Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Husband's Been Busy

I was shocked when I realized that I haven't updated the blog in two weeks...I thought it had only been one! Have we been busy? I guess we have. The husband's marketing genius has had us at a book signing something-or-other almost every weekend this month and we already have a couple things set up for next month and the month after. The husband is a promoting maniac. I haven't totaled this month's numbers yet, but I'm pretty sure we are going to exceed last month.

Here are some links to some of the things he's managed to get set up.

These two are articles in the Collingswood Patch about the 9th Annual Book Festival:

This one is from the Medford Central Record regarding the Carriage Trade Cheese Shoppe signing:

This is from the same Medford paper but a bit more expanded:

This is the podcast that I was interviewed on. The show is called "got paranormal?" and the host is S.E. Burns:

So, wow, right? Or maybe it's more of a "holy shit" if you're inclined to speak that way (which I am...truly a foul-mouth, but don't tell my mom). Either way, it's a lot of activity and a decent amount of press.

Let's hear it for my awesome husband!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Before and After

Who doesn't like a successful before and after?
Welcome back Donna White Glaser and her novel, The Enemy We Know.
(Please find the original critique here.)



Wow, right? I think it's a huge improvement and a much stronger cover.
What do you think? Weigh in in the comments!
Don't forget to check out Donna's book on Amazon.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Halloween Sale

So, the Husband and I went back and forth over having a Halloween sale for the month of October. I didn't want to do it, but am not clear if it was ego making my decision, so I conceded. The Husband pointed out that it might be a good way to get eyes on books. It's all experimental at this point, right?
So, that's the deal. 99 cent books. (Ooof! It hurts me even to type that out! I think they should sell for a million dollars a piece!! Arggghhhhuuullbaaaargle!!!)

Okay, now that I have collected myself, here are the links, let's see if he is right (again. And I can't really hope for him to be wrong, now can I–it's a damn catch 22!):

The Devil Stood Up:
Other Formats

Darkness Within, A Collection of Horrorific Short Stories:
Other Formats

Faith, Creation:
Other Formats

Other Formats

Have you ever been in a situation where it's bad to be right and good to be wrong?

Friday, October 7, 2011

It's Not Always Bad News

I want to welcome the work of Lisa Goodwin to the blog. Lisa contacted me for a cover critique and gave me three covers to choose from, so I critiqued them all.

Here are the covers, the critique follows:

I’m going to call them A (Within Dreams) B (Dark Dreams) and C (Stolen Dreams) for easy reference.

Technically, I think the covers are good. The imagery is strong and eye catching, even on the scaled down Amazon format. C is the strongest design because it has excellent balance with light and dark and the dark swirl is a strong, graphic element; almost a yin-yang. Your eye is bounced nicely from the figure to author name to title. A is second strongest because the imagery evokes a dream-like state which ties in nicely with the title.

If I were to change anything it would be these things:
Author name should be bigger on B and C.
Title is slightly difficult to read on A.
Floating, disembodied eyes in the trees on B look amateurish and odd. I would strongly suggest removing.
Figure on B does not look ‘likable’ because her expression borders on a sneer depending on how you look at her. Also, she does not look ‘engaged’. Perhaps that is the intent.

Here are two questions I think you might want to consider:
If these are a series, as the titles imply, does that show strongly enough in the covers? For the purposes of branding, I would suggest author name placement (at the very least) remain a constant.

Do these covers appeal to my core audience? I didn’t read anything about the books while critiquing, but I am assuming these are in the YA genre. If that’s the case then you have succeeded. If not, maybe rethink it (not with A so much as B and C).

All in all very nice! Good colors. Evocative titles. Upsize the author name! Be goddamn proud you wrote three damn books and make it easy for your fans to find you.

Thank you, Lisa, for allowing me to critique your covers.

Here are the links to Lisa's books. Two are available at this time (A&B) and the third (C) is in the works.

I am super torn up about Steve Jobs dying. It depresses the hell out of me. I can't think of anything to say that hasn't already been said, other than I was sincerely inspired by him.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Numbers and Other Exciting Things

In September, we implemented some changes that are giving us a much better view of what we're selling. We had all four books on Amazon for Kindle by early September and transferred the rest of the distribution of the e-books to Smashwords. So, the following are our September numbers, but they don't include Barnes and Noble. In October, we'll be going direct to B&N also, so we'll have those numbers, too. For now, everything save Amazon is a mystery.

Amazon Kindle: 52
CS Paperbacks: 44
Smashwords: 6
Festival: 117
Total: 219

Overall we are pretty happy with the numbers. Why not? We don't really have anything to compare them too. When we try and look up other indie author's numbers, they're all over the board.

For the month of October, we have all the books at 99 cents and we're going to do a Twitter and Facebook campaign to see if we can boost the ebook numbers a little more.

We were a vendor at the Collingswood Book Festival on Saturday. I think we did exceptionally well there, considering the crowd was probably not my core audience. We made the local paper which was very cool. Here is the link:

October 8th We're going to be at The Witches Ball in Mount Holly, New Jersey. This is a night time event which is a new thing for us and I'm very excited. This is a Halloween Festival and I'm really hoping this will be a crowd that will love the books! Link here:

October 22nd  We'll be in Medford, New Jersey at The Carriage Trade Cheese Shoppe during the Medford Main Street Ghost Tour and I'll be signing books and sneaking nibbles of their delcious cheese. Can't wait for this one!

There is a big convention in March in Cherry Hill, New Jersey called Monster Mania (link: and they get all kinds of celebrities signing autographs and speaking. We've seen Robert Englund, Bruce Campbell, Lance Henrickson, Cary Elwess, Cory Haim or Feldman, Jake Busey, Danny Trevo...the list goes on and on! But here's the cool part, along with being vendors, I contacted the president and guess who is now in charge of swag bags for all those celebrity guests? Me! Guess what's going in the bags?*

*I hope you guessed 'a thoughtful assortment of Christine Dougherty's Novels' because then you're right! Yay for you and yay for my novels making their way from the East Coast to the West Coast in the hands of  people who may have connections in the world of horror movie-making. Pretty cool, right?

I have writing to do.