Today I'm pleased to have author Sandy Appleyard on my blog! Having just released a new book in October, Don't Mess with Daddy's Girl, I asked her to stop over, and answer some questions about her writing.
When I was on maternity leave back in 2006 I got the writing bug. I wrote poems and short stories while I was in middle school, but the desire to write a book came when I had too much time on my hands and no outlet for creative energy while elbow-deep in dirty diapers.
You write fiction and nonfiction stories. Which is easier to write and why?
Strangely enough, fiction is easier. The first novel I wrote was difficult but after I pushed through that I was hooked. It’s much easier to make stuff up I suppose. You have to plan out your plot lines and characters strategically, but it’s so much easier to fabricate than it is to use actual facts….and funner too!
You have a new release out that is fiction. Tell us a little bit about it and how you came up with the idea.
Don’t Mess With Daddy’s Girl is a romantic suspense, and the second novel in a police procedural series. None of my books have cliffhangers or loose threads, so what I love about them is that you can read any, in whatever order, and you won’t be confused. This novel is about a young girl, the daughter of the chief of police, and her stock broker boyfriend, and how they get tangled up in a case that leads to her kidnapping.
The idea struck when I had the desire to write a novel about a girl who is loved and protected by more than one man in her life, yet she is strong and level-headed enough to keep cool in even the worst situations. The story has a little bit of everything in it, including family drama, so it’ll keep readers on their toes.
"***** This book had a little bit of everything!" Amazon Reviewer
"***** The suspense kept me in knots!" Amazon Reviewer
You’ve been self-published and published by a small press. What are your experiences with the pros and cons of both and which do you prefer? Do you find better luck with one over the other with specific genres?
Being self-published and published by a small press is not much different. One key difference between the two is transparency. You can’t see sales until quarterly reports come to you, unlike with Amazon, where you can hop on any time and see for yourself how sales are doing.
To be fair, I haven’t been with small press long enough to determine which I prefer, as sales figures haven’t been made available to me yet (my book was just released in October). But if I had to decide which I liked better at this point I would have to say that self-publishing is my preference.
I can’t say whether or not small press publishers work better with any particular genre because I’ve only worked with them for one genre so far….but I can get back to you!
Do you have your books in paperback and ebooks? Which do you sell more of and why do you think that is?
Yes, all my books except for the latest release are available in both print and ebook. My sales tend to be better in the ebook department, but that seems to have been just in the past six months. I think it’s simply because more and more readers are turning to their e-readers, especially for independent authors, since we’re more widespread there.
You have a great following on social media. How did you build it and what advice do you have for others who are struggling?
Social media for me has been a slippery slope. Some days it’s great, other days not so great. Picking away at it daily is the only thing that has worked for me. Facebook has tended to be less successful in recent months because of newsfeed changes. Twitter is still above the crowd in my opinion.
With Facebook you need to throw a lot of incentives in to get a good following; weekly draws, ‘like and tell your friends to like’ type contests, etc., and if you have money burning your pocket you can try paid ads.
Twitter success depends on good content; both sharing of other’s material and your own original posts, following targeted people, utilizing lists and automation applications such as Buffer and Hootsuite. If anyone needs further help I offer a free online Twitter course on my sister website forthelastdime.com.
Do you have a favorite book you’ve written? Why?
Without a doubt my favourite book to write was ‘She Only Speaks to Butterflies’, which is yet to be published. It was the most enjoyable because it was so out of my normal genre. Being a Christian/sweet romantic suspense, it covered so many subjects, but the most touching dealt with a child suffering from post traumatic stress disorder.
What was the first book you remember reading and it really making you think, “One day I want to write a book!”?
When I read the book ‘A Walk to Remember’ by Nicholas Sparks, while I loved the book I wasn’t excited about the ending, and it inspired me to create a story about someone suffering from a serious illness and recovering rather than succumbing. The love story in my book ‘Blessed and Betrayed’ was born from this concept.
What are you working on right now?
On my desk right now is a very touching, dramatic story about a young actress who, in her youth, falls in love with an actor, and later seeks him out. But when he falls in love and marries her, he doesn’t marry the real her; just a sanitized version. After she’s involved in a near-fatal plane crash, he learns who she really is, as she remains comatose in hospital. The book is to be called ‘Would You Still Love Me?’
When is your next release coming out?
The third book in the police procedural/romantic suspense series ‘The Wheels of Change’ is coming out in spring 2015. Stay tuned!
I always love a good romantic suspense story and Don't Mess with Daddy's Girl is one of them. This book is very heavy on action and suspense. The romance is a secondary thread and in no way graphic or explicit when it comes to the romantic scenes. Micheal and Jessica are the main couple in the story. Micheal is a successful stockbroker who knows what he wants out of life, a solid career, Jessica, and a family. Jessica is struggling to find her way. She dropped out of college, refuses to marry Micheal, and doesn't want kids. Surprisingly, her family has her figured out long before she figures herself out.
Invited to a wedding for Michael's cousin, Jessica finds herself suddenly faced with her own insecurities about marrying Micheal. Angry with him for not selling stock that was causing problems for them, she leaves the wedding to go to her parents, the chief of police, Mark. When she doesn't show up at their house two hours later all hell breaks loose and suddenly the picture begins to take shape.
Ms. Appleyard keeps the pace moving quickly and aptly through the whole story. There are many different storylines all coming together into one point at the end and that isn't easy to pull off, but Sandy does it in a smooth and concise way. If you like romantic suspense then Don't Mess with Daddy's Girl is a must read for 2015!
I give Don't Mess with Daddy's Girl....5 Cups!
Bio: Sandy's latest release, 'Don't Mess with Daddy's Girl' has been described by one reviewer as, "the story has all the makings of a made for TV crime drama. The author has created a true multi-genre story with romance, crime, drama and suspense. A great read from an immensely talented author."
With many titles coming down the pipeline, you can be sure Sandy will soon be on bestselling lists. Appleyard writes in many genres but romantic suspense is her current forte. To learn more about the author you can visit her website
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Sandy-Appleyard/e/B00AMRFW6S/