Orangeberry Virtual Book Tour, Defined

It’s August, and I’m virtually (almost or nearly as described, but not completely or according to strict definition) starting a virtual (not physically existing as such but made by software to appear to do so) book tour.

The Orangeberry Summer Splash! 100 authors waxing elegant and cracking snide all over your local internet. Giveaways, prizes, virtual hotdogs and a watermelon seed spitting contest. (Don’t even try to beat me. I’ve got an intellectual patent on my spitting technique, the tongue cannon.)

What’s a Virtual Book Tour?

But semi-seriously, part of the fun of this brave new world we live in are the ample opportunities to discover new books and new voices who were barred from public platform only a few short years ago. The virtual book tour acts as a surrogate promoter for books lost in the digital woods. In this case 100 authors have rallied to the teat of Orangeberry for a month of nourishing via the mother’s milk of book bloggers all around the world. (Yes, this is as serious as I get.)

This is How it Can Work [Read more…]

My Plan for Kobo Books

What the world needs now is an online version of the neighborhood book store, for eBooks. Kobo, I say it should be you.

It appears inevitable that the Department of Justice will soon dish out a top-rope body slam to the world of traditional publishing. For those who haven’t been following the matter like so much O.J. carnivality let me explain. No, there’s no time. I’ll sum up. “Colluding” major publishers will no longer be able to dictate the price of eBooks. Thus online retailers (ie. Amazon) will be able to affectively sell major titles for whatever price they want (without suffering a year end loss).

Bad News for Readers

Alas, I am feared this heralds bad news for both writers like me and readers like you. “How do you figure?” you might ask. Well, gentle reader, even though eBook prices on some of the most popular titles will most certainly fall (good for readers) the end result of this could be a loss of diversity for the written word (bad for readers unless you only want to read vampire romance and legal thrillers).

Crap man, and just when the eBook revolution was cracking the market open for all sorts of original (some terrible, some terrific) creations of fiction. Now it appears inevitable that lower prices on major titles will squeeze indie authors out of a job. If The Hunger Games and the latest Tom Clancy thriller are available at $7.99 (or less) how many readers will continue to take risks on unknown authors for $4.99?

Enter Kobo Books (or any other eBook retailer with the gonads to step up). [Read more…]

Branding & Business Cards for Indie Authors

Some are saying that the eBook is the new business card.

Crap.

If that’s the case then I’m one of thousands trying to make a living from handing out business cards that take between four and twelve months to write. Which would make me an idiot something fierce.

This isn’t a road I want to go down. But if eBooks aren’t the new business card, then what are they? What is the new business card? What am I? (And what’s this I’m sitting on… oh, my son’s Cheerios.)

Of course the industry word at the heart of all this piss and rambling is “branding.” As I wipe the cereal crumbs from my britches I think of all the heart-smart mornings I’ve spent watching my sons eat these crunchy little ohs which have become ubiquitous with snack-traps and toddlers. Branding.

I’m a story-teller. A liar by trade. I don’t mind saying I’m pretty damn good at it. [Read more…]