Friday, December 31, 2010

A little praise goes a LONG way

Just found that somebody has given me 'Favorite author' status on Smashwords!

Seems they like 'The Cockatoo River Incident'

That makes my day!

A new site to market your book- free!

Bookbarista

Courtesy of Dodge Winston- another Smashwords author

Thursday, December 30, 2010

A New World Order

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Barnes & Noble Inc said that sales of digital books made through its website now exceed those of traditional books that it sells online.
Barnes & Noble, which introduced its Nook electronic reader last year to compete with Amazon.com Inc's Kindle, said customers bought or downloaded 1 million e-books via the Nook on Christmas Day.
A spokeswoman for Barnes & Noble said that figure included free e-books, but that most were paid downloads...

More here

Sunday, December 26, 2010

ebook reader feedback

Quite pleasing to see the interest my new ebook reader got. A few people I thought would never be interested expressed an interest in owning one.

Especially when they saw how many free books are available!

Friday, December 17, 2010

A review from Barnes & Noble

SiFi Channel: Here's your next hit series!

Customer Rating See Detailed Ratings

Posted December 6, 2010, 2:47 PM EST: This book, while rough around the edges as far as editing goes, especially in the later chapters, but is otherwise a great read. It doesn't trouble itself explaining any of the conundrums of time travel into the past (where killing your own great great grandfather could cause you to cease to exist), but hey, its Science Fiction, not physics. Also hardly a chapter goes by without characters imbibing ridiculous amounts of alcohol. But the story line begs to be featured on the SiFy channel as the next big hit like the Stargate series (Timegate?). And the writing style is perfect for episode serialization. The tendency to use vintage military gear from an era where it was plentiful should make props cheap. Characters are sufficiently developed without wasting time on soul searching / tear jerking sentimentalism. Bedplay merely hinted at instead of becoming the story. Wayne Watson yanks some chains along the way, misses opportunities to yank others, and gores a few sacred oxen as his characters strike out on a major "do over" of history. With the entire history of earth as its playground the book never lacks for subject matter and neither would a TV series. The book keeps you waiting to find out what effect the meddler in time had in changing earth's history. Getting there is the fun part. A fast and easy read.

0 out of 0 people found this review helpful.

A fair review.
This was never meant to be more than a bit of a fun read.

As for ridiculous amounts of alcohol- the reviewer was obviously never in the NZ Army! ;-)

I FINALLY get to see an actual ebook reader

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Buying an Ebook reader for Christmas?

...or one of the many devices that can be also used to read ebooks- iPads, iPod touch or the various clones- even a computer.

If you are treating yourself or buying as a gift- how about a bit of added value?

Download a selection of TOTALLY FREE ebooks, to fill a tiny corner of one of the gigabytes!

As well as the many freeware classics available, why not take a punt on a new independent author?

There is no better place to look than SMASHWORDS.

Of course this is a shameless plug for my 'Meddlers in Time' Series, currently available for FREE!




Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Progress

Over 500 downloads this month and Meddlers in Time ranks 17/1050 in the Sci-fi/fantasy section at Smashwords.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Milestones

Meddlers in Time- Out of the frying pan, into the fire- has just hit 1000 downloads.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Book Five- kiss your sand-scoured arses goodby

Commander Jamieson's Engineering battalion fixes a large gravatic drive to a ten kilometer iron-nickel asteroid and drives it into....


Saturday, November 6, 2010

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Smashwords Milestones

Smashwords passed the billion words published mark today.

A year ago, they had 150 million words published.

Any guesses on a years time?

Friday, October 8, 2010

Stats

In Smashwords Adventure section 'Most Downloads'

Meddlers in Time 7/530
Meddlers in Time- Out of the frying pan 13/530
Meddlers in Time- The Cockatoo River Incident 21/530

Saturday, October 2, 2010

The one from MIT- Deja vu!

I was out in the bush today and came across this private hut.

I looked in the window and there was the hut from MIT- down to the old books and the ancient sofa. Just as I had pictured it in my mind...

Friday, October 1, 2010

One year with Smashwords

The three books crossed the 2500 downloads mark today. Downloads are currently a steady 10-15 a day.

What is good is that the other books in the series are proving popular, as well- which means I'm getting folks back for more!

I never dreamed that many people would have read my stuff- and the files keep going out the door...

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Why is it?

That the only ones that comment on various review sites have ADD or poor comprehension skills!



2400 downloads to date

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Milestones

Over 2000 downloads today!

Stats

In Smashwords Adventure section 'Most Downloads'

Meddlers in Time 6/470
Meddlers in Time- Out of the frying pan 14/470
Meddlers in Time- The Cockatoo River Incident 28/470

Friday, August 13, 2010

Finally!

Smashwords have raised the bar regarding formatting standards. I discovered this when I resubmitted my profiles to get then listed in the sci-fi category and they were flagged as having a variety of formatting errors.

I had to take the whole Meddlers in Time manuscript, paste to notepad and then copy back to Word and reformat, thus stripping out all the hidden Word formatting- a mess, as I wrote this on five different PC's!

Formatting for scrolling ebook readers is different to formatting for the printed page and the 'smarter' readers wind up adding spaces and breaks if you don't keep the formatting very 'clean'

Still, it's done now!


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Still more editing

Smashwords raises the bar and I finally get a copy of Word, so I have been reformatting to appease the gods of Apple.

I had to get extreme with the first book, copying it to notepad, then back to Word and a total reformat. This is the trouble with using five different machines to write a novel using cut & past!

This DID have the effect of making me dream about the characters- even if they were doing stuff not seen in the books- although I may use the dream one day, should I want somebody to have a slow and nasty demise!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Experiment Three

A one year experiment to see if visualizing, imagining and creating new worlds spills over into my dreams.

Actually, I know that it does- I want to see how much.

In the previous experiment, I found that by writing a few notes on waking, I would remember the contents of dreams which otherwise would soon be forgotten- as is what normally happens for most of us.

Anyway, the on-going dream log is over here.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Annoying

1500 free downloads and bugger-all in the way of reviews received. (Thanks Francis and Bez!)

It would be nice if even a few of those who enjoyed the stories could click the rating stars- THAT requires minimal effort!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Another Distributor

All three books have now shipped to Sony Books

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Ebooks hit New Zealand

Ebooks are available at Whitcoulls.

The Kobo Ebook reader is available here at $295- for this price you get 100 FREE classic books.

Best of all- I'm there!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Steady progress

In Smashwords Adventure section 'Most Downloads'

Meddlers in Time 13/380
Meddlers in Time- Out of the frying pan 30/380
Meddlers in Time- The Cockatoo River Incident 55/380

As of five minutes ago- 880 downloads

Better pull finger with the next installment!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Cockatoo River Incident edited

Got most of my typos out today. I really need to buy a copy of Word.

Also added a few lines to explain why we did not come to the rescue will ALL guns blazing.

Carrying on from Out of the frying pan, we are still on the Agent Provocateur mission.

Not everyone gets a happy ending...

Update:

Now after Word has gotten most of the cock-ups, I'm going through line-by line looking for the rest.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

For new and not so new viewers

A little history:

Meddlers in Time started life as two books- Meddlers in Time and Meddlers in Time- Culture Shock. There are five copys of each in print version- I had a small print done as a test run. At that time I thought the books migh never go any further than that.

But then I rolled the two together, as I planned to self-publish and it was more economical for me to produce one big book.

The next book was started- this was to be Meddlers in Time- Catspaw and covered mainly the adventures in the 35th century that happened before the first book(s)

But then came ebooks and I changed plans, deciding to release the parts of the book as short novels/novellas. This seems to be the way to go when targeting the ebook reader users and those reading on IPhones, Ipads and suchlike.

So I rolled out the first part of this tale as Meddlers in Time- Out of the frying pan, into the fire.

Next came Meddlers in Time- The Cockatoo River Incident and now I'm working on the next part, Meddlers in Time- Downward to Earth.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Freeware is great for 'getting it out there'

Meddlers in Time is now 9/290 and MIT- Out of the frying pan is at 21/290 in the Smashwords Adventure section (over 25,000 words)

MIT- The Cockatoo River Incident is at 72/370 in the Adventure section (all books)

Getting there!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Under way

Right- I have actually started tapping the keys and #4 is on the way.

This one may run a little longer, but I'm hoping to have it done by end of year.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Damn- it's working!

Downloads are going nuts.

Once I hoped that a couple of dozen people would read my stuff and maybe like it.

It is proving a bit more popular than that!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Tactical decision

Amongst other reasons, I decided that I need publicity more than sales right now.

This means the books will be available free for a while yet.


Now I need to get started on book four!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Yes- another free book!


The Cockatoo River Incident is on the way!

Another Dead-Tree option


Meddlers In Time- Out of the frying pan is soon to be available in hard copy here

Thursday, April 22, 2010

A new version

I have just finished an extensive edit of Meddlers In Time. I stripped all the formatting by saving it as a txt file, then put back the formatting I wanted and resaved as a doc file.

Curse Microsort Word's autofarmatting!

If you have purchased an older version, you may upload the latest revision at no cost- hell- anyone can have one of the new ones- I'm giving the books away!

It is curently 89th in the queue at Smashwords, so may no be available for a few hours.



The lesson here is- get a book on how to write before you start to write!

UPDATE II
Bugger- something didn't work, so I have gone back to the saved copy.

It's updated, just not quite as nicely formatted as the version that failed. Back to the drawing board!

What they teach you in school here does NOT cut it!

UPDATE:
There is a problem- the new version won't convert to EPUB and I think that the problem is at the other end. It used to work and I have only simplified the formatting- nothing new is in there.

Now its a 'wait & see'...

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Up yours!

Uncle Sammy wants 30% of my royalties, unless I complete his incomprehensible tax forms.

So bugger it- the current 'administration' won't get a cent out of me.

The books stay free!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Bribery

Buy one of the books- no card needed when they are free- write me a nice review and I will send you a copy of the next installment free!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

FREE

Belated Birthday Giveaway:

My books are now FREE.

Bugger it, I'm not making anything selling them anyway.

Get in before I change my mind...

Saturday, April 10, 2010

!

2216 of these used in the first MIT.

Point taken Francis!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Formatting

All seems OK, with the exception on RTF.

That decides to randomly change the type size for no apparent reason.

HTML, Java, PDF and Kindle all good!

Meddlers In Time- Out of the frying pan, into the fire

Meddlers In Time- Out of the frying pan, into the fire.


This is part one of the 35th century tales. It covers the period of when Wayne Jamieson is drafted into the Imperial forces, having spent the last forty years as a spacer, pirate, mercenary and lastly- as the commander of a successful privateer Free Company.


After leading a raid that turns the course of a civil war, he is shipped off-planet because of a large price on his head.


On his way back to Old Earth, he manages- as usual- to get involved in a desperate action with the other main character, Jenny DeVries.


This time they do not have the near-magical gates to help them.


This and the next four parts cover the shaping of the protagonists into the deadly weapons found in the first book of Meddlers In Time.


The next in the series is: Meddlers In Time- The Cockatoo River Incident and is due to be released early May 2010.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

This weekend- hopefully!

I just have to run the next installment through a grammer checker and do some final format adjustments and the next 36k words will be posted on Smashwords.

The next part is not too far behind that!

UPDATE:

DONE!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Playing with cover art

Finished!

The Cockatoo River Incident!

Now I will spend a month kicking it around and doing a bit of editing.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

File cleanup

I have just uploaded a 'cleaned up' document to Smashwords.

I have found a few formatting errors and have minimised the use of italics. I might like them but a lot of readers don't!

I have learned from this and are now doing all my work on one computer and NOT cut & pasting chapters into a master document- where most of my troubles started!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

IPad books

I have just opted in to distribute through the Apple store.

Smashwords sure make life easy for us writers!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

An E-Book Review 'Which Art In Hope' Francis W. Porretto




This work stands out as a gem on Smashwords- where unfortunately there is an abundance of cringe-inducing dreck! Such is the price of freeing us all from the gatekeepers of the publishing houses- and one man's dreck is another's romantic fiction!

Heinlien's anarchist/libertarian societies with Julian May's mental adepts!

The tale, set 1200 years into the future, is on a world now home to refugees from earth, who have fled earth's oppressive governments. (If anyone has spare places on such a trip, please contact me!)
The author explore the conflicts between lovers of freedom and those who deliberately or unwittingly impose obligations and duties to others using the 'justification' of the insidious 'for the greater good'

I won't say too much more as I hate to give away a story!

Once I got started, I was stuck to the screen and damned if there wasn't a tear in my eye at the end of the story. Not many manage that!

Francis Porretto is an author destined to go far!

Nowhere else as Smashwords are such quality tales available so cheaply, so spend up!

Available Here at Smashwords

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Now I have an ISBN

ISBN: 978-1-4523-0900-2

Title: Meddlers In Time

Author: Wayne Watson

Publisher: Smashwords, Inc.

Hooray! I have an ISBN! I am in the system!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

On track

Wrapping up The next installment of MIT now.

Another 5-10 k words an the Cockatoo River incident is done.

I think the model of releasing a string of novella-length installments is better than waiting 2 years for me to put out a full length one.

Heel, thinking about the years I spent waiting for one of my favorites to put out another 250k!

Welcome to the brave new world of ebooks!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Confession

I said 'Clip' instead of 'Magazine' in the opening pages!

Then forgot to edit it out before publishing.

I DO know better!

Thing is, with telling a story, sometimes you do have to stray away from the technically correct for your target audience.

When on subjects military, you need to change what would be the actual dialogue in order to make it comprehensible to the civilian reader. A string of acronyms which makes perfect sense to one who has served means absolutely nothing to on who has not.

I also tone down the language a lot.

If I used the work 'Fuck' as often as is usually heard in a conversation between servicemen, my word count would be boosted by about 30%! and this doesn't really add much to the tale!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Perspective

I never intended this to be a literary great.

I DID want to write a story that was a bit of fun and an entertaining read.

When I wrote it, I thought I would be happy if a couple of other peple liked it. I still enjoy re-reading it!

It was one of those 'Bucket List' tasks. A lot of people I know TALK about writing a book. They have been doing so for near 1/2 a century in some cases- but I actually did it!

Now I want to do it better and keep getting better!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Format

The next work 'The Cockatoo River Incident' is going well.

I'm at the point of the incident now and I'm enjoying getting back into writing, after a couple of years of fiddling and editing.

With the ebook format, I'm now thinking of getting away from the 'big book' 200k word model and turning out a series of novellas/ short novels in the 'Meddlers In Time' series.

I can always string a couple together into a larger book...

Friday, February 19, 2010

E-Book Week

All you want to know about ebooks over here!

For once, NZ is not the test-ground for the new technology.

This would be our telcos wanting crazy money for some of their un-used 3G capacity, no doubt. Not exactly world- leaders in inovation or service, that lot...

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Now available at Barnes & Noble!

I see that I now appear amongst their listings!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Writing tricks

Being very time-poor, I have come up with a technique that seems to work for me.

I have set a target of 500 words five days a week. I find that while driving around on my own (can't do this with other people in the vehicle) I can come up with enough story line to fill out to 500 words easily. I only have to keep a few days ahead with the plot this way- while working to the story plan, of course.

Break anything down into small bit and it becomes do-able.

500 words, five times a week is nothing- but adds up to 100 k a year!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Another price change

I have decided to try Mark's suggested model of letting the buyer set the price.

Minimum price is 99 Cents US!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The daily grind

The Cockatoo River Incident just broke the 10k word mark!

I have set a goal of 2k words a week. I know- pathetic to a full-timer, but I work 60-80 hours a week and have a handicapped kid. What I are doing is getting the writing discipline back and 2k a week is a book every two years (allowing for editing and re-writing)

If you want me to write more, tell people (with money) about MIT. I know this won't support me anytime soon, but I'm taking the long view with this!

This message sponsored or prompted by Jacob's Creek Chardonnay!

(The Cockatoo River Valley is on one of the Australian worlds of the Empire)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Cheers!

My thanks to those kind folks who nominated me for the NZ Sci-fi Award- the Sir Julius Vogel awards!

I got confirmation of my nomination today!


Monday, February 8, 2010

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Getting on with it

The new book has been nothing like the first one, which was blurted out in a couple of month.

I learnt much from that, the big lesson being 'slow down, do it once, do it right'

or at least don't spent three years editing and tinkering!

It's slow going, with work and everything, but 500 words a day adds up over a year1

Saturday, February 6, 2010

More Google Earth shots

I wish I had this when I started writing the story. At the time I had to used on-line topographical maps.

This is the piece of Derbyshire from the book- no doubt it looked a bit different back in the ninth century!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Google earth is a writer's friend!

Of course being in an alternate universe, the locations are only approximate, but this is where the 21st century NZ parts of the story take place.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Found on youtube

Every now and again I search 'Meddlers in Time' to see what comes up on Google.

The other day I found this offering:



Don't worry- I won't sue!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Sir Julius Vogel awards 2010

I'm blowing my own trumpet and nominating 'Meddlers In Time' for the Sir Julius Vogel Awards for science fiction!

[Serious grovelling mode on]

my chances would be greatly improved if I recieved supporting nominations!

To help with this, I have prepared a nomination email body below, which just a cut & paste and your name added.

The information is all is here: http://sffanz.sf.org.nz


Name / Title of work
Meddlers In Time
Name of Producer / Author / Creator
Author- Wayne Watson
What the work is i.e. Novel, TV, Movie, Short Story, Web, Collection, Comic, Art
Novel
Year of First Release
2009
Publisher / Production company name
also
How to contact the producer / author


What category you think the nomination belongs to i.e. Fan awards, Professional awards
Professional Awards
GENRE - science fiction, fantasy or horror
Science Fiction
Contact details of the person making the nomination e.g. email or/and phone number
add details here
Other details about the work, that might be relevant

e.g. the media it appears in - radio, web
Where to get a copy of the work
or email here for a free copy: wwfeatherston@xtra.co.nz
Any other comments you wish to add
Meddlers In Time is in ebook format

Reviews

A great review over at Sci Fi Down Under!

"...if Avatar is a 'puff pastry' the this story is a T-Bone with all the trimmings. It's great to have the Kiwi's as the main protaginists they make great anti-heroes. It does take a little bit to get into the story but stick with it as the action does come and when it does it is full on. Wayne has done a lot of of research to make sure all of the details are accurate which makes it a very appealing read.
If high-tech weaponry, guns, APC's and Kiwi's having Nukes (oh yes we do!!!!) setting up residence in 9th Century England sounds interesting, check it out..."

Check out this blog for all the news on sci-fi books and movies.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Price Reduction

I have just slashed the price of Meddlers In Time to US$ 2.00!

This price stays until I sell 100 books, so get in now!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Now 50% available as a free sample!

I have just been re-reading Meddlers in Time on Kindle for PC.

This gives you a counter with the percentage of the book you have so far read.

The 25% available in the free sample just wasn't enough! I'm just getting warmed up at that stage (I don't do short stories!)

So I have upped the free sample to 50%

Download away!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Kindle for PC

Amazon have a Kindle for PC download available:

Kindle for PC

Saturday, January 2, 2010

TANSTAAFL

Back to full price- the rock-bottom low $4.00 US!

If you want a copy and don't have paypal or a devils card- get in touch and see if we can do a deal.

Plugs on prominant blogs* and reviews are good currency at the trading post!




*- as many daily hits as mine!

Friday, January 1, 2010

The future of print

Few are as much in need of a shakedown as the traditional publishing model.

The end user, AKA the customer, is so far from the producer that he is paying far more than need be. Look at the retail price of a paperback these days!

And I don't mean those poor abandoned orphans on tales outside the shops- the full price material on the shelves.

Where it is staying.

Then along comes the ebook and Print On Demand.

No more waste or risk with advance printing.

Ebooks can be produced dirt cheap. Mark Coker of Smashwords talks about the model of the four dollar book. Customers will be more inclined to try a new book or author when the price is low- way below even the discount books.

Smashwords pays authors up to 85% of the net proceeds from the sale of their works. Net proceeds to author = (sales price minus PayPal payment processing fees)*.85.

Also, the author gets to set the price and can control discounting through coupon codes. I have just had a 100% discount for the Christmas period. Being a newbie, I need to get my name out there!

Now a lot of folks are traditionalists and prefer to read paper books. I have to admit to being one of them. But there is a new breed of reader coming up- one who is more used to reading from the screen than the printed page.

They will change the face of book retailing.

Folks who live in small city apartments can keep huge libraries in digital form. No more packing crates of books- just grab the Kindle and a handful of USB sticks.

Students won't need to bust themselves carrying 30kg of textbooks around!

And best of all- those who love there card & paper can have their favorites printed out and bound as hard copy via POD!

Books will never go out of print and I won't have to hunt through second-hand book shops for long-lost old friends (although I probably still will,because I like doing so!)