Requesting Beta Readers for The Rebel’s Touch

Dear Reader,

Goodness gracious I’ve been busy, but not on The Rebel’s Touch.

Requesting Beta Readers for The Rebel’s Touch

I don’t know why, I’m just so horribly stuck with that book. I’ve put it aside, so very frustrated and wondering what to do with it. Perhaps send it to a beta reader or two? If you’re interested, let me know! I’d love your thoughts and, most importantly, questions, so I know what to answer as the book goes forward. Leave a comment or contact me via Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, or the contact form on my website to let me know if you’d like a sneak peek to the first couple chapters to provide feedback.

What’s up with Mad Maxine?

In the meantime, I keep tweaking my short story, Mad Maxine. I’ve never liked the cover for it and finally, on Monday night while sipping a nice red blend with How I Met Your Mother in the background, I redesigned the cover and uploaded it to my distributors. See below for all the different covers and the final (fingers crossed) selection.

First cover Second attempt Third attempt

Whatever happened to Loving, Longing, Leaving?

Remember that anthology I was going to pull together last year? Well, I’ve rejuvenated the project. I even created a cover for it, to provide some sort of accountability on my part. I’m compiling my old poetry and short stories and will be sending it to my editor for her input fairly soon. It’s called Atlanta & the Lion, and Other Tales.

The collection is quirky, kind of weird, and everything is set in some undetermined time and place including characters concerned with a man on an epic journey to reclaim his lost mustache, a woman whose boyfriend is a lion, and a grieving woman who thinks if she hugs enough people, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles might become a better place, and more. Sounds fun, right?

I like this cover because it’s starting to show how my non-Victorian or historical pieces will all have a particular visual theme. The kind of mid-century “I’m typing on a keyboard but I’m influenced by the past” sort of feel. Me likey lots.

Buy Haunting Miss Trentwood direct!

I finally set it up so you can purchase Haunting Miss Trentwood directly from me. I have a Kindle and ePub version available, as well as the first ten chapters of the audiobook available as a teaser. The full audiobook will be direct for purchase in the coming months.

But you keep disappearing!

I know, I know. I pop into the blog to say, “Hi! I’m still alive! I promise I’m still working on things!” And then you don’t hear from me for too long. I post things at Tumblr more frequently, images and quotes and the like, and I’m working on a way to automatically import those posts into this blog because I think it would be nice to spice things up a bit. So look for that. You’ll know if it works because I’ll be posting more often.

So yes. That is the skinny on Belinda’s writing world right now. I have a dance lesson tonight, a dance tomorrow and Saturday night, and Father’s day on Sunday. Busy busy busy!

Promising to keep working,


Haunting Miss Trentwood Audiobook

Dear Reader,

I’ve just finished listening to the Haunting Miss Trentwood audiobook, narrated by the fantastic Arielle Lipshaw. I’m pretty excited about this, I’ve never had an audiobook done before and hearing my characters speak as if they were part of a radio play is a lot of fun.

You might wonder how I got into making an audiobook. Well, along the lines of Neil Gaiman, I joined the Audiobook Creation Exchange, henceforth shortened to ACX.

ACX is owned by Amazon, so if you want to have an audiobook you first need to have the book be available on Amazon. There is a mysterious algorithm which will determine whether your book is acceptable audiobook material. For instance, Catching the Rose is not allowed to be an audiobook, but Haunting Miss Trentwood is. I assume this has something to do with ratings (13 on HMT, 1 on CTR), and downloads (lost count on HMT, still somewhere around 150 for CTR).

ACX is is like a marketplace for authors and narrators to pitch one another to help complete their creative works. When you sign up, you search for your books on Amazon that are allowed to be made into audiobook format, and you write a project pitch. In my project pitch, I provided the synopsis, my ranking/rating numbers, and a number of excerpted reviews.

Then I went in search of my narrator. The narrators on the website each have samples of their different styles; I knew I wanted someone who could mimic an Elizabeth Bennet style. I found her in Arielle Lipshaw.

The nice thing about ACX is you can split the cost with your narrator in different ways. The one I chose was to pay Arielle up front once the project was completed to my liking. This means I won’t be sharing royalties with her later. It’s quite a bit of money (around $1500), but luckily my existing royalties are paying for that. And hopefully future royalties from this additional distribution stream will balance out the cost. Arielle has also helped me by pointing out her rate would be cheaper if she did the English accent only when the characters were speaking, rather than for the length of the entire book.

All in all, the project is coming along. I’m looking forward to the finished product and I hope you will enjoy it.