8 reasons why book promotions work and why they don’t…

Have you ever wondered why one author can have a big success promoting a book in a certain way but when you try, it doesn’t work?  There are many factors that can affect the success of a promotion campaign. Here are eight of them:

1. You are at different stages of your writing careers. What works when you’re established doesn’t work if you’re just getting started. When Big Name Author sends out a newsletter to 20,000 fans, she gets a huge boost in sales that you won’t get with your list of 300. If she runs a Facebook party she has the draw of fans who are interested specifically in her books. A new author won’t have the same success and may draw more prize seekers than fans. Likewise, Big Name Author may say that doing promotion x is a waste of time, but for a newbie, promotion x might be a necessary, even critical, first step.

2. The genre. Some genres are more popular and sell better than others. Others have a more targeted and easier to identity readership base. Certain promotions work better with certain genres. When I wrote spanking romance, blogging was a great way to promote books because the spanking community had an established online presence. Blogging for sci-fi romance doesn’t work nearly as well. Certain review sites only take certain genres. Authors of some genres are more organized and supportive of each other than in others.

3. Changes in the publishing market. The market is different now than it was a year ago and is dramatically different than it was five, seven years ago. What may have worked then doesn’t work so well now or may not even be an option an longer. For example: When Amazon first rolled out KDP Select, an author could list a book for free for five days, and when it switched back to paid, they kept their rankings. That gave them enormous visibility, resulted in a boost in sales, and they built a fan base. A lot of Indie authors doing well now got their start in the old days of KDP Select. Do a free promotion now, and your ranking drops back to what it was before it became free. Authors no longer get that extra visibility in paid sales. (Doing freebies still has merit though!). Kindle Unlimited was originally way more lucrative than it is now. So when an author tells you he/she got their big break doing x, you need to know how long ago she started doing x.

4. What goes on behind the scenes. For every visible promotional campaign, invisible actions may be happening that you don’t know about. For example: a free promotion. Author A might make a book free, get a huge number of downloads, a big increase in sales of her other books, loads of reviews, and a boost in fan base. You try it and very little happens. What you don’t see is how much advertisement Author A put into gaining visibility for that freebie. Or you may have picked different newsletters to advertise in. Some newsletters have great ROI; some have poor. The other author may have gotten a Book Bub deal.

5. Whether a book is a standalone or part of a series. You have more options to promote a series than you do a standalone. Making a first book in a series free or pricing it at 99 cents will result in more sales for the other books in the series. Make a standalone free and you don’t get the same results, even if you have other books.

6. Differences in expectations. Authors might talk about their successes, but their definition might be different from yours. If they say they tried x and it worked great, their definition of success might be more modest than yours. Some authors would be thrilled to sell 300 books a month; for others, that would be considered a “tank.”

7. Whether a book is Indie or traditionally published. There are advantages to both that are not available to the other. Authors with an e-book publisher gets the boost of being on the publisher’s website (often the home page) and featured in the publisher’s new release newsletter list, which can be quite large. This gives authors a huge advantage with new releases that an Indie doesn’t have. So while Author A and Author B might be following the same promotional plan for a new release, one author might have an extra boost that the other doesn’t have. An Indie has the flexibility to use price discounts to manage sales for the longer term. They can do free and 99 cent promotions that Trad-published authors can’t take advantage of. They can do Kindle Unlimited and take advantage of borrows.

8. Lies and Omissions. You can’t assume that everything other authors say is true or that they are telling you the whole story. They might say they promoted their successful book by writing 100 blogs, but what they really did is write 100 blogs and spend $2,000 on advertising. A successful advertising gig or promotional strategy is a lot like a good fishing hole. They’re reluctant to share it.

What other factors do you think affect the success or failure of a promotion?

 

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Backlist to the Future: Switched by Diane Burton #B2F, #TBT #ScifiRom #Humor

Backlist to the Future is a weekly Thursday feature highlighting science fiction romances from authors’ backlists.

To be notified of future Backlist to the Future posts, you can subscribe to this blog (top of the sidebar). If you’d like to submit your book for this feature, click here to get the particulars.

 

By Diane Burton

In the late 1990s, I was at a low point in my writing life. So many rejections on the contemporary romances I’d submitted. For fun, I wrote a story about an Earth girl who was kidnapped by aliens . . . by mistake. They wanted Cindy Crawford and got Amy Poehler. It was fun to write something crazy. It also brought back that wondrous feeling I had when I first started writing.

Then I tried to get it published. I had no idea Switched was a science fiction romance. Back then we called it a futuristic. Of course, none of the BIG publishers were buying futuristics. When a local publisher visited my RWA chapter’s weekend retreat, she said she’d heard from a mutual friend that I had a futuristic and asked why I hadn’t sent it to her. Her new company, ImaJinn, published paranormal, fantasy, and futuristic novels. I never got “the call”—rather an email offering to publish. My first published novel! I was ecstatic. Even more so, when she said while reading my manuscript she fell out of bed laughing. (Here it is seventeen years later and I still remember that compliment.) Switched came out in late August, 2001. Two weeks later, we all know what happened. September 11th. Elation turned to shock and horror.

Fast forward ten years. I had the rights back, and another friend suggested I use Kindle Direct Publishing to put Switched in digital format. I updated the story, added a new beginning, and changed an unpronounceable name. That’s how a new aspect of my writing career began. When asked which of my books is my favorite, I say it’s like asking which of my children is my favorite. Secretly, though, Switched is my fav because it was my first.

Switched book blurb

As if being kidnapped by aliens isn’t bad enough, Jessie Wyndom discovers they grabbed her by mistake. She wise cracks past her fear especially when she learns she was part of an experiment separating Terran twins before birth. Her twin just took Jessie’s place back in Ann Arbor, Michigan while she gets to twiddle her thumbs on an Alliance of Planets starship. The only good part is the hunky captain. Except, he’s so unemotional he could be Mr. Spock’s clone.

Captain Marcus Viator’s well-organized life is turned upside down by the free-spirited female from Earth. Problems with the starship prevent him from returning her to her home. Fate brings them together. Treachery tears them apart. Is their love strong enough to reunite them?

Book Excerpt

At the whisper of a whoosh, Jessie spun around. A portion of the wall parted to reveal a doorway. A tall man in a burgundy and silver jumpsuit strode into the room.

Oo-whee. What a hunk. Raven black hair and brows. A blade-straight nose and a strong jaw. No five o’clock shadow for this guy. He had soot-black lashes to die for and silver eyes. Hold on. Silver eyes? She shivered at their intensity. Not in fear but in a purely feminine reaction. Yowza. Get me a fan.

“My name is Captain Marcus Aurelius Viator of the Alliance starship Freedom. This is Ensign Drakus, a member of our Security team.” The tall man indicated his considerably shorter companion.

Intent on the hunk, Jessie hadn’t even noticed the little guy who climbed on a step and peered into the pedestal monitor. She stretched out her hand. “Hi, I’m—“

“Captain. I checked the coordinates in the booth.” Drakus nodded to the upper right wall. “And verified them here. She was transported from a residence outside Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA, Earth. If she is the owner, her name is Jessica Marie Wyndom. Age: twenty-nine. Occupation: repairman.”

“Transported?” She snorted. “Ri-ight. Okay, I’ll play along. But, c’mon, guys, let’s be PC. I’m a repairperson. So, is there a secret salute I should know?” She dropped her hand and glanced down at the little guy. “A troll. Nice costume, kid. Aren’t you a little young to be one of my nerdy brother’s friends?”

The man who called himself Captain Viator raised a finely-sculpted black eyebrow. “Ensign Drakus is not a child. He is a Trucanian.”

She snorted again. “From the planet Trucania, I suppose.”

“The planet Trucan,” the troll corrected with glee.

“Right. And I’ve been kidnapped by aliens.” She rolled her eyes. “Give me a break. I’m not going to fall for that gag. I recognize Tim’s handiwork here.”

“Captain, she does not believe—“

The tall man held up his hand. “It is better that she not.”

An uneasy feeling settled in the pit of her stomach. She shook it off. “I like your outfit, big guy. Pretty authentic looking.” Hobbling on one shoe, she circled the Captain, examining him. “You’re quite an improvement over the geeks Tim usually hangs with.” She stopped behind him. “Great buns.”

Buy links 

Amazon ~ Amazon UK ~ B&N ~ Kobo ~ iTunes ~ Smashwords

Author bio

Diane Burton combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction and romance into writing romantic fiction. Besides the science fiction romance Switched and Outer Rim series, she is the author of One Red Shoe, a romantic suspense, and the Alex O’Hara PI mystery series. She is also a contributor to two anthologies: Portals, Volume 2 and How I Met My Husband. Diane and her husband live in West Michigan. They have two children and three grandchildren. For more info and excerpts from her books, visit Diane’s website: http://www.dianeburton.com

Blog ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Goodreads ~ Diane’s new release alert

 

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Get PETS IN SPACE before the romantic adventure ends…#scifirom

Pets in Space, an anthology of nine science fiction romances by nine authors, will be removed from publication the end of this month and will no longer be available for purchase. This is your last chance to pick up the complete volume of action-packed, funny, romantic stories starring a hero, heroine and their pets.

AmazonBarnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo 

A look inside Pets in Space

A Mate for Matrix by S.E. Smith

A young vet assistant learns the strange wolf that was delivered to the clinic is more than it seems – especially when a sexy alien warrior shows up looking for him.

Stray by Susan Grant

When the woman he loves goes missing, an Interplanetary Marine and the scrappy street dog that he saved must use all their skills to find her.

Spark of Attraction by Cara Bristol

When his emotions are erased, a cyborg military captain doesn’t think he’ll ever feel again – until he meets a traumatized young woman and a ball of synthetic fur named Sparky.

The Real Dragon by Pauline Baird Jones

The fate of the Earth, or at least ten square miles of Texas, depend on a woman, her talking dragon, and the man she loves – if only she could remember who he was.

 Star Cruise: Stowaway by Veronica Scott

Danger surrounds the stowaway that a Cargo Master discovers with the help of the ship’s cat and her alien sidekick.

StarDog by Laurie A. Green

A complicated mission depends on the unlikely alliance between a navigator, a charming street vendor and an adorable StarDog.

Spike by Alexis Glynn Latner

An unusual pet from space offers two young people a chance at love – and helps in solving a dangerous mission plagued by sabotage.

Space Ranger by Lea Kirk

A hardened commander and a botanist discover that love can blossom from the smallest, furriest ties.

Escape Run by Carysa Locke

The fate of an entire population rests on a hunter and her psychically gifted fox, unfortunately the man who hired her might prove a fatal distraction if she can’t keep her focus.

GET A FREE CYBORG ROMANCE ~ Start here

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A free #romance, a preorder and info about my NEXT book…#freekindlebooks

Hey, spring is here and an author can’t let the grass grow under her feet. I have a lot of book news to share.

First up: Alien Mate, a brand new funny science fiction romance will be released NEXT week — April 10. If you don’t like sci-fi romance, this is book written for you. It’s a humorous mail order bride story set in the future. Preorder it now, and it will be delivered right to your reading device on Monday. If you’re still not sure if you’ll like it, you can download a FREE three-sample. Try before you buy.

Amazon US |  Amazon UK |  Amazon AU | Amazon CA

iBooks | Kobo |  Barnes & Noble

Get your FREE sample here

Not one, but TWO free books!
Stranded with the Cyborg is free on Amazon US, iBooks, Kobo and Barnes & Noble. After you get your free copy, there is a link in the book to the sequel to Stranded with the Cyborg, which you can download totally free!

Amazon US ~ iBooks ~ BN ~ Kobo

(Note: I’m working with Amazon to make Stranded with the Cyborg free in UK, CA & AU).

 

 

Coming later this year — Rescued by the Cyborg!

This is a short novella, part of the Cy-Ops Sci-if Romance series, to be published in an anthology in the fall with a group of SFR authors. If you liked Captured by the Cyborg, you’ll love this one. It has a new hero and heroine, but the latter is Faria, just like Illumina in Captured. I finished the first draft on Friday, and I’m working on revisions now. Carter’s story is still yet to come. I’m hoping to start writing it later in the year.

Prize drawing coming this month

The end of April, I’ll be participating in an awesome science fiction romance prize drawing. The prize is going to be EPIC. I can’t share the details yet, but stay tuned. You don’t want to miss this. Sign up below to be notified:

Get notified of the EPIC contest,  free book deals and new releases.

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#8Sunday: From ALIEN MATE….the aliens revealed!

Release in 10 days ~ April 10

The SS Australia has landed on the freezing cold, primitive planet. Starr and her fellow passengers file into the “reception center” to meet their alien mates.

Instead of crowding around the fire, my fellow ’net brides stood still and quiet, staring across the room at…bears. Huge, furry bears.

The aliens.

I’d never seen beings so large, their bulk enhanced by their furs, the hoods thrown back to reveal swarthy faces. My gaze was drawn to their heads. Not a horn in sight. Thick dark straight hair fell to their shoulders. Eyes and ears—thankfully, only two of each. One mouth, one nose, no scales.

Some of them smiled, and I noted with relief they didn’t have fangs or lizard-like tongues–not that I could see.

But that’s only her initial glimpse!

Book Description

I’m Starr Elizabeth Conner. Earth’s government falsely convicted me of a crime, packed me on a ship with other female felons, and sent us to Dakon, a primitive, frozen wasteland of a planet. Why? Earth needs minerals, and Dakon is desperate for females.

But I’m no barbarian’s ‘mail order bride,’ even if he is super tall, muscular, and the chief of his tribe. He doesn’t want a BBW blonde, either–it’s written all over his chiseled face. He’ll be truly angry if he ever learns what my ‘crime’ was.

I am Torg. I have waited 34 rotations for a mate of my own. With this shipment, I was sure to get a fine, sturdy mate who’ll bear me many daughters. Instead, I receive a small, curvy, pale-haired female who looks at me with anger and fear.

It is only when we ‘kiss’ that I believe things may work out between us. But I’m hearing rumors that Starr and her shipmates are law-breakers. To survive, Dakonians must obey all laws … or be exiled into the frozen wasteland.  Just when I have found her, will I have to send my mate to die?

Don’t miss this sexy, suspenseful sci-fi romance–preorder your copy of Alien Mate today!

Amazon US |  Amazon UK |  Amazon AU | Amazon CA

iBooks | Kobo |  Barnes & Noble

To visit the participating authors of Weekend Writing Warriors, click on the logo:

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Stranded with the Cyborg is FREE on #Kindle, #iBooks, #Nook & #Kobo

She wronged him once. Now they’re marooned on a hostile alien planet. Can she trust him to protect her?

Download your FREE copy of Stranded with Cyborg

Amazon US ~ iBooks ~ BN ~ Kobo

(I’m working with Amazon to get Stranded free in the UK, CA & AU)

Ten years ago Penelope Isabella Aaron had been a pain in Brock Mann’s you-know-what. Much has changed in a decade: “PIA” as he code-named her, has grown up and is about to attend her first Alliance of Planets summit conference, and Brock has been transformed into a cyborg after a near-fatal attack. Now a secret agent with Cyber Operations, a covert paramilitary organization, Brock gets called in, not when the going gets tough, but when the going gets impossible. So when he’s unexpectedly assigned to escort Penelope to the summit meeting, he balks at babysitting a prissy ambassador. But after a terrorist bombing, a crash landing on a hostile planet, and a growing attraction to his protectee, Operation: PIA may become his most impossible assignment yet.

Stranded with the Cyborg is book one in the Cy-Ops Sci-fi Romance series.

Saving the girl and the galaxy, one mission at a time

 

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Backlist to the Future: Pauline Baird Jones holds The Key…#scifirom #B2F #TBT

Backlist to the Future is a weekly Thursday feature highlighting science fiction romances from authors’ backlists.

To be notified of future Backlist to the Future posts, you can subscribe to this blog (top of the sidebar). If you’d like to submit your book for this feature, click here to get the particulars.

 

By Pauline B. Jones

A long time ago, in a writer’s life far, far away…

It actually was a long time ago and somewhat far away, that I got an Idea for a story, and being me, I wrote it, even though it didn’t fit with anything else I’d written. It was an action adventure romance that just happened to take place in outer space.

The words science fiction romance and space opera never occurred to me. I didn’t write science. I had barely passed it in high school. (Probably because I was writing science fiction then, too.) So I wrote this not-science fiction romance book and sent it my then-editor with much trepidation.

She loved it and pointed out that it was a Big Ass Book (hence forth called the BAB) but she couldn’t see how to make it shorter. So a BAB it was and a BAB it remained. In time, they released it into the wider world and reviewers started calling it space opera and science fiction romance.

This was, honestly, my first clue I’d changed genres.

Once I’d picked myself up off the floor, I realized I loved making up science and loved writing space adventures. Readers liked the book, too, and begged for more stories in the series. So one book turned into five (two more books turning into BABs), and a small short story collection.

I’m particularly excited because this year I’ll be adding more adventures to the Project Enterprise series. A new ship, new characters and brand new adventures. (There is also a connected series called Uneasy Future, set in future New Orleans. You can find out more on my website.)

If you haven’t read the series, now would be a good time to catch up!

The Key blurb

The key will unlock more than an unknown civilization; it will define who one woman will become….

Sara Donovan, an elite member of Project Enterprise, signs up for a mission that will take her far beyond the safety of her galaxy and into one torn apart by warfare. Shot down, she finds herself on an inhospitable planet with an alien resistance fighter who has a few secrets of his own.

Kiernan Fyn is a member of a resistance group called the Ojemba. Kiernan has enough of his own troubles without adding a mysterious alien female searching for answers to the list. He is given little choice when Sara is targeted by three separate forces believing she has the key to a long lost civilization – a key they are determined to possess.

Together, Sara and Kiernan must avoid capture, and deal with their growing attraction for each other, while they search for a mysterious, hidden city on a planet that brings Sara closer to understanding her baffling abilities and her mother’s past.

Don’t miss out on the excitement in this Independent Book Bronze Medal and Dream Realm Awards Winner! Join Sara and Kieran today as they discover where the key is hidden and stop those that would use the secrets left behind by a lost civilization for their own agenda.

Book Excerpt

“Captain?” Xever’s brows arched in surprise. “You are a soldier?”

“I’m a fighter puke—a pilot, sir.”

Was there a slight edge in her smooth voice?

Xever looked puzzled.

“Our women do not have to serve as soldiers.”

“None of us have to serve. We all volunteered and are proud and happy to defend our country.”

Oh yeah, there was an edge to her voice.

Xever’s smile got a little superior, Fyn thought, and felt Sara’s hand clench slightly in his.

“Why would any woman choose to be a soldier?”

“Some pukes in a movie said it best. I joined to travel, meet new people…and kill them.”

Kilburn and the colonel were, unfortunately, taking drinks right then and both choked it back into their glasses. Theirs weren’t the only choking sounds either. Fyn bit back a chuckle.

“What did you say?” Xever’s eyes got wide.

Fyn couldn’t see Sara, but he somehow knew her brows had arched.

“You wear the uniform of a soldier, sir. I don’t have to tell you that a soldier’s primary mission is to break things and kill the enemy.”

He nodded. “That is true, though I have never heard it put quite that way.”

“That’s not our—” Kilburn started.

Fyn didn’t see Sara look at him. He just saw the result.

Kilburn’s eyes widened and his jaw worked a couple of times, but no sound came out.

Dang. Fyn hoped he was never dead to Sara.

Halliwell was trying not to smile.

“I understand female pilots are rather rare around here?” Sara lifted her drink, watching him over the top as she took a sip.

“They are unheard of. We treasure and protect our women.”

“So there are no women on your vessel?”

Xever’s eyes widened a bit. “Well, we do have a few for…” he stopped, looking uncomfortable now.

She shifted slightly and Fyn could see the gently inquiring look on her face.

“For…?” She prompted him, a steely note to her voice that said she wasn’t going to let him off the hook.

Buy links

Amazon   iBooks     Nook     GooglePlay     Kobo

Pauline never liked reality, so she writes books. She likes to wander among the genres, rampaging like Godzilla, because she does love peril mixed in her romance. You can find out more about her books (and get a free story for subscribing to her newsletter) at: paulinebjones.com

Website   Facebook   Twitter    Amazon Author Page    Bookbub

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Reflections on sports, humiliation and science fiction romance…

There are good athletes and average athletes, and then there’s me: athletically challenged.  No matter how bad someone is at sports–I’m worse. Junior high and high school PE was a humiliating experience.

I was the kid nobody wanted on their teams.

I sucked. I couldn’t hit—or catch–a softball to save my life, and I was afraid of hurting my fingers in volleyball. In sports like football or basketball, I was ignored by my teammates. If I happened to be in the right position, nobody ever passed me the ball.

The worst part was choosing teams. I was always the last one picked. Never third to last. Never second to last. Last. Every single time. Everyone considered me the worst of the worst, and nobody wanted me on their team. I knew it, everyone else knew it and that knowledge played out in a very public way.

I hated PE.

(Here’s some irony: I got Bs in high school P.E. while some of the really talented athletes got Cs. The gym teacher graded on “participation” so I made sure I looked like I was doing something when she glanced my way, AND she deducted points from your grade if you didn’t wear appropriate gym clothes. Some of the good athletes forgot their gym clothes a lot.  I always remembered. I survived high school PE by dressing appropriately!).

I drew on the humiliating experience of high school PE in writing Alien Mate, my new male order bride science fiction romance to be released April 10 (currently available on preorder).

Heroine Starr Conner is falsely convicted of a crime and is sent to another planet to become an alien’s mate. The aliens decide to do a “schoolyard pick” to choose their brides:

An excerpt:

“Once you have agreed to the selection, you will join your mate and travel with him to his camp,” Enoki said. “Let us begin. Number one!”

A tall man with black eyes and hair flowing to the hood of his fur—which pretty much described them all—bounded forward. His gaze zeroed in on a pretty woman with olive skin and almond-shaped eyes. Callie, I recalled. Embezzlement. “My name is Krok. I choose you.”

Callie smiled, fluttering her lashes. Some people were born flirts. “I would like that.”

He held out his hand, and she took it and told him her name. As he led her away, she waved with her free hand. “Bye, ladies! Good luck!”

“Bye, Callie!” We waved.

The farewell hit me with a thud, and I glanced at Tessa and Andrea. We’d become friends. Would we ever see each other again? How far apart were the camps? And what did they mean by camp? That sounded…primitive.

Number two approached Andrea. “You are very beautiful. I’m Groman. I would be honored if you would consent to be my mate.”

She sized him up, her scrutiny just shy of a visual rectal exam. For as long as it took her, I almost felt sorry for the guy. I could see his confidence slip with every passing second. Finally, she nodded. “I agree.” Andrea grabbed me in a hug. “We’ll find a way to meet up,” she whispered in my ear. “Remember, his name is Groman.”

“Groman,” I repeated, hugging her tight. A lump formed in my throat. “I hope you get what you came for, Andrea.”

“You, too. Good luck!”

I was looking for my appeal to come through so I could return to Terra.

She embraced Tessa next and then left with her alien beau.

“Number three!” Enoki called.

No one bounded forward. The men glanced at each other. Several checked their chits as if they might have the wrong number.

“Number three?” Enoki called. “Torg?”

“Torg is not here,” one man said.

Enoki shook his head. “Very well. He can wait until the end, then. Number four!”

A grinning alien jumped forward.

One by one, women and aliens paired up. Nobody refused anybody. Tessa was chosen tenth by a man named Loka. “Take off your hood so they can see your face,” she whispered in my ear when we hugged good-bye.

My chest tightened as she skipped away with her tall alien squeeze. They reminded me of newlyweds. The only thing this party lacked was confetti. And cake. I wished I had some. The selection process had triggered an urge to stress eat. Out of fifty women, Andrea had been chosen second and Tessa tenth. An irrational jealousy knotted my stomach, and the beginnings of humiliation heated my face.

Eleven. Twelve. Thirteen. Fourteen. Taking Tessa’s advice, I pushed off the hood. Twenty-five, twenty-six. Not a single alien glanced in my direction. Thirty-one. Thirty-two. I was no raving beauty, but I rated on par with at least some of the remaining women. I had nice eyes. Good skin. A cute nose. Sure, I carried excess baggage around my hips and thighs, but in the disgusting, smelly fur they couldn’t tell! We were all bulky blobs. What was wrong with these aliens? Forty-five. I crossed my arms, tucked my still-freezing hands under my armpits, and glowered. Fine.

Forty-seven, forty-eight.

Last one. Forty-nine strode up to the other woman not chosen. “I’m so relieved,” he said. “I worried someone else would claim you before my number came up. Would you be my mate?”

Smarmy asshat. My throat thickened, and I yanked the hood over my head. If I could have crawled into a snowdrift, I would have. These aliens, desperate for women, had passed me over—every single one of them. I huddled in my fur and pressed my tongue to the roof of my mouth to keep from crying. Only me and Enoki, the head alien, remained.

He cleared his throat. “By default, Torg will be yours.”

Why don’t they want Starr? Where is Torg? Read Alien Mate to find out!

Book Description

I’m Starr Elizabeth Conner. Earth’s government falsely convicted me of a crime, packed me on a ship with other female felons, and sent us to Dakon, a primitive, frozen wasteland of a planet. Why? Earth needs minerals, and Dakon is desperate for females.

But I’m no barbarian’s ‘mail order bride,’ even if he is super tall, muscular, and the chief of his tribe. He doesn’t want a BBW blonde, either–it’s written all over his chiseled face. He’ll be truly angry if he ever learns what my ‘crime’ was.

I am Torg. I have waited 34 rotations for a mate of my own. With this shipment, I was sure to get a fine, sturdy mate who’ll bear me many daughters. Instead, I receive a small, curvy, pale-haired female who looks at me with anger and fear.

It is only when we ‘kiss’ that I believe things may work out between us. But I’m hearing rumors that Starr and her shipmates are law-breakers. To survive, Dakonians must obey all laws … or be exiled into the frozen wasteland.  Just when I have found her, will I have to send my mate to die?

Don’t miss this sexy, suspenseful sci-fi romance–preorder your copy of Alien Mate today!

Amazon US |  Amazon UK |  Amazon AU | Amazon CA

iBooks | Kobo |  Barnes & Noble

Want to try before you buy?

Download the FREE three-chapter ALIEN MATE SAMPLER on Book Funnel.

 

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#8Sunday: Getting ready to meet their alien mates…

Available for preorder

The SS Australia, the ship ferrying female felons to Dakon, has landed, and the women are about to meet their new mates. We’re in the heroine’s POV (Starr Conner).

“The Dakonians have provided you with warm coats,” the coordinator said, “form a line, please and come up and get one.”

Grimacing, I accepted the coat, slinging the smelly thing over my arm, holding it away like it was a dead animal. Which it was.

“How do I look?” Tessa pivoted. The fur covered her from head to knees–only her hands, face, and a few strands of brunette hair were visible.

“Like an alien,” I said. In the fur, she was indistinguishable from the Dakonian in the orientation video I’d finally watched.

She mimicked horns with her index fingers pressed to her temples. “How about now?”

Book Description

I’m Starr Elizabeth Conner. Earth’s government falsely convicted me of a crime, packed me on a ship with other female felons, and sent us to Dakon, a primitive, frozen wasteland of a planet. Why? Earth needs minerals, and Dakon is desperate for females.

But I’m no barbarian’s ‘mail order bride,’ even if he is super tall, muscular, and the chief of his tribe. He doesn’t want a BBW blonde, either–it’s written all over his chiseled face. He’ll be truly angry if he ever learns what my ‘crime’ was.

I am Torg. I have waited 34 rotations for a mate of my own. With this shipment, I was sure to get a fine, sturdy mate who’ll bear me many daughters. Instead, I receive a small, curvy, pale-haired female who looks at me with anger and fear.

It is only when we ‘kiss’ that I believe things may work out between us. But I’m hearing rumors that Starr and her shipmates are law-breakers. To survive, Dakonians must obey all laws … or be exiled into the frozen wasteland.  Just when I have found her, will I have to send my mate to die?

Don’t miss this sexy, suspenseful sci-fi romance–preorder your copy of Alien Mate today!

 

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Backlist to the Future: Dementional by Tonya Cannariato #scifirom #B2F #TBT

Backlist to the Future is a weekly Thursday feature highlighting science fiction romances from authors’ backlists.

To be notified of future Backlist to the Future posts, you can subscribe to this blog (top of the sidebar). If you’d like to submit your book for this feature, click here to get the particulars.

 

By Tonya Cannariato

I wrote this book as part of my second winning effort at NaNoWriMo in 2011. There had been news coverage at the time on the order of Chicken Little’s “the sky is falling” with the advent of the opening of the Large Hadron Collider in Cern, so my way of exploring what a disaster arrogant scientists could unwittingly create was to write this story. The science of my novel is dubious—how could any one man lose a Higgs Boson? But since Higgs Bosons have also been called “God particles,” are the mechanism for atoms to accrete mass, and I have long been interested in the intersection of the sub-atomic world and what enlightened people call Spirit, this seemed an ideal playground for churning out what to me at the time were a lot of words.

Since both of these topics are rather esoteric, it’s never surprised me that the novel hasn’t reached a wider audience, but I had a lot of fun letting my imagination run while I was writing it. And those few who are fans, are super-fans, claiming this is my best, most interesting work, and it really deserves a sequel. Or at least an answer to what happened to Petal. I’m still kicking those ideas around, though when I conceived of this story, I had meant for it to be a standalone.

Dementional blurb

Mark Inman has two loves: particle physics and Sarah. She agrees to become his wife at the same time his experiment to find the Higgs boson goes off the rails. Journey with Mark while his existence melts and reforms in unpredictable ways as the veils between realities thin. His exploration of the minutiae of quantum physics builds a fascinating tapestry of alternate universes. His search for survival, and the search for meaning and what is real, drive Mark as he experiences lives he never dreamed possible. His only touchstones: find Sarah and find his way home.

Book Excerpt

I started this adventure as a research scientist, carrying on where the Montauk experiments seemed to have failed; deep in the bowels of a remote naval station. The government didn’t want to risk civilian exposure a second time, given the proliferation of ghost stories, sightings, and conspiracy theories after that early experi­ment.

Even the Large Hadron Collider was deemed too public for this kind of research, so, with typical efficiency, some bureaucrat chose a random mountain in the Denali chain. My whole department got shifted to the 63rd latitude—after a few years of bickering and building. In the meantime, my research showed great promise. Focusing multiple lasers on a single point could give us access to alternate dimensions. We were now able to strengthen our defensive capacity without resorting to more offense. That was the theory, anyway.

I was happy enough to be doing something in line with my pacifist inclinations, though it was a lot to ask of Sarah to move out to the wilds of Alaska—even if we were within 100 miles of Anchorage, which had a population of a third of a million people. She took the request in stride, though, and decided her creative self would be satisfied by learning local crafts from the native population.

Life was good—or at least on something of a normal/expected track. I was young enough that when I asked her to marry me, I was all nerves and thumbs, but being on a government payroll and housed within government apartments, I had the extra cash to be able to be extravagant with my proposal. I felt lucky when she said yes.

It wasn’t long after her commitment, though, that my life started feeling like it was the storyline for a Twilight Zone episode. At first, I put down the missing papers and unexpected experiment results to distractions related to our wedding planning, but even Sarah started noticing a change in the atmosphere in the housing complex.

In hindsight, I suppose we were gullible to assume my superiors would resolve the situation—or even that it would be possible to close the Pandora’s Box we had opened with our early tests. But I was trained as a scientist, and had supreme faith in the scientific method. I still wonder if the team had had more people of faith—or even just naïveté—whether I would be on this dark path.

Richards, my boss, while always a methodical and brilliant man, was careful to keep us younger set away from anything that smacked of spirit—let alone a collaborative esprit de corps. His answer to ev­erything was competition and more layers of secrecy. I don’t think I know what any of the other members of the team were experiment­ing with in the same lab, let alone in the same complex. Maybe there were quantum entanglements we should have taken into ac­count in our calculations. But those thoughts don’t help me put my world back together, nor track down the rift I need to plug, to put me back where I belong.

Sarah was worried enough to ask whether we should postpone our nuptials, but I didn’t want to wait. She might still change her mind. She was that supportive, loving, once-in-a-lifetime mate for me, and I wanted the world to know it. So on a bright June morning, true to all wedding clichés, we exchanged our vows in a small local church in front of a handful of colleagues and friends. We planned a visit back to the DC area to give our parents, who were older anyway, a chance to show us off. Being only children, we decided to be selfish and keep the main ceremony small and private. Without the weight of extra eyes, I was more comfortable sharing my awe at Sarah’s agreement to join her life with mine.

As it turned out, I wish they could have been there, because while the ceremony was beautiful, something about the collection of colleagues assembled started the sub-atomic changes that are pushing me further and further from my birth dimension. I never got a chance to see them once I was wed.

Buy links

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Author bio

A voracious reader since she was a toddler, and an ordained spiritualist, Tonya Cannariato has now presided over the marriage of her love of reading and her love of writing. She’s lived a nomadic life, following first her parents in their Foreign Service career through Africa, Europe, and Asia, and then her own nose criss-crossing America as she’s gotten old enough to make those choices for herself. She’s currently based in the Washington, DC suburbs with her four loves: her husband and three Siberian Huskies. She suspects her Huskies of mystical alchemy with their joyous liberation of her muse and other magical beings for her inspiration. She loves to sleep, to watch her interesting dreams, some of which are now finding new life in written form.

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