Friday Feature: Cover Loving by Avril Tremayne

Erica here! Welcome to another Friday Feature! Today, Harlequin and Random Romance author Avril Tremayne is discussing covers. Avril’s fun and flirty style is what got her noticed in both Harlequin’s So You Think You Can Write 2013 and Wattpad contests. Since then, Avril’s published six booksIf you’d like to win a free ebook of Avril’s newest release, just leave a comment. 

There are so many blogs out there about book covers – good covers, bad covers, cover trends, choosing covers – and one thing I know for sure: I am clueless!
In fact, my cover cluelessness is one of the main impediments to my becoming a self-publishing author.
I’ll give you an example. The first book I ever put on Wattpad, Signed, Sealed, Delivered, shocked me by becoming quickly and very successful. There was only one recurring criticism: that the cover (which I designed myself) did not do the story justice. In the interests of full disclosure, I’m sharing it here, alongside the much more fabulous cover of the version published earlier this year under its new title, The Contract.
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I’ve published seven books, and for those books, I’ve had 15 covers market-by-market and edition-by-edition, featuring everything from headless torsos to frolicking heroines to little boys. But I haven’t thought deeply about the subject until a month ago, when I hit the cover jackpot with my latest book, Escaping Mr Right, which comes out in October. Not only does the cover couple look almost exactly as I picture my heroine and hero, but the whole feel of the image is as sexily delicious as I believe the book to be.
There was only one tiny issue niggling at the back of my mind. Escaping Mr Right is book two in a trilogy, and the cover of book one (Wanting Mr Wrong), which has been out in the world since February, is a very different beast. So what? I decided; the books may be ‘attached’ via their characters, but they are nevertheless definitely standalone stories.
The end, I thought.
My wonderful publisher, Random House, however, thought not the end, and redesigned the cover of Wanting Mr Wrong. Both the old and the new Wanting Mr Wrong covers are pretty fabulous, but they’re also very different. One’s a little flirtier; the other’s a little sexier. Take a look…

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Now, I write flirty, sexy books, so both covers ‘fit’, but in this particular instance, I’m barracking for the sexier one. First – because it lets readers know they’re not getting a squeaky clean ‘sweet’ read. Second – because there’s enough pop and colour and flirt to suggest that while this book is a sexy read, it’s doesn’t veer into erotica territory. Third – because together, Wanting Mr Wrong and Escaping Mr Right really do look like a ‘family’.

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I’d love to hear your views – which (if any) of these covers grabs you? And in general, what is the kind of cover you love best?

Image 4Wanting Mr Wrong
Evie Parker has never been one to swoon after celebrities – give her a neuroscientist over an actor any day! So when she develops her first movie-star crush, she’s determined to date her way out of it, starting with the next good-looking doctor she sees.
Yet hovering on the fringes of her life is her gay best friend’s determined brother, Jackson J Stevens, a famous actor who comes with trailing paparazzi. The one thing worse than a celebrity in Evie’s eyes is a media circus, so Jack isn’t an option no matter how hard he flirts with her.
Evie knows what she doesn’t want; Jack knows what he does. And somewhere in the middle, pheromones are making things go haywire every time they’re together.
Buy link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PI46TI0

Avril Tremayne has wanted to be a writer ever since reading Jane Eyre as a teenager, but navigated diverse careers along the way,  including, shoe-selling, nursing, teaching, public relations and corporate affairs – most recently in global aviation.

Returning to her home city of Sydney, Australia, after a three year stint in the Middle East, she finally decided in 2013 to kick-start her last career as a romance writer, and pens the types of tales she likes to read – sexy, funny, urban stories.

When she’s not writing or reading, Avril can generally be found eating – although she does not cook – drinking wine, and obsessing about shoes.
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Friday Feature: Excerpt from The Truth About Hope

Erica here! It’s my pleasure to share an excerpt from Kate James’ new Harlequin Heartwarming title, The Truth About Hope (Erica insert: I love the title already and can’t wait to read this one!). I’ve been a fan of the Heartwarming line since it was revamped, and I hope you’ll enjoy this line of clean reads that pack an emotional one-two punch combo that will have you snot-crying and happy sighing in turn. You can learn more about the line’s author’s here. Now let’s dip a toe into The Truth About Hope!

In the pet store, Hope pushed the shopping cart up and down the aisles and tried to set her negative thoughts aside. But she found it more challenging to put Luke out of her mind.

            “That’s a lot of dog food,” the young clerk behind the counter commented as she rang up the two thirty-pound bags, a box of dog treats and a couple of chew toys.

“Yeah, and you’ll be seeing me back sooner than you’d think,” Hope said as she slipped her credit card and the receipt in her wallet. The clerk was too young to know her. After the encounter with Miranda, it was nice to have a pleasant interaction, free of tension. Hope slid the shopping bag over her arm, then hefted the first of the two large bags of kibble.

“Let me give you a hand with that.” The clerk came around to help just as the phone started ringing.

“Go ahead and answer that. I can manage,” Hope told her.

“You sure?”

Hope nodded.

“Thanks,” the clerk said as she rushed to answer the phone.

Hope pushed the plastic bag farther up her arm and hoisted the other bag of dog food. Weighed down and barely able to see over her load, she was glad her Jeep was only a few steps outside the shop. She maneuvered one of the bags farther up as it began to slide and raised her leg to balance the other one so she could reach for the door.

Just as she was about to open it, the door was pulled out of her grasp. She lurched forward and tumbled out the doorway. She hit the sidewalk hard, landing inelegantly on her hands and knees, her purchases scattered about. One of the bags of dog food had split and kibble was strewn around her.

Hope pushed to her knees and winced as raw skin scraped across the rough cement.

“I’m so sorry. Here, let me help…” A pair of large hands reached toward her. They froze and withdrew abruptly as Hope looked up and, from under the brim of her baseball cap, made eye contact with a pair of gold-flecked amber eyes—Luke Carter’s lion eyes.

The man before her was tall and fit. His face had matured in a rugged, handsome way. He looked the same and yet he didn’t.

Hope’s immediate reaction was excitement, that little thrill she’d always experienced when she’d been with him as a teen.

She lowered her head. “Great. Just great,” she muttered. Those mischievous fates just had to have another go at her today, didn’t they? Of all the people they could’ve thrown in her path, it had to be Luke. Probably served her right for not being able to keep her mind off him.

Erica again. Don’t you just love an awkward meeting? And apparently it’s not the first that Hope has had. I’m already wondering why Luke drew away so abruptly when he realized who Hope was, and why she’s been thinking aobut him. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to read this one!

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

The Truth About Hope
by Kate James
Adult Contemporary Romance
May 1st 2015 by Harlequin Heartwarming

Who is Hope Wilson?

Is she the girl her former hometown thinks she is? Or the girl Luke Carter once loved–and maybe still does?

When Hope returns to Canyon Creek, Texas, to honor her father’s last wishes, there’s only one person on her mind: her high school sweetheart, Luke. The boy she lied to when she had to leave Canyon Creek as a teen, finding it easier to hide what she really felt than deal with the grief of loss. Her father’s fortune could make a big difference to Canyon Creek–but Hope finds that the townspeople have a long memory about his misdeeds. With a plan to make amends on his behalf, Hope learns the truth about herself. And the truth about love.

Kate James spent much of her childhood abroad before attending university in Canada. She built a successful business career, but her passion has always been literature. As a result Kate turned her energy to her love of the written word. Her writing has been recognized with a number of awards, including first place honors for Silver Linings in both the First Coast Romance Writers’ Published Beacon Contest and ACRA’s Heart of Excellence Readers? Choice Award. Her November Harlequin Heartwarming release, A Child’s Christmas, received first-place honors from Southern Magic, the Birmingham Chapter of the Romance Writers of America, for the 2015 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence!

Kate married her husband, Ken, in an elegant, ocean-front wedding on a tropical island. When they are not traveling, they split their time between their properties in southern and central Ontario in Canada, with their beloved black Labs, Harley and Logan.

Kate?s next novel is the first book in her K-9 Squad Trilogy, and is scheduled for release on October 1, 2015.

Follow the Tour:

Tour Giveaway

$30 Amazon Gift Card (INT)
5 Print Copies of The Truth About Hope (US/CAN Only)
1 ebook of The Truth About Hope (INT)

Ends May 15th

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Author Amy Vastine Talks Up a Storm about The Weather Girl

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A themed tour with Prism Book Tours

Welcome to my stop for the April Showers Book Tour for

The Weather Girl

by Amy Vastine

The Weather Girl Book Cover

 

The Weather Girl
by Amy Vastine
Clean Adult Contemporary Romance
January 1st 2014 by Harlequin

Erica: Today, I am pleased to bring you guys a guest post from the lovely and talented Amy  Vastine! I’ve been following Amy’s journey since before she was published and was so excited when I saw that her debut, The Weather Girl,  was being published by Harlequin. I’ll be back in to give a review of her debut in a future post, but right now, I’m turning over Copywrite1985 to Amy. Enjoy!

Thank you so much for hosting me on your blog today! I am so excited to be here and be able to promote my debut novel, The Weather Girl. In the book, Summer Raines is a quirky meteorologist in West Texas who falls in love with the fallen football hero, Travis Lockwood.

 

Having grown up with two brothers and a father who still talks about the good ol’ days playing ball in high school as well as being the mother of two boys who play, I felt pretty confident about my football knowledge. The weather, on the other hand, was something on which I needed to do a little research.

 

Summer tends to rattle off some pretty obscure weather facts when she’s nervous, so finding interesting tidbits took some time but made me a fan of Mother Nature. The photographs I saw while researching this story blew me away! From Texas hail the size of baseballs to lightning storms in Venezuela, there are some amazing stories out there.

 

One of the dilemmas that Summer faces is should she or shouldn’t she take the job of her dreams, a job that would allow her to travel around the world and see these weather phenomena first-hand. An old family friend tries to lure her by sending her examples of some of the adventures she would go on if she took the job. My favorite is when he tempts her to come to Finland to see the northern lights from a glass igloo.

 

In reality, there is this incredible resort in the Laplands where you can stay in these glass igloo rooms. Here’s a link to the website if you’re interested – http://www.kakslauttanen.fi/. There’s something about the northern lights that intrigues me. I hope to go see them someday, maybe not in Finland but perhaps in Canada!

 

I also have a Pinterest board for The Weather Girl where I have a bunch of weather-related pictures – http://www.pinterest.com/vastine7/the-weather-girl/. My favorite picture on there is either of the sky punch or the sky wave. They make the boring clouds drifting over my house seem very boring. If you get a chance, check it out!

 

Do you have a favorite weather event? Are you thrilled by tornados or maybe love to watch it rain?

Weather Girl - Amy Vastine

 Amy Vastine has been plotting stories in her head for as long as she can remember. An eternal optimist, she studied social work, hoping to teach others how to find their silver lining. Now, she enjoys creating happily ever afters for all to read.

In September of 2012, she saw a tweet about Harlequin’s So You Think You Can Write contest. She entered, hoping for nothing more than a little feedback from some people in the business. Amazingly, The Weather Girl made it into the semi-finals, thanks to the many wonderful voters out there! The manuscript didn’t make it to the finals, but the editors over Harlequin were still interested. A few revisions later and The Weather Girl was contacted for publication with Harlequin Heartwarming – a dream come true!
Amy lives outside Chicago with her high school sweetheart-turned-husband, three fun-loving children, and their sweet but mischievous puppy dog.