Just In Time for the Beach

Need a beach read — or seven? Beginning July 1st, three SSI books and all four Prime Chronicles novels are being featured as Amazon Monthly Deals. And because my Distributor (IPG/INscribe) likes to see me sell lots of books, they are spreading the special deals wide on the seven books. How cool is that?

Which books are featured and how much? All books will be $1.99 for the month of July (Eye of the Storm (SSI 1) and Prime Obsession (PC 1) are normally $1.99 and will remain so after the end of the month).

So visit your favorite online retailer — my books are at all the major ones and some not so major (remember I said “wide”). Happy reading!!!

What A Witch Needs

Pre-Order Now!!

Yes, it is time for another novella from the Magic and Mayhem Universe.  What A Witch Needs is book two in the What A Witch series and once again a witch finds her Shifter soul mate an ocean away from home in the Appalachian Mountains of West Virginia.

Blurb:

A witch on the run…

All Gloriana Anora St.John wants is to serve the annulment decree on her never-really-a-husband. She didn’t expect to barge in on a blood sacrifice. After rescuing a young girl, Gloriana and her familiar are cornered by the coven of dark warlocks. It’s no wonder her hasty transport spell—and why hadn’t she practiced the damn spells when she was supposed to?—lands her in the middle of nowhere West Virginia.

A lonely bear Shifter with issues…

Former Marine and bear Shifter Liam Hardisty is minding his own business, popping a thieving honey badger and fishing for his breakfast. Before he can even snag a fish, a turquoise-colored transport cloud dumps a witch and her familiar practically at his paws. One sniff and Liam knows he’s found his mate. Her name is Glory.

Gloriana just rid herself of one male. Plus, she has a dark warlock in hot pursuit. She has more than enough man trouble—she doesn’t need a mate, even one a delicious-smelling hunk like Liam.

Liam knows he’s working on a short clock and has a lot to do before he can give Glory his mating bite—he needs to gain Glory’s trust, prove he’s what she needs in her life, and then protect her from the evil asshat warlock.

What a witch needs isn’t always what she thinks she needs—sometimes, it’s better.

Check out that cover!!  My fabulous cover artist, April Martinez of Graphicfantastic, took my vision and made it real.  How did she do it?  Well, here is a short video showing the cover process from concept to finished product. 

Pre-Order Prime Target, Book 4 in the Prime Chronicles Series

Prime Target will be published on November 19, 2018.  You can pre-order now at the following retailers (I will update when iBooks link goes live). Retail is $4.99 USD

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Kobo

B&N

Amazon

Google Books

Blurb:

Former Prime sex surrogate Susa Anghard has never been off her planet, let alone out of the Cejuru solar system. While she isn’t naive about men and what they want, she isn’t prepared for the predatory males who now have her in their sights. When she’s kidnapped on her way to a galactic rim jump station to visit her cousin Borac, she has no expectations of being rescued. She vows to free herself or die trying.

When Borac Anghard asks Damon Martin to intercept his cousin Susa’s transport and escort her to their jump station, Damon agrees. When he arrives to meet Susa’s ship, he finds she’s been kidnapped by Dorian mercenaries. He goes in hot pursuit and prays he finds her before she’s delivered to the person who paid for the kidnapping.

When Damon catches up with the kidnappers, he hadn’t expected to find the resourceful Susa in the act of getting away. And he really hadn’t expected to be so attracted to her. An attraction that could go nowhere—she was his business partner’s cousin and Damon still wasn’t over losing the only woman he’d ever loved.

Take one alpha-male with a slightly broken heart, add in one Prime female finding her courage and self for the first time—throw them together in close quarters in a trip across the galaxy and love will find a way.

Covers to Color: Legal Stuff

MM_CoversToColor_page01Last Wednesday, I told you a bit about how the coloring book of covers project began and introduced my cover artist April Martinez of Graphicfantastic.  This week, I will go into the legal aspects of converting an already existing piece of graphic art into a coloring page.

Yes, this is a great idea for promo, BUT BE AWARE: There are copyright issues that must be addressed if you as author are not the copyright holder of your cover art – and I would venture to guess, most of you are not. Just as an author has all sorts of rights under copyright law for their written words, visual artists have similar rights in their creations.

Now I had an easy time with the legal issues since my cover art was created by the graphic artist I approached to create the coloring page illustrations.  April is the sole copyright holder of my covers.  Thus, our agreement to create the coloring book included hiring her to alter her original artwork to make coloring pages (a new form of artwork) and to do the layout with front and back covers. This process protected her rights of reproduction in her original art work.

The main copyright issue in converting your cover art to a coloring page illustration centers on whether you, or your publisher, merely licensed the right to use the cover to promote your book OR whether the work was “for hire.”

Just a note, most of the e-publishers I have worked with merely have licenses to use the artwork created for their authors’ covers.  It is much less expensive for the publisher (thus lower outlay of capital up front) to license the rights for the life of the publishing contract.  I would also suspect that most self-published authors merely have licenses to use also.

Basic rule of thumb for cover art:

Licensed cover art work – the artist is both the creator and the copyright holder for the original cover art and/or design (some cover art contains other licensed elements such as photos which the cover artist manipulates with permission of the licensing agreement for the photos). The author or publisher requesting/contracting for the cover art will have paid a licensing fee and have restricted usage of the cover art.

“For Hire” cover art work – the artist is the creator, but the author or publisher (contractor) requesting/contracting for the cover art owns all rights and holds the complete copyright in the cover art.  The contractor will have paid for all those rights. At that point, the contractor may reproduce, alter, manipulate, sell, etc the cover art as they wish.

A word about cover art licensing agreements — The terms of the licensing agreement (contract) should spell out the length of the contract and any restrictions on usage of the cover art.  Most licensing agreements between graphic artists and publishers set the term of the agreement for as long as the book is published with that specific publisher and restricts the usage of the cover to promotional and marketing uses only. As many authors whose publishers have shut their doors have found out- – if they loved their covers, they must renegotiate the license to use the covers if they wish to keep using them on a re-publication of the book.

Authors’ rights in a cover — What you, as an author, DO own from the cover art is your name and your brand. This ownership right is recognized under the Lanham Act and has more to do with common law trademark about protection of reputation than copyright. Your book title is not copyrightable by you or the artist.

Visual/Graphic Artists’ reproduction rights — An artist who creates an original piece of art, be it an oil painting, a photograph, cover art, or whatever, may sell the “original” work, but still owns all the other rights to reproduce it. A person buying original art does not have the right to reproduce the art work in any way, shape, or form, or they would violate the artist’s right of reproduction.

Rights of reproduction in visual art include such processes as making print plates from an original piece of art and then issuing prints, and in this particular example, changing/altering the original cover art into an illustration to be colored.

By the way, a print and a coloring page would be considered new pieces of art since there is actual creative activity in etching the plates and creating an illustration.  Thus, if an artist doesn’t claim ALL RIGHTS RESERVED in their original art work, they could lose out if a person who bought the original work decided to make a print.  Most artists understand this — and the language, All Rights Reserved,  is usually found with most art work and sales of such art work. Note: Under U.S. law it is understood all rights are reserved unless otherwise said, the specific language is more crucial for international law. I would still urge all artists (and authors, too) to use the specific terminology in relation to their work, just to be cover all bases in protecting all their rights.

Bottom-line:

If the cover artist has merely licensed the cover art to an author or publisher and holds the copyright, all rights reserved, then only the cover artist has the right to make the coloring page OR give permission for such a coloring page to be made.

Therefore — if your cover art was not made under a “for hire” contract, then you had better seek out your cover artist and get permission to use the covers before you create coloring pages or a coloring book from the cover art.

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Next blog in the Covers to Color series will be by guest blogger April Martinez of Graphicfantastic.com and she will share her technique for making a cover into a coloring page.

It’s Convention Time!

See where I’ll be over the next month or so. If you’re attending RT in Dallas or Lori Foster’s RAGT in Cincinnati, please do find me and say “hi.”

Love, Lust, and Laptops

rtbooklovers-150x82Yes, that is where I’ll be next week, May 12 -17, in Dallas, Texas.

I don’t go to the RT convention every year — mostly because it takes too much time away from life and my writing schedule.

It’s only a week, you say?  Well, nope, it’s not really. I have been preparing for this convention for most of this year — in between hubby’s open heart surgery, moving son to his new job, and trying to finish SSI 4.  This entails swag bags, promo items, coordinating with booksellers and panel assignments — and then, last but not least, the pre-con beautification rituals so I don’t look like a hag. It’s okay to look like a hag while sitting in front of the computer, but not when meeting the public.

Also, this year I am flying.  So, I am dealing with pre-flight jitters; they began a month ago. I’m leaving…

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Storm Warning — SSI Books 4 — Pinterest Board

MM_SSI4_StormWarning_300x400 Just a few days ago I revealed the new cover for Book 4 in the SSI series, Storm Warning.

Taking a page from my author friend Tina Whittle, I decided to do a Pinterest Board for the book.  On this board I have shown inspirations for the main characters’ looks, maps of places depicted in the story, and other background material that will provide insight to the novel to come.

I plan on adding research info and pictures as I write the book.

So, if you want to follow along as I continue on the journey with Tweeter and DJ, please bookmark the  board:

Storm Warning Pinterest Board

Haven’t discovered the Security Specialists International series yet?  You do so now by getting the first book in the series, Eye of the Storm for FREE now through December 15th at iBooks.

Here’s the iBooks link: Free Eye of the Storm

I also have two novellas in the SSI series FREE at Liquid Silver Books, in all major formats: Stormy Weather Baby (Bk. 1.5) and Storm Front (Bk. 2.5). Here’s the Free SSI Novellas.

A Thanksgiving Tradition

Naked In DeathI bet when you read the title you assumed I’d be talking about food or family.

Well, I’m not.

Yes, we have turkey and the fixings.  And, yes, my dear hubby and darling son and I are all together for the day.  Football games will be viewed (not parades, my husband hates them!) by my hubby. My son plans on working on a school project due next week.

But after the clean up is done and I write at least 3,000 words on my current work-in-progress, I will do what I have done for the last four years — I will begin my re-reading of every J.D. Robb Death series books and novellas, in order. One book every evening until I get through them all.

Yes, I love those damn books.  And with the fact that each year she usually adds two full novels and maybe a novella or two, it takes longer and longer to get through them all with each passing year. (Um, duh, stating the obvious there, Moni.)

What about these books pulls me back again and again?

The relationship between Eve and Roark, one of the greatest romances in romantic suspense fiction.  Their relationship with the family of friends they have around them. The humor, sometimes macabre.  The sense of place and time — no one builds a world better and in such a tightly written fashion as Roberts does. And the great police procedural plots and three-dimensional villains.

The J.D. Robb books are the best writing Nora Roberts does. Hands down.  And since I read a lot, and I have lots of other authors whose books I re-read – that’s saying something. 🙂

If you haven’t read a single J.D. Robb book, start with Naked in Death (first published in 1995 and stil available in mass paperback) and see if you don’t get hooked.  Here is the LINK to the Official J.D. Robb website.

I have my list of the chronological order (there is a PDF of it on her site, but it is missing the 2013 additions) and I will check them off as I read them. I figure I’ll have finished them all by the end of the year (I read fast and can do a novella and a novel in an evening). 47 novels and novellas just waiting to be rediscovered.

Whatever your Thanksgiving Day traditions are — HAVE A HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

Weather the Storm, SSI Book 3, is available for Pre-Order

AVAILABLE FOR PRE-ORDER AT LIQUID SILVER BOOKS SITE.

Pre-order it now, save $$, and have it as soon as it goes live on October 28, 2013.

All major formats available.

The rumor is you can also have it delivered to your Kindle, if that is the format you use. I have never done it, but that is what I have heard.

Pre-Order Page

You Are Invited …

LITC inviteTomorrow, beginning with Jianne Carlo’s “Jack of Hearts,” Love Lust and Laptops Blog will feature ten short stories just in time for Halloween.

My short story, The Wheel of Fortune, will be on October 24th.

So come and join us. Love Lust and Laptops Blog

No tricks. Just treats. And a very special treat is all ten stories will be combined into a FREE downloadable anthology LOVE IN THE CARDS on or about Halloween.

The stories have adult content.