Book News

07/21/17 Book News , Once Upon a Time # , , , ,

New Book Announcement!

I’m beyond thrilled to announce that I’ll be writing a book for the hit ABC show Once Upon a Time. I couldn’t be more excited to write this story, a modern day New York City fairy tale featuring OUAT’s Henry and Violet in high school.

Once Upon a Time is such a magical show, and the opportunity to write a story set in my favorite fairy tale city is a dream come true.

More details to come! In the meantime, make sure you’re all caught up on the show, will you?

😉

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06/09/16 A Walk in the Sun , Book News , Events

Event Reminder

B-Fest_Social_Twitter_date

 

Just a reminder that I will be talking about A Walk in the Sun, writing, and pretty much everything else at Barnes and Noble as part of their Teen Book Festival this weekend.

I have two events, one in Tribeca and one in Kingston, NY the following day. Hope to see you at one of them!

<3

 

 

 

 

Friday June 10th @ 5pm
Barnes and Noble Tribeca
97 Warren Street
New York, NY 10007
with Amy Ewing and Jordana Frankel

Saturday June 11th @3pm

Barnes and Noble Kingston
1177 Ulster Avenue
Kingston, NY 1401
with Jeff Hirsch and Julie Chibbaro

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05/17/16 A Walk in the Sun , Book News , Events

Two New Signings

WalkinSun HCHi, friends!

I wanted to let you know that I’ve added to two new signings to my calendar, one in NYC and one in Kingston, NY to celebrate B:Fest, Barnes and Noble’s Teen Book Festival. I’ll be signing copies of A Walk in the Sun and anything else they have in stock and/or you bring with you, and I’ll be joining some other awesome authors to talk books and writing and who knows what else.

These events sometimes have a mind of their own.

😉

I’m especially excited to talk about A Walk in the Sun in New York, because the book is set in the Hudson Valley, and it feels a little bit like home.

Hope to see you there!

 

Friday June 10th @ 5pm
Barnes and Noble Tribeca
97 Warren Street
New York, NY 10007
with Amy Ewing and Jordana Frankel

 

Saturday June 11th @3pm

Barnes and Noble Kingston
1177 Ulster Avenue
Kingston, NY 1401
with Jeff Hirsch and Julie Chibbaro

 

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12/09/15 Book News , Indie , Mob Boss Series , Romance , Savage # , , , ,

SAVAGE Cover Reveal

Savage_front_coverWith The Muscle Part Three wrapping up next week, I’m super excited to reveal the cover and blurb for SAVAGE, the first book in the London Mob series featuring Farrell Black and Jenna Carver. Those of you with eagle eyes and a great memory will be able to place Jenna from the Mob Boss books, and of course, no one can forget Farrell, my biggest, baddest — and dirtiest — main character yet.

 

If I was Superman, Jenna was my Kryptonite.

Farrell Black is dirty, dangerous, and holds nothing sacred. Growing up on the mean streets of London, he clawed his way to the top of a criminal empire with nothing but sheer force of will and the determination to need no one.

Ever.

Then he met Jenna Carver, and all bets were off — until the day she walked out of his life without a backward glance.

Leaving him was the hardest thing she’d ever done.

As a kid, Jenna knew how people looked at her. Like she was stupid. Worthless. Poor. So she spent her life working to become someone else. Then she met Farrell Black, and their all-consuming passion blew a hole in everything she thought she knew about herself.

Until she was forced to make a terrible choice.

Now Jenna is back in London for her father’s funeral, desperate to avoid the one man who can banish her hard-earned reason in favor of red-hot ecstasy. But when her father’s death is tied to an abuse of power at the highest levels, she has no choice but to ask Farrell for help.

As they work together to find answers to a puzzle that could have dangerous implications, desire threatens to undo them both — and forces Jenna to choose between keeping the secret of a lifetime and possessing the only man who has ever commanded her heart and soul.

Preorder Savage Now

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11/24/15 Book News , Lies I Told , Promises I Made , Reading # , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Promises I Made Release Day!

PromisesIMade HC CToday’s the day I’ve been waiting for – the day readers will finally get to know the outcome of Grace’s story from Lies I Told. This books means so much to me, and I’ve already been getting mail from advance readers saying it’s my best book ye, the highlight of which was a reader who emailed to say, “Of all your books, Grace’s story is the one that moved me the most.”

Add that to praise from Kirkus – who called the book “riveting” – and it’s an understatement to say I’m excited for this story to be out in the world. I so hope you enjoy it! As always, please consider adding it to your Goodreads shelf and leaving a review on Amazon, B&N, Goodreads, etc.

They help more than you know!

<3

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11/13/15 Book News , Reading # , , , , ,

A Walk in the Sun Cover Reveal

La-di-da! Oh, happy day!

I finally get to reveal the cover for my Summer 2016 book, A Walk in the Sun. This book has a very special place in my heart. It’s about love, loss, family, and the risks we all have to take to really live. It’s a quintessential summer love story with heart, and I could not be more excited to share it with you.

So without further ado…

WalkinSun HCI just love this cover for its simplicity, and for the fact that it really highlights the setting, a family farm in a small town in upstate New York. There’s a wounded female with a spine of steel and a tough-talking cowboy with scars of his own who works on her farm for the summer, peach pie, old orchards, swimming holes, small town fireworks displays, and lots of questions about legacy and loyalty, and how much of ourselves we should sacrifice in the name of those things. Most of all, it’s a love story in the truest sense of the word. I think it will speak to the uncertainty a lot of young people feel at the end of high school, and to the healing power of love in all its forms.

You can preorder it now (even though the cover isn’t up yet), and stay tuned here for more information as we get closer.

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Also, if you’d like this kind of news first, plus free bonus content and chance to win a Tiffany necklace every month, please subscribe to my email list on the right sidebar. I actually revealed this cover early for email subscribers. You can easily get in on that action.

😉

 

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08/25/15 Book News , Fearless , Indie , Mob Boss Series , Romance , Ruthless , Self-Publish , Uncategorized # , , , , , , , ,

FEARLESS Cover Reveal

Fearless_front_V2You guys! Ruthless has raced to the top of the Amazon rankings in both the UK and the US. I’ve been absolutely stunned by the response, and I can only hope this means you’re ready for the release of FEARLESS on September 7th (less than two weeks away!).

Assuming you are… I thought you’d all like to see the cover. I’m sure you’ll notice that Nico looks a little rougher around the edges. That is intentional (because…. story), and I think you’ll be really excited by the continuation of Nico and Angel’s story in this next book. You can add it to your Goodreads shelf here.

In the meantime, if you haven’t read RUTHLESS, now’s the perfect time to do so. Thanks so much to everyone who has read, reviewed, and recommended to friends.
<3

Buy RUTHLESS on Amazon

Buy RUTHLESS on Barnes & Noble

Buy RUTHLESS on iBooks

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08/06/15 Book News , Indie , Mob Boss Series , Romance , Ruthless , Uncategorized , Writing # , , , , , , ,

Self Publishing; The First Four Days

Well, I’ve  been self-publishing for four whole days, and while I’m far from an expert, I’ve learned a few things!

 

 

I’ve promised to be as transparent as possible about my experience, so rather then give you one giant post at the end, I’m going to keep you updated any time it seems I have information that might help.

So far I feel pretty good about how well Ruthless is doing. I’m going to wait to give you numbers until everything shakes out at the end of the month, but I’ve been surprised to find that I’m selling a decent number of books every day. I think I’m doing some things that have helped (which I’ll share), but I know I still have a lot to learn. The book is listed at $3.99. It’s held steady at around 20,000 in the Kindle store, and it hovers right around 1100 in Contemporary Fiction > Romance, which is a huge category. This feels good to me given that I’m using a pseudonym and have never written a full length novel in this genre. I’m looking forward to the release of FEARLESS, the sequel to Ruthless, on September 7th. Hopefully having the second book out so soon after the first will bring in new readers (Lawless, the third and final book in this series, will release a month later in October).

For now, here are my lessons learned;

1. Get your cover right. This is a BIG one. Quite possibly THE biggest one after producing a solid story (which is a given here – seriously people, I’m not even going to waste space talking about that). I spoke to several authors before embarking on this journey and they all said the same thing; Cover is King. The problem with a lot of Design-Yourself-Covers is that they just don’t look professional. And professional is really important, especially when it comes to self-publishing which already has an unfairly bad rap for quality. I used an online service called 99Designs on the recommendation of several friends and was over the moon with the results. 99Designs allows designers to bid for your project, which gives you lots of options and allows you to inform the evolution of the design. Prices for book covers start at $300 and go up from there. I connected with a fantastic designer for that price and ended up giving her the work for all three covers (the covers for Fearless and Lawless were quite a bit cheaper). I’m ecstatic to have her on board and will continue to use her for everything, and I’m pretty sure my cover has gone a long way toward making readers feel like they’re getting a quality product.

2. Proofread WAY past the point where you think you need to proofread. I’ve always had respect for my copyeditors in traditional publishing. It’s SO tedious going through a manuscript with a fine tooth comb, and your brain does this thing where it shows you what you expect to see. So “form” looks like “from” even though it’s clearly a typo. You don’t see it — but your readers often do. I went through Ruthless very carefully after uncorrected galleys (which were sent out pre-copyedit because of time constraints) went out to bloggers. I even had someone else proof it. But there were still typos in the uploaded file, and to be honest, a friend and reader has found a few more that my formatter will fix today. It’s embarrassing to admit this! I do freelance editing, and I’m extremely careful about stuff like this, but it just validates what I tell editing clients; you CAN NOT edit your own work and get the same result, and it pays to have more than one person read through your book slowly for typos. Luckily, the digital platform means you can make changes even after you upload — but don’t count on it. Do everything in your power to make sure the book is perfect out of the gate.

3. A great formatter is worth his or her weight in gold. Mine was absolutely awesome and was also very responsive, critical when I was uploading and had a problem that needed resolving asap. Also, she’s been a gem about fixing those typos I mentioned above, which is important because unless you have the formatting software and know how to use it, going in and doing it yourself is more complicated than it sounds (at least for me!).

4. Give yourself plenty of time to upload. I started uploading three days before Ruthless was slated to release. I didn’t tell anyone, because I wanted everything to be in place for release day, and I’m glad I didn’t. I tweaked the description several times, played with the metadata (see below), and resolved problems with an old Nook Press account I had forgotten I had. The Amazon KDP platform was by far the easiest and fastest to use, and their Customer Service team was extremely responsive when I had questions. I also got help from many generous people on the Kindle boards. Nook Press was, frankly, a nightmare. There were all kinds of tricky rules regarding accounts and it took a lot longer  to get help, in part because I think their Customer Service is offshore, and the language barrier became problematic at times (at least two emails were wasted without getting an answer to the question I asked). Once I got everything resolved, the book showed as On Sale a good two days before it actually showed up on B&N online. But one thing I like about the Nook Press system is that you can make changes to the manuscript (like correcting typos) using their system, which means I didn’t have to go back to my formatter to make a small change. iBooks was my least favorite in terms of ease-of-use. First of all, you have to download two different apps to upload the book — iBooks and Producer.  You also need an iTunes connect account, which is different from your regular iTunes account. Then it was around three full days from the time I uploaded the book until it was actually on sale in the iTunes store. As the release date for Ruthless got closer, I was glad I’d given myself extra time to get everything in order.

5. Connect with other writers in your genre. This is true of both self-pubbed and traditionally published writers. Since most of my work has been YA, I didn’t know many writers in the romance genre, but I started reading romance and connecting with the people who write it months before my release. I learned so much about the genre that way, and it’s been gratifying to have their support, even if it’s just in an occasional tweet or share on social media. I’ve been very lucky to have a few friends in the genre who have gone above and beyond by reading and blurbing the book and spreading the word to their readers, and I’m looking forward to the day when I can pay it forward, both to them and to other newbies like me.

One word of advice; don’t be a user. Working relationships, like all relationships, are best founded on authenticity. It’s always a nice bonus when you can help a friend or they can help you, but it’s much more sincere to show a genuine interest in their work and to connect on a personal level where possible. I don’t connect on a personal level with every writer out there, and that’s okay. I focus on building genuine friendships (online and otherwise) and let the rest take care of itself.

6. Get all the help you can afford. I made the decision early on to hire InkslingersPR to do a release day blitz and two-week blog tour for Ruthless. To be honest, this isn’t money I have laying around. It was hard to part with it. But I do think it’s made a difference, and it’s been a relief to focus on writing while the bloggers that are part of the tour take the lead in spreading the word. They’ve done a great job so far, and the peace of mind it’s given me has been more than worth the money I spent. I’m pretty sure a good part of the reason why I’m selling regularly is because of the sustained attention given to the book during the campaign.

7. Try Facebook ads (and others) if you can afford to. I’m still experimenting with this, but so far I’ve been happy with the results. As a disclaimer I have to ad that I have a very knowledgeable friend who has helped me get this done right, but so far my ad on FB (I’m paying  maximum of $100) has garnered about 1500 targeted impressions and 30 clicks to the Buy page (the last time I checked). I’m also going to experiment with a Goodreads ad. It’s a bit more than the FB ad, but I think the reach is a lot wider. I’ll try to keep you posted on my results going forward.

8. Play with your metadata until you get it right. Metadata is the keywords and categories used to drive readers to your book. If you list your book as Action Adventure but it’s really a Romance, the right readers won’t find it. And if you simply use the keyword “romance”, it will get lost amid the millions of other books categorized that way. There is tons of great information online about metadata (I think I’ve read about twenty hours worth), but I’ve found that “keyword stuffing” helps a lot. This means instead of wasting one of my keywords with “romantic mystery”, I use “romantic suspense mystery thriller”. Instead of using “contemporary romance”, I use “contemporary urban modern new york city romance”. Because all of those words are within the commas, they count as one keyword. Try to think about the search strings reader might use to find a book like yours if they don’t know about your book. You can also start typing things into the search bar as if you’re a reader, i.e. “romantic suspense” pulls up previous searches for “romantic suspense kindle books”, “romantic suspense books”, and “romantic suspense boxed set.” If any of these things apply to your book, use them!

Obligatory word of caution; don’t abuse the system by invoking the names of similar authors or using adjectives that won’t always be true (like “new”). You MIGHT get away with it, but you might not, and if you don’t, your book can be delisted. Just be smart and follow the rules, and if you search for your book using adjectives a reader might use but don’t find it, it’s time to tweak your metadata until it comes up higher in the search results.

I think that’s it! But it’s a lot for four days, amIright?

 

 

Please check back over the next month for more updates. In the meantime, you can buy Ruthless on Amazon, B&N, and iTunes, and you can add it to your Goodreads shelf here.

 

 

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08/03/15 Book News , Mob Boss Series , Ruthless # , , , , , , , ,

Ruthless Release Day!

Ruthless_FBAd_short_quote

 

Please help me spread the word by sharing on social media, adding it to your Goodreads shelf, purchasing the book, and reviewing it if you enjoy it. Many of you have been with me as readers for years, and I’m so excited to finally share Nico and Angel’s story with you!

 

Add Ruthless to your Goodreads shelf

Purchase Ruthless on Amazon

Purchase Ruthless on Barnes and Noble

 

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06/06/15 Book News , Life , Reading , Uncategorized , Writing # , , , , , , , , , ,

Newsletter – Incoming!

After much deliberation I have decided to join the ranks of newsletter-bearing authors. One of the hardest things about authoring in the modern age is knowing how much to share, how often to share it, and whether people are REALLY interested in hearing it. Here, I’m my own worst enemy, because my assumption is always that people are busy and overloaded with information, and it takes something pretty special to compel them to read something else on their computer.

Do I have stuff to share that’s something special? I’ll let you decide. But I do have stuff to share — about reading, writing, and life.

And sometimes I even have NEWS.

😉

So after taking an informal Facebook poll and confirming that a good number of my readers would like a semi-personal, once-monthly, quick and easy to read account of what’s going on — with my writing and everything else — I decided to give it a whirl. My plan is to include a couple of real life things (recipes, things I’m loving that month, etc.) with a personal snippet and a book recommendation or writing tip. I’m planning to keep it one page, and only put it out once a month.

But the big thing is that I’m going to make as many announcements as possible to newsletter subscribers first. And that includes my next book announcement.

If you’d like to stay in the loop, you can sign up for the newsletter here in under ten seconds. And if you decide to opt out at any time, all you’ll have to do is hit the “unsubscribe” link at the bottom of each newsletter.

<3

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03/05/14 Book News # , , , , , , ,

The Best Kind of News is New Book News

 
Super excited to announce my new deal with HarperTeen. Can’t wait to share LIES I TOLD with you guys!

 

Jennifer Klonsky at HarperTeen has bought a new YA novel by Michelle Zink(The Prophecy of the Sisters series). Lies I Told centers on Grace, a teenage girl adopted into a family of thieves who move from town to town, conning the wealthy and privileged. But when they arrive in the affluent enclave of Playa Hermosa for their biggest heist yet, the foundations in her makeshift family start to crack. Publication is scheduled for spring 2015; Steven Malk at Writers House did the two-book deal for world English and audio rights.

 

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Michelle Zink is the award-winning author of over seven novels. She lives in New York with too many teenagers and too many cats.
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Michelle St. James Online
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Acclaim

"This arresting story takes readers to other planes of existence…"
- Booklist (starred review)


“An intense and captivating story…”
- VOYA (starred review)


“A fresh and engaging cast of characters, a page-turning plot and lyrical prose add up to an accomplished feat of storytelling…”
- The Guardian


“A captivating tragedy…"
- Publishers Weekly


“Zink’s methodical unfolding of events will draw readers in…”
- Kirkus


“Tingly suspense is craftily managed…”
- The Bulletin

Awards
 

 



@MichelleZink
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