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Stone and Silt
by Harvey Chute

Kindle Edition published 2013-08-14
Bestseller ranking: 713665

Product Description
Big Al's Books & Pals 2014 Readers' Choice Awards: Young Adult Nominee

A ruthless murder and a stolen shipment of gold.

At school, sixteen-year-old Nikaia Wales endures the taunts of bullies who call her a “half-breed.” At home, she worries about how her family will react if she reveals her growing feelings for the quiet boy next door.

Those are soon the least of her troubles. Nikaia discovers a hidden cache of gold, and when police find a corpse nearby, her father becomes a suspect. Worse, Elias Doyle is circling, hungry to avenge his brother’s death.

Nikaia desperately searches for clues to save her father. In her quest to find the killer, she learns about the power of family, friendship, and young love....

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Messages - Write.Dream.Repeat.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: I need help with a trope
« on: January 16, 2018, 01:24:34 PM »
This is a common trope in Asian dramas. You should check some of them out to see if they set off any ideas in your head. I could name a few (probably all watchable online) if you need.

I'm glad someone mentioned this because Disney's 'Mulan' is the first thing that popped into mind.

I would definitely love to work with you! Just have to finish this book first ^^;

Hey there! I'd love to talk about it :D Go finish your book haha ;)

Writers' Cafe / Re: Full Price Launch
« on: January 13, 2018, 09:06:00 PM »
In August, I went back to school to get a B.S. in marketing. It's one of the areas I've struggled in throughout my career, and I wanted to learn the basic principles of marketing so that I could more effectively sell my books. One of the things I learned about last semester was new product pricing strategies.

Common practice in our industry is to run a pre-order and launch sale, usually $0.99, and then bring the price up to full. This is called market-penetration pricing. That's what I've been doing, too, and though I can move a lot of copies -- and even grabbed three Top 100s for Any Other Love -- it's been hard to make real money. After all, I'm a business. My goal is to make a profit.

There's another pricing strategy for new products, though: market-skimming pricing. You launch the product at a higher price to hopefully gain as much revenue as possible, later dropping it. Apple, for example, does this with their iPhones.

Since every product has a life cycle, your pricing strategy will vary depending on a lot of factors. But I thought this market-skimming pricing concept was interesting, especially since after 30, 60, or 90 days, ebooks tend to move into the mature or even decline stage of the product life cycle. It seemed to me that I'd been doing things backward, that I should be launching at full price and then utilizing a $0.99 promotion to rejuvenate the ebook's sales once it moved into the decline stage. If all my readers are grabbing it at the sale price, there's no one left to scoop up the later $0.99 promotions I tend to run -- unless I want to pour money I don't have into advertising.

This month I released my 12th novel (A Disturbing Prospect), and I launched wide at full price ($3.99). It's ranking about the usual for my releases (I'm not a rockstar by any means). It's also selling comparably to my previous releases. The key difference here, though, is I'm making money.

Your mileage may vary, of course. I know a lot of authors do well with $0.99 launches. However, it's not your only option, and there's science to prove it.

I'm really glad I went back to school. A lot of things are finally clicking for me!

This makes total sense to me and I've thought about it often. I'm glad to hear there are names for these! I feel like I'd benefit from a business course or two.

That blog post is...incredibly written. I'm so sorry for you and your family.

Another happy customer here - Colleen is great to work with. Cheerful, professional, happy to accommodate weird and detailed requests, and very willing to go the extra yard to make sure the final product is professional. If you're looking for top-notch interior design, look no further.

Thank you so much, Phil! It was so much fun working on your series. I can't wait to work together again! :D

Colleen does amazing work. Fast, beautiful and affordable service!

Just wanted to chime in that Colleen does a wonderful job, and I'll always ask her to format my novels. She's fast yet incredibly detail oriented, and with both of my books with the help of images gave them a very distinct, professional feel. If you want to make your interior stand out, and convert more of those readers who click on the Look Inside, she's a fantastic choice.

Aw, jeez, guys, thank you! What a great thing to wake up to Sunday morning :D

Just a quick note from an otherwise casual observer: the influx of 1st-post defender accounts always look off.

If anyone is interested in a peak at some great interior formatting, have a gander at my Ranger Rising book's Look Inside on Amazon. Colleen did all of that and then some. Flawless, elegant, and definitely something worth investing in. She customized the map I provided and even made me my own logo for my publishing arm (You know I'm a huge, one man publishing company, LOL). When I needed a quick update, she was responsive and quick. I'll leave it at that and let the book's interior do the talking. :)

Thanks for the fast turnaround last week, Colleen. And at such a late hour during Christmas break. Awesome work.

If anyone wants to see what I'm talking about, look at the Look Inside of my latest, Rising Fury.

Thank you, guys!! I can't wait to work with both of you again, you're both AMAZING to work with! Wayne, I do have you scheduled for the dates we talked about before, so I know when we get to roll again. :D

Everyone, I'm going to be updating the availability calendar in the next few minutes. Just check the first post in the thread for details!

Writers' Cafe / Re: Critique my cover (it's a trap)
« on: January 03, 2018, 03:13:48 PM »

Colleen did a wonderful job on a paperback interior for a three novel, four story collection that totaled almost a quarter million words and 200+ chapters. Despite this unwieldiness, she got the page count down from 1,100 pages (!) to under the Createspace limit (less than 828) without losing any readability. It reads great, and of course looks super-pro. She's also super friendly, responds to emails fast, and really goes above and beyond with small touches and little flourishes that bring the interior to life. Amazing formatting work, as usual, and highly recommended.


Nick!! Thanks so much for your kind words; it was a unique challenge and I enjoyed typesetting it for you. I'm pleased we got it as far below the maximum page count as we did!

This was a challenge that an automated print program couldn't handle, but doing things by hand did. I've done a few of those this year. :)

Everyone, I have a MIGHTY NEED to help you get a professional book interior. One that matches trad pub, is done by hand, and is completely controlled by me and you.

Check out my first post in this thread for details on my current promo! 20% off all fiction print interiors done in January, plus some extras just for you! http://www.kboards.com/index.php/topic,196452.0.html

Writers' Cafe / Re: women's literary fiction, NOT romance
« on: December 26, 2017, 08:48:56 PM »
You might want to check out Suanne Laqueur, an awesome client of mine:


Writers' Cafe / Re: There's a Loon on the Lose
« on: December 20, 2017, 03:22:39 PM »
Low reviews don't hurt conversion to sales unless a book has a majority of low reviews. That said, since this is obviously a malicious review it's good that you reported it.

In the future it might be good to consider that constant calling out and excessive posting about reviews on Kboards will (and now, has), attract negative attention you don't want. It may be wise to consider talking minimally about reviews on your books in order to avoid this sort of attention.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Larks & Katydids - Now accepting new editing clients!
« on: December 19, 2017, 11:52:23 AM »
I'm not a writer!!! BUT I always refer clients straight to Larks & Katydids. I know they have awesome service and are INCREDIBLY thorough. Do it, people.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Help me stop waffling!
« on: November 05, 2017, 08:28:51 PM »
When I was a kid, I thought that Christmas song was "Here We Come a-Waffling." Like you would walk around the neighborhood eating waffles and singing.

You're not the only one ;D


Maybe, just maybe, BB needs to source books from a wider range than just Indies.

BB's been featuring books from traditional publishers for a long time. They have no shortage on options, they just choose whatever they think will convert the best and make them the most affiliate money.

Writers' Cafe / Re: For heaven's sake, people, you're authors.
« on: November 05, 2017, 10:32:24 AM »
It's a boxed set. Not a box set. I have enough boxes, I don't need a set.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Is matted cover the way to go now? (for print books)
« on: November 05, 2017, 10:20:33 AM »
10 pt?  :o

I can't even see what I'm writing in 10 pt. I had been using Times New Roman 12 and like the looks of Palatino Linotype, but the spacing increases my page counts 30%.  :(

Just as a quick note, the human eye usually needs a 2pt increase to maintain the same readability on screen vs on print. So reading 12 pt TNR while you write on a computer is the same as reading 10pt TNR when printed. :)

Writers' Cafe / Re: Is matted cover the way to go now? (for print books)
« on: November 04, 2017, 05:55:26 PM »
Baskerville Old Face 10 pt. is about 65 a line. And I'm trying a different font for chapter heading that I hope will look amazing rather than lame. LOL 

I'm using the KDP for paperback, so the options are white or cream. 

65 per line is ideal, so really it's just a matter of trying out the different fonts at different sizes and seeing which fill in a similar way :)

Writers' Cafe / Re: Yea or Nay for a first book cover?
« on: November 04, 2017, 12:50:05 PM »

Just realized without the blurb you had no idea what genre, etc.  Not sure it matters, I see what you mean about the darkness.  I may have to break down and pay for a cover.

Way too late in the fall to get someone most likely without paying through the nose.  Probably need a January or later release.

What genre is it? There are a ton of premade options from various sites and they'll be quick to get and professionally done (if you choose the right one, of course ;) )

Writers' Cafe / Re: Yea or Nay for a first book cover?
« on: November 04, 2017, 12:32:40 PM »
Nay. It's hard to discern and extremely dark. The typography is just ok, and I'd change the font for the author name to something simpler and more professional.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Is matted cover the way to go now? (for print books)
« on: November 04, 2017, 12:28:39 PM »
I prefer white paper. It's a bit thinner, and feels more like a proper book, rather than a book that got printed on resume paper.

I hate all of the paper options for createspace. I just want a weight inbetween and a color in between. GIVE ME WHAT I WANT, CS!

Writers' Cafe / Re: Is matted cover the way to go now? (for print books)
« on: November 04, 2017, 12:27:54 PM »
Exactly.  I'm using the 10pt Times New Roman as a comparison to the other fonts and going for a similar size.  Is this a good base comparison?

How many characters per line do you get with 10pt TNR? Generally, a good line length in the average novel should fall between 59-72 characters-per-line on a full line of text. I prefer 65 myself. It's hard to tell how it looks on your page without seeing it, or knowing your other settings :) Just select one line of text and find your word count/character count information.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Is matted cover the way to go now? (for print books)
« on: November 04, 2017, 12:09:34 PM »
As for size...about the same as 10pt Times New Roman?

All fonts size differently, so it's a best practice to experiment with different font sizes to get the proper characters-per-line. 10 TNR looks completely different from 10pt Garamond, and what size you use for any font completely depends on your margins and page dimensions.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Is matted cover the way to go now? (for print books)
« on: November 04, 2017, 12:04:34 PM »
Times New Roman or Times, which is used for newspapers. (Someone more knowledgeable please explain why???).

Times New Roman is too thin (made to fit into thin newspaper columns), and gets laborious to read on wide columns of text, like books usually have. It's much easier on the book format to read type that's more relaxed horizontally.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Is matted cover the way to go now? (for print books)
« on: November 04, 2017, 11:33:18 AM »
It's not too hard to make a 6x9 book longer. Most indies actually have too small of margins, too many lines per page, too many characters per line, and essentially everything that makes a book very legible vs one that's only ok. Make those things ideal and you get more pages pretty easily.

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