Selkies' Skins

Selkies' Skins
Current book in series Temple and Skinquest. Enjoy Castle and Well from Amazon, B&N and Smashwords while waiting for that and the prequel's audiobook "Pearls of Sea and Stone: Book of Seals".

Friday, May 19, 2017

Unboxing Publishing Stock & Flea Market Announcement

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Direct order pricing adjustments

It is with regret that I am going to have to start imposing payment fees when payments are made through paypal. For my authors the past several years I have eaten the fee that Paypal charges me. I can no longer do that. Paypal charges me 2.9% + $0.30 of the total payment sent to me. For years I have only asked just a bit above manufacture price per author/illustrator-ordered book, far below my share of royalties, and after all of the associated fees I actually have been getting even less than my share of profits with which to pay myself. That makes it difficult to afford to make the business grow. The last order that I set to be fulfilled actually went in the red due to neglecting to calculate the fee Paypal took out of the sum.

New rates

  • For my authors, illustrators, and editors associated with a particular title requesting copies of their titles to distribute locally or at booths copies will now be the base cost of manufacture plus 30% (instead of the 10% since I've not been seeing at least 20% additional coming back to meet my base share). Additionally shipping will still be charged, and taxes since I still have to pay the taxes. Paypal payments will now be calculated to include the 2.9% + 0.30 fees they charge.
  • Single item orders from people not involved in a book will have no discounts.
  • Bookstores, libraries, and other wholesalers contacting me to order a run of books sent will pay base cost of manufacture plus 50%, as I realize they too must have room for markup. Additionally shipping will still be charged, and taxes since I still have to pay the taxes. Paypal payments will now be calculated to include the 2.9% + 0.30 fees they charge.

Larger orders would give me more room to give discounts, calculated on a case by case basis for the time being.

Monday, May 15, 2017

How To: Reviews

When writing a review there are some things you will want to consider and touch on. You don't have to do them all, but the more you do the more thorough the review. This is primarily for books but can be applied to other items.
Main Body
  • Title and Author
  • Book Summary
  • Technical aspects, quality, accuracy
  • Emotional Impact
  • Age range intended vs. Age range you feel it appeals to
  • Suggested Readers
Star Ratings
  • Some places use star ratings for how much the book was enjoyed by the reader.
  • Some places use star ratings for quality purposes
  • Some places do a combined system.
When you have negative things...
  • Point out what you like
  • CONSTRUCTIVELY Point out what you do not like or did not work for you. some criticism is ok, but it has to be done in a fashion that is not harmful and that might help a writer (beginner or not) improve.
  • ALWAYS be polite.
  • ALWAYS be honest.
  • If you feel better bringing up detracting things in direct conversation with the author then it is good to do so. This also helps conversation between author and audience, and you might get lucky enough for that author to talk with you about character motivation or get told about planned future developments or backstory that exists but can't be public knowledge yet.

Book Review: Dark Musings by David Boiani

Book Review
Title: Dark Musings
Author: David Boiani
Star Rating: 5 stars for both enjoyability and structure
Age Rating (IMO): PG13 for most of the stories

This book is a collection of short stories ranging from somber, macabre, all the way through beautiful. Some of them are all of these things. It starts strong and stays strong through the entire book. Some of these stories are going to haunt my head for awhile, such as the child rescued by the teacher, the serial killer, the mother that lost touch with reality, and the one about the birth of Adolf Hitler and his parent’s expectations as examples. There are so many different viewpoints and scenarios, and no character is flat. They live, they breathe, some of them you wonder if you’ll meet walking down the street or getting your morning coffee. Some of them you pray you never will. Yet, it is likely that at some point you will meet someone that might have stepped from these pages.
These are tales that might happen, some that do happen. It is not a journey for the faint of heart. However I also feel it is one that most should read. Some of these are great cautionary tales, and I would consider this a very good addition to a collection of modern folklore. They remind me in a way of books that I grew up with, such as the Scary Stories collections by Alvin Schwartz, but aimed for an older crowd.
It is hard to find anything that I did not like. Some of the stories appalled me, but not because the author dared write them. They appalled me because I’ve read of things similar happening in news and some of the things addressed are real. It is not the author’s job to control his fellow man, and an author’s job is as much to shine light on the good as it is to expose the bad. Therefore I do not find anything to actually detract. It was very well done. I am going to be suggesting this book to several people that I know who will immensely enjoy it.

Personal note for Youtube: It took me a couple days to finish this book. I prefer to read in long uninterrupted sessions, but it just was not able to happen as I’d have liked. If I had nothing else on my plate I would have been able to finish in less than a day. You might prefer to read this one story a day and contemplate to let the full effect seep in, or you might read in spurts here and there and you can grab the time, both would work and if done would lengthen your reading time. If you are like me and like to carve out reading days then you still will be able to. This book fits any reading style due to the short story structure.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Mozilla's Campaign for net neutrality

I have just signed Mozilla's campaign regarding strong net neutrality regulations. This is intended to help preserve the free use of the internet to watch, read, and say what one wants. What is available to us should not be limited by religion or anything else within America, as this is clearly under the 1st Amendment and an issue of free speech. I invite you to join me.
Click here to see the campaign or to sign your name.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Book Review: The Eleventh Hour (The Prime Insurgency #11)

We have come to the end of my personal challenge, the Advance Review Copies, and the series. I greatly enjoyed the chance to read through these books. Having spoken with the author there will be two boxed sets for this series.

  • Books 1-6
  • Books 7-11
Book Review
Title: The Eleventh Hour (The Prime Insurgency #11)
Author: J. D. Stonebridge

First off the end of this made me tear up. Even in winning there was defeat, as should be expected in a storyline such as this, as inevitably someone is going to lose. I don’t think any of the characters in this were truly evil. In this I am reminded a bit of Miyazaki’s works. It is very fast, but at the end, in that last chapter, it gets very somber very quickly.

Even though we have deity-like Primes, the truth of the gods of the various religions, there is no deus ex machina in this. Everything is explainable. Even down to the battle between two “father figures” and a colossal screw up that possibly could have been avoided if not for one thing. Pride. This is what I take from the story anyway.

The story is not ended, not with what the epilogue sets up. Once more Tony goes missing, leaving behind a note begging not to be sought or stopped. Of course Lauren and Lance are going to go looking. I hope to see another series following this storyline.

Once more the writing is good. The characters come alive in this and it is the interplay of character with plot that keeps the pages turning so fast. You get attached to them. You grimace when they get hit, feel bad when they die.

There were a few places that jarred me out of the flow but I was pulled along by the story so fast that by the time I realized I was already too far forward to go back and make note of it properly. This was a very enjoyable book and series, which I would recommend for anyone that likes contemporary sci fi, whether teen or older.

Book Review: Ten Great Beams (The Prime Insurgency #10)

Nearing the end of my personal challenge, the Advance Review Copies, and the series. There's only one more after this! Having spoken with the author there will be two boxed sets for this series.
  • Books 1-6
  • Books 7-11

Book Review
Title: Ten Great Beams (The Prime Insurgency #10)
Author: J. D. Stonebridge

In this book we learn what happens with Tony and get more intimate with Sun Child, or Rathanos. We also discover that this Prime is a huge book worm. I have to compare him with Thoth and with Apollo. We are not brought in his viewpoint to where he met back up with Lance yet, I am assuming that this comes in the next book “Eleventh Hour.” We do however learn more about two plans, Rathanos’ plan, and that of the Zeus/Ivan. I cannot recall off the top of my head the actual name of the storm Prime that was given in one of the previous books. Thus I have to admit falling into the pantheon problem when these beings are more of what is at the root of them all.

So I wonder if this also makes Sun Child/Rathanos the seed for Amaterasu as well, given how some saw that deity is female and others male.

Again the writing is well done. I noticed less strange drop downs in dialogue. This time they really were at logical places such as paragraphs within speech. The characters are still rounded and believable, and growing, living, breathing. It is obvious how much thought each character was given. The story stays intriguing the further one goes. I also very much liked how Tony, the scholar, ends up standing up to Ivan, the host of the Zeus-like Prime, and displaying the bravery that others have commented on.