Thursday, November 1, 2007

What a Difference Half a Year Makes and Preview Of Coming Attractions

posted by Aunty Cindy

Here we are at the start of a new month and the Banditas have much for which we are thankful. Aunty is amazed to think that it was only six short months ago that we "officially" launched the Bandit blog into cyberspace!

Back in May, when we threw open the doors (and windows with attached ropes) of the lair and invited everyone in to party with us, we weren't sure what to expect. We were a rowdy bunch with 4 pubbed and 16 AYUs who knew that we had a special bond and a lot of positive energy amongst all of us that we wanted to share. Most of us were new to blogging, didn't know what we were doing, and weren't sure what kind of reactions we'd get. But we jumped in, bucket boots and all.

May I just say... WOW! And THANKS!

What a difference half a year makes!

We have been truly overwhelmed by the wonderful positive responses we've received! We've made so many new friends and are THRILLED that many of you drop by and share your days with us. We are also excited by the numerous NEW guests who pop in and leave comments every day. Back in June, we were astounded that we'd had several hundred unique visitors. Well, now we've had thousands -- EVERY MONTH!-- and from over 60 countries, including places like Malta, Sri Lanka and Qatar! And from every continent, even Antartica!

We have been extremely privileged to have fun and informative guest bloggers including best-selling authors like Lorraine Heath, Sabrina Jeffries, and Brenda Novak, just to name a few. We've shared recipes, favorite books and characters, writing techniques, and personal secrets. We've given away lots of Bandita Booty and watched our sold to unsold numbers swell to an even 10 and 10.

Most of all, we've enjoyed every minute of our wild blogging ride these past six months and look forward to many many more fun times! As usual, we have a lot of things on the horizon including:
  • Tomorrow, prolific multi-published author Stephanie Rowe joins us,
  • Nov. 9th, RITA award winner Dianna Love Snell will guest blog,
  • Nov. 12th, red-hot paranormal author Nalini Singh will be here,
  • Nov. 27th, we'll celebrate the launch of our Regency Noir Bandita Anna Campbell's newest release Untouched (which has already earned a 4 1/2 star top pick review from Romantic Times!)
And that's just a start! Aunty doesn't even need her crystal ball to know that those scales are tipping to the pubbed side. YES! More sales! More contests! And a super holiday bash that only the Banditas (and their buddies) can make happen!

We asked several months ago, but we'd like to ask again: Please tell us what you like, or don't like about the Bandit Blog. Is there something in particular that we don't include on the blog that you'd like to see? What were some of your favorite blogs?

Aunty will send one randomly chosen commenter a box of chocolate rum balls from her recent sojourn to St. Thomas, USVI.

58 comments:

Helen said...

Hi Guys
A big congratulations from me I love this blog I always feel very welcome and comfortable here you guys are so much fun and so down to earth.
I love the guests that you have had and all the interesting advice that has been given.
As you know I love reading and I absolutley love starting with debut books so as I can keep up with the books released as they come along instead of searching for a backlist.
Of course all the booty you give away is fantastic as well and I have been lucky enough to win some of that booty.
So from Helen good on ya keep up the hard work. Hugs to you all.
Have Fun
Helen

Buffie said...

Good Morning, Ladies!! Has it been six months already?? Sure doesn't feel like it.

I must say kudos to all of you wonderful ladies. You have created a very warm and inviting space here and I have truly enjoyed commenting on the blogs and getting to know each of you a little bit better. I'm a pretty busy lady (aren't we all) and when I first heard about the this blog I thought I'd check it out every now and then as there so many things that need to get done in a day. But you ladies have made it such a joy that I find myself checking in every day (sometimes more than once), just to put a smile on my face. Thanks for impacting my days with positive energy!!!! And I can't wait to see what you all will be doing in the next six months.

Gillian Layne said...

Congratulations!! The blogs are all wonderful. (I'm a Libra, we're not much into actual choices :))

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I like it the way it is ladies, I enjoy the different discussions, I am not a writer of course, not even aspiring, just a totally dedicated reader :-) I like the booty real well especially having won some of that said booty myself. Everyone here just seems to interact so well, it is like having a slightly zany online family.

brownone said...

I actually love your blog and check it out every day. I am introduced to some fabulous new authors on this blog (much to my hubby's dismay)!

Stacy S said...

Congrats on the 6 months! I love your blog! I like the call stories, guest authors, just a great place really.

Caren Crane said...

Aunty, I love posts by that fabulous AYU...can't quite remember her name. I recall something about Girl Scouts, NC State Fair food, camping trips and maybe something about a Golden Rooster yesterday. Whoever that chick is, make sure she keeps posting. I think I am her biggest fan! *g*

Oh, and I always like to hear what the cabana boys are up to, as well. Did those new thongs ever come in?

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Cindy! Is it really six months since we strapped on our cutlasses and started sailing the Seven Internet Seas together? I feel like I've known you girls forever. I think you really hit the nail on the head when you talk about positive energy and I think that positive energy is one of the things that's led to sales for so many of the AYU Banditas when we started. It's so exciting to be part of such a dynamic group. Brings a tear to the old eye, really. And sadly, the eye is as old as the rest of me. Groan!

Helen, Dianna, Buffie, Stacy, Gillian, Brownone - we love that you visit as readers or as aspiring writers and that we're getting to know you better too. I mean, who can forget Keira and her Nutella obsession, for a start? And haven't we had some fantastic guests? I'm really looking forward to interviewing Nalini. She's such a lovely person and her books are HAWT!!!!

Caren Crane said...

Foanna, must we discuss Nutella again? My hips are still suffering (by which I mean bulging out of my pants) from the last Nutella post!

Suzanne Welsh said...

helen, buffie, gillian, dianna, brownone, stacy and all the other frequent commentors and readers, we're delighted y'all feel so welcome and enjoy our friendly banter. You should see us on our private loop, we're just as nutty!

Aunty Cindy, as much as Caren likes that Girl Scout leader Bandit, I'm much more attached to the vampire one. The one who types all her posts with her black sunglasses on and Rocky-the-wonder-dog at her feet! Keep letting her pop on line!

Joan said...

I'm with my fellow Banditas! I look as forward to posts from regular readers Helen, buffie, brownone, hrdwrkmom, stacy s, nancy, doglady, Kiera. So many new friends! (And Helen! YOU got the Golden Rooster today! Congrats! Watch your back though, Anna lives SO much closer to you..and she's been known to swipe not only fowl but favored gladiators too :-0)

I adore all my fellow Banditas and Suz is right. Our private loop can get just as whacky. And yes, those Girl Scout leading, Nutella obsessed and sun glassed Banditas are fab. But, I hope to hear more from the one with a goddess complex who believes Rome conquered a world and so can her patricians. VBG

doglady said...

Congrats, ladies!! I LOVE this blog, as you well know! Everyone is so warm, welcoming and FUNNY! My day always goes a little better if I check in here first. I wouldn't change a thing. I have won my share of booty as well and that is always a plus!! Any chance to talk to an author and 'pick their brain' about what works and what doesn't is always a plus!!

Kate Carlisle said...

Since you ask, Aunty Cindy, I would prefer to see more serious discussions on the state of the industry with regard to the juxtaposition of---ACK!! More men!! More hunks!! More bare chests and six-pack abs!! Get my whip!! More cabana boys!! Bring more cocktails!!

Good heavens. I believe my Tourette's is out of remission. Must up the meds.

But reeeally....it seems like only yesterday we started this madness! I'm so lucky to be a part of it, and still, most days I feel like the biggest fan girl because I can't wait to get in here and see what's shaking, which fabulous guest is visiting, or who's sharing their latest adventure with us. It's the best part of the day!

I love you guys!!

Caren Crane said...

Kate, I confess that I love it when people's embarassing secrets and high school traumas leak out. I think we have established that we were the biggest group of geeks in the universe in high school. Well, except for Jo. She was probably a cheerleader or something. *g*

Trish Milburn aka Tricia Mills said...

I love Dianna's description of us as "a slightly zany online family". So true. I think it's the combination of that sense of online family, good information and general hilarity that makes the blog so vibrant. I LOVE seeing regular visitors as well as new guests. Never a dull moment. :)

Oh, and I always like Buffie's avatars. Yum! :)

Donna MacMeans said...

We ARE one big zany family, bandita bloggers and honored bandita regulars. I would like to see some more interviews of heros. Seems to me Anna's RT TOP PICK UNTOUCHED is due for release in December. Let's hear from the mad, imprisoned Lord Sheene *g*

Thanks for everyone for making this endeavor so much fun.

MsHellion said...

Personally I love the blogs where *I* win prizes, but really, I've loved all your blogs. You ladies rock! I love the blogs that offer us a chance to interact and discuss. I love the opportunity to chat with other readers...and authors. :)

Karen H in NC said...

Happy 6 month anniversary Ladies. Enjoy your blog and I stop by almost every day to see what's happening. I enjoy the book excerpts, bits & pieces about your everyday lives, guest authors and contests. I think blogs are a great way to hear about new-to-me authors and their works.

ellie said...

Your provide great entertainment with your posts, and unique and excellent books that I can now enjoy. Love visiting and learning about new authors, the guests and everything connected with books and authors.

Aunty Cindy said...

Helen, "Ask not for whom the cock crows..." Congrats on the Golden Rooster this morning, or in your case this afternoon! And I'm with Kate, bring on the hunks, in Buffie's avatars and elsewhere!

Brownone, stacy s, ellie, mshellion, karen h, gillian, dianna, doglady and EVERYONE who drops in, our zany family would not be complete without ALL OF YOU! We have all been so pleased and gratified to have such loyal readers.

And don't worry Caren, Suz, and Joan, I'm quite sure we'll see many more posts from certain Banditas who have scouting fetishes, 'labor' all night, and have goddess complexes. Oh, and that nasty tempered Bandita with the riding crop and gleam in her eye is sure to be around also. *very evil grin*

AC

Nancy said...

I love reading the comments. Of course I enjoy those of the Banditas, but I can read them off-blog. I especially enjoy the posts from our visitors, sharing their likes and dislikes from books to food to Halloween. It's great fun!

Hrdwrkdmom Dianna, it is a lot like having a zany online family. I still haven't met most of the banditas in person!

To those who said we brighten your day, thanks so much! Having you stop by and weigh in is great fun, even if you just want to say "Hi. I read it."

I like giving stuff away, too!*g*

Beth said...

Wow! Those six months sure flew by *g* I've had so much fun being a part of this blog. Dianna, I think you hit the nail on the head - this IS a slighty zany online family. I've enjoyed getting to know all of our readers and I so look forward to reading all the responses each day :-)

And I wouldn't mind more hunks ;-) And chocolate. Or hunks dipped in chocolate.

Keira Soleore said...

Banditas, many, many, many congratulations to you for your successful six months in The Lair. I've loved visiting here and and plan on continuing to do so.

AC: The last time you asked about recommendations, I had a few things. But now that each and every one of those have been implemented, I have no suggestions on improving perfection.

Oooh, Nalini is one fab lady. I'm looking forward to chatting with her.

Foanna and Caren: I'm going to become a model citizen now and not mention you-know-what. There's just this problem with my nose. It keeps on growing. Do you know a cure for that?

Cassondra said...

Wow, it's been six months since our launch? Wow.

And the energy IS positive, isn't it? I love that. I always feel better after reading through everyone's comments--especially our friends who visit regularly. I feel like I know y'all now. And miss you when you're not here.

Zany online family. That's a very cool thing to have going. It feels that way to me. Nice to know it transfers to everyone!

Here's a toast (okay it's a toast with rather tepid earl grey tea) to many more zany days in the Bandita lair!

Cassondra said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cassondra said...

Sorry for the double post everyone. My internet is being a tad weird. I deleted the duplicate.

Anna Sugden said...

Wow! What a fab six months this has been. It's been such fun getting to know all our wonderful commenting ladies ... and even meet some of you for real! I'm with the rest of you - I love our zany online family *grin*.

More hunks (especially some of Buffie's avatars)... more chocolate-dipped hunks (and the occasional N-dipped one for Keira) ... I feel that in the interests of improving our blog, I can go along with that!

Susan Seyfarth said...

Wow, six months? Already?? Time flies when you're...late to the party. :-) As the Last Bandita, however, let me just say that this past month or two that I"ve been with you all has been wonderful! I love hearing from all our regulars, & being part of this zany, on-line family.

And if I had to pick a favorite post? I'd go with Kirsten's day without underwear. I was just dropping by every now & then, checking you guys out until I saw that post. I had to comment on it, & then next thing I knew, I'd been broken down & was the Last Bandita. And it's been wonderful. Thanks, guys. :-)

Susan

Deb Marlowe said...

Congratulations Ladies!

You've created a warm and wonderful home in the cold midst of cypber space!

Go Banditas!

Caren Crane said...

Susan, I must agree that Kirsten's Day Without Underwear stands out, doesn't it? Man, we had some revealing stories that day! Oh, no, Foanna and her punning have rubbed off on me!

Deb Marlowe said...

Uh, that would be CYBER space

duh

:-)

Caren Crane said...

Hi, Deb Marlowe! Maybe we can get an "interview" with the Wicked Lord Dayle early next year. What do you think?

Christie Kelley said...

Six months! It's been six months already? How can that be? I just want to thank all the regular readers and posters who stop by. We couldn't do this without you!!

And I have to say Kirsten's blog about the underwear was without a doubt the funniest thing I've read in a loooong time.

Caren Crane said...

In addition to the panties-free post, I recall only too well the interview with Lord Nicholas (bed)Chambers. That man has a way with a sable paintbrush. Aiyee!

Cassondra said...

Caren, you're right.

I have to say, he absolutely came to life for me through that interview. One learns things about a hero through such an interview that we might not...uh...otherwise discern?

And Kirsten's Commando Post will go down in history.

I agree. Dunno how we could top those two.

More hero interviews I say!

If we could interview CHOCOLATE covered heroes, who would admit they're also going Commando, I guess that would top it all out wouldn't it?

Okay, back to cleaning the car.

Maureen said...

Congratulations! Your blog topics are so interesting and there is such a variety of subjects and great guest bloggers.

Deb Marlowe said...

Oh, I don't know, Caren! You know the Wicked Lord Dayle is desperately trying to live down his wayward past! Doing an interview with the Banditas does not seem to mesh with his plan to keep his nose clean and to the grindstone.

Hmm, we'll have to think of something to convince him! I'm sure Sophie can give us some tips--she's an expert at rattling his chain! :-)

Helen said...

Ya the golden rooster yes Kirstens underwear free day I loved and who can forget the interview with Lord Bedchambers (fantastic book BTW)
Have Fun
Helen

Suzanne Welsh said...

BETH! What a fabulous idea. Wonder if we could start an on line "male"order business. We'd probably make $$ around the Holidays!

Cherie J said...

I enjoy this blog. I am a bit of a lurker so I don't always post. In the interest of the upcoming holidays, maybe some posts sharing some favorite holiday recipes. I am already looking into what I am going to bake for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Oh Beth, I love your idea, hunks dipped in chocolate, works for me!!!!

Nathalie said...

Congrats on that first year!!

I love contests... who doesn't!!

Cassondra said...

Buffie, my LORD, where do you get those hunks you use as avatars........(fans self)..............

Lily said...

6 months... are you wearing Pampers now!!

I love this blog...I check it everyday :)

jo robertson said...

Thanks to all our wonderful visitors. Our blog wouldn't be successful without your visits, so I hope you continue to drop by.

I love our guest bloggers. The interviews are always so interesting and I've picked up lots of new books for my library which now overflows every room in the house. I think I have a disease!

Uh, Caren, that would be NO! Jo is the klutz, the person born with no rhythm or grace, the one who stands still and trips over her feet! The cheerleader has to have been Valley Girl Tawny.

Buffie said...

Gee, ladies, I'm so glad that you enjoy my eye candy. I could post a picture every now and then if you want me to. Or you can check out my avatars on RomanceNovel.tv -- they get changed every week and I even have a Hottie of the Week forum.

Can I post a picture within a comment? Let's see . . .[IMG]http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t131/williejojo/avatars/sigh.jpg[/IMG]

Buffie said...

Well, I guess I can't. If you know how, let me know. I am more than happy to share the candy :)

Christine Wells said...

Mmm, chocolate rumballs. I'm almost tempted to relinquish my Bandita status for a chance to win those, Aunty C. Thanks for a great post!

We are always talking among ourselves about how great our readers are and how much fun we're having. It's good to say it in public once in a while. We've got a HUGE year coming up on the blog and I'm sure our unpubbeds will be stepping up to the plate in no time, while our published authors go from strength to strength. Thanks to all our readers and vive la Bandit Blog!!

Christine Wells said...

Ooh, hunks dipped in chocolate. My two favourite things juxtaposed in a novel and amusing way:)

Joan said...

LOL, Kate you crack me up!

Alas, chocolate was unknown in the Roman world so my resident hunks ala gladiators would not know what quite to do with it.

But honey. They can do amazing things with....

Ummm....never mind (sheepish grin)

Aunty Cindy said...

Hmmm, Lily I'd say most of us are waay closer to needing Depends than Pampers... WHEN we're not 'going commando' that is! *very big grin*

Thanx for the good wishes Maureen, Nathalie and Deb M (we knew what you meant, scary how we can read your mind???). And speaking of mind-reading, Cherie J. we were just discussing holiday recipes on our private loop, so stand by for more details (and cue that twilight zone music)!

Now back to those fantasies of choccie covered hunks busily stirring up holiday recipes...

AC

anne said...

Your blog has books, guests and much more. All of the fascinating observations that such a diverse group contributes daily. Wit and fun involved. It has brightened up my weeks.

doglady said...

Uhm. I am with Kate C and Christine! Hunks, covered in chocolate. Buffie honey you do this almost 50 year old woman a WORLD of good!!! And I love the idea of interviewing those wonderful troublesome heroes!!

Kirsten said...

Oh what fun! I was hard at work all day and didn't even get to log in this morning before I left.

I can see I'll have to have more clothing malfunctions to keep our regular readers (and a few of my fellow Banditas) happy. My shame is your gain, dears! :-)

Thanks for all the kind words and support. I can't believe it's been only six months either. Feels more like..well, an eternity...but in a really good way, naturally!

And the fun's just beginning. Look forward to more great guests (amazing guests, actually!), more fun, more call stories, and more booty.

Yes, more booty. Take that as you will.

HUGS and KISSES to the whole crazy Bandita family!

ruth said...

Interesting and appealing posts which give me much to think about. The books are an added bonus and love the humor and fun.

Keira Soleore said...

Cassondra wrote, "If we could interview CHOCOLATE covered heroes, who would admit they're also going Commando"

SOLD! You first. :)

Tawny said...

Hmmm... my favorite thing about the Romance Bandits.... hmmmm

:-)

The Fabulous Bandita's of course!!!

blackroze37 said...

im pretty new
but i do like the blog!
and i love the chance to win