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It's that time of year again when authors remind the reading world what they've published in that year. In the SFF world, it started as part of the annual awards season--reminding potential nominators of works they may have forgotten they enjoyed. But it's also a self-affirmation. A way of saying, "Yes, I've been productive this year. Look what I've accomplished."

Well, ok. Look what I've accomplished.

"Hyddwen" by Heather Rose Jones, published by Podcastle.org in September 2017

It's a regular feature of my life as an author to feel like I have to justify and excuse the fact that I pay attention to what the world is saying about my books. You see, authors aren't supposed to pay attention to reviews--whether to what they say or simply to their existence. Authors aren't supposed to mention that what readers do to help spread the word about a book is important, because that puts undue pressure on readers. But it does matter and we do care.

It may seem premature to think about the results of some of my recent activity, but the fact is that there have already been significant results—and most of them are all in my head.

But Heather (you say), you don't write horror! You don't write supernatural fiction! What do you mean you want to feature Halloween content today?

I'm officially signing people up for my new monthly newsletter. You can sign up here. (You may notice that the sign-up form is hosted on my other website. I'm still working on integrating it with the code on this one. It won't matter for the sign-up process.)

My brain is about to explode with the learning curve for both Hootsuite (for scheduling routine promotional postings on social media) and Mailchimp (for my new monthly author newsletter). The eventual goal will be to have a widget for subscribing to the newsletter embedded in the website structure itself, but for now, I'm testing out the html code for embedding it on a page. So go ahead and sign up if you want to -- it'll help me test how it works.

Having listened to the promotional strategy advice of a wide variety of people, I'm planning to accomplish two things this weekend. One will be to set up Hootsuite (or some equivalent social media manager, but that's the one people seem to prefer) to handle automated promotional reminders that I rarely have the emotional energy to do manually. The other will be to set up an opt-in (of course!) newsletter for fans and readers to provide both a direct way to communicate announcements and other information, and to provide special content in exchange for access to attention.

Bella Books is holding one of its periodic surprise sales. This time the theme is relatively recent ebooks, so if you haven't gotten around to buying Mother of Souls yet (yes, I'm secretly tapping my foot impatiently) it's only $5.99 through this weekend. Plenty of other bargains as well!

How delightful to wake up this morning to find the release announcement for "Hyddwen" in my Twitter mentions! This is the second story in a series inspired by my love for medieval Welsh literature (and the gnawing feeling that what medieval Welsh literature needed was more lesbians). I love love love what Pip Hoskins, the narrator, has done with this one!

I've done the random drawing for the bonus book for Storybundle buyers. The lucky winners are: Louvelune, Kareina, LG, Andrea, and Abigail. I'll be contacting you by e-mail to confirm book and format for fulfillment. Thanks to everyone who partcipated, and to all the Storybundle buyers in general!

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