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Friday, October 2, 2015


By Caroline Clemmons

Stick with me while I explain a bit, and then I need your opinion.

Being self-published means I write what I want and on my schedule. Okay, I’ll admit I’m a slave driver when it comes to setting that schedule, but I have the choice of coasting along if I wish. Another plus to being my own boss is that I can write the type book I wish.

Of course, I still have the book edited, have a cover designer create the cover, buy numerous ads to promote the book, and so forth. Although I love being self-published much more than being with a traditional publisher, that means I deal with the problems that otherwise would be partially handled by my publishing house. I am my publishing house. LOL

Among self-published authors, there is controversy about whether pre-orders are worthwhile or not. So, I’m asking you to weigh in on this issue. 

***Here's where I need your opinion: Do you purchase books through pre-order or wait until the book is released? Please let me know why or why not with a comment.

While I’m talking about pre-orders, let me mention a box set (of which one of my books is part):

COURTING THE WEST is a western historical romance box set at only 99 cents for ten sweet to steamy novels by NYTimes, USAToday, and other bestselling authors. They include Debra Holland, Kirsten Osbourne, Lily Graison, Cynthia Woolf, Jacquie Rogers, Sylvia McDaniel, Paty Jager, Merry Farmer, Keta Diablo, and me—Caroline Clemmons. 

Preorder COURTING THE WEST at Amazon:

Here are the COURTING THE WEST books with a mini-description and a line from a review followed by my reaction to the book. I must warn you that I’m a fan of every author in this box set:

PAINTED MONTANA SKY by Debra Holland, NYTimes and USA Today Bestselling author.
Can two lonely hearts find their hearts' desire under the majestic Montana sky? "You'll fall in love with this town and these characters."

Debra Holland has never written a bad book. I loved this story about a girl with a limp who sets out to paint wildflowers. I have a limp since my ankle problems, so right away I’m hooked on Lily’s story even though her limp is from a fall from a horse. Then Lily meets a sweet man who is as shy as she is. You’ll love learning how the hero arranges for Lily to be able to navigate the uneven meadows for her painting. This book was quite touching with unforgettable characters.

DAISY (Brides of Seattle series) by Kirsten Osbourne, USA Today Bestselling Author. Can she possibly find love and contentment or is she doomed to a life of regret? "I definitely recommend this book and this series to Everyone!"

This might be my favorite Kirsten Osbourne book—even with so many from which to choose. Daisy Sullivan is one of seven daughters with flower names, known as “the flower daughters” of their socially prominent parents. She longs to be treated as herself and signs up through her aunt Harriett as a mail order bride for Eli King. I was also happy to meet up again with Harriett, who founded the marriage agency in Beckham, Massachusetts and is now living in Seattle. (Sorry, but in my head these are real people.)

HIS BROTHER’S WIFE by Lily Graison, USA Today Bestselling Author. A high society mail
order bride with a 14 year old bridegroom and his devilishly handsome brother all under one roof. What could possibly go wrong? “An emotional roller coaster ride, right up to the end.” ~Charlene Botha

Mail-order bride Grace Kingston barely makes it to her destination to meet her groom. When Jesse Samuels turns out to be a 14-year old boy, Grace is humiliated and devastated. She’s broke and can’t even rent a room in town. She has no alternative but to go to the Samuels ranch with Jesse and his handsome brother, Rafe. The situation sounds humorous, and it is to everyone but Grace, Jesse, and Rafe. In fact, the book is the perfect blend of humor, pathos, excitement, and romance.

TAME A WILD WIND by Cynthia Woolf, Amazon Bestselling Author. Revenge is a dish best served cold. “Love, trust and lust just in the right combo...”

And revenge is a big part of this book, but so is finding true love. Widow Cassie O’Malley needs a foreman and Sam Colter fills the bill. In fact, he is just about perfect. Except for one thing—a killer is after him and willing to destroy anyone Sam values. This is another great Cynthia Woolf story and she holds readers captivated with this quick-paced book.

SLEIGHT OF HEART by Jacquie Rogers, Amazon Bestselling author. A strait-laced spinster, a gambler with magic hands, and a fortune to be won—by sleight of hand, or Sleight of Heart? “It's a full house with romance, high stakes and adventure. You can always count on Jacquie Rogers for some laughs, and she doesn't disappoint...Enjoy the ride!”
~Meg Mims, author of Double or Nothing

This book made me laugh so many times! Lexi is just a fun heroine and Burke is too yummy to forget. I loved the repartee between them and all the subtle twists Jacquie wove into the adventures of this couple. Lexi is loosely based on a math wizard (did you see me shudder after the word “math”) great aunt who was so super smart she worked for the government on a special project. Of course, the aunt who inspired Lexi lived in the 1900s and Lexi in the 1800s. I defy you not to love this book!

A HERO’S HEART by Sylvia McDaniel, Amazon Bestselling author. Wade Ketchum is searching for his only surviving sibling when he finds a ready-made family. A 1996 Golden Heart Finalist.

In my opinion, this is one of Sylvia’s best books. While Wade Ketchum is searching for his brother he finds Rachel Cooke, her sister, and three orphans as the only survivors of a wagon train attacked by Pawnee. Rather than desert them, he agrees to take them to Fort Laramie and leave them there so they can meet and travel with another wagon train. Rachel gets under his skin, though, and he can’t abandon her. When the new wagon master says she can only come if she’s married, Wade has to decide whether or not he’ll take the job. This a great romance.

LAYING CLAIM by Paty Jager, Amazon Bestselling author. Jeremy Duncan heads into the
Yukon Territory by dog team in the middle of a blizzard to keep one strong-willed, business-minded beauty alive. “A wonderful plunge into the Alaskan gold mining era.”

Jeremy Duncan’s sister married into the Halseys and he is eager to prove he’s worthy of the trust that family placed in him. Claire Bixbee has come to Alaska to find her brother after the death of her father. She hires Jeremy as her guide because he’s “the only honest guide” in Skagway. He tries to talk her into waiting until a patch of bad weather is over, but she refuses and he does have a contract to keep in the Yukon. Against his better judgment, he takes on the job. There are surprises along the way and more when they find the brother. This is an adventure romance with enough humor to make you smile and enough danger to keep you on the edge of your seat.

SARAH SUNSHINE by Merry Farmer, Amazon Bestselling author. Only love can stop history from repeating itself before it’s too late…. “Loved Sarah’s story! Makes you
feel good about life and how you can overcome your past
.” 5 Stars Amazon Reviewer

Sarah Withers has just served out her contract as a whore at the local saloon and is determined to live a virtuous life now. Roy LaCroix was her best customer and wants to marry her now that she’d free of her former life. Sarah is popular with most of the people in town because she is kind, helpful, and has a sunny disposition. There are always a few, though, who seek to keep people “in their place” and don’t want Sarah to be happy. Sarah and Roy are determined to find a way to live their dream and a group of old biddies are determined to stop them.

by Keta Diablo, Amazon Bestselling author. A sinister ghost chases
Deacon, Madrid and the Indian maiden, Sacheen, across the desolate landscape of New
Mexico. “The old west and paranormal all wrapped into one page turning book. A five-star read!” The Book Heathens

If you like Southwestern anthropology and archeology as much as those in my family do, this is a story you will dig into to and enjoy. I admire the research that Keta must have done and that flows through the story seamlessly without detracting from the book. I didn’t intend to read the book at one sitting, but I simply couldn’t stop. I can’t wait to read the Bannisters, Book 2.

THE MOST UNSUITABLE COURTSHIP by Caroline Clemmons, Amazon Bestselling author. Storm Kincaid wants justice; Rena Dmitriev wants vengeance. “More than just another western novel. A well-plotted action thriller that's full of romance and passion and peopled by very likable characters.”

I wanted this story to differ from any of my others, and it does. At least, in my opinion. Storm is chasing a group who killed his best friend and the friend’s wife when he finds Rena. She had hidden from the men who killed the elderly man who was more like a grandfather than husband. She vows to trail and kill the men for what they did whether Storm lets her accompany him or not. The only way he can protect her is to let her go with him.

These are previously published books, but even if you’ve read one in the past, you can’t go wrong at this bargain price. I read all of the books in the ARC, even those I’d read previously, and love this set! I hope you will too. COURTING THE WEST offers everything: heartstopping action, humor, and romance. 

***Don't forget to tell me whether or not you pre-order books and why. 


  1. I do pre-order (especially when they're 99 cents, but I think I would buy the same books anyway, so I'm not sure how much pre-ordering has to do with it. The boxed sets I'm in have done it, but since I'm the following type, I can't say why or how effective it is. There's your basic non-answer. Good luck with the set!

    1. Thank you, Liz. I pre-order a few books, but mostly just buy when I think of it. Turning on my Kindle and seeing a book I'd pre-ordered pop up is a nice surprise. Often I might have forgotten to buy the book otherwise.

  2. I've occasionally pre-ordered, just because I don't want to forget. I see it, I order it, and boom, it's on my Kindle on release day. Since I usually forget that I ordered the book, it's just like a Christmas present. :)

  3. Sometimes I pre-order, especially if I personally know the author or if I read a blurb on Twitter of FB and the plot sounds good. But as a rule, I just wait until it's released.

  4. I didn't used to pre-order but have begun when the price is low. I have gotten too many boxed sets where I haven't read any of them but think I will. I will pre-order this once since I know so many authors in it :)

  5. I've pre-ordered a few times, but I usually wait until the book is published, especially if the author is a new one for me. I like to "look inside" on Amazon to see if I like the story's opening and the author's writing. However, if I have enjoyed books by an author before and I see that a new book is available for pre-order, I'll go ahead and buy it. COURTING THE WEST sounds like a terrific box set, and I'll definitely pre-order it.

  6. I don't preorder, only reason is that I only deal with Amazon with gift vouchers. I don't want my credit card details in my account. I'm guessing due to the exchange rate between usd and the aussie dollar Amazon won't let me preorder on it. I put them in my wish list with the date to remind me. If the price goes up on the first day I probably won't get the book.

  7. I pre-order all the time. Mainly so I don't forget and if I'm busy writing a book, I can barely remember to cook dinner. I have a book releasing in 3 weeks and my editor told me I have over 350 pre-orders. I didn't know if that was good or not,. but she seemed pleased. These are full-priced books, no pre-released specials.

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  9. I always pre-order when friends have new books available or if I read about a book or box set that appeals to me. No point in waiting, right?


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