Stoc Launch

4 Sep
Stoc

Stoc: Volume Three

Hard to believe a year’s worth of effort is now up for sale on Amazon. Stoc is the third novel in my series and starts to really flush out the world and issues that have been building since book one. I have a good feeling about my series. A good feeling in that I believe sales will increase and I gain more readers and followers. It really is a good epic fantasy series and I believe it will resonate with fantasy readers. If you haven’t bought it yet then please do! The first novel is available for free on Instafreebie. Try it out!

The book launch was last week on Thursday. Many thanks to C.L. Cannon and the other authors who had a good laugh at me trying out figure out what was going on. I had no idea what I was doing and struggled to be “interesting”. Next time I will do better. I promise!

Courtney has announced the winners of the raffle-copter prizes. The winners of the $10 USD Amazon gift cards are Brandy D., Sarah R., and Alyssa D., and the winner of my entire New Druids series eBooks is Sandy M. Congratulations to you all! All prizes have been sent.

Indie Author and Mainstream Publishing

17 May

Support Indie Authors

I’m biased. I am an Independent Author (AKA Indie Author) and so I will gravitate more toward Indie Authors than mainstream authors. I want to say that up front. This is an opinion post. Not well researched and completely anecdotal.

I remember when paperback prices started to rise back in the 80s and 90s. There was anger by the readers and articles were written about it. The rationale of the big publishing houses? It cost more to produce a paperback or hardcover novel. The cost of paper, ink, binding, etc. all had increased and so did the cost of the novel. Many people, including me, didn’t believe it but had no choice but to accept that argument. I have tried to find articles on this but failed to find any – it was in the early days of the internet and I am pretty sure it was in an Ottawa Citizen newspaper article. I remember the gist of it though. Back then I paid for those paperbacks myself over at the House of Speculative Fiction on Fourth Avenue in Ottawa. [I miss that store, by the way. I still have those books downstairs on many bookshelves.]

When paperback prices started to rise, I was angry and couldn’t understand why, but when it was explained by the publishing houses I had little choice but to accept but I never forgot their explanation – even today. Thankfully along comes the eBook, and I rejoiced. The arguments I was fed for the high price of paperbacks no longer applied! I was happy (and yet deeply saddened at the loss of holding a book in your hands for an e-reader).

Indie Author; Bored?Fast forward to today. An author I follow, Patricia Briggs, a New York Times Bestseller who writes Urban Fantasy published the latest in her Mercy Thompson series and is charging $12.67 USD ($14.99 CAD) for the Kindle version of that novel as of today. I am flabbergasted. What justifies that cost? Can it be the cost of producing the novel that raised the price so high? I hardly think so. Ebooks are frakking EASY to put together. Writing is the hard part – formatting is easy. A child could do it. Takes about a day to do it right. So what is it? Greed? The cost for the most amazing and perfect editing job ever seen on Earth? Gimme a break.

$14.99? For an ebook? That is far too much, IMHO. We are starting to see more and more established authors charging more and more for their work. I wonder what the next A Song of Ice and Fire novel will cost? Probably more than $14.99 CAD. Shameful.

In comparison, another author I favour, Faith Hunter, also published a new novel in her Jane Yellowrock series. Faith is another New York Times Bestseller but her novel is only $7.60 USD ($8.99 CAD) on Amazon. While I find that a little high in price it is acceptable for someone who has made it “big” and can start to demand more for her work.

This is not hypocrisy on my part. I suppose everyone has a price that is their line in the sand. Everyone has a threshold for what they can accept. Mine is less than $10 CAD for an established author. Note that I can buy two of Faith’s books for one of Patricia’s. So, guess where my money goes?

What’s the difference? Who is the better author? They are both New York Times bestsellers. Yet one is pricing her novel at almost twice the cost of the other author. Does this mean that Patricia Briggs is twice the quality of Faith Hunter? I wouldn’t say so. They both have strengths. I personally prefer Jane Yellowrock over Mercy Thompson but that is a personal preference.

Who chooses what to sell the ebook at? I believe that is the publishing house that represents the author. So who published each novel? Penguin Group USA. The same company for both authors. Interesting, no? So, like the sailor I am, I boil away the water and see two piles of salt. One is larger than the other and is wrapped in dollar signs.

The good news: People will see those prices and say “fuck that” and go buy a reasonably priced Indie author’s novel(s). Yay, me. Publishing companies are shooting themselves in the foot, IMHO.

Segue: Some bloggers have been arguing that Amazon has been intentionally driving the price of ebooks down to corner the market. Others are saying that publishing companies are increasing the costs of ebooks to drive out the market. I don’t know what to believe. This anecdotal evidence seems to support both these arguments. I just know as an Indie Author I scramble to make the small amount of change I make off the sale of my novels. These prices frighten me and anger me because I buy all my novels. I have since I was a kid.

Will I crank my price up to $14.99 when I become famous? Not if I have any say in the matter. I want the 14-year-old kid of today to be able to click my novel and pay for it with their own pocket money and not have to take out a line of credit to do so.

Sorry to rant but wow, what a piss off to see ebooks gouging people like this.

Ciao.

Here are a couple of interesting articles I found after about 10 seconds of Googling:

Have Publishers Shot Themselves in the Foot with Costly Ebooks? by Caleb Mason (January 19, 2016)

Publishers Initiate Predatory Pricing on e-Books to Destroy the Market by Michael Kozlowski (September 26, 2015)

Piracy and Copyright Infringement

9 Dec

UPDATE #2: Amazon sent me a very nice explanation email. Here is what Anne Tarpey, the Amazon Trademark Agent, said:

“Thank you for your e-mail. The Kindle title, “DUILLEOG: Druids Novel” ASIN: B01N9CSV4N was removed from sale on Amazon.com. Our North American sales records do not reflect any sales of this item while it was active. The appropriate group is currently investigating this publisher. For privacy reasons, the results of their investigations cannot be disclosed, but be assured they will take any disciplinary actions they find appropriate.”

UPDATE #1: The offending novel has been taken down from Amazon. This happened yesterday, December 10, 2016, sometime in the afternoon. Still no word from Amazon.


Yesterday I was working on the details of my new release for Leaf and Branch. As I am wont to do, I went to Amazon and typed in my first novel title. This lets me quickly get to my author bio and copy it. When I typed in my novel and hit enter I found myself looking at another novel with a very similar title: Duilleog: Druids Novel. My alarm bells went off.

I clicked the book and found myself looking at a very badly done cover and the name of an author called “Park Michael”. I clicked the novel to look inside and noticed, one, the copyright detail was not there, two, it was a complete cut and paste from my novel, Duilleog, A New Druids Novel, Volume 1. This asshat had blatantly stolen my novel and was selling it on Amazon. I want to be clear here: it is a COMPLETE copy of my novel. Word for word.

I have sent a copyright infringement notice to Amazon and I am STILL waiting on word back. It’s been over 24 hours now. Meanwhile, needing a shoulder to lament on, I went over to the Science Fiction and Fantasy Author group on Facebook and told them – and my personal Facebook page. Their support and the support of my friends has been nothing short of spectacular. Moral support. Sympathy. Everything I could need. PLUS, they have flooded the pirated novel with one-star reviews and warned the world it was a plagiarised novel. My faith in humanity restored. They have all levelled up, IMHO.

Meanwhile, this pirate is selling my novel. Amazon needs to be more responsive. This is without a doubt a blatant theft. I fail to understand how Amazon could allow the publishing of something so clearly plagiarised. In Staff College, I had to submit my essays through Turnitin. Surely to Gaea, Amazon could run submissions through something similar. It’s not hard. The novel was at least two years of my life if not more. Hard work, sweat, tears, frustration, joy, and everything in between – only for someone to scan it, post it, and sell it as if it was their own. It’s criminal.

I’ll update when I have more news.

Black Friday Sale

21 Nov

I am doing a Black Friday sale with my two novels on Amazon.com. Yes, that is correct: the New Druids series will be on sale!

Duilleog eBook Cover August 2016_GOLD

 

The first novel, Duilleog will be FREE starting November 22nd straight through to Saturday, November 26, 2016. Yes, free. My GeBA Gold award winning novel will be FREE for five days!

 

 

 

51h6-epwesl__sy346_

The second novel, Craobh will be on countdown starting at $0.99 USD and going up a dollar every couple of days – so get it early. This is my GeBA nominated novel, folks!

 

This is my first time doing this – hope it interests you!

Ciao!