Sunday, December 1, 2013


Gosh its seems like forever since I last blogged. I think its because I had nothing new to report. To be honest I was in a funk. I had sent my ms to a publishing company that requested it. They emailed me and told me my story wasn't for them. I actually think it was a form letter. It wasn't the information I wanted to report so I have been avoiding blogging. Gahh I am my own worst enemy!

I reminded myself today that this blog is a way for me to document my journey writing this trilogy. I promised myself when I started this that I would document everything. All good and all bad. So here it is.

I have spent the last few months hammering away on my keyboard trying to get something written that I loved. I ploughed through eleven chapters in a couple of weeks and felt like I was well on my way meeting the Feb deadline I set for myself. Problem was something was needling away at me about the story's direction. Eventually it wore me down and the characters stopped talking to me. I then spent well over a month rewriting my first chapter. Yep Chapter one. I wrote at east twenty different ways. I couldn't make a decision to save my life. Of course everyone kept asking me how the book was coming along. Oh my Good I anted to throw up. Things were not coming along at all. Things were a flippin mess. I then began to question the storyline in book one. I began to regret things I wrote. But I wrote them and I really couldn't change it. But then things quickly changed for me. As if it was a gift from the universe. I had totally forgotten that I had signed up for a two hour November workshop. I did it back in August. I attended the workshop and the facilitator was a literary agent from Toronto. I had been on the companies website and I have to say I was pretty impressed with their clientele and their reported ms sales. Of course since I was in my funk I didn't really have any misgivings about what I was actually going to accomplish but I went anyway. Thank God I did. I met S. H. (I'm not comfortable using his name) For some reason I found myself hanging on his every word, He had this comfortable way about him that drew me in. He talked about the industry as a whole. He wasn't all rah rah in fact he was quite honest about how difficult it is. After the session he did someone on one discussion in a private area. For some reason instead of trying to sell myself to him as an author with an amazing story to tell I found myself telling him about the struggles I was having with book 2. He seemed to sympathize with me.
On the way home I berated myself for being an idiot. I had an opportunity to garner the attention of a literary agent who actually has a pretty impressive roster of clients and success stories. I had the chance to sell my story to him and instead I chose to dump my problems on him. Who in the hell does that kind of thing? Sometimes you meet people and you tell them things you wouldn't normally tell anyone else for fear of being judged. A complete stranger new my secret. I had regrets and I was questioning my ability to continue the story. I mean the real story. The one that the characters decide. Not the one that I decide. There is a big difference. I knew it was there but I couldn't find it. Before we finished speaking he asked me for a copy of my book. There was someone in his office who was looking for romance writers so he'd pass it along on his recommendation. I was kind of shocked. Of course later I convinced myself he was simply being nice.

Once I got home I sent him a thank you email. He responded and told me he planned on passing along my book. I thanked him again and assumed that would be the last I hear from him but it wasn't. He emailed me and said he facilitated a writing group at his place on the weekends and he invited me to come. I accepted not really knowing what I was getting into. To make a long story short it was the best decision I have ever made. Once I got there he introduced me and told everyone where he met me and why he invited me to this exclusive group. he told them I was stuck and I needed help working it out. I told them about the characters and the story line. Things that I had written that I kind of wished I didn't were the things that S.H. gravitated to. He said that's great stuff. That's fresh and interesting. On the way home I thought about what he said over and over. One of the things he said was that I may not be a typical romance writer because my thoughts are deeper and darker than that. he was one hundred percent right. I love romance but I have grown to become intolerant of fluff. Since that meeting I have not been able to stop writing. I pretty much tore up my outline and a because I was writing fluff. Once I realized that I decided to become true to myself and true to the characters and the story and not worry about the commercial acceptability of what people like in a contemporary romance. A clip flashed in my mind. A very emotional raw segment if you will. I jotted it down and built everything around it. It flowed out of me like water from the tap. So much so in fact that not only is book two set but so is three. The story took a direction I didn't expect. They may like it or hate it but the story is the story. Some of it is painful but its life and sometimes life is painful. Now that I know the story I cant stop writing. I am so in love with these character and the story. This is my opening paragraph:

Tiny beads of perspiration clung to his forehead like dew on a summer’s vine. Raw emotions consumed his every thought, threatening to take him to a dangerous place. A place that he’d been before. A place that he’d rather die than go back to. His could almost feel his thread barren resolve stretch beyond the point of no return. A kind of psychological war he fought so many times in the past was stirring inside of him. He knew the signs all too well. The inability to focus being the most revealing. Fight fire with fire. That was the motto he’d been introduced to. The first fire—the destructive fire—a poison compulsion. Both a psychological and physical need to alter his mental state with any substance he could get his hands on. A heroine-cocaine concoction called a speedball  was his favorite. The second fire—the good fire— the remedy. Remedy was the wrong word. It was more a Band-Aid. A remedy would mean some kind of absolution. A remedy would mean he’d have forgiven his parents. He would have forgiven himself. A remedy would mean he’d have found a way to set shit right in his head. He learned to fight darkness with darkness. For years his methods worked for him. Now he found himself on a new path. A path where light sometimes peeked through the darkness. A place where he argued and compromised. A place where he began to feel again. A path he could only walk with her by his side. The numbness he was able to find through pain was quickly fading. She was his new vice. He was dependant on her. He realized the moment Jon Maxwell told him she had been kidnapped that he needed her like he needed air in his lungs. It was dangerous. Dangerous for both of them.


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Plugging away

Since the last time I blogged I did two bookstore appearances. It's actually more difficult than I thought to convince people who have never heard of me to buy my book. Unless you have a bus load of family and friends show up, don't expect your sales to be through the roof. That being said I had an amazing day at both venues. I can't get over the number of people who admit to either considering writing a book or are in the process. My advice to all of them was "Just do it" If writing is what they are supposed to be doing they will instantly know and never look back.

I've had a book club pick up my book for their new read which is pretty exciting. There is another book club at the Chapters I appeared at that may consider my book as well. I gave a copy to the lady who facilitates it. Cross my fingers she feels its worthy enough for the club.

Tonight I have a radio talk show interview to discuss my book. I've never done anything like that before so I'm a little nervous. I emailed him and asked for a list of questions he will be asking but much to my dismay he doesn't "plan" his interviews. Ugh!

I received a response form a Harlequin submission I sent way back. It wasn't a form rejection so I am pleased. Unfortunately The Jaxon Effect doesn't really fit the Super Romance Category I submitted it under. They want 99% of the story to be between the hero and heroine. This title is a bit more complex than that. Maybe "The Men from Remington's," series would be better suited. Stand alone titles tend to work better for Harlequin.

On a good note I submitted to another publisher on Thursday evening. Monday afternoon I received a response, they requested my full manuscript. After hitting the roof I fine tooth combed it again and sent it to them yesterday evening. Before submitting it I did another round of editing and shaved 3000 words from the story. It could take up to thirty days to hear back, then again they said it could take up to eight weeks to hear back from the query I sent and it only took a couple of days so I hope its sooner. Even if they reject at least I know the most recent query letter that I struggled to perfect is in the pocket.

Book two is moving along well although I have to admit I have been writing scenes that I have no idea where they belong yet. The characters are being secretive and only giving me glimpses of the full story but I like what they are showing me. There is a bit of "one-upmanship" going on which is fun. It tells me their relationship will never become boring or monotonous. They are both too stubborn for that to happen.

Its time for me to relax my mind and get back into Jaxon and Kate's world. Have a wonderful day!

Publish Post

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Cliff Hanging and Reviews and a Writing update!

First let me say I am sorry to the haters ;) who were angry enough to throw their e-readers across the room when they realized The Jaxon Effect book 1 was over. Although some of you paid me back by giving me a 1 or 2 star rating you are my best spokespeople!!! Why? Because although you gave me a low score and skewed my rating average you were motivated to do that because you were engaged in the story. You WANTED  it to not be over. You WANTED answers and you didn't get them. The characters came to life for you and you felt vested. Although I would have loved a 4 or a 5 star rating I totally understand.

The good news is you will get the answers Book 2! I will also say as of now my intentions are not to leave you dangling at the end of book 2. Hopefully you will want to read book 3,not because I left a dangling carrot but because you want more of  Jaxon and Kate's story. I hope you love the characters as much as I do.

For those of you wondering about book 2 I am pleased to say the characters have been very co-operative lately. The past three days I flew through six chapters. I spent 48 hours in the same pair of pyjamas but that's okay. When the characters want to speak I drop everything and I write.  I am becoming excited about this one as the story begins to unfold. What I thought I was going to write and what I actually wrote are two totally different things. I had the outline done. The entire book was in point form chapter after chapter and then I began to write it. I wrote five chapters. They were decent and were on point for the most part with my outline and then...... BLOCK!!!!! I left the story alone for a couple of weeks. I edited what I had wrote several times hoping that something would soon start up again but it didn't. I was getting worried and I thought if my husband or my kids asked me one more time how many chapters I had I was going to scream. I put away the outline and decided to take a break from the story all together. Funny thing happened after a couple of days of not trying to force a square peg into a round hole the characters began talking again and what they said was those five chapters I had been fiddling with for a month were completely wrong. As much as I wanted to be organized and plan out the story and all that good stuff it doesn't work for me. So I began again from scratch and I am happy to say I have already completed ten chapters. I have read some blogs from authors who talked about how they write a story. They have a schedule they follow. They outline, they research, they sit at their computers for a certain number of hours each day etc. I can't do that. It would be nice but its not how I roll. Hopefully the continuing sequence of events in Jaxon and Kate's life won't disappoint you. The story continues as its supposed to continue not how I thought it would originally.. I truly believe when the characters tell the story and make the decisions it can't be wrong.  I love the direction the characters are leading me in and I really hope you will too.

Sunday October 6th I will be doing a book signing at Chapters John and Richmond in Toronto. Please join me if you are in the area.

Have an awesome day!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Torontonians really do rock!

Hey there

So its Monday morning and the weekend is finally over. I had my first big event yesterday at Word on the Street, Toronto. My husband and I prepared for this for a while. Okay he prepared for this on my behalf. He is my saviour!

I wasn't sure what to expect because this was actually my first time at Word on the Street, so just in case I bumped into an agent or publisher I had made ten query packages. As I believe I have mentioned in an earlier post (or should have) that query is going to give me and ulcer. There are so many contrasting beliefs on what at query should look like. At 1:30 am on Sunday I finally decided to go to bed and stop changing my query. It turned out I didn't need it anyway.

I sold approximately 25 books and handed out hundreds of book marks. I had some encouraging discussions with people who were not into my genre but they were so darn supportive all the same. I was starting to get a little worried when people would stop and pick up the book , read the back and then put it back down. Of course my first thought was that there's a problem with my blurb. So I started asking people, "Do you read romance?" It turned out many of them didn't but they were drawn to our display and the book's cover so they stopped. Through many of those conversations amazing things happened. When  people realized I was the author they would smile broadly and offer congratulations. Many people offered advice on marketing etc. Many of them took post cards, sell sheets, and book marks to distribute to people they know who do read my genre. This happened multiple times all day. I had some postcards printed to advertise my launch at Chapters on John street in Toronto on October 6th. At least a dozen or more people had said they will try to get people to come out to support me. I was blown away. These were complete strangers that wanted to help.

Following the book event we went down to college street for a "Magical evening with  local authors,"  Since I had never done anything like that before I had no idea what to expect. We were greeted at the door by two very welcoming gentlemen. Since we were almost the last to arrive, sitting a distance away and the speaker system wasn't optimal it was difficult at times to follow what was going on.

Four authors were scheduled to read excerpts from their books. I had assumed readings were reserved for those who wrote gorgeous pieces of literary fiction that would read like poetry. It was appearing that way at least until a lady stands up at the microphone and begins to read an excerpt from her romance novel. What? Romance authors are asked to speak at these things. That's amazing. When this lady spoke I quickly realized why. She had passion. She read the pages from her ms with heart. She took on the persona of each character as she spoke. I really didn't care what she was saying, it was the fact that she was passionately in love with her work that made me smile. I realized in that moment that we, the romance authors of the world, are a special breed and I need to start practicing my public speaking because I too want to share my passion the same way this lady did.

We shared our table with a lady that was on her own. A complete stranger. Two hours later it felt like she was a friend. That might have been the best part of the entire day! We talked about my fear of public speaking and she gave me some really great advice. She was just so genuine and supportive. She had a belief in me and my book although she hadn't read a word of it.  People like that don't come along often, so when they do the encounter is memorable and in this case worth mentioning. It turns out this woman has some media connections. When she finally told me where she worked the thought truly hadn't even crossed my mind that she may be able to help me get some exposure. In fact when I asked her where she worked and she told me I think she expected a light to go on in my head. (which maybe if I wasn't dog tired it would have)  Later I went to the bathroom and when I returned my husband informed me that she was going to do what she could to get my book in the hands of the right people. Immediately I felt awkward. I cant explain why and I know my response was something really strange because I didn't know what to say. I should have just said thank you. Which I did do after but I think my first response was something like" its okay if you can't I know its hard to do things like that." WTF is wrong with me. I think I liked this lady so much that I didn't want the basis of our new found friendship to be based on a "What can you do for me?" bottom line. I don't have a business head. I am all about emotions and relationships. Maybe that's why I'm a romance junkie.  And truth be told I think part of me knows what's coming next and it scares me. Success is something we dream about but when you know beyond a shadow of a doubt its around the corner it becomes very daunting. I can be my own worst enemy. Maybe I need to find a doctor with a couch. ;)

I could have written a half chapter in the time it took me to post this. I have a lot of wonderful fans that are anxiously awaiting book two so I better get back to work!


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Jaxon Effect

I am thrilled. When I originally enrolled my book on KDP for Kindle I opted not to go into the borrowers pool. However with my sales on the other devices being dismal and my sales on kindle being not much better I thought what do I have to lose. Since my book is actually the first of a trilogy why not? I put a year into my book. It spent almost a thousand dollars on my print version and cover design that was why. But then again what did I have to lose?

I pulled my title off Smashwords (who distributes to all the other devices) and went KDP exclusive. Holy cow its only been like a week and I have had close to 4000 downloads and around fifty ebook sales. I don't really know what that will equate to in dollars because some of that was under  "Free e-book promotion days" where I will earn squat for those downloads. But I don't even care. What's amazing is that there are 4000+ people across the globe who have now heard of K.C. Michaels. Many of whom love The Jaxon Effect. I have amazingly enough gained like sixty twitter followers and at least twenty new fans on my Facebook  page in the past couple of days. I have gotten several messages through Facebook, twitter and my website from people who have read my book and are chomping at the bit to read the second installment. I am over the moon.

I now have 19 ratings on Goodreads and five on Amazon and counting. The Jaxon Effect has also been added to over 150 times as a to be read on Goodreads as well. I am still of course hoping to find agent representation so the distribution of my print books can be handled by someone else. For now I will box, ship and drop off copies to retail outlets as necessary. A girls gotta do what a girls gotta do.

I would also like to say I love every positive message I receive. I read them all and they inspire me to keep moving forward. I must get back to my writing now so until next time I will say goodnight!

PS: Dates to Remember

Sept 22nd Word on the Street Festival booth 197
October 6th Chapters John and Richmond in Toronto (Book launch and Signing)
October 20th Chapters St. Catharines,  (Book signing)

I have a shipment that I sent to Coles at 800 Grand Lake Road in Sydney, Nova Scotia. They should arrive the end of this week or beginning of next week.

follow me for updates regarding book 2 @jaxoneffect or @KC_michaels on twitter

Or find my fan page on facebook The Jaxon Effect


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Its been a while

It's been another while since I blogged. Life just zips on by and before I know it I am down for the count. A couple of weeks ago I went to NYC and wrote 5 chapters in one weekend. It was amazing. I need to go back again. I was so focused it was scary.
Today I am officially on consignment at my local Chapters store. Its located in St. Catharines Ontario and I will be doing a book signing on October 20th from 1-5pm. October 6th I will be at the Toronto Chapters for a signing as well from 1-5pm at the John and Richmond location. September 22nd I will be at Word on the Street in Toronto. Lots of amazing thing happening and the reviews for my book have been wonderful!

Friday, August 16, 2013

This is so much work

I thought writing the book was work. Holy cow promoting it and publishing it and then republishing it is work too. So of course now that my husband has seen a finished product he has decided to help me. I love the help I really do but it would have made my life easier if he would have been the research guru that he his now months ago. There are a few more new things he has learned and shared with me. For instance that free isbn number that CreateSpace gave me. I should not have taken it. I should have just gotten my own because now I have to retire my CreateSpace isbn and upload a whole new file and cover image and start from scratch in order to change my isbn. There was an article that suggested I drop my CS isbn and replace it with my own isbn and then I can print on demand through Create Space for online retailers and I can use Lightening for bookstore orders. I am sharing this information because I'm hoping my mistakes and trials and success will help someone else at some point.

So in a nutshell if you want to offer print on demand books and your goal is to see in bookstores you need your own ISBN.You are better off at Lightening. If you want to focus on online sales then the best place to be is Create Space but I would suggest getting your own number so if you want to do both you can. More than one ISBN is not a good idea because best seller lists are based on isbn tracking. Clear as mud?