This Showcase for Starving Writers
is evolving into a showcase for successful books. At least one formerly starving writer I know of
is now dieting.
Star Spangled Banner by Frances Scott Key -- Lyrics
Friar Bob's Books (Below)
Books by Robert G. Makin
is now available in paperback and most eBook readers.
I am looking for a location for a book signing in Camden, South Carolina. Suggestions would be appreciated.
(A West Virginia trip)
For a Good Time, Click Here!
We're doing the wild thing in the Rocky Mountains.
Few bothered to write about Daniel McGirtt unless they hated him.
Then, their words were many. Historians remember him as
colorful, calling him a bandit, head of the banditti, a horse thief and
murderer. Yet the British Governor of East Florida made him
Lieutenant Colonel in the East Florida Rangers. He fought bravely
and daringly under Brigadier General Augustine Prevost at
Savannah, Charleston and Augusta beside the likes of Lt. Colonels
William“Bloody Bill“ Cunningham and Stephen Mayfield. His
reward of a two thousand acre plantation on Maxton Island in
Florida became his home and refuge.
Tasked with guarding Florida’s border from the opportunism
of Georgia’s raiders, Daniel severely angered the brigands
raiding Florida’s farms. After their raids, he pursued them all the
way into Georgia, recovering the stolen goods, frequently with
much bloodshed and a large interest penalty consisting of the
rest of their property. After the war, when Zespedes gifted land
to the former raiders, those Daniel angered became his neighbors.
That uncomfortable arrangement resulted in harassment,
political bullying and ultimately Daniel’s imprisonment at
the Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine and El Castillo de
Los Tres Reyes Magos Del Morro in Cuba. Dan’s fingerprints
probably still mark the walls of those damp, lightless dungeons.
At the Castillo de San Marcos in St. Augustine, one large
compartment is labeled “The Jail.” To see the horrendous place
where Daniel McGirtt was imprisoned, take a look.
This study of the life of Daniel McGirtt attempts to understand
the real man instead of confirming or denying the allegations
assembled to defame him. The many vague accusations
leveled at McGirtt remain enigmatic but consistently appear to
be written by his enemies. In the face of all that, his many
friends and large family remained loyal and protective.
Somewhere between the anger and the love, rests the truth.
Where the Clouds Sleep
is now available in paperback from all major book sellers. As of today,
September 4, 2015, it is available on Amazon's Kindle at $7.99. It's a deal!
The bridge is real.
It's over the
New River Gorge
in West Virginia. This is exactly what it looks like, most mornings.
Rape, murder and other evil Human foibles, some believe are repaid in kind by a justice loving God. Some call it
Karmic Justice. They tell us, “What goes around comes around.” That, not happening is like ending a song without
resolving its chord progression. It grates on the ear like a fingernail on a chalkboard, offending one’s sensibilities
on the seventh-chord of outrageous, appalling, injustice. Makin’s first adventure into writing Crime/Fiction draws the
nail across the chalkboard of our sensitivities heaping anger upon anger, until the eraser arrives, if it ever does.
The peaceful hamlet of Copperhead, West Virginia goes about its business of harvesting rock, raising children and
enjoying the rhapsody of life in the mountains, until dead children begin appearing. The sickness first passes nearly
unnoticed, for a while. The virus inflicting that pastoral society appears to go into remission, but then it returns with
Hardcover? It's as Gone as Gutenberg!! Well. Maybe not...
Order in any major bookstore
Order in any major book store
The Ebook Revolution is ringing the death knell of traditional publishing. Amazon reports ebooks outselling
hardcovers by an increasing monthly margin. Hard cover books will be obsolete in our lifetimes. It's happening as we watch.
The traditional literary agent will give way to the epublicist. The Ivory Tower Publishing House is quickly vanishing.
All Aleister Smiley needs is his Thumb Drive and an internet access.
All Angus Williamson needs is an IPad, a Nook or a Kindle. But, of course, Johnny Lewis still needs his Anna and perhaps,
that gift of the gods.
Kindle (Amazon Books), Nook (Barnes and Noble) and Ipad are offering new writers an opportunity for exposure - free.
At first glance, I didn't like the idea of the E-book. I like holding a book in my hands, being able to skim through it and then putting it on one of my bookshelves for later reference, if I want it. Kindle was enticing enough that I placed some of my books there to see what would happen and how I liked that method of publication. I then bought a Kindle reader. I like my Kindle. I can have up to 3,500 books in it, which is more than my present library. E-books cost much less to buy and the royalties are much higher. Return to Masada, (Print-On-Demand) for example pays me a royalty of $1.25 with a 'for sale price' of around $18.95. StrathNaver Legends, for sale now on Kindle, sells for $7.99 and pays me a $5.59 royalty. If it sells, it doesn't have to sell much to beat the more conventional publication for personal income.
The downside, if it can be considered as that, is the writer must do his or her own promotion. If the book is on Kindle, or Nook or Ipad, and no one knows it's there, no one will BUY it. When you post your books as ebooks, the ball is in your court for promotion - just like print-on-demand. My print on demand publisher promised Return to Masada would be in brick and mortar book stores, that it would be distributed by Ingraham, that it would never go out of print. The book has never been available in brick and mortar stores, it was never distributed by anyone much less Ingraham and now the publisher expects me to pay an annual fee to keep it in print. The author discount is so shallow that I can't even buy it in quantity and distribute it, myself, profitably. NOTHING I was promised by my print of demand publisher was true. So far, Kindle has treated me honorably. I recommend it as a reasonable alternative to conventional or print-on-demand publishing.
Smashwords.com is a major event in the publication and distribution of ebooks. One corrctly formatted submission to Smashwords.com will be distributed to nearly all the major ebook dealers, including Kindle, Sony ebook Reader, Ipad, Ipod,Iphone and Nook, and a host of others. This is well worth a look..
by Robert G. Makin
I used to look down my nose at self publishing. Paying thousands of dollars for a company to make books that I then store in my garage never sounded very smart to me. That’s what they did. The editorial services were cursory if they existed at all. Editorial advice was a comic afterthought. It was and still can be a major rip-off, in my opinion.
I am pretty sure, everyone reading this has done as I have, spent thousands of dollars, over a period of years, in printing and postage to send copies of my work to publishers and literary agents. Unless your name has celebrity value, the material is rejected as fast as Aleister Smiley rejected material sent to Ronald Flaass. I had one publisher send it back so fast that he failed to notice the $6.00 worth of postage I had on the envelope to be used as a mailing label. He returned that envelope bearing $6.00 in postage, containing a note that he couldn’t find the postage. So he discarded my manuscript. Another claimed to review everything carefully for up to four months. He returned my submission the same day.
You’re probably thinking the stuff must be classic trash. Maybe it is and maybe it isn’t. For what it’s worth, it’s selling on Kindle and in several other ebook formats. I’m getting glowing feedback. People love the stuff and I’m getting nice royalties.
My first book (that was published) is still, at this writing, in the hands of Dandelion Books, a print on demand publisher. When I first approached Dandelion Books, Carol Adler, the owner was trying to do something like conventional publishing using the print on demand concept. Nothing she promised me has come to pass other than hard copy of the book being available. On her behalf, I believe that she believed what she promised me to be true and possible to fulfill. We learned together that her expectations were unrealistic. Nevertheless, Return to Masada is still available as a print on demand book from Dandelion Books. When Return to Masada was published in 2,000, Dandelion Books was NOT a subsidy publisher. Even that has gone away.
New developments in ebook publishing are getting my full attention. The opportunity there, in my opinion is vast. There is also danger. The danger is that we authors don’t effectively edit our own stuff as well as an objective other person can do it. When I make a mistake, then proof read it, my eye makes the same mistake every time and I don’t see it. If we send out too many manuscripts like that, and then get placed in Kindle and other reading lists, we look like fools. I, for one, am not content with that. Get someone to proof and edit your stuff before you publish it. My StrathNaver Legends, published on Kindle and Smashwords has two typos. I found them after it went out. For the present, I’m going to have to live with that. In time, I’ll fix them. I’m still searching Faces of Inanna for more typos but I think I got that one pretty well cleaned up.
The opportunity lies in the money. At the present time, Kindle, Smashwords and others are offering authors the chance to upload their manuscript in pre-formatted condition –FREE- and they will add it to their online inventory for sale. Kindle offers a royalty of 70% - and that’s what they actually pay me when I get sales. How that reads out is like this. Two months ago I got two checks. One was from Kindle and one was from Dandelion Books. Both companies sold the same number of my books. The check from Kindle was five times the one I got from Dandelion. Where is the better place to publish is a no-brainer.
My experience leads me to believe that conventional publishing is all but a thing of the past. Ebooks range in price from free to half what conventional versions cost. Ebook readers have become handy and easy to use. They’re getting cheaper to buy. They can store thousands of books. That’s an improvement over my library at home that takes up two rooms. My Kindle will even read to me, out loud. It can surf the web, do other interesting tricks.
If your books are not available to the ebook world, maybe putting them there is something worth considering.
At Starving-Writers.com we don't keep track of visitors. You can come and go as you please in total anonymity. On the other hand, our advertisers send out cookies and follow everybody everywhere so that they can determine the most seductive advertising to stick under your nose. I have not addressed the ethics or morality of such nibbyness, although I have known about it. If you click on a Google ad, they will slip you a cooky. If you visit sports pages, they will then stick sports stuff out for you to see. If you visit religious pages, it will be religious stuff.
Sorry for the hassle. If you want to be private, don't click on their links. If nobody clicks on their links, we won't be paid and their links will all go away.
For the most part, these inserts that vary every few minutes, controlled by Google, are not there anyway, so it won't make much difference.
Drey Shepperd and Barry Manilow pointed out, “we dreamers have our ways of facing rainy days, but somehow we survive.”
Walt Disney’s widow reportedly visited Disney World in Florida with some friends just after it opened. Walt died some time before. One of Mrs. Disney’s companions remarked, “It’s too bad Walt didn’t get to see this.”
Mrs. Disney replied, “Oh, but he did see it. That’s why it’s here.”
So. Does existence precede essence or does essence precede existence? Which ever is true, it has been my experience that nothing has ever happened to me that someone didn’t think of first, usually me. Walt Disney had the fantastic ability to manifest his dreams. The Magic Kingdom, before it existed was a glimmer in its father’s eye, a spark of excitement in the heart of the child who still lived inside Walt Disney.
Everyone has a child living deep down inside, the child that we all used to be. Some of us stifle the dreams of that child, telling it that its dreams are impossible. Others get branded as childish dreamers. I learned recently that nearly all “great” scientists made their “greatest” discoveries as very young men. That is to say they made their discoveries before they were taught all the things that are impossible. Einstein was under thirty when he developed his Theory of Relativity. He was too young to know that e=mc2 was impossible. He still believed in his dreams. The TRUTH?? The TRUTH is the whole world is a Magic Kingdom.
Believe in your dreams and they will believe in you.
Never give up. Never lose the faith you had in yourself as a YOUNG DREAMER.
Never. And you will make it through the rain.
Robert G. Makin
Since last updating this section, two more books by Robert G. Makin have appeared. They are Where the Clouds Sleep and Dirt McGirtt. Where the Clouds Sleep is crime fiction. My fan club loves it. Dirt McGirtt has just appeared so I have no feedback yet for that one. It's my second historical fiction. Daniel McGirtt puts a new bench mark on controversy for his day. Sketchy historical accounts make him seem enigmatic. I wonder if his name is STILL maligned in his home area of Camden South Carolina. Maybe that's why the local bookstore doesn't answer my emails requesting a book signing in Camden.
Faces of Inanna and Aleister Through The Looking Glass, by Robert G. Makin both have become available at Barnes and Noble, Amazon Books and all major bookstores - in paperback. In addition to that, Sons of Aaron Publishing released a book of short stories by maritime performer and writer, Chris Kastle. From the Icy Fingers of the Deep, by Chris Kastle became available in late May of this year. Its introduction to the market took place at the Mystic Maritime Festival in Mystic Connecticut. Chris's next stop is at the Maritime Fesitival this weekend - June 21-22-23 in Wildwood New Jersey. If you haven't heard Chris Kastle perform, it's worth the trip - Wildwood New Jersey. Here's a link to Chris's performance at the Chicago Maritime Festival this past February.
Strathnaver Legends was released by Sons of Aaron Publishing, August 27, 2013. A very limited promotional budget is being used to set up book signings and soon there will be volumes available in some of the bookstores. At the present writing (11/3/13) it is available in all major book stores, but they are having a hard time keeping it on the shelves, so you might have to special order it. Return to Masada can also be ordered at any major bookstore.
Faces of Inanna is on schedule for release in paperback early in December. The hold up is the art for the book cover. Aleister Through the Looking Glass will be hot on its heals with a probable release date of late January. If you buy a copy in a bookstore and the author is not present to sign it for you, bring it to one of his book signings and he'll be please to do that.
Strathnaver Legends, Faces of Inanna and Aleister Through the Looking Glass are all currently available as eBooks and will remain so. Return to Masada, as of this writing (11/3/13) is available only in paperback, for the present. We have plans for that. Those plans will materialize in a few months.
No Plans at this writing. (April 15, 2016)
Kingstown Vs. Rhode Island
So. I was in Rhode Island last
week, promoting middlefingerparty.com’s free
Ad program. I instructed
my GPS to find me a BP gasoline station. After
searching, it told me
there was one a few miles away. I said, Let’s go. When
we got there, it turned out to
be a Gulf Station –
whatever – I needed to use the
Inside, on the bathroom marked, “men,” a sign on the
door said, “No Public
Restrooms.” I went
to the clerk, a pleasant
gentleman with gray hair and
a kind demeanor. I didn’t feel
kind just then. I asked,
“Do you not have public
He said, “No.”
I said, “If you don’t let me pee, I will not buy gasoline.”
As he unlocked the bathroom
door, he explained, saying that
Kingstown has no sewer
system. The state’s Health
Department has been bringing
pressure to bear against the
city to install a sewer system.
As part of that effort, the state
has mandated that certain
public facilities that have
public restrooms, including
gas stations, convenience
stores and certain fast food
restaurants would either lock
their restrooms or be closed
by the power of the STATE.
I searched for news of this on
Google and found essentially
– nothing. I did find a
document alluding to the
lengthy) document. I have no
way of verifying that the story
this man told me is true , but
it sounds to me like Rhode
Island and the City of
Kingstown are having
a huge Pissing Contest. I wonder which will go the