What a way to end the A to Z Challenge, by talking about money! And yet selling books is part of the equation. Readers are always on the hunt for new titles–and authors–to love. They are! Don’t lose heart, writing friend.
This is the age of the story. I mean, look around. People are addicted to Netflix and Hulu, binge-watching an entire series in one weekend. Even using their phones, which I think is crazy. How can they see? Then again, these are twenty and thirty-somethings with young eyes.
Get in on this craze, because readers do the same with books. Feed them! Keep that idea factory running.
Nothing sells older titles like a new book, right? And eBooks? Those are instant-gratification mind candy! One click, and… let the reading begin!
People do judge a book by its cover. A book purchase is impulsive, driven by curiosity and emotion. I think the cover designer for Darcy By Any Other Name nailed the intrigue of the body-swap. The publisher’s designer for my Mercy’s Embrace series? Not so much.
Speaking of Darcy, choosing which passage to share each day has presented a quandary. I cannot betray what happens at the end, or in the middle, or, well…anything! So let’s finish the A to Z Challenge with a no-spoilers smile. From Chapter 30, here is Collins-as-Darcy in all his bumbling glory. Dear me, with Collins at the helm, the handsome “Mr. Darcy” is fast losing ground.
The evening wore on. It was Miss Bingley’s stated intent to accustom him to fashionable hours, such as he would find in London. What brutes Londoners were! Supper had been abominably late—even Mr. Bingley had complained—and then they must play cards and converse and listen as Miss Bingley played the pianoforte until the small hours.
But Collins’ tedious evening was brightened by the contents of Netherfield’s wine cellar, in particular a decanter of beautifully-aged cognac. Such a lovely, golden amber it was, served in special glasses to warm it. Bingley sipped his. Collins, who had never before tasted brandy, tried to follow suit but could not. It was simply too delicious. Mellowed and warmed, he found himself humming a tune as he refilled his glass.
Not that he’d had the funds in those pinched university days for as much as a pint of beer. But from the mists of memory an old drinking song bubbled up.
“With women and wine I defy ev’ry care,” Collins sang. “For life without these is a bubble of air.”
He drained the glass, marveling at the delicate flavor of the brandy. He stole a glance at Miss Bingley. She was looking both surprised and disgusted. Wonderful! Smiling, he continued humming. “A bubble of air.”
Charles Bingley began to laugh. “Upon my word, Darcy,” he said.
Again Collins reached for the decanter. Wasn’t it odd that a song he’d never sung came so easily to his lips? This time Charles Bingley sang with him.
“Each helping the other in pleasure I roll,
And a new flow of spirits enlivens my soul—”
“Really, Charles,” said Caroline Bingley, “you shouldn’t encourage him. We have enough to put up with in Mr. Hurst.” And she tugged on the bell pull.
Collins shared a grin with Charles Bingley.
Sometime later Holdsworth appeared, as neat as a pin, wearing his usual wooden expression. Apparently the man’s intention was to escort him to his bedchamber.
“Good night, Miss Bingley,” Collins called, as he was led from the drawing room. He was soon grateful for Holdsworth’s arm, for he staggered as they climbed the staircase together. Bingley followed.
“For life without cognac is a bubble of air,” Collins sang. “A bubble of air.”
Yes, a merry song. For some reason Holdsworth did not enjoy it.
Again, thank you for joining me for this challenge. It’s work, pumping out twenty-six posts in a single month, but it’s been enlightening and affirming. I expect the artwork for the print cover soon, and then we’ll be off and running. Check here for details!