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My brain is about to explode with the learning curve for both Hootsuite (for scheduling routine promotional postings on social media) and Mailchimp (for my new monthly author newsletter). The eventual goal will be to have a widget for subscribing to the newsletter embedded in the website structure itself, but for now, I'm testing out the html code for embedding it on a page. So go ahead and sign up if you want to -- it'll help me test how it works.

Having listened to the promotional strategy advice of a wide variety of people, I'm planning to accomplish two things this weekend. One will be to set up Hootsuite (or some equivalent social media manager, but that's the one people seem to prefer) to handle automated promotional reminders that I rarely have the emotional energy to do manually. The other will be to set up an opt-in (of course!) newsletter for fans and readers to provide both a direct way to communicate announcements and other information, and to provide special content in exchange for access to attention.

Bella Books is holding one of its periodic surprise sales. This time the theme is relatively recent ebooks, so if you haven't gotten around to buying Mother of Souls yet (yes, I'm secretly tapping my foot impatiently) it's only $5.99 through this weekend. Plenty of other bargains as well!

So here's the deal: we sold over 1000 Storybundle packages (in fact, over 1000 at the bonus level). To celebrate and thank the buyers for their support, I'm going to give away five (5) Alpennia e-books to randomly-selected bundle purchasers who comment on this post. If The Mystic Marriage (in the bundle) is your first introduction to Alpennia, I'd strongly suggest you try book #1 in the series (Daughter of Mystery).

You have just five more days to take advantage of this incredible Storybundle offer featuring speculative stories that feature and embrace LGBT+ characters by authors committed to good representation and solid storytelling. If you’ve already enjoyed even one of the featured books, it’s a good sign that you’ll like others. If you look at the list and spot even two that you’ve been meaning to read, then the bundle as a whole is already a bargain.

The LGBT+ Bundle - Curated by Melissa Scott

Special for LGBTQ Pride Month, the Lesbian Historic Motif Project is doing an all-Sappho month.

We start off with a podcast: Lebian Historic Motif Podcast - Episode 10: Sappho of Lesbos - The Woman and the Legend

The blog will feature four books covering various aspects of Sappho's work, reception, and symbolism. (Well, ok, they were the four books I had with "Sappho" in the title that I hadn't covered yet.)

 

Today is even more random than usual, as any possibility of applying my brain to a new creative topic is toast. It looks like I'm finally circling down to being able to close the investigation that I've been working on the last two months. And I set up my new laptop last night and have yet to go through and do a complete functionality verification regarding programs and data-transfer, so I don't dare do anything on either the old or new machine that involves changing files yet.

Usually I like to focus this blog on the creative part of the writing process, but I'm in an unusual pause at the moment so I thought I'd talk about the analytic end. I know the common wisdom in mainstream publishing is that an author should pay no mind to reviews and ratings. At most, we should do comic readings of our one-star reviews to show how little we care. (Only cry in private behind locked doors.) So this essay isn't really for anyone whose book came out from a major publisher.

I suppose I'm cheating a little by including Naomi Novik's League of Dragons in this series, because technically the hardback was released in June. But the mass market paperback was a November book, so that's my excuse. And it isn't that Novok's Hugo-finalist series needs any extra publicity boost from me, but it's an opportunity to tell an amusing story about the power of the knowledgable independent bookseller.

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