Friday, February 14, 2014

Time's Forbidden Flower by Diane Rinella

Time's Forbidden Flower 
by Diane Rinella
(Book 2 in the "Love's Forbidden Flower Series"

An eternity of passion cannot be quelled by society.  

Once upon a time Donovan assured Lily all of her dreams would come true. But how could he keep the promise of a fairy tale when her truest goals could not involve him, though her deepest desires did? Now, Lily has it all—love, passion, a family, and the career of her dreams—with Christopher. But something is lacking. She and Donovan have spent the last ten years living apart, and the soul mates are eager to reunite. Can Donovan keep his promise to give Lily all she desires, even with Christopher in the way?   

For Lily and Donovan, the past is a mirror to the future that cannot be shattered.   

Donovan is convinced Lily has been his love for all eternity. Determined to unravel the past, they embark on a journey to discover where it all began. For centuries Donovan has stolen Lily’s heart while forced to suffer for his love. How much can a soul endure before the breaking point is reached and a monster emerges? Can the demons of the past be combated to pave the way for happiness in the next life? Or has the abuse suffered in this life already turned Donovan hell bound? Time and again, one woman has destroyed their happiness. It’s time to silence her once and for all

Buy links:

Warning: This title contains graphic language and raunchy sexual situations. It is intended for those 18 years of age and older.

Love’s Forbidden Flower

Love’s Erotic Flower

Time’s Forbidden Flower

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery



The light of the alarm clock covers my face in a soft glow while its progressing numbers remind me that life is passing by. Finally, Christopher's breath deepens into a low snore. Like a paranoid ninja I slip out of bed and head down the stairs.
Is the frigidity of the knob on the library door brought about by the weather outside, or the betrayal I feel stepping through this portal, knowing a letter from a former lover awaits?
Grabbing the designated book off of the shelf, excitement and apprehension course through my nervous system. Hidden in the section on making gum paste lilies is a sheet of stationary that bares an uncanny resemblance to the stationary on which I once wrote letters to Donovan, sharing in the madness of an alternate reality.

To My Lovely Lady,
      You are, and will always be, the force that drives and inspires me. On my brightest days, you are the warmth that shines upon me. In the darkest nights, you provide the voice that soothes me. Because of you I face each day knowing who I am and the good I bring into the world. Because of you, I am whole.

Until the end of forever,

Placing the book back on the shelf, I head for the family room, unable to bring myself to return to Christopher. Curling up on the sofa I turn on the TV where the A Christmas Story marathon continues. Quickly I change the channel, only to return to it, and then flee again. Finally I settle on an infomercial, staring blankly, striving to force myself into panic over the details of the New Year’s Eve party to come. The diversion proves to be a terrible idea. This will be the first New Year’s Eve Donovan and I have spent together since we split. How do I move past the impending pain of the night while finding a way to heal?
“Cannoli,” I softly mutter aloud. “I’ll switch from cream puffs to cannoli. Maybe I should stuff the cream puffs with cannoli filling…”

Author Bio
Enjoying San Francisco as a backdrop, the ghosts in Diane’s 150-year old
Victorian home augment the chorus in her head. With insomnia as their catalyst, these voices have become multifarious characters that haunt her well into the sun’s crowning hours, refusing to let go until they have manipulated her into succumbing to their whims. Her experiences as an actress, business owner, artisan cake designer, software project manager, Internet radio disc jockey, vintage rock n’ roll journalist/fan girl, and lover of dark and quirky personalities influence her idiosyncratic writing.

Selling your controversial book and a conservative world

When I started writing Love’s Forbidden Flower, I knew it would be a hard sell. The up side is that though the subject of siblings in love is normally handled as erotica or the characters are made dysfunctional, mine are simply soul mates who are born into a world of cruel realities. The down side is, well, you saw that part about them being siblings, right? I spent a very long time polishing the query and gathered a lot of feedback. I was told it was beautiful crafted, as was my entire pitch for the story. Despite the black cloud over the subject matter, I went into the agent querying process with confidence.

It's pretty well known that the turnaround time for a query response is several weeks, sometimes months. For me, the turnaround time was so short it seemed like I hadn't even hit the send button. Two responses were common: “No, thank you.” and “Your writing is very eloquent, but we are unable to publish your story given the relationship of those involved. Feel free to submit again if changes are made.”

While I was certainly open to the possibility that Love’s Forbidden Flower could use some sprucing up, some things were sacred, like the part about Lily and Donovan being siblings. That was the biggest complaint, and without that key element, the story would not work. Meaning, in order to get published I’d easily have to change over half of the book.

No, thank you.

So, I self-published. Now I was left to face a big issue all by my lonesome: How do you market a book that agents and publishers don’t want to touch because of its subject matter?

I tried to get blogs to write about it, but it was really hard to get traction. I was very upfront about the subject matter and many people wouldn't respond to me. It was interesting to feel the push of discrimination.

Then I reached out to people at Goodreads who had read other books that contain the topic and asked them for honest reviews in exchange for free copies. The support was absolutely overwhelming. It was phenomenal how quickly my book took off within that community. Still, the bloggers wouldn’t bite.

I took a chance and signed up for blog tour. The problem here is that the book blurb for Love’s Forbidden Flower does not mention the relationship of the characters because I wanted to appeal to the reader’s emotions, not to fetishes.  Instead, a disclaimer was attached. Apparently quite a few people missed the disclaimer. Thus, the majority of the people who reviewed had absolutely no idea what they were getting themselves into. Of those, the vast majority absolutely loved the book! The common response was: Had I known what it was about, I never would have picked it up. I’m so glad that I didn’t miss out on an amazing journey.

So, how do you market a controversial novel? A great question. I’m still learning. It all comes down to finding your audience. I had to put a disclaimer on it stating it's not a work of erotica, because people commonly think any type of romance involving siblings would naturally be just about sex. However, in learning that, I found that audiences who enjoy erotica are much more likely to read Love’s Forbidden Flower.

The disclaimer seems to be the way to go. The blurb reflects the spirit of the story while the disclaimer lets the reader know what they are getting themselves into. I made the first chapter available on my website, and I post links to it on Twitter and Facebook often. By the end of that chapter, you fully know what you are in for. Sometimes I get flack for throwing the reader into the relationship so quickly, but you know what? I'd rather get a little bit of flack than mislead people into reading fifty pages before they see where everything is going and quickly decide they are done.

The final thing that helps is letting others know the mission—the whole reason why I wrote what I did: Love’s Forbidden Flower is a controversial, civil rights piece, about siblings that makes you ask the question, “Why do we make love laws?”

Buy links:
Warning: This title contains graphic language and raunchy sexual situations. It is intended for those 18 years of age and older.

Love’s Forbidden Flower

Love’s Erotic Flower

Time’s Forbidden Flower

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
In accordance with FTC guidelines/regulations for bloggers and endorsements, please note that all the books reviewed on this blog were either purchased by me or provided to me by the author/publisher in exchange for an honest, unbiased review and nothing else. In case of reviews for Blog Tours - while the company may have received some payment for their services, I as a host do not accept any payment and gain nothing in return for the review other than the book itself.

Book covers & Summary of the books are copied from Goodreads. No Copyright infringement Intended.
My reviews are my honest opinion and remain uninfluenced.