Mark Coker, CEO of Smashwords, was interviewed recently by Smashwords is a site where independent authors and publishers can create ebook versions of their work. I’ve talked about it here before – this is the ebook version of RealmShift at Smashwords – 4.7 stars out of 5 and some nice reviews so far, which pleases me greatly. It’s still in the top 5 bestsellers over there since hitting the number 1 spot briefly on its release.

Anyway, the interview. Here’s a good example of how some time and effort spent on quality cover design can get you noticed. Mark Coker was interviewed about the nature of epublishing and the site he has created with Smashwords. To go along with the Q&A interview, they wanted a good looking book cover to give an example of the sort of thing that Smashwords makes available to the public. They chose RealmShift.

So as part of an article about Mark and Smashwords, with no effort on my part, I get the following free plugs:

Moderator’s note: Alan Baxter’s RealmShift, the SF-and-fantasy novel shown here, is one of the five-star-rated titles on Smashwords, a site for self-published writers and their fans. “Samuel Harrigan is a murderer,” reads part of the plot descrption. “He used ancient blood magic to escape a deal with the Devil.”


Mark Coker, CEO and himself a self-pubbed novelist, sees Smashwords as a chance to help the Baxters of this world to bypass publishing’s gatekeepers and connect directly with readers. Down in Australia, Baxter is also working through his own small press, putting out a paper editon, as Mark would encourage him to do, given the small size of the e-book market today.

So with that I got links for this site, my book on Smashwords and my indie publisher, Blade Red Press. All because I have an eye-catching, professionally produced book cover. So, perhaps people do judge a book by its cover after all. We’d all be fools to think that they didn’t.

I only found out about this after Mark put me onto it, so it’s very heart-warming to know that my stuff is out there getting noticed in different ways. If you’re going to make something, make it the best it can be.

The whole article, including the Q&A interview with Mark, can be found here. Have a read – it’s very interesting stuff.