Kindle Fire: My New Love

For my birthday, I received the Kindle Fire.  I never had an e-reader before, and all I can say is I didn’t know what I was missing.

The Kindle Fire is amazing.  I’m going to sound like an advertisement in saying this, but I can surf the web, create documents (I still need to figure that one out), and read books within seconds.  I can read books on my iPhone too, but it’s a lot easier to read a book on the Kindle screen than the iPhone screen.  Not only are books easier to read, so many of the classics are free.  FREE!  To use a Princess Bride line, “Inconceivable!” at how amazing this thing is.

I feel like the Kindle Fire will get me to read more.  I’m embarrassed to say that I am behind on my reading.  I used to pride myself on being a fast reader, but since graduating from college I’ve fallen back into slow-reading mode which means it takes me longer to finish a book.  There’s something about the Kindle screen, however, that brings out the inner child in me that loves to flick the screen to turn the e-pages.  Plus, there’s the added bonus of not having to hunt through my bookshelf to find the book I’m looking for, then to hunt for it again once I put it down.  With the Kindle, it’s right there in my carousel.

I read Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest yesterday.  Although I have the print copy on my bookshelf, the print copy has a thin layer of dust on it from not even being glanced at in so long.  But downloaded to my Kindle, I spent the afternoon reading it.

Now having experienced the Kindle, I think there is something to be said about the different reading mediums out there.  I know there was (and still is) debate as to whether traditional publishing will eventually be phased out in the wake of the e-publishing revolution.  While I do think that the popularity of traditional publishing will subside, there will still be a place for traditionally published books.  I may love my Kindle, but I still love holding a book in my hand.

Books are becoming more like Warhol pieces where it’s the same image only in different colors; with books, it’s the same book only in different formats.

Happy (Belated) Book Birthday!

Amazon will state that both THE HUNTED and DARKNESS CALLS were published on August 23, 2012 which sounds about right.  I’ve seen authors, agents, publishers, etc. wish their books Happy Book Birthday when they are published.  Since THE HUNTED and DARKNESS CALLS were published before this post, it’s a belated birthday wish.

So here goes…Happy (Belated) Book Birthday to THE HUNTED!  Happy (Belated) Book Birthday to DARKNESS CALLS!  Both available through the Amazon Kindle store!  *Throws confetti and glitter at computer screen*

Despite all the doubting and worrying and gut-wrenching worst-case scenarios that have gone through (and still continue to go through) my mind, I’m proud and excited for both my books.  It took a lot of hard work to write them and then get them ready for publication.  It took even more courage to actually publish them.

I hope that people will at least give one or both titles a glance.  Right now I feel like my books are the new kids in the Kindle school, trying to get people’s attention.  Hopefully, people will be interested.

Thank you.

Publishing Hiccups: Part Two

After a few hours to cool down after my stress-out over my publishing hiccups, I’ve come to decision to just “own it” as far as those mistakes go.  I realized I have two choices: I can either continue to stress over mistakes that are mistakes and the perfectionist in me cringes at them; or accept them for the fact that while mistakes, they’re minor.

In regards to the name issue, I like the way my name appears on the ecovers: L.N. Rocha.  Aesthetically, I think it looks better than Lauren Rocha would on them.

As far as the whole “In Progress” status for Pricing and Royalty goes, there’s nothing I can do about that at the immediate moment.  I’ve emailed the Amazon Kindle Publishing people, and according the auto-message I should receive a response within 24 hours.

Stress-out of the day is over.  For now.

Publishing Hiccups

Both THE HUNTED and DARKNESS CALLS are now available for purchase through the Amazon Kindle store.  While I put a lot of effort and worrying (I still worry) into both and am very proud of how they came out, they aren’t without hiccups.

The publication of both books marks the first time I have published.  EVER.  I like to think the publication of both books also marks a milestone of me overcoming my technophobia and improving my technology skills.

That said, it wasn’t without hiccups.  While Amazon does its best to explain what the different categories mean when inputting information before books can get published, I was still confused.  For instance, next to the Book Contributor category, I filled in Lauren Rocha because they asked for first and last name.  I selected myself as Author and didn’t give much thought to it after that.  Now, though, I realize what that meant.  Although I put my author name as L.N. Rocha on the book cover, Amazon lists my Author name as Lauren Rocha, not L.N. Rocha because I filled in the Author Book Contributor field as Lauren Rocha, not L.N. Rocha.

The other nagging issue is that when I click on Bookshelf to see the details of both books, under Pricing and Royalty it says In Progress even though both books are published and available for purchase.  I do not understand!  I clicked the box on the bottom for THE HUNTED that says Agree, then clicked Save and Continue, and now it’s acting like it’s republishing the book.

Just when I think I’m on my way to figuring out this whole technology thing, technology laughs in my face.

It’s Official!

It’s official!  My books are now available for purchase through the Amazon Kindle store!  *More happy dancing*

I hope that everyone will at least take a look at them even if they decide not to purchase them.  Or, if you know someone you think might like one or the other, if you can please tell the person about them I would greatly appreciate it.  Like if there was a way to email you a basket of homemade chocolate chip cookies and send you a hand-written thank you appreciative.

Here are the links to the pages:



Thank you!

Phase One Happy Dance

The much-talked about, much-fretted about has happened: I have uploaded not one, but TWO books to Kindle using Kindle Direct Publishing!

I uploaded the first manuscript I ever wrote, The Hunted, about a werewolf named Sarah who is able to enter people’s minds through their scents, and the second manuscript I wrote, Darkness Calls, about a half-angel, half-demon girl named Eden.  I feel both deserve a page on this blog and will be getting one.

Now is the waiting game.  *Fingers crossed everything goes as planned and there are no problems*

In the meantime, phase one has been completed and happy dancing can begin!

Below are the book covers I made for the books.  Please know that I am not a graphic designer nor did I major in art in college.  These are my attempts at not-half-bad book covers:

Darkness Calls book cover and The Hunted book cover copyright L.N. Rocha

L.N. Rocha…that’s me! I’m officially an author!

Conquering My Technophobia

The In Search of Representation Query Quest is now over and having heard back (or taken the silence as a no) from all the agents/agencies I queried, the results are in: no takers.  No requests for a partial manuscript, no requests for more pages, nada.

A couple of years ago when I went through the same process with my first manuscript, I became discouraged from my dream of being a published author thinking that if agents, the so-called “Gatekeepers” of the literary/publishing world, didn’t respond well to the very idea of my book then it wasn’t going to happen.  A couple of years ago, I hadn’t heard of Kindle self-publishing.  Now, I’ve decided to finally go after my dream of being a published author by publishing both the first manuscript I wrote and the one you’ve been reading about on this blog using Kindle publishing.

While I’m wicked excited about this, I’m about scared out of my mind.  The main fear running through my mind is that when I upload the documents, the formatting will come across as weird and unreadable.  I’m stressing so much that I’m stressing over if I should change the first line tab spacing from .3” to .2”.  Then there’s the ebook cover issue.  I’ve decided to go with, but I am not the best graphics/artsy person.  And I know people shouldn’t judge a good book by its cover, but a standout cover does draw a person’s interest.  Oh, and how do I even begin to express my gratitude especially to readers in the Acknowledgement section?

This is a brand new chapter in my life (get it “chapter”…okay, even I admit that one was a little overboard).  I just hope when it comes down to it, that all the technology issues will work themselves out.  Until then, lots and lots of chocolate.

Success Stories

On the plane ride back from Orlando, I caught the headline at the bottom of CNN that read how The Hunger Games series has topped Harry Potter as Amazon’s top-selling books of all time.

When I read a headline like that, my immediate reaction is the dreadful “Does that mean Harry Potter isn’t as popular anymore?”  But after thinking about it, I’ve come to the conclusion that The Hunger Games series wouldn’t be as popular as it is without the success of Harry Potter.  Neither would The Mortal Instruments series, the Twilight series, fill-in-the-blank with another chart-topping bestselling Children’s/YA book series.

Let’s face it: Harry Potter paved the way for the success of future Children’s/YA series.  When Harry Potter was first published, many didn’t think it would sell as well it did because it is a children’s book.  Seven books, eight movies, and an entire section of Islands of Adventure later, Harry Potter has made people pay attention and rethink the notion that just because a book is categorized for younger readers then it won’t draw in a large audience.

If you Google books/book series that are set to be made into movies, or are already movies, you’ll find a number are based off of ones that fall into either Children’s or Young Adult category.  I don’t think there would be as many without Harry Potter.  The Boy Who Lived has allowed other series to live successfully as well.


What to Pack

Anna Dressed in Blood is going in the carry-on…Photo Source

I’m leaving for Orlando next Monday to go to Universal.  I’m wicked excited about the trip because I haven’t been to Universal in years, and I finally get my chance to say I went to Hogwarts (and have a picture to prove it!)!

I’m in the middle of packing and getting stuff together for the trip, much to my cat’s disappointment.  My cat knows when I’m about to go away because he chooses to hide himself in my closet, in my clothes, and when that fails he plunks himself on top of my suitcase.

Alas, his attempts to keep me home do not work.  They just lay a major guilt-trip on me.

Guilt-trip aside, this is when I have to start making the major packing decisions.  By that, I mean what books to bring.

I’m currently reading Cassandra Clare’s City of Bones which I intend to finish before I leave.  I’m mildly tempted to bring the second book in the series, City of Ashes, with me.  But here’s my dilemma.  I really like the series so far, but the books are on the large side and not the best portable reads.


So I’ll reserve continuing in The Mortal Instruments for when I get back.

Barnes & Noble sent me two coupons this past weekend, one for 20% off and the other for 15% off.  I used both to buy the books I’m going to take on the plane: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendra Blake; and Skeleton Crew by Stephen King.

I love a good ghost story, and I’m a huge fan of horror.  I’ve also decided that Halloween, my second favorite holiday, doesn’t get enough it’s-Halloween-season-time acknowledgement because in terms of holidays it’s kind of in limbo.  In August and September everyone’s focused on it’s-back-to-school-time, so Halloween spirit usually gets at most a couple weeks in October (especially since Christmas season has now encroached into October).

So I’m getting into the spirit early by indulging my love of horror early on.  Hence, Anna Dressed in Blood and Skeleton CrewAnna sounds not just like a good ghost story, but a story that stands out amidst the sea of YA books to choose from.  I’m not bashing YA or YA paranormal romance, but it seems like in the past few years a lot of the novels that were published contain similar love triangle/love story arcs in terms of characters and their personalities to the point where I was turned off to YA for a while because it felt like publishers were only publishing books that fit a certain mold and were going off of a particular trend.  I’m looking forward to reading Anna because it sounds like it has a plot that is very unique, especially for the genre.

I chose Skeleton Crew because I’m a fan of Stephen King.  And if I want horror, then who else to read besides one of the modern masters?

The Fantasy Fantasy Olympics

I have a secret.  I don’t really watch the Olympics.  I might watch some of it, but I don’t keep track of which country has the most medals or anything I can’t go to Google for.  Please don’t hate me.  I’m just not a sports person no matter what the sport is.

But in honor of the Olympics, I decided to create my own fantasy fantasy Olympics team featuring characters from fantasy literature, film, and TV.  The events wouldn’t be swimming or kayaking; they’d be more like Wizard’s Duel, Quidditch, vampire slaying, zombie survival, time travel, lightsaber competition…you get the idea.


Photo Source Wikipedia

Harry Potter

Lord Voldemort

The Doctor


Rupert Giles

I picked Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort to be coaches because although they both fought each other in an epic-showdown in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, you have to admit they are great motivators and know how to rally people around them.

I picked The Doctor from Doctor Who because he’s a Time Lord so he’s been all over the universe and has knowledge about the different species that inhabit it.  Not only has the Doctor been all over the universe, he’s even restarted the universe to save it from not existing all together.

Rupert Giles because in Buffy he’s the go-to person for anything research related, and he’s been part of every epic battle Buffy ever faced.  Plus he made hanging out in the school library cool again.

Yoda…come on, he’s Yoda.  How could you not want Yoda as a coach?


Anita Blake

Buffy Summers

Fitzpatrick “Trick” McCorrigan

Anita Blake is one of the most powerful characters in fantasy literature.  I think the question is, what can’t she do?  Not only is she herself bad-a** powerful, but those around her aka her boyfriends, are not to be messed with either.

Buffy Summers has fought monsters from different dimensions, saved the world on a weekly basis, and knows how to dress.  She’s the Chosen One for a reason.

Fitzpatrick “Trick” McCorrigan from Lost Girl is the Blood King who wrote Fae laws.  His blood has the power to make whatever he writes happen.  In addition, he knows more about the Fae than anyone else.

Team Members:

Hermione Granger

Albus Dumbledore

Minerva McGonagall

River Song

Willow Rosenberg


Bo (Lost Girl)

Sookie Stackhouse

Katniss Everdeen

Tony Stark

Mercy Thompson

Photo Source Wikipedia