Keli Gwyn
Sneak Peek Readers

Amazon’s “Look Inside” feature gives readers the chance to do just that. It’s a great way for online customers to see if they like a book before placing an order.

The “Look Inside” feature was activated on my debut novel this past Friday night. I happened to be on my book’s Amazon’s page at the very time they were uploading the file my publisher had sent them.

I learned that Amazon uploads the entire file and then deletes the pages that aren’t part of the preview. At first, almost every one of the 320 pages in my book were visible.

Once they completed the process, around 50 pages remained. Most are from the first three chapters. There’s a small section in the middle from one of my favorite scenes. Much to my surprise, most of the last chapter is visible, too, which struck me as being a big spoiler.

My first reaction was to freak out a bit. My second? OK. I’ll admit it. I emailed my agent. Rachelle got right back to me–on a Saturday, no less–and gave me great counsel. She said not to worry about it because those who read the last chapter want a spoiler.

Duh! I knew that. Really I did. After all, I’ve heard some readers say they flip to the end of a book to make sure it has a good ending before they buy it.

An even bigger “ah ha!” moment followed. Only fifty pages or so are included in Amazon’s preview, and yet all the pages will be visible when the book hits the shelves of Walmart and brick and mortar bookstores.

This experience got me wondering how many readers like to get a sneak peek. Bearing in mind that I’m simply curious and not out to judge anyone, do you look inside a book before buying it? If so, do you read the first page, the first chapter, and/or flip to the end?

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Keli Gwyn
Friday Fun Victorian Style

One word that describes the Victorian woman with regard to fashion is modest.

Women in the Victorian era followed rigid guidelines regarding conduct, conversation, and clothing. A lady could relax her dress some in the evening, perhaps showing a bit of her neck and a minimal portion of her chest, but by day a Victorian woman was generally covered from her head to her toes, with only her face visible beneath her stylish bonnet.

Clothing was often worn a number of times before it was laundered. One of  the ways they would keep a gown looking fresh was to change the collar frequently.

Here are three pictures of an accessory used by Victorian women for decoration as well as for filling in the neckline of a bodice to achieve the desired level of modesty.

[slideshow]

Can you guess the name of the item? Since it’s an unusual word that comes to us from the French language, I’ll give you the five letters, but I’ll mix them up: h i c u f.

Leave your guess in a comment.

• • •

Update and Answer

fichu – pronounced fiSh-oo

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Keli Gwyn
Romance: It’s All in a Name

Honey. Sugar. Sweetheart.

These are but a few of the terms of endearment many couples use.

But not Gwynly and me. We’ve come up with some of our own.

My guy often calls me Wifely, and I call him Hubbly. Yeah, I know. Really original.

Early in our marriage, we coined two terms of endearment I’ve never heard anyone else use. They stemmed from the traditional “Dear,” but grew into something unique.

I’ve always been one to make up words. That was one of the ways my creativity found release in my pre-writing days. Gwynly learned this while we were dating, so it came as no surprise to him that “Dear” morphed into “Dear-face” soon after we were married.

What was surprising was Gwynly’s response. I knew he had a sense of humor, but I’d yet to see it show itself in wordplay. He took my “Dear-face” and changed it into “Deer-face,” which led to a pet name I can’t believe I’m admitting in the intimacy of the Internet.

And what is the clever name Gwynly’s gal answers to?

Doe-buns.

Now most women might not find being likened to Faline’s backside romantic, but since I’m sure Bambi found that particular attribute of hers attractive, I’m fine with the name.

• • •

What pet names do you and your special someone use–that you’ll admit to in public? 🙂

If you’re not married, what special names were you called as a child?

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Keli Gwyn
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