Tag Archives: ebook

Christina Peaden Writes Book About The Carnival Triumph Hell Cruise… Can She Launch A Career?

I don’t know if Christina Peaden thought of herself as a “writer” one month ago, but she certainly took advantage of a huge opportunity to make a name for herself with her first published project: Triumph over Calamity.

triumph over calamityAccording to an article over at the Houston Chronicle website (Galveston woman already published book about Triumph), Christina Peaden kept a journal about her family’s recent vacation on the Carnival Triumph, which as you probably know ended in spectacular failure.

When Christina finally got home, she decided to self-publish her journal as an eBook on Amazon to give one person’s account of what happened. The Houston Chronicle claims “at least 850 people have already purchased it,” although they don’t state where that number comes from. I would assume from the author since Amazon.com doesn’t really release sales information.

So, assuming Christina picked the 70% royalty rate (and why wouldn’t she have?) and assuming those sales numbers are true, she’s made $1,768 in sales in the first seven days. Not bad for a 80 page journal she had been writing anyway.

I have no idea how well the book is written and edited. I’m also not sure why she used the clunky and hard-to-remember pen name C.A. Peaden. She’s giving her real name to the media and it’s a perfectly good name for an author. Maybe she feels her publishing name needs to be gender neutral, but that’s more of a “genre problem” so that doesn’t really explain it.

Christina’s marketing angle for her book is that faith in God will help you triumph over any circumstances. Whether or not you believe what she believes, I’m sure you can recognize there is a HUGE market for books promoting that view. There are also ample opportunities for speaking tours, etc. What I’m saying is, she has a chance here to launch a serious career if she makes the right moves.

I have no idea who Christina Peaden is. I don’t know if she’s charismatic or if she speaks well on camera, but I do know she saw she could be the “first to market” with a first-hand account of what happened during a major news event that recently consumed the American public’s attention. If she has the right internal make-up and she plays her cards right, she should be able to use this as the launch to something bigger.

By “internal make-up,” I mean, does she have a natural instinct for self-promotion and marketing and a natural drive to build on this opportunity, or did she essentially just get lucky by thinking, “Hey, I should publish my journal for other people to read!”

Author Joe Konrath, for example, has a natural drive to self-promote that courses through every decision he makes for his career. Most authors don’t know how to market their work the way Joe does on a very instinctual level. He’s always thinking of new ways to promote himself. Selling his work just comes naturally to him.

The difference between Christina Peaden being a one day story and Christina Peaden being a well-known inspirational writer for years to come might hinge on her ability to “make something” of this first publication while there’s still time. Strike while the iron is hot.

Ultimately, what Christina probably needs right now is a high level publicist who can prep her properly and make some media events happen fast while there’s still interest in this story. (And for all I know, maybe she already has a publicity team hard at work on her behalf.)

So what do you think? Will the publishing world be talking about Christina Peaden a year from now? Or will she fail to capitalize on this huge opportunity?

(P.S. If you have the time, go and read all of the customer reviews of her eBook on Amazon. It seems her view of the cruise isn’t universal and some of the other passengers are writing their own rebuttals via their reviews/comments, which are just as interesting to read in many cases.  For extra credit, check out how many of the reviews are written by people who have never reviewed anything else on Amazon. It’s almost as if there’s a PR battle being waged in the review section for this book.)

Update on Cemetery Dance’s 13 Days of Halloween Celebration

13 Days Of Halloween

Today is the last day of the 13 Days of Halloween Celebration from Cemetery Dance Publications!  For those who missed the news, here are all of the eBooks in order:

Invitation Only

A Little Halloween Talk

Quiet House

Gerassimos Flamotas

Yesterday and The Day Before

The Toll

Gerassimos Flamotas


Monster Night

The House of Cottage Lane

The Legend of Halloween Jack

Devil's Night


Short of Breath

Treats for Adeline


The Halloween Phantoms

Don’t forget, there’s a special Amazon.com link you can bookmark to always every Cemetery Dance eBook on their store:


The Fleshless Man by Norman Prentiss: eBook Available Now

the fleshless manIf you haven’t read Norman Prentiss yet, you’re really missing out. His novella, Invisible Fences, is one of my favorites of the last few years, and his mini-collection Four Legs in the Morning is a lot of creepy fun.

His new novella, The Fleshless Man, is an excellent place to start reading his work, although I highly recommend picking up those other two as well.

The Fleshless Man by Norman Prentiss

“The Fleshless Man wants to kill me,” his mother said.

Curtis never enjoyed the cool, oppressive atmosphere of his childhood home, and that atmosphere is even worse when he returns as an adult. His mother is dying, and her illness seems to infect everyone around her: Curtis’s brother has developed a nervous habit that might indicate more serious problems; the attending nurse exhibits puzzling, possibly sinister behavior; and Curtis himself suffers from nightmares and uncharacteristic dark thoughts.

It’s as if the house itself wants his mother to die more quickly—and it will achieve that goal however it can.

Even if it must inspire Curtis to imagine harming his own mother.

Even if it must summon the intervention of a strange entity called the Fleshless Man.

Start reading on your Kindle right now!

The Painted Darkness eBook Now Available on Kobo

My novella, The Painted Darkness, is now available on the Kobo store. It only took about two years to make that happen, so it’ll be interesting to see if anyone actually buys a copy there! Click on the cover below for more information:

The trade paperback is also still available through: Amazon.com • Cemetery Dance • Barnes & Noble

The eBook is available through: Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk •Barnes & Noble • iBookstore • Sony Reader • Kobo • CemeteryDance.com

The Audiobook is available through: Amazon.com  • Audible.com •  iTunes

FREE eBook This Week: #1 Bestselling Collection on Amazon in the US, UK, and Germany!

The other day I realized this blog had passed 20,000 hits, which I thought was pretty cool!

As my way of saying thanks to everyone who has stopped by, I’m giving my eBook short story collection Seven Stories away for FREE on Amazon for this week only.

US link: http://amzn.to/SevenStories
UK link: http://amzn.to/SevenStoriesUK
Germany link: http://amzn.to/SevenStoriesGerman

If you have a Kindle, or the Kindle App, or even if you just want to try out the Kindle Cloud for the first time, now is a great time to grab a copy of the collection before it goes back up to the regular retail price on Friday.

(Also: because these stories are going to appear in new collections down the road, the eBook will probably disappear from Amazon later this year, but those who download the eBook now will have it for as long as you want, of course!)

So please go ahead and download the eBook for free this week if you’re at all interested in my short fiction. What do you have to lose, after all? I hope you enjoy the stories.

Also, if you can, please help me spread the word about this FREE giveaway by posting the news and that link on your websites, blogs, message boards, Twitter, Facebook, etc.  Any help in promoting this would be greatly appreciated since I don’t have a lot of time to let readers know.


UPDATE: Seven Stories in now the #1 bestseller in Amazon’s “Free Anthologies” categories in the US, the UK, and Germany thanks to everyone who downloaded today!