The Magic of the Carousel

The carousel horses in my trilogy, The Flying Ponies, are all based off real-life carousel horses. They are either aboard machines still in operation or in museums, where people can admire them. Some of them are on the carousel at the Grand Rapids Public Museum; their literary equivalents debut in Tilt, book two of the trilogy.

Two of my fans (and nieces) visited the museum with their family earlier this month and took a spin on the 1928 Spillman carousel. They also took selfies with a couple of the horses; Contessa is a palomino mare and Oriflamme is a palomino armored horse (the names belong to their counterparts in my books). I was given permission to share the pictures.

I love the beauty and majesty of antique carousels, and I love the fact that these two girls were able to ride this one and enjoy it. Carousels have charm and a certain grace, and if you are able to stand quietly next to their painted ponies, you might just hear them whispering.

Magic might not exist in a literal sense, but it can be found in life. One only has to believe and be willing to seek it out in the ordinary.

Write Your Story

I did an author meet and greet yesterday at Gales IGA in Hart, and I had a ball! I sold some books, but what was more fun was just talking about Lift with the people who came. They were genuinely interested in learning about the process and the inspiration, and I thoroughly enjoy talking about it.

It’s been said that if you can’t find the kind of book you want to read, then you need to write it yourself. There’s a danger in doing that, of course – what if no one else likes your story? Well, to be honest, should a writer care about that? Yes, at least a little. Most working writers hope to make some money, though most of us know we will never make enough to quit our day/night jobs. That’s a reality that needs to be faced.

It doesn’t mean, however, that you shouldn’t write that story that you want to read. Somewhere out there are other people who need your story, too. They might not even realize it until they see it sitting on a local book store’s shelf or on Amazon. Not every person will click with your story, and that’s okay. How many books have you read that didn’t do it for you? That’s no reason to hold back.

I love my story. I love my characters. I can’t wait to share book two of The Flying Ponies trilogy with all of you. It’s a story I would’ve loved to read, but no one had written it, so God gave it to me to write. For better or worse, the Flying Ponies are mine now.

What story do you want to read that hasn’t been written yet? Perhaps it hasn’t been written because it’s waiting for you to do it.

Have a blessed Memorial Day, everyone. Remember our fallen soldiers and what they did to protect the freedom we as Americans enjoy.

(I found this quote on Pinterest.)

Support Your Locals!

I have been frequenting Gales IGA grocery store from the time I was little. Whichever one of us girls went grocery shopping with Mom there got a snack and a pop for the ride home. It’s a friendly place, and easy to find what you need.

Gales has been getting a make over recently, and it looks amazing! Their new cafe spot with comfy chairs, couches and tables is a terrific place to sit and relax for a bit. Another new feature is that they carry home decorations and items made by local people. One of those local items is a new book entitled Lift!

I was super excited to be asked if they could carry my first novel. Of course I said yes! How awesome to have something of mine displayed and for sale in a store that I admire and love?

This writing adventure, which started back in high school, is leading to some marvelous things. I now have Lift available at the Book Nook & Java Shop in Montague, and Gales IGA in Hart. It’s so nifty.

Oh, and I got to meet a fan today at the library where I work. So cool. So blessed. I love this writing life!

Here’s a picture of Lift on display at Gales. Have a wonderful evening!

PS! I’m going to be at Gales on Saturday, May 26th, from 4-5 pm, speaking about writing and signing copies of Lift!

Lift Book Trailer!

Brought to you from Laura A. Grace from Unicorn Quester, who graciously made this for me while also reviewing Lift and interviewing me.

Enjoy!!

Lift Launch!

So Saturday, April 21st, was my launch party at the Book Nook & Java Shop. I had my nervous breakdown the Tuesday before (Would anyone come? Would I sell any books?) Well, I had no reason to be nervous.

I spoke for roughly twenty minutes on Coney Island, carousels, and writing Lift. My hubby recorded me; it’s on YouTube (L. M. Ransom Lift). I took some questions, and then sat down to sign books.

And ran out of copies before the end of the line. Never expected that! I wasn’t expecting the amount of people who came, either. Friends, family, a coworker, my hubby’s coworkers, and people who I didn’t know. It was a terrific turnout! Everyone was encouraging and excited, and I had an awesome time. It was more than I could’ve hoped for, which isn’t surprising. God has blessed everything about Lift.

My next event is Saturday, May 26th, from 4-5 pm, at Gales IGA in Hart, Michigan. I’m looking forward to it; I doubt I will have any anxiety, now that I have the launch party behind me.

Here are some pictures!

Launch Day!

It’s finally here: Lift officially releases! This day has been a long time coming; I’ve wanted to be an author for a long time now.

If you’re in the vicinity of Montague, Michigan this afternoon, I will be at the Book Nook & Java Shop from 4:30-6 pm, talking a little about Coney Island carousels and the inspiration behind Lift. I will also be selling and signing copies of the novel, which is the first in the Flying Ponies trilogy.

This picture was taken at the Grand Rapids Museum this past March. The horse is an armored charger from their 1928 Spillman carousel. They are one of my favorite types of carousel horses. This particular one will serve as inspiration for one of the Flying Ponies in the second book in the trilogy, Tilt.

Have a blessed day and hope to see you this afternoon!

Launch Day Approaches…

We are now T minus four days from launching Lift, first in the Flying Ponies trilogy. It is a great feeling to be here, this close, but I have to admit to you – a little frightening, too.

As an indie (independent) author, my book isn’t debuting with all the fanfare a Big 5 book would get. There are no ads in glossy magazines, no write-ups in the New York Times, and no appearances on Good Morning America. It is, however, getting a launch party at the very cool book store, the Book Nook & Java Shop, on Saturday. It has three very nice reviews on Goodreads, and it has a KILLER cover. I mean, have you seen it?? So what is so frightening?

The fact that it might not sell well.

You see, indie authors, unlike Big 5 ones, pay for different book services. I have an outstanding editor and publisher, but I also pay them for their help. Now, when my book sells, I don’t owe them anything, whereas a Big 5 author owes money out of their sales to both their publisher and their agent. It is a big decision whether to go indie or Big 5; I have been nothing but happy and content with my decision to be an indie.

However, this also means that Lift needs to make back enough to publish the next book in the series. And so on and so forth. To be completely honest, I’m not really that worried, though. Or at least, I try not to be. I have felt blessed by God from day one of this journey, from the first inklings of the story up to right now as I write this. Still, it’s good to remember that I want writing stories to be a business.

So, overall, I’m super excited about Saturday. I’m excited to share Lift with others. I’m excited that God has blessed me with some writing talent.

And I hope to make some money. Oh and by the way, the gorgeous carousel horse below? He is a Charles Looff original, circa 1900. He was once part of Marianne Stevens’ carousel collection, and is now for sale since she passed away. You could own him, if you have $49,500 lying around.

He is also the model for Penumbra, the lead horse of the Flying Ponies Grand Carousel, featured in Lift. The photo is not mine, unfortunately. It is borrowed from a carousel website.

Hope to see you on Saturday!

Daybreaker Hits Home!

Daybreaker is the final book in the Undertow series. The author, K. R. Conway, is also my publisher. We met on Goodreads, after I fangirled over Undertow, the first book in the series. Daybreaker releases tomorrow!

This is the press release for Daybreaker and the Undertow series:

Daybreaker, the final book in K.R. Conway’s Urban Fantasy series known as Undertow, is finally out! If you have yet to read about Eila Walker (you know, the hilarious teen girl who inherits a house with a murderous past along with a snarky crew of supernatural rejects and a killer boy who’s determined to keep her alive), have no fear: the link to the first book is here: https://books2read.com/u/m2okW7


The link to all Conway’s books are here: https://www.amazon.com/K.R.-Conway/e/B00FUZUXRU/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1520549081&sr=8-1

BIO:

K.R. Conway is a sarcastic bugger who likes to torment Cape Cod’s summertime tourists, taunting them about sneaky sharks and traffic-free backroads. She’s been a professional journalist since 1999 when several newspaper editors lost their minds and hired her as a feature writer. She is best known, however, for her Urban Fantasy series, Undertow, which reads like a mash-up of Jaws and The Goonies.

Awards, nominations, and features include Barnes and Noble’s Seven Terrifying Summer Reads for Teens (2015), Teen Ink Magazine’s Best Picks, Girl’s Life Magazine Cool Winter Reads, newspapers, magazines, and radio. Nominations include Indie Recon Live (Best New YA, Best Opening Line, Best Book Boyfriend), YALSA, Cybil, Goodreads, IRDA, and others.

The series has spawned fan fiction, fan art, jewelry, clothing, and even tattoos. Conway, who is a member of SCBWI, teaches fiction craft at writer conferences, high schools, and libraries. She lives on Cape Cod with her equally weird family and a strange assortment of critters. When not writing, Conway drives a forty-foot Loser Cruiser that smells like forgotten Pony sneakers from the 80s.
LINKS:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/k_r_conway/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorKRConway/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/SharkProse
Website: https://capecodscribe.com

KRConwayUndertowpic

What’s Happening Next

So as most of you know, Lift is now available as a Kindle pre-order, and the soft cover ARCs are in my hands. Three have been sent out to others. One will go to someone who will review it for our local paper, and one is staying right here with me. So what comes next?

The release party is being held April 21, from 4-6:30 pm, at the Book Nook & Java Shop, in Montague, Michigan. The book will be available from Amazon on that day as both an e-book and a trade paperback. I am also going to have the book available from other distributors; most notably from Ingram, from whom most libraries order their books.

The second book in The Flying Ponies trilogy, Tilt, is complete. I won’t look at it for 6-8 weeks or longer. When I do begin going through it, I will be looking at how it flows and what changes need to come about. When it’s as far as I can take it, it will be sent to my editor, Kat Szmit, and together we’ll mold it until it’s ready.

In the meantime, give or take a month or two, I will begin writing Spin, the final book in the trilogy. Once The Flying Ponies is finished, I’ll begin work on the next story, which I’ve already started notes for.

The writing life is busy, but I wouldn’t want it any other way.