Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Using the news to sell your book

I tell authors all the time to use current events to help sell their book. This short article from Sandra Beckwith's BuildBookBuzz newsletter does a great job explaining that concept.

Be Opportunistic:

Tiger's Tale

How can authors capitalize on media events such as the never-ending Tiger Woods drama? Be creative. Using Tiger's tale as an example, you can:

• Form a virtual support group and announce it to the press. For example, the author of a book with a heroine married to a high-profile personality who is caught cheating on his wife can announce that she has formed a virtual support group for - of course - spouses of high-profile personalities caught cheating.

• Create and announce a top 10 list related to your specialty. Maybe it's the most attention-getting personality-based crisis communications events of the decade, a list of the women who have handled a personal crisis with the most dignity and grace, movies you'd like to see made from the year's headlines, and so on.

• Contact the media with your advice to one of the parties involved in the headlines. If your book is on how to survive a divorce or build a more satisfying relationship, give both Woods and his wife advice. If it's a novel centered around a failed marriage, share what you learned about marriage while researching your book. If it's on branding or marketing, state your advice to the companies that sponsor Woods.

If you have something to say about a topic in the news and your book provides the credential you need to say it, don't let someone else get all the media attention. Be creative and pro-active to make sure your book title gets in the news.

Sandra Beckwith's e-newsletter is free. Sign up at www.buildbookbuzz.com.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Twitter tip: Finding journalists

From Sandra Beckwith's newsletter

Journalists use Twitter and other social networking sites and services to find resources for stories and segments. Once you've identified the media outlets that are important to your book publicity campaign's success, look for journalists representing your target outlets on Twitter using these and other resources:


Read their tweets so that you not only learn more about them and their "beats," but so that you uncover interview opportunities that will help you promote your book, too.

Build Book Buzz is a free e-newsletter published twice a month by Beckwith Communications.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Try book marketing on blog radio

Thought I'd share this info on pitching your book blurb to blog talk radio as a way to market your books. Good luck!

Take one genre, two combative critics, five authors angling to break out of the pack and what have you got? “Blurb!” – the new book show that’s anything but bookish.

Each week, bibliophiles Sally Shields and Dr. Kent review not books themselves but prerecorded pitches from five writers whose literary works are hot off the presses. And each has got a mere three minutes to convince the hosts that theirs is the one worth cracking.

But if they succeed, they capture the coveted Book of the Week title - a great book promotion. That means Sally and Dr. Kent post the winning work prominently on the Blurb! Radio page, and invite its author on their show a week later for a live pitch to thousands of listeners. Plus, each winning work is featured on the BlogTalkRadio blog!

Go to Blog Talk Radio for more information.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Branding is the secret to selling books

If you've ever wondered what motivates people to buy a book, consider this: consumers don't buy a book, they buy a brand or, as a friend of mine says, consumers crave a brand. This is true now more than ever. Why? Because people want consistency (think McDonald's), they want value, and they want to be entertained, enlightened, or educated. A brand, when done properly, can really pull in readers to your site, your message, and your book. Here's how to do it.

Brands, in their traditional form, are the things we think of like Coke, Kleenex, and Advil. These are big, robust brands that are recognizable both in messaging and packaging. The two key components in effective brand strategy are both of these things. If your message and package are different, or fragmented and not uniform, you will confuse your audience.

Regardless of whether you are fiction or non-fiction, a brand is a brand. Think Nora Roberts or Dan Brown, both of these authors are brands. Their messaging is consistent and their packaging uniform. The audience is told in word, color and image exactly what they are going to get and the "brand" does not disappoint. When creating a brand for yourself, here are a few things you should consider:

Understanding the "look" of the market: there is a look and feel to each market. For some markets it will be a consistency in color, messaging, or packaging, and for others, it's just a "feeling." For example, if you're a thriller writer, websites for thrillers tend to be dark and foreboding. There may not be a consistent message but the feel is the same: scary. Getting to know your market is the #1 thing you should do when you're thinking of developing your brand.

Identity crisis: who are you? So who are you, really? This isn't meant to be a psychological exam, but rather an in-depth look at your brand, your market, your current focus, and future goals. There's a saying that goes: "If you don't know what road you're on, any path will do." The same is true for your brand and your career. Define where you want to go and then build to that message.

Brainstorm your brand: if necessary, get some outside help. Branding doesn't have to be expensive, but it does have to be thorough. Understanding your brand and your message is important because if you don't control it, your consumer will. I spoke to an author the other day who had been propelled on her journey by her brother's suicide. From that, she learned, grew, and is now working to inspire others to overcome some of the most horrific challenges life can throw at you.

Platform building: building a strong brand is also about platform building. Understand that your platform can be a lot of things: the message and consistency of your blog, any book promotion you do, blogs you have a presence on. All of this is important, you want to get known in your market, and you want to lead with a strong and consistent message.

Consistent marketing materials: by this I mean business cards, letterhead if you have it, bookmarks, folders, etc. Again, don't scatter your efforts by having a hodgepodge of marketing materials that looks cobbled together. Everything is your resume. This is very true with anything you mail out or any "leave behinds," like bookmarks, postcards, and business cards.

Delivering on a promise: whatever you promise, you must deliver. In fact, promise less and deliver more. If you have promised the reader a "thrill ride," don't give them a soft-peddled story. If your message doesn't live up to its promise, you'll lose your reader. Probably forever.

The center of the universe: your website. An author's website is the single most important piece of your brand. Yes, your book is important, but before a reader gets there they will often find your website first. Make sure it's brand-focused and professional. Don't have someone design it who does not understand your market or your work. Make sure your site is professional and follows whatever "theme" you are trying to create.

Building a strong brand is more important than ever. A brand not only shows consistency but it shows you're serious about what you're doing; and if you show you're serious, your readers will take you seriously, too.

Reprinted with permission from "The Book Marketing Expert newsletter," a free ezine offering book promotion and publicity tips and techniques. http://www.amarketingexpert.com

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Rules have changed in book marketing

Forget what you know about media and marketing, the rules have just changed. Here's the truth: the Internet has changed the way we market in more ways than you could have ever imagined. So much so that marketing to media might not be the best way to get the word out about your book. Now I'm not saying to *never* market to the media, just switch your focus to your real target: the consumer.

Direct to consumer marketing is a hot phrase many marketing people like to throw out. It implies direct access, ease of marketing, and a quicker sale. But accomplishing one or all of these things isn't as easy as it seems. These days, consumers don't want to be sold something, they want to hear about it, they buy buzz and they generally buy this buzz from people they trust.

When you start to look at directing your campaign to market to the consumer, everything about your marketing strategy will change. First, you'll start to become more aware of topics and keywords that affect your reader/buyer. By doing this you'll be able to zero in on messages, sites, blogs, and hot topics that you can start commenting, blogging, or writing on.

The media is so inundated with pitches that most of them are just white noise. Also, when a media person needs someone to comment on a story they're more likely to go after someone who is an "authority" on the subject, rather than someone who has sent them dozens of press releases. Writing a press release does not make you an authority, your connection to your target community does. That's why a campaign that is less media-focused and more consumer-focused will end up driving more media to your book.

I have always talked about becoming an authority, about becoming an expert. This is the same thing, only you're being more aggressive about it, you're actually marketing to that consumer instead of just adding the label "expert" to your bio.

The new age of media is upon us, it's no longer an issue of when to pitch, who to pitch, and what days of the week are best, it's a matter of positioning yourself to be irresistible in the eyes of the media by making yourself the "go-to" person in your market.

1) Write and issue news releases often, but make them newsworthy. While press releases to the media may get ignored, they have a bigger chance of getting noticed by your customer. Writing direct-to-consumer press releases is a way of "speaking" to your customer through a series of announcements, advice, or trends. When you do this, hone in on keywords that make a difference to them. Don't toss out high-brow, technical terms that are meant to impress unless your market actually speaks that language. Send a release out via the Internet through sites like PRnewswire.com once a month and then, keep them archived in the newsroom of your website.

2) Forget high-profile media targets, go after plugged-in bloggers, high traffic, relevant content-rich websites: while it would be great to have Oprah call, the likelihood of that happening is pretty slim. Focus instead on where you can make a difference and make the sale. Focus on your customer. Where do they go when they're online and who do they listen to? Those are the people you should be targeting with your story. When you find these folks, offer them tips, helpful advice, story excerpts, whatever is most appropriate for your market/topic.

3) Comment on blog stories the media writes: this is a fantastic way to network with media people. Have you visited a media blog lately? You haven't? Well, start adding them to your list. Just like I recommend commenting on industry blogs (see bullet #4) you'll also want to keep an eye out for media who writes on your topic and also has a presence on the Internet. Did you know that the media will notice someone who's an active commenter on their blog before they notice a news release?

4) Comment on industry blogs: same ideas as #3 but now you're focused on blogs that matter to your reader/consumer. Go after them and start commenting on what they're blogging about. This is a great way to network and introduce yourself to folks who may be part of the "big mouth" market in your industry. (The term "big mouth" is reserved for bloggers who have a lot of clout within a particular arena). Also, while you're at it, get your own blog. If you're going to network with bloggers, become one of them.

5) Content drives action: getting a content-rich website is a must. There's no two ways about it. I don't care what you've written or what market you've written to. It's all about content, content, content. Have a resource section on your site, put a blog up there. Be helpful till it hurts. Put up lots of useful, relevant content and the world will beat a path to your door.

6) Never sell your book to your consumer: the biggest mistake authors make both on and offline is that they sell their book. No one cares that you wrote a book, they only care about what the book can do for them. Sell the benefits, sell what your book can do for your reader but never, ever, ever sell your book.

7) It's not about you: remember as you're developing your direct-to-consumer campaign that it's not about you, it's about your market, and it's about your reader. Knowing what matters to them will help you circumvent a lot of marketing snafus and directions that take you nowhere. Keep in mind the things that matter to your reader and what their hot buttons are. If you can become a channel to direct their issues, challenges, or questions to you and your website, the media will stand up and take notice.

8) Many goals lead to confusion: what's the goal for your website? I mean, seriously, what's the one goal you have for If you don't you should. Having one singular focus will help sharpen your message to your reader. Pick one thing you want your home page to accomplish and build on that. Too many messages will only confuse your reader and send them off to your competitor's website.

Selling a book, product, or business has become less about getting into your favorite newspaper, magazine, or TV show and more about making yourself so irresistible that the media comes to you. Build credibility in your market and consumers will buzz, when consumers buzz the media will surely follow.

Reprinted with permission from "The Book Marketing Expert newsletter," a free ezine offering book promotion and publicity tips and techniques. http://www.amarketingexpert.com

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Social Networking for Authors

I started doing marketing research about a year before my historical fiction novel was published - and wish I would have had Michael Volkin's Social Networking for Authors to guide my way.

This book not only defines social networking to those new to its use, but thoroughly explains how it can help you sell books. For new authors trying to navigate the complex world of social networking and book marketing, this book is a resource that will help you focus your efforts.

Social Networking for Authors is divided into two parts. Part 1 discusses numerous tips and tricks you can use to enhance website traffic and increase sales, and Part 2 discusses how to sell books via social networking.

Most importantly, Volkin's book offers a host of free tools that literally took me years to stumble across. I was able to take my novel to a #1 spot in the historical/romance category using many of the suggestions in this book - but the hours I lost while stumbling blindly through the maze of social networking sites is incalculable.

I’ve been disappointed by many marketing books, but the amount of time this one will save you makes it well worth the price.

Jessica James

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Attention authors: Start a radio show

If you've been thinking about starting up an Internet radio show as part of your book marketing efforts, now is the time to do it. Global Talk Radio is offering a special opportunity to create your own Internet radio show and share in the advertising money generated by your show.

Here's how it works (according to their promo email):

* Upon approval, you will appear as a host or featured guest on our station
* We will help develop your topic into a talk show or podcast format
* We do ALL the technical & engineering work
* We will launch a dedicated web page for your topic & archives
* We will sell advertising and share the revenue with you
* And we'll exchange links with you to boost your traffic and SEO

What do you have to do? Simply come up with the content and submit a show idea to them. Note: There is no cost or commitment required on your part. To apply for your own Internet radio show to help with your book promotion, go to: Global Talk Radio.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Posting book reviews you want to share

Have a great review that you want to share?

You can do so at TheNewBookReview . The guidelines are on the left of the page. Scroll down a bit. Also authors are welcome to submit their favorite reviews of their own books. This is a cross-promotion effort so that all participants benefit from any promotion they do about the site.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

5 reasons why visiting a bookstore can be good for your health

With all the debate raging about healthcare reform, I think it’s a good time to remind readers about the benefits of a bookstore.

1. A book specialist can help you find just the right book – with no co-pay.

2. You don’t have to pay a deductible at a bookstore, and the value is unbeatable.

3. Bending over, standing up, crouching down to look at the bottom shelf is good exercise. (Repeat as necessary).

4. Carrying a large stack of books to your car is great for cardio and muscle-building.

5. Books provide entertainment, promote a sense of wellbeing, and insure you will have something to read in the waiting room.

- Historical Fiction Author Jessica James

Friday, July 31, 2009

Twitter marketing: Using hashtags

by Donna Gunter, The Online Biz Resource Queen (TM)

Twitter, as a popular social networking platform, is a viral marketing strategy all on its own, especially if your followers like your tweets and retweet them to their followers. However, I've recently noticed another trend in Twitter usage that increases its viral marketing capabilities through the use of hashtags.

What's a hashtag, anyway? Also called the pound sign, the hashtag (#) is added to a tweet as a way of creating trackable categories, groups, or topics that others can use to search for info using the Twitter Search feature. One of the most common uses of the hashtag is to tweet what's happening at an event or conference. The event organizer will request all attendees use a specific hashtag, i.e. #yourevent, when tweeting about the event to your followers. So, then, someone who isn't present at the event but wants to follow what's happening there can simply search for #yourevent and see what's going on and what participants are saying and sharing about the event.

Anyone can create a hashtag by putting hashtag (#) in front of anything. If you log into Twitter and look in the right-hand column, you'll see the Trending Topics, many of which can be tracked with a hashtag. How can you use this strategy to create more viral marketing for your business on Twitter? By creating a hashtag Twitter tips campaign.

Here are 6 steps to help you create your own Twitter hashtag campaign:

1. Research. What kinds of tips would be appreciated by your target market? On what topics do you frequently receive questions from your clients? My target market is always asking questions about getting more traffic, so I decided to focus on traffic generation strategies.

2. Choose your name. Choose a short, simple name that reflects your brand and what you're offering. Before making your final decision, you need to check your proposed name on Twitter Search (search by including the #) to ensure that no one else is using that name. Otherwise, your tweeted tips will intermingle with the other hashtag group using that name. I quickly checked and discovered that no one was using #OBUTrafficTip, so that's what I chose.

3. Create your tips. You can easily pick your tips out of an article or blog post you've created. In my case, I had purchased a PLR ebook that I used as a basis for my tips. Remember that your tips need to be less than 140 characters, including the hashtag name you've chosen and any links you include.

4. Link to relevant info. You get the most mileage out of these tips if you link the tips to something relevant to that tip. For example, if you have a bank of articles, each tip might link to an article you've written that has more details about the tip. For maximum exposure, you'll want to link to info on your site or your blog rather than to the posting of an article in an article directory.

5. Upload the tips into TweetLater.com. This type of campaign is easily managed using TweetLater.com. Simply upload your completed tips and set them to distribute once a day (or several times a week) over the upcoming weeks by postdating them into the future. In this way you put these tips on autopilot and they post themselves.

6. Let them begin to work their magic. It may take awhile for them to catch on, but eventually others will begin to retweet your tips as useful information they want their followers to access. As with most marketing strategies, consistency is the key here to your success.

It's pretty easy to begin your own viral marketing tips campaign using the Twitter hashtag. Simply follow the steps as outlined above, and watch as your number of Twitter follows grows each day!

Online Business Coach Donna Gunter helps baby boomers create profitable online retirement businesses by demystifying the steps needed to successfully market a baby boomer business online. Would you like to learn the specific Internet marketing strategies that get results? Discover how to increase your visibility and get found online by claiming your FREE gift, TurboCharge Your Online Marketing Toolkit, at == > http://www.TurbochargeYourOnlineMarketing.com

Monday, July 27, 2009

Using cross promotion in book marketing

Today I want to share a couple of ways I've used cross promotional opportunities to successfully reach new audiences. Hopefully these examples will help you come up with a few cross promotion ideas to help you market your unique book.

Back when my novel was new, I wanted to reach equine enthusiasts as a secondary market because a horse owned by the main character plays a major part in the plotline. After doing a google search, I contacted the Equine Art Guild and asked if anyone would be interested in working with an historical fiction author (a fellow "starving artist") on a promotional project. I received a handful of responses and picked Kristen Queen, who specializes in equine and animal portraiture. Kristen already had a piece of art that resembled the equine character in my book (named Justus) - and I really liked her style.

In addition to placing information on her website about my book (and me doing the same for her), Kristen also created an entire Justus store on Cafepress which helps get the word out about her art and helps me by showcasing a character in my book. We also incorporated each other's contact information on all our promotional material, including "Justus" greeting cards that I had printed to give out at book signings.

The great thing about cross promotion is it doesn't have to cost anything to reach a new audience. Kristen's art is now being seen at the festivals and book signings I attend, and my book is being seen at art shows and horse events that she attends.

My latest cross promotional project involves the trailer for the Civil War novel Shades of Gray. Since authentic-looking Civil War stock art is a little hard to come by, I requested permission to use the artwork of renowned artist Dale Gallon (never really thinking I would get it). Mr. Gallon not only gave me permission, he is linking his website to mine, helping me to reach Civil War enthusiasts in a whole new way.

No author has the time or money to reach all their potential audiences. Concentrate your energy on a small, defined group, and then think of ways to reach secondary and related audiences without expending a lot of time.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

10 mistakes first-time authors make

Finding that promoting your book is even harder than writing it? I certainly have. But luckily for me, my earlier career was in a newsroom where I learned the ins and outs of getting past the editor's desk and into print. As a result, I was able promote my historical fiction novel into the #1 spot on Amazon in the romance/historical/U.S. category.

There is more to book marketing than just press releases, so here are some of the mistakes I often see first-time authors make in book promotion.

1. They spend too much time chatting with other authors. Author groups are great for networking and commiserating, but you’re not selling books by chatting with other authors about how you’re not selling books.

2. They assume the store where they are signing books will advertise the event. Do your own publicity for every event. That could mean press releases to local papers, sending calendar items to publications, posters, postcards, radio interviews, etc.

3. They spend too much time on social networking sights that don’t produce results. It's easy to spend the better part of a day between twitter, facebook, linkedin and ning groups. They are an important part of marketing, but you should be wise with your time.

4. They don’t realize the power of the press release. You have a local paper, right? And there are tons of free Internet distribution sites out there. If you've sent less than four press releases in the last six months, you’re not effectively marketing your book.

5. They're not using key words and SEO effectively (which is why press releases and articles are so important). There is a learning curve to all this technology, but it’s necessary to know.

6. Back to the basics: They think their target market is "everybody."

7. They start trying to get reviews AFTER their book has been published. The big reviewers need the manuscript four to five months before the pub date. If you want the review to coincide with the launch, obviously you are going to have to get the book into reviewers hands early.

8. They rush their book to print before it's ready. It's hard to be patient, but hurrying the book into print will only cause headaches later.

9. They think they are going to be a guest on Oprah before they've even received an interview from their local paper. Start small, build buzz.

10. They're marketing plan (if they have one) is not multi-faceted. You can't rely on one type of marketing. Your plan should include print media, radio, blogs, websites and ezines, to name a few.

Good luck!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Downhill race against a killer

Killer Bunny Hill
By Denise Robbins

A killer is on her bunny trail. Shot while snowboarding, Samantha Spenser lands on a stranger’s doorstep without her memory, but with a shooter on her tail. Even after the stranger saves her from the gunman and offers her refuge, Sam begins to fear for her life when Max, holding a gun to her head, demands to know the location of his abducted brother. Is the man with the whiskey-colored eyes her savior who will protect her, or the shooter who wants her dead? If Samantha trusts the sexy man to unravel the mystery of her amnesia, will he discover she is an innocent bystander or a deceitful criminal?

The last thing he wants or needs is the complication of a gorgeous snow bunny half dead from bullet wounds on his doorstep. Frustrated by the lack of clues and even more discouraged by the lack of help from his agency and his brother’s, special agent Maximilian Stone sets out in search for his kidnapped brother. First, he must solve the mystery of Samantha, the intriguing woman sleeping in his bed.

Is there a connection between Snow Bunny and his missing FBI brother? Or was she brought in by a darker enemy to destroy Max before he can find them?

Read about author Denise Robbins' other computer/crime/romance thrillers.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Welcome authors!

If you are a new published author - or any author who is struggling with getting your book noticed, you've come to the right place!

I started this blog as a way to help other authors get a little more exposure, and think I've come up with a pretty good package for those who need help with their book marketing.

As a way of introduction, I was a newspaper editor for 18 years before publishing my first novel in 2008. Thanks, I believe, to my newspaper experience, my expertise in writing press releases, and my diverse marketing plan, my Civil War novel climbed to #1 on Amazon's Best Seller list in the romance/historical category, beating the clasic Gone with the Wind.

After hearing from other authors who are fumbling around (like I did at first), I've decided to offer my marketing plan as a basic guide. I wish I could afford to offer it for free, but I think I'm making it affordable at $39.95. The plan took me two years to write and includes different facets of marketing like: PR/Publicity (press kits, reviews, endorsements, newspaper articles); Internet (social networking, web site, blogging); Joint Ventures/Cross Promotions; Special Promotions; Selling; Electronic Media; Paid Advertising: Other Promotional Events: and Msc.

As a bonus, I will include:
  • A list of Internet services that will distribute your press releases.

As a thank-you I will throw in:

  • A 94-page pdf called 154 Power-Packed PR and Marketing Tips by Gail Martin of Dreamspinner Communications.

And finally:
  • Space and time permitting, I will spotlight the books/authors of those who participate in this offer on BookExposure.

Note: The marketing plan is written to promote my historical fiction book, but I believe the general components are fairly universal. If you have any questions, please email me at bookexposure(at) yahoo.com

Purchases may be made through Paypal at the above email address.

Monday, April 27, 2009

A Bloody Good Cruise

A Bloody Good Cruise
By Diana Rubino

A Bloody Good Cruise is a humorous story about how romance author Mona Rossi and her on and off again main squeeze, Fausto Silvius, a full blooded vampire, narrowly escape a lunatic fringe group of vampire hunters they call the Vampire Ball Busters.

It's set on The Romanza, a cruise ship on a Mediterranean voyage. Fausto, the ship's doctor, can never be one of Mona's kind and she's afraid to become one of his. As they sail the Mediterranean on a writers' cruise, the couple is stalked by vampire hunters, and by Fausto's notorious ex-wife, Lucrezia Borgia.

Events force Mona and Fausto team up with the hunters to capture Lucrezia, but where can they go from here? With Fausto's friend and Mona's editor vamping it up and a hunter on the loose, can this bloody good cruise have a happy ending?

Visit author Diana Rubino's website.

Purchase A Bloody Good Cruise on Amazon or through the publisher Eternal Press.

237 Pages
Print ISBN: 978-192664-7593
E-book ISBN: 978-1-926647-51-7

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Suspense and history in "Afternoon Tea"

Afternoon Tea
By J. R. LeGreca

Enter the fascinating Victorian Age in New England and witness a saga of forbidden love, the standards of high society and their paradox unfold in Afternoon Tea, an engaging tale.

Get a glimpse of a glittering, yet cruel world where image and status are everything. With a bundle of roses in one hand and a walking cane in the other, Lawrence Gray, an elderly gentleman, braves the cold Northeastern winter as he makes his way to Saint James Cemetery.

There, he offers the flowers to his wife who passed away forty years ago. Lawrence ’s devotion to his long-dead wife elicits curiosity from Meg Bailey, a neighbor who spies on him from her kitchen window every morning. Meg’s curiosity hits a peak when town historian, Fanny Brund, invites her for afternoon tea and reveals the mystery surrounding the Grays.

In a bid to uncover the truth behind Lawrence Gray’s guilt over his wife’s untimely death, Fanny warps back to the year 1895 — only to unravel a secret that will change Meg’s life forever. . .

Visit the author at her website J. R. LaGreca and read more about the book Afternoon Tea.

You can purchase Afternoon Tea on Amazon.

Monday, March 16, 2009

New suspense/thriller 'The Rasner Effect'

The Rasner Effect
By Mark Rosendorf

Rick Rasner escaped death in a New York City bridge explosion – but he couldn’t escape becoming an unwitting participant in a top secret military experiment.

When the Duke Organization, a group of ruthless killers, set off a violent explosion, they wiped out Rick Rasner’s life as he knew it. Many years later, as he still struggled to remember any shred of his former existence, he put a new life together – as a therapist in the Brookhill Children’s Psychiatric Residence, a facility for troubled urban teens.

Brookhill’s policies, set by head director Katherine Miller, seemed brutal and oppressive. She bullied the therapists too – Rick’s meek personality left him incapable of handling her attacks. He developed an unexplainable bond with fifteen-year-old patient Clara Blue – something about her conflicted, volatile personality struck a cord deep inside his psyche. Rick wanted to help her and the other patients, yet met with non-stop opposition from the staff.

The Duke Organization resurfaced, searching for Rick Rasner. When they found him at the Brookhill facility a bloody hostage situation ensued. The lives of both Rick and Clara were about to change – but for the better or worse?

Disgraced mercenary Jake Scarberry was forced out of the witness protection program and back into action – after the Duke Organization. An unpredictable chain of events result between Jake, Rick, and the Duke Organization – and Clara Blue.

This complex psychological suspense/thriller will leave you questioning exactly who to root for in a battle of good versus evil.

Visit the author Mark Rosendorf and read reviews for The Rasner Effect.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Computer-thriller will keep you guessing

It Happens in Threes
By Denise Robbins

Seeking to escape her stalking ex-fiancé, savvy computer expert, Ruby Goodman, flees to her family's vacation home. Always a healing place, Florida is the best spot for her to reassemble the crumbling pieces of her personal and professional life in safety.

But somehow her high school sweetheart and first love, Michael Augustson, always appears when she least expects-but needs-him most. This time the only man she's ever truly loved needs her help to catch an international thief. But can she risk her life by becoming involved in his scheme? And does she dare to lay her heart on the line for a man who may disappear at any time?

Forced into some 'R and R', unflappable special operative, Michael, takes refuge in Florida where he runs into his old love, Ruby. Brilliant and a whiz with computers, Ruby is the answer to his prayers. He needs someone to crack the computer systems of an elusive money laundering thief. While working with her, Michael finds it a challenge to keep his distance from Ruby because he fears his passion for her may endanger both their lives.

The only way to keep Ruby safe is to keep her close. Is it because of the threat to her life? Or is it because the stubborn, independent and infuriating but passionate Ruby has become a threat to his heart?

Visit Denise Robbins at her website or watch the trailer for the book on YouTube.

GIVEAWAY: Denise has been kind enough to donate a signed copy of It Happens in Threes as a Giveaway. Leave a comment for your chance to win!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Plenty of suspense in Dark Lullaby

Dark Lullaby
By Mayra Calvani

At a trendy Turkish tavern one Friday night, astrophysicist Gabriel Diaz meets a mysterious young woman. Captivated by her beauty as well as her views on good and evil, he spends the next several days with her. Soon, however, he begins to notice a strangeness in her -- her skin's abnormally high temperature, her obsession with milk products, her child-like and bizarre behavior as she seems to take pleasure in toying with his conscience.

The young woman, Kamilah, invites him to Rize, Turkey, where she claims her family owns a cottage in the woods. In spite of his heavy workload and the disturbing visions and nightmares about his sister's baby that is due to be born soon, Gabriel agrees to go with her.

But nothing, not even the stunning splendour of the Black Sea, can disguise the horror of her nature. In a place where death dwells and illusion and reality seem as one. Gabriel must now come to terms with his own demons in order to save his sister's unborn child, and ultimately, his own soul…

This is a Dream Realm Awards Finalist!

Find out more about Dark Lullaby at www.mayracalvani.com.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Meet "Crash the Puppy"

Crash the Puppy
By Mayra Calvani

This book about Marcelo and his first puppy will have you smiling all the way through.

The author touches on the responsibilities of owning a puppy while keeping it simple so even a very young child can understand both the love and work surrounding having a puppy. A good book for children – especially those who have a love of dogs. This short and sweet book will be the perfect present.

Find out more about Crash the Puppy.
Read a review on BookStacks.

Monday, March 2, 2009

The Magic Violin

The Magic Violin
By Mayra Calvani

Eight-year old Melina wants to become a good violinist. When she loses confidence, her Rumanian teacher Andrea decides it’s time for a magic dose of self esteem. A mysterious old woman in rags gives Melina some curious advice; a violinist Russian hamster, who happens to live under the old woman's hat, offers her a virtuoso performance; a shooting star fills her with hope on Christmas Eve.

Is Melina actually playing better, or has her violin become magic? Who is the old woman in the town square, and why does she wear the same emerald ring as her teacher Andrea?

Find out more about The Magic Violin
View the trailer for The Magic Violin

Friday, February 27, 2009

Take a romp with Sunstruck

By Mayra Calvani

"Salvador Dali meets Terry Gilliam in a surrealistic romp that skewers the society of dilettantes and artistic poseurs. Reading Sunstruck is like having one of those long, convoluted dreams that seem to be totally logical until they twist off into another dimension entirely. Monty Python's Flying Circus would be proud."
-Blue Iris Journal

Find out more about Sunstruck

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Chanukah Guilt & Talk Dirty Yiddish

Chanukah Guilt
By Ilene Schneider
ISBN: 1934041319

Rabbi Aviva Cohen is a 50-something, twice-divorced rabbi living a rather uneventful life in South Jersey. True, she has a family that is rather unconventional. And her first ex-husband is moving to her town. But her life takes a truly interesting – and sinister – turn when she agrees to officiate at the funeral of an unpopular land developer.

She doesn’t expect to be told by two different people that he had been murdered. Nor does she expect that the first funeral will result in a suicide. Her search for the story behind the suicide (or was it murder?) will lead her to discover the truism “appearances can be deceiving” is accurate, while putting her life in jeopardy. (The first in a series.)

Visit www.rabbiavivacohenmysteries.com

Talk Dirty Yiddish
ISBN: 1598698567

Similar to other books on the Yiddish language, Talk Dirty Yiddish is a lexicon of Yiddish words and phrases, transliterated into the Latin alphabet and translated into colloquial English. But it differs from these other books in that it goes beyond being a listing of words and phrases with their translations: each phrase or word is followed by humorous examples of how to use the words in English conversation. The book also contains sidebars on almost every page, as well as appendices, with "fun" trivia, little known facts, history, and background of the language, Judaism, and the Jewish people.

Rabbi Ilene Schneider, Ed.D., has yet to decide what (or who) she wants to be when she grows up. One of the first six women ordained as a rabbi in the U.S., she is currently Coordinator of Jewish Hospice for Samaritan Hospice in Marlton, NJ, near Philadelphia. She can be reached at rabbi.author@yahoo.com.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Romantic suspense in The Drowning Pool

The Drowning Pool
By Jacqueline Seewald

The sequel to Jacqueline's Seewald's romantic suspense/mystery thriller THE INFERNO COLLECTION can now be ordered from Five Star/Gale.

Kim Reynolds, academic librarian, and Mike Gardner, police lieutenant, are spending a passionate, romantic evening together at Kim's apartment when Mike gets a call about a homicide. Kim and Mike join forces to solve the puzzling death of a man found floating in the locked pool of Kim's garden apartment complex in New Jersey. The victim, a womanizer, had many enemies. The excitement builds when the hunters become the hunted. Join Kim and Mike in this romantic suspense-filled follow-up to The Inferno Collection.

Jacqueline Seewald has taught writing courses including Creative Writing at the high school, middle school and college level and has also worked as an academic librarian and educational media specialist. Seven of her books of fiction have been previously published including the romantic suspense/mystery thriller, The Inferno Collection, published by Five Star/Gale in hardcover in 2007. Her short stories, poems, essays, reviews and articles have appeared in numerous publications such as: Sasee, Affaire De Coeur, Lost Treasure, The Christian Science Monitor, Pedestal, Surreal, After Dark, The Dana Literary Society Journal, Palace Of Reason, Library Journal, The Erickson Tribune and Publishers Weekly.

THE DROWNING POOL is set to be published this month. Please ask your local library to order it so that you can read it.

You can find out more about the author and this by reading her Breakthrough article in the February 2009 issue of THE WRITER Magazine, p. 14.

Friday, February 20, 2009

The Unselfish Gene

The Unselfish Gene
By Robert Burns

It's love and terrorism in the time of cholera. In the mid-21st century, a SARS-like flu has killed billions and turned most of the rest into mindless, stumbling zombie-like invalids. The few humans who had immunity now face the threat of a comet on a collision course with Earth.

Settlers from the Moon colony were spared the disease, but face their own threats to survival: radiation-induced mental illness, a limited gene pool and shrinking resources. The Moon settlers have launched a last-ditch mission to Earth to salvage human DNA and other crucial materials ... before the comet strikes. The salvage crew finds the biggest threat to the mission is neither the zombies or the comet, but insanity within their own ranks.

Find out more about The Unselfish Gene.

Purchase this book on Amazon.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Recent release: Flutter Bunnies

Flutter Bunnies
By Mel McIntyre

When Mystery's gift arrives, things start going wrong. It's up to Magic and Honey Bunny to make Mystery feel better and save the day - and rescue Mystery from Fancy the Fox. With help from Hooter the Owl and field mice Bubble and Squeak, that's exactly what they do.

Buy Flutter Bunnies on Amazon.

Visit author Mel McIntyre

Monday, February 16, 2009

There's A Spider In My Sink!
By Bill Kirk

What's a young boy to do when he discovers first thing in the morning that a spider has moved into the bathroom sink without even asking?

The little creature seems likable enough but after all, a boy’s got hands to wash and teeth to brush and this spider is right in the way.

There's A Spider In My Sink! is an engaging little book, illustrated by Suzy Brown. It contains educational Spider Factoids, four pages of glossary, definitions, activities and an answer page, with a bonus rhyme and verse to sing to music.

Find out more about this book at Guardian Angel Publishing.
Visit the author Bill Kirk.

Friday, February 13, 2009

The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing

The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing
By Mayra Calvani & Anna K. Edwards

The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing was written not only with the aspiring reviewer in mind, but for the established reviewer who needs a bit of refreshing, and also for anybody - be they author, publisher, reader, bookseller, librarian or publicist - who wants to become more informed about the value, purpose and effectiveness of reviews.

Are you passionate about books? Do you have the desire to share your thoughts about a book with readers, yet are unsure about what makes a good review? Are you curious about the influence reviews have on readers, booksellers, and librarians? If you’re an experienced reviewer, The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing will serve as an excellent reference tool and amalgam of resources. If you’re a beginner, this book will show you how to write a well-written, honest, objective and professional book review.

It will also teach you:
• How to read critically
• How to differentiate the various types of reviews
• How to rate books
• How to prevent amateurish mistakes
• How to deal with the ethics and legalities of reviewing
• How to tell the difference between a review, a book report, and a critique
• How to start your own review site
• How to publish your reviews on dozens of sites and even make money while you’re at it, and much more.

If you’re an author, publisher, publicist, bookseller, librarian, or reader, this book will also bring to light the importance and influence of book reviews within a wider spectrum.

National Best Books Awards Finalist and EPPIE Finalist.

Required reading at Loyola College, Kent University, and Claremont University.

Click here for more information on The Slippery Art of Book Reviewing.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Three books in one with Abraxas

The Abraxas Series: Books 1-3
By Cinsearae Santiago

Set in Philadelphia, the first three novellas of the ABRAXAS series are combined in one volume, complimented with scenic imagery throughout!

Christine Vargas is an independent, young, working-class girl, violently swept into another world--a world deemed unrealistic and impossible by many, a world under the mundane one she is so used to. During her physical transition, she has to come to grips with new powers she has been bestowed, and join up with her new 'Lord'--Ryan Price, a gentleman of high social status--and twice her age.

Her 'new family' is a motley crew of young vampires, and among the family are two rebellious twins trying to dethrone Ryan and take over the clan with their own legion of bloodthirsty (and drug-hungry) vamps.

Only Christine can determine the outcome of the oncoming battle and must chose quickly before the unthinkable happens. This is only the start of the strange, twisted, and mystical life Christine is now a part of, as more scarier situations present themselves to her, Ryan, and their delicate ABRAXAS clan--and sometimes, the 'monsters' aren't quite what you'd expect...

Find out more about the Abraxas series on the author's website.
You can buy the book at LuLu.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Check out this paranormal mystery

His Name is John
By Dorien Gray

Two strangers rushed to the emergency room, but only one survives. So what happens when an ordinary guy who does not believe in spirits encounters a spirit who believes in him, and needs his help not only in finding out who he was, but who killed him?

Find out more about Dorien Grey.

Other websites of interest:

Friday, February 6, 2009

'A Prescription for Love'

By Leeanne Marie Stephenson

“Nicole looked into Travis’s piercing blue eyes and gasped upon seeing the flames of passion and desire reflected in them. With a moan, Travis’s mouth came down possessively upon her soft yielding lips. She sighed and molded her body into his, letting go of her self-control.”

Do you desire a consuming, ridiculous, can’t live without you love? Then this is the story for you!!

Head Nurse, Nicole Danley RN, does not intend to permit herself to fall under Dr. Travis Anderson’s spell, but her job demands that she work closely with him on medical matters. She finds herself becoming extremely conscious of his virile appeal. Every time his gaze meets hers, Nicole’s heart turns over in response. A war of undeniable feelings rages inside her as she finds his constant nearness disturbing and exciting.

Emotions run rampant in this raw passionate journey amidst a world of wealth, prestige, and privilege, interlaced with breath taking life and death hospital scenarios. This hard to put down read allows your fantasies to be indulged within this enticing, steamy, sensual romance!!

For more information and to purchase this book, go to:

ISBN# 1424165075

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

School Girl: Poetry & Prose

School Girl: Poetry & Prose of a Pre and Post Adolescent
A Book of Poetry by Anarda Nashai

From the mind of a child—through the heart of a young woman…
Written in thirteen-year-old dramatic monologue, through to searing confessionalism at seventeen, School Girl, is a most dazzling and unexpected collection of not quite “children’s” poetry. Anarda Nashai gives life to the uninhibited and thought-provoking voice of one child while she uses her poetry as a companion—a confidant that she comes to rely on with each step taken toward womanhood.

About the Author:

Anarda Nashai is a poet and fiction writer from Washington D.C. School Girl is her first collection of poetry, as she has recently completed her first novel to be released in the near future and is currently working on several literary projects. Her interests include international film, psychology, Italian culture, and, of course, reading and writing.

School Girl is available for purchase at www.lulu.com.
Click her for the direct link on LuLu

Link to Anarda Nashai's website

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Check out these great books for boys

They didn’t call him a liar; they just couldn’t believe his story. Brian Fisher was determined to prove it was true even though it involved the risk to his own safety. His rescue of a wolf pup from a steel trap results in a mysterious relationship with surprising results. The story is set in the lower elevations near Yellowstone

NEWSPAPER CAPER 0-9729256-4-3
Tom Stevens was a super salesman. He and his friends delivered newspapers early every morning. Along their route, the boys often saw some pretty strange things. Then one day they actually became the story. Readers will like the humor, attack dogs, car thieves, and the chop shop Tom and the others uncover. This story reminds us of how important friendship is.

The Washburn families have been coming to the same cabins, on the same lake, catching the same fish, for about as long as Andy can remember. And he's sick of it. This summer would be different he decided. Only he never imagined how different. The story is filled with excitement, danger, humor, and drama. In the end, Andy learns the concepts of family tradition, that God loves justice while He hates injustice, and it is important to follow the rules. Readers will enjoy the gigantic, jet-powered floatplane, computers, home made radio transmitter, and naturally, no one will ever forget Big Wally. He’s a fish of course.

Scott and his friends had dreamed and prepared for their first wilderness camping adventure. When they become separated from their group in a mountain fog, trouble begins. There was that bear, the decrepit suspension bridge over a bottomless gorge, the sheer cliff in the dark, those terrorists in the remote cabin, the Army, the helicopter ride, and…

BIG-RIG RUSTLERS 0-9752880-1-6
Todd and Amanda live with their parents in a Midwestern city. The family doesn’t go to church. The children are invited to visit their uncle, aunt, and cousin Drew, on their Wyoming ranch over spring break. Todd learns, in a unique way, why stealing is wrong. He decides to choose a new path for his life because of his uncle’s example. A band of high-tech cattle rustlers are caught, revealing that Todd was also wrong about Travis, a shadowy character.

Read about the round up, rattlesnake, and rustlers.

Who are the real heroes in America ? Randy and his friends pooled their resources to go cave exploring, discovered the hidden loot from a bank robbery, and learned they weren't heroes at all.

Readers of action-adventures and mysteries, by Max Elliot Anderson, already know to look for unexpected twists and turns. So it is with his new short story, BIG FOOT.

BIG FOOT appears with a group of sports short stories published by Darby Creek Publishers. The title of this new book is LAY UPS and LONG SHOTS. Anderson 's story shares the pages with children's authors Joseph Bruchac, Terry Trueman, David Lubar, Dorian Cirrone, CS Perryess, Jamie McEwan, and Peggy Duffy.

Learn more at Books for Boys blog

Visit the Author's Website

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Surviving Serendipity is a world apart

On the night of her twenty-first birthday, June comes home to what should have been an empty apartment, to find her destiny waiting for her in the dark.

Kidnapped by a sinister stranger and whisked away to a far corner of the galaxy, June discovers that the life she's lived on Earth for over two decades has been a lie, and that her true home is the troubled kingdom of Prendawr, on the planet Thallafrith. As if that wasn't enough to chase her back under the covers, June is informed that her duty, as princess and sole surviving member of the royal family, is to use her newly discovered magical abilities to save the planet from impending doom.

June has no idea that she is about to embark on the journey of a thousand lifetimes, one that will surpass both her wildest dreams and her most terrifying nightmares. But can she beat the odds and save Thallafrith, or will their quest for survival end with the world?

Find out more about Surviving Serendipity on author Jacquelyn Sylvan's website Sylvania Mania.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Desiring the Darkness is vampire thriller

Welcome to my new blog that helps authors promote their books. I'm very happy to start it off with Desiring the Darkness by Shiela Stewart.

With the cloak of Darkness surrounding Jacob’s Cove, Dante Vega must work together with his friends to protect the humans from the blood thirsty vampires wanting to take over the human race. When a half naked young woman races into his arms, begging him to protect her, he is compelled to do so, despite the fact that she is a vampire.

Before all hell broke loose and the sun vanished, Gypsy Dawn was an ordinary woman carrying on with her ordinary life. Until she’s turned into a vampire. With no family and no where to go, she clings to Dante. Aside from his dark mysterious good looks, she finds herself inexplicably drawn to him. And when his life is threatened, she discovers just how protective of him she is.

Trying to bring back the sun isn’t easy, especially when Chaos, the one creature responsible, has gone into hiding. And when Dante finds out his long lost brother is working with the man responsible, he tries desperately to convince him to switch sides. But his attention is drawn to more important things when one friend is killed and another is taken hostage.

Will Dante be able to save him before it’s too late?


Visit Shiela Stewart's Website: www.shielasbooks.ca
Purchase Site: http://www.mybookstoreandmore.com/shop/search.da?search=Shiela+Stewart