Happy New Year!

Monday, December 31, 2012

2013 is only hours away, and my usual New Years melancholia is setting in. I am by no means a fan of the night ahead. I don’t celebrate—instead I get caught up in my head, thinking about what I’ve done and neglected to do over the year. I think about the people who are no longer with me. I wonder how I can make sure that the next New Year’s Eve will be different.

2012 was an important year in The History of Jannie Lund. I made some decisions that I’m extremely proud of, put my will power to the test and to good use, and learned a lot about myself and others. To celebrate that—even if I don’t celebrate the night—I’ve tried to take on a more positive approach. Will power and all that.

It’s like no matter how hard life is—no matter how much you struggle—then there are lights in the dark. My lights include my friends. They may be spread out over the globe geographically, but they are always in my heart. Some of you I’ve seen this year—some of you I’ll see next year. Some of you I might never see at all. But I still love you. Friendship is stronger than distance.

I go into 2013 lighter than I went into 2012. Go me. I fulfilled dreams in 2012, and new dreams are waiting to be fulfilled in 2013. There’s that novel. There’s that friend from Connecticut who’s just waiting to outrun me in Copenhagen. There are those goals I’ll never say out loud until I’ve achieved them (though I might spill them on WhatsApp). There are boundaries to test. Life to enjoy.


What’s this?

I’m being all positive and shit. And it’s New Year’s Eve. Something’s wrong...

Happy New Year! May 2013 be filled with blessings for us all.

Merry Christmas

Sunday, December 23, 2012

On this Little Christmas Eve (as it's called where I come from), I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and and a happy New Year. :) May your holidays be blessed with happiness and joy.

Thank you to everyone who has inspired me, supported me, and helped me in 2012. You all know who you are. <3

I'll see you in 2013!

P.S. If you haven't gotten your copy of "Clear as Glass" yet, it's not too late. Get it on Amazon or the Silver website.  

Clear as Glass Release Day

Thursday, December 20, 2012

"Clear as Glass" is finally here!

Kristin thinks there is Christmas magic in glass artist Daniel Hawkins' glass baubles. And when snow traps her in the same house as him, the magic becomes passion--and maybe more--under the Christmas tree.
Get it on the Silver Publishing website or on Amazon. Enjoy! And don't forget to add it on Goodreads.

Cover Reveal - Second Rate Chances by Holly Stephens

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Sam wakes up in the hospital expecting to find his girlfriend by his bedside. Instead, he finds a bleached-blond diva, claiming to be his fiancée, hovering over him. When he learns that he's just woken up from a coma and has lost the last three years of his life, any semblance of stability he thought he had falls down around him. All he wants – all he needs – is Lil.

After countless visits with her shrink and too many sleepless nights waiting for the one man she loves to walk back through the door, Lil wants nothing more than to separate herself from the life she used to have. But the moment Sam smiles at her, Lil knows it's going to take more than self-restraint to stay away.

Second-Rate Chances is about a young man fighting to regain his memory, and the one thing in his life that felt real. A modern-day Samson and Delilah, it's a look at what it means to love and be loved, and to fight though it seems hopeless.

Release Date: January 10, 2013

About Holly
People have often told me that I live in a fantasy world. Little did they know, I was building an empire of stories in my head to one day share.

I'm a mother first, a wife second, and a writer third. I'm so thankful to have been given this chance to get my stories out of my head and onto paper.

When I'm not writing, I sell plumbing (no I'm not kidding) and read romances that leave my heart a flutter. I know a ridiculous amount of pop culture information and can quote certain movies word for word. Music drives me to write and to also sing off key.

Website | Twitter | Facebook


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway Winner!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

And we have a winner of the giveaway. The soon-to-be proud owner of her very own copy of "Clear as Glass," as well as a Rosendahl holly Christmas ornament, is...drum roll, please...


Congrats! The ornament will be on it's way in the mail as soon as I get your address. :) The book will be available for download on the 20th when it is released.

Thank you, everyone, for participating! :)


Friday, November 30, 2012

Win a copy of my Christmas ebook, ”Clear as Glass”, and an original Danish Rosendahl Christmas ornament!

Later this month “Clear as Glass” will be released. To celebrate that I’ve decided to host a little giveaway.

THE PRIZE is a copy of the ebook and a silver holly Christmas ornament from Rosendahl. I did consider a glass bauble in true “Clear as Glass” style, but it’s been my experience that glass doesn’t always ship so well.


ALL YOU HAVE TO DO is follow me on Twitter (@jannielund) and tweet the following:
I entered the "Clear as Glass” by @jannielund Christmas GIVEAWAY! Details here: http://bit.ly/TjlWkf


leave a comment on my blog or Facebook post.

All posts must be received before December 9th where I announce the winner. I will ship the ornament quickly so it can hang on your Christmas tree this year if you win. The book will be available for download on December 20th.

The Next Big Thing Blog Hop

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The lovely and amazingly talented M.A. Stacie tagged me in The Next Big Thing Blog Hop, which means it's time to reveal a little about what I'm working on at the moment.

What is the working title of your book?
It's called "Finding Eve". Initially it was just to call it something, but the more I think about it, the more I'm leaning toward keeping it as the title. At least until something better pops up.

Where did the idea come from for the book?
A while ago I read a series of articles about children in Spain that had been kidnapped. Some were taken on their way home from school or whatever, and some were taken at birth by hospital staff. The parents were then told that their childen had died at birth and were so deformed that they shouldn't be looked at. Decades later the truth is slowly being unraveled. Reading about it broke my heart, and the stories stayed with me until one day I formulated a loose plot idea and sat down to write.

What genre does your book fall under?
Contemporary romance.

What is the one (two!) sentence synopsis for your book?
 Who can find Eve? Her family, the man who loves her, or the woman who used to be Eve?

What are the central themes in your book?
Above all, love. Love between a man and a woman. Between parent and child, brother and sister, which leads us to another very central theme - family. And belonging somewhere. I said above that it was reading about kidnapped children that gave me the idea for the book, but the story is actually about the aftermath - about the kidnapped child - now woman - returning to the family she was taken from.

Describe a random character in your book:
Lucas Quinn. He's the twin brother of the main female character, and for almost thirty years he has lived with knowledge that few others believe. His sister, who was kidnapped when she was only a few months old, is alive. He feels her out there somewhere - he knows she's not dead. But he can't find her. He's stubborn and loyal, never backing down when he truly believes in something.

Holly Stephens, Sherry Gomes, and J.M. O'Bryant - consider yourselves tagged to tell us all about your Next Big Thing!    

December Promo Scavenger Hunt With Free Holiday Story Book Give Away and Site Wide Discount Code Scramble

Monday, November 19, 2012

Happy holidays! Silver Publishing wants to give our fans more than 60 chances to win either a free Holiday Story from our 25 Days of Christmas Releases or for a lucky random five 20% off codes! And if you are really dedicated there is a Word Scramble included that will provide a discount for titles purchased during the last week of December!

To make it even more exciting, the authors participating may offer new and interesting content or contests of their own to help distract from the frantic pace of the holidays.

So, how does it work?

VJS 2012

Friday, November 2, 2012

I received my advance copy of VJS in the mail today. There are two of my short stories in there - "Det der virkelig tæller" (What Really Counts) and "Hjem til jul" (Home for Christmas).

"Det der virkelig tæller" is contemporary Christmas with a healthy dose of Murphy's Law. Sofie in her newlywed bliss decides to tackle Christmas dinner for the entire family for the first time. Enter Murphy and his law...

"Hjem til jul" is a nostalgic tale of the young Sine waiting for her beloved to come home for the holidays.

VJS 2012 will be relased on November 6th.

More "Clear as Glass" Info

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

"Clear as Glass" is now up for presale on Silver Publishing's website! The release date is December 20th, but you can pre-order it now if you want. Avoid the Christmas rush. ;)

It's also on Goodreads, so go add it immediately!

"Clear As Glass" Cover

Monday, October 15, 2012

CLEAR AS GLASS now has a cover! Although all 25 stories in the series have the same cover, I like to think that the eye candy is Danny, the extraordinary glass artist, from my story. :)

Here's a little taste of what it's about:

An interview with the glass artist, Daniel Hawkins, gives Kristin a glimpse into his magical world of Christmas, as well as into her own past. Trapped in the same house for the night by the snow, they discover their own magic under the Christmas tree. Passion gives way to awkwardness when the past intervenes, but magic of the Christmassy and romantic kind is too powerful.

It looks as if the release day is December 20th, so Christmas can't come quick enough this year. I'm so excited!

Christmas Stories

Friday, October 5, 2012

Christmas stuff is beginning to show up in the stores. The holidays are officially looming on the horizon. So I thought I'd give you an update on some Christmas stories coming up. I don't have any actual dates or anything yet, but that will come eventually.

First there is a Danish one. "Når julefreden brænder på" will be published in this year's edition of "Ved Julelampens Skær". It's the fifth year in a row I have a short story in that particular Christmas anthology, so it's very dear to my heart.

There is also an English one. My short story, "Clear As Glass" will be published as an ebook as a part of Silver Publishing's "Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow" series where a holiday themed story will be released every day in December until Christmas.

More info to follow soon.

Facebook Page

Sunday, September 30, 2012

I have a new author page on Facebook. Go check it out HERE. :)

Rejections – a Writer’s Battle Scars

Friday, September 14, 2012

Any real writer should have a drawer or an email folder full of them. Rejections. The dreaded and unavoidable evil for all writers. They crush hope and dreams, they hurt, and they are your self confidence’s worst enemy. Whether it’s a standard letter full of useless but polite phrases or a personal note from an editor, who took time to point out what he or she did and didn’t like, it sucks to open a letter or email that says that you’re not good enough. Because it’s personal. You put your heart and soul into your work, and then someone just says “no thanks. Next”. It blows. No question about it.
But. And there is a big but. If you hope to make it in the writing business, then rejections are part of the game. You need to take whatever criticism the rejecting editors (hopefully!) give you and learn from it. Use it to move on. Mope for a few hours or a day at the most, and then let it be a kick in the ass so you work even harder. Sometimes it’s not just a cliché to say “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. In writing it’s true. If you don’t let the rejections get you down, they will make you stronger. They are valuable experience.
Besides, a drawer or folder full of rejections proves that you’ve tried. That you’re not one of those people who dream about writing a book but never get off their ass and actually do it. Rejections mean that you’re out there chasing your dream and that you believe in yourself even when random editors and publishers don’t. And that’s what you need to succeed, because if you don’t believe in your work, no one else ever will.
And remember – battle scars are sexy.

Kirkeklokken i natten

Thursday, September 6, 2012

"Kirkeklokken i natten" was the first novel I ever wrote. The fact that it's now in print is solely because I wanted a copy on my shelf. It's a suspence novel for children aged 8 to 12 and is about Gustav. He lives in a small town where strange things start to happen. No one seems interested in finding out why, so it's the boy against the world.

A big thank you to Laura and Christina for putting up with me and my words while I was creating Gustav's world.

It's available here, though in Danish only.

"Kirkeklokken i natten" var den første roman jeg skrev. Det at den nu findes i bogform skyldes udelukkende egen egoisme fordi jeg ville have et eksemplar stående på hylden. Det er en krimi for børn i aldergruppen 8 til 12 og handler om Gustav. Han bor i en lille by, hvor der begynder at ske mærkelige ting. Ingen andre virker interesserede i at finde ud af, hvad der foregår, så det er drengen mod resten af verden.

En stor tak til Laura og Christina for at holde mig og mine ord ud da jeg skabte Gustavs verden.

Den kan købes her.

The Greatest Gift of All

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Sometimes things don't go as you'd expected. Often it's little things like a trip to the grocery store or the way your hair looks, other times it's big things such as careers or marriages. Many disappointments later, many of us are still not one hundred percent convinced that the grass isn't greener on the other side, either. It sure looks green. And it smells heavenly in the summer rain. It's called hope. Such a beautiful thing, yet hurts so much when it comes crashing down. We all know it, but even though we remember the pain, we're always looking for something new to hope for.

As a writer, you do a lot of hoping. You hope that your story turns out good, you hope that deadlines, stubborn characters, and lack of inspiration won't make you go insane, you hope that the story will be published, and you hope that people will like it. I hope this all the time. However, experience has taught me that sometimes hoping is in vain. Sometimes your story is crap, you go insane, and end up with nothing but a stack of rejection letters. And that's okay. It's all part of the experience. And let's face it. It should be. You'll never grow as a person or as a writer if you don't accept that the bad comes with the good. A failure will make you work harder next time. And be proud of those rejection letters, too! They prove that you're not taking the easy route. Easy routes are boring.

So some disappointments are healthy. Others are not. Rejection from an editor is one thing. It's to be expected and it's not personal. Yes, yes, I know that there are a lot of personal elements in your story and having it rejected can hurt the first few times. But there are also personal elements in the story that was picked instead of yours. Try again. The other kind of rejection hurts more. The one from the people you know. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and although praise is wonderful, honesty is better and more useful. That's not the problem. The problem is when your author friend shows interest in your work and you don't return the kindness. You think it's "cool" to be an author? It's a job. It's hard work. And it's as hurtful to have your writing work ignored as it is when your promotion or praise from your boss is ignored.

I have never tried to hide that I'm not taking the easy route - not even within the business. I don't do it for any other reason than my conscience won't allow me to do differently. I stay clear of publishers who are low on morals. I write a story for what it is and don't change it so it becomes something else. I wasn't born with the annoying, yet sometimes useful, look-at-me gene that often results in too many tweets about the same thing. (read: book) It's not me. And good on you if it's you.

So what's my point with this blog post? Yes, there is one. I'm venting. Simple as that. It's been over four years since I got my first letter saying that someone thought my story was good enough to publish. And in that time, I can count on one hand the times people have told me that they liked what I'd had published. Don't you have friends? I hear you asking. Yes, I do. And what about family? Yes, that too. I've worked hard to get to where I am today, but unfortunately I've received a lot of gifts. The greatest gifts of all.

And yes. There is no doubt I'll regret this blog post. And finally - yes. I am feeling sorry for myself today. I'm allowed.

Paperback: Fresh Blood

Monday, August 6, 2012

Fresh Blood is now available as paperback. Get it on Amazon. 

Fresh Blood

Saturday, August 4, 2012

FRESH BLOOD is now available in ebook format on Amazon and Smashwords. The paperback will be available in a few days.

My story in the anthology, "Sleep, My Sweet, Forever," is my first in English. Previously, I've only published in Danish. So it's extra exciting! It's not that long ago that I never would have believed that publishing in two different languages was even possible.

The story is about Amy, who encounters a dark and seductive creature in the forest. Read about what happens - and read the other Fresh Blood stories!

On Losing Weight and Writing Books

Monday, July 30, 2012

 It hit me yesterday how many similarities there are between losing weight and writing books. I’m sure there are even more dissimilarities, but it is the similarities that interest me. If you have a lot of weight to lose and a book to write, both will be long struggles with lots of ups and downs.

There will be days where you feel everything is hopeless, gaining weight when you should be losing it, and erasing words when you should be writing them. You will cheat and eat ice cream while you enjoy someone else’s written words instead of creating your own. And there will be the good days where you can see and feel the weight you’ve lost, where eating healthy and exercising make you feel liberated and good about yourself. Where the words flow and you’re convinced you’re writing Nobel Prize worthy material. Maybe you have training partners and pre-readers. Maybe you’re alone on your journey toward being skinny and published. But whatever path you take, it’s paramount that you make it your own. You cannot lose weight or write a book using someone else’s recipe.

There is a good chance you will have tried either losing weight or writing a book before. Perhaps even both. There is also a good chance that you didn’t succeed, because let’s face it, that’s how it often goes. What you did succeed in, however, was dreaming up how amazing it would be once you’d lost that weight and published that book. You could taste it, picture it in your mind, and you had already started planning which clothes to buy and how to sign your autograph in all those books you were going to sell. And then life happened. Something got in the way, and you never finished.

It is a journey. Weight loss or book writing. And until you’re one hundred percent ready to make that journey, you will never reach the destination. Happy traveling and good luck.   

Writer's Block: The Myth. The Stupidity. The Dumb Excuse

Monday, April 30, 2012

I always believe in my favorite soccer team. Though they suck – and they really do at the moment – I always think they’ll win when the game starts. God, however, I’m not so sure I believe in. At least not the God mentioned in the world’s first bestseller, the Bible. One thing I’m certain I don’t believe in, though, is writer’s block. God may or may not exist, but writer’s block definitely doesn’t. 

“There's no such thing as writer's block. That was invented by people in California who couldn't write.”
Terry Pratchett

If it was really invented by people in California, I have no idea. But I’m sure it was, indeed, invented by people who couldn’t write. Writer’s block is nothing but an excuse. Because of the misconception that writing isn’t hard work, those who don’t put in the effort need an excuse to why they’re not producing words on their paper.

Sure, sometimes your writing won’t flow. But blocked? Nah. More like stuck in a corner you’ve written yourself into. Delete. Write a different scene. Take a break. Change writing venue. Switch from computer to pen and paper. Read for a while. Go cook dinner. Take a walk. Put in some more effort. But whatever you do, don’t tell yourself or anyone else that you have writer’s block. You might end up believing it yourself, and then you’re truly screwed.

What you need isn’t to hide behind an excuse. You need a prompt so you can get past the road bump – because that’s all it is. It’s not a road block. Analyze why you’ve stopped writing – is the scene going in the right direction? Are your characters behaving as they should? Is the dialogue unnatural or stilted? Find out what the following scene will be and use it as a guiding light to get through the one giving you a problem. You’re not blocked – if anything, you’re lost. So get unlost. It’s your damn story! Writing is hard work, but it’s not rocket science. Well, unless you’re writing about rocket science. And odds are that you’re not.

By using the term writer’s block, all you’re really doing is making things harder for yourself. Instead of making excuses (and worse, actually believing them), then work hard at getting through whatever problems you’re having with your story. The perfect recipe on how to move forward with your story when you feel you’re stuck is the same as the perfect recipe on how to write a story – you find your own. There are as many approaches to writing as there are writers, and with some work and effort, you can find one that works for you.   

Saying “I have writer’s block” may fly with some people. All I hear is “I’m not invested enough in my story to put in the effort required.”

So quit with the excuses and write! 

What Am I Up To?

Monday, April 23, 2012

I haven't been very good at updating my blog. Apologies. I have a good excuse, though. I've been busy writing! So I've been a good writer and not a very good blogger. I think I can live with that. However, I will try to do better in the blog department in the future.

I finished a novel. I mentioned it last year. It's called A Thousand Sunsets and was written last November for NaNoWriMo. This year I have been editing it, cleaning it up, polishing it, vacuuming it, dusting it - basically doing everything possible to make it shine. I had help. My amazing friend, Heather, offered me the use of her grammar and picking-a-not-so-good-story-apart-and-suggesting-how-to-put-it-back-together-again-in-a-much-better-way skills. Wouldn't you love to have skills like that? Now the novel has been sent off into the big, big world, and only time will tell how it does. A writer needs to have a lot of patience.

The novel isn't the only thing I've been working on. Short stories, reasearch, articles...I write it all. It's been quite the month for submissions, but instead of sitting back and waiting for the barrage of rejection letters and emails, I'm diving head first into my next projects. It can make a girl almost depressed that she will never, ever have time to write the million stories she wants to accomplish, so at least I write as many as I can. And I will.

Until next time - keep writing!