Friday, June 23, 2017

Shifting Book 4 and 5 - NOW AVAILABLE

I am so pleased to announce that the final Shifting Books in
The Twin Cities Series 
Are Now Available for Presale
2 for the Price of 1 through the Presale

Book 4, Shifting from Darkness into Light will wrap up the story of Cody/Scar and Simone.

Cody has moved into Simone’s apartment now that she is gone. There is a problem, the place is haunted by a pooka, poltergeist or house elf… or is it?

Simone has found herself trapped in another dimension of The Realms.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

A Challenge from a Fellow Writer

Theresa Jacobs tagged me on a blog post challenge. 
Why did I chose an animal as my main character?

Here are her questions and my answers.

Why did you choose to use animals as your main character? Is your animal real or mythical?

I actually have three animal characters:

Farloft is my dragon in The Farloft Chronicles. I chose him because I was wracking my brain trying to think of who, or what, my nine-year-old nephew would listen to. Whose advice would he take when he wasn’t listening to his parents, grandparents or aunt? I thought it might just be a very wise old dragon.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

How Art and the Written Word Come Together

I find it interesting to follow a piece of work from concept to completion. I thought I would give you a glimpse of how something recently came together.

Darris, a twitter friend and dragon persona, and I, were tweeting with another friend who lives in Australia. He was praising my Farloft Chronicles and telling us he was reading them to his niece Nakita. He even sent us a photo on the DM side of twitter. She looked about five years old. Travis said Farloft was her favorite dragon.

I think it was Darris who suggested that we have a piece of art done to show "Darris the dragon, and Farloft, with Nakita." He found the artist and it came together.

We wanted something that placed the drawing in Australia, and what better to do that then the Sydney Opera House.

First came a sketch of the dragons. We thought it would be fun to have Nakita sliding from Darris to Farloft on their wings as they flew.

Next came the line art.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Baring the Bones of Proofreading and Editing

October of 2015 I opened up shop as Affordable Proofreading & Editing Service, LLC. Why did I do this? I was already a published author in my own right. I certainly did not have a wealth of time on my hands. I hold down an 8-5 job and am caregiver to my elderly father - and still must find time to write. What was my motivation to give up what little free time I did have?

I’ll tell you what… The need to see polished work in the self-publishing field. Manuscripts that are of a better quality assist all of us in sales, not just the author of the particular book.

Thinks about this…

A reader sees an ad on social media, be it Facebook, Google+, Twitter, wherever… They are intrigued by the cover and click on the link… The blurb for the book sounds interesting and the price is reasonable… (Anything 99 cents to $3.99 is reasonable.) They think, ‘heck, that’s only the cost of a fancy coffee.’

They click the download button, and you, the person who wrote this masterpiece, and birthed it one rainy day, after frustrating multiple tries to upload to Amazon or Smashwords with limited success, have sold a book!

But, my friends, this is only the beginning. Now it is going to be read.

Whether this is a good experience or a bad one for the reader, now lies entirely in your hands.

If you have so many errors in the first fifteen pages of the book that your reader feels like they have been repeatedly smacked in the head, you are toast and so is your book. If you are lucky, they stick with you and finish the read. Maybe even post a review, with the proviso that the book needs another good proofing to make it truly deserve that 4 Star rating. If you are unlucky, they delete the book from their device and it sits forever in their cloud like a cold coffee on a busy desk. If you are really unlucky, they post a nasty review or even worse… tell their friends about this book they wasted money on when they could have had a nice caramel macchiato.

Now, take a seat in this reader’s recliner and think about this.

The following day, that same person has nothing to read and they see another eye-catching ad and download that book. They have a similar experience. This book is reasonably well proofread, but the story line is jumbled. They send this one to e-book hell too. It’s stuck in the cloud for eternity.

Fast forward… Several more of these experiences later the reader finally says, ‘been there… done that… not going to go there again.” Your reader is no longer a ‘self-published author’ reader, they have moved back to the traditional publishers. Why? Because they know the books there will be proofed, edited and a decent read, since someone (the publisher) took the time to see it done right.

This reader is most likely gone for good. The self-published author readership is down by one. This affects the whole self-publishing field.

According to the latest Bowker Report (September 7, 2016), more than 700,000 books were self-published in the U.S. in 2015. Unfortunately, the marketplace is not able to absorb all these books and is hugely oversaturated.

Because of this, we all need to make sure our manuscripts are as close to spotless as possible. We are the ‘publishers’ of our books. We are the ‘quality checkers.’

As a part-time proofreader and editor, I can tell you there are errors in books I worked on that were totally unacceptable to a reader. A book with the same character name spelled two ways. If you can’t keep your character names straight then what else are you missing? Tense changes in the middle of sentences from present to past run rampant. Spelling errors that could have been caught by a simple spell check on the computer. Run-on sentences that would take your breath away and repetition of adjectives in the same paragraph or even sentence.

This is why I founded Affordable Proofreading & Editing Service, LLC. I hope to improve the self-publishing world overall. I want us each to succeed, so we all can succeed.

Let’s not allow the readers to escape. Why not build a strong self-publishing industry where they know they are in safe hands with quality reads?

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Wencon... or - Success at a Pop Culture Convention

I attended Wencon last weekend as a vendor.
It was a Pop Culture Convention and very well attended.

Check it out! (read on)

Sunday, March 12, 2017

"The Beast Within" - Presale NOW!

Volume #7 of the Star Traveler Series is on Presale - Release Date June 2nd.
Line up your Summer Reading now...

If you have been reading the series, you will find this new book an adventure you will never forget.

If you are just hearing of the Star Traveler Series for the first time, this is a great book to start with. You will be able to enjoy the two intertwining plots as well as being tempted by the little tidbits from past books to go back and read the whole series from the beginning.

Here is a short synopsis of "The Beast Within"

Captain Targus of M.T. #2424 has found a way to assist his Henu friends in rebuilding the cliff dwellings at Ijul. But, has his innocent actions inadvertently placed a member of the community in danger? Plotting, chaos and murder touch Targus’ life in this adventure. How will he deal with these life-altering events and who will show him comfort during his time of need?

Not his second in command, Sergeant Coal…

Coal is off on his own adventure. He has been summons home to Realda by his lost love, Raceen. There is a hidden mystery on this planet, where everyone looks the same except for their diversity of brightly colored, ornate tattoos. Coal may reveal a secret so closely kept by the government of Realda that it might mean the death of his species.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Read an E-Book Week - March 5 through March 11th

The first week in March is always "Read an E-Book Week" on Smashwords.

I have three books in the selection for FREE!

Shifting in The Realms - a #1 Amazon Best Seller in Paranormal
James & the Dragon - a Delightful Fantasy for Any Age Dragon Lover
The Helavite War - Character Driven Scifi SoapOpera

Find them here:

Here is a little more detail about the week's activities and where to find the full catalog.

Readers: Where to Find Books

Smashwords Read an Ebook Week Catalog - This is the hub of the action, where you find over 70,000 multi-format books regularly priced at free every day, and thousands more that are free or deep-discounted exclusively at Smashwords during Read an Ebook Week only. Browse the catalog by discount categories of FREE, 75%-off, 50%-off and 25% off.

Apple iBooks - For iPhone, iPad, iTunes and Mac users. CLICK HERE to bring up a selection of FREE ebooks organized by categories such as Featured Titles, Fiction & Literature, Non-Fiction, Children & Teens, Romance, Mysteries & Thrillers, Sci-fi & Fantasy, Biographies & Memoirs, Arts & Entertainment and more. iBooks features thousands of free and low-cost books every day in their iBooks app.

Barnes & Noble - CLICK HERE for access to hundreds of free ebook for the Barnes & Noble Nook.

Kobo - Smashwords supplies tens of thousands of free ebooks to Kobo. Click here for a collection of 50 of the most popular free ebooks at Kobo drawn from multiple publishers and distributors. - This popular site offers readers access to hundreds of free ebooks. - Over 33,000 free ebooks from one of the early pioneers in free ebook sites. - This popular site offers regularly updated links to many free ebooks organized by category.

WattPad - Whatever you love, you'll find it at WattPad. At WattPad, authors serialize their books, often while they're still writing. Many of Smashwords' bestselling authors first got their start at WattPad.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Affordable Proofreading & Editing Service, LLC

Are you thinking about publishing your first book in 2017?
Have you had less than stellar reviews on your indie or traditionally published book?

Let me be your second set of eyes.
I love assisting in making an author's work shine.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

12th Annual Chocolate Fest

It's time to review the 12th Annual Chocolate Fest!

Yesterday it happened again, I ate enough chocolate to choke a dragon and carried away enough from the fest to keep me in fancy tea treats for the year.

But first, let's give you a lesson in chocolate from Bean to Bar by the Portland Chocolate Mob.

Monday, January 2, 2017

2016 Recap

The two high points of 2016 for the Snyder Family!

Reflections on 2016 and Goals for 2017

Here I am with another year under my belt. I was first published in May of 2013 so, this marks the end of three and a half years of self-publishing and marketing. It just seems easier to reflect on past achievements around this time of year when most people are making New Year’s resolutions. I prefer to set goals. Some I manage to meet, some I set aside, and some roll-over to become renewed goals because they were just so ‘darn good’ in the first place.

I would like to state one large, general observation I made this past year – almost an epiphany. ‘I am only in competition with myself.’ I need not make comparisons of my goals to others goals or achievements made by other authors. If I don’t get something published on my timeline, it doesn’t matter. It is ‘my’ timeline. Life raises its ugly head sometimes and it demands that deadlines and goals be set aside. With that said, I feel very accomplished at the close of this year. I have twenty-two books in print and four more written, waiting to be polished and published.