Monday, April 30, 2012

Which Synopsis Do You Like Better?

   I currently have two working synopsis's for my upcoming novel, Future Dreamer. Please leave a comment and tell me which one you like better! Thanks.

1.  In the return of the Impenetrable Spy, special agent Zack Carter's oldest friend has been murdered and the crime has been pinned on Zack: his prints are on the gun and now he's on the run. With agents on his tail and danger ahead, Zack races from Nigeria to Chicago to Langley itself in a search for the truth. And the deeper he goes, the more he realizes he's been caught in a conspiracy of apocalyptic proportion. Now he must clear his name and stop the true killer before time runs out ... and the world goes up in flames.


2.  Five years has passed since the events of The Impenetrable Spy. Zack Carter’s oldest friend has been murdered. The gun is covered in his fingerprints. Now on the run, Zack has to pit himself against CIA agents while trying to uncover the truth. He has to clear his name before things get out of hand. When he stumbles onto something bigger he must go on several missions through locations including Nigeria, Chicago, CIA headquarters, Germany, and France.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner's Dilemma

  I recently read The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner's Dilemma, the third and final book in the trilogy. The story focuses on extraordinarily smart kids Reynie, Sticky, Constance, and Kate. When the power goes off in the city of Stonetown, the children investigate and problems begin to arise. Out of the books, I'd say this is my second favorite, the first being my least. The books gradually got better, although the plot isn't as strong as the second book, which remains my all-time favorite of the series. This book is filled with action, and closes the series nicely. The book reeled me in within the first chapter, and I was hooked until the end. I liked the description in the book, and thought it did a nice job describing everything. There wasn't much character development in this book, but a few things are revealed at the end. 

Sometimes the book got a little dull, but the book picked up pace and the story gradually got more exciting. I am pleased with the series, and glad that I read it. I'm looking forward to the prequel series, with hope that it will answer a few more questions. I give this book a 4/5.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Book Guys Show

I was included in a podcast with The Book Guys and author Seth Harwood last night. You can download it on iTunes, and find it here on their website: http://bookguys.ca/episode-040-palms-sunday/

Seth Harwood is the author of several books, including Jack Wakes Up, which he published on iTunes as an audio book. You can find his website here: http://sethharwood.com/

I talk about my writing and how I came to publish The Impenetrable Spy. Please leave a comment!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Seth Godin

If you are a writer, an aspiring author, an entrepreneur, a salesman, a business owner,or anyone that enjoys great marketing tips and talk about publishing, go and subscribe to him! Seth Godin is a best selling author and public speaker. His posts are short and to the point, and offer valuable information.

Subscribe to his blog here: http://sethgodin.typepad.com/

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Maintaining Your Online Presence

   You might market yourself with a website, Twitter Account, and Facebook Fan Page, but if you don't keep marketing yourself, and you become less active, people forget about you. In order to market yourself correctly, make sure you keep an online presence. I have been awfully bad at this lately, resulting in lower pageviews and less sales. I have been scheduling tweets, and been sending them out more lately to try and resolve this problem.

   Being interactive is a good way to keep people connected to you. People like it when others take interest in what they have to say. On Twitter, I do my best to RT and respond back to people. I hope my name stays in the people's heads I connect with, that way they might respond to some of my tweets. This helps you build a relationship with your followers/community.

   As far as my blog goes, I'm sorry for not posting as often lately. I have been extremely busy with things (school and writing) so I haven't had much time to think of things to post about or post them. I have a severe case of Blogger's Block! I already have some posts planned out, so expect some posts very soon.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Scheduling Tweets

   As of yesterday, I began scheduling tweets for my Twitter account, using Tweet deck. There are several benefits for scheduling your tweets, instead of doing them in real time.

   If you work during the day, you can still have tweets (mostly promotional) sent out using the application. I said mostly promotional for a reason. Yes, you could send out tweets about Starbucks and whatever else is on your mind, and schedule them for a different time, but I think Tweetdeck is best for sending out promotional tweets. It is a great marketing application, but it is not the only service that allows scheduling tweets.

   You can buy some programs (for a low price) that can enable repeat tweets every day, hour, etc., instead of manually scheduling them like you have to do on Tweetdeck and most other free Twitter applications. I have had some success using it, and have gotten retweets while I'm at school. Not only is Twitter great for marketing, but scheduling tweets enables you to be on Twitter, even when you're not. Another benefit is that you don't manually have to find a certain link and repeat post things (like tweets about your book) on your own in real time. Another benefit to this is finding what time the most people are online using twitter. Sure, you could randomly schedule all of your tweets, but if you find out the time the most people are online, you have a better chance of your tweet being seen, and in turn retweeted and replied to. Definitely look into using an application like Tweetdeck if you plan on promoting tweets through your Twitter account.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Lucky Number 7

I was tagged to do this promotional post by fellow author, John Rykken.

It works like this. On Twitter, an author "tags" four other authors, who post this Lucky Number 7 post on their blog. If you are "tagged," flip to page 77 in your newest published book/work in progress, and skim down seven lines, and on your blog, post the subsequent 7 lines.

My seven lines come from my first published book, The Impenetrable Spy.

"Zack shot a burst at the guard with the ski mask as Jack fired a three round burst at the guard with the beanie. The dead bodies fell over each other. Zack and Jack walked into the original control room with the pillars. Zack looked for an off switch. He flipped the switch that read, “Stop Production (Emergencies Only). The machines all stopped as the dead bodies from earlier lied cut up throughout all of the razors. Zack saw all of the bloodstains and then decided it was best to just look away."

Now it's my turn to tag four authors.


Be sure to check out these authors, and their fantastic books!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Your Opinion On The 99cent Book

   People always match price to quality. In most things (furniture, TV's, computers, etc.) the most expensive thing is the best. When it comes to ebooks, books, and movies, people don't frequently associate price with quality, unless, you are an Indie author.

   I've had librarians say that I should be charging more for my book, because 99cents is too cheap, and means that my book is not very good from a consumer's eyes. Some readers won't dish out more than a few bucks on a brand new author, and especially an Indie one, if no significant books are associated with their name. Some authors would never price their book at 99cents either, because they feel that their work is worth more than such a cheap price.

   I charged my first book at 99cents with this thought: A reader can easily dish out 99cents for a book. When I have several titles to my name, that one 99cent book (or more if I keep charging this price) could be a "sample" or "look" into my style of writing. This would let them know if they would like to buy another book by me, even if it's a little more expensive, because they liked the first.

  What I really wanted to do was make my first book completely free, and then release subsequent books in the series for an actual price. Many people download free books when they have the chance, and word gets around that you have a free book. Then when people read it, they might buy another in the series, and who knows how many hundred might download the first in the series for free. The only problem is that there are ebook hoarders. These people gather as many ebooks for free as possible, and most of the time, never end up reading them.

   What do you think about the 99cent ebook price? Is it too low? Does that price turn you away from buying the ebook? Please leave a comment.

  Check out this post that Melissa Foster wrote for more details into this: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/20/ebooks-cheap-price_n_1160383.html

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Book Review: The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey

  I recently started the second book in The Mysterious Benedict Society series, The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey. I loved the first book, and couldn't see a series being made out of it. I'm glad the author chose to write another. The second book in the series was much better than the first. The first got boring at times, and the ending was too obvious and "happy." The second book is filled with action, and never bores you. I was reluctant to start it, but finally did. The book focuses on Reynie and his friends, who go on a mission around the world, searching for their friends, Number Two and Mr. Benedict, who have been kidnapped. Reynie and his friends run away from home to save them, and meet several bad guys along the way. They also encounter Ten Men, torturers who have ten ways to hurt you. The description is great, and the author does a good job of keeping your interest. The book has a strong set of very likable characters too. I give the book four and a half stars. 

Interview with M.G. Wells

What is LightMasters: Number 13 about?
It’s ALL about Jessica--a smart, bold courageous teen who discovers she has amazing powers on her 13th birthday. After her parents’ sudden death, Jessica is stuck living with her weird, gassy grandparents in a small town in upstate New York. Constantly bullied by her schoolmates, this Georgia girl feels like a total loser and outcast. Angry about being forgotten on her 13th birthday Jessica is lured into the forest by a strange spiral light. In the woods she encounters three magical beings, who call themselves Lightmasters. The leader, Dragateen, tells Jessica she has special powers. Intrigued, she agrees to be transported to another dimension where she’s tested for her courage, strength and ability to overcome intense obstacles.  Life changes drastically when Jessica returns to Earth. During school the next day, her reality shifts and people start turning into repulsive, reptilian monsters. Of course, it doesn't help that it’s Halloween, which makes it even more bizarre. Dragateen explains to Jessica she's needed by the Lightmaster Alliance to defeat an invisible alien beast, who feeds off fear. The story follows Jessica on a wild adventure as she learns to empower her mind, conquer her own fears and help rid the world of a wicked alien monster who hates humans. 

Where did you get the idea for your book?
Oddly enough, the main idea came from Louise Hay’s Book: You Can Heal Your Life.  It woke me up and encouraged me to see how important thoughts are to one’s life. The rest came from my personal experiences as a teenager, my demented imagination, the appreciation of world cultures, and a desire to weave a story that had entertainment value whilst addressing the challenging issues we all face in life.


How did you come up with the title?
It just popped into my head one day. The Number 13 has always fascinated me and LightMasters felt strong and empowering. Mastering one’s own inner light. Way cool.


Who designed the cover?
A computer geek friend and I designed it together. I scribbled the spiral icon one day, and we created something colorful and unique.


Do you have to travel a lot for your books?
No. I cannot due to chronic health challenges. Now, if someone wants to provide me with a limo and a private jet, I’m there. I do miss traveling.


When did you write your first book and how old were you?
I was twenty-something. I did not publish due to the fact it dealt with the intense, family abuse I experienced. I felt it best to keep it a private manifesto.


If your book was a movie, who would you pick to play the main characters?
Love this question, Spencer, since it is every writer’s delight. Some actors I visualized while writing LightMasters were: Anthony Hopkins, Miriam Margolyes and Keanu Reeves. How weird is that?
  
Do you plan on writing sequels?
If there is an overwhelming audience for LightMasters, I will write more.

How long did it take you to complete LightMasters: Number 13?
Five years.


What is your favorite book?
I love diversity, and there are too many to list just one. Some are:  Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens, Matilda by Roald Dahl, and IT by Stephen King.