Release Day

. . . for A New Kind of Bliss was yesterday. I'm up to my eyeballs, but wanted to acknowledge the occasion.

For any of you in the South Chicago suburbs or Northwest Indiana, I hope to see you this Saturday, May 2nd, at Borders Books & Music on U.S. 30 in Matteson, Illinois. I'll be in the store between 2 and 4PM.

One Week To Go . . .

. . . until the official release of A New Kind of Bliss on Tuesday, April 28th.

I was looking at my Amazon listing yesterday and, out of curiosity, checked the other titles people have been ordering along with ANKOB. To my surprise, the majority of the titles were not mainstream women's fiction, not romance, but in the inspirational category. I thought this was interesting, and I do hope readers aren't expecting "bliss" of the religious kind. This book, like all my novels, ends on a hopeful note, and while it is not particularly explicit (a rather neat trick for a book largely about achieving sexual satisfaction) there's a little salty language in it.

Not all the other titles were inspirational fiction, just most of them. I guess that readers of inspirational fiction like to mix it up a little.

At least, that's what I hope. I'd hate like hell - I mean, I'd hate for anyone to pick up my book, thinking it's something different than what it is.

The Week in Review

I was delighted to learn that Captain Richard Phillips was rescued from what looked like a certain death at the hands of modern-day pirates in the Indian Ocean. How brave of him to ask the captors to leg his men go and to keep him. And how wonderful to see that his men appreciate the sacrifice Captain Phillips came close to making. Go, Seals! Great markmanship.

Hollywood is abuzz about Mel Gibson's divorce after a long-term marriage performed without benefit of a prenuptial agreement. The man has $900 million dollars. Even if he has to give up half of it, that still leaves $450 million dollars. What's the big deal? I mean, can a 53-year-old possibly spend that much money in the rest of his lifetime?

Some somber anniversaries are being marked. The standoff at Waco happened on April 19th, the Columbine school shootings on April 20th. The event in which the most people perished, the domestic terrorism attack on the Murrah Federal Building on April 19th, once more gets short shrift. My heart grieves for those people. I'll never understand why the country seems to care so little about what happened to those people that day. This story got a fraction of the coverage Columbine gets. Oklahoma City got perhaps one minute of coverage in the middle of the broadcast I watched this evening. I suspect Columbine, which got a large chunk, perhaps three minutes, will figure prominently on the news tomorrow as well.

Our President is being chewed and spit out by Republicans who are offended that he shook hands with the leader of Venezuela, not a friend to the U.S. by any means, but that petulant attitude our previous president took didn't work, so why be rude?

I wish everyone a good week ahead.

Heeeeeere's LaShaunda

I'm turning the spotlight over to LaShaunda Hoffman of the popular SORMAG (Shades of Romance Magazine), who is sharing tips with you about doing podcasts. While you're here, please listen to my podcast, which you'll find on the sidebar on the left.

Take it away, LaShaunda! And thanks for stopping by to chew the fat on your blog tour.

10 Tips For Promoting With Podcasts

1. Create a podcast about a subject you know (i.e., How to Write Dialogue)

2. Create a podcast you can turn into workshops

3. Read an excerpt

4 . Interview someone

5. Have someone interview you

6. Host your own radio show

7. Feature your podcasts on your site

8. Feature your podcast on other sites

9. Make copies on CD and give away

10. Include links to your podcast in your signature.

I’ve listened to podcasts for a few years now. I enjoy the ones that teach me something. I created my first podcast this year, and I was hooked. A writer can come up with many creative ways to use podcasts in their promotion. You can feature a different podcast each month and it will help you promote your books.

Hello everyone, my name is LaShaunda Hoffman and I’d like to thank Bettye for letting me introduce SORMAG to you. I’ll tell you a little about me. I turned my love of books into an online magazine, and we’ve been online for nine years. The years flew by fast because I was doing something I enjoyed. I continue to look forward to the coming years because I know I’ll be meeting more writers and having the opportunity to introduce them to readers.

SORMAG - Shades Of Romance Magazine -
An online magazine for readers and writers of multi-cultural literature.

Author/Book Promotion/Book Reviews/Literary News
Online Book Tours/Online Workshops/Online Bookstore
Writing Community

Promoting books and their authors for nine years.

Bettye, thank you again for inviting me to your blog, if anyone has a question for me feel free to leave a comment. I will be checking back throughout the day to answer them.

I invite the readers to become a member of our community. I’d also like to offer a special report, FIVE TIPS TO BUILDING AN ONLINE PRESENCE.

Send an email to with special report in the subject and I’ll send you a copy.


A SORMAG GOODY bag will be sent to one lucky blog winner who leaves a comment on this blog. (10 winners)

If you join SORMAG’s Community this month, you have a chance to win the following:

$25.00 Gift Certificate to (2 winners)


Much Ado About Reading PROMO AD (value 70.00) (2 winners)

Visit the following blogs for a chance to win.

Meet SORMAG - April 6 - Elaine Cantrell -

10 Tips For A Perfect Online Interview - April 7 - Dara Girard -

10 Tips For Promoting On Twitter - April 8 - Chelle Hicks -

Tips For Writers Who Are Promoting Online - April 9 - Ty Moody -

10 Tips For Promoting On A Blog - April 10 - Wanza Leftwich -

5 Reasons Why You Should Attend An Online Conference - April 13 - APOOO -

Meet LaShaunda Hoffman - April 14 - Vanessa Richardson -

10 Tips For Promoting Online - April 15 - Patricia Woodside -

10 Tips For Promoting With A Podcast - April 16 - Bettye Griffin -

5 Low Cost Ways To Promote With An Online Magazine - April 17 - Andrea Jackson -


Linked In
Join our community

LaShaunda C. Hoffman -SORMAG's Publisher

SORMAG - Shades Of Romance Magazine is new and improved. We invite you to consider promoting your books on our new sites. We have rates for every budget –

The Author is always the last to know

Some good news to report. Both the book club and audio rights to A New Kind of Bliss have been sold. A New Kind of Bliss will be a featured selection of the Black Expressions Book Club, and an audio version will be released by Recorded Books (although the latter probably not until sometime in early 2010).

I actually found out about the Black Expressions sale when I instinctively went to their site and put in my name to see what titles popped up (because the publisher has forgotten to tell me about this in the past). Voila! A chat with my editor clarified everything for me.

I wish you happy reading and listening.

Gone Blogging

My guest column at Romancing the Blog ran yesterday. Check it out!

Easter Wishes to One and All

About to head out to work for the last day this week. I'm off tomorrow and Friday . . . just in time to work on the tax return from Hades.

If anybody in the blogosphere is located near Racine, Wisconsin, I'll be doing a signing Saturday morning at the Upscale Salon & Studio (yes, a book signing at a hair salon), so stop on by! I'm hoping that everybody getting their hair done for Easter will want something to read while they're waiting for an operator or sitting under the dryer.

My father passed away April 12, 1999, so this Easter will mark his tenth anniversary in Heaven. We all miss him so much.

Have a glorious Easter, everyone! I'll be back to the blog next week. BTW, is there anyone else there like me who waits until the last minute to do their tax return (or get it done), or are all of you sickeningly organized?

The Week in Review

It's Palm Sunday, the start of Holy Week. People everywhere are in church, collecting palms. I always try to attend services on this day (I confess, even as a chid I thought Easter services went on waaaaay too long). But here in Wisconsin, we're preparing for 4 inches of snow. I left the house at 9:15AM to run errands and didn't get back until exactly four hours later.

The Tom Joyner Morning Show, which, if I'm not mistaken, originated in Chicago, is no longer on the air in Chicago. Although I haven't listened since I stopped commuting to work in the morning, I feel sad at this news. The show always made me start the day with laughter. If we arrived at my husband's job before 7:30 (we carpooled until I got a job closer to home), he didn't get out of the car until Huggy Bear had done his routine. And I have to wonder . . . is Steve Harvey's show (the replacement) really all that good?

Last weekend I rented the Cadillac Records DVD. My husband is a big blues lover and got me into it, which is why we chose Clarksdale, Mississippi and Memphis as a vacation spot two years ago. From the clips I'd seen, I'd feared it was more of a concert movie, but plenty of story mixed in with the performances, and we both enjoyed it. I am more impressed with Jeffrey Wright every time I see him. And Beyoncé (did I accent the right letter?) Knowles did much more than put on a blond wig and sing Etta James' signature tune; she did an excellent job of portraying a troubled real life character. And the actor who played Howlin' Wolf actually looked like the pictures of seen of the late singer, in terms of both his looks and his size. The filmmakers played with the sequence of events a bit, but they usually do when filming real stories), but I liked the triumphant note upon which the story ended. Since we have a copy of the CD Muddy and the Wolf, apparently the two musicians managed to get along long enough to record together . . . or maybe they just tolerated each other for financial reasons.

My only real beef with the movie was Adrien Brody's hair, which looked much too contemporary for a movie that ranged from 1941 until about 30 years later.

This morning I rented Miracle at St. Anna , but from the way my husband is snoring downstairs, I might end up bringing it back to the Red Box unseen.

Have you seen either of these movies? What'd you think?