Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Step Aside, Catwoman...

There's a new super in town and she's FULL of BADASSNESS.

That's right boys and girls, we have art. Super Art. Full of Super Sexiness. You know you wanna whip on your cape and cheek-bone disguising mask and hie off to do some Derring Do. Oh yeah. You know it.

What's this you're looking at? It's the cover art for Midnight Justice - the superhero anthology featuring yours truly, the fabulous Ms. Jodi Redford and the marvelous Ms. Kimberly Dean. Coming to a brick and mortar store near you in... wait for it... wait a little longer... a little more than a year... YEP, that's right. Spring of 2013. So... really really admire that art, you guys, cuz it's gonna be a while before you can hold it.

So what thinks you? You like?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Best Author Interview Evah

Dude. You guys, Maurice Sendak is so fabulously cantankerous. My favorite part? Right at the very very end where he talks about ebooks.

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Grim Colberty Tales with Maurice Sendak Pt. 2
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical Humor & Satire BlogVideo Archive

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I Do Not Think That Word Means What You Think It Means

I'm a number nerd. And when people take a mathematical concept (see also: statistics, finance theory) and think that they can change the definition however the hell they want to support whatever non-math-based argument they are making, it kinda makes my head 'splode.

Case in point: There's a phrase that's been bugging me lately as people are talking about epublishing and self-publishing - the long tail. There are a couple of different definitions for this phrase in business and statistics, and then there is one commonly misused definition that makes me want to scream until the faces of people around me melt off Raiders of the Lost Arc-style. You can't just adopt a phrase that already has a specific (and very good!) meaning and assign it whatever the hell meaning you want. I forbid it!

What Long Tail Means:
A long tail distribution is demonstrated by a graph (graphs are exciting, amirite?) where a high percentage of the frequency of sales (80% is one often used number) are attributed to a small percentage of the items in a population, tailing off rapidly to a large population of items with very small frequency. For example: A small number of books will be mega-best-sellers and most books will fall into the "long tail" and sell a small quantity.

In a business sense, the term long tail is often used when referring to online retailers because they have set up a sales model where they benefit from selling a very small quantity of a very large variety of items - i.e. profitizing the long tail where a traditional retailer cannot afford to keep items which are less likely to sell at large numbers on the shelf - Costco profits in bulk, not specificity, Amazon the opposite.

What Long Tail Does Not Mean:
The long tail has NOTHING to do with how books sell OVER TIME. It does NOT describe the phenomenon where your book that steadily sells a thousand copies a month for thirty years will eventually sell more books than Bestseller X even though it was never a best seller.

Now, I'm not saying that cumulative and backlist sales do not, over time, add up and equal big money - but the thing is, there's already a term for that. It's called "having legs". So why not say "I'd rather have a book with legs than a best-seller" instead of saying "the power of the long tail!" Because, you guys, the power of the long tail is for Amazon and companies who haves set up their sales model to benefit from selling five copies of a million different books, NOT the author who sells five copies a week for thirty-five years. That's legs.

And see, long tail does apply to the self-pub/epub argument (if you're using the real definition). Because minority tastes are being made available (rather than only things which will be expected to sell eleven bazillion copies) there is an opportunity for more diversity in the options available to readers - and writers who write "outside the box" have a place to sell their five copies a week. So if you're using the phrase that way GO YOU! You are a rockstar!

But please try to keep it straight from legs. Enthusiasm is awesome and all, but lack of precision about mathy stuff makes me hear air raid sirens in my brain. Just sayin'. Number nerd out.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Guest Author: Sara Ramsey & Heiress Without a Cause

Today I'm all aflutter to host the fabulous Ms. Sara Ramsey as we discuss her inaugural release, the fun and fabulous regency romance Heiress Without a Cause.

After winning the Golden Heart in 2009 and being named a finalist again in 2011 (with the first two books she wrote, but lets all pretend we aren't green with envy over that), Sara is launching her delightful Muses of Mayfair series with those Golden Heart recognized novels, featuring artistic, rebellious highborn ladies and the rakish lords who love them.

Sara grew up in a small town in Iowa, and confesses to an obsession with fashion, shoes (of course), and all things British. She graduated from Stanford University in 2003 with a degree in Symbolic Systems (also known as cognitive science) and a minor in history. After graduation, she worked at Google for seven years in a variety of sales, management, and communications roles. She left Google in 2010 to pursue her writing career full time.

And now she can add "published author" to her impressive CV.

Heiress Without a Cause

One title to change his life…

A disgraced son with a dark reputation, William “Ferguson” Avenel is content to live in exile – until his father dies in the scandal of the Season. With rumors of insanity swirling around them, his sisters desperately need a chaperone. Ferguson thinks he’s found the most proper woman in England – and he won’t ruin her, even if he desperately wants the passionate woman trapped beneath a spinster’s cap.

One chance to break the rules…

Lady Madeleine Vaillant can’t face her blighted future without making one glorious memory for herself. In disguise, on a London stage, she finds all the adoration she never felt from the ton. But when she’s nearly recognized, she will do anything to hide her identity – even setting up her actress persona as Ferguson’s mistress. She’ll take the pleasure he offers, but Madeleine won’t lose her heart in the bargain.

One season to fall in love…

Every stolen kiss could lead to discovery, and Ferguson’s old enemies are determined to ruin them both. But as their dangerous passion ignites their hearts and threatens their futures, how can an heiress who dreams of freedom deny the duke who demands her love?

I was lucky enough to read Heiress Without a Cause before its release, and the blend of heartfelt romance, realistically drawn characters, and risky Regency situations sucked me right in. Here's a little peek inside:
Her heart beat faster and she lowered her voice. “Perhaps we should practice how we might appear together in the demimonde.”

She was useless as a flirt, but he was smart enough to grasp her meaning. “You want to practice being my mistress?”

“I find my acting improves with experience,” she said, hoping she sounded like a coquette but fearing that she sounded like a fool.

He laughed. She flushed bright red as the heady bubble of attraction burst. She was indeed a fool… she didn’t know how to play these games… he was helping her out of charity, not desire. She turned away from him, wishing she could hide in a carriage as easily as she did in ballrooms.

He reached across the carriage to stroke her cheek. “Mad – it’s not you I’m laughing at. Imagine my predicament, though. I have the most beautiful, talented woman in London as my mistress, and I cannot touch her without ruining her.”

She looked back at him. Several emotions flickered across his eyes in the dim light of the coach, but mockery was not one of them. “And I have the most notorious rake in London in my carriage to save my reputation. Aren’t we quite the pair?”

He watched her for a long moment. She saw the battle play out on his face. Abruptly, the darker side won, and he shifted his hand to her wrist and pulled her toward him.

She landed in his lap, too astonished to do more than squeal with surprise. Wish her face mere inches from his, she could see the banked, smoldering look in his eyes – just as he tilted her mouth and kissed her.
Can you see why I couldn't put it down? I sat down with Sara this week (in the metaphorical, via email sense) to get the inside scoop on her debut release.

Vivi: My favorite historical romances are always so integrated with the period that they simply could not be told the same way in any other era. Your book is so deliciously Regency. What drew you to the era? Did you always know you wanted to write Regency?

Sara: I adore, adore, ADORE the Regency. Some of it is standard: I like the clothes and the parties, of course. But I’m intrigued by Regency romances because I like the challenge of conforming to all the Regency expectations while still finding fresh ways for my characters to break the rules.

I also think the time period is interesting because it parallels the modern world in a lot of ways – the extreme gaps between blatant excess and crushing poverty, the odd hypocrisies between sexual freedom and prudishness, and how obsessed people were with gossip rags. It makes the Regency a lot more accessible to modern readers than some historical time periods. Still, I like the fantasy factor of historical romance, and no matter what I write in the future, I doubt I’ll ever abandon historical influences.

Along those lines, I’ll share something embarrassing - my first attempt at a romance was very Viking and very dirty. My best friend and I wrote the first chapter during a high school sleepover, and by the end of the chapter, the heroine (disguised as a boy) was discovered by the hero when he tried to whip her for insubordination. Obviously we were operating under the influence of the 1980s romances, and it will never see the light of day!

Vivi: I love a good in-it-together, falling-for-one-another amid potential social ruin story. Did you set out to write that kind of story or did it just develop organically? (Sort of my version of a plotter vs. pantser Q.)

Sara: My process for HEIRESS was so messy that I’m not sure I can claim that I planned anything! In the first version, there really wasn’t any scandal; instead, Madeleine’s long-lost fiancĂ© from France turned up demanding to marry her in what was ultimately a convoluted attempt by Ferguson’s father to keep them apart. I scrapped that entire storyline, killed Ferguson’s dad, and started over when it became clear that my pantsing was totally off-the-wall insane.

I loved the characters, though, and those ill-fated 40,000 words were almost like an alternate-reality character development exercise for them. I lost a lot of words, but they were still the same people. And as I got to know them better, I knew that they would skate on the very edge of social ruin to get what they wanted – so I played that up in the new version, and ended up loving it.

I also learned that I may be more of a pantser, but I have to do some plotting initially or else I work myself into serious trouble. I’m a lot less reluctant to kill my darlings after that experience, though – cutting a scene now is nothing compared to cutting half a book.

Vivi: Your characters are so brilliantly developed. There is a fabulous duality in many of them, especially the heroine, Madeleine - who embodies both the daring actress and demure spinster - do you see her rebellion more as a balance of her two sides or as the emergence of her true self? Do you have any tips on character development for authors aspiring to your level of awesomeness?

Sara: Thanks – I’m blushing! This question makes me happy because I hoped Madeleine’s duality would come across. As I wrote her, I thought a lot about how people often have many goals that sometimes come into conflict with each other, and how hard it can be to make a choice between two lives that can both be satisfying. Yes, Madeleine wants to be an actress – but it’s not the only thing she ever wants for her life, just the thing she most wants right now. Her lesson throughout the book is how to balance her current desires so that her true self can emerge – but she won’t know what that true self is until she understands what she really wants.

If you’ll allow me to geek out for a minute, I think some characters feel one-dimensional because their goal is something quite basic / outside of themselves: find the artifact, save the child, get revenge. But if someone’s goal is basic/elemental, I often don’t find their character arc quite as satisfying – I may love the plot, but going from “I need to defuse this bomb or people die” to “yay I defused the bomb!” is pretty straightforward for the character. I’m more interested in characters who have to choose between two competing, higher-level desires – in Madeleine’s case, the need for acclaim/recognition vs. love and companionship. Humans are usually confused about what they want (or maybe that’s just me!), and exploring that confusion can really speak to the reader. Just don’t ramble like I did in this paragraph, or you may lose them :)

Vivi: Your hero is a former rake, but instead of being glorified for it as can be a Regency theme, his past becomes a genuine obstacle for him - were you intentionally taking a less fanciful look at what reputation meant in that historical era than we sometimes see in Regency Land?

Sara: I try really hard to avoid logical inconsistencies – to the point that my roommate probably doesn’t want to watch TV with me anymore because I’ll sometimes nitpick the entire episode (like last week’s Once Upon a Time, when I pointed out during the climax that one probably can’t roll down the back window in a sheriff’s car from the inside – not sure she’s forgiven me yet).

Anyway, I love reading about rakes, but I have trouble believing that they could all be reformed easily. Reputations are really hard to shake, even now – it must have been worse back when honor and duty were such a huge part of the social fabric. Ferguson became a duke and had never done anything bad enough to be ostracized for it, but that didn’t mean everyone would suddenly love him. I didn’t set out to make a statement with him, but he certainly doesn’t find redemption easily.

Vivi: As I mentioned above, I'm in love with your characters - even those who play more minor roles. I'm excited that there are two more Muses of Mayfair books to look forward to (Amelia & Prudence! I can't wait!), but I'm also dying to know if there will be romances for Ellie & the twins. Pretty please?

Sara: There are at least three more: Amelia’s book, Scotsmen Prefer Blondes is coming in March, and Ellie’s book, The Marquess Who Loved Me, is coming sometime around June – she wasn’t even a Muse when I started the series, but she steals every scene she’s in and won’t allow Prudence to go before her. I’ll write Prudence’s book, which is still untitled, for a fall release. Beyond that, the twins may get their books if readers are interested; otherwise, I have plans for a new Regency series to kick off next year.

Vivi: How did you come about your decision to self-publish your 2009 Golden Heart Winner & 2011 Golden Heart Finalist manuscripts?

Sara: It was a tough decision, but I’m thrilled that I made it. When my 2009 book didn’t sell, I put it aside and focused on writing the second book (which went horribly at first, as I mentioned above). That became my 2011 book, which my agent shopped to editors this summer. My agent and my beta readers loved it, but editors were lukewarm about it, and it became clear that no one was going to make a great offer for it.

But self-publishing options are so much better than they were in 2009, and I know more about the industry than I did then. I also worked in the tech industry for seven years before pursuing publication, so I felt confident that I could figure out the technical aspects – and since my jobs were all around marketing and communications, I’m actually excited about creating a business from my self-publishing and figuring out how to get my books into the hands of readers.

Beyond that, though, I’m just tremendously excited to have my books out and to share them with other romance lovers. My agent and I both believe in these books and were heartbroken when they didn’t sell traditionally – but while traditional publishers excel at distributing blockbusters, they simply can’t afford to take the same risks on newer authors. It’s a business decision, and I respect that. And traditional publishing is still the right path for some people, just as self-publishing is the right path for others. For me, given my expertise and interests, self-publishing is the way to go. And hopefully it will pay off – but if it doesn’t, at least I will know that my books had a shot with an audience and didn’t just languish under my bed with the poor ‘80s-style Viking romance I scrapped fifteen years ago :)

Note: Over at the RUBY BLOG TODAY Sara is giving away a Nook copy of HEIRESS to a random commenter – it was chosen as a Nook First exclusive, and will only be available on Barnes and Noble for the next month. If the winner doesn’t have a Nook, she will give them an ebook or print copy of their choice on February 23.


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Acceptable Theft

So, you may have noticed a bit of hubbub recently about the Stop Online Piracy Act and Protect IP Act. I'm not going to talk about the bills, because the proposed legislation and potential enforcement risks have been dissected ad nauseum elsewhere. But I've been thinking about this quite a bit lately and I'd like to talk about the way our society seems to have come to view artistic products in the digital age - because in all the furor over the acts no one ever seemed to acknowledge that digital theft is wrong. That stealing a song or an ebook online is the same as shoving a book or CD under your shirt and sneaking out of Barnes & Noble or Best Buy.

You know why? Because it isn't exactly the same. The difference is in the consequences. You will get arrested for shoplifting, but downloading is viewed not only as an unpunishable offense, but almost as a right, a fucking privilege of the digital age. But see, freedom of information is not the same thing as taking someone's artistic endeavors without paying for it (their livelihood, but I'm trying to stay away from that argument because I know I'm too personally affected by this issue to be even remotely objective if we start talking about the fact that as a copyright holder I am one of the victims of this perceived-as-victimless crime).

Yes, the bills were likely unconstitutional and had a bevy of problems, but the rhetoric linking protecting copyrights to a dictator cracking down on the next Arab Spring was a bit much for me - not because the bills weren't a clumsy, "buy a bigger hammer" approach to the problem, but because not once did anyone acknowledge that piracy is wrong and there are people who are hurt by online theft. Fix the bills, propose new ones, don't just protest the very idea of cracking down on online theft!

If you'd rather hear this from Guns N Roses, check out Duff McKagan's Quit Whining About SOPA & PIPA. Where's the Public Outrage Over Online Piracy?

John Stewart - whom I am usually a fan of - brushed aside any impact piracy has on artists, authors, and musicians and tacitly encouraged his viewers to pirate copyrighted material from the Big Bad Corporations who make all the movies. Yeah, because theft is totally okay as long as you steal from someone who can afford it. Awesome.

You know there's a reason the phrase "starving artist" is a cliche. It's because most of us aren't bazillionaires who won't notice a few hundred thousand illegal copies of our books and songs being downloaded. I don't get a giant advance. I get paid on royalties (a percentage of each individual sale) - and just think, if I actually got paid for all those pirates who steal and read (and some of whom illegally sell) my books, I might be able to splurge and afford health insurance this year. (And I have epically failed at keeping this from getting personal. Oh well.)

But it's not about the legality. It's not about the bills. It's about the pervasive societal view that it's okay to steal, as long as it's this one particular kind of theft. It's so damn easy, but that doesn't make it right.

The thing is, there are legal, ethical, non-stealing ways of getting books for free. Become a reviewer. Go to author blogs (like this one where I have TONS of chances to win them, as do many authors). Join Goodreads and be on the lookout for their giveaways. Go to your local library - many of which are starting to lend ebooks. Use the borrowing feature on your device and trade with your friends. But piracy is THEFT.

How about a deal? I won't pick your pocket on the street if you don't download my books for free. Sound fair?

Bottom line: if you don't protect creative endeavors and intellectual property, eventually you won't have any art to enjoy anymore. Sorry, but that's just how it goes. If you take away a creative professional's ability to make a living doing what they love, they can't create the stuff you love anymore.

If you disagree with me, I'd love to hear your argument. Or if you have any insights into why we as a culture can't respect digital property I'd be curious to hear that as well. Or, better still, if you have any ideas on how we can shift perception to show that intellectual property is worth protecting, that would be amazing.

Your thoughts?

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Get Your Curse On

It's that day, ladies and gentlemen! The moment has arrived! That day you've been dreaming of... Bachelor Recap Day! Glee's Winter Season Kick-off! The second episode of the second season of Switched At Birth! (And don't you dare mock my love of cheesy ABC Family schlock.) The day when I map out a quadruple feature to try to watch all the Golden Globe Winners I'd never heard of! Okay, yes, it's all of those, but also... drumroll please...

Ghosts of Boyfriends Past release day!

Curses. Ghosts. Studly reporters. (Envision McSteamy from Grey's Anatomy. Well, hello there...)

Add in a little bit o' Valentine's falling in love and you've got Ghosts of Boyfriends Past.

I've gotta say, y'all, I'm super excited about this one. It's not a Karmic Consultants book, but while it stands on its very own, it has a lot of the quirk and lighthearted goofiness that readers may expect from the KC series. So if you're looking for some love and laughter with a touch of magic and a lot of heart to get you in the mood for Valentine's Day, you may wanna take a peek...

Letting him in could mean losing him forever.

Elizabeth “Biz” Marks has the magic touch when it comes to matters of the heart—except her own. In a slightly tipsy fit of loneliness, she once tried to harness a little love mojo to work in her favor. Instead the spell mutated into a nightmarish curse that kills off her boyfriends on her favorite holiday: Valentine’s Day.

With three permanently ex-boyfriends on her conscience and another hearts-and-flowers holiday approaching, the last thing she needs is a too-gorgeous-to-be-true reporter snooping around.

Biz just has extraordinarily bad luck, or she’s a bona-fide Black Widow who bumps off her boyfriends for a chunk of the inheritance money. Either way, Mark Ellison is sure there’s a story here. Especially when his attempts to charm her send her into a panic.

The harder Biz tries to keep Mark and his beguiling dimples as far away as possible, the harder he digs to get at the truth. Now she’s beginning to wonder if his is the love that will finally break the curse...or if she’ll be burying her heart along with him.

Product Warnings: This book contains curses, meddling ghosts, nosy neighbors and enough peppermint Schnapps to drown the inhibitions of even the most cautious witch.

Check it out from Amazon :: Samhain :: B&N.

In my usual release day tradition, I'll be visiting the Samhain Cafe to chat and share excerpts (around 3:00pm EST). Swing on by and say howdy!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

All Manner of Exciting Things

For anyone wondering if I fell off the edge of the world in the last couple days, fear not. I'm just helping look after my sister's kids for a few days while she and her husband take a little vacation and DAMN, I do not know how you folks who have miniature people living with you full time manage to find a second to yourselves. And yet, in spite of my distraction, I'm a font of exciting news this morning. (Well, exciting to me. Humor me.)

1. Winners! A couple days ago I promised prizes - and prizes ye shall have! The winners of their choice of The Sexorcist (print), The Ghost Exterminator (print), or Ghosts of Boyfriends Past (ebook ARC) are:


Congratulations! Please email me at vivi@viviandrews.com to claim your prize!

2. The Tagline Verdict! It's official, boys and girls, YOU the readers have spoken and the tagline getting the most votes - which was also one of my favorites so I'm pretty jazzed - IS:

Spark and Snark in the Dark.

Which is also kind of awesome because one of my best friends has a slight obsession with Spark in the Dark Life-Savers and I have many fond memories involving them.

Now, for the moment I'm kinda swamped (seriously, how do parents function?), but I'll whip up a new header in the next week or so and get that shiny new tagger up and on display. A HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who helped at all stages of the brainstorming and picking process. And to Gwynlyn, who supplied the winning tagline, I'll be in touch about arranging your reward for tagging services rendered.

Next up on the Gushing Agenda...

3. Librarian Love! Ghosts of Boyfriends Past was written up in the Library Journal (and I love me some libraries so I'm pretty giddy here) and my goodness, was it ever positive!

"Verdict: Paranormal fans and romance lovers will love this playful story; its light sexual content yet heavy emotional substance provides a delightful, satisfying read.—Jennifer Harris, Mercyhurst Coll. Lib., Erie, PA"

Let's all send some mad love to Jennifer Harris for being sublimely awesome. Woot!

And lastly...

4. Sins on Shelves! A friend here in snowy Alaska sent me a snap she took at my local bookstore. Now, I don't expect much from a print release because, well, I've seen my numbers and I know that ninety-five percent of my readers have their Kindles & Nooks surgically welded to their hands (as well you should), so imagine my surprise when what should my local bookstore have but four copies of Serengeti Sins sitting on the shelves! It's almost like they expect people to buy them! How 'bout that? I'm all aflutter.

I'll have to go down there and see the clutter of books for my very own self - right after I de-kid-ify. (Don't really want the kiddos associating the bare midriff cover with their favorite auntie until they're a lot older. We already have the weirdest conversations starting with why. Trying not to open that particular can of worms.)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Tag Me Contest! Vote Now for Your Favorites!

It's that time, boys and girls! Time to help me pick a tagline! Here are the options we've found so far, and you (yes, YOU!) can win books and prizes by voting for your favorite in the comments section, as well as suggesting new taglines if GENIUS strikes you! Sound good? So get voting!

The options:

1. Making paranormal warm and fuzzy since 2009

2. Spark & Snark in the Dark.

3. Expect the unexpected.

4. I write the naughty so that you don't have to.

5. From the Dark Side with Love.

6. Variety is the spice of life, Vivi Andrews is making sure your variety has plenty of spice.

7. Love comes in many forms. Sweet, spicy, or with a bite, enjoy the ride.

8. Love without limits... from sizzling shifters to quirky comedies.

Something about paranormal romance in all flavors? Paranormal Romance from A to Zombie? (Dude, I need to write a zombie book...) Or something like warm, witty, and outside the ordinary? Or, um, yeah, I got nuthin'. Ideas?

Three commenters will win their choice of signed print copies of The Ghost Exterminator or The Sexorcist or an ebook ARC of Ghosts of Boyfriends Past (hitting digital shelves next Tuesday!).

And yesterday's winner of Serengeti Sins is StacieD! Congrats, Stacie! Please email me at vivi@viviandrews.com with your snail mail address so I can mail you your prize right away!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Winter Wonderland - Writer's Edition

Winter in Alaska means we have an abundance of two things - cold and dark. (And this year we also have an abundance of snow. Woot!) But the great thing about Alaskan winters is that it's the perfect time to hunker down, batten down the hatches, curl up under a pile of blankets with a giant mug of hot cocoa and write until spring. Which is why the Winter Writing Festival is so perfectly timed for me.

That's right, boys and girls of the writerly persuasion, it's time for the Ruby blog's version of NaNo: The Winter Writing Festival - a seven week writing frenzy where you set your goals and we whip encourage you to meet them with sprints and check-ins and prizes, oh my! (Yeah, the initials are WWF and that's because we're putting the SMACKDOWN on winter laziness, beeyotches!)

Wanna play? Head on over to the WWF site HERE and register to participate (totally free). Then check back tomorrow when the chat room opens for sprints and the Ruby blog is open for Goals, Goals, Goals! (I'm mildly obsessed with goals. As evidenced by my copious quantities of To Do lists and the fact that I've been fantasizing lately about buying a new day planner. Organization is my crack.)

And speaking of crack... you know what else gets me giddier than kids on Christmas? SNOW! We have so freaking much this year. It's brilliant (and makes my shoveling muscles ache just thinking about it). A few weeks back I posted about a multi-day power outage we had, accompanied by a mega-snowstorm - including some pictures. Well... we've had a smidge more snow. Observe:


So in celebration of all things Winter and Snow, I'm giving away another signed print copy of SERENGETI SINS (which includes Serengeti Storm, which includes a freak blizzard!). Just comment here for a chance to win.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Winners of Ghosts of Boyfriends Past ARC

Thank you to everyone who commented this weekend. And, now, without further ado (though we all know how I love my ado), the winners are... Arlene Hittle & ParaJunkee!

Congrats! Just drop me an email at vivi@viviandrews.com to let me know which format you prefer and claim your prize!

More prizes to come as the Ghosts of Boyfriends Past release day approaches. Stay tuned!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Ghostly Good News & Giveaway!

Guess what, boys and girls? Long & Short Reviews gave Ghosts of Boyfriends Past Four Stars!

"The cast of characters were a delight."Check out the full review.

This novella (of the hefty novella variety that sometimes masquerades as a thin novel) is not yet available in stores (coming January 17th!), but I'm so excited that today through Sunday, I'm giving away TWO advanced copies of Ghosts of Boyfriends Past to lucky commenters.

"Once you read this cute story, you'll never think of Valentine's Day the same again. And if you've ever stated that you were cursed, that may be nothing compared to Biz Marks. Want a little ghostly humor in your romance? Readers will find all that and more in Vivi Andrews' book Ghosts of Boyfriends Past."

Sound like a prize worth winning? Just comment this weekend - tell me about your own Valentine's rituals - and you're entered to win!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Ruby Prophecy

Today I'm taking a break from the Tagline Quest to make predictions for the New Year over at the Ruby Blog today. Swing on by and test out your prognosticating skills! (I may or may not have predicted some hot romance novelist-movie star hook-ups at Nationals this year in Los Angeles.)

Oh, and did I forget to name a winner for Tuesday's release day giveaway? Why yes! I did indeed. So apologies for the delay and CONGRATULATIONS to elaing8! Please email me at vivi@viviandrews.com and let me know which book you'd like in which format.

Don't forget to check back tomorrow for a shot to win an as-yet-unreleased copy of Ghosts of Boyfriends Past!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Tag Me Contest Continues!... And a Release Day...

First off, a big thanks to the ladies who helped me get the ball rolling on the brainstorming/giveaway that is the Tag Me contest!

And to demonstrate my thanks... THE WINNERS! Congratulations to Kelly & Kali! You've both won print copies of Serengeti Sins! Just email me at vivi@viviandrews.com with your snail mail address and I'll get your booky goodness in the post to you straightaway.

Our work here is not yet done, darlings. Some options we've hit on thus far:

Love without limits... from sizzling shifters to quirky comedies. (AKA, the old one - massively lame)

I write the naughty so that you don't have to. (So cute! Though writing naughty isn't exactly a chore... wink, wink)

Making paranormal warm and fuzzy since 2009
(Cute huh? Some are warm and fuzzy feeling and some are... you know, lions, so hot and furry, right? Hee hee. I do love a double meaning. Or perhaps, making paranormal romance fun and furry since 2009?)

When it comes to love, expect the unexpected.

Love hurts... but laughter is the best medicine.

What do you think? Does one of those win your vote? Keep your brains storming and if you think of more tagline options, you can post them any time in the next two weeks for more goodies and prizes. (Though every day I'll have other stuff going on too, and you can always comment on that stuff too for more prizey goodness.)

You know what else is going on today? Serengeti Sins is arriving in bookstores. It's HEEEEEERE! That's right. You can get your touchable, smellable, petable, lickable (not advised as it makes the books kinda sticky) copy now!

Once love catches fire, no mere force of nature can hold it back.

Serengeti Storm

Bred to be the Alpha’s consort, Shana seethes when he chooses another mate. Standing between her and her destined place is Caleb, the royal enforcer. Her former lover.

Assigned to keep the she-cat in line, Caleb must use his body to save her from herself. Now if only he can save his battered heart from the volcanic desire that never went dormant.

Serengeti Lightning

Logic—and her biological clock—means Mara must cross Michael off her list of potential mates. His rare genetic malady disqualifies her delicious sex buddy as daddy material.

Slink away while she steps into the arms of another man? No way. The tricky part will be convincing his over-analytical lover to listen to her heart.

Serengeti Sunrise

Zoe has a bad case of wanderlust…and the hots for commitment-shy Tyler, who sets her on fire one second, then walks away the next.

When Zoe demands a no-strings affair, temptation wins and Tyler finds himself thinking mine. But Zoe’s plan to hit the road doesn’t include white picket fences…

Check it out from Amazon :: B&N :: Samhain.

Admittedly, I've been a little slow out of the gate with my fanfare on this release, but since all these stories came out in ebook previously this one feels more like an add-on than a newbie, you know? And I feel like all my reader peeps are internet-y folks who have their Kindles & Nooks surgically welded to their hands and how do you even hold one of those archaic paper book things if you have to put down your ereader to do it, amirite? And yet, they are so fun to pet and coddle, so now, if you are of the paper book inclination, TODAY, RIGHT THIS INSTANT, you can get yourself a lovely, coddle-able copy. Don't delay!

TODAY: One commenter will receive their choice of any of my books - ebook or petable print.

Monday, January 2, 2012

New Year, New Books, New Tagline

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, introducing the shiny new print release (out tomorrow!) of Serengeti Sins, a Serengeti Shifter anthology featuring Serengeti Storm, Serengeti Lightning, and Serengeti Sunrise. Three novellas of shape-shiftery hotness in one delicious package! (Check it out from Amazon :: B&N :: Samhain.)

AND to celebrate the release and the upcoming (January 17th!) release of Ghosts of Boyfriends Past, today is the launch of the Vivi Andrews TAG ME Contest!

You see, reader-friends, I need a new tagline. What, you may be asking, is a tagline? Observe...

Shelli Stevens: I'm the author your mother warned you about.

Jessa Slade: Love conquers all... which explains the scars.

Me: Lameness. Lots of lameness. (Okay, technically my tagline is: Love without limits... from sizzling shifters to quirky comedies. I know, it's awful, right?)

So help me, reader-friend! Write me a logline of sublime awesomeness! And I will give you something. Something cool. Like a book. Or an ebook. Or an upcoming book dedicated to you. Or a character named after you in an upcoming book. Or a chance to read one of my upcoming books when it is in the Oh-crap-who-wrote-this-shit phase (cuz that just sounds heavenly, doesn't it?).

Yes, the Winning Tagger gets their choice of awesome, but just for coming up with a tagline, or voting on a tagline someone else suggests, or telling me that I'm crrrrrazy and you love my old tagline (srsly?), or even just popping by to say "Hi, Vivi!" - you will be entered to win one of TONS of books I'm giving away in the next two weeks. Prizes include: FOUR shiny new print copies of Serengeti Sins, TWO print copies each of The Sexorcist & The Ghost Exterminator, and THREE ebook copies of the Not-Yet-Released ghosty goodness of Ghosts of Boyfriends Past. (And I may arbitrarily decide to give away more stuff too... cuz sometimes it's just so darn hard to stop.) Sound like fun?

So get tagging!

Things to keep in mind:
1) It should be short. No more than a sentence or two.
2) It should give folks an idea of what my books are like... which may be a challenge because
3) I like variety - while I write primarily paranormal romance and I like to play around with trying to be funny, not all of my books are humorous or paranormal. The idea is to give folks a sense of who I am as an author - which would be so much easier if I knew who I was as an author, right? Having a little existential identity crisis here.
4) It should be unique - while I may want to be Jessa Slade when I grow up, alas I cannot steal her tagline. *sigh*

Enough to get your creative tagging juices flowing? Go forth and tag, my minions! (Note: this is not an endorsement of graffiti. If you're gonna spray paint stuff, don't get caught blame me.)

TODAY: Two commenters will win signed copies of Serengeti Sins.