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Translate your books for free with Babelcube #AuthorToolboxBlogHop


Have you ever wondered how much it would cost to have your books translated into other languages?  My books are available from Amazon in thirteen countries - but only to the English speaking readership, so I began looking into the costs of translation. My research led me to the Babelcube website  and the partnership model had an immediate appeal to me, as I've had great results with s similar approach for audiobook production with ACX. Babelcube provides an easy way for publishers and independent book authors to partner with translators and distributes their books in up to fifteen languages globally. Translators are paid via a share of royalties, so the only cost is little time choosing and ...
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Book Launch: This is Not a Book About Charles Darwin, by Emma Darwin


New on Amazon UK and Amazon US Everybody knows about Charles Darwin, and many know about others in his family, from Erasmus Darwin and Tom Wedgwood, the first photographer, to composer Ralph Vaughan Williams and poet and radical John Cornford, the first Briton to be killed in the Spanish Civil War.  But when Charles and Emma Darwin's great-great-granddaughter, another Emma Darwin, tried to root her new novel in that history, the conflict between her complex heritage, and her own identity as a writer, became a battle that nearly killed her.  This is Not a Book About Charles Darwin takes the reader on a writer's journey through the Darwin-Wedgwood-Galton clan, as seen through the lens of Emma'...
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Book Launch Interview with Kaya Quinsey, Author of Love, Amour, Amore: A collection of three love stories from around the world


Three distinct, completely charming love stories set in beautiful places that, after reading, you will want to visit. Wonderful characters. No helpless maidens here! Quinsey's heroines are energetic women in pursuit of their own dreams whilst they  pursue love, or it pursues them! New on  Amazon UK ,  Amazon US and  Amazon Canada I'm pleased to welcome Canadian author Kaya Quinsey to The Writing Desk: Tell us about your latest book? Thank you for welcoming me to your blog, Tony. My latest book, Love, Amour, Amore: A Collection of Three Loves Stories From Around The World, is just that - a collection of three of my romance novellas. The three stories all offer something a little different - a...
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Guest Interview with Liri Bahar, Author of The Birth of the Ringmaster (The Circus Book 1)


Available on Amazon UK and Amazon US For eighteen year old Cassandra, The Golden Circus is everything. It's where she was born, it's where she grew, it's where she belongs. I'm pleased to welcome author  Liri Bahar to The Writing Desk: Tell us about your latest book My book is called "The Birth of the Ringmaster". It tells the story of Cassandra and her father, who had performed at The Golden Circus for years. When she turns eighteen years old, they are losing their job and force to find a new place to call their own. Cassandra's father had enough of the show business, but unlike him she refuses to fit into her new environment.  When a new circus comes to town she sees it as her chance and r...
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How to Create Large Print Editions of Your Books With Vellum


I've been using Vellum to format my books for eBooks and print editions for several years now and am happy with the ease of use and excellent results.  In particular, it is easy to make updates to your text and produce new editions with one click. The latest version, Vellum 2.5 includes support for production of Large Print editions, which can help you reach the wide readership who may not be able to read a typical paperback. You can use the latest version of Vellum to create a Large Print edition in just a few steps. Open Print Settings from Vellum’s File menu. Press More Options to find presets for large printFind large print presets by pressing More OptionsWhen you select one of the Large...
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End of an era - the demise of Google+


In case you didn't know, Google+ is closing personal accounts on April 2, 2019. Any Google+ pages, including images and videos will also be deleted. If you are a Google+ user, this is therefore a good time to download and save your content.  I was an early adopter of Google+ and have used it as part of my author platform since it started as an ‘invitation only’ network in 2011.  Since then Google+ matured into a lively and often thought provoking community.  As well as being a great place to easily cross post from my blog, I would often have useful feedback on ideas. I must admit I haven't made much use of it for the past twelve months, but I would to thank the Google+ team and wish them wel...
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The Silence of Kings: Book One - The End of The Beginning, by Samuel Perin


New on Amazon US and Amazon UK A young man named Leo Gryffl rediscovers an old family heirloom that goes on to change his world forever. The heirloom that he discovers sends him down a dark, whimsical, and sinister rabbit hole that leads him on a path of adventure, self-discovery, and insanity.  On his journey he meets a cast of colorful and unique characters that all have a story to tell or a past to run away from. As the story progresses Leo goes on to find out that their world is not what it seems, and that someone (or something) is somehow influencing political events in almost every country that exists. Things take a dark turn when entire governments begin to collapse all around our “he...
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Book Review: The Tudor Cookbook: From Gilded Peacock to Calves' Feet Pie Paperback, by Terry Breverton


Available for pre-order from Amazon US  and Amazon UK Terry Breverton has clearly enjoyed bringing together over two hundred and fifty recipes from surviving records of the Tudor period.  He suggests this is a splendid starting point for the adventurous cook - although some are a little alarming by modern standards, such as the secret of how to make a pie from which live birds emerge to delight the diners. (The origin of the nursery rhyme, four and twenty blackbirds.) This little book is packed with fascinating details of authentic Tudor food. I was intrigued to learn how wide-ranging and exotic many of the ingredients were, showing the extent of medieval global trade.  There is a useful lis...
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Book Launch Guest Post: Inspiration For Writing We Shall See the Sky Sparkling, by Susana Aikin


New on Amazon UK and Amazon US Set in London and Russia at the turn of the century, Susana Aikin’s debut introduces a vibrant young woman determined to defy convention and shape an extraordinary future. Like other well-bred young women in Edwardian England, Lily Throop is expected to think of little beyond marriage and motherhood. Passionate about the stage, Lily has very different ambitions. To her father’s dismay, she secures an apprenticeship at London’s famous Imperial Theatre. Soon, her talent and beauty bring coveted roles and devoted admirers. Yet to most of society, the line between actress and harlot is whisper-thin. With her reputation threatened by her mentor’s vicious betrayal, L...
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Stories of the Tudors Podcast: Catherine of Aragon


When Henry VIII married Catherine, she was an auburn-haired beauty in her twenties with a passion she had inherited from her parents, Isabella of Castile and Ferdinand of Aragon, the joint-rulers of Spain. This daughter of conquistadors showed the same steel and King Henry was to learn, to his cost, that he had not met a tougher opponent on or off the battlefield when he tried to divorce her. You can listen to all the stories of the Tudors podcasts here: https://tonyriches.podbean.com/ Original link
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Anne of Brittany? Raised to rule, she knew how to lead: Guest Post by Rozsa Gaston, Author of Sense of Touch


Available on  Amazon UK  and  Amazon US “A romance and an interesting novel about a little-known French queen. It is a story with a strong sense of place and well-drawn characters, a story of heartache and forbidden love, of women in the 15th century French court, who fought with passion and determination for what they wanted. A striking story.” —Historical Novel Society A 2017 RONE Book Award finalist for medieval historical romance A 2018 TopShelf Indie Book Awards finalist for women's issues About six years ago I picked up Mildred Allen Butler’s 1967 book on Anne of Brittany, mainly because I was struck by the image of Anne as a young girl on the cover. I liked how sure of herself she loo...
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Book Launch: Blood & Sugar by Laura Shepherd-Robinson


New on Amazon UK and Amazon US Blood & Sugar is the thrilling debut historical crime novel from Laura Shepherd-Robinson. June, 1781. An unidentified body hangs upon a hook at Deptford Dock – horribly tortured and branded with a slaver’s mark. Some days later, Captain Harry Corsham – a war hero embarking upon a promising parliamentary career – is visited by the sister of an old friend. Her brother, passionate abolitionist Tad Archer, had been about to expose a secret that he believed could cause irreparable damage to the British slaving industry. He’d said people were trying to kill him, and now he is missing . . . To discover what happened to Tad, Harry is forced to pick up the threads of hi...
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New Book Spotlight: The Tragic Daughters of Charles I, by Sarah-Beth Watkins


Available for pre-order from Amazon UK and Amazon US Mary, Elizabeth and Henrietta Anne, the daughters of King Charles I and his queen, Henrietta Maria, would be brought up against the background of the English Civil War. Mary would marry William, Prince of Orange, and be sent to live in the Netherlands.  Elizabeth would remain in England under Parliamentary control. Henrietta Anne would escape to France and be the darling of the French Court. Yet none of the Stuart princesses would live to reach thirty. The Tragic Daughters of Charles I is their story. Chronos Books presents the latest in a series of historical royal biographies by Sarah-Beth Watkins, author of Lady Katherine Knollys: The U...
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How to produce an audiobook with Amazon ACX #AuthorToolboxBlogHop


I’m always interested in finding innovative ways to reach new readers, although I imagined the costs of producing an audiobook would be a stretch. I was encouraged to learn that Amazon’s ACX (Audiobook Creation Exchange) offers a ‘profit sharing’ deal, where authors can sign up to a 50:50 royalty split with the narrator. I considered making a one off payment but liked the idea of entering into a partnership with the narrator, who has an equal stake in the success of the finished work. ACX is part of Audible.Com and a subsidiary of Amazon. As the author, you decide how your audiobook is produced, who narrates it, and select your distribution channels. To enter into a royalty share deal, you n...
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The Hidden Lives of Tudor Women: A Social History, by Elizabeth Norton


Available on Amazon UK and Amazon US The Tudor period conjures up images of queens and noblewomen in elaborate court dress; of palace intrigue and dramatic politics. But if you were a woman, it was also a time when death during childbirth was rife; when marriage was usually a legal contract, not a matter for love, and the education you could hope to receive was minimal at best. Yet the Tudor century was also dominated by powerful and dynamic women in a way that no era had been before. Historian Elizabeth Norton explores the life cycle of the Tudor woman, from childhood to old age, through the diverging examples of women such as Elizabeth Tudor, Henry VIII's sister; Cecily Burbage, Elizabeth'...
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Plantagenet Queens & Consorts Family, Duty and Power, by Dr Steven J. Corvi


New on Amazon UK What unacknowledged theme can be found across 250 years of English history? What thread runs throughout the Plantagenet Royal House, including as it does the ‘cadet’ houses of Lancaster and York, to the beginning of the Modern Period in 1485? It is the influence on events of the royal women; in particular, the queens. Without children, there is no dynasty, no ‘house’.  Plantagenet Queens and Consorts examines the lives and influence of ten figures, comparing their different approaches to the maintenance of political power in what is always described as a man’s world. On the contrary, there is strong evidence to suggest that these women had more political impact than those wh...
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Guest Post by P. K. Adams, Author of The Column of Burning Spices: A Novel of Germany's First Female Physician (Hildegard of Bingen Book 2)


Available for pre-order  from Amazon UK and Amazon US The Column of Burning Spices is the second part of a series based on the life of Hildegard of Bingen, a 12th century German composer, mystic, writer, and physician. As I wrote on this blog last summer when the first part, The Greenest Branch , was released, I first learned about Hildegard in a music history class at university. I became fascinated by this famous medieval woman who was not a royal. How did she manage to achieve such prominence without the prerequisites of high birth? And how did she navigate the societal strictures that prevented women from accessing education, living independent lives, and having a public voice? The Green...
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Book Launch Interview with Kaya Quinsey, Author of Valentine in Venice


New on Amazon UK , Amazon US and Amazon Canada Valentine wants to prove to herself that she's no longer the impulsive, daring girl who got married (and quickly divorced) in Vegas to a man she barely knew. Now, she is living by a new set of rules: planned, cautious, and carefully executed. But her plan is challenged when she falls (literally) into the path of her first love, Lorenzo. And with Valentine's Day around the corner, will Valentine be able to keep herself from making another big mistake? I'm pleased to welcome Canadian author kaya Quinsey to The Writing Desk: Tell us about your latest book? Thank you for welcoming me to your blog, Tony. My latest book, Valentine in Venice, is a swee...
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Historical Fiction Spotlight & Giveaway: Fortress of the Sun: An Epic Novel of the Battle of Corinth, by E.M. Thomas


New on Amazon UK and Amazon US It’s 243 B.C. and Greece is ready for a revolution. Eighty years have passed since the death of Alexander the Great, the man who first cowed free Hellas into submission. His successors to the Macedonian throne have only tightened their grip in the interim, the present king no exception. Spartan rebellions, opportunistic usurpers, foreign invaders – for nearly five decades, King Antigonus has seen them all and crushed them all. He now stands alone astride Greece;  he fears no one. Aratus of Sicyon plans to change that. With a passion for freedom and hatred for the King that stem from the same childhood tragedy, he takes aim at Macedon when no one else would dare...
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Guest Post by Steven A. McKay: Researching The Druid and the 'Dark Ages.'


Northern Britain, AD430 A land in turmoil. A village ablaze. A king’s daughter abducted. In the aftermath of a surprise attack Dun Buic lies in smoking ruins and many innocent villagers are dead. As the survivors try to make sense of the night’s events the giant warrior-druid, Bellicus, is tasked with hunting down the raiders and thwarting their dark purpose.  Available on Amazon UK and Amazon US As an author of historical fiction it is absolutely vital that you have a good idea of the period you are writing about. What did they wear? What did they eat, drink, do for fun? And, in the case of my latest book, The Druid, what was their religion like?  My first series was a retelling of the Robi...
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