Month: July 2020

The Secret to Daily Word Counts – The Path of Least Resistance

By: Ginger | Posted on July 31, 2020

If the old saying that “a writer writes” is true, why do so many authors find it difficult to keep the words flowing? Ginger has some thoughts on that, and shares some tips for authors who are serious about turning self-publishing into a career – or who already are, but just want to become more productive.  The points below all ring true to me, particularly the second one as that was what led me to a corporate job and away from writing for many years (although in my case, it was more my own logical mind that talked me out of writing rather than anyone else – but the solution was the same.)  So if you’re looking for a few tips on increasing your daily word count and finishing your books, read on! During all my blog posts about marketing, advertising, and promoting your books, I hope one thing has… Read More >

5 Fab Thriller Novels that Span the Globe

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on July 28, 2020

Every month, hundreds of new thriller novels get published – and some of the best of them are offered to Hidden Gems subscribers to read for FREE. We looked back over some of the recent action packed tales shared with our subscribers and cross-referenced their reviews, rankings, and popularity to pick five ‘hidden gems’ to highlight for you.  The stories here span the globe, with thrills from the heat of Texas, to the rains of London.  Never Look Back in Texas by Russ Hall  Russ Hall has brought us six vibrant adventures featuring retired Texas lawman Al Quinn – rich with detail, and filled with taut, terrifying action. In Book Six, Al is on the hunt for a school friend’s missing son – but that path places him in the sights of the vicious Mara Salvatrucha gang; and what should have been a manhunt now turns into a battle for… Read More >

Does genre matter? Writing something different may teach you something new.

By: J.E. Rowney | Posted on July 24, 2020

If you’re like most authors, you’ve likely picked a genre that you know or like the best and embraced it, rarely (if ever) writing outside of it for a variety of reasons.  Perhaps it’s because nothing else interests you, or because you’re afraid that your fans are only interested in reading that type of story from you.  But as guest post author J.E. Rowney points out, there is a lot to be learned from stepping outside your comfort zone. Even if it’s just as a small writing experiment instead of a full blown novel, spending time in an unfamiliar genre can make you a stronger writer even when you return back to the familiar. As my readers will know, I write in the chick-lit or women’s fiction genre. My books focus on friendships and relationships. These are the things that interest me. They are what I want to read about,… Read More >

5 Steamy Summer Romances

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on July 21, 2020

Even if where you live hasn’t opened up post-COVID-19, the weather is certainly announcing the arrival of summer – and so now is the perfect time to stock up on steamy summer reads for the beach, poolside, or backyard if you’re still in quarantine. Fans of romance get a ton of value by subscribing to Hidden Gems books – the following five books were offered for FREE to subscribers, in addition to dozens more from 15 other genres.  The SEAL’s Convenient Marriage by Katie Knight  It was supposed to be a marriage of convenience – so tough-as-nails SEAL Nate could help Emily provide care and treatment for his cancer-stricken little brother. However, when Emily discovers their doctor is embroiled in a conspiracy worth killing for, Nate has to fall back on his lethal training; and protect Emily at all costs. “This is the first book that I have read from this… Read More >

Mailing Lists: Covering Your Caboose and Protecting Your Privacy

By: Nate | Posted on July 17, 2020

For an independent author, there is nothing more important than building your fanbase.  There are lots of reasons for this, but the most important is that there is no one more likely to buy your next book than someone that already read and loved your last one.  That’s why you want to make sure you have a list of as many of those fans as possible so that you can contact them to let them know about your upcoming releases – something you should be doing as part of a regular marketing strategy via your newsletter.  But setting up a newsletter means first setting up a list that your readers can join, and while there are plenty of companies that provide mailing list services, there are some important things you need to consider first before you get started. Not only are there legal rules around what you can send and… Read More >

Author Spotlight Interview: K. L. Bryce / Kayley Wood

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on July 14, 2020

Today’s Author Spotlight Interview is with K.L. Bryce, the author of Mean Crush, the first in the Unbroken series. Even though this is her first book under that penname, it made an immediate impact and has already left readers hungry for more – plus, you can find more of Kayley’s writing under her other penname, Kayley Wood.  HG: Firstly, WHO ARE YOU? Or more accurately – how would you describe yourself to somebody who isn’t familiar with your writing yet? KLB: I’m a big goofball, really. I love to laugh and to make others laugh. I’m laid back and more of a peacemaker who avoids drama if I can help it, which is pretty funny since I write romance. I love my friends and the amazing woman in my life who have helped shaped who I’ve become. I was very lucky to have a close relationship with my grandmother…a beautiful,… Read More >

Helping You Decide – Go Wide or Go KU?

By: Tracy Cooper-Posey | Posted on July 10, 2020

The debate about whether or not to self-publish exclusively to Amazon or go wide to other online distributors is a lively one, but the fact that the question is so controversial in the first place tells us one thing for sure: That there is no right answer that works for everyone. Unfortunately, this leaves many independent authors wondering how to make that very important decision.  That’s why we turned to author Tracy Cooper-Posey for advice.  Not only is she a successful author and blogger, but she has experience on both sides of the debate.  She’s not here to tell you which way is better, but rather to provide you with the criteria you need to consider in order to make the best decision for you and your career.  Wide V Kindle Unlimited:  Is there a more contentious issue out there these days? We’ve resolved, more or less, that advertising is… Read More >

Fantasy Reads with STRONG Female Protagonists

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on July 7, 2020

Conan the Barbarian can stand aside – the fast-moving fantasy genre is dominated at the moment by feisty, female protagonists and it couldn’t come at a better time. We’ve scoured the rankings from the last month or so and identified the five highest-rated fantasy books shared with Hidden Gems subscribers in recent weeks; and a strong woman driving the action is one thing they all have in common. Take a look and you’ll be hooked! Fate Forged by B.P. Donigan All good fantasy stories begin with a tough, scrappy protagonist – and in Fate Forged, you’ll meet Maeve O’Neill – a once-homeless young woman who’d managed to pull herself up despite the odds stacked against her. All this progress is threatened, though, when nightmarish visions of torture and murder plague Maeve – and her attempts to get to the bottom of this mystery see her burdened with magical powers that immediately… Read More >

True or False? 3 New Updates about Advertising on Amazon YOU Need to Consider

By: Ginger | Posted on July 3, 2020

Amazon is alive! Not in a literal sense, unless you’re a proponent of science fiction scenarios, but in the sense that the algorithms, interfaces, and strategies that help authors perform best on the world’s largest bookstore are constantly evolving, changing, and pivoting. In this article, we’ll ask “true or false” about the effectiveness of three previously tried-and-tested advertising strategies – and look into whether you might want to rethink your approach to them. A couple of weeks ago, we posted a blog entitled 3 Ways to Turn Your Advertising on Amazon into a High Performing Machine – and received a comment from a reader named Lee Gabel that read: Tip #2 is no longer accepted practice for Amazon Ads. Instead they recommend no more than 100 keywords per ad and advocate using ad groups instead of copying campaigns. In addition, Amazon Ads now frowns upon more than three ads per… Read More >