Are free eBooks sending the wrong message?

I recently stumbled across an interesting article that talked about the dangers of free eBooks and it got me to wondering if free promotions might do more harm than good by training (for lack of a better word) readers to expect free reads.

Many indie authors have already noticed the discrepancy in pricing and how it has set the bar low for many people that regularly give their eReader a workout. My short story, Dead Man Walking, is priced at 99 cents, but it’s setting on the digital bookshelves right next to full-length novels that are also priced at 99 cents. Does this mean short stories should be priced for free? Should novels be priced higher than the rock-bottom price that’s available to use?

The great thing about being your own publisher is that those questions don’t have carved-in-stone rules and the author is free to do as he chooses. But should something be done just because it can be done? That’s a question that has to be answered by the author as an individual, and there really is no right or wrong answer at the moment.

Along the same lines, there are free promotions that are regularly done to boost interest in titles. Initially, it doesn’t seem like a bad idea, but I’m wondering if free promos will eventually do more harm than good for sales.

Imagine this scenario – you release Book 1 and eventually set the price for free, then you release Book 2 and eventually set the price for free, again. When Book 3 comes out, will readers that follow you scoop up your latest hit or will they wait for it to go free, because that’s what you’ve done with your previous titles.

We’ve all felt frustration after flipping open a store advertisement and seeing something priced at 50% off… after we spent full price on it last week. It’s the ugliest form of sticker shock; the birth of that little voice in your head that tells you to wait next time until the item is on sale.

I worry that regularly putting our work out there for free will condition people to wait for it to be free. On the other hand, my wife believes if the work is good enough, then readers will scoop up the latest titles, regardless of having to pay or not. It’s a great spotlight on the type of shoppers we are. I’m willing to wait for something until the price is right, and she’s more into immediate gratification by getting the item right now. Which type is the majority? I’m curious because if most readers are like me, then most indie authors are going to end up being starving artists. If they’re like my wife, then there are no worries.

What do you think? Are free promos a temporary fad, an excellent form of advertising, or a danger to how readers shop for eBooks?


Cover Reveal: Little Demons

Little Demons

February is knocking on our door and that means my new release, Little Demons, is almost upon us.

And that means it’s time to roll out the brand new cover so you’ll know what to look for 😉

Think I’ll be stepping away from KDP Select with this one so watch for Little Demons to rise up on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords in mid-February.

No zombies in this one but there will be plenty of things that go bump in the night as a con man named Frank looks to steal lottery winnings from a seemingly helpless old farmer and his sexy daughter. Unfortunately for Frank, he doesn’t realize things don’t always go as planned when you’re in the little town of Hale (pop. 666), where the Devil always gets his due.

Zombie Corpse Doll to keep you company after you go to sleep

Zombie Corpse Doll

This little angel came to my attention via LinkedIn and I couldn’t resist sharing.

Everyone sleeps a little better when they have a special friend watching their back and the Zombie Corpse Doll will always be there for you… watching you with its one unblinking eye.

If this sweet thing is calling out to you, it can be purchased by Living Dead Girl Nicole, but don’t drag your feet because there are only 10 available.

Disclaimer: I am not affiliated in anyway with Etsy or Living Dead Girl Nicole. I just thought this was cool and wanted to share.

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Run for Your Lives 5K Obstacle Course: Stay fit and stay alive

Run for Your Lives 5K Obstacle Course

Ever wanted to take part in a marathon or run an obstacle course but didn’t think you could stay motivated for the whole thing? Think a legion of the walking dead could keep you inspired to run?

Run For Your Lives is a 5K race, obstacle course, and zombie apocalypse all rolled into one. Curious to find out if you could survive an uprising of the undead? This is the best way to find out… and to prepare for the real zombie apocalypse.

The course includes 12 obstacles, with some being natural and others being man-made. As their site describes it, “there will be mud, water and maybe some blood.”

There are currently 11 locations hosting what looks to be a great zombie adventure, but more locations are expected to be added soon. You can sign up to be a zombie for the event if you prefer to be predator instead of prey or you can become a volunteer that helps to keep the event running smoothly. Of course, if you simply prefer to watch, you can purchase a ticket and just hang out with both the living and the dead.

After the race, regardless of whether you become zombie chow or not, there will be live entertainment and music, local celebrities, vendors, food, and beer.

You can find out when and where all the zombie apocalypses are happening by visiting Run for Your Lives.

Will you be running when the zombies come?

The Walking Dead has Growing Pains

The Walking Dead Season 2 Poster

What happens when Rick and the gang from AMC’s The Walking Dead gets mashed up with the 80’s sitcom, Growing Pains? A whole lot of laughing, if you’re like me.

I’d love to see AMC shock everyone by using this opening scene just once when The Walking Dead returns on February 12th, and they could even spice things up by having Kirk Cameron’s Mike make a guest appearance as a zombie.

Yeah, that will probably never happen, but it’s still fun to picture it.

Source: Bloody Disgusting

Zombie Lover meets Zombie Lover when I guest post with Jesse Petersen

Dead Man Walking and Married with Zombies

Today is a special day for me because, for the first time, I brushed off the dirt and shambled over to another site to do a guest post; my very first one as an author 🙂 It also happens to be the first time she’s had a guest blogger on her site, so it’s a big occasion for both of us.

I hope you stop by her website and say hi as I talk about why I put my zombies behind bars with Jesse Petersen, the author of Married with Zombies, Flip this Zombie, and Eat Slay Love.

You can hop over to Fictitious Musings to check out my review of Married with Zombies.

Want to read something really scary? Writers are being ripped off

PiratePirates! Ugh! They’re everywhere. It really sucks when pirates hand out the work of hard-working authors for free, but it bites really hard when they set up a subscription service and make money off all that hard work, without sending a penny to the people that created those books.

The site is eBookr. Add a .com to the name to get there but I don’t want to link to the site because it just makes me feel dirty. This group of losers seems to think they can sell books with no problem until the holder of the copyright contacts them and tells them to stop.

I’ve warned a few friends on Twitter but their catalog is so extensive that I’d be on Twitter for at least a week if I told everyone that way so I’m posting the info here. If you’re an author, it’s probably in your best interest to visit the site, search for your work, and then contact them to tell them to remove it. Better yet, report their sorry butts to GoDaddy because they don’t play with pirates.

I think the idea of a digital library is great. It would be even better if they compensated the authors that allow their stupid site to exist.

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