It’s Brynnde‘s big day! Release day, that is. I hope you’ll take a look. You can read her first chapter right here on this site (look under the Books tab), or look inside on the Amazon page. And while you’re at it, I hope you’ll consider voting for the gorgeous cover on Book & Benches.

Meanwhile, an update on the Sherlock Holmes audiobook: a narrator has been chosen, and he has agreed to the job. I think it’s going to be wonderful, and I can’t wait to share the final result when it’s ready. We’re aiming to be done at the end of March.

Every time I write and release a book, I feel so sure it’s “the one.” You know, the one that will break out and do well. I felt so sure Peter would be my bright star, and then Manifesting Destiny (which ostensibly has a much wider market potential), and now I find myself hoping Brynnde will find a solid readership.

Sigh.

It would be easy to lapse into yet another lament about how difficult it is to get discovered in this business. How tough it is to be heard and seen above the clamor.

If I get hung up on it—on the numbers—I’ll lose the will to write. I’ll cease to enjoy it for its own sake because I’ll be too anxious about how no one wants to read what I write. And then my writing will get worse instead of better because I’ll be forcing it, or trying to write what I think others want to read, or something.

Well then. Head down, eyes on my work. I can at least say that, yes, Manifesting Destiny has done relatively well (and it’s all relative, isn’t it?). And it remains to be seen what happens with Brynnde. In the meantime, I’ll get on with it.

Available February 9. Pre-order on Amazon now for a special discount!

Brynnde’s thoroughbred kicked up dust as she spurred him up the tree-lined carriageway. She kept her own head low under her wide-brimmed hat, more in the hopes of not being noticed than for keeping the dust from her eyes. She was in trouble and she knew it.

She rode astride the horse, having “borrowed” some of her older brother Nicolas’ clothing. It was something she did often, and her family had long since ceased to prevent her, except on days like today—days when important guests were expected to arrive. Brynnde had ridden out early that morning, fully intending to be back and presentable before nuncheon, but she had managed to get herself into a long conversation with Mrs. Davershire, wife of the gamekeeper, which had led to a visit to the gardener Mr. MacDonald to check on the recovery of his broken leg, and so she had lost track of the time.

If the tenants were at all appalled at the sight of a daughter of the house riding in masculine fashion, they kept it to themselves. Surely, in Brynnde’s mind, that topic of conversation around Aux Arbres and the nearby village of Barrow Wood would have worn itself out long ago.

But now they would have something new to fuel the gossip, namely Brynnde’s disgraceful arrival.

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See this beautiful book? I wish I could claim credit for the cover, but no, the lovely Lila Mijailovic deserves all the glory. And she deserves your votes, too!

Books & Benches has selected Brynnde as a cover finalist for February. Please go vote! Only one vote per person, though, okay? Let’s keep it honest.

And while you’re at it, make sure you’ve pre-ordered Brynnde, which comes out in one week! If you wait, you’ll have to pay full price. Order it now for just 99 cents and it will be automatically delivered on February 9.

Brynnde Archambault needs to find someone to marry, else she’ll be stuck with dull Mr. Dallweather. The answer to her problem arrives in the form of handsome and witty Viscount Burbridge, but just when everything seems to be going smoothly, scandal strikes and the engagement ends.

Meanwhile, Brynnde has no trouble matchmaking her friends and even her own brother. But while she breezily finds suitors for everyone else, for her time is running out. Must she resign herself to becoming Mrs. Dallweather? Or will Brynnde yet succeed in making a match for herself?

If you love the old Zebra and Signet Regencies, this book is for you!

InsecureWritersSupportGroup It’s time again for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. Read and support writers by clicking here, and if you’re a writer you can also join!

This month I’m both nervous and excited. Nervcited? A couple of things are happening: 1. I’m putting out a new book in a completely new genre for me. I’ve long loved reading Regency romances but never thought to write one until now. I’d been writing a lot of heavy books and found myself needing a lighter project. I was just playing around, really, but found I loved it! So I’m hoping you will all enjoy Brynnde too, and that I’ll find fellow Regency lovers to read it. 2. I’m doing an audiobook! I attended a talk about audiobooks at last year’s InD’Scribe and it really planted the seed for me to want to have one of my books adapted to that format. I don’t know yet how it will work out, but I’m hopeful. So far I’ve had some great auditions and plan to pick a narrator soon. Stay tuned!

As for being nervcited, well, of course there’s the nagging fear of: What if it all goes to hell? What if it all fails? But I’ll never know until I try, right?

Question of the month: How has being a writer changed your experience as a reader?

I recently noticed this as I was re-reading Dune and then again while reading Anne Perry’s The Face of a Stranger—that my knowledge of “rules” for writing sometimes pulls me out of a book when I notice one of those rules being broken. And the truth is, these writing rules are relatively modern and new, and the books cited above are somewhat older and probably not beholden to those rules. But I still noticed. In the same way that I notice things in movies because I have a film degree and also have worked on film sets. I think any time you have experience in an area, you’re going to notice things, for good or ill. You’ll get the inside jokes but you’ll also notice the errors.