August 28, 2017

Join Fey's Sparklers! / Monthly Mishmash

Radio Interview:

I did my first radio interview on Off The Chain, hosted by author Yvonne Mason. We discuss my pen name, how I started writing, the Disaster Crimes Series, and I share fiery details about Book 4. 

Recorded Interview:

I did this recorded interview back in June. It was posted earlier this month. Check it out and witness how terrified I am. LOL!

I'm starting a street team! :D

Fey's Sparklers

WHY SPARKLERS? Because they are cool. lol And because a spark can ignite a blaze, and that is what a street team does. They ignite blazes for authors and books.

SPARKLER GOALS: The members of Fey's Sparklers will have missions. Maybe two a month, to start. If you complete a mission, you will get a prize. Or if the mission is a big one, the person who completes the mission with the highest score (details later) will get the grand prize.

The prizes could be...ANYTHING!

I'll also offer advanced reader copies (ARCs) to Fey's Sparklers and do fun contests. For example, you could help me name characters and get credit for it.

WHERE: Fey's Sparklers will have a private Facebook Group for all of this to take place, so I'll need to be able to add you there. All members will get one of my ebooks (of their choosing) as a gift when they join.

If you're interested in being a Sparkler, please fill out THIS FORM. Or use the one below.

NOTE: If you don't know your FB URL, make sure we are friends so I can find you. Here is my personal FB.

GOODREADS GIVEAWAY:  I'm doing my first Goodreads giveaway for a print copy of Seismic Crimes. The giveaway will end on September 11th, so enter now! 

QUESTION: Will you sign up?

August 21, 2017

Diverse Characters - P + Q + R


There’s been a lot of talk about adding diverse characters to fictional books. Most of the time, this is about including people of color if you’re a Caucasian writer, but all writers can add diverse characters to their books. And why stop at race? In this series, I’m going to list all sorts of diverse characters.

Note: I'm not knowledgeable about all types of people, so I'm skipping my usual tips in favor of letting others share their knowledge. See below 

**I won't be able to list them all, so here's a list of ethnic groups...with a list of even more lists at the bottom of the page. lol

Here are the diverse characters for P:

Pacific Islanders


Palmists (palm readers)

Peruvian Individuals

Panamanians (Individuals from Panama)

Paraguayans (Individuals from Paraguay)




Polish Individuals

Portuguese individuals 

Pregnant Women





Polio Survivors

Poor Individuals



Puerto Ricans 

Here are the diverse characters for Q:





Here are the diverse characters for R:








Romans (Rome)

Romanians (Romania) 


Rwandan Individuals 

SHARE: If you can come up with more diverse characters that start with P, Q, or R, let me know and I will add them to my list.

QUESTION: Do you have tips or Do's/Dont's for one of the characters I mentioned above? Share your advice for writing about those characters in your comment.

Have you written about a character from my list?

August 14, 2017

Empowering Women - Angelina Jolie

Before I get to the post, I want to share some news...I did my first radio talk show on Friday with author Yvonne Mason. I was nervous but ended up having a blast. You can listen to it here: Off The Chain - Chrys Fey

Or here:

Every month I am highlighting an empowering woman. This month it is:

Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie is far more than her looks (or her marriage/divorce to Brad Pitt). She is a major humanitarian and has received several awards for her efforts. She advocates for various causes including women’s rights, education, and conservation.

She joined forces with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and started visiting these areas to see what it was like for the refugees. She’s completed more than 40 field missions. To help ferry aid workers and food supplies, she got her private pilot license. In 2001, she became the Goodwill Ambassador for UNHCR. And in 2012, she became Special Envoy to the UNHCR’s High Commissioner.

“I think we all want justice and equality, a chance for a life with meaning. All of us would like to believe that if we were in a bad situation someone would help us.”

What else does she do? 
- Pushes legislation to aid child immigrants
- Co-Chairs Kids in Need of Defense
- Has funded a school and boarding facility for girls at Kakuma Refugee Camp in NW Kenya.
- Jolie Legal Fellowship, a network of lawyers and attorneys who are sponsored to advocate the development of human rights in their countries.
- Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative, a campaign against sexual violence in military conflict zones .
- Centre for Women, Peace and Security, which aims to contribute to global women’s rights issues including the prosecution of war rape and women’s engagement in politics.
Plus more!

All of this is on top of adopting three children and giving birth to three more, acting, and directing (In the Land of Blood and Honey and Unbroken).


I want to talk about Unbroken for a moment. I thought she was robbed when she wasn’t even nominated for Best Director. When I watched Unbroken, I was amazed at the power of it, the story, and the craftsmanship. Angelina directed a powerful movie.

I remember hearing her in an interview that she was going through a hard time when she read Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand, and it changed her. Unbroken is about Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runner, a Lieutenant in the US Air Force and a POW. (Jolie and Zamperini were actually neighbors!)

Cancer Prevention:

Angelina has also spoken out for cancer prevention. In 2013, she underwent a preventative double mastectomy after finding out she had an 87% risk of developing breast cancer. She also had an oophorectomy (removal of ovaries) due to a 50% risk of developing ovarian cancer.

She wrote about her decisions in The New York Times:

“On a personal note, I do not feel any less of a woman. I feel empowered that I made a strong choice that in no way diminishes my femininity.”

“The Angelina Effect” started soon after as women all over the world did the BRCA gene testing. To further help at-risk women, she advocated for wider accessibility and lower costs. June 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court greatly reduced the cost of the BRCA gene test.


Angelina’s role in Maleficent won her a Kid’s Choice Award for Best Villain.

“I wanna say that when I was little, like Maleficent, I was told I was different, never good at fitting in. And then I realized something, something I hope you all realize—different is good.”

Angelina is a humanitarian, business woman, fighter, and mother. She’s a force to be reckoned with.


QUESTIONS: Have you seen Maleficent or Unbroken? Are you a fan of Angelina Jolie?

August 07, 2017

The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing / Books for Writers

The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing: Everything You Need to Know to Write, Publish, Promote and Sell Your Own Book 
by Marilyn Ross & Sue Collier. Now the title of this book is a tad misleading. While it is first and foremost about self-publishing, I found much of the marketing advice perfect for any writer, especially those writers (most of us) who publish with small presses/publishers. I found this guide when I was at Barnes & Noble hunting for books about marketing. I sat down and jotted many notes that I felt I could do, and when I got home, I started working on them.


What advice did I find?

- Look for niche magazines about subjects or destinations your books cover. Write articles for them, ask for reviews or interviews, and/or offer them an excerpt of your book.

- Provide literary magazines with freebie chapters that include your promo materials at the end, such as full ordering information.

- If your book is a how-to, take a part of a chapter, alter it, toss in an introduction and conclusion, and you have a fresh article.

- Find a writing group in your area and promote together.

- If possible, team up with organizations. Sell your book to help them raise funds.

- At a book signing, wear a badge with your book cover on it, or one that says “Author” with your name.

- At an event, have a packet of sample reviews on your table for interested readers to look at.

- Put an author interview in the “From the Author” section on your book’s Amazon page.

- When writing reviews, sign off as “Author of XYZ.” Or put this at the beginning.

If you’re self-publishing, definitely get this book. If you’re looking for ways to promote that’s unique from 1001 Ways and Guerrilla Marketing…get this book!

QUESTION: What’s your favorite self-publishing how-to book?

August 02, 2017

Give Me Your Questions!


Do you have writing-related questions?

Editing questions?

Marketing questions?

I don’t claim to be an expert, but I love to share what I know and have learned, so please pose any questions you can think of in the comment sectionI’ll do something with them later. :D


Contract:  I signed the contact for Flaming Crimes (Disaster Crimes #4) last month! YAY!!! 

LOGO: I have an author logo! The concept is a spark with the letter C acting as a fish hook, using a heart as bait. ;) It goes with my author tagline: Thrilling and Romantic with Heroines of Steel.

Insecuritiessss: I've been posting marketing videos on YouTube to help me get over my fears of public speaking and being seen as Chrys Fey.

Current videos since the last IWSG Day:
Marketing Spark 7: Blogging

All of this was to prepare me for something I'm doing for the IWSG:

On August 24th at 2:00 pm EST, I'll be participating in a LIVE YouTube interview with Evan Carmichael, an entrepreneur who I'll be interviewing about his book Your One Word and getting some great advice for authors and IWSG members.

You'll be able to watch the interview live HERE. Afterward, it'll be featured in the August 30th IWSG newsletter. 

I'm nervous! 

But with my own YouTube videos and an over-the-phone radio chat I'll be doing on August 11th with Yvonne Mason, I hope I'll be ready.


Personal Announcement: 

Due to personal reasons, I am stepping down as an IWSG admin. BUT I will be a partner, so the book club will continue.

My last IWSG newsletter will be the August issue coming out on the 30th. After that, I'll be passing on the IWSG newsletter to Christine Rains, the newest admin. Congrats, Christine! And good luck! :)

Have a great IWSG Day!

COMMENT: Give me all of your writing/editing/marketing questions!