Free Book Friday March 10: Freeders vs. Readers

A few months ago, I wrote about the marketing approach that many authors use to get readers to give their book(s) a chance:

Free books, as opposed to discounted books, always get more downloads, although I have heard that many of those free books go unread or are forgotten.

An indie author’s mailing list is usually generated by readers signing up to get a free offering, either a short excerpt or a first in series from that author. Because there are many indie authors doing this, there is no shortage of free books out there.

Many readers will sign up to the mailing list, get the freebie, then unsubscribewhich is their right, while others remain, waiting for the next free offering. On average, 50% of newsletters are opened, and 10-20% of those readers interact by clicking on links, participating in surveys, or expressing interest in the authors new projects.

I enjoy getting emails and feedback from my subscribers because I know that I am continuing to provide entertainment on a weekly basis.

I recently changed my free book offering from a five story sample to the full collection, The Knot at the End of the Rope and Other Short Stories, to give readers more value and hopefully, more incentive to purchase one of my other books at full price.

Obviously, if a reader doesn’t like my stories or writing, they won’t, and that’s OK, I don’t expect them to. So, here is a sample of my writing style, the story that inspired the title of the collection and provided countless hours of trying to find the perfect cover graphic:

The Knot at the End of the Rope

I had a dog once. His favorite toy was a rope. He would bring it to me, but he didn’t want me to throw it. Just try to take it from me, he seemed to taunt. I tried but never could get it away from him. His jaws would clamp down onto the knot at the end of the rope, not relinquishing their grip, so that I ended up spinning him around by the rope until his feet left the ground. I feel like that dog right now.

   My instinct, when the hatch blew, was to grab the first thing I could. Unfortunately, the tether I am currently hanging on to was attached to said hatch. I’m accelerating toward the planet’s surface, and I can’t let go. Well, it’s more that my brain won’t let me. If I let go, I have zero chance of survival, but if I hang on, I’ll have less than that. I wonder if that’s how my dog felt. I bet he didn’t feel himself getting warmer.

   I miss him.

Oh, that’s it, incase you are wondering. It’s my shortest short story at a whopping 175 words. Now if that was my free offering, you’d probably be disappointed.

Here are my enticements for you. Are you a reader or a freeder?

Sign up for my weekly newsletter and receive a free book!

Oh, pick me!
C’mon, space stuff!

The story behind Free Book Friday:

I’ve met many authors and readers during my time marketing, cross-promoting, and blogging. I think writers have a responsibility to inform readers about all the indie authors out there in the very crowded world of book publishing. You can’t do it alone, and why would you when you have a supportive group available?

Readers don’t just read one author – they stick with their favorite genres. There lies the power in cross-promotion. If one of my readers buys a book from an author I promote, then chances are there will be a reciprocal effect, or so is the hope. Do I want to boost sales? Of course I do. Do I want to boost other’s sales? Why not. It’s called karma.

Some free book offers require a newsletter sign-up, which is a small non-monetary price to pay to try out a new indie author.

Here are this week’s promos to check out:

Featured Authors

JF Garrard is an award winning speculative fiction writer, editor and publisher. She is the President of Dark Helix Press, serves as the Co-President for the Canadian Authors Association’s Toronto Branch, Festival Coordinator for LiterASIAN Toronto, Deputy Editor for Ricepaper Magazine, and Assistant Editor for Amazing Stories. Her portfolio of books and short fiction is listed on and you can find her on Twitter @jfgarrard.

Get Designing Fate for free:

Check out Out of Time on Amazon:

I am a technologist and a science fiction author.

My professional career provides me with a unique perspective on the technologies of the future. I am working at the forefront of the 4th Industrial Revolution, advancing 3D Printing, Artificial Intelligence, Digital Supply Chain, and Energy Transition. You can read my fiction and connect with me at my website

Join me in my quest to imagine the future world!

Tired of finding sub-par books? Theses titles are all rated 4 and 5 stars!

Starts March 1

Previous promos: Discover New Authors and Free Books.

Leon Stevens is a multi-genre author, composer, guitarist, songwriter, and an artist, with a Bachelor of Music and Education. He published his first book of poetry, Lines by Leon: Poems, Prose, and Pictures in January 2020, followed by a book of original classical guitar compositions, Journeys, and a short story collection of science fiction/post-apocalyptic tales called The Knot at the End of the Rope and Other Short Stories. His newest publications are the novella trilogy, The View from Here, which is a continuation of one of his short stories, and a new collection of poetry titled, A Wonder of Words.


Published by Leon Stevens

I am an author, composer, and an artist. I published my first book of poetry: Lines by Leon – Poems, Prose, and Pictures in January 2020 and a book of original classical guitar compositions. My latest book is a short story compilation of science fiction/post-apocalyptic tales called, The Knot at the End of the Rope and Other Short Stories.

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