One of the worst things in my opinion that can happen is to write an entire story, and then no one buys because said story has three issues, and these issues kill the story on arrival.
There are three things that will kill a story on arrival in online bookstores. Here they are, and here is what you can do the correct these issues so you will have a bestselling story.
1. You wrote in too much back-story. Readers do not want to read pages and pages, or even one page for that matter that is nothing but back-story about the main character’s past. In fact, this will cause readers never to buy another story from you. So, how do you fix this issue in your current story? First things first, don’t get hung up on going back and changing past stories, leave them alone where they are, readers are looking for new material from you and they want it yesterday! Fix the story you’re working on now and stories going forward. So, what you need to do is go through your story and be ruthless in cutting out any sections that are just back-story fluff. Once you’ve done that, find ways to include the information in dialogue, or if you must show it in a flashback, but keep it short and sweet and use this technique sparingly.
2. In the very first scene, nothing happens, or you try to get your readers excited about something boring like shopping, or going to church, or brushing the main character’s teeth. Please, I’m begging you! Kill these types of first scenes now, today! Your readers are going to get mad at you if you write these kinds of first scenes, and expect them to get all excited. They’re going to ask Amazon for a refund, and or they’ll never buy another of your books, and they’ll also possibly write a review that is less than flattering. If there is not an explosion in the church, if there is not a gunman in the store who takes the main character hostage, if that toothpaste isn’t booby trapped with a deadly poison, do not, I repeat do not have these activities in your first scene. Instead, delete and rewrite your first scene so there is action, action, action, your readers will thank you.
3. You didn’t ask yourself the four most important questions an author can ask. From now on, ask yourself these four questions about each scene you write. Read each scene as though you were the reader and not the author. Is what happens in the scene exciting information to know? Does said information make you want to keep reading? Does what you wrote make sense within the context of your story? Is what you wrote fun to read, and entertaining? It’s easy for us as writers to think, “Oh, that’s good writing!” We get so caught up in playing with words that we don’t realize that we’ve just written a scene about the main character buying oranges at the grocery store. Oh, we’ve got lots of showing rather than telling going on, but it’s showing about the character buying oranges, something our readers aren’t going to care about. Unless those oranges are going to explode, dance the mamba or are full of poison that as soon as the main character touches them, they have a deadly reaction, you need to kill this scene, and rewrite it. Ask yourself the four questions above for each scene and rewrite as necessary.
Writing a story that is “correct” with regards to grammar, punctuation, and showing rather than telling is easy. However, if you have any of the issues mentioned above, you aren’t going to sell many books. If you apply the solutions mentioned, your book sales will go up!
Just like mine will when I’ll release Not In The GameVirtus Saga +, Deleted Scenes from my bookseller The Game, Book 2 Virtus Saga. And even if this new addition will be a FREEBIE (yeah, you read right!), I’ll measure its bestselling worth from the number of readers’ downloads. So just to get your mouth watering, here’s the first taste of Not In The GameVirtus Saga + (Deleted Scenes from The Game, Virtus Saga Book 2), beginning with the opening scene.
You’re really enjoying this, aren’t you?
“By the gods, lover!” Chris blurted out, short of breath and of suitable expressions.
Could Prince Duncan Caldwell have been fiercer?
No, no way!
Impossible to describe the level of refined ruthlessness he had reached while denying Chris the very pleasure he had worked so hard to achieve.
Could Chris have loved it more?
No, no way!
Impossible to describe how thoroughly he had relished Duncan pushing him beyond any feasible limit, blowing his mind along with all the rest of his body in the process.
“That was…” The most awesome ass-fuck of my entire life! And why don’t you do it again right here, right now? “Goddamn fantastic!” It did not render the magnificent sensations that still tightened his muscles, but it would have to do. “And totally unexpected.”
Which had been the best part of all.
“Just getting in the role.” Duncan grinned, a splendid affair that brightened his handsome features.
And caused Chris a near heart failure.
“Yeah, and making my ass so big no one’s going to want it now.” Half teasing, he stole a peek at his gorgeous prince from under his eyelashes. “That is…if I now managed to convince you…”
“You can’t buy me that easily.” Was he joking or being serious?
And since Chris had the impression it was the latter, why was Duncan bent on giving him such a hard time?
Like he wanted Chris to sweat it out until the very last moment.
“I’ll decide in the chamber.” Cradling Chris’s head against his chest, Duncan raked a hand through his hair.
“Not fair!” Flying off every one of his horses, Chris scrambled to his knees. “Not after I’ve worked my ass off to earn this.”
“Just means you’ll have to work it a little harder.” Prince Caldwell laughed.
“You’re really enjoying this, aren’t you?” Challenging, Chris threw back his shoulders as though getting ready for a fight.
“Immensely.” So Duncan tackled him down, pressing his full weight on him. “Why?” Reaching his ear, he whispered huskily, “Aren’t you?”
Yeah, oh, fuck, yeah, but why does a mere whiff of his hot breath make me lose it like a first time phaser?
There seemed to be no way around it.
All tense at first, Chris had gone melting all over the place the second his lover’s lips had brushed against his ear. And the dark cloud of fury hanging over him had evaporated instantly.
“Yeah, I guess so.” Just why Prince Duncan Caldwell would know how to push all his buttons was something still beyond Chris.
And all that stuff about the energy business had nothing to do with it, because Duncan had known how to do it from the first moment he had laid eyes on Chris.
“Must be this Game of Cecilia’s.” To regain a measure of composure, he straightened. “It’s something I’ve wanted to do with you ever since she started it.” He pushed out a heavy breath of air. “Only we never had the right slave for it.”
“Then let’s toast to the one person who has made it all possible.” Letting go of him, Duncan fetched the bottle and two glasses from the dining table. After filling both, he handed one to Chris. “To the princess.” He raised his glass.
“Yes, to your slutty princess.” Chuckling, Chris clicked his own to Duncan’s.
“And to the best way we could devise to turn her into a real slut.” Smacking his lips, the prince drank down the first generous sip. “Which will be all to our advantage.”
“So that’s the real reason you asked her to do it!” Well, he had always believed his lover to be one-step ahead of everybody else he knew, Arthur included and never like in this case was he proving it.
“Of course.” Duncan beamed. “I was thinking only of us. Or did you think I really gave a damn about Cecilia’s Game?”
“Could’ve fooled me.” His arguments had seemed so sensible Chris had taken them at face value. “And her,” he added maliciously. “But I bet she’s too hot right now to care either way.”
For he had no doubt the heat and pressure had gotten to her already.
“She’s literally boiling.” Duncan chortled. “Which means we shouldn’t leave her in that chamber for too long.” After drinking down the last of the amber liquid and getting to his feet, Prince Caldwell picked up the blue robe lying crumpled on the floor and wore it. “Or in Cecilia’s company.”
Would serve her right!
That Cecilia did not seem to have taken a liking to Ylianor was kind of an understatement. That she just might hate her guts was what Chris expected out of a woman he had never been able to stand.
“If you put it that way, I could almost feel sorry for her.” Not really. Still, he played along with his prince’s need to protect the damn witch, though the gods only knew why.
And if they did, they better not tell him!
“Cecilia’s company could get on anybody’s nerves.” At least, this was no lie. “Especially if she doesn’t like them much.”
“You think she hates the princess, don’t you?” From the expression crossing the attentive black eyes, it was obvious Prince Caldwell thought so, too.
“I don’t just think it.” Bending on his knees, Chris uncovered the leather pants he was supposed to wear from a tangle on the floor. “I could bet on it.” Clutching the pants, he rose. “Even if David is a master of discretion, Cecilia must’ve caught on to what happened between him and Ylianor.”
“You mean the sex?” Kind of evident this still grated on Duncan’s nerves, and just seeing it so plain in his face irked Chris like it had the first time the prince had admitted it in the Hall. “Or also that bit about the pledge—”
“I mean everything.” Because there could be no doubt that Ylianor meant more to David than just a heated fuck. “Which is what got Cecilia so jealous she would’ve given you just about anything you had asked for simply to satisfy her curiosity about your slave.”
“Jealous of David, eh?” The way he said it, Chris had the distinct impression Duncan had already thought about it.
“I’m not sure David is her real target.” Because the facts were not adding up. “In case you haven’t gotten it already, the reason Cecilia invited you to all editions of her dam Game, even when you weren’t even old enough is that she thinks you’re the perfect master. And guess who she thinks your perfect slave would be?”
“No, she couldn’t possibly…” The black eyes widened in disbelief. “Not her.” And shock.
Which was totally understandable, since it would make no sense for someone like Cecilia to play slave in a game of her own creation, would it?
Yet, there it was.
“Yes, her.” This was the only explanation that made sense to Chris. “That’s why, when she saw your slave, she must’ve pieced together the little David had told her and drawn the only logical conclusion.”
Since Duncan seemed about ready to leave, he wore the black leather pants, which was an effort in itself. Just getting them to slide up his legs required several tugs and contortions. For they were so tight fitting they stuck to him like a second skin. But when he glanced at himself on a large mirror hanging on the wall, what he saw rewarded him of all the strain.
Perfect! They were just perfect! They clung to him so closely he might as well have been naked. And best of all, they shaped his cock like he was carrying a veritable beast between his legs.
“Now I’m ready to go.” Dressed like this, he would get all the cocks he wanted if it was the last thing he did in his life.
“At least Cecilia knows how to dress her guests.” The nice thing was having Duncan staring at it as though he wanted to rip them off and start all their sex over again. “‘Cause I just love your outfit, Angel.” Possessive palm pressing on what belonged to him, he stroked it forcefully until the engorged blood veins creased the fabric to the point of explosion. “So much that I might just decide to play with you rather than the princess.”
Sure, whom was he kidding?
The mere idea of playing his own game inside Cecilia’s Game excited him so much that no amount of sex with Chris could deflect him from it. And that Ylianor was the only person he could play it with seemed too much of a self-evident truth for Chris to question it.
Which did not mean he was fine with it. Quite the contrary!
“And if I don’t stop this right now, we’ll never get to that chamber.” With a regretful grin, Prince Caldwell’s hands dropped to a side.
“Works for me.” His reasoning and logic flying out the window, Chris’s paws attacked his lover’s engrossed crotch.
Who needed her anyway? And who cared about other cocks when he had the best of them all to himself?
“Not a chance.” Blocking him, Duncan forced him to let go. “If you want me, you’ll just have to wait until I finish playing.”
“‘Cause you’re planning on giving it all to her, right?” Just thinking it made him so mad he hoped she would choke on it.
“No, ‘cause I’m planning to have you both sweat for it.” The prince suppressed a chortle. “Now come on.” After slapping his butt, he strode to the door. “Let’s get going.”