indieBRAG Blog

Congratulations- Sue Fortin!

Congratulations Sue! I hope your new publishing deal with Harper Collins is a wonderful and fruitful experience- Thank you, it's very exciting. Since Harper Impulse is digital publishing, will you continue to have a print copy of your book available and, if so, how will that work? Harper Impulse are working on a digital first basis, so although there are no guarantees every title will be published in paperback, there is the scope for it at some point. Many self-published authors are seeking deals with traditional publishers while many are not. What is it that you find appealing about such a deal? Oh gosh, that's a loaded question  It really is a matter of personal choice and for me, there were several reasons. To self-publish proficiently and to a high standard can be quite expensive and I really wouldn't like to add up how much I spent on having my book edited, edited and edited again, together with having the cover professional designed and then the costs of promotion. To do this again for a second novel, I wasn't sure if I could invest so heavily. Another factor, was how wide reaching I could be as an indie author.…

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5 Facebook Marketing Tips for Authors

 Some advice from Blogger and Author Lindsay Buroker on using Facebook-Month after month, Facebook and Twitter are the top sources of traffic for my site (after the Big G and its search engine, of course). If we consider that I spend much less time on Facebook than Twitter (I usually post to my FB author page 3 or 4 times a week, versus using Twitter incessantly throughout the day, because I'm become a tweet-happy addict), then Facebook is the clear winner when it comes to time spent versus results delivered. I should also point out that I don't post links to my site on Facebook very often, so all of this traffic (1,000+ visitors in January out of about 23,000 total) comes via two or three updates a month.And is getting traffic to my site a win insofar as book sales goes? It's hard to say if the folks who come in via social media outlets are buyers (I suspect many have already bought), but it's a rare day that I don't have at least a couple of sales at Amazon (monitored via the affiliate links I provide to my own books) that originate on my blog. Sales aside, I…

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Little Miss History – Barbara Ann Mojica

Author Interview -Barbara Ann Mojica Stephanie: Hello Barbara! Congrats on winning the BRAG Medallion. Please tell me about your book, Little Miss HISTORY Travels to MOUNT RUSHMORE. Barbara: Little Miss History Travels to Mount Rushmore is the first in a series of books using the Little Miss HISTORY character as a guide. She looks like a wannabe park ranger with pig tails and hiking boots three sizes too big. With her as your child's guide learning about people and places of historical importance will be fun and educational. The aim of these books is to whet your child's appetite to learn more about history and perhaps even visit these landmarks with you. Little Miss HISTORY presents information in a whimsical and factual way while amusing your child. I hope you will invite her into your home and enjoy this first adventure, and those to follow, with your loved ones. Stephanie: What genre does this fall under? Barbara: This book is children's non-fiction. In the US it would be generally be aligned with fifth grade core curriculum which studies American history. Stephanie: What inspired you to write children's books? Barbara: I am a historian with Bachelor's and Master's Degrees in history…

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HAPPY HALLOWEEN ALL!

  Though the origin of the word Halloween is Christian, the holiday is commonly thought to have pagan roots. October 31 – Nov 1 was seen as the end of harvest and the beginning of the dark days of winter. This was a time when the 'door' to the Otherworld opened enough for the souls of the dead, and other beings such as fairies, to come into our world. Feasts were had, at which the souls of dead kin were beckoned to attend and a place set at the table for them. However, harmful spirits and fairies were also thought to be active. People took steps to allay or ward-off these harmful spirits/fairies. Wearing costumes may have originated as a means of disguising oneself from these harmful spirits/fairies. In the Christian tradition, it was believed that the souls of the departed wandered the earth until All Saints' Day, and All Hallows' Eve provided one last chance for the dead to gain vengeance on their enemies before moving to the next world. In order to avoid being recognized by any soul that might be seeking such vengeance, people would don masks or costumes to disguise their identities. In Halloween: From Pagan…

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Daughters- florence Osmund

Author interview:  Florence Osmund Stephanie: Florence Osmund grew up in an old Victorian home in Illinois, complete with a coach house, the same house she used as inspiration for her first two books. She earned her master's degree from Lake Forest Graduate School of Management and has obtained more than three decades of experience in corporate America. Her notable website is dedicated primarily to helping new authors—offering advice she wishes she had received before starting her first novel. Osmund currently resides in Chicago where she is working on her next novel. Florence, thank you for chatting with me again and congrats on winning the BRAG Medallion for your story, Daughters. Please tell me about your book. Florence: The year is 1949, and twenty-four-year-old Marie Marchetti has just discovered the identity of her father, Jonathan Brooks, the father she never knew. She hopes the invitation from him to spend two weeks with her newfound family over Thanksgiving will help uncover vital truths about herself. Discovering who her father is also means discovering her own ethnicity, and her strong need to understand who she really is and where she belongs drives her to seek peace and truth in her life. A lot…

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Teens Are Not Reading!

    "There's been an enormous investment in teaching kids to read in elementary school-Kids are doing better at 9, and at 11. At 13, they're doing no worse, but then there is a catastrophic fall-off. ... If kids are put into this electronic culture without any counterbalancing efforts, they will stop reading."NEA chairman Dana Gioia Let's face it, parents have to take a lot of the blame. No one wants to hear this but far too few parents turn off the TV or computer and pick up a book themselves. It is our job to set the example. Take some time to talk to your kids about a great book and not the latest Lindsey Lohan gossip! Here's a plan- next time your kids say they are bored, and who doesn't here that a hundred times a week?, hand them a book. Next time you are working around the house, give them 2 choices, help or read. Want to bet they will read! I bought my 9 year old granddaughter a Kindle with a pretty pink cover. A lot of our relationship revolves around books- picking books, sitting together on the porch reading, reading interesting or funny passages to…

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Top Ten Things A Self-Published Author Hears At A Cocktail Party

    10. "You're an author? ... Really!?" 9. "What have you written? ...Never heard of it!" 8. "Who's your publisher? ... Oh. I see." 7. "So what's your book about? ... I never read that stuff." 6. "What else have you written? ...I don't like that either." 5. "How come I haven't seen your books in Barnes and Noble? ... What's an eBook?" 4. "Is there any money in this? ... That much? Wait...that's what you've spent!" 3. "Then how much have you made? ... "You're kidding, right?" 2. "Why're you still doing this? ... Have you ever tried root canals?" 1. "Well, good luck. ... Even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while."

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Shocked By Rejection?

    As you might imagine, some of the self-published authors whose books were rejected by indieBRAG readers are not happy. Fortunately, I am pleased to report that only a few of them have taken the time to berate us! The brutal fact is that many indie books have no chance at all of getting through our initial screening process, let alone being read by our reading team - they have poorly conceived stories and/or are badly written. These books are invariably rejected by most, if not all, of the readers who review them. However, occasionally we must reject a book with regret. These are books with really good stories but are in desperate need of professional editing- either content or copy editing or both. To have a book that is worth a reader's time and money, an indie author needs to do everything they can to fine tune and perfect their work. A great story poorly edited is a real shame. We recently rejected a book that the author said was going to be made into a film. This is wonderful news for the author but having a book made into a screenplay doesn't change the basic facts about…

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The Little Gnome-Sheri Fink

Author Interview:  Sheri Fink Sheri Fink is a #1 best-selling, award-winning children's author, creator of "The Whimsical World of Sheri Fink" children's brand, and an international speaker. Sheri writes books that inspire and delight children while planting seeds of self-esteem. Her first children's book, The Little Rose, was a #1 best-seller on Amazon for over 60 weeks, became the #1 top-rated e-book on Amazon, and received a gold medal in the 2012 Readers Favorite International Book Awards. Her subsequent books have all been #1 best-sellers. Her children's book series recently received the Gold Mom's Choice Award for excellence in family friendly entertainment. Sheri was recently selected by CBS Los Angeles as one of the top 3 authors in her local area, a distinction she shares with Dean Koontz. Stephanie: Hello, Sheri. Congrats on winning the BRAG Medallion. Please tell me about your book, The Little Gnome. Sheri: The Little Gnome is a charming story about a garden gnome experiencing the wonder of the four seasons for the first time. At first he doesn't understand and resists the changes in his environment. That just makes him grumpy. Once he begins to understand the seasons, he finds something good in every change.…

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Island of Fog- Keith Robinson

Author Interview: Keith Robinson   Stephanie: Keith Robinson is a writer of fantasy fiction for middle-grade readers and young adults. His ISLAND OF FOG series has received extremely positive feedback from readers of all ages including Piers Anthony (best-selling author of the Magic of Xanth series) and Writer's Digest. Keith is a self-employed website designer with a wife and daughter. Originally from England, he moved to the United States in 2001 where he now resides in the sticks of Chickamauga, Georgia. Apart from writing, he collects young adult and children's books. He has a bookshelf crammed full of secondhand hardbacks of varying authors from the 1940s-1960s, in particular those he grew up with in the UK. He owns EnidBlyton.net and is webmaster of EnidBlytonSociety.co.uk, both dedicated to the great author. Visit UnearthlyTales.com for more. Hello Keith, congrats on winning the BRAG Medallion! Please tell me about your book, Island of Fog.Keith: Thank you! A lonely, foggy island is home to eight families. Twelve-year-old Hal and his friends have always wondered what happened all those years ago on the mainland, that unseen place Out There beyond the fog, and after an astonishing discovery in the woods the children are more determined…

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