Thursday, July 31, 2014

T-shirts and reviews

In Alabama Skye, Cheney and Greer sell t-shirts and sweatshirts out of the front room of their Scottish B & B. This charming bed and breakfast is called Gannon's Glen. I was lucky enough to receive my own shirt yesterday, although I didn't have the pleasure of traveling all the way down to the coastal town in Kelby, Alabama to get it.

I've been working on an outline for a sequel to Alabama Skye. I've gotten some amazing feedback and many readers telling me they aren't yet ready to say goodbye to the cast of characters in this book. I am so surprised and thrilled by this. I believe the second book will be mostly about Noah. That's the way it's going right now, anyway. I have many ideas running through this crazy head of mine, and once I start writing, the characters kind of take over. We'll see what I can come up with.

I received a four star review on Amazon yesterday. The book has gone out to many different people. This one was left by an unknown reader. 

4.0 out of 5 stars Climax a little bit of a let down, but otherwise a fantastic novel!July 30, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Alabama Skye (Kindle Edition)
I really enjoyed this book - the characters were well fleshed out, the dialogue was realistic and fun, and the overall story was great .


There was only one thing that really threw me: the whole book builds toward a big, dramatic scene about Cheney's past, and when that big secret is finally just doesn't quite make sense. She accidentally kills her husband Callum by hitting him over the head with the butt of a gun, thinking he's an intruder, which, by itself, would have been plausible. It also goes a long way in filling out Cheney's character. The problem is, the exchange is several pages long, and the whole time he is breaking into the house (shooting through the door, even), Cheney keeps calling out to him, "Who are you?? What do you want with me??" He never responds, not until after she hits him over the head. It's mentioned that he smells of whiskey, so it's supposed to come off that he was inebriated, but that didn't feel like enough of an explanation. Even Cheney asks why he didn't respond, and he never gives her an answer. I kept waiting for more of an explanation, and it never came. It was jarring, because the whole book was so good; the whole scene leading up to Callum's death was gripping! My heart was beating faster, the pictures just flowed through my mind. So the climax was a little bit of a let down. Otherwise, I loved it!

I'd love to know who SonOfASailor is so I can acknowledge whomever it was. I like to thank those personally who take the time to sit down and write out a review. If it was you, thanks!

I'm always looking for more reviews. If you're interested in reading and reviewing for me, I've got a free eBook copy of Alabama Skye waiting for you. Just send me a note. :)

*****UPDATE - I have since found out who left the review and have been able to give my thanks to this reader. 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Press release for Alabama Skye on PRWeb

I've self published both of my novels through a company called Xlibris. I retain all the rights to my work, plus I get to say what my cover looks like and what the inside format of the text looks like. It costs more money than it would to do it other ways, but I also get quite a bit of marketing for the price I pay. I was interviewed by Xlibris shortly after I published The Color of Thunder in late 2012. Xlibris has a blog and I was featured on their Indie Author's Roundup. Here's a link to that interview:

Xlibris put together a press release for my newest book, Alabama Skye, and sent it out to more than 1,000 media outlets. These include web sites, newspapers, magazines and radio programs. Members of the media rely heavily upon the press releases that cross their desks on a daily basis to fill out every column inch and every broadcast second. When the media responds to a press release, Xlibris acts as the primary contact and forwards interview requests to me. They send free copies of my book to these members of the media, and I just saw the press release they created in action.

Here is what my press release looks like on the PRWeb website:

Of course I'm hoping that Xlibris receives some requests for copies of Alabama Skye, and I'm very interested in doing some interviews. I've gotten a lot of positive feedback on this collection of characters in my fictional little town of Kelby. It's been an amazing two months.

Like Sarah says in Alabama Skye, "Opportunity is like a bird. It never perches."

I'm taking every opportunity that I can to help Alabama Skye soar. I feel a little bit of wind beneath this novel's wings. Here's hoping there's enough to get it up into the great big blue sky.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

A few more amazing reviews for Alabama Skye

The feedback on Alabama Skye has been overwhelmingly positive. It's such an amazing thing! I am so grateful to all of those who have read and reviewed it. There have been a couple of reviewer said she thought the story was too sweet, and another one even made fun of the title saying the combination of Alabama and Skye is too cute and unusual. This second reviewer, incidentally, is absolutely convinced that this is a memoir and that it was not worth either writing or reading. I don't know this person, so this is nothing but conjecture on his part. In this case, I have to say that he's least about the memoir part. The only thing even remotely autobiographical about Alabama Skye is that my grandmother, like Sarah, had Alzheimer's. Oh...and I do have a mother...but that's where the similarities between me and any of the characters in the novel end.

I wasn't on Facebook, didn't have my blog or a web site, and certainly didn't have a following of any sort, (other than my loyal family members and friends...and thank God for them) when The Color of Thunder was published. I was an absolute unknown. I was in a different place, however, while getting ready to release Alabama Skye. I was totally taken aback when it was published and  people I didn't even know were paying attention told me that they'd been anxiously awaiting the book's release. I've had readers push the book for me, getting their friends and family members to read it...and the response I've gotten has really been an amazing and wonderful surprise. Sometimes you put things out there and don't hear a thing about them. I built up the release of Alabama Skye like nobody's business on Facebook, posting pictures of the different characters, blurbs from the book and all sorts of other things. It's easy to get frustrated when you're trying to let the world know that you've accomplished something you're enormously proud of and you don't think anyone's listening. I learned a big lesson about that in the last month. Someone is always listening.

Here are a few more reviews from Amazon I'd like to share.

5.0 out of 5 stars a wonderful story of twists and turnsJune 30, 2014
This review is from: Alabama Skye (Paperback)
This is the first book I have read by J.C. Wing and I'm looking forward to reading more of her books.
Alabama Skye is a treat, a wonderful story of twists and turns. It's a beloved inspiring and uplifting story of family, loyalty, loss, forgiveness, coming together.
It's a well written book about Cheney who lost her husband and left Scotland to make a fresh start in Alabama with her family. The plot moved along well and had me so interested it was hard to put it down, the only bad part was it was over and now the wait to see if there is a sequel to the book.
Congratulations on your first book J.C. Wing looking forward to reading more from your :)

5.0 out of 5 stars Hooked from the first chapter!July 5, 2014
This review is from: Alabama Skye (Paperback)
J. C. Wing has written a book that pulls you immediately into the setting of the story and keeps you there through the last chapter. Her descriptions of the surroundings and characters bring the story and people to life and make you feel as if you are there with them and know them personally.
Ms. Wing writes about situations that are part of many people's everyday lives which allows you to identify with the characters and their issues. However she has a way of writing so that you aren't bored but instead anxious to find out the outcomes to the circumstances she has presented.
At different times while I was reading Alabama Skye I chuckled, I smiled, I felt sad and I felt happy, yes I thoroughly enjoyed the book. Well done!
Although the story did have closure I was sorry when it was over. Maybe a sequel written from Noah's perspective?

4.0 out of 5 stars Wish it was longer......July 4, 2014
This review is from: Alabama Skye (Paperback)
I really enjoyed Alabama Skye. All of the characters are so likeable and it is easy to imagine their interactions. It's fun to have both the Scottish and the Alabama sides of the story. I liked how the background stories came out throughout the book, and not all at once. I wish it had been a bit longer. 200 pages goes quickly.

One of the other reviewers commented that there were opportunities for confrontations/drama/problems that weren't taken by JC. She saw this as a problem. I actually saw it as refreshing. It was a nice escape - it's easy to get caught up in our day-to-day where negative things do happen so I thought it was enjoyable to read a story about a really close family that doesn't even recognize challenging situations because they have each other.

I'll definitely recommend this to friends and look forward to reading another book by JC.

5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely a must-read.June 30, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Alabama Skye (Paperback)
Alabama Skye is a treat, a wonderful story of twists and turns. It is one of those "can't put down" type stories, a beloved inspiring and uplifting story of family, loyalty, loss, forgiveness, coming together. It will impact you in some way, bringing these characters to life, making you feel connected in some fashion. You will feel like you know the characters, thanks to the detail and images created by the author JC Wing.

My only complaint is that it ended. I look forward to a sequel or more, from some of the other characters viewpoints. Definitely a must-read.

I also loved this review I got on Goodreads today.

's review 
Jul 08, 14

Read in June, 2014

I absolutely Loved this book by J.C. Wing. I have read both of her books now and will continue to read her novels.

This was a book that captured my interest, held it, and left me wanting more when I reached the end.

The very interaction between characters, the story line, and the history of both Scotland, and the south have a way of pulling you in and keeping your interest during the whole book.

I feel that this is a great avenue for J.C. Wing to consider a series, as with these characters, there is still so many avenues to investigate, and journey through.

There have been two things I've heard the most from readers. They want to know where the recipes are for all the different foods I wrote about in both The Color of Thunder and Alabama Skye. They also want to know when the sequel for Alabama Skye will be published. As for the sequel...I'll be honest. When I finished writing Alabama Skye, it felt complete to me. I had no thoughts whatsoever about ever writing a sequel to this book. I am so excited, though, about the fact that so many readers want more of these characters! I have written up a loose outline for a sequel and have begun the first chapter. I can't promise anything for sure...I have to love the story and the way it turns out before I spend the time and energy to get to it published. I love these characters. I love Kelby, Alabama and Gannon's Glen and I have been happy about going back and working on the continuation of the story. I've also got plans to put together a cookbook filled with all original recipes from both novels. I've got a son, who loves to cook. If I write a sequel to Alabama Skye, however, a cookbook will have to be delayed. I can't imagine that Greer will go through an entire book without cooking up more amazing treats.

Thank you to everyone who has read and reviewed for me. Please, please, please...when you read a book - mine or any other author's - if you enjoyed it, take the time to post a review. Amazon is always a good place to do that. Reviews make an author's world go round. It effects sales and promotion...and it let's us know what you like and don't like about books. Every review is useful. Every review is helpful. Every review matters.