Monday, July 30, 2012


The free promotion for DEGENERATES has ended and here are the results. Copies given away to U.S. and Canadian customers is 1,678. Copies given away to U.K. Kindle owners is: 586. Copies given away to all other countries that can purchase from Amazon: 48. Of my other seven books that are for sale right now, during the four day free promotion period I saw sales increase by an average of thirty-five percent. All in all, I’d say it was a successful promotion. Between that promotion and the promotion for AFTER done at the beginning of the month, I gave away nearly four thousand copies of those two books. Though my paid sales for this month are lower than last month, I anticipate a pretty big increase if just a small percentage of my free promotion books draw in new readers. As far as my latest novel IMAGINATION goes, I’m at the one stage in finishing a novel that I hate most; copying my handwritten notes and corrections from the hard paper copy onto the computer file. I find this to be a detestable task that saps my energy and burns my eyes. If only I could pay someone who could recognize my scratch. On the bright side, this stage of my novel writing process indicates that the newest masterpiece is nearly finished. I do believe I will make my deadline of an early fall completion.

Friday, July 27, 2012


I’m in the midst of another free giveaway promotion, this time it’s for DEGENERATES. This is the first time I’ve given away one of my thrillers and you know what? It’s flying off the shelves. It’s only the second day and the promotion goes until Sunday and I’ve already given away almost a thousand books. I’m happy to do it too, because I have two other thrillers FROSTPROOF and PULP that are written in the same style and have that same eerie, creepy, Stephen King-don’t-know-what-freaky-thing-is-going-to-happen-next feel. If any of the thousand-so-far readers who have downloaded the book like it, you’ll love my others. As I’ve said in the past, the free promo has been one of the best ways for me to have gotten my books out there. I almost always get a bump in sales of my other books when I do one. But sadly, as I’ve posted, I am taking all of my books off the KDP Select program. Being exclusive to Amazon is great and the perks are great, but I really think millions of readers buying Nooks and other ereader devices are too valuable to dismiss. So far Smashwords distribution to these outlets has yielded me about ten percent of my total royalties this year, but I hope to increase that through a heavy marketing campaign I’m planning in early to late fall when IMAGINATION is complete and published. Until then, get your free copy of DEGENERATES while you can, for soon I will have no more free giveaways. Enjoy the suspense.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Sleepless night.

Please enjoy DEGENERATES for free until Sunday! And have a sleepless night : )


Brutal slayings in the quiet suburbs of Philadelphia have detective Aaron Miller on edge. Residents are readily falling victim to a cold-blooded serial killer who is absolutely vicious, torturing and murdering at random and for sport. As pressure mounts to stop this psychopath, Aaron becomes increasingly frustrated by the lack of evidence. As his own life begins to unravel, a chance encounter leads him to interview the employees of City Café. He notices the shadowy figure washing dishes in the back. What happens next places the group in grave danger and leads them into a horror that will change everything about their lives.

Monday, July 23, 2012


As I checked my email this morning I was pleasantly surprised to find out that my novel. DROP OUT has won today’s Indie Book of the Day award. . I’m not too familiar with the website but it seems like it has a lot of followers. I’m also not sure who nominated the book but if that person or persons reads this blog I’d like to say thanks. As I’ve always written, making it as an independent author requires exposure, lots and lots of exposure. I’m hoping this award will introduce a slew of new readers to my novels. I’ve already noticed a slight increase in sales. Once again, thanks for the award.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Author freedom

I got another one of those terrifying e-mails from Kindle Direct publishing saying they have discovered INSECTLAND for sale at other online booksellers. And as anyone who publishes through this promotion knows, you have to be exclusive to for 90 days. Violating this can lead to the expulsion of your book not only from the promotion but also from Amazon and Kindle. That would be a huge blow to my market audience of Kindle and Kindle Fire owners. Worried I might lose this book, I quickly checked the stats. I had enrolled the book in early March and had hit the automatic renewal button. It showed a new start date of June 7th. Fine, I thought, my 90 day exclusive was up nearly two months ago. I have nothing to worry about. Then yesterday, I got another email from KDP saying that INSECTLAND was still on other websites and that it would be withdrawn from the promotion. I was a little flabbergasted and a little pissed. I read the rules and had followed them. I didn’t publish my books anywhere else until I was certain the 90 day period was up losing who knows how many Nook and Kobo sales? I bit the bullet because I believed that KND Select along with publishing for Nook and various other ereaders would turn out to be the best bet in the long run. I didn’t understand what was going on so I decide to post the question of why, after my 90 day exclusive is up that I’m getting my book pulled from the program, on the KDP forum to see if anyone else was having this difficulty. I got two great responses and here they are:

If you are enrolled with kdp select the conditions are that they have exclusivity. You cannot publish any other e versions of your book until the 90 day period has finished. By auto renewing you are agreeing to another 90 day exclusivity!

You said you renewed? Then you start all over with the 90 day exclusivity. The only way to get out of the exclusivity clause is to non-renew on your bookshelf.

There’s the reason. Whereas I thought after my first 90 days were up I’d have free reign to do what I wanted. Finding this out was very disappointing, mainly, like I said before, because I wasted three months on exclusivity instead of marketing to everyone. Though, every author has their own individual goals on who they want to sell to and how, I decided to withdrawal all of my books from the Select program. I want my books out there all over the world and available on everything with a screen. I know not having the free giveaways option may make me have to market harder, but I still think author freedom is worth it.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

We all die. But what happens after?

Now you can find out for free! For the next two days AFTER is absolutely free on! Thanks and enjoy.


When Nick Murray dies mysteriously he enters an afterlife like nothing he had ever imagined. There are rules, regulations, and beings in positions of great power. The devil craves this power and will do anything to attain it, even use his evil influence to start a global war on Earth. The devil intends to collect billions of human souls and turn them into a massive, afterlife zombie attack force.

Nick’s soul is dropped into the body of a deceased army commander in the hopes of stopping the apocalypse. But an unexpected turn of events lands him face to face with the ultimate adversary where he discovers a terrifying truth. How can you destroy something that is already dead? Fostered to be a celestial super hero, can he prevent the devil from damning for eternity all who ever lived?

Also, check out the AFTER Facebook page.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Organizing the chapters

So begins one of my favorite aspects of writing a novel; organizing the chapters. This is when I take each separate character and their plotline and read it all in one string instead of being spaced out in the book. This allows me to flush out any inconsistencies and make sure the story stays true and along the proper path. I first did this when I wrote DEGENERATES That book has so many characters and plotlines that it was nearly impossible to keep track of everything. I literally wrote seven separate stories, one for each character, before melding them together to form a coherent novel. This is what I’m doing right now for IMAGINATION. Once I get the characters in order, it’s just a matter of connecting them with a few key intro sentences and, wallah, the book is nearly complete. Why do I say “nearly”? Because I still do two more final reads. The first final, I’ll read half the book in one sitting at a relatively slow pace looking for any mistakes or errors no matter minute or insignificant. The next sitting, I will read the second half, looking for the same things. Then I put the book aside for one week give or take a day and concentrate on marketing and promoting, putting the manuscript totally out of my mind. Then comes the final read day. I’ll plan it on a day when I know I won’t be disturbed and have nothing pressing to do outside of the house. I’ll wake up early, get a steaming cup of coffee, settle into my comfy chair in the sunroom, place my laptop computer on my thighs, and read as much as I can before my eyes bug out or I stop for lunch. I’ll read the book like someone who bought the book; fast and looking to be entertained. I’ll only pause if something really terrible stops me. If I do have to rewrite a paragraph and shift some things around during this phase, I will start the entire process over again, reading from page one. I’ll do this until I can read the entire book in one sitting without stopping to fix anything. Sound like a long process? It is. I’ve written entire drafts of novels faster than it took me to consider the book finished after re-reads. You might say I’m a perfectionist, but I’m really not. For me, finishing a book is like setting a child out into the world. I want the book/child to be the best it can be and shine far above all the other competition. So, as I take another sip of coffee and look over these pages, I won’t know if IMAGINATION will be done in a week or a year. Let’s hope it’s the previous, I’ve got lots more new books to write.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


Okay, so here we are entering the second week of July and my sales have remained relatively stagnant since the Fourth of July. I’ve explored all the free promotion sites, and forums and threads. I’ve placed sponsorships with Kindle Nation Daily, Kindle Fire Department, Kindle Boards, and various smaller indie websites. I’ve manage to write on average three blog posts a week and have over 170 followers (thanks everyone) and almost 200,000 hits. I’m active on Authors Den, Goodreads, Shelfari, The Book Marketing Network, and various other websites for writers. I participate on Facebook, Twitter, Linked in, Booktown, Bookblogs, and numerous other social media outlets… so what do I do now to boost sales? Pray to the book buying Gods to make me go viral? Pay thousands of dollars for a publicist and go forth unto the living and market directly to humans? Or simply keep doing what I’m doing and hope that eventually my dues will be collected and it all will pay off. I’m at the point in my writing career where the biggest book buying will probably come from word-of-mouth. With eight books out there now and three more on the way within a year, I can only hope that word-of-mouth will propel sales. I’ve gotten nothing but rave reviews for my novels and these are from actual unbiased buying customers that I don’t know. My friends who do buy my books also tell me how much they enjoy them. I get emails and comments from total strangers who love my stuff and style. So, what do I do now? The agony of word-of-mouth promotion is that it can take a long time for it to gain momentum. But then suddenly, poof, you go viral and everyone wants your stuff. Suddenly, you’re rich beyond your wildest dreams and selling tens of thousands of books a day. You buy vacation homes, and boats, and fast cars. You sit in a big house overlooking the ocean and tap out stories, happy beyond your wildest dreams. Yep, that’s what the right word-of-mouth can get you. Now, if I only knew how to get people talking. Any ideas? Check me out on Indie Spotlight today! Of course they got the wrong cover so that’s not good. That’s free advertising for ya.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

The future

Lately, I’ve been contemplating the future of writers in today’s high technology society. What will become of us and the books we write? Will the paperback go the way of the compact disk? Will publishing houses disappear the way most record labels have? Will the paperback book become a lost art? I don’t know, but one thing I do know is that there will always be writers and there will always be stories to tell. What is uncertain, is what medium will sell those stories. I have several theories on what may happen in the not-to-distant future. One, and something we can all agree upon, is that ebooks will replace traditional books to a large degree. People will carry libraries of their favorites in a nearly weightless ereader the size of a sheet of paper or less. And we all know how easy it is to pirate a book and place it for free all over the internet. So, how will a writer make money? I’m nearly certain that book advances by major publishers will be non-existent within five years. I have two theories. My first, is that authors will have websites that people can join and then read the author’s books. For instance, I would charge say, 99 cents a month to read all the books I have and continue to put out. No one would really own the books but they could read them everywhere and on all types of devices. This would work extremely well if you had a large following. Imagine thousands if not tens of thousands of people paying .99 cents a month. That’s a lot of scratch. My second theory on the future of authors and their books is perhaps an author will offer their ebooks for free on websites or even as stand alone novels. The twist, there would be ads on both the site and in the book. The product would be free to the reader, but companies would pay to advertise alongside or in between the pages. This could generate quite a bit of revenue if the book became big. Imagine charging a certain sum for advertising per month and then switching it up between advertisers. Again, that’s a lot of scratch. As I see it, the traditional book industry of buying a single paperback from a single author through a bookstore or website will soon become ancient history. But for the author, this opens up a whole new way of getting the world to notice you. We’ll see what the future holds.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Don’t get discouraged

I’ve been reading a lot of posts on KND and KDP about how July sales have started out slowly. It’s not surprising considering the Fourth of July holiday. As I said in my last post, I made the biggest mistake of all by booking a sponsorship during this week. People are out having fun and spending time looking to buy ebooks takes away from some of that fun. Although I’ve sold a bunch of books already this month, I’m not going to base my monthly average on this week’s sales. Otherwise, I might get discouraged. In my never ending quest to sell more books I’ve decided to start concentrating on selling to Nook. Nook is lowering their price and has great features like backlighting for night reading. I’ve joined the Nook Boards (which allows you to promote your books on their author’s forum) and already have all eight of my books in the Smashwords premium catalog. Smashwords offers a much higher royalty than Kindle, and for each $1.99 book I sell I get to keep $1.40 compared to about sixty cents from Kindle. As most authors know, Smashwords also makes your book available to all other ereader devices except for Kindle, though I’ve heard a merger just may be in the works. I’ve got my books up on Smashwords and in the Nook store, but until recently I paid little attention to marketing for those devices. Until I saw that Smashwords has paid out more than ten million in royalties this past year. I want a piece of that. I have sold a few dozens copies to Nook and Kobo and have seen the royalty deposited right into my bank account so I know the machine is primed for selling. If I do this right, and join the correct forums and websites for Nook readers, I should double my sales within a few months. Nook or Kindle, it doesn’t matter to me which ereader is better and I have no loyalties to one or the other. I just want everyone in the world to read my books.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Not so good

So once again, I’ve made a blunder (I think) in my sponsorship ads. Last Friday, DROP OUT was Kindle Nation Daily’s sponsor. According to their own estimates more than 150,000 readers were exposed through their means. I probably exposed the link to another twenty or thirty thousand people through my promotional efforts. I figured it was a good day to place the sponsorship because of the upcoming Fourth of July. I assumed readers would be anxious for some holiday reading by the poolside or on the beach. I, myself, was at the beach all last week at Wildwood Crest New Jersey. Our checkout date just happened to be the Friday of my sponsorship. So, after posting notice and the link on all my writer’s sites and blog in the morning, I merrily packed the car and headed home, thrilled to check my sales numbers when I arrived. I cruised out of the island pretty easily, but then we got to the expressway. Oh my God! Traffic was backed up for miles and miles. It was crazy. People honking. People getting out of their cars and looking down the street. People scratching their heads in frustration. Thankfully, the cars were all going toward the beaches and not away, like I was. So, as I drove onward relieved that I wasn’t involved in that mess, it suddenly occurred to me that today was a HUGE travel day. People weren’t going to be lounging around poolside or scanning their Kindles for books. They were going to be traveling. I had booked a sponsorship on a day when most people won’t be reading anything. The last sponsorship for DROP OUT was a few months ago with Kindle Fire Department, and that yielded impressive results. With that hopeful thought in mind I tried to put sales out of my head and concentrate on driving. Three hours later, tired and hungry, I pulled into my driveway. Not one for suspense, I went straight into my office, turned on my computer, and waited with tingles along my spine for the machine to boot. After what seemed like an eternity, the screen flickered to life and I was online. Fingers trembling, I typed into my account. I looked at a few sales of my other books and then lowered my eyes to DROP OUT’s numbers. It felt like a lead weight had dropped into my stomach. My biggest fear materialized into truth. My sales for DROP OUT after the sponsorship were hardly affected, just a few more than normal. I sighed with disgust at my own stupidity for booking the date. If nothing else, I’ve learned this about sponsorship. Don’t sponsor on the weekends even though most people say you should. I’ve discovered most sales come during the week when people are bored at work and fiddle around online to pass the time. That’s when they discover you. Don’t book sponsorships on sites with less than 10,000 hits a day. The percentages against making enough sales to cover the cost run against you. And the hard lesson for me, never book a sponsorship on a known travel day. Hopefully, sales will magically increase and I can put a plus on the income side of this sponsorship instead of a negative.