How to Market your Ebook – 11/1 (links at the bottom)

indiana jones

Waddup, waddup.

My first week of marketing Master is officially over. And boy-oh-boy was it… uneventful. That’s not to say I didn’t learn a tremendous amount.

Doing anything new requires an enormous amount of patience and persistence. I spoke to a friend of mine about working construction projects with him, as he is a tremendously successful independent contractor. He explained to me that though he is willing, taking me along with him would most likely result in a financial loss. A project that would normally take him fifteen minutes would take me four hours or more. Now that I’m branching out into a field I have zero experience in, I understand exactly what he means.

One of the most effective ways to generate buzz for a book you plan on releasing is to release it shortly after a novella. Because I don’t have a novella, I’ve decided to take some of the short stories I’ve written on here and self-publish them in a timely manner leading up to the Nov. 20th release date for Master. Even though these stories have already been written, I will have to purchase ISBNs, e-book covers, and a membership with a program called Merchant Words (this program allows you to view the keywords consumers most often search on engines such as Amazon).

Along with releasing numerous short stories leading up to the release of Master, it’s imperative I rack up a number of bloggers to provide reviews during that same week. Unfortunately, I have yet to contact any potential reviewers. This is largely because review bloggers are bombarded for their services, by traditional and indie authors alike. The biggest obstacle we indie authors face is separating ourselves from the pack – let’s be honest, a group that accepts anybody is bound to have its share of hopeful hacks…. And I’m hoping to hack my way out, but until then, I’m one of them!

I’m happy that a plan is coming together, regardless of how behind schedule I currently am. After-all, we learn from taking taking action and making decisions. The only way to avoid the pangs of reality is to forever avoid it.

Posted below is a list of websites that I’ve found extremely helpful for marketing my e-book. I suggest for any and all authors to take advantage of the information they have to offer.

Master – 9.1

Master_eBook

Click here to start from the beginning!

Ch. 2     Ch. 3     Ch. 4     Ch. 5     Ch. 6     Ch. 7     Ch. 8

Master comes out in 4 days! Pre-order NOW!

CHAPTER 9

It’s the last person I ever want to see – Ashley Dupont. My first real girlfriend. We dated through high school and the first two years in college, up until I got with Loretta. She’s also Loretta’s ex-best friend. And that’s a capital ‘X’.

“Are you… carjacking me?” she says in her typical high-pitched voice.

My gun hand won’t keep steady.

She blinks, then holds her pink nails out like an invisible plate rests on the top of her hand. “Like, for real?”

My blood boils. My adrenaline rushes. A realization has dawned on me – If I leave Ashley behind, she’ll be waiting to tell the authorities who I am and what I look like, not to mention the exact license plate number of her red mustang. I have to kidnap her. I aim at the diamond in her ear.

“Scoot over.”

“This is a jay-kay, right?” She looks around. “Some new reality show or something? Carjack your ex?”

The gun fires. We both jump. I accidently shot a bullet through her blonde hair and into her headrest.

“Jesus fucking Christ!” Ashley scurries over to the passenger seat, then fastens herself in.

“Holy fuck, what is wrong with you! Don’t kill me!”

“No-”

“We were together for like, 6 years! What the fuck Phil!”

My arm is locked in the air, my eyes can’t stop blinking. I’m in disbelief – nearly killed my ex-girlfriend.

“You want the car? Me? What is it?!”

I shake my head, then cough and lower into the vehicle. My knees jam into the steering wheel, but I find the lever and scoot the seat back. I start the mustang, turn it around, then head for the Sheraton Inn. I let out a breath. Holy shit, I can’t believe I just did that.

“Where’s your phone?” I say.

“What’s going on? Are you gonna kill me?”

“Just give me the phone.”

“Did I do something? Why me?”

“The phone, Ashley.”

“Phil! You’re a criminal now? Why? What happened-”

“The phone goddammit!”

“It’s at home… Don’t kill me.”

I take a good look at her. She’s wearing a black mini skirt. Her legs are clamped together. “Take your phone out from under your skirt.”

“I told you, I left it at home.”

“I carjacked you. I’m not afraid to wrestle your legs apart.”

I can’t stop thinking about how close I came to cracking her skull open with a bullet. This sucks; every part of this sucks. I decide to give up on the phone thing. I’m a married man; the thought of touching Ashley inappropriately sickens me. Because I’m a married man and my wife is missing, not because I’m not attracted to her. Ashley is every man’s dream – she’s even better looking since I left her, in a materialistic sense. Her breasts perk up like they’re resting on an invisible shelf, and they’re twice as plump as they used to be. Plus now she’s got these big fisheyes like the Kardashians after applying ‘make-up contour techniques’. Ashley got work done, and the doctors knew what they were doing.

I hate every part of this. I hate that Loretta and Avery are in danger, and I hate that I’m on my way to a hotel where I’m supposed to kill whoever is in room 203. I don’t even know what I’m going to do when I get there.

CLICK HERE FOR 9.2!

  • Thomas M. Watt

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Master – 8.1

Master_eBook

Click here to start from the beginning!

Ch. 2

Ch. 3

Ch. 4

Ch. 5

Ch. 6

Ch. 7

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CHAPTER 8

I wake up screaming. I’m bloody, my shirt is ripped, and I’m surrounded by desert. My head is attached to my body; my upper torso is no longer spooned clean.

A brief chill. Then the torment returns.

“No.” I push myself up. I grab my expos cap, jam it on until I’m eye-deep, then rip it off and throw it to the ground.

Somebody’s handgun is in my pocket.

I pat my pockets down – no phone, no wallet. I do a three-sixty. My family is gone. Loretta and Avery are hostages.

Master has them. In real life.

My eyes glaze over the sand, then the rocks around me. How is this possible? Am I delusional, have I gone full-blown insane?

I pick one of the rocks up, then hurl it. How could a psychopath from my dreams kidnap my family? I snatch another, then fling it forty plus yards.

I grab a third, then sprint forward. I swing my arm back, then hurl it through the air. My pace diminishes to a clumsy limp. Two more lifeless steps, then I stumble and fall, face-first into the sand. My wrist jams from my half-assed attempt to catch myself. Grains of sand fill my mouth and catch in the cracks between my teeth.

I slip the handgun out from my pocket and stare down the barrel.

The sicko has my family. He could be raping them, torturing them. Maybe he’s killed them already. Maybe he’s right – maybe I’m doomed to fail.

Have I lost my mind? Has ‘Master’ really infiltrated my dreams and abducted my family? Does he even exists, or has paranoia deranged the shit out of me?

I think hard about my morning with Loretta, searching for some alternative explanation. Is it possible our love wasn’t mutual, and she opted to take our daughter and run? No – She wouldn’t do something like that, I’m sure of it.

That cop who pulled me over – he seemed tormented, too. Especially when he blew his brains out. Maybe Master had him.

I flip the gun aside.

I’m dehydrated, hungry, and disoriented. I push off my belly then sit on my knees, gazing absently at the sun. I remain there until only a faint orange glow remains. I drop my head, let out a breath, then rise to my feet.

I have to get going. I have to save my family.

There is a roadway in the distance. I look down at the handgun, bend over to grab it, then stop. I swipe my expos hat up instead, then fix it over my shaggy hair as I walk toward the roadway.

I’m not going to kill anyone. Like I said before, I’m not a man of violence, and there’s no way in hell I’m going to let Master get to me. Even with my family in jeopardy, force and intimidation is not part of my lifestyle. I clean pools for Christ’s sake.

I pause short of my fifth step. What choice do I really have, though? My wife and daughter are in his hands. He’s the one calling the shots.

I shut my eyes and sigh.

“Goddammit.”

I return to where I sat, grab the gun, then tuck it in the waistband of my jeans and hike through the desert sand over to the roadway.

I’m not going to use it. But I’d be an idiot not to take it.

I wish going to the authorities were an option. Too bad cops don’t file police reports about nightmares. Plus I’m freaked out about how Master tracks me in real life. Could be some wacko shit like Being John Malkovich, where there’s this portal that allows people to observe life through some famous actor’s eyes. I forget the actor’s name.

Master? Who is this guy? Why did he pick me to carry out his dirty work? Somehow this complete stranger has jacked the steering wheel of my own life and taken me for a joy-ride.

I reach the road, then wait on the side. A trailer approaches. My arm is outstretched, thumb aimed skyward. I step out for the driver to see me. He tugs the horn and swerves around.

Five minutes pass without a single other vehicle passing. Then a truck rumbles my way. This time I jump in the road and wave my arms frantically. They slow to a roll, and I move aside and signal for him to lower the window.

Guy laughs and gives me the finger, then drives off.

Enough with the bullshit.

I hold the gun firm with one hand. Next car is mine.

A red mustang comes tearing down the highway. I flag them down from the middle of the road. I hope to God the driver isn’t one of those mad-as-hell gun owners who live for murdering in self-defense. The mustang pulls over and stops, but the tinted window remains up.

I take one last breath, then aim my gun at the driver’s side window. I fight jitters as I reach out for the door handle. Part of me fully expects my head to be blown off before I ever see who’s inside. I tug the handle, and hear the snappy click – it’s unlocked. I bring the door toward me.

“O… M… G,” she says.

Fuck me.

CLICK HERE FOR 9.1!

  • Thomas M. Watt

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Best Quotes – #3

Thank you to Jacqueline Obyikocha who nominated me for this award. I’ve been selected to write 3 of my favorite quotes, and nominate 3 of my favorite bloggers to do the same. I will provide 1 quote per and nominate 1 blogger per day.

Today’s Nominee: Laura Pickren.

Congrats!

Steve Jobs was an influential man. I never knew much about him until recently. In one video I’ve been unable to track down, Jobs states that “influence is more powerful than control.” This really struck a chord with me.

There are different types of relationships, so many that I can’t even fathom attempting to list them one-by-one. The most common are: romantic, professional, and friendly.

It is becoming disturbingly commonplace for relationships to consists of one person attempting to exert control over another. The motivation to control is always the same – fear. Fear that someone will leave you, refuse to do business with you, or reject you. At its core, control is the action taken by people who wrongly believe they’re unlovable.

Used car salesmen, passive-aggresive girlfriends, and domineering father figures perpetuate stereotypes that I consider best represent controlling personalities. These types will trick, manipulate, and flat-out lie just to get others to submit to their will.

The reason I like Job’s quote so much is because it holds true. The fruitful relationships in our lives natural influence us – you listen to your best friend’s suggestion about what movie to see, the advice of a successful person encourages you to behave similarly, the loving support of your significant other lifts you when you are down.

Always remember: Fear controls. Confidence influences.

Come by tomorrow evening to read my second favorite quote!

Master – 4.2

Master_eBook

Click here to start from the beginning!

Ch. 2

Ch. 3

Ch. 4

She’s hidden beneath the covers, and I know she hates being woken up. The only exception is Christmas morning. Then again, she’s wide awake every Christmas morning.

I peel back the cover just enough to see she’s facing away from me. I rest my hand on her brown hair, and she doesn’t move.

“I know you’re sleeping right now, Brussels-sprouts. I just wanted you to know-” I pause.

I lived a very lonely life. That’s what people don’t get about me; that’s what they miss. Until you’ve gone without love, you have no idea how powerful it can be when it finds you. It’s not just a saying, and it sure as hell isn’t something I tell myself to feel better about giving up football. I don’t mean to get sappy, but as I stand here at my daughter’s bedside, knowing a short hallway away rests a beautiful woman who loves Phil Gordon the pool guy, I can’t help but thank God for all the life I have, and forget to give two shits about the one I gave up.

“I love you, Brussels sprouts.”

She turns over, and I finally see her face. Avery puts her hand in mine, then rubs her eye open.

“What time is it, daddy?”

I smirk. “Too early for you.”

She giggles.

I kiss her on the forehead, then get up.

“Wait!”

“What is it?”

“Come over here!”

I sigh, then do.

“Pinky.”

I grin, then hold out the finger. She locks her tiny pinky around mine.

“Say it, daddy.”

“You sure? Figured you’re too grown-up for that.”

“Say it!”

I smile. “Daddy cauliflower always returns for princess Brussels Sprouts.”

“Yay!” says Avery, kicking her legs and feet. I can’t help but laugh along with her – she hates vegetables.

I proceed to the kitchen, scoop out some Columbian roast, toss it in the filter, then add about four cups worth of water and turn the coffee pot on. I wait with my hands on the counter and my head dangling over my chest.

It was a dream, I remind myself. Nothing but a dream.

Still, ‘Master’ seemed so real. The entire scene did. Some dreams are so ludicrous you realize you’re dreaming while you’re in the middle of them. Other dreams fool you a little more, but as soon as you return to consciousness you realize you’d been tricked.

The coffee finishes brewing, and I pour myself a cup.

But then there are those other dreams, when long after waking, you are still convinced that you were in the presence of another being. Maybe not physically, but maybe metaphysically. The universe is a strange place.

“Are you trying to freak me out?”

It’s Loretta – she’s standing in the doorway, glaring at me.

“Yes, just the dream. Don’t worry-”

“You don’t spook easily, Phillip.”

“I know.”

“So why do you look so disturbed, baby?”

I think for a moment, and some primitive part of me urges me to warn her about Master. I almost want to stay here, just to watch over my family and make certain everything remains alright.

“Like you said, it was just a dream.” I hand her the mug. “Here, I don’t even want this. Have a good day, babe.” I kiss her and head for the front door.

“So why are you so upset?”

“Just being paranoid, like you said.”

“Love you, Phillip,” she says as I leave.

CLICK HERE FOR 5.1!

  • Thomas M. Watt

Master – 4.1

Master_eBook

Click here to start from the beginning!

Ch. 2

Ch. 3

CHAPTER 4

“Phillip?” says Loretta.

I’m out of breath and gasping for air.

“Look at you baby, you’re covered in sweat!”

She puts her hand to my forehead. I shove it away, then mount and kiss her with every ounce of passion I have. She pushes me away.

“Phillip? What is it?”

“God almighty, Loretta. I thought you were dead.”

“Bad dream?”

“You have no idea.”

I try to kiss her again, but she scoots out from under me. “What was it?”

“You and I, we were in a psychiatrist’s office… I watched you die, babe.”

“Hmm,” says Loretta. “In your dream, you and I are seeing a psychiatrist.”

“Yea.”

“And he attacks me.”

“Yea, he set you on fire.”

“What did you do?”

“Nothing… I couldn’t move.” I lean to kiss her, but she dodges back and catches my face with her palm.

“So you sat there and watched it happen?”

“I had no choice, I told you.”

Loretta scoffs, then rolls over and throws the cover over her head.

“Babe?”

She doesn’t say anything. Her silence makes me feel worse than her yelling. I rub her shoulder.

“Hey, I’m sorry Loret-”

She springs out from her side of the bed and wrestles me onto my back. She’s got my shoulders pinned to the mattress as she straddles me.

“I don’t care if you have dreams about trains splitting my brains across the rails.” She darts her head forward and smushes her lips into mine. “You know why?”

“Tell me.”

She sucks in my lips as she grips my pecks. “Because in real life, Phillip, you would stop that fucking train. You would figure out a way to stop that train and save me, and nothing in the world could stop you.” She kisses me softly, only for a moment.

“And that’s why I love you.” She leans back, then pulls up my eyelids with her thumbs, studying me like a child.

“What?” I say.

“I see it in your soul.”

She kisses me again, then falls away from her straddle of me and returns to her side of the bed. “Baby, what was the name of the psychiatrist?”

“In my dream?”

“Duh.”

I laugh. “He wouldn’t tell me. Made me call him Master.”

She turns over and looks at me. “Seriously?”

“Yeah, why?”

She sits up to her elbows and stares straight ahead.

“What?” I say. “Remind you of someone?”

She laughs, then turns back over and faces away from me. “You’re too paranoid, baby.

Your mind is going to get the better of you.”

I roll out of bed, kick on my jeans, then head out the bedroom. I’m surprised to find the

door to Avery’s room cracked open; usually she keeps it closed.

CLICK HERE FOR 4.2!

  • Thomas M. Watt

Master – 2.2

Master_eBook

Click here to start from the beginning

“Why are you laughing?”

“You’re paranoid baby. I swear, sometimes I wonder if I married a schizophrenic.”

She returns to me again, then playfully straightens out my Montreal Expos cap. “You’re Phillip Gordon! You stand a sexy six-foot four, don’t take shit from nobody, and married the hottest Latina this town has ever seen.” She sets her hand on my knee, then slides it up my thigh, closer to my crotch. “You have a beautiful daughter, named Avery. You’re the greatest football player this town has ever known. And you know what? If anyone gives you shit, just dump enough chlorine in their pools to kill off their entire families. And their little poodles.”

I laugh. “Saying things like that could get you in trouble.”

“I don’t give a fuck what people think, baby! Only you.”

Loretta rubs the crotch part of my jeans with the flat of her palm until she finds my dong. Then, in the sexiest voice you could ever imagine, “You like when I do this?”

Loretta forms her hand into a fist and punches me right in the dick.

“Hey!” I say, then shove her away with a single arm. She giggles like a school girl as she returns to her seat, then smiles to herself while staring out the window. I laugh at first, then the ride turns to silence. No music playing, no conversation – just silence.

“Loretta?”

“Ya Baby?”

“I love you.”

She takes my hand and kisses the back of it. “Love you forever, Phillip Gordon.”

CLICK HERE FOR 3.1!

  • Thomas M. Watt

Master – 2.1

Master_eBook

Click here to start from the beginning

I remove my Montreal Expos cap and take a step forward. I snag a firm grip of his shoulder, then stare straight into his eyes.

“One day, God-willing, you’re going to have a child of your own. And when you do, you’re going to raise that kid and do everything you can to keep him from becoming the person you once were; maybe the person you are now. When that day comes, I want you to look in your child’s eyes, and ask yourself – was it worth having this child? All the sleepless nights, all the extra-payments, all the stress that comes along with caring for a family?”

“Fuck that, I don’t do relationships.”

I smile. “Have a good day, son.” I turn around to face my wife. “Let’s go, babe.”

She frowns, then takes my hand. We leave.

CHAPTER 2

My Dodge pickup sounds like it gurgles cement as we bump along the road. Loretta unbuckles her seat belt, then leans over the center console and wraps both her arms around my right bicep.

“Let it go, baby,” she says, then kisses my shoulder.

“We should move,” I say.

“Why?” Loretta springs back.

“I don’t want to live here anymore. I don’t want Avery growing up here.”

“You and I grew up here. We have family here.”

“I don’t want Avery dealing with the same bullshit I do. She shouldn’t have to deal with these questions.”

“What questions?”

“C’mon Loretta, you want me to say it?”

“Say what?”

“The fact that I was an NFL prodigy who quit. Fact that the same people who thought I’d be rich and famous call me when their pool’s got too many leaves floating on top.”

Loretta laughs. She sits back in her own seat, crosses her arms, and stares out her window.

“What?”

She looks at me, rubs the tip of her nose, and turns away.

Click here for 2.2!

Thomas M. Watt

Master Update – 9/21

runner

I know some of you are looking forward to Sunset Part 4 – Should be writing it tomorrow. Busy molding the ending to Master today, and I’m really thrilled about how it turned out.

Ellie Augsburger tells me her initial concept for the cover should be finished by the end of this week. I’m excited to see it. A cover will also make it much easier to promote.

I did a lot more writing than promoting this weekend. Pushing a book begins while you’re still writing it – The problem I’ve run into is a split personality, the artist and the promoter. The more time I spend on social media connecting with others, the more my mind is occupied with finding more effective ways to draw attention to my story.

Now that the story is (nearly) complete, I’m going to send the full manuscript out to four or five willing beta readers. The good news is that multiple parties have already read the first half, and they are just as enthusiastic about it as I am.

This isn’t the first time I’ve poured my all into a book, but it is the first time I’ve received overwhelmingly positive feedback. I’d like to think that the short stories I blog on here reflect my overall improvements as a writer.

Beyond that, I’m excited to wrap up Sunset this week. I’m happy with the ending I have in mind, I only hope I can find the right words to show it to you.

  • Thomas M. Watt

Marketing – Day 2

bum

Waddup.

So yesterday was a pretty big success. Got some new followers on this blog, one of whom has a very impressive blog and seems determined to make her debut novel something special (her name is Allison and you can visit her blog here).

Beyond that, I reorganized my wordpress page, ditched the old shit cover of “A New Kingdom” and gave it a flashy new one (that’s sick as fuck), and edited the first chapter of Way of the World. Off to a good start? I’d say a fucking great start.

So where do I go from here?

From what I’ve garnered, the next step is to create a twitter account and promote my books in various forums. I’ve also got this wild fantasy of dressing up as one of my book characters, going to a local book store, and calling people over with a loud voice, then smiling big, laughing obnoxiously, and then I get money and they walk away with my book. I’m pretty sure that’s all there is to selling, right? Haha, just kidding… I’m gonna fall on my ass but so what.

Eh. I am not looking forward to this marketing shit. Then again, I’m kind of excited to do it, because I’m single and it seems sort of like dating – if you’re a single dude, you ain’t ever gonna get any unless you get off your ass and risk making a fool of yourself. You know it’s true because there’s an expression that says “Only fools fall in love,” but I never heard anyone say “See that really shy guy over there who keeps scribbling in that notebook over there? Yeah, he gets a ton of ass.”

Thomas M. Watt