Streets Ahead Book Promotion – D.G Kaye

This week we’re promoting D.G Kaye’s memoir ‘P.S I Forgive You‘.

Description:

Confronted with resurfacing feelings of guilt, D.G. Kaye is tormented by her decision to remain estranged from her dying emotionally abusive mother after resolving to banish her years ago, an event she has shared in her book Conflicted Hearts. In P.S. I Forgive You, Kaye takes us on a compelling heartfelt journey as she seeks to understand the roots of her mother’s narcissism, let go of past hurts, and find forgiveness for both her mother and herself.

After struggling for decades to break free, Kaye has severed the unhealthy ties that bound her to her dominating mother—but now Kaye battles new conflict, as the guilt she harbors over her decision only increases as the end of her mother’s life draws near. Kaye once again struggles with her conscience and her feelings of being obligated to return to a painful past she thought she left behind.

Review:

5 stars by Wilma Lettings:

A wonderful and moving memoir dedicated to a narcissistic mother, written by a daughter who is working through the times to come to a point of forgiveness and closure of sorts.
A touching book with a lot of honesty, wisdom and insight – and, most importantly of all, forgiveness.
A must read for anyone looking to make peace with their past and move forward.

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Re-blog of Stephen Bentley’s Excellent Post for the Benefit of Indie Authors

I’m re-blogging Stephen Bentley’s post today, as I expect many of us Indies have been duped at one time or another by bogus publishers – I know I have.  Here’s the link below to the original post if you want to check it out, and also some links if you want to find out more about Stephen:

The Publisher Will Do That For Me

Find my books at Books2ReadAmazon Author Page or All Author

Stephen’s Blog:

I detest seeing people duped. For reasons that are obvious, I will mention no names. I recently read a comment on Facebook from an author who said, “The publisher will do that for me.”

I’ve got news for that author. In this particular case concerning this “publisher” absolutely nothing will be done. They (the so-called publisher) do nothing that an individual indie cannot do for him or herself.

The above quote was the author’s response to a Facebook friend exhorting the author ‘not to forget the libraries.’ The reply was as above: “The publisher will do that for me.” The author in question is as high as a kite celebrating signing a contract with this “publisher” for all existing and future books.

But let me tell you this, in case you are wondering what the hell I’m on about: they (so-called publisher) use the free KDP ISBN’s. Effectively they take over your Amazon KDP catalog and switch them to their account. I’m not kidding. Here’s the rub and nice work if you can get it – the “publisher” gives the author 26% in royalties on a Kindle instead of the usual 70%. Similarly on paperbacks, the “publisher” keeps most of the Amazon royalties and gives the author a pittance.

This outfit also uses ACX royalty share if it creates an audiobook so once more, they are doing nothing that the individual could not do. And again, with that system the author receives a pittance. They also “brag” about translations but all they do is use Babelcube, again on a royalty share basis. They do nothing for an existing book. They also “brag” about being a BookBub Partner. So what? I am a BookBub Partner as a self-published author.

For future books, okay, they do edit and format, and produce covers at no expense to the author. But these are all things the savvy indie can do him/herself. The difference is in the latter DIY mode, the author keeps all royalties and doesn’t see them hived off by a leech. There is no con here. It’s the authors who are being gullible. If not gullible, then they are the type of snobbish person who can’t bear people to think he/she is one of those awful indie writers who self-publish.

Indeed, on that last point, the grand dame of this “publishers'” stable responded a few days ago in a Facebook group that she was no longer an indie. I have news for you. You still are even though you signed a contract with this “publisher.” Check your paperbacks on Amazon! Do you see the name of your publisher in the product details? No, you don’t. What you see is exactly the same as my paperbacks: “Independently Published.”

The difference is I am proud of being an indie, and rather pleased I escaped the clutches of this so-called publisher who did absolutely nothing for me except take a chunk of money they did nothing to deserve.

I also blame the grand dame for persuading the author in question to join the stable. She clearly has not been truthful otherwise he would not have said, “The publisher will do that for me.” This publisher will not especially with a KDP ISBN.

Why do I speak now? I checked their most recent incarnation. They are re-branding and developing a very sophisticated marketing strategy to make money at the expense of gullible or vain authors.

Be careful with any publisher calling themselves a “hybrid” or “Rapid Versatile Publisher.”

The truth is the days of any publisher doing anything for an author are long gone. Even the vast majority of traditionally published authors have to do their own marketing. The one exception is the “big five” will provide galley copies, often hardbacks, of new releases to the mainstream media. That is the one thing an indie will find impossible.

Wait! Just before I hit ‘publish.’ I found this on the Absolute Write forum about this publisher. I have edited some details out.

They are an “Amazon exclusive” publisher – meaning your book won’t be available anywhere else.

And then there’s this:

“XYZ operates on a revenue-based model, meaning that we deduct a percentage of book profits to cover our expenses. On average, our authors earn 30-50% of eBook list prices and 15-25% of the paperback list prices, depending on pricing, form of payment and place of sale.”

Covers range from pretty good to pretty awful. A glance at the reviews for a random couple of the titles on Amazon show complaints about both the writing and editing.

Followed by this reply to the OP:

  1. They approached you. Not to rain on parades or anything, but that usually doesn’t happen with strong, reputable publishers – unless you’ve won some major writing award or come to public notice, somehow.

      2. Their terms are less than desirable, to put it mildly.

Caveat Emptor, with this one. If I were judging between it and Kindle, I’d just publish directly through Amazon.

Wise words indeed!

This blog post first appeared on Author Stephen Bentley’s website

Stevie’s comment:

I checked out this particular publisher with the ‘Writer Beware‘ website who basically said very much the same thing, and they added a little plus… you can have a #1 bestseller in an obscure category on Amazon and still not have a good sales ranking.  Don’t be taken in by publishers who boast about their bestselling books!  Check any publisher out with Writer Beware first.

 

 

Open Book Blog Hop – 19th August

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This week the topic is:

“What does literary success look like to you?”

To me it looks like Stephen King, J.K Rowling, and E.L James to name but three!  They’ve made a success of their literary careers, and can live off the money they earn from book sales and film rights.

Hey ho,  but for those in the higher echelons of success there are also millions striving for the same success currently having to be satisfied with selling the odd book or two.  For us lowly mortals it’s a success to sell one or two books per week, so success is all relative to where you are in the pecking order.

Would those three at the top of the pile feel they are not as successful if their book sales start to dwindle to thousands rather than hundreds of thousands/millions?  I would be in seventh heaven if I sold thousands of books, but maybe Mr King et al would start to panic at the sudden downturn in sales?

Sam and I have other work that puts food on the table and pays the bills, but it’s always a little thrill if I see even one of my books has sold.  We can’t all be at the top of the pile, but it isn’t so terrible languishing lower down – it’s just a case of suck it up and accept it!

What do other bloggers see as literary success?  Click on the link below to find out or just add a comment:

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

 

Rules:

1. Link your blog to this hop.

2. Notify your following that you are participating in this blog hop.

3. Promise to visit/leave a comment on all participants’ blogs.

4. Tweet/or share each person’s blog post. Use #OpenBook when tweeting.

5. Put a banner on your blog that you are participating.

My New Service for Authors

One thing I’ve always had to be mindful of in my many years as a medical secretary is good spelling and grammar, as doctors read the letters I’ve typed and they can be quite scathing if letters are not up to standard.

Therefore using these talents, I’ve had an idea that might help me promote my books.  Goodness knows we authors try so many ways to market our novels, and this is a new one.  It might work or it might not.  I’ll let you know in 6 months’ time…

If you’d like to post your (anything up to) 50,000 word manuscript to me, then I’ll check it for spelling and grammar.  I won’t alter the story at all, so rest assured there.  I prefer to mark a physical manuscript rather than work online, as my eyes do not fare too well if I stare at a screen for long periods of time.  So … send me something you don’t mind me writing on with my red pen.

What about the price?  Well, all I’ll charge is the price of one of my books and a review.  You can buy an eBook, paperback or audio version of whichever of my books interest you.  I’ll work on the plan that one review will equal up to 50,000 words of your manuscript.  Books from 50,000 – 100,000 words will equal two reviews, and so on.

https://www.amazon.com/Stevie-Turner/e/B00AV7YOTU

As soon as I see the review (s) online then I’ll post your manuscript back to you in the stamped addressed envelope you have provided (depending of course whether or not I’ve finished marking your manuscript!).  If you live outside of the UK, then I think you would need to send me the cost of posting it back to you via Paypal (unless you can think of a better way of doing it!)

That’s all there is to it.  If I receive a sudden influx of manuscripts then I’ll have to close submissions until I’ve caught up.

For more information about where to post your manuscript, please email me at stevie@stevie-turner-author.co.uk with ‘Proofread’ in the subject box.

Sunday Salon

Thanks to Janet Gogerty for this 5 star review of my paranormal short story ‘Finding David’. I’ve no idea why Amazon won’t allow it, but it’s on Goodreads. The ‘Zon have their reasons I expect, but I just wish I knew what they were!

Times and Tides of a Beachwriter

I have been catching up with my book reviews; two novels, a poetry anthology and two novellas / short stories. Authors from England, the USA and Australia. Yeshiva Girl was the novel that stood out for me and I was delighted that Amazon posted my review after my recent experiences. I post all my reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, you can see Amazon’s response to Finding David, but I have not yet heard back from Amazon on the other three. So the mystery continues; I and other reviewers have concluded it could be the rule that you must have spent £50, or fifty of something in your own currency, in one year to be able to leave a review. As Amazon allows authors to sell their e-books for as little as 99 pence this does not make sense. Nor does it make sense they accept a review for one book…

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Friday Click & Run – 16th August

Sometimes when we’re busy it’s nice to simply leave a link to our blog or blog post and run, and so Friday Click and Run is just for that purpose. However, of course you can check out others’ links and share away if you want to. So… every Friday do add some info of what your blog is about and also a link to your blog or blog post in the comments if you’ve got a minute. You don’t have to do anything else such as sharing or commenting unless you really want to. Isn’t that cool? People may decide to check your link out, or they may not. They might decide to leave their own link and run as well, so you may meet each other heading out the door. If I see a post that’s a bit risqué, then I shall be running too – straight to the ‘delete’ button!

Fire away then… let’s see what we end up with.  Thanks to the 5 bloggers who left links last time.

Polishing a Turd…

My blogging friend Phil Huston, in his own inimitable style, gave me the inspiration for a blog today when he left the comment below on my Open Book Blog Hop earlier this week:

Man I could polish a turd until you could shave in it.  I see something and I go, “Oh, shit.  That could be so much better.”  

I mentioned in this week’s Open Book that unless I can think of a great subject for a book, then I won’t write a thing.  What’s the point?  Readers will know if I’ve written something just for the sake of it.  I tend to sit back until inspiration strikes, and that could be many weeks or months before the right topic comes along.

So… here’s the question:

Do you feel that you need to keep writing even when you know what you’re writing is shite?  We tell ourselves we’re writers and therefore we should be writing, but are you writing a story just because you feel guilty that you’re not writing?  Do you go back and polish that story many times even though you know it’ll never be good enough to publish, but you tell yourself that hey, at least you’re writing?

I do find it rather pleasant when I’m in-between books and don’t need to do anything other than check social media sites.  I can read, go outside for long walks, or just sit in the garden and do nothing.  I know that sooner or later the right subject will come along, and until then I don’t want to publish anything sub-standard that I might have written just for the sake of writing.

The same could be said of blogging.  Do you feel that you have to blog about something every day, even when you’re struggling to think of anything to blog about?  I used to feel that way, but now I don’t.  The reason for this became perfectly clear to me after about 5 years of blogging:

Nobody cares whether or not you blog every day, once a week, or once a year!

Nobody cares because the majority are too busy worrying about what they can blog about next, and whether the blogging world will forget them if they have a few days off.  What a game it all is.  I say –  blog when you can think of a good subject to blog about.  Until then… kick back and take time to smell the roses.  It’s a lot less stressful!

 

 

Open Book Blog Hop (a bit late again!)

This week’s topic is:

‘What is the most difficult part of your artistic process?’

I’ve read my fellow writers’ blogs on this subject, and they talk about planning, grammar and punctuation, blurbs, marketing and titles.  However, I have a different issue which grips me every time:

What the hell to write about in the first place!

Yes, it’s the book’s subject matter that I find most difficult.  As soon as I have an idea in my head then I can tap away for hours, but it can be many months before inspiration hits.  I try and pick subjects that not many other people have written about, and so I listen to news items and have found a few topics that way.

I also write about what I know or have personally experienced.  I mix it all in with a fictional plot, and let the reader decide what’s true and what isn’t.   However, I think I’m all written out for the moment, and so I’m looking for a new subject.  Answers in the comments box below please!

Do pop over and have a read of other authors’ blogs by clicking on the blue button below, or just add a comment.

Rules:1. Link your blog to this hop.
2. Notify your following that you are participating in this blog hop.
3. Promise to visit/leave a comment on all participants’ blogs.
4. Tweet/or share each person’s blog post. Use #OpenBook when tweeting.
5. Put a banner on your blog that you are participating.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Quote

First 4 Words You See? — Dr. Eric Perry, PhD

I posted this on my Facebook page and it’s had over 40k shares with 10k+ comments and 6 million reached so I wanted to share it with you as well.

via First 4 Words You See? — Dr. Eric Perry, PhD

My first 4 words were:

Connection

Power

Change

Self-care

So … maybe if I apply self-care I will have the power to change bad connections (or even  make good ones!)?

Let’s see which 4 words you come up with…

Streets Ahead: Dorinda Duclos and ‘A Journey of Life Through Poetry’.

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This week on Streets Ahead it’s the turn of Dorinda  Duclos and her book of poetry ‘A Journey of Life Through Poetry’.

In ‘A Journey of Life through Poetry’, Dorinda invites you to join her, as the wonder and awe of the Earth inspires her, bringing her visions to you through her poetry. Experience the setting sun, share in the challenges and victories of life, await the new day, and find yourself lost in the lush forest trees, as you join her on her journey, through Passages and Paths.

Review:

December 22, 2018 by Robbie Cheadle

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Passages and Paths, a journey of life through poetry is a delightful collection of poems about nature and love. Through her beautifully descriptive nature poetry, the poet expresses her amazement at, and delight in, the natural world around her. Two of the lovely descriptive phrases I enjoyed in this book are “Spun in golden, silken threads,” and “Seductive eyes and lips of red” both taken from the poem, Swept Away in Golden Splendour”.

Dorinda takes ordinary, everyday sights and shares the hidden beauty and intricacy of our amazing world.

There are a number of poems about enjoyment, love, desire and passion in this book too. One of my favourites was Without a Care:

“She reads aloud without a care

Unafraid that I am there

I have to wonder what she sees

When at last she looks at me

Continuing on with her journey in mind

She speaks of a forest, so soft and so kind

Of places that sparkle in emerald green

Of creatures she’s never really seen

Of beauty concealed in faraway lands

All this from a book

That she holds in her hands

Still she sits here before me

Enrapt in the story

As she utters the words

I can’t help but adore thee.”

Dorinda is a talented poet and her poems are certain to delight your soul.