Tag Archives: From Earth to Mars and Beyond

From Earth to Mars and Beyond #free through tomorrow!

Until recently, this collection of eight of my previously published sf short stories, including the Nebula nominated “Mars: A Traveler’s Guide”, was available wide through most stores where eBooks are sold.

And it sold about 2 copies.

So I pulled it from other venues and put it into KDP Select, which means I can also give it away to my loyal readers. Through tomorrow, Sept. 23, you can download the collection free from Amazon.

From Earth to Mars and Beyond

Here the description:

“From Earth to Mars and Beyond” is a collection of eight previously published science fiction stories by award-winning author Ruth Nestvold. But reader be warned: these stories of galactic empires, space exploration and first contact tend to be on the dark side and do not depict an ideal future world. Here a selection:

“The Far Side of the Moon” – Women from all over the world have been “recruited” into service on the habitat Volva, where they unwillingly cater to men’s pleasure. But the Volva is outside all global jurisdiction — and none of the women will ever retire …

“Troy and the Aliens” – When the first aliens make contact with Earth, they do not land in the U.S.; they land in Stuttgart, Germany. The President sends his aide Troy Jackson to figure out why. What ensues involves beer tents and driving fast on the Autobahn, but it doesn’t exactly end as the President ordered.

“Rainmakers” – Rekaya is sent as ambassador to Chepanaek, in order to try and negotiate peace between the planet’s native population and the colonists of the Allied Interstellar Community. The task seems impossible, and Rekaya doubts she is the right person for the job. But soon she begins to feel an affinity for the planet that she cannot explain.

Enjoy the interstellar darkness!

Do please download and pass the word along!

New cover for “Mars: A Traveler’s Guide”

One of the things I’ve had on my to-do list for at least a year is to upload my short story “Mars: A Traveler’s Guide” to Amazon and make it free. The story is also in my collection From Earth to Mars and Beyond, and I’ve been thinking that I should redo the Mars ebook with an excerpt from one of the stories in the collection in the back matter to entice a few readers to buy more. “Mars: A Traveler’s Guide” is hands down my biggest “seller” on Smashwords, but just sitting there as a free short story without any incentives anywhere in the text to buy anything else from me doesn’t seem to be inspiring those who download it to go looking for opportunities to purchase my fiction.

Since I’ve had fairly good experience with the free story “Gawain and Ragnell” to keep my sales of The Pendragon Chronicles alive, I was hoping I could do the same thing with “Mars” for my SF collections. But when I went searching for the PSD of the original cover to edit it for recent standards and add the Nebula nom to the cover, I couldn’t find the file, nor could my daughter. She suggested that maybe it was time for us to make a new cover for the story anyway, since it was one of the first we did together, and reflects that. So that’s what we did. Here’s the new cover we came up with:

Mars cover

And here’s the old cover we did back in 2011, for the sake of comparison:

Mars: A Traveler's Guide

I’d love feedback on the new cover! And if you’ve already read the the story, so much the better. 🙂

A new book for a new year: From Earth to Mars and Beyond

Happy new year, everyone!

To celebrate 2013, I got my new collection of stories, From Earth to Mars and Beyond, finished and uploaded to Amazon:

This one won’t be going into KDP Select, since several of the stories are available online, and that would violate the rules of Select. We’ll see what success I have marketing it without. I don’t have the new book up in other stores yet, but I will try to do that in the next few days.

As I already mentioned over on Facebook, I’ve been a bit frustrated recently by reviews from readers who apparently never read the description before they read the book, (e.g. complaining about the ending of Yseult, even though the description makes it obvious it’s a tragedy; or people complaining about the length of short stories in a short story collection). So to let off some steam, I wrote a tongue-in-cheek blurb for this collection, and I actually ended up using it:

From Earth to Mars and Beyond is a collection eight previously published science fiction stories by award-winning author Ruth Nestvold. But reader be warned: The stories in this collection do not depict an ideal future world. Most of these stories do not end happily, and many of them are on the bleak side. Main characters die. If you only like happy endings, this is not the book for you.

On the positive side, “Mars: A Traveler’s Guide,” was nominated for a Nebula Award. “Troy and the Aliens” may not portray a particularly rosy view of the earth as we know it, but for a change, no one dies, and several characters get the chance to drive fast on the Autobahn. “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Monkey,” based on a poem by Wallace Stevens, is blessedly short, and shouldn’t cause the reader too much pain. And at least there’s a story about whores in space, “The Far Side of the Moon.” Enjoy the interstellar darkness!

What do folks think? Should I keep it or go with a description more positive and conventional?

Wishing everyone a happy and successful 2013!