Savvy Book Writers page 2

BEHIND CLOSED DOORS Available in Print

Imagine you are a little house fly and you could get access to homes and mansions were celebrities and politician reside – being able to get a peek behind closed doors and spying on them.

Take a peek behind the masks of hypocrisy and the walls of deception that lurk and thrive in the mainstream; the secret, desperate lives of sinners, perverts, and criminals that remain usually well hidden in posh mansions from the wrath and condemnation of our society.

Get now also the print version of the fictional story BEHIND CLOSED DOORS on all Amazon sites around the world.  Such as Amazon for the USA, Australia, NZ, South Africa – or on,,, or at B&N, Kobo, Gardners, Scribd, Story- Tel, OverDrive, Bookmate, just to name a few of the many retailers and distributors that carry her books.

Author Dr. Charlayne Grenci’s purpose was to expose and dramatize the true reality of what goes on in the private lives of people in suburban America.  Watched by a tiny little detective fly – tells you all…
Paperback: 282 pages
Publisher: French-Flair Publishing July 21, 2017
ISBN 978-1988664057

Amazon Canada:

Amazon UK:

Amazon Germany:

Follow the Author:
Website and Blog
Author Page
Amazon Book Page

Connect with her on social media:
Twitter: @CharlayneGrenci

More books by Dr. Charlayne Grenci:
Queen of Domination: My Secret Life
Marcel Proust EXPOSED
Last Curtain for a Stripper
A Politician EXPOSED


Want Your Novel in Bookstores?

Imagine to walk into a local Barnes & Noble and find your own book displayed on the shelves…


Before you approach bookstores, make sure your book will pass muster with a book buyer.  The Independent Book Publishers Association has published an Industry Standards Checklist for Professionally Published Books.  If you want bookstores to carry your book, please make sure you can check every single box on this list before you bring a copy into their store and ask them to carry it.

In March 2017, IBPA’s Advocacy Committee published an Industry Standards Checklist for a Professionally Published Book.  The purpose of the checklist is to give book authors and industry professionals an at-a-glance gauge of the professional presentation of any book in order to help level the playing field between indie publishers and large-scale conglomerates.

How IBPA Helps Authors:
“Too often, IBPA has noticed a bias against self-published authors, independent publishers, and hybrid presses when it comes to choosing titles or authors for review consideration, book award contests, association memberships, and inclusion on independent bookstore shelves,” said IBPA CEO Angela Bole.
Excerpt From the Industry Checklist for a Professionally Published Book

Reference the October 2016 issue of IBPA Independent magazine for examples of great design. If you no longer have your copy, email the IBPA office at to request a new copy for $4.95 per issue.

Win by Design

3 Challenging Covers

Sample 1: General Cover

Sample 2.1: General Cover

Sample 1: Advance Reader Copy Cover

Sample 2: Advance Reader Copy Cover


The following interior design spreads are linked with permission of the publisher.

Sample 1: Interior Spread

Sample 2: Interior Spread

The title page is often the very first page of the book (if you don’t include a half-title page).

Sample 1: Light Messages Publishing

Sample 2: Light Messages Publishing
Copyright pages vary, but all contain the same general information.  Below are copyright page examples linked with permission of the publisher.

Sample 1: She Writes Press

Sample 2: Independent Book Publishers Association

“IBPA’s Industry Checklist for a Professionally Published Book will help industry professionals and independent publishers and authors bridge this gap by offering a structured means.  It will ensure that books be judged on merit and quality rather than on the business model used to produce them or the size of the publisher.”

The Kindle Store is Officially Broken


“Amazon’s continued inaction is increasingly baffling,” wrote best-selling author David Gaughran on his blog. Gaughran reported about many incidents, such as the one that happened recently, when a “click-farmed” title hit #1 in the Kindle Store. And Amazon took no action…

“Over the last six weeks, one particularly brazen author has put four separate titles in the Top 10, and Amazon did nothing whatsoever.  There are many such examples.  I wrote at the start of June about how scammers were taking over Amazon’s free charts. That post led to a phone conversation with KDP’s Executive Customer Relations.  I explained in detail how none of those contentions were true, that readers are leaving angry reviews under these books, which regularly hit the charts, and further that KDP has singularly failed to act on 18 months-worth of complaints.”

The Facts and How Amazon Reacts (or NOT)
Here are the details what’s going on at the Amazon charts: An increase of 38,584,000%! within days…  How does that not set off alarm bells in Seattle?  Amazon is yet to respond or take any action. Sam DeSilva, a lawyer specializing in IT and outsourcing law at Manches LLP in Oxford had mentioned that: “Potentially, a number of laws are being breached – the consumer protection and unfair trading regulations. Effectively it’s misleading the individual consumers.
It seems that Amazon can invent flying delivery robots, but can’t handle a 1990s-level internet marketer scam.

Amazon Has A Fake Book Problem
In this former article author David Gaughran explains in detail 
how the click farm scammers “produce” and distribute their books: “For over fifteen months now, scammers have been raiding the Kindle Unlimited pot using a well-worn trick.  They usually pilfer the content first of all – often by stealing an author’s original work and running it through a “synonymizer” – and then upload it to Amazon, thus avoiding the automatic plagiarism detectors. They make sure the “book” is as long as possible.
These thieves make the book free for a few days, and then use a variety of banned methods to generate a huge and immediate surge in downloads – generally suspected to be bots or click-farms or dummy accounts, or some combination thereof.  These fake books then suddenly jump into the Top 20 of the free charts, displacing authors who have gone to considerable effort to put together an advertising campaign for their work.”

What are Click Farms?
A click farm, according to Wikipedia is a form of click fraud, where a large group of low-paid workers -usually located in developing countries, such as India, the Philippines, and Bangladesh – is hired to click on paid advertising links for the click fraudster.

It is extremely difficult for an automated filter to detect this simulated traffic as fake because the visitor behavior appears exactly the same as that of an actual legitimate visitor.  In an effort to circumvent filtering systems, click fraudsters have begun to use these click farms to mimic actual visitors.

KindleUnlimited – Forget it!
David Gaughran explained in his blog that fake authors are sucking in money from the communal author pot, and stealing visibility from genuine, hardworking authors – despite the irate reviews from readers.
“One of these scammers who has been engaging in various shady tactics for years with impunity – has gate-crashed the Top 10 four times in the last six weeks using click-farms.  His books tend to immediately slink back to around 100,000 in the charts and don’t have “Also Boughts” weeks after publishing (meaning that he didn’t manage to rustle up 50 genuine sales yet – borrows don’t count towards “Also Boughts”).
On the same day that this click-farmed book hit #1 on Amazon, KDP announced yet another drop in rates for Kindle Unlimited authors – and rates have been steadily dropping for some time now.”

See the long list of emails which David Gaughran sent already to Amazon – without any action from them to stop these scammers. It shows clearly that authors are screwed when participating in KU – not only due to the measly payouts. Best step for authors is NOT to enroll their book in KDP Select.
Inclusion in KDP Select (and KU) means that authors are losing out on other revenue streams – and also becoming increasingly more reliant on Amazon.  KU is NOT an author’s friend.  It’s Amazon’s friend to draw customers to their site.



Free Trip to Germany & Switzerland – Hurry!


Did you always want to travel the romantic Black Forest region?  Or yearn to explore the Jungfraujoch area, to enjoy the stunning Glacier Express route, Interlaken, and to see St. Moritz in Switzerland?
Win a Trip To Europe With Rail Europe!

Join #TalesOnRail in 2017 or for 2018.

Travel is one of the best ways to find inspiration for creative projects, but it isn’t always easy to get away from work or other everyday life commitments. Creative individuals get now a chance to focus on a personal or professional project during an inspiring, creativity-filled train journey through Southern Germany and central Switzerland in late September 2017. Many artists and writers have been inspired by the beauty of train travel in Europe. Trains are a fantastic place to unplug, relax, and focus on getting work done.

This opportunity is open to aspiring writers, visual artists, musicians, photographers, videographers, and any other creatives from the USA and Australia.
The most exciting part? TalesOnRail will produce a video series about the artists’ experience, with episodes to be released online in early 2018!  Deadline to enter is July 17, 2017.  But don’t worry: you can apply next year as well, it’s a yearly contest.  Just mark your calendar – and collect ideas and great photos for the next contest.

What Will the Trip Include?
Rail Europe: “We’ll start off in Germany and use our German Rail Passes to explore the regions that have inspired the artists and writers before us.  As guests of Germany Tourism and Deutsche Bahn, we’ll travel through the vibrant area in and around Frankfurt, heading south to the romantic Black Forest region. Then it’s off to Switzerland, where we’ll use our Swiss Travel Passes to explore by train, bus, boat, and maybe even some paragliding (weather and courage permitting). As guests of Switzerland Tourism and Swiss Travel System, we’ll explore Jungfraujoch, the stunning Glacier Express route, Interlaken, and St Moritz.”

How it Works Explains RailEurope:
“Head on over to Instagram and make sure you’re following us at @raileurope.

Upload a photo to your Instagram account. The photo should show a place that has inspired you creatively, and the caption should explain to us in 3-4 sentences why a trip like this could really help you move forward with a creative project you’re working on or have been wanting to start.”

“Make sure to use the hashtag #TalesOnRail2017 in your caption so we can find your entry!

“Take a look at our Terms and Conditions. By uploading a photo and entering this contest, you confirm that you’ve read and agree to these Terms.  That’s it!  You have until July 17, 2017, to enter.  We’ll contact a winner a few weeks after the contest closes.”
Check out last year’s #TalesOnRail web series.

The Art of Travel: there’s truly nothing like a train journey
to inspire creative thought and spark new ideas!


Writers: Get Paid $200 Per Word? Maybe!



20K for 100 Words?  Yes!  The V International Flash Fiction Competition has such a generous prize on offer – US$20,000 for 100 words – the contest is extremely competitive.  And there is no entry fee.  The former Museum of Words contest attracted recently 35,609 entries from writers in 149 countries.

The 5th Edition of the International Prize for Micro-Stories is organized by the César Egido Serrano Foundation.  The Cesar Egido Serrano Foundation is based in Spain and is a private, not-for-profit foundation.  The foundation’s aim is to encourage dialogue between different cultures, ideas, religions, and sensibilities.

Entries for the Museum of Words flash fiction contest are open until Thursday, November 23, 2017.  Entries must be submitted via an online form.
Keeping in mind the Foundation´s ethos, which is that the word is the tool of coexistence between different cultures, religions, and ideologies, the V Edition of competition is open, under the motto: The Word, bridging the gap between different cultures and religions”. The rules of the competition are as follows:

  • Writers from anywhere in the world may participate.
  • The contest rules limit the number of entries per writer to two.
  • Originals whose theme will be free (two per author, maximum) will be written in any of the following languages: Spanish, English, Arabic or Hebrew.
  • An overall first prize of 20,000 dollars is awarded for the best story in any of the languages authorized in the contest.
  • Three prizes of $ 1,000 each will be awarded for the best stories in each of the other remaining languages admitted in the contest, that are not winners of the main prize.
  • The stories cannot exceed 100 words. They will be sent exclusively by completing the online form that will be found on the website of the Foundation.
  • The texts will be original, unpublished in all media (paper, blogs, electronic publications, etc…) and must not have been awarded prizes in any other contest. Those who do not meet this condition will be disqualified.
  • The deadline for submission of originals will end on November 23rd, 2017.
  • The jury will make a selection of the finalists it deems appropriate.  The list of finalist titles will be published on the website of the César Egido Serrano Foundation.
  • The César Egido Serrano Foundation reserves the right to publish the finalist stories.
  • The decision of the jury will be final.
  • The registration in this contest is an agreement in the total acceptance of its rules.

Good luck to all writers who participate!

US$40,000 for a Short Story?

You are reading correctly!
The Sunday Times Short Story Award 2018: Entries Now Open for the World’s Richest Short Story Prize July 6, 2017



Writers from around the world are invited to enter the 2018 Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award. The winner will receive £30,000 (approx US$40,000), making this the most valuable prize in the world for a single short story.

The prize is for stories up to 6,000 words in length and there is no entry fee.  Stories can be either unpublished or published.  If it was published, the work must have first appeared after 31 December 2016.

Writers can enter regardless of their nationality or residency but they must have an existing record of publication in the United Kingdom or Ireland.

The 2017 Sunday Times Short Award was won by Bret Anthony Johnston, Director of Creative Writing at Harvard University. Previous winners include Jonathan Tel (2016), Yiyun Li (2015), Adam Johnson (2014) and Junot Diaz (2013).

Entries for the 2018 award close at 6 pm GMT on Thursday, Sept 28, 2017.  A long list of up to twenty entries will be published in February 2018 and the winner will be announced in April.  Full terms and conditions for the prize can be found here (PDF) and writers can access the entry form via the Short Story Award website.

Good Luck to All Participants!


Benefiting From Free/Permanent Free Books?


My Question: Do you feel you are subsidizing the reading habits of a small portion of readers when offering your e-book(s) for free?
There are lots of pro’s and con’s regarding free books. Authors are discussing this topic since years – just look at the KDP forums, this thread for example: “Do not give your book away free! EVER”.  There are eight pages of opinions about this topic.

If you wrote only one book so far, it does not make sense at all to set it up for free.  But after the fourth or fifth book or a series, offering one book, maybe the first in the series, as a permanently free book on Amazon will help you to introduce many new readers.

Learn in this blog post several ways how you can arrange this without opting for the KDP Select exclusivity!
Permanently Free eBook?
The only official method of pricing an ebook for free in the Kindle store is for authors is to enroll their books in KDP Select, an optional program that requires exclusivity.  Amazon likes to offer books at rock-bottom prices, but on the other hand, Amazon is the only online retailer who restricts the ability of authors and publishers to price their books permanently for FREE.

Free via KDP Select
Paying members of KU can ‘borrow’ books as part of their membership.  Authors can only give their book away for free, as a 5-day-promotion, during a 90-day KDP-Select period. The rest of the time, it remains paid for people who aren’t part of this KU lending club.  Or as a Prime Member have the opportunity to get certain books/magazines for a free read.

The catch: your book must be exclusively sold on Amazon. No Apple iBooks, no Barnes & Noble, no Kobo, no website sales. Exclusivity!  Exclusivity is great for Amazon, but it’s not so great for those indie authors and self-publishers who want to maintain their independence and build a readership across all online retailers.

How Permanently Free Works Without KDP Select:
There’s another, better way, to have an e-book permanently free on Amazon and it doesn’t require exclusivity.  Self-publishing authors have been using Smashwords and other online retailers to get permanently free e-books into Amazon without exclusivity.  It is a way to trick Amazon’s price-matching.  They just price their books on Amazon for $.99 – and offer it at Smashwords for free.  Soon Apple iBooks will pick up the new free price, B & N and Kobo will follow suit.

Now you need to let Amazon know about your free book. Click the link under the “Product Details” where it says, “tell us about a lower price” to report that your book is available for free at another retailer.
Provide Amazon with a direct hyperlink to one or all of the retailers.  You need to report the book separately at their other stores in different countries as well.  Go to,,, etc. in order to encourage price matching in each (country’s) store.  Amazon will then – not always right away – but most likely eventually “price-match”. This way your book will be eventually permanent free on Amazon’s website.

Series and Prequels Will Profit Most
If you write a series, price your series starter as a perma-free book.  The reason: It is proven that series with free series starters earn more overall sales than series without free series starters.
Apple’s iBooks does more to promote free than any other retailer with their regular “First in Series Free” promotions. Free books can build higher readership (provided they are as good as the paid ones) and can help you establish your first reviews.  However free doesn’t mean the reader will read it or finish it, they’re probably less likely to finish a free book if it doesn’t keep their attention.

Another great way to introduce a new book is also to write a short prequel and set it up for free
– with lots of info and links to your upcoming new book.
Your Decision!
If you have a standalone book on pre-order, you can price another standalone book free to drive up readership, and then use the last pages of the free book (and not only those) to advertise your pre-order.  At the end of every book, you should provide a list of all your other books with sales links.  Bestselling author Derek Haines: “I had a perma-free ebook for a couple of years using this method, and it did wonders for my other e-books.  As long as you have enough e-books published to allow you to use one as a loss leader, it is well worth trying.”

Really Smart Authors use “Pay-with-a-Tweet”
The greatest disadvantage of giving away your e-book on Amazon for free: You will never know who downloaded your title.  To learn more who is interested in your writing: give away the e-book from your own website and let readers “pay-with-a-tweet“.

The benefit will not only be that you get to know your audience, but they also automatically spread the word about your book to all their Twitter followers, and those may re-tweet it too. You get the idea!

See all the details about “Pay-with-a-Tweet” here:


How You Can Grow Your Google+ Following


Saving time on Social Media, allows you to interact more with your followers and readers.  But first, you need lots of followers to connect with you.

The easiest way is to connect followers from several social media sites. So, no matter on which site your followers are, they will find your posts.  Some of the best social media sites to blog are LinkedIn and Google+.  Start to grow your presence on GooglePlus, this social media giant is as important as ever. Remember: Everything you post here is automatically in their search engine results!

Transfer LinkedIn Followers to Google+
Martin Shervington from PlusYourBusiness explained in a video how to connect your LinkedIn followers with your Google+ account. He explains how it works Step-for-Step:

  • Log in to your LinkedIn account and on the upper left go to your Connections page and click on “Keep in Touch”
  • Once you are on the page, click in the upper right on the gear-icon
  • When the Connection page appears, click on Export LinkedIn Connections in the “Advanced Settings” part in the right column
  • A new page opens with a button: Microsoft Outlook (.csv file)
  • Underneath you can see EXPORT, click this which prompts the download
  • Open the .csv file and you will get an Excel Spreadsheet on your computer screen with all the names and email addresses of your LinkedIn connections
  • Select all the email addresses in the E-mail Address column and copy them to your clipboard/notepad.

Another YouTube Video by Lee Smallwood shows:
How-to Import LinkedIn Contacts into Google Plus Circles

Should your LinkedIn account be relatively new with only a dozen followers, you can implement them one by one. Just copy every email address from your clipboard or notepad into the search function on top of your Google+ page, where it says: Search for people, pages or posts.  Google+ will open up their profile pages if they are a Google+ member, and you just need to click “add”

If you want your LinkedIn connections to follow you back on Google+ too, you can send them a brief note (in one shot to the entire circle!) saying hello and letting them know you are now following them on Google+ because you are already connected on LinkedIn.  To do this, use the function “Also send emails from you to Your circles” at the lower end of each post, next to the SEND button.  Just mark it, before you send your note.  No one will know that you just sent out dozens of emails.

Most Important:
Your Google+ profile must stand out to people who are in your niche. Shape your profile into something that looks interesting.  Place a great profile photo of yourself (not your cat, dog or motorcycle).  Be a person that others want to follow.
Join Google+ communities, you are then part of a larger group of people who are engaged on a certain topic.  This is another way that you can refine your level of engagement on Google+ in order to add not just a lot of followers, but the right kind of followers.



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