Today’s KDD: “Up to 80% off over 40 top Kindle titles of 2016”

August 28, 2016

Today’s KDD: “Up to 80% off over 40 top Kindle titles of 2016”

Today’s

Kindle Daily Deal (at AmazonSmile…benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

is “Up to 80% off over 40 top Kindle titles of 2016”.

When I’ve polled my readers, they are interested in when tradpubbed (traditionally published), Big 5 books go on sale…and that’s the case in today’s Kindle Daily Deal!

Titles include (note that if I say “and” it is two separate books, not an omnibus):

  • The Martian by Andy Weir
  • Take Me With You by Catherine Ryan Hyde
  • The English Spy by Daniel Silva
  • Red Rising by Pierce Brown
  • The Cuckoo’s Calling (Cormoran Strike #1) and The Silkworm (Cormoran Strike #2) by Robert Galbraith (AKA J.K. Rowling)
  • The Good Girl and Pretty Baby by Mary Kubica
  • The Girl in the Spider’s Web (Lisabeth Salander)  by David Lagercrant
  • Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline
  • Room by Emma Donoghue
  • I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai
  • Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert
  • Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #1 by Rick Riordan
  • The Last Coyote (Harry Bosch), The Drop (Harry Bosch), and Trunk Music (Harry Bosch) by Michael Connelly
  • Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah
  • The Wedding, The Choice, Nights in Rodanthe, and The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks
  • Elon Musk by Ashlee Vance
  • Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
  • Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy
  • Running with Scissors by August Burroughs
  • Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates by Brian Kilmeade
  • The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  • Absolute Power by David Baldacci
  • What If?  by Randall Munroe
  • The Pearl that Broke Is Shell by Nadia Hashimi
  • Willow Brooks Road (Chesapeake Shores) by Sherryl Woods
  • American Sniper by Chris Kyle
  • Rock  with Wings by Anne Hillerman
  • Life and Other Near-Death Experiences by Camille  Pagan
  • Keep Quiet by Lisa Scottoline
  • Huntress Moon by Alexandra Sokoloff
  • The Headmaster’s Wife by Thomas Christopher Greene
  • Irish Thoroughbred by Nora Roberts
  • The North and South Trilogy (omnibus) by John Jakes
  • All Creatures Great and Small/All Things Bright and Beautiful/All thing Wise and Wonderful (omnibus) by James Herriott
  • American Caesar: Douglas Macarthur by William Manchester
  • The Wheel of Fortune by Susan Howatch
  • Forever Erma by Erma Bombeck
  • Dreamsongs (#1) by George R.R. Martin
  • House of Cards by Michael Dobbs
  • Illumination Night by Alice  Hoffman
  • Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
  • Shakespeare: The World as Stage by Bill Bryson

There are some great books in today’s sale! Remember that you can give these as gifts, and delay arrival for the appropriate gift-giving occasion. I love giving books at the holidays, often not as the “main gift”. If your recipient already has the Kindle version, they can have Amazon give them store credit instead…that makes it easy to be sure that people can get something they want.

Enjoy!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

It’s ILMK’s 7th birthday…and I’m celebrating with a giveaway!

August 28, 2016

It’s ILMK’s 7th birthday…and I’m celebrating with a giveaway!

August 28, 2009: the I Love My Kindle blog begins with this post:

Oh…um, Hi!

Seven years…and they said our relationship wouldn’t last!😉

Every year, I’m more amazed by the impact that this blog has…both when I hear things from readers, and when readers say things which impact me. It’s definitely a two-way street. I love it best when commenters respectfully disagree with me…I learn new things that way, and/or get a deeper insight into my own thoughts.

Thank you to my commenters!

This blog would not be what it is (one of the most popular blogs of any kind in the Kindle store), and I wouldn’t be what I am, without  them.

Thank you.

Thanks also go to those who subscribe through the Kindle store…that’s part of what it makes it possible for me to devote this much time and energy to writing I Love My Kindle! Thanks, subscribers!

More thanks to people who follow links on this blog…it may be to buy something from Amazon (including gift cards) or to be exposed to something I’ve suggested. The latter lets me help  out people and organizations I find interesting.

Let me also thank those of you who read the blog, but haven’t yet followed a link or subscribed. You never have to do either to be part of the energy that feeds this galloping Pegasus of literary pixels!😉

In order to make my thanks a bit more tangible, I’ve made as many of my Kindle store books free as I could for August 28th!

Please check that a title is free for you before buying it.

I have asked Amazon to make them free on August 28, but I can’t say exactly when it will happen. I think they may also only be free to customers in the USA.

So, you can click on the titles before, but please make sure it is free when you click the 1-click buy button.

The Mind Boggles: A Unique Book of Quotations (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

When this one was first published in December of 2012, it was the number one bestselling book of quotations at Amazon…including paper! That didn’t last long, but it was fun while it did. :)

Love Your First Generation Kindle Fire: The ILMK Guide to Amazon’s Entertablet (at AmazonSmile)

This one has been a bestseller. It was written before the Kindle Fire HDs and HDXs, so it doesn’t match up exactly with those. If you do have the first generation Fire, though, I think you’ll find it useful.

The Kindle Kollection: Three Early Books about the Kindle (at AmazonSmile)

This one combines the three below into one volume:

* ILMK! (I Love My Kindle): Being an Appreciation of Amazon’s E-Book Reader, with Tips, Explanations, and Humor
* Free Books for Your Kindle
* Frequently Asked Kindle Questions

ILMK! (I Love My Kindle!): Being an Appreciation of Amazon’s E-Book Reader, with Tips, Explanations, and Humor (Revised Edition)(at AmazonSmile)

This has some fun stuff…and other things that are out of date. If you want The Happy Little Bookworm, this one has it. :)

The Collected I Love My Kindle Blog Volume 1 (at AmazonSmile)

This is the first 101 posts in this blog. :) I did 101 posts so I wouldn’t cut off Doctor Watson’s Blog: A Kindle Abandoned (which is a four-part story). I’m coming up on the five year anniversary of the blog, and I’m considering doing a “best of” book. I’d include the posts that are less time-dependent, I think…if you have any opinions on ones that you remember, feel free to let me know.

Remember, double-check that they are  free to make sure before buying. Since they are also in Kindle Unlimited, you may see a zero price showing, but it won’t be zero near the Buy button.

Enjoy!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

One Murder More wins 3 Silver Falchion awards…and up to 100 ILMK readers can get a free Kindle version!

August 26, 2016

One Murder More wins 3 Silver Falchion awards…and up to 100 ILMK readers can get a free Kindle version!

I’m very excited to announce officially that my sibling’s first novel, the murder mystery

One Murder More (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

has won three 2016 prestigious

Silver Falchion awards

at the

Killer Nashville literary conference

Previous Silver Falchion award winners include Dean Koontz, Anne Perry, and John Sandford. You can see other 2016 winners in the Silver Falchion awards link above (Silver Falchion awards).

Kris’ book won in the following categories:

  • Best Fiction First Novel
  • Judges’ Award for Political Thriller
  • Judge’s Award for Female Detective/Women Sleuths

This is OMM’s latest accolade…New York Times bestselling author John Lescoart called it “Crisp and entertaining…”. Another New York Times bestselling author, Robert Dugoni, called it “…irresistible…” One Murder More has a 4.7 average out of 5 with 90 customer reviews on Amazon at the time of writing. Amazon featured it in their only brick-and-mortar bookstore.

I’m very proud of Kris. I should mention that I don’t have any official connection to the book (I’m not part of the publishing team), although I have been giving advice. I don’t financially benefit from purchases of the book.

Kris has generously agreed to give away up to 100 Kindle version to readers of I Love My Kindle!

Thanks, Kris!

I have readers around the world, and I want to spread out the opportunity to get them, since people are in different time zones.

Here’s what we are going to do.

If you want one, comment on this post asking for it.

We’ll give up to ten away each hour for the first ten commenters that hour (one per person).

If an hour doesn’t have ten requests, though, we’ll go back to the comments from the first hour and start with the eleventh request, then the twelfth, and so on. When all of the commenters from the first hour have been given copies, we’ll move on to the second hour, and so on.

For example: let’s say 15 people request it the first hour. The first ten get one. Then, we wait for the second hour. If eight people request it the second hour, those eight get one…as well as the eleventh and twelfth from the first hour. Next, we wait for the third hour. If five people request it the third hour, those five get it…plus the remaining three from the first hour.

We may not end up giving away all 100 if there aren’t that many requests.

Don’t worry about all that, though…if you want one, ask for it!🙂

What if you already have the book (and if you do, that’s appreciated!)?

You can still request one. Amazon lets you turn the value of a gift e-book you already have into store credit. What I’d like you to do in that case is gift One Murder More to someone else.

All of this is to celebrate the Silver Falchion awards, and to thank my readers who have been following the progress of a first-time author’s first book in the evolving publishing world.

Kris is providing these books. The Kindle gift will come from me, so that I’m the only one who sees your e-mail address (my readers also don’t see it…I’ll use the one that is used when you post your comment). If you write a review, which authors always appreciate, I believe it’s proper to disclose that you got a free copy from the author (but you aren’t getting it in consideration of a review).

One final point: I mentioned that I have readers around the world, but there may be geographic restrictions in you getting the book.

Once again, congratulations to my sibling, Kris Calvin, on three Silver Falchion awards for

One Murder More (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

Enjoy!

Update: Kris was also kind enough to give me a statement for ILMK readers: 

It’s not that getting an award changed my life. But as a debut author, it is a source not only  of recognition, but also  of comfort. Of  feeling like I belong in the community of writers. 

After hearing my name called for the second time, when  my powers of speech were beginning to  come back to me (for the first award I really was speechless!)  I  shared from the podium that I’m one of those  people whose  early draft manuscript was pronounced “terrible” by the first editor who reviewed it. It was only through the support of  others  that I was able to stick with it ,and to write my way  through two more drafts to find myself here. 

During that process, even the murderer changed!  

The kind words, insights and  encouragement  from  family, friends, fellow writers and colleagues all  became incredibly important,  enabling me  to exercise  and build my creative muscles  despite  the noise  and pressure of obligations  that  dominate all of our daily lives.”

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

Note: other of my family members have published books, including another sibling. You can see more information at I know these authors!

 

 

 

Amazon launches the Kindle Reading Fund

August 25, 2016

Amazon launches the Kindle Reading Fund

I’ve written several times in the blog about WorldReader.org, an organization that uses Kindles to bring books to children in parts of the world where transporting bulky paperbooks is effectively impractical.

I’ve also suggested  that Amazon could set up a way to give Kindles to kids…and  I have, with the guidance of my readers, done that myself:

Give a Kid a Kindle

As you can imagine, then, I was very pleased to see in Amazon’s blog yesterday that they have started the Kindle Reading Fund:

blog post by Dave Limp

This is a multi-pronged effort, which in part centralizes community literacy support that Amazon has done in the past.

The KRF will include

  • A new partnership with Worldreader.org
  • Donations to local schools and libraries
  • Donations to hospitals and non-profits
  • Work with the National PTA

I commend Amazon on these efforts!

I also recommend the video (featuring David Risher, CEO…Chief Executive Officer…of Worldreader) embedded in the blog post: I like the description of books as at first a “mirror”, where we look for ourselves to be reflected, and then later as a “window”, where we see the lives of others. It’s a succinct two minutes (slightly under) explaining what Worldreader does, and why.

There is a new

Kindle Reading Fund page

I went there expecting to be able to donate to the effort…but instead, there was a button to request a donation from Amazon (for a school, for instance).

This page also features Amazon’s other community efforts, and there are many, from disaster relief to the Amazon Literary Partnership (which offers grants to publishers and author group) to pro bono legal services.

Thank you, Amazon, for the good you are doing in the world, especially through spreading the power of books!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

Round up #145: sight-reading vs. listening, B&N CEO O-U-T

August 23, 2016

Round up #145: sight-reading vs. listening, B&N CEO O-U-T

The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

One Murder More reportedly wins three Silver Falchion awards!

I’m waiting for

Killer Nashville

to post the official results before I do a full post (and celebration), but I thought some of you would be curious: my sibling’s first novel, One Murder More (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*), won three Silver Falchion awards this past weekend! That’s amazing, and puts Kris in good company, including Anne Perry, John Sandford, Dean Koontz, and Sue Grafton.

More to come…

Barnes & Noble loses CEO

In this

press release

Barnes & Nobles announced the “departure” of its Chief Executive Officer, Ronald D. Boire (after not quite a year in the post).

This is being reported both as Boire being fired, and as Boire “stepping down”…but regardless, this is a negative for the Big 5 traditional publishers (who are still reliant on brick and mortar bookstores…I’m a former manager of one). Nobody who is already established in business likes uncertainty, and this is B&N’s third CEO recently.

The press release says that the Board determined Boire wasn’t “a good fit”…and that’s the Board’s fault.

One of my proudest things after I became the training manager at a franchise (where I think we had five owners in seven years…something like that) was that I lengthened the average longevity of my team significantly. When I was hired there, I was told there was a ninety-day “ramp up” period. I asked how many people didn’t get through that period, and I was told two out of three! Sure enough, I was hired with two other people, and I was the only person still there after three months.

That’s just…inefficient hiring, in my opinion.

I’ve hired a lot of people over the years, and I think I’m pretty good at it.

After I was the Training Manager for a year, the average longevity went from under three months to over a years, as I recall…basically, nobody left. Yes, I hired people during that year, but not that many because turnover was low. If I hired them, they stayed.

If the Board hired somebody who wasn’t a good fit, that’s likely to be mostly their fault.

This is odd timing, because we are heading into the most important time of the year…the last three months of the year, in a retail business like this, can easily be 90% of the year’s sales.

Maybe if Boire had made it a full year, the departure would have cost them more?

Replacing the CEO at the end of August is a little bit like replacing your pilot while your plane is at the gate readying for takeoff.😉

However, Leonard Riggio, who was going to retire in a few weeks (Riggio has been a driving force at B&N since buying the company forty-five years ago) is going to take the helm for now.

The publishers may see that as a good thing…they understand Riggio, even if the leadership is only temporary and therefore limited in determining the strategic direction.

I thought this

RetailDive post by Corinne Ruff

had intelligent insight.

B&N has had some good signs recently…none of them said “Books for Sale in Our Stores”, though.😉 The strategy has been to move the stores more into other things (especially the cafes), cut back on the NOOK even more, and try to remake the online presence. Those strategies aren’t likely to change.

MarketWatch: physical bookstores rebounding

In this

MarketWatch article by Trey Williams

they report a clear rebound for brick-and-mortar bookstores in the USA, continuing last year’s reversal of a downward trend which had been in place since 2009. I’m not sure I agree with Whitney Hu of

The Strand Bookstore in New York

a marvelous institution. Hu says in part:

“The recent growth in sales is a result of the waning novelty of e-readers, such as Amazon.com Inc.’s Kindle…”

On the other hand, Hu is more likely to be right than another authority they quote…Ronald D. Boire, the aforementioned outgoing CEO of Barnes & Noble.😉

Are audiobooks cheating?

Regular readers know I listen to text-to-speech (software which reads books out loud to you) a lot. It’s typically hours a week in the car. I sight read every day, too…on my now discontinued Kindle Fire HDX (that’s what does the text-to-speech in the car for me), on a

All-New Kindle Paperwhite, 6″ High-Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Built-in Light, Wi-Fi – Includes Special Offers (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

and a

Kindle Voyage (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

depending on where I am in the house (I also read different books in different parts of the house…I’ve always done that).

I will admit, though,  that there has been a slight, nagging thought: is listening to the book somehow “inferior” to sight-reading it?

Turns out, I wasn’t the only one with that thought.🙂

This

CNN post by Melissa Dahl

resonated with me…it was the same question.

Fortunately, Dahl was referencing this

blog post by Daniel Willingham

The bio states that Willingham is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Virginia.

Willingham addresses the idea of whether or not listening to an audiobook is “cheating”.

I was actually hoping for an fMRI (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) study showing that what the brain was doing was similar during sight-reading and listening, but the post isn’t that.

It’s talking more about the process, and how it will “mostly” be the same (although there may be an advantage when reading more complex material to sight-reading it, an adult reading a typical novel should be pretty much the same).

It was interesting to me that the article was at least partly what I would consider to be philosophical…questioning the value of defining reading as “work”, something to be more rewarded when you put something more into it.

I do think some “literati” have that attitude: if a book was harder to read, it was better for you and more worthwhile.

I don’t buy that myself.

I think there is value in reading a “popcorn book”, one which reads with little effort. People used to (and some still do) call them “page turners”, although “button masher” became the digital equivalent for a short time (when was they last time you used buttons to “turn the page” on an e-book reader?).

In fact, and maybe I am a bit of a lazy reader in this regard, I tend not to like very “dense” epics…I describe them as when the sentence is better than the paragraph, the paragraph is better than the page, the page is better than the chapter, and the chapter is better than the book.😉

You know the type…I would put The Worm Ouroborus by E.R. Eddison into that category.

Still, it’s nice to know that a professor of psychology has the opinion that listening to an audiobook isn’t cheating.🙂 I intend to comment on the blog post (if the requirements to do so are not overly restrictive) to ask about text-to-speech versus audiobooks…I suspect that the TTS cognitive processing is much more similar to sight-reading than audiobooks are. I’d be interested to hear what the professor thinks about that…and about the fact that I generally don’t experience prosody (hearing voices when you read).🙂

What do you think? Have you thought of listening to books as “cheating”? Will Barnes & Noble continue to have physical bookselling in dedicated brick-and-mortar stores as a major component of their business? If they don’t, what does that mean for tradpubs? Why do you think brick-and-mortar bookstores have been rebounding? Is it because of a decline in e-book use…or maybe it’s coloring books?😉 Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

2016 Hugo Award winners

August 22, 2016

2016 Hugo Award winners

The Hugo Awards (named after Hugo Gernsbeck) are one of the most prestigious science fiction awards out there.

Past winners include Dune, The Man in the High Castle, and Stranger in a Strange Land.

There has been quite a bit of controversy in the last couple of years, as a couple of groups have made an effort to get the results that they want. That doesn’t sound like a bad thing, when I put it that way…but many people disagree with the apparent agenda of those groups.

The Hugo Awards have addressed this in part by having a “No Award” choice. Last year, it was a big impact…this year, not as much. It’s reasonable to conclude that the awards actually given this year do not align with the groups’ objectives.

I mention all this because the campaigns make some people question the legitimacy of the awards. That’s always true with awards, of course, but I would say that the Hugos certainly were an indicator of high quality for many geeks like me.

I was curious, so I checked: I’ve read most of the novel winners from the 1950s through the 1980s…not as much after that.

That doesn’t mean that I don’t consider those later novels worthy, not at all…I would say that it is more that I diversified my reading quite a bit.

If you are looking for a quality science fiction/fantasy read (or watch or  listen…they do more than  just literature), I think that using the Hugos is not a bad data point in making your decision.

Here are this year’s winners (awarded Saturday night, August 20th at MidAmeriCon II):

Best Novel

The Fifth Season (The Broken Earth Book 1) (at AmmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) by N.K. Jemisin

Best Novella

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Best Novelette

“Folding Beijing” by Hao Jingfang, trans. Ken Liu (Uncanny Magazine, Jan-Feb 2015)

Best Short Story

“Cat Pictures Please” by Naomi Kritzer (Clarkesworld, January 2015)

Best Related Work

No Award

Best Graphic Story

The Sandman: Overture written by Neil Gaiman, art by J.H. Williams III

Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form

The Martian screenplay by Drew Goddard, directed by Ridley Scott (Scott Free Productions; Kinberg Genre; TSG Entertainment; 20th Century Fox)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form

Jessica Jones: “AKA Smile” written by Scott Reynolds, Melissa Rosenberg, and Jamie King, directed by Michael Rymer (Marvel Television; ABC Studios; Tall Girls Productions;Netflix)

Best Editor, Short Form

Ellen Datlow

Best Editor, Long Form

Sheila E. Gilbert

Best Professional Artist

Abigail Larson

Best Semiprozine

Uncanny Magazine edited by Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas, Michi Trota, and Erika Ensign & Steven Schapansky

Best Fanzine

File 770 edited by Mike Glyer

Best Fancast

No Award

Best Fan Writer

Mike Glyer

Best Fan Artist

Steve Stiles

The John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer (not technically a Hugo)

Andy Weir

Congratulations to the winners!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

 

Your move, Amazon: Kobo announces a new frontier E-Book Reader

August 19, 2016

Your move, Amazon: Kobo announces a new frontier E-Book Reader

I always want there to be competition for the Kindle.

It’s a good thing…it drives innovation.

Frontlit EBR (E-Book Reader)? NOOK was first.

Lending to your friends and family? Again, NOOK first.

Well, while the NOOK line has been imploding, Kobo has been continuing to improve its EBRs.

Available for preorder August 30th is their latest:

Kobo Aura ONE

While I’m not at all tempted to switch, I am impressed with the features…and with a marketing introduction which I admire, and appears to be working; it’s been years since I’ve seen the “Kindle Killer” stories in the blogosphere.😉

I’m sure it’s not a Kindle Killer…but in the paraphrased words of Nietzsche (and exact words of Kelly Clarkson),  “What  doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”😉

The price is $229.99, which is $60 less than Amazon’s top of the line Kindle Oasis…in fact, you could buy the new Kobo and the entry level Fire tablet for the price of the Oasis.

What does the Aura ONE have going for it?

It can automatically adjust the amount of blue light, meaning it has a day mode, and a mode which won’t tend to disrupt your sleep. While the Fire tablets now have a blue light filter option (“Blue Shade”), that doesn’t adjust automatically and it’s not on the Kindle EBRs. You can also adjust it manually.

Do we want this for the Kindle EBRs? Sure, why not? I actually have my

Kindle Voyage (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

light turned all the way down when I read in bed…but I do have superior night vision, which may be connected  to some color vision deficiency.

It has built-in Overdrive: borrow e-books from your public library easily. It looks to me like you set up OverDrive with your public library, and then you’ll have a choice of buying it or borrowing it from your public library (if available). Seems like it will just be a tap of a button, although it might not be quite that simple.

Why would they do that? Won’t that hurt their sales?

They say they looked at data, and that people who were serious readers both bought and borrowed books.

Yep…there is a “myth of scarcity”, that suggests that there tends to be only so much of a resource, so it will only be allocated in limited ways. In this case, it would be that people spend X amount for books…so, if they borrow a book, that reduces the number of books they buy.

However, it could be that they buy the same number of the books they did before, plus they borrow library books. It could even be that they buy more books…they borrow a book, like  it, and then buy other books in the series or buy that book for other people.

Before I mention more features, I want to mention that marketing angle.

Kobo is positioning this as customers being involved in the design process. They say, “Designed with the help of our most passionate customers.”

Now, Amazon has clearly had customers looking at devices before they are released (that’s why they can have blurbs for the announcement press release). They don’t, though, identify those people in the way Kobo is doing. I think that’s effective. It makes people think that Kobo is listening to its customers.

More on features:

  • It’s waterproof:  something Amazon has yet to do (but I think we may see that in new models in September)
  • They have a lot of options for the appearance of the text: “…weight and sharpness settings exclusive to Kobo, as well as the ability to choose from over 50 font sizes and 11 font types”. The Oasis has nine fonts and eight sizes
  • The ONE weighs 230g: that’s more than the Oasis when it doesn’t have its cover (it’s 131g or 133g, depending on whether it has 3G or not). The cover adds 107g…which makes the Oasis in its cover heavier than the ONE without a cover…but I would guess many people will read the ONE in a cover
  • The ONE has 8gb of memory…the Oasis has 4gb
  • The Kobo has 14 file formats supported natively (EPUB, EPUB3, PDF, MOBI, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, TIFF, TXT, HTML, RTF, CBZ, CBR). The Oasis supports these: “Kindle Format 8 (AZW3), Kindle (AZW), TXT, PDF, unprotected MOBI, PRC natively; HTML, DOC, DOCX, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP through conversion”. CBR is for comic books, and that’s popular

The other big difference is that it is, well…bigger. 😉 That’s in terms of screen size: it’s 7.8″, compared to 6″ for all of the current Kindle EBRs.

Honestly,  I don’t think I’d like that better. I had an 8.9″ tablet (one of a bunch of devices stolen in a home break-in), and it was too big to fit comfortably in pockets in my “utility vest” which I wear on the weekends. I like the form actor of the Voyage and Paperwhite. On the other hand, my now discontinued Kindle Fire HDX 7″ isn’t too big,  so  maybe it would be okay.

Bottom line: I think this has some great features, and Kobo has been, I think, thoughtful in the design. Amazon has other great features, and the obvious one is that it’s compatible with my Kindle books.😉 That’s by no means the only thing, though: Amazon’s customer service is so good (in my experience, and based on surveys) that it is a major advantage.

I expect this will drive further development on Amazon’s part, giving us Kindleers even better devices in the future.

Bonus deal: speaking of devices, two Kindle EBRs are $20 off at time of writing:

All-New Kindle E-reader – Black, 6″ Glare-Free Touchscreen Display, Wi-Fi – Includes Special Offers (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) $59.99 instead of $79.99

and

All-New Kindle Paperwhite, 6″ High-Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Built-in Light, Wi-Fi – Includes Special Offers (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) $99.99 instead  of $119.99

Those are both good models (I own the both). I like the Paperwhite very much, and this is the new entry level Kindle with Bluetooth audio.

What do you think? Which of these features would you want in future Kindles? Have you owned or do you own a Kobo? What would make you switch to another model…if anything? Would you have two different  libraries to use two different devices? Feel free to let me and my readers know what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

 

 

 

One Murder More nominated for three awards

August 16, 2016

One Murder More nominated for three awards

My readers have been following the progress of my sibling’s first book:

One Murder More (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I write about it in part because I support my family, sure, but I also think it’s informative about the publishing industry.

OMM has had  a number of milestones, including appearing in Amazon’s tightly curated physical bookstore.

It has an average of 4.7 stars out of 5 with 89 customer reviews, which is very high.

An early enthusiastic blurb was from New York Times bestselling author, John Lescroart.

It’s currently ranked 459,158 in the USA Kindle store. That’s out of 4,717,502, which puts it ahead of about 90% of the titles.

Now, it’s been nominated for three (!) awards at the major mystery writers’ conference:

Killer Nashville

To give you a sense of the conference (which runs this Thursday, 8/18, through Sunday), the Guests of Honor include Janet Evanovich.

You can see the nominees for the 2016 “Silver Falchion” (a falchion is a type of sword) awards here:

http://www.killernashville.com/2016-killer-nashville-silver-falchion-finalists/

The three categories in which One Murder More is nominated are:

  • Best Fiction First Novel
  • Best Mystery/Crime
  • The Judges’ Choice

That’s impressive to me…especially the Judges’ Choice which has a different selection process.

Kris will also be part of Session 59, Turning Headline News into Fiction, on Sunday at 12:45 in the Sycamore room.

To celebrate these honors, I’m going to give away the Kindle edition of One Murder More (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) to the first three (for the three awards) of my readers who comment on this post asking for one. You’ll need to be somewhere you can get a Kindle gift from the USA, and I’ll use the e-mail address you use when you post (which is not visible to the public) to send you your gift. As you may know, if you get a Kindle gift and already have that book, you can contact Amazon to change to a store credit instead.

If One Murder More does win any awards at the Killer Nashville conference this weekend (virtual fingers crossed), it will be interesting to see how that impacts the book’s progress. I think that “award-winning” can be an influential statement to make on a book’s product page, but if it happens, we’ll be able to see if the sales ranking changes (although we won’t know for sure that the award mattered, of course).

Congratulations, Kris!

What do you think? Does it matter to you if a book is “award-winning”? Does it matter if you haven’t heard of the award before? Do you pay more attention to judge-selected or peer-nominated awards? What about reader-voted? Are you going to Killer Nashville, or have you been in the past? Feel free to let me and my readers know what you think by commenting on this post (and ask for a copy of OMM, if you like).

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

Note: other of my family members have published books, including another sibling. You can see more information at I know these authors!

 

Should the President be reading indies?

August 15, 2016

Should the President be reading indies?

“Politicians should read science fiction, not westerns and detective stories.”
–Arthur C. Clarke

I like that we get to see the President’s reading list..and just to be clear, that would be any President, not particularly the current one.

It tells the country and the world that the President of the USA reads recreationally…not a small message to send.

When I saw this year’s list, though, I was struck by one thing in particular. Here’s  the list, as reported by the White House

here

What stood out to me?

While they aren’t all from Big 5 publishers (Grove isn’t one), they are all traditionally published.

Now, that’s not really a surprise. These books are well known, and I’m sure a President doesn’t have much time to browse.🙂

However, it could have really had an impact on an indie (independently published book) if the President had selected one.

I’m sure there are people who could have made a recommendation.😉

I don’t have anything against mainstream published books. It’s just that it seems like this is a missed opportunity.

I was curious: in terms of the Kindle store, the highest any of these was ranked was #19 bestseller at time of writing. It’s a different situation in p-book (paperbook) bestsellers, and I would guess that at least some of the time, the President reads e-books…

One other comment: all of these publishers are headquartered in the USA. Penguin (a British company) merged with Random House, but the HQ is in New York. There are hundreds of indie books published in the USA Kindle store every month, and I would be sure the vast majority of those, if they make any money at all, are under USA tax jurisdiction, and tend to contribute to the USA  economy.

What do you think? Were you surprised by any of the President’s choices? Do  you think picking an indie or lesser-known book would have been a good  thing? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

 

 

 

Today’s KDD: Up to 75% off over 20 top-rated Kindle books

August 14, 2016

Today’s KDD: Up to 75% off over 20 top-rated Kindle books

Today’s

Kindle Daily Deal (at AmazonSmile…benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

has many well-known authors and some well-known books.🙂

This is a one day sale, and as usual, do check the price before tap that Buy button…the prices may not apply in your country, for one thing.

Today’s books include:

  • Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
  • What We Find by Robyn Carr
  • Unfinished Business by Nora Roberts
  • Afterburn & Aftershock by Sylvia Day
  • Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreigtt
  • The  Darkest Torment by Gena Showalter
  • The Empty Throne by Bernard Cornwell
  • The Wedding Dress by Rachel Hauck
  • Three Wishes by Liane Moriarty
  • The Fireman by Joe HIll

Enjoy!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

All aboard our new The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project! Do you have what it takes to be a Timeblazer?

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

 


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,410 other followers

%d bloggers like this: