Guest Author Spot

I’m delighted to be guest author on Rita Lee Chapman’s site this week.  This is to coincide with a free run of my new, short contemporary romance, ‘The Fight for Dolores,’ free on Amazon from 25th to 29th May.

Many thanks to Rita for featuring me and the book:

http://ritaleechapman.com/guest-authors

 

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Promoting Free Smashwords Books

I recently re-blogged a post of Grace Risata’s about her experiences of using Kindle Countdown Promotions. As Grace’s blog suggests, if you are promoting a book on Amazon the challenge is to decide how to do it from the many possible sites available. My experience of promoting books that are free on Smashwords suggests that the reverse is true: there are very few sites interested in listing a Smashwords book that is free, if it isn’t also free on Amazon.

In the past, I have primarily been looking for free means of promoting free books and I have found that almost all sites dedicated to ebook promotion require the free deal to be on Kindle as well as other retailers. It’s often the case that if a book is free on Smashwords, it will go free on Amazon too but, in my experience, it can revert to paid on Kindle even if it’s still free on Smashwords, so you need to be aware of this if you’re scheduling a post for the future.

Good ways of promoting free Smashwords books are: to use Goodreads, most of whose Groups have dedicated discussion threads where author promotion is permitted, and to use other book forum sites (Library Thing, Mobile Read and Book Barista are all included in my links). Free Online Novels.com will list your book if it is permanently free.

In part, I am writing this post in the hope that someone will tell me there are ways of promoting free Smashwords books that I’m unaware of. Personally, I’ve never come across dedicated sites to promote books on iTunes (to whom Smashwords ship) and I’ve found that many book pages on Facebook and Twitter are very much Amazon-oriented.

 

RONR is Nearly 3! ‘High Sea’ Promo, Free Book Listings Sites and Book Review Blogs

'High Sea,' short Victorian romance, free on Amazon 12-16 November

‘High Sea,’ short Victorian romance, free on Amazon 12-16 November

As Romance Or Not Romance approaches its third birthday, I have decided to celebrate with a free promotion of my short Victorian romance, ‘High Sea.’  This will be the last one on Kindle Select so, Kindle users, grab it while you can!  The book will be free from Wednesday 12th to Sunday 16th November.

The impending anniversary has given me cause to reflect that the blog is now morphing somewhat from its original purpose as a platform to publicise my books, into a bit more of a writing / self-publishing blog.  Having now had some experience of the trials and tribulations of self-publishing, it seems natural to use RONR to summarise useful information I’ve found and, to some extent, to seek to inform other indie writers who are starting out or looking for guidance / inspiration.

To that end, I’ve improved my lists of links to other sites.  There is a category for Book Blogs and Other Sites, which contains links to the blogs of reviewers who’ve helped me along the way and to various sites that I have found useful, in terms of providing writing opportunities and guidance or services to authors.

I’ve also created a list of links to sites providing free listings for authors.  These are sites that may also provide paid promotional services but do have an element of free listings that I have found to be effective.  Some are sites where your book needs to be free to be included.  They all have their own submission criteria, so please study these carefully before submitting.  Many are forums that also provide scope for indie authors to promote their work.  Please bear in mind that forums have etiquette that you must observe – only posting promos in the designated threads, for instance.

I will keep these link lists updated and hope that writers find them useful for promotional purposes and that readers find them a rich source of free and bargain books!

‘Brizecombe Hall’ Gets A Make-Over…

New Book Cover for 'Brizecombe Hall,' short historical romance

New Book Cover for ‘Brizecombe Hall,’ short historical romance

… because apparently books really are judged by their covers!

I have been digesting the advice of Mark Coker (Smashwords Founder and Self-Publishing Guru) and, as a result, have decided to embark on a process of revamping my bookcovers.  Having now become a lot clearer about defining my short historical stories as ‘Romance,’ I figure that, accordingly, their covers should be romantic!

First to get the treatment is ‘Brizecombe Hall,’ my Regency / Victorian romance.  I acquired this cover from Self Pub Book Covers.com and I’m really thrilled with it.  Their site is a great concept, I think, connecting authors and artists and enabling authors to browse loads of designers’ images and customise them.

In other news, I’m delighted that the current promo of ‘Elizabeth Clansham‘ has now filtered through to Amazon.com, where readers have started to download the book for free.

‘Collected Romances’ – on Amazon Kindle

'Collected Romances' book cover

‘Collected Romances’ book cover

I have published a collection of my seven short historical romances on Amazon Kindle, to give readers a book that is of overall novel-length:

http://www.amazon.com/Collected-Romances-Catherine-E-Chapman-ebook/dp/B00N16DKRK

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Collected-Romances-Catherine-E-Chapman-ebook/dp/B00N16DKRK

‘Collected Romances’ contains the short stories: Brizecombe Hall, Kitty, The Hangar Dance, Danburgh Castle, Braggot Park, Rhiannon and High Sea.  At $2.99 it’s great value compared to buying the stories individually.

I do appreciate that some readers are either looking for only clean romances or are after something more sensual, and this collection contains both, so all stories may not be to everbody’s liking!

To clarify the rating of the stories, Brizecombe Hall, Kitty and The Hangar Dance are all sweet romances.  They are also available in the collection, ‘Three Romances,’ from both Amazon and Smashwords.

High Sea, only available individually at Amazon at present, is also a sweet romance.

Danburgh Castle, Braggot Park and Rhiannon are more sensual romances and are available as a collection of ‘Three Medieval Romances‘ from both Amazon and Smashwords.

I’m really pleased to be having lots of downloads of both Collected Romances and High Sea through Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited programme.  It seems this is a great way for authors to connect with new readers.

I’m running a promo of Collected Romances on Amazon Kindle from Friday 3rd October.  It’s a Kindle Countdown Deal, which means that on Amazon UK, the book will cost 99p, rather than £1.99, from 3rd – 10th October, and that on Amazon.com it will cost $0.99 from 3-5 October and then $1.99 from 6-10 October, so if you’d like to buy the book but want to hold out for a bargain price, grab it on 3rd October!

‘High Sea’ – Short Victorian Romance

'High Sea' -Victorian Romance- book cover

‘High Sea’ -Victorian Romance- book cover

My latest novelette in the genre of historical romance is ‘High Sea,’ a story set in the Victorian era.  Here’s the blurb:

 Samantha, a seamstress, stows away on a ship bound for Australia, disguised as a boy. Discovered by the ship’s doctor, John Seacombe, she becomes his assistant. However, she rapidly finds that her growing feelings for Doctor John mean that her disguise is a hindrance, rather than a help. And when the feisty Estelle McEwan enters the scene, things become even more complicated for Sam.

As an introductory promotion, the book will be free on Amazon Kindle from 16th – 20th August:

http://www.amazon.com/High-Sea-Catherine-E-Chapman-ebook/dp/B00MJC8QFS

http://www.amazon.co.uk/High-Sea-Catherine-E-Chapman-ebook/dp/B00MJC8QFS

I hope readers enjoy it.  Although the Victorian era is familiar territory for me, this books differs from most of my writing in that it’s written from the point of view of a first person narrator.  (I actually have in mind the narrative style of earlier, 18th century novels.)  So, in this respect, it’s a departure.  I’ve written short stories in the first person but tend to go for third person narrators for anything longer, but I really enjoyed writing in the voice of Sam / Samantha!

If you read ‘High Sea’ and like it, I would appreciate reviews and ratings on Amazon and elsewhere.