Hi, Caryl, So glad you could join us. First question:
Have you always wanted to be an author?
Caryl: Funny you should ask! J In the seventh grade—that would be 1962—Mis’ess Bell assigned an essay on what we’d be doing in the year 2000. I wrote of the joys of being an intergalactic famous author jetting from planet to planet signing books for all my fans! What can I say? The space program let me down! Isn’t that fun? I have always loved writing and reading. My favorite grandfather wrote a book as did my mother (neither were ever published) so I guess it’s in my genes. 🙂
What’s your favorite method for keeping a story’s middle from sagging?
Caryl: Oh, the middle is my favorite part, and I have ever thought about it sagging 🙂 After the first ‘act’ when all your characters have been introduced and your story goal established, then you just start throwing obstacles in the way of your hero and heroine to keep them from accomplishing the goal. One after another after another because isn’t that how life goes? When it rains, it pours. This is a true idiom. So after act one, depending on how long I want the story to be, I just keep throwing rocks at my dear characters. Being a ‘skirter’, (I don’t wear pants, so can’t rightly be called a pantser) I don’t plan ahead and write to an end. I just write and see what troubles my characters get into and how God can get them out of them. 🙂
Do you write every day?
Caryl: No, I do not. Most days, but not every day. Being a hybrid author (traditionally and independently published) I wear many hats besides that of the writer. I edit, line up other editors and proofreaders for each manuscript. I format and design the interior. I consign my historical covers to the best in the business as far as I’m concerned, Kirk DouPonce, the Biblical fiction series’ covers are original art, but I have to make the cover from it, and the contemporary and mid-grade series still get my own cover designs, so I have that to do. There’s the actual publishing, then the marketing! BookBubs and Blog Tours, and Parties! Oh, my!
How will you market your book?
Caryl: I’ll discuss DAUGHTERS OF THE HEART’s marketing since that’s this month’s release. I started months ago setting up dates to visit blogs such as Writers’ Prompts! As the date draws closer, a couple of months before its launch, I begin with a cover reveal while I’m getting it ready for Kindle’s ‘Pre-Order’ program. So the next thing is to upload the cover and interior, proof and click publish, then start advertising the novel’s availability.
I almost always host an online Virtual Launch Party either by myself or with an author friend, and sometimes with many other authors. My review crew (what some authors call their ‘street teams’) need to get the manuscript ahead of time so I take care of getting it to everyone, I have a wonderful group of ladies I call my eVALUaters who are my first readers. I make lots of memes—pictures to promote the book, usually the cover combined with text, sometimes blurbs or reviews. And I post those around and the eVALUaters share those with their friends. More blog visits and parties continue through its Release Month. For DAUGHTERS, I set up a blog tour with CelebrateLit, and Sandy there lined it up for three full weeks of reviews on about twenty+ blogs.
I also set up a BookBub promo to start offering the previous book in the series for FREE. It’s pricey—like $210 to advertise your title FREE for one day—but the return on the investment is immeasurable! Book four, SINS OF THE MOTHERS had right at FORTY THOUSAND downloads, these have resulted in sales that are still rolling in on ALL the books in the series, including DAUGHTERS!
I keep it up…parties, blogs, memes, posting in Facebook Groups, face to face book signings, at least one a month, usually more. Try to keep the excitement high until the next book’s turn. In 2015, my goal was to release eleven new titles, and I’m on target to meet that goal with only October and November to go. October’s is down to the cover and formatting and I’m still writing November’s. This was not an easy feat, but with God, all things are possible!
Have you ever had a funny experience connected with being an author?
Caryl: Last month, maybe even in July, I began working on October’s cover. It was to be STARFISH PRIME book one of THE KING’S HIGHWAY Trilogy, for mid-grade readers. I tried this and that and eventually came up with a design I really loved, so when the manuscript was ready, I posted in The eVALUaters Facebook group and showed them the cover first. One astute lady looked it up on Amazon to find there was a book with the SAME NAME and practically the very SAME COVER! An orange with silhouette people! He had soldiers where I had three kids wearing backpacks with a dog, but SO SIMILAR!
SO I went to work to change up the cover, but I’d been so happy with the first, none of the new renditions pleased me as much. Yesterday my husband suggested changing the title, so now it will be THE KING’S HIGHWAY, book one of the Days of Dread Trilogy! Problem solved! Original design restored, never the twain to meet! 🙂
Thank you so much for inviting me to Writing Prompts! It’s been my pleasure!
Glad you dropped by!
God’s perfect plan is sometimes so hard to determine.
Gwendolyn, Cecelia, and the youngest, Bonnie, make a pact never to break their father’s heart like their big sister did. Then their determination is sorely tried when suitors show up, and he gets so pigheaded with his rules.
Will Henry survive his daughters coming of age? Will they endure and keep their promises to each other?
From one man asking to court her—who Daddy sends packing—Gwen goes to three! How can she ever decide? Cecelia knows exactly who she wants, but she’s still a year away from Daddy’s acceptable courting age. What if her beau doesn’t know or won’t wait? And Bonnie hates being the baby and wants to be grown-up more than just about anything…except her man. She is for sure and for certain in love.
In his life, Henry Buckmeyer has never been so beside himself. His little girls are so young, just babies, too young. He hates the whole idea of men coming to take them away and is inclined to shoot every one of them, but praise God for a level-headed, loving wife and step-mother! She helps keep him sane amidst the female chaos. Packed with fun, romance, deception, action, heartbreak and tears, this delightful Christian novel keeps the twists and turns coming.
Will the Buckmeyer home ever be settled and peaceful again? Will any of his daughters find true love…a man he’ll approve and to whom he can give his blessing?
Simon & Schuster, Christian hybrid author, Caryl McAdoo is currently writing three series: her historical Christian Texas Romances; the contemporary Red River Romances; and The Generations, her Biblical fiction. The novelist loves singing new songs the Lord gives her, and she paints. In 2008, she and her high school sweetheart-husband Ron moved from the DFW area—home for fifty-five years—to the woods of Red River County. Caryl counts four children and fourteen grandsugars life’s biggest blessings believing all good things come from God. Praying her story gives God glory, she hopes each one will also minister His love, mercy, and grace to its readers. Caryl and Ron live in Clarksville, the county seat, in the far northeast corner of the Lone Star State.