April 26, 2017

Straight From Arrow

Welcome to the latest installment of Straight From Arrow featuring news about romance fiction and publishing.

Table of Contents

Popular Authors May Face Declining Sales

How often have you heard the following? “She’s my favorite author, but her last few books have been just terrible…” or, “I don’t buy any of his books anymore till I read the reviews. I’d rather re-read his old books!”

Are our favorite authors losing their touch? Should we let them know how disappointed we are?

The answer may not be solely on the shoulders of the authors. And the very reason their books don’t grab us anymore is probably the same reason that our feedback is not getting to the authors: financial considerations trump editorial excellence.

Too often the editors’ concerns are ignored or even discouraged. The dialogue goes something like this:

Angry Woman imageManagement: “What are these editorial comments on the draft of the manuscript for (fill in any author’s name)? How dare you question her knowledge of Washington, DC? Look, Missy, she has written more than a dozen best sellers set in that city.”

Editor: “I know, sir. But I’ve lived in DC and Key Bridge doesn’t cross the Anacostia River.”

Management: “Well, no one will know. I can’t have you taking a high-handed attitude with one of our best-selling authors.”

Editor: “I simply queried how her hero could jump off the Key Bridge on to a barge in the Anacostia River—”

Management: “Look if she says he jumped off the damn bridge into the Anacostia River—where the hell is that, anyway?—then he did. And what is this snarky comment in the margin on page 200—‘please rework, this is contradictory’? Rework? Rework?”

Editor: “Yes…hmm…she has the villain being a vegetarian on page 40 and has him eating a steak on page 200. A little rewriting needs to be done—”

Management: “Who the devil is going to notice something like that? You’re too picky. I won’t have you upsetting (fill in name of author). Besides, we have a deadline to meet. We don’t have time for all this crap.”

This may be a little exaggerated for effect. In essence, our popular authors who once benefited and even welcomed editorial comments and oversight, no longer get the chance to, and in some cases feel they don’t need to, interact honestly with their editors.

One editor I heard from recently had the temerity to correct the spelling of a German word in an author’s manuscript. The author immediately crossed out the editor’s correction and put back in her own misspelling. Never mind the editor is German and fluent in the language!

So, any popular authors out there, New York Times best-seller or not, you probably owed a lot of your early sales to hardworking editors. If you find your readers a little dissatisfied with your books these days, (i.e. sales are a little flat) it’s because readers do notice mistakes and sloppy editing. So you might want to make your publisher aware that you require, in fact insist upon, a strong, experienced editor.

And work with him/her.

Patricia White
Publisher Arrow Publications

Ms White has more than 40 years experience in publishing—as a columnist, author, editor, and publisher.

Bobbi Cole Myer Explores Romance About Paralyzed Lover

A Letter from Bobbi Cole Meyer

Dear Readers:

Driven by Passion's Destiny coverDriven By Passion’s Destiny, my third book in The Men of Passion’s series features charismatic 6'-4", green-eyed Lee ‘Wild Man’ Harris. Lee first appeared in Uncensored Passions in a sexy polyandry lifestyle relationship. His flamboyant back flip over the ropes into the ring and his flirtatious manner with the ladies make him a popular world champion. Lee retires early from wrestling, surprising his myriad of fans, to pursue his second love of gourmet cooking. The chain of restaurants he opens is phenomenally lucrative and Lee is on top of the world until his world collapses following a plane crash. The spinal injury he sustains leaves him paralyzed, embittered, enraged and disillusioned. Withdrawing from society, he shuts himself away in his mansion and begins to slip ever deeper into depression. Until he meets Cassie Sheppard.

Cassie is a skilled, no-nonsense physical therapist with a secret. She takes the position as Lee’s live-in therapist in spite of the fact he has become known as an uncooperative, rage-filled patient with whom no other therapist has been able to cope. Cassie is determined to get Lee back on his feet and able to walk with the aid of a revolutionary exoskeleton suit, the BioTekGait. But first, she faces the monumental task of snapping Lee out of his defeatist attitude. Her goal is to make Lee realize his life is far from over; that loving and being loved is still an option, and she is the one to prove that to him.

Driven by Passion’s Destiny is one of the most challenging and yet rewarding novels I’ve written. Researching what paralyzed individuals go through as they deal with and overcome disabilities made me realize how inspiring they all are. Though my bionic device (BioTekGait) is fictional, there has been a phenomenal breakthrough in true bionic technology that has given new hope to many who believed they’d never stand or take a step again. That should, as it did me, grab your heartstrings and have you rooting for the magic of love in the age of high technology!

I've posted an excerpt in case you want to take a sneak peek at Driven by Passion's Destiny.

Bobbi Signature

P.S. Driven by Passion’s Destiny will be available for pre-order at Amazon.com on the May 1, 2017. Release date is May 15, 2017.

No Need to Nibble Around the Edges! Marketing Is a Full-Course Meal


By Marsha Friedman
CEO & Founder, EMSI Public Relations

Someone recently posed a question to me that is definitely worth sharing because it’s a subject that comes up from time to time and applies to everyone trying to promote their personal or business brand.

This person knew that an array of marketing options exist—social media, radio shows, print media, a book, TV, public speaking—but he wanted to get right down to the nitty-gritty.

Of those many possibilities, he asked, which is the one that would be best for his branding goals?

After all, there must be one correct answer! Right?

I can be a nitty-gritty kind of person at times myself, so I didn’t hesitate with my reply. You can’t choose just one marketing option and unequivocally claim that it alone can get the job done. Each works in its own way to help you build your brand, and whenever possible you should take advantage of as many of them as you can.

At Thanksgiving, we fill our plates to overflowing and go back for seconds, so permit me to use a metaphor that involves food. You really shouldn’t look at marketing as an a la carte menu because in reality it’s a full-course meal—and a delicious one at that.

Sure, you can put nothing but mashed potatoes on your plate if you choose, but why do that when other delightful dishes are available and can give you a more nutritious and balanced meal?

So if you really want to feast on all the branding opportunities on the serving table these days, let me offer a few ideas on how to go about accomplishing that:

  • Write a book. Yes, this one is ambitious, but as you’ve heard me say many times over, a book can be a critical piece of your marketing foundation. It adds credibility to your branding efforts and gives you a platform for getting your message out. You can hand out copies to potential clients the way others might hand out business cards. A book also opens doors to the media for you. (I already hear what some of you are saying. “I can’t write!” Not to worry. You can always hire a ghostwriter to do the work for you.)
  • Get a slice of everything you can fit on your marketing plate. As I mentioned before, you don’t want to limit yourself to just one avenue of marketing. You’ll want to spread out in as many different directions as possible.
      1. Make sure you have a quality website before you do anything. You’ll want to drive traffic there with your branding efforts to capture email addresses. That way you can share valuable content that you write for your blog.
      2. Take full advantage of social media, which has so many options to offer in and of itself. You’ll find different tools you can use and different audiences you can reach through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and others.
      3. Look into hosting your own radio show or podcast where you’ll have great freedom to share your message and promote your brand.
      4. Get out and speak to as many groups as possible. A speaking platform positions you as an expert in your field.
  • Cross promote. As long as you’ve plopped a helping of nearly everything on your marketing plate, it would be wasteful not to make the most of it. The smart way to maximize your marketing investment is cross promotion. If you have a radio show, give out your Twitter handle and tell listeners to like your Facebook page. At the same time, use your tweets and FB posts to entice followers to tune into your show. Do the same with speaking engagements—invite your audience to follow you on Twitter and FB. As you build your audience on multiple platforms, you’re successfully building your brand.

We really live in great times when it comes to branding because there’s such a world full of opportunity out there due to the internet and social media. The 1970s, ’80s and even the ’90s were the Dark Ages in comparison.

Remember that old potato chip commercial with the line, “I bet you can’t eat just one?”

When it comes to your marketing options, why would you want to?

Dig in!


Article reprinted with permission by Marsha Friedman, EMS Incorporated.

Marcia FriedmanAbout Marsha Friedman
Marsha Friedman launched EMS Incorporated in 1990. Her firm represents corporations and experts in a wide array of fields such as business, health, food, lifestyle, politics, finance, law, sports and entertainment. She consults individuals and businesses on a daily basis and is frequently asked to speak at conferences about how to harness the power of publicity.


The Men of Passion Series

Candy Caine’s Clay Creations

Catching Up with Interracial Romance Author Candy Caine

Most writer experience writer’s block. Each has his or her own way of handling these dry spells. Interracial romance author Candy Caine has found a new hobby that helps her deal with hers—pottery! When her writing stalls, Candy takes her creative efforts in another direction. She finds while shaping clay, the shape of a story also comes to her. She has started pottery classes to up her skills as a potter. Take a look some of her whimsical creations below.

Candy's Pottery #1
Candy's Pottery #2
Candy's Pottery #3
Candy's Pottery #4

A Bridge to LoveCandy's Kindle Scout Campaign

Candy hasn't abandoned her computer for her potter's wheel. But she is trying new things with her books. Her latest interracial romance, A Bridge to Love, can be previewed at Kindle Scout, which is described as reader-powered publishing for new, never-before-published books. For more information on A Bridge to Love and to support Candy's book, visit her blog at http://candycainescorner.blogspot.com. You can also view the book listing at Kindle Scout.


Popular Books by Candy Caine

At First Sight cover For Your Love cover Because of You Save the Last Dance for Me cover


Romance Graphic Novels That Intrigue on MyRomanceStory.com

Mystery, Passion and Desire are Always in Style. Here is a preview of one of our favorite romance graphic novel written by T.E. Valentine and illustrated by Enzo Pertile.

Always in Style cover

Always in Style

By: T.E. Valentine
Artist: Enzo Pertile

For Liz, a budding fashion magazine photographer, it was a dream come true. Off to Venice for a three-week photo shoot! And they would be working and staying at a fabulous palazzo. What could go wrong? Then Dante, the handsome, aristocratic scion of the family who owns the palazzo, thrusts his arrogant attentions on Liz—but for reasons much darker than simple desire…

Always in Style Panel 1
Always in Style Panel 2
Always in Style Panel 3
Always in Style Panel 4
Always in Style Panel 5
Always in Style Panel 6
Always in Style Panel 7
Always in Style Panel 8
Always in Style Panel 8

Always in Style is available for sale at MyRomanceStory.com and Amazon.com. Explore our Romance Graphic Novel Collection for other titles.

Want more romance graphic novels, visit our Free Reads section for the complete version of Throb.

Throb cover



By: Nic Anders and Taylor Ashley Subrosa

Artist: Roberto Goiriz

When rock superstar Throb hires Marlena Summit to lead his team of bodyguards, she proves more than capable of deflecting attempts on his life from a violent stalker. And, focusing on her job, Marlena determines to ignore the sensuality Throb emits. But when the concerts are over and the groupies have gone, Throb sheds his hyper-sexed facade and becomes a man that Marlena finds impossible to resist.



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