The last few weeks have been pretty manic in our house. Millie’s been poorly, I’ve had eye strain, I’ve had a mammoth client post to work on, I’ve been finishing my next nonfiction book, How to Write Believable Characters, and also finishing off Hollywood Drama! Oof.

Now, Millie is on the mend and I’m resting my eyes more, my client post is almost done, How to Write Believable Characters is done, and Hollywood Drama almost is too!

That means you can now preorder your copy of Hollywood Drama and get your hands on it on 24 November.

Hollywood Drama cover

Unlike my other recent releases, Hollywood Drama will be Amazon exclusive.

This is an experiment I’m conducting with my books, to see how it impacts sales. Hollywood Gossip has been considerably more popular on Amazon than on other platforms, so I want to see how enrolling it (and the rest of the series) into Kindle Unlimited affects downloads.

This may or may not be a permanent situation; it really depends on how the next few months go. But I’ll keep you posted, either on here or on The Writer’s Cookbook. At the end of the day, my books are a business and I have to follow the money.

Upcoming projects

If you’ve perused my site before, you’ll notice I’ve made some updates over the last few days.

These updates are primarily in the form of new pages, which belong to Hollywood Destiny, Empath, and Ghost Call. All of these books will be released in 2021.

Hollywood Destiny will be the fourth book in the Hollywood Gossip series, following Tate and Jack as they face the question of: what next? They’ve achieved so much in their lives already. But do they want to continue down those paths for the rest of their lives?

Hollywood Destiny cover coming soon

If you preorder your copy of Hollywood Drama, you’ll also get a sneak peek at the titles for the final two Hollywood Gossip books, too 😉 There’s no date for them yet, but it’s likely to be late 2021 or 2022.

Ghost Call and Empath will mark my first trips into publishing fantasy. If you’re on my newsletter, you may know I’m a fan of paranormal romance and paranormal women’s fiction. It was inevitable that I’d return to writing fantasy one day—it was the second genre I wrote, almost twenty years ago. (The first was crime, if you were wondering.)

And a new genre means…

Announcing my new pen name!

This is something I’ve thought long and hard about. Many authors have multiple pen names and write different genres under each. This is a marketing decision—some readers are loyal to authors, others are loyal to genres.

Many fantasy readers only read fantasy, for example, while some romance readers don’t like fantasy. Separate pen names avoids any confusion and negative reviews because people have stumbled on a genre they don’t like.

Some authors keep their pen names secret, but I’m open about using them and don’t mind people knowing what books I’ve written. I don’t, however, want to confuse/upset the Amazon algorithm anymore than I already have and risk damaging my potential readership.

With this in mind, I’ve chosen to publish my fantasy books as K.C.Adams.

The K obviously stands for Kristina.

Adams is the same, and comes from my nan’s maiden name.

And the C? That stands for Carl, which is my boyfriend’s first name. He’s been through everything with me over the past eleven years, and I’d be totally lost without him. Honouring him in my pen name is my way of saying thank you.

So, what books will I be publishing as K.C.Adams next year? Let’s take a look…

Ghost Call

Think of Ghost Call like Gilmore Girls, but with ghosts.

It’s a story of a mother and daughter living in a small town. The mother is a ghost hunter, while her daughter is trying to survive college as the weird goth kid/daughter of a ghost hunter. She also desperately wants to be a ghost hunter—which is the last thing her mum wants.

But when the daughter receives a message from a ghost, her mum’s worst nightmares may come true—no matter what she tries to do to stop it.

While I have plans for this to be a series, the first one will be able to be read as a standalone.

Ghost Call will probably be a novella, which means it will be quicker to write and publish. That means there may well be more than one outing for these characters in 2021.

Sign up for news on Ghost Call.

Empath

This is a project that’s really close to my heart. It was a story I told myself back in January 2019, after I’d had my endoscopy. Shudder.

I was in such a weird pain that I couldn’t sleep or function, so I distracted my mind by telling myself a story. It evolved into something I was really, really excited about.

But then I got so excited about it I told lots of people and they got excited and the pressure to do the story justice started to make me nervous. So I retreated.

But now, slowly, as my confidence in plotting and world building grows, I’m ready to focus on it.

Empath is a complicated story with lots of themes to juggle, and it’s important to me to get this right, because the messages about emotions and pain are very close to my heart. As close to me as What Happens in New York was when I first started working on it, back in 2008.

I hope to release the first three books in the series fairly close together, then continue the series as the characters grow and solve different crimes/mysteries/develop their powers.

Empath will be a combination of urban fantasy, crime, and slow burn romance. And the main character? The most judgmental empath you’ve ever met.

Sign up for news on Empath.

2021 calls…

I don’t usually plan this far ahead. But not having a plan often shoots me in the foot. Making decisions in advantage takes the load off when it comes time to work on something and reduces decision fatigue, giving me more energy to get shit done.

But I need a plan that’s flexible. One that works with my health problems, not against them. One that works with my moods and time constraints.

So far, my plan involves writing several books at once, editing several, then rapid releasing them next spring/summer/autumn, depending on when things are finished.

As I frequently mention on The Writer’s Cookbook, writing and editing are different skills that require different mindsets. It’s also important to take breaks between writing and editing projects so that we can edit them more objectively and make them the best they can be. This approach allows me to do that.

And it gives me a break from the stress of publishing, which will always be my least favourite part of the process (I do love talking about the books with you after, though!).

Planning this far ahead also makes it easier for me to work with an external cover designer. This is something I’ve never done before, but I’m confident is the right decision.

While I enjoy cover design, I don’t have the skills or patience to design something complicated enough for a fantasy novel. As Andrew and Pete say, you should outsource the things you don’t want to do or that other people can do better than you.

This is something I’m trying to keep in mind as I grow my business. It’s not easy letting go when you’re a control freak, but it’s an important part of the process.

That’s a wrap!

Well, I think that’s about everything. I wasn’t planning to announce any of this yet, but what the hell? Why not? If Halloween isn’t a good time to announce a new fantasy writing career, when is?

Happy Halloween!