FitReaders Check-in

Bloggers Jen Twimom and Felicia the Geeky Blogger are doing a FitReaders Challenge, and I’m joining in because support is always good.

My Week:
I’ll be honest, it wasn’t as good as I’d like, but considering I’m in the home stretch of a deadline, I’m not doing as bad as I normally would. The fitness part of my plan has been sadly lacking this week with only three walking days, but the eating properly has been pretty good. It helps that I can feel the difference in the ease of movements and energy levels. Friends goggled in shock when I told them I was actually going to be around midnight every night and getting up by 8 Am. This might not sound like a big accomplishment to some, but it’s a huge one for me. After more than 20 tears as a bartender I live for nights, and hate mornings. And it;s only taken 2 years for me to feel normal on a regular day workers schedule. LOL

The biggest thing for me right now is pop I have a huge pop addiction,and I’ve been fighting with homemade iced tea. Unsweetened iced tea isn’t something you see very often appear in Canada, but I started drinking it at conferences because it was at meals a lot. I found that I’ve really enjoyed it when I was down there. So last week when I was really, really craving pop and I didn’t have any, instead of going to the store and getting some I thought of the ice tea. I got a couple of teabags from my cupboard, boiled the tea, let it cool, then tossed some ice in and drank it all. As much as I miss carbonation and fizz the unsweetened iced tea has been my savior because drinking only water is really too boring.

I should post my steps but I’ve been slack in making sure I had my fitbit on so I do’t know them. But I’ll be better next week. :)

Wicked Wednesday excerpt

Today’s excerpt brought to you from SEXUAL HEALING (a LUSH novella) 

 

SashaWhite_SexualHealing800Hard muscles, supple skin, and slow firm strokes. Caitlyn Ellis knew that was what made a massage good. Not just for the receiver, but also for her, the giver.

The tensile strength rippling beneath oiled skin, responding to her slightest touch. The pleasurable sighs that filled the dimly lit room when she worked him over, her thumbs digging in slightly, circling wider each time. Followed by a more complete stroke with the heel of her hands. And finally, a smooth healing caress of the hands skimming over everything.

The flow of energy from her hands easing the stress and pain of another made her body hum and her soul soar.

Energy came in many forms, from many sources. For Caitlyn, it was mostly sexual. She enjoyed her job as a massage therapist. She liked to heal people and bring them peace, and she drew on her own most basic energy source to do it.

Sexual energy.

Not all clients were as open and receptive to her energy as Ben was, but even if they were completely blocked to energy work, the technical aspect of a proper massage worked wonders.

The thing with Ben was, he was completely open to her, and each time she saw him, it became more and more potent. The sheet over his hips was always tented impressively at the end of a session, and he made no attempts to hide it, and she was always damp and aching.

It would be natural for them to hook up. Ben had asked her out often, and idiot that she was, she’d always said no. He even said he’d go to another massage therapist if she’d only go out with him, but she stayed firm. She wasn’t exactly sure why, after all, it wasn’t like she was a fan of rules or restrictions. She was, however, a woman who trusted her instincts. And the dull blue base of his over-all aura told her he was a bit too content with his life. Perhaps, even selfish. He certainly had no real ambition or drive for success, and that bothered her.

Plus, she was done with short-term flings.

“So, is the answer still the same, Cait?” Ben’s voice was husky as he lay back on the table.

Caitlyn finished washing her hands in the sink and turned back to him with a small smile. “Sorry, Ben. The answer’s always going to be no.”

“I know you like me.” He tucked one hand beneath his head as he spoke, his other hand inching toward the edge of his sheet.

Her pulse picked up a bit of speed. She’d often wondered if he masturbated after she left. She usually did because her body would be humming on a high note if she didn’t. The thought of him doing it at the same time had been a regular fantasy when she’d played with herself.

“I do like you,” she said finally. And she did, mostly. Especially his body. “But I’m not going to change my mind. You and I would not be a good match.”

A hot body was nice, but it wasn’t everything. She might feel a sexual pull low in her belly when she was giving him a massage, but other than that there was no spark. If she hadn’t given up on one-night stands a long time ago, she might’ve considered him for one, but that was in the past. She’d grown a lot and she wasn’t willing to just give herself away anymore.

“You know you want me.” His eyelids lowered and his voice dropped. So did his sheet.

It seemed Ben was tired of being a good boy and taking no for an answer.

Caitlyn leaned back against the sink and prepared to enjoy the show. She knew she shouldn’t, but well, sometimes people did things they knew they shouldn’t. It was a fact of life.

His cock was long, strong, and standing proud. He circled his shaft with his thumb and forefinger and stroked up and down the length slowly. The head darkened in color and arousal hummed through her veins, settling between her thighs.

Caitlyn was no innocent; she’d had her wild days and nights, and just because she was looking for more than a sexual fling, didn’t mean she wasn’t going to enjoy a free show. As long as he understood, that’s all it would be.

“Very nice,” she said. “I’ve always had a bit of a voyeuristic streak.”

Ben smiled and his lovely blue eyes twinkled mischievously. He bent his knee, angling his leg out to the side so she could see everything, and her sex pulsed. He was watching her as she watched him.

Caitlyn’s fingers curled into the palms of her hands. It had been too long since she’d held the heated throb of an aroused man in her hand. Saliva pooled in her mouth and heat crept over her chest and up her neck.

“You really do like to watch, don’t you?” he murmured.

She nodded, licking her lips as his fist tightened and the head of his cock darkened. He pumped his hand up and down, his speed picking up enough that she knew he was close. On every upstroke, he curled his hand over the crown and her tongue was starting to twitch, she really wanted to be the one playing with him.

Or even playing with herself.

She pressed her thighs together and flexed her inner muscles, but there was no relief. She’d have to wait until she was alone. Not because she was shy, but because she was at work, and her professionalism meant a lot to her. Well, enough to only inch a toe across the line, and not her whole foot.

“I can feel your eyes on me. It’s almost like it’s you stroking me. So good, Cait. We could be so good together. Just once, come on over here and help me.”

She shook her head. Tense. Waiting. His aura was vibrating, shifting with his energy and there was a flush across his cheekbones and his panting was noticeable. His hand twisted just a little on each upstroke and she could see the vein on the underside throbbing.

“Come for me,” she whispered.

And he did.

She watched as he threw his head back on the table, his hips arched up, and his fist tightened. Come jumped from his cock and Cait’s insides trembled.

“Yes!” He hissed.

He released his cock and his hand fell to his side. Caitlyn turned back to the sink and put a facecloth under the warm water. When it was soaked, she turned off the taps, squeezed out the cloth and stepped over to him. She placed the cloth on his belly and bent down to place a soft kiss on his lips.

“Thank you.”

She turned and left the room, knowing she wouldn’t accept another appointment with him. He was good-looking, and nice enough, but he only wanted her as long as he couldn’t have her… and she wanted more than that from a man.

 

Want to see more SEXUAL HEALING, visit the BookPage HERE for another short teaser and buy links. 

Each novella is available on its own for $2.99 or get the whole bundle for only $3.99 at Amazon.ca, Amazon.com, or Kobo SashaWhite_Lush_bundle800

Step into Lush, the decadent art gallery that specializes in the sensual, and let your desires set your heart free.

Motivational Monday

“Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.”
– Will Rogers

It’s hard sometimes, to just stay steady on the path you’ve set for yourself. Everything seems to be all rush rush rush and immediate gratification. The internet has made the world so much smaller for us, but it also seems to have made us all too competitive with each other.

It’s too easy to see what others are doing and think why isn’t that happening for me?

Business Hat

Years ago I put together a group blog called Genreality. It was about the reality of being a professional genre fiction writer. It was a fabulous group, full of amazing authors who were willing to share their thoughts, opinions, and experiences. (It’s still up as an archive so surf through it sometime) Here, on my own blog, I don’t often talk business because my blog is geared toward readers who want to connect with me, and get to know the author behind the stories. However, today I feel the need to speak to other writers about something that effects us all-inclduing readers.

Authors, if you want readers to value your work, you have to value it first.

By that I mean that we’ve gone from a time when a Free Read was something readers saw as the treat or bonus gift it was meant to be to a time where readers don’t want to pay more than $2.99 for a full length novel. And there is no one to blame but ourselves.

The good news is, we can fix it. There is nothing wrong with offering a Free Read. I think it’s great. I do it. I also love to give away the surprise treat on social media or through my newsletter, but I don’t like that it’s expected to price the work at a permanent bargain basement level. I know the market is FULL of cheap reads, and many of them are even good, but if we want to keep a career going, then we need to start being realistic about pricing. The thing is, it’s not just some readers who are wanting that low low pricing, it’s some authors too. But to me, what is meant to be a treat or special, should not be the norm.

Yes, lower prices can help the money come in on that title. And with the higher royalty rate that we get from Indie publishing, it feels good, for a month or two, to actually make some decent money. But I have to wonder how many of those readers who are buying it at 99 cents (or who are getting it free as part of a blog tour or promotional giveaway) are actually reading it and turning into a return buyer. I wonder this for two reasons.

1) I know *I* bought a ton of 99 cent books because they either looked interesting and “Hey, its only 99 cents.” or to support friends. Out of the ones I bought, I’ve maybe read 3/10.

The lack of physical book has made it so easy to store a TBR pile that mine is bigger than ever now. Combine the infinite space to store with the “Hey, its only 99 cents.” factor, and I know I have a shit ton of books I’ll likely never read. I can’t be the only one who does this, right?

2) I don’t see the millions of free downloads translating to sales of other titles, or even reviews for the Free one.

Now, I know not everyone who reads one of my books is going to enjoy it enough to buy other titles, but I have to believe that some (Let’s say 25% just for the sake of argument) of the people will. If I don’t believe that, then, well, I might just not have the heart to keep at this gig.

Example: UNFETTERED has been FREE for 8 months ( I just took it off Free last week) In that time it has garnered over 100,000 free downloads and 29 reviews.

The next book in that series PRIMAL has been out for 5 months, and was Never free (but was on pre-order for 99 cents and sold about 1,000 downloads at that price in just under 2 months) and while it has sold way less then the 100,000 free downloads of Unfettered, it has 55 reviews.

My conclusion is that if the price is enough that the reader has to actually think about buying it, instead of just auto clicking a 99 cent deal – then they chances of them actually reading it are higher. Which means, hopefully, that the chance of them buying other titles by the author is higher, and the chances of them leaving a review are higher.

Sure, it’s great to see the number of downloads rise, but what good is that is so few of those downloads lead to someone actually reading my work? I want readers to THINK about buying my books. I want them to look at the cover art, read the blurb, and make a conscious choice to put their money there. I want them to learn my name, my brand, and trust in it, and in me to give them some enjoyable hours of escape that are worth their time and money.

So…now you’ve had a glimpse of my thought pattern when I’ve got the business hat on …care to share yours?

Tell me what you think about the glut of 99 cent eBooks. How many have you bought that you haven’t read yet?

Readers, do you value the books you pay a higher price for any differently than the ones you get free or for cheap? (Counting print books you might get free as giveaways or goody bags at cons)

Stuff

SO, I’ve been a path the past couple years to get myself in shape again, and it;s freaking hard, because everytime I’m doing well something big hits. (Like the death of someone close, or an occular occlusion/stroke). It’s a battle, but I’m still fighting it, and I found this cool thing with a bunch of readers. If you’re trying to get fit, check out the #FitReaders Challenge that Jen Twimom and Felicia the Geeky Blogger are doing. .

Oh, and my Horoscope for today…..
A ‘keep it to yourself’ mode should be in place throughout the day. Your opinions are valid (and correct), but no one is in any mood to appreciate them. You will make better use of your time if you channel your emotions into a creative pursuit. Cooking, dancing, singing — even shopping will benefit from your great ideas. It’s a terrific day to enjoy your friends. Have fun, and avoid banging your head against a wall with a bunch of folks who just don’t get it.

The thing is, I’m always full of opinions. So uhmm, yeah, okay, Shut and write today. Only, not, because it’s errand day. I work the outside job for a few hours, then need to do all that normal stuff like banking, groceries, and laundry. Then I need to write.

UNABASHED isn’t even close to done yet, and it’s deadline time coming up fast. Cross your fingers and send out some tequila to my muse would you? I need co-oppertion and creative juice.

Thanks. I’ll repay with something steamy soon. ;)

OH, and if you want an ARC of EVERY WHICH WAY,whihc will have UNABASHED in it submit for it here