Thank-you for stopping by and thank-you to Linda who is kindly helping to promote me and my latest release from Breathless Press, Baby, You're Cold Inside, on release day!
2012 has been quite good to me. At this point last year I was eagerly awaiting the release of my first book Between the Lines and now here I am, only a year later, out and about, promoting my third book. Also, at this time last year, I didn't have a sweet clue about how to promote myself. Blog tours, blog hops—these terms were completely foreign to me! However, once I figured out what they were, I knew that they were something I was going to have to get on board with pretty quickly or I'd be stuck at the back of cyber shelves everywhere, but how?
I'll tell you how I learned the ropes: support. Through my own blog and forcing myself upon other blogs, I've met some great writers this past year, writers that I now not only consider my friends, but who have been an incredible source of friendly advice, patient guidance and when I need it, constructive criticism. Also, they are writers whom I've been able to turn to when I'm not feeling the love from other places and they are writers I can just chat with about things that have nothing to do with writing. I'm not sure where I'll be writing career wise a year from now, but I can tell with all honesty that one of the best things that has happened to me because of writing is the connections I've made both in my face to face world and on the internet.
To me, that spells success.
The main character in my book Baby, You're Cold Inside, Lily Sinclair, was incredibly fun to write. She's confident, says things out loud that no one should ever say, but she is strong and completely at ease with the person she is. Far too many of us live our lives as people who we really aren't. We are shadow figures, representations of what people around us expect us to be. In February, I'm turning 40 and it's only been in the past few years, and especially since I've taken up writing as more than a hobby, that I've stopped my shadow charade. I am who I am and if people don't like this dramatic, very silly, a bit odd, quick to laugh at nonsense, passionate (ok, emotionally volatile) person who stands before them, that's ok. I've found people like me, supportive people, people who also want to be themselves and not pretend to be someone else and as I hit the big 4-0, I'm happy to say that, much like Lily Sinclair, I finally know who I am.
However you celebrate the holidays, I hope you are sharing them with loved ones and friends who offer support and kindness and help you to be the person you really want to be.
Blurb for Baby, You're Cold Inside, By Ivy Bateman
Lily Sinclair isn't in the Christmas spirit.
Successful, sexy and headstrong; being nice is too overrated when being naughty is so much more fun. However, there are those who believe that her cool interior stands in her way of true happiness. On the night when something a little bit colder than Lily takes her on a journey to her past, she goes along for the ride, but...
Will her guide show her just what it will take to melt her icy soul?
Excerpt from Baby, You're Cold Inside By Ivy Bateman
*Erotic Bits - Beware*
"Why'd you bring me here?" I gesture to the circle of trees.
"So you assume that I arranged this?"
"Well, I don't see any other magic, frost people around," I say, trying to keep my sarcastic tone in check.
"Well, yes...it was me, but why aren't you more shocked? A lot of people freak out when this kind of thing happens to them! I thought for sure that even you would be impressed to be taken back to a point in your past. But no, you're just as full of attitude watching your past as you are in the present! The guys and I really thought we'd be able to break your hostile exterior." He genuinely seems hurt, but it doesn't faze me.
"The guys? What guys?" I put my hands on my hips and face him.
"Yes, the guys, well and some girls, my co-workers, we who work for St. Jude."
"Yes," he says, his voice filled with pride
"The saint for hopeless cases?"
Our banter is interrupted by a loud groan. We look over at Cory the rutting wonder and past Lily. I can tell Phillip assumes the noise came from Cory, but I remember it was me, expressing my sour mood. This guy had one move; put it in, pull it out and repeat. It got old fast.
I shake my head and look back at Phillip. "They can't see us, right?"
"No, they can't see us, or hear us, or anything like that. So getting back to St. Jude..."
"Yes, ok...you work for the saint of hopeless causes, Phillip. I got that. So why are you here? Oh wait!" I put my hand up to stop him from talking. "You and the guys think I am a hopeless case or cause or whatever! That's a riot! Are you here to help me?"
Frozen Phillip momentarily transitions into assistant Phillip. He looks down at his feet and scrunches his face. He appears embarrassed. I laugh loudly.
"You are! That's insane! I don't need any help!"
"Well, Lily, we disagree," he starts speaking very slowly, as if he was talking to a child. "We've been watching you for quite a few years. Your attitude toward your fellow man has been a bit...off kilter for more than a little while and we think it's time to intervene. Most people who are not very nice eventually have an epiphany, a sort of a wakeup call and change their ways, but not you. You seem to thrive on making people miserable, but in the end it's not going to help you." Phillip stops and looks into my eyes. He's probably trying to see if this is moving me at all. I stare blankly back at him, crossing my arms under my breasts.
"And?" I snap at him.
Phillip swallows before he continues. "And every Christmas season, because at this time of the year people are often at their kindest, we are all given a 'hopeless case,' a person to turn around. This year I was given you as my project. I've been sent by the powers that be to help you find your kinder side. We think that somewhere under your cold exterior lies a warm heart, a gentler person and we'd like to bring that out in you."
I howl with laughter. "Wow, Phillip, do I feel sorry for you! How'd you get stuck with me? Did you draw the short straw?" I'm laughing so hard I'm in tears, but I stop soon after. The snow suit is too tight for a lot of mirth.
"Lily, I'm quite serious."
"Oh I believe you, my dear. Don't worry. The icy get up, the trip to the past, it's all very dramatic, but come on, Phillip! Why on earth do you and your guys care about one bitchy woman? Besides, I don't think I'm a hopeless case. I think I'm fabulous. You're wasting your time. Aren't there people who have seriously hopeless cases that you could be working on?"
He smiles brightly. "See right there! The fact that you can think of people other than yourself, that you can imagine there are suffering people who need help shows that you have a bit of warmth in your soul."
I scoff at him. "No it doesn't. Phillip, I think most people are hopeless. If you helped people based on what I think, you'd never stop working. The only person I care about is me." I pat his frozen cheek and walk over to watch the action in the center of the trees.