Posts Tagged ‘great books’

Amazon Kindle Canadian Literature TopSeller list, Oct. 14, 2012

Posted on: October 14th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

BIG NEWS!

3 of the Top 5 spots on Amazon Kindle’s list for Canadian Literature are being held today by Donna Carrick’s novels!

#1 – The First Excellence

#3 – The Noon God

#5 – Gold And Fishes

At Carrick Publishing, we’re proud to bring you only the best in quality books and e-books. Check out all our titles, for your reading pleasure.

And don’t forget to visit our “e-book Promotions” page, for frequent updates on Free e-books!

Carrick Publishing Presents… EFD1: Starship Goodwords, available Sept. 14/12

Posted on: September 15th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

Ta da!

It is with great pride that we bring you the first in our series of ‘cross-genre’ anthologies, EFD1: Starship Goodwords, featuring more than 20 of today’s talented authors.

Now available at Amazon for your Kindle or Kindle App.

Compiled and edited by Donna and Alex Carrick, this collection includes: Mystery, Crime, Flash Fiction, Poetry, Literary, Paranormal, Science Fiction and Humor.

There’s something for every reader in this exceptional sampling.

Contributors by Genre:

Foreword, Donna Carrick
Crime Fiction, Catherine Astolfo, Family Recipe
Crime Fiction, Donna Carrick, Corner Store
Crime Fiction, Alexander Galant, Remember Me
Crime Fiction, Joan, O’Callaghan, Stooping to Conquer
Flash Fiction/Crime, M.H. Callway, Incompetence Kills
Flash Fiction/Crime, Sylvia Maultash Warsh, Family Values
Flash Fiction/Literary, Kathleen Bjoran, Giving Thanks
Flash Fiction/Literary/Humor, Melodie Campbell, The Battle of Beavercoat
Poetry, A.C. Cargill, Treasures in the Attic
Poetry, Rosalind Croucher, Dance
Poetry, Sheila Jeffries, Finding Calm
Poetry, Michael C. Slater, Murmur
Persuasive Article, Paulissa Kipp, Fostering Humanity Manifesto
Literary Fiction, Melanie Robertson-King, Cole’s Notes
Literary Fiction, Tracy L. Ward, Running Parallel
Paranormal/Fantasy, Susan M. Botich, The Minstrel’s Spell
Paranormal/Horror, Dayna Leigh Cheser, The Legend of Corkscrew Swamp
Paranormal/Horror, Troy Lambert, The Mighty Pen
Paranormal/Science Fiction/Humour, Ira Nayman, The Predator’s Prerogative
Humor/Fiction, Alex Carrick, My Wife and I Argue over our Travel Plans (Hey, I’m not Cheap but…)
Humor/Anecdote, John Thompson, “Oh, Okay, and the Good Soldier Schweik”

Announcing “Beyond the Excerpt Flight Deck” — an opportunity for members only…

Posted on: June 24th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

And now, our announcement as promised! This will be of interest only to members of the Excerpt Flight Deck FaceBook group:

As soon as our group reaches 200 members, we’ll set a date to begin accepting submissions to the first of a series of Kindle anthologies designed to feature authors from across all genres.

Formal guidelines will be established and set out here at our Carrick Publishing site.

We’re hoping to include a cross-section of today’s writers, both fiction and non-fiction, prose and poetry.

This series will be intended to introduce readers to the vibrant array of authors they might never otherwise encounter. Each author will be footnoted with a brief bio, Amazon author page and/or website link, and editor’s note about his/her use of genre.

This ambitious project is possible thanks to the experience Carrick Publishing has acquired through our own literary endeavors and the work we’ve done for our Associated Authors in the new but expanding e-publishing field.

You can view our Associated Authors page here at our site.

If you or your friends might be interested, be sure to spread the word. This exciting opportunity will be open at no cost to EFD group members only.

Thank you –and please keep the outstanding samples of your work coming!
Donna & Alex

Join us on June 3, 10am, for our Sunday Morning Workshop: Building Your Platform ~ Social Media for Authors

Posted on: May 27th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

ARE YOU ATTENDING THE BLOODY WORDS XII CONFERENCE IN TORONTO, JUNE 1-3?

Register now for our Sunday Morning Workshop
at the Bloody Words 2012 Conference
Toronto Downtown Hilton Hotel
June 3, 10am – 1pm
Building your Platform ~ Social Media for Authors
Donna & Alex Carrick will present an interactive,
hand’s on session.
Learn more…

A $20. hotel WiFi fee will be charged.

Attendees should bring along a netbook, laptop, iPad or tablet, Smartphone, or any WiFi connectable device to follow along with the workshop coverage.

There is a $20 charge for this workshop to cover the Hilton’s charge per person for WiFi. You can pay by Paypal. (The Paypal
button is on the Workshops page on the Bloody Words XII Website You can find the Website through your Search Engine.)
Pay and preregister for this workshop by sending an email to registrar@bloodywords2012.com stating whom the payment is for. We will be checking badges at the door.

Deadline for registration is May 25.

A “Great News” Week at Carrick Publishing…

Posted on: May 19th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

I can honestly say there are times when Alex and I have no idea where this roller-coaster writing life will carry us next.

Of course we have goals and plans — you can’t set off on a journey like this without some kind of road-map. And yet hardly a week goes by without an exciting detour, an adventure that both surprises and delights us.

We were still riding high from last Sunday’s interview with The Platform “Voice” John Rakestraw and his co-hosts Liz Borino and A.T. Russell. The questions were insightful, and we had a blast exploring the world of Indie Publishing with that fantastic group of industry leaders.

Then, out of the blue, on Monday we discovered that Alex’s personal blogsite, www dot alexcarrick dot com, was named last week’s Website of the Week by Writer’s Digest.

What an incredible honour!


Here’s what Writer’s Digest had to say about Alex’s site:

Alex Carrick’s blog is clean, crisp and entertaining. His stories range from humorous to thought-provoking, making it a fun read.

—Writer’s Digest Writing Website of the Week, May 14, 2012

The Platform “Voice” John Rakestraw~ BlogTalkRadio, on Indie Publishing

Posted on: May 13th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

The Platform “Voice” ~ BlogTalkRadio host John Rakestraw and co-hosts Liz Borino and A.T. Russell speak with Donna and Alex Carrick on the topic of Indie Publishing.

Tune in for the Mother’s Day edition of The Voice:

Listen to internet radio with John Rakestraw Talks on Blog Talk Radio

Guest Author Troy Lambert (Redemption) ~ Twenty Years in a Day:

Posted on: May 5th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

“Dude, your book was great! I read it in a day. I started yesterday morning, and I didn’t go to bed until I was done last night.” A great compliment that drove a nail into my heart. It took me nine months to write that novel and you read it in one day? And really the story was twenty years in the making.

As I sat down to write this I realize that the story is much older than that. True I first penned the story of Arthur Creed and his descent into insanity twenty years ago. It was poorly written and unpublishable—partly because of timing and partly because as I found out later, it wasn’t finished. Suddenly in my home office one sultry morning Arthur Creed met Samuel Elijah Johnson and a novel was born. The story was finally complete.

Of course this is a simplified version of the events that took place for this work to come together. Arthur’s story is my reaction—my answer to my upbringing. I think I wrote it in a fit of rebellion originally—almost a “if you thought I was bad before check this out” story. I put it away after a couple of rejection slips and after letting only a few friends read it. They said it was good, but some looked sideways at me as if to say “that is totally screwed up.” It was the best compliment they could have paid. I knew I was screwed up so writing a screwed up story seemed a logical step in my journey.

Since then I have learned to reconcile my past with who I am as a person and as a writer. I was writing non-fiction making decent money and working part time at a museum when I decided I should embrace fiction—what I really wanted to write. So I compiled some short stories and put together Broken Bones, a collection I released last year. It met with great success and minor criticism. At the same time I was writing Redemption.


I learned and moved on. Redemption is a much more tightly written and edited story. Reading it you will discover what church and prison have in common. You will find that to find Redemption and make wrongs right again sometimes it takes more than you ever thought it would. Sometimes you have to go farther than you could have imagined.

I am now working on a sequel tentatively titled Confession. I hope you enjoy the journey of Redemption as much as I have. It has been a much longer one for me than it will be for you. Read it in a day? It is okay to tell me. After all I may have saved you a twenty year journey.

Troy’s work may be found at:
www dot troylambertwrites dot com
You may contact the author directly:
Author at troylambertwrites dot com.

Look for Redemption on Amazon, Goodreads, and at your favorite local bookseller.

Today’s Author: Building a platform, Part III- Twitter Basics

Posted on: March 15th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

Ask not for whom the bird Tweets. It tweets for you…

One of the questions I’m asked by fellow authors is: How can I build a strong network on Twitter?

By now you’ve set up accounts with several of the major Social Media forums. (See Building a Platform, Part I: Blogging and Part II: Networking .) You’ve added your Twitter link to your Email signature, your Website and any other on-line pages you maintain.

You’ve designed an appealing Twitter page, including a bio that links to your blog, your Website, or directly to your book selling page.

You’re shooting 140 character pearls into the Twitter-verse, taking care to present your most interesting self in every Tweet.

The challenge remains: How to build a following? Without that key ingredient, we’re just “Tweeting in the wind”.

Here are a few ideas that may help you connect with folks on Twitter:

1- Interaction

A handful of Twitter users may be ‘bots’(Robotic Tweeters), but most twitter accounts are manned by real individuals with specific reasons for being there. Behind those Avatars are human beings.

If you visit the Twitter pages of the people you follow, you’ll easily identify what those reasons are. You can make one general assumption: Almost everyone on Twitter is looking to connect.

So the key is to “connect”. If you follow Crystaline Blythe, let her know you’re following her. Send a “Nice to meet you @CrystalineBlythe” tweet to Crys. She’ll appreciate the mention and will be far more likely to follow you back. She may even respond to you by saying “Nice to meet you, too, @Joe_Writer727”. This mention will be visible to all of Crys’s followers, which raises your prominence on Twitter.

2- RTs or ReTweets

Pay attention to the people you follow by viewing your Twitter Stream on a regular basis. If you see a Tweet you find interesting, Retweet it. The sender will appreciate it and will be far more likely to pay attention to your Tweets.

3- Identify yourself.

Most people are reluctant to follow ‘bots’, or accounts that serve the sole purpose of high-powered selling or even spamming. These bots are often easy to spot on Twitter. They may not sport a proper avatar, displaying only the Twitter avatar, the egg or the bird. Even bots cleverly designed with a proper avatar may still have common features. The bio can be revealing, or you may notice they are following 1 and have 1100 followers, or they’ve posted only a small handful of tweets.

Take care not to dress like a ‘bot’. Design your page to reflect your personality. As a writer, your bio will say something like: Joe Writer is the author of the Nellie McDuff mystery series, available at Acme E-Books. Visit www.joewriter.blog.com Be sure to include the link.

Use an avatar. People won’t follow you without one. The avatar can be a book cover (popular and useful), a character image, or a photo of you, the author.

Your own image is always your best choice, especially when you are first building your Twitter presence. People want to know who you are. Give them something real to connect with.

4- Exclusive or Inclusive? That is the question.

When faced with a decision regarding whom to follow, each of us will quickly build our own criteria. For example, I won’t follow pornographic sites or tooth whitener ‘bots’. However, I will follow most anyone in the arts or literary industry. I learn a lot from these wonderful people, so why not follow their Tweets?

I ask myself: Is this someone I’ll be comfortable interacting with? It doesn’t matter to me where they’re located or what walk of life they come from. So long as I’ll be comfortable interacting with them, I go ahead and follow back. After all, you never know who will give you the most pleasure. It’s best to keep an open mind.

If they Tweet links to pornography or violence, I’ll unfollow in a flash and block the Tweeter.

5- Why follow writers?

We’ve all heard the arguments. What’s the point of following fellow writers? Will they buy our books? Where are readers hiding?

Joseph Konrath made this point with eloquence in a recent blog post. He reminded us that Social Media is just that, social. It can’t be relied on to sell books. Nor should it be.

In our changing literary landscape, the people with the greatest vested interest in encouraging the general populace to read are your fellow writers. They are bright, enthusiastic and knowledgeable people, well worth knowing.

And yes, they may buy a book or two, occasionally.

Their true value, though, lies in the community they share. I strongly encourage you to approach Twitter with that in mind. In my opinion, this bonding between writers and other artists is one of the unexpected gems forged from the Social Media experience.

I’ve learned a great deal from these people, including how to sell books.

Where are tomorrow’s readers likely to be found? Will they frequent bookstores? Some may still venture there, but the recent unfortunate closings of the brick and mortar stores seems to belie that assumption.

My guess is that tomorrow’s readers will reach out for a multi-media experience. They’ll discover their new favourite writers through talking with friends on Social Media platforms, including Twitter and FaceBook. They’ll read these books electronically, on their Kindles, iPads or even on their phones.

Although a Twitter presence may not sell a gazillion books, if we’re going to connect with the readers of tomorrow, the most likely avenue will be through building a sound on-line platform.

~ Donna Carrick, Carrick Publishing, author of The First Excellence, winner of the 2011 Indie Book Event Award for excellence in fiction.

In Today’s Author: Building a platform, Part IV, we’ll take a closer look Twitter’s rules and how to successfully manage the “follower/following” ratios.

Join me for this series at: www.carrickpublishing.com.

Attending Bloody Words 2012? Hope to see you at our workshop on Building A Writer’s Platform through Social Media.

Donna is an executive member of CrimeWriters of Canada and the author of three mystery novels as well as 2 short story anthologies. Her titles include: The First Excellence (winner of the 2011 Indie Book Event Award), Gold And Fishes, The Noon God, Sept-Iles and other places and Knowing Penelope.

Donna blogs regularly at www.onfreedomroad.com , www.carrickpublishing.com , www.donnacarrick.com and http://donnacarrick.blogspot.com/

Today’s Author: Building a platform, Part II- Networking

Posted on: February 26th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing 1 Comment

So, you’ve got your blog running at full steam… (See Today’s Author: Part I at Carrick Publishing — Blogging.)

You’ve been toiling for weeks, churning out your most interesting thoughts, spinning tales into cyber-space.

What’s that you say? Your site had three hits yesterday? Two of them were your mother?

How do we entice readers? You’ve got a great topic. You’ve used images to heighten the visual appeal of your page.

With today’s Social Media tools as close as your nearest WiFi connection, there’s no excuse for toiling in isolation.

Some of the popular outlets for writers include: StumbledUpon, DIGG, CrimeSpace, GrapeVine and GoodReads.

In our experience, there are 4 primary Social Media forums that can help you connect with people who share your passion:

1- Twitter is loaded with potential connections who are waiting to hear from you. They won’t all share your interest in WollySprocket Handbooks, but Twitter offers easy-to-use tools to find your fellow WollySprocket enthusiasts.

The key advantage Twitter offers is its fast, fluid nature. In 140 characters or less, you can josh, share a blog link with your followers, post a photo of your new grandchild or ask for advice.

2- FaceBook is another great forum for finding friends who read, write, publish and are eager to discuss books and e-books.

One of the things I like most about FaceBook is the ability to easily check in on family members, friends and fellow-artists/writers to see what they’re up to.

3- Google + is a newcomer to the Social Media whirlwind, but is quickly making a name for itself, especially among the younger crowd.

One of Google +’s claims to fame is its easy access and connectivity throughout the Google Empire.

4- LinkedIn is a quieter and often overlooked forum. We think of LinkedIn as a professional network, where we can connect with colleagues in our “day jobs”.

For writers, LinkedIn is so much more. It’s full of Writing and Publishing Industry groups, where seasoned professionals gather to chew the fat on the hottest topics of the day.

Joseph Konrath hit the nail on the head with his recent blog post: The Value Of Publicity (A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing, Wednesday, January 18, 2012). Konrath points out that, despite our best efforts, it’s tough selling books.

Even the hottest publicity does not always pan out in terms of heightened book sales.

Social Media may not drive high volume sales. However, it will start your sales-engine. And, more important, it can connect you with others in our industry. These people talk ‘books’, all day every day.

If we ever hope to master this industry of ours, it will be through the friends we make as we build our platform.

**

In Today’s Author: Building a platform, Part III, we’ll focus our discussion on one of the most beloved and writer-friendly forums out there: Twitter. We’ll look at using its Search capabilities to find folks who share our passion.

Join me for this series at: www.carrickpublishing.com .

Attending Bloody Words 2012? Hope to see you at our workshop on Building A Writer’s Platform through Social Media.

Donna is an executive member of CrimeWriters of Canada and the author of three mystery novels as well as a short story anthology. Her titles include: The First Excellence (winner of the 2011 Indie Book Event Award), Gold And Fishes, The Noon God, Sept-Iles and other places and Knowing Penelope.

Donna blogs regularly at www.onfreedomroad.com , www.carrickpublishing.com , www.donnacarrick.com and http://donnacarrick.blogspot.com/ .

Today’s Author: Building a platform, Part I

Posted on: January 28th, 2012 by Carrick Publishing

Photo by Deb GrayUnderstatement alert!: The literary world is changing….

Just thought I’d throw that out, by way of introducing my topic: Platform building.

Sounds simple, right? We all want to be heard, to have our words reach readers in a meaningful way. With writers of every stripe rushing into Social Media, how can a lone writer hope to be noticed?

Before we can discuss how-to build a platform, we need to understand what “platform” means. For purposes of this article, “platform” is the building blocks we stand upon in order to be heard.

In other words: The Platform is a representation of Who We Are.

Sounds basic? You’d be amazed how many people struggle with finding a public persona they are comfortable with.

The key is simpler than most will imagine. It hearkens back to the earliest advice many of us received from our parents, the first time we trudged off to school:

Just be yourself.

If we are always “ourselves”, we’ll never have to remember who we’re supposed to be. The people we network with will respond to the integrity they perceive in us.

Ok, we’re all poised, ready to “Be Ourselves” in public life. Now what?

The “Nitty Gritty”: Even if you can’t afford a Web Designer and haven’t got a book to sell, that’s no reason to hold back. The time to plant those on-line footprints is now. For writers, it’s never too early to start “Building Your Platform”.

Blogging is a great place to begin our public adventure. What do writers do? We write!

There is no better way to hone our skills than exposing our work early…and often… to the reading public.

No readers? No problem. Write anyway. Your blog will become the cornerstone in your efforts to build a platform.

Tips for successful blogging:

1- Know your topic. Your blog should offer a representation of you as a writer. Your topics may follow a theme, or may change according to your interests. In either case, visitors should always leave your blog with a better understanding of Who You Are.
2- Update regularly. Whatever schedule you decide on, stick with it. Call it a ‘writer’s exercise routine.’ As your readership grows, you’ll enjoy repeat traffic, but only if you update.
3- Be visual. Readers today are changing. Treat them to images related to your theme, rather than huge blocks of dry, uninterrupted text.
4- Have fun. If you’re enjoying the process, your readers will know it.
5- Be yourself!

Once you have your blog in place, the next step will be “Reaching Readers”!

In Today’s Author: Building a platform, Part II, we’ll discuss those first steps into Social Media, with emphasis on growing your readership.

Join me for this series at: www.carrickpublishing.com .

Attending Bloody Words 2012? Hope to see you at our workshop on Building A Writer’s Platform through Social Media.

Donna is an executive member of CrimeWriters of Canada and the author of three mystery novels as well as a short story anthology. Her titles include: The First Excellence (winner of the 2011 Indie Book Event Award), Gold And Fishes, The Noon God, as well as short story anthologies Sept-Iles and other places and Knowing Penelope.

Donna blogs regularly on the following topics:
Art and the Survivor of Childhood Trauma at www.onfreedomroad.com
Changes and Challenges in the new literary industry at www.carrickpublishing.com
Great Books and Stories at www.donnacarrick.com
and whatever moves me at Writer’s Craft.