The Red City Review For Sojourn In Captivity!

The Red City Review For Sojourn In Captivity!

Greetings all,

Sojourn_Ebook_CoverA while back I sent Sojourn in Captivity to be reviewed by Red City Review. The five-star feedback was humbling and kind.  You can find the official link here.

What I’d like to do most is take a moment to talk about one particular compliment.

“Essential plot pieces are set in place here for future series entries, but the real attraction is Weech’s world-building. Animals, trees and plants, domestic customs, and planetary weather phenomena are all described in detail, giving a well-formed view of life on Oron.”

The Perception of War series is huge, and my goal is to provide a truly universal story. This means the planets need to feel real. The aliens need to feel authentic. Is that what everyone will think? No. But it is my goal to help a number of readers feel like they’re on different planets interacting with creatures.

That comment from Red City Review was particularly validating because it showed that the effort I put into making Oron and the Seferam feel authentic worked, at least for that reviewer.

Honestly, I would have been elated for them to say that the world building was good, so to have the reviewer say the world building was the real attraction was actually a surprise, but a welcome one.

WeechLogoColorI’ve said a few times that I always strive first to have compelling characters. My new logo proclaims, “Great Characters. Clever Plots.” I want to stand behind that, but I also strive to grow with each project I work on. If I’m going to grow as a science fiction / fantasy author, I need to have immersive worlds, and this review indicates I’m off to a good start.

In related news, Sojourn is entered into the 2019 Red City Review Book Awards. I haven’t heard anything regarding whether or not it’s a finalist, but I’m hopeful. I truly do think Sojourn is a fantastic story (even if it’s short).

My hope is the review might convince you to give it a try if you haven’t already. If you have, even if you hated it, I’d sure appreciate a rating and review on Amazon or Goodreads.

Thank you for reading,

Matt

What Is My Brand? What Do You Get When You Buy An M.L.S. Weech Book?

What Is My Brand? What Do You Get When You Buy An M.L.S. Weech Book?

Greetings all,

MLSWeechI’m honestly just watching Kurt Hugo Schneider videos, and in a few, he “writes” a song for a popular singer. My wife and I frequently dance to his writing of an “Ed Sheeran” song.  What he does is look for elements common to the performer, and that got me thinking about my brand.

So branding is an interesting concept. Some writers brand by genre. This guy may write horror while that guy writes romance. If you like the genre,  a certain author will fill that need. I’ve had dear friends talk to me on occasion about how often I jump around. Honestly, I don’t have the first clue how to hold still. I can’t even type a blog like Thumper talking about the forest with Bambi.

That hurts some authors. I would probably be more successful more quickly (an important combination of words) if I stuck with one genre. Readers like to know what they’re going to get when they buy a book.

So if I don’t stay in one genre, what is my brand? What do people who buy my book get?

Please allow me to offer you a list.

Bob CoverCharacters you connect with: If you read the first ten pages of one of my books, and you don’t feel an immediate connection to the characters you’re reading about, I’ve failed, and you probably won’t enjoy the story. I want people who buy my books to fall in love (or completely hate) the characters.  Here are some examples:

” … keeping me engaged with the plot and the characters with some mad skill.” — A review for Caught.

“Mr Weech does some good worldbuilding here and delivers lots of character development — not just with protagonist Bob Drifter, but with pretty much his entire cast.” — A review for An Unusual Occupation: Part One of The Journals of Bob Drifter.

“While each of the different POVs fascinated me, I found Bob’s voice to be distinctly enjoyable.” — Another review for An Unusual Occupation: Part One of The Journals of Bob Drifter.

“There is just an awful lot to like about Bob. He is a well-conceived, fully fleshed out character that you can’t help but admire and root for.” A review for The Journals of Bob Drifter.

Fast Pace: Even my longest book, The Journals of Bob Drifter, has a pace that moves. I typically write short chapters that let a reader feel like they’re flying through a book even if that book is 130,000 words. I want readers to feel like they’re on a roller coaster that set the world speed record. True, Bob evolves more slowly, but that evolution is spent building anticipation. This fast pace creates a story that’s hard to put down. Here are some examples:

“The story hits fast and you quickly are embroiled in a fast moving action sequence.” — A review for Sojourn in Captivity.

“Repressed was fast paced with nicely timed reveals.” — A review for Repressed.

caught-front-coverSurprises: If you want at least one moment where your jaw drops, and you say, “WHAAAAAAAAAAT?” my books are for you. Honestly, I’m not sure which of my stories has the biggest surprise or plot twist. What I can say is that every time someone comes to me to talk to me about my book, they immediately comment about the surprise. Most reviews mention the end of my stories.  Don’t believe me?

” … and the ending was good.” — A review for Stealing Freedom.

“The narrative direction this story goes (without giving anything away) is both surprising in the moment and completely logical in retrospect.” A review for Caught.

“Caught” is a thrilling psychological horror full of nightmares, gore, and unexpected plot twists. It keeps you guessing every step of the way.” “I can’t remember the last time any novel has surprised me. This shows a clever ingenuity that impressed me.” A review for Caught.

So there you have it. If you like fast-paced books with great characters and surprising twists, I’m your man. All of these were different reviews for different books from a number of different reviewers (though in honesty there are some repeat reviewers because they became return customers).

I hope this gives some of you who maybe haven’t tried my work a chance to see why you might be interested.

Thanks for reading,

Matt

Some Reviews For Various Audiobooks

Some Reviews For Various Audiobooks

Greetings all,

It’s a bit harder to share reviews for audiobooks because there aren’t any direct links to just those reviews (or at least I haven’t figured out the trick). However, I’ve gotten a number of reviews for a lot of these audiobooks, and so I wanted to take a chance to share some of the comments.

Caught_ACX_CoverCaught:  Caught has two ratings and one text review.  It has an average 4.0 rating (again only two ratings) at the moment.  The text review just kindly said that the reader loved the print version so much that they wanted to listen to the audio version while I work on Betrayed.  The reviewer also took a moment to praise the plot twists, which I honestly think is the greatest part of the book.

 

 

The Power of Words: The Power of Words has four ratings for an average of 4.3 overall.  It also has two text reviews.  The most recent reviewer said the stories were entertaining. He appreciated the range of genres, which I was actually concerned would be a problem. He took a moment to praise the narrators on this (and I think Lisa and J.M. are indeed worthy of praise.  This reviewer concluded by acknowledging that short stories don’t have the depth he typically looks for (“…they’re usually over before you can really get into them.”)

The older text review focused again on Lisa and J.M. The reviewer did say the collection “lives up to the title.” I appreciated seeing that.

Repressed_ACX_CoverRepressed: Repressed has one rating and text review.  The reviewer had issue with the tone and target audience of Repressed vs Caught (Repressed, as you may know, is based on Kaitlyn from Caught).  I honestly accept this criticism and respect it. I had to make a choice on what to do here. I wanted so desperately to give Kaitlyn her own short story, but when I did that I had to gauge the content against those most likely to read it. So it’s completely fair and just to have this thought. My hope is, those who love Kaitlyn will appreciate this story. Those who love the darker, more horror driven aspects of Caught, it’s fair to say, won’t enjoy this.

The reviewer also took a moment to compliment Jennifer on her reading. I always felt she had the perfect voice for Kaitlyn, and I’m glad this reader agreed. My hope is Repressed get’s Jennifer plenty more offers.

And I think that has me caught up with the reviews for my work so far.

If you’ve read any of my work, I humbly request you take a few moments to toss up a rating and review on Audible, Goodreads, Amazon, or all of those above. I can’t tell you how much reviews help in so many different ways. Even if you hated it, feel free to spend however many thousands of words  you feel you need to express your discontent. It’s still valuable feedback.

If you’re interested in any of my audiobooks, and you don’t have a credit you want to spend on one, just send me an email, and I’ll send you a free promo code for whichever (or all) you want.

Thanks for reading,

Matt

Book Reviews Make Authors Happy!

Book Reviews Make Authors Happy!

Greetings all,

I get to share a few reviews with you all today, and I don’t know that I’ll ever get tired of that.

caught-front-coverThe first is an extensive four-star review on Goodreads for Caught. J.M. actually has a Twitter account in which she does these super awesome book-quote pictures. It’s a clever idea, and I encourage you to give her a follow. I saw a quote from Caught and realized she was reading it. It was a thrill to see those, and this review is everything an author could ask for: praise for things she liked and honest clarification on what she didn’t like.

Next there is a new five-star review for The Power of Words.  The last two reviews were from the same individual.

 

Sojourn_Ebook_CoverThe next (and final) review was special because it’s the first review for Sojourn in Captivity.  It’s nice to start off on a strong note, and you can’t get better than a five-star review.

I’m always thrilled to see feedback, and it’s that much sweeter when it’s positive. I’d like to take this opportunity to ask you to consider leaving a rating and review if you’ve ready any of my work. Even if you hated it, I still value the feedback. If you haven’t tried any of my books yet, I hope these reviews motivate you to give one (or all) a chance.

Thanks for reading,

Matt

 

An Amazing Gift! The Results From Caught’s Birthday.

An Amazing Gift! The Results From Caught’s Birthday.

Greetings all,

caught-front-coverThere are simply no words to express how overjoyed I am. To say the giveaway was successful would be an understatement. I’d like to walk you through how things went.

The event kicked off with a start that already had me thrilled.  Ninety-seven people downloaded Caught. I’m always happy when I get a lot of downloads during free events, and that was just amazing.

Day two brought similar results as eighty-two people downloaded the book. I was on cloud nine.

When I set up the giveaway, I also set up a BookGorilla campaign. I’d used them a few times before, and I wondered how things would change if the book was free. I went to church and then we got to my in-laws’ place. I brought up my phone, expecting to see another hundred or so downloads.

What I saw first was the bar graph KDP uses to show sales. The bar for that date was much higher than the others. Much. Higher. I zoomed in and touched the bar: More than 300 people downloaded the book. I jumped off my seat, telling my family what was going on. I rushed to Caught’s Amazon page and learned I was ranked seventh in my category (Paranormal Suspense).

Screen Shot 2019-01-28 at 6.48.02 AMI would have been out of my mind with joy if it had stopped there, but that bar just kept going. I saw that I had 500 downloads and moved up to fifth. 748 downloads later, I had landed in the top three. Number 3 in my category.

Monday came, and 183 more people downloaded my book. The campaign finished Jan. 30, and fifty-seven more people had downloaded the book.

In total, 1,166 people downloaded the book. There just aren’t words. I could say thank you 1,166 times, I could say it 1,166 times 1,166, and it wouldn’t be enough. To all of you who picked up the book, THANK YOU! I hope you enjoy it.

If I shut off the overjoyed artist for a moment or two, I can talk about the overall goal. The first goal was to get about 300 downloads. Well, that goal got obliterated. The next goal is one that I’ll have to track.

Screen Shot 2019-02-01 at 8.57.31 PMYou see, it’s common for people to simply grab up a copy of a free book. Who wouldn’t? The hope is that any percentage actually read the book. My hope is about 100 people read the book. I can’t really track that, but the last metric gets to the main hope of the campaign. Every author hopes for the most cherished thing they can have. Purchases are nice. Compliments are wonderful, but the thing that really helps an author is a review. My goal for this? 10 reviews.

I’d love for all of those to be glowing praise for my creative mind, but if I get ten scathing reviews, it would still be a successful campaign in my eyes. I’ve already seen a bit of reaction. My Goodreads page for Caught shows two new ratings: One two star and one five star. I can live with that sort of breakdown.

Th campaign hasn’t even been over for two days, so the fact that two people have already rated the book  is just amazing. Now all that’s left is the wait.

Even if I don’t get any reviews, it’s just amazing to see that so many people have at least shown the interest in Caught to download it. I can only hope everyone who tired it enjoy it. Whatever you think of the book, I just want you to know how grateful I am. You’ve made a silly old dreamer so happy, and I don’t even know how to show my appreciation.

Bless you all.

Thanks for reading,

Matt

My Top 3 Reads of 2018

My Top 3 Reads of 2018

It’s a new year, which means it’s time to share my top three reads of 2018 with you all.  Goodreads says I’ve read 37 books in 2018. It wasn’t quite as much as last year, but it’s a solid amount, especially considering how much happened. This list was made without regard to publisher, format, or author.

How I did it:  I kept track of books I liked and mentally compared one to the other. Without further delay, here’s my list.
51C+CI-HrZL#3 Colony Lost by Chris Philbrook: You can find my review for that book here.  This book was my at one point my favorite that I read this year. It had a slow start, but man are those characters awesome, and I just love the action in the story. Of the three, I’d want this made into a movie most. I think this is the first in a series, and if it is, I’ll be picking up the other books once the series is over.

 

 

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So that’s my top three. What are yours? Why? Do you have a review you can link it to? I’d love to reblog it for you.

Thanks for reading,

Matt

800 Followers! Shout Out to Those Who Helped Me Get Here

800 Followers! Shout Out to Those Who Helped Me Get Here

Greetings all,

thank-you-1606941_960_720
All stock imagery from Pixabay.

I’m still happy to report the blog is going at a fairly steady rate, and it’s all thanks to you! I’m honored to see more and more people take an interest in my thoughts and words.

As is usual when I hit a benchmark like this, I’d like to pay it forward by giving a shoutout to my five most-recent followers (as I type this).

 

Vibe a Little: This is a page that combines imagery with some prose/poetry. It has a very Instagram feel to it, but it’s great for quick fixes for those who want some creative fuel for their day.

The Geek Astronaut: Thiago (awesome name by the way!) blogs about mostly nerd stuff. You can pop by his page to see posts on Anime (and the like), books, TV shows, and stuff about his life. It’s eclectic in a lot of good ways. You might not be able to track what he’ll post about, but he’s consistently putting out content, and it’s entertaining.

The Working Writer: I haven’t dug into this page yet because it’s essentially a course. It’s designed as a writing-for-profit site that offers a free course on how to do just that. I’m interested, but I confess I haven’t had a chance to look at it, so I can’t offer testimony about how it works and the advice it gives. Fair warning: It makes you register before showing you any content.  That puts some people off, so I thought it was far to at least tell you that was a thing.

Laura Bon: Laura is a christian author, which is cool as we have that in common.  I haven’t read any of her books as yet, but her blog posts Bible verses and prose, and that’s alway since. It’s good to see fellowship on the blogverse.

What Irin Reads: This is a pretty new review site. They only have one post (that I can see), but I’m sure if you give the site some follows, that content will start surging. The review on the page is fairly detailed without being too long, so once those reviews start populating, they’re worth a read.

There were other bloggers, but their pages aren’t linking up. I’m not sure if it’s a hyperlink issue or if the sites are down, but they do exist and I will look into their pages once I get to a place where I can work a little more deliberately.

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I want to thank these five bloggers and all the others who’ve decided to keep some sort of track of my antics. I can’t tell you what a blessing you are. I hope my blog is engaging. Please always feel welcome to comment or ask questions as much as you like.

Thanks for reading,

Matt