Tag Archives: Amazon

Elf Saga: Solarpunk has arrived!

solarpunk_2700Hello, readers! I know it’s been a very long time, but I promise it was worth the wait. I’m very pleased to announce the release of Elf Saga, Book 4: Solarpunk. The ebook is currently available on Amazon and Smashwords, and the paperback is on Amazon too.

What’s it about? Here’s the blurb:

This is still not your typical epic fantasy! When Zaya and her friends learn that the world is dying, they set out to play hero just like their ancestors did. But whole countries lie in ruins, armies of refugees roam the land, toxic storms ravage the earth and sea, and no one is coming to help them. Zaya wants a villain to slay, and Roxy thinks she can fix anything, but Adeja suspects this may be a fight that no one can win…

Explore a world of sword and sorcery that’s as classic as it is bizarre with ZAYA, an apprentice shaman who just wants to fight the undead, ROXY, a one-armed inventor with a healthy fear of dragons, BASTIEN, a romantic drunk who wishes he’d never become a healer in the first place, and ADEJA, a beautiful singer who just inherited the most powerful weapon in the world… and wants nothing to do with it.

What the heck is “Solarpunk”?

Glad you asked! It’s a pretty new genre, a bit similar to Cyberpunk and Steampunk, but Solarpunk is a utopian look at the future, with a focus on human ingenuity, finding ways to adapt to a changing world, and inventing brilliant, beautiful, and sustainable solutions to massive, life-threatening problems. And I thought it offered a fantastic, positive note to end the Elf Saga on.

Whoa! The end of the Elf Saga?!

For the moment, yes. I do have other Elf ideas, but I want to explore some different stories for a while. But if you’d really like to find out what happens in Elf Saga 5, pester me on Facebook and maybe I’ll get working on it sooner! In the mean time, check out my new website www.elfsaga.com for a little more info about the series, and about me.

Other news

Life has been pretty exciting lately. Mostly because I met someone, and she proposed to me, and now we’re engaged! So we’ve been moving her in with me and the girls, and rearranging our lives a bit. Adventure!

But now I’m ready to get back into the writing groove, and I’m planning to release my next series as an old-fashioned serial, with lots of short novellas coming out pretty quickly. What’s it about? Fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, giants, monsters, chases, escapes, true love, miracles… in space!

Thanks so much for your support, I really appreciate it!

Explaining why my books are only available on Amazon

Hi readers,

Some of you may be wondering why my books are only available on Amazon. You may be interested in how the whole indie publishing scene works, or why I personally made the decision to sell my books exclusively on Amazon. If so, this post if for you.

(If not, then please go watch Lindsey Stirling’s latest music video because it is fantastic.)

So first, you should know that indie publishing involves a lot of steps. It’s not a difficult process at all, it’s pretty easy. It’s just converting files and checking files and uploading files. Easy, but time-consuming, especially when you have over two dozen books.

So if I just want to update the “About the Author” page on all my books, it could take between 6 and 10 hours. And if I’m uploading my books to four different sites (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords), then it takes even longer. So it’s clearly easier to only deal with one of them.

Now I’ll answer some questions.

Q: Why would you give up all the extra money you would make on those other sites?

Because I’m not giving up much. When I sell my books on all the major sites, about 95% of my income still comes just from Amazon. So why would I invest 75% of my publishing time on other websites that only make 5% of my income?

Q: Why would you give up all the exposure on those other sites?

My personal experience has been that there just aren’t that many customers using those sites. Sorry! The bottom line is that I value actual sales and actual reviews over “availability” or “potential” or “exposure”. And my actual sales and actual reviews are all on Amazon.

Q: What’s so bad about publishing on Barnes & Noble?

In addition to poor sales, the publishing website does not work well, and often fails to load or publish, which takes even more of my time. And it’s been like this for years.

Q: What’s so bad about publishing on Smashwords?

In addition to poor sales, Smashwords requires a unique Smashwords-specific version of each book that says “Published on Smashwords” at the front, plus I have to delete the link to my own website because that would be “competitive” in their eyes. So if it takes me a long time to publish all of my regular books, imagine having to make a second version of all of them just for SW!

Q: What’s so bad about publishing on Kobo?

In addition to poor sales, nothing. But it makes more sense for me to get the benefits of being exclusive on Amazon instead of being available on Kobo. That’s all.

Q: What’s so good about publishing on Amazon?

Besides the fact that Amazon’s store gets me far more regular sales than all of the other sites combined, when I go exclusive with Amazon by using their “Select” program, I (and by extension, YOU) get extra perks, such as:

  1. Kindle’s Lending Library – You can read my books for free and I still get paid!
  2. Kindle’s Unlimited program – It’s like Netflix for books. You pay $10 per month and get to read tons of books as much or as little as you want. So if you read just a couple chapters of my books, I get paid!
  3. Pre-Orders – I can set up a pre-order page for my upcoming books.
  4. Freebies – I can make my books free for five days every three months.
  5. Deals – I can run price-reduction countdown deals.

All of these features make me more money (while also saving you money!).

In fact, in the month of August 2014, I will make more money from Kindle’s Lending Library and Unlimited programs than I ever did from Nook or Kobo or Smashwords… and those are books you guys are reading for free!

So that’s why my books are only available on Amazon. Time and money.

Now, please, watch Lindsey Stirling’s new music video:

Free ebooks this week: YA dystopia, epic fantasy, and more!

All right, friends,  I have several different titles free on Amazon this week:

          

ULTRAVIOLET is my new young adult dystopian adventure about a teenage girl who creates a high-tech suit to fight the evil megacorporations of Baltimore.

RAZIEL’S SHADOW is the first book in the WAR OF THE MAGI epic fantasy series about a war between angels, demons, and djinn, and the heroes trapped in the middle of it all.

SAKURA is the second book in the MYSTWOOD series of fantasy novellas for young readers, based in part on classic video games like Metroid and Megaman, about a young woman exploring a dungeon to rescue a grumpy old wizard.

Going exclusive on Amazon! (yes, it’s a good thing)

Friends, I know that some of you are dedicated Nook, Kobo, and Smashwords readers, and for the last three years I have been sure to maintain a large selection of titles in those ebook stores. Unfortunately, due to dwindling sales on those sites, I have decided to remove all of my books from them and make my entire catalog Amazon Kindle exclusive.

This offers my Kindle readers several benefits, including the ability to read all of my books for free through the online Lending Library. It also gives me the freedom to more easily adjust prices, and to host sales and giveaway events much more often. (As in, every weekend!)

Also, keep an eye out for my new epic fantasy, Tales of the Magi: Azrael’s Wrath, coming this month!

And now I’ll open up the floor to some questions.

1. Isn’t it better to be available in more stores?

In general, yes. But in this case, no. As I mentioned above, my books have been available everywhere for the last three years, and the fact is that Amazon has always provided about 95% of my business. So I feel it no longer makes sense for me to make three times the extra effort on three  other stores when going exclusive on Amazon makes things easier for me and offers more benefits to my readers.

2. But if Amazon does [ something evil ], and they’re your only store, then you’ll be in huge trouble!

No, because if Amazon does something evil, then I’ll just pull my books out and put them back in the other stores. The exclusivity agreement is not a lifetime contract. It’s barely a contract at all. But more importantly, I don’t believe Amazon will do anything evil, ever, because they know perfectly well that there are lots of good e-stores out there ready to steal their business, the same way that Amazon stole their business from everyone else. So I’m not worried.

 

Free this week: Mystwood (a fantasy adventure)

For the next five days (September 12 to 16), you can get my fantasy adventure novella trilogy Mystwood free on Amazon Kindle. [ Get it now! ]

About the book: On the island of Sylvana, three heroes defend the kingdom from a family of evil geniuses. Follow the adventures of Princess Jacaranda, Lady Sakura, and Professor Dracaena as they explore ancient ruins, encounter strange people, unravel bizarre mysteries, and battle monstrous creatures to keep their home safe.

It’s funny and light, and besides all the adventures for young readers, there are also tons of classic video game references for parents (and other people of good taste). “Jacaranda” is a love letter to Legend of Zelda, Super Mario Brothers, and Castlevania. “Sakura” is an homage to Metroid and Megaman. And “Dracaena” recalls the original Final Fantasy and Pokemon. Enjoy!

Why are you still here? Go get Mystwood now!

And if your reader is a little older and prefers urban fantasy tinged with steampunk, science, history, and globe-trotting thrills, you might try out the Zelda Pryce trilogy of YA novels.

Free this week: The Kaiser Affair (a steampunk thriller)

For the next five days (August 22 to 26), you can get my steampunk thriller The Kaiser Affair free on Amazon Kindle. [ Get it now! ]

About the book: When a master thief escapes from prison, detective Bettina Rothschild must put him back behind bars before the scandalous fiasco destroys the Ministry of Justice. Her investigation leads from decaying cemeteries where ravens conspire to warehouses where wondrous machines are built in secret, and even to the fabled Drifting Isle above the city of Eisenstadt where an ancient tomb hides a deadly secret.

It’s funny, it’s sexy, and it’s fast. The reviews have been great so far, and if you like it then I hope you’ll take a minute to review it too.

The Kaiser Affair is part of the Drifting Isle Chronicles, a collaboration between many fantasy writers who have each written their own stories set in the steamy, industrial, fantasy world of Eisenstadt and the Drifting Isle.

Why are you still here? Go get The Kaiser Affair now!

Free this week: Halcyon (A Steampunk Trilogy)

HalcyonThe title says it all. From August 8 to August 12 you can get Halcyon, the complete trilogy of steampunk thriller novels, for free on Amazon.

Check out the individual books for more details and reviews:

#1 – The Burning Sky

When a mysterious explosion destroys an airship, four strangers come together to uncover a vast conspiracy to plunge the nation of Marrakesh into a devastating war.

Taziri Ohana, inventor of the experimental airship Halcyon, leads the investigation across the length of the country. With the aid of a brutal detective, a holy swordsman, and an exiled princess, she discovers clandestine meetings, deadly beasts, horrific experiments, and bizarre machines that reveal a far-reaching plot against the royal family and her countrymen.

#2 – The Broken Sword

Master swordsman Lorenzo Quesada believes he can peacefully restore his country’s prosperity and honor using the legendary Skyfire Stone. But Salvator Fabris, the most feared fencer and assassin in Italy, also wants this holy relic.

And then famed inventor Taziri Ohana arrives on Lorenzo’s doorstep with a tale of a horrible plane crash and three frightened passengers: a scholar, a politician, and a scowling Italian chemist named Dante. Unwilling to abandon strangers in need, Lorenzo takes them with him across the wintry wastes into the mountains, where they encounter creatures far more terrifying than mere assassins.

#3 – The Bound Soul

In her darkest hour, exiled princess Qhora Yupanqui allies herself with both strangers and enemies to find her husband’s killer and free his immortal soul from eternal bondage.

From the soaring skies of Marrakesh to the perilous streets of Alexandria, Qhora tracks the murderer to a strange temple where men forge mystical swords and where immortal youths called Anubis and Bast wield god-like powers. But she also finds two new friends: a gunslinging Spartan dwarf and a vicious harpy eagle from her homeland.

Halcyon, the complete trilogy of steampunk thriller novels, free on Amazon this week.