Monday, May 5, 2014

Interview with Bernadette Marie


Can you give us a brief overview of your latest book? Is it part of a series?
Home Run is the 7th book in the Keller Family series. This story follows Christian, the son of Madeline and Carlos whom we meet in book 2. Since every Keller is in every book, we have been following Christian since he was about 12. Now, an adult, he faces the loss of his baseball career, due to a tragic accident. He also lost the woman of his dreams, his fiancée Victoria, when, in that same accident, she lost her sister and brother-in-law and became guardian to their children. The story follows them as they both try to move on. Victoria with another man and Christian with Victoria. Only true happiness is found when they both begin to let the walls they’ve built around their worlds (and hearts) crumble.
 
Have you ever had a minor character evolve into a major one? Did that change the direction of the novel at all?
Yes! And that usually means the books has become a series of books. That’s what happened here with the Kellers. I wrote a book about Regan Keller. At some point I have her a brother and he had a story, and so did her sister, and her other brother. The list goes on.

Did you try the traditional route to publishing, i.e. querying agents/publishers?
I did. I have been rejected since I was 16 years old. But in 2009 I was contracted for my first series by a company that would later fold after not paying any of their authors. So I opened my own publishing house and I have had great success with that. Not only have most of my 15 books gone bestseller, but I have over 25 authors and a catalog of over 60 titles. Numbers of them have also gone bestseller.

What factors influenced your decision to self-publish your book(s)?
When you’ve gone through the ups and downs of the excitement and turmoil of a “Non-Legit” publisher, you quickly get the thought that you could do this all by yourself. That was what I did. I built a company just for me, but others began to see it as a workable platform and the publishing house of 5 Prince Publishing became more than a place for me to put out my work. It became a launch for many great authors and a new platform for other already published authors.

What is your writing process? Do you listen to music or do you like silence?
I have five sons. So I find when I’m working during the day and they are at school I sit and work in silence. Music is my muse, but not my partner during the work day.

Do you outline your story or just go where your muse takes you?
My characters write the stories. I’m very much left out of the loop. I seem to just be the typist.

What have you’ve learned during your self-publishing journey?
That voice is very important and too many times an author’s voice is taken from them. With my first publisher she decided to do Christian books after having contracted me. This wasn’t my voice, but she changed all of the books to be “sweet and clean.” This stole my voice. An editor can also quickly do that if a house demands that or the author isn’t working with an editor that embraces that.

Besides Amazon, are there any other sites where your books are for sale?
My books are on Barnes and Noble, iTunes, and also distributed on a grand scale through Smashwords.

What kinds of marketing [twitter, facebook, blog, forums] are you involved with for promoting your book(s)?
I’m very active on Twitter and Facebook. I have a great blog too! (@writesromance on Twitter. Facebook.com/authorbernadettemarie and authorbernadettemarie.blogspot.com)

Do you find it difficult to juggle your time between marketing your current book and writing your next book?
I find it hard to get in all the marketing period. I have a marketing director inhouse and I’ve hired a PR firm for an upcoming trilogy. I’m never at a loss of time to write. I make that happen. But the marketing is harder.

What advice would you give a new author just entering into the self-publishing arena?
Do it! It’s a great avenue. It’s not easy so don’t think it is. And PLEASE go in professional! Get your cover designed! Get a professional editor! Have it line edited after that! But don’t just push publish!

Besides writing, do you have any other passions?
Of course my kids! They are all competitive hockey players and I do find great joy in sitting in ice rinks. I am also a 2nd degree black belt, but due to my schedule my training has halted, but I am now finding a great passion for Pilates!

What’s next for you?
This summer I will launch a trilogy called THE THREE MRS. MONROES. I’m so excited about this project and I hope it is loved by my readers just as much.

~~~~~~~~~~~~
BOOK BLURB:
In one moment Christian Keller’s life was changed. Now as he picks up the pieces he wonders if he can possibly recoup what he lost.

Victoria Lincoln had a promising future with Christian until an accident took the life of her sister and left her as guardian to her two small children.

Their lives have gone in different directions, but Christian and Victoria’s paths will cross again. It will take a lot of change to pick up where they left off—if either of them can.

~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Bernadette Marie has been an avid writer since the early age of 13, when she’d fill notebook after notebook with stories that she’d share with her friends.  Her journey into novel writing started the summer before eighth grade when her father gave her an old typewriter.  At all times of the day and night you would find her on the back porch penning her first work, which she would continue to write for the next 22 years.

In 2007 – after marriage, filling her chronic entrepreneurial needs, and having five children – Bernadette began to write seriously with the goal of being published.  That year she wrote 12 books.  In 2009  she was contracted for her first trilogy and the published author was born.  In 2011 she (being the entrepreneur that she is) opened her own publishing house, 5 Prince Publishing, and has released contemporary titles and has begun the process of taking on other authors in other genres.

Bernadette spends most of her free time driving her kids to their many events.  She is also an accomplished martial artist, working her way to her second degree black belt in Tang Soo Do.  An avid reader she loves to meet readers who enjoy reading contemporary romances and she always promises Happily Ever After.


~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

Bernadette will be awarding a $25 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here: