Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Pro Tips From Instafreebie: Finding Your Next Favorite Authors #IndieMonth2017

I’m excited to welcome Felicity Henson from Instafreebie to chat about how you can download free books in genres you like and easily find new authors who are just right for you. Did you know that marking a newsletter you signed up for as Spam can hurt the author? Have you ever wanted to reach out to an author but didn’t know if you could? Wondering how to find the authors that are just right for you? Read on for Felicity’s advice!

Discover and Engage with New Authors
By Felicity Henson

Instafreebie, the leading platform in author discovery, is a starting place to find new books and authors you love! Instafreebie features free books (and group giveaways) and new authors in genre-specific categories every weekday, making it easy for readers to discover books in the genres they like. However, the real benefit of Instafreebie lies in the potential of readers building relationships with authors they care about after they’ve read a free book. This is how to start taking those first steps!

Download Books You’ll Actually Read

There are a lot of free books out there. It can be tempting, but don’t download every single one. Claim books you think you’ll enjoy, and have the time to read. You don’t want to drown in more books and author newsletters than you can keep track of! This way you’ll be able to decide whether you like their content and emails, and won’t have to unsubscribe simply to keep your inbox clean. Authors will appreciate this too. They put a lot of hard work and thought into creating their content, and it can be frustrating for them when a lot of people download their book with no intention of reading it.

Join Author Mailing Lists

Some free book giveaways ask you to join the author’s mailing list in order to download their book. If this is the case, make sure that the book is one you want and will read before downloading it. If you sign up to a lot of mailing lists you don’t care about, it will frustrate you and clutter up your inbox. It will also hurt authors, who pay more money for each subscriber they have.

Some authors won’t require you to join their mailing list in order to download their books, but will give you the option. If you plan on reading the book, consider joining their mailing list. If you end up loving the book, you’ll be able to keep up a relationship with the author, find out what new things they’re doing, where to get the rest of their works, and how you can give them feedback. They might also become a place to find new authors and books you’ll love! If you join the mailing list and end up not wanting to hear from the author, you can always unsubscribe later.


What it Means to Unsubscribe

For authors, every unsubscribe comes with a question. Why? Did the reader unsubscribe because they didn’t like their book? Was it because the reader didn’t like the amount of emails they received? Was it because the reader never intended to read those emails in the first place? Authors’ livelihoods depend on their engagement with readers. Give them a chance before unsubscribing by reading their content and learning if it’s for you or not. If you try what they’ve written and decide it’s just not for you, then it’s a good idea to unsubscribe from their list. You should also unsubscribe if you don’t like the author’s email habits – if they send emails too frequently or you don’t like the content they’re sending you. However, if you do choose to unsubscribe, give feedback as to why you are. Usually there’s a poll when you unsubscribe where you can explain. This way the author will learn and improve their email practices. 

Pro Tip: Take a couple seconds to fill out the post-unsubscribe polls to help authors improve their email practices

What It Means to Mark as Spam

Marking an email as spam is not the same thing as unsubscribing from an email list. When an author is marked as spam, it hurts their credibility, and often results in their email service blocking them from sending any emails. When you download a book and give your email address, you’re signing up to get emails from the author. Spam emails are emails sent to you without your agreement. Since you agreed to receive emails from the author when you downloaded their book, these emails aren’t spam. If you want to unsubscribe from an author’s email list, you can usually find a button to unsubscribe either at the top or the bottom of the emails they send you. If you can’t find the unsubscribe button, email the author and ask for their help. They can remove you from their list. 

Engage With Authors

The more connected an author is to engaged readers, the more encouraged and successful they’ll feel, and they’ll reciprocate by writing more and more content that you’ll get to read.

Authors you engage with are more likely to feel encouraged and write more content you’ll get to read

If you’re on an author’s mailing list, read their emails! Authors will give you information on how to get more freebies (if they’re offering any), how to find the rest of their books, and recommendations for other books you should read. They might also tell you about their life and ask you about yours. 

Don’t be afraid to engage with authors you like. Authors want to hear what you have to say, even – especially – if you haven’t interacted with them before. Do you have an answer to a question the author asked? Respond to their email and tell them! Did the author send out a poll looking for information about readers? You’d really be helping the author by responding, and they’ll remember you fondly for it. Do you want to do something more for the author and are willing to put in a little effort? Leave a review of the book on Amazon or Goodreads and look into joining the author’s street team, if they have one. Street teams are groups of readers that help the author grow, usually by leaving reviews or promoting the book to the other people they know (often in exchange for free content!). Street teams can also be a way to meet readers who are interested in the same books, so you can meet new friends while you’re at it.

Authors want to hear what you have to say, even – especially – if you haven’t interacted with them before.

Even if you’re not responding to a question or joining a street team, don’t hesitate to shoot an author an email if you have something you want to tell them. They’ll always appreciate it, and might even respond. You could become friends with your favorite writer, someone you respect and admire.

So if you’ve downloaded a bunch of free books and are wondering what the next step is, try reading emails from authors and start interacting with them. Authors love to hear from you and by giving feedback and reviews, you can even influence their next work! Start finding new authors today by joining the Instafreebie community

About Instafreebie 

Instafreebie was created in 2014 with a mission to accelerate great stories and big ideas. As the book world’s leading platform for exclusive access to sneak peeks, advance previews, and special giveaways, we live our mission every day and give readers a chance to SEE IT FIRST™.

Instant Connection
For our author partners, See It First means an instant connection to engaged fans in our rapidly growing reader community. Instafreebie builds the trusted and lasting connection to the right readers–the ones authors knew were there all along

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Develop Your Author Brand Through Reader Connections

By Felicity Henson


Many successful authors feature giveaways on their sites for potential readers to sample their writing or reward fans. A lot of authors share short stories and book previews. You can also permanently give away the first book of a series for free or give away a work for a limited time. Use Instafreebie to set up giveaways - we host giveaway links, landing pages, and handle reader tech support, all for free. Plus, the more you promote your giveaway - and your author brand - the more Instafreebie will promote you too, giving you the chance to be featured on our blog, newsletter, homepage, and social media, which will drive up downloads and increase your connection to the right readers.

Expert tip: Giveaways build a sense of trust between you and readers, which reflect well on your author brand. By providing readers a sample of your writing, you’re letting readers see for free that you are who you say you are. In fact, we’ve found that readers who read free books tend to buy more often.

Communicate with your Readers

If you receive comments and messages, that’s a good thing! Readers are interested in you, developing trust, and the more you engage with them, the more they’ll remember you. Try to respond to any comments and emails you get and build relationships with fans. Through Instafreebie, you can offer devoted readers exclusive free content as a thank you for reading and for talking up your brand. You can also distribute private Advanced Review Copies. With more reviews, more people will find and buy your work when it’s published.

Collaborate with Authors

You can find writers you read through their blogs and websites, and on social media. Talk to people about their experiences and make new connections.

Connecting with other writers is not only fun, it can help build your reputation with readers! Have you ever thought about the people who recommend you? What if you also recommended your favorite authors? One way to recommend great books is to participate in a group giveaway, where multiple authors promote their free books to all of their fans. Recommending high quality books you love to your readers will boost your connection. Your passion will come through and readers will get excited too. They will trust you more and appreciate the thought you put into giving them more of what they like. You’ll also be recommended to the readers of authors that are similar to you, so you’ll be able to create connections with more of the readers you want.

Between recommendations, collaboration, and social media, there are a lot of ways for you to connect with readers and start building a brand. Want to start developing your brand? Then come join Instafreebie

Author Brand Basics by Felicity Henson

Monday, June 5, 2017

SAFE HAVEN On Sale for #99cents!

This week only! SAFE HAVEN by Lisa Mondello, book 2 of the Heroes of Providence series, is on sale for just #99cents!

Safe Haven
Heroes of Providence
Book 2
Lisa Mondello

When someone you once loved wants you dead, is there any SAFE HAVEN?

Finding out her ex-husband hired a hitman to kill her didn't leave Daria Carlisle all warm and fuzzy. But Detective Kevin Gordon's suggestion she flee the only home that had ever truly been hers was downright crazy. Forget that the sexy police officer made her heart pound and her blood stir. She'd worked too hard to get what little she had. She wasn't leaving.

Kevin Gordon didn't make mistakes, but he'd made a big one in letting Daria's ex slip through his fingers. Although he tried to make it very clear to Daria that the fixer upper home she considered a palace was no safe haven, she just dug in deeper and insisted on staying, leaving him no choice but to be her protector. Left on her own, she surely faced murder at an assassin's hand. But can Kevin spend every waking hour sleeping on her doorstep just to keep this stubborn woman alive without risking his heart to love?

Amazon      BN      Google Play     Kobo     iTunes

On Conversations: #bestselling #author Rebecca York

Please join me in welcoming New York Times bestselling author Rebecca York to Conversations today! Rebecca is here to talk about her new paranormal romantic suspense novel, BOXED IN and it's priced at just 99¢ as a new release special price for the month of June. BOXED IN is the 16th Decorah Security Series book, but can be easily read as a standalone novel. So be sure and check out the cover and blurb below! And don't forget to check out her bio too and get to know Rebecca York.

Lisa ~


Olivia Weston is sure her boss has imported a shipment of stolen antiques. And when Decorah agent Luke Garner handles one of the items, an ornate puzzle box, the spirit of a warrior, locked away for centuries, takes possession of his body. Zabastian, the guardian of the box, forces Luke to help him return the object of power to its rightful owners. As Olivia sees Luke change before her eyes, his transformation both frightens and arouses her. And both men who inhabit Luke’s body want her. But they must also learn to work together to protect the mysterious artifact from a trio of murderous thieves who will risk anything to steal the prize. And in the end, will the warrior allow Luke and Olivia their happily ever after?

Purchase BOXED IN for only 99¢!
Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo

A master of paranormal romantic suspense, Rebecca York is the author of over 150 books. A New York Times and USA Today best-seller, she has written paranormal romantic thrillers for Berkley and romantic thrillers for Harlequin Intrigue. Her romantic-suspense series, Decorah Security, is set at a detective agency where agents have paranormal powers or work paranormal cases. She also writes an Off-World series where each story is a science fiction romance taking place on a distant planet in the far future.

The first of her Berkley Sensation paranormal romantic suspense novels, KILLING MOON, was a launch book for the imprint.

She also wrote the popular 43 Light Street series for Harlequin Intrigue. In addition, as Ruth Glick, she has authored or co-authored 15 cookbooks.

Rebecca’s many awards include two Rita finalist books. She has two Career Achievement awards from Romantic Times: for Series Romantic Suspense and Series Romantic Mystery. NOWHERE MAN was the Romantic Times Best Intrigue of 1998, and the book was selected as one of their Reviewers' "all-time favorite 400 romances." In addition, she received the 1998 Affaire de Coeur's Critics Choice Award for Best Contemporary Novel, also for NOWHERE MAN. Ruth's book, KILLING MOON, won the 2003 New Jersey Romance Writers Golden Leaf Award for best Paranormal. AMANDA'S CHILD won the 2001 Golden Leaf Award for Long Contemporary and was nominated for Best Intrigue of 2000 by Romantic Times. She is one of a small group of authors to have won the Romance Writers of America Centennial Award.

Ruth and her husband travel frequently to research settings for novels and taste new dishes for cookbooks. Her many unique experiences are apt to end up in her books--like the time she encountered a coral snake in the Guatemalan jungle or took a flight in a glider plane.

Website: rebeccayork.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/Rebecca-York

Monday, May 22, 2017

On Conversations: #AAMBC #author Marian L. Thomas

Please join me in welcoming author Marian L. Thomas to Conversations today! Marian is here to talk about her new book, I Believe In Butterflies! So be sure and check out the cover and blurb! And don't forget to check out her interview too and get to know Marian L. Thomas.




I Believe In Butterflies is a resonant story told through the insightful voices of three women navigating life and love.

Seventy-six-year-old Emma Lee Baker has lived a seemingly ordinary life near the banks of Thomas Bay, but a shocking discovery turns her ordinary life into something altogether extraordinary.

Honour Blue Baker is the polar opposite of her gentile mother. There are only two things in life she fears: her past and the idea of falling in love. Those fears come full circle when she returns to Barrow County to visit her mother, never knowing that her journey home will become a journey of a lifetime.

Twenty-three-year-old Lorraine has hedged her bets on three things: love, butterflies, and the fact that she's a white woman. When she discovers that her long-held beliefs are nothing more than fallacies, all she's held dear is shattered. The hard truths force her to seek out a fresh start - far from the life she thought she knew - but that new life will not be without its share of perils.


Interview with Marian L. Thomas

‘I Believe In Butterflies’ will release on May 21, 2017; for those who don’t know, can you tell us a little more about the characters in the book?

It’s a resonating story told through the insightful voices of three women navigating life and love.

Emma Lee Baker is a seventy-six-year-old woman from Barrow County, Georgia. She’s a straight-shooting woman who believes in speaking her mind.

Emma has one daughter- Honour Blue Baker. Their relationship is more like burnt toast and year-old jam.

Honour Blue Baker’s greatest fears are centered around two things: her past and the idea of falling in love. Those fears come full circle when she returns to Barrow County to visit her mother.

Honour is my favorite character in I Believe In Butterflies. She’s strong, yet, has a gentleness that makes your heart understand her seemingly tragic tribulations.

Lorraine has spent twenty-three years believing in three things: love, butterflies, and the fact that she’s a white woman. However, the day comes when all that she’s held dear is shattered, after discovering that her close-to-heart beliefs are nothing more than fallacies.

When it comes to writing, have there been moments when you wanted to walk away from it?

I have always enjoyed writing. The idea of becoming an author, was something that I resisted at first, even after my first book, Color Me Jazzmyne was published in 2009. Being an author brought about responsibilites that I wasn’t sure I was ready for. Readers now wanted more of me and I wasn’t sure I was ready for that type of exposure. I felt like running away from it. It wasn’t a matter of not being able to do it, it was more a matter of—do I want to put a part of me, out there. That’s what it’s like to write a book. It’s putting a small piece of yourself out there for the world to either love or hate.

What do you enjoy most about being an author?

I absolutely adore when a reader enjoys my book. It’s like a pinch of satisfaction on a job well done. Of course, there will always be those that didn’t. It comes with the territory and I have learned to embrace them. I have found that just because a reader didn’t like one of your books, doesn’t mean they will never enjoy one. You just have to learn how to capture their heart, if possible. Sometimes, this happens. Sometimes, it doesn’t. It should make you a better writer.

What contributes to your writing inspiration?

Everything and anything, can inspire me. It could be a movie. It could be a flower. It could even be a conversation I was having with someone about a particular subject.

How often do you interact with your readers?

I try to interact with readers as much as possible via the various social media sites. I’m pretty active on Instagram (@marianlthomas09). Readers can often find me on Facebook, posting about everything from books, to food recipes, to weight loss.  I also tweet (@marianlthomas01).

In fact, it’s via social media that most book clubs connect with me. They inbox me via Facebook to request that I attend a book club discussion of one of my books or invite me to Skype with them, when they aren’t local to Georgia. It’s fun and something that I welcome.

What’s the biggest “moment” of your writing career?

The biggest moment of my writing career came in 2016, when my book Blue Butterfly, a USA Today recommended read, was adapted for the theatrical stage as Blue Butterfly-The Black Ballerina. The play debuted in June of that year, at the Marietta Performing Arts Center.  I had a great cast and they worked hard to deliver a very memorable performance that was well-received by those that attended the play.

What’s coming down the pipeline for you? What’s next?

Doing another play. I’m considering adapting my first book, Color Me Jazzmyne, into a musical that focused on Jazz, Life, and Love.

Do you have any advice for those looking to write their first book?

My advice is simple: Believe. Do. Write.

Dont’ dwell on it. Write. Don’t doubt. Write. Don’t say...”I can’t.” Write. Writing starts with one word and ends with a period—everything in between, is a recipe of determination, inspiration, and a dash of reality.


Award-winning author, Marian L. Thomas, is a dynamic story-teller with over five dramatic novels to her credit. Her books have been seen on national television stations such as the Oprah Winfrey Network, Ovation, and the A&E Network. She is the producer and playwright for the hit play: Blue Butterfly - The Black Ballerina. Her novel Blue Butterfly was a USA Today recommended read. She resides in Atlanta.

Find the author:
Facebook: www.facebook.com/marian-l-thomas
Twitter: @marianlthomas01
Instagram: @marianlthomas09
"Like" Page For I Believe In Butterflies: @ibelieveinbutterflies2017 or www.facebook.com/ibelieveinbutterflies2017
Author website: www.marianlthomas.com

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

On Conversations: #AAMBC #author S.F. Powell

Please join me in welcoming author S.F. Powell to Conversations today! S.F. is here to talk about her new book, Like Sweet Buttermilk! So be sure and check out the cover, blurb and excerpt below! And don't forget to check out her interview too and get to know S.F. Powell.

Lisa ~


Like Sweet Buttermilk, set in the suburbs of the Washington DC metropolitan area, is a story of betrayal, deception, and love. The story explores the emotional boundaries within what appears to be an ordinary marital relationship.

Rick Phillips loves his family. To him, family is everything. He is leading what he considers a comfortable home life with his wife, Viv, and their young daughter, when Viv tells him that she wants to separate; that she is romantically involved with someone else.

Rick’s jealously gets the better of him; Viv’s lover is soon found dead… and Rick is a changed man. The boring suburban husband is now a spontaneous, fun-loving man with an intense sexual appetite.
Through therapy with Dr. Alexander, Rick and Viv attempt to salvage their marriage, and events lead to the couple finding renewed passion for each other. Naomi, however, knows everything is not as lovely as it appears … and she fears Viv may be in danger.

Rick’s irrational devotion to family and his recent changes in personality have Naomi worried for Viv’s safety. The no-nonsense psychiatrist becomes the reluctant semi-detective…


Excerpt from Like Sweet Buttermilk

The question sat there among them.

Naomi needed to move on to the next session. She didn’t want to answer Rick’s question. It was a fair one. So what? Naomi decided she would need a shot of Hennessy before sitting down with Mr. Rayburn. “My husband was murdered, Mister Phillips.” No matter how many times she said the word, “murdered” always felt cold, foreign, and heavy on her tongue. She always seemed to spit the word out at people.

Viv placed a hand to her chest. “Oh. Sorry, Naomi.”

Rick’s silence served his apology.

It was enough for Naomi. “No problem. See you in two?” Naomi stood and moved behind her desk. Earlier, she would have shaken their hands. The moment for that was gone now. She sat down and opened Mr. Rayburn’s file.

Rick and Viv made their way to the door.

Naomi found it within herself to ease the tension. “Viv, be prepared to expound on that last outburst. You too, Rick.”

Viv’s eyes flickered with anger before she nodded solemnly.

Rick nodded as well.

“And, guys, seriously: take a vacation.” Naomi smiled.

Rick and Viv smiled, yet Viv’s smile was half-hearted. Rick let Viv out before him and closed the door behind them.

Before the door closed completely, Naomi took a last look at Viv’s rear. Once the door closed, Naomi opened her top desk drawer, reaching into the back for the familiar.

Interview with S.F. Powell

What inspired you to write this book?

After taking a few creative writing classes at the local community college, I had seeds for stories, but nothing that ‘popped.’ Sitting on a park bench working on some of my poetry, I noticed a couple being romantic, engaged in a little excessive PDA. Watching them, I had questions about relationships and the role of forgiveness, and decided to explore aspects of forgiveness through a story. I finished Like Sweet Buttermilk after taking the Writer’s Digest novel course.

Summarize the story.

Like Sweet Buttermilk is mainstream commercial fiction centering on the sleuth-type skills of African American psychiatrist, Dr. Naomi Alexander and her approach to treating a married couple in which the husband has killed someone—unbeknownst to the wife. The dynamics of the married couple’s relationship provide a bit of suspenseful romance.

What is the overall theme of this book?

The power of love and forgiveness in the worst of circumstances.

Who are the main characters? Why are they important to the story?

Dr. Naomi Alexander:  A psychiatrist with her own set of personal problems. Naomi’s talents as a therapist help Rick and Viv Phillips repair their broken marriage, and her uncanny reasoning skills aid her in solving a murder investigation.

Rick and Viv Phillips: Married couple in therapy with Dr. Alexander. They explore the pain of infidelity and the harmful effects of complacency in their marriage. Because of Rick’s actions outside therapy however, the test of true forgiveness becomes the crux of their story.

Why will Like Sweet Buttermilk appeal to readers?

If readers enjoy suspense tales, romances, mainstream works that straddle the line of various genres, or books with occasional touches of erotica, they’ll enjoy my stories.

I think readers will get a kick out of Naomi, her quirks, and her approach to treatment. At the same time, readers will enjoy ‘experiencing’ the romance between Rick and Viv in the face of their marriage trials. It’s fun rooting for love conquering all, isn’t it?

How is the book relevant in today’s society?

The growing trend/need for psychiatric counseling in today’s society, coupled with the challenged but tried and true institution of marriage has plenty of avenues for exploration. Marriage and Therapy: the two aren’t mutually exclusive.

Name elements of your story you find special?

Like Sweet Buttermilk has: painful truths and sweet moments; funny moments and sexy encounters; thought-provoking moments, and touch of suspense to keep things interesting.

A native of the Washington DC Metropolitan area, S.F. Powell writes fiction with works focusing on life, relationships, and sometimes love. Her stories touch on the elements of several genres because life is sometimes a suspenseful mystery carrying moments of romance and humor, maybe with enough drama that it seems right out of science fiction.

A writer since her teens, as an adult she was stirred to write her first novel. Taking a chance, her submission for Like Sweet Buttermilk won first place in the Black Expressions Fiction Writing Contest, and inspired her to write the follow-up, Obscure Boundaries. She is a member of the Black Writer’s Guild of Maryland and currently working on books three and four.

A wife and mother of three, when she isn’t writing, reading, or spending time with family, S.F. Powell likes watching documentaries, a good orange soda, working puzzles, or enjoying something in the horror genre, be it books or screen.

Other works
Obscure Boundaries, another Dr. Naomi Alexander novel, is also available. This time, Dr. Alexander is providing grief counseling.
I’m currently working on a third work featuring Dr. Alexander: Broken Benevolence, in which Naomi is treating a woman trying to overcome the effects from a violent attack as well as the oppressive relationship that is her marriage.

Find the author:
Website: www.sfpowellbooks.com
Twitter: @sfpowell
Facebook (profile page): www.facebook.com/sfpowell.author
Facebook (fan page): www.facebook.com/author.sfpowel
Contact: info@sfpowellbooks.com

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