Friday, July 27, 2012

Supportive Blogger Extraordinaire Contest!

The support and encouragement from other bloggers is wonderful. All the people who left comments regarding M. Pax’s book on Monday; those who responded to my request for quotes for my book; the bloggers who have helped with my past book launches; etc. Sometimes we don’t always get full support in the real world, but online, it is everywhere.

Who has supported you? Who encourages others? Who goes out of the way to notice a fellow blogger? Who champions others? Who is a positive influence in the blogging world?

I aim to find out!

This contest is two-fold. The first round will be the nominations. Tell me why the blogger you are nominating deserves to win. I will select the three most compelling arguments for three different bloggers and those will go up for a vote.

Supportive Blogger Extraordinaire Contest Rules:

1 - July 27 - August 5 - Nominations open. Leave a compelling comment - why does the blogger you are nominating deserve to win? What has that person done? What is that person’s character?

2 - The same blogger can be nominated more than once. (Just make your argument more compelling than the previous person’s.)

3 - Nominations open to everyone, but the person you nominate must be a blogger.

4 - I will select the three most compelling comments for three separate bloggers.

5 - Voting will open August 6 and run through August 11.

6 - Winner announced August 13.

7 - Prizes!

The three people making the most compelling arguments will receive a $10 Amazon gift card and that person’s choice of free ebook from my titles. (The Circle of Friends series and Overcoming Obstacles with SPUNK!)

The winner of the voting round will receive a $25 Amazon gift card and that person’s choice of free ebooks of all my titles OR two print copies. In addition, the person who nominated the winner also wins that prize package.

Now it’s up to you - who will you nominate?

Monday, July 23, 2012

The Backworlds Book 2 and Industry News

The Backworlds Book 2 is Out!

The sequel to The Backworlds is now available. Craze and his friends continue their adventures in Stopover at the Backworlds’ Edge. See what role chocolate plays in the galaxy this time.

The interstellar portal opens, bringing in a ship that should no longer exist. A battleship spoiling for a fight, yet the war with Earth ended two generations ago. The vessel drops off a Water-breather, a type of Backworlder thought to be extinct. She claims one of Craze’s friends is a traitor who summoned the enemy to Pardeep Station. A betrayal worse than his father’s, if Craze lives to worry about it.

Available for all ereaders from: Amazon Amazon UK Barnes & Noble Smashwords
iTunes and Kobo will be available shortly.

If you haven’t read The Backworlds yet, it’s available as a free read from many outlets. See HERE for links.

Inspiring the words M. Pax writes, Mary spends her summers as a star guide at Pine Mountain Observatory in stunning Central Oregon where she lives with the husband unit and two loving cats. She write science fiction mostly and has a slight obsession with Jane Austen. Mary blogs at M Pax Author

In other news:

The social site DIGG was recently sold for a mere half a million dollars. It was once valued at $164 million. Read about DIGG’s fall at Publishing Executive.

E-books now lead in adult fiction sales. Read the full article at PI World.

People trust FaceBook less than Amazon and Google when it comes to personal data usage. Read full article at Bloomberg Businessweek.

Those facts about DIGG or FaceBook surprise you? Or that e-books are selling so well?

Friday, July 20, 2012

What Would You Tell a Writer or New Author?

Now that I have my manuscript back from my critique partner (thank you, Karen Walker) I can finally finish my publishing and promoting book. By finally finish, I mean get my own butt in gear and get ‘er done.

I’ve a few more things to add, plus links to hundreds of websites. As I’ve said before, if the publishing industry would just stop changing for a week or so, I could finish.

As with my Overcoming Obstacles with SPUNK book, I intend to include some quotes from others in the book. Just little tips and suggestions sprinkled throughout the chapters. I have many people to email this weekend, but I’d like to open it up to my followers, too.

If you are an author, book blogger, or publisher - what would YOU tell a new writer or author? What words of advice would you impart? What I’m seeking are short, 1-3 sentences of wisdom from those who’ve been there, done that. All contributors get a by-line and a link to their site.

If you are interested, leave a comment and include your email address if it’s not located on your blog or in your profile. I’d like this to benefit as many people as possible.

Karen’s comments were wonderful and I really hope How to Publish and Promote Your Book Now helps a lot of people!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Love of Animals, Writer's Organizations, and Unique Book Video

I have a guest post over at Jo on Food, My Travels, and a Scent of Chocolate

It’s a little different from my normal publishing and promoting tips, as I venture into the area of animals, vegetarianism, and beautiful animal photos. Please stop by Jo’s place if you love animals.

For those of you looking for a specific genre writing organization:

Mystery Writers of America
Sisters in Crime
Romance Writers of America
Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America
Horror Writers Association
Historical Novel Society

I also found this video of a book warehouse - and what the stockers do with the books is incredibly creative!

Monday, July 09, 2012

The Risk of Blogging and Politics

They always say there are two subjects never to broach - religion and politics.

Now for an author whose book is about politics, especially if it is non-fiction, blogging about the topic is a given. Regardless of the slant, he or she will want to attract the target audience for that book. Using the right key words and the right content will bring potential readers. (And potential non-readers, sometimes in droves.)

Lately though I’ve seen a lot of author blogs going off on political rants, even though their books have nothing to do with politics. Even worse, I’ve seen a lot of political slamming comments left on other blogs. Many of these have had nothing to do with the content of the post - the commenting author just felt a need to say something politically negative.

As an author though, it all comes back to one thing - being marketable. And we aren’t selling our books, we are selling ourselves. Yes, our blogs are our own, but once we step into the limelight as an author, we need to be more careful what we say. We can be adult and tactful while still sticking to our beliefs and values.

Going on a politic tirade on one’s blog is guaranteed to do one thing - it will alienate half of your potential audience. No matter which angle you take, left or right, you are going to anger the other half. And what happens when you do that? You potentially eliminate half of your reading audience. HALF.

This isn’t limited to politics, either. It can include any controversial topic.

Authors work so hard to build up an image online. We want to appeal to as many readers as possible without compromising who we are as a person. We need to carefully consider everything we say, whether it be a blog post, comment, or Tweet. We need to avoid shooting ourselves in the foot.

As a reader, there are authors whose books I will never purchase. All it took was one rant, one negative comment, one bitter post, for me to reach that decision. And I’m sure I’m not alone.

How carefully do you consider what you say online? How many authors have turned you off?

Friday, July 06, 2012

Thank You and My New Toy

With the Fourth of July holiday on Wednesday, the week kinda slipped by me.

Thanks to everyone who encouraged me to write the fiction book earlier this week. I'd written one of the stories years ago and have the outline prepared for another. Once everything is finalized on my next book, maybe I will dive into those stories.

Actually, I've been a little distracted this week. I bought a new toy! (And paid cash.) After racking up over 163,000 miles on my little Tribute in just seven years, it was time for a new ride. Monday night I came home with a 2012 Hyundai Sante Fe Limited, fully loaded with sunroof, heated seats, and Infinity stereo system. And she is sweet!

Yes, ever since my Dodge pickup, I've developed a thing for red cars. Ironically, since the magnet on the back of my Tribute permanently adhered itself to the metal, someone will now be advertising for me:

Everyone have a good weekend!

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

The Insecure Writers Support Group

It’s time for another edition of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group, hosted by Ninja Captain, Alex J. Cavanaugh.

It is wonderful to see so many writers publishing their fictional works, either through a traditional publisher or by self-publishing. This makes me wonder as I wrap up my next (non-fiction) book - will I ever attempt another fictional story?

There is such a learning curve with writing. I’m not sure at what point we finally get a handle on things, but for me I don’t think I really knew what I was doing with my fictional work until Book V of my YA series. (I’ve since read a lot of big name authors say they wish they could redo their first few books, so I’m not alone.)

It’s not just the learning curve. Promoting and selling fiction is much more difficult than non-fiction. (I’ve done both.) Speaking engagements and media interviews are so much easier to acquire when you’re promoting a non-fiction book.

The genre of the fictional story I’m contemplating has me worried. Not to mention the fact that it’s an anthology of four novelette length stories. With a working title of “Four in Darkness,” the stories center on a ghost, a werewolf, an alien, and a vampire. Toss in that all four involve a romance and that lands the title right in the middle of an over-saturated genre: paranormal romance. And in two years, that genre will be on the wane or dead.

So what do I do? I’d really wanted to write something different from realistic fiction. I certainly don’t want to ever do YA again. But paranormal fantasy/romance? Do I really want to all but kill myself promoting a fictional title again? Maybe I should just stick to non-fiction now.