Tag Archives: free book

Testing a new cover: Looking Through Lace #free until Dec. 29

Before things got really crazy around here, I tried to get various marketing gigs scheduled, among them a short free run for Looking Through Lace to test the cover. It’s free from Dec. 27-29 — and I think I can already declare the new cover by Lou Harper a huge success. I have done absolutely zilch so far in the way of promotion, and as of this writing, it already has 232 downloads. Those are numbers that I normally spend money to get. *g* I do have one Fiverr ad scheduled for tomorrow, for the sake of comparison, since I regularly use Bknights for free runs, as cheap and effective as it is. But Looking Through Lace with the new cover is getting the same kinds of downloads without any advertising whatsoever that I get for my short story collections with ads.

So while we are all admonished not to judge a book by its cover, it seems very obvious to me that if you want to sell a book, you have to make sure the cover is the best you can possibly get. 🙂

Anyway, you still have two days to nab my linguistics-in-space novella for free! If free and the lovely cover isn’t enough of an argument for you, here’s the description:

As the only woman on the first contact team, xenolinguist Toni Donato expected her assignment on Christmas would be to analyze the secret women’s language — but then the chief linguist begins to sabotage her work. What is behind it? Why do the men and women have separate languages in the first place?

What Toni learns turns everything she thought they knew on its head.

Originally published in Asimov’s in 2003, “Looking Through Lace” was a finalist for the Tiptree and Sturgeon awards. The Italian translation won the Premio Italia for best work of speculative fiction in translation in 2007.

Feel free to share!

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Late Happy Holidays! Oregon Elsewise #FREE through Dec. 28!

Christmas has been very busy around here this year, and I never got around to posting about my “Christmas present” to my readers. But it’s not too late! My themed story collection Oregon Elsewise is FREE until tomorrow, Dec. 28. As with the rest of my short stories, I will be taking it out of Select after the end of this run and going wide with it — so if you don’t have it yet, now is the time to grab it! My collections don’t sell on Amazon, but they do elsewhere (if only a copy or two a month), and since they don’t work as loss leaders to sell my novels and novellas either, I might as well publish them on all possible venues.

Here’s the description:

Oregon is a strange an wonderful place. These short stories explore that strangeness through the genres of fantasy and science fiction. Here a sampling:

“The Old Man and the Sneakers”: It began the summer the Nikes washed up on the beach by the dozen — but never by the pair. The old man knew it was a sign …

“The Sea Gives, the Sea Takes Away”: After a painful divorce, Elisabeth returns to her home on Skagit Bay to heal — with the help of a little magic.

“Sailing to Utopia”: Ecotopia is perfect — except when you refuse to be laid back about everything. Fed up, Picara decides to go on a tour of perfect societies, only to discover that every utopia contains the seeds of a dystopia.

The short stories in this collection were previously published in various venues including Strange Horizons, Abyss & Apex and Futurismic.

If you are so inclined, do please pass the word along!

52 authors you can try for FREE!

Fifty-two books by fifty-two authors. All are the first in a series, all are free. Click the image or the link below to check them out!

http://pattyjansen.com/blog/fifty-two-authors-you-can-try-for-absolutely-nothing/

Please note: not all of these books are free outside of the U.S. Many of them have been made free through price-matching on Amazon, and the author does not have control over this. My book, for example, Yseult: Two Women, has not been price-matched outside of the US, whereas my Pendragon short story “Gawain and Ragnell” has. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Beware of gifts from the dowager princess …

Slowly getting back into the blogosphere, me. With family matters no longer as pressing, and the head cold winding down, I can get more done that needs to get done. Yesterday I didn’t make any progress on the big stuff on the to-do list, but I did manage to get 1200 words written. That’s a good writing day for me!

After that mini-update, on to WIPpet Wednesday! As a result of craziness of the Christmas holidays, and then that stupid cold, I haven’t played for several weeks. In honor of 2015, I’m giving you 15 sentences today. I’m still posting from Facets of Glass, although I don’t know how long I will still be able to do so without spoiling too much. Anyway, this excerpt follows right after the last one I gave you before Christmas between the Dowager Princess and her guard, Gaetano:

“Gaetano, there is something I would like you to do for me,” she said from her chair on the dais several steps above him.
“Certainly, Your Grace.”
“Please, come forward.”
He already stood at the bottom of the dais, so tentatively, he took the first step. Now he was nearly eye to eye with the princess.
She laughed and motioned him forward. “Come, Gaetano, I will not bite!”
Slowly he took the rest of the stairs up to the elaborately upholstered chair on which she sat, so that he towered above her, rather than she towering above him, as it should be.
She took something small, round and red from a table at her side and held it out to him. “I want you to take this small gift to the sister-in-law of Prince Vittore, Minerva of Murano, as a token of our appreciation.”
Gaetano had seen the sister of the new princess many times since Prince Vittore’s marriage. She was a flighty and vivacious thing, a young woman who laughed often and didn’t have a care in the world.
He examined the object he held. “An apple?” he couldn’t help but blurting out.
“A glass apple,” Princess Zilia corrected him. “From the hand of a master glassmaker, and thus more precious than gold.”

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.

By the way, my short story collection If Tears Were Wishes will be free from tomorrow, Jan. 8 to Jan. 12. If you don’t have it yet, grab yourself a copy!


A Christmas gift for my readers: Looking Through Lace

Merry Christmas, everyone! We had a wonderful family Christmas Eve last night, and much turkey and many presents were had by all. Christmas is so much more fun with children, their enthusiasm is catching. 🙂

In honor of the occasion, I’m offering my award-winning SF novella, Looking Through Lace, free through Dec. 29.

Looking Through Lace

As the only woman on the first contact team, xenolinguist Toni Donato expected her assignment on Christmas would be to analyze the secret women’s language — but then the chief linguist begins to sabotage her work. What is behind it? Why do the men and women have separate languages in the first place? What Toni learns turns everything she thought they knew on its head.

Originally published in Asimov’s in 2003, “Looking Through Lace” was a finalist for the Tiptree and Sturgeon awards. The Italian translation won the Premio Italia for best work of speculative fiction in translation in 2007.

Enjoy! Happy holidays to all. 🙂

Stories on the Go: 101 Very Short Stories by 101 Authors – FREE!

I have another Christmas present for my readers: Stories on the Go: 101 Very Short Stories by 101 Authors. For this one, my contribution was very small, as you can gather from the title — less than one percent. 🙂 This is a mutual project from a whole bunch of indie authors who hang out on Kboards, including Hugh Howey, Toni Dwiggens, Lisa Grace and many, many more. All of the stories are flash fiction pieces, under 1000 words. We have Andrew Ashling to thank for doing most of the editing, with some help from various beta readers among our ranks, and Scarlett Rugers for the cover.

Stories on the Go

Here’s the description:

This anthology aims to be a showcase of recent indie writing.

Hugh Howey launched the idea on Kboards, a forum for Kindle readers, but also the meeting place of an active community of indie writers.

The result is this anthology of 101 very short stories by 101 authors.

To make it more attractive for you, the reader, we set ourselves a limit of a thousand words. You should be able to read each story in under five minutes — on your desktop computer, laptop, or tablet at home or in the office, but also on your smartphone, on the go, while you are commuting or waiting at a coffee shop for your significant other to arrive.

We included as many genres as we could. We hope that maybe, with only five minutes of your time on the line that would otherwise be wasted anyway, you’ll be tempted to venture outside your comfort zone and try out some new genres and new authors.

Enjoy!

“Yseult, Part I: Two Women” now finally free on Amazon

As I mentioned a while back, in September I embarked on an experiment: splitting my almost 200,000 word monster book Yseult into episodes and making the first one free.

The problem was, Amazon wasn’t cooperating. The book was free on iTunes, B&N, Google Play, you name it — but no matter how many times I clicked on “tell us about a lower price” and how many people I asked to tattle on me, the price refused to budge, sitting there stubbornly at 99c. I published the first two episodes within days of each other, but when I had so much trouble making the first book free, I didn’t bother putting together the last two.

Yesterday, I finally got fed up at how long it was taking for Amazon to price match, and I wrote them directly.

And lo and behold, it worked!

I don’t know if it is also free in other countries or only in the US (my experience has been that it takes much longer for other Amazon stores to catch up). But at least if you’re in the US, and you have not yet read my (first) doorstopper, you can now get Part I for free. Here the details:

Yseult, Part I

Yseult, Part I: Two Women

Yseult the Wise and Yseult the Fair, mother and daughter, are members of the proud race of the Feadh Ree, the Old Race in Eriu. New ways and a new religion are coming to their land, and despite all their magic, they may be powerless to stop it.

“Yseult: Two Women” is the first of four parts from the bestselling historical fantasy novel “Yseult: A Tale of love in the Age of King Arthur,” a retelling of the tragic love story of Tristan and Yseult. Yseult is a princess of Ireland, a land on the fringes of Europe, a land that had never been conquered by Rome. What would her life have been like in that pagan land before the advent of Christianity?

This book is a re-imagining of Yseult’s youth, never part of the legends — until now.

BTW, even if you already have read the complete novel, you’ll be doing me a favor if you download anyway. It will help the book rank higher. 🙂

Almost All the Way Home From the Stars #6 in Australia

In the middle of all the turmoil, I got a little consolation prize today:

That’s right, Almost All the Way Home From the Stars is #6 in Free Kindle Books in Australia. This is not a genre list, it’s free books overall. This is what it looks like at the time of this writing:

Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #6 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)

#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Space Opera
#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Dystopian

I don’t generally sell much in Australia, so this is great news. With any luck, it will result in one of my books being more visible there for a while. I’ve had a couple of sales of my other books in Australia this week too. Since Amazon opened its AU store, I’ve sold a *total* of 5 books down under, so I can really use a little visibility. Cross your fingers for me. 🙂

Giving “Free” another chance with Chameleon in a Mirror

Some time ago, after a series of very disappointing free runs that hardly seemed to bump the visibility of the respective books at all, I decided to give up on temporary free runs as an advertizing method. Instead, I tried to increase interest using permafree offerings.

Let’s just say that hasn’t gone so well.

I haven’t been doing a lot of marketing for some time, and it has really been showing in my sales figures. Admittedly I didn’t have a lot of time while I was working on the translation, but it has made me quite convinced that if you don’t make any effort to market and find readers, they are not going to find you.

I published Chameleon in a Mirror earlier this year when I was right in the middle of the translation. I didn’t do anything other than announce it on this blog and post a couple of chapters to my Aphra Behn Page. It sold a few copies and then proceeded to sink into oblivion. Even after over half a year, it still doesn’t have enough reviews for me to book any paid advertizing anywhere. So I decided to try out “free” again for a change, in the hopes that a few people will download, read, and review. I updated my list here on this blog of places to notify about a free run, went through it only using the sites that didn’t charge for the announcement, and got back to organizing the cover reveal for Island of Glass.

To my surprise, CIAM took off. Here is where it now stands on Amazon.com:

Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #325 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)

#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Historical Fiction > Fantasy
#3 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Historical
#3 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > New Adult & College

Then it got picked up by the German version of Pixel of Ink, XTME. And now the book is practically set to break the Top 100 free books overall on Amazon.de. Here the present ranking:

Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #105 Kostenfrei in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 – Kostenfrei in Kindle-Shop)

Nr. 1 in Kindle-Shop > eBooks > Fremdsprachige eBooks > Englische eBooks > Belletristik > Populäre Belletristik > Historisch

So if anyone reading this is in Germany, please download a copy! (And everyone else too, of course.) It’s free through October 18. It would be so cool to get into the top 100 here!

Another thing I love about this is that maybe a few more people will also learn about my idol, Aphra Behn. 🙂

Aphra Behn by Peter Lely

Of course, I don’t yet know if this will result in actual sales once the free run is over. Be assured that I will post more next week. My sales on sites other than Amazon are so abysmal, if this works, it might be worth to pull my books elsewhere and put all my eggs back in one basket, as bad as that advice usually is.

ADDENDUM: Chameleon is a Mirror is now #89 on Amazon.de!

A mostly marketing update, and more mirror for #WIPpet Wednesday

With the cover reveal for Island of Glass yesterday, the first free run in almost a year that I’ve organized for one of my books, and a lot of work on the big translation project, I haven’t had much time for actual writing so far this week. What free time I’ve been able to devote to my writing has been taken up with marketing.

But that is going VERY well! I want to thank you all so much who participated in the cover reveal for Island of Glass. The book isn’t even out yet, and it has already cracked a Top 100 list with pre-orders! Here’s where it stands as of this writing:

Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #38,198 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
#50 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Teen & Young Adult > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Fairy Tales & Folklore

You guys are the greatest! *Hugs* 😀

As to the free book, that’s my Aphra Behn time travel, Chameleon in a Mirror. I tossed that one out on the market earlier this year without a plan. It’s been limping along and still doesn’t even have enough reviews for me to advertize it anywhere. So I decided to try out “free” again for a change, in the hopes that a few people will download, read, and review. More on that decision tomorrow, since it’s free through Saturday, and I have time. Right now I just want to share with you how well it’s doing on its free run:

Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #382 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Historical Fiction > Fantasy
#2 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > New Adult & College
#3 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Historical

Chameleon in a Mirror

So grab yourself a copy while you can! Tell your friends so they can grab a copy too! *g*

On to WIPpet Wednesday. I’m still posting from Facets of Glass, the second book in the Glassmakers trilogy after Island of Glass. It’s getting a bit difficult to do without providing spoilers, so this excerpt is a page or so after the last one I gave you, skipping the bits with a bit too much information. So here are 15 sentences for the 15th day of the month. Princess Zilia has just seen what the magic mirror has to show her:

The dowager princess clenched her hands in the folds of her skirts, controlling her anger with an effort. She hated many things, but she particularly hated betrayal. That combined with potential pecuniary loss to the Empire of Venice made it all the more heinous in her eyes.
“I would like to keep this mirror in my rooms for the time being,” she told the witch.
Vanna pressed her lips together before she spoke. “With all due respect, Princess Zilia, this mirror is my main source of income.”
“And I would not dream of taking it from you without compensation,” she said, although of course she had. “I treasure your services too much. Inform my steward what your projected loss of income will be, and he will see to it that you are paid.”
The witch seemed to choke back a sigh of relief. “Thank you, Your Grace. May I inquire as to what you intend to do with the mirror, as you do not have the magic to ask questions of it yourself?”
“Keep it out of the hands of others, Vanna, no more and no less.”
“Ah, very wise.”
“You are dismissed. The apple please?”

WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts.