The Importance of Pre-Orders, via Brain McClellan

Here I was, all ready to do a post about the importance of pre-orders for authors and their books, and my friend Brian McClellan comes along and beats me to it. And even does a better job that I likely would have done, too.

The nerve of some people!

Well, I suppose the means there is only one thing to do: tell you to go over to Brian’s blog and read his post. Because it’s important. And it’s true. Pre-orders can make a big difference in how a book does and is received, even before its release date. Every pre-order helps a tremendous amount, as do first week sales. In the end, this is a numbers game to a certain degree, and bigger numbers help authors get the opportunity to write more books.

Brian was good enough to put links down at the bottom of his post to some of the authors he has pre-ordered this year. Sworn in Steel is among them, yes, but they are all good books, all good reads, and all authors who could use the help. And I can also recommend Brian’s first book, Promise of Blood, and his upcoming release, The Crimson Campaign (which has the same release date at SiS, as it happens). If you are interested in any of these titles, or any other, don’t wait: pre-order them.* It makes a difference.

And because I am sure some of you are wondering: my own pre-orders were low last time I checked. If you are planning on buy a copy of Sworn in Steel, sooner would be nice, if you can swing it. Thanks. Links here.


* = I will note that if you are planning to attend a signing, then it is fine to hold off and buy the book there. Bookstores get nothing for hosting a signing other than (hopefully) increased sales of the book itself. Considering how much effort and planning the stores that have hosted me put into a signing, I would hate to take even a single sale away from them.

ARC Giveaway Results

This was a hard one. And I wasn’t even judging. (Thank goodness.)

There were thirty-two entries for the SWORN IN STEEL ARC giveaway. Thirty-two fun, clever, imaginative entries. I asked for you people to show your creativity, and you brought it in spades. It was an absolute joy to open each and every e-mail, to see each and every photo. You guys picked up the spirit of the contest and you ran with it.

Thank you. I wish my publisher had sent me a lot more ARCs.

As it is, the judges became deadlocked. It wasn’t possible to limit it to three. So there are going to be FOUR winners of SIS ARCs this time around, because I just don’t want to be that arbitrary.

Big congratulations to:

Sarah Keuper and her dangerous paper cutter

Sarah papercutter

Ellen Cutter and her mini-mercenary


Rebekah Lund (and her dramatic sword Valermos)

Bekah & Valermos 013

Cindy  Schwenzfeier, who was willing to sacrifice a wine glass for the cause.

Cindy L. Schwenzfeier

Congratulations, and thanks to everyone who entered!

As for those of you who didn’t manage to score an ARC, I would like to send each of you a signed bookplate. Not the same as winning a book, I know, but at least something you can stick in your book (besides a sword/scissors/knife/baby’s tooth/whatever).

(This is the bookplate, btw…)

Bookplate final low-res

I will be contacting all the entrants to get mailing information, etc.

Thanks again for entering (and my appreciation to the people on Twitter who suggested ideas for the contest in the first place). This was a ton of fun. I’ll have to do more contests in the future.


ARC contest update: Judging Is Imminent!


After an unanticipated delay (for which I offer my apologies), ALL of the entries for the “Sworn In Steel” ARC giveaway have now been uploaded. I will be putting all thirty-two(!) entries before the judges tonight, right after they get home from work and school. ;) The three lucky winners will be announced shortly thereafter, and I will contact them directly to get all the pertinents necessary for sending along the ARCs.

In the mean time, go take a look at the entries. I think it is safe to say I have a bunch of fun, clever, talented readers who really know how to get into the spirit of a contest.

Good luck everyone!

ARC contest update

I am heading out of town rather last minute to visit an ailing friend. I will post the final round of entries when I get back next week, as well as determine the winners. Sorry about the delay.

Thanks for your patience. And if you can spare any good thoughts for a dear friend, please send them along.

Free books are FREE

My publicist sums up the plight of these poor, poor books. Won’t you give them a forever home?

Woot! My publisher, Ace/Roc, is giving away 15 copies of AMONG THIEVES over on Goodreads in anticipation of the release of SWORN IN STEEL. Contest closes April 4. So, if you know someone who hasn’t read the book yet but would like to win a free copy (or if you want to win a copy for a friend or the like), send them/head over!