A New Era In Publishing & Lots Of Prizes, Too!

I have a fabulous author guest blogging with  me today.  She’s Joan Swan, and she writes romantic suspense for Kensington Brava.  Her debut book, Fever, has gotten great reviews and received tons of attention.  Trust me – if you like gritty romantic suspense, you will love this book.

But like many authors, Joan is also branching out into self-publishing or, as it’s often called, indie publishing.  In fact, she’ll be releasing her first indie book in May.  You can check out all the details on her website.

Joan and I have something in common.  We’re both members of Rock*It Reads, a collective of print authors who are also indie publishing.  I blogged about it a few weeks ago, and Joan is here to give you the latest update, which includes a very exciting announcement.

Over to you, my friend!

The publishing industry has turned the corner into a fast and furious new era.  The changes are undeniably exciting…and daunting.

For authors a whole new area of choices await—how your cover will look, which editor you’ll choose, what story you’ll write next and in what genre.  But there are also more worrisome concerns, like how you can make your work stand out in this overflowing market.

For readers, this new era gives you an amazing body of work to choose from that would not have been available even just a year ago.  Many talented authors, both previously unpublished and traditionally published, have a new outlet for their work—both new and backlist titles.  The low prices associated with most epublished books certainly helps out in tough economic times as well.  Add to that the portability and flexibility of ereaders and you’ve got a near-heavenly situation.

Why just near-heavenly?  Because you, the reader, have to wade through the millions of books available to narrow down your choices.  Might sound easy, but it only takes a few duds to the tune of $3-$5 to make those “off” choices add up pretty quick.  And I have to admit that’s one of my pet peeves – taking a chance on a book — spending the money, investing my time, my hope…and being let down.  For a romance reader, there is not much less disappointing than this.

This is a conundrum that the authors at Rock*It Reads also found troubling.  Rock*It Reads is a group of NY traditionally publishing authors who are also venturing out into indie epublishing.  The coop we’ve created supports a group of authors who get not only goes into a quality read—editing, design, proofreading, etc., but what it takes to stand out in an ocean of unknown titles.

So when you see the RIR, Rock*It Reads logo on a book cover, you’ll know each book has been professionally handled from cover to cover, by authors who have done this many time before in the professional realm of New York publishers.

As authors who appreciate amazing writing and long for an awesome story as much as the next reader,  we have partnered with Barnes and Noble to bring outstanding self published titles to readers’ attention through a brand new review column: Love Rocks.  At Love Rocks, Rock*It Reads authors will showcase a fabulous Indie read they’ve discovered and review the book.  We’ll be focusing on the lesser known authors and titles whose brilliance has yet to be recognized, which I personally find thrilling.  What reader doesn’t love to find a talented new author to read?

Our very first column launches today!  So, swing by Barnes and Noble Review.com, catch Love Rocks and stay to chat!  We look forward to seeing you there.

Come back here and leave a comment on your thoughts about the Love Rocks column and you could win one of the following fantastic prizes – donated by many of the RIR authors.

Love’s Portrait by Monica Burns

Skin Deep by Pamela Clare (Available May 2012)

Carnal Gift by Pamela Clare

Sweet Release by Pamela Clare

Undone by Lila DiPasqua (Available May 2012)

Hot Number by VK Sykes (aka Vanessa Kelly)

Fastball by VK Sykes (aka Vanessa Kelly)

Hardball by VK Sykes (aka Vanessa Kelly)

His Wicked Revenge by Vanessa Kelly

Claiming Her by Kris Kennedy (Available May 2012)

Stolen Fury by Elisabeth Naughton

Fever by Joan Swan (print copy)

Intimate Enemies by Joan Swan (Available May 2012)

Vanessa, here.  I have to tell you, I’m very excited about LOVE ROCKS.  So what do you think, readers?  Do you like this new world of indie publishing?  What do you think about this leap into the future?  Leave a comment for a chance to win one of these great books!

93 thoughts on “A New Era In Publishing & Lots Of Prizes, Too!”

  1. I actually prefer sites like RIR or author’s blogs and some Yahoo groups (I belong to about 90 or so) to provide me with info about authors and their new works. I usually steer clear of review columns on bookseller websites…but that’s just me.

    That said, the sea of indy authors is getting deeper and deeper. I only recently bought an ereader (love it BTW) mainly because some of my favorite authors were going into the self-pub ebooks only route. If I wanted to continue to read them, I needed to invest in a reader.

    What I’m about to say may not set well with auuthors, but I belong to a paperback book trading website and get most of my paperbacks there. I belong to a couple of their forums. One is geared towards my love of historical romances coming soon and another for historical ebooks that are free at Amazon & BN. I have found several free books by new-to-me authors. Most are short stories but it is enough to give me a taste of their work to see if I want to invest cash to buy their other books.

    • Thanks for your thoughtful reply, Karen. I’m an author who sees nothing wrong in readers exchanging books with each other. Hopefully, other readers will then fall in love with our books and go out and buy our back lists!

    • Hi Karen,

      I can’t say I’m at all upset by your comment. Maybe it’s because I used to read voraciously before I began to write, and did a lot of sharing of books myself. Maybe it’s because I believe that the best way to gain new readers is by giving them a free taste of my work. Maybe it’s because the thought of people sharing my book because they loved it and couldn’t wait to tell someone else about it gives me and honest-to-God thrill.

      Enjoy your E-reader!!


  2. I haven’t read any of your books; but, I love reading. I would love to have one. Books are my very best friends.

  3. LOVE ROCKS column literally rocks…bookmarked as favorite, shared on FB and Twitter. Well done, very well done!

  4. I will definitely be look for the RIR logo on books 🙂 I’m okay with the Indi publishing world 🙂 as long as authors keep writing amazing books I’m happy I do agree with Joan though it is kind of heart breaking to try a new book and be let down 🙁

  5. Congratulations!! I can’t get over how much is involved in getting a book from the author to the reader. More and more it is the author that takes on the responsibility for this transfer. I have not yet bough an e-reader as I really do love the feel of a book in my hand while cuddling up on the couch. A long as I can still get the hard copies, I will put off the ereader. Best wishes in RIR I love the logo and respect all your hard work!!

    • Thanks, Betty! Some of our RIR authors are also putting their digital books out in paperback through Createspace on Amazon. I think you’ll see more and more authors doing that.

    • Hi Betty! I’m with you — still. And as Vanessa said, Createspace will be part of all my self publishing as long as it’s available, because, I like you, love the feel of a real book in my hands.

  6. I’m excited about Rock it Reads! I myself have gotten quite a few ‘disappointment’ indie books that after awhile as a reader you become much more wary when dealing with indie books simply because you just never know what the quality could be.It could be amazing or it could be fire fodder.

    I am also excited for authors since this will be a win win for both the readers and the writers!

  7. I think Indie publishing is a great opportunity for authors to get themselves out to the public. The whole idea of writing is to be read and if you are good enough to publish and no ‘major’ house recognizes your talent you still have a way to market your books.
    I am always looking for new authors and I love to share both old and new authors with my friends!

  8. I like knowing that when I purchase a RIR book — it’s got a professional background… not just someone who thinks they can write… [kind like anyone can write a letter to the editor.. but a lot don’t make any sense!]

  9. My wish list has grown A LOT since I found RIR. I have all of Pamela Clare’s books (and LOVE them) but haven’t read any of the other authors. I am really looking forward to doing so.

    • Hi Tonya!

      Yes, Pamela ROCKS! (No pun intended, cause, really, she does 🙂 ).

      As do the other authors in our group. Hope you find amazing reads and come back often!

  10. I love the idea of self pub books. I am a friend of RIR on Facebook. It will make it a lot easier to get info on a new book. Thanks for the giveaway.

  11. i love the idea-some “indi” published books are awful-no proofreading, editing etc… so the previously published author requisite is a great idea. keep updating FB-I can’t keep up with columns, blogs etc but I do keep up with FB. Thanks!

  12. I love the idea of Love Rocks! I just want a great quality book and i am finding that self published book is were the quality is at! Look forward to seeing more about Love Rocks and RIR.

  13. First, congrats! What an exciting partnership! Second, I must be doing something wrong, because I cannot figure out where to look for the Love Rocks columns. When I click on a link, it brings me to the BNReviews site; is there a further search refinement?

    And while I don’t tend to get my book recommendations from large booksellers, maybe this will those readers who do a chance to see that there are all sorts of great reads that aren’t just from the “big box” sellers 🙂 Best wishes to RIR!!

  14. Congratulations Ladies! RIR is such an amazing concept.
    It is so great that you have banded together and thought of ways to not only get your work out there, but thought of the readers as well. The idea that we can get good, quality reads at a decent price completely makes my day.

    Having a Kindle now I find that I’m more willing branch out and discover other authors, and I’m willing to spend the money. But… I hate that ripped off feeling when I spend good money on a book that is poorly edited and the writing is just terrible. I’ve tried some doozies out there, so it’s great to have a resource to pull from where I can wade through the bad stuff and come out with the good.

    Swinging over to Love Rocks to check it out. Have a good week everyone!!

  15. What an exciting new venture for you all! This is great for me, because some of you all are new authors to me and I simply love finding new ones. My biggest problem is keeping track of you all! Congrats on your new launch!

    • Hi Sue! It’s very exciting! This whole new era is exciting! (And anxiety producing 🙂 ).

      I too love finding new authors to read, so this is as much fun for me as a reader as it is for me as a writer! 🙂

  16. Wow so many good books coming out I don’t know where to start and it is so great to see some established authors going self-pub, not that I don’t love the indies but…
    Congrats ladies looking forward to what’s coming!

  17. Congrats on new launch. The Love Rocks column sounds great. The next time that I buy a book I’ll make sure that I look for the logo.

  18. I think it’s a wonderful idea! As of right now there are 3 main types of romance: Paranormal, Historical and Contemporary and while I love and appreciate each one, I know that there are others out there who might want something different and I think indie publishing just might make the romance genre even bigger with many more choices for everyone.

  19. I am very excited about this new venture, while I agree with Karen H’s comment above – I usually shy away from the bookseller’s lists and such in favor of indies. But it seems this might be a mix of the two? Not sure yet, but will be keeping my eye open for goodness!

    • Hi Shannon,

      I’m curious, what do you mean by booksellers list? Meaning the traditionally published? Or those that are being advertised/promoted by big booksellers?

      I like to get my info on a book from various locations as well.

      • Joan, the latter. I don’t like to have things shoved at me just to make a sale. I want good content. Hoping that’s what I’ll get with this – as I suspect I will 🙂

  20. I love the idea behind RIR! It is very frustrating to take a chance on an indie read by a new author and find it to be disappointing to say the lest. I have found several that way, but I have also found some wonderful new authors that I now follow the same way. The idea behind RIR seems to be a happy fix to this, and I look forward to exploring the RIR books.
    I love my Kindle and the ebooks, but I also still really love my paper books as well. Many times if I have an ebook I really really enjoyed I’ll buy the paper version as well, and of course with my top favorite authors I still always buy their paper versions.
    As for Love Rocks, I like it. Although I don’t normally follow the big sellers suggestions, reviews, blogs, etc. I find that this might just be one I keep an eye on.
    Thanks and Congrats.

  21. Congratulations on the new venture! I think it is smart for like-minded authors to band together to ensure the high level of quality is maintained. I’ve read most of the authors in the group so I know I won’t be disappointed when I try one of these books!

  22. Congrats ! Loverocks is totally awesome and completely ROCKS !!! I am definitely telling everyone I know and sharing everywhere I can. Thank you for a super fantastic LOVEROCKING giveaway !

  23. I think it’s wonderful. Anywhere that I can learn more about books and authors is a good thing. I have found some new to me authors by winning books and I love supporting those authors that are so generous.

  24. I know many authors are choosing to self publishing and I do think the readers will be able to discover a new author or even rediscover an old favorite.

  25. Congrats on Love Rocks! I like how Mia introduced your plans. I already signed up for your emails for RIR about a week ago and am looking forward to reading from some of you for the first time. Good luck on the wonderful venture..

  26. Congratulations Vanessa and the whole RIR team! I am so excited for you (and us readers as well), so great to see many new and exciting new titles which just sound and look wonderful!

    Congratulations Ladies, and I am already impressed! 😀

  27. How exciting for you, and what a great group of authors! I have heard about your RIR and hope it will be wildly successful for all of you. I know I will be purchasing some RIR books!


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