Archive for ‘The Night Ones Legacy’

December 14, 2014

The Heart of All Magic is live for Kindle!!! #thenightones #theheartofallmagic

'The Heart of All Magic' went live for Kindle tonight! :)

The Heart of All Magic’ went live for Kindle tonight! 🙂

I’ve spent the last two months polishing ‘The Heart of All Magic.’ (Which means I haven’t been blogging much.)

It’s finally here. Book two of the two-volume series ‘Legacy of the Night Ones‘ is finished!

Tonight ‘The Heart of All Magic‘ went live on Kindle. The paperback will be available sometime next week.

I really love this game!

Please take a few minutes to look at the Amazon page! If you read it and like it, please leave an Amazon review. And if you get to it in the next two weeks, I would LOVE to have nominations for the Whitney Award! It takes five nominations to be officially entered.

Thanks so much, everyone! I’m looking forward to being on the blog a little bit more again.

Wishing everyone a very happy December. 🙂

September 27, 2014

There’s a winner! #nightones #giftcard #giveaway


I love rainy days when clouds sink low into the mountains, like this!

I love rainy days when clouds sink low into the mountains, like this! 

What a happy rainy day for a gift card drawing!

The winner is Heidi from Wyoming. Congratulations, Heidi! I hope you enjoy the gift card!

So what’s next in the Night Ones world?

Book two is still on schedule for a December release. The cover reveal will probably happen around Thanksgiving time, maybe a little bit before. LaRae Monroe has already agreed to create the book cover, and I’m so excited I can hardly wait for November. She’s an incredible artist. (Check out her Facebook Page!)

Meanwhile, some local authors are banding together to sell books at a pumpkin walk this year. I wasn’t going to print any physical copies of the book, but I do want to support my fellow writers–so I gave in.  I expect to have a small number of books in a week or two. My husband, a truly talented woodworker, also wants to sell some at a craft show on October 30. I guess we’ll see how it goes!

A poetry sample book is coming sometime soon, too. I meant this as a Mother’s Day gift two years ago. Due to some technical difficulties, I set it aside and only finally finished uploading it last night. I may get some physical copies of that one to give to loved ones, or to sell, if there seems to be a demand. I intend for it to be free on Kindle, maybe as soon as tomorrow.

I also have a stand-alone fantasy book I’m in the process of editing. I hope to have it completely edited by the end of October. At the request of someone dear to me, I’m sending out queries to traditional publishers for this one. I’m not holding my breath. It sounds like fun, but right now, I plan to self-publish this book after I receive all my rejection letters. 😀

The critique group is coming along NICELY! I really love having people to bounce ideas back and forth with, and the writers in this area are packed with talent. It’s impossible to spend time with friends like these and not become a better writer. The larger writer’s group is lots of fun, too.

Journalism continues. I had three pieces published in September, which is the most work I’ve had published at once in about two years–I may have to slow down again, but I love writing these stories, so it’s hard to set aside. These articles are all fun, lighthearted stories focusing on the positive things in my world–incredible people with amazing talents and unique experiences to share. I love writing about good people who do great things in their spheres of influence!

And now, the news about more gift card give-aways: Yes, I’ll be doing another one in November!!! Stay tuned for more details! If you’ve already downloaded The Night Ones but haven’t had a chance to read it yet, now you have a head start! 🙂

If you’re interested in more information on my books, my give-aways, more frequent updates on my works-in-progress or other writing-related things I don’t always post on my blog, please send me your contact information! I’ll send out an e-mail once or twice  a quarter to let you know what’s up.

Wishing everyone a very happy day!


September 19, 2014

Look what friends can do–thanks, everyone! #thenightones #free

Look what I woke up to this morning! :D

Look what I woke up to this morning! 😀

Yesterday 95 copies of The Night Ones were downloaded.  I woke up this morning to find The Night Ones had reached #4 in its category for free downloads on Amazon.

That felt like a lot of downloads for not actively promoting it. I only posted about it here on my blog and on Facebook. While I intend to use free e-book listing sources in the future, I’m grateful to see what just a handful of friends can do.

A big thanks to everyone here who shared the post about The Night Ones‘ free promotion or who liked it. You made my day.



September 18, 2014

The Night Ones is free September 18-22 #free #thenightones

The Night Ones is free on during September 18-22.

Get your copy here, and happy reading!


August 31, 2014

New drawing for $25 Amazon gift card #contest thing

Prizes for The Night ones Legacy contest

Enter for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card! by reviewing the Night Ones. (See below for details. 🙂

I’m so excited about this!

While I wait for the final book cover for The Night Ones, I decided to host another $25 Amazon gift card drawing. (Some of you may remember when I did this a few years ago. I’m really happy to be doing it again.)

Here are the rules:’

1. Read The Night Ones, by Gwen Bristol

2. Post a review of The Night Ones on Amazon–here’s the link:

3. Send me an e-mail at letting me know you posted a review. If you win the drawing at the end of the month, I’ll contact you by e-mail to get a physical address so I can send you the gift card.

Here are a few more things to consider:

1. If you read my last post, you’ll remember that The Night Ones was previously published as The Night Ones Legacy. I recently re-released it under a new name to prepare for the sequel, but if you already read The Night Ones Legacy and left an Amazon review, you have a head start. It’s the same book with some minor editorial tweaks–so just go ahead and review it again, and send me an e-mail letting me know! (Of course, I would love it if you liked the book enough to read it again anyway.)

2. If you feel this is worth sharing, please pass it around! If I get more than 50 entries, I’ll buy another gift card and host two drawings…and if I get more than 100 entries, I’ll buy another one. You get the idea.

3. You have almost all of September to post a review and e-mail me. I’ll stop receiving entries by midnight (MST) on Friday, September 26. I will notify winners on Saturday, September 27 and I will post about the results of this promotion/contest thingy then.

4. If, by my writing style tonight, you guessed I’m a bit tired, you guessed right. I may think of other things to say about this contest/promotion thingy later this week, but for now, that’s it. Go read, and review, and e-mail me, and most of all, have fun!

Wishing everyone a wonderful upcoming week!

March 25, 2013

The Night Ones Legacy gets a new look

New book cover!

New book cover!

This is an exciting day for me: The Night Ones Legacy has a new cover! (Well, as I write this, it’s been uploaded to KDP but it’s still under review.)

The need for a new book cover grew out of feedback I got from some terrific reviews and the contest I hosted earlier this year. The story itself was earning five-star reviews, but the cover was detracting from the content inside.

There were about six concepts to choose from, and I was able to narrow it down to four fairly quickly. From there, I asked for opinions from a diverse handful of people. The concept above was the one liked most by almost everyone I asked.

Most importantly, the daughter I wrote the story for likes this one the best.

I also made a few changes to the text. There were a few grammatical errors to be addressed (a ‘to’ that should have been a ‘too,’ etc.). There still may be a few mistakes, but I’m not anticipating any other changes to the book.

I’m slightly apprehensive as to how the updates will go for Kindle owners who already have the book. I’ve never had problems with book updates before, but I’ve never been on this end of it before, either.

One other thing that I learned from the contest: it seems my writing is geared more toward a young adult audience, even though I tried to make this first book a middle-grade read. The sequels will most definitely be written for a young adult target audience.

I’m ready to focus on the sequel, which I’m tentatively hoping to publish at the end of April. We’ll see how that goes! My chapter-by-chapter beta readers are already hard at work as I write, and I have a list of full-book beta readers in place. I’m looking forward to the feedback.

I was so shy when I wrote The Night Ones Legacy that I really didn’t ask for any help. After fourteen drafts, there were still quite a few changes that needed to be made. Hopefully most of them are addressed now. If nothing else, writing and publishing this book has been a great education. I really love that part of my life.

Just for comparison, here’s the first book cover one more time:

book cover possibility three point seven five

March 8, 2013

Thank you to Ionia Martin for the wonderful review! I’m smiling and smiling and smiling.

readful things blog

When Lily breaks the most serious law in her village, she unwittingly unleashes an army of Night Ones, fierce creatures who are rumored to eat children.

But as she struggles to make things right, she realizes that not every story she’s been told is true…

In order to save her people, Lily must find a stolen treasure, uncover the truth, and restore a lost emperor to his throne—and she has to do it before time runs out and thousands of innocent lives are lost…

THE NIGHT ONES LEGACY is a middle-grade fantasy in which the heroine foils a plot to commit genocide on a suppressed minority race, discovers who she is and ultimately regains the family she thought she had lost forever.–Description from

  • File Size: 287 KB
  • Print Length: 357 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1461137357
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English

You can find this book

View original post 333 more words

January 30, 2013

Re-announcing the $25 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway


The Night Ones Legacy book cover--Ruby Rift is the most most recent draft of a possible sequel.

The Night Ones Legacy book cover–Ruby Rift is the most most recent draft of a possible sequel.


I’m re-announcing the $25 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway that opened on January 15.

To be eligible for this contest, send me an e-mail at answering these three questions:

  1. What you liked best about The Night Ones Legacy
  2. What would make it better
  3. Who you would recommend this book to (and why)

This feedback will help me tailor the sequel. I plan to have a rough draft of that ready for beta reading by the end of February.

It will also help me decide what I should do with this particular book. Since everything about it happened on almost immediate instinct, I’m not sure the editing and re-writing process got the attention it deserved. It’s certainly been a learning experience, and that makes it valuable to  me.

For the full contest rules, please see the first contest announcement.

The first 100 e-mails I receive will be entered in a drawing for a $25 Amazon Gift Card. If there are more than a hundred entries, I’ll hold more drawings.

So far, I’ve had quite a bit of interest in the contest itself but only two complete entries. I’m looking forward to receiving more! The contest will run until the end of February.

If you want to enter this give-away but don’t have a book and can’t get one, please e-mail me at I now have a limited number of Kindle versions to share for free.

January 14, 2013

My contest, The Night Ones Legacy and a fire that burns from the inside out

Purple Flowers

These are my ‘serenity flowers.’ They remind me that writing should be a calm experience, not a fiery burn-yourself-out one.

The whole idea of hosting a contest has made me think back to when I first wrote The Night Ones Legacy. Like many writers, I secretly harbored a dream that it would be BIG, but I’m also pretty grounded in the idea that book sales from an unknown author takes a lot of work.

If I remember right, I sent one query off for The Night Ones Legacy, just about the time my son was born. Most of the books and articles I’ve read on the subject say one try simply isn’t enough. When you’re looking for an agent or a publisher, you have to try over and over and over again to find the right fit.

I didn’t know why at the time, but I was reluctant to send more queries out. I read about self-publishing somewhere, and the idea clicked with me immediately. I felt an urgency to move on the idea. Two weeks later, I published The Night Ones Legacy for Kindle and on CreateSpace.

I shyly gave a few copies of the book to friends in North Dakota. I was pleased (and still shy) with the enthusiastic response I got. Someone told me a local book club read it and discussed it, and I was elated (and shy).

Soon after, we found out we were moving to Utah. I didn’t know where we’d be living or how long we’d be between homes. I had a local e-mail carrier that was canceled when we moved, and my phone number changed three times over the course of about five months.

Looking back, I realize I didn’t know what a rough move it was going to be. I only knew I needed to do SOMETHING with my book RIGHT AWAY. You know that feeling. It’s the fire that burns from the inside out, the warmth and heat that gives you courage to do things you wouldn’t normally do.

In any other circumstance, self-publishing wouldn’t have been my first choice. This time, it turned out to be perfect for me. It got the book out of my heart and mind and into the wide world, leaving me free to focus on keeping my family together through our difficult year. While I didn’t do much to market it, knowing it was available gave me the confidence I needed to introduce myself to new friends.

I found myself straightening a little every time someone asked what I like to do. “I’m a writer,” I said. “I mostly write for regional newspapers and magazines, but I’ve also got a book out now.”

My family and I were in a jumble between May and November, when we finally purchased another home. It’s taken another year to stabilize our lives (and my writing schedule).

Now that we’re finally somewhat settled, the fire inside is blazing again. This time, it has to do with the contest I’m throwing. I deeply hope to give away at least five gift cards, but I can’t see the future any more now than I could in 2011. I just know this is something I have to do.

No matter how shy I feel.

No matter what the results are.

I tell myself that those are the things that don’t really matter. The fire inside DOES matter, and I’m always a better person if I pay attention to it.

January 13, 2013

Enter to win a $25 Amazon gift card

The Night Ones Legacy book cover--Ruby Rift is the most most recent draft of a possible sequel.

The Night Ones Legacy, available on Amazon Kindle and other outlets

Beginning on January 15th, 2013, you have a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card for reading and answering three questions about The Night Ones Legacy.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Read The Night Ones Legacy, by Gwen Bristol–you can get a copy here.
  2. Send me (Gwen Bristol) an e-mail with the word CONTEST in the subject box, at this e-mail address:
  3. In the body of your e-mail, answer these three questions:
    1. What did you like best about this book?
    2. What would improve this book?
    3. Who would you recommend this book to, and why?
  4. Also, please include your mailing address so that I can ship the gift cards to the winners. I’ll keep your information private.
  5. Wait to see if you’ve won! Contest updates will be posted periodically on

The first 100 e-mails I receive will be entered in a drawing to win a $25 Amazon gift card. The winner will be contacted immediately and the gift card will be shipped the following business day. All other participants for that round will be contacted when the gift card ships.

HERE’S SOMETHING IMPORTANT: This contest doesn’t end with the first 100 e-mails. I’ll hold a drawing for a second $25 Amazon gift card when I receive a second set of 100 e-mails (e-mails 101-200 will be eligible for this drawing). I intend to hold drawings for at least five sets of 100 e-mails.

If I receive a big enough response, I’ll continue holding drawings all the way through the month of February. The deadline for all e-mail drawing sets is February 28, 2013. If there are more than five drawings but the last set is incomplete, I’ll hold the drawing as if that set is complete.

E-mails are only eligible for this drawing if all three questions are answered, and they’re only eligible for the drawing within the 100 e-mail set.

ONE MORE THING TO NOTE: I’m considering this contest as a ‘marketing lab’ that will count toward my personal 1000 hours of marketing education campaign.

I intend to keep practicing. With that in mind, please look for future contests, give-aways and free stuff on this blog site. I’ll be adding a ‘Contests and other cool stuff’ page to this blog site soon so these things will be easier to find.


I’m looking forward to giving these $25 Amazon gift cards away!


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