Soot and Slipper | Cover Reveal and Pre-Order!

Hey, remember how I was writing a sequel for Namesake? I wrote a Cinderella adaptation instead. It’s based on Charles Perrault’s version of the fairy tale, I’ve called it Soot and Slipper, and it releases April 1st.

Because April Fools! It’s the wrong story!

(But in all seriousness I’m still working on the other one, just slower than anticipated.)

Anyhoo, because this is only a novella (~35K words), the writing and publishing processes have seemed more like a whirlwind than usual. Today, I’m pleased as Punch to bring you the summary and cover reveal.

Soot and Slipper: A Summary

Eugenie lives in isolation on her father’s estate, with only her elegant stepmother and two stepsisters for company. When the crown of Jacondria announces a series of royal masquerades, she yearns to go. However, her stepsisters’ fortunes hinge on them finding wealthy husbands, and Eugenie doesn’t want to interfere with their odds.

Enter a mischievous fairy who has other plans.

A scant few hours of light-hearted revelry seems harmless enough. By the fairy’s own rules, Eugenie can’t stay the whole night, and with everyone in costume, her stepfamily will never know she was there.

Really, how much trouble can result from attending a masquerade or two?

And now for the eye candy…

Soot and Slipper book cover

Isn’t it pretty?! I have a soft spot for the pale pink/dark gray color combo anyway, and this just exploits that to its fullest.

But wait! There’s more!

Want a preview of the first chapter? You can read it over on novelthree.com.

More importantly, do you want the ebook added to your Kindle library on release day? It’s up for pre-order on Amazon.

Rejoice and wonder, my dear friends!

(Yes, this is the first time I’ve done a pre-order. And yes, that’s why it’s only a week in advance.)

There will be a print version as well, hopefully around the same time. I’m waiting for a physical proof in the mail, and if everything checks out, I’ll give it the thumbs up when the month turns.

Happy Spring, everyone!

8 Responses to Soot and Slipper | Cover Reveal and Pre-Order!
  1. Karen says:

    Can’t wait to read it! This is totally acceptable as we continue to await Namesake’s sequel.

  2. JSU says:

    I know I don’t have full info, but I’ve been wondering for a while why your releases have been on the lower end of indie pricing, with nothing much above the KU rate or at all over $2.99. The earlier books maybe were early in your development, but Namesake and Brine&Bone at the very least seemed way undervalued – there’s a lot more to them than page count, and I fear not signaling this in the price has more of a negative effect than the pure value proposition has a positive even on sales to new readers.

    But maybe I’m way off.

    • kstradling says:

      No, you’re probably right. It’s been a slow transition for me to move from hobby publishing (where most of my buyers were family and friends whom I felt self-conscious in even directing to an online store) to a broader market. Because I’ve been learning the process along the way, I didn’t want to charge a higher price for a product where I was essentially winging it with the formatting. Everything before Namesake was bare-bones in that respect.

      I have better tools at my disposal now. It’s a matter of shifting my brain over to, “No, the price should go up with the quality.” That being said, Brine and Bone (and now Soot and Slipper) are priced at $0.99 specifically because they’re novellas, a third as long as one of my full-length books. Add that they’re based on well-known fairy tales, and they become introductory fodder to the rest of my repertoire for readers unfamiliar with my work.

      I’m in a position where my investment for book production is far more time than money. Ultimately, my lower ebook prices are meant as a sign of goodwill to my loyal readers, but I totally get where undervaluing a product might have a negative effect on perception of worth from those looking through the shop window. I have gone back and forth on whether to up the $ amount, but since I’m only accountable to myself, I’ve deferred the decision every time.

      Long story short, the price is low in large part out of courtesy. But thank you for the implication that you value them higher than their list. 🙂

      • JSU says:

        Well, now that I’ve read Soot&Slipper, I feel like I underpaid for that one too, though it probably will be accessible introductory fodder for others down the line.

        (SPOILER BELOW)

        It’s interesting that you turned both B&B and S&S into stories of a second meeting. Was these something specific to these adaptations that suggested it, or was it just the fact that it’s a great device in general?

        • kstradling says:

          Basically it’s because I hate the “whirlwind romance” trope.

          The original fairy tales for B&B and S&S both have a love-at-first-sight factor to them, which I’m not opposed to as long as the relationship has time to mature beyond that. However, a novella’s framework doesn’t allow much room to develop relationships to that degree. Second-meeting scenarios make for better justification that these two people do actually know and care about one another. In my brain, at least.

          That being said, I did start one (loosely based on Sleeping Beauty) where the hero and heroine have definitely never met. Who knows whether that story will go anywhere, haha.

      • A says:

        As someone who doesn’t know you, my own opinion is that yes you are undervaluing your work. Your books are amazing, and I, and probably many others, have skipped some of them in the past based on perception that if you the author don’t think they were worthwhile, they probably aren’t any good.

        I would love to see you more popular than you are, and even the older books are well well written and your price should be raised to imply it.

        My unsolicited opinion (as someone with no experience selling books at all) is that if you want to strike a balance you should raise Namesake and future novels to maybe 5.99; your 2 fairy tale and any future long novellas to maybe 1.99; your Kingdom of Ruses and Inge to 3.99; and Goldmayne and Tournament to 4.99? Maybe. Something like that. Something that doesn’t put you at the overpriced mainstream range, but says you are worth more than just the 99 cent “this reads like I wrote this over the weekend and didn’t bother editing” authors, I have come across on amazon.

        (Unrelated: do you ever plan on putting out a third book and completing the annals of altair?)

        • kstradling says:

          Thanks for adding your voice to the discussion. This has given me a lot of food for thought. From a market standpoint, your suggestions are good, and I appreciate the input. There are factors beyond market trends that I have to take into account (my own worldview being one of them), but I can see this does merit some serious thought as I move forward.

          It was my intent when I set up my imprint a couple years ago to move my earlier titles over one by one and to adjust their prices at that point. It hasn’t happened for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that I’d rather work on new stuff than spruce up the old. However, “in the mouth of two or three witnesses,” as the saying goes. So, I will be taking the comments here under advisement.

          (And unrelated: I always considered the Annals of Altair complete at two books. But I have written most of a third, so the answer to your question is an unreliable maybe.)

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