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ebook sales exceed expectations!

12 Dec

I’ve finally published my first ebook on Smashwords and it’s selling better than I’d dared to hope.

Finding Home is a revised and updated edition of a romantic thriller about a surrogate mother, written under my pen name Elizabeth Sage, originally published in the U.S. in 2002 by Five Star  as part of their First Edition Women’s Fiction Series.

I might never have attempted publishing an ebook were it not for YA writer Arthur Slade. I’d like to thank him for his informative and inspiring blog posts about his ebook adventures. He made it all seem so possible. And lucrative!

There were many steps to the process, but taken separately, most were easy enough. Just, you know, time-sucking. Some people publish their work in digital format in under two hours. It took me over two months.

It was the thought of instant and insane cash that kept me going. I just knew I’d be a millionaire overnight with my ebook. I comissioned a new cover – many thanks to photographer Michael Galan and designer Sarah Schneider – and had the ms formatted according to the Smashwords Style Guide.

But by the time I was finally ready to upload the book, I was struck by that writer’s panic thing – I just knew my book wouldn’t sell. Not. One. Single. Copy.

Why had I bothered? Why had I wasted weeks of good writing time? Why had I spent money on a project that wasn’t even going to cover my costs? I was making myself poorer, not richer.

I revised my goal and decided I’d be happy to break my record for print sales. Even though family and friends had said that they loved Finding Home when it was first published, with no promo whatsoever (my fault – I didn’t know any better) and no independent reviews either, the hard cover sold a total of 82 copies. I didn’t earn out my advance and the book was immediately remaindered.

But here’s the thing. All rights reverted to me, and now I’m well on my way to financial success with the ebook. Because guess what? Once I’d uploaded it, someone bought a copy within the hour! Really. How cool is that? I’ve already netted $3.03!!!

Will keep you posted on how it goes. If I do make a million, I guess I can live with that. But for now, I’m glad that Finding Home has found a home. You can see it here:

Finding Home is only $2.99, plus you can sample the first 20% for free. You don’t need an eReader – just download HTML for online reading. Reviews – gushing, glowing, gobsmacked or godawful – are most welcome.

As of May 2012, Kindle edition is here.

And here’s the trailer, produced by the awesome Andie Rosenbaum of Airbookvideos:





Get Inspired!

25 Jul

Check out my profile/interview just posted on the website for teens. It’s part of the new Get Inspired! series on Canadian YA authors.

I’m not sure how they chose me, but I’m so pleased that they did. And I’m delighted to be in such good company.



new book contract, website & blog

16 Mar

I’m thrilled to announce that my new YA novel, How to Tend a Grave, will be published by Great Plains Teen Fiction in Spring 2012. I’ll be working with the awesome editor Anita Daher. The book features two grieving teens who meet in a cemetery and … well, more about all that another day.

In honour of signing the contract I decided I needed a new website and blog. 

For the past year, while How to Tend a Grave was out looking for a publisher, I’ve been working on my first historical YA novel. Set in 1868, it made me more concerned with my protagonist’s hand-written letters in pen and ink than in figuring out how to use Facebook or Twitter. But now that the manuscript is finished and under consideration, it’s time for me to return to the present and catch up with social media.

I find the Internet amazing but scary. Like many writers, I’m worried I’ll be so distracted by what’s out there that I’ll never write anything but blog posts and tweets again. Still, the chance to connect with the online reading and writing community proved impossible to resist. So here I am.

Many thanks to Crystal Stranaghan for designing my new website and explaining so patiently how everything works.  Also to Debbie Ohi for her wonderful Writer’s Guide to Twitter, and to Shrinking Violet Promotions for their very helpful blog and Online Persona Workshop for introverts. I highly recommend them all.