KB Featured Book
Stone and Silt
by Harvey Chute

$2.99
Kindle Edition published 2013-08-14
Bestseller ranking: 713665

Product Description
Big Al's Books & Pals 2014 Readers' Choice Awards: Young Adult Nominee

A ruthless murder and a stolen shipment of gold.

At school, sixteen-year-old Nikaia Wales endures the taunts of bullies who call her a “half-breed.” At home, she worries about how her family will react if she reveals her growing feelings for the quiet boy next door.

Those are soon the least of her troubles. Nikaia discovers a hidden cache of gold, and when police find a corpse nearby, her father becomes a suspect. Worse, Elias Doyle is circling, hungry to avenge his brother’s death.

Nikaia desperately searches for clues to save her father. In her quest to find the killer, she learns about the power of family, friendship, and young love....

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Topics - Michael Buckley

Pages: [1] 2 3 4 5 6 7
1
Writers' Cafe / Here is the update at night I promised
« on: May 10, 2016, 06:11:44 AM »
Since the gofundme campaign to get me back to America from the Philippines, Iraq and Afghanistan it has been a rough ride. I still have the same job and car. I will be moving into my new home a tent in a state park in a primitive camp ground. The cost is 236 for 2 weeks but they have public showers and bathrooms.  I Tryed to get an apartment but my credit score is 600 and no history is no apartment. I will post a long post tonight to explain my 1 plus year. I don't want money and that is not what this is about I have a job.
It is a interesting story how I got here but a long one. I am at work now. The few who messaged me I am sorry I did not reply.

2
Now a good month for me will have others in tears. :)

I am almost at 29 dollars at D2D and almost all from B&N and I should just break 30 this month. Amazon I will break 5 dollars. After KU my sales at Amazon stopped. Not bad considering I have nothing new out. I have read a nice, how to book about scrivener and I have plotted a rough outline of 22 Chapters.
It has been a long time for me,my personal life is bad. I finally have reached a part in my life that I am tired of thinking about it and I feel good about writing in a different place then I am at now. It's a chance to escape and enter a different place.
My number 1 seller after all this time is still the grammatically challenged serial of Billy, It's Time.
Just a little update from me.
So yes I am writing again, finally.

3
Writers' Cafe / update on my status
« on: March 20, 2015, 08:29:41 PM »
Randall gave me a email and said a few people were asking about me, below is the update.

Monday will make the beginning of week four in my training, six weeks total of class room training and than two weeks on the main floor answering calls training for a total of eight weeks before I start working on my own.

I sold the truck so I had some money to give back to twillerjune and put a down payment on a Toyota corolla.I have about a 45 min drive to and from work and other than work I am alone all the time, I do not interact with the ex or my daughter and it's lonely I guess you could say. Saturday I will take a cheap shotgun, I got a Mosseberg maverik 20 gauge "can't take the kick of the 12 gauge anymore" I could, but it would not be a wise thing to do. I will pattern the turkey choke and possibly go turkey hunting when it starts up in April, maybe not-"ify right now."

It's strange I would feel a lot less lonely if I was living by myself and not with the ex, I give her 500 a month to sleep in a spare bedroom, but it's really uncomfortable living here and I don't look forward to coming home after work. As far as writing my mind is a million miles away from everything right now and I have to put my energy in learning.
I guess I miss having a girlfriend or even the company of a lady. Going to the range tomorrow will help fill the void and take my mind off of ladies.

I do my own thing here, make my own food, laundry and make my lunch, it's the same like living a lone, but different, because I don't belong here.

Later on I hope to get my own place and I can worry about the ladies than.

Right now it's just me and the shotgun. :) I will start writing again in a few months after the training is over and I get settled in with my work schedule.

I get along with everyone at work and I don't dread going there. It's good to be productive again.

4
I am totally penniless and have turned down twillerjune's request for more help until this last week after seeing the OFF lite flash on the column shiftier for the OD and worrying about wearing out the tires, no gas for truck and no food I told her I would greatly appreciate her help again.

I felt like I have been backed in a corner and everything I have tried has failed. I went crazy the last few days and blasted craigslist with resumes, I got a few emails and not much until yesterday...

I received a call which told me I had to move now, not tomorrow and get everything done or I could forget about the job. I drove 40 mile to Greenville where I went though filling out paperwork and a job interview, next I was sent to the job location in Anderson which is a 18 miles drive from where I live, fill out more paper work and then have a interview with the supervisor for the job. This interview had technical questions and when the interview had ended they agreed to pay me 50 cent more than the maximum amount in their add.  Next they brought me to HR where I did more and more paper work. After everything had completed I had to drive over and take a drug test. I finished up at 6 PM.

The title "Authorizer" and I will work at a large call center authorizing claims for repair or replacement for Hvac, Electrical and plumbing to include some appliances. My job is to make sure someone does not install a garbage disposal for $900.00. Help to control the company being over charged and keep the customers happy. If the need is there we will send a different company to make repairs. A garbage disposal can cost less than 100 and 800 for labor is over the top, thats my job.


First off is a required 6 week training course that starts this Monday, that is why I had to get everything finished immediately so I could attend the class. School is 8:30 to 5:30 five days  week. After training I will work 11 to 7:30 with Tuesdays and Sundays off. They said my hours will be 32/40 and the pay period is bi-weekly. They said it is full time employment with a chance of overtime. Healthcare after 30 days.

FINALLY. :) Now I can become a member of society again, I will cancel VA healthcare and SS disability.

5
I forgot the name of the movie with Rosie Perez where her husband wins the lottery and he gives half to a waitress. Idea is similar. Stay tuned.

Sometimes great things happen and we cannot see the big picture from the sidelines, I see it a little bit better from my POV. I have people here who don't even have a pot to P*ss in giving me a five dollar donation and others donating as many as three times and they don't have that much money to be doing that. TwillerJune from the sidelines has been trying to help me get a truck and without one I am dead in the water. I have asked if I could do work to paid off the money for the truck, but they said it was not needed or they could give me a loan, without a job how can I pay off the loan and not knowing if I will find a job that pays enough to even pay off the loan I am weary of accepting such a great offer.

We all know that the gofundme and indiegogo life campaign is a big joke an the public does not care and they don't donate. Everything that has happened has happened because Kboards made it happen.

Everyone has been a part of this from the beginning and my crazy idea is this, let me try to explain. TwillerJune does not have a money tree that she picks dollars off of, they have to work daily to make money. Kboards members have to work daily to make money. The idea I have is to write a book and give everyone here on kboard credit if they would like to be included in the mentions or to hide their identity it would be up to them.

The book would be about Kboards and would have to have the approval of Harvey and kboard members.. It would have to be professionally edited and a professional cover made with donations from the editors and cover designers. I feel that the funds from the book could be used to pay back TwillerJune for all she has given and to help if she decides to help with the truck. After she is paid back the funds should than go to a international fund to help woman throughout the world who are abused.

The book is similar to the movie above that I mentioned, we are all strangers here , meaning we have never met face to face and often times I can p*ss people off, almost daily I do that..

Philip keeps pushing for me to tell the story- I cannot do it alone, because its a Kboard story. I have no idea if something like this could work or not, it would have to be promoted and it's a risk the book could fall flat on its face and everyone would be out of their hard work and time.

everyone deserves to be paid back, but that would not be possible and I thought after twillerJune was Paid back the funds could help other people in need. It would have to be on a international level because Kboard members are international and donations have come from all over the world.

I need to get a truck and work, but I feel guilty to accept money for nothing. I keep telling TwillerJune to wait for the Indiegogo Life campaign something will happen there it will start up in the last 8 or 9 days we have left, but it has not. Many people have given already and I don't expect we will see any change in the indiegogo life program. The truck are crazy expensive and the ones we are finding even in the 3 to 4k range need work. that would be great if I had a job to fix them up and I don't. I made it back to America and I am thankful for that. I just had a idea so I thought I would run it through Kboards, most Ideas are not good ones and if this is good or not I bring it in front of Kboards to decide.

I will not write  book on my own and publish it, that would embarrass Kboards and that is why it has to be professionally proofread and edited with a proper cover.

All things can be gone over, what type of format should we do, and such. I think what Kboards has done is great, why not tell the world? You an even leave me out of the picture if you want and just say some guy, I don't car, but it would be nice to tell the world that sometimes good things can happen.

6
The ships sails on it's historical voyage, taking all the old members with it. The anchor dropped briskly towards the bottom and before it could reach the sandy bottom the old kboard members were all gone, vanished into thin air, without a trace they were suddenly gone. Only a few members remain. Now, the old seats are all filled with new faces.

Ward, Casey and Howey are seldom seen anymore, out with the old and in with the new. The new start of 2015 has seen a lot of hostility in threads, I know I was a part of a few and surly added to the start of some I am sure.

The warm fireplace coziness has been replaced and you can feel it in the air. I am sure some made their pot of gold and have no time to hang around much anymore, some have not and just left after feeling unwelcome.

We have always had hostility and managed to work are way through it and remain friends. It's impossible for everyone to agreed on everything, how bland would it be if they did.

It seems like something is missing, maybe everyday life has reared it's ugly head and pulled some people away with jobs that are very demanding and higher expectations from other people which could have driven some away.

I have noticed a few very intelligent people lately gaming people, edging them on to start arguments and that could have been some of it as well.  Some of the new breed here are not writers and have no intention of being one, they are not readers either, they are here to stir the pot. It seems to be working, the old members are disappearing as fast as I can type this.

I hope for the sake of the forum it can get ironed out, it's the best writers forum on the net, bar none. The new members will need the old members if they hope to be successful and sell books.

I have a little advice for new members here, don't think if you write that nice big novel it will sell and people will want to buy it, in reality it probably won't. I got lucky when I started out and stayed on the bestsellers list for three months, I have crashed and burned with bad reviews ever since and that was a year and half ago.

It's not even about writing a great book anymore, it's about people knowing your out there and why should they waste their time trying your new book out. Most people don't even want to waste the time to read what you have for free, now put a price tag on it and see how difficult it gets.

Most who have made it, sell through  bookbub promo's, it's hard to get accepted there and your book has to have a lot of good reviews before you can even think about bookbub. If bookbub accepts you than the chances are you already have a good enough book which has gained media attention and people like what you write. Don't count on bookbub until you get established and start on your own readership and mailing list.

If you sell a few copies a month starting out your doing good and write more books and go from there. Don't lose your most important resource and that is the old time members here, don't ask them to proof read your 300 page novel, they have better things to do with their time.

When you start out your a nobody just like everyone else, don't try to save the world with your brand new shiny ideas it only alienates others against you. The ideas you have have all been heard and used before, blend in and learn and one day with time and effort you can make a few sales if your content is likable, readable and with a decent cover.

As a forum the cozy fireplace feeling needs to return if the forum will remain successful. look at all the posts and you will see what I mean most members have fewer than 200 posts, everyone is new, not good if you plan to sell books and make money. Fresh out of of college with a degree in English literature will not sell books.  Anyway that's enough rambling, people have eyes, look around and see what I have just mentioned, I have been wrong before, but not likely this time.

7
Writers' Cafe / non-productive, please remove.
« on: January 19, 2015, 07:16:40 PM »
.

8
Sometimes we are flooded with ton of books, often the same.

Now the question for everyone, don't you get tired of clicking on a genre and seeing the same thing and same story every time.

How can you possibly write a bestseller if you can't even stand to read one.

Soon every idea will be used and there will be nothing left. I like to see something new from time to time and Wool when it first came out was just what I needed, I loved the free book and read it, I had a hunger to read all of them, but lacked the money to buy the omni book set. The time I finally had enough money to buy the book set, I bought it and just did not really get into the rest of the books, I will some day read them. I think a lot has to do with the fact I was on a roll and needed to have the whole story in front of me to devour now, right now. later when I finally purchased the book set I lost a lot of the desire which the first book magically gave me. That happens with serials and series if the writer does not put the books out fast enough, Wool was out there to buy and If I had bought it the same time I might have read it all and loved it.

I feel what happened the new world was already created with the first book and later on I lost some of the magic to drive me through the remaining books.

As a reader don't you want something new and different?  As writers we can easily get locked in writing the same type of books over and over to stay in our own Genre, is that hurting us or helping us? As readers don't we want something new and different?

Example of stepping out of the normal day in and day out movies and books is a movie called Avatar, it was different and new and just an incredible movie to watch.

So as readers what do people really want? 50 shades of gray ten million times or something new?

As writers have we forgotten to take risks and dare to be different?

Do we want to copy others success or create success for ourselves?

How many times have I heard the key to success is to find the books in your genre that sell well and copy their ideas.

Why not be creative and have others copy you such as Wool, he has a large group of writers copying his works and they are continuing his world.

If we search for the answer it has to come from the readers who buy our books. As writers we can never be happy writing stuff from other peoples ideas. often we hear people say if you want to make money than write erotica. How can you make money writing erotica if you don't have the craft and skill to write it in a way that sells?

We can often take suggestions from others to write this or that and make a ton of money, it will not work for most of us. Writing requires passion, if you don't have it than how can the readers?

Hugh Howery has done what many strive for, he has created worlds in his books that give people and escape from their's. He has writers continuing his legacy, he is a brilliant writer an sales person. Now most of us are not as capable as him in creating our own world and having people continue it.

But why not try and be different if you are selling well now, no need to change it and go hungry, but if not maybe we need something new and different to spark on a new breed of readers who also want something different and new. I have three new books I will be writing and two of them are old ideas, nothing new, one's a little different, but not stepping out of the box either.

I am just curious to find out what readers want for 2015 and beyond. Do readers want short books, small novels 45 to 55k or full size books over 100k.

Do readers want something new or are they happy with the stuff that is out there now.

Stuff like murder mystery's will probably go unchanged, books on adventure can always change and so can Sci Fi. Dystopian is a large playing filed and bad things can happen in many ways, but it's not really new.

Romance is bringing to the reader a world often which they wish theirs were like, but with kids, and work it's a struggle just to stay a float so it makes a nice escape for the readers. Surly their has to be a way to re-energize that genre and come out with something new and different.

I am trying to find my specialty and Gene and so far it has deluded me, I write a lot of dystopian, but it's not really me and often I am not comfortable with writing only that.

2015 brings a good chance for readers and writers to re-unite and to make it a better place for everyone.

I still am looking for my magic and I feel sooner or later I will find it, as of yet I have not.I want to write a book that people do not want to read, they have to read it, they have to because all the neighbors are talking about it and they have to see what all the talks about.

9
The population in the Philippines has one of the highest number of alcohol abusers in all of Asia and it's easy to see why.

The beginning everyone has high hopes and they set out to find a job to support their family, Find a nice place to live and be happy. Sound familiar? That is a world desire, not just the Philippines. Most fail miserably and don't find a job. I have so many stories to tell and some I would lose a lot of female fans after I told them, yes the country is similar to Thailand and it supports a large part of the Asian sex trade, but that is not the true story, the story is about the lives and how people survive, how loving families no longer love each other, how they fall out of love just to survive. How many children grow up on the streets discarded like a old comic book.  The husbands and wives are no longer a working family. Many woman can no longer enjoy sexual relationships and the men lose hope because they are often discarded to for the better of the family. A wage over here working in a department store can be 3 to 5 dollars aday and you have to be under 30 to get the job. After six months they lose their job and a new person takes it. Men sell sun glass's on the street and many women work the bars. The families become a broken mess.

Now about the abs- I kick boxed a long time ago and I had to have a stomach that could take a punch or a kick and not have the wind knocked out of me. I did the wheel on the floor where you roll it forward and it wipes out your shoulders but will give you a stomach as hard as a rock in short order. I did rope pull downs and leg lifts. I did a lot of aerobic activity to burn calories and I had the stomach I needed to compete. The six pack abs I did not have, no mater how hard I tried to diet properly and eat right I did not stick to my diet enough and with the constant uptake of protein it was a losing battle. I had a six pack but it was hidden, you could touch my stomach it was rock hard.

The secret reviled- The Philippine men who get jobs working in construction or the rice fields or manage to keep their family's together, have a wife or girlfriend they love and children they adore almost always have six pack abs. I have never been to a place where so many people have six packs and none of them go to the gym or do aerobic exercise. They work hard, have love in their hearts that keep them from being drunks, they have hope  and strong family values.

The men compared to me are quite small in size and I think the bigger men might tip the scales at 140 pounds only and many less then that. They work hard and are very strong, imagine  man who barely weighs 100 pounds or about 47 kilo lifting a heavy bag of rice that weighs in at 100 pounds plus. they do that all day long when they have to transport the rice. The men building houses carry smaller bags of cement sometimes two at a time. For their size they are far stronger than I have even been. I use to load up 300 pound A/C units on a ruck by myself, but just one or two, they do this all day long.

The diet consists of fish if they can get it and rice, no bread or candy. It is amazing how the US is always searching for the six pack and here almost everyone has one who is not a drunk and who has a hard physical job. no gym or running required.

1. Healthy relationships to keep you from being a drunk.
2. hard physical work
3. A diet that consists of no bread or small amounts and mostly fish and small amounts of rice, to much rice will give you a bloated gut. The diet is very different from the ones in the US, that is the number one reason they have the six pack.

The myth about six pack abs is reviled, no gym or aerobics required.

I am not a doctor or a scientist, just what I have seen with my own eyes. If you want to write how someone gets a six pack that is how. If any of the three requirements are missing then so will the six pack.

A foreigner here who lives in regular areas could live here all their lives and be happy. It's impossible to live in a squatter area and keep your mental health, you become a different person. All the things we learn growing up, what is right or wrong does not pertain here.

Now the question to ask is it right or wrong? I am not God and I cannot answer that. The only thing I can say is they do what ever it takes to survive, is it pretty? NO. Do the people who live here enjoy this kind of life style? Of course not, no one would. They except things that I could never accept, never, and that is why I can never fit in.

I have been told a million times you need to accept how things are, now everyone knows I never will. I still have values and things that I perceive are very different than others see them.

Standard practice here in squatter areas are with foreign boyfriends, where the Philippine husband or boyfriend leaves for two or three weeks while the foreign boyfriend visits. They try to receive support from the foreigner and pledge their loyalty to the foreigner. I am asked when I see this happening everywhere around me why is it so hard to accept? I ask them how can you love someone and share that love with another person, they reply it's only money and not love. I am not part of any of that and it's bad enough that I am around it all the time. The person I am staying with has  foreign boyfriend and so does her sister, they play the game. I tell the one I am staying with I'm glad your not my girlfriend because I could never except it. They let me stay here because they thought I would get a disability pension. They are not throwing me in the street and I keep my mouth close even when sometimes what I see bothers me so much I could scream. Some of the men that come here from other country's abuse the women here and I ask them why they put up with it? they say it's only money. The love in areas like this is non assistant and the abuse far exceeds what anyone would care to see. People often beaten and they get away with it because of money. I have no sex here and I don't have a girlfriend here, I am asked regularly if I want a girl and my response is no thank you.

It has been a learning experience living in a squatter area and I see things here that no one else knows exist, that is why I have to leave here. It's all survival here, survival is not pretty and takes a toll on the way you think.

They have fed me when I was hungry and been nice to me, often times people here never get support from a foreigner or don't have a foreign boyfriend. Some sell discount clothes they buy at the market and than spend months trying to get pay for things people promise to give the money for next week and never do.

Sometimes we take our life for granted, here it's just so very different. I want to live my life again, maybe one day fall in love again, but when I do I don't want to share that love with no one else. If I can find a used motor-home a few good hunting dogs and a way to survive in the forest, maybe that is a better life for me, I feel like I just need to get away from city life for a while.

10
I am working on a new story, sort of :) I only have a few chapters done and I thought it would be a great way to play around with Shriverner to try and learn how to use it.

I copied the manuscript from word and placed it in the manuscript folder and named it. I then create ne chapters and copy and paste them into the new Chapter folders which I have named Chapter 1, Chapter 2 and such. My word doc already has a header called Chapter 1 and Chapter 2 and 3... you get the point.

If  I compile it to a .pdf file I get two chapters titles, one I created and one made by Schrivener. I also imported my book cover but have not figured out how to include it to my project when I compile it.

I put three Asterisks when I change POV and enter them on the page, in Scrivener it's not allowing me to center them. The Pope is here in the Philippines now and the internet is slower than usual so online tutorials are out of the question for now.

I like the idea of being able to make a lot of chapters and use the cork board with the note cards to write a description about the chapter, you can do the same thing in word with notes, but it's better designed in Shrivener. I had complete control of my text in word, with Shrivener I feel I am losing that control. I know it's because I do not understand the app as of yet. I like how you can organize a serial or series all in one window without having to open up multiple word files and you can go to the cork board for info on your other books.

11
I tried to PM Zoe, but she is no longer taking messages.
I will tell you a story about me and Zoe, at first I hated her, every single post I made I felt she was attacking me. I saw her and I thought to myself, here we go again soon I will get blasted.

If you can get past the rough exterior of Zoe you will find a person with a heart of gold who is not afraid to slap you upside the head when you get out of line.

She is not a Grammar Queen, even though her IQ is double the size of some of us, she is not about that at all. She could careless if your car is shinier than hers, it's not who she is.

She has a passion for proper grammar and many of my posts might have her pulling her hair out.

When she helps you don't be offended just understand her and you will come to like her as much as me.

If you ask her for help, when she is finished helping you, there will be no need to worry about if you put your T-shirt on inside out or not, are your shoes on the right foot. She will make sure your comas and hyphens are in place, and when she Finish's you can rest a shured you will be better off after her help.

She cares about each and everyone of us, her heart is filled with love, but she has a bit of a temper, so do I.

Don't be offended let her help and know deep inside she cares about you, me and everyone. I consider her my best friend here.

I don't know what happened, Annie is a good person, I like her, she's helpful to everyone, but to me Zoe is "GOLD." You need to come back Zoe. I would bounce off of walls without you.

12
Link to your homepage is useless, unless your on the A list, no one will visit.

Example if you use D2D to publish to all channels and you have a four book series what do you do? Let's just use apple "ITunes" for this example. Series title is "whatever"

Whatever book 1
Whatever book2
Whatever book 3
Whatever book 4
Whatever book set
Someone downloaded book 1 which was permafree, you did not rock their world, but they will give you another chance and purchase book 2. If you rock their world they will work hard and find it, if not the link has to be in the back matter of your book, they don't want to go to your website, right no world rock in :)

I always just cave a link to my webpage where my books can be found.

You cannot put competive site links on your back matter, so you would have to have books with different back matter for every site.
You could not hit publish and send the book to all sites at one time. Does anyone actually do the links for each site and if so did it help sales?

13
Writers' Cafe / Vietnam, how it effects books and life in general
« on: January 14, 2015, 05:36:49 AM »
I can imagine, but I am not sure, it has a small percentage of sales compared to other war books.

1976 I was 17 and joined the Army for the first time, I was gung hoe and wanted to be a airborne ranger and anything else they would give me, stupid back than.

Honest I was not that ugly back than, it took years of good living to have the look I have now. :)

Anyway it was a sour time for vets coming home, and for me as well. I had to show my ID just to get a date because I looked old for my age, no girls wanted anything to do with a soldier coming home from Vietnam and until I could prove my age there would be no dates.

My book Tears from Kabul I never gave away a single copy at B&N and today Apple downloaded ten copies of the free book. Apple is more international than B&N I would guess. America has listened to Iraq and Afghanistan for over ten years now and they are tired of it. That might also be why my campaign is failing to the general public. I saw it and lived it during the Vietnam area. I been to Thailand one time and I brought my Philippine girlfriend. Rode the elephant rides and drank beer but did not have any Thai women over there. One time was enough for me and I had no desire to go back there, same like the Philippines only cleaner and nicer and a less dangerous place than the Philippines

I have never been to Vietnam or Cambodia. That is a war I have been accused of going to that I never have, I have pity on the people who went there because they were treated poorly when they came home. My uncle went and when he came home he went to work in the coal mines and never re-entered civilian life again, he died working the coal mines. Before he went he was a people person and got along with everyone, he came back and he was not the same person, he never talked about it, he just left for the mines. I endured a small amount of the hatred because I looked like a soldier who might have been in the war.

It was over in 73 and 74 for most, I still had drill sergeants after they took their R&R they were assigned as my DI and that was the middle part of 76 long after the American involvement was over. They were still coming home in 76.  My Di never finished training us he went to jail on rape charges. He attacked a woman off base.

I know WWII has been the popular war where Americans came home to a heroes welcome. All the other wars, not so.

If someone writes war books do the ones on Vietnam even sell?

14
As most people know I have a serial one star fan, he/she is only one person and if you look at most books they all get a few one star reviews here and there. My goal is to try and write something worth while, if that happens a reader will give a good review and flush the one star review down the toilet.

Until I reach the point where my books are not getting good reviews, pen names will not help. I don't write erotica so there is no need to use a pen name.

I guess my goal for 2015 is to improve on my characters, put commas in the right place more often, use spell check and grammar checker properly and tell a story that someone actually wants to read.

So for now I will keep the same name.

15
Writers' Cafe / Tips for climbing out of the barrel and writing again?
« on: January 14, 2015, 03:00:18 AM »
If you wait for a perfect world you could age 20 years and still not write nothing. If you feel your in a writers slump or fell into the bottom of a 55 gallon drum, how do you crawl out of it.

Nothing in thee world should block you from writing, a day or two break is okay, but anything more it makes it harder to step back into writing. We can always find accuses not to write, the same is true about why we should write.

Any tricks people have to get back to writing, any problems I have will still be here tomorrow waiting on me, and they won't help my writing any.

There is no forest to take a walk in to get fresh air, I am stuck in here, my own little world. It should not be a cause to not write. How to bust the bubble and start to write again. Any ideas? I have three stories I am writing and none of them have a real start, they are just sitting and waiting to be told.

I guess it's writers slump or something, not writers block, I could think of ideas for the stories. Kind of strange feeling, almost as if I am floating in space, trying to grab a hold of anything to pull me back into the spaceship, but I seem to just miss the handle to pull myself back inside.

honestly this is not meant to be a negative post, just any tips that others have found that help when they get disoriented from their writing.

16
Writers' Cafe / New Idea on books, based on SM's sort of...
« on: January 12, 2015, 05:21:31 PM »
I read SM's post a few days ago and found it very interesting. I have a little different take on it and don't even know if it would work or not.  master writer of WWII books seems to pull it off, but his books are all pretty much close to being the same Genre. W.E.B Griffin, he has two Characters that are all that and more. McCoy and Brigadier General Picken's. I would buy his darn books if the characters went from a war story to a book on sewing or knitting. The characters are that strong and likable.

Now my idea is this, forget about the genre, not important and it might even hurt your sales. Lets write four books that are 20k to 60k, create a database or a spreadsheet or notepad and write down he character information with dates. The dates are important because we will have at least two characters at any given time in all four books, the same two characters for all four books. any other characters you will just blend them into the story.

The genre's you use could be anything you want-war- love story-romance and sci-fi. Create a whiteboard you can buy them at wall mart still or a office supply store. Now the hard part it to let the stories intertwine across the different genres with real dates and times, keep the one star reviews away.

You will be bringing readers in from other genre to read your stories, give the characters spunk and make them lovable or hated. You have now with your four books opened up the playing field for four different series in the future, you have fans wanting more. I for one read other books because of the character more so than the genre. I think it's a win-win situation. And if you are a writer who does not write series it might be the next best thing.

If you love full size books than write four books 100k, the rules are yours to make or break. Why write four novels that end up sinking down to the bottom with a sea of other books that don't sell, this can work... In order to be successful you have to work hard on character development and give your readers a reason to go to another book that might not be their genre give them a character they have to have, have to read about. It's doable, don't give up, so many new post lately of people that have reach the point they are not making money and give up.

Look at me, I am beyond failing and I have my own one star serial reviewer for over a  year one staring all my books, I don't give up- why should you.

Be different, be new- and succeed. What your doing now is not working, why throw wet firewood in to the fire when you know it will not burn, my idea will work. I might even try it myself, but i won't sell much because my character development S*cks. I am always trying to improve on that.

i hate to see people who have done this for two or three years to just give up- stop what your doing and try something different, giving up is failure, give up on your books, than tomorrow give up on something else, quitting is easy, fighting is hard but has better results in the end.

After eight years in two wars I have to have some kind of PTSD or a word like that, I am always depressed, reading people who post they want to give up stress's me even more, dare to be different people, don't follow, lead.

17
I pulled almost all my books out of KU the end of DEC when my 90 days was over.
I always had downloads with D2D and apple, but I had nothing to sell, I had a link in the back of my book to my website where my books can be found.

I had one book that Apple loved the permafree, but it did not cross over with any sales on Amazon, my website had links to the books, but no one at apple was going to my website to download them. KU killed the few sales I would have made at Apple. last month for Dec I had 25 dollars in sales at mostly B&N. This month Apple has started a few sales here and there, I am getting buys for book two and than the final book three.  Amazon I sold one book set of that title so far this month. Amazon I have about 7 dollars in sales. Nothing to borrow. last month I had about 8 or 9 borrows, but they were mostly from Kboarders.

One title on B&N has kept my sales higher than over 20 books at Amazon. Last month was the first month in a very long time I broke the 20 to 30 a month range across all channels.

With borrows and all channels I should be about 50 to 60 US dollars for the month of Dec. The month of NOV I had about 5 borrows only. I see no profit in borrows for me, only a lost. I'm finding out that if your books are not readily available on the sales channel where they buy your book they won't go looking for it, you just lost a sale.

This is chicken scratch for the A team such as Hugh, and Wayne, but for me it's a lot. Even with the lack of sales at Amazon I am heading for maybe a 40 dollar month for all channels. Pays the monthly bank charges.

Now what this post is all about, after you finish reading all the gibberish.

I have seen that making a book permafree and throwing it out there on Apple and B&N and having the rest of your serial or series on sale at Amazon in KU is not a good move.. I write dystopian and literary fiction, no erotica and my romance books turn out to be a mix of dystopian and suspense I guess you would say.

Sometimes it's good to hear from people who don't sell 50 books a day, the best I do now across all channels would be five books a day and if I make a sale or two a day it's a good day, I had a six day dry spell this month on Amazon where I sold zero books and three or four days with no sales on D2D.

My sales are coming from old books that are serials over a year old. My new book sells a book or two a month and my newest serial Cave In that is not so new sells maybe a book or two only. Cave In really never was much of a interest with my readers.

After reading SM's brilliant post I might use her Idea if I can figure out how to take books that are completely different and use the characters in my other books.

Character development to me is a one star or a five star review with direct mention of the characters. If they hate the MC or love them, your doing something right, your making the readers care. My biggest weak spot is the development of characters that spark heavy emotion from my readers.

Without strong character development you are doomed for the worst possible review a reader could give, they did not care enough about the characters to continue. Make the readers, mad as H*ll or happy, but make them feel something if you want to sell the next book.

My book Billy got a few bad reviews telling how the characters  were garbage, I did well than, the book still sells today because some of the bad reviews it received. B&N i had one reviewer comment how violent and brutal the book was and gave a one star, the review sold more books.

The books once you get the money should be proofread and edited, if not you will see a ton of grammar issues telling the readers it needs a good editor.

So my account of all this is as follows. have the book proofread and edited, put a nice cover on it and bring your characters to life, make the readers hate or love them, but make sure they never forget them.

I have seen a few posts lately where people are talking about giving up, don't give up, if I can write books so can you. Everyone has room for Improvement, even the A team. If you don't sell a book today than sell it tomorrow or the next day. Keep writing until you find the magic that will cause readers to download your book. I did it when I first started out and was on the top 100 dystopian paid sales for three months. I have not been able to write another book so far that gets the readers attention, "BUT I WILL, DAMN STRAIGHT I WILL." And so can you.

18
Writers' Cafe / "Why I'm angry-everyone please read!- long"
« on: January 09, 2015, 07:02:22 PM »
It might be sad or crazy or both, but the only family I have right now is Kboards and that is not a family, but a online forum.
Underneath all the grammar, covers and millions of words of text lurks people..."Yea real people." I have for the most part of my life been, I guess you could call a loaner. I hate big cities and I find myself living in one now, you cannot breathe against the constant huzzle that big city has.

People striving to survive, fighting over a single job and doing whatever they can for the single pound of rice or piece of bread. If I lived in a town that was 5 square miles and had only 100 people I would fit in a lot better, not five million for the same size area.

I like small towns where people know each other and respect each other. Example... Johnny's grandmother went to the grocery store and after loading up the grocery's in her car, she struggled with one heavy bag she could not lift. Pat the neighbor kids see's hr struggling and runs over to help her put the heavy bag in her car. They know each other and a few friendly words of thanks are said as they go on there separate ways. Little simple things make a big difference in how we live. Now why I am upset follows below- Your thinking all that reading for nothing still no story, "Damn"

I love my country and always have, a few people are not going to change that. I will take you on a ride, so buckle up and sit down and enjoy the ride... A few bumps along the way, don't spill your coffee, tea or beer. Let yourself go and enter my story and for now, try to enter my head and transform yourself into me... Come on just do it. :)

I worked my whole life and finding a job was never a problem until now- After checking everywhere and coming up empty handed I used the internet to find a job, I had a skill set that was in high demand and I found a job finally working for KBR, three or four months had gone by without a job, panic was setting in, I had a family to feed, money was drying up.I was living in Liberty, SC. I sold all my guns and toys to pay bills and buy food. I still had a Honda rancher or ranger, what ever they called it, I forgot, it was 350cc, an atv four wheeler and a few guns left. The joy I felt when they told me I would be going to Texas to a place called Houston to train and take my medical. I would make more money than I ever made at 80,000 a year and when I went to work for fluor I was signed on for 120,000 a year, that was for my last year in the middle east.

I never was much of a macho man, but visions of the planes hitting the trade center were still fresh in my mind in 2004. I will never forget that day for as long as I live, never and no one here should either. I was on a A/C repair service call in Florida at the time, I saw the instant replay and I tried to rationalize what had just happened. I thought it was strange how a airplane could strike a building, maybe something went wrong with the hydraulics of the plane and it was a accident, than the second plane hit and all doubt was removed, it was no accident. Soon the Pentagon would be struck and another plane crashed elsewhere on the ground. America in all her gracefulness was being attacked by her own Airliners. No one in a million years would have thought airliners would be used as a weapon, but they were, it was a perfect weapon that resulted in the lost of thousands of innocent people, a act of terror, harming innocent people for a statement, goes against everything I believe in, I was mad and felt helpless at the same time, how could I help?

In war you target other military people to fight and kill, not helpless civilians. I had my chance to make money in 2004 and to help payback the people who did this to America in 2001 on Sept 11. I passed my training and medical and loaded up to go to a foreign country and a war I had known nothing about. I had mixed emotions, I was scared of going to a combat zone, but they did not pay you big bucks to work in none combat zones, war was money. I bought a nice size life insurance policy incase I died and the company would give your family money as well. I had more value to my family if I was dead, I hope if they killed me they would do it fast, a direct hit with a rocket or something similar.

We arrived at Baghdad airport and when we landed e were hit with incoming mortar fire. We lost at least five people when they said they would not stay and they were flown back home, they quit. We were all scared, but like everyone else I came over for a reason and no damn rockets or mortars would change that. At first my knees shaked and I was scared of dying, but after time goes by the fear disappears, I no longer cared if I lived or died. My family life was terrible, I begged to go back to a wife who left me two months before 911 happened, but it was broke and beyond repair. It was just make money to give to my kids now. After calling and hearing my kids say I am not here, I stopped calling and sent money only, I never went back. I went to the Philippines on my first R&R in Feb 2005 and would stay there, I am still there now in the Philippines.

I worked my butt off in late 2004 and 2005 for a good six months I was like a zombie and so were the other people working for KBR. 16 hour plus days for a good six months, we worked seven days a week, no weekend to look forward to and back then incoming mortar fire every single day, they try to blast you apart. They were bringing in the military faster then the living quarters could be put together. We gave everything we had to get the Air Conditioning installed so the troops would have a place to sleep. I passed out after my shift was over and some how managed to get up and do it all over again. * years in the middle east with 7 day work weeks ad a minimum of twelve hour days. I cared and put in the extra effort to make sure the troops had Air Conditioning i the hot days that often went over 150 degrees, they could not survive in the heat, Afghanistan was cold, but no where near the heat that Iraq had, Afghanistan where I worked was in the mountains, Kabul had a high elevation and did not suffer like Iraq in the hottest days of summer. I sweated my butt off for seven years in Iraq and I did the impossible almost everyday to make sure the troops had A/C.

I took care of them, I did not give stories like others that we don't have parts. I told the soldiers the truth, this is war, if you want something, than you will have to step up to the plate at times. I told that to the special forces sgt that I was there for him, but the military failed to supply the parts I needed. I had no broke A/C units at the time to get parts off of.n He told me to come back in the morning and he would have parts for me. I told him, not to waste my time, many people needed my help. He said just come in the morning I will not let you down. Morning time I went there and found five condenser units waiting for me outside. I found a good fan motor and capacitor and got his A/C running. He was grateful and I was glad to help. Ira was like that. Poorly supplied and we were asked to perform miracles. I did perform the miracles and often I had to push he troops to help make it possible. What I was doing was not allowed, but i had no option I was not going to order parts that would never come and watch the troops sleep outside because it was to hot to live in their living quarters.

I busted my butt over there and I try to get a repatriated loan from the government and they almost spit on me. Putting in the effort to help the soldiers when I did not have to, my orders were simple, put the parts on order if we did not have them, orders came in a year later or most times never. I went above and beyond and my government spits on me. I made it so they could survive in the hot desert, I did not help Kboard people, I helped the troops. Kboard people are helping me and my own government spits on me... I expected more. I still love my Country , but I feel like they just kicked me in the "B*lls" They let me down, but I still love her and would die for her, like a bad girlfriend I guess, she might make you mad, but you can't hate her.

Rant over................



19
I'm the world's worst blurb writer, sometimes accident's happen. I just changed my blurb at Amazon from the one I have on D2D and I think it' a great blurb and here is why. Sometimes it's not the grammar, it's the moment you give the readers that is important.

1. Now have you ever woke-up in the morning and just reached the point where you felt you have had enough? Bad relationship? Bad job? Bad neighborhood? Or the kids are driving you nuts?

2. What can you do?

3 Now you see a book that gives you a way out, it' not real and the reviews on he book s*ck, but it's a way out, even if it's just a short time.

I did okay on Amazon this month, many people bought my book from Kboards or borrows. I had 12 borrows and  26 dollars in sales across all my books on Amazon. I know some of you do that in ten minutes, but I don't. The blurb I mentioned the details about above, matched Amazon in sales with just that one book. At B&N I had the book for free on B&N for a year and it never sold a book, it's priced at 1.99 now and for the last two months it has made at least 20 in sales. It means that Dec instead of 20 to 30 a month in sales across all channels I will have about 65 dollars. Take 15 dollars off the top for ATM use and monthly bank charges and it leaves a monthly income of 50 dollars. I was starving to death at 20 to 30  a month, my stomach was always growling. I took cigarettes and coffee over food when there was a choice. The person here buys low cost clothes at a market and sells them for a small profit and helps out with some food and internet cost as well. She says she is paying me back for the money I gave her before which helps also.
Some months after the internet and food is bought we go to sleep hungry, she gets food from her sister, but I don't take food from her sister. I h managed to sell any stuff I still had left, like external hard drives, electrical meters, some tools and odd's and ends. Enough about all that junk, check out why the blurb works. see below.

Read the top paragraph and tell me in all honesty, have you never in your lives wanted to pack up and jump on the Honda 750 yourselves?
That is why the blurb is good-not the grammar or not really the story just the top paragraph. The cover is hand made by me and lacks, the grammar in the book lacks, the idea,, does not lack.

I think to be a person who sells a lot of books you have to give the people what they want, need. Wayne does that with his laid back books on the Florida Keys, he gives people a way out of there everyday lives and takes them to a different place where they can relax. Hugh created a world and transported people into his world with the book "Wool" and he created a series of Wool books all to transport people into his own world that he created.

Erotica is hot because it also gives people who are in a relationships or no relationship a way to escape and enter a world that is much better than the one they have now.

I feel the perfect book is about giving people what they don't have now in their lives. Romance is hot and sells, WHY? Who has romance in their lies? Be honest about it, really honest, after you take care of the kids, feed everyone, work if you have jobs and at the end of the day you probably don't even have enough energy left to lite a candle.

Your tired and drained of energy, but you still want to be made to feel special every single day of your life, who wouldn't? A good Romance can take someone on that journey and give us what we don't have now.

I"m older now and I am a guy- the last time I looked :) and I still grave and want Romance, who ever says they don't is only fooling their self's. Who would not want to walk together with someone they love, hand and hand and have a strong feeling of love in their heart for the other person, everyone want's that and that is why Romance is hot, steamy romance, why not- sex is good and even better with someone you love and adore.

Maybe what I  wrote makes no sense at all I will have another cup of coffee and try to wake up. :)

blurb:

Billy and Travis loaded up their Honda 750 and left their run down trailers to the landlord for back rent due. It's no longer feasible to stay in Georgia, neither one has worked for over a year. They were starving, and could not last much longer. It was time for change. They landed a small Carpenter job to give them enough money to start their journey. Along the way in search of work, they meet like minded people in dire need such as themselves. The year is 2017 and the bottom fell out of the economy, crime was the new law of the land, no police. The criminals use whatever force, necessary to survive.

Under constant attacks, they were losing their battle to survive, until they form a brotherhood with the Cherokee Nation, which results in a combined force with Billy's new group of people and the Cherokee Indians. A force the townspeople have never seen. The ferocity of their combined group is unmatched.
Word count 15,455
BILLY, IT'S TIME (SEQUEL) is available.  Two books and the Sequel, end's the story.
BILLY, IT'S TIME is the first book.   Contains violence, for adults.

20
Good morning everyone, in an hour or so I will go to find someone to take my pictures and do my passport application and than call the courier for pickup and delivery of passport app and such. I am just waiting for the person to take me, like always their in a bad mood and hate the world.

The purpose of the fund raiser was to engage the public with my story and to hopefully have someone think my cause was worthy of a donation so I could go to America and start my life again. Kboards made all the donations on both gofundme and indiegogo life, not the public.I thank Kboards for their help and without them I would have had no hope at all. I am terrible in speeches in front of the public in person or behind a keyboard. I do not know how to engage the public and what works and what does not.

The blurb is third person my website is first person, what is right and what is wrong?

I have made a small list of problems I feel are wrong to try and restart two dead in the water campaigns.

1. People are over whelmed with information, link to my home page and the blurb is to long.
2. The webpage is adding something people don't want
3 The cause is similar to someone who own's a iphone 5 and now with only 500 more they can get a iphone 6, simply put not worthy of anyone's attention or donations.

Any thoughts to where I went wrong can you please add them.

page for gofundme - http://www.gofundme.com/jatrfc

page for Indiegogo Life - https://life.indiegogo.com/fundraisers/bring-him-home--6/x/9429767

Thank you

21
Writers' Cafe / present- past tense question.
« on: December 31, 2014, 08:24:55 PM »
"I have had enough"

Have is "present tense"

Had is "past tense"

I see the tenses mixed up many times in books. I get bad reviews from the poor use of tense.
The first sentence would be better worded "I had enough" or am I wrong?

I could possibly see it's use if you wanted to show a more passive voice, but what is the correct way.

22
Don't drink an drive. The old is gone, now it's time for the new and many book sales. Happy new Years everyone.

23
Writers' Cafe / The most successful size for short story series?
« on: December 28, 2014, 04:05:03 PM »
I crashed and burned on my novel, not in a hurry to write another one, so I want to stick with  short stories they perform the best for me. I found the starting point is 15k for me and anything less just has crickets singing in the background.

I know there are a lot of people writing series now and what seems to be a popular length for the book's?

24
The question is also about the blurb/description.
Which is better for a campaign? I had it in first person and then I changed it to 3 rd person and should the blog/website use the same first or 3 rd person as the description on gofundme and Idiegogo Life?

I am not a salesman or a marketing person and I don't have a clue what I am doing...

I  want to try an jump start two dead campaigns that have both had no action, gofundme in two days and Indiegogo Life in five or six days with nothing happening.I have sent tons of tweets and that has not helped. gofundme being placed in Medical has not helped either, they put you where they deide, no option to change that.

I might just not have a campaign that is worth while, and I could expect it to maybe just fizzle out as it is. Both campaigns have failed miserably with the public. Kboard gave almost all of the donations.

I need to try and find away to engage the public with my campaign and I have not been able to do so.

Be honest and frank please with your answers, do you think the campaign has no merit? not important enough to draw interest? or am I just messing up and going about it all the wrong way. The blog/website is it even worth doing?

The key idea for the campaign was to engage the public to find away home and away to start a new life, I see the tons of campaigns and almost all seem a lot more in need than mine.

I feel like I'm lying in the street, on the corner in a busy city with a can in my hand begging for donations, only to be stepped on by the public with an occasional spit as they pass bye. Zero success with the public.

25
I was there for around 2.5 years from 2007 to 2009 roughly- it explains the words I used PMOI - MEX and another MKE.

Here is the link to wiki.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camp_Ashraf

I have a book I unpublished which was taken inside the Museum in Ashraf, but I removed it because it was the most violent book on the Internet. If you think about it, fiction is never as violent as real life. It takes Amazon three or four days to approve it when I hit publish. They are pictures I took with a good SLR camera of pictures inside the museum.

One such picture in the book is of several people standing on box's blind folded with ropes around their necks with men with AK-47's strapped to their backs with rifle slings.

Some of my workers gave me pictures of their family's with ropes around their necks and want me to past the word to tell what happened. I had to delete the pictures because my nightmares would not allow me to sleep at night I can on seeing faces. I put a big warning on the book before I published it. For people who write non-fiction books of war they know to well that the chain-saw massacre is bland compared to the atrocity's committed in real life.

Bosnia, Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Philippines, Korea, Vietnam, Germany, Korea and the list is much larger and goes back long before The Civil war happened in America. The Romans, Macedonia in Yugoslavia, Genghis Khan almost took over the world in a non-gentle way.

I thought I would post this because I often have people commenting on how brutal my books are, not nearly as brutal as real life. During the Philippine American war in the late 1800's a secret picture was taken where the US had thrown a thousand or o bodies in a large hole and started to bury them. Yes our own country as not always been saints either. The world is a rough place.

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