Award Winning Author

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Karen Dales is the Award Winning Author of "The Chosen Chronicles" which include "Changeling: Prelude to the Chosen Chronicles," "Angel of Death: Book One of the Chosen Chronicles," and "Shadow of Death: Book Two of the Chosen Chronicles." She is currently at work on "Thanatos: Book Three of the Chosen Chronicles" and a Historical Romance set in Edo Japan.
Karen loves receiving emails from fans. If you'd like to email her:

Sunday, March 29, 2009

We're getting closer to the shooting dates for the three commercials for the book. If you are interested and live in Toronto please email

Also, as time seems to be progressing nicely with an updated laptop, I'll be getting the copy edit version done of the book back to the publishers really soon. I can't wait to see a galley!

So far, as for a release date for the book, we're looking at the end of May. An exact date has not been set yet, but it's getting close. It had better be 'cause I'm doing the Toronto Small Press Book Fair on June 13th!

As to what else is going on...this week I'm sending off my application to have a table at the Fan Expo at the end of August. I am so excited about that one! Please cross your fingers for me that I get the promised table.:)

I'll also be at Kaleidoscope Gathering this year too. I believe Helmut is going to put up a writers tent for us authors, which is really sweet of him.

I'm also looking at other venues to participate in.

I haven't heard back from Word On The Street in Kitchener yet so I'll be calling them next week as well. More crossed fingers please.:)

Please feel free to let everyone know about this fan page by inviting your friends.

I have also set up a Facebook Group too. Feel free to join it and tell all your friends about it.

Karen Dales
"Angel of Death: Book One of the Chosen"
Release - Summer 2009

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Third God by Ricardo Pinto

I have to state that one of my favourite authors and a friend of mine has the third book of his trilogy coming out now.
"The Third God" the final installment of "Stone Dance of the Chameleon" looks like it's going to be even better than the first two books, "The Chosen" and "The Standing Dead." If anyone is truly interested in reading a unique and extraordinary trilogy one really needs to pick up Ricardo's books.

I'm waiting very impatiently for my copy of "The Third God."

Check out his website

Karen Dales
"Angel of Death: Book One of the Chosen"
Release - Summer 2009

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

This week, even tho it's only half over, has been a crazy ride that I know will only get better.

It all started on Sunday evening when three friends of mine came over for dinner and a discussion. It was a good discussion. They volunteered their amazing abilities to help me promote my soon to be released novel
'Angel of Death: Book One of the Chosen'

That night my marketing/publicity team laid out an amazing plan of action that left my head swimming and my energy levels bouncing. They were talking about things that took me a while to understand the true scope of what they are about to do. Thus, I ended up having a sleepless night.

I went to work bouncing around doing my job. That evening we went out to our monthly get together/networking group where Sunday night's energy was still with me. Two of my marketing team were there and were ready for my eventual crash (which came at about 10:30pm and insisted I self medicate with caffeine to make sure I drove home in one piece. They are great folks!

Then on Tuesday night was another meeting! My marketing team leader (who is a freaking genius!) met with my husband and I for another dinner and discussion. This time for the video aspects of promotions. My husband is a videographer/music producer/graphics god. They came up with some incredible ideas.

This afternoon, my hubby is putting out a casting call while my team leader lays out story boards! We're all meeting again this Saturday and I'm really stoked!

When I asked what I'm supposed to do, I was told by my team leader to "continue writing and networking". If this keeps up I may be forced to get a blackberry (much to the overjoyment of my computer/viral marketing/publicity dude.:)

Gods, I've been blessed with great friends!

After the first run is all sold out, I'm taking them all out for dinner to celebrate!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Self Publishing vs Traditional Publishing

First of all I want to state that I was going to post this as a response to ruthannnordin's post Self-publishing: What can you realistically expect for your money? I was going to write a response in her profile but thought to post in my profile since it's probably going to be a bit on the longish side.

When someone publishes, regardless of whether or not they do it with a mirco/small/large publishing house or self publishes, the success of the book is very much dependent upon the author's ability to get out there and do what is necessary to market and publicize their novel.

In large houses, they do some publicity and marketing in the hopes that what little they do will stimulate sales enough to clear out their initial print run of 5000 (for debut authors without a proven track record..which is most of us) within six weeks of launch. After six weeks whatever is left is either remaindered, sold to discount book stores, held in warehouses or just destroyed. After 6 weeks, the large houses will usually not continue their campaign unless success is evident within the first 6 weeks because they have other authors to try and see if they can hit the jackpot with them.

Most of these authors will never sell their first run and then the book will be remaindered. If one is lucky, it'll be put on the publisher's POD for possible individual sales later on. Oh...and that advance the author gets...that should go to marketing and publicity.

As for expecting similar marketing/publicity from a mirco/small publishing house is not realistic. They usually do not have the budget to do a proper marketing campaign or publicity run. Again, the advance they give you (if any) should go to getting your own marketing agent and/or publicist.

Most authors don't make it big until their 3rd or 4th novel (usually in a series). Very few, unless they are literary authors, will get large advances. The only exception to this is when Steven Erikson sold his 10 novel series...he got the largest advance in British history...L500,000.

Why do agents and publishers want to see a marketing plan from an author? Very simply, if the author isn't willing to go the distance, they won't put in their money. There can be clauses within the publishing contract that the author has to put up a certain percentage or amount of money and the publisher will match or offer a percentage for marketing and publicity. I've seen a couple of those.

Just because one is published by publishing house it does not guarantee you'll see your book on a bookshelf in a bookstore. Bookstore space is extremely limited. There are many authors who have been published with publishing houses where you'll never see their books on shelves.
And the publishing rights...gone to that publisher. Getting books into independent bookstores is usually the way to go in your city/local, but this means, regardless of how your book is published, the author has to go in and talk to the manger/purchaser.

Now, for self publishing, ruthannnordin posts some interesting links about POD, BUT it's not about the costs of the printing, but rather the costs of having them publicize/market your novel. An author, no matter where, will have to pay out of pocket for a publicist and marketing agent UNLESS they have friends who specialize in this. Oh...and the author should have a computer/internet genius on there payroll or as a friend, to set up viral marketing. So regardless of whether one self-publishes or goes the traditional route, the author still has to pay for these services.

If one wants to self publish and is looking at PODs like Lulu or iUniverse (Gods...stay away from Author House that set themselves up as a trad publishing house but are not) then one has to look at these places as only printers, just like if you go to any other printers.

No matter what, in either case, the author must view their novel and the need to sell it as a self-employed business. If not, then the book will fail to sell.

As for self published individuals getting on the NYTimes bestsellers list...well...the NYTimes list and others are generally manipulated by the author/publisher depending on how much money is put into it. In other words, these lists are complete fabrications and have no bearing on whether it's a good book but rather how many books were sold within a short period of time. Yes...these lists are completely manipulated.

No matter the case, whether one is self publishing, publishing with a micro/small/large publisher one needs to market/publicize one's books. Oh..and a good book for that.. 1001 Ways to Market Your Books by John Kremer.

Oh...and today I have a meeting with my viral marketing genius and my marketing/publicity genius...both of them are friends. In exchange for their services, for him: getting him into the Cons I'm going to do:) as for her, shaitsu massages from me.:) The barter system is still alive and kicking!

Karen Dales
"Angel of Death: Book One of the Chosen"
Release - Summer 2009

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

My First Book Fair

I've done it!

I've managed to get a table at
The Toronto Small Press Book Fair So on Saturday, June 13th at the Toronto Resource Library, I'll be getting my first taste of getting up close and personal with the public in trying to let them know about 'Angel of Death: Book One of the Chosen' I'm hoping to sell a few books and see what happens. It's going to be a great and wonderful test for me as I'm going to get a table at the FanExpo here in Toronto in August, which is Canada's LARGEST multi-media event.

To help let folks know about it too, I've set up a
Facebook events page for it.

My brain is reeling. I don't even have my first run ready to be printed off and yet I'm getting all these events booked! I'm stoked, and nervous, and excited, etc.:)

So, there I'll be at the Toronto Small Press Book Fair, at table #47, with my books, posters, bookmarks and biz cards. It's time for me to step out into the limelight.

As to what else I'll be doing? I'll let you know as soon as I've met with my friend who has experience and expertise in marketing and publicity. Dinner in trade of her squishy brain...I think I'm on the good end of the stick.:)

Karen Dales
"Angel of Death: Book One of the Chosen"
Release - Summer 2009

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I'm crossing my fingers that finally, FINALLY, my writers block is broken and I can get down to work on writing the next novel in the series.

Man, it's been hard. It's been a long time since I went through that. Thankfully this time it didn't last as long. That would have completely messed me up. At least this time I was able to use my pent up energies in trying to write with promotions and marketing for the current novel. Unfortunately such work did not get rid of the knot in my gut telling me to write and the anxiety of not being able to.

I think what finally broke the block is that I sat down with my husband to talk about the problem. He's always been a great help and support. What we figured out is that I was still emotionally unready to release the first book out into the world - I didn't want to let go and because of that I couldn't move forward. The talk made a lot of sense for me and I let it work over my subconscious when I went to sleep that night. I think it worked! I remember waking that morning with the key to make the scene I was writing make sense. It literally came to me in a dream. After that I meditated upon the whole idea and how it would work. This morning, after I dropped my son at school (I have Tuesday's off from my full time job), I went home to an empty house (hubby was at a photo shoot downtown) and I wrote for almost two hours before having to pick my son up from JK.

It felt so good. I'm excited to write tonight after the Bug hits the hay I'll be able to sit down and write some more. Just being excited to write is a relief! I love painting moving pictures with words.:) Wish me luck!