Friday, September 23, 2016

Excerpt from Mouse's Tale: An Alpha League Supers Novel

For those interested, I'm still hard at work on the Mouse book (working title: Mouse's Tale).  Since I've been talking about this one for a while, I thought it might be fun to share an excerpt, so - bearing in mind that this has not gone through the editing process - here you go:


The first to come in was Buzz, the speedster. He was a young guy with dark hair and a lean, athletic frame. From the way he moved, I got the impression that walking at what could be considered normal speed was unnatural and awkward for him.
Next was Esper, a natural beauty who was generally considered the most powerful telepath on the planet.  Although I’d never heard of her misusing her powers, she was definitely someone you didn’t want to get on the wrong side of.
Finally, there was Alpha Prime. Handsome and statuesque, with a chiseled physique, he probably could have been a movie star had he so desired. As was usual for the most powerful super on the planet, he simply floated in. (Apparently walking was a pastime for mere mortals.) At least he had the good grace to close the door behind him.
I gave them only a casual glance – long enough for them to know that I’d seen them – then went back to puttering with the microwave.  Although it was already repaired, I took satisfaction in giving the impression that even a broken-down, obsolete appliance merited more attention than my visitors.
As they approached the counter where I was seated, Alpha Prime glided to the front of the trio, with his companions flanking him.  When he got close enough for it to become clear that he wanted my attention, I looked up.
He was already tall, at least six-six, and floating several inches off the floor probably made Alpha Prime seem even more imposing to most people. Rather than crane my neck looking up at him, I leaned back in my chair. I spent a moment letting my gaze shift to each of them in turn.
“Can I help you?” I asked no one in particular.
Alpha Prime frowned slightly. My guess was that he was used to people being overawed by the presence of the Alpha League in general (and by him in particular).
Sorry, buddy, I thought. Fresh out of awe.
“We’re looking for the owner,” Alpha Prime said after a moment, his voice a magnificent baritone.
“You’re also looking at him,” I countered.
“You’re Dale Theodore Goodson?” Esper asked.
“Every day,” I replied. “But most people call me Mouse.”
“That’s right,” Buzz chimed in, snapping his fingers once. “You were Power Piston’s sidekick at one point. I think I remember you.”
“No you don’t,” I corrected him. “You just remember the facts you read in whatever file or dossier you pulled up on me before you came here. And I wasn’t Power Piston’s sidekick. I was his partner.”
Buzz, turning red with anger, was on the verge of saying something when Esper suddenly stepped forward.
“We have something we’d like you to take a look at,” she said. At that point, I realized that she was holding a folded piece of paper. She opened it up and laid it on the counter in front of me. “Do you know what this is?”
“Sure,” I said, glancing at what was on the paper. “It’s a portion of the schematics for a suit of power armor. To be precise, this shows part of a shoulder-mounted cannon.”
“Are you certain?” she asked.
I nodded. “No doubt.”
Her brow crinkled slightly. “How can you be sure?”
“Because I’m the one who designed it.”
“A-ha!” Buzz practically bellowed, like he’d just caught a kid with his hand in the cookie jar. “So you admit it!”
I frowned. “Admit what?”
“That you built this,” Buzz said as he step forward and tapped the sheet of paper with the diagram on it.
“No,” I declared, shaking my head. “I said that I designed it. I assume that the guy I sold the schematics to built it.”
“And who would that be?” asked Alpha Prime.
I crossed my arms defiantly. “I’m sorry, but my client list is confidential.”
“List?” Esper repeated. “How many of these designs have you sold to people?”
“That’s confidential as well,” I replied. “But I will say that I do more than just armor. In fact, I can design almost anything a client wants. It makes for a profitable niche.”
“Let’s just go ahead and clear the air here,” Alpha Prime said. “We know that the client you sold these schematics to was Gun-Greave, and you can stop all the ‘confidentiality’ nonsense because he’s dead.”
Although this was surprising news, I kept my voice neutral. “Gun-Greave’s dead? When?”
“Last night” Alpha Prime replied.
“What happened?” I asked casually.
“He went criminal,” said Esper.
I shook my head. “Doesn’t sound like the fellow I dealt with. You must have the wrong guy.”
“No, it was him,” Alpha Prime assured me. “He got caught trying to break into a museum vault.”
“Yeah,” Buzz added. “And he just happened to be wearing the power armor you designed when he did it.”
I shrugged. “So what’s your point?”
Buzz placed his hands on the counter and leaned forward. “My point, asshole, is that you’re in league with criminals.”
“First of all,” I said, “he wasn’t a criminal when I sold him the design. He was a guy with dreams of maybe joining a superhero team, but his crappy armor wasn’t cutting it, so he came to me.”
“Well, that makes sense,” Buzz sneered. “Since you know all about not cutting it, don’t you?”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” I practically demanded. 
“I think you know exactly what it means,” Buzz said. “You went out for the Super Trials three years in a row and failed miserably every time. Later, you barely made it as a sidekick.”
“Buzz!” Alpha Prime barked. “That’s enough.”
“I’m only quoting what’s in his file,” Buzz said innocently.
I was starting to fume. Buzz had inadvertently settled on the one issue that was definitely a hot-button topic for me. Normally I try to keep my face impassive, but something must have shown because I felt Esper once again trying to surreptitiously poke around the outer rim of my mind – this time, presumably, in an effort to keep me calm. (In fact, she’d been scanning me since she and her colleagues had entered my shop, but I’d made sure she hadn’t gotten anything worthwhile for her efforts.) I got a grip on my emotions and intentionally leaked enough calm to convince her that I wasn’t going to blow my stack. Satisfied, she ceased her efforts to pacify me but didn’t withdraw completely from my head.
“I apologize for my colleague,” Esper said a second later. “He gets a little passionate when it comes to bad guys.”
“Don’t worry about,” I stated in a monotone voice. “But as I was saying, Gun-Greave didn’t start off as a bad guy, and I just tried to help him out. I couldn’t predict that he’d get tired of walking the straight and narrow.”
“Well, your efforts are what probably got him killed,” Buzz said.
I frowned. “What are you talking about?”
“Your designs were a significant upgrade to what he’d been capable of before, and it became clear that he wasn’t going to let himself be captured,” Alpha Prime said. “With innocent people caught in the crossfire, the only way to take him down was to take him out.”
There followed a moment of silence, and then I muttered stoically, “Well, that’s a damn shame.”
“Yeah,” Buzz said sarcastically. “I can tell you’re really broken up about it.”
I gave him a hard stare.  Obviously, the speedster and I had somehow gotten off on the wrong foot, and he was taking every possible opportunity to needle me. However, before I could respond, Esper interjected.
“Look,” she said, “this wasn’t intended to be antagonistic. We’re actually speaking to you here, instead of at our headquarters, as a courtesy to Power Piston and out of respect for the fact that you two worked together.”
“That’s laughable,” I said, guffawing. “Power Piston would be the last person to show me any favoritism if he thought I’d done something wrong, and there’s no way he would ask it of his teammates.”
Alpha Prime nodded. “You’re right – he wouldn’t ask. He doesn’t even know we’re here, because we thought it would crush him to know that his old partner and protégé might be working outside the law.”
“You’ve got to stretch the facts pretty far to get anywhere close to that conclusion,” I countered. “I haven’t heard anything that implicates me in any illicit activities.”
“Doesn’t it bother you that some of your clients might be criminals, or use your work for illegal purposes?” asked Esper.
I snorted derisively. “It’s not illegal to engage in business with criminals.  It’s only illegal to engage in criminal business. If you’re going to harass me about what I’ve done, are you also going to go after the guy who sells criminals their groceries? How about the power company that supplies their homes with electricity? The department store where they get their clothes?”
“None of those other services directly enable the bad guys to engage in criminal behavior,” Alpha Prime countered.
“Touche,” I said. “But I still don’t see you going after gun manufacturers after their weapons have been used in a robbery. Or taking on auto manufacturers after one of their vehicles is used as a getaway car.”
“Stop trying to spin this like you’re some honest businessman,” Buzz said testily. “You’re as guilty as the criminals you sell to.”
My eyes narrowed. “We’re done here. You can leave now.”
“We’ll leave,” Buzz stated. “But you’re coming with us.”
I blinked. “What?”
Buzz sneered. “We’re not done talking to you. You’re coming back to HQ with us.”
I shook my head. “That’s not gonna happen.”
“We can do it, you know,” Esper said. “Like most superhero teams, we’ve got the authority to take suspects into custody.”
“Maybe with probable cause,” I acknowledged. “Which is sorely lacking in this instance.”
“Even without probable cause, we can detain you if we feel it’s warranted,” said Alpha Prime.
“You can try,” I said, casually stretching my hand across the countertop. Of course, the object I was reaching for wasn’t there, and I spent a few seconds glancing around as if bewildered.
“Looking for something?” Buzz asked. He held up a hand and I saw that he was palming a small square-shaped, metallic device with two buttons on it – one gray and one black.
“Give that back!” I demanded, coming to my feet.
“I don’t think so,” Buzz said with a leer. He turned his attention to the device. “Let’s see… I wonder what will happen if I push this.”
His finger hovered over the black button.
“Don’t press that!” I yelled.
“Or what?” Buzz said, then pressed the button.
There was a momentary crackling sound, and the air in the shop between me and my visitors seemed to flicker for a moment. They realized almost immediately that something had happened, but obviously they had no idea what it was.
I gave them a grin that was practically magnanimous. “I told you not to press that.”

Friday, September 16, 2016

TiVo, Where Art Thou? (And Where's My "Lifetime" Service?)

In the early part of this century (or millennium, however you want to style it - around the year 2000, dammit), I purchased a TiVo.  At the time, I was a hardcore television junkie. I wrote in a previous blog how watching television  is a like a second job (the average American watches 34 hours of TV per week), and I was a textbook example. I spent a lot of time wrestling with video cassettes, setting timers, screaming bloody murder when I accidentally recorded over something I hadn't watched yet...

For me, TiVo was almost like the second coming. It could record tons of shows, I could watch them in any order I wanted, I could get a "season pass" and record every episode of a program - it even learned my preferences and recorded things it thought I would enjoy.  Frankly speaking, within weeks I was wondering how I had ever lived without it. (Had that uncultured, uncivilized Neanderthal with the VCR and box full of VHS tapes truly been me?)

Fast-forward a decade-and-half: TiVo and I are still going strong, a powerful and graceful symbiosis of man and machine. And then the rug gets yanked out from under me: TiVo is being bought by entertainment company Rovi. The buyout in and of itself wasn't terrible news - companies get bought and sold all the time. However, what almost sent me into a raving fit was the fact that the combined company is no longer going to support the TiVo Series 1 (which, as you might guess, is the series I own).


Apparently, Rovi's current software won't run on the Series 1, which is the first generation of TiVo devices.  Adding insult to injury is the fact that, when I bought the thing, I paid like $200 for the Tivo "Lifetime" service (referring to the Tivo subscription service that provides software updates, scheduling info, and so on). Granted that 15+ years is certainly a long time, it doesn't quite meet the definition of "lifetime" in my opinion - not when both I and my TiVo are alive and kicking.  And make no mistake: my TiVo still works.

As you can imagine, I'm a little PO'd about the entire situation, as are plenty of other TiVo owners. To give them credit, TiVo has attempted to mollify the masses by giving us $75 gift cards (which I have yet to receive, mind you).  Taking that into consideration, I'm sure someone will say that I should be satisfied.  After all, bearing in mind the value of the gift card, it would mean that over a fifteen-year period I spent $125 for service that regularly costs like $15/month.  But I'm not satisfied, dammit. I paid for Lifetime service; I want the effin' Lifetime service!  Like the guy in the Xfinity commercial below, I believe that if you sell a product or service, it should work:

Basically, if you sell a lifetime service, it needs to work - and be available - for a lifetime. Not a day, not a year, not a decade.  A lifetime.  Can you imagine the response I'd have gotten if our situations were reversed?  If I had called up TiVo a year ago and said, "Hey, I'm not going to be using my TiVo any more - I've unplugged it and now use it as a paperweight. Can I get a refund on the balance of that Lifetime service contract - say, $75?" They would have told me to eff off, that a deal's a deal, and then suggested that I perform an anatomically impossible act upon myself.

See, those mother-bleeping bleep-sucking, mother-bleepers would have demanded that I honor our deal, so I'd be within my rights to demand no less of them. I expect corporations to exhibit the same level of integrity that I expect from natural persons.  Still, it's probably not worth wrangling over legally (although I could see a class action lawsuit arising out of this).  It'll just have to be enough that I never buy another TiVo/Rovi product again.  Of course, I had the same mindset with respect to the lack of backwards compatibility for the Playstation 4, initially saying that I'd never own one and later breaking down. Somewhat. (My wife bought it for me.  What was I supposed to do, tell her it was a terrible gift???)  

In short, while I know I should never say "never," at the moment I feel that the odds of me ever buying anything from them again are somewhere between slim and none.  And, as they used to say in the old days, slim's outta town...

Sunday, September 11, 2016

The Exponential Increase in the Cost of Book Promotion

A couple of years ago, one of my early posts on this blog was How to Beat the High Cost of Indie Publishing.  In that post, I basically outlined what I thought was generally required for an author to produce a quality novel. However, while I covered a lot of the basics leading up to the final production of a book (editing, cover, etc.), I failed to address one of the important things that comes after a book's release: marketing and promotion.

As most indies (and even some traditionally published authors) quickly learn, book marketing and promotion is a necessary evil. Unless you are very lucky - almost lotto-winning lucky - getting and maintaining visibility for your work is an ongoing effort. Thus, at some juncture, almost every indie will turn to one of the book promotion sites.

With that in mind, I was recently doing some research into where to apply my marketing efforts for one of my novels.  (This book promotion thing has actually become a bit of a pet project of mine, with me even going so far as to add a Book Marketing and Promotion page to this blog.)  As I investigated, it occurred to me that prices for book promotion seem to have been on a steady increase for a while.  In fact, going back and plugging in some numbers from the past few years yielded the following results:

Needless to say, this is not all book promotion sites, nor all of those that have increased their charges. However, I don't mean to imply that all such sites have been raising their prices. In fact, many of them have not. Still, as you can see, the numbers have shot up significantly for a number of these venues.  That said, some of the dollar figures may seem paltry, but when you consider that many indies will promote a single title across a score of sites simultaneously, it adds up pretty quickly.

Businesses, of course, will typically charge as much as the market will bear. Moreover, indies have shown that they're willing to pay top dollar in order to reach their audiences.  However, the kind of price increases noted above can't continue without some kind of effect.  In many instances, the end result may be that authors will have to raise prices. (Although, in truth, an increase in prices should eventually be expected as a result of ordinary inflation.)

In short, while no one assumed that the cost of promoting books was going to remain static, the exponential increases are worth noting.  That's not to say that the sites that have raised their prices aren't worth it.  (BookBub, for instance, is the gold standard and worth every penny.)  The real takeaway is that, for those of us with limited dollars, it's become more important than ever to separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to marketing our work.  In other words, it's time to figure out which promotional sites are actually offering some bang for the buck, because you need every marketing dollar that you spend to work just as hard for you as you did in earning it.

(***Just a quick note about the chart above:  it denotes what promoting on the listed sites cost at various times in the past.  The term "Cheapest Available" generally means the most inexpensive promotional opportunity for a paid book that I could find on a particular site at present.  That said, I tried to make this as much of an apples-to-apples comparison as possible, which meant, for instance, sticking to the same genre when feasible. By way of example, the $160 BookBub promo in 2013 was for the Sci-Fi genre; a promo on BookBub in that same genre will cost $600 today.)

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Audiobook Release: Revelation is Now Available

In keeping with my commitment to produce audio versions of all my work, I'm pleased to announce that the audiobook of Revelation (Kid Sensation #4) is available.

This one actually took longer than anticipated for a number of reasons; for instance, the power went out one night while I was listening to the audio files.  (That's force majeure, man. Nothing you can do about that.) Thankfully, I was eventually able to finish, and  - like the prior audiobooks in the series - I think it turned out very well and will prove to be worth the wait.

Needless to say, it's a lot of fun for me to have my work brought to life in this way.  It's not anything I really anticipated early on when I started this writing gig, but I really enjoy it. (And it helps that I have a great narrator.)

Kid Sensation #5 is now in the [audio] works, with the anticipated completion date being in October. I feel blessed that the audiobooks have been getting a very warm reception from listeners, so hopefully that will continue - and cross over to my other series when I start releasing the audio versions of those titles. For now, though, I'm just enjoying everything about the process.  

Monday, August 29, 2016

A Welcome Surprise: Additional Passive Income

So a few weeks ago I'm just going about my daily routine, checking email, when I see a notification that HubPages has sent me a payment. 

Say what?

Yes, I had actually received money for doing...nothing.  Okay, not exactly nothing.

I wrote about HubPages before on this blog in a post about earning passive income. HubPages is an article-writing site, where you create web pages called hubs about various topics. (You can write about anything you like.) Several years ago (before I turned my hand to novels), I had started writing articles on various sites, including HubPages. I created what I consider to be a fair number of hubs in a short period of time, and - as proven last month - those hubs have continued to produce income.

To be frank, however, my start on the site was rather inauspicious. My first month, I wrote one article. It earned me a penny that month - nothing to get excited about.  However, the next month, with me still doing nothing, that article earned something like 20 cents. Now it was getting interesting - not because of the amount of money, but because now I had a better idea of the potential.

Liking what I was seeing, I wrote something like a dozen articles after that, which earned me around three bucks the following month. Shifting into high gear, I cranked out 25 articles the next month, and earned about $8. I did almost nothing the month after that (6 articles) and made (drumroll please)...$60! Yes: dollar sign-six-zero! Needless to say, that was a major leap forward and validated what I had been doing in terms of trying to earn passive income.

Fast-forward a bit in time, and at the end of my seventh month on the site I had written about 80 articles, which were earning me about $40 per month. (Not a whole lot of money, but better than nothing.)  Since then (about 4 years ago), I've written exactly one article on Hubpages.  However, my work is still published on the site and continues to earn me money every day.

How much money, you say?  Well, after the last payout (which was - as I said - unexpected, because I haven't done anything on the site in years), I went back and looked.  Turns out my 80 articles were no earning me roughly 7 cents per day.  Yes, 7 cents.  Go ahead: yuck it up.  But if you put $1000 in a savings account earning 1% interest (which is well above the national average at the moment), you'd only earn $10 after a year.  My 7 cents a day would total over $25 at the end of a year - twice what someone would earn with a grand in a savings account, and I didn't have to lock up thousands of dollars to do it.

Anyway, I blame Google for the diminishing returns I'm getting from my hubs.  Google seems to update its algorithms regularly, which tends to have an effect on the discoverability of articles on sites like HubPages. (If I find myself with time on my hands, I may go back and tweak my articles to make them more Google-friendly, but I prefer to devote that time to writing novels these days.)

That said, the fact that I'm still earning passive income on work that I did years ago speaks volumes about the potential of sites like Hubpages - especially for someone willing to put in the time to write decent articles.  I figure that a person with just a little hustle could write a decent article every day capable of earning at least what I was getting early on (which was about 50 cents per article per month).  So, at the end of a year, you'd have 365 articles earning $6/day, or almost $2200 per year. But if you can manage that for two years (or write 2 articles per day), now you're earning $12/day.

Or maybe you can write killer hubs capable of earning more than $1/month each. It's certainly possible. When I got started with Hubpages, I wrote an article for my wife that - early in its life cycle - was earning over $1/month. In fact, during its best month, I think it earned $3. Again, it may not sound like much, but imagine that you've written 100 articles like that, or better yet, 1000. Now you're talking about earning $1K - $3K per month, which is far from chicken feed. And, if you can stay on top of things like Google algorithm changes, you might keep earning that amount indefinitely.

But even if you can't maintain that level of earnings, whatever you get is still free money. (Or as close to free money as you can get.) And to be honest, when it comes to free money, I'll take it - even if it's just 7 cents per day...

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Indie Publishers: You're Doing Print Wrong

I've mentioned several times on this blog how - even though I sell way more ebooks - I continue to pursue the print market as well. Some authors eschew print altogether, often citing various reasons for doing so: they can't sell enough to make it worthwhile, they don't want to learn how to format for print, and so on.  Not me. All I've ever seen are on-going reasons to make sure I produce print versions of all my work. Basically, it costs practically nothing, it's another revenue stream, and it allows me to reach additional readers. Plus, I'm still conscious of the fact that there may be readers who simply can't afford an ereader of any type. (In which case, they can always request that their local library order print copies of my books.)

Bearing all that in mind, and having been at this indie publishing thing for over three years now, I thought I had a pretty good grasp of how print worked. In essence, my approach was to make sure I priced the books high enough to make a small profit, but low enough to encourage sales.  That sounds like the formula for a winning strategy, right? I thought so, but even though I was making sales, I was wrong in that regard. Wrong, Wrong, Wrong!!! 

However, it wasn't until very recently that I discovered just how poorly I - and probably a lot of indies - understood how the print market really works.  I came across a passage written by Julie Ann Dawson of Bards and Sages Publishing, and it was eye-opening. It made me reevaluate my entire approach to putting my work in print.

Now, with Julie's kind permission (and because I found it to be extremely valuable), I am reposting the passage she wrote on the subject:


We actually sell more print with many of our titles than we do ebooks. The print market is a completely different creature than ebooks.

First, print is still sold on the wholesale model. Manufacturers set a retail price, and vendors pay a percentage of the retail. Retailers then can sell the book for any price they want. Indies lose site of this because all of the POD services call their money "royalties." More accurately, POD is more of a consignment deal that a royalty deal. But that is just a matter of semantics. The point is, Unlike ebooks, you don't set the "selling" price. Retailers do.

(***KH: I added the emphasis to the last sentence in each of the above paragraphs because I think they are very important points to remember.)

What indies tend to do is set the retail price of their books to match the Amazon SELLING price of books in their genre. Don' Look at the retail prices of the books instead. THAT should be your baseline. You want to set your retail price to match the normal retail pricing for your genre. For example, typical trade paperbacks have a retail price of between $12.99-$16.99, depending on how long they are.

Second, don't bother trying to mimic smaller formats with POD. The mass market paperback size is not cost effective in POD. To understand why, you need to understand the role that size played in print traditionally. Go LOOK at an actual mass market size book compared to a trade paperback or a hardcover. You'll notice two things. One: the covers tend to be index stock, not heavy card stock. Two: the paper tends to be thinning and more like newsprint. Until the rise of ebooks, mass market paperbacks filled the role of ebooks in the marketplace as the "low cost" alternative.

POD services use the same materials for mass market sizes as they do trade sizes, which means you are simply increasing your manufacturing cost for no real benefit. Stick with the trade paperback formats.

Third, on the matter of price and sales. If you price your book correctly, retailers will place it on sale for you. And unlike digital, when a retailer puts a print book on sale, that comes out of their profits, not yours.

(***KH: Emphasis above added by yours truly.  The next few paragraphs are also critical to understanding how the print market works, but it seemed easier to note that here than highlight so much text.)

Retailers will determine whether to put a book on sale (either individually or including in store-wide promos) based on their profit margin. The profit margin is the difference between the final sale price compared to the cost to purchase the book + its markup. ALL RETAILERS add a markup to the wholesale cost to cover their overhead (rents, utilities, wages, etc). For the sake of discussion, we will set that overhead at $1 per book. We'll assume a standard trade paperback at 200 pages through Createspace as the book. We will also assume a 30% discount to the retailer.

If you set the retail price to $14.99, the retailer pays $10.49 for the book. Through expanded distro, that means $2.74 profit for you. Including the retailers markup, that leave the retailer with $3.50 of room to play. That is plenty of room to include the title in sales promotions, like 10% off deals.

Let's say you decide "I'm going to sell my book cheap to encourage sales!" and price it at $10.99. You make $1.14 per sale. Now the retailer is paying $7.69 for the book. With his overhead, his profit margin is now only $2.30. There is less room for him to play with sales, but still some.

At $8.99, you are only making 34 cents on a sale, but you are hoping to make it up on volume. The problem is that now the vendor is paying $6.29 for the book. Which means, with overhead, there is only a profit margin of $1.70. At that price, it stops being practical including the book in sales. The book won't be included in most sales promotions, and, in the case of brick and mortar stores where shelf space is a premium, it won't even be considered for stock because the profit opportunity in relation to shelf space is too low. Why take up shelf space on a book that makes almost nothing for me when I can stock other titles with high profit potential?

It doesn't help you to price your book low if A. stores won't stock it since they can't make money and B. stores won't include it in their sales promotions because the profit margin is too low.

(***KH: Once again, emphasis added by me.)


After reading Julie's passage (more than once, I might add), I revamped my approach to print and have been pleasantly surprised by the results, to say the least. More than anything else, however, it's shown me that this is a business in which I still have a lot to learn. To that end, it's nice to know that this old dog is still capable of learning a few new tricks.

Friday, July 22, 2016

New Release: Amped (A Kid Sensation Companion Novel)

***Update: The Kindle edition finally became available late Friday, I believe. I think it may actually have taken more than 24 hours, which is the longest I can recall it taking Amazon to publish a Kindle edition of one of my books.  I have no idea what caused the delay, but I'm happy the ebook is now available.

I'm very excited and proud to formally announce that Amped has finally been released!

Those who've been following the Kid Sensation books are probably well aware of the fact that I've been intending to release several companion novels which would explore the backgrounds of various characters from the series. This is the first of those novels.

As I've previously mentioned on this blog, this book delves into the backstory of Electra, Kid Sensation's girlfriend. In my opinion she has an interesting history (and no, I'm not biased), so hopefully readers will be entertained. 

The next companion novel will be Mouse's tale (working title: Mouse's Tale), which - along with so many other items - is already a work-in-progress. I'm kicking the tires on a couple of subtitles at the moment, oscillating for the most part between A Kid Sensation Companion Novel and An Alpha League Supers Novel. (The latter, of course, would probably be a segue into novels about the adult members of the Alpha League - assuming there's interest in such.)

On a side note, the audiobook of Infiltration (Kid Sensation #3) is now available as well.  I have to admit that I'm enjoying the process of bringing Kid Sensation to life in audio, and I seem to be reaching new fans in the process.  I'm blessed in that the audio of versions of the first two books in the series have been well-received, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the warm reception continues with the rest of the books in the series.

As always, I want to thank readers (and - considering the growing audience for audio - listeners as well) for their continued support, and will now show my sincere appreciation by getting back to work grinding on the next book.

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