Tag Archives: ebook

Yseult free for Kindle today!

I’m having another freebie of Yseult, so if you don’t have the book yet, and you enjoy Arthurian fiction and / or High Mud Fantasy (the official genre), please grab yourself a copy!

Yseult was also featured on Free Kindle Books and Tips today, so you might want to head on over there and see what else Michael has to offer! And check out the list of The Best Free Kindle Books and Snickslist — they list Yseult today too. 🙂

If you feel so inclined, please pass the word along. A great day to all!

Interview, free book, and hand-painted shoes

A bit of a potpourri today. First: Marshall Payne has started up his interview series with speculative fiction writers again, and today he posted an interview with me. You can read it here.

Also, Looking Through Lace is available FREE today and tomorrow, for perhaps the last time. I’ve opted to take it out of KDP Select so that I can try uploading it (and a few other things) to the Kobo store, which just came out of beta for indie authors. That means I will also republish with Smashwords, although the sales there are negligible. Anyway, pass the word along!

Finally, on a very different note, I wanted to point people in the direction of an amazingly original business idea that my niece Emma has come up with: hand-painted shoes.

E Design

Don’t they look stunning? Way to go, Emma!

Could group promos be the wave of the future for indies?

As folks who occasionally stop by this blog may have noticed, I participated in a group promo for fantasy ebooks last week, Summer Solstice Free Fantasy. 23 authors who hang out on the Kindle Boards got together and offered a total of 29 books for free on June 20-21.

Chris Tarwater, husband and promotions manager for his wife Tristan Tarwater, had the idea for the promo and did most of the organization, including putting together the site and having a banner made. For those of us interested in participating, there were a few requirements:

– The book or books to be in the promotion had to be Fantasy
– Books with no ratings were fine
– If the book did have ratings, it had to be at least 4 star avg.
– Book(s) had to be available for free on June 20-21

Chris’s plan for the group promo included:

– Group advertising
– Cross promotion on Facebook, Twitter, blogs
– Submit to the usual suspects (a lot of the “usual suspects” can be found in my post on Promoting Ebooks with KDP Select)

Chris submitted the group promo as a whole to the various sites that list freebies, while each of us participating submitted our books individually. He also organized ads for the promo, which we contributed to as a group, making the cost much more manageable. It was actually the first time I’ve paid for advertising for my ebooks. 🙂

But what gives a group promo like this a dynamic that goes far beyond a little extra advertising is all the people participating. There were a number of things that helped:

– We created an Amazon list with all of the books free on Amazon (some of the books were only free on Smashwords), and about a dozen of us added a free promo blurb to the beginning of our book descriptions shortly before the promo went live. That way, anyone who nabbed one of my books, frex, via an individual listing, would be made aware of the group promo and perhaps be inclined to call up the list and see who else was participating. In this way, when any of us got picked up by POI, ENT, or Digital Book Today, it might also result in extra downloads for those who hadn’t made those lists.

– Those of us with special connections or strategies promoted the group as a whole rather than just our own individual books — which can also be a much bigger draw. For my own part, my German connections resulted in a noticeable number of hits to the group page. I had recently been contacted by Daniela from the German reader site “Verlorene Werke” about a guest blog (my novel Yseult originally appeared in German translation as Flamme und Harfe, so I have a few readers in Germany). When I sent her the article, I also told her about the group promotion, and she posted about it here.

– While not all of us were actively promoting, there were enough people with different friends / followers / subscribers / whatever who were passing the word along through various channels that we as a group were able to reach a much wider audience than we would have as individuals.

During the promo, I gave away a total of over 15,000 books on Amazon.com, plus a few here and there on other Amazon sites. That was over four books, two of which were free three days and two for only two. (Some of us extended the promotion for an extra day to try and take additional advantage of our run.)

Since the (extended) promo ended on June 22, I’ve sold 105 ebooks and had 6 borrows. (My total for the month is 222 / 25.) Yseult and Shadow of Stone are both on the third page in the popularity rankings for historical fantasy. While this still doesn’t come near the results of my very first ever freebie promo back in January, it’s the best I’ve done since Amazon changed their algorithms in March. May was a total washout for me, so I am very happy with the results and will definitely participate in (and maybe even organize!) group promos in the future.

Great review of Shadow of Stone!

Just a short note: Shadow of Stone (The Pendragon Chronicles) got its first review today, and a very enthusiastic one it is. 🙂 You can read it here.

Given that wonderful endorsement, I would like to remind you that Shadow of Stone is free today for the Kindle!

Those of you who subscribe to Daily Science Fiction, the story in your mailbox today is my flash piece, “The Magician of Words.” I hope you enjoy it!

Great promotional opportunity: Ebooks for a Buck

I have the great good fortune that Yseult is presently being featured on Michael Gallagher’s book blog Kindle Books for a Buck (or less). Since he put up the link, I’ve sold 12 copies of the book. And that after sales ground to a halt earlier this month, I have no idea why. After a week of no sales, I lowered the price to 99 cents and started looking for promotional opportunities specific to that price point.

The most effective until now has been Michael Gallagher’s site. He features indie authors with books that fulfill certain criteria (in addition to the fact that they are a buck or less). You can check his requirements here.

So thanks to Michael for giving Yseult a much-needed boost!

“Yseult” Book of the Day on Flurries of Words!

My novel Yseult has been chosen as “Book of the Day” today on the ebook readers web site “Flurries of Words.” Thanks, Paula!

My brother is brother is presently visiting from the States, and today I “have to” run off and visit Hohenzollern Castle with him (poor me). But that means that I won’t have much time to do any promotion of this wonderful opportunity. So if anyone who reads this feels inclined to send a brief tweet out into the world, I would be very grateful!

I’ll upload pics of Hohenzollern when things have calmed down here. 🙂

“Looking Through Lace” FREE from now until Friday

I’m getting a little burned out on doing free promotions so often, so I’m using all the rest of my free promo days for my award-winning science fiction novella “Looking Through Lace” this week. Available for Amazon Kindle:


I’m planning on taking it out of KDP Select after that, at least for a while, so get it free while you still can!

“Looking Through Lace” free tomorrow, March 14

I fear I’ve been neglecting my science fiction while concentrating on promoting my fantasy. Now, in order to celebrate my new science fiction collection The Future, Imperfect, I’m offering my Sturgeon and Tiptree Award nominee, “Looking Through Lace” as a free download tomorrow, March 14. It will only be available for 24 hours (at least this time *g*), so grab it while you can!

While I’m at it, I have some good news to report (besides the fan letter I got today, which I always love): Yseult is #2 in Arthurian Fantasy on Amazon! For a little while, it was even #1, but that was too late last night for me to write a coherent blog post, so you will have to take my world for it. Actually, you don’t — I took a screenshot of it, natch: 🙂


Please, pass the word along about “Looking Through Lace” tomorrow!

Working on a science fiction collection, and an experiment

In my continuing attempt to make my previously published fiction available in ebook form, I am now working on a collection of some of my near future science fiction stories. My daughter once again helped me out with a cover, and I would love some feedback if you have the time!

Future Imperfect

This one has taken me a bit longer, since I want to get enough stories into the collection that I will feel justified in charging 2.99 (and getting 70% royalties rather than only 35%). For the first time, I will also be including a previously unpublished story. The novelette is set in the same world as the other stories, so I’m pulling it from the submission circus and adding it to the collection. Might not pay off, but thematically it belongs with the others, and I have plenty more to submit, after all — especially if I spend some time polishing half-a-dozen pieces of fiction that have yet to make their way out into the market.

That, of course, is one of my on-going goals, which I keep shoving to the back burner while I play epublisher. Another thing I really need to do is update the publications on this blog and on my web page. I just joined Amazon Associates, and that could give me a few more pennies here or there if I make sales directly from my links. But the first thing on my list is still to get the new collection finished and up.

I did a little experiment with KDP Select this week: I didn’t a 24-hour unannounced freebie of Dragon Time, no promotion, nothing. I got a total of 37 downloads — compared to 2000 the first day the first time it went free. Of course, I don’t have any exact comparison, since so many other factors play a role, but that seems pretty indicative to me that promoting helps.

Yseult continues to sell steadily, a couple of copies a day. Nothing earth-shattering, but I’m still pretty pleased, since I’m only a newbie to this epub venture. I also managed to have Amazon change the epic fantasy category to Arthurian fantasy, which means it’s back in a top 100 list (not much competition there *g*). I’m hoping the change will help in the long run, having Yseult listed in a category where people who are actually looking for Arthurian fiction might even find it!

Luck and skill to all. 🙂

Leap Year Promotion: Yseult free for 24 hours, Feb. 29!

It’s starting to look like I’m addicted to these free promotions, doesn’t it? The truth of the matter is, they’ve been very good for my sales. With the exception of my story collection If Tears Were Wishes, everything I’ve offered for free with KDP Select has come out of the free promotion with a dramatic increase in sales. Five days after the free promotion for Dragon Time it is still in a couple of top 100 lists:

#35 in Books > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Anthologies
#91 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Fiction > Fantasy > Historical

So anyway, if you didn’t get a copy of Yseult during the introductory promotion, here’s your chance to get it now. And please pass the word along! The more people who download and the better rankings it gets, the better it will be for sales when it goes back to paid.

Now, if I can only learn how to create sustained sales without going through this promotion gig every week or two. It’s a lot of work.

That isn’t all I’ve been doing, though. Over on the Codex Writing Workshop, they had a “subber” challenge, and I finally got some stories out into the cold cruel world again. Seven short story submissions in two days. And my “ready to send” list is still way to long. I have to do that more often, challenge or no challenge.

I also have only two more chapters left to go on this final editing pass of Shadow of Stone. I doubt if I’ll be finishing it tonight, though. I’m tired.

BTW, my story collections got some very nice reviews by Kriti Godey. She won a LibraryThing giveaway of Yseult and liked it so much she got all the stories I’ve put up for Kindle until now. Thanks again, Kriti! I guess this is what they call creating an audience base. It’s not an overnight thing; I have to give my target audience the chance to find me. But at least in the indie world I’m not going to get relegated to the remainder bin.