So I've missed almost a week's worth of posts due to all the Thanksgiving hoopla. Ah, what a time of year. Turkey, mashed potatoes, and dressing. In more senses than one. Nothing like being told that the clothes I like best makes me look like I'm in a cult. Family... gotta love 'em, but can't live with 'em, which is why I moved away!
But that's another story, and could quickly spiral into the emo-ness I managed to avoid last night, so I'll set it aside for now (other than a very mature :-P) in favor of writing news. My sci-fi debut, Killdeer, is live on Amazon and Smashwords in e-copy, also from Amazon in hard copy (with Matchbook discount), and signed copies on Etsy!
Also available on Amazon and Smashwords, and Amazon and Etsy, is this year's holiday collection, In the Bleak Midwinter. The combined edition of two years' holiday collections, Christmastime Is Here 2013, is available only through Etsy, with a free e-book for anyone who buys the print. If you want just the e-book of this, let me know.
As I have said many times before, I do not want anyone to spend money they don't have. That being said, I will point out that I price my books lower than even most independent writers, because I know that my readers are generally on fairly tight budgets. I'm on one myself, with all the care around "fun" spending that entails.
But really, what else can you get for $3 or $4 that will provide happiness for two people: for you, O reader, and for me? If you can spend that money, or let me know that you will be spending it (waiting for a gift card, maybe, or for my books to go through Smashwords' premium catalog to Apple, B&N, Sony, etc), it will cause me joy.
If you've already purchased and read one or both of these new releases, or are going to purchase and read them, I would ask one further favor. Please, please, consider posting an honest, polite review on the site where you purchased your book. Of course I prefer positive feedback, but honesty comes first. Nothing's ever perfect.
Why do I ask for reviews on my originals? Well, consider that you are a casual browser on an e-book site, looking for new reading material. Your search, or the "other people bought" links, show you two intriguing covers. One has gold stars under it and comments beside it. The other has nothing. Which will you investigate first?
If you're like most people, you will click first on the link to the book that other people felt was worth their time to rate and review. The comments, and the ratings, mean that other readers cared, which means you might well care. They will also give you more of an idea whether or not this book would suit your preferred reading style.
I do understand that many people are afraid to leave feedback, because it's a public form of writing, because everyone can see it and "what if I look stupid?". I know that fear very well. I experience it every time I finish a new fanfic chapter, every time I post an entry on this blog, most especially every time I click "publish" on a novel.
There's no easy way to deal with that fear, and if it stops you from leaving me feedback on public sites, then so be it. I cannot make you do anything, O readers, and would never want to. But I work hard on my writing, devote weeks and months of my time to it, fight my own fear of rejection and failure to make it available to you.
So I ask you now -- and there is no need to provide me with an answer to this question, only to think about it to yourself -- what is that worth? What are you willing to pay, to be able to read my stories? In money, or in time, or in effort and thought and the fear of exposure, what would you consider a fair exchange for my writing?
As I said, no need to answer that "out loud". Just think about it, please. (Mostly because I know what a bunch of smart-alecks you all are and somebody is bound to tell me I'm worth seventeen toothpicks or a tin of peppermint Altoids or some other silly valuation.) Thanks, as always, for reading. Regular blog posts resume tomorrow.