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The Online Book Club has a program they call “The First Ten” in which they ask approximately 20 of their top reviewers to read at least the first 10 pages of the books they pick as their “Book of the Day”. These reviewers look at the cover, blurb, official Online Book Club review, and read at least the first 10 pages. Then, they write up a short review and state whether or not they plan to read the rest of the book. The percentage that say they will read the rest of the book represent the percentage of people who upon perusing the book are likely to buy it. According to the Online Book Club, “any score above 0% is acceptable” and “any score over 10% is considered very good.” Hell Holes: What Lurks Below just scored 47%. I’m naturally very pleased with the score and also with what the reviewers had to say about the cover (thank you Ellie), the blurb I wrote, the editing (thank you Heidi), and naturally the book content itself. I was also glad to see that I had already fixed one of the complaints. Now all I have to do is get a ton of potential readers to look at the book’s cover, read the blurb on the back cover, and skim the first few pages.
Here are the actual reviews if you’re interested:
In Too Wyrd, the first book in her Runespells series, Sarah Buhrman has crafted an exciting story with an inventive plot, good characters (especially the main protagonist, Nicola, and her good friend, Joseph), memorable dialog, and lots of exciting action. I generally enjoyed the religious backdrop in which all pantheons of gods, demigods, and demons exist, and it was interesting to see the Norse god Odin and the Valkyries as the good ones opposing the Jewish/Christian ones, who were the bad ones.
On the other hand, I found the motivation of Nicola’s ex-husband, Keith, to be jarringly inconsistent with his behavior (especially with regard to his daughter). I also found some of the descriptions of the magic to be excessively long, which created too much of an unnecessary pause in the action.
That said, if you are like unusual modern urban paranormal fantasies, you should definitely give Too Wyrd a try.
Here is the new cover for Hell Holes: What Lurks Below.
|This is the second major cover, created by cover artist Ellie Kay Bockert Augsburger of Creative Digital Studios. The round item behind the main title is Aileen O’Shannon’s amulet, a ring of gold engraved with the words “Tutores Contra Infernum” surrounding a devilstone. The cover shows Aileen O’Shannon, the team’s photojournalist, taking pictures of the hell hole after it erupted.
As part of my Firesmith’s Speculative Fiction Newsletter, I invite other authors to provide either author interviews or character interview (i.e., interviews with a character from one of their books or book series). I had decided to collect them and republish them here on my author website. You can read these interviews under the tab Other Authors.
I’ve decided that the new cover for Hell Holes 1: What Lurks Below is actually much better suited for Hell Holes 3: To Hell and Back. I am currently working with my cover artist on a new cover for book 1. I plan on posting two versions of the new cover and seeing which one my fans like best. Stay tuned.
I had a great time Friday Evening at the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) mass autographing event following there Nebula Awards ceremony. Even sold one of my best wands.