Archive for April, 2011

Time for a Giveaway!

Posted in Just For Fun! with tags , , , , , , on 04-23-2011 by jeffreymartinsnovels

A quick blog this week, before many celebrate the Easter weekend. We are going to give away a signed wall print of my latest novel, 3:16. All you have to do is send me an email and You will be added to my pool of lucky contestants! I will announce a winner next weekend. So, without further ado, send me a line with your name and addy, and remember…death is only a click away!

20110423-102832.jpg

Bookworm Author Event

Posted in Personal Appearances with tags , , , , , , , , on 04-18-2011 by jeffreymartinsnovels

Thanks to the outstanding staff at The Bookworm in Omaha, Nebraska. It was a pleasure to meet new fans and friends. If you didn’t make it out, I did sign a few copies and they will be on the shelf. Stop by and pick up one…and remember…death is only a click away.

20110418-123527.jpg

Yesterday’s Author Event

Posted in Personal Appearances with tags , , , , , on 04-16-2011 by jeffreymartinsnovels

A big thank you goes out to John at The Book Store, in downtown Des Moines! Met some cool people and signed some books. Here’s a pic of a new fan…hehe!

20110416-120031.jpg

Meet Me This Weekend!

Posted in A Writer's Life, Personal Appearances with tags , , , , , , , , , on 04-15-2011 by jeffreymartinsnovels

This weekend, if you are in the Des Moines or Omaha areas, stop in to say “hi” at the following events! Hope to see you there.

Friday, April 15, 2011, at 12:00 p.m.

The Book Store

606 Locust St

Des Moines, IA 50309

515-288-7267

 Sunday, April 17, 2011, at 1:00 p.m.

The Bookworm

8702 Pacific Street

Omaha, NE 68114

http://bookwormomaha.com/

Who is the Right Publisher for You? (Part 2)

Posted in A Writer's Life, General Information with tags , , , , , , , on 04-8-2011 by jeffreymartinsnovels

Ah, sequel time, boys and girls…(Everybody enjoys a good sequel…hehe!)

Today is the day, future author! The initial query letter you sent in topublisher X resulted in a request for sample pages and synopsis. A  few months later, (please pretend time lapse for effect) the acquisitions editor asked for the full manuscript of your sparkling novel, Sacred Skin, and within a time frame not to exceed six months, you receive a phone call from Mr. Redpencil (hehe) saying, “Welcome to the family. We at publisher X would love to add you to our family of authors. We want you to review the contract we have prepared, where our author royalty percentages are above the normal industry standards!” (I always wonder how many people were polled to determine the industry standards?)

Now, my author friend, excitement fills you to the brim, and your fingers tremble , as you barely keep your sanity. I know you want to sign the contract right this minute…but take a deep breath, and S- L- O- W- down. Before you do anything, read the damn thing!

A few things to look  at…

1. What format/formats is your work going to be published in?  Mass market paperback, trade paperback, hardcover, audiobook, e-book, or some form of publication not developed yet? (Yep, many contracts have this phrase in it.) Find some other titles the publisher has released, and see if they are in the same format as yours.         

2. Distribution of your work. Will the novel be listed with all the large book store/libraries/chain merchandise retail stores?  You need to scrutinize this portion of your contract very carefully and ask questions of Mr. Redpencil if you don’t understand. The more distribution you have,  the more likely your book will be seen! If Sacred Skin is only listed on publisher X’s website, this may not be the most effective way for your work to be seen.

3. Royalty payments. The contract will list a schedule of royalty payments. Sometimes it’s quarterly/semi-annually. Understand the payment schedule and don’t be afraid to inquire if you feel something doesn’t sound Kosher. It’s important the contract addresses the term royalty statements. The statements determine your sales figures for a designated time frame. Example, if your sales for six months is 5,000 copies, the statement should reflect this amount.

4. Synergy with publisher.  Hmm,  I hope…no let me rephrase that…I pray you have done research in the initial querying process to determine if publisher X is the right one for you. This can be as simple, as recognizing the kind of novels they publish. If Sacred Skin is a suspense/thriller, and publisher X has only released children’s stories, this may not be a match made in Heaven. Publishing a novel takes team work, and you want the publisher who chooses your work to love it and embrace it as you do. Does that mean you and publisher X should dance under the moonlight together making kissy-face…no, of course not (not unless you want to). BUT  IT DOES mean to have an open and  honest communication of what the partnership needs to be successful and how you work as a team to achieve that success.

Finding the right publisher takes a determined effort and committment.  There may be times when a publisher has offered a contract, and you review it to find they have great distribution, outstanding royalty payments, and will release your work in all formats…but the synergy is off, and working with them is painstaking, to say the least. What do you do?  Hmm, Now that’s a question YOU have to answer.

Hehe! Hehe!

Until next time… Death is only a click away!

Who is the Right Publisher for You? (Part 1) Yes, Part 2 is Next Week!

Posted in A Writer's Life, General Information with tags , , , , , , , on 04-1-2011 by jeffreymartinsnovels

Hmm, let’s ponder that question. Some would say that anyone willing to publish your work is the right one. Not so much, aspiring writers. I know you slaved away on the manuscript and spent countless hours editing it to within an inch of its’ life, and then…you sent out dozens upon dozens of query letters, where the only correspondence was in the form of a cookie cutter rejection letter. It can be disappointing to say the least.

So, your next course of action, is to scour the internet and writing forums for publishers who accept query letters. You take a deep breath…(make sure you exhale, or you will pass out) and fire off a few queries to a publisher who you think will make your writing dreams become a reality.  A few weeks/months later,  the golden ticket arrives in email/mailbox, and the excitement grows to a level so intense, sleep is barely on the agenda.  Hmm, it would appear the hard work has paid off, and you are well on your way to seeing your novel on display as a end cap at the brick-and-mortar stores.

Unfortunately, the publisher you have been so lucky to have been chosen by has no clue how to successfully market you or the novel you possess. When the book finally comes out, it’s so riddled with errors, you wonder if the editorial team (if they even have one) was high on some illegal substances. Now, to top if off…your 300-page trade paperback has been priced at the reasonable price of  $19.95. (Hehe!) But have no fear…because you the author of the work will get a reduced price for future purchases (after your one free author copy) at the fair rate of $13.95…what a freaking deal, my author friend!

Wow, you may think the example above is far-fetched…but let me tell you, I’m fortunate to travel across the region doing author events, some with authors in the situation above. Their novel is priced at such an inflated amount, the only people who buy it either are family or friends. It pains me to see this, and I urge all the aspiring writers out there, if you decide to forego the literary agent route and tread into the waters of publishers, be mindful of who you are dealing with.  In the above example, the research for finding a publisher was half-ass. A quick check on valuable writers websites tells you many things, but it’s your job as the author to be very thorough. Example, if the publisher has a list of authors, find out if those books are carried at the local book stores and libraries. The individual authors of publishers will have websites, active usage of social networking will also be important. Scour their sales numbers, and reviews through a multiple of networks. Your goal is to determine if this publisher can do the following:  honest feedback when you ask pertinent questions,  distribute your work to the masses, assist in author appearances, market your novel in all media formats, and the most important, (to me at least) love your novel as much as you do

Next week, I will continue this conversation and talk a little more about the following:

1. Distribution of your work

2. Reviewing your contract

3. Royalties 

4. Synergy with Publisher

Until then, remember…death is only a click away.