Sunday, November 27, 2011

Spec The Halls: A special charity appeal

Note: Today I wanted to pass along a guest post from Steven Saus, a great author, eBook wizard, and all-around good guy who has a very worthy project this holiday season. Please give this a read and consideration! Steven's the real deal as far as good folk in the small press/self-publishing world! :) thanks!
-Stephen Z

Spec the Halls

My name is Steven Saus; I'm an author and publisher. I run Alliteration Ink, where I both publish original work and also provide publishing services. This year, I've taken up the mantle of running Spec The Halls from Abra Staffin-Wiebe. There's both a writing contest and a charity fundraiser. Right now, I'm doing a bit of a blog tour to support the fundraiser; each entry talks about something different, so you'll want to stop by them all. You can see a full linklist of the guest posts at and read more about the whole project (and get the charity eBook) at

I've already been asked a few times why Spec The Halls is only going to be available in digital formats.

First, I want to point out that if you get the eBook from our website, not only will more of the purchase price be going to charity, but you'll get more formats. You will get a PDF as well as the ePub (iBooks, nook, Kobo, Sony) and Kindle formats. Basically, if you have a computer, you'll be able to read it.

Second, it means that more of the money can go to charity. If I printed the book (about 150 pages if you made it a trade paperback size), it would cost a few dollars a book - and that's not counting what the retailers take. Because the authors donated the stories, Kathleen Tennant donated the cover art, and I do eBook conversions myself, there are neither up-front or per-unit costs. More money for Heifer International!

Third, this eBook is only available for a short time for the fundraiser. When the fundraiser is over, I won't have excess inventory to worry about!

Finally, digital distribution means that we can do innovative things with the book - like accepting reciepts for donations that people make on their own instead of requiring people to pay me directly.

It's that kind of flexibility that made it obvious that this project required digital-only distribution.

This year's edition of Spec The Halls is only available for a limited time, so act quickly to get your copy!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday and Small Business Saturday-Consider Seventh Star Press! :)

As you go about your weekend shopping, whether it is Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, or Cyber-Monday, please consider picking up some books from myself, or one of the other Seventh Star Press authors.

We have a great online store where you can get limited hardcovers, softcovers, and other collectible items like t-shirts and art posters, and the SSP site takes international orders too.

If you are buying an eReader for someone, or know someone that is getting one, consider gifting the Kindle Versions of a Seventh Star Press Book, or a Nook version. There's some great new stuff, with H. David Blalock's Angelkiller, a new urban fantasy, and D.A. Adams' The Fall of Dorkhun, the third in his fantasy series.

I encourage you to take a look at all of it, and whether you buy it from the online site, or on, every purchase really helps a small press. Please give it some thought, and celebrate Small Business Saturday with a purchase of a Seventh Star Press item!

Visit the online store at:

Thursday, November 24, 2011

My Gratitude to My Reader Friends-A Thanksgiving Message

To all my reader-friends, today is one of those days I tend to get a little reflective. I always think about the things I am grateful for on the Thanksgiving holiday.

I want to express my heartfelt thanks to my reader-friends in particular today. Without you, I cannot pursue my dream, without you, I cannot achieve it, and without you, I can't exist as an author. This is in my mind every day of the year, but sometimes it needs to be said openly.

The things that you might think are smaller, like sharing a link, making a post, putting up some comments/reviews on or GoodReads, are always deeply appreciated. I thank you for taking the time to do that, as it makes a real difference. I do notice it, and each thing you do puts a little more wind into my sails.

My work as an author is an inseparable part of me, and not a small one at that. It is not a hobby, a pastime, or a side pursuit. It is at the heart of what I am, and who I am. I am in my work. When you pick up one of my books, it is a validation of the real me, the area of my life that contains my dreams, the part I am passionate about. As you can probably guess, I have a very special affinity for those who are supportive of my path. I have commented on this before, but this is why I often use the term reader-friends, because in helping me attain my dream, you are being a true friend, as a friend wants the best for those they care about.

I want you to know that I honor your support every day by giving my path every ounce of effort and resource I can put into it. From burning the candle at both ends, mountains of research, a lot of sacrifices in my lifestyle and time, I demonstrate my commitment to you every day, pushing always to improve and grow as a writer.

Thank you for keeping the faith. Know that everything that you do, from helping to promote my work, to buying a book or eBook, is an encouragement that helps me to keep moving forward when my pockets are empty, my body is exhausted, and the slope of the mountain looks impossibly steep. We'll get to the summit of that mountain together, and I will be an author you can count on, who will work hard to bring you new adventures to escape into, and enjoy for years to come, and who will always be the kind of author you can approach, and reach out to.

thank you for all you do! :)


Sunday, November 13, 2011

New Guest Blog Post and Contest

Wanted to stop by and let everyone know that I have a guest post up on Darlene's Book Nook, which goes along with a contest. The contest is easy to enter, and the winner will get to pick the first book of either The Rising Dawn Saga or the Fires in Eden series, whichever they would like.

The blog post goes into my influences as an author, discussing several of my main influences and why each of them had an impact upon me.

Visit Darlene's Book Nook by clicking here!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Kentucky Book Fair

Off to the Kentucky Book Fair in Frankfort, Kentucky tomorrow. 200+ authors and 5,000 plus attendees, this is regarded as one of the 20 best book events on the lists of many industry folks. This will be my third year, and I am really stoked about coming back again.

I will have 3 more titles with me than I had last year, with Dream of Legends, The Seventh Throne, and the Dreams of Steam II: Brass and Bolts anthology.

I was honored to receive one of the 12 live reading slots, and have decided to read from the latest Harvey/Solomon story from Dreams of Steam II. Will be a celebration of Harvey/Harry, and I think I can get through it okay.

I want everyone to know I've been hard at work, writing daily. Polishing and tweaking the third Fires in Eden book, and working on polishing or finishing out some short stories for an exciting new series coming up via Seventh Star Press. Readers of the two book series are about to get much more to explore in the two worlds, and horror fans will have something new to check out as well. I will have details very soon.

My schedule has been very tough, as I've been working with Keeneland Broadcast for the massive auctions and the October racing meet. The past several days have been at the November sales, which brought in over 167 million dollars the first week alone. Going very well, but it means that I get up early to do a writing session, tackle my Keeneland responsibilities, use every spare moment I get during the day and then at night to attend all business responsibilities, keep up with all emails and messages, and then try to squeeze in a little more writing at night. Pretty intensive, and I'm looking forward to the end of the sales on November 17th just to get a little breathing room, LOL.

Get ready for a very active finish to the year! And if you are in the area, come out tomorrow to the Kentucky Book Fair at the Convention Center on Mero St. in Frankfort Ky. 9-4:30 are the hours, and except for the 2-3pm window I have for my reading I will be at my booth. Come by and say hi! :)