…another wee glimpse of a Celtic past in the Scottish Hebrides… #TBSU…

…a couple months or so ago, I posted a blog piece about my time as a teenager, employed as a trainee banker in Tobermory, a township with less than a thousand souls, nestled at the edge of the beautiful Tobermory Bay on the Scottish Hebridean Island of Mull…

 

tobermory

 

…many of yeez have asked for a few more snippets of what it was like living there… and I must confess, when I sit back and think of these days, I yearn for them more and more… folks had time to talk with each other…emb’dy remember what that was like?… the internet and SOSYAL NETWURKIN was a thing of the far-distant future… the stuff of H.G.Wells-type novels… what sticks with me most clearly are the mem’ries of people… every one a character… every one a real personality…. Gaelic music sat at the heart of the informal house ceilidhs, or gatherings at home with neighbours and friends… from that day forward Celtic music has been tangled round my heart, it never fails to pull me toward the nostalgia of a time a mere fifty years ago… I put on here a wee while ago the beautiful ‘Ubhal As Airde’ (the Highest Apple) by Runrig… the video that comes with it is as poignantly stirring to me as the music… here it is again;

…the reason I play it again is that it reminds me so vividly of one old ‘bodeach’ (older man) singing an old gaelic tune in a house ceilidh one evening… his eyes were kinda half-closed… the voice strong for a man of such vintage… but yeez could hear and yeez could feel the timbre as he sang… his soul was singing to us… everybody present took up the chorus… half love song, half a lament for past times…haunting… it was among the most engrossing song renditions I have ever heard… if yeez click on the video, yeez’ll get some idea of what I mean… so yeez will have to forgive me if I indulge this stuff every now and then…  if we have no real sense and love of some of the beautiful things of our past, then I think we have no real future to pass on to our children, nor they to theirs… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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…Authors on Kindle… to promo? or not to promo? that is the question… here’s my tuppence WURTH on it … #TBSU…

…the Sherlocks amongst yeez will prob’ly have noticed by now that I’m Scottish… as in, ‘no sh*t, Sherlock?’… by derivation, my ancestral DNA rails against giving stuff away for NUTHIN… (just try to find emb’dy out-of-doors during a street charity collection in any town North of Hadrian’s Wall)… comes then the question, ‘why would this ol’ Jurassic even think about indulging the Amazon Kindle Free Promo Program?’… handing over virtual copies of my wee crime thriller masterpiece babies for zilch, nowt, nada, rien, zero, nil?… well, as with most things, it isn’t quite as straightforward as that, Mabel… over the past few years, I’ve dabbled with the various Promo mechanisms on the Great God Amazon, and have found a rythym that suits me… let me tick off for yeez, the various points…stay awake at the back, there…

1. What are yeez actually ‘giving away’? 

virtual copies of yer WURK which would prob’ly never ever have found their way onto the freebie downloaders’ Kindle devices… so, in physical terms, NUTHIN lost… in intangible measure, p’raps… and only p’raps, lost potential money sales to the same downloaders … but I very much doubt that…

2. What do yeez get in return?

…notionally, and this is only conjecture, mind… yeez may just be planting seeds of a follower base for yer ‘back list’… the other goodies that yeez continue to produce and serve on the ‘price-tagged offerings’ lists… also, Amazon includes free downloads as part of yer ’sales’ figures… that begins to have a powerful impact when yeez get some ‘critical mass’ building up… then, if yeez are lucky (and if yer WURK merits it) some of these good downloaders may see fit to render a review on the Amazon pages… always good to have, the more the merrier…

3. Is the effort involved WURTH it?

…the answer to that is like trying to reply to, ‘how long is a piece of string?’… my take is that if yeez put NUTHIN in, yeez are likely to get precisely NUTHIN back out… I look on the mental sweat and time as investment in my business of writing… part of the bigger schematic of being present on the Literary Webo-sphere… as a side benefit for me, it gives me oodles of opportunities to interact with my fellow scribblers in the vaious SOSYAL NETWURKS I employ to propagate the stuff…

… so, the proof of the pudding is in the eating, they say (daft saying, but there yeez have it)… I can only point to the comparative success of the promos I’ve done thus far…the current one for SAVAGE PAYBACK enters its fifth and final day today, July 20… I targeted from the outset an average of 500 downloads per day, for a total of 2,500… with about 18 hours still to run, the gratifying figure is now a touch above 5,500 downloads… also, I’ve recorded readers in the UK, USA, BRAZIL, JAPAN, CANADA, AUSTRALIA, GERMANY, SPAIN and ITALY this time around… not a bad marketing/promotional reach from the comfort of my own laptop desk… and, total aggregate sales/downloads for all of my books now exceed 80,000 copiesNET total reviews across all Amazon pages and Goodreads tops 200…

…in summary, I look on the promo mechanisms not so much as a free handout, but much more of an ‘exchange’ for the intangibles outlined above… and I don’t care what emb’dy says, as an author, I’m over the moon just to know that people out there want to read what I’ve crafted…

…I trust this may be helpful to my fellow quill-scraping Lads and Lassies of Blog Land in yer deliberations whether or not to jump on the Promo Wagon… the current promo link for SAVAGE PAYBACK is clickable below… fill yer boots…see yeez later… 

http://bookShow.me/B00G00GZEO

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ALL MY BLOG POSTS ARE FREE TO SHARE/RE-BLOG SHOULD YOU SO WISH—BE MY GUEST!

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…the Authors’ equivalent of ‘WURKING the room’… anatomy of an Amazon Kindle Free promotion…#TBSU…

…many of yeez who’ve spent any time in business where yeez were expected to attend ‘events’ will know what I’m talking about here… corporate functions… organised cocktail parties for business partners and prospective clients… sports days, with or without celebrity faces to bolster the prestige… for the invitees, a relaxed afternoon or evening enjoying corporate hospitality is the norm… on the flip side, the executives and officers of the outfit sponsoring (read ‘paying for’) this company largesse, it’s quite a different slant… they’re there to ‘WURK the room’… to ‘press the flesh’… to ‘pump the handshake line’… to exchange as many business calling cards as possible… to build potential ‘leads’… to ‘develop the relationships’…. emb’dy see any similarities there for we self-publishing quill-scrapers?… this week, my third wee Jack Calder crime thriller, SAVAGE PAYBACK graces the Amazon Kindle Free Program for the first time…

Savage03-1

http://bookShow.me/B00G00GZEO

…I’ve used the Kindle Free Program for previous titles… this time I did it without indulging paid advertisements… money’s tight enuff for we scribblers without throwing it at the ‘vanity pedlars’… so, I got stuck into my own organised program of promotional activity (by the way, Amazon does not do any of this marketing stuff for yeez other than carry the titles)… flurries on Twitter RTs… cascades of posts onto Facebook… placements on Goodreads, Stumbleupon, Pocket, Digg, Pinterest, Google+, Tumblr have run their contributing course… wee tags on to my pals on LinkedIn… it’s an intense five-day action plan… and d’yeez know what?… so far it’s been just wunnerful!… my ‘business’  target was to achieve 2,000-2,500 downloads… here we sit just into the third day, and already the numbers are a gratifying 3,600+… I have to confess, I know marketing and such is not everybody’s delight, but I embrace it 1,000,000%…. this is our writing business, Lads and Lassies of Blog Land… I hope this might help some others debating whether or not to go down this route… and a wee plug for my SELF-PUBLISHING STEPS TO SUCCESSFUL SALES won’t go amiss either ( hey! it’s my blog, what do yeez expect? :) see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

 

http://bookShow.me/B00JBL6K80

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…Awesome Amazon Australia… simply Awesome!… TBSU…

…when yeez have been at the self-publishing independent scribbler bit for a wee while, yeez kinda expect the ‘firsts’ to recede… not so, Lads and Lassies of Blog Land… how unforgettable is the very first time yeez type or write the WURDS ‘The End’ on yer masterpiece… I can’t speak for emb’dy else, but it took me more than a week to come down off the pink cloud I nearly floated away on… happily, the exhilaration repeated in getting to the finales of subsequent novels… then there’s the very first sale yeez make on Amazon… it may well be yer Granny who downloaded it… but there yeez sit—a published, purchased author… grand isn’t it?… following that, the very first review that gets loaded onto yer pages on Kindle… hopefully at least a four-star, coz for the first wee while, these reviews seem to matter… until yeez learn to take the roughs with the smooths and coat them all in a healthy dose of salt… then, after a while, don’t discount the splendid feeling the very first time sumb’dy asks yeez to sign a copy of yer wee literary baby… or the very first time yeez get asked to speak in front of an audience as ‘an author’… if yeez are Kindle Select Program practitioners, the temptation prevails to launch yer first ever Kindle Free Giveaways… the freebies still count as sales by the way, and it means watching for the very first time as copies go flying off, theoretically into the hands of future readers of yer WURKS… I’ve done several of these Freebie programs now, and the excitement never palls of knowing people are downloading yer stuff… and it’s all over the WURLD and many other places… here’s another coupla firsts, this time around… I shared yesterday that Amazon Japan saw fit to house their first ever download for me… but today, more goodies… Amazon Australia seems to have found its antipodean feet… my downloads growth there is mega-multiples of their first ever time around… bring on Amazons India, Mexico and Brazil… JUST LUVVIN IT!… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

http://bookShow.me/B00G00GZEO

 

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ALL MY BLOG POSTS ARE FREE TO SHARE/RE-BLOG SHOULD YOU SO WISH—BE MY GUEST!

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…どうもありがとう… there’s me showing off now… it’s Japanese for ‘thank yeez very much’… #TBSU…

bowing

‘duomo arigato’… that’s the Anglicised version… so when yeez hear it traditionally shouted at yeez by the staff when yeez go into a Japanese restaurant, they’re not hurling Nipponese abuse yer way… far from it… genteel-mannered folks in the main they are from the land of the Rising Sun… and it behoves this ol’ Jurassic to respond in kind to the fact that my first-ever recorded download from Amazon Kindle (Japan) happened today…(triumphant blaze of klaxons, trill of trumpets, skirl or three of a bagpipe, surely, as background, p’raps, Mabel?)… on the first day of the current freebie offering of my third Jack Calder crime thriller masterpiece, SAVAGE PAYBACK, Tokyo Trumps… Osaka Oscillates, Kyoto Kracks it,  a single download, it may be…costing NUTHIN, it may be…but a first is a first… now, all we need is for Mexico, Brazil and India to step up to the Amazon plate… if yeez know emb’dy in these geographies with half an inkling for a free read, nudge them this way… see later… LUV YEEZ!

SAVAGE PAYBACK… absolutely FREE until July 20th:

http://bookShow.me/B00G00GZEO
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ALL MY BLOG POSTS ARE FREE TO SHARE/RE-BLOG SHOULD YOU SO WISH—BE MY GUEST!

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…yer first wheeled collision should always be a memorable event… #TBSU…

superman

…there’s those who think me a tad strange that I’ve never possessed a driving licence in my life… indeed, there’s also those who deem me a tad weird for many other reasons, but that’s another story… so far, I’ve survived into that age category classified as, ‘my WURD, yeez are looking well’ without the need for a drivers docket… thinking back, I sense that my first-ever attempt to commandeer a wheeled vehicle may have had much to do with the lifelong antipathy to motorisation… as a mere sixteen-years-young lad, employed at the time in Tobermory on the beautiful Hebridean Island of Mull, my rented accommodation was with a family who lived in a croft, a small farm steading… the croft was some three or four miles out of the town, along single-track roadways, a traffic medium which I don’t think has changed much in the last hundred years… customary means of transportation each morning was a lift with the garage mechanic who lived in the same house… the desire for a bit more personal mobility enticed me to purchase a motor scooter… second-hand of course, with a massive staff loan from the bank of about thirty pounds of Her Britannic Majesty’s sterling… a further investment outlay on a ‘skid-lid’ and proper leather clothing caused a deeper bite into Master Gallacher’s non-existent savings… came the day to get on the bluudy thing and learn how to manoeuvre it… the mechanic, well-versed in such matters, took it upon himself as Chief Instructor to impart that knowledge to me… we (wisely as it turned out) chose not to go on the common roadway, but to make the maiden ride along the driveway of the house… he must have told me a hundred times the difference between the throttle handle, and the brakes… but, but, but… no sooner did I try to ‘gently’ ease the throttle, than the Vespa took a life of its own… my nervousness contributed in large part to the ensuing melee… instead of throttling ’back’, my right hand sum’how turned it to ‘full’… like a startled stallion, Vespa, Master Gallacher, crash helmet, new leathers and all, accelerated forward at the speed of a helluva sound… ground covered must have been all of seven yards… straight slap bang into a rowing boat, lying up on the grass verge…

boat

…disaster at sea for marine people is one thing… shipping collision on dry land quite sum’thing else… the impact of the machine on boat produced enough firewood to keep Guy Fawkes roasting for eons… Master Gallacher vied with Nadia Comaneci for gymnast of the month with somersaults (plural), landing miraculously feet first into a thistle bush… the Chief Instructor had metamorphosed into an imitation of the Laughing Policeman, with a lucrative tale to tell in the pub for months later… the ad appeared two days later in the Oban Times, ‘Second-Hand Vespa–Hardly Used’… see yeez later… drive carefully now,yeez hear?… LUV YEEZ!

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At my back I always hear time’s winged chariot hurrying near…

Seumas Gallacher:

…LUV this particular post from Author pal, M.T, McGuire… been there, done that… AM there, DOING that …:)

Originally posted on M T McGuire Authorholic:

Twenty one years ago, when I was 25 – yeh I see the smoke coming out of your ears as you do the maths – a good friend from University was killed in an air crash. She was lively, fun and when we graduated – in the middle of a deep recession – she was one of the few people I knew (I was the other one) who didn’t carry on and do a Masters Degree (no chance of a job so I may as well get another qualification) or just take one look at the job market and do law. Never one to conform, was Sharon, she started to design and make jewellery, instead. I signed on as a temp with a firm of contract cleaners – not quite in the same league. You can see who had the get up and go there can’t you, phnark, but I…

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