Super-Secret Plan for World Domination

Yup. It's about that time, ladies and gents.

NOCTURNE is about to hit the shelves of the Borders and Waldenbooks stores in your area. I've pegged the street date at about Aug. 18.

That means two things: a) I need your help, and b) PARTY!

Let's deal with (A) first. The fact is, NOCTURNE is just one trade paperback from a press that few people recognize right off the bat. Also, nobody's ever heard of me.

So I need your help if NOCTURNE is to be a success. And why should you care, you might ask? After all, you already bought NOCTURNAL URGES and A MORE PERFECT UNION.

Do you want to know what happens next?

Last night I finished the draft of third book. INFERNII. It's a doozy, folks. I made myself cry. I never cry. I got through TERMS OF ENDEARMENT without a sniffle. It's the book that takes this series out of paranormal horror-romance and into straight horror. I personally think it's gonna be a hell of a ride.

If you want to see INFERNII in stores, NOCTURNE has to be a success. Otherwise, the series will end and I will be very sad.

So. How can you help make NOCTURNE a success? Here enters the Super-Secret Plan for World - er, Bookstore - Domination!

(Which isn't so secret. Since I'm posting it everywhere.)

a) Request the book. Now. Ask your local bookstore when they're getting that new Elizabeth Donald book, NOCTURNE, from Cerridwen Press. You know, the author of SETTING SUNS? It's really good, Mr. Bookseller, I hope you'll be carrying it.

Muahahaha. First salvo fired. They'll go look it up in their computers, and their computers will show a sharp increase in people looking for the book. It can't hurt to do a search for it on those self-service Borders computers, either, so you're not always driving the bookstore clerk nuts.

When you find NOCTURNE in a bookstore, ask if they also have SETTING SUNS by the same author. (They won't.) It tells them there's interest in my work, and they might recommend it or even god-forbid order copies for their store.

b) Buy the book. Duh. But please, unless you absolutely have to have free shipping, don't buy it at Buy it at your local Borders or Waldenbooks. Borders will order about twice as many books as they think they can sell - it's the nature of the book business. Any books they return get taken out of my paychecks, which ain't so great to begin with. Therefore, it is in my personal best interest for Borders stores to sell through as many as possible.

If you simply cannot stand Borders and Waldenbooks, go to your local independent bookstore. It is likely that they won't have it - Borders has a special deal with EC-CP, but it isn't exclusive. They can order the book through Baker & Taylor Distribution under ISBN #1419954040.

Or you can order it through me. I will have a (very) limited number I will be selling personally. While this means tidy profit for me, I only get X number I can sell, and once they're gone, that's it. I'm stuck paying the same price as the rest of you. So try Borders first.

c) Promote the book. Tell everybody who ever liked vampires, horror, mysteries, humor, Memphis or sex. I will happily provide banners to anyone who wants to put it on their web site or journal or anywhere else. (That goes for Setting Suns, too.) Talk about it on message boards and chat rooms. Tell your friends.

d) Put the book on your wish list. That helps Amazon know people are interested in it, and it improves my chances of being one of those recommendations they like to do so much. You can also tell Amazon you want to be notified whenever I have a new book coming out. Like you could miss the announcement! But again, it puts me on Amazon's computer radar. Exploit the system!

While we're talking about Amazon, please go to the Amazon page for NOCTURNE (linked below) and say what you think about it. Many of you did this for SETTING SUNS, and it really, really helps. No kidding.

Unless, of course, you hate the book. In which case, as the Great God Whedon says, this is a time for quiet reflection.

Wait, didn't I just say not to buy it on Amazon? Of course. But there are people who cruise Amazon just browsing for something to fill out their $25 minimum purchase for free shipping, and I want those people. Even if it means I only get a buck from them.

(And yes, I know Amazon currently has the wrong title and no cover image. I've begged and pleaded, and the winged monkeys are allegedly on their way to solve the problem.)

e) They're going to shelve NOCTURNE in romance. This is NOT where it belongs. There's less sex in NOCTURNE than the latest Anita Blakes, which are shelved in horror. It should be in mystery-thriller or horror. But romance is where you'll find it. Ask anyway, so the booksellers know there's interest - and hey, they might actually have bucked the system and put it in horror where it belongs!

I was going to ask you to grab a copy and move it to horror. But I've been informed by bookstore people that this really hacks them off and backfires, leading to lousy placement for the author's books in the future. So we'll leave out this part of the Super-Secret Plan, because bookstore workers are our friends.

When you find it, it'll be spine-out among a hundred other books. Turn it face-out. Statistics show people are much more likely to buy books that are faced-out. Don't mangle the whole display doing it, because bookstore people are nice people and don't want to spend half their day picking up for you. But face it out, so people can see it and go, "Hmm..." If you see it on an end-cap display, take a picture with your cell phone and send it to me! Okay, that's geeky and obsessive. Therefore I'm kidding.

g) Consider buying a Nocturnal Urges T-shirt. No, they're not available yet, but you'll know as soon as they are. The proceeds from the T-shirt sales support my appearances at conventions, and the shirts themselves let people know this series exists. Also, they're funny.

h) NOCTURNE makes a great Christmas gift! So does SETTING SUNS, for that matter!

I want to add something very important: This plan is not just for me. Consider the works of other authors, the people who are still scratching out a living on the midlist. Think about Kit Tunstall, Frank Fradella, Jeff Strand, Jay Smith, Barri Bumgarner, Sarah Monette, Sara Harvey, Angelia Sparrow, Alicia Sparks, Bryan Smith. Just to name a few. This works for all of them. Don't complain that bookstores only have the ninety-seven Forgotten Realms books interspersed with Pocket's eternal Star Trek series - go out and find the books that Borders forgot, and employ the Super-Secret Plan.

Oh, and there was another thing, right? PARTY!

WHAT: Nocturne Release Party!
WHEN: 8-10 p.m. CST (or until we get bored) Aug. 17
WHERE: Wilderness Chat Room (directions below)
WHY: Prizes, snark, trivia questions and virtual blood punch!

We always have a good time at the chat parties, and I know this one will be no exception.

I am exceptionally proud of this book, folks. Those of you who've been around since the beginning know what trials the Nocturnal Urges series has been through, and what it took to reach this point. I truly believe the loves and woes of the folks at that pesky club near Beale Street will mean something to those who read them. I've enjoyed playing with them, and look forward to making their lives literally hell for as long as you folks want to keep reading them.

And as always, thank you guys for sticking with me all this time. You're the ones who really make it happen, and I am always grateful for my wonderful readers. Without you, I'm just talking to myself.


Stay awake.
Memphis isn't safe anymore.
NOCTURNE, by Elizabeth Donald


  1. Just did a Borders on-line availabily search for NashVegas...your books shows as availalbe in two of the three locally and the other lists it as on order.


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