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Messages - skylarker1

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Writers' Cafe / Re: My experience transitioning paperbacks from CS to KDP
« on: October 16, 2018, 03:40:12 pm »
So, I finally took the plunge and transitioned all six of my paperbacks from CreateSpace to KDP print. I've carefully perused three of the six books so far and can happily report that my content appears unaffected by the transition. My covers, text, page counts, formatting, maps, fancy dropcaps are all fine. I did notice on the "Paperback Details" page that only one category was identified (so I chose a second) and only 4 of 7 keywords appeared. I can't recall if CreateSpace allowed less keywords than KDP to begin with. Also, I'm not sure why, but "all territories" wasn't selected on the "Paperback Rights & Pricing" page, so of course I checked that box. These issues have been consistent across all the books I have reviewed thus far.

Just thought I'd share for those who are still nervous about taking the plunge. Now, off to check the other three books!

Thanks for posting this! I never thought to check on the details, but have now made sure that I've asserted world-wide rights for all my books!

By the way, there is still plenty of time to sign up for anyone who might think it's too late.

Good to know. I can't do it from the day job, but will as soon as I get home. Mine's an eight story collection, Fantasy romance (tales from the files of the fairy godmothers' union.)

Writers' Cafe / Re: How can I up my ads game to shift more books?
« on: October 01, 2018, 03:38:51 pm »
I absolutely love your cover. I actually remembered it by name from when I was browsing on Bookfly's site. But it occurs to me that it might be causing you a problem, because I kind of feel like your cover doesn't match with what you're describing in the blurb. That might be just me, and I could be completely wrong, but I thought I would put it out there just in case.

I got that feeling, too. The blurb mentions an airship, which suggests Steam Punk, but the cover has more of a magical fantasy feel to it.

Writers' Cafe / Re: A question for writers thinking about their senior years
« on: September 28, 2018, 03:57:35 pm »
One thing I'll add....I sold my last house some time ago and swore I'd never own another--taxes, upkeep, yard care, maintenance....I figured it would just all be too much. Two years ago I moved to Pennsylvania and rented a one bedroom, 900 square foot apartment that I really love...but....the property company is NOT lovable. Rents have gone up 2-3 times the rate of inflation every year, and promise to keep going up in every year to come. Maintenance and upkeep on the complex has gone down as the owners milk every penny from this property in order to fund another new complex they're developing. I really like apartment living and I like my neighbors, but....I'm beginning to reconsider that house-owning decision.

I was in a similar boat with my old apartment when it sold to a new management company and started hiking rents. Fortunately, I was able to get a condo for not too much more in monthly payments. It has the advantages of apartment living, where I don't have to do the outdoor maintenance and can enjoy shared facilities - and the equity that goes with making mortgage payments.

Writers' Cafe / Re: In a Post-Kboards World, Where Will You Be?
« on: September 28, 2018, 02:53:43 pm »
Writer's Sanctum is awesome, everything I've wanted from kboards and more

Would you post a link, please?

I googled 'writers sanctum' and got a lot of results that seem to be other things entirely - a music discussion group, a publishing house, etc.

And the last post is up.

I want to thank all of the authors for spreading the word about the blog tour this week. It wouldn't have happened without you all pitching in and filling out the answers. I'm hoping you got hits and some sales this week. Thank you so much!

Let's get together and do this all again next year.  ;)

And to all the teachers, kids and parents, hope you have a great start to the school year.

Thank YOU, Tiffany, for organizing the event!
~ Skylarker

I was going by what was on the books in your signature. So, I can change the pen name to Laramie Sasseville. You don't have to do any giveaway at all. I'm just suggesting for discounts and giveaways. It's nice to have a list of giveaways and promo deals to go along with the blog tour.

Sure. I can offer a free copy of 'One of Me is Missing' - I've just never run a Rafflecopter before.

Participating Authors:

1)   Becca Price
2)   Melody Bremen
3)   Naomi Snow
4)   Patrice Shavone Brown
5)   Lenora Rodriquez
6)   Sherry Soule
7)   Jan Hurst-Nicholson
8)   Jacquelyn Simone
9)   Simon Haynes
10)   Margit Elland Schmitt

Thanks to everyone that has signed up. This is going to be a GREAT BLOG TOUR promotion.


Do you mean 3) as Naomi Stone? That is my pen name for adult fantasy. For middle grade I use my own name,
Laramie Sasseville -- Thanks!

Would you like to do your own rafflecopter for your giveaways?
Two books would be the max listed. I'm starting to get more sign-ups, and will have to double up with authors on some days. That's good news though. -Tiff

I've never done a rafflecopter and this isn't a good time for me to figure out something new. I'd just as soon join something already in the works. Thanks!

Hey, I've only got 4 books now. I just put my new 4th book on preorder and ordered the proof. So, lets get the first book in front of people's eyes.
I've got you on the list. What is the title of the book you'd like to promote?-Tiff

I'm debating between the first book in the series and the second, which I think might have broader appeal. The first
is 'The Winter Knife' and 2nd is 'One of Me is Missing.' (Links in my sig)

PS: I'm for giving away copies of the books.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Science Fiction That Made You Think
« on: August 20, 2018, 02:44:17 pm »
The Handmaidís Tale, Margaret Atwood

Ursula LeGuin: The Dispossessed, The Left Hand of Darkness

Writers' Cafe / Re: What's the latest on KDP PoD versus CreateSpace?
« on: August 20, 2018, 02:24:36 pm »
The website has definitely gotten glitchier recently. I'll go to check my sales and get one of those "CS is down for maintenance" messages and have to refresh the page and the previewer seems to be taking longer to launch than it used to.

I started the publishing process for two coloring books this weekend and the previewer wouldn't launch at all. I got a message about Flash being out of date, so I downloaded the latest version, installed it, restarted the computer and it made no difference - still got the same message. I'm now waiting on the review process for both books. We'll see how long that takes. It's already been more than the promised 24 hours for the first one.

I'm interested in participating. I only have two middle-grade (age 12-14) books so far, but they both deal with coming of age issues along with the monsters and magic.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Being on a Panel
« on: July 24, 2018, 03:07:35 pm »
I've only done a couple of panels at small cons before, so I don't know that I'm qualified to give advice .. but that's never stopped me before.

I suggest you have your own cheat-sheet for each panel with a list of points you want to cover.
For the panels I was involved with, there was an earlier meeting with the other panelists just to make sure we weren't all intending to bring up the exact same examples/points. There was an informal agreement not to hog the entire panel, to let other panelists have a chance to speak, etc. Also an agreement on whether to take questions during or after.
This was over 15 years ago, btw, so I'm struggling to remember anything else.

Lastly, have fun ;-)

I've only been on a few panels, but this sounds like good advice. The conventions I've attended usually have moderators for each panel, also, who will help with keeping people on topic and intervene (ideally) if someone does start to 'hog the panel.'

Writers' Cafe / Re: An Open Letter to Amazon
« on: July 11, 2018, 03:46:36 pm »
* The reason I even mention that is the obvious fact that the 50% read strip rate is starting to look like it's a fantastical number. I don't know how it's possible to not view it as a fabricated number. The mathematical odds of these bad actors somehow reading, within a few points of error, a consistent 50% of a varied group of authors works, is.... well it's so low as to be improbable. Put that information in front of a court of law and I genuinely think Amazon is going to have to answer a bunch of questions they would prefer not to. Questions like: How do you record reads? What criteria do you use to ascertain false reads? How precisely does this all add up to 50% stripping across the board? Frankly the whole thing is on very shaky ground, no?

ETA: I'm British and we're usually too polite to sue, or threaten it. ;) I just think this stinks to high heaven and I hope someone ends up challenging their arbitrary behavior.

This situation sounds like a class action suit would be appropriate. If the same arbitrary numbers are hitting a large group of varied authors...

Writers' Cafe / Re: Adult Coloring Books?
« on: July 11, 2018, 07:41:10 am »
This was always my concern with coloring books, too. Thought about it. Long and hard. Still consider it some days, but my quality-obsession would have me spending so much getting books sent to me to check paper quality.

I just haven't gotten around to it yet, but I think the problem could be solved by printing on one side only of the pages. There'd be twice as many pages, but that could be kept within a reasonable production-cost budget.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Adult Coloring Books?
« on: July 10, 2018, 03:25:02 pm »
I published an adult coloring book through Createspace. The book only has 32 pages, so it's not hard to make it lie flat. The main problem reported to me is that the paper quality needs to be heavier to avoid bleed-through if colorers want to use markers.

Writers' Cafe / Re: I Reported a Five-Star Review
« on: July 10, 2018, 03:10:58 pm »
I've also reported a couple of 5 star reviews that seemed fishy. My book was permafree so probably seen as an easy way to cover up some pay for review practices by adding reviews of a few other books in the mix. Like yours, it was oddly worded and the references didn't make sense for the book. When I looked, the person had copy/pasted about 50 reviews on that day alone.  :(

ETA: And they did remove the reviews in those cases. Not sure if it was because I reported it or just that Amazon also caught it for being fishy.

Since Hidden Gems does not pay reviewers, only hooks them up with free books, I don't see what they gain by signing on to do more reviews for books than they can actually read.

Writers' Cafe / Re: I Reported a Five-Star Review
« on: July 07, 2018, 12:09:40 pm »
I reported a five-star review to Hidden Gems - only because the reviewer had written virtually identical reviews to the other books on her Amazon profile, and had 'complimented' my sweet/clean romance for its spicy love scenes.

I don't mind the five stars, but don't want to misrepresent the book to potential readers.

I only have two middle grade books published so far and plan a couple more in this series, but could start another series based off one of these stories.

- How often do you publish a book?
Not often enough. About one a year.

- What is your word count?
about 50-60,000

- Series length?

- Are many of your readers are adults?
I don't have data on the readers

- What Ad path have you taken? (Instagram, FB, etc.)
I've done a few discount-day multi-author promos. AMS didn't seem to help.

- Do you find readers are NOT okay with certain things?
My one really negative review was based on the reader mistaking the furry creature on the cover for a snake. I'm not drawing any conclusions from that.

Thanks for starting this thread; the feedback is interesting!

Writers' Cafe / Re: On the topic of Pen Names
« on: June 27, 2018, 12:08:06 pm »
Mark Twain is a pen name. George Eliot is a pen name. Louisa May Alcott used the pen name A.M. Barnard. Stephen King used the pen name Richard Bachman. Charlotte, Emily, and Anne Bronte used the pen names Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell. Alice 'Alli' Sheldon used the pen name James Tiptree Jr. Some people consider the practice of many women using initials, including myself and the rather better known Joanne Rowling, to be a form of pen name.

There have been accusations that using a pen name is always unethical but obviously I disagree. There is absolutely nothing wrong with using a pen name. Fraud on the other hand is wrong whether you use a pen name or not.

No argument here. I use a pen name to distinguish between my stories for adults and those of middle-grade age. I want readers to have some idea what to expect.

There are many other legitimate reasons for using a pen name. One of my friends is a professor who does not want her students distracted, knowing she's also writing romance novels.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Slogan for a vampire hotel/bar
« on: May 09, 2018, 03:37:56 pm »
Hotel Antone - where it sucks just right.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The APRIL Urban Fantasy Group Promo!
« on: April 05, 2018, 08:35:22 am »
Hi! The form asks for an Amazon link, but I'd like to use the Universal Link from D2D which will direct readers to multiple retailers:


Writers' Cafe / Re: Any writers here who have had Lasik?
« on: April 03, 2018, 01:31:32 pm »
I had cataract surgery and even that did not keep me from reading or writing, as they did one eye at a time, allowing a week for recovery before doing the other eye.

NINETY percent. :)

There are plenty of good movies and good books getting made, despite the usual dreck. A whole lot of them in both industries are by indies. Same as it ever was.

If you hadn't mentioned the 'NINETY' percent, I would have.

I propose a graduated scale, with maybe twenty percent approaching the non-crap top ten percent, to be called the Near-Good Twenty, and of course, everyone's scale will be a bit different, with one person's 10% good stuff smack at the other end of someone else's scale. :)

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