Saturday, May 31, 2014

Spread the wealth! #Amazon ’s not the only distributor that pays royalties!


 
I was going to share with you about what prompted me to stop with the Select program and start spreading my books over the other channels so here goes…

As I mentioned in an earlier blog, 99cents is the new free. Used to be that the readers would flock to any free book and have a download frenzy. Not so much anymore. I imagine there are still those who search out these gems, but I also know that most book fanatics are willing to pay for their enjoyment. I guess they’ve figured that a dollar or two for a book is less than a cup of coffee, lasts longer and in many cases gives you a lot more bang for your buck—especially those with hot sex….haha!

*** Recently, I started reading the conversations going on in the various Indie loops I belong to and realized that many of these authors had already made the changes and were:

- financially doing very well – okay – extremely well.

- now able to reach the lists like New York Times and the others because their books were available on the other platforms.

- satisfying many of the readers who owned e-readers other than Kindles.

- reaching a larger audience – not everyone shops at Amazon.

*** I made my choices of where to share my work by paying attention to what I was reading from the other authors who’d already blazed the trail and this was what I found out:

- Amazon absolutely – they are the biggest book seller by far and have made a lot of writers very wealthy. They’re wonderful to work with, easy to upload on to and accessible if you run into any problems.

- Apple itunes (ibooks) is the next one you want to get your work on. If you’re not a Mac owner, you’ll need to find someone else to upload for you. Two ways are open for doing that. You can hire a person like AmyAtwell who will charge you a onetime fee of $30 a book and will set it up for you (her advice about this company is invaluable) and then she’ll hand over the controls. Or, you can go through a distributor like Smashwords or D2D and they will take their 15% (or whatever they charge) on every sale from then on. Personally, I chose Amy and am very satisfied that I made the right choice for me.

- Barnes & Noble would be next on my list. Unfortunately, being a Canadian, I had no choice but to go through a supplier like Smashwords or D2D. For the Vegas Series, I chose to use Smashwords because I wanted to put the first book Partners free. Recently, D2D has changed their policy and will do the same for you. I will probably use D2D to get access to B&N for the rest of my books because it’s so damn easy to use!! On the other hand, Smashwords has a lot of features one can’t ignore. (more about them later)

- Kobo is important for us Canadians because it’s connected to Chapters which is like our Barnes and Nobles stores. It also makes eBooks available for the Canadian library system. And… my sister and her family have their e-readers - so I promised one day to make it easy for them to be able to buy my books…hey – some things are kinda important??

- Google Play will be making its …ahem…play for attention soon. Google is working very hard to take over some of the Facebook market and I have no doubt they’re taking steps to challenge Amazon in the book selling department also. Let’s face it, for their search engine capability alone you want to be connected with them.

- Smashwords this love/hate publisher is also one you don’t want to ignore. They have a huge number of smaller channels they are now distributing to. The latest e-mail from Mark Coker (the company’s owner) has explained the newest features they’ve added and they’re not to be ignored. I think one of their best features is Mark himself. He's a very hard worker, innovative and incredibly smart.

So - I guess the biggest hurdle in spreading your work is getting the accounts set up on these various places. I ran into a hurdle with nearly every one and had to struggle my way through. I’ll try and remember the difficulties I ran into and do up a blog explaining how I got out of  them because I now have accounts at all of the above....finalllyyy!
What's left is to get 24 of my books uploaded to each place and formatted in the file they request.

Argggghhhh!!!

Don’tcha just love this business!??

 

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Exclusive Excerpt for…BETWEEN HEAVEN & HELL by @Jacqui_Nelson


**Welcome again, Jacqui, with your beautiful cover for your newest release. I Can't wait to get it in my pudgy little fingers!!!
 
Thank you once again, Mimi, for hosting me on your blog during the two-day reveal of my upcoming new release! Yesterday, I shared the cover for my newest Western historical romance available this June. Today it’s excerpt time.
 
I’m delighted to share with you this never-before-seen excerpt from Between Heaven & Hell. I hope you’ll leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the story that earned me a Golden Heart® for Historical Romance.
 



 
 
Excerpt
Fort Leavenworth, Kansas - 1850
 
Paden Callahan lifted his gaze skyward. High above him, the pale blue arc didn’t even come close to rivaling the eyes of the woman standing beside him. How on earth had she made that shot? He knew only a handful of men capable of the feat she’d accomplished. Most of them were seasoned Rangers. Men from a life he’d left far behind.
 
He shook his head. A woman couldn’t be a scout. The job was chockfull of hazards. But the competition had been dangerous as well. Why had he allowed her to stand off against a brute like Dawson? Why had he behaved so impulsively?
 
Dawson looked none too pleased either. He clutched his rifle against his chest in a white-knuckled grip. “If you hire her instead of me, you’ll be sorry.” The scout’s voice was as close to a hiss as any Paden had heard. The man wasn’t going to leave quietly.
 
Paden suppressed a growl of impatience. He hadn’t shot anyone in years and meant to keep it that way. He strove for an even tone. “I’ve got a whole saddle bag full of sorrys. Adding another won’t make much difference.”
 
Dawson lowered his spent rifle until it hung by his side. His free hand twitched, inching toward the loaded pistol strapped to his hip.
 
Paden drew his revolver, cocking it on the upswing and leveling it at Dawson. The feminine gasp close beside him made him freeze. He suppressed the urge to tell her he wasn’t a killer. Why lie? He’d pulled the trigger in the past, and Dawson needed to believe he’d do it again. “Keep the supplies we advanced you. That’s more generous than I have to be. But this is the last time I’ll tell you—leave.”
 
Dawson slunk off with his two cronies dogging his heels. Paden released the hammer and shoved his revolver back into its holster. Then he spun to face the woman.
 
This time she didn’t retreat, but every bone in her slender body leaned away from him. He shouldn’t have reached for her earlier when she swayed on her feet. Being almost grabbed by a lout like himself had only added to the storm of emotions he sensed in her: caution warred with curiosity…and something more.
 
Cover Blurb
Welcome to a new Old West
 
Hannah knows one thing the moment she enters Fort Leavenworth—she's arrived in Hell. But inside is the means to a new life, a position as a scout on a wagon train bound for the Western Territories. All she has to do is convince the wagon master, Paden Callahan, she's the right person for the job.
 
After his wife was murdered by the Comanche, Paden let his work as a Texas Ranger consume him. Now he wants nothing more than to disappear into the West. Unfortunately, the one man he can't refuse has asked him to guide a wagon train full of tenderfoots across thousands of miles of Indian land. But Paden's greatest challenge turns out to be Hannah, a woman his heart won't allow him to ignore even though she was raised by an enemy he hates.
 
Release Date
June 2014
 
Author Bio 
 

 
Jacqui Nelson writes historical romantic adventures set in the American West and Victorian London. Her love for the Old West came from watching classic Western movies while growing up on a cattle farm. Her passion for Victorian London wasn’t far behind and only increased when she worked in England and explored the nooks and crannies of London on her weekends. She now lives on the west coast of Canada where she works in a bookstore. She is a Romance Writers of America® Golden Heart® winner and three-time finalist.
 
Jacqui’s debut release was Adella’s Enemy, a novella featuring a feisty female spy and an Irish railroad foreman. Adella’s Enemy can be read on its own or as part of the Passion’s Prize anthology inspired by the hit Western TV series Hell on Wheels.
 
Jacqui’s Golden Heart® nominated novels—Between Heaven & Hell (set on the Oregon Trail) and Between Love & Lies (set in Dodge City during the heyday of the cattle drives)—will be released this summer.
 
Awards for Between Heaven & Hell
Great Expectations, Gotcha, Gateway to the Best finalist and winner of the 2010 Golden Heart® for Historical Romance.
 
Praise for the previous work of Jacqui Nelson
“A great tale with subterfuge, saboteurs and sweet romance." – Nora (Adella’s Enemy on Amazon.com)
 
"A fantastic read that has you turning the pages faster with every sentence." – Lisa (Adella’s Enemy on Amazon.com)
 
Today’s Giveaway
Be the first to receive Between Heaven & Hell as a gift directly from the author! Leave a comment below (with your e-mail address) and you’ll be entered in a draw to win a free e-book (for your Kindle or your computer).
 
Thank you everyone who visited yesterday and left comments!
 
To learn more about Jacqui and her writing, please visit…
 
 


 




 
 






Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Cover Reveal… BETWEEN HEAVEN & HELL by @Jacqui_Nelson



**It's my great pleasure to welcome my good friend and convention buddy, Jacqui Nelson, to be my guest today and tomorrow on Believe. I gotta tell you - I just love the cover and title of her newest release Between Heaven and Hell!! If this book is anything like her last one Adella's Enemy, then we're in for a real treat!!


Thank you, Mimi, for inviting me to be your guest today as I reveal the cover for my newest Western historical romance releasing this June. My thanks would not be complete without giving my praise to Kimberly Killion and her team at The Killion Group and Hot Damn Designs.


Holy Hannah, do I have a cover that I love! I hope you like my cover half as much as I do, and that you’ll leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the story that earned me a Golden Heart® for Historical Romance.
 


Cover Blurb

Welcome to a new Old West…

Fort Leavenworth, Kansas - 1850

Hannah knows one thing the moment she enters Fort Leavenworth—she's arrived in Hell. But inside is the means to a new life, a position as a scout on a wagon train bound for the Western Territories. All she has to do is convince the wagon master, Paden Callahan, she's the right person for the job.
After his wife was murdered by the Comanche, Paden let his work as a Texas Ranger consume him. Now he wants nothing more than to disappear into the West. Unfortunately, the one man he can't refuse has asked him to guide a wagon train full of tenderfoots across thousands of miles of Indian land. But Paden's greatest challenge turns out to be Hannah, a woman his heart won't allow him to ignore even though she was raised by an enemy he hates.
Release Date
June 2014
Author Bio 


 
Jacqui Nelson writes historical romantic adventures set in the American West and Victorian London. Her love for the Old West came from watching classic Western movies while growing up on a cattle farm. Her passion for Victorian London wasn’t far behind and only increased when she worked in England and explored the nooks and crannies of London on her weekends. She now lives on the west coast of Canada where she works in a bookstore. She is a Romance Writers of America® Golden Heart® winner and three-time finalist.

Jacqui’s debut release was Adella’s Enemy, a novella featuring a feisty female spy and an Irish railroad foreman. Adella’s Enemy can be read on its own or as part of the Passion’s Prize anthology inspired by the hit Western TV series Hell on Wheels.

Jacqui’s Golden Heart® nominated novels—Between Heaven & Hell (set on the Oregon Trail) and Between Love & Lies (set in Dodge City during the heyday of the cattle drives)—will be released this summer.

Awards for Between Heaven & Hell

Great Expectations, Gotcha, Gateway to the Best finalist and winner of the 2010 Golden Heart® for Historical Romance.

Praise for the previous work of Jacqui Nelson

"Pulled me into the American West faster than a shot of whiskey could be downed on a hot day." – Gael (Adella’s Enemy on Amazon.com)

"Has enough to tempt and interest all readers." – Pat (Adella’s Enemy on Amazon.com)
Today’s Giveaway
Be the first to receive Between Heaven & Hell as a gift directly from the author! Leave a comment below (with your e-mail address) and you’ll be entered in a draw to win a free e-book (for your Kindle or your computer).
Tomorrow the fun continues!
The wonderful Mimi Barbour has kindly offered to host me again tomorrow when I post an exclusive never-before-seen excerpt from Between Heaven & Hell. I’ll also be giving away a second e-copy of Hannah and Paden’s story to another commenter who leaves their e-mail address. Hope you’ll join us again tomorrow!
To learn more about Jacqui and her writing, please visit…


 




 

 

 

 
 
 

 


Monday, May 26, 2014

Bawdy Songs for a Sassy Siren: PISTOLS AND PETTICOATS @AdriennedeWolfe


 

 
Bawdy Songs for a Sassy Siren:
PISTOLS AND PETTICOATS
By Adrienne de Wolfe
 
Schlock.  That’s what my high school English teacher called my best attempts at poetry when I was enrolled in his Creative Writing class.
But the joke’s on Mr. Snooty, ‘cause nowadays, I’m a bestselling author, who writes bawdy rhymes for her latest heroine:   a wise-cracking, pistol-packing torch-singer, who headlines in Dodge City’s infamous Long Branch Saloon (1879.)
 
I have to admit, I’m having a ball writing schlock.  (So go suck a lemon, Mr. Snooty.)
I’m not exactly sure where the inspiration for Sadie Michelson’s songs came from in my new novella.  SHADY LADY is featured in PISTOLS AND PETTICOATS, an Historical Western Romance Anthology that includes works by two other bestselling authors: Barbara Ankrum and Sharon Ihle. 
 
For decades, I’ve been terrified to write anything even remotely like poetry for public consumption, thanks to a certain harrowing writing class. 
To make matters worse, I get knee-knocking scared whenever I have to sing.  In another of my high-school era tragedies, I stood in an auditorium, packed with students and parents, and forgot the lyrics to my Christmas solo. 
 
(Did I mention I HATED high school?)
 
Needless to say, Sadie is nothing like me.  A red-headed siren with a rapid-fire wit, my lusty heroine isn’t intimidated by corrupt lawmen, drunken hecklers, raunchy gamblers, or sniveling high school teachers.  
 
Sadie gave me the courage to write poetry again – even if some of it might raise a stodgy eyebrow.  Here’s a snippet of her cowboy song from Shady Lady: 
 
"Then came a Texas cowboy,
A downright orn'ry guy.
Bulgin' at the chaps, he was,
With notches on his fly ...”
 
Sadie sings the previous verse about her hot-headed, gun-slinging lover, whom rival bawds have nicknamed the Rebel Rutter.  (I’ll leave the reason to your imagination.)  William “Cass” Cassidy also sings bawdy songs, as you’ll see in the excerpted scene, below.
 
But not all of my lyrics are bawdy. (Darn, huh?)  I penned two ballads and a love song, called Destiny, for Sadie to sing when she and Cass return in my upcoming Historical Western Romance, DEVIL IN TEXAS (Book 4, Velvet Lies.)  Here’s a sneak preview of Destiny:
 
Suns may rise, stars may fail.
Worlds collide; love prevails.
Through all time, you and me,
Heart to heart, destiny.
 
So now you’re probably wondering:  Did I ever muster the courage to sing solos again?  Yes, I did!  Years and years later (in another state, under another name,) I appeared in a variety show.  Nobody booed.  (And I’m pretty sure none of them were comatose!)

Excerpt from
SHADY LADY, a Novella
By Adrienne deWolfe
from the Anthology
PISTOLS AND PETTICOATS
“Cass, I’m busy. Can’t you see I’m writing a song?”
He recalled that Sadie turned into a fire-breathing dragon if someone dared to interrupt her creative frenzies. He cocked his head, plotting his strategy to whisk her off to the river.
His ornery lover was sitting with her spine propped up by pillows against the headboard of her unmade bed. Her glorious red-gold curls tumbled in every conceivable direction over the sagging, ebony lace of her night wrapper. A sea of yellowed papers surrounded her exquisitely long legs, bared up to the thighs. Those papers had lots of black lines, little bitty symbols, and tea-cup stains.
In fact, the whole room smelled like mint and rosehips, Sadie’s favorite brew. The teapot – and a pair of greasy, sunny-side-up eggs – sat forgotten where she’d left them: on a chipped china platter atop the traveling trunk at the foot of her bed.
“The sun is shining!” he cajoled.
“Yes, well, it’s daylight, isn’t it?” she retorted absently, her bare toes wiggling to some inner rhythm as she scribbled a few more symbols on the paper in her lap.
She’d barely glanced his way. He steeled himself against a flare of temper. He was Coyote Cass, after all. He could charm the rattle off of rattlers.
Strolling to the side of the bed, he was careful to keep his expression enthusiastic rather than provocative. There would be plenty of time for romping in the daisies and buttercups, where he planned to spread a blanket, pop a bottle of champagne, and practice all the creative ways that Sadie had taught him how to use whipped cream and berries. Maybe even honey.
“What’s that chubby, black dot with the flagpole rising out of it?” he asked, knowing full well that it was a musical symbol.
“Music.”
“What kind of music?” he persisted, undaunted by her growl.
She blew a curl off her forehead. “The usual kind.”
“A love ballad?”
Her stylus paused as those tawny Tiger eyes glared up at him. He just loved when Sadie glared. He didn’t mind arguing with the hellcat one bit. Not when her make-up sex was so divine.
“When have you ever heard me sing about love?” she snapped.
“Maybe it’s time.”
She muttered something under her breath that sounded like, “Dreamer.”
Smirking, he thought fast. The only person in the world who thrived on competition more than he did was Sadie. Calling upon a credible baritone – one that she had once described as “lyrical” – he belted out an improvised rhyme:
“With looks that drive the gals insane,
He rides them like a hurricane . . .”
His musical lampoon succeeded. Her lips twitched. Her stylus actually lowered.
“Not bad,” she conceded grudgingly. “Where did you hear that? From Wilma’s piano player?”
“Hell, no. I made it up.”
“You did not.”
“I did too!”
She hiked a challenging eyebrow. “Right here? On the spot?”
“Damn straight! Wanna hear another?”
Hooking his thumbs over his gun belt, he swaggered around the room, acting adorable.
“He rides like greased lightning atop his black steed,
The handsome young Ranger, renowned for good deeds,
To rescue the damsel, alone in her bed
From cold eggs and boredom and songs in her head.
Away to the river, he carries the lass
To woo her and feed her and kiss her bare . . . ”
“Cass!” she shrieked, her laughter ringing through the room in merry peals.
He chuckled, enjoying her earthy humor.  “I reckon Cass rhymes, too.”
"You are a pest. And pests should be spanked."
"Never argue with a lady. That's my motto."
"Is it, now?" She tossed aside her stylus and swung her naked feet to the floor. "Since when?"
"Since I was... uh... " He gulped. "Sun-up?"
He'd lost the use of his brain the moment she'd started shrugging off that scanty black waterfall of lace. Nothing but freckles adorned her alabaster flesh now.
"Maybe you've confused me with someone else, lover," she drawled.
She was prowling closer, all sizzle and sin. By the time she halted before him, his loins were hot, and his mouth was watering. Those wicked, feline eyes laughed up at him. 
"Do I look like a damsel in distress to you?"
"Uh... " Trick question, some lucid part of his brain warned. "You look like my heaven," he rallied gamely.
“Aw.  Isn’t that sweet?”  A dimple flirted with her cherry-red lips. "Who taught you how to lie so prettily? That Injun half-breed?"
"Lynx doesn't like to be called -—"
"I'm more interested in what I like," she purred. "And what I like is naked cowboys . . . "
PISTOLS AND PETTICOATS

BOOK DESCRIPTION
 


From bestselling authors Barbara Ankrum, Adrienne deWolfe and Sharon Ihle come three fresh novellas, featuring three firebrand ladies, each determined to make her mark while making her match.

ETHAN'S BRIDE - 27,000 word sequel to CHASE THE FIRE (Wild Western Hearts, Book 4) Violet Bradford desperately wants a child. Believing herself barren, she answers Dr. Ethan Walker's advertisement for a mail-order bride in Colorado, knowing he only wants one thing: a mother for his young daughter. Surely the joys of motherhood can compensate for a loveless marriage. But Ethan's broken heart won't stop tugging at hers. And Ethan soon realizes he must risk his heart again or risk losing it all.

 
SHADY LADY - 26,000 word prequel to DEVIL IN TEXAS (Velvet Lies, Book 4) Fiery singing sensation, Sadie Michelson, thinks falling in love is bad for business—until William "Cass" Cassidy, a hotheaded gunslinger, sets his sights on wooing her. But when a Texas Ranger arrives in Dodge City to extradite Cass for a crime of passion, Sadie must use all her wits and wiles to lure the law from her man's trail. And that means risking everything—including Cass's love.

 
BAREBACK BRIDE - 25,000 word sequel to THE BRIDE WORE SPURS (The Inconvenient Bride Series, Book 1) Expert horsewoman, Shannon Winterhawke runs away from home to join the Buffalo Bill Wild West extravaganza. Shannon is hired on the spot, but the show's head horseman, Seth Edwards, simply sees another flighty gal looking for a cowboy fling before settling down with some unsuspecting fool. But all bets are off as Shannon slowly sneaks into Seth's heart and lassoes him with his own rope

 

 

About Adrienne de Wolfe


Adrienne deWolfe is a #1 bestselling author of action-packed Historical Romance novels, where feisty Heroines buck the conventions and true Heroes must be wickedly funny.  Currently, she is writing Devil in Texas,  Book 4 in her Velvet Lies Series (September 2014.)  For sneak peeks of her sassy ladies and sizzling rogues, visit http://ebookdiscovery.com.p8.hostingprod.com/AdrienneDeWolfe




 
Website: http://MagicMayhemBlog.com

Thursday, May 22, 2014

My follow-up on Pressbook – A template useful for formatting mobi, epub and pdf files.


 

Pressbook: Part 2   
From my blog post on May 19th, I did promise to let you know the areas on Pressbook where I ran into trouble. That way, if you hit the same snags, you’d know what to do. So here’s my sad tale….
First of all, I overthought it. In other words, I expected it to be a lot more difficult than it really was. If you think of the site as a template where you insert the information into its slots, it will make more sense.
So - the first thing that gave me trouble was the Copyright area. I don’t know why I ran into a problem there since all you need to do is insert the regular spiel about this being a work of fiction and all rights reserved, etcetera, in the space provided on the Info page and it will come out just fine. I guess I thought it had to go into the front matter and ended up with two pages. One they created and the one I added.
Another thing I didn’t pay attention to was the Publish box on the right hand side of each page where it has the Export settings. It’s important to tick the top two spaces for the linked table of contents because the program will organize it for you. That’s so cool!!
Include in exports
Show title in exports
Also- when I did my first book, I had two chapter headings and it looked horrible.  I couldn’t figure out why that happened until I asked the same friend that told me about Pressbook.
The way you fix this is to go to the left side panel of tabs and choose Appearance – themes - and when you choose the theme setup you’d like, then go to theme details and then theme options and where it says Global Options, make sure that the box beside Display Chapter numbers is left empty. Now save it. That will clear away the double headings.
Another of my favorite things about Pressbook is that I had wracked my brain trying to come up with the correct way to insert a cover image into a word doc that wouldn’t disappear when I uploaded the file to Amazon. So many times, I ended up with a little camera instead of the picture. I tried the insert image with my windows 10 and for me it wouldn’t take.( I must have been doing something wrong….Ya think?)  When I spotted the add media button on Pressbook, my heart did a little leap for joy because I knew that this problem was now solved. And... I was right. It’s great!! I’ve even begun adding my author photo on My Page just ‘cause I can :-))))
The last thing that threw me was when I had to upgrade because my file was too large. I had no idea what to do until I saw the Upgrade tab. It took me to a place where I set up a visa number and paid the $10. Once that was done, it let me finish loading everything and then Export the files in the three formats – mobi, epubs & pdf. Again, I had no problem downloading the files they formatted and checking them out through Caliber. But when I saw something I wanted to change, for some reason it didn’t dawn on me that I had to actually hit that darn big RED “Export your Book” tab again. Took me some time before that became clear….duhhh!! In fact, you can export as many times as you want. So, making corrections to the files is very simple.
Like most new things, once you’ve used this tool, I promise you it will become easier. I still haven’t delved into the other parts of the program like comments, users and utilities but I’ll get to it. If you go to their help page, as I did, there is lots there so you won’t feel alone or... you can always e-mail me:-)
Pressbook - Need some help? Here are some ways to get in touch:
•Guide to PressBooks: An Incomplete Guide to Using PressBooks
•User Forum: post a question on our PressBooks User Forum (NOTE: new registration required)
•Email: send an email to support@pressbooks.com
•Twitter: @ us on twitter.com/pressbooks
•Read our FAQ (coming soon)
***If any of you reading this have anything else to add about your experiences with Pressbook, please do so in the comments so we can all learn more from each other.
 
The yellow Rose is for friendship!!

****I'm trying to gather names for my newsletter list so please click the button on the side panel and add your e-mail address. I only send letters out about once a month so I won't be inundating you with mail. And be assured I would never share your information with anyone else. That's a promise!!