Here’s a question for you: Which authors’ books do you buy—preorder, even—without question? You’ll pick up their next book no matter what?

I have three at the moment.

1. Tana French

I love her Dublin Murder Squad series and click “preorder” without hesitation whenever a new one is announced.

2. Ben Aaronovitch

Yeah, the last couple Peter Grant novels were wobbly, but I’ll still read them.

3. Kate Morton

She has a definite formula, but I enjoy her books anyway.

I enjoy a lot of authors on a regular or semi-regular basis, but in most cases I’m still pretty selective. Like, I won’t read every Stephen King novel. And I fizzled out on Neil Gaiman. And I haven’t enjoyed the most recent stuff by Anne Rice.

So which authors inspire your loyalty and why? What is it about their work that you keep coming back to? Let me know in the comments!

P.S. Brynnde is still free, but today is the last day!

Today through this weekend, you can pick up Brynnde on Amazon Kindle for FREE! Remember that you don’t need to own a Kindle to read Kindle books; there’s a free app that will allow you to read them on your tablet or phone.

If you do read Brynnde, please consider leaving a review on Amazon and/or Goodreads. Reviews help other readers find great books. They also let me know whether you like what I’m doing and want more . . . or not. Even just a star rating is helpful! Thank you for supporting my work.

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?

Brynnde is a light, bubbly, and sweet Regency romance in the vintage style of Zebra and Signet.

A little more from The Great Divide (Changers 2):

“I have faith in the people I know,” Arlon said.

“And distrust for the people you don’t,” Annice finished. “By that logic, I have no reason to trust you.”

Arlon looked at her again, this time startled. “You know me.”

“Not really,” said Annice. “I know Mrs. Montague a bit because she is—was—our neighbor, but you were ahead of me in school and I’m not friends with Marcus or Cee, so… Tell me again why I should trust you?”

“Because I helped you!”

“You knocked me out of a window and made me a fugitive. Some help.”

I resisted podcasts for a very long time. I don’t generally like talk radio, and I can’t do audiobooks* so I didn’t think I’d like podcasts either. Turns out, I was wrong. After getting kind of sick of the songs on my iPod, I decided to try “Serial.” Remember when that was a big deal? I came into it really late, but I was hooked. And once it was over, I was desperate to find new podcasts to listen to.

I mostly like entertainment podcasts. I listen to “Pop Culture Happy Hour” most weeks and “Little Gold Men” every week. (I used to listen to PCHH every week, too, but in recent weeks I’ve found the topics less compelling, and the hosts began to get on my nerves a little? I don’t know if that’s just a result of overexposure or ???)

Other podcasts I’ve enjoyed include the now defunct “Mystery Show.” And I listen to occasional episodes of “RadioLab” and “Reply All.” I like the Crack’d podcast, too, and sometimes “Bullseye” or “Fresh Air” or “Stuff You Missed in History Class.”

Still looking for some good author/book marketing podcasts. If you know of any, please comment! (I did guest on “She Wrote a Book!” a couple times, which is a nice one, but there must be more, yes?)

So. Do you listen to podcasts? If so, which ones? If not, why not? I want to hear!

*I can’t listen to audiobooks because I find I can’t absorb the story in that form. I need to see the words.

That’s my handsome 11-year-old son. I know I don’t write a ton about my family—I’m private that way—but I just love this picture too much not to share it. I think the 80s have come back into style. You’ll see my son’s hair is pretty long, and I’ve noticed a number of his [male] classmates are rocking the long hair lately, too.

My son does get mistaken for a girl, but only when he puts his hair in a ponytail.

In other news—writing news—I’ve been given a wonderful opportunity to attend a small workshop/retreat in France this coming June. I’m very much looking forward to it! And I promise to post lots of pictures, if not here then on my Facebook page. In the meantime, I’m still working away at Changers 2 and my stack of other projects. (If you enjoyed Brynnde I think you’ll really love Faebourne when it’s finished!) I’m busier now than I can ever remember being in my life. Probably because I’m naturally a bit lazy. I admit it. Having too much to do stresses me out because I’m the kind of person who needs frequent quiet and alone time to recharge. That hasn’t been possible in recent weeks, which is another reason to look forward to the writing retreat. Well, and France. Who couldn’t look forward to that???

I need about 40,000 more words to finish The Great Divide, maybe a few less. The goal is to be done by the end of April. So here is my Pacemaker graph for tracking my progress.

I now have a lovely new logo! They always say authors these days need a brand. Because I write in a variety of genres, I couldn’t make mine genre specific. So I went with my favorite color + something that simply shows I’m a writer.

The thought is, instead of having to make all-new marketing stuff for every new book (though I still will in some circumstances), I can also have all-purpose items that are just, well, me.

For now I’ve put the logo on the sidebar, and I will have to decide how else to use it. I don’t need new business cards yet, but I’ll be at the Bay Area Book Fest in June and I’ll surely want to hand out some goodies. We’ll see what I come up with. Stay tuned!

Five years ago today, we flew from Boston to San Francisco to become Californians. I don’t regret a minute of it. California is better for my health—mental, physical, and emotional. While there are things about Boston that I miss, I struggled with seasonal depression and panic attacks during the snowy season. Due to a lung condition, I also had bronchitis on a fairly regular basis, at one point for six months straight. By comparison, I’ve only had it twice since moving. I’m much better off here.

The day of the move, we landed at about 9:00 p.m. local time and drove through In-N-Out Burger on our way to the temp house. So tonight we’ll celebrate with In-N-Out (which we don’t eat as often as when it was new and novel) and then have pie for Pi Day! There’s a cookies-and-cream pie in the freezer just waiting . . .

Do you celebrate Pi Day? What kind of pie do you like? (I won’t eat fruit pies, only cream pies because I’m weird like that.) Are you a transplant of any kind? Tell me about it in the comments!

I saw a headline from the London Book Fair today touting that, in the UK at least, print books are on the upswing. For two years running sales of print titles have gone up. Now, the article doesn’t mention if some of that rise is due to adult coloring books (which is what accounted for similar boosts in print in the U.S.), so maybe it’s much ado about very little, but…

I think most authors dream of holding their book—an actual, printed book—in their hands. Maybe as new authors grow up in the digital age, this feeling will diminish. Younger authors will be happy to have their work “on screen” (and I don’t mean a movie). And while I can say that my e-books do sell more than my print ones, at least thus far, I’d still truly love to see some of my digital titles in print format. Not for monetary reasons (see above) but for concrete satisfaction and a full sense of accomplishment.

More and more, readers online tell me they prefer “real” books. By which they mean physical, printed books. An e-book is, of course, also real, but the experience is decidedly different. Reading from a screen versus a printed page, scrolling rather than turning, even just the feel of it in one’s hands is very different. Our brains certainly take in a screen differently than they do something printed. It’s why they tell you not to look at a screen before bedtime—the interaction with a screen fires your brain up when, in the evening, you’re trying to wind it down for the night. Which makes me think that reading from an electronic device must be, to our brains at least, less relaxing than reading from a printed book.

The pros of e-books: less expensive (for both reader and publisher), faster to produce, easy to revise, one can change the size of the type to suit one’s needs, and one can carry a substantial number of them on an e-reader so that one can basically have a portable library.

The pros of print books: a different kind of engagement with the text, and that great book smell. In short, while on paper (har!) the e-book appears to have more advantages, there’s simply something satisfying about a print book. And people will give up a lot for that satisfaction, including a number of seeming conveniences. We’re not rational creatures, after all, at least not wholly. When logically we should think e-books make the most sense, we still find ourselves buying and reading physical books.

Anyway, I do have an e-reader that I sometimes use, but not nearly as much as I could. I’ll almost always reach for a print book before thinking to check my e-reader. I must have dozens of titles on the e-reader that I might never get around to actually reading, and I’ve heard the same from many other bibliophiles. They download e-books when they see a good deal (read: free, or maybe 99 cents if the books sounds interesting enough to risk a little money) and then promptly forget them. Leaves me to wonder how many of the e-books I sell remain in a never-ending TBR stack…

What about you? Do you buy e-books or print or both? Which do you read more of? Are there other pros and cons to either format? Let me know in the comments!

The Great Divide (Changers 2) is under way as I type this. (Well, not as I type this because I’m typing this rather than working on Changers 2, but . . . Yeah. Let’s just say I’ve been working on it.) Here’s a taste:

Guin felt as though a net were closing around her. One she couldn’t see or fight. She stood there, opening and closing her fists while her mind reeled. Go back to the Vulpes? No, couldn’t put them in danger again. Go after Marcus and Cee? Maybe…

Warm hands closed around Guin’s own and drew them gently together, startling her out of her racing thoughts. She lifted her head to meet Rand’s dark, compassionate gaze.

“It’s going to be okay,” he said.

“You don’t know that,” Guin said. The words felt too big for her throat, but she managed to squeeze them out. “You can’t promise that.”