Today is a big day for me! It is a make-or-break kind of day, to be exact, because today I am giving Jason Dark a second lease on life.
When I first started my Jason Dark series of supernatural mysteries six years ago I had no idea where the adventure would take me. Ebooks were a technological aspiration that had not yet fully emerged, let away broken into the mainstream, and I simply wanted to spread my wings into true fiction writing, after having spent decades writing for computer games.
Consequently I wrote seven adventures featuring the inimitable ghost hunter Jason Dark and his sidekicks Siu Lin and Herbert, along with a serialized short story that was published in Fangoria magazine. Those who read the stories enjoyed them. some loved them—or so they said, and yet, the series never took off and I was forced to abandon it after finishing and publishing “Fu Man Chu’s Vampire” more than three years ago. It was a hard decision for me to walk away from the series. I had fallen in love with the characters and the setting of the series in Victorian England. Writing these stories was a dream come true on so many levels, but I simply could not afford spending any more time writing, publishing and promoting books that did not sell enough to make a living.
And so, the books languished for a long time, until earlier this year, I felt the urge to give it another try. The market had changed so much in those years. Ebooks are now fully established in the market, self-publishing was the only viable way for authors to get their work out, having practically replaced traditional publishing industry altogether, which had imploded by its own hand, helping its own demise along with an abandon of intelligence I have never seen before in any industry. But I digress…
It all started when I re-read “Fu Man Chu’s Vampire,” the last book in my series. I have the habit of taking notes constantly when I read—regardless of whose book it is—and I found that I had a lot of notes on this particular book. Notes where I felt the wording was weak, where more information would have been à propos, where the flow wasn’t as well-rounded as it could have been, and so on. It was then that I decided to give the book a good do-over and perhaps try to bring to full novel length. And so I got to work—and when I was done the book was 45k words long and deserved a new title—Hunted.
With that done, and the knowledge that new title would require a completely new launch of the book, it was almost a foregone conclusion to relaunch the entire series along with it. So I talked to Lieu Pham who has been creating hundreds of covers for clients and her Covertopia.com website. Together we went through every book in the series and she created a stunning new cover for each one.
At this time I also decided to make the first book in the series, “Demon’s Night” permanently free as a hook, to get readers to try out the series and hopefully continue from there. Although each of the Jason Dark adventures is a stand-along book that does not require any knowledge of the previous books, I understand that mean reader simply want to get into a series with the first book.
For me, the problem was that “Demon’s Night” was the first book I ever wrote—six years ago—so I wasn’t sure if the book would live up to expectations. While one could argue that a free book is a free book, my intention is to use it to introduce new readers to the series, and to hook them, and if that book is weak, clearly, the plan will not work.
I daresay that I have grown as a writer since and when I began re-reading the book to check on the quality of the writing, I very quickly realized that it, too, would require a bit of extra work, so I made some changes. Not to the same extent as I did with “Hunted” but I did clean out some sections and added more information, while also looking for grammar and, most importantly, wording issues.
The last step was reformatting all eleven eBooks in the series to update their look, making it more contemporary and more what you’d expect from current eBook technology. You may recall that I discussed the subject in a previous post called “The new look of Jason Dark.”
Which brings us to today’s launch. The new website is live, all the books have been updated in online stores, making sure readers can now grab fully updated copies with their beautiful new layout. And, of course, the crème de la crème, “Hunted” is now available for everyone to read!
The book is currently available at a $0.99 introductory price to help give the book a strong start. The first weeks of a book are the most critical because they determine how online stores like Amazon will treat the book, whether it is something worthy of recommending to their millions of readers or whether its fate will be more along the lines of “also ran.”
Help me bring “Hunted” to the forefront of readers’ minds, would you? It’s a 99 cent investment, less than a cup of coffee or a candy bar, and it will keep you entertained—I promise. Better yet, it will lure you back to the fog-shrouded streets of Victorian London and throw you in the middle of an action-packed mystery.
New York Time-bestselling writer Joe Nassise even compared my character Jason Dark to the likes of Carl Kolchak—don’t be afraid to show your age—and Fox Mulder. I felt incredibly humbled when I read his endorsement. I mean, we are talking about Mulder here… THE Fox Mulder!
So, if you’ve gotten curious, do yourself a favor. Buy the book—once again, it is only 99 cents currently, an investment I am certain you can afford—and help my Jason Dark series back on its feet. There are so many cool stories in the series, and so many more in my head that I have yet to write.
So, let’s get this show on the road. Let’s put Jason Dark and Siu Lin on the map for all fans of supernatural mysteries to find, and your purchase of the book will go a long way towards that goal.
Enough with the procrastinating, already… click on one of these links and get your copy of “Hunted” right now! If you don’t like the book, throw it in my face, and I’ll give you your money back. How’s that for a deal?