Jerks & Irks XXXV: Puntastic Titles

Last week I listed a bunch of jerky quirks of mine that may keep me from reading a book. Turns out they weren’t so jerky. At least not in the eyes of the commenters on that post. But during the course of the week, I realized I forgot one. A big one.

Puntastic titles. You know what I’m talking about.

  • Between a Glock and a Hard Place
  • A Nerd in the Hand
  • Two Birds with One Bone
  • Fight the Bullet
  • Stud is Quicker Than Water
  • Break the Vice
  • Fought Red-Handed
  • Give the Bold Shoulder
  • Teased as Punch
  • Rule of Numb

You get the picture, right? Why do I hate puns? Ironically I don’t. I like puns. I named my personal publishing company Blood Read Press, (pronounced “Blood Red”), for heaven’s sake. Maybe it’s because porn titles are usually some cheesy pun or another (Arma-get-it On, anyone?). If you read over the above list with a gutter-friendly-mentality, some of them even sound like porn titles.

As far as I know, these aren’t actual book titles. I just made them up for the purposes of this post. (See, I’m even good at puns. I guess that’s why I can always come up with a good fantasy football team name.)

But, if your book title is punny, I really hope the blurb is outstanding.

Because otherwise I won’t read it.

Because I’m a jerk.

 

T-Minus Twelve Hours!

Until what, you ask? Until I select the winner of the Name My Series contest, of course!

clock

If you’re just joining us, you’re in luck. You have twelve hours to rush to the original post, click on the Rafflecopter link, choose the Series Title you like best, and leave it in the comments section of the blog post. Be sure to click the “I Commented” thingy on Rafflecopter to ensure that your vote counts toward the prize!

Speaking of THE prize, here’s what’s up for grabs:

That's one good lookin' gal on there!

That’s one good lookin’ gal on there!

  • A Jordanna East Tote Bag. A large one. Perfect for books. Or to hold all the other stuff I’m gonna fill it with so you can flaunt your winnings around your friends. Such as…

moleskine_2245_41635128

  • A set of two Moleskine journals. 96 pages each. Ruled. 81/2 x 11″. Still in the shrink wrap. Awesome looking cover art on both.

pen

  • Pens that look like syringes, in honor of how my main character, Lyla, kills people and stuff. Maybe some other pens, too. I like the added mystery of deciding this on a whim.
  • A magnet for your fridge. Have a coupon for your favorite cereal? Allow me to hold that up for you.
  • An “I ❤ Blood Read Press” T-shirt. Ordered to the winner’s size specifications because I, personally, hate receiving a swag-tee I can’t wear.
  • And, finally–this is my favorite–CHOCOLATE!!! A bag of Lindor Truffles for you to share with your loved ones or hide in a secret drawer, presumably from your greedy loved ones.

lindor

So what are you waiting for? Go, go, go!

In Case I Wasn’t Clear About the Contest

Yesterday I posted a contest to help me name my book series. I’ve received several responses, yet, still things aren’t going exactly as planned. It’s not your collective faults, it’s mine. I’m new at this. But, just to be clear, if you want to participate, please read the following:

  1. In order to have your name considered for the prize, you have to click on the Rafflecopter link. Just commenting doesn’t do it. (If you already commented, make sure you visit the link so your comment counts!) I’m sorry.
  2. If you click I Commented on the Rafflecopter link and don’t actually comment, you are a bad person. Not only that, but if Rafflecopter chooses your name and I don’t see a relevent, corresponding comment in your name, I will pick another winner. I’m sorry.
  3. If you don’t know what my books are about, visit the My Books page where you’ll find blurbs for both titles, Blood in the Past and Blood in the Paint. (On a side note, they are Psychological Thrillers. If you read the blurb and gather another impression–one person said they sounded gory, another asked if I wrote romance–please let me know, so I can revise the blurbs.)

So, to recap: Click this link for a Rafflecopter giveaway. See the examples of suitable series choices. Click I Commented to enter the contest. Return to my blog and comment with your series title choice. If you need more info, go to the My Books page. Bite your nails until February 9th when a winner will be selected to win a Jordanna East ‘Tote Bag Full of Swag’ (Journals, pens, a calendar magnet, a tshirt, and CHOCOLATE!).

Name My Series! Win Stuff!

In January 2012 I picked up writing my unfinished novel again. I gave myself a self-imposed deadline to have it finished by the end of the year. I know what you’re thinking: A whole year? To finish a novel you already had nine chapters of? What are you, chiseling it into a cave wall?

Gimme a break, guys. I was a newbie. Still am. Didn’t know how long it would take. Regardless, I still didn’t finish. I have a problem with over-editing before moving on. I might seek professional help as one of my New Year’s Resolutions. We’ll see.

Anyway, I’m FINISHED NOW!!!!!

The aforementioned novel, Blood in the Paint, is done. First draft, at least. The prequel, Blood in the Past, is all typed up and ready for the first round of revisions before it goes to the editor. Eeek!

So, this is a series, guys. I’ll be needing a series name. I can’t decide so I’m asking you all to help me pick one. The winner recieves a swag bag. (I probably shouldn’t call it a swag bag because swag stands for Stuff We All Get and, well, frankly, you all can’t be winners. But I’m going to continue to call it a swag bag because swag bag is fun to say and it rhymes and stuff.) Specifically, the winner will receive a Jordanna East tote bag with all kinds of goodies inside based on the suggestions you provided last week. Journals. Pens. A calendar magnet. A T-shirt. Chocolate! Goodies galore! Enter the contest below!

So, to recap: Click this link for a Rafflecopter giveaway. See the examples of suitable series choices. Click I Commented to enter the contest. Return to my blog and comment with your series title choice. If you need more info, go to the My Books page. Bite your nails until February 9th when a winner will be selected to win a Jordanna East ‘Tote Bag Full of Swag’ (Journals, pens, a calendar magnet, a tshirt, and CHOCOLATE!).

 

 

Jerks & Irks XXX: Free is, as Free Does

What happens when you tell people you’re a writer? They say:

“I’d better get a copy!”

“When do I get a copy?”

“You’re gonna give me a signed copy, right?”

Of course! My goal was NEVER to make a living!

Of course! My goal was NEVER to make a living!

Umm, what the frick, people? Hellooo! Starving artist here! Pay up! (A select handful of people say “I can’t wait to buy a copy!” And I love those people and wish I could give them all a puppy.)

And what’s worse is that most of the time, the people who assume they’re getting free copies of Blood in the Past and Blood in the Paint are in positions to give ME free stuff. And haven’t. Like my Pseudo-Boss Sandy. Every time I see her she asks to read my book. Like, right now. Like, she doesn’t even want to wait for it to be out, she wants to read it over my shoulder on my computer before I get a chance to print it out at Staples, right now. Umm, no. You have to wait. You have to buy a copy. I don’t even like you. Or, since you work at that highfalutin Racket Club, get me a membership. FREE!

Then there’s the Nail Salon Lady. When I stopped getting acrylic gel tips (aka longer, harder fake nails) she asked me why. I told her that I only wore those when I worked in the restaurant business because washing my hands a million times a day makes my nails soft and brittle. I told her that I’m writing a book now. She keeps asking where’s her copy. Umm, when it’s finished I’ll tip you a business card with a QR code on it, since you own the shop and never offered to do my pedicures for FREE. Not once. Not ever.

Does this happen to you guys? If so, how do you handle it? Especially if you’re an Indie Publisher and would have to pay for copies of your own book in order to give one away to every Tim, Dana, and Henry. (I’m a writer, can’t use the clichéd “Tom, Dick, and Harry. 😛 )

High Five for Top Fives

Up top, guys! This year is freaking over! Whoo hooo! Let the champagne flow! Pass the jello shots! Because nothing says classy like champagne and jello shots!

And no end-of-the-year blog post is complete without the requisite Top Blah Blah Blah List. Here are several of mine:

Top Five JJE Posts (based on Views, Comments, & Likes)

  1. Getting Arrested for the Greater Good
  2. Murder & Mother-In-Laws
  3. What Not to Do on the Train…
  4. The Typos Aren’t Your Fault?
  5. Location, Location, Location

Top Five JJE Posts I Liked But No One Saw

  1. Research or Get Besmirched
  2. Like Reading a Schizophrenic’s Notes
  3. This “Sux!”
  4. Who Wears Short Shorts?
  5. The Next Big Thing (Ok, this one’s a shameless plug. Don’t judge me, my books come out in 2013. TeeHee)

Top Five Weird-A$$ Search Terms That Brought People Here

  1. “baster brain” & “bald slavegirl fantasy” (That’s a tie, sorry)
  2. “fiction stories don’t beat me”
  3. “wave bum”
  4. “you’re welcome, it was a pleasure, hope you didn’t destroy your keyboard”
  5. “I’m not the same person please go away”
  6. BONUS *anytime someone searched for “jordanna east” or any derivative thereof* (That happened ELEVEN times!)

Top Five Books I Read This Year

  1. The Hunger Games Trilogy (Duh)
  2. The Pine Deep Trilogy by Jonathan Maberry
  3. The Hangman’s Daughter by Oliver Potzsch
  4. The King’s X by Stephen T. Harper
  5. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter by Seth Grahame-Smith

Top Five Things I Look Forward to in 2013

  1. Typing up my Prequel, Blood in the Past, and submitting it to beta readers, editor, etc. Publishing it via Blood Read Press
  2. Getting my finished book covers from the amazingly talented Kit Foster
  3. Revising my full-length novel, Blood in the Paint, and submitting it to beta readers, editor, etc. Publishing it via Blood Read Press
  4. Starting the second full-length novel in the series (and the research for it!)
  5. A much deserved SPA DAY and a VACATION!

I just want to get all sappy for a moment and thank everyone for following me here, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, etc. For being interested in me and my silly dream. For asking about my books. For laughing at my bookstore horror stories. I value your encouragement in same way I value cute kittens, funny-looking chickens, and anything made of chocolate. Happy New Year!

My First Progress Report? Really?

It occurred to me the other day that this is a “Journey” blog, yet I never post To Do Lists or Progress Reports or What I’m Up To When I’m Not Eating Cupcakes posts. It’s been almost a year since I started this site and you guys don’t know how far I’ve come in that time. I say, “For shame!”

So here’s what I’ve been up to lately when I’m not eating cupcakes:

  • When I started this blog I had a handful of chapters written years ago and a few small journal pages of convoluted notes that hinted toward a general story idea. I had no title. I had no ending. I had no idea whether I wanted to traditionally- or self-publish. Frankly, I had no idea what I was doing.
  • NOW, I am a handful of chapters away from being finished with my first novel. I have a title, Blood in the Paint, which I fully intend to self-publish. I have an ending (a doozy of an ending, if you ask me). I still don’t know what I’m doing though. Well, I’ve done a lot of exhaustive research on what to do, I just haven’t done it yet. But I will.
  • I used to want to write a prologue. Then I found out that apparently prologues are the antichrist. No big deal. I drafted a prequel novella instead. Completed it a couple of months ago, just need to type it up (I wrote it in a notebook while hiding at work from the stupid bookstore people). That has a title, too: Blood in the Past. I also scheduled a February editing date with Red Adept Publishing’s editorial service.
  • I started my own self-publishing press company, Blood Read Press (pronounced “red”), under which I’ll be publishing my novels. I’ve heard that reviewers and bookstores take you more seriously when your publisher isn’t “CreateSpace.” Go figure.
  • I said novels, plural, because it’s a series now! And I already have ideas for the remaining installments.
  • I have book covers already in the works! The magnificent Kit Foster is working on them and the first drafts look amazing. See that header up there? He did that!
  • My prequel is slated for released in March 2013, with the novel to follow that Summer. Visit the My Books page to learn more about them. And leave your email here to be informed of their exact release dates and any related giveaways. I promise not to spam you. I swear on a sacred stack of cupcakes.

So that’s my deal. What’s yours?

Introducing Blood Read Press…Continued

Last I left off on this little quest, I had to visit the Social Security Administration to change to my married name on my Social Security Card, since I thought that was what was holding me back from applying for my company’s Employee Identification Number on irs.gov. Here’s what’s happened since then:

  • I checked the irs.gov website repeatedly to see if it would let me complete my application. It did not.
  • I checked some more. Way past the allotted “24-48 hours for it to change in their system” time period. No dice.
  • Received my new Social Security Card in the mail. Checked irs.gov again. Still no dice.
  • Called 1-800-F*CK-IRS or whatever their number is and talked to a lovely lady stationed in a Midwestern office who spoke way too slowly for a native New Yorker such as myself to bear. I think her name was Susan.
  • “Susan” informed me that changing my name with the Social Security Administration had no bearing on the IRS’s records. Because why would government bodies communicate with one another?
  • “Susan” completed my EIN application for me over the phone. It took forever, given her midwestern sloth-speak. (No offense to Midwesterners. You guys have to know you speak slower. Feel free to make fun of New Yorkers. We’re mean, snobby, etc. Have at it.)
  • “Susan” then hands me some bad news. She can’t put my business in my married name. She has to put it in my maiden name c/o my married name. Because that’s not retarded.
  • At the end of the call, I received my EIN over the phone. Hooray! But I’m told that when it comes in the mail, I have to write the IRS a letter asking them to kindly remove my maiden name as the sole proprietor and to please just use my c/o name. And they could actually remove the whole c/o part, too.
  • Armed with my new EIN, I then go back to irs.gov in search of how to apply for my Tax ID. After many, many minutes, I finally realized that EIN and Tax ID are the same thing. *Sigh*
  • A few days later I went to the bank to open a business account. Mary helped us. That’s definitely her name so I won’t be using any quotations when referring to her.
  • Mary hooked me up with a lovely little business account…except…
  • She misspelled my company name. Instead of Blood Read Press, she spelled it Blood Rad Press. Gosh dammit Mary! Hubby-pants says it’s because I over-emphasized the A when I spelled it for her. You see, it’s a pun. Pronounced Blood Red, so I’m sensitive about people misspelling it. Apparently a bit too sensitive. So that was exactly a week ago and my company’s business account is still listed as fricking Blood Rad. Yes, still. Way past the allotted “24-48 hours for it to change in their system” time period. I’m still awaiting the correction.

PS: The awesome Blood Read Press logo pictured above was designed by Kit Foster. He’s eleven flavors of awesome-sauce.

PPS: Make sure you stop by tomorrow to enter to win an Official Jordanna East Tote Bag!

Introducing Blood Read Press…Sort of

No blog post yesterday. Why? Because I was out most of the day. Through research and discourse with other writers, I have decided to create my own self-publishing company. Apparently bookstores and reviewers may not take you as seriously if your publisher is Amazon or CreateSpace. Go figure. So here’s what Hubby-pants and I went through:

  • Parked car in Camden, NJ. (Google it, you don’t want to go there unless you have to.)
  • Went to City Hall.
  • Took one look at security and metal detectors and remembered that we both carry knives. Back to the car.
  • Returned to City Hall. Pointed in the direction of the Camden County Clerks Office down the hall.
  • Filled out an application to register my business, Blood Read Press (pronounced blood “red”), with the state of New Jersey.
  • Application approved and notarized!
  • Now what?
  • Told to go the bank and open a business account (which I planned on doing anyway), then go to a building near the aquarium (?) to apply for a Tax ID number.
  • Went to the bank. A man named Bihn K. Do helped us. He had a heavy Asian accent and a coke nail. I decided to call him Binkydoo in my head.
  • Found out from Binkydoo that we needed the Tax ID first if I wasn’t going to use my social security number as my Tax ID.
  • Headed to the building near the aquarium.
  • They don’t actually assign Tax ID’s. (Grrr) Given websites to apply for a Federal Employee Identification Number first, then a Tax ID.
  • Stopped for lunch at home. I had a Greek yogurt. Yum.
  • Went to website to apply for FEIN.
  • Couldn’t apply for FEIN. IRS records didn’t match. Why? Because I forgot to change my name on my social security card when I got married. (Oops.)
  • Headed to Social Security Administration. Took a number.
  • Forgot marriage license. Went back home.
  • Returned to Social Security Administration with marriage license in decorative box. Just missed number. Took another number.
  • Changed name. Found out the change won’t be recognized in the system for 24-48 hours. Still couldn’t apply for FEIN yet. 😦

And that’s why the title of this post said “sort of.”

To be continued…