Just as I was about to give up on writing mystery novels, Down and Out Books offered me a contract to re-issue Alphabet Landand continue the series. So it looks like the Rook, one of my favorite characters, will live on. . .as soon as I sit back down at the computer and dream up another sticky situation for him and his .45 Chief’s Special to get into.
I’m excited and honored.
In the meantime, I’ve become a stay-at-home dad (long story), and to cope with the stress and share the joys of parenting, I started a blog called Breakfast With Harry. It’s all about me trying to feed my four-year old breakfast everyday. The stories are funny, I think, so check it out.
Because I am so desperate to have people read my latest book, I am giving it away for free on Kindle. That’s right, the cost to you is zilch, squat, nada, nothing. All the Different Ways Love Can Feel is completely gratas through September 12. So if you read the book and like it, be so kind as to write a review on Amazon and spread the word on social media (or conch shell, if you prefer). If you don’t like the book, you’re wrong, and I feel sorry for you.
Message to Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Jose: kindly piss off into the ocean where you belong, and leave us land lubbers alone.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go spend another fourteen years writing made up stories, so, when I’m fifty-two, I can give those away for free.
Have a nice day.
Max, Author of Free Books (if I was a completely different person, here is where I would drop a killer emoji. Alas, I am a grumpy old man, the kind who uses the word alas a bit too frequently.)
I’ve enrolled ALL THE DIFFERENT WAYS LOVE CAN FEEL in a Kindle Countdown deal, which means the eBook will be available for only $.99. The deal runs from June 28th through July 5th, so if you need something cheap to read at the beach or by the pool, give it a try! And, by all means, spread the word to your friends. Thanks!
Max Everhart’s latest book is a collection of short stories called All the Different Ways Love Can Feel. It is available on his Createspace storeand Amazon. You can also read his latest novel Unlove Me on Wattpad for free. Find him on Facebook and twitter.
An article I wrote called “Self-Publish or Perish” will appear in the September issue of InD’Tale Magazine. The article chronicles my journey from small press author to whatever it is I am now. I discuss writing “epiphanies” I had along the way, critique my goals as a writer, and recalibrate my expectations going forward.
If you’re looking to promote a book, or if you have something to say about the craft of writing, consider sending InD’Tale Magazine an article. I’ve copied and pasted the magazine’s submission guidelines below, if you’re interested, or you can click here to go ahead and submit a piece.
InD’Tale Magazine Submissions
InD’tale welcomes all article submissions and happily compensates all contributors with a short bio and picture plus a free full page advertisement (a $90.00 value) upon publication. If you are interested in having your article published in a monthly issue of InD’tale, please read the following guidelines and information:
All articles must be between 850 – 1500 words (concrete on the low end, flexible on the high end.)
Articles must be written in an informative and/or entertaining way that includes all readers (rather than a “diary” type that concentrates only on the author.) Personal experiences are accepted and often encouraged but must tie in directly to a larger message that is clearly explained.
We do not accept articles that are submitted for advertisement purposes only.
Articles must take into consideration our readership ranges from Adolescent to Old! All content must be PG-13 rated or lower and contain content appropriate for mainstream audiences only.
Subject matter diversity is encouraged as long as it is educational and/or entertaining.
Original work ONLY! We do not accept articles that have been posted or published in other magazine, websites or blogs. Basic content is allowed but the article must have fresh information, new content, ideas, etc.
Max Everhart’s latest book is a collection of short stories called All the Different Ways Love Can Feel. It is available on his Createspace storeand Amazon. His novel Unlove Meis available for free on Wattpad. Find him on Facebook and twitter.
Hey, wanna snag a paperback copy of my new short story collection, which is getting rave reviews (2 so far), but refuse to pay retail price? Then you’re in luck. Just follow these easy steps, and get 30% off!
Almost two years ago, I sat down with a composition notebook, a pen, and no real ideas for a story. All I knew was I wanted to try to write (as realistically as possible) a novel completely through a woman’s perspective. What I ended up with was Unlove Me, definitely the most personal book I’ve written to date. Because it doesn’t fit neatly into a specific genre, I decided to release it for free on Wattpad. Just click here if you’re interested.
Nearing forty, Hannah has a damn near perfect life. She is a successful HR director of a prosperous software company. She has a lovely home, two beautiful and healthy sons as well as a handsome husband who adores her. Life, on paper, couldn’t be better. But Hannah also harbors a macabre side, and when she–on a whim–purchases a bookcase that can be converted into a coffin, she unwittingly sets a chain of events in motion that force her to confront her troubled past. . .not to mention the many and varied lies she’s told her husband. Equal parts detective mystery and literary character study, Unlove Me, at its core, tackles the age-old question that every spouse must ask him or herself: can you ever really know your partner?
A new one for me: I spent a few bucks (a very few) and ordered a one day social media promotion through Books & the Bear. I’d read and heard good things about their editing and marketing services, so I thought I’d give it a go.
Here’s what I know so far. First, their website looks great and is very easy to navigate, which is a big plus in my book. Second, they have a range of marketing services from blog tours on the high end of the price scale, to book promotion packages and social media promotions on the lower end of the spectrum. Being cheap by nature (and wanting to do an audition, of sorts), I bought the social media promotion, which was only $5. For that, you get a one-day social media blast. I’m not expecting miracles, but Books & the Bear has a very strong social media presence (about 221K on twitter), and they even provide stats for the social media promotion: reach an audience of 210,00+ with an average of 458+ clicks. Whether this will translate into any sales, who knows? But it should, I hope, provide some exposure for ALL THE DIFFERENT WAYS LOVE CAN FEEL.
Max Everhart’s latest book is a collection of short stories called All the Different Ways Love Can Feel. It is available on his Createspace storeand Amazon. Find him on Facebook and twitter.
Good news, I set up a Goodreads Giveaway for ALL THE DIFFERENT WAYS LOVE CAN FEEL. The promotion will run from June 5th until June 12th, so drop by and put your name in the hat. I’ve got (2) signed paperback editions up for grabs. And I’ll probably write each winner a personalized letter in which I ramble about whatever is on my mind; lately, I’ve been preoccupied with such topics as the most recent season of House of Cards, how pharmaceutical companies re-purpose their drugs in order to extent the life of their patents, and my son’s floppy hair. Or I might just three pages worth of complaining about the Southern humidity in June. Who knows? Gotta enter and win to find out. (Actually, if you just send me your address, I’ll write you a letter. I like writing letters.)
Making your manuscript Kindle-ready IS A PAIN! In Microsoft Word, you will need to set up your book according to very specific formatting guidelines. I did that. I took my time to do it, carefully following KDP’s instructions on the subject. My manuscript still didn’t look right on the digital proof. So I got a recommendation from Shamus Award winner M. Ruth Myers, who self-publishes the excellent Maggie Sullivan series. She suggested I use Karen Perkins, an author and editor who works in publishing, to do my Kindle conversion, which I did. It cost me $70 and was totally worth it. Karen was friendly, professional, and quick. Based out of England, Karen emailed me a little worksheet about my book, I filled it out, and two days later she sent back my book, Kindle-ready. If you’re interested, here is her contact information. I give her my highest recommendation.
Edit carefully. Yes, this is an obvious one, but so necessary. Just before I published my book, I went back and proofread/edited it one more time. And I’m glad I did. I found about three typos per story, which I was able to correct before sending my book out into the world.
Please leave me comment. Let me know what self-publishing tips (or thoughts) you have.
Max Everhart’s latest book is a collection of short stories called All the Different Ways Love Can Feel. It is available on his Createspace store and Amazon. Find him on Facebook and twitter.
On Createspace, you’ll find a tool called Cover Creator (guess what it does?), and within this tool, you’ll discover three basic options for creating your book cover. In this post, I’m going to go over those three options and briefly discuss the pros and cons of each one. Then, I’m going to explain the less-than-efficient way that I created the cover for my book, ALL THE DIFFERENT WAYS LOVE CAN FEEL.
Option #1: Use one of the free templates provided. First off, let me say Cover Creator is pretty great–it’s totally easy to use and even fun, and I’m not a tech guy. Now: the free templates. There are, as best I could tell, about 35 different templates to choose from, and within each template, you can customize the text, font, size, color, layout, and a bunch of other things, too. The templates themselves are quite generic, and I wouldn’t recommend choosing one without really customizing it. (Note: regardless of whatever template you choose, you can upload images–JPEG files–and have them be a part of the cover. They just need to be 300 DPI (dots per image) or higher. And, of course, make sure whatever image you use, you have secured the proper rights to it.)
One of the templates allows for you to, essentially, upload a completed front cover and a completed back cover. That is what I did. Well, sort of. More on that shortly.
Pros: this option is free; user-friendly; fast.
Cons: templates are generic; formatting can be tricky, especially when it comes to uploading a 300 DPI photo.
Option #2: Upload a completed book cover to Createspace. This option allows a user to make a one-sheet book cover (front, spine, back), save it as a PDF, and upload it to Cover Creator. In the beginning of my book cover creation process, I chose this option. But, despite much effort, I could never get the cover to come out exactly the way I wanted it, so I circled back to the templates and found the one where you can upload whatever front and back cover you wanted.
Pros: allows for a completely customized book cover; you control every aspect of design.
Cons: formatting is very tricky; compared to using the free templates, this option is really difficult to use (to me, at least).
Option #3: Pay Createspace for a book cover. For a customized book cover, it’ll run you $399, which, after a bit of research, I learned is pretty standard. (Note: when 280 Steps went out of business, I asked them how much they wanted for the rights to use the ALPHABET LAND book cover, which I really loved. Memory serves, they quoted me a price of $325.) I read a bit about how this option works, and, as I understand it, Createspace sends you a detailed worksheet filled with questions about your book and your preferences regarding art, font, text, etc for the book cover. They then take that information, create a cover, and you approve it (or ask for more changes/tweaks). When you’re satisfied, you do a final approval, and your cover is ready. Not sure about the timeline for the process, but, per their website, Createspace employs lots and lots of book cover designers, and they’re the experienced professionals. Honestly, it sounded all right. . .if you got the money. Me, I didn’t want to pay. Plus, I wanted to figure it out myself.
Pros: you don’t have to make your own cover; you work with experienced book designers.
Let me preface this by saying up front that I am terrible at following instructions. And taking advice. And recognizing, once I’ve already started down an untenable path, that I should start over or change lanes.
I said all that to say this: how I created my book cover is definitely not the most efficient way to do things. Consider yourself warned.
So, with my disclaimer complete, let me begin. The first thing I did was create a free account with Canva, which bills itself as “amazingly simple graphic design software.” On Canva, I created a front cover for ALL THE DIFFERENT WAYS LOVE CAN FEEL. Using one of the free templates, I found a public domain image, cropped and edited it to suit my taste, and pasted it directly onto Canva. Next, I created a back cover on Canva, this time using a different template, but one that, I felt, fit the overall ascetic I was going for. All that was easy. Took me very little time. . .
Then came the fun part. On Canva, you can share your book cover on social media and email, no problem. But if you want to save your book cover, it must be saved as a PNG (portable network graphics). Createspace will not accept PNG files, so I had to convert the PNG file to a JPEG, and in order to do that, I had to find a free converter online (click here to see the one I used.) Once that was done, I chose the free template on Cover Creator that allows you to upload a front and back cover image; I uploaded the JPEGs I’d created on Canva, and voila. Except it took several tries (I’d guess around eleven, maybe fifteen) before I got the margins and formatting approved by Createspace.