Special Guest: Sally Cronin, The Odd Jobs Gal – Swashbuckle and Romance


odd jobs

About Sally Cronin

sally wedding day 1980

My name is Sally Cronin and after working in a number of industries for over 25 years, I decided that I wanted to pursue a completely different career, one that I had always been fascinated with. I began studying Nutrition and the human body twenty years ago and I opened my first diet advisory centre in Ireland in 1998. Over the last 18 years I have practiced in Ireland and the UK as well as written columns, articles and radio programmes on health and nutrition.

I published my first book with a Canadian self-publisher in the late 90s and since then have republished that book and released ten others as part of our own self-publishing company. Apart from health I also enjoy writing fiction in the form of novels and short stories.

My thanks to Lyn for kindly inviting me to share this post in the Odd Jobs and Characters series on her wonderful site.

Odd Jobs and Characters – Hotel Assistant Manager – Swashbuckle and Romance.

Last week I wrote about my cross country journey of many hours by train, to reach a hotel in the heart of the Snowdonia National Park in Wales. My time there was filled with adventures, and in this post I would like to introduce you to a couple of memorable guests. To spice things up a little, and since I am the guest of an award-winning romance author, I have included a little love interest.

Snodonia National Park, Wales

Snowdonia National Park; wikipedia creative commons; photo by Mike Peel

The hotel boasted an award winning restaurant which overlooked the Mawddach estuary. In the summer months in particular, guests could eat outside on sunny days and evenings, enjoying the spectacular mountains that dominated the landscape. This attracted international visitors as well as those closer to home, as well as the rich and famous. This included Denis Thatcher, husband to the newly appointed prime minister, Maggie Thatcher, and several actors and BBC television presenters who used our hotel as a base when filming in the area.

One lunch in particular stands out in my mind as it involved the head of one of the most prestigious Champagne houses.

One of my boss’s best friends was an importer and businessman in the area, and he would frequently drop in for lunch with his clients. Normally when my boss and his friends had lunch there was a fair amount of alcohol involved, and I would be kept busy bringing bottles of wine and spirits out to the table on the terrace. The guest that day was the head of one of the largest Champagne houses who was on a business trip to Wales. He had brought some bottles of the really good stuff with him. Pre-chilled and stored in a special case in the trunk of his car.

Wine flowed and the trio enjoyed lunch which included our specialty lobster dish. Our French guest left the table for about 5 minutes and arrived back with a sword in a very ornate scabbard. He asked me to line up the remaining two full Champagne bottles on the stone balustrade of the terrace. Bearing in mind the amount of alcohol consumed by this time, it was with some trepidation that I did as requested, and then stood back; well out of the way.

With a great deal of flourish, the sword was removed from the scabbard, and the hilt was clasped in two hands. It was announced that any further champagne would be drunk from bottles opened in the traditional way. With that the sword swept through the air missing the first bottle completely. Without missing a beat, a stance was taken again and silence fell upon the watchers as there was another wide sweep of the weapon. This time the neck of the bottle was removed and champagne cascaded all over the gravelled balcony. I do believe there was about half a bottle left to be consumed by the admiring lunch guests.

However, other guests made their mark in a more permanent manner. An Irishman booked a room by telephone, arriving a week later and was given the key to room 40. He caught the eye of more than one member of staff due to his good looks and his lovely accent, but apart from booking meeting rooms and business lunches or dinners, he kept mainly to himself. It was therefore quite a surprise on his last night when he asked me to join him for a drink when I finished for the evening. He apparently knew that I was off the next day and asked me out to lunch and then dinner. We did a lot of talking and perhaps a kiss or two! He was due to leave the next morning and came down to my flat to say goodbye; or so I thought. Instead he asked me to marry him.

I didn’t hesitate and said yes and we were married five weeks later in the small registry office in the nearby town. Just my parents and his parents attended and we had a small reception with lunch and champagne of course. However, swords were kept in their scabbards. As they have been for every anniversary since for the last thirty-seven years.

Huge thanks again to Lyn for hosting this post today and I hope you have enjoyed. The characters that I met working in the hotel have definitely found their way into my stories.

Wow! What a swashbuckling, romantic story, Sally! Thanks for sharing.

To enjoy more of Sally’s adventures in this series, click the following link where you will find links to each post. https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/sallys-odd-jobs-and-characters/

Now here is Sally’s latest book: What’s In A Name? – Volume Two 

 wian web sized

Our legacy is not always about money or fame, but rather in the way that people remember our name after we have gone. In these sixteen short stories we discover the reasons why special men and women will stay in the hearts and minds of those who have met them. Romance, revenge and sacrifice all play their part in the lives of these characters. Kenneth watches the love of his life dance on New Year’s Eve while Lily plants very special flowers every spring for her father. Martha helps out a work colleague as Norman steps back out into the world to make a difference. Owen brings light into a house and Patrick risks his life in the skies over Britain and holds back from telling a beautiful redhead that he loves her.

 Sally’s other books

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All books are available on Sally’s Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Sally-Cronin/e/B0096REZM2

You can connect to Sally here:

Blog: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/sgc58
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sally.cronin

 

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Raise Your Amazon Book Rank


I’ve tried lots of ways to boost my book’s rank on Amazon. The best way I’ve found is to submit my book to Ereader News Today’s Bargain and Free Books. When I placed RESCUING LARA (Romancing the Guardians, Book One) on ENT it shot up from in the dumps to in the 1,000 top book ranks. I was thrilled!

Why I didn’t follow up with book 2, I don’t know. Life probably distracted me. Then I actually forgot which book promotion site worked so well. Aarg!

Well, one day last week I was going through my files, cleaning out some clutter, when I ran across a note to myself about the excellent results from ENT for Rescuing Lara. Wasting no time, I submitted BEGUILING DELILAH (RTG Book 6) to ENT. The book was accepted and is running today on ENT. http://ereadernewstoday.com/more-bargain-and-free-books-for-8-6-17/

Cover & Cote d'Azur

Once again, sales are zooming  up. You can bet I will be submitting my other books to ENT soon! I highly recommend their site for other authors who need to boost their Amazon rankings.

To clarify, you must make your book FREE or price it low on the day it runs on ENT’s Bargain and Free Books page. But believe me, it’s worth knocking your price down if  you have to in order to push your book up the ranks so it will be noticed by readers on Amazon.

 

Bastille Day Release


At last! Beguiling Delila (Romancing the Guardians, Book 6) will be released on July 14, Bastille Day – France’s equivalent to the US Independence Day. Why? Because most of the book is set in France. Opening in Paris, the story takes Delilah Moreau, the French Guardian, and Leon Tseda, her hero, on a life-and-death race across the country to Nice on the breathtaking Côte d’Azur, before they take flight to America.

Cover & Cote d'Azur

Leon is one of my favorite characters from the series. He’s no spring chicken, and neither is Delilah, but they’re not too old for a second chance at love. Their journey is fraught with danger, excitement and steamy, mature romance.

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Now, in case you missed any of the earlier books in this epic series, here is a quick overview. First, there are seven Guardians, each sworn to protect a precious scroll containing a secret prophecy handed down from ancient seers. Not to be revealed until mankind is ready to listen, the prophesies are in danger of being seized by vicious “Hellhounds” who want to use them to gain power and wealth.

Rescuing Lara, winner in the 2015 Paranormal Romance Guild Reviewers Choice Awards, stars Lara Spenser, a psychic heroine who’s running for her life, and Connor O’Shea, a hunky ex-Special Forces hero Lara hires as her bodyguard. Irish folklore, an ancient prophesy, murderous villains, and steamy romance make this a wild ride.

US: Amazon    UK: Amazon     CA: Amazon     AU: Amazon

Decoding Michaela features a heroine who can read minds. Michaela Peterson is stunned by news that her revered leader, the High Guardian, has been murdered. She’s attracted to Dev Medina, the handsome messenger, but fears he may be out to steal the scroll she guards. Can Dev win her trust and unlock her heart before the Hellhounds capture her?

US: Amazon     UK: Amazon     CA: Amazon     AU: Amazon

Capturing Gabriel is set in the mountains of Colombia. When Gabriel Valdez is tracked down by a feisty Navajo beauty intent on convincing him to go to the United States with her, he instead takes her prisoner. Josie doesn’t count on falling for him. Gabriel doesn’t intend to trust her with his secrets or his love, but the heart has a mind of its own.

US: Amazon     UK: Amazon     CA: Amazon     AU: Amazon

Touching Charlotte Introduces Charlotte Dixon, an empathic Guardian, and Tristan Jameson, an ex-NYC cop burdened by hidden pain. He needs healing and love, but how can a man romance a woman who can’t stand to be touched? Getting past Charlotte’s barriers while protecting her from Hellhounds proves the ultimate challenge.

US Amazon     UK Amazon     CA Amazon     AU: Amazon

Profiling Nathan is a chilling murder mystery/sexy romance. Guardian and ex-con Nathan Maguire just wants to make a living inking tattoos, but FBI profiler Talia Werner turns his life upside down. To save her pretty neck, he must help catch a serial killer. His deadly psychic gift may come in handy.

US: Amazon     UK: Amazon     CA: Amazon    AU: Amazon

Romancing the Guardians Series * Part One (1st 4 books)

US     UK     CA     AU

Lyn Horner is a multi-published, award-winning author of western historical romance and romantic suspense novels, all spiced with paranormal elements. She is a former fashion illustrator and art instructor who resides in Fort Worth, Texas – “Where the West Begins” – with her husband and a gaggle of very spoiled cats. As well as crafting passionate love stories, Lyn enjoys reading, gardening, visiting with family and friends, and cuddling her furry, four-legged children.

Amazon author page: http://amzn.to/Y3aotC

Lyn’s Romance Gazette http://eepurl.com/bMYkeX

Twitter    Facebook     Google Plus     Goodreads

Sweethearts of the West 

Need a video trailer? Meet Opal Campbel


Opal is an experienced video designer. I met her (online) through Frank Kelso, author and organizer of THE POSSE western romance anthology. I told Opal I wanted to post the short trailer she created for my story in the anthology and asked her to tell me a little about herself. Here’s her answer:

“I have a facebook Page www.facebook.com/videosbyo as well as a blog that I use more as a website. www.videosbyo.blogspot.com
I have been creating videos for about 5 years now. To date I have made over 400 videos and over 200 book cover GIF’s 🙂

There really isn’t much to say about me LOL My MAIN goal is to make sure that ANY author or publisher that wants a video can get one and budget is not a factor. I keep my prices very low and for anyone interested in a full book trailer I actually let the client pick the price 🙂 This is to make sure that no matter the client’s budget they can pay what they feel the video is worth to them or what they can afford without breaking the bank :)”

After viewing examples of Opal’s work on her blog site, I could find lots more to say about her, but I will let a few of the videos she did for THE POSSE speak for themselves:

Lyn Horner https://youtu.be/Rtp0IgFk4S0

Charlene Raddon https://youtu.be/-GOaqc4GiQ4

Chimp Robertson  https://youtu.be/f1D0AsqEdck

Release Day Minus 1


Well, actually minus one & one-half. TOUCHING CHARLOTTE releases on May 26th – this Thursday. It’s not too late to pre-order, which I would surely appreciate. As I mentioned in my previous post, pre-orders help boost a book up the ranks on Amazon, making it more visible for readers on release day.

As an incentive to pre-order Touching Charlotte, I’m making RESCUING LARA, the award-winning first book in this series FREE for 3 days beginning tomorrow, May 25th. I hope you will take advantage of this special offer.

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Rescuing Lara: http://amzn.to/1sSwh8y

Decoding Michaela: http://amzn.to/1MJpYOC

Capturing Gabriel: http://amzn.to/1Ro7FPH

Touching Charlotte: http://amzn.to/1SU6vNG

Date Change & Why Use Pre-orders


I goofed!

When I set the release date for Touching Charlotte as Tuesday, May 24th, I forgot that big publishing houses often release new books on Tuesdays. It’s not a good idea for indie authors to put a new book up against the big boys, so I pushed back the release date to Thursday, May 26. I hope there will be enough pre-orders by then to boost my book up the ranks on Amazon.

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The importance of pre-orders:

1. Pre-orders boost a book’s ranking on Amazon, B&N, Apple, Kobo, etc. on release day. The higher it ranks in its categories and in the site’s overall sales, the greater the chances your baby will be noticed by readers, which in turn may lead to more sales and an even higher ranking.

2. Pre-orders contribute to first week sales. Enough of them and your  book might make it onto a bestsellers list. We all dream of that, right?

3. If your book is traditionally published, a large volume of pre-orders may cause the vendor to place an order for more copies from your publisher — before your book even hits the shelves.

With these factors in mind, I plan to always offer my future books for pre-order.

If you are interested in reading Touching Charlotte, please, please Pre-order it now. You will make a real difference in the book ranking on release day.

Amazon US      Amazon UK     Amazon CA

How and when to put your book on pre-order:

I’ve learned it’s best to start your pre-order campaign at least 30 days prior to the release date of your book. This allows more time to spread the word to your followers and on social media, and for pre-order sales to grow.

You can upload your book as a rough draft when placing it on pre-order. However, in the case of Amazon, you must upload the final copy no later than 10 days before the scheduled release date. Why? Because Amazon doesn’t like authors to miss their release date and upset customers. If an author does not upload their final copy by that 10-day cutoff, they lose pre-order privileges for one year.

On Amazon, placing a book on pre-order is much the same as uploading and releasing it immediately. You fill in the same details, upload the book cover if ready, upload the book, set the price, etc. The difference is you indicate on the form that this is a pre-order submission. (There’s a spot for that.) And, if you wish to upload a rough draft, you also indicate that.

That’s pretty much it. Just make sure you follow that 10-day rule!

Questions? email me: lynhorner@outlook.com

You can also find me on these sites:

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