Monday, September 29, 2014

Last Week's Free Book Promotion on Amazon - Regards to J.A. Konrath

J.A. Konrath has a web log that consists of equal parts controversy and tips for indie writers.  I feel like I am the person who discovered Konrath because, years ago, I came across an article about him in a writer's magazine.  He had just inked a two book deal with Hyperion for $150,000.  At that time, and probably for many today, this is the writer's dream.  Discovery, validation, and the fame that only a writer's magazine can bestow.  There were black and white photographs of him walking near a railroad bridge, no doubt deep in thought.

Fast forward about a decade, Konrath now seems to prefer the wealth and control that comes to the fortunate and professionally committed of the Amazon self-published crowd.  By any reasonable person's standards, J.A. seems to be doing very well.  He also shares a huge amount of personal and practical information on his blog.

So, earlier in September, J.A. Konrath posted an article with 15 tips for self-published authors.  This time, I resolved to try his advice.

Last week, the 22nd through the 26th of September, I used my Amazon Kindle free promotion days and made Brand Loyalty  available for free.  I promoted the event with 2 of the 3 advertisers he recommended, one being a bit pricey for me.

Here's what happened:

I started the week with an Amazon rating of 7,093 on the Free List.  I peaked at 53 within a day.  Brand Loyalty was in the top 100 for 3 of the 5 days and I ended at about 350.  Overall, I was able to share my first novel with over 6,000 Kindle readers, including readers in Germany, the UK and Canada.  I even got readers in India, Japan, France, Australia, and Italy.

Because of this exposure, sales of my second novel, Beyond the Law, are better than ever and now I have a sales rating in Germany and the UK as well as a much better one in the US.

I don't know why Konrath chooses to give such valuable advice to people he doesn't know, but here's the link to his blog.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Now How Cool is This? A synopsis of Brand Loyalty in German!

Man, this is just ausgesheitnit (my stab at the German word that I believe means Outstanding.  I love this.

Major Matt Rommel, der vom Marine Corps und dem California Department of Corrections pensioniert ist, hat ein Leben voller angewandter Gewalt hinter sich. Nun ist er Museumsführer im Palace of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco und verbringt seine Tage umgeben von Kunstschätzen und die Nächte in Vinces Bar im Mission District. Die Jahre haben auch das Leben von Carolyn Kast verändert und sie mit einer gescheiterten Ehe zurückgelassen. Jetzt ist sie alleinerziehende Mutter in ihren Vierzigern mit einer Werbeagentur im Anfangsstadium und zwei Geschäftspartnern, die einander ständig an die Gurgel gehen. “The writing in Brand Loyalty is really very good and the author’s skill at switching among the many quirky characters (a favorite of mine is a one-eyed dog by the name of Chesty) seamless.” (Leser) (17 Rezensionen / 4,9 Sterne) Ca. 485 Normseiten – noch gratis?

Monday, September 22, 2014

Free on Amazon Kindle - Brand Loyalty - Currently Rated 68 - Updated

Brand Loyalty is available on Kindle FREE.
Ranking on the Free side began yesterday morning at 7,093.

It is currently ranked at 68.
#2 in Suspense
#5 in Mystery

Also, good rankings on Amazon UK, and Germany.

So, I suppose you could say that Brand Loyalty is an international best NON seller!

File Size: 522 KB
Print Length: 332 pages
Publisher: F.M. Kahren; 2 edition (November 23, 2013)
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Language: English
Text-to-Speech: Enabled
Not Enabled
Lending: Enabled
Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #125 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
#5 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Mystery, Thriller & Suspense > Suspense
 Would you like to give feedback on images or tell us about a lower price? .

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Book Give Away Results -

The Book Give Away Contest is Over.  Thanks to all who participated.

Look for next weeks promotion on Amazon.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Download my Doctoral Dissertation for Free as a PDF? - See Link

I don't know if this is for real or not.  I came across this site that states that my Strategic Planning/Wireless Telephony research can be downloaded at no charge.

I had no knowledge of this sites existence, nor did I agree to this.  That being said,  The work is about 12 years old and the purpose of a dissertation is the creation of knowledge.  So, assuming that this site is legitimate and assuming that someone out there has an interest in different strategic planning methodologies, fine.

Monday, September 8, 2014

My Advice to a Novelist Just Beginning the Journey

So what would qualify me to give ANYONE advice about the publishing business?  One thing only, the person asked.

Twenty years ago, I worked for the local phone company.  I met a lot of talented people.  Somehow, I did not alienate all of them.  Last week, I got an e-mail from a former colleague who has written a novel.  He invited me to meet and discuss the publishing business with him.

If you are a grown up with a family, you know these things are difficult to arrange.  Still, I couldn't help thinking about my experience (and I am not done trying yet!) and what the first couple of years can be like.  So, I sent him this letter, if the hope that even this little bit would be of some use:


I don't know when we are going to be able to get together.  Even so, I have been thinking about your new adventure, writing, publishing etc.

Without meeting, I can pass along a few things, most of which you may already know:

1) Fiction or Non-Fiction - Traditional Publishing vs Self Publishing - It makes a big difference;
If you are selling fiction to a traditional publisher, you must have a completed manuscript.

If you want a decent publisher, you probably need a good agent.  Two good agents are Janet Reid and Elizabeth Pomada.  I really like Janet, she's a successful pro.  I wasn't able to land her, but I like her.

Look at the Literary Marketplace - a massive resource book that lists publishers and agents.  Important here are the publishers that accept unagented manuscripts.  There are only a few.

Non-Fiction, easier to sell and you don't need a complete manuscript.  Michael Larson is among the best on the West Cost and he is non-fiction only.

POD publishers (print on demand) - Easier to get to, but they do almost no promotion.  You can say that you have a publisher and you may get a good edit.  That's about it.
My POD publisher relationship was odd.  Not bad, but odd.

Self - Publishing:  Much easier to do, but lots and lots of work after that.  You will have to spend the rest of your life selling if your work is fiction.

Non-fiction - "Calculus made Super Easy" or whatever, always has a market.

Conferences: I went to the SF Writers Conference in 2004 and it was the hardest 3 days of my life.  Everything I wanted to believe, was wrong.  I learned a lot.
That conference was at the Sir Frances Drake.  Also at the hotel - a drag queen conference.  Tucked, taped and fabulous.

I also went to Bouchercon in 2010 at the Hyatt Regency.  Bouchercon is for Mystery writers and fans and it was nothing but indulgence.
I met my favorite writers.  I visited with booksellers that had my novel in stock who were embarrassingly kind.  I didn't sell.  I didn't buy.
I wallowed in my own dim glory and the achievements of much more successful writers.

Writing novels is for those who will not quit: will not quit writing, will not quit selling, will not quit obsessing over how to gain new readers.

Of all the true winners I have known in Life, you are near the top.  I know that this will be a good thing for you and that you will touch many people.



An Interview in Readers Writers Journal -

Lucky break for me, an interview on Readers Writers Journal.

So, Waddaya think?

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Wanda Snow Porter - A Prose Style that Steinbeck Would Admire

Wanda Snow Porter's Engaging  Character from "Riding Babyfact"

One of the books I am currently reading is "Riding Babyface".  It is much more that a coming of age story.  It is more that a tale of deep friendship between a girl and a clever horse.  This is a tale of California central coast life in the late 1950's.

Porter's prose style evokes Steinbeck in those moments when he gently contemplates the human condition of everyday people.

Today, Wanda Snow Porter discusses her character on her site.

Click here:

ps: I never thought I would use the words 'clever' and 'horse' together in the same sentence.

A bit more about Wanda Snow Porter:

Wanda Snow Porter grew up on the central coast of California riding horseback on land once part of an old Mexican rancho. An avid horsewoman, she learned the vaquero way of riding and training horses, and earned the United States Dressage Federation's Bronze Medal Rider Award. She is a docent for the Dana Adobe and helps school children experience what life was like for vaqueros who lived and worked on an early California rancho. Her knowledge of ranch life, horses, and history inspired her to write stories for tweens, teens, and the young at heart. She has written and illustrated the Adobe Burros Picture Book Series, published by Dana Adobe Nipomo Amigos, and is the author of three young adult novels: Spurs for José, Remedy, and Riding Babyface.

Wanda's Website and Blog: