author

Cover Reveal: AJ Linn’s A Gentleman’s Fate

As many of my readers know, author AJ Linn is a friend of mine. You can find my other article about him here. Everything AJ Linn is doing is a testament to why it’s so incredibly important to support independent authors. Not only does he dream up and write books, but he formats and publishes them as well. He’ll tell you how hard it is, but he does it because he loves it (no matter how much he grumbles) and he does it for his fans. I am honored to be a part of the big reveal (albeit late…) of the cover to his newest book, A Gentleman’s Fate.  Read on for an excerpt from his new book, and learn more about this amazing author.

Book-cover-release

An Excerpt from A Gentleman’s Fate

We arrive at the dock, and before us is the hard-not-to-miss gondola, filled with red roses and surrounded by dozens of tiny white flickering votives. The priest and the gondolier are standing by, making the big surprise even more obvious with their shit-eating grins. It quickly becomes apparent to Scarlett what’s happening, and she doesn’t say a word. She just stands there, stunned, speechless, and horrified.

“Come aboard, happy couple!” the gondolier says, attempting an American accent, not overshadowing his own thick Italian. “We have-a da champagne on ice for da celebration of this most joyous of occasions!”

“The celebration? Donovan? What’s going on?” she asks, not taking her eyes off of the priest. “What is this?”

“This, Scarlett, is me trying to marry you. The romantic shit that you hate, remember?”

“Donovan?” A confused, terrified look sweeps across her face.

About AJ Linn:

A.J. Linn published his debut novel, A Gentleman’s Affair, Volume 1 of The Gentleman’s Series, in May, 2013.

Since that time, he has continued protagonist Donovan Hart’s story in A Gentleman’s Secret, published in December, 2013, and revealed Donovan’s earlier life in a prequel, A Gentleman’s Memoir, a novella published in August, 2014.

The series quickly became very popular with fans of his RP/character blog, which he’d been writing for almost a year. He credits those fans with this series, since they were the ones who encouraged him to “write a book” and dedicated the books to them.

With his unique voice and writing style, the popularity of the series began to grow, despite the promotion and marketing challenges facing a self-published indie author.

In an original and creative idea, he gave his readers the opportunity to submit “characters” for A Gentleman’s Secret and A Gentleman’s Memoir, which he crafted into the story. The results were intriguing and sometimes hilarious, as he paid the ultimate compliment to his fans and readers…making their characters part of Donovan’s story.

While having full-time job and a very busy life make finding time to write a challenge at times, his readers are in agreement that he has done a fantastic job: four books in two years is quite an accomplishment.

The paperback editions of the series can be found on Amazon. The ebooks are available on Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, and iTunes.

Support Author AJ Linn and Buy His Books

I’ve written about my friend AJ Linn before. He’s a guy who had a blog, then he started writing a book. Three books later and now he’s working on his fourth novel. Four books. The guy is a machine.

I’m shamelessly plugging the fact that Mr. Linn put his books on sale over at Smashwords (here is a direct link) and if you haven’t checked out his Gentleman’s Series yet, you should give it a shot.

It isn’t often that we get a romance series written by a man from the male perspective.  AJ Linn has done just that, and he brings a fresh voice to the genre with his hero and protagonist, Donovan Hart. Throughout the three novels (A Gentleman’s Affair, A Gentleman’s Secret and A Gentleman’s Memoir) Donovan tells the story of his very personal quest to find true love, including all of the hits and misses he suffers along the way.

Not only is it fun to check out a new series, but it feels great supporting a self-published writer who is doing everything on his own. 

I highly recommend the Gentleman’s Series. But hurry over to Smashwords–this sale won’t last forever!!

Book Review: A Gentleman’s Memoir by AJ Linn

In A Gentleman’s Memoir, AJ Linn’s newest volume of the Gentleman’s Series, we learn more about the intriguing past of alluring bachelor and badass playboy Donovan Hart. In previous books we have seen Hart endure date after exhausting date as he sought out his unico vero amore, his one true love, and at the end of the second book Hart has finally met his match with Scarlett Montgomery. Now we take a tour of Hart’s playboy past, beginning in 2006. Hart endures lust (though never love) and heartache as he moves down the path toward the powerful man readers have come to know and love.

Linn masterfully weaves together tales Hart’s beginnings in the “scene” along with his trysts and rendezvous with the people he meets along the way. All the while, Hart is building his business empire and caring for his heartbroken father.

A Gentleman’s Memoir is a quick read, and not just because it is, in fact, a short book. The story seems to fly through nearly a decade. Linn is a master at creating colorful dialogue between his equally colorful cast of characters while his talent for descriptive language makes the scenery as interesting as the characters.  Linn does an excellent job balancing Hart’s “man’s man” public persona while allowing readers to see just enough of his vulnerable side to make him a lovable and wholly relatable character.

If you’re a fan of AJ Linn’s work then you’ll find that A Gentleman’s Memoir is a tantalizing amuse bouche to keep his rabid fans sated as he works on the fourth (and final?) book in the Gentleman’s Series.

On Writing: The Author’s Bandwagon

I think I’ve fallen off the bandwagon.  Lately I’ve been so pressed for time that writing has taken a backseat to everything else.  This is not good.  

I’ve considered things like daily page goals, or word count goals, but generally I feel that with writing nonfiction, trying to work toward a word or page count goal could lead to a bunch of crappy writing.  Instead, I’ve tried to write something solid, and if I’m satisfied with the quality, then I’m happy with the progress.  However, I suspect that I’ll never get done if I keep this system going.

Perhaps there is a happy medium that I’m not seeing.  For now, I’ll consider any progress to be good progress.

On Writing: Hold that Thought!

Last night I started writing the intro to the third chapter of my book.  Then I got interrupted and wasn’t able to come back to it.  There was a 50/50 chance, I knew, that I might forget what I was working on.  Fortunately, it seems to have stuck with me.

Don’t you hate it when you have an idea and you can’t write it down, and then you lose it?  I’m serious when I say I’ve probably written dozens of books over the years…in my head.  I have to work on the “writing it down” part.

I actually dreamed the entire plot of a novel back in 2003.  It was Thanksgiving weekend and I woke up with the entire thing in my head, from start to finish.  And oddly enough, I’ve never forgotten the plot.  It’s as fresh today as it was back then.  One of these days I’m going to write it out and publish it.

One of these days….

On Writing: That Spark of Inspiration

I confessed to my coach last week that I was frustrated with my book’s outline.  I need to prepare the first four chapters to submit to a agent.  From my perspective, the first four chapters are the least interesting, and yet they’re absolutely critical.  

My coach stepped in and pointed out that by subtly changing my viewpoint, I can make those dull chapters more interesting.  It was almost too simple.  All of a sudden I looked at my outline with a new set of eyes.  I didn’t need to rewrite the outline or change things around in the book–I just needed a new approach.  

And just like that, I was back on track.

Thanks, Coach!

Reading to Help the Writing

I ordered a book last week and it arrived on Thursday.  I’m almost done with it, and so last night I ordered another one so that I have a new book to start when I finish this one.  They’re both business books by Alan Weiss and Marshall Goldsmith.  (This is the third book I’ve read by Weiss and the 4th is due to arrive next week)  The book I’m writing is nonfiction, and it centers around a philosophy I developed. Reading their books helps me to get my own book done.

I don’t think reading falls into my procrastination trap.  I think this is more like research.  However, I do find that I get lost in the books, to the extent that I’ve devoured several hundred pages in a few weeks. (I can read fiction much faster; nonfiction requires a different area of my brain, which is why I developed my own personal writing process)

On the one hand, I have tons of new ideas floating around my head.  On the other hand, I haven’t done as much writing as I should have.

Again, this is why it’s a process for me!

Over the Writer’s Block/Procrastination Hump: Inspiration Strikes

All of a sudden the words are coming.  My trusty pink notebook has been within arms’ reach so that I can record whatever pops into my head.

The system is working.  Procrastination as a form of mental warm-up.  Write things that have nothing to do with the book so that the brain is tricked into doing nothing but thinking about the book.

Silly brain.  I have you figured out now….

On a Roll…The Words Are Pouring Forth

It’s funny how much writing I’ve done today.  I laugh only because I am writing a little bit of everything.  I have a solid outline that is my backbone, so I find myself writing a little bit here and a little bit there.  I suppose that after a while, I’ll have everything done and none of it will have been done chronologically.

Is there any harm in this?  I’m going to say no.  

While it’s true that I eventually have to transfer all of these random pieces into the computer in some semblance of order, I’ll consider that part of the editing process.  Indeed, I think that this will allow me to tighten up certain areas because I’ll throw some of it out and add new material into it as I go along.

Again, this is all part of the process.  My process.  As long as it’s working, why would I change anything? (That’s rhetorical…there are tons of things I could change about this nonsensical process of mine…I’m just not going to do it!)

This Isn’t Procrastination–This Is The Writing Process!

As it turns out, all of the distraction had a positive effect on the book today.  All of a sudden, as soon as I opened my pink notebook and grabbed my pink pen, the words started flowing forth in a torrent of pink ink.  

I really think that there is something different that comes with writing nonfiction as opposed to fiction.  I was discussing this with an author friend of mine today.  He didn’t understand what I was saying when I said that this book is harder than writing a novel, and then I drew the comparison of trying to write a 250+ page essay or research report.  That’s essentially what I’m doing.  And then he understood.

Oddly, though, I think that taking time to work on fictional pieces and writing articles and working on my blog and posting to Twitter have all helped.  There is a subtle shift from fiction to Twitter to my blog to articles to the nonfiction book, and so doing those things together allow my brain to shift gears from fiction to nonfiction.

This isn’t procrastination–this is the writing process!