Today I am so pleased to welcome Chris T. Kat to Joyfully Jay. Chris  has come to talk to us about her latest release, Secret Energy. She has also brought along a great giveaway.  Please join me in giving Chris a big welcome!

The Holy Grail of Promotion

Jay, thank you very much for the opportunity to be a guest on your blog. Dreamspinner Press published my new release, Secret Energy, on August 29th. Secret Energy is a shape-shifter story, and the sequel to Secret Chemistry.

Ha, admit it—the title got your attention, right? Okay, I’m not going to stretch this out unnecessarily, so here’s the Holy Grail of Promotion:

It doesn’t exist. Sobering, isn’t it? Yeah, that’s what I keep thinking too.

You’ll probably have read a lot of posts about what works for promotion and what doesn’t. I can only talk about my own experience, so here’s what works for me.

  • Mouth-to-mouth propaganda. There’s not much one can do about that, but I always hope that if someone likes my books that they’ll tell someone else. I definitely do that too. 🙂
  • For some time, I joined a couple of tweet groups. It was an interesting experience, but after a few months I left them again. It was just too much work to keep up with all the tweets every day. Also, my Twitter became cluttered and I’d rather tweet or re-tweet something I genuinely believe my followers would be interested in. Nowadays, I tweet less, and if I do it’s mostly to spread the word about posts I liked (usually via Triberr) or to chat with friends.
  • I belong to a flash fiction group called Wednesday Briefs. Every Wednesday, the participating authors post a 500 to 1000 word-long flash that’s based on prompts. I really enjoy these free stories, and I believe a lot of people like reading the weekly updates.
  • Blog tours are a great way to get the word out about a new book. I’ve worked with different virtual book companies, and I’m a host for one myself. There have been some well-received blog tours, and some that didn’t help with sales at all. I haven’t figured out yet why some worked and some didn’t, but I’ve gone back to organizing my own tours. It’s a lot of work, that’s for sure, but after lots of consideration this is the best way for me.
  • Chats on Dreamspinner’s Facebook page are an excellent promotional tool. The two hour chat is always very busy, and can be a bit overwhelming, but it’s great fun. It helps boost sales, and I’ve gotten to know lots of awesome people through these chats. 🙂
    I post in various Facebook groups whenever I have a new release, received a good review, or if I have a guest on my blog. I’m not sure how these posts translate into sales, but it’s a good way to get my name out. I check out posts from others too, to keep up with their new releases or contests. 🙂

Which social media platform do you prefer? How do you feel when an author promotes their work? Does it intrigue you or does it annoy you?

Excerpt from Chapter Three

When the bear moved in Robin’s direction, Robin yelped. The bear stopped midway while the creek’s water swooshed around him, darkening the fur on its legs. Robin estimated the bear to be at least double his size and three times his weight, though it was hard to tell with the bear’s thick coat.

Robin swallowed when the bear breathed in deeply. The huge animal, who smelled so good, so very enticing, shuffled forward again. Robin scrambled backward, intimidated by the sheer size of him. There was something else, some kind of strange vibes he got from him… it… he didn’t know.

The eerie silence surrounding the bear unnerved Robin. Why wasn’t he making any sounds?

On instinct Robin crouched with his rump curled down, assuming a submissive position. The cold water soaked his fur and drew a gasp from him. The bear approached him slowly, his dark eyes gleaming in the moonlight.

Robin wanted to lick the bear’s muzzle, and he wanted the bear to return the favor. He withstood the temptation to roll over onto his back and present his belly, if only because diving deeper into the creek horrified him.

Robin shuddered as the bear closed in on him. A series of pleading whines escaped his mouth, stopping the bear’s approach.

The bear’s ears flicked back and forth before he raised himself on his hindquarters, forcing another longing yip from Robin. He stared up at the huge animal, not really understanding the incredible urge to press himself against the bear. Nonetheless, he rose to his feet, though he kept his front lower than his rear. In a crouch he crawled toward the bear at the edge of the stream, whimpering.

When he reached the bear, he darted a glance upward and whined softly. Hey!

The bear, who for all Robin knew was his mate, didn’t respond. Maybe he’d got it wrong. More loudly and clearly, he pronounced, Hey! I guess we somehow belong to each other?

Still no telepathic response. Robin flattened himself wholly onto the ground, the trembling getting worse as the silence grew. Why didn’t his mate talk to him? This was freaky.

The air around Robin almost crackled with tension, causing another distressed whimper to tumble from his lips. Listening to his own high-pitched mewling finally switched something inside Robin. Instead of going on with whining, he abruptly stood up and growled at the bear.

Fine. Maybe I was wrong. I’ll leave you to… whatever it is you’re doing. Don’t your legs get tired from taking all your weight? As far as I know, you’re not supposed to put all your weight on your hind legs. But what do I know, huh?

His rambling didn’t get him a response either. Robin whirled around, intent on walking away, even though everything inside him screamed at him to stay right there.

Robin sensed movement behind him and turned his head to get a better view. The bear peered down at him with a hard-to-interpret look on his face. Of course the look on the bear’s face was hard to interpret! It was a freaking bear! Or a were-bear or….

Robin trailed off. As stupid as it sounded, he liked the word were-bear. His tail swished from side to side, doing so of its own volition. Stopping his tail’s unauthorized movement, Robin pulled himself together and took a couple of steps away from the bear.

His paws sunk into the moist earth next to the creek. There was a hum before the air pressure around him changed. The bear had gone back on all fours, effectively trapping Robin underneath him. Startled, Robin scuttled backward, only to push right into the bear’s abdomen. Even more startled, he whirled around with his ears flattened to his head and his fangs showing.

The bear was everywhere—literally. He surrounded Robin and didn’t allow him to run. Panic rose up inside Robin, and his breath hitched. He tried squeezing out from under the bear at his left side, but the bear thwarted each and every attempt.

Oh shit! Oh shit! Come on, let me go! I’m sorry if I upset you earlier, but it’s pretty clear we’re not meant for each other, what with you not talking to me!


Secret EnergyWhen wolf shifter Robin agreed to cover for his older brother Tim and Tim’s lover Jay, he never imagined feeling so stifled. Tim’s overprotective attitude suffocates him. Pressure from within—the urge to find his own mate—mounts daily. With a little help from Jay, Robin finally convinces Tim to let him go for a run alone, but he has no inkling that his life will change forever as a result.

Unexpectedly, he finds his mate Peter Brannigan, an old and special soul, and the one shifter who can bring balance to Robin’s life. The new couple spend days together, developing their bond as mates. Yet even as they explore and cement their relationship, crisis looms just ahead when an old enemy of the pack shows up and kills someone Robin loves.


Chris T. KatChris T. Kat

Chris T. Kat lives in the middle of Europe, where she shares a house with her husband of many years and their two children. She stumbled upon the M/M genre by luck and was swiftly drawn into it. She divides her time between work, her family—which includes chasing after escaping horses and lugging around huge instruments such as a harp—and writing. She enjoys a variety of genres, such as mystery/suspense, paranormal, and romance. If there’s any spare time, she happily reads for hours, listens to audiobooks or does cross stitch.



Chris has brought a $10 Amazon Gift Card to give away to one lucky reader. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. If you want you can also share your thoughts on author promotion.  The contest ends on Saturday, September 6th at 11:59 pm EST.

  • By entering the giveaway, you’re confirming that you are at least 18 years old.
  • Winners will be selected by random number. No purchase necessary to win.  The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning.
  • If you win, you must respond to my email within 48 hours or another winner may be chosen. Please make sure that your spam filter allows email from Joyfully Jay.
  • Winners may be announced on the blog following the contest. By entering the contest you are agreeing to allow your name to be posted and promoted as the contest winner by Joyfully Jay.
  • Prizes will be distributed following the giveaway either by Joyfully Jay or the person/organization donating the prize.
  • By entering you are agreeing to hold Joyfully Jay harmless if the prize or giveaway in some way negatively impacts the winner.
  • Readers may only enter once for each contest.  Duplicate entries for the same giveaway will be ignored. In the event of technical problems with the blog during the contest, every effort will be made to extend the contest deadline to allow for additional entries.
  • Void where prohibited by law.
FILED UNDER: Excerpt, Giveaway, Guest Post
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