The Characters In My Head….

When it comes to my books, the ones with actual characters, they are the most important part about the book. Sure, you have to have a good plot, a good location for the plot to happen, and a good storyline, but if you have characters that are boring, dull or inexpressive, well no one will want to read the books! Your characters need to truly be interesting, in one way or another. They can either be similar to you, to what you want to be, someone else you find interesting or whatever else. But, they do have to be interesting nonetheless.

When it comes to my characters, I tend to put a lot of thought into them before even writing the book. The Warfighters Series for instance, took me a long time to come up with each characters name, their position in the group, if they were funny/angry/indecisive/goofy, etc. To be honest, first I start out with their personality. Then for something like the book content I start to delve into how I want them to act in the book, any trademark motto’s they use, the certain way they talk and more. Its actually a lot of fun. Its a time sucker, but it is fun! Then for something like the book covers I actually tend to start looking at celebrities. I take apart their faces and pick out what I like or don’t like, what I want changed, fixed, colored a different way, pronounced etc. I don’t think anyone unless they are some crazy artist, can actually “paint” a picture, create a character, or draw a character unless they sort of take parts from other people to create their own character. Sometimes I feel a bit like Doktor Frankenstein.

I tend to build their personalities first and write it all down on my laptop on Google Docs. Then once I get an idea of who they are, I begin the task of looking through a million and one pictures to see if my guy can essentially be matched with who I see in my head in terms of looks. Again, super time-sucker, but this is actually my favorite part of the book – the characters! Sometimes these characters don’t even come from strangers, sometimes they are someone I know personally, or God forbid, myself lol.

When I first created one of the characters in my book for the Nine Of Hearts (Rachel Jenson) I knew exactly who I wanted her to be like in my head, but I also think that visuals help and if you can mentally figure out who you want that character to be if someone were to call them and be like Hey she wants you in her movie for her book sort of deal lol then its easier to flesh out the other details. Essentially, and I don’t know if this is okay haha, but Rachel Jenson was sort of created with Anna Torv in mind. I love you Anna Torv if you ever read this in a million zillion years haha.

I’m a visual person, so finding someone that I could relate my character to was super important. By the way ALL my main characters in the Nine Of Hearts are fleshed out using real people – not all are celebrities. Some are just regular old people. I don’t know if every writer does this, but I do. I have about 35 pages with my main group; their name, call sign, relationship status, background info in the military, any significant loss in their lives, type of personality they should have, their age, and yes, a photo of whomever I want them to be. When I write my books, I get so close with these characters and their lives and personalities, sometimes it feels like I could just call Billy Jackson up haha. But, I’m not insane just overly involved with my characters lol.

When it comes to these books, any of my books – whether they have characters or not, its not just about getting on the laptop or the computer and starting my story. Its about so much more than that. I guess that’s why authors tend to get so involved in their books and writing.

The Warfighters Series – Book #2

Book #2 of the Warfighters series was completed a few weeks ago.  Just been busy re-reading through it to make sure I included everything I wanted to include and editing it.  Then, off to the REAL editor (I really suck at editing TBH!) and then the cover needs to be drawn.  Should be released in May!  Can’t wait!  Its a really good continuation of book #1 The Nine Of Hearts.  Ill post a blog notice on here when book #2 is officially posted on the book sites.  For now, you can find book #1 here still:




Google Play:

Still trying to get it on iTunes, but unfortunately you need an Apple product and since I don’t have one, its deeming to be super difficult to get it on there!

Honesty Is The Best Policy…

I know I haven’t been keeping up with this blog and my facebook fan page very much these days.  In all honesty, I have been having some personal issues, and while they are personal, I also think people should be aware that they are there.  Starting on June 13th of this year to October 8th, I lost my cousin who was like a sister to me, very abruptly, my dog died a month later – I had him for 16 years and my grandma passed away on the 8th of October – her and I were very close as well.  I guess everything sort of put me in a funk which is why I have been having issues keeping up with things, like this blog, and my Fan Page.  I am still writing The Warfighters series, it’s just slow going, slower than I thought it would be going.  But, I am trying my best and if you send me a message, I will answer.  If you talk to me on the Fanpage, I will reply, etc.

I just thought I should be a little honest in what was going on, though I did think about 50 times, this was something I should not share, I decided to anyway.

I am still here, just dealing with things.  So, thanks for your support and patience, for visiting my website, buying my ebooks, and for giving me a chance.  I know there are a billion authors out there, I am just one of many!  But, I really love to write for you guys (and let’s be honest, for myself!) and I hope to get the second book in the series done soon.  I am on around 45,000 words.  Also, if you have not done so already, Payhip is offering my book The Nine Of Hearts at 50% off IF you share it on Twitter or Facebook – really awesome deal, for a really awesome book, if I do say so myself!

Closer towards Christmas, probably at the end of November, I will be making my book for sale on Amazon as well, for all you Kindle lovers out there.  Ill post a blog when that is available.


Kristi Ambrose

in News | 363 Words

The Nine Of Hearts – The Warfighters Series – Sale and News

Warfighter Series

I started writing book #2 about a month ago, but due to some unforeseen issues in my personal life, I sort of have been lacking in the writing department.  Still writing, just not as much.  I have about 15,000 words for book #2 (untitled so far).  But, I hope that in the next month I’ll start having writers fever again.  Be sure to like my Fanpage to stay up to date with all the going on’s of the series.  This is where I make the most updates and posts!

In the meantime, The Nine Of Hearts – The Warfighters Series, is on sale on Amazon right now for $2.99 so if you have not scooped it up yet, please do so BEFORE the 15th!  You can download the Kindle App to virtually ANY device which means you can read TNOH on any computer, smart phone or MP3 player’s like iPod.

Inexpensive ISBNs – Info New and Old Authors Should Know!

I think most Authors that get into the self-publishing boat probably do a lot of their own research.  As did I!  You kind of have to, especially if this is something you are new to.  Obviously I am not new to the writing game, but there was one thing in particular I did not have any knowledge about.  I found all sorts of ways to stay with my budget, but still get all of the things I needed and wanted for my books.  One of those things was an ISBN.  Beyond just finding the PERFECT site to buy my ISBNs from, I also found out a little more about ISBNs and when you need them.  Before I get into anything else, I do want to say upfront that this is an affiliate url.  So if you can use it – awesome.  If not, well that’s okay too.  The website I buy my ISBNs from is:  So why did I choose them among ALL the other websites out there?

– First off, the website was easy to understand.  You can simply go to the site with no previous knowledge and understand what they are talking about!  I was new to all of this ISBN stuff and some sites made it SO scientific.  It really made me shy away from them.

– Second off, most people will tell you that you have to pay $125 for an ISBN.  in fact, before doing some in depth research, I really thought $125 was the norm.  But, I didnt like that.  I was spending money on other things that were even more important to me; like the illustrator and the editor.  So I really started to search and research and search again.  This site offers CHEAP ISBNs.  The more you look around, the more you begin to realize that $125 is NOT the norm.  Its what “they” want you to think is the norm.  In this case, cheap does not mean crappy.  There is a $18.99 option which allows you certain facets and there is also a $99 option which allows different options as well.  The website is very transparent.  No big words you can’t understand.  No beating around the bush.

– The support was superb.  Every little or big question I had, Dan helped me out and answered me in a fairly timely fashion.  Even with the legendary aka I emailed them many months ago and never received a reply.  Shame shame!

–  I don’t know how other ISBN sites work because I was not about to buy a $125 ISBN lol, but with I got an email soon after I purchased it and the email had my ISBN in it.  For a split second I thought, “Is this for real?  Can it really be that easy and that cheap?”  So then I visited one of the major ISBN versifier websites and voila it was a real ISBN, it was not used yet, and it was valid.

Other things you NEED to know about an ISBN:

– According to the handful of people I talked to, all of which were ISBN website owners and or authors, they all said that for an eBook you do NOT need an ISBN.  I know this to be true because I put my books on sites like NookPress, Kobo, Scribd and Amazon and have never been asked for an ISBN or HAD to have an ISBN.

– eBooks vs Print:  You can sell 5,000 ebooks and never use an ISBN (except for sites like Lulu) and you can sell 5,000 print copies of .. The Nine Of Hearts.  But, you can only use the ISBN you purchased for one or the other.  You cannot use the same ISBN for both ebooks AND print books.  Further more, you have to buy a new ISBN for each book.  So if you have Book #1, Book #2, Book #3, you have to have different (3) ISBNs for each book.

– As mentioned above, ISBNs are NOT $125.  Or they are, but that is NOT the norm!  Even if you don’t want to use my little link and you want to find a site on your own, just know that $125 is a cheat.  I won’t call the $125 option a scam, because I am sure there is some use to it (for people that don’t do their research and find a less expensive site!), but its a great way to cheat you out of your hard-earned money.  Pardon moi, but screw that!  I save money on whatever I can.  Maybe someday when I become a Best Selling Author and I make $XX,XXX a month then I’ll look into the $125 option, but probably not.   If the $18 option is the exact thing as the $125 option, well …!

– There is also another website that a converter/author mentioned that I was drilling questions with!  She suggested this site and it’s the one she uses: they start at $55, which is more than ISBN Services, but less than the “norm.”


On a final note:  Always do your research – or find someone else to do it for you!  If you cannot find a service that fits your budget, do it yourself!  Obviously you cannot create an ISBN by yourself, but when it comes to things like writing and submitting your own press releases, making videos for your books or products writing blogs, do it yourself!

The Nine Of Hearts Cover!

I think I already posted this on every single website I have an account on, but just for good measure here is the COVER for my new Warfighters Series.  The cover was done by hand by my Illustrator Carlos.  It’s absolutely fantastic if I do say so myself!  Click the image for the original size.  You can also see the illustrations leading up to the final sketch by visiting my Facebook!

Warfighter Series

The Nine Of Hearts….

I am in the process right now of writing a new book in a completely different genre than I have published in before.  It’s a really fun project that is going to start at the first book being around 50,000 to 60,000 words long, with the addition of books in the very near future ie; a Series.  I expect the first book to be finished in about 2 to 2 1/2 weeks.  Which should also be enough time for my Illustrator to finish the cover as well!  I am really excited about this book, not only because it’s something I have never published before, but just because it’s a fun genre to write about.  Be sure to keep in touch by joining my newsletter, liking my fan page or liking my Amazon Author page.  By the way!  This book is going to be published on a variety of platforms not just on Amazon.  This includes devices like Kindle, Nook, Kobo, and Scribd just to name a few.

Ill make a few updates along the way.  Back to writing I go…


Writing Websites For Writers!

I am one of the many people that procrastinates when it comes to my writing.  To be honest, I think its for the monetary reasons.  See, I was a writer for my own business many years ago and wrote many articles, blogs and descriptions.  But, the money was always up front.  I never had to wait for people to purchase the content.  The money was just… available.  Sadly, I have been running into this issue called impatience lol.  I am having a hard time writing books because the “prize” is not available right away.

Because of this, I wanted to find a way to give myself a prize.  I thought maybe a challenge of sorts would work.  No, its not money.  You can’t buy a car with a challenge, or pay bills with a challenge.  But, it does make you want to write and stop procrastinating!  I researched a lot of different websites you can write on, but I found only a few that really did what I needed it to do.  Here is a little list of writers websites for you to take a look at.

1-  I came upon this website while reading a post on the Writer’s Digest forum.  It is free…. for the first 30 days.  After those 30 days, you cannot use the site anymore?  I don’t know, I could not get anyone to answer me. They don’t tell you that you have to pay until you sign up.  Its $5 a month.  Which might not seem like much to someone like me.  But, other people on the site write to just write for fun, so $5 or $60 a year is a lot to them.  The challenges are pretty cool.  I signed up for the March challenge.  You have to write 750 words (or more) every day for a month.  The stats keep track of recently used words, how you were feeling during a specific post, average words per day/week/month/year, average words per minute, etc.  This is all very useful and fun to see change over the course of a month.  Support:  is absolutely horrendous.  It is actually sad because the site is so fantastic, but getting a hold of support is like pulling teeth.  I have been emailing them for over 2 weeks say I could pay my membership fees.  Still no reply.

2-  Another website I signed up with.  But, I use 750 words more often.  Penzu also allows you to write in a private space that only your eyes can see, just like 750words.  I have not paid for Penzu, but I guess there is a free option, as well as a paid option.  The paid option gives you more choices to customize your journal, but it is $19 a year.  Much cheaper than Penzu.  The biggest complaint that people have with Penzu is the font.  I guess its too small for some people to read and there is no way to actually make the font bigger.  Here are all the options you get with Penzu Pro.  I have used the free version a few times, and I see nothing really wrong with font size.  For the features for Pro I would definitely consider getting it considering there ARE so many options to choose from.  The only reason I have not upgraded yet, is because Penzu is geared more towards journaling and 750 words is geared more towards writers and authors.

3-  Supposedly this website is 100% free with no upgrades and no down grades.  I only signed up for an account a few weeks ago and have not used it yet.  The design is streamlined without a lot of bells and whistles, but sometimes that’s a good thing.  Some of the options are very similar to Penzu and 750words, but again, not a lot of bells and whistles.  Just a few extra options like exporting entries, searching within certain entries, private writing unless you want to share your entries, etc.

4- Then of course you have sites like LiveJournal and Xanga that are specifically for blogging or journaling, as well as Joomla and even WordPress.  You CAN make posts on WordPress 100% hidden or only available for certain people to read, like registered users, logged in users, etc.  But, I prefer to keep business separate from my feelings, thoughts, ideas and creative scribblings.  On the other hand, you could just create a WordPress website for your explicit thoughts and writings and just make everything private.  But, there are much cheaper ways, like LJ and Xanga – both of which I have used for years.  I prefer Xanga by the way!

Its a NEW Year….

Just like most anyone else, I have a few resolutions myself!  But, most of mine have to do with writing on a more consistent basis and having a more diligent schedule.  I am almost done writing the first Zombie book and the first Mystery Detective series.  TBH I guess I am a little nervous and that’s why I have been procrastinating!  Not necessarily for the zombie book, but for the Mystery Detective book.  But, you can’t get fans if you don’t put it out there.  I will be working on finishing these two this month, but I will also  be away from the computer Jan 11th to Jan 26th for some much needed time off.  But, as soon as I get back I will be writing again.

Another reason, beyond procrastination, that I have not been writing as much on my blog and in my books, is because I updated to the new Windows 8.1  It was supposed to be improved.  But, all it has done to my laptop is made things really bad.  I have to reboot about every 45 minutes and it just gets annoying!!!!

Anyway, no more excuses.  I will will will get these done and I am still working on my next cookbook as well.

If you have not done so already, please visit my Fan Page.  That is something you can always find me writing on and I almost always have facebook open to communicate.

Hope everyone had a nice Christmas and New Year.

in News | 247 Words