New Story – Merge, a Sequel to Mean and My Sore Hush-a-Bye

It’s now available on Amazon and Smashwords my new short story (8 thousand words). If you read Mean: A Psychological Thriller Novelette and My Sore Hush-a-Bye and want to know more about Cassandra and Camille’s future, here’s your chance.

** Please note that this short story (around 8K words) is a SEQUEL to Mean: A Psychological Thriller Novelette and My Sore Hush-a-Bye. Do not read it before these books if you don’t want those stories to be spoiled! **

Cassandra Connelly and Camille Marie Jones: two women who suffered unthinkable child abuse. Their lives were forever stained by their ordeals during their childhoods.

The way they reacted to it, however, was completely different.

Five years after the events of Mean: A Psychological Thriller Novelette and My Sore Hush-a-Bye, see what happened to Camille and Cassandra, and how they will react when facing one another.

– Merge is FREE at Smashwords for a limited time, and only 0.99 cents on Amazon. –

MergeCover7

Author, please read this and NEVER EVER publish without professionally editing your book!!

When I first published Mean: A Psychological Thriller Novelette”, I was young and naïve. Okay, it was only four months ago, but when it comes to the publishing world, it’s more than fair to say I was like a child.

I’ve learned more than I could have imagined since June. With the help of several wonderful authors from the amazing Indie Community, I learned about editing, formatting, publishing, marketing, etc. Of course there’s a lot more to learn—learning is a never-ending job, thank God!—but I now know enough to get me started.

When I finished “Mean”, I hurried to publish, because I was too excited about the idea. I thought it was ready. I had asked a friend to look at it—he called himself an editor, so I believed in his powers…—and then went over it again myself. “Perfect,” I thought. Ha! Presumptuous little foul, Renata!! 😀

Well, the truth is, “Mean” was NOT ready. It had typos and grammar glitches. I, however, had no idea. Friends and strangers bought it. Then, I did a KDP Select Free Promo and hundreds of people downloaded it! I was happy and confident.

Then, I saw my first review. On Goodreads.

I remember that day clearly, a Sunday, when my fantasy world crumbled into pieces. Martha Bryce—who is now a dear friend, but who I wasn’t familiar with at the time—reviewed it as an excellent story, but in urge of an editor. Boy, was I devastated…

I opened my book again and saw what she was talking about. I was so embarrassed, I took it off Amazon and wrote to Martha, thanking her honesty and explaining I had taken it off and was hiring a new—serious—editor. She was the most amazing friend, helping me with edits, and re-reading the book once it was—really, this time—done. Then, she rewrote her review, and I finally republished “Mean”. Since then, the good reviews keep piling up, and I’m so absurdly grateful for that.

Martha Bryce became a friend and my beta-reader, and that’s why she was the first one to readMy Sore Hush-a-Byeand deserved so many words of gratitude on the Acknowledgments page.

The point is…I committed a terrible mistake, but life was easy on me about it. It could have been a disaster. I could be finished as a writer right then.

Thank God I had a good story, otherwise I’d still be crying. And “My Sore Hush-a-Bye” would never see the light of day, or would have to be published under a pen name.

I’m telling this story for two reasons.

  • First, to plead…no, to BEG authors: NEVER publish a book that has not been professionally edited!! Never ever!! It can ruin your career, and gives a bad reputation to all self-published writers..

And by ‘professionally’ I don’t mean ‘expensive’. There are good, affordable editors (I can recommend mine, just contact me if you want, okay?) or even ask a friend to help you (better than the one I described here in my tale 😀 Someone good, if you’re lucky enough to know anyone like that). Go to pred-ed.com, an amazing site where you can find good info before hiring someone. But most important of all: LEARN. You’ll never be able to know if your editor is doing a good job if you know squat about grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

  • The second reason is to prevent a future disaster. I understand that most people who download a free book nowadays, with the amount of free possibilities, will maybe not even read it, or will read it months after downloading… So, you see my point, right?

There are hundreds of people out there with a terribly edited version of my novelette on their Kindles. I asked Amazon twice to inform customers about my new, improved edition. I explained the changes in detail, but never heard back from them. Therefore, I decided to do it on my own.

So, if you have a copy of “Mean: A Psychological Thriller Novelette” bought or downloaded for free BEFORE JULY, 23rd, please, please, pretty please contact me before reading it, and I’ll replace your file with the improved edition ASAP. I’ll even send it in any format you prefer (Epub, Mobi, PDF, etc.). And I’ll apologize and thank you endlessly while doing it, be sure.

Summing it up: If you want to be a serious writer, take your time to make your book the best piece possible. Do not ask people to buy your book if it’s not exhaustively edited. Don’t treat your final readers as beta-readers—that’s not what they signed for when buying your book.

 **Be sure that I’ve learned my lesson. “My Sore Hush-a-Bye” is absolutely, completely, professionally edited. I’ve spent countless hours editinghunting mistakes like a bloodhound with rabbits, or a pig with truffles. I, my editor, and my beta-reader went through my novel time and again (and again, and again, and again…) correcting to guarantee that my readers will have the best work I can provide for their money and time. (Thanks in advance to you all, by the way! 🙂 )

My last KDP Select Promo – Time to move on

From September 07 to September 08, my book “Mean: a psychological thriller novelette” was free to download on Amazon. I’m still a little tired after the marathon.

It was my last KDP Select Promo, since I won’t renew  with the program.

When you enroll your book on the program, you cannot sell o send for free your e-book anywhere else than on Amazon. Paperbacks are okay, but digital editions are exclusive. The two advantages you have in return are Amazon Prime lending programme and the 5 days free promo.

I haven’t got many borrows during my 90 days in the program. Well, I believe not many Amazon Prime members would use their only monthly borrow with a 50-page novelette, so that was expected… Maybe it works better for full length novels.

The free days gave me exposure. At least three reviews came from people who download it on free days. However, it’s preventing me from submitting my book to reviewers, (and I sure want to do that), to promote giveaways and simply to sell it wherever I want. So it’s done for me. Time to move on.

My 90 day period ends on September 18th, and I can’t wait. I have dozens of prospect reviewers to send my book to, and plan to publish through Smashwords.

I’d like to thank everyone who helped me during my promo days, spreading the word in any way. Also, a special thank you to all people who downloaded ‘Mean’. I truly hope you enjoyed it.

If at least some of you take the time to leave a review, I’d be more than thankful. Never forget how much you can make an author’s day with a simple review.

‘Mean’ Book of the month on E-thriller, FREE Sep. 07 and Sep. 08

For two days (starting today), Mean: a psychological thriller novelette, is FREE!!

This is your last chance to grab your free copy of my novelette. If you don’t believe me when I say you should do that, please, read what a reader said on goodreads (Thank you very much for your kind words, Martha Bryce!!):

I have already read Mean and believe me, this is a book that you don’t want to miss from an author you will want to follow as she climbs to the top name in the psychological thriller genre.

So, what are you waiting for? Go pick your FREE copy  and see for yourself if Mean is truly a Chilling and Captivating Novelette. (And please, leave your own review on Amazon and/or goodreads– I’ll truly appreciate it!)

Amazon US

Amazon UK

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Ok, you still have doubts… Fair enough. Well, maybe other reviews will help you decide (thank you very much, reviewers!):

4.0 out of 5 stars Kept me turning pages…, September 2, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)

finished this well written short read in one sitting. Ms. Barcelos gives the reader insight into a multi-layered character who has ample reason to be mean. Looking forward to the intriguingly titled, “My Sore Hush-a-bye”.

5.0 out of 5 stars Mean Thrills!, August 5, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: MEAN: A psychological thriller novelette (Kindle Edition)

Mean is a great little novelette. A young woman starts to see a psychologist because she is worried that her meanness is going to drive her to commit murder, a murder that she hopes the psychologist can guide her to avoid committing. The murder that the young woman feels compelled to commit, however is not random but specific to a person who she feels is responsible for having ruined her life. As the story unfolds, more details of the young woman’s horrific past are revealed, building to a carefully constructed crescendo of calculated madness. This is a compelling, well written read and a true psychological thriller!

4.0 out of 5 stars Dark Psychological Thriller, July 27, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: MEAN: A psychological thriller novelette (Kindle Edition)

MEAN by Renata F. Barcelos is an enjoyable dark psychological thriller novelette told from the point of view of an angry female patient who is seeing a psychiatrist and planning to kill somebody. The reader is left guessing as to who the intended victim is until the last few pages. I must admit it surprised me. Very good and quick read at only 50 pages, but there are a few editing issues with the work that need correcting. I have since been advised that a revised version is posted and the errors have been fixed. Still I enjoyed it overall.

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dark but interesting, July 21, 2012
By
C Liset (Miami, FL USA) – See all my reviews
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: MEAN: A psychological thriller novelette (Kindle Edition)

This novelette kept my mind constantly shifting trying to figure out who she wanted to kill. Without spoiling it, I’ll tell you that is something new for me. The way that she addresses you as if she were talking to you… I enjoyed it.

e-thriller review (also on goodreads):

A Chilling and Captivating Novelette – Review by Charlotte Waller
Despite being a novelette, Mean by Renata F. Barcelos is captivating from the very first sentence. It starts off with the reader being let into the chilling mind of Cassandra Connelly, hinting at the deep but downright scary thoughts to come.
The unique style of writing makes this thriller even more exciting, as Cassandra could well be talking to the reader themselves. We soon find out that the whole story is her side of the conversation with her therapist and because the reader is seeing the whole thing through Cassandra’s eyes, it makes it even more chilling, especially as she has the urge to kill someone.
This mystery person who has angered Cassandra is only revealed at the end, keeping the reader literally on the edge of their seat. There are hints here and there as to who this person is, and you might not be as surprised at the end when all is revealed.

Lizzy Lessard (check her blog, great reviews there!) review:

I actually read two different versions of this ebook and I can definitely see the improvements in the latest update.  This is an odd book in that it’s written in first person and directed to the reader – only the reader is playing the part of Cassandra’s shrink.  Cassandra rants about her life and the person she wants to kill to her shrink.  It’s amazing how rich her background and personality is without boring the reader.  And the ending is nice…very dark.

Edit – Brand new review on goodreads:

That was so unexpected.I never expected it would turn out the way it did.This book just goes to show you how upbringing and environment can affect how children turn up.I could so relate to what Cassandra was going through,even if I haven’t gone through what she did.But we all have some feelings within us that makes us so dark sometimes.All part of life.I loved this short novel,Amazing.

Authors: is your book going to be Free this Friday and/or Saturday? Let’s cross-promote!

As you may know (since I can’t stop bragging about it :D) my book Mean, a psychological thriller novelette is Book of the Month on e-thriller.com, with other two amazing books.

To celebrate I decided to use my two last promo days this week. It may be the last chance to grab your free copy, since I won’t renew with KDP Select program.

Mean is going to be free to download on Amazon from September 07 (Friday) to September 08 (Saturday).  Mark it on your calendar:

To help spread the word, I’d love to cross promote with you, fellow author, who’s going to offer your book free on the same day. Since my book is a thriller, I thought of  other thriller books to promote together, but other genres can apply.

So, if you want to join me on it, use the contact form bellow, and let’s work together!

PS – Dear readers, please remember to ‘like’ the books you download for free, and maybe leave a review if you have the time… It makes an author’s day!!

‘Mean’ featured as Book of the month on E-thriller!

 

I’m thrilled to announce (okay, pun intended!) that Mean, a psychological thriller novelette, was chosen as Book of the Month on E-thriller. Thank you Charlotte Waller, the reviewer, and all E-thriller crowd!

I’m in great company there, as you may check: www.e-thriller.com. If you’re looking for a good thriller to read, that’s the place to go.

Read the great review my novelette received:

 A Chilling and Captivating Novelette – Review by Charlotte Waller
Despite being a novelette, Mean by Renata F. Barcelos is captivating from the very first sentence. It starts off with the reader being let into the chilling mind of Cassandra Connelly, hinting at the deep but downright scary thoughts to come.
The unique style of writing makes this thriller even more exciting, as Cassandra could well be talking to the reader themselves. We soon find out that the whole story is her side of the conversation with her therapist and because the reader is seeing the whole thing through Cassandra’s eyes, it makes it even more chilling, especially as she has the urge to kill someone.
This mystery person who has angered Cassandra is only revealed at the end, keeping the reader literally on the edge of their seat. There are hints here and there as to who this person is, and you might not be as surprised at the end when all is revealed.

So, what are you waiting for? Go pick your copy and see for yourself if Mean is truly a Chilling and Captivating Novelette. (And please, leave your own review on Amazon and/or goodreads– I’ll truly appreciate it!)

 

Amazon reviews (thank you very much, reviewers!):
4.0 out of 5 stars Kept me turning pages…, September 2, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)

finished this well written short read in one sitting. Ms. Barcelos gives the reader insight into a multi-layered character who has ample reason to be mean. Looking forward to the intriguingly titled, “My Sore Hush-a-bye”.

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mean Thrills!, August 5, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: MEAN: A psychological thriller novelette (Kindle Edition)

Mean is a great little novelette. A young woman starts to see a psychologist because she is worried that her meanness is going to drive her to commit murder, a murder that she hopes the psychologist can guide her to avoid committing. The murder that the young woman feels compelled to commit, however is not random but specific to a person who she feels is responsible for having ruined her life. As the story unfolds, more details of the young woman’s horrific past are revealed, building to a carefully constructed crescendo of calculated madness. This is a compelling, well written read and a true psychological thriller!

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dark Psychological Thriller, July 27, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: MEAN: A psychological thriller novelette (Kindle Edition)

MEAN by Renata F. Barcelos is an enjoyable dark psychological thriller novelette told from the point of view of an angry female patient who is seeing a psychiatrist and planning to kill somebody. The reader is left guessing as to who the intended victim is until the last few pages. I must admit it surprised me. Very good and quick read at only 50 pages, but there are a few editing issues with the work that need correcting. I have since been advised that a revised version is posted and the errors have been fixed. Still I enjoyed it overall.

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dark but interesting, July 21, 2012
By
C Liset (Miami, FL USA) – See all my reviews
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: MEAN: A psychological thriller novelette (Kindle Edition)

This novelette kept my mind constantly shifting trying to figure out who she wanted to kill. Without spoiling it, I’ll tell you that is something new for me. The way that she addresses you as if she were talking to you… I enjoyed it.