King Halvar is ill and childless, so he visits the village orphanage, narrowing his search for a suitable replacement to the throne to two young brothers, Silas and Dregz. Halvar knows the new king must be strong, resilient, determined, and most of all, honest. Dregz wins the competition, and his brother Silas, in a fit of jealousy, has him banished to the Island of Dregs, warning the people that “only the dregs of the earth live there!”
But Silas’s actions have dire consequences. Dregz’s son Dreck is determined to uncover the secret his father has kept for years, and as he sets out to save the people who once looked down upon him and his family, he finds himself in a terrifying chain of events. Will he be able to save Silas’s daughter, Princess Elle? And can he defeat Nazaar–the slithery stranger who seems to hold such power over them all?
Elizabeth Brown’s “Privacy is an Illusion: A Memoir of Life Events Witnessed by T.S.” Issues confronting people have not changed that much over the centuries, and generation after generation must deal with them. Written by clergy member Elizabeth Brown, this book is for feelers and thinkers who know there is no one answer to life’s riddles. The reader is responsible to write in their own minds what happened before and after. They must ascribe the meaning. This quirky book is not for the faint of heart, but maybe, it will help us think more kindly and less harshly.
B. De La Mater-Novak’s “The Adventures of Belinda Buttercup: A Blossom Land Tale.” Belinda is a tiny blossom child who becomes trapped in a water lily on Blossom Land Stream. The swift-moving current carries her away toward the crashing waves of Loud Waters. Even more dangerous are the Big People who are building huge dens to live in and destroying Blossom Land Forest. The little people of Blossom Land vow to do whatever it takes to stop the Big People, but first they must save Belinda.
Technology has created a wide variety of ways to reach audiences all over the world. It takes is a little thinking outside the box and you can market a self-published book in creative, affordable and impactful ways. Consider book tours! Tours are a great way to connect with your readers and technology has made them easier and more cost effective than ever!
Author Ellen C. Maze is taking her latest book Rabbit: Chasing Beth Rider, on tour — a Virtual Book Tour with Outskirts Press. This will allow Ellen to take her book into the far corners of the globe, all from the comfort of her own home! Keep an eye out for Elle’s book as she will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead!
Luckily for us, Ellen was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of Rabbit: Chasing Beth Rider.
OP: Tell us a little bit about Rabbit: Chasing Beth Rider. What is it about?
Ellen: Author Beth Rider’s Christian Fantasy novel is a best seller, but the plot is leading real-life vampires — the Rakum — down a path their leaders cannot abide. She must be stopped, and senior-Elder Jack Dawn takes it upon himself to ensure her demise. He did not expect his most ruthless lieutenant, Michael Stone, would choose to help the woman escape. Beth goes on the run, joining forces with Rakum sympathizers along the way, but will their contributions be enough to protect her from Jack Dawn’s rage? Ancient and wise as the ages, the powerful entity that created the Rakum, High Father Abroghia, will face off with the power inside Beth Rider and in the battle between light and dark, there can only be one victor. Vampires are fiction, but the Rakum are real, and they guard their power zealously.
OP: Why did you decide to write this story?
Ellen: Rabbit: Chasing Beth Rider began as a writing exercise to work on as I shopped my first novel — The Judging to publishers. The Judging is about a 15th-Century priest who is transformed into a vampire while unconscious. He spends the novel-time in the modern era justifying his bloodthirst, certain that he is killing for God. I started Rabbit after asking myself, what if real vampires read The Judging? Would it lead them to God? The more I played with it, the more it grew. Characters developed and the plot flowed on its own accord. Before I knew it, a novel had been born. When it was completed, a second popped out, seamlessly continuing the work done in Book One. When Two (Rabbit Legacy) was complete, a third book also poured out (Rabbit Redemption), and then a fourth (Anomaly: Beyond the Rabbit). When Book Four was nearly done, I realized the series would have six installments, each one more exciting than the previous and each one will dig deeper and deeper into the psyche of the Rakum. This 2019 edition reads “Special Anniversary Edition” because it has been ten years since Rabbit was first published, garnering hundreds of reviews and enticing readers across the globe to join the chase. It is my hope that this special edition will enable an entirely new generation of readers to dive in and enjoy this trip down the rabbit hole.
OP: How did you get your book published?
Ellen: Rabbit: Chasing Beth Rider was first published by Treasureline Press in 2009, a traditional publisher that has since gone out of business. The book never stopped bringing fun to new readers, so in 2019 it was accepted and re-released by Outskirts Press, with additional material and a brand-new chapter.
OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?
Ellen: I love this question because I am a reader, too. My work has been compared to that of Frank Peretti and Bill Myers. My influences as a young writer were Stephen King and Anne Rice, so many readers find a creep-factor in my work not present in most Christian fiction. Readers who enjoy vampire fiction and wonder what it might look like from a biblical perspective will enjoy this book and readers of paranormal and supernatural secular novels will enjoy it, too, as even though the main character is a Christian, the writing is not preachy. Does this mean my books are kid-friendly? Yes, if your child watches PG-13 movies or TV-MA television programming. My novels contain violence, mild profanity, (non-graphic) sexual situations, and adult themes, yet people can be edified by the messages hidden inside the fiction.
OP: What is special about your book?
Ellen: If one reads the reviews for this book, you find that readers are amazed at the messages intertwined with the plot. Anyone who enjoys vampire or paranormal tales will be entertained and edified (or provoked, as the case may be). Christian authors are often afraid to write of violence and horror, but isn’t the Bible peppered with such things? One reader said to me, “The Bible is often violent, and mankind suffers violence on the path to purity. God sharpens and cleanses us with trials and the Rabbit book puts its protags through the worst!”
OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?
Ellen: Along with the oddness of writing “horror” or “vampires” from a biblical perspective, which is extremely rare, this book has another bizarre oddity. The main plot of Rabbit: Chasing Beth Rider revolves around Beth’s bestselling novel, The Judging. In real life, The Judging is published and available, penned by Ellen C Maze. The Judging is Book One of The Corescu Chronicles, two of four are published already, so my readers can dive into that series when they finish Rabbit!
OP: Have you published any other books?
Ellen: Besides those mentioned above (the first four books of the Rabbit Saga and first two books of The Corescu Chronicles), I have also published a collection of short stories, 22 Sideways: Twenty-Two Bloodthirsty Tales, a dozen digital short stories, and edited and contributed to an anthology of Christian fantasy writers entitled, Feckless Tales of Supernatural, Paranormal, and Downright Presumptuous Ilk. Outside of this genre, I have published non-fiction, a dozen equestrian coloring books, and illustrated children’s books under the names Ellen C Maze and Ellen Sallas.
OP: Do you plan to publish more?
Ellen: Oh, yes! I am currently completing Book Five and Six of the Rabbit Saga (Conundrum: The Lost Rabbit and The Vestige: Final Chapter), and I am simultaneously writing stand-alone novel of spiritual warfare, pitting Old Testament gods against biblically-accurate angels, and deal with the mortals caught in the cross-hairs. This will be my first “young adult” novel with the main characters being aged 16 to 21.
OP: Thanks for your time, Ellen! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Raised on Bram Stoker and Stephen King, Ellen read Frank Peretti’s This Present Darkness in 2000, and has never been the same. Now she takes the horror/ paranormal/vampire genre directly into the heart of spiritual matters, pitting good against evil within the confines of biblical truth. Scripture is often bloody and the struggle to escape the claws of evil is real and personal. With writing as her passion and her main hobby, Ellen lives in Alabama with her family and does NOT have holes in her neck.
This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road.” Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.
Are you an author looking for help to market your self-published book?
For many readers, summer marks the perfect time to slow down and pick up a new book or two to savor, whether basking in the sun on the beach or camping in alpine meadows … or adhering to the same work schedule as always. Book sales in the fiction genre, including science fiction and fantasy, spike at this time of year, and for good reason! Whether readers are looking for their next travel-friendly book or for a way to escape when they’re stuck in place, the fantastical and the technological sublime are the perfect escape valve.
They’re also, sometimes, difficult books to market. Both science fiction and fantasy qualify as “genre fiction,” and while massive numbers of science fiction and fantasy books are sold each year, those numbers are not, by and large, coming from standard bookstore sales and standard marketing campaigns. If you’ve recently published a work of science fiction or fantasy yourself, you’re probably already aware of the fact that your ideal readers, while incredibly loyal, can be difficult to reach.
So how do you market to them effectively? Here are five fearless ideas to get you started.
1. Publish an ebook edition.
Nothing appeals to readers of genre fiction quite as much as accessibility, transportability, and ease of use. After all, many of your readers are on the move at this time of year, and the others are likely too busy to bother with shopping at physical stores every time they want a new science fiction or fantasy book, which is on average more frequently than readers of pretty much any other genre when you consider the numbers. If you want your book to be easy to find and easy to buy, you absolutely must consider investing in an ebook edition of your book if you haven’t already. You can promote the release of your new ebook edition on your website, blog, and social media sites, and even offer an e-giveaway to boost traffic and engagement on all of the above websites!
2. Get thee to social media, STAT.
It naturally follows that you need to be online, and you need to have a robust digital footprint. Readers of science fiction and fantasy, once they fall in love with a book of yours, will want to engage with you online. And most, if not all, of the top science fiction and fantasy authors are already online, so rounding out your social media platforms isn’t so much giving you a foot up over the competition as it is leveling the playing field. Luckily, plenty of established authors love to network and boost their fellow authors on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and elsewhere, so don’t forget to follow your favorites and interact with their tweets and posts. They are likely to respond, follow you back, and help get news of your latest book out there. Perhaps it’s a legacy from the difficult, hard-boiled bootstrap days that current science fiction and fantasy authors went through in the 1980s and 1990s, but science fiction and fantasy authors tend to be more supportive and collaborative than authors in many other genres. And don’t forget about Reddit! Many of your ideal, technologically-savvy readers are to be found on that website, debating upcoming releases and the details of their current favorites.
3. Make sure your book cover is on point.
Each genre has a kind of shared visual vocabulary, and when you peruse the shelves of your local bookstore or web-based sales platform, it’s easy to see just how the vocabulary differs from one genre to another. Can you guess which of the five book covers we’ve included at the top of this post are science fiction and which are fantasy? Here’s a hint: there’s a lot to do with the font, the imagery, and the prominence given to the title. And here’s the thing: the difference between your average science fiction and your average fantasy book cover is much less pronounced than the difference between covers in these genres as compared to books in other genres, such as crime fiction and romance. When you set out to design your book’s cover, or hire an expert to do so, spend some time analyzing what makes for particularly eye-catching book covers in your chosen genre … and make sure to include some of those same visual cues in yours! In the end, readers do tend to judge a book by its cover, at least a little, especially when they already know what they like and are looking for books which may do something similarly and well.
4. Find your nearest convention.
Here’s the flipside to the whole “ease of access, go digital” coin: many readers in the science fiction and fantasy genres love to discover new books in person, too. And there’s no better way to identify your local genre-lovers than to attend your nearest convention! While many of these are still classified as “comic cons,” most conventions have expanded their offerings to include all things science fiction and fantasy, and many will actively solicit vendors and presenters from creators within these genres. Many of the biggest conventions may be too expensive to afford vendor privileges (including the San Diego Comic Con, Dragon Con, and the Denver Comic Con), there are always plenty of smaller conventions with more reasonable fees taking place around the country at the city or regional level. Hop online and search for events happening in your area, and reach out to the event organizers to inquire about pricing and ways to promote your book. Even if you only break even on sales at one of these conventions, you’ll have raised a great deal of awareness about your book, which can have cascading positive repercussions for your marketing strategy. And most often, you’ll do much better than simply breaking even!
5. Reach out to the genre gatekeepers.
Convention organizers are only one category of important gatekeepers you need to be reaching out to if you truly want to boost sales of your science fiction or fantasy book! Many readers in these genres find their books by word of mouth, and from their favorite online content providers, including pop culture bloggers, vloggers, reviewers, and podcasters. Do some research into the most popular personalities in all four of these categories. And once you’ve identified them, use your social media platforms to engage with them. Once you have established some sort of digital handshake, you can reach out to them to request a shout-out on Twitter or a review of your book. Even if not every one of these genre gatekeepers has the time to do so, it’s likely that at least one of them will be interested if you truly do your research and contact all of the likely candidates. All it takes is one positive response to get the ball rolling!
Still not sure where to start in marketing your book this summer? It may be time to lean on an expert! If you’re looking to market your science fiction or fantasy book, there’s never a better time than now to inquire. Visit us online at www.outskirtspress.com or access our wonderful free resource center at http://anyflip.com/bookcase/mhpb, where you’ll find countless further recommendations to suit your marketing needs.
Barbara A. Mastej’s “Zodiac Witches: Marbella the Eleventh Witch.” Go on a magical journey with Marbella, a typical teenage girl, where Marbella is chosen as the 11th Zodiac witch on her 12th birthday. She joins the other teen witches at Zodiac mansion in Galaxy Park to try to pass the challenge day to have power and beauty for eternity.
At Outskirts Press, Inc., we take great pride in celebrating the work of our successful self-publishing authors, and we do so each week through our Self-Publishing Author Spotlight. This week we highlight self-publishing author Jennifer Fales, who has published four successful titles with Outskirts Press.
Learn more about award winning author Jennifer, her interested and her published works through this week’s Self-Publishing Author Spotlight. About the Author:
Jennifer Fales was born in Jacksonville, Florida, and lived in Cocoa Beach and Melbourne during her high school and college career. She then moved out to Southern California in 2004. Jennifer is a huge fan of Stephen Colbert. English is her native tongue, followed closely by sarcasm. Her interests run the gamut from science to the supernatural, with a little kickboxing thrown in for good measure. She currently resides in Corona California.
She is a 2011 Foreword Reviews Book of the Year award winner.
Shadows and Fire
Shadows of Fire is an adventure of epic proportions. It transports the reader into the parallel future, where mankind has created its own worst nightmare – a hybrid species of supernatural beings that demands a high toll in return for peace. Follow the adventure of a tortured man seeking redemption and a brother and sister, the unwilling product of both worlds, torn apart, determined to reunite with one another.
The Seraph Contingency is a 2013 Readers Favorite International Book Award winner.
When angel meets demon, prepare for all Hell to break loose. What do a five year old and a ferryman have in common? What does a goddess have to do with a golf course? What’s with all the artifacts in Hell? And what business could a seraph possibly have down there? To find the answers, you have to start with a beautiful, bored angel sneaking out of Heaven and wandering into the one dive bar in Purgatory. Add abduction courtesy of a devious demonic Duchess with a checkered past looking to expand her wardrobe. Call in the Cavalry in the form of one powerful Transporter demon with interesting tattoos, an active libido, and a nagging conscience. Toss in a colorful cast of characters, including a violet haired vixen with a mind-bending condo near the beach, a cigar smoking witch and one amazing little boy, for good measure. Season the mixture liberally with science, laughter and magic. Stir until trouble rises, skip the ice and let it all boil over into the wildest party Hell has ever known.
In a world where predators rule, war is always at the doorstep, and wolves flirt like nobody’s business, a young woman struggles to define herself and protect the powerful house she is aligned with from disaster. Sleight of Hand is the highly anticipated sequel to the award-winning Shadows and Fire, where humans and human/animal hybrids known as Supernaturals exist in a dystopian parallel future. The book follows adult twins Lilith and Laydon as they try to find their own identities—one leaning toward darkness and the other toward light—as they develop their powers deep in the shadowy world of the domes. The threat of war looms on the horizon and in the midst of this growing conflict Lilith has a vision tied to a suicide bomber. His words hold a clue to her power but also tie to the blackmail of the powerful dragon house she belongs to. Lilith, Augustin, the retired warrior priest she considers her sensei and father, and the Dragon House allies must face a maze of lies, clever gadgets and danger in a quest to unravel the truths behind the bombers ultimate riddle and an ugly secret. Her psychotic brother and a well-heeled night club owner won’t make it easy along the way.
The Robusta Incident introduces readers to Howard Danishefsky. He’s a smart-mouthed chemist working for his ex-lover turned tight-skirted, ball-busting boss, Melinda Carpenter, in the shiny downtown office of an international coffee conglomerate known as the Robusta Corporation. He has a legendary astrophysicist father in the Consortium of Evil that he’s never met, a dead Russian mother who still keeps in touch, and a brilliant young daughter he loves but rarely sees. More importantly, he also has an evil genius complex that is about to go through the roof. When Howard finds himself pushed past his tolerance limit once again by Carpenter’s cutthroat machinations and the Robusta Corporation’s mindless culture, he takes it as his cue to “evil up” seeking revenge so nefarious it’s guaranteed to gain the attention of the Consortium. What better way to do it than by adding a little “something extra” to the new coffee he’s been given carte blanche to develop and using the entire office as his own personal test group? He’s convinced he has it all under control, until his secret ingredient gains him the interest of a voodoo queen, an ancient professor, and a guy so far past his expiration date deodorant doesn’t even stand a chance.
Format: 5.5 x 8.5 paperback cream, 307 pages
Publisher: Jennifer Fales (Jan 09, 2015)
Genre: FICTION / Horror
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Brett Vonsik’s “Primeval Origins: Paths of Anguish.” A routine paleontological dig takes an unexpected turn when Nikki, a talented graduate student, raises difficult questions about a mysterious weapon and creature that baffle the experts. Nikki suffers an accident…and finds herself living a vivid and terrifying episode of mankind’s ancient past: a civilization where gods, alien intelligences, and horrific dangers seek to subjugate mankind. 2015 Readers Views Reviewers First Place Choice Award
Gabriel Common’s “Phantom.” Rarely, if any, are science and celestial creatures mixed in a work of fiction. The book is about a young Nephilim who is caught in the middle of an interplanetary battle between the forces of good and the forces of evil. It tells the readers that, like the Nephilim, we humans can tap into our angel side, which is a source of so much power, so that we can overcome our challenges, conquer our personal demons, reach the goals we have set for ourselves, and fight for what is right and good.
Author Sherri Rabinowitz recently sent us this picture from her book signing event at her local Barnes and Noble.
Sherri Rabinowitz has been writing since she was a small child and was inspired by Ray Bradbury and Agatha Christie. She had always loved writing, but has had to make a living in a varied number of ways: she has worked as an actress, a travel agent and in several forms of customer service. Her passion, though, has always been writing. She loves and enjoys both reading and writing fan fiction. Fantasy Time Inc. is her second work of original fiction.
Fantasy Time Inc.
In the future we as a people will be going through many strange and conflicting changes. We will be traveling and living in space and under water. We will have an even better network of communications and transportations, but we will still need to have a vacation and to relax from that antiseptic new environment. People will need an escape.
Most people dream of the future and the past, because no one romanticizes about their own time.
Alex Bennett led a double life. She was known the world over as the highly successful founder of a toy software company. But she was also the head of the infamous Murder, Inc. A situation she didn’t want but felt an obligation to fulfill until she met the lovely Patty Darcy and suddenly she wanted to just be the head of Toys Inc. Now she had something to fight for. Will the love of this sweet woman help her get out from under the weight of family obligations? Will she be able to share the kind of life with Patty that she wants?