Category Archives: Miscellaneous Stuff

The Final Blog Post

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When I started my professional career, one of my first bosses gave me some good advice – to summarize it, whenever you have something hard to say, just come out and say it without beating around the bush.

That being said, this is the last post for this blog.

Although the hard part is over, the remainder of this post is hard to write – mainly because I am giving up and throwing in the towel for this blog.  Some of you may not care for the rationale behind the decision; if you don’t, you can stop reading right now and jump to the last paragraph for some final instructions.

Some of you might want to know why I’m stopping this blog, but to boil it all down it comes to simple economics (as do most decisions like this): it’s not profitable to maintain this blog for the amount of time and effort involved.  You can boil it down to the following:

  • Amazon does not support or promote the paid blog subscriptions on e-Ink Kindles.
  • The majority of public opinion regarding eBooks priced at $1.00 or less is generally not favorable.
  • Independent authors can’t make a living with quality books perpetually priced at $1.00 or less.
  • Not that many people are purchasing eBooks priced at $1.00 or less.
  • The four factors above, in light of the fact I work 10 hours or so during each weekday in addition to trying my best to be a husband and father means there’s not enough hours in the day to make it worth the time and effort.

Since I am an accountant by day that analyzes various financial decisions and results each day (I don’t do taxes!), the following adds a little more color to this decision making process (make of it what you will).  Before I do that, here’s a little subscription data other blog publishers on the Kindle storefront probably don’t want me to disclose to you, although I am certain they would love to know the information as it helps them determine where they stand on the blog bestseller list:

  • 576 monthly paid subscriptions via the e-Ink Kindle push model.  That makes it have a ranking of #40 on the blog bestseller list.
  • 1,021 email subscribers.
  • Approximately 60 – 100 unique blog website visitors per day.
  • For each book posted to the blog, on average, lately there are approximately 10 – 20 sales of that particular book per post.  Sometimes a lot more, sometimes (gasp!) even none.

Amazon Support of the Blog Business Model

When the e-Ink Kindles first came out (an e-Ink Kindle is any Kindle not named “Fire”), in addition to being able to read books, newspapers, and magazines, Amazon touted the ability to receive blogs via a subscription “push” model that forwarded new blog content to a person’s Kindle.  That was pretty cool to a lot of folks (obviously to me, also), and in its prime the Amazon storefront had over 15,000 blogs available via this subscription model; today, there are 13,616 or approximately 9% less than there were about two years ago.

When I started this blog in June of 2011, it acquired just over 1,000 subscribers via the subscription model the first month.  Most of these came from a referral of my other blogs, some from word of mouth, and I did no outside advertising of this blog as I couldn’t afford it.

The title of this section is “Amazon Support of the Blog Business Model” but that’s an oxymoron as Amazon doesn’t really support the blog business model: pricing has been all over the map, it’s hard for a potential consumer to find out blogs are available for them to try out for the free two-week trial period, and the commission structure to the blog publisher is out of balance.  To top it off, Amazon does not reach out to the blogging community at all.

Links to the blog section used to be front and center on the Kindle pages of the Amazon website as well as from the shopping area directly from your Kindle: now, you have to click several times, deep into the offerings, and hope a potential reader / customer will click numerous times just to see blogs are available for your Kindle.  It’s very difficult to get new subscribers to enroll in a blog subscription – if Amazon isn’t going to make it easy to find customers, you’re stuck on a degrading subscriber model as the people who eventually unsubscribe aren’t replaced by new customers.

The pricing structure is really strange: the blog publisher has no control over the price as it is set by Amazon.  When Amazon first started the blog section, if you put a “new” blog up for consideration in the Kindle storefront the pricing was immediately set at $1.99 per month.  After an unknown period of time – or maybe it was the number of subscribers as Amazon would never reveal the pricing “formula” involved – the blog pricing might revert to 99 cents per month.

99 cents per month doesn’t sound too bad, does it?  If only that were the case, as Amazon keeps 69 cents and the blog publisher gets 30 cents for each subscriber.  When all of the e-Ink readers were via a cellular connection instead of the predominant Wi-Fi they are today, Amazon explained the split on the pricing structure was the way it is due to having to pay the underlying cellular provider (AT&T and Sprint) for the modems built-in to the Kindle.  Most of us rationalized it as a third each between Amazon, AT&T / Sprint, and the blog publisher.

Now that the majority of e-Ink Kindles are Wi-Fi only, you would think the cost structure has gone down (and it probably has) but that has not resulted in a change in the commission structure to the blog publisher.  With the lack of promotion, and the other factors I’ll mention in a moment, the number of monthly paying subscribers has steadily decreased and the number of purchases for books posted made each month also decreased.  With a total of 576 paying subscribers (and decreasing each month) for this blog, I would receive approximately $173 for a month or about $5.50 per day.  It’s harder than you think to find a potentially good Kindle book for $1.00 or less!

Most bloggers aren’t making much, if any, money via the Kindle subscription model.  In fairness, they probably shouldn’t expect to have the Kindle subscription model be the #1 revenue source for their blog(s).  Right now, as I type up this post, this blog is ranked #40 in terms of sales rank of the 13,616 blogs.  I wonder if the blog ranked at #5,000 – or #13,616 – has more than a handful of paid subscribers?

There’s an exponential difference between being in the top 10 and #40 on this list – I have been fortunate enough to have the #1 blog in the Amazon storefront for a little over two years now, and my cousin runs the Joke of the Day blog which is also in the top 10 and I know his subscriber numbers.  To say there is a cliff dropoff between #10 and #11 is an understatement as those in the top 10 enjoy the benefit of being on the first page of most potential subscribers’ display.  The reality is if you’re not in the top 10 don’t expect to make a living or substantial money via Amazon off of a blog!

In my opinion, Amazon also missed a major opportunity by not making the blog subscription model available for the Kindle Fire as they did the e-Ink Kindle, but that’s another story over a couple of adult beverages.  If Amazon would hire me to revamp the blog subscription model experience, I feel fairly confident (I’m from Texas, after all) I could make it profitable for all parties and continue the drive to make the Kindle indispensable to the end-user.  I doubt (a) anyone from Amazon will read this, and (b) that kind of job offer would ever materialize!

Looking over what I just typed – wow, that’s a mouthful!  Let’s see, I had three more major points to cover…

Public Opinion Regarding Books Priced at $1.00 or Less

Let’s face it, there are a lot of crappy (that’s a technical term, of course) books out there in the Kindle format.  You can read posts I’ve made on one of my other blogs about a sloppy book description (click here or type in http://wp.me/p2b82w-3Ux into your web browser to see it) or a bad cover (click here or type in http://wp.me/p2b82w-3UA to see it) which are discussions among themselves, but a potential consumer is looking at any reason to not purchase a book with their hard-earned money.

The beauty of the self-publishing platform is it is very easy to do, and a lot of outstanding authors who were rejected by the mainstream publishing companies have finally found an outlet and have embarked on full-time jobs as independent authors.  I’ve found a lot of them (and you have, too) and I want to read more from them.

The other side of the coin is the ease of being self-published: we’ve all read stuff in the Kindle format that looked like it was slapped together and is absolutely horrible.  That’s not unique to the Kindle world as you can certainly find the same in “regular” paper books. But many consumers associate price with quality (among many other factors).

As a result, not many people are taking a chance on a 99 cent book.  If people aren’t taking a chance on a 99 cent book, authors aren’t selling anything, and leads to my next point…

Independent Authors Can’t Make a Living with Quality Books Perpetually Priced at $1.00 or Less

To nip some of the comments in the bud now – sure, there are quality books priced at $1.00 or less, and they sell a lot month-after-month.   I personally know many authors who are doing this as a loss-leader approach: they have a catalog of books priced, for example, at $3.99 and above, and they are using book 1 of a series or one book (if not part of a series) as a “hook” to capture your interest.  The theory behind this is if you liked book 1 in a series, for example, there is a good chance you will buy their other books at full price.  With the introduction of Select, the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, etc., authors are now making their books free for a period of time in order to enable that same hook concept.

If an independent author was relying on the $1.00 or less model to make ends meet, it would be very hard to do.  Why?  It’s all about the commission structure.  If a book is priced at $2.98 or less in the Amazon Kindle store, the commission to the author is 30% and Amazon gets the rest.  If the pricing is $2.99 or above, the commission structure is 70% to the author and 30% to Amazon.  To make $30,000 a year before the government takes their “fair share,” I would need to sell 100,000 books priced at $1.00 each.  Each year.

I don’t know about you, but I think that’s one hell of a lot of books to be sold each year.  Not too many people can do that year after year.

As someone who has also published books in the Kindle format, it doesn’t take my accounting degree to make my decision on that one: I’m going for a minimum of $2.99 as my pricing model all day long unless I want a loss leader that will be offered at a discount or free on a periodic basis.  At $2.99, to make that same $30,000 before taxes in my example above I need to sell “only” 14,333 books a year or 1,194 per month; at $3.99 I need to sell 10,741 books.  You can do the math at other price points.  That’s still a lot of books to be sold, but clearly not as daunting as moving 100,000 books each year.

From the author’s perspective, they don’t have much incentive to price at anything less than $2.99, and it takes a heck of a lot of trolling around for me to find a highly-rated book that appears to be a quality offering – I do read the review comments and the book descriptions – each weekday.

Number of Sales Per Post

As I mentioned above, for each book posted to the blog, on average, there are approximately 10 – 20 sales of that particular book per post.  Sometimes there’s a lot more than 20, and sometimes there’s none.  Zero.

Part of the way I get paid for the effort of the blog is via affiliate sales: I put a unique link in the post so that if you click on the book I posted about on a particular day and buy it, I receive a variable commission based upon the sales price.  While that doesn’t increase the cost to you, I do get a referral fee as a commission – after the government’s fair share, that nets out to approximately 4.7% for each sale made.  Assuming I had a great day (great for today, but not near as good as when this blog started) and 15 sales were made on a particular day for a 99 cent book, I will net 70 cents.  Assuming I found a nickel somewhere, I could buy a Diet Coke from the office vending machine!

It’s About the Time Commitment!

As many of you know, I don’t blog full-time but have a fairly demanding full-time job, plus my wife and I have two children and the commitments of being a husband, father, homework checker, and carpool driver.  There’s not enough hours in the day to justify continuing this blog with the time required to do a good job of it vs. the financial reward of less than $200 per month.  My other blogs can run on that model – I’ve done the analysis – but for this one I’m going to have to call it a day.  I’m not going to take this blog down or delete it, but will leave it up as I still believe the prior posts contain some great, and affordable, reading material – I encourage you to click the links on the blog’s website (https://ebooksforabuck.wordpress.com) and see what you may have missed – who knows, you may find a new favorite author!

For those of you who have subscribed to this blog, made contributions and suggestions to make it better, I appreciate it!  I’ll still be around blogging, for example, with the Free Kindle Books and Tips blog (www.fkbooksandtips.com)  if you still need your Kindle fix.

If you are an email subscriber, there’s nothing you need to do – there won’t be future posts to worry about clogging your inbox.  If you’re an e-Ink subscriber, you need to go to the “Manage My Kindle” section of the Amazon website and end this subscription so Amazon won’t continue to charge you 99 cents per month!

Until next time (or the next new blog)-

Michael Gallagher

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Kindle Reset Instructions

I am going to set this message up to go out periodically for each of my blogs: if you’ve seen it before and know what I’m talking about, or if you’re just plain ‘ole tired of seeing it don’t worry – I’ll be back with a new post soon.

Don’t have a Kindle? Well, you should get one! They range in price from $69 – $499 depending upon the number of bells and whistles you get. You can click here to give the kind of Kindle I primarily use a look.

There seems to be a Kindle problem for a lot of folks who own an e-Ink Kindle – that is, what do you need to do if (a) this or any other blog or newspaper all of a sudden stops updating each day on the Kindle, and (b) you can see the blog or newspaper post in the to be downloaded list of the “Manage Your Kindle” section of the Amazon website and for some unexplained reason it doesn’t show up on your Kindle..

You will need to write this down, or try to memorize it, because if it happens to you I’m willing to bet you won’t remember unless you’ve reset your Kindle a few times!

If you would like to print this out, click here to read my post on the Free Kindle Books Plus a Few Other Tips blog to how to capture screen shots on your e-Ink Kindle.

If this happens to you, you will need to reboot your Kindle. Here is how you do it:

  1. Click the “Home” button to get back to your home screen.
  2. Click the “Menu” button, and select “Settings.”
  3. You will see several options, but “reboot” is not one of those options. Press the “Menu” button again.
  4. You will have several options, but choose and click the “Restart” button.

Once you do that, it will take about 1-2 minutes to reboot. Make sure your wireless is on, and the Kindle will go look in the Amazon store to see what is pending to be downloaded and viola! You should be back in business. If you ever need to restart your Kindle, I hope this helps!

Want to have this blog sent wirelessly to your e-Ink Kindle vs. reading it on your computer? Try out the free two-week subscription!  Click here for the Amazon page for Free Kindle Books Plus a Few Other Tips or type in http://www.tinyurl.com/fkblog into your computer’s web browser.

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My Other Blogs

I am sending this out to each of my blogs…if you receive this more than once, feel free to delete it as I will be back soon with a new post.

Several times a week, I get asked a question via email along the lines of “…are you the same person who does the other Kindle blog named…?”

The answer is probably, “yes,” as I publish a total of six blogs that are available on the Kindle.

I believe one of the neat things about the Kindle “experience” is your Kindle is much more than an eBook reader – I use the free wireless service to check email, follow the scores for my favorite teams via ESPN’s mobile website, and check the weather forecast. As I type this, there are over 13,000 blogs available to be sent directly to your e-Ink Kindle. Some of them update several times per day, just once a day, a few times per week, or a couple of times per month.

A blog subscription to be sent directly to your e-Ink Kindle costs 99 cents per month – I don’t know how they come up with the pricing as Amazon sets the pricing on the blogs. With respect to each of my blogs on the Kindle platform, of the 99 cents Amazon gets 69 cents and I get 30 cents. As you can probably guess, I am not getting rich off of this but it does allow me to purchase a few woodworking tools on occasion, and has helped to pay for my Christmas vacation in the past!

Amazon allows you to check each blog out for free on your e-Ink Kindle for a two-week period, and you can cancel within that two-week period at any time with no cost to you. There are quite a few blogs out there I think are pretty interesting, and I subscribe to a few myself.

In no particular order, here are the six blogs I have available for reading on your Kindle.

 

Free Kindle Books and Tips

Free Kindle Books and Tips is my largest blog in terms of Kindle subscribers as well as the number of people who either read it on the web, with the free Kindle Fire app, email subscription, Facebook, and Twitter. I’ve been very fortunate with this blog as it has been the #1 bestselling paid subscription Kindle blog since 2010, and has been in the Top 100 of all Kindle titles (books, magazines, blogs) for almost two years. What is it all about?  As new free titles become available in the Amazon Kindle store or places in addition to the Kindle store, I provide a brief synopsis of the book as well as the link to download it to your Kindle for your enjoyment.

Based upon my own experiences as well as what I have been able to find out from others, I also provide reviews of and information about the numerous sites that offer free material, tips on how to maximize your Kindle experience, and various other Kindle-related information I think is interesting. Maybe you will, too. If you would like to check it out the free two-week trial of this blog, you can click here or just type in www.tinyurl.com/fkblog into your web browser: this shortened web address will save you from typing in a really long series of characters and will take you right to the blog’s Amazon page.

From the blog page on Amazon, just click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page. You have two weeks to try it out for free (and free is the name of the game).

Bible Verse of the Day

If you did a search for my name in the Kindle Blog section of the Amazon store, you will also see the Bible Verse of the Day blog I also publish: you can check out the two-week free trial if you click here or type in http://tinyurl.com/bvoftheday into your web browser and click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.

Any receipts I receive from Amazon for this blog (again, after Amazon’s cut) are donated to The Nehemiah Center of Houston, a Houston, TX based charity which is a Christian-based organization that offers academic, emotional, cultural, social, and spiritual enrichment to the children and families in the MacGregor Elementary School Area just outside Houston’s Third Ward. I have visited this facility, and they are making a tremendous difference in the lives of hundreds of at-risk children. You can find out more about the Nehemiah Center of Houston by pointing your web browser to www.nehemiahcenterhouston.org

Thanks to the generosity of this blog’s subscribers as well as their direct contributions, collectively we have donated over $7,000 to this charity since 2010.

You can always visit this blog’s website at http://gbvd.wordpress.com

 

Kindle Books for a Buck (or Less)

This is a supplemental blog to the Free Kindle Books and Tips blog. Each weekday, I spotlight a book in the Amazon Kindle store that costs all of a dollar or less (sometimes free) with an emphasis on the independent author.

The main purpose of this blog is to focus on the many independent, self-published authors that typically fall under the radar screen amidst all of the noise from the “headline” authors I have really enjoyed. I think you will enjoy it, too, as you will come across recommendations of many genres – plus the purchase price of one dollar (or less) is a pretty easy price point vs. throwing down ten or more bucks for something.

You can check out the two-week free trial if you click here type in http://amzn.to/kb4abuck into your computer’s web browser and click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.

You can always visit this blog’s website at https://ebooksforabuck.wordpress.com

 

Trivia of the Day

This blog features random trivia and facts hand-picked and designed to give you a “leg-up” on your friends, relatives, and co-workers…you should know this stuff! If you read this one for just a week, you will know a heck of a lot of random trivia and people may think you are like Cliff from “Cheers.” To try out the two-week free trial, just click here or type in http://tinyurl.com/toftheday into your computer’s web browser and click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.

You can always visit this blog’s website at http://triviaoftheday.wordpress.com

Quote of the Day

This blog features inspiring quotes from famous and everyday people to start your day – sometimes wise, sometimes humorous, you are sure to find something that will inspire you in your walk of life. To try out this one’s two-week free trial, just click here or type in http://tinyurl.com/qoftheday into your computer’s web browser click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.

You can always visit this blog’s website at http://gqod.wordpress.com

On This Day in History

Have you ever wondered what happened on a particular day, such as historical events, birthdays, deaths, worldwide holidays, etc.? Well, the On This Day in History blog will tell you – every morning you will receive the unique events of that day directly to your Kindle. The listed events are not just USA-specific, but worldwide. To try out this one’s two-week free trial, just click here or type in http://tinyurl.com/otdhistory into your computer’s web browser click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.

You can always visit this blog’s website at http://otday.wordpress.com

 

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Kindle Reset Instructions

I am going to set this message up to go out monthly for each of my blogs, as most of you read them on your Kindles vs. the computer or via email: if you’ve seen it before and know what I’m talking about, or if you’re just plain ‘ole tired of seeing it don’t worry – I’ll be back with a new post soon.

Don’t have a Kindle? Well, you should get one! They range in price from $79 – $379 depending upon the number of bells and whistles you get. You can click here to give the kind of Kindle I primarily use a look.

There seems to be a Kindle problem for a lot of folks – that is, what do you need to do if (a) this or any other blog, newspaper, or magazine all of a sudden stops updating each day on the Kindle, and (b) you can see the blog, newspaper, or magazine post in the to be downloaded list of the “Manage Your Kindle” section of the Amazon website and for some unexplained reason it doesn’t show up on your Kindle, or (c) you’ve ordered a book, app or anything else for your Kindle and it never seems to download,

You may need to write this down, or try to memorize it, because if it happens to you I’m willing to bet you won’t remember unless you’ve reset your Kindle a few times!

If you would like to print this out, click here to read my post on the Free Kindle Books and Tips blog to how to capture screen shots on your e-Ink Kindle; for you Kindle Fire owners, the instructions on how to print something from your Fire are pretty long and are a post for another day.

If this happens to you, you will need to reboot your Kindle.

Here is how you reboot an e-Ink Kindle:

  1. Click the “Home” button to get back to your home screen.
  2. Click the “Menu” button, and select “Settings.”
  3. You will see several options, but “reboot” is not one of those options. Press the “Menu” button again.
  4. You will have several options, but choose and click the “Restart” button.

Here is how you reboot a Kindle Fire:

  1. Press and hold the power button for 20 seconds, then release the power button.
  2. The Fire will turn off.
  3. After the Fire has turned off, press the power button once and release it to restart the Fire.

Once you reboot your Kindle, it could take about 1-2 minutes to reboot. Make sure your wireless is on, and the Kindle will go look in the Amazon store to see what is pending to be downloaded and viola! You should be back in business. If you ever need to restart your Kindle, I hope this helps!

Want to have this blog sent wirelessly to your e-Ink Kindle vs. reading it on your computer?  Try out the free two-week trial subscription!   Click here for the Amazon page of the Free Kindle Books and Tips blog or type in  http://www.tinyurl.com/fkblog into your computer’s web browser.

Download the Free Kindle Books and Tips blog app for your Kindle Fire or Android-based smartphone or tablet – for free, of course – by  clicking here or type in  http://amzn.to/freefireapp into your computer’s web browser from the Amazon App Store or  click here or type in  http://bit.ly/fkbtgoogle into your computer’s web browser for the Google App Store.

 

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New Kindle Fire for Just $164 – Today Only – Voucher Instructions Attached

As most people read this blog on their Kindles, I thought it appropriate to send out to the members of the blog.  As I will be sending this to each of my blogs, if you get it more than once you won’t hurt my feelings by deleting it!

Amazon is running another “Local Deal” today for the Kindle Fire by giving you a $30 off voucher plus a $5 voucher for instant videos to be watched on a Kindle Fire or your TV and, if past history is any judge, I would imagine this deal will be gone quickly (remember when they discounted the regular e-Ink Kindle to $49 – that was over by mid-afternoon of the day of the event).

With a one-year warranty, that makes the price of a brand new Kindle Fire just $164 vs. the price of a refurbished Fire being $169.  Basically, Amazon is taking off an additional $35 on the price of a new Fire but there is a catch – the additional $35 is for today only.

If you know of someone who has been wanting a Kindle Fire but couldn’t justify the expense, why not pass these instructions on to them?  If you have been wanting a Kindle Fire for yourself or as a gift for someone, I would recommend jumping on this one fast.

In order to get the $30 off voucher and the $5 movie credit, here is what you need to do:

  • Go to the Amazon Local deal by clicking here or typing in http://bit.ly/KoFD4t into your computer’s web browser.  You need to go to this specific page to get your voucher – the voucher is free, but they are limited in quantities and are offered for today only, and you have until June 15th to redeem the voucher.
  • Click on the “Get Voucher” icon on the right-hand side of the screen.
  • If you are not signed into Amazon, you will need to sign in with your email address and password for the Amazon website.
  • You will be taken to a check out screen: while they ask you to confirm your billing information as linked to your Amazon account, you will notice the price is zero.  Click on the “Place Your Order” icon in the lower right-hand corner.
  • You will next be taken to a confirmation page, but you can then click on the “Your Vouchers” icon in the top right-hand corner of this confirmation web page.  It may take a minute to generate the code – keep pressing your browser’s refresh button (it took about 30 seconds for me).
  • Click on the “View Code” icon to the right of the voucher’s details.
  • A new window will open up with your code.  Copy that code down with your mouse or write it down on a piece of paper.
  • Go to the Kindle Fire page by clicking here or typing in http://amzn.to/kindlefiretablet into your computer’s web browser.  Once on this page, click “Add to Cart” and proceed to checkout.  Don’t click the 1-click option as you need to perform a step after the “Add to Cart” option.
  • On the “Review Your Order” page, enter your voucher code in the “Gift Cards & Promotional Codes” field, and complete checkout.
  • That’s it!

For the $5 instant video credit, Amazon will email you a promotional code 72 hours after the Kindle Fire ships.  You will have until August 31st to use this $5 credit.

Hope that helps!

Michael
Want to have this blog sent wirelessly to your Kindle vs. reading it on your computer? Try out the free two-week subscription! Click here for the Amazon page for Free Kindle Books Plus a Few Other Tips or type in http://www.tinyurl.com/fkblog into your computer’s web browser.

Download the Free Kindle Books and Tips blog app for your Kindle Fire – for free, of course – by clicking here or type in http://amzn.to/freefireapp into your computer’s web browser.

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My Kindle Blogs

I am sending this post out to each of my blogs, so if you get it more than once feel free to skip on over the second time you see it.

Several times a week, I get asked a question via email along the lines of “…are you the same person who does the other Kindle blog named…?” The answer is probably, “yes,” as I publish a total of six blogs that are available on the Kindle.

I believe one of the neat things about the Kindle “experience” is your Kindle is much more than an eBook reader – I use the free wireless service to check email, follow the scores for my favorite teams via ESPN’s mobile website, and check the weather forecast. As I type this, there are 13,346 blogs available to be sent directly to your Kindle. Some of them update several times per day, just once a day, a few times per week, or a couple of times per month.

At this time, the only Kindle device you can read a blog on via a paid subscription is an actual Kindle and not, for example, any of the Kindle applications on an iPad, nor can you get a blog subscription on the Kindle for PC application. Why? I don’t know: it seems as if it would be fairly easy to program in the Kindle application, and Amazon (in my opinion) is missing out on one heck of a monthly revenue stream. Amazon really doesn’t promote the Kindle blog arena, and they rarely reply to a question blog publishers pose to them – I wouldn’t be surprised if one day they shut it all down, but that is a topic for another day as well as another blog format.

You can receive blogs on your Kindle Fire, just not as a paid subscription like you can on a “regular” Kindle. I will send out instructions on how to receive this blog on your Kindle Fire for free in a separate post.

A blog subscription to be sent directly to your Kindle costs anywhere from 99 cents to $1.99 per month – I don’t know how they come up with the pricing as Amazon sets the pricing on the blogs. With respect to each of my blogs on the Kindle platform, they are priced at 99 cents each per month: of that amount, Amazon gets 69 cents and I get 30 cents. As you can probably guess, I am not getting rich off of this but it does allow me to purchase a few woodworking tools on occasion, and is helping to pay for a few things here and ther! Hmm, with Amazon receiving 70% of the revenue, it makes me wonder even more why blogs are not allowed / available on other Kindle applications such as the Kindle for iPad / PC / Droid, etc.?

Amazon allows you to check each blog out for free on your Kindle for a two-week period, and you can cancel within that two-week period at any time with no cost to you. There are quite a few blogs out there I think are pretty interesting, and I subscribe to a few myself.

In no particular order, here are the six blogs I have available for reading on your Kindle.

Free Kindle Books Plus a Few Other Tips

Free Kindle Books Plus a Few Other Tips is my largest blog in terms of Kindle subscribers as well as the number of people who either read it on the web, email subscription, Facebook, and Twitter. I’ve been very fortunate with this blog as it has been the #1 bestselling Kindle blog since 2010, and is consistently ranked in the Top 100 for all Kindle titles (473 days and counting). What is it all about? As new free titles become available in the Amazon Kindle store or places in addition to the Kindle store, I provide a brief synopsis of the book as well as the link to download it to your Kindle for your enjoyment.

Based upon my own experiences as well as what I have been able to find out from others, I also provide reviews of and information about the numerous sites that offer free material, tips on how to maximize your Kindle experience, and various other Kindle-related information I think is interesting.  Maybe you will think it is interesting, also If you would like to check it out the free two-week trial of this blog, you can just type in www.tinyurl.com/fkblog into your computer’s web browser: this shortened web address will save you from typing in a really long series of characters and will take you right to the blog’s Amazon page.

From the blog page on Amazon, just click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page. You have two weeks to try it out for free (and free is the name of the game).

If you have a Kindle Fire, you can’t subscribe to this blog via the Amazon interface – that’s not my decision but an Amazon decision.  As a workaround, I’ve developed a free app for your Kindle Fire or Android-based phone or tablet computer that you can get if you click here or type in http://amzn.to/freefireapp into your computer’s web browser.


Bible Verse of the Day

If you did a search for my name in the Kindle Blog section of the Amazon store, you will also see the Bible Verse of the Day blog I also publish: you can check out the two-week free trial if you type in http://tinyurl.com/bvoftheday into your computer’s web browser and click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.

Any receipts I receive from Amazon for this blog (again, after Amazon’s cut) are donated to The Nehemiah Center of Houston, a Houston, TX based charity which is a Christian-based organization that offers academic, emotional, cultural, social, and spiritual enrichment to the children and families in the MacGregor Elementary School Area just outside Houston’s Third Ward. I have visited this facility, and they are making a tremendous difference in the lives of hundreds of at-risk children. You can find out more about the Nehemiah Center of Houston by pointing your web browser to www.nehemiah1.org

Thanks to the generosity of this blog’s subscribers as well as their direct contributions, collectively we have donated just over $6,000 to this charity in a little over two years.

Kindle Books for a Buck (or Less)

This is a supplemental blog to the Free Kindle Books Plus a Few Other Tips blog mentioned above. Each weekday, I spotlight a book in the Amazon Kindle store that costs all of a dollar or less (sometimes free) with an emphasis on the independent author.

The main purpose of this blog is to focus on the many independent, self-published authors that typically fall under the radar screen amidst all of the noise from the “headline” authors I have really enjoyed. I think you will enjoy it, too, as you will come across recommendations of many genres – plus the purchase price of one dollar (or less) is a pretty easy price point vs. throwing down ten or more bucks for something.

You can check out the two-week free trial if you type in http://amzn.to/kb4abuck into your computer’s web browser and click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.

Trivia of the Day

This blog features random trivia and facts hand-picked and designed to give you a “leg-up” on your friends, relatives, and co-workers…you should know this stuff! If you read this one for just a week, you will know a heck of a lot of random trivia and people may think you are like Cliff from “Cheers.” To try out the two-week free trial, just type in http://tinyurl.com/toftheday into your computer’s web browser and click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.


Quote of the Day

This blog features inspiring quotes from famous and everyday people to start your day – sometimes wise, sometimes humorous, you are sure to find something that will inspire you in your walk of life. To try out this one’s two-week free trial, just type in http://tinyurl.com/qoftheday into your computer’s web browser click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.


On This Day in History

Have you ever wondered what happened on a particular day, such as historical events, birthdays, deaths, worldwide holidays, etc.? Well, the On This Day in History blog will tell you – every morning you will receive the unique events of that day directly to your Kindle. The listed events are not just USA-specific, but worldwide. To try out this one’s two-week free trial, just type in http://tinyurl.com/otdhistory into your computer’s web browser click on the “Subscribe now with 1-click” button on the right-hand side of the page.

That’s all for now!

Click here for my “Kindle Tips, Tricks, and Shortcuts” book or type in http://amzn.to/seDbUq into your computer’s web browser and learn a new thing or two about your Kindle!

 

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30 Books – 99 cents – This Weekend Only!

I received an email from my friend, Phoenix Sullivan, who some of you may recall is a pretty darn good independent author – I’ve featured her book Sector C both on this blog and the Free Kindle Books and Tips blog.  She wrote to tell me about a special promotion she and fellow author David Gaughran have organized: 30 books from 26 different authors where the pricing will be reduced to 99 cents for today through Sunday only.

Most of these books are normally $2.99 and up, and there are some bestsellers as well as undiscovered gems in this lot: I’ve profiled just a few of these in the past, but seeing as how there are new members all of the time on this little community, there are many of you who haven’t seen these books before.

The 30 books are listed below without the description – but they are listed with the title, author’s name, genre, and a link to the Kindle book’s Amazon page.  Remember, these will revert back to their regular pricing after this weekend, so if you are interested in any (or all) of them grab them now!

Thank you, Phoenix, for giving the blog readers the heads-up on this!

Here are the 30 books:

Michael Wallace – Devil’s Deep – Thriller (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/yksjCb into your computer’s web browser.

Simon Royle – Bangkok Burn – Thriller (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/yz0yTV

Melissa Furrer Miller – Irreparable Harm – Thriller (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/xz403o

Christine de Maio-Rice – Dead Is The New Black – Mystery (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/xDqAW9

David Gaughran – A Storm Hits Valparaiso – Historical Fiction (normally $4.95) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/zauOBj

Sarah Woodbury – The Last Pendragon – Historical Fantasy (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/zu5xFr

Phoenix Sullivan – Spoil of War – Historical Romance (normally $1.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/w3dXr8

Jennifer Blake – The Rent-A-Groom – Contemporary Romance (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/wRkyEC

Tamelia Tumlin – Catering to the Italian Playboy – Cont. Romance (normally $1.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/zI66FN

JJ Toner – St. Patrick’s Day Special – Crime (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/Ag3af9

Vicki Tyley – Thin Blood – Suspense (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/wBnsNt

Mike Cooley – Crystal Warrior – Fantasy (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/xnO5MN

David H. Burton – The Second Coming – Fantasy (normally $4.95) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/zBcYzL

SM Reine – Death’s Hand – Urban Fantasy (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/xx7PdR

Shea MacLeod – Dragon Warrior – Urban Fantasy (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/wkEPtg

Simon Royle – Tag – Technothriller (normally $4.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/xGsI6o

Heather Marie Adkins – Abigail – Paranormal Romance (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/y2M9lp

David H. Burton – Broken – Paranormal Romance (normally $4.95) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/y8lZmB

Karin Cox – Cage Life – Short Stories (normally $1.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/vZl140

Cheryl Shireman – Life Is But A Dream – Women’s Fiction (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/ADbic0

David Gaughran – Let’s Get Digital: How To Self-Publish, And Why You Should  – Non-Fiction/How To (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/wKo5FS

Tony James Slater – That Bear Ate My Pants – Travel/Humor (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/ystZxQ

Ben White – The Undying Apathy Of Imogen Shroud – YA Zombies! (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/zBJsnN

Stephanie Abbot – Past Lives #1: Rachel – YA Steampunk (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/x1QvmW

Michelle Muto – Don’t Fear The ReaperYA Fantasy (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/w19Akj

Ben White – Resonance Book One: Birds Of Passage – YA Fantasy (normally $3.99) –  click here or type in http://amzn.to/xPCMHU

Sarah Billington – Life Was Cool Until You Got Popular – MG Novel (normally $3.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/xbVOxM

Ben Oliver – Kitt Pirate: Snaggletooth’s Treasure – MG Adventure (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/x7Uzm6

Sam Torode – The Dirty Parts of the Bible: A Novel – Literary Fiction/Historical (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/xWBSRY

Danielle Blanchard – Death Lair (The Vamp Saga) – Vampires! (normally $2.99) – click here or type in http://amzn.to/w3Qeu1

 

This list should keep you busy for a while….have a great weekend!

Michael

Published Monday – Friday (with an occasional weekend post) this blog, Kindle Books for a Buck or Less, primary focus is on the independent author as there are jewels beyond the “name brand” authors. If you would like to try out the free two-week trial subscription on your Kindle, click here or type in http://amzn.to/kb4abuck into your computer’s web browser. Who knows, you might find a new favorite author!

Looking for more or a reliable source of free books for your Kindle?  Click here for my “Free Kindle Books and How to Find Them book (updated January 2012!).

 

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