Return to Homepage

Debbie Flint

Debbie Flint

Debbie Flint

FOCUS ON STEAMY – Kitty French tells all!

The author of ‘Knight and Play’ and ‘Knight and Stay’, USA Today best-selling author and all round nice person, Kitty French is the subject of this week’s RiWiSi Go Large! A former fellow student of Julie Cohen’s writing courses, here she talks about her own amazing success story – since she first self-published her erotic novels on Amazon. Go here to see her titles online. But first, here’s the highly anticipated insight into how to follow in her footsteps, and some great tips from the UK’s Queen of Steam…

Kitty French

Kitty says,

"I usually write romantic comedy, so with the advent of Fifty Shades and the associated explosion of the erotic romance market it wasn't a huge leap to have a go at writing something more explicit. My books are still romance at heart, just with added oomph - I think of it as complete escapism reading. A hot leading man is an absolute must for this genre, as is a heroine that doesn't irritate the heck out of everyone!

 

The one question I get asked the most is where do I get my inspiration from, and the answer is lots of places. I read a huge number of books, and film and TV are great sources of inspiration. For the Knight series I wanted to write a hero who had some of Christian Grey's alpha qualities, but who was all about pleasure rather than pain. I also wanted to set it somewhere unusual, somewhere icy cold where you could see the aurora borealis. Putting all of this together led me to create Lucien Knight, originally from Norway but now a successful London based club owner. This gave me the scope to set the book between the UK & Norway, which was a real treat to research, and Lucien was great to write, full of wit and one liners but with lots of hidden depths! Any fans of the True Blood TV series will not be surprised to hear that Alexander Skarsgard would be my dream casting for Lucien. A girl's gotta dream, right?

 

I decided to self-publish the Knight series for speed reasons - if there's one thing I've learned about the traditional publishing industry it's that everything takes an absolute age, and I wanted the Knight series to catch the crest of the erotic wave. It turned out to be the best decision I've ever made.

Self-publishing isn't hard, but you have to make your book the best you possibly can if you want it to stand up against the traditionally published books out there. 

 

Obviously it all starts with a good story, but also professional editing & cover art are essential too, as is the perfect title and blurb. It all matters, and time and attention to those details will give your book the best possible chance. I printed off the amazon blurbs for all of the erotic books doing well and studied them for similarities and buzz words, then wrote mine with those in mind. Think of your cover and blurb as your shop window - you need people to stop and look rather than walk on by! 

Erotic romance is a really hot category to write in at the moment. Fifty Shades has opened the door for so many other writers, myself included.

 

I published Knight & Play from a standing start in November 2012, and for the first few days I had a flurry of sales from friends and writing buddies. Seven one day, twelve on another, those kind of numbers. I expected it to slow from there on in, but in actual fact the opposite happened - it sped up. 

Twelve daily sales turned into twenty, and by the end of week two I'd reached my first one hundred sales a day land mark. That felt pretty amazing! The numbers spiralled really quickly from there on in to the point where the book ranked within the top 100 best sellers on Amazon over Christmas 2012, which felt completely crazy! People often ask me what gave Knight & Play that initial push, and the honest truth is I don't know. I think it was just right book, right cover, right time plus a good dose of luck.

 

 

If I thought that experience had prepared me for the release of the second book in the series, I was wrong! Following its May 4th release, Knight & Stay shot straight to the number one spot on the Amazon erotic chart on both sides of the Atlantic, and it also hit the USA Today best-sellers chart to boot. That was pretty special! It also had the pleasing effect of pulling book one right back up behind it, which certainly taught me the power of writing a series.

To date, The Knight Series has sold just over one hundred and fifty thousand copies in ten months. That's some number, isn't it? I hope it helps to see that if this happens to normal people like me, it can happen to you too if you're a self -publisher. 

 

 My whole life has changed since I published Knight & Play back in November last year, and even more so since Knight & Stay came out this summer. It has certainly taught me the power of writing a series, so much so that I'm currently writing book three to release in December. Exciting times.

 I feel incredibly lucky to do a job I love and actually get paid for it too. I'm sure Deb would agree that there's never been a better time to self-publish, so if you're contemplating writing your own novel, come on in, the water's warm.

Kitty x"

More about Kitty here, and click these links to find her books - third novel out in October!:

 Knight and Play

 Knight and Stay

 Next week - a complete beginner's story - and steamy continues!

 

SUE MOORCROFT’S TIPS ON WRITING EROTICA

Sue Moorcroft is a prolific romance writer and member of the RNA as well as running writing courses and workshops. She’s got a very interesting blog (Aug 31st) - her own tips for writing your novel, and how she writes hers. But more importantly for this week's topic, she’s the author of a pertinent book which might be your best next step if you’re interested in writing your own steamy fiction! Plus I hear she’s got a course coming up in ten days’ time (call 0203078 7825 for an info pack) so do look her up! Otherwise if you're completely new to this type of writing, try the book.

Love Writing – How to Make Money Writing Romantic  - Erotic Fiction

 

 

SELF-EDITING TIPS

Of course once you’ve written your ‘SFD’ (sh**ty first draft - the well-known term that writers use fondly for their initial brain dump), you’ll need to edit your manuscript. Before I give it to my own beta readers, I do this self-editing lark - several times! (The first three chapters were probably revised fifty times by the time it was published!). Here’s a handy post from Kristen Lamb with six easy tips for self-editing.

And if I were you, it might be a good idea to sign up for your favourites amongst the bloggers I mention on RiWiSi, or peruse their websites or previous blog posts as there’s a whole mine of information about writing to be had, without leaving your laptop!

 

Next week – the single best way for authors to use Social Media, and a complete beginner’s journey into self-publishing!

If you'd like to send me a comment on this blog, email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Come back weekly for more hints and tips on Read It Write It Sell it!

 

 

Free this Sunday? Fancy an online book launch? With author Lynda Renham; Plus - My 'Hawaiian Affair' first chapter - it's free to Download - till Tuesday!!

Last week, my web-blog had the fab guide to self-publishing and a comp to win a signed paperback from one of my writing pals, (click here if you missed it). Well since it was so popular, I’m adding a few more guidelines in this week's RiWiSi/GoLarge!  

 

Apart from my little focus on eBooks on today’s new QVC blog (link below), I thought I’d bring you a couple of fab extras here on the weekly Read It Write It Sell it page.

This week  –
Facebook Open Day! A nice little bit of news about one of the ways of marketing your book using social media, once it’s published. Would you like to experience a writer’s online book launch this Sunday? Emily Harvale invited me, and I’m inviting you! Novelist Lynda Renham will be actively answering your questions on her facebook author page all day from 10am this Sunday (1st September), with other writers popping by, and competitions to win several fab novelists’ books. Leave her a message of congrats or join in the chat or just read it – it’s a public page. You’ll see tips on how she self-published her new title The Valentine Present and Other Diabolical Liberties and lots of other juicy tidbits! It’ll be great! Go here for more info.

 

My little Tuscany writers group (‘The Ladies of Posara Say’) are planning one of these events nearer Christmas, for our own titles – so this’ll give us an idea of what they’re all about! Course, you need to have built up a little following for it to be effective, joining in on various relevant group message boards etc (eg writers groups etc, to get yourself known a bit.)

The way to do your own event like this, when the time comes, is apparently to make sure you start the build up early, long before your book is launched. Build your ‘author platform’ as they call it, including on twitter, facebook, blogging and leaving comments on others’ blogs. But more importantly, building up genuine relationships with all those people online - ones whose work you like, who are the right sort of facebook friends, or people you’d ultimately like to inform about your work. Build up the banter with people but make it normal social stuff, not pitching your ideas to an agent, nor doing little more than plug after plug for your new book. It’ll bore people and they’ll skip by your posts! (note to self – take note! Lol).

Then in the run up to the ‘big day’, you can do what Lynda’s done – just flick down her posts, where she has included little extracts of her new novel, posted the cover, got other authors to comment on her page, etc. If you’ve done it right, and have a good group of people to rely on, the other kindly author pals should help to spread the word about your new book – and you’ll achieve a beautiful authentic buzz!

So do pop along this Sunday if you can – I’m sure Lynda will appreciate it! Full info about her other work is also on her page! And if you’ve done anything similar do let me know! Leave a comment on my home page.

 lynda renham page

 

- 7 Ways to Improve Your Odds.

 

 Next - On the back of last week’s popular guest blog on how to publish your own novel from a successful Amazon author, I have another blog to recommend – ‘7 ways to improve your odds for bestselling success’ – a must-read for anyone thinking of doing it! Including – hire professionals when necessary – more specifically, which ones you should hire. Also – write multiple titles (hear hear, Ed!).And schedule time for marketing – it’s a major part of being a self-published author!

The creator of this blog is Gary McLaren, owner of publishYourOwnEbook.com – another site worth signing up for, for updates on the publishing world not just writers’ tips. Go here to read the whole article, including a link to the story of Stephen Leather, the writer who sold 45,000 ebooks in one month! We love an inspiring story, don’t we?!

 7 TIPS ON BEING A BESTSELLER

-

And finally – the first chapter of Hawaiian Affair is free! Till Tues 3rd

As promised, here’s the link to go take a better look at the start of my steamy romance novel! If you then want to get the rest, right now the PG eBook is only 99p! And the Steamy one is £2.02. Full info about the story and the amazing reviews – at time of writing 122 out of 135 are five stars!! Whoop Whoop! – is on my amazon page, or via my QVC Blog. Do let me know what you think via twitter @debbieflint or on facebook or via a comment on my QVC Blog on here on the home page of this website!

 

- Yet more book info on my latest QVC Blog out today – including Lee Child’s new book!.

 

(Next week in RiWiSi I’m doing a ‘focus on steamy’, considering 8 out of every 9 people buying Hawaiian Affair choose the raunchy version! And coming soon there will be a brilliant insight into what it takes to become a bestselling erotic novel writer, with another great author interview.)

 

 

Self- publishing Success Story - and guide...

One of my own personal inspirations has been Emily Harvale, whose light hearted romances have warmed many a heart - namely amazon readers. Over the past year, Emily has set herself up to have quite a following, from selling only 503 copies in the first eight months to finding a way of increasing sales to more than 22,000 on amazon in the last seven months alone. Here she tells us how to do it! Or how she did it...

Read the attached document - download the link 'Emily Harvale - 20 tips on how to self-publish' below - for all the low down and insider tips to give you a head start on your own self-publishing journey.

You will find out -

- how promotions - clever ones - make all the difference for any new author

advice on what to set up before you publish

- guidance on how to actually self-publish with tips on pricing, royalties and choosing a cover

And if you're a fan of light-hearted romances, why not enter the competition to win a signed copy of Emily's latest release, Sailing Solo, along with a bookmark to match. All you have to do is email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and make sure you add your address and full name! Competition closes on 6th September 2013, and a winner will be randomly chosen from all entries.

Then - time to start yours! Let's hear from you when you've published yours - keep me informed. And good luck!

best wishes

debs

x

 

Here's the competition!

Just leave me a comment on my qvc blog - this week's one dated 22nd August (here) - and say you'd like to be entered for the competition! Full Terms and Conditions are in the doc attached below and outlined here. What you will win is a full Red Carpet Manicure set, item 400472,  which will be Today's Special Value on QVC UK on Friday (23rd Aug), plus another three colours from the other TSV option. it will be dispatched to you direct from RCM themselves, within three weeks of winning and you will need to provide your address only if you are randomly selected as the winner when the draw ends on Thursday 29th August at midday. Good luck!

luv

debs

x

ps full contents of TSV listed on QVC website, item 400472 value over £130, plus three more colours, (worth £12.95 each - prices direct from RCM website). Full Terms & conditions on the attached document.

It's here at last! This weekend - August bank holiday - the long-awaited complete PG eBook of Hawaiian Affair, my first novel, will go on sale on amazon - at just 99p! It was originally published in serialisation with an option for steamy or non, in certain instalments. And about 8:1 bought steamy! It's been highly reviewed too - how lucky am I? At time of writing there are - across all the versions - 115 five star reviews out of 125.  

I'm very pleased, and excited to offer it as a complete eBook with the steamy bits toned down for those who prefer their romances more 'close the bedroom door'! And since many people have enjoyed the PG serialisation in four parts, but requested the complete novel for their kindles or kindle apps, here it is. Whoop Whoop!

But if you already read it, what did you think of it? If you'd care to add your review, do go here - you'll be amongst the first, since the brand spanking new upload has none to begin with - so do add your thoughts! And what's more - it's only 99p for a limited period only. So don't miss out. Here's a little teaser to whet your appetite, from some of the comments I've had so far on the other versions. Enjoy!

Debs

x

"Wow, what a great book. I could not put it down literally....in fact I read it cover to cover in 24 hours. The only disappointing thing about this book is when you've finished reading.....wanted it to go on & on. Loved the characters Sadie & Mac...how refreshing to have a female lead who was a real (curvy) woman (not a size zero) & intelligent too. She made me proud of my curves. As for Mac....it's all about you now......dreamy.
A really enjoyable book, highly recommended, get it now."

Eleybelly, Amazon Reviewer.

ps - don't forget that the original version is Steamy - and is available on amazon in both complete eBook and in paperback. (Paperback of PG version will be out in October).

 

It's here at last! This weekend - August bank holiday - the long-awaited complete PG eBook of Hawaiian Affair, my first novel, will go on sale on amazon.

 

I'm very pleased, and excited to offer it, since many people have enjoyed the serialisation in four parts, but requested the complete novel for their kindles or kindle apps. Whoop Whoop!

So if you got it, what did you think of it! Do go here to add your review since the brand spanking new upload has none to begin with - be amongst the first to add your thoughts! And what's more - it's only 99p - but for a limited period only. So don't miss out. Here's a little teaser to whet your appetite, from some of the comments I've had so far on the other versions. Enjoy!

Debs

x

"Wow, what a great book. I could not put it down literally....in fact I read it cover to cover in 24 hours. The only disappointing thing about this book is when you've finished reading.....wanted it to go on & on. Loved the characters Sadie & Mac...how refreshing to have a female lead who was a real (curvy) woman (not a size zero) & intelligent too. She made me proud of my curves. As for Mac....it's all about you now......dreamy.
A really enjoyable book, highly recommended, get it now."

Eleybelly, Amazon Reviewer.

 

Just had to post a little pic of our two lovely QVC models, sadly lost to us within the last few weeks, first Beulah, then Amica, who passed on last week. If you're a regular online, you'll probably know by now. Amica's hubby posted on facebook that she lost her fight to breast/ lung cancer last week, peacefully at the hospice she'd gone to a few days before hand.

May they rest in peace, and look after each other - two new angels in the heavens. For those who have asked, here's the heartfelt talk Amica did a while ago, and it's with great pleasure that I link to it, as a fitting tribute to a lovely lady. There's a thread on QVC UK facebook page if you'd like to post a comment there too.

best wishes

debs

x

 

Read it Write It Sell it – my weekly look at all things book!'Defiant Love' by Jessica Hart

Book of the Week – First this week, I’ve been really enjoying my first ever Nora Roberts – see below for more.

But I thought I’d just mention that my original writing tutor in Tuscany, Jessica Hart, is releasing her early books on amazon – she is one of the most prolific Mills and Boon authors, (over 60 novels).

This book, 'Defiant Love', features FIVE of her early romances, all in a £1.60 eBook! She’s a great author and if you like conventional, traditional, sweet romances, it could be a good choice for you! Go here to see more. 

 

 

 

 

Useful Blog – about blogging!

Anne Allen's blog- An interesting feature on social media secrets and how they help an author is to be found here– do go read about one person’s path to success, aided by her dedication to blogging – there’s hope for me yet! Lol!

 

 

 

 

  

The Countdown is On! ... 

Only two weeks till the non-steamy (PG) version of my novel is available in eBook on Amazon (paperback in Oct). And the big news is… It’s going to be 99p!

More and more guests have it, including Leighton Denny and Stacey Shiefflin. I tweeted that I hope it doesn’t corrupt Leighton lol! Plus, the five star reviews keep mounting up - thank you so much from the bottom of my heart if you’ve posted one on Amazon; it means the world to a beginner like me.

Debbie's novel 'Hawaiin Affair'The latest review on Amazon is from HappyJill, who said -

“This book is very entertaining. Jolly saucy in parts 2 and 4! I loved how Sadie exhibited her feelings and intellect in equal measure, vulnerable yet hopeful.

Mac … is the epitome of the ideal romantic hero! NO guy is THAT good! … There were many lovely touches of the author throughout the book.

And setting the scenes in glamorous locations was wonderful… an escape from the humdrum British weather!... I found the twist and turns of the story led to a satisfying conclusion. Can't wait for the next one!...”

For all the direct links to each of the options of Hawaiian Affair available on Amazon, go to the 'writing' tab on www.debbieflint.co.uk or click here for the steamy complete novel.

 

 SO do put ‘Amazon/PG Hawaiian Affair’ in your bank holiday weekend diary if you’d like to be the first to get it… and for 99p! Whoop!

In case you’re reading this for the first time and you didn’t know, the thing is that I initially published it in instalments, so that at present you have to buy the separate parts on amazon to get the ‘close the bedroom door’ (PG) version.

It’s actually been created in response to requests, so I would love it if you would let me know what you think of the non-steamy eBook! Do pass on the news too, if you know anyone who’s been waiting for it!

 

And finally - Nora Roberts' 'The Witness'

Nora Roberts' The Witness 

I love audio books - seriously, I LOVE them!! So it was with great pleasure that I devoted my car listening hours to ten hours or so of a fab actress called Julia Whelan reading out the unabridged version of Nora Roberts' 2012 romance/thriller 'The Witness'. I loved it. It's a coming of age rebellion / chase and escape and hide / new identity/ Russian mafia /small town hero, type book.

I initially gave it 8.75 out of ten cos of the performing of the dialogue more than anything. But having finished the final few chapters, I am giving it 8.25 - it lost a couple of marks for the tame conflicts in the closing sections. Checking on the reviews afterwards, I found other Nora fans thought the same, but others loved it. On the stars system, it'd get 4 from me - mainly as the audio book was so good to listen to (specially after a slow start).

But it's a fun way to spend an otherwise loooooong journey to and from work, so go here to find out more - I bought it on audible.

Last minute update! If you're a QVC regular, and love Liz Earle beauty products, until Thursday 8th at 6pm you can leave a comment on my blog to enter a competition to win a little Hair Serum and mini shampoo and conditioners! Just go here and read all about it! And if you like a bargain do look up the fab kit of hair, face and body products 203089, worth nearly £100, for just £55. Sorry - thought I was at work for a sec there! lol. But it is truly fab stuff! Anyway, the winner will be announced in the next blog on Friday!

luv Debs x