Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tours

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Wednesday, June 20, 2007
I was watching another episode of the “Bachelor” and noticed that these women were so comfortable calling themselves “girls” and wearing pink. When Trista married Ryan from “The Bachelorette, everything in her wedding was pink—the table coverings, the bridesmaid dresses, the cake. Everything imaginable was pink. And then I realized that the latest genre in women’s fiction—chick lit—was targeted for this same age group and all of the covers were pink. What was up with these “girls” today and what was with all the pink?

Anyway, as an antithesis to all of that, I started writing about 3 women from 3 different generations: 20-something, 40-something, and 60-something and these women wore red because that was a woman’s color—not pink. And it didn’t matter their age—they all wanted the same things. And that’s how “Real Women Wear Red” came to be.

While writing this manuscript, I was originally uncomfortable putting myself out there so strongly on the page. My husband kept saying, “Let her out.” And I did. He loved it, my critique partners loved it, and test readers loved it. When an agent loved it and offered to represent me, I loved her. But my timing was all wrong. The chick lit boom began to slow down and publishers and agents noticed sales began to slow.

So what next? Well, no matter what genre you call it, I believe there’s the forgotten woman in fiction. It’s the woman (she could be any age) who has never married or recently divorced and without kids. She’s asking, “Where’s fiction written for me? I don’t want to read the chick lit for 20-somethings and I don’t want to read hen lit for 50-somethings. Where’s fiction about women who reflect my lifestyle, my choices, my circumstances?

No matter our age, we want to read contemporary women’s fiction that has the same tone, the same attitude, the same search for the inner woman and what she’s looking for that she thinks will make her life happy. I want to write about the questions that we, as women, ask ourselves, and you can ask these questions at any age. Questions such as, “My life isn’t working and I desperately need to change something, but what?” “Is it time to get married, will I ever get married, will I ever have kids, do I even want kids?” “Should I buy a house, settle down, move to Paris , change careers?” “What is it I’m supposed to be doing with my life?”

I’ve been called a “trendsetter” and that I’m ahead of my time. And maybe I was when I began writing Real Women Wear Red as a twist on the whole pink cover, chick lit trend. But I feel the time is right, the attitude is right, and all I have to do is persevere. I chose to self-publish Real Women Wear Red, even turning down contracts with e-publishers. I hope that you will not only enjoy my attitude through my writing on my blog, but that you will also enjoy it through my fiction. And that I’m one step closer to getting my “women’s fiction with attitude” out there.


Kathy Holmes is on a mission to write women’s fiction in a way that inspires women of all ages to follow their dreams. As part of her journey, she turned her life around when she realized it wasn’t working any more, including searching for the father she had never met. And once she met him, she was motivated to raise an awareness of fatherless daughters through novel writing. In support of that, she also posts on blogs and writes online articles.

From all facets of the publishing world (from journalism to printing to technical writing to fiction writing), to all corners of the US (from Los Angeles to San Francisco to the Pacific Northwest to the Midwest/Northeast, and Southeast), she has used all of her experiences to spread her wings. Myths of the Fatherless and Real Women Wear Red are just the beginning of Kathy living outloud and pursuing her dreams.

Kathy Holmes
Author of Real Women Wear Red and Myths of the Fatherless

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posted by Dorothy Thompson @ 1:41 PM   0 comments
Friday, June 15, 2007
Many authors mention in their bios that they always wanted to be a writer. Not me. I wanted to be an astronaut. Didn't happen due to a right brain that quakes at the sight of anything requiring math skills, not to mention a body prone to motion sickness. Obviously, some dreams just aren't meant to be.

However, how I became a published author is all about a dream that did come true. Only it wasn't a dream to become a published author. Twelve years ago I was on a business trip. One night I had a dream. The fact that I remembered the dream when I woke up the next morning was unusual in itself. I generally don't remember my dreams. What was even more unusual was that I hadn't dreamed about anyone I knew. The people in the dream were all strangers to me.

Then something REALLY strange happened. The next night the dream continued. And it kept continuing -- every night for several weeks. I was dreaming the chapters of a book! But it wasn't a book I'd ever read. Finally, one day I decided to put the dream down on paper, more to get it out of my system than anything because by this time I was DAYdreaming about these people,

The next thing I knew, I had a 50,000 word romance that spanned 35 years. And I thought I'd written the great American love story. Needless to say, Nora Roberts didn't have to worry about losing her Queen of Romance title to me. I quickly learned from a slew of rejection letters that my opus was a waste of the trees that had sacrificed their lives for the paper it was
printed on. Call me clueless!

But while all this was going on I'd thought up the idea for another book, and it was itching to move from my brain to my computer screen. I'd been bitten by the Writing Bug. So I figured I'd better get a clue because if I was going to spend the time to commit these stories to paper, it would be nice to know how to do so in a way that I could sell them. I soon discovered that there were many published books offering advice on the subject. Thanks to my trusty VISA card I became the proud owner of several hundred dollars worth of how-to-write-a-romance books.

In one of those books I learned about Romance Writers of America. I joined RWA and several of its chapters and eventually lost my cluelessness. In fact, after awhile I was full of clues. Eventually, I found an agent who liked my writing, and I sold my first book. TALK GERTIE TO ME, a story about a 26 year old who resurrects her childhood imaginary friend to help her cope with her mother's menopausal meltdown, was released in April of 2006 from Dorchester Publishing.

But this story is about another book, my current release. LOVE, LIES AND A DOUBLE SHOT OF DECEPTION is a romantic suspense about secrets and revenge and the lengths some people will go in order to bury the former and achieve the latter. It's also that very first book that came about as a result of my dream.

As I learned about the craft of writing, I quickly realized that my plot had no chance of ever being resuscitated into something publishable. However, the characters I'd created had become a part of me. I liked them, and I wanted others to know and like them. I didn't want them condemned to an eternity under the bed with no one but the dust bunnies to keep them
company. So over the years I occasionally tinkered with Emma's and Logan's story. Eventually I got them to a point where I thought they were ready for the scary world of submissions. By this time their story was no longer a 50,000 word romance that spanned 35 years. It was now a 95,000 word romantic suspense that spanned a few months. And lo and behold, my editor
liked Emma and Logan and their story and bought the book!

LOVE, LIES AND A DOUBLE SHOT OF DECEPTION was released on May 29, 2007 and is available at bookstores and online.

If you'd like to read an excerpt of LOVE, LIES AND A DOUBLE SHOT OF DECEPTION, click over to http://www.loiswinston.com/. Stay awhile and check out the various articles I have posted and read what reviewers are saying about my books. You can also read an excerpt from TALK GERTIE TO ME. And while you're there, I hope you'll sign up for my newsletter.

Award-winning author Lois Winston writes humorous, cross-genre, contemporary novels. She often draws upon her extensive experience as a crafts designer for much of her source material. Her first book, TALK GERTIE TO ME, a combination chick lit/hen lit/romantic comedy with a touch of the paranormal, was an April 2006 release from Dorchester Publishing and has to date won a Readers and Bookbuyers Best award and racked up nominations for a Reviewers Choice Award, a Golden Leaf Award, and a Beacon Award. LOVE, LIES & A DOUBLE SHOT OF DECEPTION, a mom-lit romantic suspense, is a June 2007 release from Dorchester. Lois also contributed to DREAMS & DESIRES, a charity anthology of 19 romances by 19 authors which was released in February from Freya's Bower. All proceeds from this anthology go to a shelter for battered women. In addition, Lois is a contributor to HOUSE UNAUTHORIZED, a November 2007 release from BenBella Books. When not writing or designing, you can find Lois trudging through stacks of manuscripts as she hunts for diamonds in the slush piles for the Ashley Grayson Literary Agency. Visit Lois at http://www.loiswinston.com/.

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posted by Dorothy Thompson @ 8:11 AM   0 comments
Wednesday, June 13, 2007

As tour coordinator for Pump Up Your Book Promotion Virtual Book Tours, I found out firsthand how important blogs are since we deal primarily with them. In my hunt to find the best blogs for my authors to appear on, I was disillusioned to find not too many blogs that dealt primarily with posting the stories behind the books that my authors had created.

So, I created one!

However, this blog is open to any authors who would like to tell the stories behind their books in the hopes that this free book promotion will benefit them in more ways than one; but not only that, to give the world a glimpse into just what it is that created the right moment for the book to be written and how it became published.

If you would like to tell us how you got the inspiration to write your book and/or how it came to be published, send us your story to thewriterslife(at)yahoo.com. There is no real word limit as I don't want to put that restriction on you. Have fun with it and don't forget to send us a link to where we can "pick up" the cover of your book and include your website link.

Thank you!

Dorothy Thompson
CEO/Founder Pump Up Your Book Promotion
posted by Dorothy Thompson @ 4:01 PM   2 comments
About Me

Name: Dorothy Thompson
About Me: Dorothy Thompson is CEO/Founder of Pump Up Your Book, an innovative public relations agency specializing in online book promotion and social media marketing for authors.  Visit her website at www.pumpupyourbook.com.

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