Today, my little sister turns 21.  I could very well make this a sentimental post about how she’s my best friend in the world and how she’s crossing a major milestone and how I’m so thankful to have her in my life, and all of that would be very, very true.  I don’t know where I’d be without her.

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In honor of her birthday, I decided to release my new book, Backstage, the sequel to Boy Band, a day early on Kindle.  I did this, in part, because she loves the first book so much.  We’re both big boy band fans in real life, and she was the one who really pushed me to finish the first book and to publish it.  She enjoyed Cemetery Tours also, but not like Boy Band.

That being said, I hope you all enjoy the second book!  I did my best not to end it on as BIG a cliffhanger as the first one, but rest assured there is a third one in the works!  Sam and Mel’s story isn’t quite finished yet!

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Love you all!

Backstage on Kindle



December Tidings

Hello, friends!

Oh my goodness, it feels like it’s been a while since I last posted.  Probably because it has been.  This has been quite a week though, let me tell you!

First of all, I hope all my American friends had a splendid Thanksgiving full of good food and good times spent with family and friends.  My Thanksgiving was pretty excellent, although as soon as I got home from our friends’ house, my throat began to hurt and I spent the next three days on the couch with The Crud that’s going around.  Thanks, Dad.  Fortunately, I didn’t get it nearly as bad as he did.

In much more exciting news, IT IS FINALLY DECEMBER!  It’s time for snowflakes and hot chocolate and Christmas lights and movie nights by the fire and all those wonderful winter things!  Now of course, once Christmas is over, I won’t be nearly as excited about the cold, but for the next 25 days, bring on the winter chill!

Even though it’s only the first day of December, it’s already turning out to be an incredibly busy month.  I’m giving a talk tonight at a local library about NaNoWriMo and what to do after you’ve finished your manuscript.  If I can figure out how to post the Power Point presentation here, I will.

I’m also giving another talk at another library NEXT week, but I need to check in and make sure everything is still on schedule for that!

Also… BACKSTAGE WILL BE AVAILABLE IN EXACTLY ONE WEEK!  I’m so excited for y’all to read it.  I would post the first chapter here, but it contains MAJOR spoilers for the first book, so I’m afraid y’all are just going to have to wait a week!  You can, however, enter to win a signed copy of BOTH BOOKS on GoodReads.

Once Backstage is released, I’m going to take some time just to enjoy the holidays, spend time with family and friends.  But I’m also going to be investigating a few new publishing platforms as well as a few new projects.  Oh, and I’m also going to be catching up on a LOT of reading.  My goodness, I am so behind.

Happy December, everyone!  It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

(Except for, you know, when it’s warm and sunny).


Happy Bookday!

It’s here!  After more than a year, After Death is finally available in Paperback AND Kindle!



I’m so excited for the ghostly misadventures of Michael, Luke, and Kate to continue.  I hope you all enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy writing them!

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I want to take a little bit of time, however, to celebrate a few OTHER books being released today: Carry On by Rainbow Rowell, Life and Death by Stephenie Meyer, and of course, the illustrated edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.

The fact that my book came out on the same day as all of these ladies is, quite frankly, a huge fangirl honor for me.  JK Rowling is Queen, as everyone knows, and I don’t know a single person whose lives she hasn’t touched with her magical world.  Stephenie Meyer, yeah, okay, it’s kind of fun to make fun of Twilight.  But I’ve got to be honest.  I still love it.  I love the story.  It’s just pure fun and fantasy, you know?  Very escapist, and I do love to escape.

Then, finally, there’s Rainbow Rowell.  I fell in love with her writing after reading the story of my life, Fangirl.  I’m serious.  I’ve never read a book that so keenly described what it feels like to love a book and, frankly, to be apprehensive of the world outside.  Oh my Heavens, do I love Fangirl.

As if I didn’t already love Rainbow Rowell enough for  bringing that story to life, I then got to meet her last May.  She is incredible, basically everything I want to be as an author and as a person.  When I found out that her new book, Carry On, inspired by the book series in Fangirl, was being released the same day as mine, I was thrilled.  And yes, I’ve already run out and bought my own copy.


Yes, I bought Life and Death too.  I wanted to buy the new Harry Potter, but let’s face it, as an Indie Author, I barely have two dimes to rub together.  I really shouldn’t have bought these two books, but I can’t help it.  I have to support the authors and stories that I love.  And, yeah, okay, I really need to feed my addiction to YA literature.  Most importantly, though, these books serve as a reminder of why I do what I do and why I put so much time and effort into my books.  I want this world of words to be my world, too.

Happy Bookday, everyone!  Go read your favorite book!  Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, go pick up something new!

May I recommend a ghost story?


IndieVengeance Day 2015

Hi, friends!  This weekend, along with spending a small fortune at the movie theater, I also participated in the third annual IndieVengeance Day, celebrating Indie Authors from all over the world.  I thought I’d share a few pictures from the event!

Warning: Most of them are just my books looking pretty.


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The new book covers were there too.

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Pretty snazzy.

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It was fun this year, crew!  Until next time!


Being Independent

Last night, I got to see two of my good friends whom I haven’t seen in ages.  They also happen to be independent artists.  We had a good long talk and several laughs about the self-employed life.  I realized that all the weird things I experience in my day-to-day life aren’t exclusive to authors.  All independent artists go through ups and downs on their way to establishing a career.

That conversation got me thinking, “Hey… I could write a blog post about this.”  So without further ado, here are the ten best and worst things about being an independent author/artist.

The Ten Best Things About Being An Independent Author/Artist

  1. You work for yourself! You get to work from home or wherever you want! You are your own boss! You make your own schedule! This is pretty much the best gig ever.
  2. You keep all creative and legal rights to your work.  Forever.  Done.
  3. No deadlines!  Okay, well, you need to make your own deadlines and it is VERY important that you keep them.  But still!  I’d rather set my own deadline than abide by someone else’s!
  4. You’re able to give every project the love and attention that it deserves.  This isn’t about the money for you.  You’re not looking at your manuscript and thinking, “Will this make me a lot of money?” You’re looking at it and thinking, “This is worth it no matter what, because it’s a great story.”
  5. You get the opportunity to learn a LOT.  I never, in my wildest dreams, thought I’d be essentially running a business for myself.  I certainly never thought I’d be publishing books.  But I’ve learned and grown so much in the past two years and you know what?  I’m really proud of myself.  It’s a great feeling.
  6. Have I mentioned the royalties that you will be getting for the rest of your life?  Unlike in the traditional world, you don’t just get paid once for one book.  One book can make you money every month of every year.
  7. You get to write what you love.  You don’t have to wait for an agent’s or publisher’s approval.  If you know that you want to write a book, and you know that you can write it well, go for it.
  8. The independent community is WONDERFUL.  I’ve met so many amazing and supportive people through my career as an independent author.  You want to know these people.  And not just fellow authors.  I’ve made so many amazing friends all around the world who are book reviewers and they’re just the best.  Again, you would not believe the overwhelming love and support.
  9. You learn that nothing is impossible, that you are capable of so much more than you think you are.  Those barriers and obstacles that you think exist?  All in your mind.  Nothing is insurmountable if you set your mind to it.  Believe me.  I’ve been there.
  10. You are making your dreams come true.  And that’s incredible.

Now that I’ve made the life of an independent author seem like the bee’s knees, here are…

The Ten Worst Things About Being An Independent Author/Artist

  1. You work for yourself.  I know, that was a good thing too, but hear me out.  You have to have a LOT of self-discipline to make this work.  That’s something I’ve really struggled with.  I get distracted so easily.  I’m a procrastinator.  I can be incredibly lazy.  I get addicted to Netflix.  I’m the world’s easiest-going boss, because let’s face it, I’m not going to fire myself.  I can do whatever I want.  And that’s a really dangerous mindset to have when you’re in business for yourself, especially when you’re just starting out.
  2. The age old, “Oh, you didn’t want to go with a real publisher?” To which my response is this.
  3. Self-marketing.  I hate it.  It’s the worst.  Do I think everyone should read my books?  Of course I do.  Do I like telling people to do so?  No.  I really don’t.
  4. You wouldn’t believe how many people will come up to you and say, “I have this great idea for a book.  You should write it!”  That might not be an indie thing though.  That might just be a writer in general thing.
  5. Because you’re self-employed, you will meet people who think that you’re free all the time because “you don’t actually work.”  This is a hard one because yes, technically, you can take time off whenever you want, but you’re going to have to make the lost time up later.  Just because you work for yourself and work from home it doesn’t mean you’re not working.  In fact, you can be working all the time and you still probably wouldn’t get everything done that you wanted to.  Working for yourself is crazy hard because it’s just you.
  6. People will ask if they can buy your book at Barnes and Noble, to which the answer is, “No, but you can buy it on BarnesAndNoble.com.”  Hopefully, sometime in the near future, Barnes and Noble will stock independent books.  In fact, I think if you go through Lightning Source, they will.  But most indies are not in bookstores.  And that’s a bummer.
  7. Money.  I know I said that you’re not doing this for money, but the truth is going into business for yourself is an investment.  You need money.  I worked for two years in a dental office all the while trying to write and get my little company up and going.  And money will be tight.  For a LONG time.  I’m about to publish my fourth book and money is still tight.  But I’m hanging in there.  I’m saving and I’m investing.  Hopefully, in the long run, it will be worth it.  I think it will be.
  8. Self-Marketing gets another mention because I just really hate it.
  9. You know, I actually can’t think of anything else.
  10. Being an independent author/artist is awesome.

What do y’all think?  Did I leave anything out?

PS – Go read my books. Self-Marketing.  Blegh.

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After a rather busy weekend, it’s time to get back in the swing of things.  Okay, that’s kind of a lie.  Yesterday, I did nothing.  But the day before actually was busy.  Went to support a few friends at a book signing, then a girls’ night complete with wine and Mario Kart.  See, I actually do have a life!

One of the friends I went out to support, Paula Walker Baker, has a new book coming out at the end of the month!  I’m delighted to announce that I will be interviewing her here on my blog within the next week or so, so stay tuned!  In the mean time, stop by and check out her blog: https://paulawalkerbaker.wordpress.com

It’s funny.  I met Paula at my camp, the same place I met three of the most important people in my life.  I know I mention my camp a lot, but honestly, that place and those people changed my life.  And it was all because of one postcard in the mail.  One that my friend Terri, one of those people, sent!  Life is amazing.  It’s so weird to think how different my life would be without them.

Anyway, before I dissolve into a sentimental spiral of destiny and fate, let’s try to steer this blog post back to books.  Books!  Yes!  My favorite things!  Books are awesome!  That’s why I’m writing two at the same time!  That, or I’m just crazy!  It’s probably that second one.

In all seriousness though, if Sam Morneau accidentally turns up in the next Cemetery Tours book, I apologize.

Speaking of Sam and The Kind of September, please remember that my Become a Character Raffle and Giveaway is going on until the end of the month!  https://jackiesmith114.wordpress.com/2015/06/15/becomeacharacter/

Finally, I’ve been promising and promising, well now I’m finally delivering!  Here’s the second Boy Band short story!  Again, it hasn’t been professionally edited because my editors are too busy with the next Cemetery Tours book.  Nevertheless, enjoy!


Title and Cover Reveal

Hi, friends!  You’ve all been asking, and I finally have an answer!

BACKSTAGE, the sequel to BOY BAND, will be released on December 8, 2015!!!

another possible design for backstage

This is two title/cover reveals in the past month, I know, but I’m so, so, so excited about both of these books!  I can’t wait to share them with you!

Please don’t forget to enter my #BecomeACharacter Raffle!  It’s so easy!  All you have to do is like my Facebook page and follow me on Twitter!  Read more about it here: https://jackiesmith114.wordpress.com/2015/06/15/becomeacharacter/

Love to all!


Hi, friends!

This will be a rather short post as I’ve got a pretty busy day ahead of me.  I’m driving out to my friend and fellow author Paula Walker Baker’s farm to consult her on the cover design for her new novella, The Conservative Congregant (read more about her and her books here: https://paulawalkerbaker.wordpress.com)!  Then my sister and I are going to the movies.  Then, of course, I’ve still got a boatload of writing to do, especially on After Death AKA Cemetery Tours 3.  It’s taken a bit of a turn that I did not expect and while that is always welcome, I now have NO idea what’s going to happen!  That’s kind of the way I like it though.

Due to overwhelming demand for a sequel (it’s coming, I promise!), I’ve also decided to write a few Boy Band short stories that will hopefully make up for the way I ended the first book.  These stories will all be set before the events in Boy Band take place, so there will be NO spoilers for the book.  They’re just for fun.  There isn’t really a plot.  They’re very short.  Just glimpses into moments in their lives.  It’s kind of like fanfiction for my own book.  This first story is called Senior Year.  Enjoy!

PS: I didn’t hire my professional editors for this one, so if you spot a typo, I apologize!

Senior Year


Unless you’ve spent the day away from television, radio, internet, smart phones, and friends with access to those things, you probably know by now that the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that gay marriage is now legal in all fifty states!  What should never have been an issue in the first place is finally resolved and I believe, wholeheartedly, that the US made the right decision.  Several of my closest friends are gay and I am just thrilled that they can finally LEGALLY marry the person that they love.  I can’t wait to attend and perhaps even participate in their weddings and celebrate their marriages.

That being said, I wanted to do something fun to celebrate this victory, not only for my country, but for so many of my friends.  That’s why my newest book (and love story!) Boy Band, is on sale for only $0.99 on Kindle!


No, it’s not an LGBT romance, but it’s still happy and fun and colorful, just as our lives and loves should be.


Today was a good day, friends. Love you all.


Yesterday as I was driving home from the grocery store, I found myself, as I often do, thinking about my next books.  The next Boy Band is going to be a LOT of fun and I can’t wait to really get started on it.  There are going to be new characters, new songs, and a whole lot of new drama.  That being said, I want this book to be special to my readers.  I want ALL my books to be special to my readers, but the first Boy Band has done so well that I really wanted to find a way to make this one as much my readers’ as it is mine.  Thus the #BecomeACharacter Raffle was born.

Here’s the deal.  I want YOU to become a character in the sequel to Boy Band.  There are three names available.

1) A friend of the band from high school.

2) A singer in the guys’ opening band.

3) A full length song titled your name (I.E. “Diana” by One Direction or “Hey There Delilah” by Plain White Ts).

Of course, these don’t have to be your names.  You can name these characters for someone you love or make up a name (Nothing silly though, please.  I will not name my character Macaroni.  I don’t think this will happen, but still, I feel it needs to be said).  These three winners will also receive personalized signed copies of the first Boy Band.

How do you enter?  It’s quite easy!


The site also made me write out some Terms and Conditions, so this is what I came up with.

1. Please be a real human being. Please do not be a robot.

2. If you win, please be willing to provide your email address so that I may contact you about where to send your book.

3. There are three names up for grabs in the sequel to Boy Band: A new friend of the guys’ from high school, a singer in The Kind of September’s opening act, and a full length song written about . If you win this raffle, you get to submit a name (either yours or one of your choosing… You can name characters for friends if you’d like!).

4. Please help spread the word! If you’d like to read the first book before entering, it is available on Nook, Kindle, Amazon.com, and BarnesAndNoble.com! Reviews are appreciated, but not required for entry into this raffle.  🙂

5. Winners will be selected randomly by Rafflecopter.

6. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me on Twitter (@JackieSmith114), here, or at info@WindTrailPublishing.com.


So there you have it!  I think this will be a fun things, and it’s open all summer!  I think it ends the last day of August.  Have a good Monday, y’all!  I’m off to see some dinosaurs.