What do you like in ILMK? 2013

What do you like in ILMK? 2013

Regular readers know that I’m always asking for your opinion. 🙂

I typically put something at the end of a post, and prompt you to comment on what I’ve written.

I also, from time to time, ask your opinion about what I should be writing.

Now, I know that part of the attraction of a blog like this is that it is personal…that who I am affects what I write and what you read. For that reason, I can’t simply write what people ask me to write. I have to write what feels real to me, and that I think can both help people and keep me creatively satisfied.

That doesn’t mean, though, that I can’t shift the focus to more of what people want and less of what they don’t.

I polled my readers a bit more than three years ago

You tell me…what do you like in ILMK?

and based on those responses and other subsequent questions and answers, I have made changes.

For example, I’ve stopped doing as many excerpts from public domain works of fiction. I still do those from time to time, but not as many.

I know I can’t please all of the people all of the time, and I’m not trying to do that. That’s part of why I make an effort to keep the blog eclectic: I really try not to write about the same thing two posts in a row, although when something big is happening, it does happen sometimes.

I was saddened recently when someone commented that they were going to stop reading the blog because I was writing too much about the Kindle Fire.

I wasn’t sad that they had commented: I appreciated that, really. I wish that they had commented before deciding to drop it…that’s my natural tendency. I try to change something before I give up on it…sometimes, that has worked out very well.

I did go back and check in that case: I’d written one purely Kindle Fire post (a menu map) and one app review in the past ten. Apps don’t do you any good on an RSK (Reflective Screen Kindle…anything but a Kindle Fire), but they do also work on other devices running Kindle apps…Android phones, for example, and the app about which I wrote is also available on iPhones, Blackberrys, and more. Not every app is available for every device, but yes, you can’t use an app on your RSK.

That’s another part of the balance. I have people who read this blog who are old hands at the Kindle, newbies to it, people who use the Kindle app on a PC or a Mac…and people from all over the world. It isn’t possible to always write things that are of universal interest, so I hope readers accept that not every post will be applicable to them. That’s part of why I try to stick to that “no two posts the same in a row” guideline. For subscribers (thanks, subscribers!), I really try and make it worth their ninety-nine cents a month. Hopefully, if one of those posts seems like it wasn’t worth the three and a third cents it costs you (approximately), another one is worth more than seven cents. 😉

I’ve also started adding little “bonuses” at the ends of some posts, particularly those which might appeal to a smaller audience. It might be a bonus sale, like one of the Kindle Daily Deals…those appeal to a pretty wide spectrum of my readers (but not everybody…for example, they may not apply outside the USA. In 2012, I had readers in 189 countries, according to WordPress).

I think those help, but I do want to hear what you think. I’m going to poll you, but also please feel free to comment on this post if you’d like to give me more information. You can ask me to keep the comment private, if you like…that’s up to you. I get private comments from time to time (I’ve gotten them about the content of the blog), and I don’t publish those to the blog (I review every comment before it gets published).

So, here we go!

Let’s start out with categories of posts…these won’t match up exactly with the categories you can see when you go the blogsite: the latter tend to be more narrow.

Sales

Category link: Sales (and others)

I write specifically about things where the price is reduced temporarily. That might be a Kindle Daily Deal, or Amazon’s monthly 100 books for $3.99 or lower. I try not to just list them, but to give you some insight about them, even if it’s just that I found a subset interesting. I do think this is one of the things that can really save you money. Still, I could see how someone might think they could get that information elsewhere, or that that isn’t personalized by me enough, or that the sales aren’t available to that person, or that it seems too commercial. In the polls, I’m going to include free books…that can be the ultimate sale, of course…unless the book is always free (as is the case, generally, with public domain books).

Tips

Category link: Tips

There are several sub-categories to this, but this is basically when I tell you about things that can help you use your Kindle or the Kindle service better. That includes things like alerting you to new or old features (the Menu Maps are one way I do that). I really like these, but honestly, I’ve covered a lot of stuff already. 🙂 That’s one reason I like it when Amazon introduces new features, say, through an update…gives me something new where I can help you.

News

Category link: News

For the purposes of this poll, I’m going to include news about traditional publishing houses, copyright and other legal issues, and so on. Think of it of something of more general interest, rather than specifically how you use your device. While it may affect you, it is more about the information. One place I do a lot of this in the Round-ups, where I do shorter pieces and often direct you to other news sources.

Analysis, Opinion, Humor, Reviews, and Bufo’s Life

I’m lumping a bunch of things together here, but they can be broadly thought of as my really original material. Analysis (such as the Snapshots I do every month has to do with me looking at something, and often applying number crunching to it. Opinion (and the newer category called Thoughtabouts) are me just thinking about things, mostly. I didn’t really intend to write reviews when I started this blog, but I have done those and gotten good response to them. I do humor pieces as well, and from time to time, I tell you some things about my life. While you might see things about what I write about in sales or news somewhere else, these are really going to uniquely be seen here. They are different enough, though, that I’m going to approach the polls a bit differently in this section:

Topic Categories

I wanted to ask you more broadly about topics. I’ll do two polls here, one for wanting more of it, one for wanting less.

Whew! I know that’s a lot of questions…just answer the ones you want. I also know that this doesn’t come close to covering everything…feel free to give me and my readers more information by commenting on this post.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

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9 Responses to “What do you like in ILMK? 2013”

  1. linnerlu Says:

    Thanks so much for caring enough to ask our opinion! I love and rely on your blog and posts.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, linnerlu!

      Nice of you to say! I do take into account what people tell me…and I do love to hear their opinions. 🙂

  2. Brian Says:

    I really struggled with the “what would you like to see less of” questions. I feel you cover enough topics and visit most of them fairly regularly that it keeps the blog fresh and my favorites come up often enough that I look forward to the grayed “I Love My Kindle” at the top my home screen indicating there is a new installment about to happen.

    I was trying to come up with some suggestion on what I think you could do better, but I literally, and not figuratively, got nuthin’.

    I really dig the round ups. They might be my favorite.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Brian!

      Thanks for the kind words! The Round Ups are interesting for me. There is some advantage in being prompted on a topic…but they do take work going back and forth. There are also sometimes too many things to cover…an embarrassment of riches. 😉

  3. tellthetruth1 Says:

    This has proved to be an excellent blog since I started following it. Love the topics. Keep ’em coming. Thanks. 🙂

  4. liz Says:

    I’ve been a subscriber from the very early days, and I’m still very happy with your blog. I appreciate your information on upcoming Kindles (and rumors of new devices) – it’s helped me avoid buying a device that’s just about to be replaced a couple of times. Also, all the info on what’s going on with the Publishers and their Agency Model has helped me understand WHY the prices for some ebooks went up a couple of years ago. I’ve heard people complain about both topics, and my first reaction is “How do you not know about this?” … and then I remember that I know about these things because I’ve read about them in your blog. Thanks for that!

    One thing I meant to mention when you last did the feedback request was that I really liked your original pieces, like the Holmes story and others. I know they didn’t poll very well for some reason, but I wish you’d bring those back every once in a while – they’re quite entertaining, at least in my humble opinion.

    I agree with the other commenter about how your posts are well balanced – I didn’t answer the poll questions about what I’d like to see less of, since I’m pretty happy with how things are going already. Maybe I don’t read each post with as much interest as others, but I’m not your only reader – probably someone else got something out of it!

    Thanks for doing a great job on this blog – well worth my 99 cents a month!

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, liz!

      Thanks for being a subscriber! That really helps make this possible.

      I like writing the fiction pieces, and I haven’t abandoned them…but I think it has been a while.

  5. Round up #175: my new hero, Apple trial begins | I Love My Kindle Says:

    […] I recently polled my readers about what they like in ILMK (I Love My Kindle), reviews weren’t very high (although they […]

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