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Promotion Secrets with Author Maria Zannini

My special guest today is author, Maria Zannini who recently self-published a paranormal romance called The Devil to Pay. Maria has been out on the virtual road with the Indie Roadshow where she tells writers about her self-publishing journey and the things she’s learned along the way. Today Maria is talking about promotion, which I know is something many writers struggle with and don’t enjoy. Over to Maria…

The Indie Roadshow

Psst. Do you want to know the secret to good promotion? You might be surprised when I tell you because it’s been in front of you the whole time.

Ready for it?

You have to find the reader, rather than wait for him to find you. And when you do find him you have to talk to your reader and keep him engaged.

Book promotion is time consuming, expensive, and there are no guarantees that your efforts will bear fruit. But a lot of your labor can be cut in half if you focus on the reader and what S/HE needs.

Think about yourself as a reader. You just finished a fantastic book from a new-to-you author and you decide to Google the author to learn more about her. When you reach her blog, all you find are advertisements for more books. It feels like a bit of letdown, doesn’t it?

To attract the reader your best bet is to go to his haunts. And when it comes to indie publishing most of those avid readers will be found at book blogs, reading forums, book clubs, and book outlets (like Amazon).

Most of these outlets are free to you, though some might require asking for an invitation to appear. Others, like Goodreads and Shelfari welcome you as long as you keep the pimping low-key.

And there’s still room for legitimate advertising. LASR (Long and Short Reviews) and The Romance Studio are two I’ve used. Both offer low-priced packages and get a ton of traffic.

Here are a list of options for you to consider that are either low cost or no cost.

Buy advertising packages at a book-centric web sites. (Make sure they get a lot of traffic.)
• LASR (Long and Short Reviews)
• The Romance Studio
Coffee Time Romance
• All Romance ebooks

Share yourself
• Guest blogging. Double your mileage and blog at places where you’re lesser known.
• Forums, such as Kindleboards, Absolute Write Water Cooler, and genre-specific forums

Talk to book bloggers about:
• Reviews
• Interviews
• Guest posts

Give your book away
Liz Fichera had a marvelous idea when she gave away her arc for Craving Perfect to ten people who would agree to review it. With an indie book, there are no limitations on how many books you can give away. Be generous. Word of mouth is priceless.

Go where the readers are like:

Finally, don’t leave out television and radio. It might be difficult to nab a guest spot, but if you have a small station locally, you’ll reach an audience you might not otherwise find.

It’s scary to put yourself out there because you don’t always know how you’ll be received, but if you’ve written the best book you can, all that’s left is to be the kind of author people want to know.

And I’ll tell you my personal secret for promoting myself. I comment on many different blogs. Not a ‘hi, I like your site’ comment, but something personal and thoughtful. If you leave short and intriguing comments, I promise you, people will follow you back.


I hope you’ll follow along with the rest of the Indie Roadshow as I share the things I learned on my road to self-publishing.

The Devil to Pay

The Devil To Pay is available at Amazon and Smashwords for only $2.99. It is the first book of the series, Second Chances.

Synopsis: The road to Hell is paved with good intentions and bad tequila. Shannon McKee finds herself at the end of her rope, and she bargains her soul in a fit of despair.

Shannon’s plea is answered immediately by two men who couldn’t be more different from one another. Yet they share a bond and an affection for the stubborn Miss McKee that even they don’t understand.

When Heaven and Hell demand their payment, Shannon has no choice but to submit. No matter who gets her soul, she’s not getting out of this alive.

Bio: Maria Zannini used to save the world from bad advertising, but now she spends her time wrangling chickens, and fighting for a piece of the bed against dogs of epic proportions. Occasionally, she writes novels.

Follow me on Facebook or my blog.

Writing A Book With Another Author

I’d like to welcome Mina Carter and Bethany J Barnes who are celebrating the release of their Sci-fi Erotic Romance, Taming the Wildcat, which was released by Summerhouse Publishing earlier this month. Please give them a warm welcome and make sure you take the time to enter their contest. Over to BJ and Mina…

Hi all *waves madly* I’d like to thank Shelley for hosting BJ and I today. We promise not to break anything, or scare anyone off (maybe)!

Mina: Today we’re going to be talking about co-authoring. Personally, I love co-authoring. Writing can be a very solitary activity (just ask any author’s family). Very often I can hole up for weeks at a time with my laptop and a host of notebooks, snarling at anyone who tries to disturb my writing time and eating a year’s supply of chocolate. (I’ve always maintained I’m in shape. Round is a shape, right?)

Co-authoring alleviates the loneliness that comes with the writing territory. I talk themes, motivations and plot to my husband and he gives me a blank look. The same can be said for my friends, until I’m reduced to muttering to myself and people look at me as though I’m mad. Unless they know me, then they already KNOW I’m mad.

Anyway…co-authors. Finding a person to write with is like an epiphany (or at the very least a damn good chocolate sundae). Suddenly you have a person who will not only listen whilst you rabbit on about your newest shiny plot with all its characters and their subplots but…they actually talk back. Far from avoiding eye contact and making a break for the door, they make comments, ask questions and add to the plot.

From navigating your own course through the choppy world of the first draft, where you have to fight awkward characters, writers block and plot issues, you have back up :D Someone to work through a scene with, help you with that trouble sentence, slap you when you’ve used the same word twenty times in the last two paragraphs (you laugh, I’m good at that one!).

Mina: BJ and I spend hours writing together over the somewhat clunky medium of skype. We each take a character and write primarily for that person. I’m a plotter, so we tend to have a plot worked out in advance (after we’ve hunted and pinned down a couple of the ever present plot bunnies) and then we write over the course of a couple of weeks.

BJ: I don’t talk to my husband about writing. He’s very analytical and has no imagination (unless it involves ways for him to be the goofy and annoying). He also doesn’t read. Not he can’t read, he chooses not to. He’d rather wait for a movie if a book sounds interesting. The most I can get out of him is for him to keep me supplied with Coca-Cola (I don’t drink coffee. I know! The lifeblood of authors the world round and I don’t drink it. Coke is my caffeine of choice), Doritos and chocolate in various forms.

Co-authoring is something rather new to me. I can thank and blame Mina for setting my feet on that path in the first place. We met and became friends through a mutual friend (waves spastically to Nic). When Mina found out I was writing a book, we started talking about it and she became interested in hearing more about it. She offered to become my crit partner and from then on, we talked about each other’s writing. Finding someone to be able to talk about characters and plots with was incredible. Someone as crazy (and sometimes crazier) as I was about writing and great characters? Awesome! She also started telling me about another form of writing she was involved in. Star Trek based RPG (role playing game). She had several characters that I became interested in and eventually, as with all of her writing, I was hooked.

Writing on the sims was the first time I had ever written with anyone else. I totally blame her for getting me hooked on the sims. Writing with others was FUN! When it ended up that the character I created sounded like she’d be a good match for one of Mina’s characters’ sons, the mother of all plot bunnies reared its head. Pretty soon, we were talking about what they’d be like together. That’s how Roz and Summer came to life. From the amount of story that was quickly filling up our heads about them, we knew that we had to write about them in a book so we could explore their characters in ways we couldn’t on the sim. Hehehehe…that translates into sex as well as character development. We didn’t want to limit their interactions when it came to how they met.

Now, co-authoring is one of my favorite things to do, even though I’m still learning as I go along. Writing with Mina is an absolute adventure and joy. I’m very blessed that she took me under her wing and showed me the ropes on how to write with another person. We’re still getting ambushed on a daily basis by rabid plot bunnies that keep telling us about this couple or that one. So far we’ve got more bunnies than we have time to write, but we’ll get around to writing more in the Sargosian Chronicles soon.

We just have to shoot or stomp on the plot bunnies that keep popping up when we’re trying to focus on current projects or they’d take over. I don’t know who I’m kidding here…they took over a while ago. Between them and the muses (for me the characters become the muse and let me tell you they are very vocal about how they should be written or what they would or wouldn’t do), I’ve had to embrace the insanity. I’ve always been crazy, but this is an all new level of coo-coo for Cocoa Puffs!

Disclaimer: No plot bunnies were harmed in the making of this post. *snickers* No…really. They are all safe and sound…for now.

Thank you so much Shelley, for letting us stop by so we could blog about co-authoring. Seriously, if anyone could see what goes into our Skype chats besides our writing, they’d wonder if we were drinking whacky juice or taking some mind altering pharmaceuticals. We aren’t, by the way…we just have that much fun together.

I’ve often wondered, before I did this myself, how people wrote books together. I always wondered how they meshed their ideas together. Now I know and hopefully, we’ve explained it a bit for your readers.

Mina CarterMina Carter was born and raised in Middle Earth (otherwise known as the Midlands, England). After a slew of careers ranging from logistics to land-surveying she can now be found in the wilds of Leicestershire with her husband and young daughter…the true boss of the family.

Suffering the curse of eternal curiosity Mina never tires of learning new skills which has led to Aromatherapy, Corsetry, Chain-maille making, Welding, Canoeing, Shooting, and pole-dancing to name but a few. A veteran Star Trek RPGer, she’s run both games and groups of games but now finds her home in Bravo Fleet,one of the internet’s oldest Star Trek simm groups.

She juggles being a mum, working full time and writing, tossing another ball in the air with her cover artwork. For Mina, writing time is the wee hours of the morning before anyone wakes up and starts making demands, or any spare minute that can be begged, bought or conned.

Her first stories were penned at age 11, when she used a stationery set meant for Christmas thank you letters to write stories instead. More recently, she wrote for her own amusement and to save on outrageous monthly book bills. Now she’s totally addicted and needs her daily writing fix or heads roll! To learn more about Mina’s books visit her website.

BJ BarnesA fiery-tempered stay at home mom by day, Bethany J. Barnes is really a superhero in disguise. Equally at home creating fantastical worlds and the men and women who inhabit them or driving armed across county to collect a hot male (her gorgeous horse, Tristan), she’ll happily wrestle rattlesnakes, rescue baby owls or perform strenuous casting tests for male leads in her stories. An active RPGer, B.J. is equally happy writing hot paranormal or steamy sci-fi and is the mainstay of many online games. An accomplished photographer, B.J.’s specialties are concert and equine photography. She’s dabbled in wedding photography, but has no patience for Bridezillas.

PS – She’s been known to shoot a bumble bee hovering in midair. Not a lady to be messed with! To learn more about Bethany’s books visit her website.

Mina and Bethany are giving away a $10 Amazon voucher to one commenter during their tour. Increase your chances of winning by following their tour.

Taming the Wildcat


Fresh out of a disciplinary that almost ruined her career and landed her in jail, Summer King is out for a much needed night on the town…or bar district in her local space station. It seems this King girl can’t stay out of trouble though, causing a bar brawl within minutes of her arrival.

Roz Taren is a mercenary, leader of the Wildcats, and a man who knows what he wants. Right now, that’s the pretty girl in the purple dress. Rescuing her from the unwanted attentions of a bunch of drunks lands her right in his bed for the hottest weeked he’s ever experienced.

Then she’s recalled and Roz discovers his little firebird is a fleet pilot aka insane crazy with a side of total fruitloop. Fleet pilots live fast, die young and leave legends behind. When he recieves word her ship is lost with all hands, Roz must bury her along with his heart.

Only this firebird isn’t your garden variety. This bird is a Phoenix…one out to tame a Wildcat.

Purchase Taming the Wildcat

Meet Me At The Coffice

These days technology allows us to conduct business from anywhere. We can live in different countries and communicate with each other for business purposes. For example, one of my publishers often holds virtual meetings I can attend in the comfort of my lounge.

On the news the other night, there was an item about a new thing called a coffice. The words comes from a combination of coffee plus office. Coffice.

It seems many business owners are running their businesses from coffee shops, conducting appointments and meeting with clients in their favorite coffee shop rather than at the traditional office.

There are loads of advantages to a coffice.

1. It’s cheaper than renting an office.
2. The coffee is good and always hot.
3. The milk doesn’t usually run out.
4. You never have to do the dishes or clean up after everyone else.
5. Many cafes offer free wi-fi these days for people to keep up with their email or surf the Internet.

I’ve written in coffee shops for years, and I have my favorite coffee shops in various towns. There’s even a pub where I sometimes spend a few hours writing. It’s perfect in winter because they have a huge open fire. I find it easy to concentrate on my writing even with the background noise and find I finish my target number of words in a much shorter time than if I stay at home.

Who knew I was ahead of the times? I’d actually mentioned to my husband not long ago that there were always heaps of business meetings at my favorite McDonald’s McCafe. I’ve eavesdropped on interviews and listened to a man organizing temp workers. Some of the local charities also hold their meetings there.

Do you have a coffice?

Fixing A Broken Character

Recently someone told me the hero in my story wasn’t heroic and didn’t behave like a hero. He was unsympathetic. Instead of panicking or becoming defensive, I took another look at my hero and, to my horror, found the criticism was justified. While I still liked my character, I definitely needed to do something to make him more likeable to readers.

Most of us want to read about characters that have the qualities we see in our friends and family—the same qualities we like to think we possess. We want to connect with characters and be able to relate to them.

So how do we do this?

In his book, Writing the Breakout Novel, Donald Maass says we should start showing the reader that our character has heroic qualities right from the first page of our book. Even if our character is an average person, in an ordinary job, we need to demonstrate a special quality in them. At the start of a book, it will most likely be something small. They might help an elderly woman cross the road or rescue the next-door neighbor’s cat from a tree, but it will make us, the reader, sit up and pay attention. This is a character we would like as a friend, and we want to follow them through the course of the book, during the ups and downs, to the happy ending.

In my case, I looked at my character’s interactions with other characters. My hero snapped and snarled quite a bit, so I softened his language and the way he interacted with the other characters. I added some extra scenes, which I hope show my hero in a favorable light. I also looked at the inner conflict and checked I’d done everything I needed to in this area.

Fixing unsympathetic characters isn’t easy, and I hope I’ve managed to get the job done. I’m awaiting the verdict at present.

Do you have any hints for changing unsympathetic characters to ones that readers will love? And do you agree with Donald Maass—that we should see the hero/heroine doing something heroic almost as soon as we meet them in the story?

Finding Foster Homes for Orphan Sentences

Kat DuncanKat Duncan is my special guest today. Kat likes to write and teach. She also likes to write about teaching and teach about writing. Today she’s giving us a few hints about finding foster homes for orphan sentences.

Have you ever tried the writing technique called layering? It works like this: you draft out your basic scene with “he said” and “she said” or “he did” then “she did”. After you’ve got that bare bones framework you go back and add details such as where they are, what they look like, the weather, the room they are in, how they feel, etc.

The trouble with this technique is that it often results in disjointed scenes. Just when the dialogue gets going, the author throws in a scenery detail or stops to have the character focus on something other than the person she’s talking to. The worst blooper of this kind happens when one character asks a question and the other character goes off into a paragraph of thinking before answering.

So what’s the solution? You don’t want to skimp on these important details, so you really need to keep them. But you have to give these poor orphans a home. Make them feel part of the family. You will want to learn how to blend dialogue, action and scenery for best effect. One easy way to do this is to give your character a reason for observing the scenery, or for moving about in the scene. Linking the scene to the character’s emotions is the most direct way of doing this.

Let’s take an example and see the progression. Here’s a snippet of conversation:

“Say what you mean, Anna.”

“Okay, I will. You can’t just barge back into my life after so long and expect to pick up where you left off.”

“It hasn’t been that long.”

“It’s not about how long. It’s about assuming that you leaving had no effect on me.”

“So, you missed me?”

“I missed you, yes. And then I got over you.”

Now that I’ve got the basic dialogue, I want to add some dialogue tags and maybe some emotions, scenery and action. I’ll layer it on all at once:

“Say what you mean, Anna,” he said.

“Okay, I will. You can’t just barge back into my life after so long and expect to pick up where you left off.” She glanced out the window at a pigeon pecking crumbs on the windowsill.

“It hasn’t been that long.”

“It’s not about how long,” she said, lifting her head to stare into his dark eyes. “It’s about assuming that you leaving had no effect on me.”

“So, you missed me?” His voice dropped to that familiar seductiveness and he reached for her.

She stepped away from his outstretched hand. “I missed you. Yes. And then I got over you.”

Can you pick out the orphan sentence? It’s the one with the pigeon. I tried to give a sense of where they were while they were talking. Mentioning “out the window” tells you they are indoors. The pigeon on the windowsill tells you they are probably in an urban setting, perhaps a few stories above ground.

It doesn’t fit the scene. It’s an orphan because it doesn’t connect properly with what came before it or after it. I also tried to give a sense of discomfort for Anna. Suddenly looking away at something ordinary during a conversation indicates unease and uncertainty. But the sentence isn’t working the way I intended. Let’s see if I can make this orphan sentence part of the scene’s family:

“Say what you mean, Anna,” he said.

“Okay, I will.” She edged away from him and faced the window. “You can’t just barge back into my life after so long and expect to pick up where you left off.”

“It hasn’t been that long.”

“It’s not about how long,” she said, waving a hand to shoo the pigeon pecking on the windowsill. “It’s about assuming that you leaving had no effect on me.”

“So, you missed me?” His voice dropped to that familiar seductiveness and he reached for her.

She folded her arms against her body and stared out at the cold cityscape. “I missed you. Yes. And then I got over you.”

Better, don’t you think?

Layering can work well. Just watch for those orphan sentences when you’re re-reading and be sure to give them a good home. For more examples of how to blend action, scenery and emotional details, check out my year-long novel writing course at Savvy Authors beginning in May, 2011. You can also find me on the web at http://www.katduncan.net

The Week That Was

The months are passing so quickly. We’ll be off on holiday again very soon. This time we’re going on a cruise of another part of the Pacific. We’re visiting Norfolk Island, Vanuatu and Noumea. I’m looking forward to the short ten-day break.

Mr. Munro visited a school or play center recently for his work. They had a worm farm and Mr. Munro arrived home with everything he needed to create his own worm farm. We already recycled all our kitchen waste into the compost bin, but these days I have to separate out the onion and garlic skins and any citrus scraps. I keep forgetting and that means a telling off. I think I’ve got it straight now, although I haven’t worked up the courage to peer inside the farm to see if I can spot the worms.

The garden has also received a bit of a makeover with some lime chips and some solar lights. It’s made a big difference and the garden is looking very pretty. The lime chips should also stop the weeds coming through. Yesterday, Mr. Munro planted some spring bulbs (rununculars and freesias) because he knows how much I like them along with some garden greens and coriander. I get the job of watering.

Bella has been a little horror since I last posted about her training. I’ve been calling her a devil dog and she’s lived up to the name. She will insist on biting when she gets over excited. I know it’s a puppy thing but I wish she’d get over it. At other times she’s so cute I just want to squeeze her. Ah, the trials of owning a puppy!

Cute Bella

In writing, I’m currently working on a short hot historical and I’m also adding a few words to the follow up story to The Bottom Line. The follow up story belongs to Julia. It’s given me real fits. I don’t think I’ve ever started a story so many times before. The current version has me excited and I’m cautiously optimistic that Julia’s story is on its way.

How was your week?

Words of Love

Thursday Thirteen

This month I’ve been writing up a storm. Since I write romance, I seem to be writing a lot of love scenes. Here’s a selection of words you might find in one of my love scenes.

Thirteen Words You Might Find In a Love Scene

1. Whimper

2. Rasp

3. Sensitive

4. Ache

5. Explode

6. Throb

7. Voluptuous

8. Decadent

9. Hunger

10. Ecstasy

11. Contraceptive

12. Kiss

13. Perfect

Since I write a lot of erotic romance I use a few naughtier words as well. I’ve given you a clean selection today.

What are some of your favorite words to write or read in a love scene?

Bullies, Bastards & Bitches!

Thursday Thirteen

I’ll often pick up a writing craft book at the library. Recently I picked up a copy of Bullies, Bastards And Bitches: How To Write The Bad Guys Of Fiction by Jessica Page Morrell. I’ve found it fascinating and definitely helpful in writing villains. The author has included a list of characteristics of villains, which is very appropriate for this time of the year. Villains abound at Halloween, right?

Thirteen Characteristics of Villains

1. Villains are consistently bad. Their behavior isn’t random or a one-off act of nastiness.

2. They have a defining event in their background that set them on their path of bad behavior.

3. They often have secrets they’re desperate to hide from others.

4. They’re not usually afraid of confrontation.

5. Villains are complicated and multi-dimensional.

6. They’re unpredictable.

7. Viallains sacrifice victims to achieve their own ends.

8. Villains often have an aspect of narcissism in their personality makeup.

9. They like to take extreme risks.

10. They’re usually alpha males or females and have underlings who defer to them.

11. Villains like to obsess about details and their plan of attack.

12. A villain controls others by using guilt and loyalty.

13. A villain plays head games and is very good at playing them.

As you can see, a hero might possess some of the above characteristics. The villain and the hero are often two parts of the same coin.

Who is your favorite fictional villain?

Plotus Interuptus with Christine Price

My special guest today is fellow Carina Press author, Christine Price. Here’s Christine’s official bio – Christine Price lives in Edmonton, AB, with her husband, two cats and a slightly idiotic Anatolian shepherd. Though she probably wouldn’t consider herself a “girly girl,” Christine is in love with cooking and baking, and she has recently tried her hand at cake decorating. As a public service, she’d like to warn people about the potential threat posed by twenty pounds of rolled fondant and a slightly inebriated best friend. In her free time, Christine enjoys wine, good movies and even better books. Her first work, Soul Bond, was released in April 2010.

Today, Christine is talking about her adventures in writing…

In Darkness Bound In Darkness Bound is my first novel-length publication. And I learned a lot from writing it. For example, the importance of fully developing a climax and the “Great Ah-hah Moment.” Actually, the first draft of IDB was at least 20,000 words shorter than the finished manuscript and missed a lot in the way of character development. Overall, the novel is waaaaay better for the revisions. But I also learned something that never would have struck me before now. Instead of going into the lengthy summation of the discovery, or doing an interpretive dance (which would be a little difficult without the use of a webcam and YouTube) allow me to provide a brief script:

Me: So?

Beta Reader: Okay, I liked x, y and z. But I don’t get what’s going on with w.

Me: Well, here’s the plot point.

Beta Reader: Huh… you should probably put that in somewhere.

Me: I did. It was on page 120.

Beta Reader: OH! … … But that’s the sex scene.

Me: Yeah.

Beta Reader: You may want to rethink that.

What my Beta Reader didn’t come right out and say was that a major plot point in a sex scene isn’t always a great idea. This was a realization I had to come to myself.

So why is it? Well…when people read romance, they want to lose themselves in the romance. The erotic passages are especially important. They establish the intimacy between the characters and heightening the sensuality in the relationship. Readers—myself included—use their imaginations during these scenes. There are also readers who prefer to read for the plot, and tend to skim the sex scenes entirely.

See where I’m going with this? No matter what the motivation for reading, I think that there’s a chance that if you include important plot points in a sex scene they’re going to be missed. This by no means goes for everyone who’s ever read a romance novel. But I’ll admit I’ve done it. In my favourite romance book of all times, I skimmed through each sex scene because I wanted to get on with the plot. When I went back and read it over (for the second, third, fourth, fifth and twentieth times) then I appreciated the sex scenes. If there’d been any important developments during those flitting pages of eroticism, however, I totally would have missed them.

I guess there’s not really a moral to my story. (Well, not to anyone other than me anyway). My novel helped me with several key points in the development of my writing. One of them just happened to be this one. As I continue writing, it’s one that will stick with me.


Contest: What are your thoughts? Plot in a sex scene – yes or no? Are you a skimmer? A “lose yourself in”-er? Or neither? Post an answer to Christine’s questions in the comments section and go into a draw to win a download of In Darkness Bound

Here’s the blurb for In Darkness Bound:

Data Collection by Dalhousie, Dr. Donna L.

Patient 331

New, confused. His powers unknown.

Patient 289

No longer viable in the test pool, he remains in isolation.

Patient 77

Reclassified to staff status. Useful, malleable.
Confined in a sterile research facility and treated like a lab rat, Chris is alone and terrified. His special powers are his only escape, allowing him to psychically connect with other patients.

Alone in his cell for longer than he can remember, Vance is hungry. When newcomer Chris makes a mental connection, Vance is intrigued and soon wants more than just conversation.

Chris and Vance seek comfort with each other, and with Simon—the only staff member who’s shown them a hint of compassion. Their relationships develop during stolen moments, and they turn their thoughts to escape. But as Dr. Dalhousie’s madness spirals, more than cell walls threaten to keep them apart…

Purchase from Carina Press

You can visit Christine at her website or chat to her on twitter.

Author Kathleen Dienne on Keeping Track While Writing Love Scenes

Writers – have you ever had trouble writing a love scene and keeping track of limbs? Carina Press author, Kathleen Dienne has written an excellent post about writing love scenes and making sure your characters don’t do the impossible.

Here’s the link to Keeping Track of Elbows: Writing Sex Scenes

PS. Don’t forget to check out Kathleen’s book Her Heart’s Divide