Allyson's and Cyra's Books


Saturday, 21 November 2015

Goodbye, Hello is now FREE for 5 days

Goodbye, Hello is now free on amazon  for 5 days. If you haven't yet read this book, now is your change for a free copy.

If you like bargains, then you may also like to know, that Touching Ed is now available in a boxset of other book. I am squashed in the middle of 8 other authors. Best Selling and Award Winning Authors no less. The 9 book box set is available from this link at only 99c/p  it is too good to be missed. 

While on the subject of too good to miss, check out my attempts at trailer making. 2nd trailer lips trailer

Not too shabby, even if I say so myself.  Anything that distracts me from writing:)))

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Hands on the goods

Hello everyone
As most of you know, I am a vagabond and mostly live on the road or somewhere other than the UK. At the moment  have been back in the UK for a couple of months and it suddenly dawned on me that I had a static address (I am staying at my mothers house; how sad is that at 50+ yrs). So I had a brainwave, which apparently is still possible at my age. I ordered paperback copies of my books. Being on the road, has not afforded me that luxury, so today I received a parcel with a copy of all my books. It was absolutely great to actually hold and see the finished product.  Okay, so they are not War and Peace, sized books, but to me they are beautiful.

The only issue I have is with the Touching Ed cover.  Because we could not get a copy sent a s a proof copy to check, the issue with the cover (having a slither of white on two sides) went unnoticed.  It is easily fixable, but now I feel bad, because I have sent out 5 Copies to Goodreads Giveaway winners. I just hope they do not mention the cover in any review, if they happen to write one.

Talking of reviews. My latest book, the nonfiction; How to Write a Simple Book Review, has been getting some really good positive feedback and 5 star reviews.  I have just dropped the price from 2.99 to .99, in the hope  that more people will buy it. please share that information if you can.

I had Salsa or Die at free for five days and spent hours promoting it on Facebook and Twitter, but ony 40 books were downloaded for free.  I have to admit to hoping for more, but if those 40 readers actually enjoy the book and write a review, I will be more than happy.

Taking the conversation (albeit one way) back to travelling, I am on the move again next week. Off to Muizenburg, near Cape Town in South Africa for a nice three month stay in the sun, right next to the beach. Please, nobody mention the sharks!
Take care

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Wow, another 5 star seal from Readers' Favorite

I am smiling again. I have just won another 5 star seal from The Readers' Favorite website for 'How to Write a Simple Book Review'

5 stars! 

Reviewed By Roy T. James for Readers’ Favorite
How To Write a Simple Book Review: Calling All Readers by Allyson R. Abbott is a short book familiarizing one with book reviews, both as a reader and a reviewer. It tells us what a review is and why it is important. Different types of book reviews are then explained, indicating the differences between them. The book, while giving a general idea as to how a review is to be written, suggests a few opportunities of cashing in on one's efforts. A good list for further information, as well as the addresses of many book bloggers are of great help.

 I wish I had read How To Write a Simple Book Review: Calling All Readers by Allyson R. Abbott before I wrote my first review. (That was returned by the author for revealing too much!) Allyson R. Abbott has certainly made a few intelligent suggestions to make book reviews more interesting to the reader, while remaining easy on the reviewer. With the help of a few simple questions, like, “Is there anything in particular that you remember about the book that stands out or you feel confident about mentioning,” as well as by suggesting a few 'must not dos,' or more of 'there is no point in doing,' the author has given a clear direction for the reviewer. The recommendations given on star ratings is of considerable assistance for rating and marking one's review. This is very helpful book, both for learning the basics of a review and as a handy reference.
Getting a 5 star award is like winning an Oscar. I am very happy.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Apologies from Canada

Having been on the road travelling through some beautiful snow capped mountains, large river valleys, intriguing and quaint towns I have discovered the one thing they all have in common, very little phone signal and hardly any wifi. I apologise for lack of updates, but technology was against me. 
I have done very little writing, so now I am on an up hill battle to get Managing Ed on track, 
I am thinking Canada travel book though!

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Ice to sun.

Yesterday we were both in awe of the huge ice crystals clinging to trees, fences and everything else in Alpine, Texas. Today we traveled to El Paso in glorious sun with blue skies. People keep warning us about the snow that's coming and we keep running. 1000 miles from San Diego. Shall we miss the snow? I hope so.
On the writing front. I am now a third of the way through Managing Ed. The sun helps me write. I wonder if that is the same for every one else.  Cold bad, warm good.
Have a good weekend.

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Moving on. The road not the paper

We have been staying in a lovely campsite in Del Rio, Texas for the last week, now it's time to hit the road again. I wish it was that easy with writing. 
I keep picking up the pen and writing a sentence or two then drift to the Laptop to check something and before I know what's happened 2 hours have been lost.
The promoting and publishing takes up too much time.  I suspect that all new authors ( especially self publishers) have the same problems; as well as all the same books on self help indie authors. 
Getting advice is easy, but choosing which bit to follow is a lot harder because a lot contradicts the rest. There appears to be two camps. Those that advocate and actively advise you to build up a strong social following and interaction through Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and such like and the opposition who say it's a waste if time and if you use your book, cover, blurb and focus on manipulating your ratings on Amazon through interaction with other authors pages and books you have more chance of success.  
Using Amazon's promotion tactics is another bone of contention. Sell yourself cheap or keep your dignity and freedom if choice. 
It is very complicated and time consuming, but challenging and intriguing at the same time. I just wish I could write with one hand and promote with the other. Maybe there is a self help book for that!

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

My first few blog posts moved over from Goodreads

January 24, 2015

Okay, it's only a short story with a few pages; and please do not buy the paperback version because you will feel cheated, but it is my first born. There were no bells or whistles when I pressed the publish now button ( I really think KDP are missing a trick there), and it has been changed and tweaked so many times since that first click.
The writing of the book seems so much less stressful than the publishing and promotion of the same. It never occurred to me that it would be such hard and intensive work. Just finding out what is best to do is a minefield; there is so much advice out there and most of it contradicts each other. In the end you just do what you can and what you think is best for your book.
At the time of writing this first blog I am in New Orleans. I started the book in Oregon, so it has travelled thousands of miles with me. from the west coast to the east coast, down to Florida and now round the Gulf. I will probably be in Nashville when Touching Ed is published. That was started in Flagstaff, although notes were written in South Africa; does that mean its an international book?
Keeping Up Appearances
After hitting the publish button for the Countdown To Love short story. I stupidly thought that I would then be able to carry on and complete the other books. I feel that I am in bits and pieces land. Not really knowing what to do next. What I did not realize though, was the amount of work that comes after the publishing excitement. The promotion work and the marketing is extremely hard; especially if it not something you are used to.
I have been very please so far with the response to Countdown To Love. It received another 5 star review. The short story's main character is Marie and in a review was described as 'one of the gals that won't let a man get a word in edgeways' which I thought was brilliant. When writing the story I had Hyacinth, from Keeping Up Appearances. and Margo, from "It's a Good Life' in mind. So I am very happy that my writing style worked.
On the travelling front we are, as the song states, 'going to Graceland, Graceland, Memphis Tennessee!'. Not happy about the weather though, forecast of cold and rain. I am hoping to get Touching Ed published this week. I need some reviews if anyone is interested please email me. In fact, I anyone is interested in reviewing any book please email me. I will keep a list and then let you know when another book is on the review cycle. Have a great weekend. Allyson

February 5, 2015

Grand Ole Opry tomorrow night, so I am just brushing up on a few songs. I am so excited to be in Nashville. After leaving New Orleans, we travelled up through the Delta Blue country and arrived at a small house called Graceland. Awesome.

All this music and blues is interfering with my writing and I have not got any further than the 5 chapters in Managing Ed, the second book in the Silver Romance series. This series follows Abby and Ed on their journey of their frustrating sex life.

Hope to get Salsa Or Die published soon. Another very short romance story read-in-one-sitting, book about Pam and Jeff, who are both in their sixties.

Publishing and marketing is a new ball game for a writer. I need to spend at least a day getting to know all about the Goodreads site. There are lots of bits and pieces I have not found yet. I know they are there, because I have just read Goodreads for Authors by Michelle Campbell-Scott and she has given me some very good idea. I just need to sit still long enough with a good 4G signal to put them into action.

Tonight we are parking in a very classy campsite. Walmart in Nashville:) Not liking this cold weather though! I may be from England, but there I am not in a motorhome. At least there I can put more logs on the fire. Good job Walmart sell blankets.
Awsome Ole Oprey
I went to the Grand Ole Oprey yesterday. It was awesome. Really enjoyed the music and the whole atmosphere. I had no idea that it was a live radio show as well.
We walked into Nashville Downtown today. What a lively town. With an ice hockey match also on in town, it was a little busy, but the place was buzzing.
Ok, I know I am supposed to be writing and publishing, but there is so much to see and do around here in Nashville.

Touching Ed is about to be made available as an Ebook. I am thinking of using Goodreads Giveaway option as a promotional point. I would be interested if anyone can tell me the best option for this. Has anyone entered a giveaway? How many books being given away is an attractive offer?
What sort of time length is the best.
Any advice would be helpful. Thank you

February 11, 2015

I think my timing is really bad. Here I am in Nashville Tennessee, with so many things to see and do and I am in a hotel room promoting Touching Ed, and Countdown to Love that have just been published.
I am trying to split the time. So spending hours in the daytime o the laptop and then in the evenings we do a little sightseeing, which may or may not:) include checking out the bars and clubs. Okay, it mostly means checking out the bars and clubs. We visited the B B King club/restaurant and I was a little disappointed that the music was not really blues, but more jazzy than I like. However, my mood soon changed when we found The Boogie Bar on Bourbon Street. They had a Blues jam session, which was rocking! Thoroughly recommend it.
Last night we went to the Bluebird café and listened to live contemporary country music: keep your eyes and ears open for Clayton Anderson, I think he is going places.
The evenings are definitely more happening than the daytimes. promoting books is hard work, although I do have a great mention on Rebels and Readers Blog page today and Cheeky Peeks blog for Countdown to Love. Being a Valentine short story needs to be promoted fairly briskly. I have had 400 downloads on Smashwords for it so far. That may not sound a lot to some international best sellers, but to me it is amazing that 400 people have taken the time to download my book and hopefully will enjoy it. That is what it is all about.
February 21, 2015
Texas sun
Wow! we had a luck escape from the cold snowy weather. We were about to leave Nashville and head to St Louis, but it was feeling a little chilly so we thought we would check the weather. A cold blizzard was creeping down from Canada and was expected to get to north Texas. We do not like the cold, so we turned tail and raced down to southern Texas and are now in sunny Corpus Christi. I like being on the move, but it does not help with the writing and promoting work. Finding a good T Mobile 4G signal seems impossible down here. I need to sit still for a while to put a few hours in of writing. I am planning to have Managing Ed ready for publishing in May and it is only four chapters long so far.
Countdown to Love is still being downloaded for free and for some reason that I have not yet fathomed, it is doing very well all of a sudden on iBooks. I am going to start charging for it in two days, only .99, but it is part of my marketing plan. Touching Ed has not sold any copies yet, but I have Salsa or Die, coming out in a few weeks and plan to put that through the Amazon select programme to do a free promo and hopefully will tie it on to Touching Ed. It's like a chess game; working out the best moves.
It is very challenging, if not frustrating. Like playing chess without knowing all the rules.
Anyway, I read To Kill A Mockingbird this weeks, during my non-internet days. I bought it because of the sequel due out soon and I wanted to recap on the story. I had forgotten how brilliant it is. If you get the chance, do treat yourself to it.
Bye for now.
Wrting again
It is amazing what a bit of sunshine can do. We have managed to avoid all the cold weather front that has swept down the USA, by staying as far south as possible. We drove north west yesterday through oil fields and being passed on the road by thousands of trucks; or so it seemed. Nobody appreciates that we are not in a hurry. Today we are in Del Rio, Texas on the Mexican border and it is 26C.
We pulled in at a campsite on spec and have decided to stay for a few nights. Last night we stayed up till 2am catching up on emails and internet jobs. It was so nice not having to go to bed early to get warm. That little bit of warmth has made all the difference to my writing.
I am now well into book 2 of The Silver Years Romance series, Managing Ed; which is a good job really as I have promised it will be available from May 2015.
So I really need to get on to it. But first I need to de-hair my legs as it is now shorts weather again.