Smashwords is having a blow out July sale and after some of the lackluster novels I managed to come across, I was more than able to find a few gems. Did I mention all the gems I found were free? These gems include A Blade Away by Jack Wallen, Caught by the Tide by Lily Evans, and Trouble Down South and Other Stories by Katrina Parker Williams. Some of these novels were originally quite expensive, even for indies. I managed to score them all for free because the authors above were involved in Smashwords blowout bonanza which lasts this whole month.
Now, as you know, I already decided to give away The Proposal: Book One earlier this week. The deal was supposed to end on the 20th but I have decided to include it in Smashwords site wide sale so it has been extended until the end of the month. The Hook Up: Book Two, is also free during this month-long sale. Heartbreaks & Lust Aches: Book Three and Red Carpet Dreams: Book Four have been discounted 50% so they are $1.00 and $1.50 respectively.
I didn't realize how important Smashwords was as a platform to us indie writers until I read articles on this blog by David Gaughran, a brilliant Irish author who manages to bide his time in Sweden for the moment (link to his website is here: http://davidgaughran.wordpress.com). He explores some of the more shadier practices the amazing e-book retailer Amazon does to suck the money out of people not in their "choice" countries. If you do not live in the United States, Germany, the UK, Ireland, Australia, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, or Canada then you will be getting a hefty Whispernet surcharge of $2 to download an eBook from Amazon (on top of VAT; the author does not collect this money so you'd have to be an idiot not to realize who is benefiting). Barnes & Noble doesn't deal with customers outside of the United States. This is where Smashwords comes in to fill a mighty big void: not only do they distribute to other eBook retailers like Sony, B&N and iTunes, they allow international buyers (regardless where you live, whether that be France or South Africa) to download from their website in any eBook format and you pay no excess charges, just for the eBook itself (if it isn't free).
This is the reason why I decided to participate in Smashwords July extravaganza sale. More international customers should know they are being cheated by exclusively shopping through Amazon (and yes, Smashwords does have mobi format amongst their eBook offerings so you don't have to exclusively buy from Amazon just because you own a Kindle).
I know this won't reach the amount of readers it should, which is why I have a secret weapon on Twitter and will have him retweet this post to his many, many followers. I hope Smashwords does well and finally gets the name recognition it deserves... not just from us writers but from readers as well.