Throwback Thursday – eBook Covers

I thought it would be fun to look at some old book covers, and play compare and contrast. We’ll start with my first four ebook covers for my first four indie-published books. I created these covers and was quite pleased with them, way back in 2011. I think I’ve learned a bit about covers since then…The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance II, an anthology of vampire romances including "Coven of Mercy" by Deborah Cooke

original ebook cover for Coven of Mercy, a vampire romance and short story by Deborah CookeFirst up, Coven of Mercy, my vampire romance and short story. This was first published in an anthology, the Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance II (which was called Love Bites in the UK, a title I still love) in print only. The anthology cover is on the right. At left is the cover I created for it in 2011.

Coven of Mercy, a short story and vampire romance by Deborah CookeHmm. I knew I didn’t have it right, so had a new cover designed. Here’s the second cover on the right.

Coven of Mercy, a short story and vampire romance by Deborah CookeAt left is the current cover, which I love. This guy looks just as I envision Micah.

Every time I write about this story, I’m reminded that it was supposed to be the first in a series. Then I try to figure out when I’m going to write that series. I’ll let you know when I do solve that riddle!

In the meantime, Coven of Mercy is available at all e-retailers.
Amazon.com
Apple
Nook
KOBO
GooglePlay
Books2Read Universal Link (Find international stores and other Amazon stores here)

Amor Vincit Omnia is a short story, a medieval romance that was originally published in a digital anthology called the Seven Deadly Sins. This story isn’t available on its own anymore, but is included in my anthology, Beguiled, in both digital and print formats.

The Leaves, a short story by Deborah Cooke, in its original ebook editionI also got some extra mileage out of that image I licensed for Coven of Mercy and used it for the cover of The Leaves, a short story I’d written and never published before this ebook edition in 2011. This story is also available now in the anthology, Beguiled.

The interesting thing here is that, in 2011, we weren’t sure people would read long stories in digital editions. Popular thinking was that short stories would rule the format, which of course, hasn’t proven to be true at all – but that’s why I published short stories first.

Beguiled, a collection of short stories and novellas by Claire Delacroix and Deborah CookeWriting this post made me realize that Beguiled hadn’t been updated for a while and was no longer available at all retailers – I had to take it down when the Ballad of Rosamunde was in Kindle Unlimited – so I’ve fixed that this week. I also am in the process of republishing the print edition, which disappeared in my distribution transition from Createspace to Ingrams.

Buy Beguiled in ebook at:
Amazon.com
Apple
Nook
KOBO
GooglePlay
Books2Read Universal Link (find international stores and other Amazon stores here)

Once Upon a Kiss, a Scottish time travel romance by Claire Delacroix (writing as Claire Cross), out of print mass market edition

Once Upon a Kiss, a Scottish time travel romance by Deborah Cooke, published under the pseudonym Claire Cross and republished as a Claire Delacroix titleOnce Upon a Kiss is a Scottish time travel romance that was published in 1998 by Berkley and was the first book I published under the name Claire Cross. Here’s my first ebook cover for it, at left.

Here’s the Berkley mass market edition at right.

Once Upon a Kiss, a Scottish paranormal romance by Claire DelacroixAnd here’s its current cover at right, created by Kim Killion back in 2011 when I realized that my cover wasn’t getting the job done.

Of course, Once Upon a Kiss is currently available at all ebook retailers, with the pretty cover by Kim.

Buy eBook:
Amazon.com
Apple
Nook

KOBO
GooglePlay
Books2Read Universal Link (Find international stores and other Amazon stores here)

Original ebook cover for Love Potion #9, a paranormal romance by Deborah Cooke, first published under the pseudonym Claire Cross and now a Claire Delacroix title

Love Potion #9, a paranormal romance and romantic comedy by Claire Delacroix (writing as Claire Cross), out of print mass market edition

Love Potion #9 is a paranormal romance and romantic comedy, and was my fourth book published under the pseudonym Claire Cross. My first ebook cover is at left. The original mass market cover is at right. I always liked the cover art, which was painted by Judy York. It depicts a scene in the book, which is a rare and wonderful thing.

Love Potion #9, a paranormal romance by Claire DelacroixLove Potion #9, a paranormal romance and romantic comedy by Claire DelacroixI subsequently licensed the cover art from Judy and she added type to it for me. (You can see with this title that we didn’t have fixed proportions for ebook covers for a while.)

Eventually, I had Kim make the type consistent with my other books, and this edition on the right is the one that’s available now.

Buy eBook
Amazon.com
Apple
Nook
KOBO
GooglePlay
Books2Read Universal Link
(Find international stores and other Amazon stores here)

Wyvern’s Mate is Free!

Wyvern's Mate, book #1 in the Dragons of Incendium series of paranormal romances by Deborah CookeWyvern’s Mate, book #1 of my Dragons of Incendium series of paranormal romances featuring dragon shifter princesses from space, is free this weekend at Amazon!

I’ve also discounted Wyvern’s Prince, book #2 in the series, to 99 cents and Wyvern’s Warrior, book #3 in the series, to $2.99 US this weekend.

The sale lasts through the 11:59 PST on January 14th. Remember that the entire series is enrolled in Kindle Unlimited, so if you’re a subscriber, you can read the series free.

This morning, the book is doing very well! Wyvern’s Mate is
#1 in Science Fiction Romance,
#3 in Paranormal Romance,
#8 in Romantic Comedy and
#53 overall free in the Kindle store!

Wyvern’s Mate is now enrolled in Kindle Unlimited and the ebook is available exclusively at Amazon.
Amazon.com
Books2Read Universal Link for other Amazon stores

Buy Wyvern’s Mate in print – which includes Nero’s Dream:
• mini-book at Amazon
• mass market paperback at Barnes & Noble

Wyvern’s Mate is also available in audio. The audio edition is narrated by Saskia Maarleveld.

Have a listen:

Buy the audiobook:
Audible
Amazon
NookAudio

• KOBO

One Knight’s Return Pre-Order

The Rogues & Angels series of medieval romances continues with the tale of Quinn’s return home to Sayerne.

One Knight's Return, #2 of the Rogues & Angels series of medieval romances by Claire DelacroixKnight and crusader Quinn de Sayerne vowed never to return home while his villainous father drew breath. Twenty years after his departure, he is notified of his father’s death and summoned by his liege lord to claim his family holding. But his overlord has a stipulation: Quinn must wed Melissande, the beauteous heiress of neighboring Annossy. Quinn hoped to make a match based on more than mutual animosity, but he is resolved to win the heart of his lady wife, at any cost.

Melissande cannot believe that her liege lord has not only compelled her to break an old betrothal but wed her to a ruffian—and granted the seal of Annossy to him, despite her expertise. It is the dream of Quinn’s father brought to fruition, for the holdings will be merged just as he long schemed. But her overlord cannot be defied and she finds herself the chattel of this rough knight, despite her every protest.

Can Quinn win his lady’s reluctant heart? Or is he doomed to lose Melissande forever when her betrothed returns?

An earlier version of this story was published as My Lady’s Champion. What’s different? Ha. Pretty much everything – except Quinn, who I still adore. 🙂 The book has been completely revised, and there are new scenes linking the company of Rogues & Angels to the story. Tulley has a niece now, too.

Coming April 23, 2019.

Pre-order One Knight’s Return in ebook:
Apple
KOBO
Nook

Read an excerpt here.

Huge BOGO Sale!

BOGO deal at Kobo January 2018If you have a device (phone, tablet, computer), that can download an app and you like saving money on books, this announcement is for you!

This spring, a few of our fabulous, forward-thinking publishing partners are enabling us indie authors to start offering readers amazing new book deals we haven’t been able to before. This means that over the next couple of months, you’ll be seeing thousands of brand new deals popping up from hundreds of bestselling romance authors. And it all starts NOW!

First up is a month of fantastic BOGO (Buy One, Get One FREE) deals from some of your favorite authors (see list below).

All you need to do is download the free Kobo reading app (available on the Google Play store or via the link below) for your iPhone, android phone, tablet, or computer — whatever you device you want to read on. We’re talking some huge savings here folks. 700+ deals this month alone! And next month, there will be a whole new set of bestselling authors bringing you more incredible BOGO savings.

Download the Kobo reading app for Android
Then after that, beginning in March, you’ll be able to start getting even more new deals via the free B&N reading app as well, similarly available for download from the Google Play store for all your devices.

Before you ask, yes, this will be a way for us to start bringing you audiobook discounts as well (more info on audio deals later in the spring). And for you paperback lovers, we’ll soon be able to offer paperback discounts too, just like the traditional publishers, right around the same time. So much savings!!

As one more added bonus, you automatically get $5 credit to use on your first book immediately after downloading the free Kobo reading app. How awesome is that?!

So, who’s ready to start the new year shopping for BOGO deals and binge reading galore?

This month, you can save on books by Addison Moore | Aleatha Romig | Alexis Abbott | Brenda Rothert | Carly Phillips | Carrie Ann Ryan | Cassia Leo | Chelle Bliss | Christine Bell | Ciara Knight | Claire Delacroix | Colleen Gleason | Cora Seton | Daisy Prescott | Deborah Cooke | E.M. Gayle | Ember Casey | Emily Snow | Erika Wilde | HM Ward | Jami Davenport | Jessica Scott | Jill Sanders | Jillian Dodd | Jules Barnard | Juliana Stone | K. Bromberg | K.A. Linde | K.M. Scott | Kate Perry | Kennedy Layne | Lauren Blakely | Lila Monroe | Marie Force | Melanie Shawn | Meli Raine | Melissa Foster | Melissa Storm | Nana Malone | Rachel Van Dyken | Sawyer Bennett | Sharon Hamilton | Skye Warren | Stacey Lynn | Susan Hatler | Susan Stoker | Tawdra Kandle | Tina Folsom

What a fabulous group of participating authors! There are over 700 titles included in this promotion!

This sale is supported in US, CA, UK, AU and NZ.

This sale runs from today through February 3.

 

 

The Escher Quilt

Last fall, I told you about a quilt kit I’d ordered. (That post is here.) The pattern is called Escher and the kit came with Kaffe Fassett fabrics to piece the top. I pieced it in December and here’s what it looks like:

Escher quilt pieced by Deborah Cooke

It’s much MUCH more vivid in real life.

This pattern was pretty easy to sew and the instructions were clear. I enjoyed putting it together. There was extra of every colour, so when I made a mistake in the final piecing (I cut a block that I shouldn’t have) I had enough to remake that block. The black was used for the little triangles at the center of each block: I cut up what I had left to make the widest black border possible. It’s not very wide but I like how it frames the bright colours. The top is about 62″ by 64″. I tried a couple of borders but thought they made it too busy, so it will be a bit of a small finished piece.

Mr. Math loves the finished top, but it’s a bit too wild for me. I think I might do this again, with solids or with a more restricted palette. This will be the first top that I take to be quilted on a long-arm machine, and I’m curious to see how that works out.

What do you think?

Plans for 2019

A new year is always an excellent opportunity to review. I took some time off in December because I felt due for a break. During that time, I thought about what was working for me—in terms of writing, publishing, and life in general—and what wasn’t working so well. From that, I made a plan for the new year. Some things are new and some are changing.

Bad Case of Loving You, book #6 in the Flatiron Five series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke• My main goal for 2019 is to add time into my publication schedule. This will reduce my stress. 🙂 Once upon a time, when I was traditionally published, my books had to be delivered to the publisher one year in advance of publication. The editorial process consumed the next eight months or so, then the book was formatted, packaged and ready to go by 90 days before publication. Paper editions were printed and shipped, and digital editions were uploaded to the portals. Although I’ll never have that prolonged of an editorial process again, my goal is to have each book uploaded 90 days before publication. It will probably take me most of this year to catch up and achieve that. This will be pretty much invisible to you, but it’s a huge change for me.

Right now, my only pre-order is for Bad Case of Loving You, which is coming out in March. Job #1 is to get that book file ready and uploaded.

• I’ll also be closing my online store. I’ve had the store for four (maybe five) years. When I opened it, there were few options for authors to sell their work directly, but gradually other services have added functionality. I don’t need a second storefront because my websites are essentially storefronts. You’ll still be able to buy directly from me, but the new buy links will look like this one, on the Champions of St. Euphemia Boxed Set page – the prices will be in US dollars, the transaction will be managed by Paypal, and the ebooks will continue to be delivered by BookFunnel.

Simply Irresistible, a contemporary romance by Deborah Cooke and first in the Flatiron Five series.• I’ll be running fewer free and 99-cent price promotions
Scheduling and managing promotions is a job in itself, and the tail or halo (the sales that result from people buying the other linked books) from those promotions is much shorter than it used to be. I think this is because the ebook market is maturing. Those specials were great for people who had just bought their first e-reader, but have become a less reliable way of ensuring discoverability. Right now, Simply Irresistible is free so is The Beauty Bride. That may change. I have my sights set on creating more front-list instead of marketing back-list.

Here Be Dragons: The Dragonfire Companion by Deborah Cooke• I’ll be doing MORE writing (YAY!)
This market skews in favor of frequent publication. I want to focus more on writing and publishing new content in 2019. (2018 was the year of republishing Dragonfire; 2017 was the year of republishing the Bride Quest.) I’m excited about adding to my existing story worlds and creating some new ones.

• I’ll be offering exclusive discounts to newsletter subscribers
I’ve had good luck with this mechanism in the past so it’s a strategy to keep. These sales will be promoted to my newsletter subscribers instead of to the world at large. If you haven’t subscribed to one of my lists, you might want to do that. I only send newsletters when I have a sale or a new release to announce. I’d also like to make some new content available exclusively to subscribers this year, too, and you’ll find out about that in my newsletters. My newsletters are:

Dragons & Angels for my paranormal romances
Knights and Rogues for my historical romances
Heroes & Bad Boys for my contemporary romances

If you don’t like to subscribe to newsletters, you could also follow my blogs:

DeborahCooke.com/blog is mostly about my contemporary romances
DragonfireNovels.com/blog is for my Dragonfire series
DragonsofIncendium.com/blog is for that PNR series
Delacroix.net/blog is for my historical romances

Wyvern's Wizard, book 11 of the Dragons of Incendium series of paranormal romances by Deborah CookeYou can also follow me at Amazon and BookBub to receive new release announcements from those portals. Be aware that Amazon doesn’t always send new release announcements on (or even that close to) the publication date. Sometimes they don’t send them at all. Also, BookBub now offers a new release announcement that authors have to pay for, so I’m not sure if their free version will be retired.

follow Deborah Cooke at Amazon
follow Claire Delacroix at Amazon
follow Deborah Cooke at BookBub
follow Claire Delacroix at BookBub

• I’ll be creating more free guided tours
These are newsletter automations that take subscribers through the works set in one of my fictional realms. Each week, subscribers get a newsletter featuring the next book set in that world, along with a peek behind the scenes and some notes about my research. There are special offers in these tours, too. I like these tours as they’re fun ways to integrate my research and Pinterest boards, then share that with you.

Right now, there’s a virtual tour available for Ravensmuir and Kinfairlie medieval romances. I’ll be adding new ones in 2019 for the Champions of St. Euphemia, the Sayerne medieval romances Rogues & Angels and the Dragonfire Novels. You can sign up for any (or all! LOL) of these now: the Ravensmuir one will start right away and the others will launch when I have them compiled. Your email will just be saved until then.

Phew! That’s my plan for 2019!

Under the Mistletoe, a contemporary Christmas romance and #4 in the Secret Heart Ink series by Deborah CookeWhere do we stand right now?
I didn’t stop working completely in December, but I certainly wrote less. This means that Chynna’s story, Under the Mistletoe, wasn’t written and published in December. On the other hand, I felt more like revising than writing, so I’ve been updating One Knight’s Return to prepare it for publication. It’ll be out in April and there will be pre-order links soon.

Right now, I’m working on the Dragonfire companion, Here Be Dragons, which will be published as soon as it’s done, and Theo’s book, Bad Case of Loving You, which will be published in March. I expect to fit Chynna’s book in there, too. (The timeline entangles with Theo’s book, so that isn’t as crazy a plan as it might seem.)

One Knight's Return, book #2 of the Sayerne series of medieval romances by Claire DelacroixAfter that, well, I have a bunch of ideas. 🙂 I’ll be at a bit of a crossroads as many series will be finished up. The Dragons of Incendium series is enrolled in Kindle Unlimited, and the rest of the series will be published there, too. Wyvern’s Wizard is next in that series, which is Peri and Nero’s book. I expect the next few books in that series to entangle a bit as the sisters set out on their quests. DragonFate is high on my list, but again, I want it all written before I launch the first book. There will be more Coxwell books – I think Annette is next – and more medievals – I’d like to publish the third Rogues & Angels book this year as well as The Stolen Bride, the third Brides of Inverfyre book.

I’m excited to dive into 2019. Do you have plans for 2019?

More Mitts

I’m still knitting mittens. 🙂

First, I wanted to show you those fair isle mitts in LopiLett, now that they’re finished. Here’s the previous picture of them:

Frost mittens in Lopi Light knit by Deborah CookeI knit the linings in the same yarn. The neat trick is that since the linings are knitted to the cuffs – you actually pick up the stitches at the top of the cuff and knit the lining from there – the wrong sides of both mitt and lining end up together. That means there are no ends or floats to catch your fingers inside. It also means the mittens are double-thickness and toasty-warm.

Here’s one turned so you can see the lining:

Lined mitten in LettLopi, knit by Deborah Cooke

I started a second pair in teal and have the first one done. I think I’ll line this pair with the taupe as I have more of that color left.

Frost mitten knitted in LettLopi by Deborah Cooke

I’ve also been knitting mitts for charity, although I have fewer completed this year because of the hats and these fair isle mitts. All year, I add odd balls and ends to a bag, stashing wool that I think will make good mittens. Every November, I dig out that bag (and sometimes add to it) then start knitting mittens for the food bank. I usually use an old Patons pattern for worsted yarn – it’s a single sheet that wool shops used to give out free. Mine looks about as worn as that one on Ravelry, but has scribbled notes on it, too. This year, though, I had some chunky yarn, some odd balls of Patons Alpaca Blend that I found in the sale bin at Spinrite. I found this wonderful pattern from Tin Can Knits called The World’s Simplest Mittens. It includes instructions for four weights of yarn, and five sizes of mittens, and it’s free!

Here are my first three pair, in that Patons Alpaca Blend. The two pair on the left are a children’s size and the one on the right is the medium adult size. Aren’t they cute?

Mittens knit in Patons Alpaca Blend by Deborah Cooke

I also am knitting some in ends of Rowan Colourscape Chunky. Since this is a self-striping yarn, I’ll knit as many as I can from the ends, then figure out which look the best together as pairs:
mittens knit in Rowan Colourscape Chunky by Deborah Cooke

I really like Colourscape Chunky and am sad it was discontinued. I love the colours and the way the variegation shifts so gradually. I also like that there are tweedy flicks of other colours throughout. Kaffe Fassett designed the colourways and it shows. These green ends are from this vest that I knit for Mr. Math. I have some more bits – left over from this vest for me (which isn’t as nearly as neon pink as it looks in these pix) and also this cardigan for me – plus one more sweater-lot for a cardigan for Mr. Math. I might cast that on in January.

What have you been knitting lately?

Boxing Day Sale

Boxing Day SaleToday, I’m having a Boxing Day sale on ebooks in my Selz store. Save 50% on ebooks! Your ebooks will be delivered by BookFunnel in either ePUB or MOBI, and they’ll make sure that you get your ebook onto your reading device of choice. Recent releases like The Runaway Bride are excluded from the sale, and so are books that are usually 99-cent reads. (The store won’t process sales for less than 99-cents US.)

But there are lots of books included, so this is a great chance to fill the gaps in your collection.

Please use this code in the discount field at check-out and click APPLY to get your discount:

RA7KDOV5

You might want to cut and paste it to make sure you have it exactly right. 🙂

Remember that the store operates in Canadian dollars. Right now, $1 CA is about $0.74 US.

This is a one-day sale, so don’t delay!

Shop Now!