Tony Phony and the Northern Woods

Today I’m part of a special blog event hosted by T. Man, a 10-year-old author and homeschooler. When T. Man was only 8, he partnered with his older brother, M. Man, on a special homeschool writing project that resulted in their first published book, Tony the Phony and Cursed Mansion. Cursed MansionThis year, T. Man went solo and just finished the second book in the series, Tony the Phony and the Northern Woods. Written in the engaging style of a Choose Your Own Adventure™, each book is available for .99 on Amazon.

But today T. Man has chosen to share his new book with his readers in its entirety in a special interactive virtual event. Seven different bloggers are hosting sections of the story. The fun begins on T. Man’s blog. At the end of each page YOU have to decide how the story will go. Each choice will lead you to a new blog. You have the possibility of landing on any of four endings. Of course, when you finish you can always go back to the beginning and start again. Choose wisely!Tony the Phony and the Northern Woods

 

Permalink to the start of the story on T. Man’s blog: http://wp.me/p2bspO-7d

Link to Tony the Phony and Cursed Mansion: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JQLMK6G/

Link to Tony the Phony and the Northern Woods: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01AL2AFYM

“Let’s go see if we can find help,” said Tony.

So Ed grabbed his backpack while Tony left the plane. Five seconds later, Ed heard Tony scream, “Help! Help!” He ran from the plane to see what was happening and came face to face with a bear who had pinned Tony pinned to the ground. “What are you doing?” asked Ed.

“Trying to breathe,” said Tony. “Chuck something at it.”

Ed picked up a stick and threw it. “I missed! Wait! The bear is chasing the stick.”

“Run!” yelled Tony.

“I’m right behind you.”

Bam! They ran into the airplane door.

“Open it!” said Tony.

“It won’t budge,” screamed Ed. “We’re locked out!”

Suddenly a loud roaring sound came from the top of the plane. The bear dropped the stick behind them, skidded to a stop with all four feet, and ran for its life.

“What was that?” Ed squeaked.

Tony pointed with a shaky finger. Ed looked up and there on the roof of the plane was a fat zombie. He looked wrinkly and warty and cranky.

Click here to run away. Click here to stand and fight.

A Multitude of Middle Grade Books!

Guest posting today is author Andrea Pearson with an amazing collection of Middle Grade books for your ereaders which are all on sale or FREE through January 7th. Here’s Andrea:

I’m excited about this promotion because it’s geared to one of my favorite audiences: middle-grade readers! I’ve always been passionate about books written for kids ages 9 through 12. Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Fablehaven, Diary of a Wimpy Kid… all excellent. :-) I wrote The Key of Kilenya when my younger brother, Josh, who was 12 at the time, told me there weren’t enough books for him to read. He’d ripped through everything our local library had and was hungry for more.

I dedicate this promotion to him and to all other readers who love and are searching for books written for middle graders!

The Multi-Author Middle-Grade Book Promotion starts January 4, 2016 and ends January 7, 2016.

 

From $5.99 to FREE
Kindle Nook  * iTunesAll Jacob wants is to make the basketball team. All the Lorkon want is to control the magical powers Jacob doesn’t know he possesses.
From $2.99 to $0.99
KindleTwelve-year-old Steven never wondered where the Loch Ness monster or Big Foot came from until he found a stone box with a dangerous secret–one people are willing to kill for!
From $2.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * KoboMore than anything, Benjamin Ravenspell wants a pet, but when he buys a mouse named Amber, he gets more than he bargained for.

 

From $0.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * Kobo * iTunesCassandra’s ordinary life is riddled with hilarious and sometimes heart-breaking mishaps as she guides herself through the world of pre-teens on the brink of adulthood.
From $2.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * KoboPart Neanderthal, but raised as a human, Arken Freeth finds that he doesn’t fit in either world as he struggles to survive.
From $3.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * KoboAn eleven-year-old girl discovers she has the power to grant any living thing its one true wish.

 

From $3.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * KoboWhen a malnourished horse shows up as a rescue at the farm where she volunteers, Jacinda, a bullied girl, takes it on as a project horse, and the mare’s sweet nature inspires her to spread kindness around to make a positive difference in the world.
From $0.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * KoboJenni Kershaw and her eighth grade science class take a field trip they will never forget. Dragons and goblins and spirits, oh my!
From $2.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * Kobo * iTunesWhen Colin suddenly learns he has magic, he discovers that Atlantis is real, and that his new mermaid friend, Alleya, is in trouble.
From $2.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * Kobo * iTunesBed bugs, burglars, and a missing mother. For Doodle, itís just part of a dayís work. A laugh-out-loud mystery for dog lovers of all ages.
From $2.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * KoboTo save her brother, the banshee Seven must save Atlantis.
From $1.99 to $0.99
KindleOne girl with a nightmare to live through; one ghost with a dream to live. With so much to lose, can anything be gained?

 

From $3.49 to FREE
KindleEnter a world of myth and magic as young English boy Thomas Farrell seeks to discover the identity of his late father, and why he left him a strange glass orb containing a serpent…
From $2.99 to $0.99
KindleWhen eating dog kibble on a dare gives 10-year-old Tawny special powers, her life nearly goes to the dogs!
From $5.49 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * KoboTwins Justin and Janine discover a mysterious egg … can they protect the hatchling while lost in Montana’s Absaroka wilderness?

 

$3.99 to $0.99
KindleDaniel doesn’t think there’s anything worse than spending a week at Camp Bigfoot . . . until he loses his prized possession: a pencil that brings his drawings to life. 

From $4.99 to $0.99
Nook * KoboLaughing and Learning Little Life Lessons
From $3.99 to FREE
KindleWhen a blast from the past shows up and makes her BFF go nutburgers, Ginnie is torn between helping her friend and getting some very important questions answered.

 

From $3.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * KoboHarry Potter and The Hobbit rolled into one captivating and humorous epic fantasy series that will have kids begging for more.
From $0.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * KoboWinner of the Mom’s Choice Award honoring excellence in media for children. Classic fantasy adventure – quirky, funny, sinister, and action-packed
From $3.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * Kobo * iTunesTo save his friends from a dystopian future Earth, Nikolas leads them to a fantastic Moon in the past. But what happens when the fantastic becomes fatal?

 

From $3.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * KoboExplore the magical history of Kendra Kandlestar’s world in this collection of bonus tales from the Land of Een.
From $4.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * iTunesDREAMS: Dorothy called it Oz, Alice called it Wonderland, but Nightmares call it HOME.
From $2.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * Kobo * iTunesWhat’s worse than stumbling upon the dead body of the Cat Lady? Being accused of her murder. Sarah Cole and her friends take it upon themselves to catch the Cat Lady Killer.

 

From $2.99 to FREE
Kindle * NookWhen Turik finds a special egg his Grandfather is kidnapped and he must balance his power for good with the strength of the evil that wishes to consume him.
From $2.99 to $0.99
KindleFelicity, an ordinary sparrow learns that she can do extraordinary things!
From $3.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * KoboWhen a group of crazed ninjas take over their school, the Smartboys fight back. And it all happens on a day when Monkey has the worst case of flatulence imaginable.

 

From $2.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * KoboGeorge, the magical basset hound, is on the trail of the mysterious ghosty haunting his Packmate, Tillie.
From $2.99 to $0.99
KindleThe legend of the little red hen, as told by the acorn that smacked her in the head. NO ONE IS TOO SMALL TO CHANGE THE WORLD!
From $2.99 to FREE
KindleCarter’s life changes when an old man entrusts him with a book of magical spells, one of which grants the power to raise people from the dead.

 

From $0.99 to FREE
KindleEver wonder what it would be like to be pulled into your computer? Sarah is about to find out.
From $2.99 to FREE
Kindle Nook * Kobo * iTunesIt takes more than a school trip to change Christy’s life. It takes murder.
From $2.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * Kobo * iTunesWhen a savage pirate and a corrupt businessman join forces to steal the treasure for themselves, Christopher and his crew get caught up in pirate chases, time travel, and an underground network of spies!

 

From $0.99 to FREE
Kindle * Nook * Kobo * iTunesSemi-autobiographical adventures from a 20th Century Northern California outdoorsman
From $2.99 to $0.99
Kindle * Nook * Kobo * iTunesThe future looks bleak unless eighteen-year-old Lance and his young New Camelot Earth Warriors can save the planet from catastrophic climate change.

Enjoy your new books! :-)

The Roller Coaster of Crowd Funding and Free Stuff!

Being a writer is often a lonely occupation.

I spend a great deal of time inside my own head. Too much time almost certainly. For me, writing stories mainly involves staring at a computer screen while my fingers peck away to fill the white space with darker pixels, punctuated by periods of gazing at a blank spot on the wall of my office while I ruminate on how best to continue the current scene or chapter. In the realm of spectator sports, it ranks just below watching grass grow or paint dry.

Unless you’re inside my head.

In there, the action flies at a blistering pace, with a multitude of permutations for each action by the characters playing out almost simultaneously until I settle on one with the most conflict/danger/insight/humor and the process starts anew. Have you ever read a book, or watched a movie, where something happened and you thought, “Man, it would have been so much cooler if they’d done _______”? That’s basically my creative process, for each and every scene. I don’t always get it right, but I examine a number of possibilities before deciding on any particular path for each story. It’s sort of like a choose-your-own-roller-coaster.

Recently, I signed up for another type of roller coaster: crowd funding. I’ve seen a number of other authors try this route to gain exposure and help with the expenses of publishing and promoting their books. One of my writer friends showed me a site called Inkshares.com, which is a new take on crowd funding, exclusively for books. Skeptical, I took a look at the long, steep uphill stretch of track before me and shuddered. The lonely introvert within me reigned supreme and I stepped away, giving it little thought after that.

Sword-LaserThen, the Sword & Laser stepped in. Now, if you’re a scifi/fantasy fan and haven’t heard of the Sword & Laser, let me direct you to their YouTube channel and Podcast. Oh, and they have a thriving GoodReads group as well. Tom and Veronica are smart and funny and do an amazing job of presenting scifi and fantasy books and authors to the world through their monthly book club, interviews, and news discussions. For the second time now on Inkshares, the Sword & Laser is sponsoring a contest where the winning book will be published and promoted in conjunction with the group, as well as the other top two of three receiving the full backing of Inkshares, regardless of the number of copies preordered. The contest runs until January 15, 2016.

Unlike my first foray, this time I’ve jumped into the front seat and thrown my arms up high, a look of glee mixed with sheer panic plastered on my face.

Here’s where you, dear reader, come in.

Having the opportunity of presenting my work to such an active and vibrant fan base as the Sword & Laser commands is amazing, to say the least. Achieving that goal requires pledges in the form of pre-orders for the book I’ve entered in the contest: The Devil You Know. Here’s the cover I’ve worked up, along with some “back cover” copy:

TDYKcover_v5

Two alien races vie for control of Earth amidst a human population decimated by a merciless plague, famine, and war.

Hell is not pleased and the denizens of the Underworld have decided it’s time to fight back.

Doing their best to create new lives in the aftermath of the chaos triggered by the aliens’ arrival, Abraham Black and Neri White are about as different as their last names would indicate. Yet, together, they may hold the key which allows humanity to remain the primary tenants of Earth. The question is: how much are they willing to give up to save the world? Their memories? Their lives? Their souls?

I’m describing it as post-apocalyptic, epic, suburban fantasy… with aliens.

You can read the first two chapters on the Inkshares site.

“How can I get my hands on this enormous slice of awesome?” You ask. Here’s how:

  1. Create an account on Inkshares.
  2. Once you’ve done that, Inkshares will gift you with $5.00 in credits you can use toward funding the project of your choice! (Sometimes the credits take a few minutes to a couple of hours to show up, so be patient)
  3. Click on The Devil You Know and pre-order an ebook for only $5.00 (after applying your credits) or a printed copy, shipped directly to you when it’s published, for only $10.00 more.
  4. Tweet or Share on Facebook the fact that you’ve just been a completely awesome person and done the above!

“Why do I need to do that last step if I did all the rest?” You wonder.

Because I’m sweetening the pot, that’s why! For every 10 new readers, you’ll be entered into a giveaway for a Print$10.oo Amazon gift card. (I’ve already given one away!) Yep, every time we hit another 10 readers, all the previous readers will have a chance to win a $10.00 Amazon card. So, the more you share and get the word out, the more chances you’ll have to get a little bonus for yourself! Additionally, if someone places an order based on your Inkshares recommendation, you’ll receive more credits to spend on other interesting works from the site. How cool is that? You get an amazing book, chances to win Amazon gift cards, and credits to get even more amazing books — all for just a $5.00 investment! They even accept Bitcoin if you happen to have some of those lying around.

Now, I realize for many folks even $5.00 can seem like a lot to spend on someone you may not even know or have read before. Believe me, I’ve been there. Rest assured, you aren’t tossing your money away on nothing. If the project doesn’t reach the top three in the contest and isn’t funded, you’ll get your money back and you might have even won a gift card along the way.

Being the lonely, introverted writer type I referenced at the beginning of this post, it’s extremely hard for me to ask others for help. I don’t like doing it. My anticipation at realizing a dream, however, has overridden my fears of reaching out and asking for this assistance. I can’t do this alone. So, please, if you can sacrifice that double mocha latte, or a Happy Meal, on fulfilling a dream, I’ll be forever grateful. Thank you and Happy Holidays!

Books Aren’t Worth the Paper They’re Printed On

Got your attention?

I’m a writer. How could I possibly, truthfully express the sentiment in that headline? Well, let me tell you a story…

My mother is an avid reader, mostly of thrillers and mysteries, and she had a number of bookshelves, stocked with her favorites from over the years. Recently, she had the carpet replaced in her home and, rather than going to the trouble of reshelving most of those books when the new carpet was in and she could return her furniture to the rooms, she decided to sell the majority of those books to a used book store.

About three years ago, she made the reluctant plunge to ebooks. I say reluctant because she didn’t think she’d stick with it initially. Now, you’d have to pry her kindle from her cold, dead fingers. She’s discovered dozens of Indie authors (it helped that her son is one of them) and spends far, far less money on reading material than she used to, all the while enjoying the activity just as much as she ever did, perhaps more.

dreamstimefree_122041The paper books from her dusty shelves, which included pristine, hardback copies of Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler, and Jonathan Kellerman best sellers, didn’t hold the nostalgic value they once had. She had no interest in rereading them, so it made sense to take them to a used book store and get a few bucks for them.

Billings, Montana isn’t a huge town by most standards, but we have a number of used book stores. We stopped by one on our way to lunch, thinking to drop the books off, quickly collect a few dollars, and hopefully pay for our meal with the “windfall.” Our visit was indeed quick, but not for the reason we supposed.

“We’re not buying any books,” the clerk explained. “In fact, we’re having a big sale right now to try to pare down our inventory.”

Hm. Okay. No big deal, we thought. We’ll just try another store.

We accumulated strikes two and three faster than Casey from the Mudville Nine.

Resigned to not being able to pay for our lunch, we visited the library after we’d eaten, seeking to donate the books.

“Could you bring them by when we have our big book sale in the winter?” the lady at the front desk asked. “We really wouldn’t have any place to store them until then.”

The library doesn’t want books? It’s not like these were outdated software manuals. Tom freaking Clancy!

We ended up dropping them off at our local GoodWill. The attendant took them with a slight frown on her face.

Being a relatively well informed writer who’s steeped in ebooks, I knew the digital world has been gaining ground on the world of dead trees, but this experience really drove the point home. I remember buying and trading used books as a kid — and as an adult — for many years. Proprietors were always happy to see me come in with a box of books, because they knew I’d be trading them for more reading material and they’d generate some churn in their inventory. Now? Those stores wouldn’t even take books in trade, because their shelves were already packed to overflowing.

And people wonder why the big publishers are doing everything they can to keep ebook prices as high as possible. Their businesses are built on paper. When anyone can publish a book in electronic form and have it appear on the virtual shelves of the largest bookseller on the planet, right next to Tom freaking Clancy, where is the incentive to spend years playing the agent-to-acquisition-to-publication lottery? Especially when the payout for that particular lottery is getting smaller and smaller with each passing day.

Before long, paper books will be a novelty item, only sought out by collectors, much like vinyl records are today. Vinyl aficionados claim digital is too clean. They like to hear the hisses and pops that records produce. I suspect the same sort of folks probably like ink smudges on their fingers from printed pages as well.

Personally, words carry the same impact for me, whether displayed on a screen or paper. A good story carries me off to another world, regardless of the medium in which it’s presented.

Books are worth much more than mere paper and ink.

What Is The Authors Guild’s Endgame in Its War With Amazon?

In case you’ve been living under a publishing rock for the past few weeks (and, seriously, who hasn’t? They have great wifi!), a number of groups, including The Authors Guild, Authors United, and the Association of Authors’ Representatives, have taken up arms against Amazon. (Yes, that’s a staggering number of “A”s in one sentence. Damn the torpedoes! Full alliteration ahead!)

A lengthy letter has purportedly been sent to the Department of Justice in the wake of last year’s contract dispute between Amazon and publisher Hachette, calling for the DoJ to investigate the online retailer for “derail[ing] the benefits of a revolution in the way books are created and sold in America” among other things. Never mind that Amazon was at the forefront of the revolution in question.

There’s an excellent dissection of these organizations and their motivations in this article on TechDirt. I think it’s pretty clear, despite having “Author” so prominently in all of their names, that these groups truly have only a small number of actual authors among their constituency. Namely, those authors whose interests align with the Big 5 publishers.

The Authors Guild states, on a page devoted to the Hachette dispute (bolding mine):

It is to protect this value of books that we have spoken out against Amazon’s tactics in the Hachette dispute, its monopoly in the book market and its unfair treatment of independent authors. At the same time, we have also challenged the major publishing houses to revisit the parsimonious stance they’ve taken on authors’ e-book royalties. Though the Amazon-Hachette dispute was resolved in November 2014, the issue of fair compensation for authors remains a central concern.

Again, never mind that Amazon attempted on three different occasions to compensate the affected authors during the dispute. Saber rattling is an effective tool for drowning out logic, isn’t it?

Interesting is the attempt to include and welcome Indie authors under the AG’s umbrella of its actions. Indies have been vociferous in their defense of Amazon against the AG et al. They see a window of opportunity with the recent change to the Kindle Unlimited payout method, which has had many Indie authors up in arms. Maybe the AG is looking to boost its membership since they begrudgingly agreed to start admitting Indie authors who can successfully jump through a number of barrier-to-entry hoops.

But that can’t really be their endgame in all this. So, what do they hope to accomplish? Lee Child offered some insight in a comment on The Passive Voice blog recently:

The end-game I would like to see is a gentle nudge to remind them [Amazon] to behave like a fabulous retailer – equal and normal (by all means tough, combative and adversarial) treatment of all book suppliers, without the weird Gazelle Project agenda in the background, which is explicitly designed to bankrupt incumbent players to Amazon’s advantage.

The Gazelle Project he refers to comes from a book published in 2013 by Brad Stone, called The Everything Store. In it, Stone described Amazon’s attitude toward small publishers.

Mr. Bezos said Amazon “should approach these small publishers the way a cheetah would pursue a sickly gazelle.” A joke, perhaps, but such an aggressive one that Amazon’s lawyers demanded the Gazelle Project be renamed the Small Publishers Negotiation Program.

Many would view that as harsh, or ruthless, but those qualities are also often admired in business circles.

Child also says, in another comment from the same blog:

This isn’t about how Amazon treats products, or my book vis-a-vis yours. This is about a specific antitrust obligation that says a dominant retailer who chooses to also become a competitor must henceforth negotiate within an altered framework when dealing with a pre-existing supplier of now-competing goods.

The competition he refers to isn’t Indie authors, but rather Amazon’s own imprints — subsidiaries operating as essentially autonomous publishing companies in their own right — which include Thomas & Mercer, 47 North, and Montlake Romance, among others. These subsidiaries seek out and acquire books in much the same way that other publishers do, although, by all accounts, they offer much better contract terms to their authors than the standard New York fare. Child’s argument, or worry, seems to be that because Amazon is a direct competitor, as well as the largest single retailer, that their dealings with the Big 5 and other, smaller publishers, falls into a different category than it did before 2009 or 10 when Amazon started establishing itself as a publisher.

The concern is a valid one, I think, and something worth looking at, but if that is what the AG et al are really after, why not say that?

Here’s the list of main concerns from the Authors United letter to the DoJ from July 13, 2015:

In recent years, Amazon has used its dominance in ways that we believe harm the interests of America’s readers, impoverish the book industry as a whole, damage the careers of (and generate fear among) many authors, and impede the free flow of ideas in our society.

    • Amazon, to pressure publishers over the past 11 years, has blocked and curtailed the sale of millions of books by thousands of authors;

    • Amazon, during its dispute with Hachette in 2014, appears to have engaged in content control, selling some books but not others based on the author’s prominence or the book’s political leanings;

    • Amazon has used its monopsony power, and its ability to threaten punishment, to extract an ever greater share of the total price of a book from publishers, which has resulted in less revenue to support midlist authors and certain kinds of books, effectively silencing many voices;

    • Amazon routinely sells many types of books below cost in order to drive less well capitalized retailers — like Borders — out of business. This practice, known as “loss-leading,” also harms readers by reducing the amount of revenue available for publishers to invest in new books.

    • Amazon routinely uses its market power to steer readers toward its own books and away from books published by other companies;

    • Amazon dictates pricing to self-published authors, requiring them to price their books within a specific range or be subjected to a 50 percent cut in royalties.

Six items there, the first five of which are directly related to how publishers and Amazon’s competitors are treated by the company, with authors only obliquely mentioned. The last bullet point, about how self-published authors should price their books sold on Amazon, neglects to mention that the “50 percent cut” still comes out to be about twice the royalty offered in the standard Big 5 contract to their authors. Point five hints at Mr. Child’s objection, but is more of a complaint about unequal advertising and promotion rather than concern about how the company treats with someone who is a competitor as well as a supplier.

The last several paragraphs of the letter drone on about Amazon somehow controlling the flow and content of ideas on the Internet (really?) and ends with:

…no temporary price cut can compensate for the costs to free expression and the health of America’s book industry that have resulted from Amazon’s abuse of its dominance in the world of books. Accordingly, we respectfully request that the Antitrust Division investigate Amazon’s power over the book market, and the ways in which that corporation exercises its power, bearing in mind the very special constitutional sensitivities that have historically been applied to any business that has established effective control of a medium of communication.

Price. Amazon is pricing books, and more specifically ebooks, too low for the tastes of AU/AG/AAR/ABA/and all the other “A”s (read Big 5 Publishers). The biggest book seller on the planet, who got to that position by selling books at lower prices and making more money for publishers and authors in the process than they’d seen for the previous two decades or more, has somehow become the bad guy to several groups who claim to have the best interests of authors at their heart. Come again?

tumblr_notev5RUz01slyfzno1_1280

But let’s get back to my original question: what’s the endgame? What outcome do Authors United and the Authors Guild see as a benefit from the DoJ presumably finding Amazon guilty of some, or all, of the nonsense they proposed?

The two antitrust cases I can find that even remotely correlate to this (one of which AU mentions in its letter) are Standard Oil and AT&T. In both cases, the government decreed the break up of the companies in question into several smaller companies. In both instances, however, years later, through mergers and acquisitions, the end results were nearly the same as when the whole process started. Technology disrupted the phone industry and Exxon eventually gobbled up many of the Standard Oil pieces to become one of the largest corporations in the world.

If Amazon was broken up into a number of smaller companies, would that enable and foster more competition? How would that even work for books? Would they propose splitting it up by fiction and nonfiction? Maybe by genre? I know! Let’s have a separate store for each section of the Dewey Decimal System!

Coming back to pricing, which we must because that’s the real cornerstone to the house of cards the AG and AU have constructed, control, and even fixing, is the desired result here. They can’t come out and say that, of course, because price fixing is illegal and is essentially what got the Big 5 in trouble, in cahoots with Apple, a few years ago. Publishers regained some control over pricing in this last round of negotiations with Amazon, resulting in higher prices for many ebooks and subtlety denoted by Amazon on its site by the “price set by the publisher” appellation which now appears on thousands of books. Evidently, whatever control they wrestled away from Amazon wasn’t enough, otherwise I’m sure Hachette would be quietly advising Doug Preston to pipe down and go sit in the corner.

The bottom line is: all these people want you, the reader, to pay more for books. And especially ebooks. Because reasons, and logic, and, and, and because they said so, dammit!

My personal take? Don’t trust any group with the word “Author” in its name. None of them speak for all, or even most, of us.