Sunday, August 31, 2008

A Guest Post by Jennifer Estep! Plus, a Giveaway!

Jennifer Estep is the author of the Bigtime series, which includes Karma Girl, Hot Mama and starting on Tuesday, Jinx (although Jennifer says it is already showing up in bookstores). When she agreed to do a guest post, I asked her to comment either on her greatest author moment and how her life changed since her initial publication. Jennifer has generously decided to cover both topics.

The Times, They Are A’Changing
by Jennifer Estep

First of all, I want to say thanks for Tia for inviting me to blog today. Thanks so much, Tia!

So Tia asked me to talk about a couple of things today – my most exciting author moment and how my life has changed since being published.

It’s really, really hard for me to pick just one favorite author moment. There have been so many incredible milestones. Getting an agent … getting offered my first contract … seeing my first book, Karma Girl, at my local bookstore … signing my very first copy … getting so many wonderful e-mails from folks telling me how much they enjoy my Bigtime superhero series … Each one has been so special and wonderful in its own way.

If I did have to pick, though, I’d say my highlight was coming home from work one day to find an envelope from my publisher. I couldn’t imagine what was in there, but when I opened it up, I let out a shriek of glee. Because nestled inside was the very first copy of Karma Girl that I ever saw.

I just stood there for a few minutes, holding it in my hands and staring at it. Finally, finally, after all those years of writing and all those manuscripts and all those rejection letters, I finally had a copy of my book in my hand. It truly was a dream come true – and made me realize how very blessed I am. A very happy and humbling moment.

Where’s that first book now? On my bookshelf, along with all my other favorite keeper titles. 

As for as how my life has changed, it has – and it hasn’t.

I’ve got three books out now, so I can say that I’m a multi-published author. It sounds more impressive than it is, considering there are tons of folks out there who’ve published many, many more books than I have. But hey, it’s still pretty cool. 

I do and get asked to do more author/book-related things now, like guest blog, book signings, and workshops (all of which I love). I travel a lot more, going to book signings and conferences all over the U.S. I have a little more name recognition, and lots of folks seem to have at least heard of me and my Bigtime series. Plus, I’ve met a lot of great folks – authors, readers, and bloggers – online and in person.

But the best way my life has changed is that I occasionally get e-mails from readers who’ve enjoyed my work. Any author will tell you those kind of e-mails are the best thing about being published. They always brighten my day.

In other respects, my life hasn’t changed at all. I still have a day job (most authors do), still hang out with my family and friends, still read and watch movies and write. I’m still the same person I was before my books came out. Oh, I’m a little older, a little smarter (I hope), and definitely more jaded about the book business. Looking behind the book biz curtain definitely takes a little fun out of things.

But I always remember that I’m one of the lucky ones who gets to share her work with others. Who has books out, more on the way, and many more ideas than I’ll probably ever have time to write.

And the great thing is nobody can ever take any of those accomplishments away from me.

Contest! Contest! Contest!

Jennifer has offered to give away a one copy each of Karma Girl, Hot Mama and Jinx to three lucky winners. (Don't worry--each novel would read well on its own.) All you have to do to enter is leave a comment here. She is willing to ship overseas, so anyone can enter. Jennifer will pick a winner on Tuesday, so be sure to check back here to see if you won. I will put up a separate post announcing the winner.

Also, Jennifer has agreed to stop by and answer questions, so if you have any questions for her, ask away!


Tez Miller said...

Thank Crikey for the contest, because I don't think the series has been sold to the UK (and Australia), unfortunately.

Have a lovely day! :-)

Jennifer Estep said...

Hi, Tez! Actually, I do believe the Bigtime books are available in Australia (or can be ordered from there) because I've gotten some e-mails about the books from booksellers there.

I don't know about the UK though ...

Dave-Brendon de Burgh said...

This is really cool, I think these books will be perfect do get my girlfriend reading - she's always struggled to find something she'll enjoy. :-)

Kristen said...

I'm intrigued - please sign me up! :)

Wendy said...

Hi, Jennifer! Congrats on your new release! Your books sound very fun, I can't wait to read them soon. :)

nholzner said...

Thanks for your thoughts, Jennifer. Your series looks like tons of fun. You mentioned traveling to conferences. I was wondering which you attend more often: writers' conferences or fantasy/comic book cons. Do you have a preference for one over the other? Or (since that's rather an awkward question) what's something you enjoy about each?

Nancy Holzner

nholzner said...

I just wanted to add that I read your post with extra interest, because I've got my first novel (a mystery) coming out in 2009, followed by the first two books in my urban fantasy series in 2010 and 2011. So I'm looking forward to experiencing some of the things you write about here!

Nancy Holzner

robin_titan said...

wow i really enjoyed reading this whole post including the comments glad i came across this site : ) thank you guys for being so generous and giving these great sounding books i really want to read (!!!!) away : )

lc_intocable at yahoo dot com

Maria said...

Sounds like some good reading! Sign me up for the contest!

Thanks Tia for hosting and having it and Thanks Jennifer!


Yan said...

Definitely sign me up! It sounds like an amazing read!


Michele L. said...

Hi Jennifer!

I was at your blog and saw your post that you were guest blogging here. Congrats on your new book, JINX! Woohoo! I was reading the review of it at Romance Junkies and it sounds awesome! I have the first 2 books in this series and can't wait to get JINX now!

Have a fun Labor Day!
Michele L.

PopinFresh said...

I just finished Karma Girl and I'm in love with the series. Please enter me in this contest!

Howdy Jennifer!

I noticed that the beginning of Karma Girl and Hot Mama are the same, what made you decide to use the same intro for both books? And does Jinx start the same way?


~ Popin

Tia Nevitt said...

Hey, everyone! Jennifer asked me to post this because she's on dialup, and the comment form is taking too long to load. Here she is!

Thanks to everyone for their comments, congrats, and well wishes. I really appreciate them! :-)

To answer Nancy's question -- So far, I've been mostly to romance conferences and my local comic book convention. But I plan to start going to more of the fantasy cons since I'm working on a new urban fantasy series. Can anyone suggest some good ones to go to?

But overall, the thing I love about cons is you get to meet so many people interested in the same things -- namely books and reading and fantasy worlds. I looove talking about books and reading and writing and fantasy worlds (TV shows, movies, gaming, etc.). So I really like going to cons. Can you tell I'm a total geek? :-)

Nancy, congrats on your sales. Trust me, you'll experience all these things and more. What's your UF about? Also, have you checked out Fangs, Fur, and Fey? It's an online community for UF writers. I'm a member.

To answer Popin's question -- I did the same intro for Karma Girl and Hot Mama because I wanted to show Fiona's point of view and immediately let folks know how much she misses her dead fiance. Fiona comes off as kind of b----y in Karma Girl, and I wanted folks to realize there's a reason she's the way she is.

Plus, starting Hot Mama with Sam and Carmen's wedding let me tie up their story and have a cool setting (the reception) to introduce the Bullucis and Siren and Intelligal (the Hot Mama villains).

But Jinx doesn't start the same way. I think three times in a row would be pushing it!

Anyone else have questions about writing or other stuff? I'm here until Tuesday ...

Tia Nevitt said...

I reset the comment form so it no longer appears in a popup. Hopefully, this will work better for everyone.

It helps if you wait until the entire page to load before you start typing. Otherwise, Blogger might erase your post and you'll have to start over!

shaunesay said...

These sound like a lot of fun, and I would love the chance to try them out!

Thank you for the contest!

I saw the listing on Rat's Reading. :)

mbentz1 at comcast dot net

nholzner said...

Hi again, Jennifer. Thanks for your answers to my questions. I'd like to hear about some good fantasy cons, too--they sound like so much fun, and I'd love to attend as a reader before I get pulled into the whole book promotion thing.

I'll watch for your urban fantasy series. Mine's about a Boston shapeshifter (who traces her lineage back to the goddess Ceridwen) who exterminates other people's personal demons for a living. It was a blast to write. I've read Fangs, Fur, and Fey in the past but haven't checked it out for a while. Thanks for the reminder!

Thanks again for your post and follow-ups.

Nancy Holzner

Ruby (Mouth) said...

I sooo want to read these books.

Jennifer Estep said...

Thanks for posting my comments, Tia.

Nancy -- Your UF sounds really interesting. I'll be on the lookout for it.

My UF is about an assassin who runs a barbecue restaurant. She's also an elemental who control the elements of ice and stone. Right now, the book is called Gin on the Rocks, since my assassin's name is Gin.

All right, last call for questions, so ask away!

Thursday said...

Please sign me up for the giveaway — just reading this interview has made me want to read the whole series.

Just.Me said...

Not sure if I am to late to enter, but I thought I would give it a try. Love the titles of the books.

Lisa said...

Sign me up - I haven't read anything lately and could use a fun series.

Lianne said...

Oooh, I've been eying the first one for a while, being a comic book fan as well as a fantasy/mystery/romance/printed words on a page fan.

Jennifer Estep said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Tia Nevitt said...

Thank you, Jennifer!!

Tia Nevitt said...

Here is Jennifer's comment with the winners. I had to remove the original in order to combat spam.

Jennifer said...
All right, I used the random number generator to choose the winners. Here they are:

Karma Girl: Popinfresh
Hot Mama: Yan
Jinx: Michele L.

Winners, please e-mail your snail mail address to me at (edited due to spam).

For those of you who didn't win, I'm doing a contest on my blog through Friday, so you can check that out too. Thanks to everyone who stopped by and commented. :-)