Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Promotion that works?

People are always asking me how I am promoting my book.  If you've read this blog from the start you know some of the foundation I laid.  I tweet, I blog, I FB.

I might actually make podcasts of each and how I use them since there seems to be enough interest in the subject.

As far as I can tell, promotion isn't doing one thing.  It's about making connections, building relationships, helping others.  I'm so pleased that my journey has not only made my book visible, but it has also brought so many wonderful people into my life.

Don't worry, it has brought the boobs, we don't speak of those.

So, if you're wondering what I'm doing for  promotion...come on over to my FB page, Author Ruth Cardello and check out my contests.  I'm having so much fun with them.  Check out my tweets and how often they are about other people.  I don't have all the answers.  Heck, I just started in April, but I will gladly share what little I've learned along the way. 

A modern American publishing success story: Ruth Cardello

A modern American publishing success story: Ruth Cardello

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Book 4: Saving the Sheik (Blurb)

Book 4 came to me while I'm writing book 3.  The blurb is still under construction, but I'm excited about the premise.

(insert super sexy sheik name) is fighting for the sovereignty of his small country. He needs to find some powerful allies - and fast. Attending the wedding of Dominic Corisi is as much about reconnecting with old friends as it is about celebrating nuptials. The last thing he needs right now is the distraction of a woman.

Zhang Yajun is a self-made billionaire who can’t believe she let her friend, Abby, talk her into wearing a ridiculous, lowcut bridesmaids dress. And only Maddy would have sat her at the same table as a hottest man at the wedding. Too bad his arrogance makes any civil conversation an impossibility.

When impulsive words lead to even more impulsive actions, these two will discover that sometimes the last thing you were looking for is the one thing that can save you.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Heidi Hall - WriterGurl1: For Love or Legacy by Ruth Cardello - Another grea...

Heidi Hall - WriterGurl1: For Love or Legacy by Ruth Cardello - Another grea...: Somehow between finishing the first book in my new series, cleaning my windows and patio furniture, and washing my car, I managed to also f...

Monday, September 12, 2011

Sales update

I haven't posted sales numbers in a while and that's because when things begin to take off you start to worry that they won't maintain and all of your energy starts to go that way.

Amazon is now where I get my most sales.  Maid for the Billionaire is still FREE and brings about 800 - 1,000 new readers to me everyday.

For Love or Legacy sells about 200/day in the US.  Sometimes slightly less.  Sometimes slightly more.  So, right now it's bringing in about $3,000 a week. My overall Kindle ranking is in the low 200s.  I don't know what they are making in the top 100....but I want to :)

I sell through iTunes via Smashwords.  My ranking is high there the romance top 10 usually....but I don't know what that means for sales. I'll tell you as soon as I know.

How long will this ride last?  I'm hoping to make a career out of this, but who knows.  I'm learning as much as I can about promotion as I go and might put up a website to tell others what I've done so far.

Either way, the money coming in is going to help this family (who lives paycheck to paycheck) put ourselves in a more stable financial place.  I don't want to get too excited, but small dreams (like being able to pay off our cars and maybe go on a family vacation) are looking possible again.

Thank you to all of those who took a risk on this new writer and have made this possible.  You've changed the life of this working mom in a wonderful way. 

Sunday, September 11, 2011


Ok, so I've decided to go to my first romance conference and everyone tells me that I need to invest in some swag.

What is swag and why do I need it?

I spent an hour last night reading about what authors bring to their conferences and like so many other promotional techniques I wonder -- How the hell does that help you?

I get how a business card would help you.  I even get how giving pens with you information could help.  And the list of what people give is as extensive as it is fascinating:  lipgloss, mirrors, can openers, bag clips.  And then the more general swag that has the picture of your book on it.

I met a few authors recently who handed me what I now know was their "swag."  I stuffed it in my purse.  I believe some fell to the floor of my car.  I hate to throw it away since they spent money making it, but seriously...with kids....where do I put these half-naked pictures of people?

If I had more money I'd get everyone a flash drive with my info on it.  Who doesn't love those?

Maybe I'll settle for pens.

Help me out here, does swag really work?  Wouldn't just a few nice business cards handed out to those who seem to want to know  more be just as effective?

Is this like men who think more cologne is sexier?  Is less more?

I'd love to hear what you think. 

Monday, September 5, 2011

Write a scene, win a new Kindle

WRITE A SCENE - WIN A KINDLE (Contest ends on September 30, 2011)

by Author Ruth Cardello on Monday, September 5, 2011 at 2:04pm
Please read the following rules carefully:

Who can enter:  Anyone who is a "Friend" of Author Ruth Cardello

When can people enter:  You can start sending me scenes as soon as you finish reading this note.  Entries will be accepted until midnight on September 25.  Entries must be sent to me via a message.  All other entries will be deleted. I will post them to a note where they can be read and commented on by everyone.

How long: Keep it short.  Entries which exceed the 1,000 word limit will not be accepted.

One entry per person.

Scene description:  The scene should be loosely related to either Maid for the Billionaire or For Love or Legacy.  It may include characters you create.  It may be an extension of something that actually happened, something you wish had happened or just a fun scene you imagine.  I reserve the right to not include any entries which offend, disturb, or otherwise annoy me.  (An example would be a scene that either paints one of the characters in a bad light, kills them off, or in general gives me nightmares.)  Keep it clean.  Keep it fun. You don't have to be a writer to just have to have a scene that others like.  Try it.

Comments:  Let's make this fun for each other by commenting on the entries.  Please remain positive...if you can't say something nice...(blah blah blah) don't ruin it for others. You can comment on as many people who enter, but you can only LIKE the one you want to win.

How to vote for the winner:  Simply LIKE their note.  You can only like one! Only "Friends" of Author Ruth Cardello may vote.  If you want your friends to vote for your entry, have them "Friend" me and then they are eligible to vote.

The note with the most "LIKES" by midnight on September 30th will win a new Kindle from Amazon and (if they would like and contingent upon my approval of the scene) the winner will be included as "extra scenes" at the end of one of the books.  Just like the movies, only you wrote the scene.  By entering the contest, you are giving ownership of your scene to Ruth Cardello.  You will not be compensated if your scene is used as an "extra."  Your compensation is your Kindle prize. I will however leave your name as a credit for the scene.

I can't wait to see what you come up with!  Happy writing!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Romance Novel Junkies: Author Ruth Cardello

Romance Novel Junkies: Author Ruth Cardello: Beneath the Sheets Quickie Q&A Author Ruth Cardello By Romance Novel Junkies . 1. What year did you start writing? I’ve been writing si...

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The more you know -- Week 2 --- $6,000 sales (total)

My book was for sale for 12 days in August.  Total sales?  Close to $6000.  I'm not sure exactly what my itunes sales were, but I'm counting the reviews and I'm counting foreign sales in there.

What have a learned?  -
  • Hurricane Irene knocked out my internet access...making it impossible for me to promote and my ranking fell.  I'm still in the 200s on Kindle, but my goal for being in the top 100 just got further away.  Promotion helps.
  • Domain names are worth purchasing.  We all think we won't need them, but if you book does take off you'll want your name.
  • There are wonderful people out there who want to see you succeed.  Be careful not to be taken for a ride, but trust that sometimes they are just enjoying the ride with you.
  • Wix does not work on iphones and ipads.  Darn it, I just made my website on Wix.  I didn't know that using flash would limit who could see it.
  • Shelfari and Goodreads is worth getting involved in.  I'm exploring both myself.
  • Romance Novel Junkies...AKA a wonderful supporter of new writers.  If you don't know her and her website, you're missing out.
  • Shaina Richmond is a romance marketing genius.  If she ever writes a book on how to market your book, buy it.  I still can't believe she takes the time to help me out.  I feel like I'm taking a college course every time I speak to her.
  • Sometimes you have to follow your gut as far as when and how to release your book.  I've turned down opportunities now that didn't have the potential to pay off the way self-pubbing could.  Will it work out?  I don't know, but I'm going to try like hell.
  • Readers are amazing!  One woman stayed up all night looking for editing issues on my new book because she knew I couldn't yet afford an editor.  I fixed everything she found and my book is better because of it.  Now that is a nice person!
  • People will assume that any success you get is luck -- it is if your definition of luck is hard work, determination, and a dogged search for how to improve your chances of making it.
  • Husbands don't mind doing the dishes for you once your writing starts to pay
  • Write! Write! Write!  There is money in magnitude of material. 
  • Formatting gets easier.  I'm beginning to know how to fix the issues I see in other ebooks that have "real" publishers.
  • 70% royalties is always nicer than 20%
  • mailing lists are as mysterious to me as the global economy...but it looks like I'm going to have to learn about them 
  • Book bloggers are good....but busy.  I don't know where to find them or how...but it has been suggested that I learn.  So, learn along with me.
  • Oh, yes, and what you label your website is HUGE.  Searches are huge.  I'm still learning about this.  Really, if Shaina writes the book....I'm first in line to buy it.