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....

Recent Posts

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1
Writers' Cafe / Re: And! Amazon rank-stripped me
« Last post by ireaderreview on Today at 01:08:06 AM »
Here are attacks against us by some unknown big tech company (and do keep in mind that we are considerably smaller than Bookbub and that we do WIDE not Narrow - so we are a considerably smaller threat if you were to think of promotion sites as a threat as they circumvent the stores (in effect) and connect readers with authors directly)

These are all 2017 only

1) Attempt to buy us using a shell company in Panama

2) Hacking attacks from Iraq, Russia, US

3) Vulnerability scanning scripts running from two big tech companies' servers

4) Entrapment attempts with people showing up and offering us money to do illegal stuff (strangely, exactly same day as other attacks)

5) Bidding against searches for us. No reason at all to do that. Only started this year. On the phone we had an incident where a less tech savvy author found the ad so similar to our link he ended up at Amazon and got stuck there

6) Email server hacked

7) Someone scanning our emails 24/7. When new emails are sent within ONE HOUR (whether it's day or night) there are people from 2 different large tech companies' servers visiting the mentioned sites (even one that is not publiclly available anywhere)

8) Click fraud using scripts running on their company servers. No response at all when contacted with evidence. Stopped for a month or so and then restarted

9) Mysterious delays of 8 to 24 hours for promotions - before rank starts moving. So same readers who in 2014 and 2015

- used to start buying books as soon as promotion started

Now for some reason ALL wait EXACTLY 16 hours to 24 hours before they begin buying
???

One interesting side note on this is that by early 2014 our curated books were taking 15 to 25 spots in the Top 100 Free Books each day

Now we have 4 million additional readers (as compared to 2014). If there were no 16 to 24 hour delays, given our size, we'd be taking 40 to 60 spots (of course, Bookbub would take top 20 to 30 - however, we'd take much of the rest).

That would mean - the Top 100 list of free books would be 60% to 90% dominated by the two biggest promotion companies

Awfully convenient that instead we see 8 to 24 hour delays and take far fewer spots than 40 to 60 in the Top 100

******************************

Please keep in mind that we are a much smaller threat than Bookbub because

a) We have 5 to 20 books per genre per day, meaning the books get to top 100 in genre lists on paid, which are much less dangerous than top 100 in the store on paid side
b) Highs are things like 100 sales in a day and 2,000 to 3,000 downloads in a day

Now imagine the things being done to a site that

a) Is 1 book a day per genre, thereby taking up the most valuable spots in the bestseller lists
b) is launching paid books into Top 100 Paid
c) Is launching free books into Top 20 Free

***
The assertion that 'they are not even aware' is absolutely an assumption and a weak one. I mean nothing against the author. I'm just presenting actual facts that people at large tech companies are VERY AWARE of what the promotion sites are doing. To the point of hacking attempts and email hacks and scanning for vulnerabilities and trying to buy them via shell companies

***
Smaller promotion companies got weakened simply by some algorithm tweaks
Medium promotion companies were attacked using a mix of measures like - algorithm delays, hiding book from pop lists and bestseller lists, removing tail, removing book from search, etc.

With us, because we're growing very fast, they have to go a bit extreme like 8 to 24 hour delays. So first day - it's as if our readers all decided to wait EXACTLY 8 to 24 hours before buying. Impossible

Now with Bookbub they don't really have any avenue. So they tried things like reducing tail etc. However, they have realized that more drastic methods are needed

There's a 50% chance one or both the founders of Bookbub will experience a life changing event in next 6 months and then will magically decide to sell to one of the large Silicon Valley tech companies and then it'll just disappear. Like Google bought Oyster and closed it down
2
Writers' Cafe / Re: Messenger Bots for Authors - why you need one!
« Last post by AJC on Today at 12:57:11 AM »
Hmm, that's interesting. So you could theoretically make the lead gen ad a bot opt-in (but hold off on the bot contact), then integrate those leads into Mailchimp and email them. Or, presumably, you could set up the lead gen to be both bot opt-in and email opt-in. Then, if they don't open emails, create a custom audience to nudge them by bot. Right?

I ask because I'm trying to tweak ads at the mo with small budgets. I've not yet scaled up, so it would be good to sort this out before I get many subscribers.

No, that wouldn't work. They have to give you their email address, you don't get access to it just by virtue of their subscribing to your bot. The second part, yes, absolutely. That's what I'm doing with one of mine. I have a JSON ad that runs to my bot when they can get a free book, no email required. If they want to enter a draw for a box set, I grab their email. (another, second free book would work, or something else to tempt them) I then have an email list for re-targeting with ads. Why is this different? Because in those first few messages you really can build a strong connection with the reader that you simply can't do with an email. Especially one that might go to spam or get missed in alongside the 500 other author emails they get that day!
3
Writers' Cafe / Re: Underperforming first book - any help?
« Last post by Wisescarab on Today at 12:53:36 AM »
I will skip past what everyone else is saying in regards to the cover, blurb, etc, and touch on the look inside.

Other folks have mentioned the opening, with "petrified," and such. I would add also the repetition of stone, and stony. While it is particularly hard to avoid another description, and I understand the use of repetition in that first paragraph, it seems to break the rhythm in the ones that follow. Also, while reading through the rest I just felt something was, off. The writing itself, while solid, lacks a little flair, or uniqueness for me (keyword, me, all tastes are different) that just makes it all feel the same. Almost, matter of fact. I don't want to use the word bland, but it does feel dictated to some degree.

It took me awhile to put my finger on why, and I think I now have part of the reason. It seems there are too many paragraphs starting off with "she did this," or "Veronika something or another." Maybe mix up your approach to action, and lead offs. Also, there is the old adage about showing not telling. For example, the sentence that starts off with Veronika trying to get Sarah to calm down. It is innocuous, and slight. But there are a few others like it which could be better represented by showing us how, or describing Veronika's action, and letting the audience infer.

However, I don't think these issues make the book a bad one. It just, again for me, doesn't make it stand out. Beyond this, I just think your book is just too new. You need time, and to run promotions. Heck, my book just came out a couple of weeks ago.  Most of my non-relation sales are from Amazon Germany, because I hand out bookmarks and such whenever the opportunity strikes (and leave some in English bookstores).




 
4
Writers' Cafe / Re: And! Amazon rank-stripped me
« Last post by ireaderreview on Today at 12:48:15 AM »
1) This, EXACTLY:  Maybe the programmers have factored in BB  :P

1b) And if you go 99c instead of free, you have nothing to worry about at all.

Box Set Rank stripping a few weeks ago. Are they less frequent? The 99c rank stripping incidents?

***********************

2) This: It's happening often.  Could it be a stab at BookBub?

It's 1000% a 'stab at Bokbub' and at other promo sites

************

3) This: I don't see it so much on kboards, but then, I don't read every thread or anything.

No, on KBoards authors choose to give the algorithms benefit of the doubt by saying 'it's being done to target scammers' when it's becoming obvious that it has more to do with hurting other marketing venues

***********

4) Here's an example of giving benefit of the doubt

Patty writes:   You cannot expect them to take notice of this.

It's actually the EXACT opposite

first algorithm delays and tweaks were done to hit all the small promotion sites

now they are going after even Bookbub

Indie authors are writing things like

- it's just a false positive
- they don't even notice this
- it is to target scammers

This is a company that built a specialized Cloud Service for the CIA 4 years ago. You expect us to believe they can't stop a handful of botters

The other defence is that they just don't notice. Actually they notice two things very well

A) That promotion sites are growing very fast

B) That if money flows away from promotion sites it flows towards their own marketing avenues
*******************************

5
Writers' Cafe / Is Black Friday relevant to ebooks?
« Last post by ShaneCarrow on Today at 12:43:09 AM »
I'm Australian so I forgot all about it - only remembered because the news is swirling up rumours that Amazon is going to launch in Australia later this week.

I'm releasing the 4th in my series this weekend and am making book #1 free from Sunday to Monday, with heaps of promo stuff already locked in an paid for. It's not like I can change things now, but just curious, does Black Friday affect things at all around this time? Do you deliberately organise promos for it, or steer clear of it because people's attention is elsewhere?
6
Writers' Cafe / Re: New landing page creator by mailchimp
« Last post by Doglover on Today at 12:40:46 AM »
So I can just host it on my website.
I believe most people host their own landing page as a page on their website that doesn't show up in the navigation. I have some free book links for people who sign up to my mailing list from there, and if I ever need to change them, I can just change the landing page. What Patty says makes a lot of sense in that regard; you just never know when you might need to move on.
7
Writers' Cafe / Re: Pronoun import with PublishDrive
« Last post by ZsofiaMacho on Today at 12:35:02 AM »
Multiple pen names. Are they allowed/possible or do you need multiple accounts?
Of course they are allowed! We don't automatically presume that everyone is publishing books from one author only / under one name: metadata is filled in based on whatever is in the book as author, not by the login name.

If you have different store preferences or want to appear under different publisher names (eg. writing both horror and children's books), you can also create multiple imprints within your account.
8
Writers' Cafe / Re: Messenger Bots for Authors - why you need one!
« Last post by RightHoJeeves on Today at 12:28:32 AM »
Hi! No, not that way round. Someone has to explicitly opt-in to your bot so if they are on your email list, but not-opted in to your bot, you're not able (which is a good thing) to contact them. Do can integrate the other way though, so that you're bot can collect emails and zap them over to your mailing list.

Hmm, that's interesting. So you could theoretically make the lead gen ad a bot opt-in (but hold off on the bot contact), then integrate those leads into Mailchimp and email them. Or, presumably, you could set up the lead gen to be both bot opt-in and email opt-in. Then, if they don't open emails, create a custom audience to nudge them by bot. Right?

I ask because I'm trying to tweak ads at the mo with small budgets. I've not yet scaled up, so it would be good to sort this out before I get many subscribers.
9
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10
The Book Bazaar / Re: Feast for the Beast - Thanksgiving Picture Book
« Last post by Wolfman on Today at 12:13:14 AM »
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