. No time like the present to dust that recipe off. In fact, I’ll share one of mine. When I was a kid, we called this “Christmas Slice” because you only ever saw it at Christmas.

Nanaimo Bars recipenanaimo-bar

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Looking for the perfect gift for the reader in your family?  There’s still time to order them a copy of Dead and Kicking, book one in the Harry Russo Diaries. In fact, there’s no better time than now to read Harry’s first adventure, with book two, Tooth and Claw, set for release on January 5, 2016.

As part of this hop, I am offering a chance to win one of five digital copies (epub or mobi) of  Dead and Kicking just leave a comment below and you are automatically entered.  Sign up to my mailing list (here) during the duration of the hop and get an extra entry. Everyone who signs up will also get a sneak peek at the first chapter of Deadlocked, book three in the Harry Russo Diaries.

DK small version cover

Available in all digital formats!
Amazon

Kobo
iTunes
Barnes & Noble

Also available in print!
Chapters
Createspace
Barnes & Noble
Amazon 

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What’s a girl to do when her date is D.O.A?

Angharad ‘Harry’ Russo is just your ordinary twenty-something, with one exception – she’s a witch with an out of the ordinary gift.  When her blind date goes sideways and she ends up face to face with a dead body, her life starts to go sideways too.

Harry soon finds herself right in the middle of the mayhem, dealing with Cian Nash, a homicide detective that is as aggravating as he is sexy; the biggest, baddest vampire in town; and a parcel of pesky zombies that keep popping up everywhere.  It’s all connected to her date’s unfortunate demise, or is there more to it than meets the eye?

 What people are saying about Dead and Kicking:

…I can’t wait to read more.
KaleidoscopeHeart Book Reviews

I have to say, there just aren’t as many new Urban Fantasy series out there as there used to be, so it’s kind of exciting for me to find one that I enjoyed. I read this debut by Lisa Emme in one sitting.
-Jen, Red Hot Books

5 stars….I read the whole thing in one go, I loved her characters and her story line, I was completely engaged…
Jen Winters

wreath

Read an excerpt from Dead and Kicking

whitespaceComing Soon!

Tooth and Claw

Available for pre-order Now.  Check your favourite online retailer!
Amazon

Kobo
iTunes
Barnes & Noble

Available in print January 2016

 

 

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merry xmas tree

Jingle Book Blog Hop Grand Prize Giveaway.  

Follow this link to enter the Grand Prize Giveaway and continue on the rest of the hop.

Enter to Win!

 

And don’t forget to check back on December 27th for the Crazy Canuck New Year’s Blog Hop.  Fill your new devices with Canadian authors with a chance to win a fantastic grand prize!

Do You Pin?

Have I mentioned I have a Pinterest account? I’ve created boards for the first two books in the Harry Russo Diaries as well as for my upcoming romantic suspense, Home Again.

There are sneak peeks, some of Harry’s wardrobe choices and other props. Want to know what kind of Harley Nash drives? What does the infamous McQueen dress look like?  There’s even a board for Harry’s store, Contain Yourself.  And let’s not forget some of Harry’s favourite recipes, or at least one’s she hopes to convince Isaac to try!

Stop on by and follow me. I’ll be adding new boards as the series progresses. Visit me on Pinterest!

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Black Friday – Cyber Monday SALE

DK small 50 offSo my sales on Kobo have been, well frankly, abysmal and since Kobo has this handy little feature where you can mark your book for a promotional sale, I’ve decided to give it a try and jump on the Black Friday, Cyber Monday band wagon.

From today until Monday, I have marked down the price of Dead and Kicking (on Kobo only). If you haven’t had a chance to get your digital copy, now’s the time to do it.

A Needle in a Haystack

As promised, I’d like to tell you a bit about the experiment I’m trying on Amazon to see if it increases my sales (as touted by the free video series by Nick Stephenson that I watched – more details and sign up here).

A search engine browser window with a magnifying glass

Amazon is basically a huge search engine. In fact, it is the second largest search engine on the internet next to Google. To increase your sales on Amazon, beside having lots of helpful (as determined by Amazon users that read the reviews and mark them as helpful) positive reviews, you need your book to filter to the top of search results so that people can actually find and buy your book. And that’s the hard part.

The trick is to figure out what category and keywords that result in a smaller search results base best fit your book. For example, I orignally placed Dead and Kicking in the category “Science Fiction & Fantasy -> Fanatasy -> Paranormal & Urban”, a category that yields almost 39,000 results. Talk about a needle in a haystack!

So after watching the webinar, I spent an hour or so exploring categories on Amazon to try and find a better fit, i.e. a category that still applies to my book but that has less competitors. I finally settled on “Mystery & Thrillers -> Suspense -> Paranormal” which only has about 3000 books listed. Much better! What makes it even better still, is this happens to be a category on Amazon that will then use your keywords to further filter the genre. So, by adding Vampires as a keyword, suddenly the results set is 730 titles. Use the keywords Werewovles & Shifters and it’s reduced even more to a much more manageable 509 titles. The chances of a reader finding my book just got a lot better.

Will this have a noticeable result on my sales?  I sure hope so.  It’s too early to tell right now, but I will definitely keep you posted.

 

I Love this Review

A little part of me can’t help but go ‘Squeeee!’ when I read a review like this about Dead and Kicking.  Click on the picture below to go to the review on Amazon, and please let them know if you thought the review was helpful.  It helps.

And also, I apologize. I really didn’t think of it as a cliffhanger.  I was thinking of it as more of a hook to the next book.  Honest.

Amazon review Nov 17

Dead and Kicking – A Review and Interview by Chapter by Chapter

CbyC Review

whitespaceDead and Kicking by Lisa Emme was a read that had me chuckling pretty much throughout the whole book.  With a quirky main character and a gruff sexy homicide detective, and a world filled with supernatural beings to satisfy your craving, Dead and Kicking was a solid book 1 in The Harry Russo Diaries…

See the rest of the review and an interview on Chapter by Chapter.

Chapter by Chapter