Yes, I know

Saturday, July 15th, 2017 09:36 am
rolanni: (Default)

Helpful people can stop writing to me to explain that Due Diligence has not yet published to the Baen website.  It will appear there eventually and it's not really worth getting your t-shirts in a twist over.


Let's play a new game.

Why not write to me when Due Diligence is available on the Baen website?  That way, those who like to check back often can continue to do so, and I don't have to open a whole buncha emails telling me the same thing, of which I am already informed.  Win-Win, as they say.

Everyone on for the new rules?



Moving right along

Friday, July 14th, 2017 09:14 am
rolanni: (Default)

OK!  Due Diligence: Adventures in the Liaden Universe® Number 24 by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller is available from most on-line retailers, and is publishing to the rest.  It was, for a couple days, a Number One Amazon Bestseller, and has fallen today to Number Three.  It has also garnered a surprising number of reviews --  thanks to everyone who has taken the time!

Those who are just arriving at the party -- there's room for your review, too; if you are so moved.

Because there were So Very Many requests, Due Diligence will also, soon now, be available in paper, from Amazon.  The reason it will not be available REALsoonnow, is that I made an error and have to fix it, as soon as Amazon stops doing something else that Amazon is doing with the file.  O! Brave New World, that hath such golems in it!

In other news, there's a small army of ducks between me and the work I really need to be doing, here, and the coon cats are not really much into duck hunting.  Their advice is to curl up on the couch with a book and let the coon cats camouflage me as a Big Pile of Coon Cats.  This is, I note, often their advice.

And that?  Is all the news that's fit to print.

. . .I do believe that I need more coffee. . .


Watch the Skies!

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 06:53 pm
rolanni: (Mouse and Dragon)

Due Diligence: Adventures in the Liaden Universe® Number 24 has been published to the Usual Suspects (including but not limited to: Baen ebooks, Kobo, BN, Apple, Amazon) and will be available for sale as the Various Ghods of Indie Publishing will.

Novella "Due Diligence" is Lee & Miller's 81st fiction collaboration.

Here's the teaser:

When Clan Korval knows your name. . .

Abandoned on a strange port by a scam gone bad, his license to pilot rescinded, and his pockets very much to let, Fer Gun pen'Uldra was teetering between trouble, more trouble, and bad trouble. Cornered in a cheap bar by a too-knowledgeable stranger with an unlikely offer, Fer Gun realized having no money and no license might be the least of his troubles. Clan Korval knew his name and that proposal was hard to refuse. . .

And, just to refresh your memory, the cover:


rolanni: (Coffee with Rolanni)

Change Management:  Adventures in the Liaden Universe® Number 23, has been uploaded and is publishing (in the case of Amazon, has published) to Amazon, Baen ebooks, BN/Nook, Kobo, iBooks, 24Symbols, Page Foundry, Scribd, and Tolino, so expect to be able to purchase it from those vendors within the next 72 hours or so.

Here's the blurb for the book:

Times are perilous, violence rife, and the future uncertain. Success and the survival of all you hold dear may hinge on how you manage change.

Some people advise that we “Embrace Change!” Other people realize that change has edges, and if you embrace it the wrong way, it may feel a lot more like a knife than a bromide when it touches your guts.

Here are two Lee and Miller stories set in the Liaden Universe®, "Street Cred," original to this chapbook; and "Wise Child," reprinted from Both stories deal with the complications arising from decisive change, and decisive Change Management at the point of peril.

rolanni: (booksflying1.1)

The last bundle of five Pinbeam Books titles has gone up for sale today at Baen ebooks.  Here's your link.

The November bundle includes:
Master Walk, by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller
Surfside, Archers Beach #4, by Sharon Lee
The Gift of Magic, Archers Beach #5, by Sharon Lee
Spell Bound, Archers Beach #6, by Sharon Lee
TimeRags, by Steve Miller

You may also buy each title separately, if you prefer.

No mail today...

Monday, October 10th, 2016 11:59 am
rolanni: (booksflying1.1)

Where I live, today is Columbus Day (observed).  Which means there's no mail delivery.  Two Sundays in one week is kinda harsh. . .

Today's big news!

The second of three Pinbeam Book bundles is now available for purchase at Baen ebooks.  The titles included in the October Bundle are:  Endeavors of Will, Sharon Lee; Gunshy (the sequel to Barnburner), Sharon Lee; The Naming of Kinzel, Sharon Lee and Steve Miller; The Cat's Job, Sharon Lee and Steve Miller; The Day They Brought the Bears to Belfast, Sharon Lee.

Here's your link

. . .you may also buy each title separately from that link.

In other news, I seem to have caught Steve's cold, so no gym for me today.  Better luck tomorrow.

Today will be a writing day, commencing, as soon as I post this blog entry, with a session of sitting-on-the-couch-staring-at-nothing.  I'm always amazed when people treat the "creative process" like some kind of cognitive mystery.  All you have to do is stare at nothing, hard, until the bead of blood form on your forehead, and the backbrain has pity and forks over.

See?  Easy.

So!  Things are starting to heat up, in A Night in the Lonesome OctoberSomebody's shown Bad Form, and somebody else is offended.  The Things are getting restive, and the lines are confused.  Not only that, but there's a new fellow in the neighborhood, who is strangely determined to befriend Jack and Snuff; and the Great Detective is afoot.

# # #

"Yes, I am familiar with your candor, and the limits placed upon it. I will ask carefully, Translator. I would not unwittingly cause you pain."

rolanni: (lit'rary moon)

Pinbeam Books (that's me and Steve), the granddaughter of SRM Publisher, has signed a distribution agreement with Baen ebooks.  The first five books are now available here,  either as a bundle, or separately.

October and November will each see the release of five more books, which ought to catch everyone up.

The catalog has not yet been undated to include links to Baen; that will be done as time and attention allow.

Here's the link to Pinbeam Books.

Blue Monday

Monday, August 29th, 2016 11:00 am
rolanni: (bleedingheart from furriboots)

I'm rather despondent as I write this.  On-going this, that, and the other thing.  I can't quite get to and back from the ocean on my own at the moment, because Reasons, but if I could I'd definitely run away today.

Well.  Next week, maybe.  Or the week after.

In the meantime, Book the Next has exceeded 40,000 words for the fourth time since we began this journey, and -- has not only not (as yet, experience teaches me to say) been busted back to private, but has put on a little more weight.  (Yes, Mixed Metaphor is today's special.  Why do you ask?) We have also reached one of the pivot scenes, so -- yay, us.  I'm taking the fact that we have reached this scene to mean that we've finally gotten the set-up right.

Fingers crossed, going forward.

The title for Book the Next continues to elude us.  I'm thinking maybe we can do a Choose Your Own Title, sort of like Choose Your Own Ending, only you get all the fun upfront.

For those who have been playing Amazon Bingo at home -- The Crystal Variation, including novels Crystal Soldier, Crystal Dragon, and Balance of Trade, by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller is currently on-sale at the Kindle store.  Pretty good, for a book which shouldn't have been "suppressed" in the first place.

No, I'm not feeling charitable.

Well.  Snail mail has arrived while I was writing this.  I note a lack of promised checks.

And on that note, I'm for the gym.

Y'all have a nice day.

Are you taking pictures AGAIN August 7 2016

rolanni: (Marvin's not happy)

Those following along at home will recall that, last week, it was discovered by an Alert Reader that Amazon had taken The Crystal Variation, an omnibus of novels Crystal Soldier, Crystal Dragon, and Balance of Trade, by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, published by Baen Books off sale.  We alerted Baen.  Baen's Speaker To Amazon found that Amazon had identified 144 "spelling errors."  Until those "spelling errors" were corrected the book could not be sold.

Baen forwarded the list to us, and we identified -- wait for it -- THREE incidences of Actual Misspelled Words (the rest were made-up scifi words, and most of them were "cermacrete"), four instances of missing commas (which Amazon had not pinpointed as errors), and one instance of two words that were smushed together.

Yeah, that's it.  Amazon pulled our omnibus, without notice, for containing three spelling errors across a 1200-page book.

The Crystal Variation is now back on sale at Amazon, thanks to speedy work on Baen's part, for getting those errors fixed, and the book re-up-loaded in record time.

So, that.

Meanwhile, in another part of the forest, Amazon had likewise taken Courier Run, Adventures in the Liaden Universe® Number 18,  by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, published by Pinbeam Books (aka Sharon Lee and Steve Miller) off-sale, without warning, for four spelling errors and two bad line breaks. These errors were represented as having been reported by a reader who found them "distracting."

Yesterday, I fixed the two misspellings, recompiled the book and re-uploaded it to Amazon.

This morning, I have in my mailbox a communication from Amazon, stating that copyright is important to them, and that I must, in five days, provide proof that I have the right to publish Courier Run, Adventures in the Liaden Universe® Number 18.  The acceptable proofs are:

Acceptable documentation includes:

- A contract or statement from the author or publisher verifying you
 retain publishing rights
- An e-mail from the address listed on the official author or
 agent’s website
- For authors using a pseudonym, copyright registration or statement
 of pseudonym use

If you publish books for which you do not hold the publishing rights,
your account may be terminated.

So, a letter has been written to Amazon, explaining the situation to them for at least the second, and possibly the third, time since we've been doing business -- in the five years during which we've been doing business -- together.  Though "together" may not exactly be the word I want, here.

As of this writing, I believe that Amazon will sell you a copy of Courier Run, Adventures in the Liaden Universe® Number 18.  There is a Quality Issues Reported Hazard Triangle just below the title.  The drop-down for that reads:

Customers reported Quality Issues with this eBook.  This eBook has
The publisher has been notified to correct these issues.

. . .so I'm guessing it's not the amended file they're selling.

# # #

In less-fraught news, Steve and I took yesterday off to travel into Waterville to attend the Very First Screening of "Kubo and the Two Strings."  This is a very beautiful movie (we saw the 2-D version); the animation was amazing. The story itself is short on plot, though the writers/directors have an Absolute Mastery of Emotional Manipulation.  I recommend it for the animation alone, and for the overall sweetness of tone.  I came away from the movie feeling (briefly) peaceful and content.  So -- C+.

# # #

For those who have been following the New Box Project.  I offer the following short photo essay:

Trooper still prefers the red basket:

Trooper still prefers the old Aug 18 2016

Sprite is thinking about the new box:

Sprite tries the new box Aug 18 2016

. . .which has already received the Belle Seal of Approval:

The Belle Seal of Approval Aug 18 2016

Observant readers will note that the floofy towel has been removed from the New Box. The floofy towel was Not a Proper Use.  So I was told.

# # #

Today, I work.  And probably do the laundry, because the life of a writer is unremittingly glamorous.

Everybody have a good weekend!

rolanni: (Red umbrella from rainbow graphics)

Those of you who purchase ebooks from Amazon need to be aware of the following:

a. The Kindle edition of omnibus The Crystal Variation, by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, including the novels Crystal Soldier, Crystal Dragon, and Balance of Trade -- has been taken off-sale by Amazon pending correction of "serious quality issues." These issues are "misspellings."  Amazon forwarded the list of 144 instances of misspelled words to Baen, which forwarded it to us.  More than a dozen of those "misspelled" words are "cermacrete."  We also have "ISBN" identified as a "misspelled" word. Also, cantra, kais, qwint, Iloheen, aetherium, autoshout -- you get the idea.  Steve and I have each made a pass down the list and have so far identified three Actual Misspelled Words, and one that I need to research, but believe to be a spacing problem.  The process from here goes like this:  We tell Baen which words are Actually Misspelled.  A Baen editor will fix those errors.  The Baen Ebook Team will then recompile the omnibus and shuffle it into its various formats, including forwarding a "clean copy" to Amazon.  Amazon will then, at some point, put the book back on sale.

If you would like to purchase an electronic copy of The Crystal Variation in the immediate future, your best choice of vendor would be Baen Ebooks, which offers the book for sale in All Formats Known to Man or Clutch.  Here's the link.

b.  Amazon has also stopped selling Courier Run, an echapbook containing two Liaden stories by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, for Serious Quality Issues.  In a Surprising Plot Twist, this title shows as being Live and On Sale from my publisher's dashboard.  KDP support is Researching the Issue and promises an answer by August 18 -- next Thursday.

If you would like to purchase this echapbook before next Thursday, please seek it elsewhere -- BN, Kobo, iBooks still offer it for sale.

c. Sleeping with the Enemy was also briefly off-sale at Amazon, but its honor has been redeemed and it is now on-sale in the Kindle store, as well as at the rest of the Usual Suspects.

d. Spell Bound, an echapbook collecting "Will-o'-the-wisp" and "The Wolf's Bride," two Archers Beach stories previously published on Splinter Universe, is now for sale at the Amazon Kindle store (after a brief tussle in which Amazon insisted that the content was available "freely on the web" and therefore I had no right to publish the compilation), and! at Kobo, and iBooks.  BN will presumably get around to publishing sometime soon.

A related note: Since these stories have been collected, they have been removed from Splinter Universe.

Today, it is rainy and cool at the Cat Farm and Confusion Factory.  I plan a quiet, working day.  I realize that we are very fortunate in our weather.  All of you who labor under Dangerous Heat Advisories -- please be alert and take good care of yourselves.

rolanni: (Marvin's not happy)
I have not been able to reliably get into or for the last, oh, day and a half.  I'm told other people can see the public pages -- which I can't see, either -- and Down For Everyone assures me that they're up.  I just can't see them, or do any work inside the sites.

Hopefully, this will resolve itself. . .soon.

*glares at internet*

As I write this, six eChapbooks have been converted and submitted to various vendors via Draft2Digital.  They should be appearing soon at Kobo, the iStore, and other vendors.  As already stated -- all Pinbeam Book titles are now, and have been since Forever, available from BN and Amazon.

Moving on -- Alliance of Equals currently has 103! reader reviews on Amazon.  Ladies and gentlemen, we are over the hump; the hard part is done.  We need a measly 97! more reviews to hit our goal of 200.

I'm really impressed with you guys -- thank you all.

Also!  If you're looking for suggestions for good reads (and who isn't?), an astute reader pointed out this list, which!  In addition to some titles that look positively yummy for my own personal reading -- includes Alliance of Equals ; (Thanks to Mike Barker for providing the link)

The comments are also worth mining.

One expected check arrived today, which was a Good Thing, also a check that I hadn't been expecting.  This leaves three outstanding checks, and I very much hope that today's delivery has broken the streak.

I really do think that's all the news that's fit to print.  This blog will be the main blog until we can get back into Also -- yes, I am aware that the Pinbeam Books catalog page has not been update, and I'm just as frustrated by that as you are.  We'll all just have to practice patience.

A reminder about this blog -- you must be a member of LJ, signed in to LJ to comment.  The settings are inconvenient, I know (and no, I don't expect you to open an LJ account just so you can comment here) but they are also necessary to cut down on the Really Incredible Amount of spam that was coming through.

Everybody have a good weekend.

rolanni: (Surprise!)

So, today, I took all of our titles on Smashwords off-sale.  They say it will take between one and three weeks for their various channels to catch up with this action.  In the meantime, all Lee-and-Miller, and Lee, self-pubbed titles remain available from BN and Amazon.

In the spirit of progress, I have converted three ebooks, so they'll be ready to go up into the sales channels through Draft2Digital when Time has Become.

Other than that, I went to the gym, and the grocery store, and was grumpy because outstanding checks have yet to arrive.  Yes, I know you're tired of hearing about outstanding checks not arriving.  I am, too.

Today, it was hot; tomorrow is going to be hot, too, which will be good for the beach, but perhaps not for the residents of the Cat Farm, who were rather melty today, even with the windows open and a nice breeze running through.  Tomorrow, we may have to condition the air.  *sigh*

And! Today's Off the Wall Question is:  Has anyone who reads here been to a performance by Hatsune Miku?  I'd like to hear about your experience and impressions.

Edited to Add:  I am remiss!  As of right now, Alliance of Equals has 98 reader reviews on Amazon!  Only 102 more to reach our goal of 200!  Thanks to everyone who has taken the time, and expended the energy!

. . .I fear that's all I have today.

Hope y'all are having positively brilliant days, wherever you are.

Belle and Trooper July 14 2016

Today's blog post is brought to you by Abney Park, "Breathe."  Here's your link.

rolanni: (storm at sea by rainbow graphics)

So, yesterday, Steve and I drove down to Old Orchard Beach, and took a walk through the shallows before the ozone levels (seen as a pink haze prowling in from beyond Wood Island Light, eating the shoreline as it came) got too high.  The beach was super crowded with people having a good time, which was nice to see. Also, I got sunburned, so it was all good.

In the way of such things, once we were out of the house, we had very little inclination to speed back to the house, so we turned left instead of right, taking Routes 9 and 1 down to Wells, which was likewise crowded, and eventually turned right on a road wending northward.  We did stop at Borealis Breads in Wells to take on, well -- bread; and at the Bull and Claw to partake of really excellent fish 'n chips, before getting serious about the trip back home.

While we were at the ocean, a Severe Thunderstorm Watch came across the phones (we live in Maine; we have Weather here, not climate, so you've gotta kind of keep an eye on it).  We debated staying down ocean-side a few hours longer to watch the storm in, but eventually decided against, and continued the northward journey.

One of the things that struck me forcibly downcoast was the number of businesses advertising for help.  Not just seasonal businesses -- though there were plenty of them needing help -- but grocery stores, and pharmacies, hardware stores, year-round bakeries, and such.  It's tempting to move south, just for the work.  Mind you, none of those jobs would cover the rent in-or-near a resort town, and you'd spend more in gas than the job's worth, if you came in from any distance.

Ah, well.  Guess I'll stay right here.

We arrived home, alert to the need to leap up at any moment to Batten the Hatches -- the Waterville-Winslow megapolis also being on the watch for Severe Thunderstorms, and possible tornadoes (!)  We heard thunder; we saw (a lot) of lightning; the wind came up in a satisfactory manner, but --

The storm passed us by.  A glance at the interactive weather map showed that it had dumped rain half-a-mile away, but our house had, like, a little weather-repellent dome over it, and we were dry.

Half-an-hour later another cell passed over, announcing its presence by striking and exploding a tree somewhere in the Very Near Vicinity of the Cat Farm.  The wind screamed, rain came down in sheets. . .

Five minutes later, it was all done, gone, and on its way to Skowhegan, where it apparently did wreak some mischief.  And, yes, there was at least one tornado briefly on the ground, in Caribou, 'way up in The County.

Today, it is much cooler, and the air is clean.  We're enjoying it while we can.  Tomorrow, they same, Summer's Back.

# # #

To the Very Best of My Knowledge, Sleeping with the Enemy, Adventures in the Liaden Universe Number 22, has now been published to all of the usual subjects, including BN, Kobo, the iStore, and Amazon.

No, I am afraid we will not be producing a paper chapbook, like in the "old days."  These days are demonstrably, and perhaps sadly, not the "old days;" postage rates have gone crazy, our very reliable printer of many years has retired, and his son has merged the business with another out of Portland, and closed the shop up here.  Also, Steve is not able anymore to do the physical lifting and schlepping and whatnot, and I never could.  So -- no paper edition.  Possibly, the stories in Sleeping will be collected in a Liaden Constellation sometime in the next couple years.

Thank you for your understanding.

# # #

As I type, Alliance of Equals rejoices in 90! reader reviews on Amazon.  That's. . .terrific.  Only 110 more to reach our 200-review milestone.  You guys rock.

# # #

I don't know if I reported here that, earlier in the season, the Cat Garden was the victim of an error produced by one of our lawn guy's guys.  The error took out one whole corner of flowers, with the exception of some coneflowers, which have valiantly bloomed over the killing field in memory of better days.  I was out inspecting just a little while ago and, honestly?  It looks like next year -- or the year after, at most -- the whole garden will be taken over by the dragon flowers (snapdragons to you folks down south).

Which is good.  Hummingbirds and butterflies both like the dragon flowers, though they bloom late in the season, rather than early.  So, if the garden is not now According to Plan, at least it is staying true to its raison de'etre.

Though I do kinda miss the yarrow and (most of) the coneflowers.

Well.  I think that catches us all up.

Everybody stay cool.

Today's blog title is courtesy of John Masefield, "Sea Fever," known to children everywhere as, "I must go down to the sea again."  Here's your link.

rolanni: (Alliance of Equals art by David Mattingl)

. . .too many parts, in fact, running in all directions at once.

Those who do not partake of the joys of Facebook may have missed the announcement that Sleeping with the Enemy, Adventures in the Liaden Universe® Number 22, is now on sale (as an ebook only) at Amazon, Kobo, ibooks, Page Foundry, and Tolino.  We are told that it will be published RealSoonNow at BN/Noon, Scribd, and 24Symbols.

As I write this, Alliance of Equals has garnered 86! reader reviews on Amazon.  Only 114 short of 200!  You guys are going gang-busters!

. . .as we used to say.

Steve and I have declared tomorrow an electron-free day, so we will be scarce-to-invisible.  If you have an urgent matter to resolve, you can try emailing the cats, but, well -- good luck with that.

# # #

Progress on Book the Next
40,459/100,000 OR 40.46% complete

"Ah, but any system is subject to manipulation. For instance, one who stands in a position of strength may decide that one whose position is. . .less strong has not paid fully enough, and demand additional consideration." She paused, head to one side. "It is rarely said, I think, that one has paid too fully, but we must be alert to the possibility."

Childrens Book Cellar Steve and Sharon photo by Ellen Richmond
rolanni: (Alliance of Equals art by David Mattingl)

Woke up early because the power went out (and came back on before the generator could engage).  Guess everybody was running their A/C and fans against yesterday's heat wave.

Steve made omelettes for breakfast, after which we moved on to working on the chapbook until it was time to head out to Children's Book Cellar and our signing.

Driving in, we realized that the event could very easily go until 4:00 and we had neglected to eat lunch, which was -- as nearly everything can be made to be -- an excuse to stop at Dairy Queen on the way in to Waterville, in order to purchase milkshakes to sustain us in our Time of Fame.

This involved some unanticipated delay, since there appeared to be a hazing going on at the College Avenue Dairy Queen, which left one newbie on duty at a very busy counter, while four of his colleagues lounged in the back room.

Still, milkshakes were achieved, and we arrived Exactly on Time at Children's Book Cellar, to find a Mighty Crowd awaiting us, including Carolyn Smith and her husband, from Stoneham, Massachusetts, and our own James Hetley, down from Bangor, as well as some local folk.  We had a blast, and hoping our audience had the same.  Thanks to everyone who came to see us, and for Ellen Richmond and the Children's Book Cellar for hosting us!

After our event, we hit the grocery store, returned home, and got with the ebook one! more! time!

On that front, I am pleased to report that Sleeping with the Enemy is now "publishing" at Amazon, and BN.  Expect to see the title on sale somewhere in the next 24 to 48 hours.

EDITED TO ADD:  The book is on sale NOW at Amazon.  Here's your link.

Draft2Digital will be uploading the book to its vendors (Kobo, iBooks, Inktera, Scribd, 24Symbols, and Tolino) on its usual schedule.  Remember!  You will not be able to purchase this title through Smashwords.

Tomorrow, it's back to the manuscript.  Monday may possibly be an Ocean Day.  We shall see.

In the meanwhile, it's still hot, though not so much as yesterday.  We hold out some hope of rain tomorrow, which will be, so they (They) say, cooler than today.  Monday, however, we're right back into the frying pan, and looking to stay there awhile.

As of this writing, there are 77 reader reviews of Alliance of Equals on Amazon!  Go, you guys!  Only 123 'til we hit 200!

Speaking of Alliance -- if you've read the book and want to talk about it, there is a spoiler thread here.  Please do feel free to make use of it.

And now?  I believe I see the cabana boy in the distance, bearing a bottle and a corkscrew.

Everybody stay happy.

Sleeping cover
rolanni: (Alliance of Equals art by David Mattingl)

. . .it was hot.  All four cats were in my office, because Ceiling Fan, but -- it was still hot.  More hot coming tomorrow.  Yay, summer.

We have a title for the upcoming chapbook.  Here it is:

Sleeping with the Enemy
Adventures in the Liaden Universe® Number 22
© 2016 by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller

For those coming in late, this chapbook will contain two stories:  "Chimera," which was published at in May 2015 (I may have said April last night; we turned it in in April; it was published in May in support of Dragon in Exile, which was a June book.  Ta-da!), and "Friend of a Friend," a brand-new story, also set on Surebleak.  The book will include an author's foreword.

Distant early warning!  We will be increasing the price of this chapbook, and all/any future chapbooks, from $2.99 to $3.99.  Thank you for your understanding.

I had hoped to get Sleeping. . . uploaded at least to Amazon tonight, but -- it ain't gonna happen.  Possibly tomorrow night (more likely Sunday afternoon, though, because Book Signing tomorrow).  In any case -- soon.

As of right now, Alliance of Equals has 61 reader reviews on Amazon.  Only 139 more until we hit the goal of 200!

As alluded to above, tomorrow, Steve and I will be signing book and talking trash at our local indie bookstore -- Children's Book Cellar, 52 Main Street, Waterville -- at 2 pm.  Drop by and see us if you can!

And I think that's all the news.

Everybody stay cool.

Scrabble holds the high ground July 14 2016
rolanni: (Alliance of Equals art by David Mattingl)

The electronic advance reading copy (aka, the one with the (most) mistakes in it) of Alliance of Equals, by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, the 19th novel-length adventure in the Liaden Universe®!

. . .is now available for sale via download.

Here's your link

I trust you all know what to do.

On a related note, I've got a side bet going with Belle, who doesn't think we can sell more than 500 copies of the ARC.  O, cat of little faith.  Sprite, on the other paw, thinks we can earn out the advance on eARC sales.  Of course, Sprite's still a little unclear on the whole Base Ten thing...

Alliance of Equals cover
rolanni: (The Dragon in Exile)

So, yesterday, I submitted the epub edition of Writing Neep to Smashwords, as planned.  Probably predictably Smashwords fussed that the cover was too small, so I had to upload a bigger image. Then it told me the book was published, but I couldn't find it in my dashboard, so this morning, I re-re-uploaded the book, and it is now showing on the dashboard, as published and pending review.

So, yay, right?


Yesterday, a friend reminded me that Smashwords, in addition to all of the rest of its annoyances, large and small, requires that Certain Particular Holy Words be placed on the copyright page, something like "This is a Certified Smashwords Edition," or...something.  Which brands the book as coming from the Smashwords Distribution Empire, and bully for them, but which also means that No Standard Copyright Page will satisfy them.  You cannot put the Holy Words on a page of their own, they must be in a particular place on the copyright page, and the words must be exact.

I had of course forgotten this, but what it means is that the book will not pass Real Human Vetting.

I am therefore calling it quits with Smashwords' storefront and distribution empire.  The books that are on Smashwords will stay there, but I will not be adding new books.  I'm sorry about that, because I, like some of you, like to have alternatives to pubbing to Kindle and Nook; OTOH, Smashwords and I simply can't reach an accommodation.

(Yes, I'm aware that millions of people every day pub to Smashwords and adore it.  I am not one of those people, and since I don't use Word, Smashwords' decision to base their entire conversion process on a bloated, buggy word processor works very much against me.)

So, that.

Last night, Steve and I watched "To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar" and had a good time with it.  This morning, we're doing catch-up with a variety of tasks, including getting Chapter Fourteen of Shan and Priscilla Ride Again ready to upload tomorrow, and doing some side-laundry.  I need to get with Sprite a little later and give her mane a trim under her chin where it wisps up into her mouth and gets made into little, soggy corkscrews of fur.

Also, the ribs still giving me back-chat, as they are, some careful stretching, and some time out in the comfy chair with The Golden Hawk, which I started yesterday.  My goodness, it does get on its bike and ride, doesn't it?  And, despite a few eye-rollers like the first mate wondering, given the notoriety of their ship and captain,  how the crew can expect to land at Xtown to satisfy their "manly needs," it's really very readable.  Mr. Yerby knew how to write sentences, so he did.

Monday sadly requires phone calls, and I've got to get to the bottom of this desk, which has become chaotic again, mostly with Mundane Matters.  I wonder if there's room in this house for a House Desk, so I can dedicate my desk to writing.  Too much to ask?  Yeah, probably so.

So!  Off to do battle with the to-do list.  I hope everyone has a restful Sunday afternoon.

Warrior Princess Jasmine Sprite reposing among her trophiesWarrior Princess Jasmine Sprite reposing among her trophies

rolanni: (booksflying1.1)

In light of the truly horrific experience that was trying to get The Gift of Magic published to Nook, and that fact that I've already given up on Smashwords as requiring too much time for too little return, I decided to try Another Way.

A kind person on Facebook pointed me to Draft2Digital which will make a mobi file, an epub file, and a pdf file of any doc/x, rtf, Word-readable-file-of-y0ur-choice that you upload to them, and distribute those files to the vendors you choose from their list.  The list includes Nook, the iStore, Oyster, Kobo, and I couple of others that I forget at the moment.

D2D also claims that it can publish your book into paper at CreateSpace, but I have not explored that part of its offerings, being interested today in ebooks.

I chose as My Subject Writing Neep, a minor chapbook of collected essays from my blog posts, which I could never convince Smashwords to accept for sale; no matter how much I tried to format it, the Meatgrinder simply did not find the work acceptable.

This made Writing Neep the perfect choice for experimentation, and experiment I did.

Upfront, D2D is much more forgiving than Smashwords.  It does have its own crochets, but I managed to finagle and work them through.  I uploaded an RTF file of the text, and a jpg of the cover.

D2D really wants to generate a title page, a copyright page, a teaser page, an author bio page -- all of it!  any of it!  for you.  This means that, if you want to include your own copyright page, that D2D's chapter auto-detect will "see" it as a "chapter" and there is not. one. damn. thing. you can do to change its mind -- except! Surrender.  Move the copyright page to the back of the book, give it a title -- Copyright Page! -- and let D2D include it in the TOC.  Which is what, after much diddling around, I did.

The other problem was the title page.  Include a title page, and it will be listed as a "chapter" in the TOC, no way around it that I found.  If I allowed D2D to generate the title page, it produced a page that said:

Writing Neep:  Short Essays on the Writing Life
Sharon Lee
July 25, 2015

. . .which might be fine for a new book, but Writing Neep was first published in 2012, and I hadn't added any new content to my Experimental Subject.

What I finally wound up doing was getting rid of the title page, unchecking the box that directed D2D to generate one, and placing the name of the book and my name above the title of the Author's Foreword.  This made for a rather ungainly four-line title, but told no lies to prospective readers.

D2D offers the option of having a Live Human Being actually go through your uploaded manuscript, if you can't make things come out right, and sort it by hand.  I did send a request for such service, but, to the best of my knowledge, no one ever answered the call -- not even a robot ack.  So, that was too bad.

For their services D2D takes 10% of what you receive from their vendors, which means that you, the author, will be giving up about 15% of cover in fees and discounts.

D2D does not have its own storefront, like Smashwords does, but!

In a few minutes, I will commence the Second Part of this Experiment, download the epub file generated by D2D,  feed it to Smashwords and See What Happens.  If the file is accepted, then the book will be on sale at Smashwords, as well as with All the Usual Suspects.

And that's what I did with my Saturday morning.

rolanni: (ferris wheel)

The title says it all.  Here's some links to get you started:

Baen (all formats known on land and sea)

BN/Nook (epub)

Amazon/Kindle (mobi)

This also means that!  If you've previously read the eArc, you may now post a review on Amazon.  And of course, once you've read this edition, you may post a review, too.

OK, I'll be quiet now, so y'all can read.

September 2017

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