A Book Tour to Remember

The three-week virtual book tour for A Gateway to Hope ended July 30, but the fun continues.

Now you can join Loving the Book as it hosts my inspirational romance, A Living Hope, August 1-21.

Enter the giveaway, read the reviews and interviews, plus hangout with fellow readers from around the world.

Come join the fun.

See you there!

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July 31st is the Day!

I am happily tired, excited and very thankful. The eBook and paperback for A Living Hope is available at major online retailers as of July 31.

The process was shorter and easier this time. But as with life in general, there is still a lot to know. Thank God I’m learning. But perhaps not as quickly as I would like to.

What did I pick up this time around?

The number-one lesson I won’t forget is to stop setting ridiculous deadlines that I simply cannot meet. At least not while working a full-time job. But that job is the reason I can eat a good meal each day. It pays the bills. Especially those bills that accumulate while pursuing a self-publishing writing career.

So where do I go from here?

I’m planning to submit the final manuscript for the YA book Pajama Party: The Story to the formatter in October 2016. Yeah, I know. Another ridiculous self-determined deadline that I made in the headiness of writing “The End” for A Living Hope.

Hope I can meet it!

The Upload to Retailers is Complete!

The manuscript was uploaded for the eBook and paperback, and I am overjoyed. It feels wonderful to finish a task that you lived with daily for a long period of time. Thankfully the second time around was significantly easier — even though I still have a lot to learn about the writing process. Establishing a routine that truly works right along with the day job is ongoing work. Yet progress is on the horizon.

The intimidation factor of venturing into the unknown was missing this time. My confidence level was higher than when writing A Gateway to Hope. Once again I fell in love with the characters. It’s like Sadie and Kyle became a part of my family, just like Neka and James had. I really got to know them inside and out. After a while, information about their characters flowed effortless onto the paper. I knew these people and could anticipate their reactions in any situation they faced.

I wonder if every author feels the same way about the characters they create? I didn’t think I would ever stop thinking about Neka and James and their family and friends. That is, until I began writing about Sadie and Kyle and their story mates.

Now, I must delve deeper into the lives of the characters in Pajama Party: The Story. October (a tentative ready date) will arrive in no time. I don’t want the month to catch me by surprise.

Keep praying for me as I pound away at the keyboard for insight and the Father’s desire for this story. Also, pray about book three in the hope-themed series, due in the summer of 2017.

Remember to pre-order your eBook copy of A Living Hope at the reduced price of $3.99 before July 31.

I’ll be back soon!

Good News

A Living Hope produced a special surprise that pleased me and I hope will delight you. Years ago, I wrote a play that debuted in St. Louis, but will now be contained between two covers. Book covers that is. The four-act play gets a full rejuvenation, and soon.

Stay tuned for the spin-off young adult novel Pajama Party: The Story, with a tentative release date of fall 2016.

Book three of the hope-themed series will be coming in the summer of 2017. Keep praying that God brings glory and honor to His name through the gifts and talents only He can provide.

Be blessed!

Whew! It’s done.

I sent the A Living Hope manuscript to Formatting Experts on July 3. The book is available for pre-order on Amazon, iBooks. Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords for a limited time at the special price of $3.99, then it will raise to $5.99.

As always, my family and friends supported me throughout the process with prayers and encouragement. Editors Amber Barry and Angela Trent helped to polish my tome. Alex, with Standoutbooks, wrote the perfect book blurb. And Rafal, along with the team at Formatting Experts, furnished the book cover, will format the copy, and do everything else needed to present this book to the reader.

The book-cover reveal, sponsored by Loving the Book, took place on June 15. A three-week online book tour featuring my first book, A Gateway to Hope, will launch July 10. Then the book tour for A Living Hope will begin August 1.

The Journey Continues

All in all self-publishing my first novel has been a humbling experience. One of the highlights derived from the process was meeting a host of professionals who helped me along the way. From Editors: Jeni Chappelle and Amber Barry, book cover designer: author Lynnette Bonner, author services: Standoutbooks, and book cover designer and formatters: Formatting Experts (who went far beyond the call of duty in making this book a reality) to Mcgully and Actress Ellen with two superb videos. It’s done! Time to move on.

Now after a few snags in the process, you can order A Gateway to Hope from bookstores and a multitude of online distributors. Mardels’s bookstore will order the book for the list price.

The last two giveaways has ended. The giveaways at bookgiveaways.net and Goodreads totaled 1225 entries with 10 winners. Hope all the winners love the story and publish a review.

Next on the agenda, I’m busy writing books two and three. Yep. As if writing book one didn’t stretch me enough, I have hopes of completing both drafts by March 2016. A standalone novel, book two will continue the hope theme begun in A Gateway to Hope. While book three is a young adult book adapted from my play Pajama Party. I’ll keep you posted.

In the future, I will update author services and blogs for booklovers and authors on my website. Hopefully the information will prove beneficial.

Thanks to everyone who made my dream of becoming a writer a reality. Be blessed and happy reading!

Back to Normal?

The last five weeks hit me like a whirlwind. Take a look at the testimonial I sent to Loving the Book:

Thank you, Loving the Book! You guided me through two unknown events to promote my debut novel A Gateway to Hope. First off, the book blitz engaged me quickly. For one full day, friends and people I’d never met gathered to review my labor of love. How amazing that bloggers I didn’t know hosted my book around the globe. Then, ten days later, the book tour launched fourteen days spent visiting multiple booklover sites. There were interviews, book reviews, giveaways, plus a host of information to promote my inspirational romance. Loved the swag. The bookmark matched the keychain featuring the book cover. Thank you, ladies! All in all, you made marketing A Gateway to Hope a wonderful experience.
Author E. C. Jackson

What’s next? Hopefully, turning this website into a font of information for self-publishing authors and book lovers enjoying clean reads. Well, actually three scenarios are now taking place.

Formatting Experts, who have more than lived up to the name of knowing their craft, navigated me through the perils of receiving unacceptable proof copies. First, from Createspace, a subsidiary of Amazon. The book cover, though technically correct, had to be adjusted.

Even today, I’m waiting on a free replacement proof copy from Ingram Spark because the first copy they sent had an error in production. Self-publishing can be difficult, yet holding a copy of your book has many rewards. Ingram Spark, utilizing print on demand, will distribute A Gateway to Hope to bookstores and libraries around the world.
Instead of twiddling my thumbs while waiting, I am tackling books two and three. Book two, a standalone book, will continue the hope theme found in A Gateway to Hope. I’ll also adapt my first play, Pajama Party, into a YA novel. The tentative publishing date for both books is May 2016.

A Gateway to Hope has a 4.7 rating on Amazon with 32 reviews. While Barnes and Noble has 5.0 with 11 reviews. And Goodreads has a 4.61 with 28 ratings and 19 reviews. So far, 270 people entered the giveaway ending September 15. And 203 people added it to read.

There were approximately 1,057 entries in the giveaway hosted by Loving the Book. Two paperbacks, three e-Books, and nine bookmarks and keychain sets were won.

Until next time…