Guest Post: Charlene Brown


To People That Want To Turn Clicks Into Profit But Can’t Get Started


Struggling to Gain Attention for Your Brand

I struggled, knew it would take time, but branching out on my own was much tougher than I realized – especially with a 9-to-5. I was tired of complaining about what was not happening and decided to learn how to make things happen.


I had to answer a key question: What are proven methods used to attract customers and increase a brand’s visibility and profitability?


A proven technique I learned to use to turn clicks into profit is to speak with my network (friends, families, and/or associates), reach out to past customers and “strangers”, and inquire online, especially those who are fans of my business and the product(s) and services I offer.

Build Your Village

“It takes a village to raise a child” but in our case a Brand. Networking is a great way to make connections. Yes we solopreneurs are busy with the day-to-day operations, but you still should make time to get from behind that computer screen and connect with like-minds face-to-face. The film “The Net” with Sandra Bullock would make anyone want to eagerly attend social events; even if you have to schedule them in advance. Attending 3 events per month or 5 every two months can do wonders for getting you and your Brand in front of people and introduce yourself.


Perhaps work with your local Chamber of Commerce. They hold networking functions to meet other business owners in your area. Exchange business cards or LinkedIn profiles and make that connection meaningful. This is a proven method for building contacts in business. After the social function visit their business or website, continue developing a relationship with them beyond that first meeting and occasional hellos.


Be an Active and Valuable Village Member

Acquiring referrals, via word of mouth, remains a powerful resource and is the hardest to get. Join communities of like-minded people. They will become invaluable assets to you. Learn from and help those around you. I have been fortunate to join amazing communities that have been inspiring and highly motivational to me.


It is vital that you choose your communities wisely. Consider why you are joining? What can you provide them? What would you want from them?


You want to, and should be, able to provide helpful advice and constructive criticism to them. Make strong and dependable connections (perhaps even friendships) that lead to your personalized village (of sorts) that include the benefit of lead generations for your business.


What to do when my online business fails to generate the profits I hoped for?

Try three things to help tweak your Brand’s success:

  1. Are getting sufficient quality traffic to your site: The type of traffic you attract can be assisted by where you promote your website. Try to share your link to groups and communities that you know have the audience you are focusing on. This may not deliver more hits to your website but it will bring more people who will purchase more of your products and in turn generate more income. Have customers? At least 30% of them will be repeat buyers and this number will continue to grow if you use the follow-up techniques discussed below.
  2. Re-evaluate customer base. Who’s in your audience?: Repeat customers come if you follow-up with them. If they already like your product(s), they’ll probably return if you offer them another product or a discount on what they already purchased. Thus leading them to promote your business to their friends. When customers like a product, they tell others, heck, they tell the world (reviews)! The more follow-ups and offers from your business, the faster your brand recognition grows and profit increases.
  3. Do the Work!: No one else’s path will ever be yours. Instead know that you need to put in that work and use the advice you learn to build your own roadmap to success. You need to still put in the work to build your brand from obscurity to success; and your success will be different.

The Art of The Follow-up

I’m still experimenting with follow-ups myself when balancing time zones and work, but follow-ups are personable and help connections between you and your audience blossom.

  1. Rewards. Reward customers for using your website, purchasing something, and sending referrals. Special “Thank You” notices for their purchase or offering a small discount when they return or refer your business to a friend are all great ways to upsurge your profit margin.
  2. Confirmations. Send confirmation messages to customers that their requests, comments or questions were received. Rather than simply saying, “we received your request” add a little oomph (something extra) in there. This is a great time to offer them something and be creative because you’ll be amazed at the responses you’ll receive.

Boss Up

Follow-ups are important. Let your customers know that you care if they are happy with their purchase and/or your Brand’s message. Should they have any questions or concerns let them feel comfortable enough to contact you. Don’t annihilate them with sales pitches. Let that message be secondary.


Charlene Brown is the Founder and CEO of Bklyn Custom Designs, LLC. and LOVES helping small businesses turn their brands from barely there to thriving and profitable businesses. She constantly seeks the best avenues to help her audience achieve their dreams with as little frustrations as possible. Code lover, avid reader, traveler, and chills out with her family and friends, all while enjoying all that life has to offer.


Say ”Hello!” at:



GoodReads: ttps:// Facebook:





Guest Post: A.M. Hargrove

Title: Sabin, A Seven Novel
Genre: Sci-Fi
Release Date: October 29th, 2015







The Seven have a code: find and protect Judgment Day (a weapon of mass destruction that poses as a harmless necklace) and the ones who possess it at all costs; and never, under any circumstances, divulge information about ourselves.
I have always abided by this code. Until Serena Callahan, a sassy, no nonsense female, found the damn choker, and now I’m the one being choked by my own emotions. Ever since the day she entered my life that code has meant nothing to me. And for the life of me I can’t figure out why I’m allowing a damn woman to lead me around by her slender finger. The rules have changed and she’s calling all the shots only she doesn’t know it. But if we can’t find the necklace soon, none of it will matter anyway.
My name is Sabin and I am the commander of The Seven.
 One day, on her way home from work as a sales
manager, A. M. Hargrove, realized her life was
 on fast forward and if she didn’t do something soon, it would quickly be too late to write that work of fiction she had been dreaming of her
whole life. So, she rolled down the passenger window of
 her fabulous (not)company car and tossed out her leather briefcase. Luckily, the pedestrian in the direct line of fire was a dodge ball pro and
had über quick reflexes enabling him to avoid getting
 bashed in the head.Feeling a tad guilty about the near miss, A. M. made a speedy turn down a deserted side street before tossing her crummy, outdated piece-of-you-know-what laptop out the window. She breathed a liberating sigh of relief, picked up her cell phone, called her boss, and quit her
job. Grinning, she made another call to her hubs and
told him of her new adventure (after
 making sure his
heart was beating properly again).

So began A. M. Hargrove’s career as a Naughty and Nice Romance Author. Her books include the
 following: Edge of Disaster, Shattered Edge and Kissing Fire (The Edge Series); The Guardians of Vesturon Series (Survival, Resurrection, Determinant, reEmergent, and Beginnings); Dark Waltz, Death Waltz, Tragically Flawed (Tragic 1), Tragic Desires(Tragic 2), Exquisite Betrayal, Dirty Nights; and lastlyFreeing Her, Freeing Him, and Kestrelall part of the Hart
Brothers Series.

Other than being in love with writing about love, she loves chocolate, ice cream, and coffee and is
 positive they should be added as part of the USDA food groups.





Guest Post: Jaqueline Kyle

Picking your Supernatural Villain


When I decided to write Ebenezer Scrooge: Ghost Hunter, I knew that ghosts would be involved. It’s implicit in the title, right? However, I needed the stakes to be a little higher, A Christmas Carol already had four ghosts (if you include Jacob Marley). To just fight ghost after ghost would be redundant and boring, so “Ghost Hunter” became a misnomer for a hunter of all sorts of supernatural creatures.


My decision making process for finding villains and supernatural creatures to populate my story began by making a list of all the popular villains (i.e. zombies, vampires, werewolves) and throw them out! There were a couple of reasons that I did this. First, I’m afraid of zombies. Seriously. Fifteen minutes of the Walking Dead will have me up to all hours in the night, plotting my escape should zombies attack. Zombies are a definite no-go for me.


Second, I felt like between Underworld and Twilight, vampires and werewolves were done. That’s a full spectrum of cheese-tasticness which makes it trite and a complete no-go again for me.


Third, I did a lot of traveling in my 20’s. I worked for a travel agency and had the opportunity to travel to unique locations and hear local folklore first hand. I knew there was a wealth of other myths to draw on for rich and frightening characters.


When you write a mash-up there are already characters and thus, opportunities to slip in new traits and dynamics. I did that as much as possible in Ebenezer Scrooge: Ghost Hunter. In the end, I spent a lot of time googling keywords like “folklore shapeshifter” to find my villains.



Here’s the final list of supernatural creatures that make an appearance!

  • Ghosts
  • Goblins
  • Bad Fairies
  • Bean Nighe
  • Humbug (my creation)
  • Doppelganger
  • Jikininki


About the Author:

Jaqueline Kyle once stood on top of an active nuclear reactor. It glowed. She dove the Great Barrier Reef and the fish swarmed to check HER out. On her 16th birthday she flew a plane solo – just to enjoy the view. She once ran a marathon – because it was faster than walking. When she bungee jumps, she always goes first, so her friends can jump off the bridge after her. Jaqueline Kyle is not the most interesting man in the world – because she’s a woman.


Ebenezer Scrooge: Ghost Hunter

Ebenezer Scrooge: Ghost Hunter expands the original text of Charles Dicken’s classic with all-new scenes of malicious ghosts, soul devouring wraiths, deadly doppelgangers and other terrors from the netherworld. Our story opens seven years after Marley’s violent death. Ebenezer Scrooge has given up ghost hunting and embraced an inevitable slow death by alcohol poisoning. When the spectre of his deceased partner appears to him on Christmas Eve, Scrooge learns that he must face three Ghosts – one who will try to help him, one who will try to harm him and one that cannot be killed.

In a story that spans a lifetime of torment, Scrooge must face the demons of his past and his failures in the present in order to prevent the horror that is his future. The stakes for Scrooge’s soul have never been higher than in this wicked retelling of the classic, A Christmas Carol.



Media Kit (PHOTOS):


Rafflecopter Link:


Video Book Trailer:














Guest Post: Amos Cassidy

Do not
stray from the path.
There is
magic in the forest, a serenity that calls to your soul.
The woods
may turn your head, they may keep you forever…
knows no peace. Fear and disappointment are her constant companions and hope is
simply a word. A stepfather who watches her every move with desire, a mother
who spends her days and nights in an alcoholic stupor, and a cottage too small
to escape from it all. The forest is the only place Scarlett can breathe, the
only place to run, until the final straw, until the final betrayal. Scarlett
makes a choice that will change her life…
steps off the path…
“The woods can turn your head… It’s easy to lose
yourself in amongst the trees and you, my sweet Scarlett, are a delicious treat
the woods would love to keep forever.”



Amos is a 31 year old Diva and Cassidy a 38 year old mother of three; well, four if you include the husband. A common love of all things Joss Whedon, Urban Fantasy, and a tug of war over Jensen Ackles, brought them together, and one cold February afternoon, over nibbles and coffee, their partnership was born.

You can find Cassidy hard at work in her fortress of solitude which has eaten up the majority of her garden, and Amos…well he’s still trying to get the invisibility gizmo he got off a friendly alien in exchange for a pair of earphones to work. Funnily enough he hasn’t been seen around much lately…

Frequent doses of Sugary snacks, coupled with regular injections of caffeine aid in their production of a unique brand of cross genre tales. They are always writing, but are happy to take a break to chat to their wonderful readers, so drop them a line at, or just pop over to see what they’re working on and they’ll bust out the biscuit tin.

Links to Stalk the Author’s!



Guest Post: Peter Welmerink




The TRANSPORT Series. A fictional Military Action-Thriller, set in Michigan 2025-2026, with zombies.


The series was fun to write. I am told it is a good read in all its POST-post apocalyptic glory.


“…faced with the two most common threats in modern horror, zombies and human nature…it does not feel like something we have seen time and time again.”

The Rage Circus vs The Soulless Void Reviews


“…a fascinating sign of where zombie narrative, road narrative, and narrative in general might be moving…”

  1. Andrew Cooper’s Horrific Scribblings


But you know what? The guts of the book would have been pretty boring if I hadn’t been able to work with the great editors and beyond-awesome artists that I was graciously provided to work with.


Rodney Carlstrom proofed and edited the first TRANSPORT book, and also HUNT FOR THE FALLEN. (Prior to getting the first book picked up by a publishing house, Tyson Mauermann went through it, and helped me polish it for publication most certainly.) We worked together via email and phone conversations.


Scott Sandridge did the editing of UNCIVIL WAR, the third and final book in the series. Again, through mainly emails, we volleyed the manuscript back and forth until we felt the piece was ready for readership.


Through all these professional editors, they offered their thoughts on the mechanics and technicalities in and of many aspects of the books contents. They were an invaluable asset when bringing the final pieces to the table.


Typically my publisher enlists one artist to do the cover art AND the interior illustrations. I got lucky to work with a cover artist, Jason C Conley, and an interior artist, Tim Holtrop.


I had been in touch with an old (as in years known, not age LOL) illustrator who was excited about the TRANSPORT concept before it had been accepted for publication. Tim Holtrop (who had done work for DC Comics and Sony Entertainment) had done some sketches of THE HURON, the big armored personnel carrier starring in the series along with its crew. I wanted to bring him into the mix as I knew he’d do fabulous stuff for the project.


Again, I got very lucky after the publisher and Tim corresponded, and the publisher (Seventh Star Press) brought him into the fold.


Jason C Conley had been contracted to do the cover art for the three books. After some emails back and forth with my vision for each book cover, Jason came back to me one day asking if I’d be interested in him doing a triptych. I had to look up the term, figured out kind of what he was getting at, and let him run with my ideas and his vision of doing ONE BIG EXTENDED COVER that could be divided into three covers BUT, when placed side by side, became one illustration.


Jason, like Tim’s work, hit it out of the ballpark.


Jason did a kickass full color, extended cover with a depiction of THE HURON, agitated zombies, embattled soldiers, an Abrams tank, a close-up of Captain Billet (though he made him with blond hair) standing over a reaching, rotting Zee, and a hovering Apache helicopter…all before the skyline of the main city in the story: Grand Rapids, Michigan.


Tim did awesome illustrations of all my main crew members: Billet, Phelps, Stokes and Mulholland. He did an excellent B&W illo of Billet, Bob the 1950’s gas station attendant zombie, and Black Hair the Zombie Assassin, duking it out for UNCIVIL WAR. He also did a great illustration of Sister Mary Mirose standing over Billet with her AA-12 shotguns roaring.


I gave my editors and artists a slow zombie nod of appreciation as it all came to fruition.


I can’t thank these gents, editors and artists (and publisher!) enough for all their work on bringing my little insane vision to life.


At one point, before the first book was available to the public, and I had seen all the great artwork to adorn the inside and outside, I commented, “Cripes, I hope the guts of the book (the crazy drivel I wrote) is as good as all the fantastic artwork.”


In the end, I am very proud of this book series, and I think you’re going to enjoy it immensely.




Peter Welmerink ( was born and raised on the west side of pre-apocalyptic Grand Rapids, Michigan. He loves his hometown and West Michigan, which is why he writes about it. He writes Fantasy, Military SciFi, and other wanderings into action-adventure. His work has been published in ye olde wood pulp print and electronic-online publications. He is the co-author of the Viking berserker novel, BEDLAM UNLEASHED, written with Steven Shrewsbury. TRANSPORT is his first solo novel venture. He is married with a small barbarian tribe of three boys.




Twitter: @pwelmerink

BLOGS (TRANSPORT-related posts) (author interviews and all things fantastical)



Barnes & Noble




Barnes & Noble






Guest Post: Amy Braun




I love fall. The colors of the leaves, hot chocolate (I resist the Pumpkin Spice temptations), warm sweaters, and of course, Halloween, the best holiday of the year. Sure, Christmas and Thanksgiving and Easter are great because we spend time with families, and I’m sure that other would argue novelty holidays like Valentines or St. Patrick’s Day deserve recognition. But I’ll pick Halloween every time. Not just because I love all the detailed costumes, the mountains of chocolate, the creepily decorated haunted houses, or the marathons of blood-soaked horror movies, but because I love the tradition of Halloween, and the superstitions that come with it.


Black cats, the story of Jack for Jack-O’-Lanterns, Samhain, crossroads, bats, you name it, there’s a superstition or tradition for it. All of it is inspiration gold. Especially since writers like me love having our characters come across those superstitions, and making them go horribly, fantastically wrong.


I used superstitions and bad omens in two of my Mocha Memoirs short stories. In Call From The Grave, I worked with the belief that if you raised an aggressive spirit from the dead, the spirit would turn on the person/people who tried to control it. And you better believe that it did. In Hotel Hell, my character Milo learned the hard way that you should never, ever, ever enter a creepy looking hotel in the middle of the night, when you are positive it has never been there before.


Recently, I finished the basic plot line for my upcoming full length novel, Resurrection Roulette. A good portion of the novel focuses on the main character being a gambler, and gamblers are among the most superstitious people in the world. Counting your money as you gamble, singing or whistling, crossing your legs, even fifty dollar bills are considered to be unlucky. Seriously.


What I find most interesting about superstitions, and Halloween superstitions in particular, is that everyone knows how ridiculous they can be. Walking around a ghost nine times to make it disappear? Yeah, because people are going to be comfortable around a ghost long enough to do that. Hearing a sigh on the wind that signals you’ll die within a year? How do you tell a sigh from the wind simply passing through trees, and what kind of sigh are we talking about? Turning your clothes inside out to meet a witch? I don’t even think I need to comment on that. But the ideas that writers can draw from them are unlimited. Why walk around a ghost nine times? Maybe this ghost is contained in a ceremonial circle and you need to get information from it, but to do so you must walk a full circle around it to keep it contained before finishing the ninth pass and returning it to rest. Hearing a sigh on the wind as a sign that your death is on the way? That’s the perfect chance for a demon with a grudge to mess with the mind of a character. Turning your clothes inside out upon greeting a witch? Seems pretty standard to me if the witch wants to make sure that the person meeting them doesn’t have any herbs or hex bags or charm or other weapons that could do them harm.


Superstitions are silly. but, there’s no denying that they’re cemented into our society, traditions carried on through generations even if the meanings were lost. And I know plenty of writers who can create a story from a superstition, and give us a reason to be scared of it again.


Amy Braun is a Canadian urban fantasy and horror author. Her work revolves around monsters, magic, mythology, and mayhem. She started writing in her early teens, and never stopped. She loves building unique worlds filled with fun characters and intense action. She has been featured on various author blogs and publishing websites, is an active member of the Writing GIAM community, and is the recipient of April Moon Books Editor Award for “author voice, world-building and general bad-assery.” When she isn’t writing, she’s reading, watching movies, taking photos, gaming, and struggling with chocoholism and ice cream addiction.


Amy’s current work includes various short stories such as Hotel Hell, Call From The Grave, the full length novels Cursed: Demon’s Daughter and Path of the Horseman, and the novella Needfire. She has short stories in various anthologies such as Survivalism in The Dead Walk: Volume 2, Dismantle in The Steam Chronicles, Lost Sky in Avast, Ye Airships!, Secret Suicide in That Hoodoo, Voodoo, That You Do, Bring Back The Hound in Stomping Grounds, Charlatan Charade in Lost in the Witching Hour, and her award winning short Dark Intentions And Blood in AMOK! Amy can be found online through her frequently updated blog, Literary Braun (, as well as on Twitter (@amybraunauthor) and Facebook (


Guest Post: Inge Saunders


I haven’t jumped on the Magic Mike train *collective gasp* …Oh come on, seriously? Typical of the western world to believe that everyone thinks half naked gyrating men is a turn on. In fact, to me‒ sometimes liberal minded, all about gender equality‒ woman from the lovely continent of Africa find the whole concept hilarious. As in ‘ha-ha-ha’ funny.

Now bear with me for a moment (that is if I haven’t put you off by not voting for this ‘classic’).

I saw my first Chippendale show on TV at age fifteen. I went a year early to school so I was in grade ten (which by no stretch of the imagination makes that okay). I think it might have been a two hour special *laughs* Men dancing, sliding over women on beds…There might’ve been a pole involved somewhere.

Either way, I laughed throughout most of it and asked myself, “Why in the world would men want to do that?” Look I understand; there are women who like this form of dancing. I don’t. I prefer more the categories of hip hop, ballet, jazz, etc.

Anyway, back to me watching the Chippendales as a teenager. Funnily enough, I wasn’t surrounded by women when I did. One gay male was present, and two straight ones and me. A pretty diverse group. And me being me, I kept asking questions, like “Why did he have to roll his hips like that? It just looks weird.” I was basically the Jessica Day in that scenario.

Flash forward into the future (I always wanted to say that!) and I’m still asking the same sort of questions.

And now I’m going to get a bit murkier (and no offence meant to all male strippers) but all that grinding and junk being rubbed up in faces, seem to take away something of the male psyche to me. I don’t want to say masculinity, because I don’t think the word explains what I mean.

Women I believe are apt at this and not because of history and gender roles.

Have you ever seen a Bollyhood movie? Have you noticed those belly dancers? That’s what I’m talking about. There’s a mystery in the sway of a woman’s hips, there’s a story there. She’s communicating something to you. There’s more going on than what’s assumed to be overtly flirtatious or even sexual.

This is what men try so hard to figure out when they look on a dancing woman. I inadvertently stumbled on this when I unceremoniously learned at a social that this one guy loved to watch me dance if he noticed we were at the same club on a Saturday night. Yeah I was freaked out too. All of my friends heard him say this and they went a bit ballistic.

I’m schooled in the art of hips-don’t-lie but my intent hadn’t been to draw him in. Like most people who have an aptitude for dance and loved to express themselves through it, it’s what I usually did. Every song was a means to ‘tell a story’ or convey a mood. And I know not everyone does this, but women are always telling you something when they’re dancing, whether it’s ‘if you’re ready come and get it’ or ‘right now we’re crazy youngsters’, either way there’s a point. And when men in shiny costumes grind and it’s not on ‘I believe in miracles, where you from, you sexy thing’, aka The Full Monty‒ that great British movie‒ of yesteryear that wasn’t just about oiled and tanned bodies, it does seem ridiculous to me. The Full Monty was nominated for Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay and Best Original Music Score, winning the latter.

No I’m not a fan of Magic Mike (I recently saw it on TV but flipped between Basketball Diaries and it, so *shrug*) and I don’t mind if someone says; there’s more to it than my impressions. Of course there is *rolls eyes* Strip *wink* the gorgeous men out of it and what do you have? A flaky romance plot.

I do get why it’s popular. It feeds into the current culture of women ‘getting theirs’. We’re always made to take off our clothes in movies, so yeah, let them have a taste of it, while doing the two-step *laughs* Understandable.

But I’m seriously not going to sit here from the sideline and be all ‘oh yeah that movie’s awesome, it was on my movie bucket list’. Uh, no. I’m so not watching the second one and if there’s a third or fourth (because franchises of everything seem to be the trend these days) I also won’t be seeing those. If the movie had taken more of a serious angle highlighting what it’s really like being a male stripper (and how the job doesn’t just include stripping for WOMEN) than yeah, it would’ve been interesting. Instead Hollywood glamorized the movie, threw in a cast of popular actors and sat back as the money rolled in.


Author Bio:

Inge Saunders forms part of Romance writers` Organization of South Africa (ROSA) and currently has two books out with Decadent Publishing; Falling for Mr. Unexpected and her latest release Dance of Love.

Dance of Love has qualified for The Romance Reviews Readers’ Choice Award-Winter 2015 in the Contemporary Romance category. Voting for nominations is open until the 30th of September. Here’s a link:


Buy Links:



Play Google:


You can connect with Inge here:

Blog: Inge Saunders – Inside These Lines

Books by Inge Saunders: