kitty

…little ball of claws.

Sorry for the random entry title. I promise I’m going to talk about some book stuff, but first I must share this. My lovely co-worker has foster kittens, and I’ve been invited over to meet the fuzzy little bundles. They are adorable in their pictures, but uh… so here it is. I will admit it. Cats are scary. But I am braving the kitties tonight. My co-workers think they will convert me into being a cat-lover. But you know what my response is when they talk about those kittens? WHY COULDN’T THEY BE PUPPIES???

All right. Enough of that, lol. So, here’s my author update. I was so excited about checking my sales stats on Friday. I can’t tell anything by those line graphs Amazon provides. Amazon even says the graphs don’t really depict your sales, just a comparison of your book against others in rankings. But every Friday, you’re supposed to be able to get an actual book count. So, I log into Amazon Author Central on Friday morning and it tells me that I’ve sold a grand total of… 0 books.

Lies! Lies Amazon tells me! Heck, I bought one. What’s going on? So, I ask someone else who’s been published a lot longer than me (who hasn’t been? 😀 ) and they say: Oh Amazon’s dashboard has been having issues this week. Try back in a few days. My outward response: Oh, okay, thanks. My inner response: WHAT? HOW DARE AMAZON BREAK DURING MY FIRST WEEK OF SALES???

Siiigh. I really want to know how many sold. I’m not expecting huge numbers, any numbers at all will please me. But I do want to know.

I’m also waiting for a couple more reviews to come, though I find I’m not constantly checking anymore. You really do get over it. I didn’t think I would. However, this doesn’t mean I don’t care about reviews anymore. On the contrary, I just don’t feel the overwhelming urge to check every 5 minutes. I finally really feel like it’s time to get back to writing–for real this time.

This is my update for the week. I have a reading coming up next Thursday, so I’ll pop up again with more randomness before then ;).  Thanks to all of you guys out there reading this, and until next time…

 

Take care!

microphones

I hear about other authors doing interviews and I think: that’s cool. I read them and get to know the author’s demeanor a bit and decide, hey I like her/him. We could be friends, therefore, maybe I’ll go see if I can find their book. So, if an interview can do that for other authors, could an interview I give potentially do that for me.

I don’t know. It’s just like when you start a new job or join a new meet-up group. You never know if people are going to get your humor or be off-put by you. So, when I did my interview, I was as “me” as possible, and we’ll see what happens.

Thank you to Magda from the Magic of Books blog for wanting to ask me questions, an if you all would like to check out my first author interview, here you go: https://maginibooks.wordpress.com/2016/07/10/interview-with-e-ardell/.

Until next time! Take care :).

 

The-Fourth-Piece-Promo-5

It arrived at noon today. Well, maybe before noon. The package was waiting for me in my chair when I came back from working the reference desk (yes, I am an honest to G librarian). The stork finally delivered. First, I walked around the office area, holding the package like a baby. (And it kind of felt like one, the peanut wrap inside felt like a Huggies.) I got a little misty eyed. Then after some urging from my coworkers, I cut open the package and held my baby!

baby born kissing book I wanted to kiss him, but I didn’t want to get lip gloss on him. Then I paraded him around the library and had my coworker take pictures, lol. Then, I flipped through the pages and admired. Then I went in search of my coworkers who hadn’t seen it yet. Some of my library people have already started reading the book and they are telling me good things. We’ll see how they like the entire thing. I hope they do :).

So, now I’m constantly looking at ratings and Amazon stats. I don’t know how to read Amazon stats, so I hope the stuff I see is good :D. I checked Twitter and YA Book Central to make sure my ads were going as planned, and YES they are! So, I’m going out tonight to celebrate.

Thank you to anyone who rated or bought my darling. I hope you enjoy him. Feel free to leave a review and tell me what you think!

whats up book!Until next time. I’ll probably have some stats or something to talk about then. Take care!The Fourth Piece‘s birthday is today! RSVP for the party at:

 

The-Fourth-Piece-Promo-4It’s almost here. Tomorrow. I just got my Net Galley stat report back today. One hundred and five people downloaded ARC’s of The Fourth Piece. I don’t know if this means I should expect 105 reviews, though, lol. I wonder what percentage of people download and review. I mean, you also have to take into consideration that maybe they didn’t like the book, and kindly chose not to review. I can respect that. If I feel that I can’t leave at least 3 stars, I don’t review it. It obviously wasn’t my cup of tea, but maybe somebody else will like it.

Of course, you want to believe your baby will always be somebody’s cup of tea. But hey, who here can claim they have liked every book they ever read? Even if it has rave reviews and all your friends loved it? I can’t claim that either. Far from it. So, whenever I read a review, I have to keep that in mind. However, that said, the reviews I’ve gotten so far haven’t been bad. A few were rather critical, but not bad. I look forward to more feedback. Book II is still in the making after all. Of course you can’t take all feedback and restructure a planned series, but if someone makes a really good point… Well. Who’s to say they might not see it later?

Okay, I just wanted to post to continue my count down until the day (tomorrow!)

Save the date: July 8, 2016!

 

 

 

 

 

The-Fourth-Piece-Promo-1

Is it almot the 7th? I’m about to jump out of my skin I’m so antsy. I’ve also been looking into more promotions. I joined this group AAYA that has great promotional suggestions. The new resources I looked into are: Book Barbarian, Book Discovery, The Fussy Librarian, K-Boards and another blog tour company called Chapter by Chapter. just confirmed dates for a Chapter by Chapter Blog Tour to happen a month after the YA Bound Book Tour. YA Bound likes for authors to wait 30 days before going on a tour with another company. They say it’s to avoid chaos. I’ll take their word for it, because I’ve never done this before, lol.

I also looked at Xpresso Tours and HEA Tours (I actually looked at HEA a few weeks ago), but I did want to share the feedback. Both of these places have excellent customer service, and I was informed that they do not really have a blogger market for YA Science Fiction or Fantasy, especially ones that aren’t romantic. Both places offered up other resources; HEA actually recommending YA Bound Books.

I also came across a directory of YA Bloggers. I haven’t started going through the list yet. I wonder how many people on it are still taking requests from new authors. This is fun and I love trying to figure out what else I can do to push my book. I even discussed the possibility of an audio book and listened to other authors tell me about their experiences with ACX.

Oh, and I planned my own little get together celebration for July 8, 2016. (Yaaaas!) Some co-workers and I are getting together after work. I will probably have some more small parties and then the real launch parties. I sent out an e-vite for the get together on Friday, telling my co-workers to meet me at a restaurant. They’d know me because I’d be the one wearing my book, lol. That kind of makes me kick myself, though.  I should have had a shirt made. Dang it.

Anyways, enough rambling. One more day! Tick…tick…tick…

Save the date! July 8, 2016

The Fourth Piece will be available through:

 

 

 

 

The-Fourth-Piece-Promo-2

July 8, 2016 is almost here. One of my friends just let me know that she pre-ordered a print copy of The Fourth Piece and it will be delivered to her on the 8th. I just sent the message out on Facebook: Hey everybody! Order the print book now and you’ll get it on the 8th, same as the eBook!

I just know that when that book is in my hand I’m going to kiss it like a newborn baby. Tears will flow. I will blubber. And then I’ll dance around like a crazy person (so… I guess that means I’ll dance around like myself then, hah!)

My eyes keep going to Goodreads, checking my stats. Every time a review gets posted or my rating changes, I’m on it like a hawk. The reviews have been great to read. One of them got me so excited to write more of the sequel, The Third Gambit, because the reader felt so strongly about something that I’m going to address in Book II. I guess what I’m saying is, this is nerve-wracking but crazy exciting at the same time! I wonder if I’ll ever stop being intrigued by reviews? Nah! Whether they be good or bad, I love feedback.

I’m still booking blog tours and e-mailing bloggers and reviewers. I have a reading booked for the end of July, but hopefully there will be a launch party this month too. If not, I’ve got one scheduled in August as well. I don’t know, it kind of feels like I’m not doing all that much for the actual day of release, or month of release. So… I changed that. I’m going on a twitter rampage starting the 8th, and I’m also running an ad on YA Book Central starting on the 8th. Got some prime real estate on there ;). Check it out on the 8th.

Sorry, I guess I don’t have all that much new to say right now, but I’m too excited not to post anything. Plus, I want to show off my new promotional images :D. Expect daily posts up until release date… and then a few after that too, maybe.

Take care guys, and don’t forget to save the date! On July 8, 2016 The Fourth Piece will be available on:

 

 

Please Review

Once upon a time I said that sending my manuscript off to agents and publishers was like sending my baby off on his first day of school. Well, now I know the real deal. Agent and publisher-shopping is like looking for the best preschool for your little tyke. Putting your novel out there for review is the first day of school. Agents and publishers might just say “No”, and plug in a canned response, and some say nothing at all if they don’t want it. Now, a reviewer–if they choose to take on your book–will tell you what’s on their mind and it might not be nice. It’s the first day of school and your baby might get picked on by the other kids :o!

So, yes, The Fourth Piece is at that point. I do have e-ARCs available to those who would like a free copy in exchange for an honest review. There are many sites and services dedicated to this purpose, and I’ve been shopping so many of them my eyeballs are swimming. I’m signed up for a blog tour in September with YA Bound Book Tours, and for a featured block on YA Books Central that starts on my release date (July 8, 2016! Save the date 😀 😀 😀 ). I’m also lining up a couple of panels, some book launch parties, some readings, a book store appearance and am about to see if Word Press has a calendar function that I can use, so I make my author engagements look pretty on the Event Page. Hah! Hear that? I have “author engagements.” Yeah, yeah, I’m a dork. I know this, but I love saying that.

I want to do everything right for this book, because it’s so special to me, but I know this is a learning opportunity. I’m going to screw things up and will end up “knowing better for next time”. I say that so calmly, but I really don’t want to mess up at all. So, anyways, I want to get into my “gathering potential reviewers” process.

My wonderful publisher gave me a list of places to try, but I also joined some other writing resources groups who list bloggers by genre, one is called: Where Writers Win. I’ve sent out individual queries and I’ve hit up some sites that have huge followings that post your book for review. Right now, The Fourth Piece is up for review on Book Review Buzz , a group that also has a deal with Net Galley.  So, my darling will get a lot of exposure, and I’m crossing my fingers that a couple of people will accept the challenge and leave me a review. And hey, if anyone reading this is a subscribing member of either of those organizations, I’d be honored if you chose to download my ARC.

I’m also extending the offer here, if anyone is a book reviewer or blogger and interested in The Fourth Piece in exchange for an honest review, please send me an e-mail at e.ardell.author@gmail.com, and we’ll talk :).

Now, if you’re wondering how I’m doing all this and still writing… Well, I am guilty of having not written for a very long time… until last Saturday. A simple deletion of yet another chapter and a POV switch flipped my muse right back on. So, now I’m going to be learning how to balance writing new stuff and promoting. Heck, that’ll probably be my next blog post. But, until next time…

Take care and thanks for reading!

 

 

 

 

 

takeover

I can write another book about all the things that have happened since I last made an entry. Call me lazy. Nah, go ahead, do it. I’m lazy. I should have been blogging like crazy these last few weeks. All right, you ready? Let’s go!

BIG NEWS: JULY 8, 2016!

What’s that? My release date! Both print and e-book formats of The Fourth Piece will be available for purchase from the publisher’s website: 48fourteen.com, Amazon, Barnes & Nobles, and select bookstores.

You can pre-order your Kindle-edition right now: http://amzn.to/24I4HNr  (WOOHOO!!)

Next off, tomorrow, I’m doing an Author Takeover Event through my publisher. Basically, 48fourteen lets some of their authors take over their Facebook page for 6-8 hours a day. My day is Sunday, June 12, 2016 from 12 PM to 6PM Central time ( 10am-4pm for me!) I’m going to be doing giveaways (free stuff for you!) and challenges and interacting with readers practically all day and I’m stoked!

Here’s the invite link: https://www.facebook.com/events/250136265348256/.

Networking events! I’m scheduled to do two readings, one at Old Capitol Books and Juice ‘N Java at PG! (I will post more specific information about these in EVENTS.) I also had a write-up about me in the Monterey County Weekly (http://bit.ly/1Yky5cR) and I’ll be filming a television appearance on August 4th!

Things I still have to do: plan some book release parties. I’ve got two currently in the making. Talk to some independent book stores. Hit up some more of my library connections to see which libraries might want to carry The Fourth Piece (because of course mine will ;). ) Make some author swag! And finalize which blog tours and review sites ad book promotions tools I’m actually going to use.

I hate to say it, but I’ve been so busy I haven’t written anything new. Ugh! But that will change soon. I’m going to start scheduling writing dates with myself. I get a treat if I do good and write X-amount at any given time. But I need to find a way to make that treat not involve food, or shopping… or spending money… Well darn, that’s a boring date. I’d stand myself up!

Hah, but any way, I’ll figure something out, but new writing will happen and happen soon.

All right, so for anyone who reads my long-winded posts, I just wanted to give you all an update on what’s going on with my book and writing. Take care guys, and I hope you’ll participate in the Author Takeover or hey, pre-order my book :D.

Take care!

 

 

A lot of people knock it at times, but I do love Creative Commons. Sometimes finding good images that are relevant to what I need to do with them is a headache, but I always come away with something. I’ve also found some of the best free music… and some of the worst, lol. This makes me get into debates with myself when it comes to paying for images and software. I’ve seen great stock images, but they can be as limited as the free images when it comes to being exactly what you need. Same with the music. So, do I invest in a subscription, pay for individual images or stick with what’s free? For now, I’m going with free.

On that note, I also choose to use Windows Movie Maker (free) over Animoto, and GIMP 2 (free) over Photoshop. I also use Audacity for mixing music. Still definitely going to pay someone to make the real book trailer, but I like my little homemade teaser trailers. As I make them, I get more excited for the release of The Fourth Piece. I can’t wait to see my words on a printed page.

Now, you know what’s coming next. You guessed right. Another teaser. This is teaser #5, introducing Lawrence “Lawrie” Ladreth, my semi-crazy character who loves gadgets, stunts, and challenging death on a daily basis.

Let’s kick this teaser off with a little Q&A:

Question: How did you come up with some of the slang used in The Fourth Piece?

My answer: It’s all word play. The Earth slang is a combination of modern slang, some retro stuff and some silly words my friends use sometimes like “shiggity” and “shizz”. Then, there are terms like “vulatto” which is a combination of the word “Visitor” and “mulatto”. “Mulatto” means you’re of mixed descent, half Black, half White. “Vulatto” means you’re half human, half Visitor. The term “Vader” is a derogatory term humans in the story use when insulting a “Visitor”. It’s a play on not only the word “invader”, but, you may have guessed it, Darth Vader. (My bestie helped me come up with that one.)

Now, coming up with slang and phrases for the Visitors to use is a lot more fun, because I can be even more creative. I like making up words and then coming up with conjugations and different ways to use them in a sentence. You won’t see so much Visitor slang in The Fourth Piece, as is mostly takes place on Earth, but you’ll see it in the next book.

But hey, even without the Visitor lingo, the Earth slang used by certain characters in the story is still fun.

Meet a Ladreth brother who loves to use his own words for things:

Lawrence Ladreth – sixteen years old, a genius and fearless adrenaline junkie who gets off on the fact that his friends think he’s insane and who can’t wait to say his life was so epic that it inspired a cinematic trilogy.

Lost? I would be too, if I hadn’t written the story. Find more information about The Fourth Piece (coming soon) on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29058267-the-fourth-piece, like me on Facebook: facebook.com/EArdell. Thanks!

 

 

Hey!

I completed my fourth teaser in my “teaser series”, and I’m nerding out because the book is called The Fourth Piece, and this is the fourth teaser. This one was the hardest to make, because the character introduced in this one might be dead. I won’t explain too much, because it’d be a spoiler and I prefer for you to read the book *wink, wink, wink* to get what I’m talking about. So, anyway, this trailer was the hardest to make because I had to someone show alien terrain from the vantage point of a character losing consciousness.

A co-worker of mine is pretty techie and she mentioned a free software program that compares to Adobe Photoshop called GIMP. I know the name sounds mean, but the software’s pretty sweet to not cost me anything. I was able to manipulate my images, change the hues and add and take away layers. I’m still not a boss at using the program, but I think my end product turned out okay. So, yes, GIMP is my new toy. I’m also learning new, fun things about Windows Move Maker. I almost spent a lot of money on Animoto, and I’m glad I didn’t. Movie Maker works just fine for the purposes I need it for and it’s also free.

I’m having a great time scripting the trailers, playing with images, and even timing the music in the trailer to match the intensity of the words on screen. I feel like a director of an EXTREMELY low budget film, but I’m still empowered. I jump for joy when I check my YouTube hits and see the counter tracking more than just me coming back to peep at my videos. The videos are also doing well on Facebook and Twitter. Tumblr… yeah, every time I think I’m going to give up on Tumblr, I get a new follower (which makes a grand total of three, by the way, lol).

If you haven’t checked out any of my teaser trailers, please do so. All of them feature different aspects of the story. Some introduce single characters, some delve into the world building. Haha, look at me talking like all the trailers are done. So far I have three trailers about characters and one trailer about world building. I plan to have seven trailers total, so three will be about world building and the remaining four about character. So, I’ve got three more trailers to go!

Latest The Fourth Piece news, aside from the teasers, is that I’m looking at title pages and chapter headings. I get more excited by the minute. I told a friend: Gee, getting ready for a book release is like giving birth…without the gross stuff. 😀

Okay, I started this blog entry to bring attention to my latest teaser, so I’m going to leave you guys with that. I’d like to introduce you to my character, Evan Ladreth.

On THE FOURTH PIECE by E. Ardell…

Time to introduce another character with yet another book teaser for The Fourth Piece. I’m going to do this one a little differently this time, since this character has lived most of his life off-world. Here we go!

Have you ever had “just one of those days?”

Meet Evan Ladreth, who’s having THAT day.

Name: Evan Ladreth or Lauduethe

Age: 18

Occupation: Leader

Hometown: First Dome, West Central, Octagon 6

Planet: Rema

Hobbies: collecting rare knives, learning new musical instruments, cross-breeding plant species, trying new food, and working old magic

Pet Peeves: Being called short or cute, being petted, being underestimated, long meetings, having to wait, bad service…and crappy missions

Want to know what the heck I’m talking about? Guess you’ll need to follow this link and check out THE FOURTH PIECE (coming soon): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29058267-the-fourth-piece.

Like this video, like me on Facebook.com/EArdell
Follow me on twitter: @E_Ardell