I’m in the Kindle Scout Program (How #KindleScout Works)

I Need Your Vote, Please

I’m asking for a favor. If you have an Amazon login, please head over to Kindle Scout and nominate my novel, Midnight Magic ? Voting ends October 22nd and you only get one vote. (Thank you in advance.)


What’s in it for You?

When you vote for my book on Kindle Scout you support my chance of being published by Amazon (i.e., the Kindle Press Imprint) and if I do get published by them, they give you a free copy.

What is Kindle Scout?

“Kindle Scout has been called American Idol for authors or a Slush Pile Popularity Contest. Amazon defines it as “reader-powered publishing.”” (Debbie Burke on Kill Zone)

How does being published through the KS program differ from being self-published on Amazon (KDP)?

Here’s my chart:

Kindle Scout

KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing)

$1500 advance No advance
50% royalties 70% royalties on books > $2.99
Amazon marketing Do it yourself marketing
Rights exclusive to Amazon (except print) Right all yours
5 year renewable contract

(you can opt out at 5 years if your book doesn’t earn $25,000.

No limits


What are My Chances?


That’s how many of the books listed on Kindle Scout are chosen by Amazon for publishing. 3% So, yeah, my chances are extremely low.

However, having my book on KS gives it more attention, more eyes on the cover, the blurb and the excerpt.

Will the Most Popular Book Get Published?


But the votes help. Amazon, like any other publisher, chooses the books that it thinks will sell well in the current market. They take into account the votes the book receives, but it’s only one factor.

What was it Like Entering KS?

Interesting. You need to have a polished, professionally edited manuscript (easy) a good cover (easy – I love my cover from Authors on a Dime) a short tagline and a blurb.

The hardest part for me was reducing my blurb to their required 500 characters. I had to take my whole paragraph on the hero and reduce it to: “… a Viking ghost with existential issues.” But I love the line, so in the end I think Amazon is right about keeping it short.

I’m Thrilled

to be selected for the program and I’ll let you know ho my adventure unfolds.


Interesting Posts on Kindle Scout (also my references)

I Need Your Vote (and How to Advertize Kindle Scout)

Kindle Scout a Two Year Performance Review

Winning the Kindle Scout Program

Book – Lincoln Cole, Kindle Scout Guide: How to Run a Hot & Trending Campaign …

5 Things I Like About Humpday

  1. It’s not Monday.
  2. That time-ahead and time-behind feeling of being on an adventure.
  3. No one expects much of me on a Wednesday.
  4. I’m half way there and the fact that I’m up and out of bed means I’m more than half way.
  5. I have time left to finish.

How about you? Any thoughts on Wednesdays?

Feeling lucky?

To celebrate the launch of my first anthology: Cheating Death: The Gambling Ghosts Anthology, I’ve set up a gigantic giveaway for my readers.

Prizes include:

  • $50. Amazon.com gift card
  • $25.00 Amazon.com gift card
  • 21 e-books

Rafflecopter link

A Gigantic Launch #Giveaway for Cheating Death #Mondayblogs

To celebrate the launch of my first anthology: Cheating Death: The Gambling Ghosts Anthology, I’ve set up a gigantic giveaway for my readers.

Prizes include:

  • $50. Amazon.com gift card
  • $25.00 Amazon.com gift card
  • 21 e-books

Rafflecopter link



#Free Book and More News

Amazon.com link

Amazon.ca link

I put the Pirate up free to celebrate it having come first in the I Heart Indie Contest (Paranormal Category).

You can read more of my latest news in my September newsletter.


A Tomato Chorizo Salad to Die For

This is a Friday #fingerfood post (sort of).

Okay, I know salad technically isn’t a finger food unless you are a cave man. I’m adding it to my finger food collection, however, because it goes so well with a table laden with an assortment of appetizers.

The key to this recipe is the combination of the spicy chorizo and sherry vinegar, an idea I picked up from Jamie Oliver.

My Recipe (made for two)


3 chorizo sausages

enough tomatoes (your choice of type) for two – I used 3 field tomatoes

2 green onions

1 small handful of small basil leaves

1-2 garlic cloves

a salad dressing made of 2 tblsp. olive oil and 3 tblsp sherry vinegar (or to taste)

salt and pepper


  1. slice and fry the chorizo in oil until nicely browned and crispy
  2. slice and fry the garlic in the left-over oil until fragrant
  3. cut the tomatoes bite-size, add basil and green onion
  4. add the dressing, salt and pepper to taste
  5. add the chorizo and garlic and mix.

The salad turned out better than I expected. It was amazing. I’m hooked on sherry vinegar.

Enjoy your weekend.


If You Want to Laugh Take a Writer’s Retreat #Mondayblogs

I haven’t laughed so hard in years. I don’t mean giggle, guffaw or snicker. I mean full belly laughs with tears flowing down my cheeks.

That is to say – Writers tell good stories.

Last week I went on a retreat with the WIP group from Qualicum Beach. Ten of us gathered at the Vancouver Island Mountain Center, a modern, west-coast lodge, on the top of Mount Washington. The group, diverse in gender, age, background and writing interests, has one thing in common —  the love of story.

And laughter.

Where is Mount Washington?

The hiking trails are easy and the scenery is amazing.

The home of the Vancouver Island marmot, one of the most endangered species on the planet, Mount Washington is a year-round recreation area. It is stunningly, breath-takingly, jaw-droppingly beautiful.

And yes, they have marmot crossings on the road.

Sitting on the front deck at dawn.



Located on the eastern edge of Vancouver Island Mountain Ranges. The  Mount Washington Alpine Resort  is about 16 miles (25K) from the Comox Valley.

In the summer, there are many trails for mountain bikers, and hikers. You can even take a chair lift to the top.

Imagine: cool mountain air, pre-dawn light shimmering over distant mountians, blood-red sunsets, moving clouds, mists, sushine … 

There’s a reason monks go to the top of the mountain.

What does one do on a writer’s retreat?

The main writing room.

We spent hours writing. Many of us worked in the main room, while others worked in their private rooms. One dictated his words as he hiked around.

We cooked our own meals and gathered around the table to chat informally about our manuscripts and the writing life.

At nine o`clock each night we met to discuss our progess and our goals for the next day. This led to a lot of laughter.

We went for daily walks.

The Marmota vancouverensis (Vancouver Island marmot) is a large rodent related to the squirrel. They are about the size of a large house cat. The good news is that the number have rose from 30 (2003) to 200 (in 2016). (Marmot Recovery Operation)

Sex, Apps and the Use of Idioms

I know you want to know what I was busting my gut over, but I’m reluctant to betray my scribbling friends.

Let’s just say the development of motivational apps and sex assists were discussed. Even in poetic form. The dreaded monster called marketing was tackled from many directions and a discussion of reverse harems and the freedom of writing under pseudonyms had many of us thinking.

That’s all I’m saying. I want to be invited again.

Did I get anything done?

A small pond I found as I walked along the Alpine Meadows trail.

Yes. I finished two read-throughs of the first draft of my current WIP (50 thousand words) filling plot holes, or at least making them smaller, and strengthening the heroine’s arc along the way. I played with a Christmas mystery short inspired by Agatha Christie’s  And Then There Were None, but it may go back in the drawer for another year as I have a lot of work on my table.

I met new people and I breathed in the mountain air. Rocky Mountain high.

When people who have a shared passion gather together there is a synchronicity of creativity. 

I can’t thank my fellow authors enough for sharing the space and the time with me. It was in one word: wonderful.

Special thanks to Poul Bensen for organizing the event, Mark Desvaux for shairing the nine o’clock meetings, Jim Miller for his inspirational Quotes, Shannon Mayer for generously sharing her insights and last but never least, Mimi Barbour for introducing me to the group.

I can’t wait for the next retreat.

How about you? Do you find retreating from your regular life to pursuit your creativity helpful?







Salsa Potato Bite #Fingerfood Heaven

This is a Friday #Fingerfood post

If you like homefries and salsa, you’ll love these. They are inexpensive, delicious and fun.


1 russet potato per person

a bottle of spicy salsa (as hot as you like it)

sour cream

sliced green onions


  1. Preheat oven to 425F
  2. Peel the potatoes and slice 1/4 inch pieces.
  3. Put the slices on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Sprinkle with olive oil and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.
  4. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove flip them over. Add salt and pepper. Bake another 15 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and let sit 5 minutes while you prepare the topings.
  6. Add a dollop of sour cream to each. Then add a dollop of salsa. Top with sliced onion.
  7. Enjoy.

How about you? Are you a potato fan? How do you like them?

Similar Posts:

Make Hummus Like Jamie Oliver

Make Cherry-Strawberry Bruschetta Like Angela Liddon