Friday, May 23, 2014

Drinks with Rachel...

Minx friend, Rachel Lyndhurst is taking over the minxes today with a guest post...take it away, Rach!

Thanks for asking me here today, Minxes! It’s like coming home to a nice, warm and cosy place full of friends who have a lot to chat about. We’ve been pals for some time now, certainly before April 2012 when I was visiting to promote Kidnapped by the Greek Billionaire. And so much has changed in that time; competition finals, completed manuscripts, contracts signed and books published by you lovely ladies – the Minxes must have special fairy dust sprinkles that’s all I can say. However, this also means we have all written a LOT of blog posts along the way and I don’t know about you,but after a few years you start to run out of steam!
Keeping your posts fresh and edgy becomes increasingly difficult as your rookie enthusiasm wanes and the demands or real life vie for your attention just as much as your new book. That’s just normal blogging too. When it comes to promotional blog tours you have to cram an awful lot of work in which must all relate to the same topic in some way – your writing and your books. Trends, markets and demographics change rapidly so you can’t afford to be complacent, for example the last year has been dominated by the young adult market from what I hear. People are buying, reading and surfing from loads more places than their home PC or laptop. How many people under thirty don’t have another ‘device’ these days? Not many, I’ll bet!
So, considering how much time she spends online, I decided it was time for my fifteen year old, gadget-dependant daughter to earn her keep and give me some hot promo tips (if she wasn’t going to pair her own socks…). She has given me permission to share her top ten blogging tips exclusively here, so here we go in her own words!
  1. Make it colourful.
  2. Use a catch line that attracts your audience. For example: “They do naughty things”.
  3. Pictures!!! Eye-catching and bold.
  4. Who is your target audience? Use things they like, like wine and garden programs or something, but make sure it links to your book!
  5. Be funny – ish. But not too much.
  6. Use awesome words like ‘paradoxically’.
  7. Make it smart casual. Not too casual or not too smart.
  8. If your post is boring then make up a hilarious or interesting story that is gripping.
  9. Separate your work out – don’t write one huge paragraph but several smaller ones.
  10. Use colours that match your theme. Like red is angry or passionate, blue is lonely, green is calm etc.
This list made me nod and laugh because I have read a number of blogs recently that are One Long Paragraph. Really. And even thought the wine and garden program tip made me wince a bit (guilt!) the list did spark some inspiration of my own. I now have my own bullet points, maybe even an embryonic branding exercise (ooh posh or what?) that I can use when preparing my posts and interviews.
Here’s the ‘reduction’ if you like (too much Masterchef as well as wine and gardening, yes, I know):
  • Make it fun.
  • Make it matter.
  • Make it real.
  • Make it exciting.
  • Make it SELL.
Phew, almost corporate there, eh? But I’m not giving myself hard and fast rules. No way, I’ve spent a lifetime following those and I’m naturally rebellious so this leads nicely into a blatant book plug (gotta do it!). The tagline for my new release Blackmailed by the Billionaire Brewer is: He makes the rules, she blows them sky high… Look here it is on the scrummy cover:

I love this tag because I was allowed to break a few of those ‘rules’ that can be drummed into you as an author in series-style romance. Entangled Publishing and my editorial team let me do some things that I thought I’d never get away with. There is irreverence, drunken antics, drunken sex, some very bad language, cigarettes are smoked and there is no audible rustling of foil wrappers …
So I’ll understand if I’m not asked back!
Here’s the official blurb for Blackmailed by the Billionaire Brewer:
Piper Reilly is in trouble. She needs a cash infusion, and she’s just left a scorching hot man in Florida to get her life in Colorado back on track. Then her surfside one-night-stand turns out to be her new boss, billionaire Matt DeLeo, with an offer she can’t refuse—agree to be the face of his brewery’s newest concoction or lose her job. A few weeks modelling for the billionaire playboy and her money worries are over, and she can definitely resist Matt’s gorgeous smile and muscular, tattooed arms—it’s strictly business.
 Matt DeLeo is in trouble. He’s found the perfect woman to sell Passion Creek Brewery’s newest brew, but if he wants her on his posters, he’ll have to keep his hands to himself. But all he wants to do is drink in Piper. And once the launch is over, it will take more than blackmail for Matt to get his way.
And, because I love you, here’s an ULTRA EXCLUSIVE pic of me drinking beer in the Canary Islands to prove I had to put a lot of research into this billionaire brewer book. It was hard work, I can tell you (hellish) and the reason why I now have too many chins …

So now it’s your turn to let rip. What rules do you hate, which ones would you like to see ripped up and stomped on in fiction as well as real life? Do you have any personal writing rules that you will never break? Spill!! (But I bag scrapping the difference between colons and semi-colons because they hate me and I am thick.)
Major buy links:
Social networking links:

Thanks a million for guest minxing here today, Rachel! 


Rachel Lyndhurst said...

Thanks for having me!!!!

Suzanne Ross Jones said...

Thank you so much for this post, Rachel - some great advice there. xx

Maya Blake said...

I love a good take over!! Thanks for being here today, Rach! And that cover is TO DIE FOR!!!