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Series Mega Sale

To celebrate Dead Magic coming out soon, I decided to put all three of the other books in the Ingenious Mechanical Devices series on sale from Friday through Sunday!

Get The Earl of Brass for free, The Winter Garden for 99 cents, The Earl and the Artificer for 99 cents. You can also pre-order Dead Magic, which will be out November 10th!

earl of brass

Get the Earl of Brass for FREE.

Lord Sorrell wants freedom. With the responsibilities of an earldom and a domineering father awaiting him in London, he escapes to the East, but he fears he will be grounded forever when a freak accident results in the loss of his arm. Depressed and facing a restrictive life, Lord Sorrell seeks what will make him whole again: a new limb.
Fenice Brothers Prosthetics is in jeopardy. Hadley’s brother is dead, and the business has fallen on her shoulders. Clients begin to turn her away and she soon fears the business will fail until she disguises herself as a man. But one person sees through her. In exchange for a new arm, Lord Sorrell offers her a chance at independence in the deserts of Palestine.
What they uncover is more precious than potsherds or bones. The desert hides secrets worth their weight in gold. Will Hadley and Lord Sorrell make it out alive or will they, too, be entombed beneath the sands?

wintergarden

Get the Winter Garden for 99 cents.

Can death be conquered?
When Immanuel Winter set off to the banks of the Thames, he never thought his life would be changed forever. Emmeline Jardine, a young Spiritualist medium, drowns, but the potion given to Immanuel by his mother brings her back from the dead and irrevocably intertwines their souls.
But Emmeline and Immanuel aren’t the only ones aware of his ancestors’ legacy. Understanding the potential of such an elixir, the ruthlessly ambitious Alastair Rose knows securing the mysteries of death will get him everything he desires: power, a title, but more importantly, dominion over the dead and the living.
Unaware of what the dashing madman is capable of, Emmeline follows him deeper into a world of corrupt mediums, unscrupulous scientists, and murder. All that stands between Lord Rose and his prize is the boy who refuses to die, but both men know the key to stopping him lies within the girl who shares Immanuel’s soul.

eata-final-cover

Get The Earl and the Artificer for 99 cents.

What mysteries lay buried beneath weeds and dust?
Following their wedding, Eilian and Hadley Sorrell journey to Brasshurst Hall, his family’s abandoned ancestral home. As Eilian struggles to reconcile his new roles as husband and earl, he finds the house and the surrounding town of Folkesbury are not as they first appear.
Behind a mask of good manners and gentle breeding lurks a darker side of Folkesbury. As the Sorrells struggle to fit in with the village’s genteel society, they find their new friends are at the mercy of Randall Nash, a man who collects secrets.
Soon, Eilian and Hadley become entangled in a web of murder, theft, and intrigue that they may never escape, with the manor at the heart of it all. Something long thought lost and buried within Brasshurst’s history has been found—something worth killing for.

dead-magic-ebook-cover

Pre-order Dead Magic here.

Immanuel wants nothing more than a peaceful life as a scientist, but his happiness is short-lived when his past demons refuse to go quietly. As body-snatching spirits attack and creatures rise from the dead, he fears his sanity is slipping. Burdened with strange new powers, he struggles to hide them from his lover for fear of losing the only person he trusts.
But the woman who shares his soul has a secret of her own. Disillusioned with her life, Emmeline turns to a handsome suitor who offers her a world of limitless possibilities at an exclusive club. Rumors swirl of occult rituals and magic, and Emmeline soon fears he wants more than just her love.
Something wicked is heading for London that threatens to destroy everything Emmeline and Immanuel hold dear. And it wants more than secrets.

 

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Series Mega Sale!

EoB WG free promoEatA 99 promo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As you can see, the entire Ingenious Mechanical Devices series is on sale this week from Monday (5/16) to Thursday (5/19).

I decided to mark everything down as a little congrats to all of the college/grad students finishing up this week and the professors who are finally finished with papers. You can get the whole set for less than $2. The links are below, and if you are able or would like to help an indie author out, please share the pics under the links on your social media accounts to help spread the word.

The Earl of Brass FREE

The Winter Garden FREE

“An Oxford Holiday” 99 cents

The Earl and the Artificer 99 cents

EoB free promoWG free promoEatA 99 promoEoB WG free promo

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Release Day and Sale

IMD Sale

To celebrate the release of The Earl and the Artificer (IMD #3), the entire Ingenious Mechanical Devices series is on sale this weekend! On Saturday, January 30th and Sunday, January 31st, you will be able to get the entire series for under a cup of Starbucks.

You can find the books here:

The Earl of Brass (IMD#1): FREE

The Winter Garden (IMD#20): $0.99

“An Oxford Holiday” (short story): FREE

The Earl and the Artificer (IMD#3):$0.99

 

**The prices above are only guaranteed for Amazon US. I’m not 100% sure if the sales will appear on all markets, so please check before you click buy**

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Sale Time!

2 books saleFor today and tomorrow only, The Earl of Brass is free and The Winter Garden is 99 cents. Why? Because I feel like it and because The Earl and the Artificer will be out fairly soon, so I thought I’d celebrate.
http://smarturl.it/TheEarlofBrassIMD1
http://smarturl.it/TheWinterGardenIMD2

A better/real blog update will come later this week. I’ve been slogging through school, my GA job stuff, and writing, so my mind has been elsewhere. More updates to come soon!

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An Experiment

eob freebie ranking 9-30So I decided last week that I would conduct an experiment. The part of me that is a biology major is screaming, “Insufficient data!”, but I would still like to share my meager yet telling findings with you.

People buy more ebooks during the week than they do on the weekend.

On the 19th, I had made The Earl of Brass free for that Saturday only. I did a bit of hustling online, posting about my sale, making my little graphic for it, and tweeting it with tags to various retweet groups. I only sold 122 copies that Saturday. While that’s nothing to scoff at since now 122 more people know of my book, it isn’t that much. I climbed up the sales rankings, tapping out somewhere around #2,000 in the free Kindle store and #3 in free Steampunk. Not bad at all. I saw similar results when my friends/fellow authors posted about how they did with a Saturday sale and no outside promotion.

Then, I started to think about when I buy ebooks. Did I do it often on the weekend? Not really. When I checked my email on a Saturday or Sunday, I would scroll through my Bookbub or Ereader News Today email, only stopping if something really caught my eye. Most people are busy during the weekend. They’re running errands, driving their kids to activities, catching up on some Netflix. They aren’t scrolling through Amazon’s freebies to find the perfect book.

Well, what day would be better? Friday? Definitely not. People are out and about more on Friday than they are on Saturday. Monday? Nope. That’s the day where you’re all wound-up about work, school, the kids, getting to work/school on time, getting everything together. That left the middle of the week, Tuesday to Thursday. Checking my own ordering habits on Amazon confirmed that I did most of my ebook buying in the middle of the week (you know you have a problem when you can use yourself as a place to gather data). Mid-week you have gotten over the rush of Monday and now you’re thinking about how to escape boredom or even planning what you’ll do later in the week.

I decided to set my next freebie for a Tuesday. This time, there wouldn’t be any roof-top screaming about my book being free. I wanted it to all be organic downloads from people who weren’t influenced by my posts. Amazingly, it worked way better than Saturday, seven times better actually. As you can see from the picture at the top of the post, the best overall ranking I saw last night before I crawled into bed was #227 in overall free, #1 in steampunk, #2 in historical-fantasy. I nearly had a heart attack when I saw those rankings. I was sick as a dog yesterday, so seeing those lovely tiny numbers really made my day. This morning, I went and checked my KDP dashboard to see how many downloads I actually had. 902. 902?! I have never ever had that much downloaded on one day.

I’m sure some of you are screaming, “But they were free!” Yes, they were free because free pulls people in for the rest of your series. People are much more willing to take a chance on a nobody like me if the first book is free. Why pay $3.99 if you don’t know whether my book will suck or not? Free means they’ll download it and if they like it, they may move on to book two. Yes, there are people who just hoard free books. I’ve downloaded quite a few free books I haven’t gotten back to, but the thing is, the book is on their device. At any time, they could read it and discover that you’re one of their favorite authors. A loss leader can only help to boost future sales and hopefully generate a few reviews as well.

Right now, I’m working on my plan of attack for when The Earl and the Artificer is finished. Leading up to it, I’m going to be doing a few more freebie days to generate interest in the series. With Kindle Select, I get 5 freebie days to allocate as I wish, so I’m sprinkling them around. I’m not 100% sure when book 3 will be out yet, but when it gets closer to the release date, I hope to take out an ad in Bookbub or ENT about The Earl of Brass being free. Hopefully, that’ll drive sales toward books 2 and three. This plan won’t be implemented for a while, but it never hurts to plan ahead. I will update you as I go on experimenting with sales and marketing.

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Free eBook Today

eob free promoYes, I totally just made a very ghetto altered version of my promo picture.

Anyway, The Earl of Brass is FREE today only on Amazon. You can find it here.

There’s adventure, mystery, drama, a hint of romance, and of course a hint of science.

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August in Review

Starting in January, I decided it would be a good idea to look back at each month and see what I have accomplished in my writing and marketing as well as reflect upon what needs to be improved in the future.

Much like July, August has been a rather productive month. It seems so long ago that it just started, and I am absolutely amazed that it’s already over. This month I have tried to get as much done as possible before graduate school started again for me in September. Usually when school starts, my productivity tanks for a while as I adjust, but I’m hopeful that September won’t be too bad.

What I did accomplish:

  1. Published my series companion short story “An Oxford Holiday” on Amazon
  2. Wrote 25,000 words of The Earl and the Artificer (60,000 words total)
  3. Met my “far” word count goal for the month
  4. Read For Love or Money by Susan Kaye Quinn and 2k to 10k: Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More of What You Love
  5. Released the audiobook for The Earl of Brass
  6. Proofed the first 15 minute clip for the audiobook of The Winter Garden
  7. Put The Earl of Brass ebook on sale for 99 cents for a limited time.

Goals for September:

  1. Write at least 10,000 words of The Earl and the Artificer (but optimally more like 15k to 20k)
  2. Read 2-3 books
  3. Manage my grad school stress
  4. Continue to write every day
  5. Balance life, writing, and fun
  6. Refill my creative reservoirs
  7. Possibly work on another bonus short story (if an idea takes shape)

So I think I have finally found something that works when it comes to keeping my productivity up and at a good pace. Seriously, the word count tracking spreadsheet has done wonders. I’m now about 60,000 words into The Earl and the Artificer, which blows my mind because I’m over 2/3 through it! A few months ago, that was unimaginable. Now, the end is in sight in a few months (probably October). During this time, I also finished and released the audiobook of The Earl of Brass and the ebook of “An Oxford Holiday” on Amazon. Now that I know I can work on a short story and a novel without sacrificing either, I hope to release more companion short stories in the future. The best case scenario is that I might be able to release a Halloween themed one in October, but I can make no promises there, especially with the semester starting. I also got a glimpse of the audiobook for The Winter Garden, and it is perfect! I am so looking forward to hearing more, and while I would like to say that I hope my narrator will send me some this month, I won’t push it. He has a life outside of narrating.

This has been an odd month. I’m feeling very productive in terms of what I have produced, but as of the last few days, I’m feeling incredibly drained. Last week, I had a workshop to go to, which is mandatory for my degree. I enjoyed it and it was incredibly interesting (about teaching writing), but it kind of drained me. It’s hard for me to be social and outgoing while surrounded by new people. It’s done now, just in time for the semester to start. Yay… Prepare to see me crawl back into my shell for about a month while I continually scream internally until I’ve adjusted to dealing with people again. Current status: exhausted and in denial that school is starting again in a few days. Today, I will be reading and chilling with my dogs in hopes of recovering some of that creative mojo since it’s edging toward burn-out level.

Kate

This month also brought a new addition to our family: Miss Kate (named by my dad). Kate is a border weenie, meaning she is dachshund and border collie. If you think she looks oddly familiar, it’s because we have 2 other border collie mixes (Edgar and Finny) who are also black and white and look a lot like her. The boys are still ignoring her, but they seem to be getting along. Don’t let her cute face and squeaky toy voice fool you, she has plenty of attitude. She already hip-checked Edgar and took a bone from his mouth.

For September, my hope is that I can keep writing every day, even if it’s only a few hundred words. 500 a day for 30 days still equates to 15,000 words. I only have two more semesters of grad school left until I have my MFA in creative writing, so I just need to power through and get it done. Who knows, maybe I’ll even be able to start outlining book four of the Ingenious Mechanical Devices. I’d love to begin writing that while editing The Earl and the Artificer.

One last thing of note: The Earl of Brass is on sale for 99 cents for a limited time on Kindle. You can pick it up here.

eob 99c promo

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The Earl of Brass is on Sale!

eob 99c promo

The Earl of Brass is on sale for 99 cents for a limited time on Kindle!

You can find it here.

Please tell your friends, share my tweets or Facebook messages if you can (or if you enjoyed the story).

Share a book, leave a review, feed an author.

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Diversifying Distribution

d2d

For the past year, I have had my books on only Amazon/Kindle because I wanted to be enrolled in their program KDP select, which allowed me to run sales and for others to download my book via Kindle Unlimited, which gave me a certain amount if the reader read past 10% of my book. Honestly, I have no complaints about being strictly on the Kindle (along with paperbacks), but I know that many of my readers do not use a Kindle.

This is the main reason I decided to branch out. I didn’t want to limit my audience to my own preferences, so I decided to look into services that distributed to other ebook servces. There are basically two choices: Smashwords and Draft2Digital.

When I first published The Earl of Brass, I decided to get my manuscript professionally formatted, so I could upload it to Smashwords. I paid less than $50 for formatting, but despite being professionally formatted, Smashwords still wouldn’t release the story to iBooks or put it in their premium catalog, which is reserved for perfectly formatted manuscripts. No matter how many times I or the formatter tinkered with it, it still wouldn’t go through. I gave up and pulled my manuscript off Smashwords and stayed exclusively on Kindle. I was frustrated and not particularly willing to try to branch out again despite possibly finding a wider audience. At that time, Smashwords was the main deal because they branched out to the most services, but since then, Draft2Digital has stepped up as a viable alternative.

I’m trying not to make this a PSA about how wonderful D2D is, but I have to gush over how much easier it was to use than Smashwords. Instead of having to feed my manuscript through a “meat grinder,” which usually kicks it out telling you what is wrong with the formatting of the manuscript, D2D allows you to simply upload a word document, and they convert it to other formats. No following a 200 page long style guide, no meat grinder, no putting my head through the plaster with frustration. I was in heaven. It would still be prudent to use a cleanly formatted word document (12 pt font, times new roman or garamond, 1.15 spacing, and justified), but the process was so easy. At first, I was suspicious. How great could it be if it was that easy and they only take a small royalty? Well, they may not distribute to ALL of the sites Smashwords does, but it distributes to these major distributors: iBooks, Nook, Scribd, Kobo, Tolino (big in Germany, which has a high English-speaking population), and the Page Foundry. I uploaded The Earl of Brass on the 9th, and by the 10th, it was on all six of the platforms. It even automatically created a table of contents for my book by searching it for the distinctive bolding and font size I used on chapter headers. It was fantastic.

Okay, well, I lied when I said I wouldn’t gush. The downside is that unlike Smashwords, D2D does not have a centralized store/directory where I can directly sell all of my books in epub or mobi format. Hopefully in the future they will open that service. One of the things I love is that they are still expanding their distribution channels and website, so who knows if D2D will catch up with Smashwords in terms of distribution channels. For now, I’m content to have my books out on seven different channels along with paperbacks.

Some may wonder what the point is of diversifying platforms when Amazon has such a high percentage of the market? Well, I want my book in as many readers’ hands as I can, and I can only do that if I hit most of the major platforms. More than likely, Amazon will still be where the majority of my sales are, but I know several people personally who use a Nook or Kobo. Plus, I want my books to be perceived as professional, and while Amazon is great, a professional author should also have their books on other platforms (or at least that is what I think). I want people to be able to read my book and not have to download a special app to do it.

Over the weekend, I plan on uploading The Winter Garden as well, but it doesn’t faze out of KDP Select until the June 12th. By Sunday, it should be live on iBooks, Nook, Scribd, Tolino, the Page Foundry, Kobo, and Kindle in ebook form. If you’re interested in picking up a copy on these new platforms, please head to the tab at the top of the page marked Buy Links where all of the ebook links have been updated for The Earl of Brass and will shortly be updated for The Winter Garden as well.

If you would like news about new releases, promos, and previews of future projects, please sign-up for my newsletter.

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Both Books on Sale This Weekend

For the holiday weekend and the vote for gay marriage in Ireland, both books of the Ingenious Mechanical Devices series are on sale for 99 cents on Amazon.

2 books 99 centsThe Earl of Brass: http://amzn.com/B00L4CWBVE
The Winter Garden: http://amzn.com/B00RU0R0YW

Both are set in the Victorian era and explore characters navigating a world that they feel excluded from. There’s cross-dressing, archaeology digs, underground civilizations, mad noblemen, soul-stealing machines, and a bit of romance.

If you’re willing, please spread the word and tell your friends. Sale ends Tuesday morning.

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