Inkitt Publishing–Novel Writing Contest!

Banner3

Banner1Hey guys! Just a quick note! I’ve just heard from Inkitt Publishing that they’re running a new, FREE writing contest where the winner will win a publishing deal!

Entries must be a fiction work of at least 20k words, and the author can’t have previous works already on Inkitt. Entry must be in English, no Fanfiction, no short-story collections. All genres welcome.

I’ve had some interactions with Inkitt in the past, and I’ve got nothing but nice things to say about them. Everyone I’ve talked to from Inkitt has been so welcoming and genuinely lovely to talk to. They’ve gone out of their way to thank their reviewers (they even sent me a bag of Skittles in the mail on a whim!) So I encourage you to check them out.

I know a lot of budding authors pass by my blog, so if you’re interested, check it out by clicking the banner to the left!

<-

Advertisements

Let’s Talk Book-Swag.com–a new place to find great books.

Hello ladies and gentlemen of blogland! This is going to be a bit of an unusual post from me, but as you may have noticed, I love books. I mean, I really love books. They are my life. Recently, I was e-mailed by Scott Mullins of book-swag.com, letting me know about his new website and sort of what it was about, and I was asked if I’d be willing to help him get the word out—and I am. Because I love books, and his site is something I see myself using. So here I am to tell you a little bit about it.

I am not being paid to promote this site or compensated in any way.. I just like books, and I want to share. So I’ll let Scott tell you in his own words what Book-Swag is about:

Book-Swag.com Vertical BannerWhy are you launching the site?

I’m launching the site as a bit of a test to see if there’s a way fro writers to promote their books without having to pay out some big fee. Most writers don’t have the money to simply try out different forms of book promotion and more often than not they don’t have the time to do the vast amount of free promotional stuff like social media, guest posting, etc.

Also, a lot of promotional sites require you to discount your book, but as the people working on Book-Swag are writers ourselves, we feel that in a way this is disrespectful to the authors. They’ve spent all this time writing, rewriting, editing, getting the book formatted, a cover designed. Why should they discount their book to ninety-nine cents? You wouldn’t ask that in other professions, so why do we ask that of authors?

As the site is free for readers to sign up and receive information on book recommendations and deals, and it’s free for the author to promote their books, the site will make it’s money through affiliate links with Amazon. For every book sold, as an affiliate, the site gets a percentage of Amazon’s commission. This way we can help authors without having to charge them a free and they don’t lose any money on the sales because it comes from Amazon’s commission.

What is your business model?

At the moment we’re a small team of friends all working for free. We’re doing this out of our own time. We launch on the 1st of July but all money we make will be pumped back into the site – hosting, email accounts, paying for coding, advertising, etc. We’re giving it six months to see if the website can become something that is self-funding while providing great results for the authors featured. After that, if the site is paying for itself, we will review everything. If it’s making money ninety percent of that will go back into the site and ten percent will be split across the team members to help compensate them for their time.

How will you control the quality of the books which you promote – often sites have minimum requirements e.g. number of on-line reviews or star rating?

We start with the submission page – http://www.book-swag.com/submit-your-book/ – and from the information the author has submitted we try to get a sense for the author (do they have a decent website, social media presence etc.). I and the other people who work on the site will look at reviews and comments on Amazon to get a sense of what the current readers think of the book, we also do a search for other online reviews and comments on Goodreads. After the initial submission, we reach out to the authors to get a sample chapter and check the quality of the writing, and if it’s something we like. It goes a little on gut feel too, if we feel the author isn’t suited then it will simply be a ‘No thanks’.

How do you plan to promote the new site?

At the moment, we’re doing a pretty heavy outreach campaign within the writing, reading and publishing community. Asking them to get the word out any way they can (Author Unpublished note: That’s where people like me come in!) , guest posts, backlinks, social media shoutouts, hitting up their email lists. We’re trying to get on sites like Buzzfeed – https://www.buzzfeed.com/scottthewriter/27-websites-to-help-you-find-your-next-great-read-2e1d8– and anywhere else we can. We’re doing a bit of social media marketing, but as we’re a small team we’re finding this quite time-consuming.  A few weeks out from the launch we’ll be looking into spending about $1000 in advertising – Google AdWords, Big Writing Sites etc.

After that, we’ll be asking each author who is featured on the site to put a backlink on their site to ours and promote it to their audience. This way it’s a bit of a promotional ecosystem, we help them get their book to readers and they also help potential readers find our site. And when I get the time I’ll be doing some outreach through press releases to news websites and writing magazines.

What’s your background? Is this your first foray into online promotion?

I’m a writer myself but haven’t written anything that I’ve attempted to publish as of yet. I spend my days working as a freelance writer and building websites for companies. Previously I created a site call thisiswriting.com  which started out as a personal site, then I started interviewing authors I had met online and it grew into multiple author interviews, guest posts, writing and publishing tips and other content about the writing world. The site gets around 5000 visits a month and I offer free book marketing through that site. People can check that out here – http://thisiswriting.com/free-book-marketing/

Anything else you want to tell people?

I think I’ve rambled on long enough, but I’d love for people to help us support authors by letting everyone know about the site, whether it’s friends, their family or a random stranger on the street. Every little bit is helping us get the word out about book-swag.com

Now let’s get back to Author Unpublished…

So, from what I understand of the the site, it’s a place for authors and readers. Authors can promote their books – for free – on a curated e-mail list, and readers who sign up will get e-book deals and promotion straight into their inbox. Personally, I think it’s great, because I read a lot of small-press and independent authors, and sometimes quality books from small sources are hard to find. Now I’ve taken up enough of my reader’s time today.. but if you’re interested, I encourage you to give the site a try.  Anything that gives authors a shot at getting their book seen… well, I’m a big fan. And hey, it’s free! What do you have to lose?

Cover Reveal : Darkly Deeply Beautifully

Darkly Deeply Beautifully cover

Darkly Deeply Beautifully by Megan Tayte

BLURB: With her mother’s life hanging in the balance, Scarlett is devastated—and done with being in the dark. She wants answers, all of them.

But when was her pursuit of the truth ever straightforward?

Pulling a single thread triggers a great unraveling. And each revelation will force Scarlett to rethink what she thought she knew about the Ceruleans, the Fallen, her family—herself.

All that came before was a mere prelude to this, the last journey. From London to Twycombe to Hollythwaite to Cerulea, Scarlett will be stalked by the ghosts of what has been, what may have been and what may come to pass. Until she reaches the place where it all began, and it all must end.

But in the final reckoning, none will survive unscathed. And some will not survive at all. In this explosive conclusion to the Ceruleans series, all must be defined by their actions: sinner, saint… or something more beautiful entirely?

The Ceruleans series poster

Publication Date: February 16, 2016

[PREORDER on AMAZON] [PREORDER on AMAZON.CO.UK]

I am so happy to announce that Darkly Deeply Beautifully, the fifth book in the Ceruleans series by Megan Tayte will be releasing February 16, 2016. I’m also excited to show of it’s gorgeous cover. I’ve been privileged to read this series since the very first book came out, and I am beyond thankful to be able to read yet another of the series in the upcoming months. I adore Megan Tayte as an author, and I’ve enjoyed all the books so far. I hope you’re all as excited as I am! If you haven’t read the series before and you enjoy YA fantasy with a bit of romance thrown in, I highly recommend you check it out. The books haven’t always been what I’ve expected, but they’ve all been great books—sometimes in very new and entertaining ways. If you’re interested in learning more about the series, I recommend you take a look at my past reviews for the series—they can all be found in the Reviewed & Rated section of this blog.

Devil and The Deep – Release Day Party + Giveaway!

Ceruleans series poster

It’s an exciting day today here at Author Unpublished! Earlier this month I was given a chance to take part in the Devil and The Deep Release Day Party + Giveaway, and I was more than happy to jump in and participate. The Ceruleans series by Megan Tayte is one of my recent favorite series. I’ve read through the first three books already (Death Wish, Forget Me Not, WIld Blue Yonder) and gave them all 5 star reviews.

Btw, Books 1, 2, and 3 are FREE today for the Release Day Party (September 30)! So go check them out! Go! Go!

free-1free-2free-3

Devil and the Deep coverDevil And The Deep by Megan Tayte, Ceruleans Book 4

STORM CLOUDS ARE GATHERING, AND THEY WILL RAIN BLOOD.

Scarlett is living her happy-ever-after, back in the real world. Only the ‘happy’ part is proving problematic.

For starters, there’s the isolation. Being a Cerulean among humans is fraught with risk, so her time with people can only be fleeting. Which means being with Luke but not being with Luke.

Then there’s her Cerulean light, her power over life and death. Less awesome talent, as it turns out, and more overwhelming responsibility. And it comes with rules – rules that are increasingly difficult to obey.

But what’s really pushing Scarlett to the precipice is something much bigger than herself, than her life in the cove. A force to be reckoned with:

Blood.

When long-buried truths are exposed, will Scarlett keep her head above water – or will she drown in the blood-dimmed tide that is unleashed?

[Buy it on Amazon.com] [Buy it Amazon.co.uk]

EXCERPT

It began with screaming. Shrill, ear-piercing, horrified screaming.

A girl shrieked, ‘Blood! Look, look – it’s everywhere!’ and pressed her hand to her mouth.

A man shouted, ‘Good grief!’ and another, ‘Great Scott!’

An old lady swooned gracefully and would have tipped over the balustrade of the riverboat had a lanky lad not caught her.

The cause of the excitement – a woman lying slumped on the long table on deck, cheek on her bread plate, headdress in the butter dish – twitched a little.

‘She’s alive!’ cried a lad beside her delightedly. ‘She moved!’

‘Did not,’ argued another.

‘Did too!’

‘Gentlemen,’ interjected a short, portly man with a twirly black moustache, ‘if you will forgive my intrusion, it must be noted that this woman has a bullet hole in her head and is logically, therefore, quite definitely deceased.’

Another old dear folded to the deck with a prolonged ‘Ohhhhhh’ and her husband grabbed a feathered fan and began wafting cool evening air in her face while calling, ‘Smelling salts – does anyone have any?’

I tried to keep a straight face. Really I did. I bit my bottom lip until I tasted my cherry-red lipstick. I pinched my leg through the cream satin of my gown. I dug my long cigarette holder into the sensitive flesh of my arm.

But it was no good.

The ‘What ho, chaps’ posh accents.

The buxom woman sagging in the arms of an elephant hunter wearing Converse All Stars.

The production of smelling salts in a bottle whose label read Pepto-Bismol.

The corners of the little round man’s moustache coming looser with his every word.

The fast-pooling puddle of pinkish blood on the bread plate, buffeted by the steady in-and-out breaths of the corpse.

Take it from a girl who’s really died – death on the River Dart, Devon, is hilarious.

‘Dear me, Ms Robson here appears to be quite overcome with shock,’ said the guy at my side suddenly, and he slipped an arm around me and turned me away. ‘Come, madam. Let us get some air.’

I smiled at him. Then grinned. Then choked back a guffaw. Thankfully, by the time full-scale hilarity hit me I’d been led to the rear of the boat, away from the rest of our party, and could bury my face in the bloke’s chest and shake mutely with laughter.

The gallant gentleman rubbed my back soothingly as I let it all out and said loudly, for the benefit of any onlookers, ‘There there, pignsey, there there.’

‘Pigsney?’ It was the final straw. My high-heeled sandals gave way and I melted into a puddle of mirth on the deck.

‘I’ll have you know, Scarlett Blake,’ hissed Luke, my boyfriend a.k.a. gallant gent, hoiking up his too-tight corduroy trousers so he could squat down beside me, ‘I Googled “old-fashioned terms of endearment” and pigsney’s a classic.’

I wiped tears from my eyes, dislodging a false eyelash in the process, and tried to catch my hiccupping breath as Luke went on.

‘Means pig’s eye. No idea why that’s appealing, but apparently in the seventeenth century, calling a lady pigsney was the very height of courting.’

Through his fake specs Luke’s blue eyes fixed me with a stare so earnest I almost managed to stop laughing.

‘But this is a Death on the Nile-Stroke-Dart murder mystery night, Luke,’ I managed to get out. ‘Set in the nineteen thirties, not the seventeen thirties.’

‘Ah,’ he said, ‘but my character tonight, Mr Fijawaddle, is a historical fiction writer, isn’t he? So as well as dressing like a brainy recluse – and I’m warning you now, I won’t hear another slur against this tweed jacket – he’d know all kinds of obscure terms. Like ginglyform and jargogle and nudiustertian and bromopnea and farctate and quagswag and philosophunculist.’

His showing off sobered me just enough to control the giggles. ‘You made those words up,’ I accused, poking a crimson talon into his mustard-yellow shirtfront.

He blinked at me innocently. ‘Did not. I told you before we left the house, I did my homework.’

I narrowed my eyes. ‘All right then, Mr Fijawaddle, what does that last word you said mean?’

‘Philosophunculist?’

‘Yes, that.’

‘Er…’ Luke gave me a sheepish grin.

‘Spill it,’ I said menacingly. As menacingly as a girl dressed up as a vintage Hollywood starlet with cute little pin curls and rouge aplenty can be, that is.

‘Philosophunculist,’ recited Luke. ‘Noun. A person who pretends to know more than they do in order to impress others.’

I threw my head back and laughed. ‘Busted!’

Luke slipped an arm around me and pulled me close. Really close.

‘Bet you like it when I use long words,’ he said huskily, eyes fixed on my too-red lips.

‘Bet you like it when I wear a clingy nightgown as a dress,’ I replied, eyes fixed on his too-kissable lips.

‘Brazen hussy,’ he growled at me.

‘Randy boffin,’ I murmured back.

Then neither of us said another word for quite some time.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Megan Tayte

Once upon a time a little girl told her grandmother that when she grew up she wanted to be a writer. Or a lollipop lady. Or a fairy princess fireman. ‘Write, Megan,’ her grandmother advised. So that’s what she did.
Thirty-odd years later, Megan is a professional writer and published author by day, and an indie novelist by night. Her fiction – young adult romance with soul – recently earned her the SPR’s Independent Woman Author of the Year award.
Megan grew up in the Royal County, a hop, skip and a (very long) jump from Windsor Castle, but these days she makes her home in Robin Hood’s county, Nottinghamshire. She lives with her husband, a proud Scot who occasionally kicks back in a kilt; her son, a budding artist with the soul of a palaeontologist; and her baby daughter, a keen pan-and-spoon drummer who sings in her sleep. When she’s not writing, you’ll find her walking someplace green, reading by the fire, or creating carnage in the kitchen as she pursues her impossible dream: of baking something edible.
You can find Megan online at:

http://megantayte.com/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13478850.Megan_Tayte
https://www.facebook.com/megantayte
https://twitter.com/megantayte
https://plus.google.com/+MeganTayte

GIVEAWAY!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My Review

[Originally Posted Here]

I’m still in a little conflict over how I feel about Devil and the Deep by Megan Tayte. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the book… but it wasn’t my favorite out of the series. The front half of the book felt a little slow to me. Not a lot happened. I read the book 20% at a time, and I didn’t feel like I was itching to get back into the book each time I put it down… If I’d put down the book halfway through, I would have shrugged and moved on—but, I am glad that I continued to read because the second half of the book was much better.

Technically speaking, the book was well written. The pacing was steady, the writing was fluid and easy to follow. I ran into a few minor typos, but nothing that distracted me from the text, or would have made me put the book down. Once again, I loved all the characters…. even Evangeline. It was a solid addition to the series as a whole up until this point. But, like I said, the first half of the book just didn’t engage me like I’d expected.

The ending was great. There was drama and chaos and lines were being crossed, and I was engrossed. When that last line hit, I bemoaned the end of the story. I wanted more.

Overall, I really liked the book. Was it the best book in the series? For me, no. Was it enjoyable? Definitely. Would I recommend it? Yes. If you’ve enjoyed the previous books in this series, you’ll probably enjoy this one too. I can’t wait for the fifth book!

I Got a Lesson in Gender Equality at a Romance Writers’ Conference | VICE | United Kingdom

I’d promised my editor a funny piece about the people who write and read romantic fiction, but what I found wasn’t a joke.

Source: I Got a Lesson in Gender Equality at a Romance Writers’ Conference | VICE | United Kingdom

As I head home, backpack full of books “I just have to read,” there’s one thing I’m still wondering about. Why do romance writers even care what mainstream literature thinks of them?

They make more money and have more passionate fans than most fiction authors. And while mainstream publishers are struggling with dwindling readership and revenue, romance is generating well over a billion dollars a year. The mainstream, it seems, should instead be taking a page out of their book.

Doing What We Can

A blog where I feel hopeless, then angry, then make an invitation to people who want to change the world.

Source: Doing What We Can

 

For the next week, Worldbuilders is raising money to help the Syrian refugees.

What’s more, Worldbuilders will be matching donations for the first $25,000 of the fundraiser. So if you kick in 10 bucks, it turns into 20. Donate $50? We’ll turn it into a $100.

Dollar-panarama-704155

(Like this.)

100% of the money from this fundraiser will be donated to Mercy Corps, because they’re already on the ground, helping out the refugees. They have more than 30 years of experience doing this sort of thing. We’ve checked them out and they’re excellent.

I’m taking a flier on this one, folks. It’s an experiment. We haven’t planned this the way we normally do. We aren’t giving out prizes. There aren’t any stretch goals. We don’t have any media lined up to help us spread the word.

This is just about helping people who are in desperate need of help.

Goodreads Has Decided That There is No Friendzone for Authors and People ⋆ Ink, Bits, & Pixels

Goodreads may have picked up tricks from their corporate parent since being bought by Amazon in 2012, but beta testing new features was apparently not one of them.

The social network added new relationship options on Friday. Ostensibly intended to better define how authors and the hoi polloi interact, the new options are causing more problems than they solved.

Where under the old setup you could be a friend or a fan of an author (or both), the new system offers “three ways you can choose to engage with author pages on Goodreads” : friend, follow, or favorite.

While I’m sure it sounds like follow is simply a new name for fan and that favorite is a brand new option, it’s more complicated than that.  The relationships friend:fan and friend:follow:favorite don’t match up cleanly.

To start with, the old system had members forming connections with authors, while under the new system members “engage with author pages” – and yes, that is the way GR framed the interactions.

Yes, authors are no longer members of Goodreads; they’re now pages. In other words, Goodreads sees authors as things.

 

via Goodreads Has Decided That There is No Friendzone for Authors and People ⋆ Ink, Bits, & Pixels. (<-You can continue reading the full article here)