Thursday, 11 February 2016

Anthologies - An Effective Marketing and Promotional Tool


I am constantly being told that in this world of author's  self-promoting to get their work noticed, many authors are collaborating in a 'Unified Brand' anthology.

Writing a short story featuring your main characters is especially effective tool to introduce new readers to the other books.

A short story might sound easy, but having been invited to contribute to a Cosy Mystery Anthology, I am finding this hard work.

The task is to paint your characters, set the scene, devise a mystery, add clues, red herrings and a denouement - all in the space of a few thousand words!  Keep it simple seems to be the best option, but omit backstory other than what is absolutely necessary, although include some so your characters don't become two dimensional, as this defeats the object, which is to engage readers and generate interest in the full length novel.

Another benefit is whenever the anthology is featured on social media and blogs, your name will also be listed as a participant, so the reach is far wider than going it alone. There is a downside though, for me anyway, in that I worry everyone else's story will be far better than mine and in this world of 'one chance to impress', I may get consigned to the reader's reject pile!

Ah well, nothing ventured nothing gained I suppose.

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Olga by Ted Kelsey

Underground Book Reviews, an online magazine aimed at Inde Authors and their work have voted Ted Kelsey's Olga, a YA novel I reviewed last summer,  Novel of The Year. 
Well done Ted and I recommend this lovely story I was delighted to receive a paperback copy from the author.


I don't usually read children's or YA books, but this one had such an engaging cover I was intrigued to discover what it was about.

PUBLISHER'S BLURB

Magic weapons, white tigers, cat-faced moths and giants on motorcycles… OLGA is Ted Kelsey’s captivating first novel and features illustrations by the fine artist and illustrator, Dillon Samuelson.

When a mysterious figure is seen floating and dancing in the field near their house, Jack and Sally decide to investigate. This decision will lead them to an exciting place far beyond their imagination, the home of OLGA.
Nothing in the clouds is as it appears, and in order to get home safely, Jack and Sally must first learn whom to trust, and find a way to believe in themselves.
A story of spirit and imagination that the Online Book Club has described as “interwoven with comedy and deeper emotions of freedom and loneliness”, OLGA will delight readers of all ages.



REVIEW 

Olga by Ted Kelsey is an engaging fairy story written for the new age where Sally, a girl who can look after herself and doesn't need a hero to rescue her, sets off with her friend Jack into the cloud kingdom where they meet Olga, the sad daughter of an evil cloud giant who has been plotting with his brothers to destroy the earth and make it their own. 

This tale has magic, courage and adventure and is just long enough to keep the attention of the younger reader used to living with texts, tweets and soundbites. The story has a scary element which will also appeal to today's young who seem to like their fiction dark as well as a moral message too. This story can be enjoyed by any age group.  I'm well into adulthood and almost out the other side, and I enjoyed it.

The illustrations, which first attracted me are by Dillon Samuelson and are quite lovely.

Ted Kelsey's Website