Welcome to my worlds!

I'm James Maxey, author of fantasy and science fiction. My novels include the science fantasy Bitterwood Saga (4 books) the Dragon Apocalypse Saga (4 books), numerous superhero novels including Nobody Gets the Girl and the Lawless series, the steampunk Oz sequel Bad Wizard, and my short story collections, There is No Wheel and Jagged Gate. This website is focused exclusively on writing. At my second blog, Jawbone of an Ass, I ramble through any random topic that springs to mind, occasionally touching on religion and politics and other subjects polite people are sensible enough not to discuss in public. If you'd like to get monthly updates on new releases, as well as preview chapters and free short stories, join my newsletter!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Download Bitterwood for free!

There's a few big news items on the Bitterwood front.

First, I'm working with the extremely talented Dave Thompson to produce Bitterwood as an audio book. I listened to the first segments today and I'm thrilled with Dave's reading. It's still going to be several weeks before the audio book is ready, but when it is it will be distributed through Audible, Amazon, and I-Tunes. I will, of course, publish further announcements as the release draws closer.

Second, the cover above is one I created myself, since when I first started ebook publishing I was unsure of whether or not I'd make enough money to justify paying for the rights to the paperback cover. The book did pretty well, however, and I would have made my money back many times over. However, since the book was selling with my DIY cover, I still didn't see a reason to pay for the rights on the original cover. However, that's going to change when the audio book comes out. To give it the best possible chance of success, I'll be shelling out the dough to place that cover on the audio edition.

And, as long as I'm opening my wallet for that, I'm also going to pay to use the cover on a new ebook edition of Bitterwood. But not just any old edition: I'm going to put together an omnibus edition of the entire Dragon Age collection: Bitterwood, Dragonforge, Dragonseed, and the prequel short story "Tornado of Sparks." And, as an added bonus, this collection will also include the never before seen fourth Bitterwood novel, Empire of Angels. I wrote Empire of Angels after I wrote Bitterwood, but before I wrote Dragonforge and Dragonseed. Set a thousand years before the events of Bitterwood, it tells the story of the first dragon to escape into the wild as human civilization begins to collapse following the rise of Atlantis. I was never able to interest a publisher in it, mainly because it's kind of short, not even 70,000 words long. As an early novel, I was also still learning how to plot, so the story's structure is a bit more linear than what I would craft today. But, it tells the origins of Hezekiah, Jazz, Gabriel (the angel from Dragonforge), the dragons, and the city of Atlantis, so it should be of great interest to serious Bitterwood fans. I plan to release this at the same time the audio book comes available.

To whet the appetite for the audio book and the Complete Bitterwood, I've decided to try something a little radical: Today, I made Bitterwood completely free to download at Smashwords. If I could, I would change the price at Amazon and Barnes and Noble, but they don't allow me to set the price to free. It's possible they will price match Kobo or Apple once the free price filters through from Smashwords to those distributors, but there's no guarantee. I know some authors who get Amazon to price match quickly, but others have their price set at free on other channels and never get Amazon to budge.

But, even if  you use Kindle, no sweat! You can download the mobi file from Smashwords. In fact, you can download the novel as mobi, epub, pdf, or even just read it directly in your browser, all completely free! Just click here. Spread the word! The price is never going to be better than this!


heresolong said...
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Bob/Sally said...

Awesome! I'd had the paperback sitting on my shelf for much longer than I'd care to admit. I'll definitely have to snag the e-book and catch up as soon as I'm done with the Dragon Apocalypse.

James Maxey said...

Thanks, Bob. Bitterwood is very different in tone from the Dragon Apocalypse books. A bit darker and bloodier, but I think that fans of Greatshadow will still enjoy all the action and the world building. There's not a lot of humor in the first book of the trilogy (though Blasphet does get in a few good lines), but I think my natural insticts for humor start to emerge in the second and third book. Mainly, though, the common thing I strived to achieve in both series is epic adventure built around interesting characters. Since those elements are also present in Empire of Angels, I feel good about finally showing it to the world.

Anonymous said...


When I heard Dave was recording this I was very excited. It's been 6 years since I read Bitterwood, and it's one of the series that I have regretted not finishing. The main reason I never finished it was I had a job change and other things, making me move from more of a print reader to mostly audiobooks. Now, i listen to 3 o 4 audios a week, and am hoping that Bitterwood is a big hit so producing the rest of your books in audio becomes a possibility.

I definitely plan on listening and reviewing the audio for my blog. If your interested, maybe we can even arrange an interview or other promotional stuff for its release. When I get some time, i will hit you up with an email with some audio promotion ideas.


James Maxey said...

Bob, I'll take any promotional help you care to give! I'm just getting ready to post an update on the audio book, to bring everyone up to speed.