bookplatesI know a lot of people say that brick and mortar bookstores are a dying breed, but those same people also say that about libraries. I think so long as people thirst for knowledge, stay book junkies, and seek a little socialization with others whose needs are the same, brick, mortar and libraries are safe. That being said, I’ve been invited to be on a YA and Children’s Literature Panel at a Barnes and Noble Bookstore in San Jose inside of Eastridge Mall. There will be a book fair in the store featuring books from all of the panelists.

My song and dance: (even though you can’t hear and see it, which actually might not be too bad for you 😉 ) The Fourth Piece is gonna be in Barnes and Noble! La, la, la!

Some authors might not care too much about this. When it comes to sales, some say they do better through Amazon and don’t make much from bookstore sales, but you know what? I’m one of those authors who want to see my books on a bookstore shelf, a library shelf, a personal bookshelf. Two down… the bookstore left to go, and it’s happening! 😀

What am I going to do on this panel? Well, I heard in the past, the authors all did a book talk about their books and genre. This year the panel is going to be more focused on individual authors talking up the books they’ve brought to sell. We’ll each get our own little table/booth to decorate and swag-up and we’ll be set up near the food 😀 (Stroke of genius!) In previous years, they’d set up near the children’s section, but because the YA section and Children’s section of this B&N are not close, it’s not advantageous to all. Also, they determined that areas closer to the food get more foot traffic. (I’m a believer in this. No matter what books I search out, I always drift over to Starbucks in the end.)

So, now, I’m focusing on my elevator pitches, and what I’m going to bring to swag-out my table. I ordered more bookmarks, I’ve got my fancy new bookplates, I’m bringing my big The Fourth Piece book cover poster, and several smaller posters of the awesome promo images my publisher made for me. I don’t know how big my table will be, so I might have to prop some posters on the floor, but I want my booth to be eye candy. Hmm…candy. Free candy is always good to put out too.

The event is going to be on Saturday, December 10, 2016 from 2-3:30 pm, at Barnes and Noble Eastridge in San Jose, California. If you live nearby, please come in and say “hey!” If you come up and tell me you’re there because of my blog, I might have a free treat for you! ;).

I’ll end this with a question. If you go to B&N or any bookstore and an author is there at a booth, selling books, and talking… what would entice you to come over and see what’s going on, aside from the book being your genre?

Thanks to everybody out there listening, reading, you know what I mean. Happy Thanksgiving to all who celebrate the holiday and, as I always, take care!

Until next time!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes, yes, I’m no stranger to showing my age these days it seems. But you know what? Nineties kids had some of the best sayings, and a lot of our phrases are back… or never really left.

I promised that the next time you heard from me, I’d have party pictures. Well, you know what? I do! I had two great launch parties. The first launch party was at Monterey Public Library. At this party, there was face painting. Some people left the party with extra eyes and a lot of glitter.

face-painting

extra-eyes

 

henna-tattooWe also had a henna artist. You can’t really see it in this picture, but I’ve got the Mark of Order from The Fourth Piece on my arm. It took forever to dry, but it washed off after a few days. I’m thinking of getting a more permanent Mark of Order in the future ;).

There was plenty of food. A good thing too, because a man came in and made sure to come over and thank me for such a good time and to congratulate me for my accomplishments… then made a bee-line to the food and proceeded to stuff his face. He refilled his plate 4 times, eating as he was stacking snacks on top of each other. (And I know you’re wondering, so I’ll tell you. No, he didn’t buy a book. Shhh…. I think he was only there for the food.)

food-table

I had music playing as guests entered. I let them grab some treats and mingle, then I kicked off the event with an introduction of myself and The Fourth Piece. My baby has come a long way, and I thanked everyone for attending his first birthday party. I played the official book trailer on the big screen, and then did a reading. A toddler loved the reading so much he screamed for joy… well, he screamed for something at least, lol. After I finished reading, I took questions and then let my teaser trailer reel play. Every 30 minutes, I pulled a raffle ticket and called out the name of the winner of 1 of my 3 door prizes.

mugsMy henna artist, a high school senior, won the first mug, her younger sister won the second mug. Before I pulled the ticket for the third mug, I joked that their mother would probably win the last mug so that the family could have a matching set…. and um… then she did. I made sure to rub their shoulders and promised to purchase a couple of lottery tickets that night ;).

While guests got tattooed, painted, and fed, or sat and watch trailers, I sold mommy-and-ebbyand signed books and posed for some pics. All in all, it was a great event that was actually recorded. I will go through the reel and make clips of it eventually, lol. The lighting wasn’t the best for video, but it made for a cool otherworldly atmosphere for the party.

Two days later, in San Francisco, I had a second launch party at Book Passage book store. I had never been there before the event. It was small, book-passagebut fabulous. The networking that was done at that meeting was amazing and The Fourth Piece is now in a book store. I look forward to getting it into many others in the future, but we’ll do it one at a time for now.  I’m learning about many other literary events going on in the Bay Area that I may be very welcome to attend now that I know “people.” 😀

Next stop on my promo train is my first blog tour. I just sent in all of the information requested from the person overseeing the tour. The Fourth Piece will be the featured book on YA Bound Book Tours from September 19-23rd! I don’t really know what to expect, but I hope I get some interesting reviews and maybe some more readers.

Until next time guys! Take care!

 

 

 

 

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:

 

 

 

 

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!