Left Coast Voices

"I would hurl words into the darkness and wait for an echo. If an echo sounded, no matter how faintly, I would send other words to tell, to march, to fight." Richard Wright, American Hunger

Archive for the month “April, 2010”

ABNA – not quite…

I heard today that Unwanted Heroes didn’t make the 2010 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award semifinals. I guess reaching the final 250 (out of 10,000 entries) is still an achievement, so I won’t be too hard on myself – now where’s that bottle of Jameson?

Good Writing,

Alon Shalev

The Next Blogging Level

Dear Friends,

To get this blog recognized on Facebook’s Networked Blogs and receive more exposure, I need people to:

1. go to http://apps.facebook.com/blognetworks/blog/countdown_to_a_novel_published/ and ‘validate’ me – no I can’t cut your parking expenses but I will be extremely grateful.

2. sign up as a ‘follower’ on the right side of this page. I need 2 more people…

I would really appreciate if you could take a few minutes to do either (or both) Have a great weekend,

Some Ebook Developments & Updates

As the ebook market continues to expand, new battlegrounds are opening up throughout the market. Here are two interesting articles:
1) Jim Milliot explains about one such battle between two giants, Amazon and Penguin, in Publishers Weekly at this link
2) Michael Stackpole then takes everyone to task regarding the percentage that the publishers and distributors are taking from ebooks at this link.

By the way, if you are in the writers business, you would do well to keep an eye on Michael’s blog.

My ebook update is less dramatic than the great wars being played out, but at least I’m involved…somewhat.

Kindle – the ebook provider of Amazon.com has reduced the price of Oilspill dotcom (ebook version) to $4.99 for a limited period. I don’t know for how long this sale will continue, but it brings it into line with my other e-outlets.

Smashwords – have signed a deal with Apple that will make them distributors for the iPad. I am i-excited about this. Smashwords have done a great job positioning themselves (and us, the authors) with Sony, Barnes & Noble’s Nook and just about everyone else.
I am also proud of the fact that the next soldier to rake advantage of Operation Ebook Drop, and download my novel for free will be the 50th soldier to do so. Know someone deployed in a combat zone? Please refer them to my website for a link to this great program.
Finally last week, Oilspill dotcom was accepted for Smashwords’ Premium Catalog. This has many marketing advantages for me, but is also validation of the level of my work.

Scribd – nothing much happening with my book through Scribd. I suspect that I am not utilizing it properly. If you use Scribd, please drop me a line and offer some advise.

In fact, I would love to hear from anyone who is seeing success with their ebook. I’d be happy to share your secrets (with your permission of course) and in doing so promote your book on my blog.

Viva La Ebook Revolution!

Making a clown out of Ronald McDonald

April 1st, 2010

I came across the following post yesterday:
April Fools? Group Calls for Ronald McDonald’s Retirement
Written by Free Audio Books – Free audiobooks on March 31, 2010 – 11:13 pm –

A nonprofit consumer rights group argues that Ronald McDonald is hardly a good example to children and, in fact, has played a leading role in the country’s current epidemic of obesity and diet-related diseases, says Corporate Accountability for International.

Now the group says it’s time — long-past time, perhaps — the clown packed up his over-sized shoes and messy red wig and retired.

“McDonald’s, and its iconic clown, is not only the face of the epidemic: it is the engine behind it. No corporation has done more to hook kids on unhealthy food,” said Stacey Folsom, spokeswoman for Corporate Accountability International. SF Gate

Truth is, Ronald McDonald is no stranger to controversy. In the McLibel trial (rumored to be the real story behind my latest novel, Oilspill dotcom), one of the defendants shared his rage at the clown appearing at a birthday party and at a public school event. When the verdict came down, McDonalds lost the point that claimed they advertise to children.

However, my favorite anecdote was when the original Ronald McDonald went vegetarian. Of course, McDonalds took him to court and attempted to force him to eat his words. They did succeed in preventing him from ever donning his McMakeup again.

Thank you to all who congratulated me on reaching the final 250 entries of the 2010 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award. Please do click on the link and leave a comment, review etc.

Good Writing,

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