Category Archives: Crystal Blade

Hello, August

I like it when months begin on a Monday—it feels orderly, somehow. And this is going to be a very busy first week of August pour moi.

1) I have to get ready for Armadillocon this weekend, which means researching the panels I’m on and making sure I have something intelligent to say on panel. It also means I need to get the car tuned up before Ramón and I drive down to Austin. (Don’t worry, our regular cat sitter will be staying here to wait on the J Crew hand and foot as always). I’ll be wearing my SF Writer hat this weekend and talking about TikTok, newsletters, and religion and nationalism in SFF.

2) I have to get Crystal Blade finished this week, and I’d really like to get Shifter Woods: Growl done and published to Amazon as well, seeing as it’s 75% done and I could get it wrapped up with a couple of good days.

3) I have to call up three companies and either cancel certain services or switch to a less expensive plan, plus I have to schedule the HVAC company to come back and install a float valve in the attic. So much fun.

4) I need to keep monitoring the currently running Amazon ads and add some more for the books that I didn’t get to last month. Seriously, I am so glad I took Bryan Cohen’s Author Ad Profit Challenge. It made a huge difference in my July sales, and I can’t wait to see how I do in August.

Learning, learning, learning

Back in April or so I was supposed to participate in Bryan Cohen‘s 5-Day Author Ad Profit Challenge, which would give me tips on how to improve my Amazon Ads game for my books. As you may remember, Bob, that was also the month I had my knee replacement surgery so unfortunately I missed out on the challenge.

To my surprise, I received an email two days ago inviting me to the next challenge. Since I really do want to improve my ad game I signed up, and two days in I’m already learning stuff about Amazon ads that I never knew before (like, you can have an ad target an entire category instead of keywords. That’s a game-changer).

So I’ve been busily creating new ads for Shadow of the Swan to test which ad copy works the best, which category is most profitable, how auto ads might work for it, etc. The nicest thing is that a slew of people complimented the cover, and I just refurbed the blurb last month so I’m hoping I can get some more traction on that book and read-thru to The Crimson and the Black. Plus, anything I learn will be immediately applied to the Paladins of Crystal books since I’ll be running ads on Crystal Shard once Crystal Blade is out and I can de-RH Shard‘s blurb and keywords.

I saw that quizzical eyebrow go up. Amazon won’t let you run ads on anything that promotes an unusual sexual lifestyle (frex, I can’t run ads on Behind the Iron Cross because it got classified as erotica due to the BDSM content). Since the ‘Zon considers reverse harem to be an unusual sexual lifestyle, you can’t run ads on any book that is obviously RH. Which means that once Blade is out, I can de-RH Shard, run ads on it, and heap the RH references on the rest of the books in the series).

I know, you’re fascinated. Not. But earning promotion and effective advertising is just as much a part of being an indie author as writing, and since I would like Ramón to be able to retire at some point I need to step up my selling game.

In other news Crystal Blade is progressing nicely and will be out on July 31st, 2022, so mark your calendars!