Tuesday, August 31, 2010
E-Book Country: How To Choose An E-Reader
I'm thinking a lot of you may be going thru the angst of Choosing An E-Reader.
No worries! I've been there. Done that. And I'm here to help you!!!
Here are your choices:
I know I was struggling with which one to choose 'til I took a fabulous class at RT10 in April given by the super terrific Angela James of Harlequin's Carina Press (http://www.carinapress.com), Sarah Wendell (http://www.smartbitchestrashybooks.com/) of Smart Bitches and Jane Litte of Dear Author (http://dearauthor.com/).
These three seriously "smart bitches" broke down the Choosing An E-Reader issue into a series of questions each of us should ask ourselves to figure out which E-reader has our name all over it. I took their advice and now know exactly which E-reader is perfect for D. D. Scott.
Let's see if their questions can help you make your Choosing An E-Reader dilemma as simple as...well...answering the below items from your point of view:
1. Think about HOW you like to read and WHERE you buy your books?
For example, if you like to read outside, the girls said the iPad (http://www.apple.com/ipad/) can be tough on your eyes and is a bit heavy. You can also see yourself in the screen which can be kinda annoying. The Kindle (http://www.amazon.com/), however, uses e-ink which is perfect for outside and doesn't have the glare factor causing you to see yourself in the screen like the iPad.
But if you want to be able to read items in color - i.e. shopping online, color-rich magazines or books - nothing beats the iPad. In fact, one of the ladies uses her iPad as a bribe for her children in that if they're good all day, they get a bedtime story on the iPad with all its super cool interactive story features. Fun stuff!
2. Where do you read the most?
You definitely need an e-ink device to read outside. E-ink is like Etch A Sketch ink. And it's great for long battery life (goes about 2 weeks on a single charge). The Kindle is e-ink so great for outside and will last about 2 weeks on a single charge. The Barnes & Noble nook is also an e-ink device (http://www.barnesandnoble.com/nook/index.asp) so would be great for beach reading too. The iPad doesn't work so well outside per the girls above and lasts about 10 hours, but that is 10 hours of color-rich text if you don't mind the glare and the extra weight of the device.
3. Will you shop around a lot for the best price on a book?
DRM (Digital Rights Management) limits where you shop for books - ex. Kindle is locked primarily to Amazon. DRM is the software used to "wrap" an E-Book and locks you into a device and place to shop for your books. The iPad is the best device for being able to shop anywhere in all formats (because it uses what's called the E-pub format which is no-DRM or unlocked if you will. The Sony E-Reader (http://ebookstore.sony.com/reader/) is both an e-ink and E-pub device as is the new Kobo reader (http://www.koboereader.com/). The nook, however, is tough to use with the E-pub format.
**Note: At this time, all NY pubs are using DRM, thus limiting you to having to perhaps buy different format versions of the same book to be able to read it on more than once device.
4. Will you need more than one device?
The girls said an unanimous "Yesss!!!" to this. They said the Kindle is a must because you can read it anywhere as long as you don't mind buying from Amazon. But, if you want color and more of a computer/laptop element, you'd want the iPad.
5. Do you own books now that you want on your E-reading device and do you want to share your books with family and friends?
Kindle allows 5 devices to be hooked to your account. The nook has a cool "lend me" feature where you can lend an e-book one-time to one friend.
6. How tech savvy are you?
The girls said Kindle is by far the easiest device for readers, and you can even email files to it. They thought the nook was next best but it wasn't as easy to buy books on it through Barnes & Noble buy apps. They all said the Kobo bookstore still needs a ton of work. Sony's e-book store, however, is international and has the widest shopping ability. Kobo's store will soon be international.
Once you download your books, always back-up and use the "library" features each online store offers. Basically, you're kind of creating your own virtual book shelves to pull down books when you're ready to read 'em. How cool is that?!
7. Do you want to read newspapers, magazines and kids' books?
We touched on this earlier, but it is important enough to give it its own section. The iPad rules for these functions - ex. Disney's library is now interactive with super fun adventures embedded and linked-to in most of their e-books. Basically, anything color-rich, whether gardening books, home decorating, cook books, or other non-fiction titles, iPad reigns supreme. Although, Kindle and nook are great for reading newspapers.
8. Cost factor?
iPad = $499 - $800
Sony = $350 +
Nook = $250 +
Kindle = $139 - $189
Kobo = $149
***Note: Only Sony comes with a case. The rest you buy cases extra for $30 +
Great info, right?!
Thanks to all these super smart and savvy women!!!
Let's see...how did all this stack-up for me?
Well...keep in mind that most of the above, if not all by now, have free apps so you can use their readers to read from your smart phones. So, to start with, and to work myself into reading via E-reader devices 100%, I began e-reading using Kindle's free app for my iPhone! And wow do I love it!!!
And keep in mind too, I was one of those brick and mortar bookstore queens who swore I'd never, ever enter and participate-in let alone publish in the brave new E-Book World.
I've never been one to say never and sooo shouldn't have then. I'm sooo beyond hooked reading from my iPhone and can't wait 'til my new Kindle 3 lands on my doorstep. Next, I'm saving for an iPad 'cause I do most all my research for each new book series I write via magazine. Since my muses thrive on color-rich images, I'll definitely be a multi-device e-reader.
Once you've answered the above questions for yourself, check-out my Facebook Wall and you'll find a ton of great links to all kinds of E-reading devices, reviews and info. Here's the link: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/profile.php?id=100001238957002
Since my debut release BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS hit E-shelves the world over beginning this month on Kindle and Smashwords, I'm obsessed with all-things-EBook and will share with you everything I learn. So stay-tuned for more fabulous, must-know scoop!
Do yourself a favor in the mean time though, and never say never!
Download one of the free e-reader apps for your PC or smart phone. I recommend Kindle's which you can find on Amazon. Amazon will prompt you - right before you buy your first E-Book there - to choose which free device app you'd like to download. Here's what the screen will look like...check-out the right side of the page for all your device choices: http://www.amazon.com/Bootscootin-Blahniks-Books-ebook/dp/B003ZDO30W/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=digital-text&qid=1283259273&sr=8-1 and Smashwords works the same way...you choose the device format you need...http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/21363
I'm a tellin' ya, once you try reading this way, you'll be amazed how comfortable it is for your eyes and your hands (as most of the devices, except for the iPad are much lighter than any book and sooo sooo easy on the eyes). Also, E-readers are fabulous for travel! No more shipping books to and from my destinations. And yes, that's what I've done all these years! Plus...if you're like me, I just don't have any room for another bookshelf and my TBR piles are seriously wayyy outta control!
Hello, E-Book Country! D. D. Scott is sooo stayin'!!!
Sexy Sassy Smart E-Book Country Choosing An E-Reader Wishes --- D. D. Scott
Labels: E-Book Country
Saturday, August 28, 2010
E-Book Country: Under The Covers - As In Book Covers - With Int'l Cover Model Jimmy Thomas (Part II)
Okay...y'all asked for it...so I couldn't resist making your dreams come true.
Incredible international cover model Jimmy Thomas is here!!!
Yesterday, we went "Under The Covers" via my super-sleuth reporting to learn exactly what happens at international cover model Jimmy Thomas' smokin' hot book cover shoots.
Today, I'm letting Jimmy have his way with you and tell you more. More as in both more about his amazing cover shoots as well as more about Jimmy Thomas the man.
And how's this for a couple teasers?
You'll learn that (a) Jimmy once fell asleep in a shoot and (b) he's now beaten Fabio's cover count and is well on his way to dethroning current Cover King John DeSalvo.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Jimmy, and wow are you in for a big treat!!!
Here we go:
1. So how did you become an international cover model? Tell us your journey to becoming Jimmy Thomas, international cover model.
It started at RT2002 in Reno, NV where I was a Cover Model Contestant. I didn't win, but since I was already a self-made model, I knew what it took to make things happen for me in the romance novel industry. I've always networked and marketed myself, and booked almost all of my own model jobs, and I've always shot lifestyle and sensual 'couples' images from the start of my model in 1998, so I developed my stock website RNC (http://www.RomanceNovelCovers.com) and shot more and more and more images, of exactly what is needed for novel covers. My networking and self-marketing did the rest :)
2. After taking your Live Cover Shoot workshop at RT10, I've been beyond amazed and intrigued at the process of shooting a book cover image. For example, I had no idea you shoot every scene from sweet to hot heat-levels. Tell us about that and how it plays out in front of the camera.
Thanks DeeDee, glad you were intrigued and entertained by it :) Well I'm a Pisces, so I'm naturally romantic, sweet, gentle, etc., so my co-models play off of my vibe, my soft touches, my passion and intensity as I change it through the shoot. Similar to a real life situation when dating someone and going back to your place for the first time. It starts off slow, steady and sweet, then works into getting heated, passionate and then intense. And my photographer is a fly on the wall, or a Peeping Tom if you will, capturing the moments we're having.
3. How do you choose the fabulous models that appear with you in your shoots?
Well I first choose them by their looks, then I 100% go by their personality for who I end up booking to shoot with me. If they are dry, boring, have only one or two word responses, then the shoot will be a waste, no matter how drop dead gorgeous they are, I won't waste my time. So I select girls who are excited to shoot for novel covers with me, who respond right away, who contact me out of the blue asking when we're going to shoot??? Etc. Those are the girls who 'bring it' during a shoot, as they WANT to do this and get great cover shots, be on novel covers and can't wait! They are into it, they show passion, have energy, use great expressions and great body language. I would any day shoot with a girl who was barely cute who was excited and passionate about shooting with me, than a gorgeous model who was hum-drum and didn't really care. So many models are only about "How much am I getting paid?" and they don't care one bit what they are even shooting.
4. How do you decide the settings and themes of your shoots?
It just comes to me with the look of each co-model. Any model can't do any genre, so I try to match their look to genres. I also go by what I'm being requested a lot of from cover artists, publishers or authors.
5. Can you give us the inside scoop on creating and shooting my BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS cover? For example, it started with me and my publisher giving you the following basics - BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS is about a bootscootin' cowboy, ready to dance with a sexy hot and sassy heroine where he's sayin' "oh yeah, you're mine" and she's got that "not so fast, cowboy" reaction. Then what?
Lol, well a location is always the first thing needed, so once that is selected, it's just a matter of doing what I feel works best for what I'm needing, or asked of, to shoot. I guess it's hard for me to explain. It's like asking a director why he/she chooses a certain angle or look or setting. I just feel it, and run with it. I have visions usually right away when I'm presented with a request :)
What a vision it was, Jimmy...
6. What's your favorite theme of cover shoot? Example: western, biker guy, historical hero, action man, etc.
I actually love them all, I really don't have a favorite. I just love producing amazing images in any genre. I have my favorite images in each genre, and to me none are better or more favorite than the other, as they each have their own power for their genre.
7. What's the most challenging part of a shoot - examples: body language, mood, lighting, location, etc.
Hmmm, I haven't found any part of my shoots challenging really. All aspects are fully needed, so not one thing can take a back seat in getting a great shot, so my focus is on everything being right in the shots, but I know what is needed, so it's not really challenging for me. I guess if I had to name something it would be different poses, lol. There are only so many you can do before you feel you are starting from the beginning again or doing the same thing you just did. But I just need a few minutes and it comes to me ;)
8. What's your favorite part of a shoot? How 'bout your least favorite too?
Seeing the images on the camera as we're shooting them and having that "OMG!!!!! I LOVE THESE!!!!!" feeling! Getting exactly what I wanted and even more. Seeing my vision of the shoot become reality! As for least favorite... ending a shoot :( I've shot 24 hours straight before, after 3 days of shooting with 3 girls a day, and I actually fell asleep near the very end where we were laying in bed together for the set and my photographer kept shooting while she was softly touching my face and lips finding me so cute while sleeping, lol. When I saw the images after it was SO SWEET. Believe it of not, it was at the end of this shoot's set: http://www.facebook.com/JimmyThomasDotCom#!/photo.php?pid=6533246&id=646127305&ref=fbx_album and http://www.facebook.com/JimmyThomasDotCom#!/photo.php?pid=6580770&id=646127305&ref=fbx_album
9. How long does an average shoot take? How often do you do shoots?
No less than 4 hours, otherwise we don't get enough to make it worth our time. My photographer and I can shoot all day and all night (we have many times). We love what we do so we only stop when the co-model gets too tired or has to leave. I prefer at least 8-10 hours to get enough from the shoot to be beneficial to all. As for how often, I was shooting almost every week before, but that backed me up so much on images, where I am still so far behind on going through, selecting, cleaning, cropping and uploading them (well over 10,000 images to go through still), from shoots even over the past year! So I've only been shooting with girls who live out of town, state or country who happen to be coming into town. The local girls I can shoot with anytime when I'm caught up. If I have a custom shoot order though, I do that asap.
10. What's the hottest shot? For example, is it the "almost kiss", action scenes, bedroom images, etc.
YES!!! The almost kiss is by far the hottest!!! HANDS DOWN!!! And being wet!!!! I mean look at this and tell me it isn't SO HOT! Sorry if I'm plugging other authors/books... I'm just wanting to give visuals ;) http://www.facebook.com/JimmyThomasDotCom#!/photo.php?pid=6813389&id=646127305&ref=fbx_album
11. How many pictures do you take to get that one shot (or a few) to use? What are you looking for to make an image a "keeper"?
Out of 100 I'll probably use 20 images from that set. At least that is what I am hoping for. It all depends on the co-model and how much they 'bring it' to the shoot and each set we shoot. I need that 'in love' feeling, that passion, that look, that intensity, that hunger, that sensuality and sexuality. There has to be great chemistry between us or poses look posed and expressions look fake. That is why I focus on their personality and chat with them for a while before setting up a shoot with them.
12. Tell us about Jimmy Thomas, the man...
Seriously? Lol, my fingers are tired ;)... Entrepreneur, inventor, producer, writer, developer, creative processor, passionate, loving, caring, hopeless romantic, children and animal lover, sweet, affectionate, hands-on, hard-working, expressive, sentimental, compassionate, a gentleman, chivalrous, helpful, giving, generous, playful, silly, down to earth, easy going, humane, open-minded, independent. I've been an Architectural Designer all my adult life, an NASM Certified Personal Trainer (12 years), a Self Defense and Kickboxing Instructor (18 years), Model (12 years), Business Owner, Writer. Ok, that was easier than writing it as a discussion ;)
13. How many covers have you done?
As of this interview, 468 (that I know of), but I'm on about 20-30 new covers each week ;)
14. Is there anything you'd like to tell us about your current and future plans/goals? (For example, LOL, you ARE going to make a very special appearance at my Muse Therapy Goes Hollywood Workshop with Harley Jane Kozak in LA next April for RT11, right?! Damn, I hope so! Talk about upping the heat level...and great "therapy"!!!)
Lol, of course I'll make an appearance at your Muse Therapy Goes Hollywood Workshop. I'm not one of those models that you have to beg or bribe to make an appearance, do an interview, guest speak, etc. I love doing it. You guys are all my friends and family to me! I LOVE going to RT each year to see all of you! That's why I go! It's like a family reunion :) I wish people wouldn't be intimidated to approach me at the conventions. I'm just me :)
As for future plans/goals.... Well I already hit one, being on more romance novel covers that Fabio (more than twice as many now ;)), so my next goal is to beat John DeSalvo's (The Cover King) cover count, which he says is around 1,500. Nobody has a written list, and his fan sites have been tracking his covers for about 7 years and one says they've found around 1,100 and another says around 1,300. So if I hit 2,000I'd be able to proudly say that I'm on more covers (of any kind) than anyone in history ;) Or maybe 1,501 will do it :) I want to reach this by RT2011, which means I need to be on 31 covers each week to do so (to reach 1,501). So at already being on 20-30 each week, and having well over 2,000 images that I'm able to upload once I've selected them, and shooting so much more before next April, especially tons of solo shoots I'm doing next, I see that easily being attainable. Then I guess John will have to pass down his "Cover King" title ;) lol. So support your family member's cause and keep buying/using my images everyone ;)
How was that for some sexy sassy smart Under The Covers scoop?!
Is the guy amazing or what?!
To know the heroes I write can turn out looking like that on the cover just makes me keep on writing...as fast as I can! I'm contributing to the making of the new Cover King!!!
Thanks sooo very much, Jimmy, for not just making my BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS hero so damn hot but thanks beyond bunches for being my guest this weekend at http://www.DDScott.com.
Now c'mon out there and post your questions and comments for Jimmy. He'll be checking in and chatting with you!!!
Hugs and Smiles and Sexy Sassy Smart Cover King Wishes --- D. D. Scott
P.S. Here are Jimmy's websites so y'all can keep up with him and his race to be our new Cover King:
Labels: E-Book Country
Friday, August 27, 2010
E-Book Country: Under The Covers - As In Book Covers - with Int'l Cover Model Jimmy Thomas (Part I)
Happy Friday, All!!!
Today's E-Book Country Blog Series Post is all about going "Under The Covers - As In Book Covers"!
And there isn't a hotter guy on book shelves and cyber shelves the world over than international cover model Jimmy Thomas, the man that's now the hero on something like 475 covers...including the oh-so-hot bootscootin' cowboy on my BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS debut release!
Check this out...and yes, drool 'til your heart's content! Jimmy's just that drool-worthy.
For more fabulous images of Jimmy and to learn more about his fascinating careers, visit his websites at:
I'm beyond thrilled my publisher and I got Jimmy to do our cover shot! And I'm super-excited to have Jimmy here as my Guest Blogger for this two-part Under The Covers segment.
We're going to start with this Part I peek at one of Jimmy's real-live cover shoots which I was lucky enough to attend at RT10 (http://www.rtbookreviews.com/convention-home) this past April in Columbus OH.
Part II will be my amazing interview with Jimmy where he'll expand on some of the topics I cover today as well as give you the inside scoop on all-things-Jimmy including what makes this sexy, sassy, smart guy tick and what his future plans look like!
Oh, and get your questions and comments for Jimmy posted now! He'll be checking-in frequently the next couple days to give us more fun and fabulous scoop!
So let's jump right in...Under The Covers...(yes, I'm having the same visuals as you all on that idea...ohhh yeahhh!). Let's find out what happens at a Live, Book-Cover Shoot!
Here we go:
1. Jimmy chooses the gorgeous models he partners with for each shoot based on their personalities. These women must be fun and have chemistry with Jimmy. He also tries to use local models from the locations he's shooting in.
2. For Jimmy's photographers, lighting is the most important factor of the shoot. The lighting can set the mood or break it and keeps the image from appearing flat.
3. Jimmy and his models never force the poses. These covers aren't posed shots. Rather they are scenes Jimmy and his partner(s) act out in front of the camera. They keep the seduction and mood going by taking each shoot from a sweet romance to full erotic heat level.
***Note: This sweet to erotic heat element was the most intriguing point I learned at the live cover shoot. I had no idea that's how it was done. That way, Jimmy explained, his shoot can be used no matter what a book's heat level. Brilliant!!!
4. Jimmy thinks the "Almost Kiss" is the hottest shot. Like he says, "If you see the kiss, you know the end of the story."
5. He goes for that push-pull factor with each shot to keep the sexual tension high and visible.
6. He works with plus-size models too.
7. He loves doing action-style shots involving "running" away or toward danger.
8. He gave us this fun and fabulous inside-a-shoot tidbit: for Playboy shoots, they use one light designated for each body part - i.e. a light focused on the shoulder, the arm, the neck, etc.
9. For every couple hundred shots taken, he may get 30 "keepers".
10. They use very little make-up to avoid dating a shot. No added eyelashes either.
11. Jimmy bought a special bed for bedroom shots and hangs sheers and uses a variety of satin sheets for different effects.
12. Photographers often stand on the bed to get better shots. (Side note: Sooo much for the romance...LOL!)
13. The sheet colors used actually change the hair color. Hair is a huge factor in the shots, moving it just the right way with the strands right where you want 'em.
14. They often use Canon or Nikon cameras.
How's that for some great Under The Cover - As In Book Cover tidbits?! Fun stuff!!!
And as I've said a couple times before, Jimmy is a super sweet, sexy smart guy underneath all that muscle. Who knew they made 'em like that?!
In just a bit, I'll post Part II of this Under The Covers segment, and you'll hear from Jimmy himself as he answers my interview questions.
Oh, and again, start posting your questions and comments for Jimmy right now! He'll be checking-in with us for the next few days and is really looking forward to chatting with us!!!
Sexy Sassy Smart BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS
E-Book Country Wishes --- D. D. Scott
Available Now at Both Amazon Kindle & Smashwords
Labels: E-Book Country
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
More BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS Blog Tour-Stops: Where's D. D. Scott
"OH! THE PLACES YOU'LL GO!
You'll be on your way up!
You'll be seeing great sights!
You'll join the high fliers
who soar to high heights." --- Dr. Suess
Gotta luuuvvv good 'ole Dr. Seuss. He described all new journeys fabulously right!!!
So here's where I'll be --- yes, me. A huge yippee-ki-yay! I'm on my way up! Oh! The places I'll be!
Where's D. D.?
Oh boy am I soaring with some high fliers to boot!
How's this for some super fun places to go?!
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
"Boots, Blahniks & Country Music Muses"
Lesa's Book Critiques
Friday, August 27, 2010
Jimmy Thomas Guest Blogs for me at http://ddscottauthor.blogspot.com
Yes, Jimmy Thomas as in International Cover Model
Yes, Jimmy Thomas as in the super hot cover model on my BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS' cover
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Guest Blogger & Guest on the Show Romantically Speaking Podcast
Future Dates TBA:
Guest Blogging on http://thenakedhero.com/ for the fabulous http://tonyakappes.com/
Guest Blogging on http://www.healthywriter.com for the fabulous http://www.tawnyweber.com/
So come on along for all the fun! My BOOTSCOOTIN' Blog Tour has just begun!!!
Sexy Sassy Smart BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS Wishes --- D. D. Scott
P.S. For last weeks' tour-stops, see my Where's D. D. page at http://www.ddscott.com/where.html
Labels: Where's D. D. Scott
Monday, August 23, 2010
BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS - Why Blahniks?
Happy Monday, All!
Time for a new "Behind and Beyond My Books" post.
Last week, I launched this new blog series to give readers the scoop on the 'Why's' behind each of my storylines. I'm giving you the insider's peek at how authors choose their topics, plus letting you in on a little writer's secret...sometimes the topics choose us.
For me, it's a bit of each, tossed together to create fun and fabulous, farcical, romcom adventures. I take topics I enjoy and ask quirky, LOL 'what if's'.
Today's question: Why Blahniks?
As you know by now, from my inaugural "Behind and Beyond My Books" post, me and my muses The Carrie Squad simply luuuvvv boots and bootscootin'!!! But c'mon now...we love bootscootin'...in Blahniks?!
As in - Manolo Blahniks - the fabulous, but potentially lethal when dancing, queen of all stilettos?!
Well...I'm blaming this completely on my muses as a perfect example of a topic choosing the author.
'Cause my muses The Carrie Squad - remember they are named after fashionista goddess Carrie Bradshaw of Sex and The City fame - gotta have their Blahniks. And yes, as in Manolo Blahniks.
My fetish may be boots and bootscootin'. But The Carrie Squad is about all-things-Manolo Blahnik.
Here are some sexy, sassy, smart tidbits on Shoe King Manolo Blahnik and why he was the perfect fit of inspiration for my BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS' heroine, apparel designer Roxy Rae Vaughn:
1. Manolo Blahnik has dominated all-things-shoe-design since he set-up his shop in London in the early 1970's.
2. Like my Roxy Rae, Manolo works alone without assistants or apprentices, and is solely responsible for the design of every one of the thousands of shoes that bear his label.
3. Manolo and Roxy Rae grew-up with the best of Paris fashion literally at their fingertips as both their parents were deeply involved in patronizing old school haut couturier as well as new, avant garde designers.
4. Both Manolo and Roxy struggled to make ends meet when starting out by working in vintage clothes stores - Manolo in a not-so-trendy Paris shop and Roxy Rae in a tractor supply store in Nashville TN (Okay...so as the author, I stretched the comparison a bit here...I know what you're thinkin'...Paris and TN?!...but it works...and wow does Nashville have some fabulous, unique boutiques!).
5. British Vogue said of Manolo's shoe designs, "If you're buying (his) shoes, employ a sense of humour." That's exactly the philosophy Roxy Rae uses for all her collections...especially her signature Buckles Me Baby belt-buckle lines.
6. Manolo's designs are always stamped with his signature style and eclectic passions - a mixture of avant garde and re-worked classics. That's Roxy's every design. Her Raeve boutique customers might be buying just a belt-buckle. But they ain't seen nothin' til they see one of Roxy's Buckles Me Baby buckles.
7. Every Blahnik shoe begins from a hand-drawn design of Manolo's that he usually creates from his home in Bath or his London office. In BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS, we often see Roxy working on her sketch pads in her home studio or in the backroom of Raeve.
8. Madonna once said that a Manolo Blahnik shoe is "better than sex...and it lasts longer". BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS is full of great shoes (and boots), great apparel designs, and great sex too!!!
***Note: Thanks to http://designmuseum.org for some of the above scoop!
How's that for some fun and fabulous "Behind and Beyond My Books" tidbits?!
There's a ton more all-things-Manolo Blahnik thru-out my debut novel BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS. (Hint: There's a big 'ole Louisiana crocodile that Manolo and Roxy Rae have a shared interest in too. Fun stuff!!!)
To Go-Manolo...and Bootscootin' with me and my Carrie Squad, here are the links to BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS:
Amazon’s Kindle Link
So there you have it...BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS - Why Blahniks?
Next time here at "Behind and Beyond My Books", we're going total CMT Country with a behind the page peek at 'Why Nashville TN?'
Sexy Sassy Smart BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS Wishes --- D. D. Scott
Labels: Behind and Beyond My Books
Thursday, August 19, 2010
E-Book Country: Why E-Books? Why Now? Because JA Konrath is My Wizard in Publishing Oz!!!
With the launch of my debut release BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS on both Amazon's Kindle and at Smashwords, I found myself BOOTSCOOTIN' My Way Into E-Book Country. So, besides going Behind and Beyond My Books, I'm also giving you the inside scoop on all things E-Book related in my new blog series E-book Country.
Let's start with 'Why E-Books?' 'Why Now?'
The answer is as simple for me as it is beyond outrageously complex.
Simple because I've always been one to prefer going at something from outside-the-rest-of-the-pack-box. Outrageously complex because the traditional publishing industry is just a complete chaotic, all-the-animals-are-out-of-their-cages-running-amok-and-ready-for-a-fresh-kill zoo!
Why E-Books? Why Now?
Because thriller writer JA Konrath is My Wizard in Publishing Oz!
If you're not reading Konrath's blog A Newbie's Guide To Publishing http://jakonrath.blogspot.com/, you must start now!!! Not tomorrow. Tomorrow is too late!!!
As you may know from my previous blog posts, I've struggled my way along the Yellow Brick Road to Publishing Oz for the last nine years. And as you also know as either a writer yourself or an interested observer of the publishing industry or perhaps an industry insider, today's writing-for-publication journey goes wayyy beyond the standard "it ain't easy".
Today's traditional publishing world is just one major WTF?! after another. And I'm sorry, if that seems a bit harsh. But that's reality. And if like Queen Nora (as in Nora Roberts) advised us at July's RWA10 in Orlando, you don't get that "Publication is wild wicked with nosedives" and get that you'd best just "suck it up" then you should probably like she advocated "stay outta the pool"!
Nora continued in her RWA10 Keynote Address with the wise notion "Say bullshit to it being easy. Ride the hard! RWA is a springboard - it's up to you to jump!"
So after nine years of jumping, dragging my ass outta the pool, hitting the board again, jumping again, and again, and again, always changing-up the jump's style to whatever the current traditional pub judges (i.e editors) wanted to see, I was saved by a proven champion diver -JA Konrath - who wasn't afraid to jump his own way. Hell, you could probably say JA also started a migration to a whole new pool at the other end of the publishing park, the end the traditional pub folks just don't want to go to or are staying in the shallow end too afraid of the deep water they find themselves in at their own pool.
I'd met JA (aka Joe) several years back in Midwest Indiana when he was doing promo for WHISKEY SOUR, the first in his beyond fabulous Lt. Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels thrillers. I then met-up with him again this past April in a workshop he gave at RT10 in Columbus OH. He said, "This is the time to be an author - an E-Book author. You can make more money now than ever." Then he gave us a ton of great numbers to back-up his statement. And I mean great numbers! Numbers no publishing exec I know of will share with you. You can read 'em all for yourself on Joe's blog.
One stat really got me though. Joe pointed-out that he was, at that time, making $12,000 per month from Amazon's Kindle. But that was $12,000 on books NY (meaning NY publishers) had rejected.
Uhmmm, Hello! Now that made me pay wayyy more attention!!!
(Note: Do keep in mind, though, as Joe repeats over-and-over, he's selling well, in part, because of his "bust my ass promotions".)
Yes, you have to have a beyond fabulous book. But yes, you also have to be a Promo Ho or Pimp and work-it hard. Ride the hard like Nora advises. And bust your ass with promo per good 'ole Joe.
So there I sat in April listening to Joe. I then came home and read every blog post he currently has posted on his site. I also always read everything I can get my hands and eyes on regarding the traditional pub world. (You can't just be a writer and write. In today's publishing nuthouse, you'd better be one savvy business person too or you're sooo going to get screwed!!!) I've also worked in a major publisher's returns center (so I know what goes on with traditional pub numbers...and it ain't pretty). I also know, per Joe's advise, that I had a beyond fabulous book (based on the fact it had landed me my beyond terrific and savvy agent, had been in major acquisition considerations by all the big NY houses for two years, had wayyy wonderful feedback from many editors who wanted to buy it but just couldn't because "chick lit was dead" and they'd never get it past their bosses, had people emailing me every day about when the book would be available 'cause they loved the excerpts they'd read on my site and loved my voice, etc, etc etc). I also had "bust my ass promo" down to a science. Well...pseudo science. Promo can never ever be straight science. Complete with my own crazy theories of what works and what doesn't.
All that was left for me to do then was be like JA Konrath, My Wizard in Publishing Oz, and make my balloon take-off. And take-off, not from the traditional magic powers everyone in Oz and the surrounding lands thought the Wizard had. Remember, those powers had been stripped-away and exposed when Toto tore back the curtain. The E-Book World has been Traditional Publishing's Toto and exposed the old-way, a presumed magical way, that books got into readers hands.
Now it's up to each writer to summons their Inner Dorothy, follow the Great JA Oz, and put-on their own ruby slippers - or in my case boots - and figure out how to fly their own balloon or click their own shoes, PC mouses, or touch screens to the new E-Book Country Publishing Oz.
Okay...that's all for this inaugural E-Book Country post. But stay-tuned for a ton more on the new E-book Country. Upcoming topics include: Choosing an E-Reader, Pricing E-Books, Cover Design, Format Issues, Which E-Book Digital First Publisher is right for you, and lots more.
I'm looking forward to your comments and questions. And please let me know E-Book Country topics you'd like me to address.
Sexy Sassy Smart BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS and E-Book Country Wishes --- D. D. Scott
P.S. You can find BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS by clicking on the following links to both Amazon's Kindle and Smashwords:
Labels: E-Book Country
Monday, August 16, 2010
BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS - Why Boots? Why Bootscootin'?
Happy Monday, All!
And welcome to my new blog post series "Behind and Beyond My Books"! Each new title I release, I'll let you know the scoop on the 'Why's' behind each storyline.
We're kickin'-off with the "Behind and Beyond" on my new Amazon Kindle and Smashwords release BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS! BOOTSCOOTIN' is a romantic comedy that's a bit chick lit, gone-country - think Sex and the City meets Urban Cowboy. Here's the blurb:
Manhattan apparel designer Roxy Rae Vaughn, who's also a still-in-the-closet, country line dancing queen, wants to be a fashion success story. Tired of being nothing more than a Fifth Avenue up-and-comer, thanks to her elitist parents, Roxy moves to Nashville, Tennessee and opens a boutique in a local tractor supply store, the only retail space she can afford. Short on cash and way, way down on luck, she rear-ends a pick-up truck belonging to a tomato-growin', bootscootin' cowboy who is anything but the perfect fit for her career plans, although he is her ideal dance partner. Can Roxy accept that her best fit is on the dance floor moving to her own style and her cowboy's lead?
Tomato farmer by day and bootscootin' instructor by night Zayne McDonald doesn't give a damn about winning Nashville's heirloom tomato contest, even though his late father did. Zayne wants to honor his father, but what he really wants is to line dance his way to a winner's spotlight. When he and Roxy are discovered by a huge dance show producer, Zayne learns it's partnering with Roxy that's his winning hybrid mix. That is, if he can keep her and the tomato contest away from Beefsteak Jack Baudlin, the toughest tomato man in CMT country.
So Why Boots? And Why Bootscootin'?
How do authors choose their topics? Or do the topics choose us?
For me, it's a bit of each, mixed together for some fun and fabulous, farcical, romcom adventures. I take topics I enjoy and ask quirky, LOL 'what if's'.
Me and my muses The Carrie Squad simply luuuvvv boots and bootscootin'!!!
(Note: They'll be more on The Carrie Squad in another Behind and Beyond My Books post...but yes, The Carrie Squad is named after my favorite gutsy gal, Sex and The City's Carrie Bradshaw).
Nothing beats putting on a pair of boots (like these babies below) and hittin' the nearest dance floor:
Got this pair in NYC - yes, there's Bootscootin' in The Big Apple too!!!
Bought in Nashville TN 'cause they screamed D. D. Scott
Favorite pair - also bought in Nashville, TN
Even Bootscoot at Bedtime in these Bad-Ass Bootscootin' Slippers!!!
Okay...so perhaps I have a boot fetish.
As a child, I took dance for eight years - everything from tap to ballet to jazz to disco and point plus more. Even though I was a wee bit plump for my leotards, I had great rhythm, style and always danced my heart out. I was good. Plump. But good.
In college, the country line-dancing craze hit. My college town even had a fabulous bootscootin' bar called the Neon Cactus where you could do a mean grapevine all night long! A few years later, while traveling to my favorite city Nashville, TN (also a fabulous topic for a future Behind and Beyond My Books post), I discovered the world-famous Wildhorse Saloon www.WildHorseSaloon.com . Thus, the saloon in my BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS was created and christened The NEON COWBOY SALOON.
In this case then, I think the topics chose me as their author. Because both boots and bootscootin' are a big part of me and a beyond perfect fit for my lifestyle, me, my muses and our characters gave life to these items on our pages.
Check out how I made my passions fit my pages. (Hint: You bet your ass I made the bootscootin' dance scenes hot! There's nothing like dancin' with your man - even if it's in your living room. Actually, especially then...) Here are the links to my debut release BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS:
For my next Behind and Beyond My Books post, I'll give you the sexy, sassy scoop on "Why Blahniks".
In the mean time, tell me your thoughts on boots and/or bootscootin'. And if you're a writer, give us a peek into how you choose the topics that end-up on your pages and screens...
Sexy Sassy Smart Behind and Beyond My Books Wishes --- D. D. Scott
Labels: Behind and Beyond My Books
Thursday, August 12, 2010
BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS Release Day is Here!!!
It may be the eve of Friday the 13th, but here in DDScott-ville, we're kickin' superstition to the curb!!!
BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS is finally off my pages and screens and is available for the first time - today - to be downloaded to your PC, laptop, E-reader of choice or smart phone!
Here's the scoop...
It's taken me almost nine years - you heard me - Nine Years - to get to this day! And as you know from my blogs, and if you're a writer writing-for-publication you know from your own personal often horrifying experiences, it ain't no easy journey on the Yellow Brick Road to Publishing Oz.
I survived the nine, tougher-than-tough, heartbreak-after-break years it took me, the ten complete manuscripts-written it took me, and the larger-than-life failures that took me and shook me by believing in myself (and my muses too!) even when and especially when no one else did!
For me and my muses The Carrie Squad, we stayed-on the dance floor, even when the crowd surrounding it's edges closed-in like vultures circling prey, snickering and sneering about my audacity to keep bootscootin' to my out-of-the-norm manuscripts, characters and narrative voice.
And because we kept on dancin', you can now check out our BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS results by going to Amazon's Kindle Store at http://www.amazon.com/Bootscootin-Blahniks-Books-ebook/dp/B003ZDO30W/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=digital-text&qid=1281641043&sr=8-2 !!!
Oh, and no worries if (a) you don't have an E-reader like Kindle or (b) you have another E-reader like a Sony E-Reader, Barnes & Noble nook, iPad or Kobo. Once you buy a Kindle E-Book from the Kindle Store, you can download right from the store free apps to read any of their E-Books on your PC, laptop or smart phone! And if you have the other readers (Sony E-reader, nook, iPad, or Kobo), you can buy my book on www.Smashwords.com using this link http://smashwords.com/b/21363 .
How cool and easy is that?! The best part yet...it's cheap! I'm sharing my dreams-come-true with you for my E-Book price of $2.99!
To hear more about my journey "Bootscootin' My Way Into E-Book Country", come along with me on my BOOTSCOOTIN' Blog Tour which kicks-off tomorrow at www.SavvyAuthors.com . For all tour stops, see the Where's DD Page on my website at www.DDScott.com !
In the mean time, I'm looking forward to your comments!!!
Sexy Sassy Smart BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIK Wishes --- D. D. Scott
Monday, August 9, 2010
BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS Book Cover Sneak Peek!!!
Happy Monday, All!!!
It's my debut release week, and boy do I have some fabulous fun coming your way along with my launch title BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS which will be available within the next few days on both Amazon's Kindle and Smashwords!!!
Sooo...to tide you over...how 'bout this hunk of a tease to kick-off our week?!!!
That's it...ohhh yeahhh!!! My debut release's BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS Book Cover, featuring the wayyy-too-terrific, international cover model Jimmy Thomas!!!
I just can't say enough great things about working with Jimmy...on the cover image, people...not otherwise...although, he does have a fabulous personality and brains to-go-with-it underneath all those huge muscles. Who knew they made 'em that way?!!!
Anyhoo...I met Jimmy at RT10 in April. A couple months later, I explained to him exactly what I needed his image to "show" about my BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS hero and heroine Zayne and Roxy. And wow did he and his gorgeous model and crew nail it big-time!!!
My beloved Zayne's body language is sayin':
"Yeah, I'm totally into you and luuuv dancin' with you...you are sooo mine, Roxy Rae"...
To which, my Roxy's sayin':
"Wait a minute, Cowboy. Back-off a bit - not so fast, Big Boy"...
Thanks, Jimmy! For more of Jimmy's wayyy wonderful work (he's done something like 440 romance covers), see his websites at www.JimmyThomas.com and www.RomanceNovelCovers.com .
Now the cover magic didn't stop with Jimmy and his shoot crew. My super terrific web designer and graphic artist Shelley of www.WebCraftersDesign.com then took Jimmy's hotter-than-hot image and turned it into my BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS cover.
She added everything else you see on the image, including the sexy sassy smart stiletto you see kickin' my name into high gear and the terrific tomatoes, teaser and title giving you tiny little hints as to what you can expect from my book!
Check out Shelley's WebCrafters site too! Her portfolio is also just-beyond amazing!!!
Talk about talent!!! Jimmy and crew and Shelley and company make my books jump-off the page and screen right from the start!!!
I'm such a lucky author to have such brilliant artists on my team!!!
Sexy Sassy Smart BOOTSCOOTIN' BLAHNIKS Wishes --- D. D. Scott
P.S. Can't wait to see your comments regarding this cover!!!
P.S.S. I'll be back soon with the inside scoop on how a manuscript becomes an E-Book...and, at that time, introduce another beyond brilliant member of my D. D. Scott Team...Rob Siders of www.52novels.com