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Sunday, January 31, 2016

Oregon Standoff...almost the end

Finally, something happened.
But unfortunately someone died. Here's the official footage.
https://news.vice.com/article/fbi-releases-unedited-footage-of-oregon-militia-spokesmans-fatal-shooting
From what I can see, the action really starts at 9:15, when the white car swerves off to the left into the snow. Finicum runs out towards the trees with his hands up. He reaches for something in his pocket, only to put his hands up again but still moves towards the trees. He then spins, reaches for something in his pocket, spots the Officer coming out of the trees, stops, and then gets shot. When he's lying in the snow, he does something else, who knows, then his right arm rests in the snow. He's still alive at that time. There are a few shots from the white car, as seen by the gun flashes. 10 minutes later, the other men slowly get out of the white car after two Officers walk up to it. The Officers can then get to Finicum. By that time, he's dead or dying. If they were allowed to get to him before then, he might still be alive. Might. Just might. If he'd kept his hands up, they wouldn't have shot him.

So, what was more important than a good man's life? Playing with guns?
There are still 4 armed people left on the Refuge. Apparently, "Only God knows what's to come." (see link below) These people are dumb, so dumb.
http://www.oregonlive.com/oregon-standoff/2016/01/oregon_standoff_last_of_the_oc.html

I'm all for having guns for self-defense, but to use them to take over an area of government land because you disagree with something? Nope. That's just as bad as taking a gun into school. That's bullying and threatening, and a complete abuse of yours and everyone else's freedom.
Guns are a tool to kill. Do you really need to carry one around with you, or fire one as a deterrent? If so, something is wrong with your community and you need to deal with that.

...but STILL nothing about the land being the property of the Bush Paiute Tribe...
http://www.inquisitr.com/2718940/burns-paiute-tribe-sounds-off-about-oregon-standoff-at-malheur-wildlife-center/

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Two Quickies in one Post! Oh my!

I came 2nd in the Iron Writer 2015 Winter Open :-( 
Twelve votes came in from the Iron Writers, 6-4-2, meaning one person made all the difference. My story was 'clever'. I wasn't going for 'wham bam' funny, more 'oh, clever'. I guess it wasn't 'punchy' enough. Oh well.

I'm also still waiting for a magazine to come out which has two of my stories, reviews and interviews of those I have met along my writing 'travels'. Still.
Also waiting for the paperback of "All For Love"...if you'd like it in Kindle, it's here...
http://www.amazon.com/All-Love-Dani-J-Caile-ebook/dp/B01APR99OK

Later this year, I have a short story in a 'love' anthology (Feb 14th), and one in a humorous anthology on Afterlife (2nd quarter of 2016)...seeing as I wrote 4/5 books on this subject, I was able to think of something for that one.

So, here's the last two Iron Writer Quickies, with pictures!

163 – image above, An important task, A complication, End your story with a quote from any song, movie, or book


"Look, Tarquin, this is a very important task. You can't just continue on thinking this way as though it's nothing," stated Jeffrey, sipping his tea and watching the people walk by, busy in their business.
"Why don't you deal with your own house before throwing stones, Jeffrey," spat Tarquin, brushing his quiff away from his face.
"Do you at least have a plan, my dear fellow?" asked Jeffrey. He spotted a potential target for tonight's follies, winking at him and getting the nod.
"Who do you think I am? Of course I do. I have a Plan A, Plan B AND Plan C."
Jeffrey turned his attention towards his companion and stared in disbelief. "Then why haven't you started?" he asked.
"There's a slight complication," replied Tarquin.
"Complication. Complication, you say? I think there's a little more than just a 'slight complication', my dear fellow!," laughed Jeffrey.
"Oh no, no. It's not that bad, almost... insignificant if you take in the bigger picture," said Tarquin.
Jeffrey put his cup down on the saucer and leaned closer, gesturing to Tarquin to do the same. His companion did, reluctantly.
"Tarquin, please. All that happens means something; nothing you do is ever insignificant."


164 – image above, desperation, social anxiety disorder, a concerted effort


Under the cover of the ship's engines, three invaders landed close by their target, unnoticed in the smoke and noise.
"Come on men, only with a concerted effort can we fulfill this mission!" shouted Jiddar, the leader of the three armored warriors. They ran together and entered the building, spotting what they had come for. With guns at the ready, Jiddar motioned to one of the others to act. "Zarth! Go, go, go!" The man didn't move. "Zarth!"
"I...I can't do this, I tell you! I'm worthless, completely worthless!" screamed Zarth, letting his XR378 Laser Cannon fall and dropping to his knees.
"What the f...?" said Jiddar.
"Oh no, his Social Anxiety Disorder has kicked in again," sighed Tardish.
"What? We only have a few seconds left!" Out of desperation, Jiddar unpressurised his armor, allowing him to remove his gloves and try bare-handed. With all his might he tried, with no success. He shook his head and suited up to leave, turning to his comrade. "Looks like we go back to base empty-handed once again, Tardish," said Jiddar, grabbing a sobbing Zarth and dragging him back to the ship.
The peanut butter jar stood defiantly on the table, unopened.

Monday, January 25, 2016

4th great review for "All For Love"

Got No.4 review for "All for Love", and it seems Brick (Thank you!) got the idea of it. Yes, a traditional mystery using the occasional trope, with a 'kick' to it. Perhaps it's the hidden message which gives the edge, I'm not sure, but I know it has class. And so do four other readers. Here's the review...

5 stars...At its best, All For Love is like Neil Gaiman had a baby with Douglas Adams
By Brick on January 24, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

At its best, All For Love is like Neil Gaiman had a baby with Douglas Adams. At its worst, the story gets tropish but you're laughing so much you don't care.
Another masterwork of short fiction (weighing in at just 100 pages) from an up-and-coming star. Definitely worth the price of admission.


So, come and have a look for yourself!
http://www.amazon.com/All-Love-Dani-J-Caile-ebook/dp/B01APR99OK


I think I've also started work on the next, a sci-fi this time...

Friday, January 22, 2016

3rd Great review of "All for Love" on Amazon!

Thanks again to Jasper for reading "All for Love" and typing up a great review!
Here it is in all its splendor...

5.0 out of 5 stars
A Murder Mystery with Dark Humor, Sharp Writing, Lifelike Characters, and Of Course A Twist
By Jasper Scott on January 22, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition

A murder mystery with dark humor and oddball characters brought to life by the author's cunning dialogue and prose. I actually found the author's style and eloquence to be one of the book's strongest points, but having said that, the mystery is a clear force throughout the book, pulling the reader through the pages, and the characters come alive to the point that I could actually imagine I've been to their one-horse town and met all of them. A great read with a cunning twist that will have you reading back through the pages to find all the subtle clues that should have given it away.


Great, huh? But my Author rank is #260,183 at the moment, with #112,468 being the highest this month (Jan 17th). Only the CHOSEN ONES get to be famous...and this fine book
 "All for Love"...
http://www.amazon.com/All-Love-Dani-J-Caile-ebook/dp/B01APR99OK
...isn't jumping off the shelves...but here are a few recent top ranks from Amazon, most of them from anthologies...

Spectacular Tales 2: The Science Fiction and Fantasy Collection (The Indie Collaboration...
#244,332 in Kindle books store (paid)

The Indie Collaboration Presents: Tales From Darker Places: A Chilling Horror Anthology
#463,740 in Kindle books store (paid)

All for Love
#627,006 in Kindle books store (paid)

Christmas Lites V
#671,957 in Kindle books store (paid)

Baby Shoes: 100 Stories by 100 Authors
#760,801 in Kindle books store (paid)

So, still not a known author yet :-(
If you can pop on a review or two, that would be nice :-)

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

2015 Iron Writer Winter Open Final!

A great blog post which sums up how I feel.
http://www.whimsydark.com/blog/2015/4/13/please-shut-up-why-self-promotion-as-an-author-doesnt-work
This week I had a 'Twitter' promotion package, free, because I won that little voting competition. Do you know how many books I sold due to that? None. It doesn't work. I guess I'll stay on the desert know as 'self-publishing'...okay, now I'm not exactly 'self-published', I have books published by L by L and Firefly, it's a step up, but in terms of sales and exposure... not much difference, but that's the 'nature of the beast'.

Oh yes! My story is up in the 2015 Iron Writer Winter Open Final!
Come here and read (and vote if you like) my take on the elements given!
Enjoy!
http://theironwriter.com/the-iron-writer-challenge-142-2015-winter-open-championship/


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Bush Paiute Tribe ignored?

Okay, it's now the third week of the Bundy Oregon Standoff and STILL nothing has happened to these WHITE GUYS with GUNS. They have no right to that land, at all.
The Bush Paiute tribe, however, have every right to take over that land...because it's theirs!
This news article over here says it all...
http://www.inquisitr.com/2718940/burns-paiute-tribe-sounds-off-about-oregon-standoff-at-malheur-wildlife-center/
130 years ago, they were marched off their land by the US Cavalry but the Government couldn't be bothered to RATIFY the Treaty they forced the tribe to sign! No respect! You see, they're NOT WHITE.
Now there's the threat that 4000 ancient artifacts on that land could be OR always have been stolen, parts of history that cannot be brought back. Now THAT'S criminal.
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/USA-Update/2016/0117/The-hostages-of-Oregon-standoff-4-000-Paiute-artifacts-video
But what I don't get is...why doesn't anyone LISTEN to the Bush Paiute Tribe?
Oh, hang on...
Because they are NOT WHITE and DON'T HAVE GUNS...simple, really.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

All for Love #codex + HarperCollins at it again! The Revenant???

Yes, I got another promo email from HarperCollins and what competion are they having? This one...

The same movie I ripped apart in this post over here...
http://danijcaile.blogspot.hu/2016/01/the-revenantspoilershugh-glass-yeah.html
I'm not saying it's a bad movie, jus' saying there are tons better. Watched "Russian Ark" the other night, a movie recorded in one take (it was the third try, apparently). Okay, slightly dull, but imagine trying that!
Oh, did I say that "All for Love", my new novella and 100% unbreakable codex, is available on Amazon and soon in paperback? Well, it is and it will be!
http://www.amazon.com/All-Love-Dani-J-Caile-ebook/dp/B01APR99OK



2 Fantastic reviews of "All For Love" :-)

A good start! Apparently I have some sales over at Smashwords...
https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/608095
...and two fantastic reviews over on Amazon from ARC readers, after only 1 day :-)
http://www.amazon.com/All-Love-Dani-J-Caile-ebook/dp/B01APR99OK


Thank you Larry and Amy! Maybe this little novella will get me off the Desert Bus and into the Castle :-)
Siren's Song...yes! She got it! :-) Lili B's face, the inspiration for this little story, a real-life siren, can be found on the back of the paperback version of the book, which will be available soon.
The book even has its own website!
http://evelynsandsismissing.weebly.com/
AND it's on Goodreads...
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28576501-all-for-love

5.0 out of 5 stars
Siren’s Song
By Amy Outland

Readers of mystery and mythology will probably enjoy All For Love, the edgy novella by author Dani J. Caile.
A mystery unfolds in the small fishing community of Fickleton, when two fishermen, Horris and Nigel find the body of a one of the village’s residents, a beautiful young girl named Evelyn floating in the river.
All For Love is a quick read at just over one hundred pages that could easily be read from start to finish in one sitting if one were so inclined.
This sharply written novella is filled with humor and suspense and will keep you guessing as the two dim-witted fishermen put their heads together to simultaneously discern the killer’s identity and prove their own innocence.
This story is fast-paced and entertaining so if you’re looking for a mystery or maybe just a good laugh All For Love is definitely worth your time.

5.0 out of 5 stars
Great Fast Paced Edgy Work
by Larry Paz

An intriguing fast read mystery with well-defined characters. The main plot is well presented and the sub plots heighten the storyline. The reader lives the twists and turns of the story through Horris and Nigel. Want to enjoy a fun but thoughtful evening of edgy reading? This book did it for me.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

WQ162 + "All For Love" on Smashwords

"All For Love" is available on Smashwords now for 99c...

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/608095 



I've also written my entry for the Iron Writer Winter 2015 Open...it's different. Next week...

And here's the Iron Writer Weekend Quickie 162...
http://theironwriter.com/the-iron-writer-challenge-weekend-quickie-162/
Mine is reproduced down here, too...




WQ162 – image above, a longstanding debt, an estranged relationship, counter-intuitive

As the rain poured down, he watched the gay, vibrant crowd inside the corner bar. Their revelry would be quickly halted. Lighting a cigarette, he took one long drag and flicked what was left into the wet gutter, following its journey into the sewers  below. One other would follow it tonight. Checking his gun below his trench coat, he entered the espresso bar, the aroma of crushed coffee beans mixing with the dampness of the night. No one turned as he sat down on a stool by the toilet door. He ordered a cappuccino and waited. It didn't take long for her to come over.
"Long time no see, Dave," his estranged publisher said as she took the seat next to him.
"You owe me," he said, pouring a bag of brown sugar into his cup and watching it disappear under the foam.
"Owe you? That was a long time ago, Dave, get over it," she said, sipping her americano.
He reached for his gun but she was quicker, firing a shot into his gut. The crowd continued on, laughing, joking.
"Well..." said Dave. "That was... counter-intuitive." He fell from his stool and lay, watching his blood cover the tiles.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Update: Winter 2015 Final/All For Love Release/How to promo!

Yep, with votes from Iron Writers, I got through the Prelims and into the Final...once again! I don't know about winning that, though... I've seen the elements. I may need to go deeper for this one...

I did pretty well in the Popular vote, too!

AND tomorrow..."All For Love" is coming out! Get ready for a link or two!
AND "How to" is being promoted for a week here! I wonder how that will go?
http://booksgosocial.com/2016/01/14/build-castle-seven-easy-steps


Wednesday, January 13, 2016

The Revenant...SPOILERS...Hugh Glass? Yeah, right.

I heard 'The Revenant' was one of the best movies of the moment, so I watched it...I want that two and a half hours of my life back, thank you very much.
I'm reading "Mrs Dalloway" by Virgina Woolf at the moment...THAT is class. The Revenant is NOT.
DiCaprio's performance is the only good thing about this movie...oh, and the snow. Go and watch it for that, if you must, but it's his "man in a bid to survive" performance, one which he has so often done before. His face suits it.
So, what's wrong? The winter landscape shots are fantastic, you can feel the cold and immense distances. But there are problems with believability, as many critics have already said.
Firstly, how can someone survive so many things which would kill you? He escapes an Indian raid on their pelt camp (about 25 out of 35 people die), he survives THREE individual attacks from a large mother grizzly bear and then is crushed under its corpse, he survives his injuries, fevers, the cold weather conditions, loss of blood, hunger, infection, escapes from the Indians by floating downriver, survives lethal rapids, escapes with a horse from the open French camp, ANOTHER Indian attack on horseback, a lethal fall from a cliff where he falls through a large tree to land in the snow and finally overcomes the man who killed his son. What?! His name is Hugh Glass. Glass. Yeah, right. He never breaks. American irony, huh?
Secondly, what is this movie actually about? It's a story about a Pawnee chief trying to find his kidnapped daughter. His tribe are able to track down Glass' group through the wilderness BUT not realise that the French have her daughter? They meet them at least twice in the movie, surely one of the braves can 'smell' or 'see' her? And they don't trust them, so why don't they check the French out? All they know is that two white men came and took the daughter. It could easily have been the French as well as the Americans.
Thirdly, just when you think, okay, that was a movie, nice scenery, shame about the plot hole and unbelievability, but good acting by DiCaprio with a spiritual ride back to his dead family...no, hang on, what's that? He breaks the 4th wall in the last 10 seconds? There he is, looking straight at the camera. Hello, DiCaprio, how much did you get for this one?
Really, I wanted to like it...

It isn't their land to fight over!

Had a look at the latest from Oregon...
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/call-supplies-oregon-standoff-enters-week-36209625 

1. destroying a fence...that's Vandalism, that is.
2. looking through 'non-computer' files...that's Unauthorised Access

Why haven't they gone in and arrested them yet?

And why is there STILL no mention of the Bush Paiute tribe??
http://www.reuters.com/article/us-oregon-militia-tribe-idUSKBN0UK1FS20160106

What is wrong with people?
1. The Bush Paiute tribe lived on that land.
2. The US Government forced them to sign a Treaty and leave the area.
3. The US Government DID NOT RATIFY the Treaty, therefore the land still belongs to the Bush Paiute tribe.

Who cares what a bunch of WHITE PEOPLE WITH GUNS say? It isn't their land to fight over!



Monday, January 11, 2016

I won on BooksGoSocial.com! :-)

Would you believe it? On my birthday, I won $100 on BooksGoSocial.com!
I entered "How to Build a Castle in Seven Easy Steps" a week ago and I thought I hadn't won...but I had!

Excellent, huh? Thank you to those 17 wonderful people who entered their email and voted for me! Maybe we can all do this!
On Friday, I will also receive 1 week's promotion from their site!
And on Friday, there will be the "All For Love" Facebook Release Party!
Oh, it's all happening...I'll enjoy it while it lasts :-)

MORE Oregon?!?! Give the Land back to d'em Injuns!

There's still more Oregon Standoff news?
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/call-supplies-oregon-standoff-enters-week-36199170

Why don't they mention the Bush Paiute tribe? THEY own the land! NOT the Feds! And hell not those "3% of Oregon"! The Bush Paiute tribe were the ones who were forced to sign a Treaty which was later NOT RATIFIED and so it is STILL THEIRS! By the Feds own laws!
Read about it here!
http://www.npr.org/2016/01/09/462513600/native-american-tribe-worries-oregon-militants-could-damage-ancestral-land

A quote from the above website post...


Rodrique would like the FBI to remove the armed men, and she thinks the FBI's inaction is a double standard.
"If I, as a native person, a person of color, were to go down there and do the same thing, they would have hit me on the forehead with a baton" and dragged her out, she says. But "because they're white people, I feel that they're being treated differently."
(article written by NPR Staff)
Yep. The Feds have double standards.
The "3% of Oregon" are WHITE and have GUNS = Stand Off
NON-WHITE with GUNS = Bloodbath
Simple. Give back the land to the Bush Paiute tribe and arrest the "3% of Oregon" for terrorism.

On another matter...another rejection letter...this time from Asimov Science Fiction Magazine...they said...
Unfortunately, your story isn't quite what we're looking for right now.
In the future, we'd appreciate it if you formatted the story in standard manuscript format (SMF).
Standard Manuscript format...really?

Anyway, "All For Love"...coming out on Friday. And hopefully this Oregon thing will be over by then...

Sunday, January 10, 2016

"All For Love" Release Party! (+WQ161)

You're invited!
Yes, a party! You're invited to the "All For Love" Facebook Release Party! Come and join! There'll be a cover reveal, book trailer, website, maybe a few games...come!
https://www.facebook.com/events/1712419848981371/

The Iron Writer 2015 Winter Open Prelims is still on, so if you'd like to read some stories, come over to the Iron Writer website...
http://theironwriter.com

And WQ161 is up! I think I did well...as did many others on the site.
http://theironwriter.com/the-iron-writer-challenge-weekend-quickie-161/
And mine is here, too :-)



WQ161 - image above (pick a song for this man to be singing), a captive audience, a short window of opportunity

Dave held them captive in the local pub with his crazy rendition of Billy Idol’s “In the Midnight Hour” on his accordion. I almost forgot our plan as his mesmerizing antics on the lounge’s pool table while wearing his beloved protective goggles made the audience ‘cry for more’. Only the shove from a couple of girls coming back from the toilets brought me back. There would be only a short window of opportunity and there was no way I could miss it, otherwise all would be lost. I edged to the bar and slid behind the backs of those sitting on the stools, all of them cheering Dave on with drinks in their hands. Getting closer to the landlord standing behind the counter and watching Dave while cleaning a glass with his favourite towel, I tried to catch his eye. On my fifth attempt, he noticed me and reluctantly put the glass down and leaned over to hear me.
“What can I get yer, mate?” said the landlord.
“Two pints of ale and a packet of pork scratchings, please!” I shouted above the noise. I waved over to Dave and gave him the thumbs up. Finally, we had been served!




Thursday, January 7, 2016

The Oregon Fiasco!

This Oregon thing is hilarious. Thirty Right wing men and women (WHITE) have taken over a Federal wildlife refuge WITH GUNS demanding the Feds look into returning land claims...
Really? Are you serious? To them? Yep. (Tangent: They're unemployed and retired, right? Do they get Government benefits and/or food stamps or something?)

Thankfully, now there are a ton of sources that state the record right...it belongs to the Paiute tribe.
http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/jan/06/oregon-militia-malheur-wildlife-refuge-paiute-indian-tribe-sacred-land
http://edition.cnn.com/2016/01/06/us/native-tribe-blasts-oregon-takeover/index.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2016/01/07/tribe-to-protesters-occupying-oregon-wildlife-refuge-we-were-here-first-get-the-hell-out/
..etc, etc.
What I got from the Washington Post goes something like this...
In 1868 the leaders of the Paiute tribe were forced to sign a Treaty by the Feds (as were many other tribes) and were then marched under armed guard off the land in the Oregon winter (walking through a few feet of snow) to a place next to a city dump (which had nothing to offer them).
BUT because the Senate has/had NO RESPECT for NON-WHITES, they didn't bother to ratify the Treaty, thus making it void... therefore, under American Law, the land still belongs to the Paiute tribe.
And what's happening?
Nothing. No one listens to them.
Why?
Because they're NOT WHITE and they DON'T HAVE GUNS sticking in your face.



A sale? PLUS Iron Writer Prelim Open story!

I sold a copy of 'Bethlehem Fiasco' :-)
http://www.amazon.com/Bethlehem-Fiasco-Dani-J-Caile-ebook/dp/B007UJHQ42
It shot from nowhere to....Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #204,471 Paid in Kindle Store 
#252 in Books > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Humorous 
#2018 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Humor & Satire > General Humor 
#3365 in Books > Literature & Fiction > Humor & Satire > Humorous

...with just one sale...really? Super :-)
OH NO! It's someone who wants revenge! Was it...HarperCollins? Run! Run for the hills!
Or was it someone who downloaded "Manna-X" and thought they'd get another? Who knows?
All I know is that ONE MORE is out there!

AND there's one more story out there in the Iron Writer 2015 Winter Open Prelims!
This story will DEFINITELY turn into a novel. Read it and you'll see why :-)
http://theironwriter.com/the-iron-writer-challenge-2016-winter-solstice-open-anais-nin-bracket/

Still waiting for the new November/December magazine with a ton of great things...

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

HarperCollins investigation part 3....A Classic?

Maybe I was too hard on HarperCollins and the REAL publishing world in that last post.
Maybe I should have a look at another book...a classic, one that I like. Let's see what I can make of that?
I had to chose "Brave New World" by Aldous Huxley, my favourite writer. It has 1,906 reviews on Amazon. 21% of them are 3 stars or below...why? Let's find out...
Comments: There's a lot of problems about the formatting, and also a lot of people who don't realise that back in the 1930s, writers wrote in a certain style that is not acceptable in this day's market.
To really appreciate this book, you need to understand that. Who has read "Gulliver's Travels"? Then you know what I mean...
So, I'm not convinced yet...let's have a look at Huxley's debut, a wonderful book called "Crome Yellow". I was transfixed when I read it, not because it was a fantastic story but the way it flowed and written so smoothly...it has only 56 reviews, 41% are 3 stars or below...oh wow! Let's see why...
Comments:Some had trouble with formatting again, the book or audio or whatever. Others again didn't realise it was a satire on aristocracy and their lifestyle, which slows things down and is kinda pretentious. Another example of people not knowing what they have in their hands. It's not a 2015 Bestseller with a formulaic plot and seen-before characters.

So, maybe I was being a little hard on HarperCollins...nah!...maybe they have helped to DE-EDUCATE the reader... for want of creating a word. Publishers like HarperCollins have helped to bring down the READER IQ over this past half-century. For sure.

HarperCollins harpering on...investigation!

Why is this post WHITE? Anyway... :-)

Got another rejection from Daily Science Fiction...exactly the same letter as before. I must try harder, maybe they'll read it next time.
The "BooksGoSocialDaily" competition... I tried on a Sunday, the last day of the week, only to find out that there was one book (pretty awful book, too) earlier in the week that had a ton of votes. I finally got 17 votes! That put me in about 5th place for that week. But the competition has no 'quality'. Just get your friends to vote.

...yes, it's a continuation of my "The Trouble with Goats and Sheep" by Joanna Cannon HarperCollins investigation!
As an Indie author, I get reviews from a few people I know, other indie authors and ALSO complete strangers...those are the ones to look out for. Those are the ones where you find out what you're really worth. Yes, it's fantastic to get a 4/5 star review from ANYONE but from someone who has no connection to you whatsoever, it's unbelievably great. If your book is good, the stranger will be 'up' with the 4 and 5 star reviews on Amazon.


However, if you get 3 or below, the stranger is one of these...
1. a person you know who hates your guts
2. a person who hates the subject of the book (why did they read it?)
3. a troll who likes to give bad reviews
4. (and this happens) someone who can't string a sentence together or lost something in translation.
I got a 3 star Amazon review once...one of my Dani's Shorts filled with element-controlled vignettes.

My point?

Go and look at a HarperCollins backed book. They are full of 4/5 star reviews from the same type of people, AND from satisfied readers, too. But they also have a number of reviews that are 3 stars or below. "The Trouble with Goats and Sheep" hasn't come out yet, so no reviews BUT there are quotes from people who have read it...AND GUESS WHAT? They're ALL WRITERS. Not friends, not strangers, but colleagues. You would've thought HarperCollins could've got oneliners from CRITICS and REVIEWERS, but no. 


So what did I do next? I checked out the writers of those quotes....are they reliable sources for a good book? Judge for yourself! I certainly won't be buying "The Trouble with Goats and Sheep" (I hated the "Look Inside") and especially if the FREE SAMPLER is $2.54...

I read a few 4/5 star reviews of a book or two of theirs, and then went down to the 3 or below. The people who put 3 stars or below reviews are STRANGERS...they are NOT people on my 4 part list (see above). They are unbiased. 

Here's the list of those who gave one liners and information about one of their own books, it's a long list...I've taken off the names so I don't get hate mail. And I thoroughly recommend that you do the same to the NEXT big BESTSELLER any of the Big Publishing Houses back.

DISCLAIMER: I am NOT trying to DESTROY anyone here, I'm merely pointing out that HarperCollins could do better than this. 
I expect MORE from the REAL publishing industry, not THIS. But WHO is reading this blog, anyway? Eh?  (Oh my, here come some reviews from people in my 4 part list, probably from people who hate me or haven't even given my books a chance).

15% of reviews 3 stars or below
Comments: Boring, sad, disappointing, Forest Gump without the humour.

22% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: Dull, self pitying, whiney, slow, doesn't go anywhere.

27% of reviews 3 or below (other reviews 50/50 between 4/5...no one really likes this book)
Comments: Starts out strong but petters out, self-conscious and smug.

26% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: Dragged, mediocre, disappointing.

There's a new book with 4/5 reviews(23) and older books have 2 to 6 reviews.
This all indicates that this is a new author on the 'proper publishing scene' and that these are friend/colleague reviews. There is one comment that sprung up..."a less irritating chick flick".

10% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: A good start but goes downhill, predictable characters, sad.

30% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: Sad and depressing, inaccurate.

11% of reviews 3 or below (9 reviews, one 3 star from a Top Reviewer...a stranger)
Comments: unoriginal, no payoff, no connection with the main character.

32% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: Pointless, far-fetched.

15% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: Formulaic. Actually, all comments of all books say "not one of her best"...which one is her best?

13% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: Slow, couldn't connect with the main character.

44% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: Boring, predictable, formulaic, a big yawn.

40% of reviews 3 or below
Comments: Starts off good, then lackluster, formulaic, clone.



...I wish these reviewers would read my books.... :-(



Sunday, January 3, 2016

A chance to win $100!? I'll try that!

Yes, I just saw this opportunity for writers...so I put in "How to" and let's see how it goes.
Please go over here, register as a 'reader' and vote for my nice little book :-) If I'm top of the list at the end of Sunday, I win $100!
http://booksgosocialdaily.com/how-to-build-a-castle-in-seven-easy-steps/

News...
Firefly & Wisp Nov/Dec 2015...we're waiting for the guys at the publishing site to 'click' a button. I think they're still on holiday.
"All For Love" should be coming out mid-Jan 2016
A collaboration is going along slowly, though I might finish it alone.
Another collaboration is halted for now.
Working on a larger plot to enlarge my Xmas 12 Days story into a book.
Working on "How to... 2"
Submitting to a few sci-fi magazines (so far, only rejections)...
In the Iron Writer 2015 Winter Open Prelims at the end of the week with a GREAT story (vignette).

The New Year brings more... :-)


Saturday, January 2, 2016

WQ 160 + Iron Writer Challenges

Sorry to say I didn't win the 50-50 Challenge 140 :-(
I got the popular vote...

But lost in the Iron Writer voting 4-5. Richard's story was a good one, though :-) I'm glad he got another win, he deserved it.

In a week I'll be in the 2015 Winter Open with another EXACTLY 500 word story. Link later.
Firefly double issue (November+December) is ready, though still no link...

But now it's WQ160!
Go see the stories on the Iron Writer website...
http://theironwriter.com/the-iron-writer-challenge-weekend-quickie-160
Or read mine here :-)



WQ160 – image above, fruitcake, returning to work after the holidays

"Scalpel," ordered Doctor Bungles.
"But doctor, you haven't seen the patient's notes, yet," said Nurse Petticoat, showing him the paperwork on her clipboard.
"Oh yes, silly me. You know what it's like, returning to work after the holidays. You forget the routine, jump right into the fun bit." The other members of staff in the room gave a polite laugh. "What's the problem, nurse? Bypass? Arteries? Kidney stones? Transplant? Corns?" The doctor turned the pages on the clipboard and gasped.
"Oh my! Really?" he exclaimed.
"Yes, doctor. Whole," said the nurse. They looked over at the patient, anesthetized and ready to go.
"Whole? Some people know how to spend their holidays, don't they? This I will have to see."
Nurse Petticoat passed him the scalpel and he began. After a fine cut across the stomach and a little swabbing of his forehead from the nurse, he stretched open the incision with his hands to reveal the glorious prize.
"Oh, doctor, that's amazing!" said the nurse. Surprise filled the room.
"Yes, it is. That's the biggest Kugelhupf I've ever seen." The doctor pulled out the sweet confectionary from the patient and laid it down on a large plate. "Anyone for fruitcake?"