E-book bargains build audiences

Authors scrambling to get on top of the fast-growing e-book market try to lure readers by offering books for free or for 99 cents. The hope, of course, is that readers will get hooked and buy more of the author's work.

This bargain baiting is old hat in marketing, but it's new to authors who've never before had such control over their own pricing.

I can't bring myself to toss any of my work out there for free, but I did mark down my humor book TROPHY HUSBAND to 99 cents. It was getting lost in the shuffle on my ever-growing backlist. We'll see if a price adjustment stirs more sales.

TROPHY HUSBAND was originally published in hardcover by a university press. It's a collection of my Home Front newspaper columns, revamped into what appears to be a self-help book for work-at-home dads. It's no help at all, of course, but it is pretty damn funny.

Sales remain brisk for CALABAMA, my new crime novel, which debuted on June 15. I've done lots of social media promotion and Internet guest appearances for the book over the past few weeks, and will be doing more. On Monday, I'm scheduled to be the guest interview on Allan Guthrie's Criminal-E blog.

A hillbilly noir set in the wilds of far Northern California, CALABAMA has gotten two Amazon customer reviews so far. Both five stars! Would love to see more reviews as more of you get a chance to visit CALABAMA.

CALABAMA, my 18th crime novel, is available as an e-book for only $2.99.

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