This is How You Support Authors

hiddenfiguresHow do you support authors? Any way you want that values their work. That’s it. It’s that simple.  You can buy their hardback for $18.99 or you can buy their ebook when it’s on sale for 99 cents. You can join their mailing list via InstaFreebie and read their book for free, leaving a positive review if you liked it.  If possible, you can download it free from a retail site*** (like Amazon or Barnes & Noble) and leave a review. You can tell your friends about it and suggest they read it. You can do any of those things and you will have supported that author.

I say this because a Facebook thread I was on suddenly took  a turn that I didn’t like. And it all hinged on people’s notion of how one supports an author. A friend posted a link about the movie Hidden Figures beating Rogue One for top spot at the box office. A person commented that people should support the author of the book the film was based on. So far, so good. No problems yet.  The person who suggested buying the book added, “It’s on sale at Amazon for $1.99 right now.” I’d seen the movie, was interested in reading the book and was like, “Booyah! I’m going to get that book.” I clicked the link, and the ebook was $10.99. Umm. That’s a far cry from $1.99. More than five times the price, in fact. I’m not saying the book isn’t worth that price. It’s just not what I was expecting. So, at that point, I chimed back in and said, “Hey, the price went up.”  Apparently, I missed this price by 20 minutes, as it had been $1.99 at the time the person posted. No harm, no foul. I said since it was going to be around $10 regardless, I would probably get the paperback instead, which was $9.59. That way, I could pass it on to others in my family to read ( Yes, I know you can lend Kindle books, but I’ve never figured out how to work it and not all family members have kindles). It is at this point that I became irritated. I was told that rather than buy the cheaper version, I should just pony up more money and buy the hardback version of the book in order to “support the author.”

Ahem. No.  First off, in this specific instance, that was absolute nonsense, because the person who posted the link would have been happy to see me pay $1.99 for the book. If I had bought it at that price and chimed back in, I’m pretty sure everyone would have said “Great.”  Had I purchased the book at $1.99, the author would have earned only a few pennies on the sale, and my support would have been significantly less than what the author ended up earning based on my purchase of the paperback.

However, because I chimed in that I was concerned about price, my act of support suddenly became one of not enough support (even though it was technically more support than the author would have gotten if I’d clicked that link within a few seconds of the person posting it).  No, just no. Here’s the deal. I’m an author, but I’m also a reader, so I support a lot of different authors. If I pay the highest price available for every book I read, then I read a lot fewer books and support a lot fewer authors. That’s not where I want to be. I want to support many authors, and that means being price conscious at times.

Second, as a consumer, why would I ever want to pay a higher price for the same product if there were no costs associated with getting a cheaper product? If the paperback was going to cost me more (shipping), then maybe it’s not equivalent. But I’ve already paid for my Prime membership, so there is no shipping cost. So why would I suddenly pay more for the ebook, when I actually have more utility with the paperback, because I can let my children or husband read it? I just can’t imagine a scenario where I say, format A costs X, format B costs X+5,  I’d be happy with either format, so let me grab format B.

Third, regardless of the price I pay (so long as it’s a sale of .99 or more), the author does get a benefit when a book is purchased. They benefit with a higher sales ranking, moving them up the charts, so they can appear in the list of top-selling books (if they get enough sales). If you’re on that first page of trending books, you get tons of sales from people who happen on the book because they’re browsing the best-seller list. Another benefit is reviews. And on Amazon, verified purchase reviews in particular, help authors. They provide social proof that a book is good and may tip the scales in favor of another fan buying.

While I’m perfectly happy to support authors, I am not perfectly happy when others suggest that the way in which I am supporting an author is not enough. In this specific instance, the book is one that embodies diversity and the people who were posting on Facebook  knew very well that diverse books need all the support they can get. Their over zealousness may have come from that good place of wanting to see this book do well. However, I would suggest that when someone is supporting an author, just say thanks. Don’t tell them how they can spend more of their money to do it in a way you’d prefer.

And don’t ever let anyone tell you that you need to support an author in some specific way for it to be good support. So long as you are valuing the author’s work (as in not pirating/stealing it), it’s good support. How do you value their work? You read it, and you leave a review for it if you enjoyed it. You tell others about it, so they might consider purchasing it. If you’re able to, you purchase their work. But all authors understand that people don’t buy every book they read. They have libraries, gifts, loans from friends. That’s fine. And that’s support. Good support. Never feel like you have to pay the most expensive price for a book for it to be support. If you’d be happy with a $2.99 ebook, you don’t need to  buy an $11.99 paperback instead to “support the author.” Get the format you enjoy.

Anyway, rant over. Have a great day, and if you haven’t seen Hidden Figures, try to check it out before it leaves the theaters (and guess what? I don’t care if you see the discount matinée, the regular matinée, the full price evening show or wait around until it hits the second-tier discount theaters. Just try to see it soon. You can even wait for the DVD at your library, if you need to. It’s a worthwhile story that should be viewed). And read the book, too, if you can. It’s a great story, regardless of format (though the book is obviously a richer, more accurate account than the film).

 

***Stealing (this includes reading pirated copies of a book) does not support an author. If an author chooses to make their book or sample available for free and you take advantage of that, that’s great. I you come by a book  free legally (borrowing it from a friend or library), that’s great. Stealing–in person or online–is not cool.

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FREE Multicultural and World Fiction!

 

Looking for some FREE multicultural and world fiction? There are more than a dozen books available in this promo. The books can all be grabbed through the InstaFreebie service, which provides a free book in exchange for signing up for the author’s mailing list.

To see the complete list of books, visit http://jlhendricksauthor.com/2016/12/20/world-fiction.

Multi-Cultural World Fiction-The Way It Should Be #Instafreebie

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FREE and Cheap Sci-Fi & Fantasy

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There’s some free and 99 cents SciFi and Fantasy ebooks to be had this week.  Just in time for Christmas, you can treat yourself to a gift with the two great promos going on. Above, you can get some free books by visiting this site http://sffbookbonanza.com/freebooks, or clicking the picture above.

The FREE books are through InstaFreebie, so to get the free book, you must sign up for the mailing list.

If you like the authors you find in the free section,  then check out the books in the 99 cent category, because only authors who participated in the FREE book promo above can be in the 99 cent promo below. That means if you find an author you like, you can get two of their books for just 99 cents (one free and one for the 99 cents price). That’s a pretty sweet deal. Check out the books by clicking the picture of interest.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Source: Pixabay

Source: Pixabay

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NaNoWriMo, Publishing and Gratitude

A writer's setup for NaNoWriMo (photo courtesy Wiki Commons by mpclemens from Pleasant Hill, United States.

A writer’s setup for NaNoWriMo (photo courtesy Wiki Commons by mpclemens from Pleasant Hill, United States).

It’s November,  and for a lot of  writers, that means NaNoWriMo, also known as National Novel Writing Month. During NaNoWriMo, writers are encouraged to write a 50,000 word novel during the 30 days of November.

I’ve never been a fan of the NaNoWriMo concept because it comes at an awful time of the year. Thanksgiving is during November, so that’s several days devoted to family when writing will be tough. But, also my husband and son’s birthdays are in November, which means more days when I won’t be writing. Last year, I tried NaNoWriMo and didn’t like it. (I listed my reasons in this post).While it’s not for me, I wish everyone who is doing it good luck.

And while NaNoWriMo isn’t for me, I think the concept of writing a novel quickly is a good publishing model. I’ve been trying to write more quickly this year, even though I haven’t entirely succeeded.  The effort has improved my writing speed and advanced plotting skills. For that, I’m grateful.

I’m also being more grateful for the little blessings. Sometimes when you have big goals in mind and you aren’t achieving them, you can get down. But, if you can find gratitude in the little things, life improves. This November, in particular, as I work at completing a short story for an anthology and getting book three of my Prophecy of Light series published, I’m focusing on appreciating all the great things that have come my way. For example, two fabulous reviews came in for my books this past week. This great review for Life First appeared, as well as this lovely review of Concealed.

It really fills me with happiness when I learn that readers enjoyed my book. So, this was a fabulous week in that respect. I’m also on par for my writing goals, even though I know I’ll have some editing coming up in the next week or so (and editing always seems to curb my word count). But in the first five days of November, I’ve written a little over 15,000 words. That pulls my average to about 3,000 per day, which is excellent. I hope to finish the month with about 60,000 words. That seems doable, even with Thanksgiving and some editing. I’m also grateful not to have had hand issues this year, as last year, I had some real issues with tendonitis.  While I still wear compression gloves when typing, I’m not having any pain, which is awesome.

That’s it for me for today, as I’ve got some writing on my stories to finish. Have a great day, and keep writing, reading, or doing whatever it is you love to do.

-RJ

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Prophecy of Light – Unleashed Available + Giveaway

prophecy-of-light-unleashed-ebook800Woo-hoo. It’s been a little over a week, and I wanted to mention that I’d released book two in the Prophecy of Light series.

Unleashed is available now and it’s just 99 cents for the first couple of days. It will go up to $2.99 later this week. This continues the story of young Kady as she tries to figure out her magic and unleash her power.

I’m incredibly excited that Unleashed is here. Both books in the series are exclusive to Amazon and FREE for Kindle Unlimited subscribers. Prophecy of Light – Trapped, the first book in the series, is just 99 cents, as well.

As a side note, I wanted to let you know I’m participating in a group giveaway of sci-fi and dystopian fiction authors.  This giveaway lists 26 books you can get free via Instafreebie, as well as a drawing for two $40 Amazon gift cards. If you’re interested in the books or the drawing, click the image below.

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Prophecy of Light – Trapped Available & Scented Gets Book of the Day Spot

01prophecyoflighttrapped_200300Happy Monday to you. I hope you’ve been well. I’ve had a busy weekend, where I saw some friends and hung out with my family.

I just wanted to let you all know that Prophecy of Light – Trapped is out today. It’s available on Amazon for 99 cents, or FREE if you’re in Kindle Unlimited.  This is the first book in the Prophecy of Light series, which follows 14-year-old Kady, who has been hiding for as long as she can remember. But, now that the darkness seeking her has caught up, she’s got to figure out how to survive. It’s a fun, short book. Next week, part two of the Prophecy series, Unleashed, will be published, so you’ll get to see more of Kady’s journey then. In the meantime, I hope you’ll grab Trapped.

Lastly, I wanted to mention that Scented, my paranormal, young-adult story, is the Book of the Day today. So, that’s quite lovely, and I really appreciate it. If you haven’t read Scented, go ahead and check it out at a retailer or peruse it free when you join my mailing list.

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Scented Now Available at Multiple Retailers

scentedlovestory_smallJust wanted to let everyone know that my YA novel Scented is available at multiple retailers now. It had been exclusive to Amazon. As it wasn’t flourishing during its period of exclusivity, I decided to expand its distribution. Scented is now available at Amazon as well as the other major retailers. It’s not at Apple at the moment but should be available there by the weekend.

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Buy on Google Play

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Prophecy of Light – Book 1 is Coming

Just a quick note to let you all know that first book in my newest series is coming out in just over two weeks. Here’s the blurb for the book, which is the first part of a four-book series.

01prophecyoflighttrapped_200300“Be careful what you say. Words have power.”
— Auntie

Kady can’t remember a time in her life when she wasn’t hiding. From someone or something, but she’s never been sure the cause of the secrecy. Auntie, her only companion and the only person she trusts, says that words have power, and she can’t tell Kady what they are hiding from. Only that the two of them must stick together and stay under the radar.

When Kady awakens in the middle of the night with her house crumbling around her, Auntie hustles her into the night and tries to protect her — through words, magic words.

While Auntie succeeds in hiding Kady, she falls victim to the mage who has been searching for them the past 10 years. Kady knows that she must find her aunt and save her. But will she be able to tap the power trapped within her to do it?

While I’ve been hesitant about doing pre-orders in the past, a couple of authors I know have said they’ve had better pre-order experiences and suggested a couple of things, so I’m going to give it one more shot. The pre-order page is https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LZBQWM8. The book is just 99 cents, as it’s more novella sized. The second book in the series, Prophecy of Light – Unleashed, should be out the following week, Oct. 24, and then there will be a three-to-four week gap between story publication dates.

Feel free to add the book to your Goodreads T0-Be-Read list. The Goodreads page is here: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32316434-prophecy-of-light—trapped.

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Banned Books – A Sign of Social Change?

diversity-banner-fb-851x315-v1It’s banned books week, a time when we’re supposed to get excited about books that are controversial to the point that some schools and communities ban them from their libraries.

The American Library Association, which sponsors the week annually, has devoted this year’s event to diverse books. The ALA notes that many of the banned books are written by minorities in society. They are banned because they bring to the forefront issues communities do not wish to discuss, issues that could bring change to communities that don’t want it.

The banning of books is always done out of fear. Usually fear that the ideas in the books will change things. That they will make things not the way they are, and those who ban them desperately seek to keep things the way they are.

But that is the opposite goal of knowledge. And that’s what books are –a  gateway to information. They are meant to expand our minds and challenge our notions. They can bring us closer to people we have never met before, people whom we would never in our lifetimes ever personally experience if it weren’t for a book.

So, I hope you’ll grab a book that’s banned this week. Take a look at the world from a different perspective, and enjoy the knowledge you gained from it. Here are some links to some books from diverse authors.

 

 

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