BOUND Struts Its Stuff

Hi guys

Thank you to everyone who voted for BOUND in this year’s Strut Your Stuff contest held by the Maine Romance Writers. Although we didn’t win the public vote (as you know, I keep my promo light and my social media on the DL), we did snag the judge’s first prize. This is becoming a trend for us. Of course we’re thrilled, and to celebrate, I’m giving away one free paperback of Guarded AND of Bound to one of its fans. Just contact me with the link to your review or rating, or simply tell me what you liked best about the book and why, at authorcarmenfox at gmai l dot com (no spaces).

But be quick. Offer expires by June 2. If you’ve won, I’ll be in touch by June 4. Good luck.

Einstein’s Genius – Room For Improvement

Hi guys!

I’ve been drowning in work recently, both at my day job and in writing. My lack of published books this year is in no way an admission of defeat. Consider it the calm before the storm. Yes, my schedule has been thrown completely out of whack. Once it’s all done, however, a heap of goodness should be coming your way.

Anyway, in the rare moments I came up for air, I turned on the TV. Trailers for the series “Genius” blasted across the screen, all perfectly dark and moody, in sync with the tumultuous life of Albert Einstein.

Now, Einstein’s mind has always been of interest to me, his experiences less so. Richard Feynman, well, here was a guy with an eventful life, and I’d love to watch that. Einstein’s just didn’t have the same pull for me. Still, I owed it to my physics roots to tune in.

What can I say? The names behind the faces and behind the camera promised a great adventure, and it was indeed beautifully choreographed. Sadly, I didn’t last longer than ten minutes.

My problem?

Einstein and the Germans surrounding him spoke English with an accent. ‘Of course they did,’ I hear you cry, but I meant they spoke English with a German accent. What’s the point? Fake German accents, too. We know they are German. It would be easy to assume they speak German even without the accents.

Ironically, the German characters’ German is spoken with a genuine English accent. Go figure. You might even wonder why they’d use any German words in the first place.

Either way, it’s a mess.

When we write, we spend a good deal of time thinking about our characters. What do they want? How do they get there? What accents they have gets maybe five seconds of our time. If English isn’t their native language, we give them an accent, but without making their sentences too broken. If they’re British, they speak British English, and Americans speak American. Simple rules.

In one of my books, my main character is German, but you wouldn’t know it from the way she speaks. Her nationality is a minor detail indicating what she is, rather than who she is. I shouldn’t distract the reader by unnecessarily complicating my characters’ backgrounds.

“Genius” would be so much more palatable if they dropped the accents. The Nazis and Nazi paraphernalia on the streets are all I need to place Einstein in Germany, assuming I didn’t already know his origins.

Focus on the story and on the characters. Give the readers and the audience what they’re after: a genuine story, and leave the gimmicks to lesser writers/film makers.

Of course, I might be blowing this out of proportions. Do these details matter to you?

What’s New, Easter Bunny?

April 2017

Hi guys

What’s new in your life?

BOUND has been doing well recently. It reached the final of the Strut Your Stuff contest, and due to a great review by InD’tale magazine last year, it has become a nominee for the prestigious RONE Awards.

I don’t have a shot in hell in reaching the final stage of the RONE Awards, because I have neither the reader base nor the social media reach. However, the Strut Your Stuff contest asks readers to rate covers and blurbs. Since this is a no-hassle and, more importantly, a fun way to be heard, I thought you might want to take part. It takes about two minutes. Cast your honest paranormal romance vote here.

I’ve just finished writing a Silverton novella that will be made available to my readers and newsletter subscribers. It’s an urban fantasy that’s a pretty fun read. It will be out at around the same time as Book 3 later this year. I’ll do a title and cover reveal soon.

Currently in editing are Moon Promise (a full-length paranormal romance), Divide and Conquer (a full-length urban fantasy), A Knight’s Quest KIDS!, an activity book, and the novella I just mentioned.

I’m currently writing Book 3 of The Silverton Chronicles and a Christmas novella.

Show Don’t Tell – Immersive Writing From The Roots Up will be released in paperbook form later this year, too.

I apologize for leaving you waiting, but Book 3 is coming along nicely. I think you’ll be happy with it.

Someone asked me the other day if I ever get time to read. The answer is yes, although not as much as I used to.

I have recently read The Hate U Give, a terrible and awesome YA book I highly recommend. Before that, I dug into Stephanie Garber’s Caravel, which was pretty cool, too. I was also judging in contests earlier this year and found some new-to-me authors that have now become auto-buys.

My collection of signed first editions has grown, too. Clearly I had to invest in signed copies of the two YA books I just mentioned, but I also have a thing for crime books. The problem is, my collection is growing so quickly, I’m running out of space.

The crosses we bear to support our book habits…

Anyway, if you have any questions, get in touch. My next update will be in May.

Happy Easter!

RIP Divide and Conquer – At Least For Now

As of April 1, Divide and Conquer will be no more. My publisher is in the process of taking the book down from all vendor sites.

At a time when women in fiction still find fulfillment mainly through their relationships, Divide and Conquer was styled to be a “buddy movie”-type story featuring two strong women as heroes. Men welcome, as long as they know to stand back.

Right now, the future of Divide and Conquer is undecided, but neither Lea nor Nieve will be forgotten.

My thanks go to my readers, my publisher (Champagne Books, especially Cassie), to Julie LaVoie, and of course to Celia Breslin, my editor. It’s been fun. We should do it again some day. 💋


Awards and Nominations

Thank you to everyone who voted in this year’s JABBIC, or Judge A Book By Its Cover, contest. There were two parts to this contest: Readers’ Choice and the Grand Prize voted on by Booksellers around the globe. Sadly we did not win the Readers’ Choice, but BOUND did scoop up the Grand Prize in the paranormal category.

I’m really giddy about it, because we put so much effort into this cover. My writing partner and I spent weeks coming up with concept art, which was brought to fruition by my fantastic cover designer Ana Grigoriu.

I should also mention that Bound was nominated for the Paranormal Romance Guild’s Reviewer’s Choice Award. It didn’t win, but then I dropped the ball both with this and the JABBIC competition, because I failed to notify my blog readers and didn’t even feature it in my newsletter. My bad. I was wrapped up in editing, and it’s hard enough to remember to breathe when I’m in the ‘editing trance.’

Now I get to listen to my story for a while, because hearing my words out loud puts a different spin on things–all part of the Carmen Fox Editing Machine.

See you on the other side!

January Update

Hello everyone!

As the first tumultuous month of the new year draws to a close, it is time to update you once again on what’s been happening in the den.

Mainly I’m doing lots of reading. I signed up to be a judge for a book competition, so I’m more or less glued to dead trees right now. It’s been far too long since I’ve power-read my way through a mountain of books, and I’m enjoying the process immensely.

On the flipside, more reading time equals less writing time, even though my tight schedule can’t readily absorb delays at the moment. After all, you’ve been waiting patiently for book 3 of The Silverton Chronicles, but no reason to panic just yet, because it is chugging along toward the finish line.

In my spare time, between watching TV and reading, I also made up a new bunch of puzzles for the kids’ version of A Knight’s Quest. Kids are going to love it (I hope). They’ll get brand-new mazes, logic puzzles, math and word games, brain teasers, and even a code-breaker marathon. Not sure about the publication date yet. First we need to ‘hire’ young volunteers who won’t sugarcoat their opinions.

Concept cover; not the final product.

That leaves Moon Promise (working title). It’s missing about three scenes at this stage, but this novella is definitely novel-length now. After editing, it will be around 60,000 words, or about 6 hours’ reading time. Oh my, I’m so pumped about this. It’s a paranormal romance, not an urban fantasy, but it’s still stuffed to the rim with plenty of plot. Unfortunately we are missing a good title for the series–but trust me, this shifter world has huge potential for more crimes and frolicking.

But Moon Promise won’t be released until the end of 2017. Come what may, Book 3 of The Silverton Chronicles will get prime billing this year.

I don’t often give specifics about my projects, and I understand it’s sometimes tough for you to share in my excitement. I’m sorry about this. But my secrecy is for your benefit. The greatest value of a book lies in its discovery. Newsletter subscribers get the scoop first, but not even they know the title of the next book or its plot yet. All I want to say is that readers who will join the Silverton crowd in book 3 will have an entirely different experience from readers who have been with us from day one.

As for Moon Promise, I don’t have a blurb or a tag line yet, but a provisional description might read something like this:

Kensi is not a sassy, kick-ass chick. She’s an alpha.

Until next time.


I don’t often autograph copies of my books, which is odd in as far as I’m also a collector of modern signed first editions. I’m the proud owner of signed copies of The Graveyard Book, Name of the Wind, Painted Man/Warded Man, Eragon, Skulduggery Pleasant, Underground Railroad, The Bone Season, Kim Harrison, Child 44, a number of signed anthologies, and many, many more.

As for my own books, only two signed copies of Bound exist, two of Divide and Conquer, and around ten autographed copies of Guarded.

Now a shipment of bookplates has arrived, and I’m sending some out to the first ten readers who will send proof of purchase (invoice or picture) of any paperback or hardback you own.

In case you didn’t know, Guarded and Bound also contain a handful of drawings, which are not available in the ebooks.

So send in your proof of purchase plus your address to authorcarmenfox at gmail dot com, but do so soon. This offer expires January 31.


This will come as a surprise to no one, but I’ve taken a detour to write a new kind of puzzle book for adults. A Knight’s Quest has now been released, just in time for Christmas. It contains almost 70 games of various genres and difficulty, but it’s more than a mere collection of brain exercises.

It’s an entirely new concept. At least for me.

Through the magic of the written word, the reader becomes a knight sent to rescue a princess from a dragon. His journey is long and filled with regret and humor. Every so often he must stop to ask for directions or to settle a dispute, which inevitably entails a puzzle or riddle of some sort. Occasionally, his very survival depends on finding the correct solution, and at least once pure chance decides his next step. He might pick the wrong path and die, and the puzzle adventure is over. It’s just as likely that he overcomes all the challenges along the way and, who knows, he might even find his happily ever after.

His fate is in your hands.

Who is A Knight’s Quest aimed at?

It’s a book for everyone. Anyone who’s tried a puzzle or logic game in the past, and even those who’ve shied away from them, will hopefully find joy in these pages. In other words, you don’t have to be a seasoned puzzler to get sucked into the story and solve the problems. No longer is puzzling a niche that’s reserved for a select few.

That’s not to say all the puzzles are easy. The levels of difficulty are designed to ensure that, in addition to quick one-and-dones, you will also encounter a number of tough nuts which might take you a while to crack. But you will.

Get your now!
Click, print, puzzle.

Try Before You Buy

If you’re not certain if A Knight’s Quest is for you, why not give the free sampler a go? The PDF file is ready to print and contains a handful of games (and solutions) to whet your appetite.

The book trailer is also live, and I love it. It’s like a short cartoon, and just when you think it’s over, WHOOSH, in flies the surprise. I’d be grateful for any shares.

The book is available at $7.49 / £6.49, but strike soon, because the price will go up in the new year. Due to its popularity, a children’s version is already planned for early 2017 (with easier puzzles), followed by two further puzzle books later in the year.

Good luck on your travels!


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Apologies and Update

I’ve been away from social media for a few months now, but I’m coming back soon. And I haven’t been entirely idle.

My new book is ready to be published next month. Oh yes indeed. However, if you’re waiting for another Silverton or Elonia book, you will have to wait a little longer. No, my last offering for 2017 is a fun excursion into a different world. That’s all I want to say for the moment.

Trapped, the novella that is free to my subscribers, has been downloading well, exceeding all my expectations. It also makes a great winter read, with snow, romance, and a little mortal danger.


My subscriber list keeps growing, but for the second time I have been unable to send prizes to giveaway winners, because they have since unsubscribed. Clearly I am legally forbidden from contacting them about their wins. So before you sign up, think about whether you really want to receive newsletters.

Please let me reassure you that authors do NOT sell or buy your addresses. At least not to my knowledge. After all, we have nothing to gain. My subscribers are important to me. I am not going to betray that trust. Likewise, subscribers that don’t want to be here won’t do me any good, especially since I pay the newsletter provider for the number of emails I send.

Just something to think about.

What else? Oh yes, my subscribers had the chance to read the unedited first chapter of my shifter novella, and the response has blown me away. I was worried that Kensi might be too tough a heroine, but she’s a hit with readers. Don’t worry, I expect that grin to leave my face soon.

That’s it for now. I have a couple of promo events to post about soon, but keep your eyes peeled for my new book.