Tag Archives: authors

Readers and Holiday Shoppers #amreading

cropped-rt-logo-ad

Got someone on your Christmas list that is hard to shop for?

What about books?

The Read Tuesday campaign is off to a good start and the preliminary catalog is now available.You can review it here. See if your favorite authors are listed or get to know some new ones here. This second annual Read Tuesday is like Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but it’s all about books, and it’s HUGE!

This is your opportunity to view a variety of authors; both traditionally published and independently published, and see what books are available at great savings. These books are a great gift item. If you know the reading preferences of your friends, browse the catalog and check them out. Then, on Tuesday, December 9th, grab yourself and your friends a few.

download (1)

Red Clay and Roses will go on sale Monday, December 7th, and be available at 99 cents for one week throughout the Read Tuesday campaign.  Many authors are listing their sale prices early, and some will have sales continuing throughout the week, but

ALL will be discounted on Read Tuesday.

I have an Ereader News Today promo going on Tuesday as well, so if you want the book at a good sale price, support an author and buy early, help bring that ranking up for the big event on December 9th. The Russell Home for Atypical Children thanks you, too!

Blogging Promotions and My Book Reviews

1792884

Somebody recently asked me if I have read all of the other author’s work that I promote on my blog. It is a question that I am asked frequently.

Most often I have, but sometimes I have not. So why would I promote them?

If I am doing a book review, then I have read that book and liked enough about it to say so and recommend it. I may not have loved it, but I liked it. I can usually find nice things to say about the books I have read, after all I did choose them to read! I do book reviews at liberty and do not take requests.

I will not post book reviews for works that I could not read, for whatever reason, or works I did not like. I may post that review on Amazon &/or Goodreads, but not on my blog if it is an author not known to me. I will usually send the author a personal email if it is an author known to me. I try to keep the blog positive.

I do promotional posts and reblog indie authors or traditionally published authors I have met through blogging. Occasionally, I will post on a really good book I have read that is written by a non-blogger author, but is so very interesting to me that I think my readers may also be interested.

Books I have not read will sometimes be promoted because I feel that we all need to help each other out. So I am not really recommending them as books I know, but as books you might like to try. They may not be a genre that I am personally interested in, but having such a diverse readership, I know someone else out there might thoroughly enjoy the read. It is a way to help readers find books.

Blogging is a way to reach other people and I feel as bloggers interested in writing books we can all pass on information about books that others might find useful or interesting, a cover reveal, a blog tour, a debut, a continuation of a series, a sale. These are all ways we can be helpful and share the word.

I would spend my whole time blogging books for others if I tried to reblog everything, so I start with people who have engaged me on this blog or whom I have met on theirs. I may not pick up on everything.

I may not have read the works, it may not be your cup of tea (or mine either)…and that’s okay.

We’re all in this social media experience together.

Share the love.

Social Media Suicide Mission

Facebook-teen-usage

I had a social media meltdown last night on Facebook in particular. I can’t say that I have Twitter figured out yet, so I don’t spend a lot of time on there.

I started with Facebook the first day they opened to the public. My kids were in college and it was another way to exchange photos with them quickly and see how they were doing. I had friends and family on there. Maybe 80 people. I didn’t need 400 really. There are not 400 people in this world I really care to keep up with quite that closely.

Facebook, as you know, has changed over the years. Groups were added. People set up advertisement pages you could like and get info from time to time.

The ad pages have gone wild sending out dozens of posts a day, probably mechanically through some automated hootsuite-like operation. Most of the reader writer groups have turned into spam mobiles rather than actual discussion forums for people to discuss books.

Despite turning off all notifications, Facebook was slamming my newsfeed with strangers on a regular basis. It got so bad this past week that every time I signed onto Facebook I had this perpetual feed of authors promoting their books….dozens and dozens of them. People I don’t know and have never heard of. Seriously, if I want a book to read, I should be able to go to a group site and scan them myself for something that looks interesting. But having them slamming me on my newsfeed thirty or forty authors two to six times a day was ridiculous.

It got so bad that I couldn’t FIND any of my friend’s posts. I would scroll past twenty or thirty book posts just to find one post from a family member or friend. Then twenty or thirty book promo posts till the next family or friend post. I could spend an hour just finding five close friends most recent posts.

I really wish I could get rid of the gamers also…but that’s another subject.

Suggested posts that Facebook sends are a nuisance but, so far, there are not that many of them.

Pages I have “liked” get to be obnoxious sometimes.

So last night…I pulled out of fifteen Facebook Groups. The only one I stayed in was my writers’ group page, so I can keep up with my local writer peeps.

I unfriended a bunch of folk who bothered me with religious or political posts. I have political opinions, but posting something just so you can be mean and hateful in comments makes me not want to care about your opinions. The fact that you go downtown and wash the homeless people’s feet, pass out food and hygiene products while reading scripture is something I will applaud you for once…but when it turns into daily grandiose grandstanding, you don’t appear very humble and that just sort of negates the whole process to me. (And really, in those 250 pictures, you should have been wearing gloves, and changing the water for their health and yours.)

I “unliked” a bunch of pages that I had previously “liked” because you abuse the privilege of being invited into my home. You talk so much nobody else can get a word in edgewise. Yes, some of my favorite people…like Anne Rice and George Takei were among them. Send me one or two notifications a day, but ten or twelve and, honestly, I’ve just had enough.

Anyway, I logged out, and this morning I logged back in. There you all were, my peeps, my family, my friends. Things look a bit more normal on there again.

If I unliked or unfriended you in my mad frenzy and you miss me. Let me know. I may have done it in a heated moment by accident. If you don’t miss me, it probably wasn’t meant to be.

I may have just committed social media suicide, but my peace of mind has been salvaged in the process.

Am I just doing something wrong?

I tried adjusting privacy and notification settings to no avail.

Is there a better way?

Authors: What to do if Your Book gets Pirated

There is not a lot of recourse against the site itself, especially if the site is out of the country. If the web hosting site is U.S.A., you can send a DMCA take down letter to the web hosting site. They are under pressure to break the links of sites performing copyright infringement. You are also required to share some personal information in the letter which you should do with the hosting company NOT the offending site.

How do you find the site hosting company?

You can search domain registration on whois.com at: http://www.whois.com/whois/

Once you find the web hosting site look for their contact info or legal contact. This is usually an email address link.

Gene Quinn has a sample letter you can personalize (copy and paste into email) and send to the hosting company:

http://www.ipwatchdog.com/2009/07/06/sample-dmca-take-down-letter/id=4501/

You will need the offending site’s URL for your work. Once you get that GTFO. Don’t attempt to download your book.

Advise all readers you know to avoid these pirating sites as they are known to send viruses, plant adware, spyware and do phishing scams for more personal information.

Often, if you use site buttons to make contact with the site itself, your IP will be blocked. It is best not to engage the site, but go directly to the web hosting site.

This information comes courtesy of:  Law Office of Cynthia Conlin, P.A.
1643 Hillcrest Street
Orlando, FL 32803
Tel: 407-965-5519
Fax: 407-545-4397
www.ConlinPA.com

One thing you can do to help protect yourself is set up a Google alert with your book title(s) and author name.

Yes, it is true, retail platforms should tighten up their security, but this is pretty much all we can do in the meanwhile.

Read Tuesday: We need your help to get the word out!

cropped-rt-logo-21-2

All you Facebookers: We need your family and friends.  Help us promote this event with a post to your Facebook account.  This event is like Black Friday or Cyber Monday, but it is all about books. It can read something like this:

Authors interested in promoting your books?  It is easy to sign up.  Gift Givers: Support the Indie Author & the Traditional Author and give the gift of books for the Holidays this year. This is going to be HUGE! December 10th! Mark your calendars. Free and 99 cent books. HUGE discounts. http://readtuesday.com/.”

Feel free to copy and post to your Facebook site.  Post it to your group sites, as well!  Or make your own message!  (Copy and paste the Read Tuesday URL http://readtuesday.com/ into your Facebook status with your message!)

When you post the link, a gold bow will appear in a thumbnail with a link directing folk to Read Tuesday’s site.

We appreciate your support.  Participate!  Get your books signed up today!

How Are You Inspired to Choose the Dedications in Your Books?

In the front matter to my book, “Red Clay and Roses”, there is a dedication, as many provide when they author a book.  I want to share with you the story behind the dedication.  It is not an ordinary dedication for supportive family and friends.  It is a dedication to a man whose name I never knew.  Well, it is to some degree, because I do mention my loving and supportive husband, Greg.   Read as follows and then I will explain:

While visiting my grandparent’s farm in my youth, an elderly African American man told me,

“If your children can look at my grandchildren and not see color, then we have made progress.”

This book is dedicated to him, the progress that we have made,

and to my loving and supportive husband, Greg.

Back story:

I am more than a half century in age at 52 years.  I was born in 1960 in Georgia.  Schools in my hometown were not integrated until 1971.  In 1972, I went into Foster Care.  In Foster Care, I was at home with other children of many races.  I did not give race much thought.  Same was true after I went to live in an orphanage in 1974.  By then, all of the schools in the area were integrated.  Most neighborhoods were exclusive, and many still are in the Deep South.  Things were very different in my grandparent’s time.

My grandparents lived on property that has been in my grandmother’s family since the land lottery of 1827.  My greatest American ancestor, Thomas Holland, won this 500 acre lot and one other lot for his war service in the American Revolutionary War.  It has been occupied by my grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins ever since that time.  Though only one home survived the Civil War, the land did.  My grandfather’s family’s Baptist Church stands on one end of the property and my grandmother’s family’s Methodist Church stands on the other end.

During my time growing up, throughout the time spent in Foster Care and the Orphanage, I was able to spend time with my many cousins and the hired help (mostly black) and their families on my grandparent’s farm.  This was primarily weekends, holidays, and summers

As I matured, I spent six months in New York City, and a few years in Atlanta Georgia.  City life was much different than time on the farm or in my small hometown.

The dedication and why it is meaningful to me:

I was not as deeply indoctrinated with racial opinions and bias as many others in my community growing up.  My grandparents; however, were very deeply indoctrinated.  While they were respectful in many ways, treated their hired help kindly, and paid them well.  They still had their set ways of thinking and acting.  Not having been very much influenced by the Civil Rights Movement, being way out in the country, they internalized the community around them, as most do.

The story:

When I was 19 years old, had a small child, and was already divorced, I spent some brief time in my grandparent’s home.  A female friend from North Georgia had come down to visit.

We were gathered at the dining room table having the noontime meal (called dinner in the South, not lunch).  The dog started barking and we heard a truck pull up into the driveway.  My grandfather got up from the table to go see what the ruckus was all about.  A few moments later, we heard him call out, “Mama, yo nigger is here to plow yo field!” very loudly.  He slammed the front door.

My friend and I looked at each other with our mouths agape.  Grandfather came back to the dining room and continued his meal, while Grandmother went to the bedroom to fetch her purse to pay the man.  A black man, an African-American, on invitation, had come with his rototiller to prepare Grandmother’s garden.

I got up from the table and went out onto the front porch where the elderly black man stood with his hat in his hands on the front steps.

79628-2218

“Sir, I am so sorry for my Grandfather’s behavior,” I apologized.

“Whatever are you apologizing for?” he asked.

“Well, he called you a nigger and slammed the door in your face.  That was rude and I am ashamed for him,” I went on.

“Little lady,” he said with a wide smile, “I ain’t never been nothin but a nigger. For all my long life, nothin but a nigger.  Your Grandpappy, he ain’t never knowed me as nothin but a nigger, all his long life.  But if your children can look at my grandchildren and not see color, well then, we has made some progress!”

His statement resonated with me for my whole lifetime.  I raised my children to not see color.  We sang “Everybody’s Beautiful” and “Jesus Loves the Little Children” before they were able to talk good.  Their friends were always welcome in our home regardless of color or national origin.  My two grandchildren are of mixed race, although they look nothing alike.  I could not imagine not accepting their father as family.

We are, each of us angels with only one wing, and we can only fly by embracing one another.

~Luciano de Crescenzo

After I wrote “Red Clay and Roses”, which was highly influenced by my life experiences and those of my family, I had to come up with what I felt was a meaningful dedication.  I did not feel the typical, “Thanks, to my supportive….,” would suffice.  The book has a significant amount of racial tension in it.  This African American man’s words came back to me.  We have made progress, and for that I am grateful.

facebook-header6.jpg

How do you decide what to write as a dedication in your books?  What inspires you to be grateful?  What progress do you see?