Monday, 13 October 2014

Unless You Can Be A Unicorn...

Happy Release Week Sale for Unless You Can Be A Unicorn by Delphina Henley!!!  Only $.99 for one week only!



Always be yourself... that was the last advice Scout's Grandma Nora gave her before she died. Scout has spent her life trying to be anything but, but she has a chance to start anew as she moves several states away to college. She had always thought the glowing aura she saw around some people was a childhood fancy, but when it starts coming back just as she's starting her new life, she learns there was much hidden about who she truly is.
Thankfully, she has a motley crew to help her along the way: a spunky bookseller, a trustworthy pub owner, a commanding grandmother, a possible best friend, and a hot rocker boy who only has eyes for her.
Unless You Can Be A Unicorn is a New Adult Paranormal Romance with content appropriate for a Young Adult audience.



Giveaway: Be sure to enter to win a Ginormous Gift Pack of Awesome including a GC, Books, swag and more :You can check out the prize pack on the FB Release Day Extravaganza page and join the fun!

Monday, 11 August 2014

Why Free Still Works...

I've found that marketing tactics among indie authors seem to go in waves. A couple of years ago, free ebooks were all a hit. Then this time last year, it was the $0.99 'deal' ebooks that were riding high. Now it seems to be $0.99 box sets that are hitting the best seller lists.

I have debated putting together a box set for some time now. To be honest, the only thing holding me back is time in formatting it, and also creating a box set cover. I'm sure I could figure it out if I had the time, but I don't right now because new books still take priority with my writing time. With the kids off school, so I now have three little ones under my feet all day, I need to stay focused.

However, that wasn't the point of this post today! No, today I wanted to talk about free ebooks and why as a marketing tool, they can still work.

May 2014 was one of my slowest months, sales-wise, that I've had for at least a couple of years. I had the third book in the Spirit Shifters series in the editing process, and I just thought sod it, I'll put the first book as free and see what happens. I did this by choosing the free option on Draft 2 Digital, and then within a few days, Amazon price matched.

Within a few days, I had over 14,000 downloads of Autumn's Blood on Amazon, and thousands more on Barnes & Noble and Apple. The sales of the second book took off, and as soon as I released book three, my sales jumped to a height I've not seen for some time.

Because my free book worked so well in this instant, I decided to take one of my other books, The Sound of Crickets, and put it into KDP Select. I've not been in KDP Select for eighteen months, but the book wasn't selling on any platform, so I figured I had nothing to lose. I set up a number of ads and set three of my free days on Amazon. Well, even these results surprised me. In three days, I had almost 20,000 downloads of The Sound of Crickets. I'd been hoping for a couple of thousand, so those numbers were overwhelming. When it went back to paid, the sales continued. Over the last few weeks they've begun to drop back down again, but I'm still getting more sales than I did before the KDP promotion.

One of the best parts of this free promotion hasn't just been the sales. When I started my give away, I had about fifteen reviews on Amazon. Now I have 35 reviews for the book, and all of them state that they're 'Amazon Verified Purchases' and all of them loved the book. I always expect at least a few negative reviews from such a big give away, but so far there hasn't been anything below a four star! (This may change any day though!).

So, here's a summary of the benefits of running a free ebook:

  • Exposure. People who haven't come across you before may put your book on their kindle, or other e-reader.
  • Sales. You may get continued sales after a free run, or the readers may buy other books in the series, if there is one.
  • Reviews. Hopefully people will be good enough to leave a review once they're done reading.
  • mailing list sign-up. I always include a link to my mailing list at the back of my books. 
Want to try one of my free books? I have several! Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Free Novel on Amazon Today!

I've decided to take another little plunge into the world of KDP Select and so my women's fiction novel, 'The Sound of Crickets', is free on Amazon for the next three days only, starting today.

I think of this novel as 'Bridget Jones's Diary' meets 'Steel Magnolias'.There are no vamps or shifters in this book, but there is a touching story of friendship between four women on line, something I think most of us can relate to in this day and age.

 I hope you'll head over to Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk and grab yourself a copy. 

Here's the blurb and the new cover! 

Four women who have never met ... 
Four lives inextricably joined ... 
Four friendships that will last forever ... 

Named after Amelia Earhart, the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, Amelia Thompson always thought life would have given her wings. Instead, she finds herself stuck at home with three small children, and a body she no longer recognises. Hoping to connect with like-minded people, she decides to reach out on a women's forum to try to find others with whom to start a blog. 
To her delight, she gets a response. Sara, a romance author whose elderly mother has just moved in with her. Kelly, whose husband only wants to spend time down the pub, and Charlotte, who is suffering from empty nest syndrome now her daughter has left home. 

Told in the medium of their blog posts and emails to each other, The Sound of Crickets is a touching novel of friendship in the digital age. 


Friday, 30 May 2014

A Change in Cover: Marketing

Last month, I released my first women's fiction novel, The Sound of Crickets. The idea is original, the characters easy to relate to, and the book has been receiving great feedback, both with reviews, and with readers contacting me to tell me how much they loved the book. I even had one reader plan out the whole sequel for me and she had some good ideas, too!

But I always knew this book would be a hard sell. The readers I've built up over the past four years are fans of paranormal romance, and The Sound of Crickets doesn't have a single vampire or werewolf in it! This is the reason it took me so long to get the book out. I always knew I would be dipping my toe into a whole new market of readers.

And I was right. Sales on the book have been disappointing, and I even ran some advertising this week and received far fewer sales than I expected. When this happens, my first instinct is that something needs to change, and the main thing that probably needs changing is the cover.

So that's what I've done. This is the original cover:


I like it. It relates to the book, I think it's fun and quirky, and is bright enough to catch the reader's eye. But for some reason, it's not working. So I've decided to go less Lisa Jewell, and more Jodi Picoult, cover-wise.
This is the new cover:

Completely different, right? A bit more contemporary, while still relating to what the book is about. I'm hoping it will do what I want, and help the book's sales. Only time, and probably a bit more marketing will tell!

You can buy The Sound of Crickets at Amazon!

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Monday, 28 April 2014

My Writing Process Blog Tour

Many thanks to Mel Comley for inviting me to join this tour. She's an amazing (and bestselling) writer of a fantastic thriller series (The Justice Series). I know because I've read them! Mel is a British author who now lives in France, where she spends her time, other than writing, renovating her house and taking care of her dogs. Visit her on Facebook at:  Mel Comley and Friends. If you're on twitter drop her a line.  Stop by her blog.  Or visit her website.

MY WRITING PROCESS BLOG TOUR

1.) What am I working on?

I'm currently working on the third book of my Spirit Shifters series, Autumn Rising. I'm hoping to  have the first draft finished in the next few weeks, and the book should be out by the end of July. Here's the cover which  I absolutely love, I hope you do too!

2.) How does my work differ from others in its genre?

This is a really difficult question! I would say it's my combination of romance and horror. My novels are quite graphic, and dark, and intense, but they always have a strong romance theme running through them as well. Sometimes, this makes it difficult for me to categorise my work - is it paranormal romance, or urban fantasy, or dark fantasy, or horror? Sometimes a single book will span all of those categories!

3.) Why do I write what I do?

I've always loved the paranormal, ever since I was a young girl. I grew up as a teenager obsessed with vampires, and so it was only natural that I would write about them one day. I also started my love of reading on a diet of Stephen King, James Herbert, and Dean Koontz, so again, writing paranormal was always going to be in my future.

4.) How does my writing process work?

I'm very much what is known as a 'pantser'. I tend to have a vague idea of a story in my head, and ask myself a few 'what if' questions. I will write character profiles down in my trusty notebook to help build upon them and make them feel more three dimensional to me, but for the most part, as soon as I start writing, they pop up pretty clear in my head. With my series books, I might have a vague idea of how I want a book to finish up, but more often than not, that changes by the end. If I try to plot or plan too far ahead, I find myself getting stuck or overwhelmed. The story will feel too big for me, and I'll start to worry I'm going to be able to pull it off. If I just start writing, and not think too much more than a couple of chapters ahead, then the words tend to flow. If I get stuck, I'll simply jump a chapter or two, and write whichever scene in currently speaking to me the loudest at that time. Of course, this does mean that my first drafts are extremely messy, and I have to spend a lot of time going back and reworking things!

WHO IS NEXT?

The next person on the tour is the fabulous Belinda Frisch. Belinda is the author of a number of novels, including the gruesome 'Cure' zombie series! But she has recently been branching out into the world of romantic suspense with her novel Fatal Reaction.

After fifteen years of working in healthcare, Belinda Frisch's stories can't help being medicine influenced. A writer of dark tales in the horror, mystery, and thriller genres, she is a storyteller at heart, and has been writing since her teens. Her fiction has appeared in Shroud Magazine, Dabblestone Horror, and Tales of Zombie War. She is an honorable mention winner in the Writer's Digest 76th Annual Writing Competition. Her novel, Cure, is the runner-up in the General Fiction category of the 2012 Halloween Book Festival and was optioned for film. She is the author of Better Left Buried, Fatal Reaction, Cure, and Afterbirth, in addition to a number of short stories. She resides in upstate New York with her husband, son, and a small menagerie of beloved animals.

She'll be posting her writing process this time next week, on May 5th, over on her blog! You can also find her on her facebook page and twitter!