Ah, yes, Mr. Dickens knew exactly how to spin a few words into memorable lines. He could have been describing the situation in which I, and many other authors find ourselves, contributing to 2 box sets in the same time period.
What Was I Thinking?
What I learned from this challenging situation of writing and promoting for two box sets is that each box set, though sounding similar, has different personalities. The style or tone of the box set is determined from the title of the box set and by the authors and their content. Let’s compare the box sets I’ve been a part of this year.
Love Blooms on Main Street
This lovely romance collection is the latest offering by 10 of us Authors of Main Street. Each story is wonderfully romantic with most categorized as sweet romance. My contribution to this box set is Old Enough to Know Better which is definitely romantic, but much steamier than the other books in the set. My book is the romance between an older woman and a younger man.
The Love Blooms box set uses the symbolism of flowers to represent the premise of our stories. The set definitely comes off as romantic. For the most part, I think it’s safe to say this box set is not edgy or gritty.
The title of the box set, the box set conceit of flower symbolism, the art work, the books–titles, individual art cover, stories–descriptions, and the video I did, all represent this romantic, traditional concept. (Watch YouTube Video: https://youtu.be/Ar1xIipdK6o)
But, remember I said my book was steamier? Like most box sets, we want to appeal to a wide audience so we use the “something for everyone” concept with different kinds of stories offered so mine and a few of the others don’t toe that “sweet romance” line.
As I write this, Love Blooms on Main Street is on two bestseller lists in Japan. Since I lived in Japan for many years, I’m really psyched by this news. The Japanese, contrary to what many may think, are romantics. Japan is a huge reading market.
Love Blooms is doing well in the other markets also. If you haven’t got your copy yet, grab it quick while it remains priced at 99cents. Links are below.
Summer Fire: Love When It’s Hot
Immediately, you’ll see the difference between the two box sets. It begins with the title, Summer Fire, and even the title of my book in the box set, Heat Lightning, a romance that’s sexy and a bit edgy.
You immediately know the kind of romance novels you’ll find in the Summer Fire box set. Hot. With double the number of authors, these 21 novellas are contemporary and steamy.
They’re not all that way. Again, like most box sets that try to appeal to a wide range of genre readers, Summer Fire has the soft and sweet as well as the edgy. Mona Risk of Authors of Main Street is in the Summer Fire set with me as well as Helen Scott Taylor and other authors noted for their sweet romance.
So even though the Summer Fire box set appeals greatly to the large audience wanting sexy, steamy romance, it too has something for everyone even though the artwork, the books themselves–titles, cover art, descriptions–and the video I did for this box set all say hot contemporary romance. (Click to see YouTube Video: https://youtu.be/SfQwk3iJ4yU)
I think box sets represent a win-win situation for readers and authors.
Readers get great books for low prices and have the opportunity to read different authors and sub-genres they may not have tried before.
Authors get their work in front of new readers who may buy the box set because they love another author in the set.
Buy SUMMER FIRE: Love When It’s Hot
Readers, what do you think about box sets? Leave a comment with your email address and be entered in a random drawing for a free copy of Love Blooms on Main Street AND a free copy of Summer Fire: Love When It’s Hot Contemporary Romance Collection. Giveaway is open until May 20 midnight. Winner will be chosen on May 21 by Random Name Picker and notified by email as well as in the Comments section of this blog.
Joan Reeves is a bestselling author of Contemporary Romance. Available as ebooks and audiobooks, her romance novels all have the same underlying theme: “It’s never too late to live happily ever after.” Joan lives her happily ever after with her husband in the Lone Star State. Sign up for WordPlay, Joan’s free email list for readers.