Summer/Winter Promotion: Seen Through the Phantom’s Eyes Series

Hi, everyone. Starting July 1, and running until the end of the month, my award-winning Seen Through The Phantom’s Eyes series will either be free or heavily discounted on Smashwords. You can choose the format to fit your preferred eReader.

The first book in the series, In The Eye of The Beholder, will be free of charge. This is a savings of $3.99 USD.

Through the Opera Glass, a transitional book of short stories, will be 99 cents USD, a savings of $1.00. This book was the 2014 runner-up for best short fiction in the eFestival of Words Independent Book Awards.

In The Eye of The Storm, a silver medalist in the Global eBook Awards, will be $1.99 USD, a savings of $2.00.

Finally, the omnibus of all three books, Seen Through the Phantom’s Eyes, will be marked down to $2.99 USD, a savings of $3.00 compared to list price. The overall savings, compared to list price for all three books purchased separately, is $7.98 USD if you choose this option.

Thanks, as always, for having a look.

Sample Saturday: “Through the Opera Glass”

February 1 marks the beginning of the Lunar New Year. It is the Year of the Tiger. Tiger represents courage, confidence, and self esteem.

In honor of the Lunar New Year, I present this sample from my award-winning short fiction collection, Through the Opera Glass. “Gong xi fa cai” translates to “Have a prosperous new year.”


A Letter from the Mine Country
Written May 14, 2012
Clever Fiction writing prompt: Bandana/Carousing/Copper

February 4, 1917
Copperopolis, California

Dearest Ming:
Gong xi fa cai, little sister! May this year of the Red Fire Snake bring you much luck. As you may well imagine, there was little enough carousing here; we are constantly busy.

Let me tell you a bit about what my life is like here at the copper mine. I am one of the fortunate ones, for it is my job to look for the ore. They don’t trust a “Chinaman” to handle the chemicals that draw the metal from the stone … and I am glad of it. I bring the stones out of the ground, as do many others, and then the stone is crushed, and treated with sulfur until the metal comes out. Then, the copper can be smelted. I have a colorful bandana that I pull up over my nose and mouth when I have to go by the sulfur pit; you would laugh to see me. I look like some kind of bandit.

Once the copper is smelted, it’s made into bullets so that our soldiers can kill people they’ve never seen. If you sense, dear sister, that I am bitter, you are correct. I will never understand man’s propensity for violence to man.

The land is beautiful here in California’s foothills, but the work is hard. I am too tired to go into Angel’s Camp, let alone as far as Stockton, to buy the things I need. We are fortunate that the Copper Consolidated Mining Company has its own store, although goods are dear; we are able to have credit there until pay day, at which time I like to joke that we give the company its money back.

I need to stop writing for now; lamp oil is very dear indeed and there is no electricity in my cabin here.

When you write back, will you tell me how Veronique is doing? I have not heard from her in some time.

Your brother,
Samuel (Song) Lee
~~~
Ming returned the letter to its envelope and pinched the bridge of her nose. Her brother was still in love with Veronique after all of this time. How could it be? She was the reason that he lived so far away; it had been the only way to keep both of them safe.

She opened her lap desk and took out a piece of stationery and a pen. She had to tell him the truth.

Dearest Brother Samuel:

Gong xi fa cai to you as well. I smiled to myself when I thought of my educated brother looking like a bandit.

As for Veronique, I have some news that may upset you …


Want your own copy of Through the Opera Glass?  Here are the book blurb and purchasing links:

Author Sharon E. Cathcart took up a challenge in 2012: to write flash fiction and full length short stories based on various prompts. Each story features one or more characters from In The Eye of The Beholder: A Novel of the Phantom of the Opera or its sequel, In The Eye of The Storm.

Brimming with historical detail, the stories in this collection range in place and time from 19th Century Persia to post-World War II San Francisco.

Through the Opera Glass is the 2014 runner-up for “Best Short Story Collection” in the eFestival of Words Independent Book Awards.

Angus & Robertson (Australia); Amazon (click on this link to be taken automatically to the site for your country); Apple Books; Barnes & Noble; Booktopia (Australia); Chapters Indigo (Canada); FNAC (France); Kobobooks (available for 2400 SuperPoints if you are part of the program); Librerías Gandhi (Mexico); Livraria Cultura (Brazil); Mondadori (Italy); Rakuten Japan; Scribd; Smashwords;

Winter Promotion: After-Action Report

Hi, everyone. Well, here we are on the second day of 2022 — which also happens to be my birthday.

As I always do after a promotion, I thought I would share some statistics. I made all of my short fiction available free of charge during the holiday period. I’ll have the “sales” numbers as usual, but I did something different this time: I tallied where the sales took place.

So, first things first. Seventy-three selections were made all together. Clytie’s Caller was, as it has been since I released it, far and away the most popular download. It’s a sweet Regency romance novella, and that genre is perennially popular. Here’s how it all fell out, with numbers:

Clytie’s Caller – 21
Flowers of Europe – 7
A Light Across the Lake – 7
Through the Opera Glass – 6
His Beloved Infidel – 5
It Happened in Memphis – 5
Down on the Corner of Love – 4
Hard-Boiled Blues – 4
Last Stop: Storyville – 4
Two Days in June – 4
Yellowjack and the River Man – 4
The Rock Star in the Mirror (Or, How David Bowie Ruined My Life) – 2

Here’s the geographic breakdown:

United States: 41
Country not listed – 11
Ethiopia – 11
Germany – 8
Canada – 4
Malaysia – 2
United Kingdom – 2
India – 1
Philippines – 1
Spain – 1

I have to say, Ethiopia gave me food for thought. The average income in Ethiopia works out to about $170 USD/year. That means there is not a lot of money for books. That a reader there would take the time to select 11 of my titles was huge.

If you selected one of my books this time, I do hope you will enjoy it and leave a positive review at your site of choice. Thank you, as always, for being such great readers and friends.

Year-End Gift For You: All of My Short Fiction is Free!

Hi, everyone. Once again, I’m participating in Smashwords’ Year-End Sale. I’ve made all of my short fiction free as a gift to you, including the entire Pocketful of Stories series. Here are the links, blurbs, etc.


atw80pAround the World in 80 Pages: Ten short stories of various genres, each taking place in a different location. With subject matter ranging from paranormal to historical fiction, urban fantasy to literary fiction, there is something in this sampler for everyone. 

rockstarThe Rock Star in the Mirror  (Or, How David Bowie Ruined My Life): Joe is a small-town Oregon guy. He’s madly in love with Lynnie … who has a huge crush on David Bowie. Joe will do almost anything to get Lynnie’s attention, but there are always consequences.

ttogThrough the Opera Glass: Author Sharon E. Cathcart took up a challenge in 2012: to write flash fiction and full length short stories based on various prompts. Each story features one or more characters from In The Eye of The Beholder: A Novel of the Phantom of the Opera or its sequel, In The Eye of The Storm. Brimming with historical detail, the stories in this collection range in place and time from 19th Century Persia to post-World War II San Francisco.

infidelHis Beloved Infidel: Farukh and Catherine are colleagues at Paris’ World Language Institute. He is Persian; she is American. Can their newly-discovered love survive the strain of Iran’s Islamic Revolution? Set against the backdrop of real-world events, this inter-ethnic romance tells the story of ordinary people caught up in extraordinary events.

clytieClytie’s Caller:  Bath, 1816. Clytemnestra Preston has become so terrified of life that she refuses to leave her room. Not even her family can convince her to take her place in Society again. Doctor Samuel Whittington, late of His Majesty’s Army, may be her only chance for a cure … and romance. Can Sam convince Clytie to open the door, and her heart? 

 

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Last Stop: Storyville: Riding a New Orleans streetcar is an everyday occurrence for Tulane freshman Jimmy Arceneaux (Bayou Fire). But one evening, things are different.

Yellowjack and the Riverman: Yellow fever. Voodoo queen Marie Laveau. A long-lost relative’s homecoming. The Underground Railroad. All of them are part of Alcide Devereaux’s (Bayou Fire) continuing story.

A Light Across the Lake: Return to Paris’ glamorous Opera Garnier, and the world of the award-winning Seen Through the Phantom’s Eyes series! A Light Across the Lake is the tale of apprentice set builder Lucien Dubois, who is determined to see what lies in the fifth cellar. Will his exploration raise the ire of the infamous Opera Ghost?

Down on the Corner of Love: Being a civil rights activist isn’t easy in rural Louisiana. Raine’s found herself ostracized and alone because she’s a woman who speaks her mind. Fed up, she leaves her country world behind for beautiful San Francisco. There, Raine meets a new best friend, Jo, who is free-spirited and living life to the fullest. But Jo’s in more danger than Raine realizes.

Two Days in June: Starvation. Fear. Fighting in the streets. It’s June 1832, and Paris is once again at war. The students of the Sorbonne rise up against those in power, believing that right and the people are on their side. But King Louis-Philippe has other plans.

Flowers of Europe: Thaddeus Flowers, American inventor and charming rake, is chasing adventure and romance across Europe. English scientist Arabella Abingdon is always one step ahead of him. Join the excitement in these steampunk-tinged historical tales that take you from Hyde Park to the Place des Vosges. 

It Happened in Memphis: Evie Boudreaux has a knack for seeing history in action. Why? Because she sees ghosts. Come along on a visit to Tupelo and Memphis, and see the earliest days of rock music through Evie’s eyes! 

Hard-Boiled Blues:  Two dead bodies. Two policemen, one in New Orleans and one in Memphis. Not all crimes have easy solutions in the Jim Crow South.  It’s enough to make you sing the blues.

The promotion runs through January 1, 2022, and you’ll find formats for any eReader. Happy holidays to you!