Perk of the author’s job

Launch day for DEAD HOPE came and went with a real bang; undoubtedly, this was my most successful launch yet, and I am still reeling from the festivities, the shares, the tweets, the messages, the flowers, the bubbles, the chocolate: I felt like a real celebrity. Thank you to everyone who made that happen.

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DEAD HOPE launch goodies given to me. Awesome!

As a result, I now get to say thank you, too. Today, I am sending out the signed copies to the two lucky winners of the Goodreads Giveaway, which saw a massive level of interest with 1546 entrants. Wahooo!

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My most requested giveaway yet!

The winners live in Belgium and British Columbia respectively, and a huge congrats to the both of them. If you entered but didn’t win: never fear! The Kindle copy of DEAD HOPE is still only 99p/99c, so go on, why not treat yourself?

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A real perk of the job. Loving it!

PLUS! Today marks the kick off of my launch blog tour with the awesome JB Johnston of Brook Cottage Books, and in addition to spotlights, guest posts and reviews (lots of those!), the tour also involves a giveaway of Amazon gift vouchers, mugs, pens, and bookmarks. So get yourself over there and take part. Good luck!

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The reviews for DEAD HOPE are rolling in!

HAPPY READING if you’ve picked up a copy of DEAD HOPE. I’d love to see your review on Amazon too. Thank you! 🙂 xx

DEAD HOPE releases! #Thriller #Suspense #Kindle

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t somewhat overwhelmed to be releasing my eighth book today. When I launched my first novel onto the world, I didn’t dare dream that six years later, I’d have produced seven more books. And yet here I am. Hooray!

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Although this isn’t perhaps quite the genre you might expect from me. DEAD HOPE is a thriller, a fusion of crime, suspense and yes, a touch of romance. I suppose it was inevitable that I’d go down this road eventually, given that I read crime and thrillers by the truckload; but for those of you who know the funny, dreamy, romantic side of me and my writing, this may be a surprise. But don’t be deterred, this is still me writing. You’ll recognise my voice and my lovely light touch at every step of the way, and I promise the story will draw you in and pull you along just the same.

DEAD HOPE was a real labour of love. (How’s that for irony?) The experience of writing this book was a bit like being told at your twenty week scan that you’ll be having a girl and then delivering a boy, kicking and screaming. Conceived under the title “Deep Cover”, this novel was born as a romantic comedy: what happens if you take the rock star out of his glamorous habitat and throw him in the real world with no money (or at least not very much), no perks, no music, and a normal nine-to-five job?

And yet what emerged, after many a transformation, was a thriller, a suspense, a crime novel that doesn’t feature a male rock star but instead focuses on the plight of the daughter of a rock star couple (I like my unexpected twists!). And the comedy was subsumed by the urgent desire to find out what happened to the rock daughter’s parents nearly two decades ago.

It was interesting and challenging to write this book. I researched a lot of things about the police system, the court system, sentences, and forensics, all in the name of bringing you the best, most plausible story I could possibly put together. And here it is, today, the result: DEAD HOPE!

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Cat Hope doesn’t want to go to prison. She needs a job, and she needs it fast: judge’s orders.

Kay Mahon, office worker by day and hacker by night, is on the run from a past life that he’d rather not remember.

When their paths cross, they begin to investigate the truth behind the deaths of Cat’s parents, the successful rock star couple Jackie and Adam Hope. Little do they know that their quest is putting Cat in grave danger.

And here’s the sales stuff:

Paperback: UK | US

Kindle: UK | US

And the really good news is that DEAD HOPE is on an introductory offer of only 99p/99c on Kindle!! So why not go grab your copy right now?

Spread the news if you like!

Out today! FABULOUS #DeadHope by @WellsNicky~A thrilling fusion of crime, suspense & romance only 99p/99c on #Kindle https://www.amazon.co.uk/Dead-Hope-thrilling-suspense-romance-ebook/dp/B06WD89J1V/

And last but not least: THANK YOU!

Yes, indeed. Thank YOU! If it weren’t for you and your imagination giving my stories pictures and wings, then there wouldn’t be any point in me writing them. I’m thrilled (see what I did there?) that you’re part of my journey, and I thank you for coming along for the ride. I hope you enjoy, and I’d love to hear what you think of DEAD HOPE. 🙂

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Look what arrived in the post! #DeadHope

They’re here!

Never mind Dead Hope is my eighth book, and this is the eighth time I’ve taken delivery of my author copies: the excitement never gets old, and I’m just as over the moon as the very first time round almost five years ago.

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Dead Hope paperbacks are here! You could win one on Goodreads right up to 22 Feb 2017!

Aren’t they beautiful?

And remember, if you’d like one~a signed one, at that~hop on over to Goodreads where the giveaway is still open for another nine days.

If that doesn’t work out, launch day is only TEN days away and *pssssst* I can tell you in strict confidence that the Kindle copy will only be 99p/99c by way of introductory offer. HOORAY!

See you back here on 23 February! #DeadHope #Thriller #LaunchDay

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The awesome pre-launch giveaway of TWO signed paperbacks of DEAD HOPE!

Cat Hope doesn’t want to go to prison. She needs a job, and she needs it fast: judge’s orders.

Kay Mahon, office worker by day and hacker by night, is on the run from a past life that he’d rather not remember.

When their paths cross, they begin to investigate the truth behind the deaths of Cat’s parents, the successful rock star couple Jackie and Adam Hope. Little do they know that their quest is putting Cat in grave danger.

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Are you hooked? Well, that’s great news, because I’ve just treated you to a preview of the blurb for my upcoming release, my amazing new thriller/suspense titled DEAD HOPE. And I’m terrifically excited about this new release, not only because it seems a long time since I last shouted about a brand new Nicky Wells book, but also because it shows you the results of a completely new and quite different journey for me: a gentle venture into the dark and murky world of thrillers, of crime, of psychological drama, not to mention trauma. But of course, it is still me who wrote this book, so you’ll find a touch of romance and definitely a positive outlook in the story. Because you know me: I’m a glass-half-full-kinda girl.

Release day for DEAD HOPE is 23 February 2017, which is only 16 short days away. But now that I’ve got you hooked, it would be unfair to simply make you wait. So instead, you can enter a giveaway to win one of two signed paperbacks of DEAD HOPE, and you can enter right now. Just hop on over to Goodreads and sign up.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Dead Hope by Nicky Wells

Dead Hope

by Nicky Wells

Giveaway ends February 22, 2017.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

The giveaway is strictly pre-launch only and will close on 22 February 2017, so on release day itself, you will already know if you won. Or not! And of course at that point, the Kindle edition will be yours to purchase as well as the paperback one, so you won’t have to wait any longer then. How’s that?

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Now then… wouldn’t you just LOVE to win one of these? And signed to boot?

So here’s three cheers for DEAD HOPE and best of luck to you all. Feel free to tell your friends about the giveaway (and the book, while you’re at it), and I hope to see you all during the book tour organised by the awesome JB Johnston of Brook Cottage Books, which will start on 27 February and bring more opportunities for prizes.

Are you ready?

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Just saying…

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Merry Christmas to you all!

Here’s wishing you all a wonderful Christmas and all the very best for 2017! May your days be bright and merry indeed, and may 2017 be happy and peaceful and deliver on all your dreams.

Thank you all for following my journey, for your love, support, and lovely messages. It means the world to me! And in case you were wondering… I do have a new little something for you in February 2017… *winks* Watch this space!

Rock on 2017! 😀 ❤wp_20161223_002

It’s a wrap: how to do **all** your Christmas shopping in twelve hours (or less)

Ditch the seasonal stress and become an oasis of calm and festive cheer this Christmas!

I’m every woman. No, really, I am. I’m a wife, I’m a mother, I’m in charge of cooking, cleaning, ironing, ensuring homework gets done, lunches are made, bags are packed, I’m responsible for running the varied family timetable to precision with all its different—and frequently overlapping—activities day in and out. Oh, and did I mention I work? Plus we have pets. So, you see, I am every woman.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas; but it does stress me out. It’s a logistical nightmare. Presents, activities, present wrapping, food shopping, keeping the kids (and the relatives) entertained in the run-up to the Big Day, let alone when they’re all together… It’s hard work. Time is of the essence if, like me, you haven’t got enough hours in the day even before the Christmas madness truly hits.

But over the past few years, I have perfected the system for taking the stress out of Christmas, at least where the logistics of present organising and wrapping are concerned. This year, I set a personal record of getting it all done in a total of twelve hours over two days. And if I can do it, so can you.

Here’s how.

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Your goal: a tower of presents ready and wrapped for festive jollification

Day 1: Preparation and Online Bonanza

1. Make a list of lucky gift recipients (15 minutes)

I know it’s obvious, but a list has to be your starting point. Without a plan, this whole operation won’t work. Make an honest and exhaustive list; put everyone on it who you will want to shower with gifts. Kids, husband or wife, parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces, aunties, uncles, friends, long lost relatives in outer Mongolia, the old lady up the road who always takes in your parcels. Leave no one out.

2. Brainstorm (45 minutes)

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Wearing your best St Nick’s hat…

Once you’ve got your list, populate it with ideas. The children will have given you a wish list—transfer all the items on your list mercilessly. (This doesn’t mean you have to get all of it, but at least you won’t forget any of it!) Think of things your husband would like, your parents-in-law, your own parents… No holds barred. Allow yourself to be creative.

At the end of this stage, your list must show ideas for everyone, however small or general the idea may be. For example, for the lady down the road who always takes in your parcel, “a nice Poinsettia” will be a good placeholder until you get shopping. For your five-year-old glitter-obsessed niece, “glitter art” will be a perfect reminder of what to look out for. You get the idea.

3. Go online (2 hours maximum)

Now you’ve got ideas brimming over, go online and go crazy, especially for the Big Things. A well-known search engine will pull up for your convenient comparison all manner of online retailers with their respective prices if you simply type in what you are looking for. When you see something that suits your budget, pounce. Buy it, and have it delivered to your house wherever possible. Don’t spend hours dithering and ensuring you get the absolutely best possible deal to the last penny; there simply isn’t time.

Right. Well done. You’ve got the big pieces in place. Cross them off your list and breathe. You are done for today.

Day 2—Real life shopping

This is crucial final stage of your new grand master plan. You need to set aside a day to bite the bullet and Get It Done. Also, you want to think of the one store that will satisfy at least ninety percent of your outstanding shopping needs. In my case, that store is a local independent art and toy shop that also sells magazines, calendars, knick-knacks, stationery, and haberdashery. It’s a veritable treasure trove, and the prices aren’t too different from online retailers. (I know. I checked).

4. Go shopping crazy (2 hours)

So, pick one shop, and go for it. Grab a basket or a trolley and pile in items from your list, but also other items that inspire you. The beauty of going into a small(-ish) store with a varied but manageable stock is that you get loads of new ideas. The important thing is to put things in your basket when you see them, even if you’re not quite sure how you might use them. What’s in your basket, you don’t have to hold in your head. Simple.

After an hour or so, take stock of what you have and allocate items to the people on your list. (You remembered to bring your list, right?) Write down who might like what; this is important because in four hours, you might not remember who’s supposed to have the Tattoo Art. You’ll find that some of the New Things You Found Along The Way will fill some amazing gaps on your list. And if there are any items in your basket that on reflection you don’t want after, you can put them back on your way out.

Continue browsing until you’ve got everything and everyone covered. If you’re finding that to be impossible, keep going until no more than three or four items/people remain unaccounted for. Your goal at this stage is to Get The Bulk Of The Presents That You Didn’t Order Online, but remember, two hours is the max. Then: Brace yourself and pay.

5. Have a break. Lunch, or a nice slice of cake (30 minutes)

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Ginger bread latte… yum!

Retire to an eatery and take stock. Work out where you can get the remainder of the presents that you need. For example, this year, I frequented a local bookstore. If you have to resort to multiple mini-buys, think strategically about where the shops are and write out the order in which you want to visit them. Ideally, this will be working your way back towards the car park or, in my case, the bus stop. Then: ready, steady, go!

6.Get the rest of your presents (1 to 2 hours max!!)

7. Go home

Wahoo! Home-time. You’ll be filled with the “oh wow, I did it” glow, and the sense of relief will be overwhelming. But calm yourself, the day’s not done yet.

8. Make a strong cup of tea or coffee and put the Christmas music on

If you don’t have to drive again today, you might also treat yourself to a mug of mulled wine. This is important because next you will…

9. Wrap the presents (1 to 2 hours)

Yes. You must wrap the presents. I know, I know. You’ve worked hard, you’re tired, your feet hurt, you just want to chill. The wrapping can wait.

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Critical tools…

Not! No no no no no. Give yourself a pep talk and get on with it. Of course you’ve bought wrapping paper, labels, and ribbons. (Add them to your list now). So: just do it. This is the final frontier. Belt out the Christmas tunes as you go and munch on some mince pies for sustenance.

Watch the pile of festive goodies grow as you work, and feel the magic seep through your bones as you realise you are on the homestretch. You’ve done it. You’ve conquered Christmas. Hooray! Now all you need to do is hide the presents, and then you can put your feet up. Tomorrow, you’ll be the smug one ambling to the school gates and going to work in a state of unprecedented, zen-like calm. You are the Festive Goddess. You are in control. Everything else is a doddle.

And why does this work? The secret is all in the prep work. The list, and the ideas, and the grand plan for shopping.

Well done you, and Merry Christmas!

Psssst…. Don’t forget to come back and tell me how you got on!