By Ashley Ladd
I’m not an expert when it comes to building community between authors, readers, and the publishing world, however I can be pretty intuitive.
Without knowing it, I was doing something right, something I stopped doing and need to do again.
What was that?
Not only was I blogging several times a week consistently, but I was responding to all the comments on my blog. In addition, I visited other blogs on a consistent basis, added them to my network, and grew friendships with those blog owners.
I’m sorry to say I stopped doing that a few years ago. It was nothing against the other blogs or my new blogging friends. Life intervened. I got busy. Then I got depressed. My focus shifted.
First, I turned my attention to losing weight. Instead of spending time on my computer, I started working out during the majority of my free hours when I wasn’t at my day job. I lost 95 pounds so it worked. I was happy with my success but I had temporarily left the blogging world. I was afraid to sit down for too long and lose my weight loss momentum.
Then I sank into a deep depression. A lot of overwhelming things heaped upon me so I became even more of a recluse from the Internet world. My muse refused to come out and play. I didn’t do anything writing related. I also regained a lot of the weight.
Anyway, I went from doing things pretty darned well to not doing anything. Of course I saw my royalties drop.
Now I’m back and trying to rebuild my community. The depression hasn’t totally abated nor has the need to lose weight. Things are still overwhelming, maybe even more so on some levels. However, I’m dealing better with everything and I’m back to stay.
Perhaps you’re wondering why I think I was doing things right about building community. Because recently I read an article from a promotions expert that outlined everything I had been doing. She didn’t purport it to be a quick fix, but a good steady, solid one.
Think about it. Who likes drive by posts or authors who repeat ad nauseum “Buy my book”? I’ll be the first in line to buy my friends’ books. I’m also more likely to buy books from people who engage me and show they truly care about me and what makes me tick.
Building community may appear to be a way to get people to buy books and maybe it is. But much more importantly, it’s about supporting one another, making friendships, and working together. When we look back upon our life, what will make us happiest? What will count the most? Making money, the number of books we sold, or the friendships we nurtured?
Title: Her Men
Series Name: N/A
Publisher: Totally Bound
Genre: Contemporary Erotic male-female-male romance
Book Length: 22,000 words
Forty-four year old Julie Weston has loved Timmy and James since her college days twenty something years ago. She's fantasized about both all these long years, never able to choose between them.
Hoping Tim and James will attend, she attends their college marching band reunion. When both men show up her dreams are answered. They're sexier than she imagined and she hopes they won't be disappointed by her older self.
It turns out both men came just to see her again and neither is happy about the other’s presence. They fight over her, confusing her more than ever. It takes a hot ménage…or two…for her heart to decide which one she’s in love with.
A silhouette fell across her, waking her up from her nap and a husky voice washing over her. “You’re going to be sorry falling asleep out here. This sun is brutal.”
Groggy, she shaded her eyes and looked up at the shadowy figure in awe. “Timmy, is that you? You’re early.”
He leaned down, his body still sinewy and strong, and held out his hand to her. Nary a wrinkle marred his matured face. Only a few laugh lines fanned out from his eyes which added to his attractiveness. “You too. Is that a sign?”
She couldn’t help but chuckle. Since when did Tim believe in signs? “A sign?”
“That you want to see me, be with me in private, as I want to see you and be with you in private.”
She swallowed hard and put her hand in his, her heart somersaulting when they touched for the first time in more than twenty years. A maelstrom of emotion washed over her and she didn’t want to mess up what was probably her last chance to be with him, so she wasn’t about to play coy.
Slowly, seductively, she licked her lips. “You read my mind.”
As he helped her up, his gaze smoldered into hers. He dragged her alongside him and his hard cock swelled into her side. He nipped her ear then whispered huskily, “Your nipples are puckering through your suit. I’d call that a sign.”
Ashley Ladd is a disabled Air Force vet that is hard of hearing but still loves language, especially the written word. She loves a sexy man, especially one with a military background and they’ll often pop up in her stories. She also loves cats and has been known to empower a cat with the gift of speech. Unfortunately he wouldn’t shut up. J She loves to plug into Pandora and sip Diet Coke while writing, usually with a cat or kid at her side.
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