Posts Tagged ‘The Moon Coin’

The Moon Coin’s Results in Amazon’s

Kindle Direct Publishing Select Program

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First off, this was my first experience with Amazon’s KDP Select Program. And before listing my book, I read about a lot of other people’s experiences with the program in order to form some reasonable expectations. But I couldn’t find anybody reporting their experience who wrote for middle grade, tweens, or young adult. On the low end, I was bracing myself for as few as 500 downloads (over three days). On the high end, 2,500.

I’d been putting off entering the Select program because The Moon Coin had yet to meet two goals I’d set up for it. One, I’d wanted to have thirty or more good reviews on TMC’s Amazon page. Two, I’d wanted to have the print edition out and available for purchase on Amazon. Why wait for the print edition, you say? Well, the target audience for TMC still reads mostly paper, and not by a small percentage. According to industry stats, 80% of middle grade and tween still get their books in paper. So, logically, I wanted any parents previewing books for their kids’ summer reading list to have the option of ordering a print copy. I got the reviews I’d wanted within six months, but it wasn’t until June 20, 2012 that I had the print edition in place.

Next I had to pick the time and length of the sale. Given that it was late June, it seemed immediately obvious to me that I should wait until the Fourth of July weekend. The only problem there was . . . the Fourth of July was on a Wednesday this year! After thinking about it for a bit, I decided not to run it on the actual day of the 4th, since that’s a really busy day and evening, mostly spent outdoors with friends or family. So that meant I had to choose between the weekend before or the weekend after. In the end, I picked July 5, 6, and 7. My reasoning being that it gave me a bit more time to prepare.

Prep time. I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on something I knew nothing about, so I opted for free sites who advertise Free Kindle Books. There are lots of them, just Google: “Free Kindle Books” and you’ll see what I’m talking about. I did do one paid ad with Kindle Nation Daily for $30, which I believe got me a one day advert on the 5th. I really like Kindle Nation Daily; they run a really smart website. I’ve worked with them before and plan to work with them again.

On the night of the 5th, TMC’s ranking was around 370,000 in the paid store. I waited up until 1:30am, thinking I’d be able to catch TMC’s flip from the paid store to the free store, but no go. As near as I can tell, TMC went live on the Kindle Free Store sometime between 1:30 and 7am, which is when I first saw it in the free store, but with no ranking. I checked it pretty regularly after that. The first ranking appeared at 8am: TMC was #6,630 and had landed at #59 on the Action and Adventure top 100 list. I was shocked.

From that point on, about every two hours or so, my ranking cut in half: #3,525, #1,933, #842, #408, #218. It kept climbing on the Action Adventure list, too: #43, #27, #15, #8, #6. TMC popped up on two other top 100 lists: Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror, and Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Magic, and was climbing those lists as well.

When I hit #135 on the master Kindle Free Store list, two things happened: first, I entertained the idea, for the first time, that I had a chance of hitting the top 100 list for the entire Kindle Free Store; second, I didn’t have a heart attack, for which I am eternally grateful. You see, I knew if I could get on that master top 100 list, then it would be like, well, did you see that movie where Vin Diesel hits the nitrous oxide then holds onto the steering wheel for dear life?

Midnight of the 5th, TMC hit #117 on the master list. But for the first time since hitting the list, it had begun to slow, and it was slowing fast. At around 2am, I decided it just wasn’t going to happen. Then, just before I went to bed, I hit the refresh one more time . . . #98. The Moon Coin had hit the top 100 in the big list. I went to bed happy, fully expecting on waking to find that TMC had dropped off. But I didn’t care. My little book had made it to the top 100. I was very proud.

But when I woke up on the 6th, TMC was at #70, landing it in the top 10 on all three of the sub category top 100 lists. (I think, at that time, it was #2 on the Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Magic list.)

I went to work as usual that morning, to our bookstore, where that paperback edition is selling like gangbusters. Over the course of the work day, TMC remained static on the list. After work, it rose to #46, then to #43, and finally to #42.

In the end, The Moon Coin was downloaded 8,981 times during the three days it was available.

It hit #1 on Amazon’s Best Seller Free Kindle list for children’s Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Magic list; #1 on the children’s Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror list; and #2 on the Action/Adventure list.

After the sale was over, The Moon Coin instantly flipped back to the Kindle Paid Store, right back to where it started: 370,000. Within an hour, it shot up to 70,000. Then it jumped up to 22,000. Over the next couple weeks, it hung out around the 20,000s, getting as high as 14,384.

In order to get on the Action and Adventure list for the paid store, it needed to get to 4,500. TMC wasn’t going to make it.

The Aftermath. TMC is sinking back down in the paid store ranking (currently 141,177). I know that many of the 8,981 people who downloaded it may never get around to reading it (there are just too many books and not enough time). And I know that 99% of the people who downloaded it were deep into a book already (or series) when they downloaded it. Realistically, over the next nine months, I’ll be lucky if a third of those people give TMC a shot, and read a chapter or more.

Happily, I received a flurry of attention and ratings from the fast readers who put TMC on the top of their reading list, and the response was unanimously wonderful.

So, ultimately, what did I get from Amazon’s Kindle Select Program?

Seeds. I’ve planted thousands of seeds. Will I get a forest someday? Only time will tell, but I can’t worry or think about that. I have work to do.

The Dragondain, book 2 in the Moon Realm Series, is due to publish as an ebook on September the 8th. And next year, The Murk, and the year after that, The Ninth Embasea, and the year after that . . .

Update: The Dragondain, book 2, has launched! And TMC will use its last two promo days Sept. 20, 21. I’ll report back on those numbers when I have them.

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For a high-quality video, click HERE.

2012 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards: Gold Medal Winner

Tales, unlike stories, never lie. You see, a tale is an account of things in their due order, often divulged secretly, or as gossip. Would you like to hear one? —Lord Autumn

Uncle Ebb was so good at telling his tales of the Moon Realm that Lily and Jasper used to wonder if he’d been there himself. But as teenagers, they’re beyond all that—up until the moment they’re plunged into the fantastic bedtime tales of their youth. Now, armed with nothing more than memories—and the moon coin—Lily and Jasper must piece together Uncle Ebb’s shattered tales and unite the fractured Moon Realm, or lose the moons they loved so much . . . all over again.

Illustrated by Carolyn Arcabascio. Volume One of the The Moon Realm Series

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Copyright © 2011 by Richard Due. All rights reserved. Gibbering Gnome Press,

A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink® The Moon Realm®

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Nine Moons Make a Realm

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Now available in Paperback!

The paperback edition of THE MOON COIN is now on sale at Amazon and Second Looks Books!!!

If you want a copy, and you’re local to Second Looks Books, and it’s easiest for you to drop by the store, then by all means do so. Otherwise, please order it through Amazon. It’ll cost you the same amount, but your purchase will go toward the book’s ranking. If you want it signed and/or inscribed, then click on the “add gift options after you “Proceed to checkout” and entering the info in the window provided. You can also send me a separate email with that info if that’s easier for you.

For a higher quality video, click HERE.

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2012 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards: Gold Medal Winner

Tales, unlike stories, never lie. You see, a tale is an account of things in their due order, often divulged secretly, or as gossip. Would you like to hear one? —Lord Autumn

Uncle Ebb was so good at telling his tales of the Moon Realm that sometimes it sounded like he’d been there himself.

As children, Lily and Jasper listened raptly to his bedtime tales of a place where nine moons swirled around one another, each inhabited by strange and wondrous beings: magical lunamancers; undersea merfolk; wise birds; winged dragons; and Lily’s favorite, the heroic, leonine Rinn.

There was only one rule: don’t tell a soul.

But now, years later, Uncle Ebb is missing. Lily has learned the secret behind the tales, and soon Jasper will too. But there’s one big problem. You see, something terrible has happened in the Moon Realm. . . .

Featuring twenty-two stunning full-color illustrations by Carolyn Arcabascio. Volume One of the fantasy adventure series The Moon Realm.

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Copyright © 2011 by Richard Due. All rights reserved. Gibbering Gnome Press,

A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink® The Moon Realm®

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New Content for eReader Devices and Apps!

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Amazon introduced a new Kindle format with the release of their Kindle Fire, called KF8. It allows me to do things I couldn’t do when The Moon Coin first debuted in September of last year. With KF8 I can embed fonts and add fun formatting features that heretofore were only available on the iPad. If you already own The Moon Coin and you want to get these new features and content, just email kdp-support@amazon.com. Include your Kindle account email and tell them that you want to re-download The Moon Coin. They’ll email you back with instructions. It’s completely free. The new content (cover, map, and character pages) is available for all the Kindle Reader Devices and Apps.

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If you have an iPad, simply open the iBooks app, hit the edit button, tap on the old version, hit the delete button and then download it again. Very intuitive. I didn’t even have to google that one.

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The update has gone live for the Nook devices (Barnes & Noble), too!

First up: it’s got a new cover!

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DropCaps at the beginning of every new chapter! Yay! (For the Kindles, this feature only works if your device supports the new KF8 format.)

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This map of Treling, which was made for the print edition, is now available for all eReader devices and apps , and if you have the iPad, Nook Color, or Kindle Fire: it’s in color! Whoo-hoo!

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These character pages were another addition planned for the print edition that’s now included with the eBooks. And if you have a Kindle Fire  or iPad, then you’ll get to see the character names in sporty SmallCaps! These are the features that make typesetters drool, people! 🙂

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Free Sneak Preview!

Six chapters formatted for ePubMobi, or PDF.

Please share these files with your friends. Enjoy.

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Copyright © 2011 by Richard Due. All rights reserved.

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Gibbering Gnome Press, A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink®

The Moon Realm®

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Some pics of the blue-lines the printer sent me:

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Technically, these are digital proofs, but they’ve been made to look exactly like traditional blue-lines burned from negatives, which I think is really cool! (Although dang hard to read!) Each page is a separate piece of paper, double-sided, formatted, and paginated exactly as it will appear in the book—except, of course, the light blue will be replaced by black ink! 🙂

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I love the Gibbering Gnome Press colophon (that’s the little silhouette thingy above the press name) Carolyn designed.

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This map of Treling is new for the print edition.

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The pages with illustrations are on normal paper so I can spec the color.

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Paperback and eBook now available:

Amazon and Second Looks Books.


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Click HERE to Read Reviews of The Moon Coin.

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Copyright © 2011 by Richard Due. All rights reserved.

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Gibbering Gnome Press, A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink®

The Moon Realm®

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Universe in Words reviews The Moon Coin.

“Lily is a great protagonist. In books, female protagonists are often dependent on men and I could never recognize myself in them. But Lily has an adventurous spirit that makes it more feasible she would survive all the different moons she is thrown onto.”

4 Stars

Click HERE or the image above to read the review.

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The Muses’ Circle reviews The Moon Coin

“The Moon Coin is truly a beautifully written fantasy novel with rich, memorable characters and gorgeous illustrations that brings the Moon Realm to life.”

4 Stars

Click HERE or the image directly above to read the review.

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The Moon Coin Print Edition Book Cover

“Tales, unlike stories, never lie. You see, a tale is an account of things in their due order, often divulged secretly, or as gossip. Would you like to hear one?”

—Lord Autumn

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Click the image above to enlarge or HERE to download a PDF.

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Here’s the final cover. The book measures 7.5″ x 5.5″, has 3″ flaps, and an inch spine. It’ll will weigh in at 304 pages. Should be ready by June.

2012 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards: Gold Medal Winner

Preview: The Moon Coin.

Six chapters formatted for ePubMobi, or PDF.

Please share these files with your friends. Enjoy.

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Paperback and eBook now available:

Amazon and Second Looks Books.

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Click HERE to Read Reviews of The Moon Coin.

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Copyright © 2011 by Richard Due. All rights reserved.

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Gibbering Gnome Press, A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink®

The Moon Realm®

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Typesetting The Moon Coin: The Print Edition

These are some screen shots from CS Indesign 5.5.

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When I was working on the eBook version of The Moon Coin, I was very limited in what I could do. Since then, Amazon has introduced a new Kindle .Mobi format that promises a slew of new features, including embedded fonts. After I finish evaluating what that means for users of older kindles, I may adopt that new format later this year. Similarly, Apple has recently introduced iAuthor, a new proprietary software program to build their ebooks. It also promises a slew of new features.

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First up, a presentation shot.

Click HERE or the image directly above to enlarge.

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Here’s a detail shot of the graphic elements in the header.

Click HERE or the image directly above to enlarge.

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Here’s a detail shot of the graphic elements in the footer.

Click HERE or the image directly above to enlarge.

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Howling Turtle

Click HERE or the image directly above for the Interview.

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I reached one of my favorite book-writing milestones today. I’m sick of my book! Don’t worry. It’s mostly temporary, I hope, and it happened at just the right time: seven years and about twenty-five editing passes in. (If I’d gotten sick of it earlier—trust me—I’d be seriously depressed.)

What did I do to celebrate, you ask? Well, yesterday, as the printer in my hallway was still warming down its jets (ink-low lights blinking furiously), I slid into the Post Office just ten minutes before closing time, slapped a delivery conformation sticker on my handmade cardboard box, and sent it roaring off to Carolyn Arcabascio, the illustrator extraordinaire for The Moon Realm Series.

Sure, The Dragondain still needs more work, but I’m looking forward to being truly ill? during the final read-through and polish. 😀 I’M SO HAPPY!

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Howling Turtle reviews The Moon Coin

Click HERE or the image directly above to read the review.

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ForeWord Reviews reviews The Moon Coin

The Moon Coin is a beautifully written fantasy novel, perfect for middle graders to pore over themselves or as a bedtime story for younger kids. The descriptions of everything, from Uncle Ebb’s electronic fish-bird hybrids to the fanciful creatures Lily meets in the Moon Realm, are so rich that the action instantly comes alive for the reader.” —Molly Horan of ForeWord Reviews

Click HERE or on the image directly above to read review.

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Courtney’s Book Nook reviews The Moon Coin

Click HERE or the image directly above to read the review.

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Brazen Broads Book Bash review The Moon Coin.

Click HERE or the image directly above to read the review.

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Some first pages, featuring illustrations by Carolyn Arcabascio.

You might not want to read the chapter text below the illustrations too carefully. I don’t think you’ll find any huge spoilers, but you could pick up on some cool bits that you might not want to know beforehand. 🙂

Click HERE or on the image directly above to enlarge.

Click HERE or on the image directly above to enlarge.

Click HERE or the image directly above to enlarge.

Click HERE or the image directly above to enlarge.

Click HERE or the image directly above to enlarge.

Click HERE or the image directly above to enlarge.

For the curious, these are iPad 2 screen shots that I later stitched together with Pixelmator 2.0.1.

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Preview: The Moon Coin.

Six chapters formatted for ePubMobi, or PDF.

Please share these files with your friends. Enjoy.

2012 Moonbeam Children’s Book Award winner for pre-teen fiction: Gold.

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Paperback and eBook now available:

Amazon and Second Looks Books.

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Copyright © 2011 by Richard Due. All rights reserved.

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Gibbering Gnome Press, A Division of Ingenious Inventions Run Amok, Ink®

The Moon Realm®

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Rambling Bookmarks reviews The Moon Coin

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Click HERE or the image directly above to read the review.

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Little Red Reads Revews The Moon Coin

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Click HERE or the image directly above to read the review.

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Carabosse’s Library reviews The Moon Coin


Click HERE or the image directly above to read the review.

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