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The DUNGEON SCRAWLERS YouTube channel is up!
Now that we’ve streamed a couple episodes, we have a YouTube Channel to post them in case you couldn’t watch them live. You’ll also find player/DM interviews there, along with other tidbits. And, why, yes, you can subscribe there, too. 🙂
The audiobook for The Jack of Souls is up for preorder on Audible, and it’s freaking fantastic! I am so pleased!
Here’s an audio file of the opening pages. The actor, Alex Wyndham, went with an English accent—probably because of the lofty material, 😉 –and he rocks it! Turns out he’s a great character actor.
Even in the first minute I love what he did with the barman. II can’t wait to hear how he did Caris and Willard and Brolli and Bannus’s voices.
I shall have to subject my kids to it on the road trip to the mountains this weekend. Mwa-hahaha!
The Jack of Souls is FREE for Kindle on Friday, October 30!
Months ago I sent two paperbacks, a cover letter, and a press release to Midwest Book Review, in hope that they would review The Jack of Souls. They get around 50 submissions a day, for 1500/month, and since they are non-profit, they don’t have time to reply to everyone; basically, if they don’t like what your wrote, you don’t hear from them. So I really had my fingers crossed for this one.
Who is Midwest Book Review?
MBR is probably the biggest non-profit small press reviewer that accepts indie books. It has a wide professional readership including book stores and librarians.
Today, while at a gas station in Winthrop, Washington (the first reliable cell reception on our week in the North Cascades), I saw an unfamiliar email in my inbox: MWREVW@aol.com.
It took a few seconds to recognize it. When I did, my breath stopped.
Good News Comes from Unfamiliar Senders
Stephen C. Merlino
Tortoise Rampant Press
9780986267413, $12.95 PB, 350pp, www.amazon.com
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive
Oregon, WI, 53575
Holy crap. Holy crap. Holy crap. Holy crap. Holy crap. Holy crap. Holy crap.
They liked it!
I know I’m not supposed to care. That I’m supposed to write no matter what anyone says good or bad. And I will. But seriously, I am so thrilled and stunned and so grateful for this review. It is so nice to see my stories aren’t just sung into a void–that sometimes someone actually shouts back, Hey, that’s pretty good! and the solitary act of writing becomes for a moment a dialogue between like-minded people.
Thanks for shouting back, MBR.
What did I do for the month after I sent out all the Kickstarter rewards? I launched what I’m calling
THE WAR ON OBSCURITY!
For an indie author, obscurity is public enemy #1. Of course, the more reviews a book has, the easier it is for readers to make a decision about it, but there’s more: to be taken seriously by the best publicity engines out there, a book needs at least 25 reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.
So, January’s Target was to Acquire Book Blog Reviews
What the Heck is a Book Blog?
I didn’t know, either. But it turns out there are thousands of book bloggers–book lovers who’ve taken to posting their own reviews of books in a blog. They don’t get paid, and they don’t HAVE to review anyone. Authors contact them with an attractive pitch and request, and the bloggers accept or decline.
If they accept, the book goes in their To Be Read pile, and months later a review appears on the their blog, Amazon, and Goodreads.
In January, I Queried 127 Book Bloggers
These I found in The Book Reviewer Yellow Pages (exactly what it sounds like, in heft and content) and Indieview. I started with a base pitch email, but each had to be individualized to fit each bloggers requirement policy, preferred genres and formats, and flavor/tone of their blog site.
I Heard Back from 22!
Believe it or not, that’s really good results! The marketer who coached me submitted a book recently to 200 reviewers, landed 20 reviews, and was happy with that. She says 10% is standard, so I’m very pleased with my 17%!
Here’s a Sample Line from my Spreadsheet
Website Blogger Date Queried JOS Sent Est.Post
SFBook.com Vanessa Dec28/Jan28 (Pbk 1/13) Mar 15
You can see too that I queried Vanessa twice—that was b/c she didn’t respond to the first query. I figure, why not send again after a month? Reviewers get busy. Maybe she didn’t reply because she was over whelmed with requests and had to delete a bunch, unread; or maybe my pitch didn’t catch her attention and she deleted it. Who knows? In any case, I re-queried and made sure to re-target my pitch, and it worked! I’ll do the same for the other 100 who haven’t replied.
I have officially sent off all 100+ mailers to 17 different countries and as many states! Here is what our dining room table looked like at the height of mailing frenzy in December. Now it’s online and Amazon does the shipping! (Whew!)
Here’s what it looks like now. We can use our table for dinner again! 🙂 🙂 🙂