Thursday, August 10, 2017

D.E. Haggerty - An Author Interview at the HBS Author's Spotlight

Today our blog puts the Spotlight on Author D.E. Haggerty. She is the author of The Gray-Haired Knitting Detective Series and The Death by Cupcake Series. Dena writes Mystery, Romance and Humor and Comedy novels.

Author: D.E. Haggerty

Author Genre: Mystery, Romance, Humor and Comedy

Website: D.E. Haggerty
Author's Blog: D.E. HAGGERTY - WRITER, BLOGGER, BOOK ADDICT
D.E. HAGGERTY WRITER, BLOGGER, BOOK ADDICT
Twitter: @dehaggerty
E-Mail: dena@dehaggerty.com
Goodreads: Check Out Goodreads
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Pinterest: Check Out Pinterest

Amazon Author Profile

Author Description:
I grew-up reading everything I could get my grubby hands on from my mom's Harlequin romances to Nancy Drew to Little Women. When I wasn't flipping pages in a library book, I was penning horrendous poems, writing songs no one should ever sing, or drafting stories, which have thankfully been destroyed.

College and a stint in the U.S. Army came along, robbing me of free time to write and read, although on the odd occasion I did manage to sneak a book into my rucksack between rolled up socks, MRIs, t-shirts, and cold weather gear. After surviving the army experience, I went back to school and got my law degree. I jumped ship and joined the hubby in the Netherlands before the graduation ceremony could even begin.

A few years into my legal career, I was exhausted, fed up, and just plain done. I quit my job and sat down to write a manuscript, which I promptly hid in the attic after returning to the law. But being a lawyer really wasn’t my thing, so I quit (again!) and went off to Germany to start a B&B. Turns out being a B&B owner wasn’t my thing either. I polished off that manuscript languishing in the attic before following the husband to Istanbul where I decided to give the whole writer-thing a go. But ten years was too many to stay away from adopted home.

I packed up again and moved to The Hague where I’m currently working on my next book. I hope I’ll always be working on my next book.


SPOTLIGHT Questions and Answers with the Author

Congratulations on your book: Fat Girl Begone! What do you have on the drawing board next? Can you tell us the timeline for its release and give us a little tease?

Thanks! I’m currently working on a historical romance set in Istanbul during the Second World War. I’m having a hard time coming up with a timeline for this one as the research is a bit daunting, and I’ve decided I’m Wonder Woman and can take on several projects in my private life. I’m discovering there is a reason why Wonder Woman was a comic book character and not real person!

Hmm… a little tease. It’s early in the writing process so things will change a lot, but how about a peek at the prologue?

My first love was a Jewish princess named Gertrude. Unlike other first loves that fade into bittersweet memory, my first love made me into the man I am today. My name is Rudolf, and this is my love story.

I don’t have time for love or romantic antics. I’m out to stop the most vile person in the history of mankind or die trying. My name is Rosalyn, and this is the rest of the story.


You have a good following on twitter. How important have your social media relationships been? How did you build your following in your niche? Do you see a carry over to your writing success?

Social media is part of my campaign to have an author platform – whatever that is! Having a good following has leant credibility to me as an author. I find that the more followers I have, the more serious I’m taken as an author, which leads to readers contacting me directly asking to review my books or telling me they’ve enjoyed my writing. It has taken me quite a while to build a following on social media. I’ve used various giveaways to build followers. I also follow like-minded individuals and a majority of those follow me back. It’s a slow process and may involve begging.

Do you do any book signings, interviews, speaking and personal appearances? If so, when and where is the next place where your readers can see you? Where can they keep up with your personal contacts online?

I’ve done some book signings in the past but living in a country where the primary language is not the one in which I write limits my opportunities. Most of my book launches were attended solely by my friends or acquaintances, which was great fun but led to more hangovers than actual book sales. I’ve not scheduled any new book release signings because of this reason (not that I can’t handle a hangover or anything).

I like the idea of bundling a series of novels. You have put together a couple sets of your novels. (The Gray-Haired Knitting Detective Series: Books 1 – 3, The Death by Cupcake Series: Books 1 – 3) What was the impact on your other sales? What was your main objective in bundling your novels?

I bundled my two series for a few reasons. First of all, I wanted to give readers a good deal. Who doesn’t love a good deal? I’ve done this by offering the bundle for a price lower than the combined cost of individual books. I also wanted to try out KDP select, but I wasn’t prepared to give exclusivity to Amazon for my individual books. A bundle also gives readers a chance to read a big chunk of the first novel for free as a sample. My hope was that they’d be hooked enough to give the series a try after the longer sample. The series bundles are my best sellers. I put one of the bundles on sale every few months and the sales usually shoot through the roof. Compared to my normal sales that is. It’s not like I’m a New York Times bestseller or anything.

What has been your experience in giving your books away free? Have you been involved in any other type of giveaways and how did that work out? What was your main goal in doing this? Did you run into any obstacles?

I don’t usually give a copy of my book away for free as part of a giveaway. I don’t think most readers are interested in receiving a free book from a mostly unknown author. I usually give away an Amazon gift certificate as who doesn’t want one of those? I also have some issues with giveaways as I’m living in Europe and my Amazon account is in Germany. Amazon – in its infinite but confusing wisdom – won’t allow me to gift eBooks from the Amazon US bookstore. If eBook gifting was allowed for me, I would definitely consider giving away eBooks.

What is your primary genre? What has been your best marketing approach to this group?

My usual answer to that question is murder mystery. But, to be perfectly honest, I think chick lit may be a better answer as my mysteries as well as my romantic comedies fall under the chick lit category. The advantage of defining my novels as chick lit is that there are tons of blogs dedicated to chick lit. I do guest posts, interviews, spotlights, and the odd review on these blogs to market my books. There are also a few newsletter services dedicated to chick lit readers. I’ve used these as well but haven’t been as successful as with other newsletter services.

Do you maintain a reader list? What are the methods you use to find your readers and create the list and the relationship? Do you use social media, forums, newsletters and/or support groups to build your list?

I don’t maintain a reader list as such. I’ve worked hard to build up newsletter subscribers, and I assume – hope! – that most the subscribers are readers as well. I do maintain a list of reviewers. For that list, I’ve used any and every method I can come up with! I’ll try just about anything once.

You have a great blog. You do a great job keeping readers informed, marketing your books and providing useful information to other writers. What is your primary goal? And where in the world do you find the time to create great novels, take care of the social media and maintain your blog?

The primary goal of my blog is to make myself visible to potential readers and give them a taste of my writing in the hope that they’ll then give one of my novels a try. I expanded the blog to include my real-life experiences with marketing and writing as I found it difficult to find articles/blogs that talked about experiences writers were having. I’m super lucky that I don’t have a day job. Writing, blogging, reading, and marketing my books as well as myself is my day job. I work full-time on doing it all, and I’m the first to admit that my blog posts fall to the wayside if I’m busy writing or editing.

Living in The Hague creates a unique selling and marketing situation and you have published one of your books in Dutch. Where is your biggest audience? Does marketing online help in this situation?

Without online marketing, I wouldn’t have much of a writing career. I sell the vast majority of my books in English-speaking countries. I rely on online marketing for these sales.

What is your method of getting reviews for your novels? Do you seek professional reviews, use social media or do you rely on your reading audience to supply them?

There are a variety of ways to find reviewers. I think I’ve used them all! In the beginning, I paid for expensive professional reviews (like Kirkus), but I found the price too steep. I sincerely doubt anyone bought one of my books because of a good professional review. After trying a variety of techniques, I’ve found blog tours and my own personal list of reviewers the best methods of getting reviews. I continue to beg bloggers for reviews, but most bloggers are super busy. I find that less than 1% of book purchases lead to reviews. I try to not look at those numbers too often as they are way depressing.



Author's Book List
Fat Girl Begone!
I’m a total mess. My boyfriend dumped me – get this – because I diet too much. Not because I’m fat, mind you. Of course, this spurs me into the diet-fitness-revenge-plan of the century, which leads me to the gym and a scorching hot personal trainer. I even manage to make some cool new friends, including a millionaire if you can believe it. Things are looking up! Naturally, that’s the moment my ex decides he wants me back, the personal trainer asks me out, and my millionaire male buddy decides to throw his hat in the ring. But that’s not enough drama. No, not for me. Because I’ve also lost my job and decided to start my own business. Just call me Ms. Drama.

Warning: Bad language, bumpy roads, and embarrassing moments ahead. But there’s also more than a bit of romance and even, if we’re lucky, love. Fingers crossed.

Not endorsed by or affiliated with any brand of tequila.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store
iTunes Store


Self-Serve Murder - Death by Cupcake Book 3
Kristie is kind with a capital K, so it’s quite the surprise when she wakes up next to a dead man with no recollection of the previous night. Even worse? She’s naked. Kristie may be a sweetheart out to save the world, but sticking her nose into an investigation of rapes across campus makes her the target of a murderer. Before she knows it, Kristie is smack dab in the middle of a murder investigation with her colleagues Callie and Anna. If that’s not enough to drive a sane person up the wall, a friend has decided he’s going to keep her safe whether she wants him to or not. And, oh yeah, he’s her man and that’s that.

Come join us at Callie’s Cakes, where murder investigations are on the menu. You are most welcome, but you may need to serve yourself as our barista Kristie is busy trying to save the world.

Warning: Although there are plenty of moments that will make you shake your head and laugh at the antics of the ladies of Callie’s Cakes, the subject matter – rape on college campuses – is very real and somewhat darker than your usual cozy mystery.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store


Bring Your Own Baker - Death by Cupcake Book 2
Anna just wants to earn enough money on the side to buy into the bakery, Callie’s Cakes, where she works together with her best nerd pal, Callie. The last thing she expects to see when she walks into Arthur’s apartment to do some moonlighting is a blood bath. Callie’s ready to jump into the investigation of Arthur’s murder, and she’s bringing another bakery worker, Kristie, into their hijinks whether Kristie wants to or not. But things aren’t as they seem. There are gang affiliations, illegal gambling dens, and ladies of the night to wade through. Will Anna and Callie discover who murdered Arthur, or will Callie’s detective boyfriend and Anna’s self-appointed protector put a stop to such aspirations?

Come join us at Callie’s Cakes, where murder investigations are on the menu, but make sure to bring your own baker, because Anna’s a bit preoccupied at the moment.

Warning: This is NOT your mom’s cozy mystery. Bring Your Own Baker may be a ‘clean’ read, but if gangs, illegal gambling, and pimps make you turn your nose up at your e-reader, you might want to skip this one. Although you’ll be missing some sizzling chemistry between Anna and her protector. Not to mention a whole bunch of witty dialogue.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store
iTunes Store


Never Trust a Skinny Cupcake Baker - Death by Cupcake Book 1
A mystery with a heap of laughs, a generous portion of romance, and just a smidgeon of suspense.

Callie’s life is rather awesome. She owns a successful bakery and teaches German literature at the local university. There’s just one tiny problem. She has no self-confidence when it comes to her body. And then there’s the little matter of her being accused of murdering her pole dancing instructor. There’s no way Callie’s going to risk losing her teaching position and thus she embarks, with her best baker bud Anna, on a journey to discover the real killer. Between stripper auditions and a detective who insists Callie is the woman of his dreams, it’s a roller coaster adventure. Cupcakes not included.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store


Molly's Misadventures
I’m having the suckiest day ever. First, my father, aka Mr. Grumpy Pants, calls to say his nurse just walked out on him. Likely story. I rush home to pack, only to walk in on my husband getting it on with his younger, skanky secretary. Unfortunately, my quick weekend trip home to fix Dad’s problems turns into a stay of a few weeks. Luckily, I’ve got Danny, the neighbor boy I’ve had a crush on since I was a dorky, braces-wearing, nose-buried-in-a-book teenager, and a brand-spanking new blog to keep my mind off things. Before I know it, I’m writing product reviews of vibrators and getting questioned by a store rent-a-cop at the world’s worst date ever. All while trying to figure out how to take things with Danny to the next level. Not to complicate things or anything, but my boss decides to give me an ultimatum—come back in four weeks or don’t come back at all. How in the world did my life get so complicated?


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store
iTunes Store


Love in the Time of Murder - The Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives Book 3
In Love in the Time of Murder, the Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives face their toughest case yet. Delilah, or Dee as she wishes everyone would just call her already, is the granddaughter of one of the knitting detectives and her life is in a bit of a shambles. She finally manages to pry herself away from her husband’s clutches, move out on her own, and start her own business. But then her estranged husband is murdered and she’s the number one suspect. The Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives aren’t about to let one of their own get sent to the slammer and jump at the chance to search for the true killer. As if Dee doesn’t have enough problems, the knitting detectives decide that Delilah being a widow is the perfect opportunity to find her a new man and decide to put their matchmaking skills to use. Will Dee end up in prison for a murder she didn’t commit or will she be taking another walk down the aisle?


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store


Jack Gets His Man - The Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives Book 2
Jack’s life is awesome. His store is making money hand over fist and his best friend has found love. So what if he’s feeling a bit restless and put out about his upcoming birthday and his ex is being a pain in his fabulous behind? That’s nothing he can’t handle. But then his smoking hot new bookkeeper discovers things at the store aren’t actually as they seem. Someone is playing fast and loose with the finances. Jack’s bestie and his gal pals, the gray-haired knitting detectives, jump at the chance to solve Jack’s problems. When they aren’t re-enacting scenes from spy thrillers, they’re setting Jack up on dates and generally insinuating themselves into his love life. They’re determined to find love for Jack as well as his missing money. Will Jack catch a thief or find love? Either way Jack’s going to get his man.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store


Murder, Mystery & Dating Mayhem - The Gray-Haired Knitting Detectives Book 1
My name is Izzy. I drink too much, am clumsier than a newborn foal, and my brain-to-mouth filter often malfunctions. My daredevil husband killed himself in a parachuting accident five years ago and my best friend Jack has decided it’s time I jump back in the dating pool. He’s perfectly happy to throw me in if I don’t listen. Just when things in the dating world start to heat up, my grandma dies. Only her knitting group of Jessica Fletcher wannabes is sure it’s murder. I’m not convinced but I’m always up for a bit of excitement as long as it doesn’t lead to a night in jail. Well, more than one night anyway. Will I miss my chance at love because I’m chasing imaginary killers? Did someone really kill grandma or am I and my merry band of geriatric thieves imagining things?


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store
iTunes Store


Life Discarded
Why would a woman who has it all throw her life away? Morgan has the perfect life. She married the man of her dreams. Daniel is smart, gorgeous and successful. Everything she has always wanted in a husband and the father of her children. But he’s also domineering, overprotective and jealous. Is living with him enough to drive Morgan over the edge? Or does something more treacherous lurk beneath the fa├žade?

Morgan
A gorgeous, sweet woman that is oblivious to her own beauty. She’s shy with men, but a rock to her friends. A librarian in a small town in the mid-west. She’s been waiting a long-time to find the one.

Daniel
An accountant in the city who will do anything to be the youngest partner in his firm. He always gets what he wants and he wants Morgan. He will pursue Morgan until she submits.

Together
They rush through a courtship and marry within a year of meeting. Morgan’s life is perfect. She has a job she loves, a best friend for which she would do anything and a husband that completes her. But things are not often as they appear. Behind closed doors the loving Daniel that Morgan married is jealous and overprotective. Sometimes he’s even domineering.

Culmination
Morgan runs away – destroying everything in her path as she disappears. What made this good girl go bad?


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble


Buried Appearances
Skylar Dewitt has been ostracized her entire life due to her grandfather’s well-known sympathies with the Nazis. But now her grandfather’s body has been recovered in the Netherlands in an area famous for being a Nazi killing ground. Why would her grandfather be buried in a place legendary for assassinations of resistance members? Skylar jets off to Holland in search of answers about her grandfather’s demise. Along the way she finds long-lost family and old friends but will she solve the mystery of what happened to her grandfather? And maybe she discovers something more valuable than resolving any mystery could be: herself.

Warning: Skylar believes the world is out to get her and this belief manifests itself in some naughty language. If you cringe everytime the f-bomb is dropped, this may not be the book for you.


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store


Unforeseen Consequences
Four very different women forged an unlikely friendship while in Basic Training. They thought their friendship was unbreakable but then they discovered a heinous crime was about to be committed. They were compelled to take action but a tragedy occurred nonetheless and thus they are forced to keep their actions a secret. These actions and the secret they must keep destroyed their friendship and so they fled.

Years have passed and the women are surviving but not living. Now the truth is about to come out. What do they do? Do they confess their part and risk jail? Or do they keep quiet and try to keep living with the guilt? Will they rebuild their friendship or will they flee again?


Order the Book From:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble
KOBO Store
iTunes Store


Author Recommended by: HBSystems Publications
Publisher of ebooks, writing industry blogger and the sponsor of the following blogs:
HBS Author's Spotlight
eBook Author’s Corner
Top Shelf Author Advice
Mystery Reader’s Circle

Check out the index of other Spotlight authors. Spotlight Index.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for having me on your blog today. It's a wonderful post.

    ReplyDelete