I have been waiting a few months for a big event happening this month at my local library. Several authors, including myself, will be hosting a large book signing event at the 26th Street South Manatee Branch Library in Bradenton, Florida, on Saturday, April 16th, from 9am to 3pm. I will be ecstatic to have you come out to see all of us there and to chat with you. It’s a little over two weeks away so mark it on your calendars! I will have copies of The Dragonscale, Shadow Blossom, Curse of the Heroines, Shadows of the Mind, and Hazardous available for sale.
Event Photo Credit: http://www.katepfeilschiefterart.com/20…/3/…/moonlit-meeting
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/thefantasywriters/
2016 © J.E. Feldman
Writing Time: 30mins
Word Count: 957
The consistent hum of the rushing water from the towering waterfall was gradually putting Ras to sleep. The water glowed with a soft radiance from the full moon above and everything felt calm in the world. As if everything was far too calm, something attached to the back of his shirt and jerked hard. Ras flailed and fell backwards from his comfortable position leaning against a boulder beside the waterfall.
“Stay still,” Aden cried out from nearby, setting aside his big hat and fishing rod.
In an instant, Ras knew it had happened again. Aden always loved going out to fish but rarely caught anything with scales. Aden mostly caught him.
“How many times do I have to show you how to throw the line out before it gets through your thick skull?”
“I know. I’m sorry,” Aden stated, gingerly removing the hook from the back of his friend’s tunic.
“Why can’t you have any normal past times? Like whittling wood or playing pranks on the girls in town?” Ras continued to whine.
“Well, remember how well I did with the whittling knife? Almost cut my hand off!”
“Oh, yeah,” Ras said, grinning from the recollection of that memory. “There was blood everywhere.”
“Yeah, my blood. So I would much rather fish and pretend to be good at something,” Aden declared.
Ras raised his hands in defeat. “Have it your way. I’m just getting tired of being your biggest catch.”
“One day soon, you won’t be. I’m going to bring back the biggest fish anyone in town has ever seen.”
“You wouldn’t be able to carry it two feet.”
“That’s why you’re here,” Aden informed him. “You’re also my witness.”
“Less yapping and more catching then,” his friend ushered, wanting to catch back up on his napping.
“You’ll see,” Aden mumbled to himself as Ras settled back against the boulder.
Paying more attention to where he threw his line, he tossed it over the edge into darkness and waited patiently. It felt like hours before he felt a little tug on the line and he jerked up on the fishing pole with all his might. He huffed in disappointment when he didn’t find a fish on the end and carefully tossed the line back over. At some point during the long night, he dozed off and a strong tug on his fishing line jerked the pole right out of his hand. He was clear-headed enough to see it whisk away into the darkness while a lump of panic dropped like acid into his stomach.
Aden’s shout of outrage roused Ras in an instant and he joined him at the edge, staring down hopelessly toward the seemingly endless bottom of the waterfall. Aden’s pale moonlit cheeks were flushed with disappointment and anger at his own stupidity. His father had told him a week earlier that fishing pole was going to be his last one and he would have to find a cheaper past time.
“Well,” Ras began. “Guess you’re back to whittling then.”
“How can you say that?” Aden yelled, rounding on his friend.
“Aden, calm down. It’s just another fishing pole. We should be getting back anyway.”
Ras’s inability to feel sympathy for his loss enraged him further and he shoved him, watching as he lost his balance. Ras’s shoulder collided painfully with a nearby boulder and he quickly turned to face his friend, backing away from the edge for safety. His timing couldn’t have been better as the ground beneath them began to quake and tremble, growing worse by the second.
“Aden, over here,” Ras shouted, holding onto a secure boulder with one hand and grasping for his friend through the dust screen caused by debris in the air.
It felt like hours before Aden grasped his hand and was a visible outline through the debris. Ras pulled him close and the two clung on for dear life, not knowing if they were going to live to see another sunrise. Almost as soon as it had started, the quaking and trembling halted, allowing the dust to settle at their feet. Part of the ledge they were fishing off of had crumbled away along with Ras’s favorite boulder.
“What was that?” Aden gasped out, choking on the leftover dust in his throat.
“Had to be an earthquake,” Ras was replying just as another vibration jolted through the rocks surrounding the waterfall.
The terror in Aden’s voice had Ras following his gaze upwards to the middle of the waterfall itself where a massive blue horned head was forcing its way out. A long, scaly neck soon followed along with a pair of wings. The beast paused for a moment, wings bracing it against the waterfall as it caught its breath. The boys, frozen in terror, had hands clasped across each other’s mouths so neither of them would let out the scream building up inside. When the beast’s gleaming eyes roamed in their direction and hovered, they found themselves unable to breathe.
At last, the beast looked away and dragged the rest of its body free of its watery prison. Its long, spiked tail lashed around as it tried to gain balance. Just as the boys were starting to hyperventilate, the beast launched itself off of the waterfall with a loud whooshing sound and disappeared into the night. Aden and Ras stared at each other in horror and excitement.
“We are going to be in so much trouble,” Aden whimpered, already beginning to pace.
“Just imagine if we could have taken that back to the town with us! You’d be the next great dragon slayer,” Ras exclaimed.
“Instead, we just released it and I’ll be forever known as the town idiot.”
“Well, there is that,” Ras chuckled.
Back on September 17th, I submitted “The Dragonscale” to the publishing group suggested by my friend. I was e-mailed back and was told to expect to receive a decision by the end of October. November 13th (over eight weeks later in total), I e-mailed the company wondering about the status of my submission. I ended up getting a very rude response back. After that, I’ve the notion to believe from the response that they never viewed my submission and their whole system of doing anything isn’t organized at all. Needless to say, I will not be publishing with this company and honestly do not recommend them to anyone. Put simply: It looks like they don’t have their shit together. And you never want someone like that backing you.
As the title suggests, the second book in my Arbedenion Trilogy will be FREE for the first time ever on November 19th and 20th! I’m really excited to try this form of marketing and am anxious to see how well it will go. You’re probably wondering why I’m not doing “The Dragonscale” first because it’s the beginning of the series. Many people have already bought that book but fewer have bought “Shadow Blossom.” This will give them the chance to get it for free and compel them to purchase the third book when it comes out next year. I’m currently well-known for leaving cliff-hangers at the end of my stories so they’re addicting. I really hope this goes over well!
Sorry for the delay in my blog posts again. I’ve been extremely busy at my day job because all of the snowbirds are coming back to town. I’ve got a really good topic to discuss with you all today. In my Fantasy Writers group on Facebook, a member asked for marketing tips. When I gave them the following suggestions, they claimed it was more work than writing the book itself but “thanks anyway.” If you plan on being a true author, the first thing that you’ll understand is that you can’t just write the book and then be done with it. You have to market that book for the rest of your life in order to make any money from it. Without further ado, here’s the list of suggestions. It’s more effective if you do all of them but, as a beginner or someone with limited time, you can pick and choose what works for you and it will still be very effective.
1. Personal website. Everyone that I know who is a successful author has their own website. They use it to update their readers on their book releases, deals, and tidbits of information to keep their intrigue until the next book comes out.
2. Blog. In order for your blog to be successful, you need to post at least 1-3 times a week. Anything less will rapidly lose your audience. I’ve been blogging solidly for five and a half years now on this site. That’s more than long enough to figure out that the more you blog, the more traffic and followers you get. When you don’t keep up with it, they lose interest rapidly.
3. Facebook ad/Newspaper ad. Do both of these. Try setting up a $5 ad on Facebook and see how well it does. I assure you that you’ll get at least 30 new Likes and 1-5 book sales. That more than gets you your money back and everyone on Facebook will still be talking about it when the ad goes away (through sharing).
4. Do R&Rs (read and reviews). There are several websites where you can pay to have hundreds of people R&R your book. The cost of this is very small considering that a higher number of reviews will make new readers purchase your books.
5. Have a mailing list. The people who follow you have e-mails. That’s how they see that you’ve made a new blog post or published a new book. With this in mind, set up special announcements directed at them so they know that you care about your readership and don’t just send out mass updates.
6. Advertise daily in Facebook groups designated for advertising. You should always join several groups that allow you to promote once (or more) a day within the group. Most people post all of their links in one post. Don’t do this because it’s overwhelming. I find myself skipping over all of those because it makes the person seem desperate and to be honest, I don’t have time to sort out the links to the sites that I actually use to follow people. No matter what book link you share, always include your author page link. Even if you don’t accumulate any sales, you’ll at least accumulate several Likes.
7. Go to your local book stores and leave business cards/personalized bookmarks. This option is harder for introvert authors or ones that are very busy with the day job and families but there’s no excuse to not do this. Eventually, you have to get out of the house or have a family outing. Stop by a local bookstore, speak to the manager, and just drop off a handful of cards, bookmarks, or flyers.
8. Ask your local bookstores/libraries to host book signings for you. While you’re at that local bookstore or library, ask if they’ll host a book signing for you. Always offer to order and bring copies of your books on your own if they seem dubious about letting you have a signing. It usually convinces them because it costs them no money and you only need a small table in the corner but it gets their store traffic.
9. Hire a marketing business. The most obvious option is just to hire a marketing company. Within your budget, of course!
10. Word of mouth. Word of mouth is the strongest marketing strategy in order to obtain lots of sales. People are more likely to trust their friend that your book is amazing versus believing an advertisement that you clearly paid for.
Today, I finally accomplished something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time. I started that online bookstore I’ve been talking about. It’s called “The Dragon Queen’s Den” and just under the title of this blog, you’ll see those same words. Those words, when clicked, transport you directly to my online bookstore. There are currently forty-nine (49) titles to choose from at discounted prices and more will be coming. Give me a break! I only created the site today! I’m sure you all are going to love it and I’m already planning on expanding it. We’ll have to see if it’s a success first.
Here’s a direct link. Please share! – https://squareup.com/market/TheDragonQueensDen
(Originally posted on http://www.stevencapps.wordpress.com/)
If you’re like me, most authors are on a budget. In this economy, good jobs are hard to come by and I’m lucky enough to hold a part-time at a tiny post office. It’s still not enough to survive on, but like many others, I manage. With this knowledge of me, you can bet that I try to find the best quality of services at a cheaper cost. This post is to present you with my personal list of references. These are people or places that I have personally used and recommend highly for self-publishing authors. Even though I am a Fiction/Fantasy/Horror/Romance author, these references are capable of doing (nearly) every genre. If you have any further questions for me, you can contact me in the comments.
Bree Vanderland – https://www.facebook.com/Author.Bree
ES Tilton – http://estilton.deviantart.com/
Jo Renehan – https://www.facebook.com/john.renehan1
Premade Covers 4 U – https://www.facebook.com/Premadecovers4u
J Ash B Designs – https://www.facebook.com/Jashbdesigns
SelfPubBookCovers – http://www.selfpubbookcovers.com/
Angel Thomas – http://covertocoverediting.webs.com/
(The reason for only one editor reference is because I have found no one who is better or equal to Angel’s professionalism.)
Facebook Ads – http://www.facebook.com/
Your Local Newspaper
Create a Blog on WordPress or Blogspot
Create a Website on Webs or Wix.
Createspace – http://www.createspace.com/
Lulu – http://www.lulu.com/
Amazon KDP – http://kdp.amazon.com/