Category Archives: Rock Star Romance, Part 3: Sophie’s Encore

Write what you know, right? Well, I recorded a single once!

It’s no secret I love my rock music. But did you know I had a go at making a record…well, recording a single, once?

Following in Queen’s Footsteps

In May 2010, a fabulous group of choir friends decided to make a very unique wedding gift for one of our tenors. A suitable rock song sprang to my mind, and I adapted the lyrics to suit the happy couple. Someone located the backing track for the song, and we were all systems go. Before anyone could chicken out, I booked us into The London Recording Studios (aka Brick Lane Studios ~ the very place were Queen recorded Bohemian Rhapsody!) for an entire Sunday, and off we went recording, kids, husband and all in my case.

We arrived at 10 a.m. to meet with the sound engineer and concoct an action plan. Owing to a rather wide geographic dispersion, we hadn’t had time to come together for an advance practice. We were simply going to take our respective lines and… wing it.

A Steep Learning Curve…

The first attempt wasn’t great. We gathered round and had a go at belting the song out. The sound man looked somewhat dismayed but put on a brave face. Undaunted, we took a half hour to regroup and practice. Our second attempt was more promising, and the sound man came into his own. He suggested an iterative approach to laying down the track and became our quasi-director/producer.

First of all, we recorded the chorus together, several times. Then we recorded the chorus again, adding a little spontaneous harmony here or there.

“You’re On. On Your Own.”

The next step was individual recording of individual lines. Uh-huh, you read that right. The studio emptied as everyone quickly filed out, leaving me holding the music and evidently having the first go. Well, the whole thing was my idea…Gulp.

What, really? You're all leaving me here to go first?

What, really? You’re all leaving me here to go first?

Recording individual lines was a weird and wonderful experience. The sound man played me the song ‘so far’ through the head phones, and I had to erupt into song at the right moments. As I was first, there were a lot of instrumentals and no vocals other than the chorus. I had three or four goes at my lines (thoroughly enjoying myself!), and then we swapped to the next person.

*sings* ...got his tickets now he's on his way-ay...

*sings* …got his tickets now he’s on his way-ay…

Mixing It Up Before Mixing It Down!

Back in the mixing room, the sound man had the studio sound on speakers, so as the next person recorded her lines, I could hear her, and my lines, and the chorus. And so it went on, bit by bit.

Slides and faders, buttons and dials... and the all-important computer. He seemed to be doing a million things at once ~ it was truly fascinating.

Slides and faders, buttons and dials… and the all-important computer. He seemed to be doing a million things at once ~ it was truly fascinating.

When we were done individually, we trooped in together for more backing tracks and tweaks. At this point, my then five-year-old decided he’d quite like a go, so we let him! He had his own little starring moment in the last chorus.

Oh yeah, he's having a go-ooooo!

Oh yeah, he’s having a go! (See that Paddington bear clutched under his arm? That’s for courage!)

He got the thumbs up from the sound man... which has me insanely proud. LOL!

He got the thumbs-up from the sound man… which made me insanely proud. LOL!

After six hours of recording, including an impromptu lunch from the local pizza delivery place (boy, did we feel like the real deal, hanging in the studio with pizza and drinks!), the sound man dismissed us for a couple of hours while he got on with mixing, mastering, and mix-down. When we returned to the studio, the song was as finished as it was going to get after one day’s work with no previous practice. We were mighty pleased!

So… I Wrote What I Knew

The whole experience was exhilarating, exciting and totally mind-blowing. I’d love to play you the result but owing to licensing restrictions on the backing track, I can’t. Maybe one day, I’ll get to make a real single and then you’ll hear all about it, I promise.

So when Sophie suddenly gets to be in the studio with Dan… when she records, and starts mixing… well, let’s just, I’d had a tiny little taste of the action myself, and it inspired me no end. Write what you know, they say…

~~~~~~

All photos courtesy of Amanda McIlroy, with thanks. Photo copyright c/o Amanda McIlroy 2010.

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10 Lucky People: Announcing the Winners of the Sophie’s Encore Launch Giveaway

3,596!

That’s the number of total entries registered for the Sophie’s Encore launch giveaway. I’m totally blown away! Thank you to everyone who entered, tweeted, shared, liked, subscribed to the newsletter, posted reviews, and generally helped to spread the word. YOU ROCK!

This was what was up for grabs:

SE Giveaway

And the winners are:

A Han ~ 1 SWAG PACK
Ananda ~ 1 SWAG PACK
Marlene Roberts Engel ~ 1 Sophie’s Run keyring
Lyka Tan ~ 1 Sophie’s Encore keyring
Sierra A McBRide ~ 1 Sophie’s Encore keyring
P Rovere ~ $10 Amazon gift voucher
Jessica Meddick ~ 1 Sophie’s Run mug
Connie Kline Fisher ~ 1 Sophie’s Encore mug
Kayla Orton ~ 1 Sophie’s Encore mug
Kelly Urban ~ 1 Sophie’s Encore poster

Congratulations!!

All winners have been notified by email.

Watch this space!

Sophie’s Encore is well and truly out, but I am not done yet for this year. Oh no!I’m keeping it all mysterious and secret for now, for reasons that will become obvious… so… stay tuned for 1 November!

1Nov_puzzle1

Nicky In Your Inbox

Did you know you can stay in the loop with new releases and upcoming giveaways via my new newsletter? Nicky in your Inbox, nice and easy, and you’ll never miss out on anything important again. Intrigued? You can subscribe here:

CLICK TO SIGN UP FOR NICKY’S NEWSLETTER

First edition coming out later this month!

Woohoo! Rock on, everybody!

Sophie’s Encore Launch: A photo and audio round-up of festivities!

Remember that tune, “Oh What a Night?” Now sing, “Oh What A Week” and you’ll know where I’m coming from!


Last week saw the launch of my third novel, Sophie’s Encore. Festivities began with a radio launch party over at Siren 107.3 FM on Wednesday, 4 September. That Wednesday morning dawned clear and bright, and I had no idea just how much fun the next few days would hold.

Here’s my launch week in photos and audio clips. Thank you to everyone who took part, stopped by, sent good wishes, tweeted, shared on Facebook and bought The Book. You rock. And I couldn’t be an author without you.

Pub Day -1:
Radio Celebrity (LOL!)

SPECIAL GUESTS:

THE HUSH ROCK BAND
NICK ELLIOTT
XANDER DEMOS

Listen In!

(click HERE: southsidebroadcasting, then click ‘Listen Now’)

Sophie’s Encore Party on Siren 107.3 FM, Part 1:
Starting in Nashville with Cameron Tilbury before
another note from Jersey with Anna Lewis.
***includes reading from Sophie’s Encore***

Sophie’s Encore Party on Siren 107.3 FM, Part 2:
We take a slight detour and discuss badger culling and Farmers Weekly awards… we rock’n’roll in every respect! 

Sophie’s Encore Party on Siren 107.3 FM, Part 3:
Another encounter with premier photographer Nick Elliott, plus lead guitarist with The Hush, Lee Landrum — with heaps of shout-outs to online listeners…

Sophie’s Encore Party on Siren 107.3 FM, Part 4:
Ace Rock Guitarist Xander Demos shoots the breeze with Nicky Wells, Holly Cox, Hannah Sylvester , Ed Wellman & Alex Lewczuk, before the team provide a Midweek Drive debut for Actor/Producer Burt Bulos, who provides the team with thoughts on `The Lady Killers` `NCIS` & more…

In-Show Photo: Hannah Sylvester, Ed Wellman, Holly Cox (and me, of course). :-)

In-Show Photo: Hannah Sylvester, Ed Wellman, Holly Cox (and me, of course). 🙂

Living like the rock stars... let's have an After Party!

Living like the rock stars… let’s have an After Party!

And a toast! Of course, a toast" *Cheers*

And a toast! Of course, a toast” *Cheers*

Publication Day:
Local Author in Action

All set and ready to roll at Welton Library.

All set and ready to roll at Welton Library.

First arrivals... let's take a photo before it gets busy!

First arrivals… let’s take a photo before it gets too busy!

Time for dinner! Cheers! What a day... :-) Livin' it up!

Time for dinner! Cheers! What a day… 🙂 Livin’ it up!

Publication Day +1:
Bestselling Author

Friday, 6 September, was spent largely recovering from the blast of the days before, responding to emails, chatting with folks and (*psssst don’t tell anyone*) catching up on sleep. No photos of the sleeping beauty, though. 🙂

However. THIS is what I found in the morning on Amazon.com. It’s a ranking for Sophie’s Turn, book 1 in the Trilogy.

Get this. Sophie's Turn is now *officially* a BESTSELLING ROMANTIC COMEDY!!!  (And the image is so large not because I enjoy showing off ~ although *coughs* I do ~ but because otherwise, you can't see what's on it. LOL

Get this. Sophie’s Turn is now *officially* a BESTSELLING ROMANTIC COMEDY!!!
(And the image is so large not because I enjoy showing off ~ although *coughs* I do ~ but because otherwise, you can’t see what’s on it. LOL

Publication Day +2:
Author On Tour

On Saturday morning, I presented myself bright and early at the BookStop Café in Lincoln for a two-hour author appearance. Huge thanks to Joff Gainey for making this possible. 🙂

Setting up ~ prime position by the entrance. Nice job!

Setting up ~ prime position by the entrance. Nice job!

First customer. Yes, she bought the entire Trilogy. Thank you! :-)

First customer. Yes, she bought the entire Trilogy. Thank you! 🙂

With Paul Redfern, who kept me amused with anecdotes from his favourite spot on the sofa opposite.

With Paul Redfern, who kept us all amused with anecdotes from his favourite spot on the sofa opposite my ‘signing station’.

"Queuing out the door." (Joff's caption for this ace photo!)

“Queuing out the door.” (Joff’s caption for this ace photo!)

Review Highlights

These are highlights from the reviews that rolled in for Sophie’s Encore on September 4, 5 and 6, 2013.

WORTHY OF A SHINY PLATINUM DISC! 5 Crowns! Perusing Princesses

How to read Sophie’s Encore: get rid of house mates, take phone off the hook, do not answer the door! Kim The Bookworm

With Sophie’s Encore, Nicky Wells gives the reader one hell of a finale! 5 Stars! Jersey Girl Book Reviews

Sophie’s Encore is in a league of its own! Cosmochicklitan

Fast paced and addictive! Today I’m Reading

~I hid in the photocopy room in work to finish the book! Oh lovely Dan. Oh sexy Dan! Dan rocked my world! Brook Cottage Books

And best of all, there were some blush-worthy scenes! Chick Lit Central

Without a doubt, one of my favorite reads of the year! Thank you Nicky Wells….you are the quintessential author of fiction! Nancy Reilly

Wow-eee! Well, what can I say? Thank you, dear readers and supporters. You all rock, every one of you.
It was a fabulous launch, an amazing reward for me personally, and an incentive to do it all again, and soon….

#1November

Rock on!

1,200 pages of #chicklit bliss on your #KINDLE for less than $6/£4.5: #Rockstar #Romance Trilogy. Hurry! Offer Ends Tomorrow!

Wooohoo! Check this out:

NickyWells_Border

…now less than $6.00 and less than £4.50!!

YES! The entire Trilogy could be on your Kindle for less than the price of a cut-price paperback RIGHT NOW. That’s more than 1,200 pages of rock star, glamorous bliss. What are you waiting for? Offer ends tomorrow, don’t dally! And if you’ve got the books already, why not share the joy and tell your friends?

Offer Ends Sometime Tomorrow!

Sophie’s Turn, only $0.99 or £0.77
Sophie’s Run, only $0.99 or £0.77
**new release** Sophie’s Encore, $3.99 or £2.65

Wishing you a glorious Sunday! I’ll be back soon with a photo and audio feature on the highlights of last week’s book launch. Until then… rock on!

Share the Joy and Spread the Word: Sophie’s Encore Launch Day Bonus Giveaway

Woohoo!
Thank you for checking out my Sophie’s Launch Day Bonus Giveaway.
Up for grabs are:

Two (2) Amazon Gift Vouchers for $10 (or equivalent currency)

How does it work?

Simple. I’d love for you to help me share the joy and spread the word about the release of Sophie’s Encore. To enter the giveaway, simply

TWEET or POST TO FACEBOOK about the release.
For example, you could tweet or post one of the following messages (the link is to the amazon.com Kindle edition):

Check out Sophie’s Encore, new #rockstar #romance by @WellsNicky! http://ow.ly/owS5V #chicklit #SophiesEncore

Can’t wait to read Sophie’s Encore, new #rockstar #romance by @WellsNicky! http://ow.ly/owS5V #chicklit #SophiesEncore

Have you checked out Sophie’s Encore, new #rockstar #romance by @WellsNicky? http://ow.ly/owS5V #chicklit #SophiesEncore

Ever had a crush on a #star? Then Sophie’s Encore by @WellsNicky is perfect for you! http://ow.ly/owS5V #chicklit #SophiesEncore #rock

3 ebooks for less than $6.00/£4.50! Sophie’s Turn & Sophie’s Run SALE, Sophie’s Encore @WellsNicky OUT NOW! http://ow.ly/ozWXV #chicklit

****

Yay! I just bought Sophie’s Encore, new #rockstar #romance by @WellsNicky!http://ow.ly/owS5V #chicklit #SophiesEncore

Or you could make up your own tweet or message ~ whatever you’re most comfortable with.  You could even post a photo of Sophie’s Encore on your e-reader ~ wouldn’t that be cool? LOL!

Be sure to include @WellsNicky and #SophiesEncore in your tweet,
or to tag my Author Page
 on Facebook when you post.
(NB: You must tag my Author Page, not me personally,  as FB doesn’t like giveaways being linked to a personal wall!
You can ‘tag’ any Page that you’ve liked.)

Giveaway is open all through launch day! Winners will be announced on FRIDAY, 6 September. Good luck, and thank you!

The Small Print

No purchase necessary. Every Twitter and Facebook entry will be logged in sequential order. One tweet/Facebook post equals one entry. Participants may submit multiple entries. Contest is open until midnight PST on Thursday, 5 September 2013. Random.org will be used to select two (2) winners. Winners will be announced ON THIS BLOG on Friday, 6 September, and subsequently also on Twitter and Facebook.

Encore! Encore! Launch day for Sophie’s Encore!

Three books in less than 365 days… Wow! Yes, it’s a year to the day, if not the date, that the first book in the Rock Star Romance Trilogy, Sophie’s Turn, was released by my publisher, Sapphire Star Publishing. And today, it’s time to set free the final instalment of the romance between legendary rock star, Dan Hunter, and girl-next-door, Sophie.

Rock with me!

Cheers!

Cheers!

Sophie’s Encore — The Blurb

Sophies_EncoreHer rock star is waiting in the wings, but will he get a second chance? It’s all change for Sophie Jones—only this time, there is more at stake than just her happiness. Rock star extraordinaire, Dan Hunter, has been her patient and caring friend through the highs and lows since her wedding day, but now he figures it is time for her to start over. By stealth, the rock singer draws Sophie into the behind-the-scenes work for his band’s latest album. Through the days and weeks spent together at the mixing desk, Sophie discovers whole new horizons for her life, yet before she can even begin to explore them, she faces the very real threat of losing her rock star for good. Join Sophie and Dan in Sophie’s Encore to find out how their journey will end…

Here’s what the readers think…

Read it! You will get the ride of your lifetime! ~ Inga Kupp-Silberg

Grabbed me ~ hard to put down ~ finished perfectly! ~ Rea Sinfield

Must-read ravishing rockstar romance with realistic grit and emotion! Top Marks for Sophie’s Encore! ~ Ces at Supportive Business Mums

Absolutely loved Sophie’s Encore! Eve’s Chick Lit Reviews

5 out of 5! Dizzy C’s Little Book Blog

Dan, Dan, Dan…..I love him even more! 5 Baskets for Sophie’s Encore! Tobi at Forget the Housework

 Sophie’s Encore was totally unexpected but in a very good way, this series finished with a bang and I would highly recommend it to anyone who has ever had a crush on a star :)  Me, My Books and I

Worthy of a shiny Platinum disc! Kelly at Perusing Princesses

Get your copy of Sophie’s Encore here:

Amazon.co.uk Kindle | Amazon.co.uk Paperback | Amazon.com Kindle | Amazon.com Paperback | Barnes & Noble Paperback | Nook

Plus! If you’re new to the whole Rock Star Romance Trilogy… if you’ve yet to meet Sophie and Dan, I have some FABULOUS news for you.
Right now, Sophie’s Turn and Sophie’s Run are on a $0.99/£0.77 sale!!!

That means that you can get over 1,200 pages worth of five-star, unadulterated rock-star reading pleasure for less than $6.00/£4.50. What are you waiting for?
Sophie’s Turn: AMAZON.CO.UK | AMAZON.COM
Sophie’s Run: AMAZON.CO.UK | AMAZON.COM

The Sophie’s Encore Launch Extravaganza Giveaway

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

1 x signed Sophie’s Encore Poster
2 x Sophie’s Encore Mugs
1 x Sophie’s Run Mug
1 x $10 Amazon Gift Voucher (or equivalent currency)
2 x Sophie’s Encore Key Ring
1 x Sophie’s Run Key Ring
2 x “Swag Pack” featuring 2 postcards (1 signed) for all three Rock Star Romance books, and 2 bookmarks each for Sophie’s Turn and Sophie’s Run

ENTER HERE: a Rafflecopter giveaway

The giveaway closes 30 September at 12 midnight BST. Entrants must be 18 or over. Giveaway is open internationally.

Party! Party! Party!

I’m really rockin’ and rollin’ today.
Here’s a tune to get you in the mood for the Encore:

Come and visit me on my Facebook page for real-time chat and music! Find me on Twitter, and use #SophiesEncore to join in with festivities there!

And last but not least, look out for the launch day bonus giveaways! You could win a $10 Amazon gift voucher. Yes, in addition to the main giveaway. Uh-huh! Two additional $10 Amazon gift vouchers up for grabs!

Launch day giveaway: Share the Joy and Spread the Word

Thank you all for partying with me and for having fun!
Now tell me…what’s your favourite Sophie-and-Dan moment so far?

1 (ONLY ONE!!) Day to go…. #SophiesEncore

Oooh yeah babe ~ this is where the story ends! Get your final Rock Star Romance Fix here, tomorrow! ROCK ON!

Oooh yeah babe ~ this is where the story ends! Get your final Rock Star Romance Fix here, tomorrow! ROCK ON!