Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A few things that took me months to learn... and I did it all wrong!

So those of you who have been following my blog know that I recently published my first ebook AFTER and I detailed the marketing and promotion strategy in this blog. Well, just as I'm about to begin the process of releasing my next ebook DROP OUT, I learn a very valuable lesson that probably put five months of promotion in the toilet. AFTER has sold copies, though not nearly as many as I'd hoped considering I'd spent months marketing and currently my combined websites get about 200-500 hits a day. I just couldn't figure out why I had so little sales from that much internet traffic? Then last week I began sending out a sample of the pitch for DROP OUT on, (A great site for free feedback) and got so many of the same response that I wanted to bang my head against the wall. Almost everyone said the same thing. I was summerizing the story instead of building anticipation. See, I used my query letter pitches. Query letters are a whole lot different then sales pitches to an audience. Therefore, my conclusion on AFTER was that my pitch sucked. Thus, I've written a new one and will be heavily marketing the new pitch while I wait for DROP OUT to finish being formatted. I just got the cover for DROP OUT, which I will post later. Anyway, here is the first draft of the new pitch for AFTER. Hope this entices you all to buy a copy. It's an adventure you won't soon forget.

From the moment we’re born we’re all destined to die. But what happens after? 


Neil D. Ostroff

Ordinary high school student, Nick Murray’s sudden death is no accident. What he thought was his life has been an illusion created by powerful celestial beings. But for what purpose?  

After a brief introduction into the afterlife, Nick learns the devil has caused global war in the mortal world. The devil intends turn the souls of the dead into a massive zombie army to take over creation. Inserted into the human body of a prominent, army commander, Nick is thrust into the center of a historic battle. But when he dies a second time, he comes face to face with the ultimate adversary only to learn a terrifying secret about his own origins. Is he something more then the soul of a mere mortal? Something much more? Can Nick save the Earth, the realms of the afterlife, and all that is human and spiritual, or will his own undiscovered powers destroy everything he’s fought to save?

AFTER available on Kindle for $1.79:             

Monday, June 27, 2011

It's happening again

Well, it's happening again. I've got the cover nearly complete for my new ebook DROP OUT. I'm currently tweaking the pitch for it and I must say, a website called helped greatly. I posted my summary and got lots of free feedback which was awesome! I can't believe how much time some people took in editing my sample. It was like getting a dozen free edits. I highly recommend that site ansd also the Kindle forums. They've helped a lot, too. Again, my cover artist is Judy Bullard and she can be reached at She is fast, easily reachable and very good. As soon as I get the final draft I'll show it.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Change of mind

So after much thought and consideration of the current writer's market I've change my mind on what book to publish next. I was going to publish my middle grade sci/fi INSECTLAND but instead I've decided to publish my very literary novel, DROP OUT. I've come to this conclusion because I feel the vast majority of Kindle readers are adults right now, though I do believe that will change rather quickly in the future. That being said, most of the people on the forums are adults and most of the contacts I've made through various sites are adults, therefore it makes sense to publish an adult novel. DROP OUT needs just a few weeks work and then it should be ready for the world. It's a pretty heavy-duty emotional novel; a far cry from my other books but something I felt needed to be written after one of my friends died from cancer. Here is the summary and I'll keep everyone updating on the process of turning it into an ebook once again:

                                                                 DROP OUT

Believe that life is worth living and that belief will create the fact. Nathan Cruz is a 911 hero who escaped from the twin towers and saved the lives of dozens of strangers, yet lost his pregnant fiancĂ© and entire extended family in the catastrophe. Grief-stricken and tormented by survivor’s guilt, he ‘drops out’ of society to live self-sufficiently on an isolated houseboat in Key West, Florida. Spared the fate of his family only to be given a life without purpose, he believes his loss prevents him from finding true happiness. Fast-forward ten years, Nathan spends his days existing in limbo, existing with no purpose and no ambition. His bubble-of-a-world changes forever when a category three hurricane forces him from his boat and into the home of Miriam Kanter, a young, fiercely independent woman alone and on her final days battling pancreatic cancer. Miriam had spent the time since her diagnosis experiencing life to its absolute fullest, but now death is upon her. Cut off from medical assistance by the storm, Nathan faces the most important challenge he’d ever imagined when he’s forced into the role of primary caretaker and must treat and comfort Miriam as the disease rapidly takes hold.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Great site for free editing and critique

I recently discovered a great site for free feedback on your writing. It's:  I put up the first chapter of my new sci/fi novel INSE#CTLAND and already have more than 60 views and ten comments on improvement. Wow. The only catch is that you have to read and comment on others writing. But hey, there's no longer a need to pay hundreds if not thousands of dollars for editing when you can get it free!! These writers on the site are good, too. The feedback I've gotten already is making the novel better. Seriously, check it out. 

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Time to move on

Thanks to all who commented and followed me on the tour. Unfortunately, I ran out of time to comment on everyone but I did manage to leave a few and like and repost most of your blogs. But now it's time to move on. I've been marketing AFTER for several weeks now and it's exhausting work. I have managed several sales and have gottten a lot of exposure but it is taking away from my true love... creating my own worlds. I've decided to publish my next book by mid-July, now that I'm more experienced with this Kindle and epublishing world. My next book is something I've been working on for years. It is a middle grade sci/fi fantasy adventure called INSECTLAND. All it needs is a week or two of tweaking since it was considered "finished" by my then agent many years ago and then I'll start the process of getting cover art and formatting again. Here is the brief synopsis.


Robot insects called Defenders have recruited average fifteen-year-old Dan Larson for a mission. He is to rid Earth of a scouting group of Cyderion: tiny, intelligent, dragon-like creatures that exploit a planet’s ecosystem. They have taken residence in his backyard. The Cyderion discover Dan's assignment, abduct him on their spaceship, and take him to their planet. Having been shrunk to insect-size, Dan is forced into a slave camp with a multitude of strange, alien creatures. Starved and worked to exhaustion, Dan meets Emily, a human doctor who refuses to accept this fate. Racing against the possibility of lifetime imprisonment and being a miniature forever, Dan seizes an opportunity and escapes. Except, his escape wasn't luck. It was planned by the Defenders who are living covertly on the Cyderion planet. The revolution has begun.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

I'm trying goshda**it!

Again, I apologize to all the blogalicious participants who have taken the time to comment on my blog; I still can't seem to leave comments on some of the blog sites. I've gotten to a few of you but it takes like ten minutes for my computer to unfreeze after each post so it's going to be some time before I get all of you. I have been "liking" and tweeting about the tour though, so that should help drive some traffic to your sites. Other than this glitch, some good news is I'm starting to sell more copies of AFTER. Feedback has been good. People are getting really into it and say they love the descriptions of the hereafter and that the story is really unique. Would love to wake up one morning and see a 1000 sales. That's the beauty of the new publishing world; you can literally wake up rich if the book goes viral.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Why am I so dumb?

To all of you on the blogolicious tour today I apologize. My computer keeps locking up for some reason when I use the links. I'm "liking" and posting everyone's blog on Facebook and Twitter as best I can but I'm having a hard time commenting. Unfortunately, I'm running out of time to figure this out and have to go to my job that pays my bills soon. If this helps, I'm posting everyone's blog here.
Again, I apologize to everyone participating that I'm too dumb to figure out why my computer keeps locking up. If I figure it out I'll definitely start commenting.

1. Dora -
2. Kriti -
3. Sonia Rumzi -
4. Paula -
5. Kate & Ashley -
6. Roy -
7. Shaeeza -
8. Anna -
9. Lisa -
10. Jessica -
11. Corinne -
12. Nicole -
13. Tosh -
14. Desiree -
15. Shelley -
16. Tessa -
17. DK Levick -

18. La Vonya -
19. Janet -
20. Jim -
21. Linda -
22. Sibylla -
23. Amber -
24. Lori -
25. Neil -
26. Tina -
27. Babz -
28. John -
29. Violet -

30. Dora -

Monday, June 6, 2011

Promo and more promo

Spending three hours a day plugging away at Kindle sites and forums is finally starting to pay off. I've had sales. And not sales from family and friends. But actual sales from strangers. It's pretty amazing what the new technology is offering writers who don't like to travel and promote outside the house. I only dream of going viral and waking up one morning to a hundred thousand sales. I'd appreciate if my blog followers participated in this dream. LOL. I have AFTER priced on Kindle at $1.79. I think this is a good number. A lot of authors are advertising their books for 99 cents, but in my opinion, it seems to cheapen the value. I worked long and hard for years perfecting AFTER and I think it's worth more than the lowest price allowed by Kindle. Do you agree?

AFTER available on Kindle for $1.79:             

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Man, does time travel fast

Sorry it's been a while since I wrote. Nicer weather means more work and less time to write, which I hate. So anyway, on to AFTER and what's been happening. I've been promoting pretty heavily on Kindle forums and the results have been pretty awesome. Not so much in sales, but exposure. My posts so far are averaging about 100 views per day, which is pretty awesome considering each post lists my sites. I've noticed an increase in hits as a result. I've also started commenting on other people's post which has also given me a lot of exposure. I'm getting about 30-50 emails a day directly related to my books, either people telling me they've seen them or friend requests for writing groups. Looks like things are steaming ahead.

I will admit, that I spend about 3 hours a day solely on marketing. It does take it's toll.