Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Writing { and reading and publishing } ~

Tag Archives: Free Novel

Soon, #Smashwords Will Be an Even Nicer Place for #Publishing…


I’ve been publishing for nearly 13 years; however, almost 7 years ago, I got very serious about it—I used FastPencil to publish a novel that I now give away on Smashwords… Smashwords Publishing

The weird thing is that I’ve known Smashwords is a very cool place to publish for all those nearly 7 years; but then, I am getting fairly old, so nearly everything looks like too much work; still, Smashwords is the easiest publishing I’ve ever done…

So, why will Smashwords soon be even nicer?

A recent email from them had this:

Heads up. This Friday October 27 we’re kicking off the Smart Author Podcast!

It will be a FREE podcast and will feature the Founder of Smashwords, Mark Coker—a man who just might know more about e-publishing than anyone else on the planet…

Here are some scheduling notes from Mark:

These first four episodes launch this Friday [Oct. 27th]:

Seven Trends Shaping the Future of Authorship
Introduction to Ebook Publishing
Bestseller Secrets
How to Sell More Ebooks with Pre-orders

And then these episodes release each week through November:

11/3 – Working with Beta Readers
11/10 – Marketing to Libraries
11/17 – Smashwords Survey 2017
11/24 – The Art of Delusion (How to keep writing despite inevitable challenges)

More episodes are planned for December…

You can listen to an Introductory Trailer right HERE

And, that page also has the following offer [which will disappear Oct. 25th around Noon Pacific time, USA]:

Click Here to apply to join our launch team.  Launch team members gain early access to the first eight episodes along with other exclusive perks.

Finally, you can Subscribe at these locations:

Apple Podcasts

Google Play

SoundCloud

TuneIn

Or, you can always Listen Online

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If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
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Visit The Story Bazaar
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FREE On-line Course in Self-Publishing & Book Promotion
Even though it may say “Fee”, it Really is FREE :-)

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Google Author Page
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

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The Story Bazaar, Some Strange Fantasies, and Other Free Books…


I thought I’d forego my usual Saturday Re-Blog and pitch my newest short story endeavor—Friday Story Bazaar—a new Tale every Friday, until I think I’ve written enough to publish another book…

Story Bazaar

Cover by Jane Darnton Watson

And, because on Saturdays I publish the same Tales on Wattpad, I’ll share that link, where it’s simply called Story Bazaar

So far, there are 25 Tales, of no specific genre—a real mixed bag of story-forms…

Strange Fantasies

Cover by Jane Darnton Watson

So that’s the newest story endeavor; but, I also have 33 Fantasy short stories at the link Friday Fantasy that are also on Wattpad as Strange Fantasies and available as a book on Amazon (cheap, $.99…).

Plus, the left side-bar has more of my writings that are freely downloadable (a Novel, a Poetry Book, a Fable, and an Essay about Words…) — if you’re on your phone, you’ll have to use your general “Menu” button and find something like “Request Desktop Site” to see the left side-bar :-)

Plus, going to my site on Lulu, will let you download two more free books—a compilation of Spiritual Writings and a book made from my previous Blog…

Finally, one more free book—my unique method of letting folks interpret their own astrological charts………
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If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
Read Some Strange Fantasies
Grab A Free Novel…
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Google Author Page
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

Bonus Post: “Sorry, grammar nerds. The singular ‘they’ has been declared Word of the Year.”


The quote in the title of this blog is the title of an article in The Washington Post… They

Why I decided to feature this in a Bonus Post will be left to explanation in response to a proper query in the comments

A hint of my possible answer is this excerpt from the article:

“…the singular they is ‘the only sensible solution to English’s lack of a gender-neutral third-person singular personal pronoun.’”

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Read Some Strange Fantasies
Grab A Free Novel…
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For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

Two Women Writers Convince Me to Experiment on Wattpad . . .


I’ve known about Wattpad for quite awhile but let it linger in the hinterlands of my interest, with all the other wonderful, fabulous, must-engage-on spaces that writers are nearly shamed into using… Wattpad

However, Orna Ross, founder of the Alliance of Independent Authors, and Elizabeth S. Craig, bestselling author of the Southern Quilting mysteries and Memphis Barbeque mysteries and link-curator for the Writer’s Knowledge Base, have convinced me to use Wattpad in a very specific way.

My experiment got its first nudge when I saw an article on the ALLi site about Wattpad Insights for Indie Authors.

There’s a video at the end of this post that was the clincher for my experimental use of Wattpad; but, first, here are some takeaways the ALLi article has from that video:

  1. Wattpad users are very mobile savvy and skew towards a younger demographic.
  2. Authors don’t have to write serially, they just need to publish serially.
  3. The Wattpad mobile app is free, and a Wattpad account is also free.
  4. Set a consistent publishing schedule for your chapter releases.
  5. If you already have a free book, it makes sense to leverage it on Wattpad. Use it as a funnel to your other books.
  6. At the end of each Wattpad chapter you can add an author call to action (e.g. sign up to the author’s mailing list, or letting your readers know where to buy the book if they can’t wait for the next installment).
  7. A demographics tab gives you insights into the age demographics of your readers and their geographic location.
  8. Authors can add images or a video to each chapter to increase engagement.
  9. It’ll take about 4-6 chapters to get some audience traction.
  10. Wattpad increases your opportunity of reaching your share of the 40 Million global readers.

#2 & #5 were the prime reasons I got interested in using Wattpad.

And, in case you’re new around here or you just never noticed, I give away my novel (even though it’s also for sale) over in the left side-bar; so, I decided I’d add a new chapter to Wattpad every Wednesday for the next 20 weeks and append a comment there to draw folks back here…

So, if you’d rather read just a bit of my book each week (instead of downloading it for free and reading the whole thing in about two days {it’s rather short but quite deep…}) Take This Link (you’ll have to register with Wattpad if you aren’t already a member)

I’ll be periodically reporting results

And, now, here’s the video with Orna and Elizabeth that convinced me to do the WattpadExperiment:


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Read Some Strange Fantasies
Grab A Free Novel…
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To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

A Topic Guide to My Very Strange Book…


Since I’m only committing to Monday, Wednesday, and Friday blog posts, I’m allowed to post more often if I just can’t help myself :-) Notes from An Alien

About 20 minutes ago, I was sitting here watching the news and something made me think about my book—the one I decided I won’t write

And, in case you missed it, my prime reason for not writing a book I’d done massive research on was that my last novel essentially said it all

All what?

Well, first, imagine three planets in a different Star-system—one completely corporate, one completely religious, and one inhabited by a True Alien

You can grab a free copy of the novel; or, if you really have to, you can buy a copy :-)

So, since I just reassured myself that a book I’d already written has everything I need to say about certain topics (at least in fictional form…), I thought I’d share what those topics are

The numbers in the following list are the chapters where the topic is predominant:

Notes from An Alien

Corporate Greed – 1, 2

Corporate Control of Populace – 1, 2, 4

Religious Wars – 1, 2, 3

Prophetic Predictions – 1, 3, 5

War-Just/Unjust – 1, 10

Constant Expansion As A Solution – 1, 2, 11

Non-Religious Religions – 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 13

Military Control of Populations – 2

Rational Religion – 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 11

Corporate Ecological Damage – 2, 4, 5

Material Realm/Spiritual Realm – 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 19

Science and Faith – 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 15

Spiritual Practice – 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11

Costs of War – 3, 4, 5, 10, 11

Governance – 4, 5, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14

Oneness of All People – 6, 7, 8, 14, 16, 19

Economic Issues – 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13

Altruism and Sacrifice – 7, 9, 11, 17

True Peace – 11, 12, 17, 18, 19

If you’ve already read the book, perhaps you’d like to put a very short “review” in the Comments?
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Read Some Strange Fantasies
Grab A Free Novel…
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To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com