Month: May 2022

Women’s lit books to read this summer

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on May 31, 2022

Women’s lit (or Women’s Fiction/Literature) are terms used for women centered books that focus on women’s life experience, and are targeted towards female readers. With summer just around the corner, if you’re looking for some great new women focused books to spend your time on reading in the sun, here are a few titles that our ARC readers loved.   Glory Unbound by Deborah L. King Glory Unbound is a sequel to Glory Bishop; our reviewers recommend reading the first book before diving in, but promise it’s worth the read. Thrust into a gilded world of wealth, society, and privilege, Glory struggles to overcome the guilt of loving her new life. With this new reality comes unexpected complications and temptations. Follow Glory Bishop in her search for freedom and independence as she strives to be her own savior. Glory Unbound is loved by readers, with Deborah D sharing in her… Read More >

Using Dialogue to Drive Your Story

By: Ginger | Posted on May 27, 2022

Using dialogue properly in your novel is one of the most important things you need to get right, yet is one of the things that so many authors get wrong, or at least struggle with. Back when I first started writing seriously, I read a couple of books on dialogue specifically, and they helped me immensely. But you can gain just as much by simply studying some of the greats, and how they structure the conversations between their characters. That’s exactly what Ginger is looking at today, with a few examples from timeless classics. In a large part, these authors and books are still widely read because they were able to nail their own dialogue so effectively.   Some of the most timeless writers of our age remain that way because of their dynamic use of dialogue. Certain writers remain as relevant today as they did when their books were… Read More >

Author Spotlight Interview: Laura Heffernan

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on May 24, 2022

Today’s interview is with romantic comedy author Laura Heffernan who also writes cozy mysteries under the pen name of Ada Bell. Her books are light and fun providing the perfect escape for readers. It was an absolute pleasure getting to know more about her writing and what she has planned! HG: How would you describe yourself to somebody who isn’t familiar with your writing yet? LH: I write light, fun books about smart women with unusual interests. My main characters like everything from pole dancing to board games to biology. Reading is an escape for me, so I want readers to feel like they can escape into my books. HG: That’s awesome. What led you to have two pen names? Was that always the way you saw it going? LH: I always planned to write and publish under my own name. Part of it is ego. Part of it is… Read More >

Approaching Your Book from the Inside Out

By: Ginger | Posted on May 20, 2022

There are many paths along the self-publishing journey, but many of the most successful authors pick the well-worn route over diving into the unknown, because they know that the readers are already following that path and returning to it, again and again. It’s familiar, they like the scenery and feel comfortable knowing where it will lead them. The danger of venturing out into the thicket, swinging your literary machete to forge a brand-new path, is that you might end up at a dead end and have to retrace your steps, sometimes starting your journey almost from the beginning. And even then, will anyone want to risk following you into that darkness? You can do both, though. It’s possible to follow the road often traveled, but veer off here and there to make your route more unique. Comfortable, yet different. Today, Ginger is here to lead you through the darkness, and… Read More >

Scary stories to keep you awake at night

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on May 17, 2022

Snakes. Clowns. Bats. What fills you with dread? While the horror genre can be one of the most harshly critiqued, Hidden Gems readers have been fortunate to have plenty of horror tales to choose from over the past few months, and this is a round-up of some of the most popular and well liked page turners. Which ones will you be adding to your to-read list?   Legacy Of Ashes by Sean Deville For the near extinct vampire race, starvation has been a way of life for centuries. That is about to change. With a respectable 4.2 average star rating on Amazon, Legacy of Ashes is the first book in the Homo Vampirous Chronicles, an apocalyptic vampire horror tale. Rebecca S. raves in her five star review, “This author has an amazing knack for weaving non-fiction elements and ‘conspiracy theories’ into tales of dystopian horror. He expertly creates characters so… Read More >

Using Fictional and Real-Life Brands in your stories

By: Ginger | Posted on May 13, 2022

Regardless of your genre, if you’re telling a fictional story then you have some sort of world occupied by characters that use a variety of products and interact with various businesses.  If your story takes place on earth, or at least a planet that could be earth, then you have a choice to make. Do you use real products and companies, or do you make them up? It might not be something you’ve ever given much thought to, and if I were to guess, I’d say many authors just subconsciously decided to go one way or the other in their books and rarely waver (their characters typically stop by McDonalds on their way home for drive through, or something like Burgers R Us.) But there are actually a variety of factors to consider when deciding to use real brands over fictional ones in your novels, and so Ginger is here… Read More >

Author Spotlight Interview: J.C. Benthin

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on May 10, 2022

Today’s interview is with charming and creative author J.C. Benthin. J.C. writes young adult and children’s novels that entertain and inspire. It was our pleasure to chat with J.C. about her writing style, future projects and life outside of writing! HG: How would you describe yourself to somebody who isn’t familiar with your writing yet? JCB: Given my experience in writing screenplays, I tend to write more cinematically with dialogue driven characters.  HG: Makes sense! You began writing as a young girl. Has “author” always been your dream job? Tell us a bit about your publishing journey. JCB: I am giggling as I write this because it took me a long time to even consider myself an author. I started my first romance novel in 3rd grade. I hand wrote it in cursive on blue lined paper and I never finished it. My writing continued in my journals, documenting moments… Read More >

Five mental supplements for writers

By: Ginger | Posted on May 6, 2022

Not everyone can maintain consistent mental focus throughout the day, and so there is no shame in looking for something that might help keep you on track. Especially when your livelihood depends on being able to concentrate! Performance enhancers aren’t just for professional athletes anymore, and the ones we’re talking about are used to improve your brain, not your body. But there are lots of options out there, which is why Ginger has put together a short list of the (legal) mental supplements that are of specific benefit to authors. Some of these you may have already tried, but you might find something new here as well. So the next time you’re feeling like you need a bit of a mental pick me up, perhaps one of these will bring you back on the road to productivity.   When people talk about “performance-enhancing” supplements, they’re normally talking about drugs or… Read More >

Humorous books to Tickle Your Funny Bone

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on May 3, 2022

They say laughter is the best medicine. Need a prescription? We’ve rounded up a list of humorous books our Hidden Gems ARC readers loved. What makes you LOL?   Strange Currents by J.C. Bruce Recommended for fans of Hiassen, White, and Hall, Strange Currents is book four of five in The Strange Files. The series chronicles Alexander Strange as he lives and works aboard a fishing trawler in Naples, Florida writing about news of the weird. J.B. raves in his five star review, “I’ve read all of the Strange books and this is the best! It’s got the most-sophisticated plot, the most-developed characters, the most-memorable settings and the best dialogue. And it is strange, which is what makes J.C. Bruce’s series so unique and readable. As a veteran of numerous trips to Key West, the authentic, recognizable setting was an added treat. Bruce fills his books with uniquely-interesting characters and… Read More >