Monday, September 30, 2013

100,000+ E-books Sold!

(Nala the Once-Feral-Cat with my seven novels to date.)

It's official! This past month, I surpassed 100,000 e-books sold. I completely missed the momentous day, since life beyond the keyboard keeps me busy. Thankfully, my husband is obsessed with Excel spreadsheets, because I stopped checking daily sales months ago. On bad sales days, I'd begin to spiral into a funk, sure that the glory days were over. On good sales days, it was too easy to just keep clicking 'refresh' on that KDP report page to the detriment of time spent productively. So I now let him do the bookkeeping and every 2-4 days I check totals, just to see what the recent trend is.

The majority of those sales were through Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing program, although I also distribute to Nook, Kobo and iTunes via Draft2Digital. Paperback sales have exceeded 1,500 units total and I've recently launched my first audiobook, Uneasy Lies the Crown, narrated by Kyle McCarley.

In June of 2012 I blogged about my journey to 50,000 Kindle Books Sold. The next 50,000 definitely came quicker, but this year has had its ups and downs. I released two more books in that time. Uneasy Lies the Crown was my 6th and sales out of the gate were lower than any of my previous releases. After I slapped myself around a bit and chose a course of action, I tried putting it in the KDP Select program, which meant withdrawing it from other digital book sales channels. I've since given away over 60,000 copies of that Kindle book and the exposure has helped immensely with other sales, as well as with sales of the audiobook.

It took longer than I expected to write and publish In the Time of Kings, book #7, because ... Well, because I was having a mental meltdown. After putting out six books in three years, to say that I was burnt out was an understatement. Researching historical fiction and then checking, double-checking and re-checking facts is very labor intensive. In fact, I'd compare writing each of those books to completing a master's thesis. Or all six to three PhD dissertations.

So when I decided to transition to something with a modern storyline, I fretted that readers might be disappointed. Or that it would just plain suck. For months, I distracted myself with any activity at hand - re-organizing the basement, cleaning off my husband's desk (that was frightening!), training dogs, training for a half-marathon, gardening ... Eventually, I ran out of things to do. So it was either write again - or get a 9 to 5 job. How sobering. I love to write. What was I afraid of? Failure. Hmph. I've been there before. So what?

It took me awhile to work out the kinks in the plot for ITOK, but in the end it was a matter of just sitting down and thinking it through. The best part was that I got to write my own ending. The depressing part about writing epic biographicals is that the hero always dies at the end. This time, I was in control. That was both daunting and liberating.

Happily, I can report that In the Time of Kings is selling well and getting a warm reception. It's a new twist on time travel romance. Will there be a follow-up? I haven't decided yet, but it's possible.

I couldn't have gotten here without the thousands of readers that have bought, downloaded, and reviewed the books and recommended them to others, as well as my beta readers, cover artists, editors, proofreaders and a husband who has supported my dream for well over a decade. So a great big, super, wonderful, fabulous, ginormous THANK YOU!!! to everyone who has helped me get here.

Until later,

Friday, September 20, 2013

The Paperback Is Out!

 Deals and announcements:

It's here! It's here!

You can now purchase the paperback version of In the Time of Kings at the following online retailers:

Barnes and Noble

  • Over 1200 people entered the giveaway for a signed copy of ITOK at Goodreads! The winners have been selected and your copies are on their way.
  • If you buy the Kindle version of Uneasy Lies the Crown, you can get the audiobook for just $1.99!
  • The Crown in the Heather (The Bruce Trilogy: Book I) is just 99 cents on Kindle through Oct. 5th.
Until later,

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Scotland in 1333 - Part III: The Battle of Halidon Hill

There was only one way to relieve to town now – wage all-out battle. On the morning of July 19th, Douglas arrayed his forces on Witches’ Knowle, north of Halidon Hill where the English were stationed. King Edward would not move from his vantage point. So Douglas felt he had no choice but to descend from his hilltop, cross the marshy ground between and attack the English on the slopes of Halidon Hill. 

By the time the Scots began uphill, arrows began to descend. Their ranks were decimated, but they pressed onward. Soon, the entire Scottish army was in retreat.

Although the Scots outnumbered the English at the onset of battle, it was Scotland that suffered that day. Thousands of Scots lost their lives, including Archibald Douglas. English casualties numbered only in the dozens. 

Of those who survived, many Scots capitulated. But the fighting was not over. Many more battles would ensue in the years after. Edward Balliol would not wear the crown for long. Young King David (the Bruce’s son) had been whisked away to safety, and his nephew, Robert Stewart (the Bruce’s grandson), had escaped the devastation of Halidon Hill.

Until later,

Sunday, September 15, 2013

In the Time of Kings is now available on Kindle!

Yaaayyy!!! It's finally here. My Time Travel Adventure/Romance, In the Time of Kings, is now available on Kindle. Paperback, iBook, Nook and Kobo coming soon!

The year is 1333. Sir Archibald Douglas, younger brother of James Douglas and now Guardian of the Realm of Scotland, faces the determined young King of England, Edward III, at the Battle of Berwick.
It's up to Ross Sinclair to change fate...
U.S. -

U.K. -

Canada -

Happy reading,

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Scotland in 1333 - Part II: The Siege of Berwick

The Siege of Berwick
In March of 1333, Balliol marched north and laid siege to Berwick, Scotland’s southernmost city and an important port town. It was one of the few strongholds that Robert the Bruce didn’t raze in his reunification of the kingdom. Berwick and its citizens were surrounded – and King Edward III was on his way to join in the siege.
At this time, Scotland’s Guardian of the Realm was the younger brother of James Douglas, Sir Archibald Douglas. While he was experienced in raids and battles, he was perhaps not as decisively quick as his brother had been. Rather than strike the moment Balliol crossed the border, he decided to gather forces from around the kingdom to launch a full relief effort. The problem was that this took time. And in that time, Berwick became weaker and more desperate.
Berwick is surrounded to the west and south by the River Tweed and to the east by the North Sea. King Edward positioned himself to the north of the town. Meanwhile, Berwick agreed to a truce, which stated that if the town was relieved by two hundred Scots, they would not have to surrender. Under cover of night, two hundred Scots crossed a bridge over the Tweed and attempted to enter the town. A few succeeded, but the effort was thwarted by the English and they were forced to retreat. 

Sir Archibald then raided into the north of England with the intent of capturing Queen Philippa in Bamburgh. Before he could do so, he received word that King Edward had begun to hang Scottish captives in sight of the town’s walls. Douglas returned to Berwick at once.


Until later,

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Enter to Win a Signed Copy of In the Time of Kings!

Would you like a chance to win an autographed paperback of In the Time of Kings? Just click below and sign up at Goodreads.

Hurry, giveaway ends Sept. 16th -- good luck!

What if you could remember another life? What if you could re-live it and find love again?

When tragedy threatens Claire's life, Ross Sinclair must face the possibility of a future without her. Then, in one unfortunate moment, he's hurled back to another time and confronted with even bigger problems.

Suddenly, it isn't 2013 anymore. It's 1333. The English have laid siege to Berwick, Ross has a wife he barely knows, more enemies than friends, and a past that brands him as a heretic.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

In the Time of Kings by N. Gemini Sasson

In the Time of Kings

by N. Gemini Sasson

Giveaway ends September 16, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Scotland in 1333 - Part I: The Treaty of Northampton

My new Time Travel novel, In the Time of Kings, takes place in Scotland in 1333. When I sat down to write a story about a man named Ross Sinclair who has memories of a past life and eventually finds himself reliving it, I had to decide when to set the story. The events of 1333 were a perfect backdrop, especially considering that The Bruce Trilogy ends in 1330.

Scotland, by then, was not only without its visionary King of Scots, Robert the Bruce, but soon it was also without the strong leadership of James Douglas and Thomas Randolph. James’s younger brother Sir Archibald Douglas was appointed Guardian of the Realm.

The Treaty of Northampton
Toward the end of Robert the Bruce’s reign, he secured the signing of the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton, effectively ending the war between Scotland and England. While in it, England acknowledged the independence of Scotland and Robert the Bruce as its rightful ruler, the treaty was primarily the brainchild of Queen Isabella and Sir Roger Mortimer. England’s king at that time, Edward III was just sixteen years old, and still under the influence of his mother. However, when he rebelled against his mother, Isabella, and her lover, Mortimer, and had Mortimer executed, it eventually came to light that he was not entirely in agreement with the terms of the treaty.

In 1329, a year after signing the treaty and realizing his lifelong dream, Robert the Bruce died, leaving as his heir a six-year old son, David, who was already wed to the four-year old Princess Joan, younger sister of King Edward III of England. Robert had named Thomas Randolph, the Earl of Moray, and Sir James ‘The Good’ Douglas as his son’s guardians. Both were strong and experienced leaders. The following year, Douglas was tasked with carrying his king’s heart on crusade to the Holy Land, but before he ever arrived there, he perished at the Battle of Teba in Spain. Sadly, Randolph also died in 1332. 

It was then that Scotland’s autonomy and its unity began to fall into peril. With a child-king on the throne and no strong leader, opportunity had presented itself for Edward Balliol, son of the prior King of Scots, John Balliol. Young Edward concocted a scheme to once again march on Scotland with the intent of subduing it by supporting Balliol’s claim to the Scottish crown.


Until later,