How to Spot an Insincere Apology

Look, I’m new to this self-publishing thing, so please keep that in mind when I say: if you’re one of those who were waiting to buy my book from the Google Play store, but have not yet purchased it in another format, please wait a few more days. I know I said the book would not be available on Play, but I have been contacted by someone from the Play Store, and we’re working on the problem.  They’ve been very pleasant and helpful about the situation, and I have been assured that they are revamping their entire publisher interface in an effort to make it less confusing. If you were waiting for the Play store, then went ahead and bought a copy elsewhere because I told you to, I’m sorry, but on the bright side, the Play version will likely be a bit more expensive than the Kindle and Nook editions.

Thanks for your patience, and for using my Amazon Affiliate links (USUKCanada).

How to Consider Someone Else's World View

Unfortunately, I have a bit of bad news regarding my novel and the Google Play store.  I know more than one reader has been waiting to get my book until it’s in the Play store, and I should point out that I’m a Google fan. I love my Android phone, and I use Gmail, and many other Google products, every day. I am predisposed to like Google, but honestly, getting a book into the Google Play store is a monumental pain. I burned an entire morning of my productive time with Google’s sign-up page open in one tab and four more tabs of their contradictory instructions. At the end of that, I hadn’t even successfully gotten the name of my book into their system.

If Google were the industry leader in e-books, I could see them figuring their system was good enough, but they aren’t. The estimates I’ve seen put them in 4th place, with something like 5% of the market. Every other system I have used has been much, much easier to deal with.

To those who have been waiting for my book in the Play store, I’m sorry, but I just don’t see it happening. The book’s available as a hard copy, on Kindle, NOOK, Kobo, Smashwords (DRM free), and will be in iBooks and Sony as soon as it works through the approval process. 

I'd like to say thank you to everyone who has checked out Rick's advice column, and for using my Amazon Affiliate links (USUKCanada).

How to Listen to Other People's Medical Problems

Hey everybody, it’s exciting announcement time!

Two items to share:

1.       Off to Be the Wizard is now available on the Kobo reader. iBooks and Sony are coming soon, and Google Play is in the works.

2.       My best friend Rick, … not the fictional character you all know as Rick, but the real guy, who looks just like the fictional character, and acts like him as well, is now writing an advice column. It's called Asking the Wrong Guy, and you can access it via this link, or you can click on the link in the navigation bar of this website. We’re going to run the column on this site once a week for the next three months, just to see how it goes. (Note: Asking the Wrong Guy has now moved to its own site!)

Rick and I met when we were both stand-up comics. I was opening for him. If I’m being honest, the people who knew us both back then would likely have told you he was the more talented of the two of us. I’m really excited to have him contributing to the site. Having read the first column, let me assure you, that is how he actually talks. His real personality is much closer to the Emperor of the Moon’s than it is to fake-Rick’s. 

Oh, and thanks for using my Amazon Affiliate links (USUKCanada).

How to Deal with the Truth

I’m going to take a moment here to answer a couple of questions about the book.

“Is it possible for me to buy a paper copy directly from you?”

If you have specific circumstances that make it difficult to deal with Amazon, please feel free to e-mail me explaining the situation. I’m happy to see what I can do, but I can’t get into the business of selling and shipping copies myself. It’s just not practical. If you look at my store page, you’ll see that I’ve stopped offering signed copies of my Basic Instructions books outside of the US. International shipping has become much more expensive.

“How is the book doing?”

Without getting into specific numbers, the book is doing better than I had any right to ever expect. Reader feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. My book is Amazon’s  #4 best seller in, “Magic & Wizards fantasy, and #25 in Kindle books, “Science Fiction/Adventure.”  I’m Amazon’s #83 ranked author for Kindle Science Fiction (Ray Bradbury is #71, William Gibson is #99). Financially, while I won’t actually see a dime for another couple of months, on paper I’ve made what a first time author could realistically expect for their advance (which is often the only money an author ever sees).

“Will there be a sequel, and when?”

I’m working on ideas for the next book. I plan to start actually writing it in May. I’ll keep you posted.

"Is there anything you’d do differently?”

Yes. I regret not getting a professional copy editor, and plan to on the next book. Those who have helped me ferret out the typos in the book have done a great job, but I have a superhuman ability to generate typos.

This has been an amazing experience, and it’s just getting started. I’m grateful to all of you who have helped, whether you read the sample, bought a copy, left feedback, or told your friends.  Thanks again!

Oh, and thanks for using my Amazon Affiliate links (USUKCanada).

How to Discuss Something that Does Not Interest You

There’s been a bit of debate in my comments section about my hasty decision to check the DRM box on the Kindle version of my book. I have looked into removing the DRM, but to do so I would have to issue a new edition, losing all reviews and ranking the book has gained, and triggering exactly the problem that the people who complained about the DRM were worried about.

Instead, I have made a DRM-free version of the book available on Smashwords.

http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/304305

You may notice that the Smashwords edition is one dollar more expensive. This is because the book took some reformatting for their system, and because they figure their royalties differently.

I should also point out that this means the book will soon be available on Sony, Kobo, and iBooks. I'm still working on Google Play.

Thanks for your patience, for checking out my book Off Be the Wizard(Available for Kindle (USUK),  Nook, old-school, dead tree form, and as a free sample), and for using my Amazon Affiliate links (USUKCanada).

How to Share Your Dreams, or Share Your Dreams

Again, I’d like to thank everybody who has given my novel, Off to Be the Wizard, a try in any of its myriad forms (Kindle (USUK),  Nook, old-school, dead tree form, and as a free sample). I’ve recently uploaded a new version with what I hope are the last two typos corrected. So, Kindle and NOOK users, you can re-download those now if you like. 

And thanks again for using my Amazon Affiliate links (USUKCanada).