A necromancer awakes from his coma. A vampire owes a god of death a favor, and the deity demands his payment. A very dead ancient Egyptian prince finds himself back in the land of the living in another man’s body. And a single mother still blames her sister-in-law for the death of her husband.
Sam Ridgeway doesn’t know these four people are her personal Horsemen. The Harbingers of Armageddon. And they are more interested in their own agendas. Because if they can’t control Sam, they will have to kill her.
And if Sam dies, so does the world.
**Links will be updated as they go live.
Barnes & Noble
As part of the Resurrected promotion, the first and second books of the Bloodlines series are available for $0.99. Yep, that's right. Both Blood Magick and Zombie Love are $0.99 each from now until Halloween (October 31th) at most major e-book retailers.
If you haven't checked out this series, now's the time to get started!
Even though I gave myself plenty of time especially with Genius Kid's graduation coming up, I didn't expect some other things that had to be penciled in over the next six weeks. (Don't worry! Not medically related.) I'm determined to get these last two books done and out on time for the year, dammit!
So things may be quiet around here for the next few weeks. I'll post something fun when I can.
Once upon a time, Amazon worked hard to give their customers what the customers wanted. The Amazon algorithms were built so that if anyone typed in "vampire romance" in the Books category of the search box, they would get a list of the most popular vampire romance novels. Ones that were the best-selling and/or most read.
Now the first couple of books are "Sponsored", i.e. the publisher who paid the most for the ad to pop up.
"That's not a big deal," a few of you are saying. It is when "pay to play" results in a lot of good books not even being show to customers.
In another example, I also collect Wonder Woman paraphernalia. When I type in "Wonder Woman" for the entire store, what show up first? All the editions of Spider-man: Far From Home because it's the big ticket item Amazon is currently pushing.
Amazon day-to-day management has allegedly done a complete 180. Consumer pleasure is no longer their driving goal. Maximizing profit is. That agenda was allegedly pushed by a few executive. The internal war resulted in situations like my Wonder Woman example, despite both the techs in Amazon subsidiary A9 and Amazon's own legal team protesting the move.
Once the cat was out of the bag, someone changed the A9.com link to point directly at the Amazon store. This type of squirrely behavior isn't going to help with the current EU antitrust probe into Amazon's activities.
"But-but my books are in KU!" you protest. "The reader only pays $9.99 to read everything!"
That's not the full story either. Amazon has changed their Prime subscription so unlimited borrowing is available to Prime members instead of having to may that additional $9.99. That means income for the Kindle Unlimited pot is down.
Another part is the backlash by readers for some of the scams that have been going through KU. Some readers refuse to subscribe anymore because of some of the problems. Other readers are angry their favorite authors have been caught and banned by Amazon.
All of the above combined is part of the reason both money page reads are down. Too many writers rely on Kindle Unlimited for their income. These writers have no additional income streams, and that's going to hurt them, especially if the US DOJ comes after Amazon for anti-trust violations.
Which is entirely possible considering the current president's personal hatred of Jeff Bezos. But hey, if the Amazon execs are that stupid to draw the DOJ's attention, the fault is totally on them.
So, what should writers do? Start looking at other retailers. I'm not saying take everything wide if you're not comfortable. There are medium points between KH and wide.
For example, only my 888-555-HERO series is currently in KU. All other series are wide. Next year, I plan to pull HERO out of KU and go wide with it while I put a new series into KU. That's right--a new series, not one of the older ones. In the meantime, the paperbacks of HERO are available at lots of retailers including Barnes & Noble and Powell's.
This is merely MY plan. Other writers need to figure out theirs because there's no plan that's right for everyone.
Yes, money's down for a lot of writers when it comes to fiction. I know I can't just put out a book and make some dosh anymore, but I expected that with a maturing system. A lot of folks seem to think the gold rush should have kept going forever. Those writers with business experience realized it wasn't going to and made adjustments. Those who haven't have seen a sharp decline in sales.
I'm in a weird position in that I've had to start over with my career this year. My sales gradually fell from 2014 through 2018 simply because I was lucky if I got one book out a year. When I did manage to publish, it was at random times during the year.
I can honestly say there are two things that work:
1) A new release triggers interest in all our other works.
2) Publish on a consistent schedule.
New books doesn't mean a new novel. It can be a novella or a short story. The new release doesn't have to be for sale either.
I posted a short story on my website about Justice's lead character's grandmother between the releases of A Modicum of Truth and A Matter of Death to keep readers interest.
Also, a consistent schedule doesn't mean releasing a novel every week or every day. (Yeah, I've heard of people doing that.) First, that's only going to fry your brain. A fried brain means no books.
Can you produce that often by hiring ghostwriters? Yeah, you can, but there's a couple of things to consider:
1) Can your ghostwriters match your quality? Or are you going to spend too much of your time managing them?
2) Are you going to burn out your readers? As much as readers love a series, there can be a point of diminishing returns. Either the readers get tired of the same thing over and over. Or the readers' attention or pocketbooks can't keep up with everything you release.
One of the cool things to come out of Amazon is being able to schedule preorders for your releases up to a year in the future. If you're a slow writer like me, it's reassuring for the readers to see when your next release in their favorite series is coming out.
On Wednesday, I'll talk about some of the issue with Kindle Unlimited and other changes on the Amazon retail store.
As of October 31st, Amazon is discontinuing its Matchbook program. For those who don't know what that this, some publishers have deals set up where if you buy the paperback novel you can get the e-book of that same novel for a deep discount or free.
Angry Sheep Publishing has most of my e-book novels and anthologies set to free in this program.
Even better, Amazon has been marking down a lot of my paperbacks. Some really good discounts too, like 25-66%. With the holidays coming up, you could buy the paperback and keep the e-book for yourself.
For example, the paperback of Hero Ad Hoc is $4.57 in the US store as of this posting, so you could buy it and the e-book version for $4.57 plus tax. Check it out if you're interested!
According to the United State Federal Trade Commission regulations, I am required to notify you that may have a financial interest in the all products mentioned on this website.
According to Amazon Affiliates Terms & Conditions, I am required to inform you that I, or other affiliates, may receive advertising revenue from Amazon when you click on an Amazon link and purchase an item from Amazon.
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