Americana: available now on Kindle and Print w/ Vinyl Record Book Cover

  
Available now! Americana (Romance/Thriller) by Rob Watts

Available on Kindle and Limited Special Edition Print with Playable Vinyl Record Book Cover (Limited to 50 Copies.)

Synopsis: Dennis, a fifty four year old down on his luck, short-order cook encounters a stunning young female who immediately adds excitement to his mundane daily life. With a toughened exterior, yet lonely heart, he’s willing to look past her promiscuous lifestyle for the sake of maintaining a relationship with her, but their growing romance opens up old wounds for Dennis. While his new girlfriend appears too good to be true, he eventually discovers that she has ominous intentions. 

  
Limited Edition Print Edition is beautifully produced in leatherette binding, with a playable vinyl record book cover, featuring the song “Americana Theme” performed by Rob Watts. Limited to 50 Print Copies, signed and numbered. Available here! 

 

   

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Intro to Alien Invasion: Book Signing & Review

  
Review and photos by Rob Watts. Follow @RobWattsOnline

Intro to Alien Invasion by Owen King, Mark Jude Poirier and Nancy Ahn.

Stretching their wings as a collaborative team, novelist Owen King, novelist/screenwriter Mark Jude Poirier and illustrator Nancy Ahn bound together to create Intro to Alien Invasion, available now via Scribner. The graphic novel is a humorous tale of college campus life at the fictional Fenton College in which college student and overachiever Stacey experiences a communication collapse on her campus just as an alien invasion is happening. With her friends in tow, they must battle to survive the unannounced visit of the aliens. 

The story is entertaining and well-executed, while the graphic design is beautifully crafted, easily interpreted and well-paced. As far as graphic novels go, this one is perfect for gift giving, bathroom reading or just general escapism at various points of your day. 
I was fortunate enough to attend a local book signing in which all three collaborators were present. Author’s Owen King and Mark Jude Poirier read humorous manifestos recalling their own fictitious (I assume) recollection of the initial pitch to produce this novel. Illustrator Nancy Ahn provided the actual storyboard stills used in the novel for viewing to anyone in attendance. The three were all very informative, entertaining and charming. The project appears to have been a great deal of fun for the collaborative. I wish them luck with it.
 

Illustrator Nancy Ahn, author Mark Jude Poirier and author Own King

 
  
More information on the book and purchasing detail can be found at Owen King’s Website

Indie Authors: It’s Your Way or the Highway! 

 

You’re Crazy!!

 
  
Indie Authors: It’s Your Way or the Highway!
By Rob Watts. Follow @RobWattsOnline
Undoubtably, you—my indie author friends, have scowled the internet over such time in search of the magical words of wisdom from the self-appointed experts on the “proper” ways to publish and market your books. You’ve no doubt stumbled upon countless blogs that tell you YOU HAVE to be on such and such social media site. YOU HAVE to publish exclusively on Kindle. YOU HAVE to have your books available digitally accross every eBook distribution platform. YOU HAVE to design your book cover this way or that way. YOU HAVE to market yourself on Twitter between the hours of 8:43am- 11:27am. YOU HAVE to offer giveaways and special promotions, all before sundown on a certain date—and on and on and on! 
Look, there is a lot of great advice out there from authors who have dug through the trenches and fought the good fight in the publishing industry. I’m currently digging and fighting alongside the rest of you out there. The one thing I’ve learned along the way is that advice obtained from “experts” should be taken with a healthy dose of discretion. They don’t always have your best interest at heart, but rather your attention—especially at the end of their blog posts which direct you to the “this program is a $750.00 value but available today for just $250.00” link at the bottom of the page. 
My point here is to be cautious. There are many bloggers out there looking to take advantage of hopeful authors in search of professional publishing, agents, Bestseller lists, and so on. Beware of the click bait. I don’t begrudge anyone making money, but there is a fine line between legitimate author services and charlatanism. 
Bottom line? You yourself know what’s working and what’s not. If your marketing on social media has grown stale on Facebook, try getting aquatinted with Twitter or GoodReads. If you only want to market and make available your book to Kindle exclusively, go for it. Many indie authors have found great success by doing this. If you want to branch out and use other ebook distribution platforms, by all means, try them out—as many as you can. Kindle is perfect for genre fiction and freebies, but iBooks is popular with fans of books with illustrations, graphs, and other useful reference material. EBSCO is a new service that makes your material available to libraries. FlipKart distributes to ereaders in India. It’s worth researching the marketplace. Your particular book might have an untapped audience elsewhere in the world—places where Kindle simply isn’t reaching. 
Don’t be a facsimile of someone else. Take the reigns of your writing career and be an individual who stands out. Pave your own way and do things that ultimately work for YOU…not what someone else claims will work for you. You’ll save a lot of money, time and ultimately, your sanity by carving out your own niche and comfort zone in the world of independent publishing. Good Luck!! 

The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove: F.A.Q.

 

The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove

 
Follow Rob Watts on Twitter @RobWattsOnline

So it’s been a little over two months since my novel The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove was released and reader response has been very favorable and encouraging. When positive feedback is received, it makes what sometimes seemed like a draining and tedious process, well-worth the time and effort. Especially in light of the fact that I have other commitments besides writing a novel. 
As of late, I’ve been asked by many people to discuss and bring to light some details about the book’s history, the story ideas, the inspiration behind the soundtrack and the unconventional method of release. I will attempt to answer as informatively and efficiently as possible without droning on ad nauseum.  
Q: How long did it take to complete the novel? 
A: If you factor in the time it took me write each of the short stories within the story—the full conceptual story front to back, then I could say almost five years. I had started writing volume one in the story (Huldufolk) back in 2010 and from there I’d worked on CRABAPPLES in 2012 and Left-Hand Path in late 2013. The time it spent to piece the stories together and write the bridge material and additional chapters, then the answer is roughly eight months. It took almost the same amount of time to record the book’s soundtrack. 
Q: How did the concept of including a soundtrack to the books come about? 
A: It’s another piece of the storytelling and I feel it give the story a little more depth and contrast. Plus, there aren’t many authors doing what I do—adding a listening element to their story. I like going the extra mile and giving the reader a unique experience for the money they’re spending. 
Q: What happened to Huldufolk? Why wasn’t that story included in The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove? 
A: Simply put, it no longer worked within the context of the novel. I love Huldufolk and it’s one of my favorite stories, but as much as I tried to make it work within the novel, at the end of the day it had to be eliminated. It was an early decision and I believe it was the correct one. As much as I wanted to make it work, I quickly realized that a young couple coming home from a haunted honeymoon in Iceland wasn’t going to flow well with the accompanying story lines. A writer needs the ability to self-edit and self-govern his or her writing, and this was a case where I did just that. Instead of completely eliminating the story entirely, I re-wrote the characters and settings to accommodate the rest of the content within the novel. 
Q: Did you end the story with the intention of writing a sequel? 
A: I can certainly see how one could draw that conclusion, but right now it’s the furthest thing from my mind. There are characters in the book that I am very fond of and have some passing thoughts as to where I could take them in the future, but that will be further down the line. If and when, they wouldn’t be direct sequels—the type that pick up right where the action from the previous book left off. If I revisit a storyline from the Crooked Roads, it will most likely be a standalone story with some relation to the aforementioned novel. There are other projects I’m working on in the meantime which will begin to materialize shortly after the new year. 
Q: Will you be releasing The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove in paperback edition? 
A: Yes, sometime in 2016 when we’ve exhausted the hardcover sales. However, like most of my work, it will most likely be a limited number run.
Q: Who is your cover artist for The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove? 
A: Nicolene Lorette Design. One of the best in the business and easy to work with. 
Q: Are vinyl copies of The Gathering from the book’s soundtrack still available? 
A: The vinyl record of The Gathering was offered for those who’d pre-ordered the book back in June. With that said, copies are dwindling and for now, are only available at my table signings at the remaining signing dates I have scheduled. They are highly limited edition as each vinyl album was hand crafted—not mass produced, and once they are gone, they are gone forever. 
Q: Where did you draw inspiration from when writing The Crooked Roads? Where were you getting your ideas?
A: I drew inspiration from the fact that there are a lot of evil spirited people around us and the fact that a lot of people are idiots. One needs not to look much further than the local news every evening to realize that we are living amongst monsters in our neighborhoods. They hide in plain sight and blend into society quite nicely. That is horror in its purest form—in my mind at least. Vampires, zombies, whathaveyou—those are great characters for escapism. But what about the person who stands before you and poses as a friend, a confidant, a respectable police officer, et cetera—but turns out to be someone of the opposite? Those are the type of people I wrote about, and although my story is a bit sensationalized, I think it captures the true essence of today’s deteriorating society. 
Q: What is the genre of the book? What’s an appropriate age group for the story?
A: it weighs heavily in the genre of Suspense and Thriller. There are elements of Mystery as well. Age 17 and up is the popular consensus, but I’m not the parent so it would be better left to a parent’s discression. 

Purchase your copy of The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove directly at Ocean View Press. Download on Amazon Kindle.

  

Out of their Shadows by Ranjana Kamo (Book Review)

  

Out of their Shadows by Ranjana Kamo

Review by Rob Watts

A wonderfully told story about faith, love, commitment and success. Two of the protagonists, particularly Nita and Sagar, are very well developed and are easily identifiable for the reader. The challenges that they face within the story are very relatable issues that anyone can attest to at one point or another in their life. Without giving anything away, Nita is on a journey towards success, but not the type of success one might automatically assume. Her personal journey towards her goal is one of dedication and drive, despite the pitfalls that lie ahead. Sagar has romantic feelings for someone (I won’t say who) and must gather up the courage to share his true feelings. He could be denied the happiness he’s in search of if he doesn’t. The story as a whole is very inspiring. It forces the reader to take stock in the gifts we’ve been given in life, as well as appreciating the tools afforded to us in life to go after what we really want. As cleverly implemented in the story, it’s patience, dedication, faith and loyalty that truly get us to the achievements we seek in life. Ranjana Kamo has a wonderfully unique way of getting this across to the reader in a very entertaining and subtle fashion.

Purchase Out of their Shadows at Amazon.com

The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove by Rob Watts: Now Available! 

  

The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove, the new Mystery / Thriller by Rob Watts is now available at a discounted price of $19.99 and FREE shipping until June 30th. This special edition hardcover includes a 20 song soundtrack performed by Watts specifically for the novel. All orders between now and June 30th will receive a free limited edition 5″ clear vinyl album of “The Gathering” from the soundtrack (while supplies last.) All books come signed and will ship June 2nd. 

The novel will be available digitally June 2nd.

Purchase your copy at Ocean View Press or RobWattsOnline.com

Upcoming Release: The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove by Rob Watts

  

April 22, 2015

So fingers crossed, it looks as though the snow is finally in the rear view for all of us here in the northeast. While stranded in my ice castle during the last several months, I’ve managed to put the finishing touches on my forthcoming novel and its accompanying soundtrack album. I’m pleased to announce that The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove will be released this June as a special edition hardcover book & CD. The official date will be announced in May, along with a cover reveal. 

The Crooked Roads through Cedar Grove is a new novel based on the previous three-volume novella series released between 2011-2014. Those books, as some of you know, were limited to 250 physical copies and (with the exception of Left-Hand Path) have since sold out. There is a limited amount of Left-Hand Path Hardcover/CD copies available here. Huldufolk and CRABAPPLES from the series are still available in digital form, but are set to be deleted from the Ocean View Press catalog upon the release of Crooked Roads. 

Pre-orders for the book will begin soon. All copies will be signed and will include a 20 song soundtrack CD performed and composed by yours truly. You’ll also have a chance to buy copies in person before the official release date, as there will be a select amount of signing appearances scheduled prior to release. Dates and locations will be announced soon. That’s it for now. Until next post! Stay safe—Rob