Tuesday, February 04, 2014

CJ Carmichael: A new look!

About 15 years ago I sold my first book to Harlequin Superromance and proudly launched my author website with a gold and orange banner and blue lettering spelling out my new pen name “C.J. Carmichael.” It was an exciting time for me, as I had been writing and trying to publish for about ten years.

35 Harlequin and 4 Indie-published books later I am launching a brand new site, this time with a more restful blue background.

I’m sure a lot of marketing experts would say that after 15 years I was definitely due for a website remodeling. But it turned out the new site was well timed for another reason, and it’s one I just noticed last night. The thing is, all three featured books on my site are Indie published.

These days I’m working on two series, both of them author collaborations. My Carrigans of the Circle C novels are part of the Montana Born series—an Indie venture started by my very good friend, author Jane Porter.  I published the first book in this series, Promise Me Cowboy, in October. Good Together—a love story, but also a falling-out-of love story—will be available in a matter of weeks. These stories feature four sisters who grew up on the Circle C ranch in Marietta, Montana. As usual with my family sagas you can expect lots of gut-wrenching drama, family secrets, and heartwarming resolutions.

The second series—which we bill as “sweet romances with a sprinkling of mystery”--is set in Carol Falls, Vermont, and my writing partners are friends from Calgary, authors Roxy Boroughs and Brenda M. Collins. This fall we published three books in the Frost Family Christmas series: What Child is This, Home for Christmas, and The Holly &The Ivy. We plan to continue writing stories and are rebranding the series: “Cozy In Carol Falls.” I’m currently working on the next story, which should be available in March.

So, two exciting new directions, and a re-invented website to make it all clear to my readers! The time has come for a few thank-yous and a celebration. First I want to acknowledge the creative team of Waxcreative Design—primarily Emily and Max—who designed the site and made it happen. They were such great people to work with. Thanks also to JodiO, the photographer who managed to shave a decade off me with her fabulous studio shoots.

And now the celebration! I’d like to offer a cozy winter reading package of 3 books, tea and yummy chocolate to one random winner who: (1) checks out my new site and (2) tells me one thing they’d like to see on the “Extra” page. (Or any other comments you’d like to make.) We’re still tweaking and want to make the website as interesting and user friendly as possible!

***CJ's winner is Cindy Hamilton!  Please email with your mailing address.  Thanks!***


traveler said...

Your new website design is impressive, well thought out, clear and delightful, filled with interesting and special areas. I enjoy the maps, recipes and character guides which help with the wonderful novels and their locales and individuals. Your books provide me with great enjoyment and are unique and very well written. Extras has so much of interest for me. It seems complete and beautiful. Best wishes.

Janine said...

The new website looks fabulous. I love the colors. It's easy to look at and navigate. honestly can't think of anything else that needs to be added.

Emma said...

The new website looks wonderful.looking forward to reading Good Together.Have a great week .I enjoy reading your books.

karen machamer said...

Love the new site. Can't think of anything that needs changing. Easy to navigate and find what you want. Love that you have all the books listed on one page and it's easy to understand.

petite said...

The new website is bright, and the colors are all appealing and perfect. The features are interesting and the books displayed in a very artistic manner. I like this website very much and it is a winner.

Jeanne M said...

CJ - I love the updates on your site and one of the things I loved the most was the "Bookshelf" page! I love how bright it is and it's so easy to find a book you might have missed in one of your favorite series! I loved that you gave your readers to read an excerpt there and then with just a click on the keyboard be taking to the ordering options!

girlygirlhoosier52 said...

I like the easy navigation and when changing from one to another... it doesn't take forever to load. It's very crisp and clean looking.

Cindy Hamilton said...

The new website is great, so easy to maneuver around it. A lot of good info on it. I like how series are grouped together on Extras page!

Di said...

Wow - Excellent website. You've got what I always look for - a printable book list (so I can keep track of what I've read and which I still need to read), and a nice display of what books connect. I like the extra page with the town layouts and you even have recipes!
sallans d at yahoo dot com

Lil said...

That is a beautiful website. What I would like more in extras? You list a couple of recipes and I would love to see more of those.

Carla Daum said...

Thank you all so much for your feedback! I'm glad you like the site! And Lil--I hear you on the recipes. More coming soon, I promise! Lee and I will be picking a winner for the cozy winter reading package soon!


dstoutholcomb said...

new site looks great. maybe you could have a Montana-based recipe or two on the Extras page?

erin said...

Love the new site! To be perfectly honest, I can't think of anything else to add :) Thanks for sharing!

Mary Preston said...

I LOVE maps, always have, & then what do I find on the extras page??? Well done. I agree about recipes. I like regional recipes. They add flavor. Couldn't help myself - blame the maps.

Alina P said...

I'd love deleted scenes and places you've discovered during research(their history, pictures)

Laurie G said...

I think you've covered everything very nicely! I like the whole website!

I enjoyed reading your author's bio page. It's fun learning about where you came from both logistically and emotionally. It's interesting seeing what career path you chose and how you started your writing career.

I liked seeing pictures of you with your husband and seeing that you like hiking and biking.

I'd love to learn more about Canada and also the places you've visited (Austria).

As for what to add to your extras.. most of this has already been said.

I like the recipe tie in. It's always fun to connect to an area through the regional foods. I like to try new recipes. Maybe readers could submit their stories about their experiences if they've visited or are from the area where the story took place.

I like it when you include how the books are connected if they are connected. Info about the research behind the book is interesting too.

Love the maps.



johnslake at usa dot com

Eli Yanti said...

I'm jealous with all of you who can create a blog, because I can't :(. And specially a blog with so many feature, color, etc. And extra page is more fabolous :)