Viral Spark is in Pre-Order – Cover Reveal

Isn’t it awesome? I put my cover designer through six months of back and forth before we landed on everything in the layout, and now my little re-telling of the Viral story as a novel is in pre-release.

For the readers, in case you are viewing on your phone, this is the blurb from the back cover:

The world has become a place of comfort, where a shopping trip means heading to the first floor to collect new food tubes for the printer. Menial tasks, like cleaning up or cooking, are relegated to robots, and Robert’s job while finishing school is to maintain them. With only three classes remaining, he’s hoping for something better.

Then everything starts to glitch:
the robots, the building, and even the people.

What starts as glitchy videos, misbehaving touch-screens, and random fighting, grows into a race against time to fix the problem before it escalates. Maybe he can land a cushy programming job in the process, but this virus is more than it appears…

The Story:

Viral Spark started out as a short story, titled Bundled Complexes. A very short story, 2000 words in fact, that grabbed the original publisher’s attention and landed me a deal for a novella trilogy. Well, I’m not going to recap the story, but the books weren’t earning quite fast enough, and the contract ended up running short.

Refusing to go on without my Viral story in print, I reconstructed the trilogy (most of it) into a novel. For the readers of the originals, I think you will really appreciate how I tied up the ending, but I don’t want to drop any spoilers, so that’s all I’m going to say.

To Order.

The book officially goes live on December 14th, but it is available for pre-order. I think Barnes & Noble is running a discounted promotion during pre-order. If you have trouble finding it, try using the ISBN, it will be the only “Viral Spark” listed as pre-order.  Here are the direct links:

But, there is another way to get a copy, and have it shipped the first week of December. You may or may not have noticed that there is a new tab in the menu titled STORE. That’s right, I’m selling signed copies of my books directly through my website now, powered by PayPal (you can order with a regular card if you don’t have a paypal account). Finish the Damn Book, and likely anything else I throw up there will be identical to books ordered other ways, but I did something special for you guys with Viral Spark.

I’ve been working with a printing company to make special edition runs of VS with foil lettering on the front cover, nicer pages on the interior, and a better overall product. The price is the same as on the cover, but I have to charge some shipping because post-office visits are getting expensive. It will also be signed by me, personally, before it is shipped out. If you don’t want your copy signed at all, or would like to request something special in the signature note, just shoot me an email and let me know when you order. Everything ships in December, so expect them before Christmas, hopefully sooner, depending on the holiday rush at the post office. All shipments will be sent via Media Mail by USPS and I can only take orders from the US on the site. (If you are in the UK or Aussie and you REALLY want a foil copy, email me and we’ll work something out.)

For Press Agents and Bloggers:

ARCs are available. Contact me via email at for inquiries about press releases and/or reviews. Would love to have a few more on my team in December.

For my Fellow Writers (Indie Author Advice):

You might be wondering how the hell I got Amazon to do a pre-order on my paperbacks. The trick is pretty easy actually. When you list your print copies with an official distributer, like Ingram for instance (wink), then you can set a release date for distribution, and they will hold mailings and tell people that they can’t sell your book until x date.

Of course, blocking up a paperback on Ingram Spark costs some money, and some people prefer not to work with them. You will also have to make your paperback available for returns, and set a reseller discount. I heard somewhere that Amazon will still list your book with a 35% discount, but don’t quote me on that. I offer bookstores the standard rate, which means I don’t really make any money on my paperbacks, but this isn’t about making money to me, it’s about finding homes for my stories, and readers who like my writing. Besides, I don’t sell that many paperbacks to begin with, so it’s no biggie for me at this point. I have an Amazon backup strategy through CreateSpace if the paperbacks start taking off on that platform. Simple switch and a minor headache to swap the distribution channel.

The E-book pre-sale was set up through KDP, and my E-Book version will only be available on Kindle for the moment. So if you see a VS nook-book, it’s the old novella, which is still in their catalog even though there is nobody on this end receiving payments, lol. I’ll let them have it. Maybe if nook readers like the novella, they’ll get a copy of the novel, who knows?

As for the foil covers, this is what you need to know. Do NOT be afraid to call a printing company. I was surprised by how nice the people at Total Printing Solutions were. Stamps cost money, that’s a fact, but I plan on taking these foil copies to cons and appearances, so with any luck, between website orders and guest appearances, I’ll make that money back, and I’ll be able to do a second printing. Maybe even a third! But that might be getting ahead of myself. Printers don’t charge you anything to talk shop, and if you do book signings and stuff, you can stand out from the other indies with spot-gloss, foil, embossing, cut-outs, etc. All the stuff that the big six can do. I decided that I wanted an awesome look for the VS special edition, and I made it happen. There is nothing outside your reach if you refuse to give up. There’s nothing the big six can do that you can’t, if you are willing to put in the work. Be strong, friends.

Okay, so this was half blog, half writing tips, but I’m in a happy mood this morning. So. There it is. Don’t forget to buy my book! lolz.

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Author: spottedgeckgo

Writer. Making my living on my pen, and working to turn a raw chunk of land into a future homestead.

4 thoughts

  1. WOW, Marty, this is fantastic!! Congratulations! All your hard work is paying off. You practice what you preach, man, and that’s great for us newbies to see.

  2. Just a little at a time. Learning one “trick” at a time (the foil stamps in this case) and trying to build a back-list. I have some other titles slated to finish self-pubbing next year, and I’ll keep trying with trade publishers as well. Just depends on the story, and what I want to do with it.

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