In a way, I’m in the midst of starting over right now.
In another, I’m just putting a name on the path I’ve been traveling for quite some time.
We love to talk about author branding. Up until now, I’ve been pretty hesitant to do so. To a great extent, for the past few years, my brand has appeared to be that there is no brand. I’ve written YA, MG, adult, picture books; contemporary realism, romance, thriller, magic realism, humor, boomer lit, short stories, novellas. I’ve published on the traditional platform and the indie platform. I’ve started to move into a bit of illustrative work.
I always thought that if I picked one thing, I’d feel stifled. As soon as I sort of branded myself, I’d instantly feel the itch to go in a completely different direction.
But the thing is, I realize there IS a type of work I enjoy writing more than any other. Lately, my indie work (I’ve just released ALL ROADS and CHRISTMAS AT RUBY’S, two holiday reads) has driven that home.
So much so, for the first time in nearly ten years of publishing, I have inserted a brand or tag phrase into the banner on my authorsite:
As well as this explanation:
Stories that are full of heart.
No matter the genre, age category, or subject, one thing my books tend to have in common is that they’re—well—positive. Even when my earliest books tackled harder-hitting subjects, they tended to end on hopeful notes. The more I write, the more I’ve come to realize the stories I most want to highlight are those that focus on the beauty in the world. The uplifting and inspiring. Feel-good stories that are sincere and genuine and, yes, straight from the heart.
I’m so excited about this direction. I already have four indie releases and additional books for submission to publishing houses outlined for ’18. It still allows me to follow where inspiration strikes—adult reads, juvenile reads, across various genres. But it also allows me to dig into stories that are warm and gentle—books that make you smile despite the problems and trials the characters face (think THE JUNCTION OF SUNSHINE AND LUCKY).
To celebrate this new beginning, my latest reads are .99 as e-reads (they’re also available as affordable paperbacks):
One family's devastating story.
One answer they all seek.
Do all roads really lead home?
CHRISTMAS AT RUBY'S
Welcome to Ruby’s, where the “spirits” are not confined to just the dusty liquors behind the bar, and the Christmas wish to spend one last moment with that special loved one might not be made in vain.