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publishing

Past Due Post: Tribute to my Mom and My First E-Book Sales Report

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On a Personal Note

September 15 is a date I will never forget. On September 15 2006 I was playing a gig with the Lisbon Swingers Big Band just south of Lisbon. As we were waiting to start our performance I received a call from my step father, Jim. He told me that my mom had lost her battle with Mantle Cell Lymphoma. I was devastated. I walked away from where we were waiting and found a wooded area away from everyone. I gained my composure but could not talk to anyone, and then we played the gig. This was the most difficult performance of my life. My mom was the most influential and special person in my life. Last year I wrote this article on Bubblews about her:

The Most Positive Person in My Life

Today is the 7th anniversary of the passing of the most positive person in my life: my mom. She was born Hendrika Charlotte Hilbers and despite many hardships in her life she always had a positive attitude. At an early age her and her family survived the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands. My mom endured bombings (she never liked fireworks displays because of this) and severe food rationing. My mom always made me finish all of my food …

A New Trick

I am a person who is always trying to learn something new. You may notice that I have a link to download my e-book on the right. I didn’t know that this could be done on WordPress until a fellow writer, Ana Spoke, blogged about how she figured out how to put a link to download her first e-book on her WordPress site. I posted her blog before this one, so check it out if you want to do the same. The link to her post is at the bottom of this page. I also did this because at my age my memory might fail me the next time I publish a book, so if I forget I have her post to remind me.

“Resveratrol: Just the Facts” Earnings Update

So here is what everyone is waiting for. Did my book “Resveratrol: Just the Facts” make me a millionaire? Not even close but some people have downloaded it. I offered it for free for the first five days and 68 people took the bait! Since then I have sold 5 more copies; 3 in the US and 2 in Great Britain. I have made $1.05 and .58 GPB. The Kindle select program also pays royalties for pages read and so far 122 pages have been read in August, but I have no idea how many pennies that will total.

YouTube

My YouTube revenues are continuing to trickle in but I have not posted many videos recently. So far I’ve accumulated $7.16 in revenue. Here is my most recent video from when we owned a gym:

Other Pay Writing Sites:

I am still a member of Bubblews but do not post there anymore. I will start to post more of my writings there like the article above. I have a balance of $28.33 and need to get to $50.00 before I can redeem my money. I don’t count on it since my earnings have only gained about $.05 in the last six months. Bubblews is considered a micro blogging revenue sharing site as well as another site Persona Paper which I also belong to. They both suffer from lack of ad revenue. So far I have earned about $.17. I have published one article there about how micro blogging sites don’t make any money:

Why Micro-Blogging Sites Don’t Make Financial Sense

Revenue sharing writing, and blogging sites are rapidly being started, copying the idea of Bubblews. I think these sites are a great idea but some are doomed to fail…

What I’m Working On

My newest project “The Vitamin D Conspiracy” is started but I have been doing some more research on the subject. I have a rough draft of the outline finished and will start filling in the chapters soon. I got some good marketing advice recently. The learning curve on marketing books and e-books is even steeper than self-publishing a book. One tip I got was to make a cover first before the book is written and start using social media and e-mails to create a buzz about the upcoming book. This sounds like a good idea. I think I will hire the cover design of this book out. I found a site called Fiverr.com that does this kind of work and comes highly recommended. Five bucks is not a lot to spend. They also have many other services for a fiver.

As far as promoting a current title I am at a loss other that social media. I have checked a few paid advertising sites. One seemed like it was OK until I did the math. They wanted something like $350 for an ad campaign that would average about 1000 sales. Each one of my e-books makes $0.35. That would only just break even! If anyone has some suggestion my ears are open.

Photo credit: Three family photos of Hendrika Charlotte Hilbers Wetherill and her son Peter Chase Wetherill taken by his father Frank Doster Wetherill.

My First E-Book is Now Published!

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Yes, I finally pulled the trigger and self published my first e-book. It will be offered for free until August 4th on Amazon for world wide distribution at all Amazon locations. Her are some direct links for downloading:

US and Portugal

UK

Spain

Netherlands

Brazil 

If you download my book I would love to hear from you and your opinions. It would be even better if you left an Amazon review.

Now on to my publishing update. I did not post for a while for a few reasons: 1. I was working on my book, 2. I wasn’t feeling well, and 3. I just got lazy with the summer heat. I think the main reason was the last one. The final additions to the book were just tedious. Adding an index of the conditions that resveratrol has been studied was tedious but adds to the reading value of the book. This was all a learning process for me since this is my first e-book and using Word to write the book.

The uploading process to Amazon was a bit more complicated. I had a e-guide that is a bit outdated. It stated that I had to convert my Word file to HTML to upload to Amazon. After finally figuring out how to do this on Windows 8, I uploaded the file successfully, I thought! After uploading there is a way to review your book on all the e-book formats. I started to check and found all of my bullet indents were a total mess. I went back to the original HTML file on my computer and tried to make all of the bullets consistent, then upload the file again. No go, still a mess. After many hours of fiddling I decided to try an see what advice the Kindle help section could offer. I was shocked to find out that it was not necessary to convert my file to HTML and I could upload the Word file directly. I did this and wah la, everything looked great. I did find a few glitches and corrected them in Word and uploaded again, then hit the publish button.

I am now a bit more inspired to write and I am finishing the research part for my second book tentatively titled “The Vitamin D Conspiracy”. This subject is more involved and I feel that it is a very important one for everyone’s health on the planet.

I have failed to keep you updated on my YouTube progress. I have posted a few more videos and actually have earned more money than I thought. I keep on studying YouTube techniques like how to craft an interesting title. This is one of the most important things to get people to watch your videos. If you title your video with something bland like “What we did on Our Summer Vacation” you won’t get much response. Better is “How we found the perfect vacation spot” which creates value to the watchers or “We had a crazy fail on our trip to Safari Land” which creates curiosity for the watchers. I am currently changing some of my titles.

So far I have accumulated $6.33! Maybe if I change a few more titles I’ll get that video that attracts a million views! Here is a link to my playlist.

Update on Publishing my First E-Book: Tedious Work!

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On my previous post I mentioned writing my first e-book and giving up on Textbroker. Textbroker has since notified their writers that they are changing their terms of service. The one thing that stood out after I read this is that they set no time period for review of assignments. This means that there is no way to know when I might be reviewed and possibly moved up a star rating.

I have been on vacation this last week so I have not done much to get my e-book ready for publishing. The writing part is finished but the publishing part is not. Self publishers have to do all of the stuff that the editors and publishing houses normally do. Things like fonts, links, covers, legal disclaimers, indexes, advertising, and  proof reading, have to be done by the author or the author has to hire the work out.

I am writing this first book more for the experience and gaining knowledge on how to self publish than trying to get rich. At this time I have most of the above things done. Just fixing the fonts for consistency was a chore. I am now working on an index that automatically links the words to the place in the book that they are located. In future books I will do this as I write each chapter which will make things much easier. Learning to streamline this process is a main goal and will speed up publishing future books and e-books. Social media is also very important in promoting for self publishers. I have set up a Facebook page which is linked in the right hand column. I will have to explore more ways to promote my books.

Hiring an editor is an option for future books and highly recommended by many self published authors. I have more involved book ideas that this would be advantageous. Here are some tentative titles that I am considering and I would love to have any comments on which one you think I should start next.

In the health category:

“The Vitamin D Conspiracy”: Similar to my first e-book “Resvaratrol: Just the Facts”. This book talks about the history of vitamin D and how the US government bungled the recommendations for this essential nutrient, as well as the effects on my health and how vitamin D deficiency is being studied for many health problems.

“Bipolar Disorder: The Caregiver Experience”. This is a tentative title about my families dealings with bipolar disorder and how the medical profession failed us totally.

Family and genealogy category:

“The Autobiography of Emilie Jane Butterfield Loyson”. This is an unpublished autobiography of my great great grandmother that I discovered in a library. It was being edited by my great-grandfather who died before he completed it. She was famous in her time because she married a French Carmelite Monk. This is very topical today because of the Pope’s mention that discussion should be opened about the marriage of priests. I will edit this work or try to find a publisher.

“The Widow and the Monk”: This is the true love story of my great great grandparents Père Hyacinthe Loyson and Emilie Jane Butterfield. I have been researching this for more than seven years. This is a story of personal sacrifice for true love against all odds. Both of their biographies are more than 900 pages each and his is all in French. A real challenge but such a great love story.

Fiction:

“Our Crazy Downstairs Neighbor”  A story based on real events in my life but fictionalized. The basic plot is how a downstairs neighbor, who at first seems OK, turns out to be a destructive force in the main characters life.  Here is a video of the main inspiration for this book: 

Science Fiction:

“The Ants of the Galaxy”. The story of humans from an extraterrestrial point of view. How naive we are to assume that extraterrestrial’s would act with any similarity to us.

“Warped Into the Future”. The story of a test pilot who volunteers to test the first light speed space ship and upon his return finds a much changed world.

Personal journal category:

“Encounters with Greatness and not so Greatness”: My personal and professional encounters with famous people.  Stories that are inspirational, amusing, but not necessary all positive, about the famous people who I have met because of my music career or just by random encounters.

That’s all for now and I’ll post more ideas as they pop into my head. Please help me to decide.

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