Monday, 25 June 2018

Top 5 Fictional Witches of All Time

To celebrate the release of my new witch books, Bloodless and Bloodshed (Witch’s Blood Series), and of Bloodless being free to download across all e-book retailers, I thought I’d write a quick post on my favourite witches from the world of books, TV and film.

Amber from my Poison Blood and Witch’s Blood Series is my favourite fictional witch, of course. But before she came along, there were some pretty good contenders for that title, and in this post, I’m going to share my top five witches of all time.

In no particular order.......

First up, Hermione Granger from Harry Potter (Books by JK Rowling), though I always think of her as a wizard(!). Hermione is not only super talented but she’s also a hard worker with a great work ethic and so endearing with her soft spot for house elves.





Sabrina Spellman from Sabrina The Teenage Witch (American TV series). When this show first aired on TV, I hadn’t heard of the film (of the same name) that it was based on, but my classmates and I went crazy for it. It was funny, cute and who could resist Sabrina’s cheeky and lovable cat, Salem? Her aunts were pretty darn cool, too, and her love interest, Harvey, was everyone’s crush. Aww, those dimples....




Willow Rosenberg from Buffy the Vampire Slayer (American TV series); my favourite TV series ever growing up (and one of my top 3 faves of all time). Willow was just so adorable before she started dabbling in magic, and what a powerful practitioner she became! She’s sweet, quirky and with Buffy and Xander at her side, they were a great set of characters for that time.




The Halliwells from Charmed (American TV series). Apart from the final few seasons, this series was amazing amazing amazing. And another show in my top 3 favourites. Three sisters. Three powerful witches. Romance. Drama. Laughs. This series had it all. Apparently, the show is getting a reboot, so I’ll be keeping an eye out for that. No matter how good it’s going to be, Prue, Piper and Phoebe of the original series will be my favourite charmed ones. Oh, and Paige, too (played by the now infamous Rose McGowan).




Sarah, Bonnie, Rochelle & Nancy from The Craft (American movie). I loved this film in my teens and watched it every time it aired on TV. It was so cool and sassy and dark, the acting was amazing, and it had one hell of an ending. A high school teen movie with bite.




Honourable Mentions:

Samantha Stevens from Bewitched (American TV series). Who could forget the domestic witch Samantha and all the trouble she and her mother got into in this hit 70s comedy series?



Mildred Hubble from Worst Witch (Books by Jill Murphy). I’d never read the books but I loved the children’s TV adaptation of it when I was a kid. Millie was cute, a klutz, and downright entertaining. I believe there’s a reboot of it airing on a TV near you....

Mollie and Minerva from Harry Potter. No introduction or explanation needed for these two badass witches. Enough said. Love these ladies. And ooh, Bellatrix Lestrange, even though I hate what she does, I love the character.

So, that’s it. Agree or disagree on any of my choices? Maybe I missed a few? Either way, I hope you enjoyed this quick post.



Click this link to download Witch's Blood, Book 1 for free from Amazon:

Click this link to download Book 2 from the Kindle Store:



And here are the links if you shop at the below e-book stores:


Here are the Goodreads links so make sure to add them to your to-read shelf:

Book 1  |  Book 2



Friday, 22 June 2018

Simultaneously The Best & Worst Weekend of My #IndieAuthor Career (Part 2)

Part 1 here.

It took me a while to convince Smashwords that iBooks had removed Witch's Blood, Book 1 from the Sci-Fi & Fantasy (SFF) category deliberately, and that my book’s disappearing act from the SFF category was not due to any algorithm. Well, it was when I discovered that the book had been moved to the Romance category (??!?!!) that Smashwords agreed to contact iBooks and ask what was going on.

And I only found out about the category swap because I was searching for books to read myself on Monday evening and checked out the Free Romance category... and there was my witch book, in the top 100 of the Romance category! It just looked so wrong in there, amongst all the contemporary romances and erotica-type titles.

My book is about witches and magic (and blood, of course), but it’s not a romance novel. The book does have some romance in it (what book doesn’t?), but its true category, for iBooks, is SFF.




It wasn’t until Thursday afternoon (UK time) that I was told that iBooks were sorting this mess out and that it would be fixed within 24 hours. A bit too late, because WB1 had dropped out of the overall Free iBooks top 200 chart by Wednesday evening, and then out of the top 200 of the Free Romance category by Thursday evening. I blame this on the incorrect changing of the book’s category. 100%. My reasoning is: most readers know what they like and what they want to read, and they will most likely check out the bestseller lists of the category they’re interested in, rather than the overall Free chart, which has a mix of genres. That’s how I use iBooks. If they want to read witch books, they’ll look in the SFF category, not Romance. Those readers looking for contemporary romance novels, which dominate the Free Romance category, will ignore books about witches, so of course my book dropped out of that chart within a few days. If your book isn’t in the place where people expect to find it, then your book won’t get seen, and therefore, won’t get downloaded. Discoverability is everything.

iBooks didn’t explain why they removed the book from the SFF category, the book’s correct category, at a time when it was doing really well in that chart (it was no.6!), and dumped it in the Romance category. The Smashwords rep I was liaising with suggested that iBooks were trying to help. He guessed that iBooks saw that the book was doing well and moved it to Romance to expose it to a different audience and boost downloads, after all, the book’s description mentions its got romantic elements. I say their interference did more harm than good and reduced downloads because it decreased the visibility of my book to its right audience. My husband says that it looks as though iBooks did what they did to prevent the book from doing well and keep it away from the no.1 spot and out of the top 10. Whatever the reason was, ultimately, it has cost me big time.




Now, I really can’t see my book return to the top 100 of the SFF category, let alone the top 10. If it hadn’t done so well initially, then it wouldn’t hurt so much now. And I wouldn’t have to live with this ‘what if’. What if iBooks had left my book alone? Could it have made it to no.1 in the Sci-Fi & Fantasy category? Would it have entered the top 10 of the overall Free iBooks chart? What if? Just, what if?

The only good thing now is that Amazon have finally price matched WB1 and its now free at the Kindle Store. Click this link to download it now for FREE from Amazon:
>>> urban fantasy <<<


Also on Kobo  |  iBooks  |  B&N Nook  | Smashwords

Thank you for reading this post. If you're interested in my debut novel, Chasing Pavements (Soulmates Saga, Book 1) click here to learn more about it.


Like all my other books, it's also available on:
iBooks   |   B&N Nook   |   Kobo |   Smashwords 


Book Details
Length: 110,000 words
Genre: Contemporary Romance / Clean Romance / Diverse Romance / Interracial Romance / Romantic Drama / Women’s Fiction

Mood: Inspirational / Feel Good / Coming of Age / Dark
Content: Sexy but No explicit sex scenes / No erotica
Audience: New Adult & College / Adult / Female Readers

Recommended for: Readers that enjoy romance novels with serious issues and characters with depth. This is a story about life, love, friendship, family, music, art, destiny and soul mates.


And the first two books in my teen urban fantasy/YA paranormal romance series, the Poison Blood series, can be downloaded for free via:

Amazon US|  Amazon UK|   iBooks US UK   |   B&N Nook Store   |   Smashwords






PB1 Book Details
Length: 29,000 words
GenreYA Paranormal Romance / Teen Vampire Romance / Young Adult Paranormal Fantasy / Teen & YA Urban Fantasy / Young Adult Science Fiction & Fantasy / Supernatural Romance / Fantasy Romance / Sparkling Vampires
Mood: Dark / Humorous / Coming of age
Content: No violence / No explicit sex scenes / No erotica
Audience: Teen / Young Adult / New Adult / Adult
Recommended for: Readers that love all things related to the Chosen One, vampires, slayers and witches!





Monday, 18 June 2018

Simultaneously My Best & Worst Weekend as an #IndieAuthor

When I put my latest books, Witch’s Blood, Books 1 & 2, up for pre-order, it was mainly to ensure that all the retailers would have the books ready for download on the same day. I distribute to iBooks, B&N Nook Store, Kobo and a number of other e-book stores through Smashwords, and directly with Amazon Kindle, and the various shops start listing the books on different days, which isn’t ideal. With pre-order, I knew every retailer would have the books ready at the same time, so I decided to list them as pre-orders and didn’t have a long pre-release period. So that was that.




I had a decent cover for Book 1 and a good blurb, and this new urban fantasy series is a follow-up to my paranormal vampire fantasy series, the Poison Blood Series, so I knew it had a audience. I hoped it would do well, and unlike when I published the Poison Blood books, this time I have an iPhone, so I knew that I would be able to see how it fares in the iBooks charts. When the Poison Blood books took iBooks (and the Nook Store) by storm back in 2012 and 2013, the self-publishing boom years, I had no access to iBooks, so I had to use App Annie to see how those books were doing. And they were doing really well. But the highest ranking that Poison Blood, Book 1 achieved was number 8 (if I recall correctly) in the US iBooks chart. Which isn’t bad if I think about it: vampire books were really popular back then and it was a saturated market, and with a simple DIY cover, I think the book overachieved somewhat. It definitely exceeded my expectations. My expectations for WB1 weren’t too high or too low, but I definitely didn’t think this witch book would surpass the highest ranking of my vampire book.

WB1 and WB2 came out on Tuesday, 12th June, but I didn’t get around to checking the iBooks charts until around 11am on the 14th. I didn’t expect to find it in the top 100 of its category (genre), the Free Sci-Fi & Fantasy category, but I hoped it would be in the top 200. I found it in the top 20! At no.12 to be precise. Yay. It was the happiest day for me, the author. (The happiest day for me, the person, was December 3, 2017, when my son was born).

The first thing I did after taking a screenshot of the chart, was log-out of iBooks and look for the “create new Apple ID” link so that I could select US as my location to check out the US iBooks chart. My books tend to do better in the US than in the UK, so I was really excited to see where WB1 had charted. Unfortunately, it turned out that I couldn’t check the international markets anymore. I think this happened because of the iOS 11.3 update; there doesn’t seem to be a way of creating new Apple IDs anymore. If anyone reading this knows how to check overseas iBooks charts, please comment below and let me know. Thanks!

Anyway, I checked the UK chart every now and then, and before I knew it, it was almost 6am the following day (15th June) and Witch’s Blood, Book 1 was no.4 in the Free Sci-Fi & Fantasy (SFF) category! And in the top 100 of the overall Free iBooks chart. Amazing. It was a great start to the day, and the best thing to happen to me, the author.



Throughout the course of the day, it dropped to no.6, but stayed there overnight. I went to bed with a smile on my face. The next day was a Saturday, and WB1 held on to the no.6 position all morning. Saturdays are for going out, seeing family and friends, watching a movie, doing the weekly shopping, keeping the kids entertained. Not the time for checking out what books are available in the SFF category on iBooks. I’d anticipated a drop in downloads over the weekend. What I wasn’t prepared for was the best weekend of my indie author career to morph into the worst weekend of my indie author career.

Around lunch time on Saturday, I opened my iBooks app to check my book’s ranking. And I couldn’t find it. It wasn’t at no.6 anymore. Or no.7, 8, or 9. It wasn’t in the top 20, or 30. Darn it, it wasn’t even in the top 100. By the time I scrolled down to no.150, I realised that something had gone wrong. Really wrong. My book couldn’t have dropped so much. And it hadn’t. It hadn’t dropped in the rankings. No. It had been removed from the SFF category page altogether?!?! It was still in the overall Free chart, at around the same position it had been in during the morning, so I knew it wasn’t a drop in downloads that had led to its absence from the SFF chart. The book could still be searched for by name, was still on my author page, it even still had ‘Paranormal’ listed as its ‘Category’ on its book page (see screenshot of the book page below), it just wasn’t in the category page that it belonged to.



It was such a random thing to happen, especially considering it was the book’s first weekend since release. Such an unlucky and unfair thing to happen, during a time that the book was doing well. Being in the top 10 of its category meant that every single customer looking for a free book in the SFF category would have seen my book because the top 20 books are on the first page. This visibility would have boosted downloads, and helped keep it in the top 10. It could have climbed higher in the chart, but if not, it had a really good chance of sticking around in the top 10 for a good amount of time. It was the newest book in the top 10. But for some reason, iBooks had taken it out of its rightful category, and as a result, people looking for a book like mine couldn’t see it anymore. It ruined my day, ruined my book’s chances of climbing to the no.1 spot, and led to a decline in downloads.

I spiralled into a dark, dark mood. It was too good to be true. Just my luck. I should have known that something would trip me up. There have always been obstacles for me to overcome in my publishing journey, especially when things start to be looking up. So unfair. Why did they do this, why?

With a sinking heart, I emailed my distributor Smashwords, knowing that their office was closed for the weekend. Knowing that this issue wouldn’t be resolved until Monday at the earliest. I tweeted @iBooks and found an email address on their Instagram page and emailed them, but I was certain that they wouldn’t see my messages until Monday. I’d have to endure this for the whole weekend.

By Sunday evening, WB1 had dropped out of the top 100 of the Free iBooks chart and looked to be on its way to dropping further overnight. After all, readers searching for free books will not always scroll beyond the first 50-70 books, and they are most likely to search by category because they know what books they like and what books they feel like reading at the moment. So, how did I go to sleep on Sunday night? With a heavy sigh and an anxious mind. Would Smashwords be able to get iBooks to rectify the situation, how long would it take, and would my book ever make it back in the top 10 of the Sci-Fi & Fantasy category? Would I be starting from scratch?

Part 2


Thank you for reading this post. If you're interested in my debut novel, Chasing Pavements (Soulmates Saga, Book 1) click here to learn more about it.

Like all my other books, it's also available on:
iBooks   |   B&N Nook   |   Kobo |   Smashwords 

Book Details
Length: 110,000 words
Genre: Contemporary Romance / Clean Romance / Diverse Romance / Interracial Romance / Romantic Drama / Women’s Fiction

Mood: Inspirational / Feel Good / Coming of Age / Dark
Content: Sexy but No explicit sex scenes / No erotica
Audience: New Adult & College / Adult / Female Readers

Recommended for: Readers that enjoy romance novels with serious issues and characters with depth. This is a story about life, love, friendship, family, music, art, destiny and soul mates.


And the first two books in my teen urban fantasy/YA paranormal romance series, the Poison Blood series, can be downloaded for free via:

Amazon US|  Amazon UK|   iBooks US UK   |   B&N Nook Store   |   Smashwords






PB1 Book Details
Length: 29,000 words
GenreYA Paranormal Romance / Teen Vampire Romance / Young Adult Paranormal Fantasy / Teen & YA Urban Fantasy / Young Adult Science Fiction & Fantasy / Supernatural Romance / Fantasy Romance / Sparkling Vampires
Mood: Dark / Humorous / Coming of age
Content: No violence / No explicit sex scenes / No erotica
Audience: Teen / Young Adult / New Adult / Adult
Recommended for: Readers that love all things related to the Chosen One, vampires, slayers and witches!




Monday, 11 June 2018

#NewRelease Witch’s Blood Series, a YA Paranormal Romance

Hi guys, hope you're having a great summer!

Guess what? I finally have a new book to tell you about! Well, two books, actually.

That's right: the first two books in my Witch's Blood Series are out this week! They’re the follow-up books to my supernatural vampire romance series, the Poison Blood Series.



These two sets of YA paranormal fantasy books are part of my Magical Bloodlines Universe, for which I have another series planned. Whereas the Poison Blood Series revolved around vampires and slayers, and the Witch’s Blood Series is all about witches, wizards and sorcerers, this upcoming series will focus on completely different mythical creatures, and I’m very excited about getting stuck in. More on that another time.




First things first. The new books releasing this week: Witch’s Blood, Book 1: Bloodless and Book 2: Bloodshed are available at your favourite retailers for your reading pleasure 😊

I hope you enjoy these books as much as you did the Poison Blood Series. Please post a review to let me know what you thought and to help others discover my books. I would really appreciate it 😊



Click this link to the Kindle Store for Book 1:


Click this link for Book 2:
>> urban fantasy <<



And here are the links if you shop at the below e-book stores:


Here are the Goodreads links so make sure to add them to your to-read shelf:

Book 1  |  Book 2


Sunday, 27 May 2018

Hello and thanks for stopping by :)

I'm currently on maternity leave, with little or no time to blog, Tweet or Instagram. At least not on a regular basis, anyway.

So, instead of you landing on a post that's a few weeks (or months) old, I thought I'd use this out of office-type message to point out that your visit to this page can still be worthwhile. Have a look around; I'm sure you'll find something interesting :)

If you'd like to know a little more about me, I've written some articles on my personal experiences and how they've influenced my writing and publishing journey. Check out the 'Confessions of an #IndieAuthor' tab for these posts.

For authors/writers:
I have a group of posts aimed at you, with tips and advice on writing, publishing and marketing. You'll find these under the 'For Authors' tab.

For readers:
I write both contemporary romance and urban fantasy. I have two complete series ready for you to check out, which I will list below. Click on the book titles if you're interested in learning more about my books.

1. Contemporary Romance:
Soulmates Saga





2. Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance:
Poison Blood Series

The first two books in this series are free to download from your favourite e-book store!




I also have another contemporary romance novel, If I Say Yes (Love & Alternatives #1), so check that out for FREE:

Kindle US|   Kindle UK  |   iBooks US UK   |   B&N Nook Store   |   Smashwords






Sign up to my Mailing List for a Free eBook!

By signing up, you will receive e-mails when I run free or discounted book promotions. I won't bombard you with e-mails otherwise.



Chasing Pavements Book Details:
Length: 110,000 words
Genre: Contemporary Romance / Clean Romance / Diverse Romance / Interracial Romance / Romantic Drama / Women’s Fiction
Mood: Inspirational / Feel Good / Coming of Age / Dark
Content: Sexy but No explicit sex scenes / No erotica
Audience: New Adult & College / Adult / Female Readers

Recommended for: Readers that enjoy romance novels with serious issues and characters with depth. This is a story about life, love, friendship, family, music, art, destiny and soul mates.


Poison Blood, Book 1 Details:

Length: 29,000 words
Genre: Paranormal Romance / Vampire Romance / Paranormal Fantasy / Urban Fantasy / Science Fiction & Fantasy / Sparkly Vampires
Mood: Dark / Humorous / Coming of age
Content: No violence / No explicit sex scenes / No erotica
Audience: Teen / Young Adult / New Adult / Adult

Recommended for: Readers that love all things vampires, slayers and witches!


If I Say Yes Book Details:

Length: A 100,000-word contemporary romance novel with added bonus content
Genre: Contemporary Romance / Clean Romance / Diverse Romance / Interracial Romance / Light Hearted Romance / Modern Day Love Story / Chick-Lit / Contemporary Women’s Fiction / Wedding Fiction
Mood: Inspirational / Feel Good / Funny
Content: Sexy but No explicit sex scenes / No erotica
Audience: New Adult & College / Adult / Female Readers

Recommended for: Readers that enjoy novels by Cecilia Ahern, Jojo Moyes, Giovanna Fletcher etc., and books such as the Wedding Pact Series.