Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Free at last!

I finally, finally, finally have the rights back to Book of Shadows and The Unseen in the U.S. and can offer these spooky thrillers as e books at the infinitely more reasonable price of $2.99 (as opposed to the publisher-set price of $11.99.  I mean, truly, does ANYONE pay $11.99 for an e book? Even your most highly prized authors? I was about to kill myself).

Oh, you thought I meant FREE.  Well, what I meant was LIBERATED, but all right, today (Wednesday) and tomorrow (Thursday) you can also download  The Harrowing for free here.

But I can't tell you how excited I am to have these rights back. The absolute worst thing about being a screenwriter was having studios and production companies hold my original scripts hostage - it's like the physical pain of having a loved one imprisoned, and knowing there's nothing you can do about it. I've contemplated murder more often than I like to think.

It's the same with book rights. That really is a post of its own, one that I need to do here, because these days it's critical that authors think clearly before they sign away their rights, especially e book rights. In the exhilaration of being offered a contract, it's far, far too easy to just say yes to whatever a publisher is proposing.

A mistake you may well regret for longer than you ever want to think.

But we'll talk about that in depth some other time. Today, I'm celebrating Liberation Day.

So tell me - DO you pay $11.99 for e books from your favorite authors? Because myself, at that price I will just pay $26 for a hardcover.

- Alex


Now available on Kindle, Nook & Smashwords, $2.99!

After experiencing a precognitive dream that shatters her engagement and changes her life forever, young California psychology professor Laurel MacDonald decides to get a fresh start by taking a job at Duke University in North Carolina. She soon becomes obsessed with the long-buried files form the world-famous Rhine parapsychology experiments, which attempted to prove if ESP really exists.

As she teams up with another charismatic professor, they soon uncover disturbing reports, including a mysterious case of a house supposedly haunted by a poltergeist, investigated by another research team in 1965. The two professors and two exceptionally gifted Duke students move into the grand, abandoned mansion to replicate the investigation, unaware that the entire original team ended up insane... or dead.

Inspired by the real-life paranormal studies conducted by the world-famous Rhine parapsychology lab at Duke University.

$ 2.99 US, €2.99 Europe. Also available in Amazon's lending library.

Click to download:  

Amazon US
Smashwords (multiple formats, inc. e pub)
Amazon UK  (paperback/e book from Little Brown)
Amazon DE
Amazon FR
Amazon ES

"Destined to become a horror classic." 
- Romantic Times Book Review

"Gave this reviewer a bad night's sleep - what more could you ask of a horror novel?" - SFX


Homicide detective Adam Garrett is already a rising star in the Boston police department when he and his cynical partner, Carl Landauer, catch a horrifying case that could make their careers: the ritualistic murder of a wealthy college girl that appears to have Satanic elements.

The partners make a quick arrest when all evidence points to another student, a troubled musician in a Goth band who was either dating or stalking the murdered girl. But Garrett's case is turned upside down when beautiful, mysterious Tanith Cabarrus, a practicing witch from nearby Salem, walks into the homicide bureau and insists that the real perpetrator is still at large. Tanith claims to have had psychic visions that the killer has ritually sacrificed other teenagers in his attempts to summon a powerful, ancient demon.

All Garrett's beliefs about the nature of reality will be tested as he is forced to team up with a woman he is fiercely attracted to but cannot trust, in a race to uncover a psychotic killer before he strikes again.

$ 2.99 US, £2.14 and €2.99 in UK/Europe. Also available in Amazon's lending library.

Click to download:  

Amazon US
Smashwords (multiple e formats, inc. e pub)
Amazon UK
Amazon DE
Amazon FR
Amazon ES
Amazon IT

"A wonderfully dark thriller with amazing is-it-isn't-it suspense all the way to the end. Highly recommended."   - Lee Child

"Sokoloff successfully melds a classic murder-mystery/whodunit with supernatural occult undertones."  - Library Journal

"Compelling, frightening and exceptionally well-written, Book of Shadows is destined to become another hit for acclaimed horror and suspense writer Sokoloff. The incredibly tense plot and mysterious characters will keep readers up late at night, jumping at every sound, and turning the pages until they've devoured the book."   - Romantic Times Book Reviews, 4 1/2 stars


$3.99 on Kindle

Mendenhall echoes with the footsteps of the last home-bound students heading off for Thanksgiving break, and Robin Stone swears she can feel the creepy, hundred-year old residence hall breathe a sigh of relief for its long-awaited solitude. Or perhaps it's only gathering itself for the coming weekend.

 As a massive storm dumps rain on the isolated campus, four other lonely students reveal themselves: Patrick, a handsome jock; Lisa, a manipulative tease; Cain, a brooding musician; and finally Martin, a scholarly eccentric. Each has forsaken a long weekend at home for their own secret reasons.

The five unlikely companions establish a tentative rapport, but they soon become aware of a sixth presence disturbing the ominous silence that pervades the building. Are they victims of a simple college prank taken way too far, or is the unusual energy evidence of something genuine - and intent on using the five students for its own terrifying ends? It's only Thursday afternoon, and they have three long days and dark nights before the rest of the world returns to find out what's become of them. But for now it's just the darkness keeping company with five students nobody wants -- and no one will miss.

Nominated for the Bram Stoker Award (horror) and Anthony Award (mystery) for Best First Novel.

“Absolutely gripping...It is easy to imagine this as a film. Once started, you won’t want to stop reading.”
--London Times

“Poltergeist meets The Breakfast Club as five college students tangle with an ancient evil presence. Plenty of sexual tension... quick pace and engaging plot.”

--Kirkus Reviews

“The Harrowing is a real page-turner, a first novel of unusual promise.”

-- Ira Levin, author of Rosemary's Baby

Also available in Amazon's lending library.

Click to download:  

Amazon UK (paperback/e book from Little, Brown, NOT free)
Amazon DE
Amazon ES
Amazon FR
Amazon IT    


Unknown said...

Hi Alexandra, and congrats on getting the rights back to your books. Yay!

Do you have any plans to make the ebooks available to non-Kindle owners?

I'm living in Western Australia and the easiest way I've found to buy ebooks from the US is via Smashwords. Sony's e-book store is not quite as easy, but still do-able. (I have a Sony e-reader, so I buy ebooks in epub format.)

Thanks, Alexandra, and I hope "Liberation Day" is going well for you! :)

Alexandra Sokoloff said...

Hey Lisa - I will eventually make my e books available for Smashwords and Nook - it's just impossible to pass up the enormous exposure and sales you can get in the Kindle Select program.

But if you'd like an e pub copy of The Harrowing, I'd be happy to send you one directly. Just e mail me: alex AT alexandrasokoloff DOT com

Tammy Cravit said...

Congratulations on getting your books back - that's huge!

As far as e-book pricing: There are less than a handful of authors for whom I'm willing to pay $11.99 for a fiction e-book. In fact, I can only think of three at the moment. For everyone else, I'll either bookmark a title and wait to see if the price comes down, or I'll read something else. Harsh, perhaps, but the truth. My "to read" pile is big enough as it as, and there isn't a shortage of good stuff priced more reasonably.

Why, one would almost think the Big 6 publishers don't WANT e-books to actually sell! :-) (Paging Chicken Little...cleanup on aisle six...)

I don't buy hardcover books, as a rule, because reading them gives me wrist pain that holding my iPad propped up on a pillow seems not to.

Legal reference books and the like are a different story, of course. I'll happily pay $35 for a searchable, annotate-able book when the alternative is to buy a paper book for $60.

Alexandra Sokoloff said...

I'm with you on the wrist pain, Tammy - I lift weights, no problem, but holding up a hardcover book for an evening? HURTS!

Publisher pricing on my e books took a good ten years off my lifespan, I'm sure of it.

Sarra Cannon said...

I have never paid $11.99 for an ebook. That's such a ridiculous price. Actually, I think the only ebook I ever paid over $7.99 for was Stephen King's Under the Dome, which was maybe $9.99. In order to pay 10 bucks or more, it has to be something I've just been dying to read.

Congrats on getting your rights back though. I loved Book of Shadows, but haven't read The Unseen yet, so I'm off to download. $2.99 for a great author is a no-brainer!!

Mark said...

For me the value of the book doesn't change that much from paper to electronic. (There are always exceptions, of course.) I would probably continue to buy the same number of electronic books I really want at or near paper prices. Essentially, the lower prices are making (at least for now) a lot of higher quality books cheaper, which I certainly like as a consumer. However, a lot of lower quality books are now mixed in with them, and quite frankly, I'm more compelled to read the ones I paid more for than the ones I "got on the cheap."

For example, I've really wanted to read one of your fiction books for a while now, and when I purchased one, I would be ready to read it soon. Near the top of the pile. The way it is right now I have three of your books in my electronic library that I got for free, but I don't really have my eye on them to get to right away. That can change on a whim, but that's not usually how a book lands on the pile.

Just FYI -- out of shear appreciation for everything I've learned on your blog, I purchased both your screenwriting tricks books. Those I will likely get to sooner, but price has little to do with it. Thank you. :)

Mark said...

Interesting what you say about reference books, Tammy. I use technical books all the time, and electronic versions are impossible. (Ironic, eh?) I expect most textbooks are the same. I much rather would pay for the paper than the electronic in that case.

Alexandra Sokoloff said...

Sarra, I have paid $11.99 for an e book a couple of times but it was under extreme duress. And it was killing me to have MY books priced that high!

You'll recognize just about EVERYTHING in The Unseen! Have you been to Weymouth?

Alexandra Sokoloff said...

Mark, thanks for buying the books!

On the fiction end, don't you choose the books you read by sampling? I sort my electronic TBR pile by blazing through the first few chapters (or pages) of everything I've downloaded, and I can discard nearly everything.

Price has NOTHING to do with that - it's quality and my level of interest in the story.

Laura Libricz, Authoress said...

I once paid 25$ for an e-book, but it is an obscure historical reference book that I really need and the hardcover was 50$. Thanks for this post. I am standing right at this spot, querying agents and publishers and truly considering self-publishing. Giving up my rights is the most unappetizing aspect of traditioal publishing.

Alexandra Sokoloff said...

Laura, things are changing so quickly that giving up rights for an extended period of time is a hard thing to stomach.

But it's also alarming how many people are self-publishing without going through the excruciating process of real editing. It's clear that way too many people don't realize just how very many drafts it takes to get that even close to right.

Mark said...

Your welcome.

Sampling is only one way I choose my books. Most books I read these days are suggested by acquaintances or referenced in writing books. I started to read Koontz's _Odd_ books, for example, because a relative praised them. Knowing I could count on a minimum quality from K, I bought the first one, then the second, now I'm hooked to the end. I've paid $7.99 apiece, so far.

The current book I'm reading, _Eifelheim_ by Michael Flynn, is exclusively because of word of mouth. With everything said about it, I thought it worth the risk, and it was. No sampling.

To a degree you are right that browsing and sampling is part of the process, but a cheaper book passes to the TBR stack with somewhat less demand for excellence than more expensive ones. So I am more inclined toward reading books that made it over higher rungs. I'm quite confident the first novel I read of yours would have made it over that $7.99 rung. I also would have spent more time selecting _which_ book of yours made the pile first, if I had to pay for it.

Sometimes I refuse to let sampling sway me. I haven't gotten far sampling G.R.R.Martin books, but from everything I've heard, I'm determined to get through one.

I also read a lot of stuff from dead guys. Sampling would have discouraged me from a lot of good reading there, I think.

Anyway, that's a taste of my reading personality and how I roll. I hope it's helpful to you. I *will* get to one of your books sooner or later. :)

Oh! Another example. I purchased and read _The Silence of the Lambs_ (paperback) after reading your discussion of it, and now have read the rest run of the run electronically. Paid a whopping $8.99 for _Red Dragon_.

Your related discussion on imagery systems was great. I'm always thinking about that when I'm developing ideas now. One thing I didn't expect is that it reflects back to you a sense of the depth (or lack thereof) you have thought through the story and character themes.

Richard said...

This is about the fifth time I've missed out on your giveaways because my rss feed lags in updating. I'm subscribing to you email alerts now.

Love your books and your writing style, Alex.

Brianna Soloski said...

My max on an ebook is $2.99. Any more than that, I will either talk myself out of reading it or see if the library has it. If I have a gift card, I am more likely to step off the guilt train and buy a more expensive book, but that's rare.

Don Dennis said...

Yeah. Sure. I occasionally pay that for an eBook. I have limited space and am increasingly less interested in accumulating more stuff. For the most part, I don't like to spend more than $10 though.

I'm more likely pick up a used book than anything else. Typically a lightly used trade paperback (or hardcover if that's the only thing available) for $4 including shipping off Thriftbooks or Alibris.