Friday, April 29, 2011

The King and the Kingdom

Well, the wedding's over, and presumably everyone survived. I suppose it's to be seen if Harry lives through the after-party.

I've never been much of one for the Royals -- I thoroughly avoided the Charles/Di debacle thirty years ago. It seems to me that the hype this time around was much less, possibly because Pr. William has not bandied about for fifteen years as an eligible bachelor like his father. I also have detected more cynicism about this wedding, which shouldn't be surprising from my seat here in the U.S., and I think it's political in nature.

Since the royal wedding thirty years ago, a lot has happened in the world besides the royal blowup, namely, democracy is rampant. The Eastern Bloc and even (for Pete's sake) the Soviet Union have fallen apart, majority rule came to South Africa, de facto representative governments stuck their heads above water in Afghanistan and Iraq, who-knows-what is trying to overthrow dictators in the Middle East and North Africa, and even China has granted economic freedoms. Monarchies and other authoritarians are becoming more and more of an anachronism.

Which poses a question for Western Christians -- how ready are you to bow to the King? Does it seem odd to think of being under absolute authority? Even decisions in most of our protestant churches are made by committees or direct election, not by elders as scripture directs (and the U.S. is definitely a protestant nation in nature.) The church in the West has no inkling of what it means to fall to your knees before one you call Lord. Something to think about.

Oh yeah. Buy my book.

Monday, April 25, 2011

New Media and New Marketing XIX

Hope you all had a marvelous Resurrection Day.

I just keep learning more and more. Here's the latest gambit -- I think these things are going to emerge much faster than I can keep up with them. #MentionMonday is another Twitter event, just like #SampleSunday, in which bloggers can promote their websites and maybe get more exposure (in my case, for "The Job"). So I'm involved today, and I have to apologize to all those Tweeters who do sample this blog and come up with this entry. I'm explaining to you what you're doing right now! Fascinating. But in truth, it doesn't get much more interesting than this.

So, check out my book on Amazon, Barnes&Noble and Smashwords. I also have a page on Goodreads. And have a good day.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Back to the Old Grind

Well, this has been enlightening. As reported, a feature on boosted sales of "The Job" at the Kindle store, although not to the great effect that I first thought. The next day, sales went back to zero, and it's been that way ever since. So getting on a prominent website can substantially help a book, but once it's no longer at the top of the front page the effect is over. The only thing I can think of to do with this is, since these sites are mostly blogs, is every time a new feature or review is posted, leave a comment about the new post. Probably won't garner much attention, but what else is there?

In other news, the second installment of the Poncey stories is finished in first draft, and the opening story is undergoing its editing process. Don't know what I'm talking about? Stay tuned for more details!

Monday, April 18, 2011

New Media and New Marketing XVIII

As I mentioned, "The Job" was featured yesterday on, which supports itself by linking to books on Amazon, thereby earning a couple cents every time a customer buys a book through the links. As I reported a couple weeks ago, "The Job" was ranked at about #70 at Amazon in the Christian>Fiction>Humor genre. Well, "The Job"'s performance Sunday vaulted it to #62 in that genre. Woo-hoo!

That's actually pretty good, but here's the other shoe. Confidentially, my sales on Sunday were four books. That's probably a daily record, but still, if four sales can lift a book some 10 places within a genre, what does that say about the genre? So there you have it.

Still, thanks so much to the Cheapskates at DailyCheapReads. Maybe I'll get a review and some word-of-mouth out of it.

Friday, April 15, 2011

New Media and New Marketing XVII

Hey, I thought of something. I've finally figured out what to do with a meaningless review. 

A new review came in the other day, which I'm not going to link to for reasons that will become apparent. First, I have to say that any review is a good review, because it gets "The Job" in front of eyes that might not see the title otherwise. Also, I've never gotten a bad review, even when the reviewer obviously didn't get it. But insightful commentary on the book seldom comes through, which has left me wondering how to use these things pro-actively.

This is how. The review that I speak of reads like this, in toto: "This book is humorous and short by Craig Davis . I couldn't put this one down. This one I highly recommend  this book but a easy short read." Extra spaces and jumbled line spacing is sic, and I don't mean that in a hip way; I don't know what that last sentence is supposed to say. This girl is clearly not a writer, and I think she's not really a reader either. She gave "The Job" four stars, which is fine, except that a review of her blog reveals that she gives any brainless romance five stars. I think "The Job" is blown off to some extent because it is humor and short, and many times it's read superficially, and I think reviewers who read any book only at that level, or want only books that can be read that way, should be discounted.

So what about me? What can I do with this? Here's what: Copy and paste "I couldn't put this one down. This one I highly recommend" and add an ellipsis. I don't know why I didn't think of this before, because it's standard practice in any kind of testimonial, but at least I've got it now. So be prepared for lots of ellipses in future posts.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Old Media I

When you get to the end of the story, you stop writing.

I posted only once last week, and here it is Wednesday and I'm only just getting around to it now. I'm running out of ideas already, and my news to share is paper thin. So has the blog already run its course? No, because it was never about ideas or news, it was about links. Sorry to be cynical, but let's face it, I have no illusions of attracting a big reading audience. I just want links to show up on Google searches, which I'm told begins to happen after about four months of blogging, so I'll keep plugging along. The Job.

I did have an idea about old media and where it might be going, but now I've forgotten it. Maybe it'll come to me.

Here's a feature on The Job at Indie Books Blog. A review would be better, but you take what you can get. I have gotten a handful of new offers from reviewers, but these things take time to turn around.

Monday, April 4, 2011

New Media and New Marketing XVI

Don't have much to say today. I've been running through new lists of book reviewers, and I've gotten a few bites, but most of these poor people are so backed up that it will take weeks if not months for "The Job" to make it to the top of their piles. One of the more major book review blogs, Red Adept, has a turnaround rate of a year. I sent them a copy late last year, so it'll probably be the fall before they get to it.

Which brings me to one observation: There are book review blogs, and there are bloggers who review books. I've learned to concentrate on the first, because bloggers who review books basically are interested only in what they would be reading anyway. Unless I can detect some real connection they might have with "The Job," it's not worth the time requesting a review from them. Their blogs are not likely to have a lot of followers, either.

Having said that, here's a review -- the very first -- of "Feallengod: The Conflict in the Heavenlies." It is by a blogger who reviews books. Full discloser: He's a friend of mine, and this is his first review, but you can trust his judgment 100%. Take a moment to take a look at it. Also, here's an author interview I posted with a Facebook group, Book Junkies.

You know, the part of this that takes the longest is setting up the links.

Friday, April 1, 2011

No Bad Publicity

If you're an author, you're probably not reading this. If you are an author reading this, you can quit now, because you've already seen it.

This is what Internet marketing is all about, in a twisted kind of way. Independent book publishers/authors are all salivating after that killer review, but this woman got more than she bargained for. Jacqueline Howett sent her book, The Greek Seaman, to Big Al's Books and Pals for a review. And that's what she got, and it wasn't particularly bad. But "Big Al" did point out technical flaws in her writing, which led to this firestorm. Now more people know about Jacqueline's book than she could ever have hoped for, and maybe some of them will even buy it.

But more will probably buy this. It's a real measure of our current media culture that you can make a fool of yourself, and someone will be making a profit off you before you can get up off the floor. Big Al is also suffering from the aftermath. Which didn't stop me from sending him a request to review "The Job," because let's face it, a lot more people know of his blog now than they did a week ago. But his sudden fame has surely brought on an onslaught of review requests, so I don't expect to hear from him. But given the size headache he no doubt has now, he might benefit from reading "The Job" anyway.

In other news, Sample Sunday is coming up again. This week I'll be featuring a chapter from "Wars of the Aoten," once again based on St. Celibart statistics, the most popular chapter. If you're on Twitter, just search for #samplesunday, and click the links that authors have tweeted. If you like their writing, then retweet their links to your followers. Help out an indie.