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Angell’s 4 Authors Author Promotional Support

Angelol's for Authors author promotion options on An angell's Life of Bookish goodness

Hello Lovely authors,

I am a big proponent of providing author promotional support. I know how important it is, as I am also an author. My main online persona is geared specifically toward readers, through my blog, An Angell’s Life of Bookish Goodness, where I offer tons of opportunities to help authors get additional exposure. There are quite a few ways that you can get in front of my audience of nearly 26,000 followers across all channels.

Free Services

Please keep in mind that everything listed under free services is first-come, first-serve, or when I feel like it. I do as much as I want/ feel inspired to do. For example, every paperback sent to me will have a book unboxing on Youtube. Beyond that, it is up to me when/ if I feel inspired to do a bookstagram post (or three. I’ve had some books that I totally fan-girled over and really inspired a lot of creative posts.) If I feel so inspired, I will also share those images on other platforms.

I have had author interviews and character spotlights pile up as much as six months (especially after big author events.) I refuse to post more than one blog post a day. That’s just madness.

I have books (e-book moreso than paperbacks because guilt and I LOVE paperbacks) that have been in my TBR pile for 3 years and some that have been on my TBR Goodreads list for far longer.

But when I share your content, it is likely it will get shared more than once across most of my platforms. As long as the post is evergreen content (not time-sensitive) then I will be happy to add it to my content cycle. I am still re-sharing good content from five years ago. True, it only typically happens once a year, but it does happen. With all that in mind, here are the free options available to you.

DIY author Interview

Please fill out the google form and follow all directions. If you do not add your tags properly, I will not chase you down to plug it in and it is less likely that I will share your content repeatedly. Also, please give me images. I like using my fun software tools to create great graphics, but I’m done doing that for free. I will create one image for your post and that is the header that goes with it. That is it. If you have an author interview and you do not provide me a headshot you will have a black box. Those who do not follow directions will be less likely to get their content re-shared over and over.

 My Readers LOVE Character Spotlights

For the character spotlight, you select a character from your book that you would like to spotlight and then a format that works best for that spotlight. For example, One author writes thrillers and did a media interview with her cop character.

One author writes sci-fi and did a stats spotlight for his character who is a genetically modified human.

Email me to submit a character Spotlight.  Please attach the images, your bio, and social media links. If it is time-specific, please let me know. I will do my best to accommodate, but I cannot guarantee that it will be met. If you want to ensure that it is posted during a blog tour then please see the paid options below.

Guest Posts

A lot of great resources for marketing your book come in the form of guest posts on other blogs and book magazines. They are a handy tool for building up your reputation and getting free publicity. The struggle for many authors is learning how to do guest posts. We are so used to writing books, that the idea of writing a quick guest post for someone else’s blog is a bit of a struggle. Even after you make the effort to master that skill (and so few authors pursue this route on my blog, it makes me so sad because guest posts are a GREAT way to get in front of other audiences!) then they struggle getting in because they don’t have a backlog of relevant articles to show that they have the skill.

Well, here you go. Build that reputation. The first step is to know the audience of that blog by scanning through other popular posts and getting the sense of who the blog is targeting.  Pick a topic and theme that suits that blog and allows you to highlight your own skills.

I am pretty open to ideas and will make this easy for you by providing you the information about my audience: 80% + of my readership are just readers. Marketing, promotion, editing posts don’t interest them. But if your book covers a particular topic and there was a fun bit of research that didn’t make it into the book, a guest post on that would be cool. I have had authors do guest posts on world building because they have a fun/ interesting slant.

Some easy guest posts are your top ten favorite authors/ ten books you recommend/ or music that inspires your writing. (I have a lot of music aficionados in my readership!)

I have combined my Angell’s 4 Authors blog with the An Angell’s Life blog as life is too busy to maintain the two separately. The content is separated by category so that readers don’t get the author’s content if they don’t want it. If you want to write a post geared towards authors, you are welcome to do so.

For those posts, I am really looking for experts who are willing to write an in-depth post to teach other authors something useful. This can be on marketing, writing, networking, promotion, finding an agent, whatever topic you feel you are an expert in. If it has already been covered, I typically won’t accept another post unless it does a better job of covering the content or takes a different approach to the subject matter.

Email me to suggest a topic, or submit an article for consideration. If you have specific images you would like included, please attach and include appropriate citation if you do not own the image. (EX: Pixabay Free Download) Do not forget your bio, an author picture, and social media links.

Other Ways I Help Promote Authors

I have built my whole online presence around the persona of another rabid book fan sharing my bookish joys. If you friend me and invite me to a Facebook event, I will invite followers, if you follow me on Twitter, I will probably share your book stuff (especially if it is interesting/ engaging and if you share my stuff first.) I’m a Booktuber and Bookstgrammer. Much of this gets looped around to the other sites, which makes it easy to provide a decent amount of author promotional support.

I know how important reviews are for authors. I also know how hard they are to get. There are days that I think “I’m done with all the writing and marketing and running around like a madwoman trying to meet everyone’s needs (AKA being a wife and mom) I just want to READ!” Alas, I cannot become a full-time reader.

However, I do schedule reading time every day. When that “I’m done” attitude hits, I am known to devour a book in one sitting. All my reviews (good and bad, you’ve been warned!) get posted on my blog, Amazon, Goodreads, Bookbub and if you have other sites you would also like it added to such as Smashwords, B & N, Kobo, etc. just let me know and I will do my best to add it there as well. (I strongly recommend that if you want a review on these places, you should follow me there as well.) Know that I am constantly talking about books. When someone on Bookstagram asks “What was a book that inspired you” I mention 3-5. If someone on Goodreads asks for a recommendation of great XYZ books, I am recommending 3-5 and telling why I think they should. If you follow me on these platforms, I can tag you when this happens. It makes it easier for them to link back to you and your book. If we don’t then there is a good chance that someone with a similar book name will get that sale, unless you have mad SEO skills. But why risk that on something as simple as giving me a follow?

Now, I would suggest that before you message me with a review request, you take a moment and look at the book reviews I have done. I will read every book sent to me (eventually) and I tend to be a harsh critic.

I almost never give 5-star reviews, but I can’t think of a single time I’ve given a 1-star review either. Most books get 3 stars and really good books get 4. I occasionally give out 2-star reviews if the grammar is really bad or the story is riddled with plot holes, but it has to be more than just “I don’t like this”.

I give DNF (Did Not Finish) reviews. These will typically fall under the 3-star category unless the previous 2-star issues are there. Generally, I will try to give it at least 100 pages or 10% of the book (whichever happens first) before DNFing. I used to struggle through books because I have a compulsion to finish things, but in 2019 I made a resolution that life is too short to waste my relaxing time on books I do not like.

Still think you want a review? I have a couple of different options for you to consider.

Send Me Your Book Links

Send me the link to your book on Goodreads and Smashwords (or Amazon, I suppose)  I will add it to my TBR and will eventually buy a copy and post a review. (If you take a look at my TBR on Goodreads, it is pretty big.) I like to support Indie authors with a sale but I’m not made of money and the husband keeps me on a strict budget because he knows as much as I joke, I really cannot live off books.

Send Me Your E-book

Feel free to send me your ebook in Mobi to or in epub to Please be sure to let me know via email that you are sending the book and if you have a deadline request (For example, it is a pre-release and you’re doing a tour.) I cannot promise that I will get it in before there, but I can’t if I don’t know about it can I?

So, what do I like to read? I am pretty much all over the map, to be honest! I will read anything except hardcore erotica. My always-in-the-mood-fors are any speculative fiction, especially fantasy and Sci-fi. I have to be in the right mood for romance, historical, and non-fiction (typically preferring books about business, marketing, sales, and occasionally self-improvement.) If you have a religious or philosophical book then I suggest that you ask yourself how hard you want someone who is very fact and science-based reviewing. I don’t really get behind woowy stuff unless there is some real science addressed to back it up. Please bear in mind that if you are sharing your experience of something and not trying to convince others to believe as you do, I am a much less harsh critic. But if your book gets preachy, I am likely to get sciency. I can’t seem to help myself.

When you submit your book, please understand that if it is an ARC, I will do my best to complete my review before the release date but I need at least 6 weeks to complete a review and that is only if a) I’m not in the middle of a book I’m enjoying and don’t want to drop for yours and b) yours catches my fancy enough to do so. The rest of the books I receive are read according to my fancy because in that way you will get a better review.  

Send Me Your Paperback

You can send me a paperback and I will do an Unboxing video and review, possibly posting the review on Youtube, post a “reveal” on Facebook Live, post a couple of pictures of the book on Instagram. I am still working on clever ways to use social media this way to promote other authors.

Email me to request my address. 

Please keep in mind that any and all of the above book-related promotion can and probably will get used periodically in Booktube Booktags and on bookstagramchallenges (especially if I have a paperback.)

Happy to Help You Network

Another key element to author promotional support is networking. I strongly recommend that you join our Facebook group Author Anon I am tied into the book community, so if you have a blog hop, book tour, panel idea, Facebook Takeover, or some other event and you would like to get the word out to authors, let me know. I will be happy to share your information around with my connections. If I feel that it is a good fit for my readers, I will also include an announcement in my weekly bookish e-newsletters.

Submit a Book Event Announcement or Sale.

Last, but certainly not least, if you have another way that you would like my help, let me know. Whether it be a Thunderclap, additional marketing services, or just need someone to bounce ideas off of, I am here to help.

All of these services are free, but if you found them helpful and would like to provide payment you can either join my Patreon or provide a one-time tip in the Tip Jar through PayPal.

Paid Promotional Services

I fully believe that no one should pay for a review. Please bear in mind that the following services are not based around “a paid review”. They are based on specific promotional content provided around a specific time-frame. You do not get approval over said content when it is a review however, you do get to use said content as you see fit. All content will be heavily promoted using well-planned SEO and hashtags and you will be tagged in the social media posts as appropriate.

  • Paperback Book Promo- Unboxing, Video Review, 3 Bookstagram images, and content posted across social media 30 times over the course of 1 year. (If the initial engagement is for a specific time frame like a new release/ book sales then 12 of the posts will be done during that time. The rest will have the original post remove the promo information and then be re-shared as evergreen content.) after the year is up, the content will continue to be shared across my social media just as the free posts are done.
  • A Timed Post Promo (author interview, character spotlight, guest post, sales announcement set for a specific week), 2 unique images besides the header which will be used for re-sharing and re-sized appropriately for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, Pinterest, and each size provided to you for your own use ( 10 images total) Content posted across social media 30 times over the course of 1 year. After the year is up, the content will continue to be shared across my social media just as the free posts are done.
  • Book Review Video- A 15-30 second clip that will be added to Youtube, my blog post, and provided to you to also use on your content as you see fit. See samples here. This one cannot be time-sensitive as I can only make 5 a month. They are great for running promo ads though.
  • Book Trailer – 15-30 seconds that you will need to write the outline for so I can tweak (please, not your synopsis.) The trailer will be added to my Youtube channel, my website as a post, and provided to you to use as you see fit. See Samples Here. This one cannot be time-sensitive as I can only make 5 a month. They are great for running promo ads though.
    • First come, first serve
  • Marketing/ Publicity Services- I can do the grunt work for you in submitting for book reviews, creating content, writing/ editing copy, evaluating your ad campaigns, developing bookstore lists, and a ton of other P.A. type services.
  • 30 Social Media Posts/ Evergreen Promo Package- You can submit 1 piece of content for me to share over the course of the year on my social media channels. I will create 2 unique images inspired by the content which will be used for re-sharing and re-sized appropriately for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, Pinterest, and each size provided to you for your own use ( 10 images total). You will be tagged in each share. This is on a case by case basis with site and content approval.

Until next time,

Keep Writing!


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Book Review: Upside Down A Vampire Tale by Jesse Smart Smiley

Book Review: Upside Down A Vampire Tale by Jesse Smart Smiley


Midgrade, Comic book


Harold is a friendly young vampire — but he loves candy so much, the dentist might have to pull his teeth! Now, what if he and the dentist, plus a couple friendly bats, all get caught up in the evil plots of the local witch? It’s a wild magical romp for all ages, just in time for Halloween!

Heidi’s Hot Take:

As I mentioned in my first thoughts, this book really is cute and fun. It is appropriate for about 8 years and up (or even an advanced 7-year-old reader) and deals with common struggles for midgrade and tweens such as enjoying things that aren’t good for us (like candy), the pull between family and friends, fear of consequences, and learning that not all adults are good. These were clearly intended messages and the author did a great job keeping the story interesting and compelling without pushing the bounds of appropriate. The artwork is simple but fun, and I totally get why my boys absolutely loved this book when I picked it up for them at Comic Con.

As I also mentioned in the video, there may have been some unintended messages in the story, which probably weren’t a big deal but did make me raise my eyebrows.  One of the messages, that not all adults are good,  is tied to a witch trying to steal from the human scientist that Harold’s family lives with. She tricks him into a date to get access to his house. Harold tries to chase her off to protect the scientist.  Later Harold sets up the scientist with the nice nurse from his dentist’s office.  I could see this being problematic if a child is a product of divorce and doesn’t like the person their parent is seeing and decides to pull the same stunt.  (I say this as a child who was a product of divorce and who, thanks to Hallmark movies, felt like it was my job to help my mom find her happily ever after.) While not a deal breaker for the read, it might be something a parent in that situation would want to talk through with their kiddo if they read it together.

Another odd message at the end is that the parents reveal that the vampire hunt Harold was afraid he would miss was to hunt witches and that they too had to have their teeth removed because vampires love candy. This was a huge part of the story. Harold didn’t go home after his dentist appointment because he thought that his parents would be upset he had to have his teeth removed and wouldn’t let him go on his first hunt. But he didn’t know that the first hunt was about witches. Maybe I read too much into it, but it seemed like the witch who we all thought was the villain may have been very justified in her attack on the vampires.  It also gave the message that adults don’t tell kids everything (I know, we don’t.) Again, I’m probably reading too much into it but it did have me hesitating on whether to enjoy the end of the story. While many kids might not have made the connection I made, I think there’s enough content in the tween market nowadays that is challenging the same messages so kids are more likely to think about these kinds of things.

All that being said, it really was a cute and fun read. I totally understand why this was a favorite for my boys, especially at Halloween. They like fun more than scary!

Definitely worth picking up if you have a tween who likes comic-style stories!

You can check it out  on Amazon

Until Next Time,

Keep Reading! 

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March 2023 Update and #IWSG Question of the Month

March 2023 Update and #IWSG Question of the Month

Hello Lovelies,

Man, this year has been so hard already! I’ve been really feeling my Word of the Year and recognizing that transformation is happening this year but if I just react to all that life is throwing at me then I don’t control that transformation and it could get ugly. But by focusing on my goals and dreams and working towards them- even if slower than I wished, I can make sure that my transformation ends up positive! With all the health struggles my poor husband is having, we really need that positive transformation.

I am well on my way. I finally got my PMP certification exam scheduled for March 26th and am studying hard every day to keep the information fresh in my mind! I’ve also almost finished the final edits on Quick and Dirty Annual Marketing guide and will be re-releasing one for authors and one for entrepreneurs next week. Maximize Your E-newsletter Masterclass is all updated and I am looking for 20 volunteers to review the course for free and provide feedback and an honest review. I am hosting the next week-long DreamMaker Challenge March 19th,  and the next 30 Days of Marketing challenge April 1st. I’m also steadily working on the edits for Angel’s Dance so I can get that re-released next. While I’m behind on where my goals were set this year and I still haven’t managed to add in new creative writing time, I’m really pleased with all I am accomplishing. Now on to the fun stuff!

March Updates

#IWSG March Question of the Month

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!
Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time – and return comments. This group is all about connecting!
Be sure to link to this page and display the badge in your post. And please be sure your avatar links back to your blog! Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.   

The awesome co-hosts for the March 1 posting of the IWSG are Diedre Knight, Tonya Drecker, Bish Denham, Olga Godim, and JQ Rose!

Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

Remember, the question is optional!

You ready?
Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

March 1 question – Have you ever read a line in a novel or a clever plot twist that caused you to have author envy?

I wouldn’t necessarily say author envy, but I have read a lot of clever twists that thrilled me as a reader who generally has the story beats figured out in the first few chapters.  As a matter of fact, that is an automatic 4-star rating as long as my reaction is “Yes, I hoped that was where it was going!” or “Holy moly, I didn’t see that coming but it makes perfect sense!” As a matter of fact, one of the things that made me rail against The Girl on the Train was that she had perfectly set the story up for the most AMAZING twist…. and then she went with the boring answer. I was sooooooo angry! It was right there.

And if you can throw in a plot twist that punches me in the gut like Joshua Robertson did in Maharia (I literally threw my kindle across the room and refused to finish the story for a few days.) then you win a special place in my heart. I bought the books in paperback for subsequent read-thru’s just in case the rage hit again! As for great lines, I can’t think of any that hit me profoundly enough to remember them later but I do know that there are times where I will pause and re-read a line or a description just to revel in emotion it elicits in the moment.  But with each of these, I cannot say I’ve felt author envy. I think because I strive so hard (usually) to separate my reader self and my author self while reading- otherwise it feels too much like my editor self and that is work and I don’t read for work, I read for self-care.

You can see the rest of the hop at IWSG Bloghop

Until next time,

Keep Writing!

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Book Review: Small Favor by Jim Butcher

Book Review: Small Favor by Jim Butcher


In this novel in Jim Butcher’s #1 New York Times bestselling series, an old debt puts Chicago wizard Harry Dresden in harms way…

Harry’s life finally seems to be calming down. The White Council’s war with the vampiric Red Court is easing up, no one’s tried to kill him lately, and his eager apprentice is starting to learn real magic. For once, the future looks fairly bright. But the past casts one hell of a long shadow.

Mab, monarch of the Sidhe Winter Court, calls in an old favor from Harry. Just one small favor he can’t refuse…one that will trap Harry Dresden between a nightmarish foe and an equally deadly ally, and one that will strain his skills—and loyalties—to their very limits.

And everything was going so well for once…

Heidi’s First Thoughts

Heidi’s Hot Take:

Small confession, I read this WAY out of order. I didn’t want to wait to buy the books between this and Fool Moon, and he did such a great job recapping in Fool Moon from Storm Front that I figured I’d be fine so I jumped from book 2 to book 10. I was


And I totally wasn’t! Oh my goodness, so much happened between 2 and 10 and while Butcher did a fantastic job just weaving in what was needed for this story, it still left me chomping at the bit to read the other books and answer more questions that were burning in my brain but were not necessary to this story. For example, when did he get a half-brother? Why did Murfy get demoted? How did he get on the Council? Why was he in a fight with the fey? How did he end up in Molly’s life? And so very many more story lines that I cannot wait to dive deep into. Alas, I must as my book budget is already spent this quarter 🙁

I would say that all those swirling questions made it a bit more difficult to stay as immersed in this story as I would’ve been if I’d read it in proper order. But Butcher leaves no downtime to forget where you are. Those longings are what occupied my brain between reading sessions, but during the reading I was completely immersed. The story line is far more complex and convoluted than even Fool Moon with the multiple possible villains. These many plots weaving together left Dresden running almost non-stop through the story, and by extension left me exhausted after each reading.

My only fear is that Butcher can’t keep ramping up like this and keep it feeling grounded. I mean, I know Dresden is a very powerful wizard and that has been evident from the very first book, but we’re running into a bit of a Die Hard Conundrum. Die Hard 1- John MacClane is your average beat cop put in an extraordinary situation but by Die Hard 4, he is launching cars over helicopters in ways that even trained elite professionals could never do. At what point do we start feeling that Dresden’s powers are so great that even with 50 baddies fighting at the same time and for different reasons no longer excite us because we know Dresden can’t be beaten?  I will say, I’m thrilled to see how much Dresden has evolved emotionally and that makes me so happy, but I fear that we will have to experience further growth through a whole heck of a lot of loss and grief. At what point will that loss and grief maybe make him the villain?

I am very much enjoying this series and look forward to it being the next slew of books I buy once my book budget opens up hopefully in Q-2.

Have you read the Dresden Files? What are your thoughts? Which is your favorite book? Let us know in the comments below!

Until next time,

Keep Reading!


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Book Review: Eye of Minds by James Dashner

Book Review: Eye of Minds by James Dashner


Teen/ YA LitRPG


From James Dashner, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Maze Runner series, comes the first book in the bestselling Mortality Doctrine series, an edge-of-your-seat cyber-adventure trilogy that includes The Rule of Thoughts and The Game of Lives

Includes a sneak peek of The Fever Code, the highly anticipated conclusion to the Maze Runner series—the novel that finally reveals how the Maze was built!

The VirtNet offers total mind and body immersion, and the more hacking skills you have, the more fun it is. Why bother following the rules when it’s so easy to break them? But some rules were made for a reason. Some technology is too dangerous to fool with. And one gamer has been doing exactly that, with murderous results.
The government knows that to catch a hacker, you need a hacker. And they’ve been watching Michael. If he accepts their challenge, Michael will need to go off the VirtNet grid, to the back alleys and corners of the system human eyes have never seen—and it’s possible that the line between game and reality will be blurred forever.

Praise for the Mortality Doctrine Series:

“Dashner takes full advantage of the Matrix-esque potential for asking ‘what is real.’” —

“Set in a world taken over by virtual reality gaming, the series perfectly capture[s] Dashner’s hallmarks for inventiveness, teen dialogue and an ability to add twists and turns like no other author.” —

“A brilliant, visceral, gamified mash-up of The Matrix and Inception, guaranteed to thrill even the non-gaming crowd.” —Christian Science Monitor

Heidi’s Hot Take:

I struggled to get into this story as the parallels to Ready Player One were so painfully obvious. From the hanging out in virtual worlds to the trio team of one girl and two boys, the big win goal that will “change” the MCs life , and the secret underlying plot that throws a wrenching the MCs goals. It was almost enough to make me put the book down.

But Dashner tells a tight story and is excellent at driving you forward even when you are pretty confident you’ve already figured the story out. I did enjoy some of the elements of worldbuilding that is why I enjoy a lot of LitRPG, the fantastical game worlds within worlds, the over-the-top quirky characters that you can only get away with in spec fick, But at the end of the day, the creative twist I was counting on did not quite play out the way I’d hoped and was left hanging that it *might* in later books, but probably not. I am honestly so divested from the trio dynamic that I don’t really care to find out.

This kind of content that follows such predictable story beats is a large part of why I generally don’t enjoy reading mainstream and trad published books.  While I think some formula is required to a certain extent, the more formulaic it is the less excitement I feel reading. That is why I was so excited when more and more authors began mixing genres because it gave a wider room for blending formulas and less predictability to the story.

If you like that (and a lot of people do, no judgment from me!) then be sure to check out Eye of Minds on Amazon and see if it’s for you.

But if you like LitRPG which isn’t so formulaic and lets you get lost in the story and the world-building, then I have some great review recommendations for you!

Check these out:

Conquest by RM Mulder

Realms Unreel by Audry Auden

Of for a cool Book about building those types of worlds, don’t miss The Man of Cloud 9 by Adam Dreece.

Until Next Time,

Keep Reading!


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Book Review: Night Rounds by Helene Tursten

Book Review: Night Rounds by Helene Tursten


International Mystery and Crime Thriller


The fourth investigation in the nationaly bestselling Swedish detective series

Irene Huss is a former jujitsu champion, a mother of twin teenage girls, the wife of a successful chef, and a Detective Inspector in the Violent Crimes Unit in Göteborg, Sweden. And now she’s back in the gripping follow-up to Detective Inspector Huss. One nurse lies dead and another vanishes after a local hospital is hit by a blackout. The only witness claims to have seen Nurse Tekla doing her rounds, but Nurse Tekla died sixty years ago. Irene Huss has the challenge of disentangling wandering ghosts and complex human relationships to get to the bottom of this intriguing case.

Heidi’s Hot Take:

I absolutely love international detective thrillers. They have a different flow than most USA based detective thrillers. There is a lot of fun details about the culture that bleed through. That is all the case for Night Rounds as well. I can’t say that I adore Irene Huss. I actually kind of struggled with liking most of the detectives in the book, TBH. Maybe it’s a cultural thing, but it was interesting to see that women in Sweden seem to run into similar struggles of how their roles are being shifted in culture and that there is kickback there just as we experience here. I will say that Helene Tursten’s red herrings were really quite good. Right until the end, I wasn’t sure who the killer was and she clearly set it up to mislead the average reader into falling into the same trap that most of the male detectives in the book kept falling into, underestimating what women can and will do and why.

While I wasn’t super won over by the detectives, I absolutely loved Tursten’s writing. How she mixes the mundane struggles of balancing life with being a detective, how we get as much of a look into Huss’s family life as her policework, and the ever-relatable feeling of struggling to balance personal and self-care around all the responsibilities of being a woman in modern society. I also felt like one of the reasons the red herrings really stood out is that Tursten makes a very solid effort to show how real police work is not getting a suspect early on and then digging into all of it to prove that they were guilty, but looking at the whole of the evidence and following up a lot of potential leads that would never quite resolve enough evidence to completely dismiss them but also ran cold on being able to follow up further. Like life, the police work wasn’t as linear as we often get in US-based detective thrillers and I really enjoyed that aspect to it.

Want to learn more about Night Rounds? Check it out on Amazon.

Until next time,

Keep Reading!

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January Updates and #IWSGQOTM

#IWSG Angell's 4 Authors Do you have a word of the year?
Hello Lovelies,
December was a crazy busy month between re-releasing Elements of Broken Mind,  The DreamMaker2023Q1 challenge, the 12 Days of Indies 2022,  and expanding my Quick and Dirty Annual Marketing Guide. This month is almost jam-packed, as I am looking for beta reader feedback on  Quick and Dirty. (If you’d like to sign up, please fill out this google form and I will be in touch next week!) am working to wrap up the course materials for Maximize Your E-newsletter Masterclass, re-releasing Quick and Dirty and then working on An Angel’s Dance re-re-release. Also hoping to schedule my PMP exam,  figure out why my dryer is not working (it’s been a whole saga) and figure out what is making my husband sick (an even bigger saga). While also making time for my personal and professional goals.  It’s only a couple of days into 2023 and I’m already feeling a bit overwhelmed. But that is not the word I want for 2023.

IWSG Question of the Month

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!
Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time – and return comments. This group is all about connecting!
Be sure to link to this page and display the badge in your post. And please be sure your avatar links back to your blog! Our Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG.
Every month, we announce a question that members can answer in their IWSG post. These questions may prompt you to share advice, insight, a personal experience or story. Include your answer to the question in your IWSG post or let it inspire your post if you are struggling with something to say.

Remember, the question is optional!

January 4 Question – Do you have a word of the year?

Is there one word that sums up what you need to work on or change in the coming year? For instance, in 2021 my word of the year was Finish. I was determined to finish my first draft by the end of the year. In 2022, my word of the year was Ease. I want to get my process, systems, finances, and routines where life flows with ease and less chaos. What is your word for 2023? 
I have really been searching and searching for the right word. I have a large list of goals(15, to be exact) and they are a wide range of goals that are all focused on growth but growth didn’t feel like the right word. I also considered balance as a good key word but that didn’t resonate with me either as I am always seeking balance. After a lot of soul searching for just the right word, I finally settled on the best word and when it came to me my soul did sing.
Transformational- (as defined by the Cambridge  Dictionary)

able to produce a big change or improvement in a situation:
Action to encourage home insulation by the EU represents a potentially transformational event for government-funded installation agencies.
transformational acquisition/deal/merger
a transformational strategy/reform/step The company’s chief executive described the transaction as a “transformational step” in implementing new corporate strategy.
transformative ideas/experiences
This goes beyond just growth, this is exponential growth. Several of my goals this year will lead to major changes in our lives and working together will align us in a whole new way. But transformational change is overwhelming and scary. I hope I am up to the challenge, am really excited to pursue this new path for us, and I am putting all the most powerful energy into making this transformational shift.
The awesome co-hosts for the January 4 posting of the IWSG are Jemima Pett, Debs Carey, Kim Lajevardi, Sarah Foster, Natalie Aguirre, and T. Powell Coltrin! Be sure to check out their posts and the rest of the awesome members of the IWSG blog hop!
Until Next Time,
Keep Reading!
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Top 10 Blogging Tips to Drive Business for Entrepreneurs

Top 10 Blogging Tips to Drive Business for Entrepreneurs

Hello Lovelies,

Today I am sharing my top 10 blogging tips for entrepreneurs and how to use blogging to grow your business. These are the tips I use with my own entrepreneurial adventures and have worked across every industry I’ve worked (B2B/ B2C/ B2B2C, entertainment/ retail, SAAS, health and wellness, writing, legal, dental, and medical.) to increase your online presence, drive traffic to your site, and build your sales funnel.  It is a fantastic tool to build trust, expertise, and respect. It is also something many businesses choose to outsource to agencies but I think that is a huge mistake. While you can hire someone in-house to handle your blogging, it is not a good idea to hire an agency to do your blogging because it will lose a lot of your company voice, it won’t be as easy to tie into your whole sales funnel, and the expertise you are seeking won’t be there because they are not experts on your product, your clients, your business. I used to write for Blog Mutt to provide these types of services and even when I was an expert in the content they were looking for, it still wasn’t a solid fit because I wasn’t an expert in their product and when I looked at their blogs to get a sense of their voice, it was all over the place because the company had no voice as everything was outsourced. So plan to do this work in-house. If you are a solopreneur you can write the articles and then pay someone to edit, format, and post them if writing isn’t your strong suit. But the core of it should come from you and you should use the same editor each time so you build that relationship and they can preserve your voice correctly.

Let’s get started!

1. Know your Purpose and Audience

You must know why you’re blogging, but also why your audience is reading. This is a common mistake I see over and over. If you are an author and you are writing to attract readers, then do not write about writing. You can occasionally write about your writing, such as research you are doing for a story, what inspired a character, etc. But so many authors are out there giving writing advice when they are trying to target readers. You should be writing about reading and about your own writing. That is what readers will find interesting.

For entrepreneurs of all stripes, you want to dig into your purpose for blogging so you can shape the content around that.

Here are some common purposes for blogging as an entrepreneur:

  • To build an audience for your products
  • To establish yourself as a trusted resource
  • To build credibility
  • To draw your customers in
  • To educate your customers in how your product can solve their problem
  • To drive sales

You can write with all these purposes or only one of these purposes in mind. Most of what will decide how many purposes you can tackle will be how much time you can devote to the blog posts and how frequently you can post. If you can only manage 1 post a week or a month then hoping to cover all of these areas sufficiently will take years. So start with just one and build that out. The beauty of blogging is that you can always update and expand posts (I do it all the time) as you grow and expand your business. If your primary focus is to build sales then start there with blog posts that tackle your different products and how they can help your target customer. Once you’ve built those posts out and are looking for more content, then you can build out posts about common problems that your customers experience and how your product can solve those problems.

2. Build a Detailed List of Topics

This will not only spare you writer’s block, it will also allow you to create a consistent posting schedule that will bring readers back over and over again. I like to build my list in my handy Editorial Content Calendar that I created in Excel. (I provide this to my clients to help them plan their own content as well.)  This allows me to not only create a dump list of ideas but to organize the content in the best flow pattern with my planned posting schedule and can let readers know what the next topic to be covered will be and when. I can also go back and link content to each other to help drive customers further down the sales funnel.

Are you struggling with deciding what topics to cover? There are some resources to get topic ideas. Look at what your customers are asking about online. I love #writingcommunity on Twitter as it is a veritable resource of topics writers are asking for help on. I also do searches on all social media for keywords I am trying to rank for, look at discussion groups on Linkedin and Facebook, and even do polls with my customer base to get topic ideas. I set up google alerts for certain topics I cover regularly so I can see when news comes out about the topic of concern. Any time I come across this type of stuff, I add it to my pile of ideas. (With newsjack items getting higher priority to take advantage of the focus.) I remember when I was working for a publishing house that offered services to indie authors, as well as publishing authors under our own label, and #Cockygate hit the news. That gave us a slew of content that we were able to scatter over 6 months around our regular content.

Some other hot topics would be to write about industry events (especially ones you are participating in), to look at what competitors are writing about and decide if you can cover it from a different (or better) angle, and community events if you’re a brick-and-mortar store. Any events or charities you partner with and why you partner with them.  You will see that Under Armour does a ton of charity outreach and partnership and writes about it.

3. Craft a Killer Headline


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Catch a reader’s eye without being clickbaity. Hit on emotional reasons a reader will care about and drive them to click on that post.

There are some fantastic tools to use to help you do this. One of my favorites is Co-schedule’sHeadline Analyzer. This tool is fantastic and gives you tips on how to improve your headline by using action and feeling words. If you’re not familiar with this copywriting technique, here is a handy guide Jenna Jacobs of Co-schedule wrote to help you out.

My general philosophy is that the more important the content is to driving revenue, the more time I spend on crafting the headline.  For example, on my website, I do a lot of book reviews. I read across a wide range of genres and many of them are not relevant to the genres I write. I don’t spend a lot of time on the headlines for any of the reviews and only spend a little time on other aspects of the optimization process. This is the outer edge of my sales funnel. The closer down my sales funnel the content is the more effort I put into every aspect, especially the headline.

4. Plan your SEO

Use your blog to drive more Search Engine Optimization for your site and business. SEO allows you to get in front of high-value targets. Make sure that you are learning all about SEO, keeping abreast of changes, analyzing your key SEO words and working them into your content plan to drive customers who are looking for your content. I could write a 50-page dissertation on SEO, using long-tail and short-tail keywords, targeting what customers are searching for, etc. But that content has already been written by true SEO experts so rather than take up a ton of space on this already long post, I will advise you to become ABLE (Always be learning everything) and recommend that you carve out some time every week to read up and research (and keep learning as SEO is constantly changing and improving). Some of my favorite SEO resources are:


The Hoth


Google Search Central

I get weekly emails and read through them to keep my knowledge growing. If you are pretty new to SEO, each has some great courses you can take to help guide your learning.

5. Write for your Audience

Make your content as niche as possible and focus the content on what that audience wants and needs most. A great way to help you with this approach is to write the post for one specific customer knowing that customer’s specific needs. The content will resonate with all other customers struggling with the same problem. A perfect example is this article. I actually took a lot of this content from an email I created for a customer who wanted to get into blogging to grow her audience and had a host of authors who wanted to work with her but none of them really had commercial blogging experience. Each was writing their own blogs on their own websites and had their own formats and styles. They each had a ton of fantastic knowledge and experiences in writing to share with the novice writer audience she was trying to reach, but it was my guidance on how they could create a cohesive blogging platform following basic blogging practices that helped to grow their overall reach. Before we started this cohesion she only had a schedule but let everyone come up with their own ideas on what to write about on their assigned Day.

We put together this plan that included all of these elements and educated the authors on the process. Within 3 months we had taken their impressions from the low 200s to over 1,000 a day. Their engagement went from non-existent to 20-50 comments per post, and their subscriber list was non-existent and grew to over 800 subscribers. In just 3 months. Over the 2 years that I worked with her those numbers continued to grow steadily.

6. Break up your Content

Anything you can do to break up the blocks of content and make it easier for a reader to scan and find the content they’re looking for and make sure you address the solution they need. The longer the content, the more you need to use to break it up. As you will see, in this very long-form content I have employed a lot of techniques: I have headings, lists, images, video, shorter paragraphs, and longer paragraphs.

One of the cool elements of all this content creation included in your post is that it will also make it easier to share your post across different platforms. Create videos and images designed for the different platforms and it makes it easy to use that image to share on that platform and link back to the post. This is especially handy if you are creating evergreen content that you can share multiple times throughout the year, like this piece.

7. Include Reputable Links

This not only will increase your reader’s view of your knowledge, but it will also lead to higher google rankings as a quality source and will decrease your chances of your website being blocked by social media platforms. When doing this, I generally aim for at least 1 link to a reputable piece of similar content on my own site and at least 2 to reputable sources outside of my site. The longer your content, the more links you will want to create. But you don’t want to overwhelm a short piece with too many links or it begins to feel spammy. Sometimes you won’t have content to interlink to on your own site and that is ok, but whenever possible try to interlink your content. And there is always an exterior link to connect to, even if it is just where to buy or another reputable source for additional information. A note about links to help your content feel more reputable, let them know where you’re sending them with the link. I hate the habit that some bigger outlets have developed of not citing the source correctly. While a site like MSNBC can get away with it, if you are a much smaller name you want to cite your source so they know where they are going. Too many smaller sites ruined people’s trust by hiding viruses and such in links so build your credibility and site the source as I’ve done throughout my content. Whenever possible, cite the content and the author (see how I did this with the guide to headlines up above). This shows that you give credit to other people’s ideas, that you know who provided the content and their value (even if your reader doesn’t), and that you know the content and aren’t just pulling top-ranking content from Google. They may not even click the link while reading through your post, but in their mind, it will make you a more trusted source.

8. Create Killer Content

Mix with long and short-form content, video, images, and lists to keep your reader’s interest. While these tools are also great for breaking up your content to make it more scannable and also provide you great shareability on different platforms, it also caters to different learning types which your audience will appreciate. If your goal is to educate, meeting your audience where they are and in the format that best suits them is the way to go. Your goal with every piece of content should be  “how do I meet the reader’s specific needs?” (writing to your audience) and then creating the best content to do that. With short-form content, you will want to be focusing on one very specific issue and address it thoroughly or create a very broad general understanding (giving yourself opportunities to dig deeper into the topic matter with linked content down the road).  When creating images and video content, while you don’t need to make it in a professional studio, you do want to make sure that it is good quality and that the lighting and sound are solid and efficient to keep from distracting from your message. Some companies (especially new start-ups) try to rush through all the content creation focusing on creating a full backlog. It is better to focus on creating quality pieces from the get-go as it will build your reputation better. While you can cycle back and re-purpose content and update it you do not want that to be a key part of your strategy to just get more content out there faster.

Blogging Tips to Drive Business for Entrepreneurs Pinterest

9. Have a strong CTA

End with a strong call to action so your reader knows exactly what they need to do next. The call to action doesn’t have to be “Buy today” or something of that nature, though that should be your close for content created at the bottom of your sales funnel. It can be “learn more” (one of my favorites for book reviews, linking to their sales page with reviews and sample reads) or what are your thoughts if it is an educational piece. Asking them to share questions in the comments and assuring you will answer them is a good step in giving them additional resources for information, but you need to devote time every day to answering questions if you choose that approach. Invite them to share the post with their network, or try out these tips and let us know if it helped. But be sure to have a solid direction for what they can do next.

10. Share Everywhere

Use your blog post shares on social media to engage with your audience, drive traffic to your site, and to your sales funnels. If your content is evergreen, meaning that it isn’t time-specific, then add it to a content sharing list that you can pull from to re-share throughout the year. I like to share new pieces 3-4 times in the first month and then once every 90 days or so for the first year. Key sales funnel pieces may be shared more frequently, things that aren’t driving my sales funnel or traffic to my site may be shared less frequently. As you go through this re-shareable content, it might be worth updating some of it if new information has come out or adding new elements as it ages. As video content became more popular and easier to produce, I have been systematically creating video and adding it to older blog posts that have not been generating as much traffic.

Bonus Tip- Always be Improving

Constantly be evaluating your content and how you can improve it. Blogging is a long-term strategy, not a quick fix. There are a lot of things you can do after content has been created to keep it growing your business.

Link content together to keep readers on your site longer, to help guide them down your sales funnel, and to increase the chances of a sale.  While this applies to content created specifically for your sales funnel, it may also apply to content that wasn’t originally created to drive the sales funnel but was a simple newsjack item. I review my content regularly to update posts and link them to other posts, and keep building my sales funnels.

If you have older content that you created before developing a specific skillset (like video) then go back through that content and add that element to it to give it new life and drive new traffic.

If you have content that you have re-vamped and re-shared and it isn’t driving traffic, then remove it so it doesn’t weigh down your site. There is no harm in doing this- but be sure that you unlink all posts that are connected to it. While it is hard to let go of content you created (believe me, I know) if it no longer serves your audience then it doesn’t serve you. It is ok to prune it.

Hope these tips help you in your journey to add blogging to your marketing arsenal. If you’d like help with your blogging journey, reach out for a consult.

Until next time,

Keep Growing!

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Book Review: Icefall By Matthew J. Kirby

Book Review: Icefall Matthew J. Kirby


Children’s Action and Adventure


Critically acclaimed author Matthew J. Kirby deftly weaves a stunning coming-of-age tale with chilling cleverness and subtle suspense that will leave readers racing breathlessly to the end.

Trapped in a hidden fortress tucked between towering mountains and a frozen sea, Solveig–along with her brother the crown prince, their older sister, and an army of restless warriors–anxiously awaits news of her father’s victory at battle. But as winter stretches on, and the unending ice refuses to break, terrible acts of treachery soon make it clear that a traitor lurks in their midst. Solveig must also embark on a journey to find her own path. Yet, a malevolent air begins to seep through the fortress walls, as a smothering claustrophobia slowly turns these prisoners of winter against one another.

Those charged with protecting the king’s children are all suspect, and the siblings must choose their allies wisely. But who can be trusted so far from their father’s watchful eye? Can Solveig survive the long winter months and expose the traitor before he manages to destroy a kingdom?


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Heidi’s Hot Take

Based on the cover, I thought there would be magic in the story. Though there isn’t, I still absolutely loved this historical fiction story. I really related to Solveig’s struggle as the middle child who felt out of place and not as important in her family dynamics. I loved watching her grow from just a shadow trying to fit in by helping where she could, to blossoming into a heroine who inspired others to be greater than they thought they could be.

The Nordic setting and the story were also fascinating and well-researched. The teases of mysticism and prophecy as well as the question of whether it was real or whether people’s belief was enough to make it seem like it could be real are pretty heavy concepts for a book aimed at pre-teens and teens. I’ve been on kinda a nordic kick with my entertainment lately and really appreciated the level of research the author did, given this was written 10 years before most of the stuff I’ve been enjoying.

An excellent coming-of-age tale with real depth for the right readers and a lot of interesting action and suspense for the average reader. Highly recommend.


Until Next Time, 

Keep Reading!

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Walito Resistance Bands introduction

Hello Lovelies,

I made this video several years ago when I was on my health and wellness kick but couldn’t go to the gym because of Covid.  But I was so mortified when I saw the video that I never posted it. I found it again when cleaning out my files and decided to post it as is, no editing. I knew if I edited the video that I’d end up chickening out and not post it. Seeing myself in this video makes me feel so nauseated. The most frustrating part is that at the time I made the video I was feeling better than I had in a long time. I was on a solid regular workout and diet regimen. I was #fatandfit promoting because I’d accepted that I would never be able to lose weight but at least I could be healthy and happy.

Clearly I wasn’t healthy and happy or I would’ve been fin editing and posting this video. But I was determined to do the best I could with the situation before me. I am so glad that my doctor pushed me to consider weight loss surgery. While I still cringe when I see myself in the mirror (especially all the saggy skin from the weight I’ve lost) I am finally seeing the results I should’ve seen with all that working out I was doing before, and I am doing half the workouts I did before. I know I still have a long way to go to reach my fitness goals but I am so glad I don’t look like that anymore and I’m thrilled that I am still using my Walito bands on busy days when I cannot get to the gym. They are a fantastic investment to help me keep building my muscle strength as my body keeps trying to eat all the muscles in my weight loss journey!


Want me to make more videos like this so you can see my progress both on my weight loss and on my fitness journey? Just let me know in the comments.


Until next time,

Stay healthy, happy, and inspired! 

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Book Review: Fool Moon Jim Butcher

Book Review: Fool Moon Jim Butcher


Mystery, thriller suspense


“One of the most enjoyable marriages of the fantasy and mystery genres on the shelves,”(Cinescape) the Dresden Files have become synonymous with action-packed urban fantasy and nonstop fun. Fool Moon continues the adventures of Jim Butcher’s most famous—and infamous—reluctant hero…

You’d think there’d be a little more action for the only professional wizard listed in the Chicago phone book. But lately, Harry Dresden hasn’t been able to dredge up any kind of work: magical, mundane, or menial.

Just when it looks like he can’t afford his next meal, a murder comes along that requires his particular brand of supernatural expertise. There’s a brutally mutilated corpse, and monstrous animal markings at the scene. Not to mention that the killing took place on the night of a full moon. Harry knows exactly where this case is headed. Take three guesses—and the first two don’t count…

Heidi’s Hot Take

This is the second book in the Dresden files series by Jim Butcher and I absolutely loved it! I am a huge fan of werewolf mythology and I love how  they added a fun bit of extra world-building by pulling from several different mythos and treating them as separate entities. I also loved the continued tension being built between Dresden and Detective Murphy and how his assumptions of what is causing it keep running him afoul. While I love the flawed hero aspect, I did find it beyond frustrating that he had a lot of self-realizations (I know my being closed off and not sharing information is getting people I care about hurt. I’m gonna do better, I swear!) never actually turned into self-actualization. There were several times where he even acknowledged that Murphy would want to know this but then consciously chose to leave her out of it, to both their detriment.

If the author plays this angle right and we see Harry actually attempt to be better (not perfect, he is human after all, but at least BETTER) then I will be so very happy. But if he pulls a Gibbs and sticks to his bad habits, I might just have to drop him on his head.  I have high hopes it will be the former, and not the latter. If so, I will recommend this series to anyone struggling with personal self-development as a template on how to do it. First, we have to know what is broken and process how we can do better. But then we have to do better!

I also want so much more about werewolves. I loved the sneak peek into these three complex werewolf societies, but that was really all we got. It was totally needed to feed the main plot (IE keep the reader and Dresden guessing on who the big baddies are.) but it didn’t give me enough of a look into each type to be satisfied. I hope to see Dresden come up against different werewolf types in the future so we can see more into the different legends and lore.

All in all, a very fun and satisfying read that I highly recommend to anyone interested in urban fantasy mysteries and alternative lore. Looking forward to getting the next books in the series! Want to give it a try? Check it out on Amazon today! Fool Moon Dresden Files

Until next time,

Keep Reading!