Monday, August 13, 2018

Did you know? Some ways authors provide #Free ebooks

Sometimes authors price books temporarily free, such as a flash sale or free promotion. Other times, authors will permanently mark books for free. Most of the time perma-free books are used to drive sales to other books. Generally, free ebooks are series starters or are books used as reader magnets (for example, book hooks to capture the reader's attention and move them toward the author's backlist).

There are various ways to offer books for free. Authors may use platforms like bookfunnel or instafreebie, and join in with other authors for multi-author free promotions. Or, those same platforms can be used for authors to leverage individually for their own personal promotions and giveaways.

Uploading free ebooks to retailers sites, so that the books are available alongside the paid backlist, is another way. Readers can find free ebooks on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, and Kobo sites, among others.

Authors may provide complete novels for free, or sometimes only a sample of the book (for example, the first chapter or two). Many authors provide free ebooks only found exclusively via their own own platforms--for example, a free short story (novella or novel) that isn't available anywhere else.

I use my newsletter to not only promote my free ebooks but I give away free ebooks to my subscribers. As subscribers interact more with my newsletter list, they become VIPs and receive more exclusive and/or free content. If you are interested in earning a spot on my VIP list, be sure to sign up for my newsletter and click to open and read the newsletter when it arrives!

In the meantime, the books listed below are #free! Check out my permanently free collection and be sure to download if you haven't already. And if you have downloaded and read the free ebook, the consideration of an honest review is always appreciated!

Click the covers below to navigate to your preferred retailer site to download for free!

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Create the habit -- When is your write time?

Imagine it is five o’clock in the morning. Your alarm goes off. You blink, stretch, throw your legs over the side of the bed and attempt to orient yourself to the day. After a moment or two of taking care of immediate needs, you stumble to the kitchen, fumble with the coffee maker, and wait for the drip-drip-drip to finish so that you can properly caffeinate yourself in preparation for writing.

Yes. Coffee is a very important part of my writing process. From the coffeemaker, I make the 17.5 second commute to my writing room—a converted back porch with three walls of windows, overlooking a very flat soybean field and a potential Ohio sunrise. With my laptop on my lap, the day on the cusp, and my story in the forefront of my brain, I write.

No music. No television. No dog barking. No fanfare.

No one else up to talk to me. Just coffee, laptop, sunrise, and me. And my story. Maybe some birds singing. Birds are okay. Silence, however, is an important part of my writing process.

I like to write when my brain is fresh, when no one else’s words, ideas, sentences, thoughts, influences clutter my head. That’s why 5 AM works. Another reason why the early morning works is that if I can write for 1-2 hours at the beginning of the day, I feel very accomplished all day long. No matter what else happens during my day, I know I have put words to paper (or screen) and I am happy. I have done my writing job.

Happy is also a part of my writing process. Writing under stress is a good way to kill creativity, and a great way to invite writer’s block. (Actually, I do not believe in writer’s block, but that is another post….)

Process. Is all I have described truly part of a writing process? It is for me. I’m a creature of habit, and my writing habits are important for my process. Believe me, I’ve been at this a long time. I have configured writing time around flights, day jobs, kids, divorce, soccer games, vet visits, vacations, power failures, and more. 5 AM works. It is a habit born out of years of trying to figure out how to best way accomplish meeting a deadline.

Create the habit, whatever it is for you. My 5 AM writing habit it is the thing that gets me up early every morning.

From Discover Your Write Path to Publishing Success by Maddie James & Sophie Jacobs coming winter 2019.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Welcome to Sweet Hart Inn: Harbor Falls Romance #SophieJacobs

Have you visited Harbor Falls yet?

My Harbor Falls contemporary romance series is a 15-book series with huge potential for growth! In the southern and sometimes quirky small town of Harbor Falls, North Carolina, you’ll find characters to fall in love with, laugh with, and a few that will make you scratch your head.

Having grown up in a small town myself, I can relate. We’re all different but we have each other’s backs (generally!) and there is one common denominator between us all—we love small town living. Harbor Falls is no different.

In this series, you’ll be introduced to Suzie Hart Matthews, owner of Sweet Hart Inn, her family and friends, plus so many of the Harbor Falls townspeople your head may spin. Characters are woven throughout the books so you’ll find continuity with the people and setting from story to story. Minor characters in one story may have a full-blown book of their own down the road.

The Harbor Falls books are a mix of some newer, never-before-published stories and some rereleased, revised/lengthened, and rebranded stories. You may have seen some of these before but they have all now been cast into the town of Harbor Falls.

All of My Heart is the first book in the series, and is the story where we first meet Suzie Hart--
celebrity chef, bed and breakfast owner, and cookbook author--who is a prominent secondary character in quite a few of the stories, especially if matchmaking is involved!

Intrigued yet? I hope so.

The Harbor Falls books are light, carefree, small-town contemporary romance stories. You won't find a lot of angst or drama, graphic violence, or super-sexy/erotic love scenes here. What you will find are light-hearted, sometimes sensual and sometimes sexy stories that depict snapshots of the characters' lives in a small, southern town--and that snapshot just happens to be the one where they fall in love. A couple of the stories are totally sweet. Some I classify as sweeter, meaning you may read a light love scene but it is not graphically depicted for pages. One deals with a hint of very light bondage (very light). Some are humorous and take normally serious situations (like a perceived stalker) and turn it into humor. Many of the stories revolve around the food business, especially if Suzie or her cousin Sydney Hart is involved. All stories a glimpse into small town living.

I hope you try one out an enjoy! These novellas and novels are reasonably priced and if you follow me on various platforms to get new release alerts, you can grab them on sale at release time.

All of My Heart is permanently FREE at all retailers. CLICK TO DOWNLOAD NOW!

All books on Preorder are 99 cents and for 2-3 weeks after release

After release week, book prices go up to $1.99 or $3.99 depending on length.

So when is the best time to buy? When the book is on preorder or during my release promotion. Once released, I don't anticipate a sale on the series for quite a while, but watch for new release alerts because I do anticipate some short-term boxed set promotions in 2019.

Twelve books are released. Three more coming in 2018. Let's see what happens after that!

Remember, to receive free NEW RELEASE ALERTS, follow me on any of these platforms.

Maddie James

Sophie Jacobs

Read more about Harbor Falls and Sweet Hart Inn.

Learn more about Sophie Jacobs' books at 

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Read an Excerpt from Chase My Heart -- #99cents limited time!

From Chapter One of Chase My Heart by Sophie Jacobs

“There he is again.”
Sydney Hart jerked her head up, bonking her forehead on the top of the display case where she had just placed a fresh tray of scones. “What? Ouch! Where?” She rubbed her head and looked to where her cousin, Suzie Hart Matthews, pointed.
“Over there,” Suzie said. “On the bench across the street in front of the library. Your stalker.”
Sydney squinted, wiped her hands on her apron, and took a couple of steps toward the big picture window of her bakery. “Oh, Suzie, are you sure?”
“Dead positive. I remember his jacket.”
“Well, shoot.” Dammit.
Puzzled, Sydney blew a strand of hair out of her face and eyed the guy. “I thought maybe he was gone. I really didn’t believe he was stalking me anyway. I mean, Shelley gets riled up about stuff like that, but you are always so levelheaded, Suzie, which has me a bit worried. And you know me, I don’t pay a bit of attention to anything other than what’s happening straightaway in front of me. So, what do we do now?”
Suzie picked up her cell. “Time to call in the local forces.”
Grasping her wrist, she said, “I don’t think that is necessary.”
A brow arched above Suzie’s right eye. “Syd, listen to me. Let me give Matt a call. He can advise.”
“Suzie, Matt is about as effective as Barney Fife. I mean, I love him, seeing that he’s Shelley’s husband and your brother-in-law and my cousin-by-marriage and all, but nothing big ever happens here in Harbor Falls, and I’m suspecting nothing big is going to happen with this guy, either. Let Matt be. We don’t need to involve any of Harbor Falls’ finest.”
She tried like hell not to look out the window again. “Besides, I don’t have a stalker. I think he just likes pastries.”

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Chase My Heart Releases Today! #sweethartinn #harborfalls #romance

A Harbor Falls Romance, Book 1

Sweet Hart Inn

Suzie Hart is back in Harbor Falls after her television debut in New York. She and her cousin, Sydney, have a number of catering gigs lined up. She’d love to fix Sydney up with a date but when this new guy starts hanging around the bakery, her radar goes up. This guy is definitely not on Suzie’s matchmaking list. Sydney, however, has other ideas.

Romancing the scone? Or romancing her heart?

High tea or sweet tea? As long as there are scones it doesn’t matter. In fact, Suzie’s cousin Sydney Hart, owner of Sydney’s Sugar High Bakery, makes the best damned scones east of the Mississippi and south of the Mason Dixon, and there is an article in Southern’s Best magazine to prove it. All is well and life is good, until a mysterious stranger comes to town, stalking Sydney’s scones, and attempting to romance her out of her famous recipe.

Stone Kellerman isn’t above romancing the scone recipe out of Ms. Sydney Hart. Although he admits he finds the woman attractive, and she appeals to him on a certain level, her scone recipe is what he is after. Her Double Orange Scone of Sinful Decadent Desire is among the best he has ever tasted. No wonder she stole the Best Scones of the South title from him. Stone’s Scones of Atlanta had heralded that title for several years.

But hanging around her bakery shifts his priority from recipe to the baker. He is intrigued with the lovely pastry chef and finds himself tangled in his own plot to finagle her winning recipe from her.

Will Stone romance Sydney out of more than her scone recipe? Read Chase My Heart and laugh your way through this quirky tale of pastries and falling in love.

Grab your copy of Chasing My Heart!

Monday, August 6, 2018

Love, Forever - #Free Sampler Now Available! #loveforever #gemsinattic

I'm a part of a group of authors who blog over here and we decided to create a freebie set of sampler chapters for our readers. If you want to try out a group of authors for free, just download this set and get 11 first chapters of bestselling author's books. Our hope, of couse, is that you'll find one or two you love and you'll want to read the rest of the stories. 

This sampler collection of romance first chapters by established, award-winning, and bestselling romance authors is guaranteed to whet your happily-ever-after appetite and send you running to your favorite ebook retailer to download to your hearts’ content! This eclectic mix of sweet to steamy reads has you traveling from the past to the future, with historical, time travel, paranormal, contemporary, western, and futuristic romance beginnings.

And we hope you will not stop at the beginning! Our stories are available in a wide variety of ebook retailers world-wide—we hope you download and enjoy every one!

Here is a sneak peek at the stories in Love, Forever:

HEAT LIGHTNING (Book 1, Outlaw Ridge, Texas) by Joan Reeves
Contemporary Romance

Amnesia stole her memory—her life! What Tessa doesn’t remember may be the death of her.

BREDE, (Rodeo Romance, Book 2) by Connie Vines
Romantic Suspense

Trouble is something hard-edged rancher, Brede Kristensen, knows all about. A widower with a rambunctious young daughter, a ranch to run and an ornery cook who has just runoff, Brede doesn’t need another problem. Yet in the midst of a violent storm, he finds an injured woman with no memory of her past—or the man who tried to kill her!

Monday, February 5, 2018

New Mindset -- Write and Enjoy the Process

I'm tired.

I'm tired all the work required of authors these days -- work that we authors have put on ourselves.

I'm tired of chasing the readers, the sales ranks, the reviews, the bloggers, the release schedule. Tired of trying to figure out which ads are the cool ads to buy and which ones don't work anymore. Tired of fighting algorithms I can't control. Tired of the competition.

Because that is what it is, you know. Competition.

We authors are competing and killing ourselves in the process. We are mentally and physically exhausting ourselves. Burning ourselves out trying to make numerous deadlines a year because someone, somewhere (probably a retailer) told us that we need X number of releases in a year. That we need a release every X number of months. Threatening us with losing our ranks in the vast book world online if we don't.

And to whose bottom line? The retailer.

And to whose health detriment--mental and physical? Ours.

After several years of chasing the sales ranks, my brain gave up on me. Striving to get a release out at least every 2-3 months, I killed my creativity. Suddenly I found myself writing books I really didn't want to write--shorter and sexier books than what I had set out to write--because of the market. Because of a chance for increased exposure. Because it's what the readers want. Because it's what sells.

Fuck what sells. Fuck it all. No more.

I've had a 20+ year writing career. It has waxed and waned. I hope the career waxes and wanes for another 20. But for the next 20, I'm no longer chasing the expectations of others, whoever they may be. Retailers. The competition. And yes, even readers.

I know you guys are important. I love my readers. But I have to be true to myself, my writing, mental and physical health, and my own peace of mind.

You may see some changes in my future works. You probably won't see me at Facebook launch parties. I won't be spending money I can't afford to spend on ads that don't work for me. I will be focusing on the things that are important. To me.

1. Writing the best book I can write and enjoy the process.
2. My newsletter will be my main source of communication with readers so make sure you are signed up there. I'll still maintain my social media accounts for announcements too.
3. Occasional in-person events
4. And lots of behind-the-scenes marketing where I do not necessarily have to have a public face.

That could change, of course. It all could, and will, change. One thing I have learned over the course of a 20+ year writing career is that industry change is inevitable. Accept it. Embrace it. Drop back and punt and take another tack.

Here is my tack for now. Write and enjoy the process. 

Monday, January 1, 2018

What is Your Write Path?

Your Write Path

So here you are, thinking about writing. (after all, it is New Year's day) Maybe you’ve done more than think about it. Maybe you’ve already drafted a novel. Published a few articles. Written a letter to Dear Abby. Drafted a note to your kid’s teacher.

Or maybe not.

Maybe you’re not so certain you can do it. Perhaps you’ve been told it’s a silly idea. Nothing to come of it. Nice hobby, perhaps, but let’s get real, you can’t make a decent living writing. Can you?


The thing is, maybe that doesn’t matter.

Maybe you just want to write. You don’t care about a career. You just like to string words together into pretty sentences. Perhaps a writing career would get in the way of the rest of your life.

Or the rest of your life might get in the way of your writing career.

Been there. Done that. On both counts.

And then again, maybe you DO want a writing career. Maybe your goal is to support yourself with your writing. It can happen. Right?

Sure it can. There are ways.

But the thing is this—whatever Your Write Path, remember it’s yours alone. Yours. You can write only for yourself, or you can write to make money. You can write for your great Aunt Sally, and that’s cool too. And as long as you are happy, and you do what you want to do, then life is good.

Truly, it is.


Don’t compete with others. Compete only with yourself.

Know what you want. Educate yourself about how to get it. Plan and act. Work hard and persevere. Give it time and whatever Your Write Path turns out to be, you’ll find it.

Or it will find you.

Right now—today—what do you see on the horizon for Your Write Path? I'd love to read your comments below.

Excerpt from the upcoming release, Discover Your Write Path to Publishing Success, by Maddie James and Sophie Jacobs. Watch for more excerpts and articles posted to this blog ahead of the release.