Monday, November 30, 2009

New Site for Authors - The Author's Inn

The Author's Inn is a website dedicated to showcasing any and all writers of serious novels, poetry and articles and giving them the introduction to the reading public they deserve at a very affordable, one-time, life-time cost and to giving readers access to those writers and their works.

For that one-time, life-time price, an author gets a page for their personal picture and bio and their book cover and synopsis. Multiple books are more than welcome. They are also listed in the indices of authors, books and genres, and their book cover is displayed in The Gallery of Books 24/7/365. Any time anyone clicks into the Gallery, the author’s book covers are on display.

The sole purpose of The Author’s Inn is to give authors the exposure they deserve for their works at a price they can afford. And, as you know, exposure is the name of the game in the book publishing and marketing business.

There are also pages for News From Our Authors, a Blog (Wanna Talk? Blog) where we can all express our ideas about writing and the industry, plus many pages of information on the subject of writing how-tos, how to market our books and so on.

Feel free to jump over to The Author’s Inn (, look at the content and the exposure the authors are getting, then sign up for your own page and tell a friend.

Last Chance to Win

Today is the last day to try your luck on winning Feathered Quill's monthly book contest.  We've got two wonderful children's books for November.  Enter the contest here.  Tomorrow, we'll have a brand new contest - stay tuned as the December book is a great business book, perfect for author's working on growing a business.

Leads From Linda - A Site for Sending Multiple Files

Now that Thanksgiving is over and we've all, hopefully, recuperated from our turkey comas, it's time to get back to work!  Let's dig in and gear up for holiday sales.  Here's our weekly tip from Linda F. Radke to get us started.

Leads from Linda

I recently discovered a great site for sending multiple files. will allow you to send up to 10 files (2000 Mb total) at one time. It’s a great service and it’s free. Let me know if you use it, you like it and it’s still free.

Also be sure to check out Linda's sites:

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Self-Published is still a dirty word to some seems that to many in the publishing/book world, "self-publishing" is still a dirty word.  Recently, Harlequin, home to so many romance novels, announced plans to introduce a new imprint, Harlequin Horizons.  This new imprint was designed to give self-publishers a chance to publish and get their books out to the general public.  But - gasp - Romance Writers of America, along with other writers' groups, didn't like that idea.  They basically told Harlequin that if they went ahead with using the Harlequin brand name with the self-publishing imprint, Harlequin books would no longer be eligible for entry into any of their award competitions.  Harlequin bowed to the pressure and renamed the imprint DellArte Press, thus removing any implied connection between the two.  

More on NetGalley

Here's the latest on NetGalley, sent directly from them to Feathered Quill.  There's also another Publishers Weekly article you can check out.  For more information, contact them at the email at the end of this post.

For People Who Read and Recommend Books

NetGalley is a website where publishers can invite contacts to view their print or digital galleys, and readers can request galleys they want to review.

Media, Reviewers, and Bloggers
Any professional readers can use NetGalley: book reviewers, journalists, librarians, professors, booksellers, bloggers, etc. Anyone who reads and recommends books can use NetGalley for free.

Publishing companies can subscribe to NetGalley as an online service for the electronic delivery of galleys and press materials. It provides them with the opportunity of distributing these materials to the media electronically and saving thousands upon thousands of pages of paper. 

No Charge
What’s great about NetGalley is that professional readers will be able to register and use this service to view new titles at no cost.  Galleys can be read online, downloaded to a computer, and read on a Kindle, Sony Reader or other device.

A Variety of Information
Through NetGalley, publishers can provide readers with marketing materials, book trailers, photos, author bios, cover art and more.

Share Reviews
Readers can tell publishers if they’ve decided (or declined) to review one of their books – as well as share the review itself with them – all within NetGalley.

Register for FREE!
Visit to register and request to view galleys immediately.  Find titles by searching in the public catalog area.

For inquiries about NetGalley, please contact us at

Author Interview with Christine Sunderland

Our interview today is with Christine Sunderland, author of Inheritance

FQ: It was wonderful visiting with Madeleine and Jack again. I feel as though by having Jack’s stomach act up again at the end of this book, you might be hinting the there is more to the story. Is this really the last that readers will see of the Seymours?

Thank you! Never say never, as they say. But for the time, the Seymours are taking a holiday...but who knows about the future!

FQ: There are many elements to your books – history, religion, travelogue, drama – which parts do you enjoy writing most?

When I began writing, I was fascinated with history and religion, but as I learned to construct a story and incorporate some of our own travels, I became challenged with setting and plot, as well as character development. It's been most rewarding to interweave them all, rather like a puzzle or a painting. I enjoy dealing with the big questions of life - who are we, where are we going, is there a God, what happens when we die, why do we suffer, what is love, what is truth. There have been many answers to these questions throughout history, and I wanted to treat them in a fictional form that might resonate with readers on a different level than a nonfiction form would. At the same time I wanted to pull the reader in, so it was a challenge to do both, to not allow the history and sermons to interfere with the drama, but to contribute to the story's depth.

FQ: The concept of time seems to be a minor theme throughout this story. For example, Maddie reflects, “Only now, when her own jewels of time seemed to be fewer and fewer in her shortening span of life, did she understand their worth. Here we are, nearly buried with this avalanche of love from heaven, and we see trickling sand, not precious stones.” I would love to hear how the issue of time resonates with you from a religious/humankind perspective.

Time is the great mystery, isn't it? We all have just so much given to us, and yet we often abuse the gift of time, take it for granted. As a Christian I believe in life after death, so in a sense I'm not limited by time, but even so earthly life is definitely circumscribed. I try and remind myself to appreciate the moment given with open eyes and heart, to not let any minute be wasted. Prayer is a great aid to this increased attention, for God helps me (ironically) to focus on the sensory world around me. Also, believing in a hereafter gives meaning to the present, for nothing is lost, whether it be suffering or joy. Everything counts.

FQ: Brother Cristoforo is an interesting character. Is he based on somebody you know? Was he more of a challenge to write about than the other characters, given his faith/background?

All of my characters are amalgams of folks I know. Cristoforo was a rewarding character to write. I've had the opportunity to know and work with many clergy over the last thirty years, and Brother Cristoforo reflects various aspects of some of them, both good and bad. I love sermons and think of them as poetic lectures (constrained by time and form), so it was fun to incorporate some of the style and content of sermons I have heard. The temptation to pride is endemic to clergy (and teachers), and I wanted to create a character who was on fire with God, but unable to control his pride. When I introduced him in Pilgrimage, he was a minor character, but I named him with the intent of possibly using him later as a Christ figure, a sacrificial lamb, but still with a human problem to solve. So in Inheritance, this was my chance to show the pitfalls of faith not tempered by humility. I also wanted to show how powerfully God can work through a simple person (often the least of us), how appearances can be deceiving, how suffering can be redeemed through love. He's Roman Catholic and I'm Anglo-Catholic, which is close, and I've spent a good deal of time in Catholic churches and monasteries in Europe, so I hope his character isn't too far flung.

FQ: Please tell us what project you are working on next!

I'm presently submitting for publication a novel set in Hawaii, called Hana-lani about a fast-paced city girl who flies to the rural village of Hana, Maui. When her plane crashes she is taken in by a local family and nursed in their home, Hana-lani. Our heroine's material world clashes with the very different world of an old grandmother, a grieving professor, and his little girl. Themes involve the meaning of love, history, and family, in our culture today. It's not an inspirational novel in a religious sense and is faster paced and more traditionally structured than the trilogy. It's a love story.
I'm working now on a mystery set in the present day, in Rome and Provence, that explores the life of Mary Magdalene and the first-century Christians.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Real Alice's Copy of Through The Looking Glass


Two of the most important books in childrens literature to hit the auction block!!!

Profile in History's Holiday Sale Will Also Include A First Edition Copy of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, The Inscribed Dedication Copy of Goldfinger, and A.A. Milne Signed Limited Edition Copies 1/20 of Winnie The Pooh, The House At Pooh Corner and Now We Are Six, and More, All Part of The 101 Lot Pat McInally Collection of Children's Literature

Calabasas, CA, November 23, 2009 - The "real" Alice's* copy of Through the Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There ($100,000-$150,000) and Beatrix Potter's own copy of The Tale of Peter Rabbit, specially bound with a personal inscription ($80,000-$120,000) will highlight Profiles in History's December 16, 2009 auction of the Pat McInally Collection of Children's Literature. This unique auction of 101 lots will also include a First Edition, first state of the text copy of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz ($40,000-$60,000), a First Edition of Goldfinger, inscribed by Ian Fleming to William Plomer, the book's dedicatee ($60,000-$80,000) and a First Edition, First Issue Presentation copy of Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There, accompanied by something extra-two fine original pencil drawings by of Alice and Humpty Dumpty by illustrator John Tenniel ($40,000-$60,000).

[*Ten-year-old Alice Liddell met and inspired Lewis Carroll to write Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.]

Worldwide bidding begins at 12:00 PM (noon) Pacific Time and can be placed either in person, via mail, phone or fax. In addition, Internet bidding is offered at the following sites:

iCollector (


LiveAuctioneers (

If there is a fan of classic children's literature on your holiday shopping list, you will not find a better gift.

Other volumes to be offered include Limited Edition copies of Winnie the Pooh, The House at Pooh Corner and Now We Are Six, all inscribed by author A.A. Milne and illustrator Ernest H. Shepard ($20,000-$50,000 EACH), a First Edition, presentation copy of The Time Machine: An Invention, inscribed by author H.G. Wells, ($20,000-$30,000), a fine First Edition (in dust jacket) copy of Stuart Little, inscribed by author E.B. White ($10,000-$15,000), a First Edition of J.R.R. Tolkien's, The Fellowship of the Ring, ($10,000-$12,000), a First American Edition of Peter and Wendy, inscribed by J.M. Barrie ($6,000-$8,000), a copy of The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, with a fantastic tipped-in autograph letter about Narnia by C. S. Lewis ($8,000-$12,000) a First Edition copy of The Story of Little Black Sambo ($8,000-$12,000) and a First Edition of Mother Goose in Prose, L. Frank Baum's first published book for children and the first book appearance of Dorothy of Oz ($8,000-$12,000).

In addition to aforementioned Goldfinger, James Bond aficianados will be competing for inscribed, First Edition copies of For Your Eyes Only ($20,000-$30,000), Thunderball ($15,000-$18,000) and On Her Majesty's Secret Service ($8,000-$12,000) and fans of Harry Potter will find a set of Deluxe Editions copies of the first four Harry Potter books, all inscribed by J. K. Rowling ($6,000-$8,000) as well as other rare editions from the Potter series.

Besides the books themselves, collectors will find exquisite, original artwork from the books, including an original John Tenniel drawing of the Gryphon from Lewis Carroll's 1865 Alice's Adventures in Wonderland ($60,000-$80,000) and Beatrix Potter's original preparatory drawing of Robin for The Tale of Peter Rabbit ($6,000-$8,000).

A selection of high resolution art is available here:

Photo credit is Profiles in History. Additional art is available upon request. For more information about Profiles in History and to download a complete catalog of items available for this and past auctions, please visit HYPERLINK "" \o ""

*Prices represent Estimated Sale Prices

About Pat McInally:

Pat McInally has been collecting children's and young adult literature for over twenty years. He has gone to extraordinary lengths to acquire only the finest copies available, and is determined to only have the most important titles by each author, only in census condition, title by title. Pat himself is as unique as his collection of literature. A former punter and wide receiver for the National Football League's Cincinnati Bengals from 1976 to 1985, Pat is the first Harvard graduate ever to play in a Pro bowl and a Super Bowl. He is also the only NFL player to achieve a perfect score on the Wonderlic Personnel Test. In 1986, Pat conceived the Starting Lineup series of action figures, which became a top seller for Kenner. McInally currently sits on the board of Wonderlic, Inc. as well as the National Football League's Youth Football Fund and also finds time to coach high school football.

About Profiles in History:

Founded in 1985 by Joseph Maddalena, Profiles in History is the nation's leading dealer in guaranteed-authentic original historical autographs, letters, documents, vintage signed photographs and manuscripts. Profiles in History has held some of the most prestigious and successful auctions of Hollywood memorabilia. Their auctions include costumes, props and set pieces from both vintage and contemporary film, television, and rock 'n roll. Profiles in History's location in Calabasas Hills, CA- virtually a stone's throw away from every major Hollywood studio - ensures a constant flow of fantastic and rare collectibles. With an extensive network of dealers, collectors, and institutions, they are proud to play an important role in the preservation of motion picture history.

Prior Profiles in History Hollywood auctions highlights include the "Cowardly Lion" costume from The Wizard of Oz ($805,000); a full-scale model T-800 Endoskeleton from Terminator 2: Judgment Day ($488,750); a King Kong six-sheet movie poster ($345,000); the Command Chair from the "U.S.S. Enterprise" ($304,750); the original "Robot" from Lost in Space ($264,500); Luke Skywalker's lightsaber ($240,000), the Black Beauty car from The Green Hornet ($192,000); George Reeves' Superman costume from The Adventures of Superman ($126,500); the H.R. Giger designed Alien creature suit from Alien ($126,500); a full-scale T-Rex head from Jurassic Park ($126,500), the Leaping Alien Warrior figure from Aliens ($126,500), Christopher Reeve's 'Superman' costume from Superman: The Movie ($115,000), C-3PO's helmet ($120,000), The Wizard of Oz 'Winkie' Guard Costume ($115,000); a "Ming the Merciless" cape from Flash Gordon ($115,000) and the Hydraulic screen-used Velociraptor from The Lost World: Jurassic Park II. ($115,000).

Monday, November 23, 2009

Leads From Linda - Dog and Cat Lovers

Cat Writers’ Association and Dog Writer’s Association

Are you writing about cats or dogs? Here are two organizations you might want to consider joining. It allows you to network with folks who share your passion and a chance to enter your book(s) in their contest.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Canadian Publishers Getting on Kindle Bandwagon

Reprinted with permission of Publishers Weekly
Leigh Anne Williams -- Publishers Weekly

The Kindle’s introduction to Canada, announced Tuesday, was greeted by a sigh of relief from consumers and publishing industry members that the popular e-reader had finally made it north, and Canadian houses were stepping up efforts to make titles available for the device. Amazon wouldn’t and still won’t say what the hold-up was. “I’m not going to go into the details,” said Jay Marine, director of product management for Kindle. “I can tell you we’ve had lots of requests from our Canadian customers for Kindle, they’re really excited about it, and we worked hard to make it available as soon as we could.”

The most popular theory was that negotiations with Canadian telecommunications companies for wireless service were the obstacle, but even now that the Kindle is in the country, Amazon referred only to its American telecom partner. “Our international Kindle uses AT&T’s 3G global network,” said Marine. “And just like in the U.S., there’s no service fees, there’s no contracts, there’s no monthly fees, you simply buy your Kindle and then choose which books you want to buy and they download wirelessly in 60 seconds, so it is part of that simplicity and magic that has made Kindle successful in the U.S. and we think that same model will work well in Canada.” Canadians can buy the Kindle from the Amazon site for $259 US ($274 Can) and will pay a $31 import fee. Marine says delivery takes one to three days.

One key difference for Canadian customers, however, is that they won’t be able to use their Kindles to browse the Web yet, although they will be able to access Wikipedia. But Amazon says it does intend to enable its experimental browser in every country. In the meanwhile, Canadians will be able to download more than 90 newspapers and magazines with single purchases or with a subscription.

The Kindle’s wireless capabilities will give it a competitive advantage over the Sony e-reader, which is already established in Canada. Sony has wireless version of its e-reader but it is not on sale in Canada yet. Asked if Amazon was able to provide wireless service all across the country, Marine referred to a coverage map on Amazon’s site. “I think Canadians customers will be very happy with our 3G coverage,” he said. There are large parts of the country that are not included in the coverage areas, but most of the southern part of the country where the majority of the population lives is. People in other parts of the country won’t have a wireless connection but could still download books to their computers and then transfer it to the Kindle.

Marine said Canadians would have access to 300,000 titles. “Customers should expect that to grow significantly over time just like we’ve worked on growing selection in the U.S.,” he said.

Most Canadian publishers have been working on converting their books into digital formats in preparation for the Canadian e-book market to catch up with the momentum it has in the U.S. Many have already started selling e-books on Indigo Books & Music’s e-bookstore, Shortcovers. Now that the Kindle has crossed the border, there is a lot of interest in making books available through that channel too.

HarperCollins Canada’s director of digital business development Steve Osgoode, said the company is just finalizing an agreement that will make its books available to Kindle users very soon. “We’re very very close. We are essentially following through on our established relationships that have been put in place in the U.S. and the U.K.,” he said. “Everything came together very quickly.”

Random House of Canada books are not yet available through Kindle, but Tracey Turriff, senior vice president and director of marketing, said, “We are in ongoing discussions with Amazon, and we are confident that we will soon be making our titles available on the Kindle in Canada.”

Smaller indigenous publishing houses are moving in the same direction. The Association of Canadian Publishers has been helping its members access some government funding to help pay for digitizing. Diana Barry, director of digital services, says that several ACP publishers already have agreements with Amazon, and others are working through their U.S. distributors. “It is something that we are working with our members as well to try to get more of them included,” she said.

House of Anansi Press publisher Lynn Henry says that Anansi hasn’t worked out an agreement with Amazon yet, but it is part of the company’s plans “to be up and running in the e-book world” in a comprehensive way in time for the spring season. She added that although the industry is still working out “the nuts and bolts of how the business model is going to work,” e-books are an inevitable development. “I think we’re going forward very optimistically into the e-book and e-reader world.”

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Your Logo

Reprinted with permission from "The Lion’s Share of Profits: The Benefits of Self-Publishing" 
By Spencer Gorin, co-author, with Charlie Steffens, of Learning to Play, Playing to Learn 

This article appears within the book, The Economical Guide to Self-Publishing: How to Produce and Market Your Book on a Budget by Linda F. Radke, ISBN: 978-1-58985-101-6

This is a great book for anybody interested in learning about self-publishing as well as those who are familiar with self-publishing (there are many great tips in this book).  Read and enjoy.

Your Logo 
Not only must your name be unique and easily remembered, but it also must be easily translated into graphic presentation. That is, it must look good on your letterhead, order forms, and all other business-related materials. If you create a logo (an identifying symbol, piece of art, or letter arrangement), be sure it will enlarge and reduce well and reflects the personality of your business. For my own publishing firm, I 
chose the name Five Star Publicationsand added a lighthearted figure as part of our logo—one that lends itself well to various reproduction sizes or colors. 

I’ve used one economical way to create a logo very successfully over the years. For my employment agency, I employed an art student who had recently graduated, and she did a wonderful job. If you contact a local art school, university, or even a high school, you’ll often find some extremely talented people. If time isn’t of the essence, an art teacher can sometimes use the creation of your logo design as a class project. Not only will you get a logo, but students will also gain experience in logo creation. The winning student will be able to add a professional piece of work to a portfolio. Whether you work with an artist or a class, come to terms up front about charges and payment so there are no surprises later. Give the artist some type of direction and show a few 
logos that look interesting to you. You don’t want exact copies, but showing logos you like will give the artist an idea of what you’re looking for. 

When designing a logo, your first consideration should be the effect it will have on the people who see it. It doesn’t need to contain all pertinent information, but it should be unique enough to be recognizable at a glance. A great logo will go a long way toward creating your company’s image and prestige, so give it careful thought. 

You also might want to consider a slogan to go along with your logo. We use “Your Story Begins Here,” and when you see our logo, you’ll also see our slogan. It’s double branding. 

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Author Interview with Dwain M. DeVille

Our interview today is with Dwain M. DeVille, author of The Biker’s Guide to Business: When Business and Life Meet At The Crossroads

FQ: The biker/open road analogies worked very well in your book. How did you first connect your love of biking to your love of business?

The real connection and underlying reason for writing the book came shortly after beating cancer in 2004. That trial was more of a focus on the future than it was a wakeup call. That’s when I decided the time had come to combine my two passions, biking and business.

I’ve always used the principals of biking in my business because running a company is very similar to that of taking a long road trip on a bike. We pick a destination, plan it out and use our skills when hit with the unknown. In both, a laser focus on fundamentals is crucial to successfully getting where you’re going. So from that standpoint, it was natural to write the book.

FQ: Your book works for all sorts of entrepreneurs, not just those who bike. What would you say to non-bikers to encourage them to pick up your book and dive in?

Don’t let the handlebars scare you! I wrote this book specifically for entrepreneurs. The biker perspective helps illustrate my points. The goal for any entrepreneur is to overcome adversity in order to build a great company AND a life. The underlying theme of the book is that adversity in either isn’t a question of “if,” but “when.”  And the key to success is how you pick yourself up and excel. It’s also written in real time. By that, I mean I’m still actively growing my company as are the entrepreneurs whose stories are sprinkled throughout.

FQ: I found the chapter on effectively addressing the "in-between" growth time great. So many business books neglect this ho-hum (but very important) time in a business' growth. What are some key elements entrepreneurs need to address during this time?

You’ve nailed one of the things that sets my book apart from almost all those other business books. The “in-between” is who we are and where we grow. The other books solely focus on the finish line. Heck, anyone can tell you where they are today and most can tell you where it is they want to be. But only true winners can also describe, in detail, the in-between of getting from here to there. So my focus, both in the book and my daily work life, is to help entrepreneurs break down their journey into what bikers refer to as “legs of the trip”. In other words, if you have a five year plan, break it down into one year increments. If it’s a one year plan, break it down into three month increments and so forth.

The in-between is where EVERYTHING happens so you better have a good handle on it as you go forward.

FQ: Your additional rules at the end of the book are quite interesting. My favorite is "If two people agree all of the time, one of them is useless." It's so true but also quite funny. Which rule is your favorite? And which gets the most reaction from your clients?

The one you mentioned is the rule that gets the most reaction from my clients and is something I tell them before we’ve agreed to work together. It’s about setting expectations in that creative conflict is a necessary ingredient to any successful organization. I’ve never seen a successful company of ‘Yes Men.’
My favorite rule is: “You never know what you’ve got until you watch it.” A mentor taught me that as a lesson on how people and things react over time and circumstance. Your employee will act one way when times are good and totally different when the pressure is on. In order to set that person up for success you must know their range and set your expectations of them accordingly.

FQ: PDP and SWOT - would you briefly explain these terms and why they are so important?

Because at the end of the day your success is all about the people you have working for and with you. Therefore it’s imperative that you constantly inventory the talent within your organization.

PDP is short for Professional Development Planning and that’s where you find out where the employee sees himself in the future in terms of position and growth. You then overlay their goals and vision for personal success with your perception of them and you do this with the SWOT.

SWOT is where you list the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats you see with this individual. I go into more detail in the book, but here again; it’s about calibrating expectations, both the employee’s and your own. For example, if the employee’s goal is to run the department and your view of him is that of a supervisor then there’s a disconnect that needs to be discussed.

FQ: You mention entrepreneurs who succeed despite the fact that they never had a business plan. However, you discuss the downside to this course of action. Would you give our readers today a little teaser on what the downside is?

Lewis Carroll wrote that “if you don’t know where you’re going...any road will take you there.” The downside to not planning is that if you never stop to think about where it is you really want to go in life and align your business accordingly, you’ll rarely if ever get there and end up living a miserable business life. I’ve seen too many entrepreneurs who’ve had great success in business end up with terrible personal lives.

It’s an old cliché, but true that “Life is a journey, not a destination.” So it’s all about knowing what direction is best for you and then creating the type of 'in-between’ that works and makes you happy. After all, if you’re not happy on the trip over, you’ll probably not be happy once you arrive.

FQ: In your consulting business, do you run into entreprenuers who are resistant to your suggestions? How do you convince them that in order to grow/succeed, they need to make changes?

As someone brought into the organization to help effect change I run into resistance all the time. People are wary of ‘change’ and all have their own ideas and agendas. This is why I get everyone focused on the ultimate goal – the “work to be done.” Once everyone agrees upfront what the goals are and helps to identify the work to be done, it simple becomes a matter of results. We then discuss the work in the open so all involved can see how their actions have affected the outcome positively or negatively.

Everyone wants to do a good job so it’s imperative that you clearly identify what’s expected of them...what the work is, their role and the level to which they must perform. Then it’s a matter of them making a fundamental business decision at the start of each day. They must decide to trade their time for your dollars (salary) and perform to the level needed. If not, then it’s time to move along and you both need to know that.

FQ: One of your real business scenarios deals with a company where you admit that you, and the other consultants, only had one side of the story (Crash and Burn) which resulted in "Glenn" being fired. First, kudos on admitting how things can go wrong. Second, how do you make sure that you get both sides of a company's story now? Finally, I have to you know what happened to Glenn?

In order to effectively navigate a company, I must have both sides of the story. And I get this by meeting regularly with everyone on the management team both individually and as a group. In these meetings we focus on the work to be done and how it’s going. Our conversations are usually confidential in nature unless we both agree it’s a big enough topic to bring to the table. So I always hear the unvarnished truth. Then it’s my job as Navigator to take this information and filter it to the rest of the organization so we can move forward.

As for Glenn, no one likes to fail, but in business, things run their course and his time with the organization had simply done that. He’s a very talented man and has landed in a situation more conducive to his talents and direction. What initially looked to be a tragic event turned out to be a win-win situation for both sides.

To learn more about The Biker’s Guide to Business, please read the review at: Feathered Quill Book Reviews.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Google Settlement Filed

Reprinted with permission of Publishers Weekly

by Jim Milliot -- Publishers Weekly

After two delays, attorneys for the AAP, Authors Guild and Google filed an amended settlement agreement late Friday night with Judge Denny Chin in an effort to end litigation brought by the publishers and authors against Google over its library scanning program. As expected by many, the biggest change in the agreement deals with international works. The agreement is now limited to books that were either registered with the U.S. Copyright Office or published in the U.K., Australia or Canada. The parties said that after feedback from foreign rightsholders they decided to narrow the class to include only countries "which share a common legal heritage and similar book industry practices" with the U.S.

In a change pertaining to unclaimed works, the revised agreement still calls for the Book Rights Registry to search for rightsholders and hold revenue for five years. A portion of the revenue generated by unclaimed works may now also be used to locate rightsholders and will not become part of the BRR's general operating fund.

The amended agreement makes some changes to the access models to the database of scanned works. While keeping the primary access models the same, future access models have been limited to print-on-demand, file download and subscription. The BRR will also be able to increase the number of terminals at a public library building. Google will also continue to allow other retailers to sell online access to the books covered in the settlement, a revision it announced in September. The overall financial terms of the agreement have not been changed with rightsholders receiving 63% of revenue generated from their works and Google 37%.

In a joint statement, the parties said that after reviewing submissions filed with the Court, including those from the Justice Department, changes made to the settlement "were developed to address many of these concerns, while preserving the core benefits of the agreement."

The new filing came after the original fairness hearing before Judge Chin set for October 7 was pushed back at the request of the AAP and Authors Guild as opposition to the deal, first announced last fall, mounted. Judge Chin had given the parties until November 9 to file an revised agreement, but granted another extension until midnight November 13.

Judge Chin is expected to soon issue a timeline that will include a notice period and an objection hearing, with the Final Fairness hearing expected to be held in early 2010.

Leads From Linda - Listing Author Events

Did you know that you can post all your book events in the Events Calendar? Did I mention that it is free? Here is the direct link:

Please visit Linda at Five Star Publications for more information on her books and marketing ideas.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Reviewer's Tip - Website Links

Today's tip is really a marketing tip, not a book design, writing, or other related tip to make your book shine.  If you have a website for your book (and if you don't - WHY NOT???!!!), be sure all the links on that site work.  When you first set up your site you'll check and re-check the links.  But over time, the urls (Uniform Resource Locator - the site's address) may change, may move, or may actually cease to exist.  Every month, it's a great idea to go through your site and check all the links - both links within your site and links to other sites.  There is nothing worse than having a customer come to your site and clicking on a link that doesn't work.  It could lose you a sale.  So keep your readers/customers happy to make sure your links ALWAYS work!

Another suggestion - to keep readers at your site - is to insert a code into the html of each link so that the new page opens as a separate/new page rather than go from your page to the new link's page.  To explain another way, when a customer clicks on a link that goes to another site, does your site stay up in the background?  It should!  That way, when the customer closes the other site's page, or moves on, your site will still be there.  The html code looks like this:


target="_blank"  is the extra little code that tells the browser to open a new window.  To see an example of this, go to our Feathered Quill Book Reviews site, and click on the "Free Book" icon in the left-hand column.  You'll note that the Free Book page comes up in a new window.  The original page is still there in the background.  This is a great little trick to keep customers coming back to your site.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Tips to Optimize Landing Pages

By: Tom Baron (see bio at end of column)

A few days back Google permanently suspended many Adwords accounts stating that the landing pages were of poor quality and did not comply with the Landing page and Quality Site Guidelines of Google. Since Google is being really strict on the quality of landing pages where users are being directed to, it is very important to keep a high landing page score if you are using Google Adwords for your online campaigns. The landing page score is determined by Google looking at the content and layout of your landing pages.  Google wants to show relevant ads with relevant landing pages to their users and your potential customers. So in this post we will look on the tips which you can use to get an ideal landing page for your campaign which would help you in getting high conversion rates and also improve your Google Adwords Quality Score.

Keep Your Landing Page Relevant: - You need to ensure that your landing pages contain similar terms and content as in your Adword ad. Keep the title and headline of your landing page similar to your ad. You can also use "semantic extractor" in Google Adwords tools to test your landing pages and find the keywords which Google thinks are relevant for that page. Use similar keywords up and high in bold to make your landing pages relevant.

Provide Unique Content: - Google doesn't like pages with duplicate content. If you are promoting a specific product then don’t copy the exact content from the supplier/manufacturer's website. Instead, create unique relevant content describing the product and how it would solve your visitor's needs. It is very easy for Google to catch content problems and Google Adwords never shows multiple ads having identical landing pages and content at the same time.

Positive User Experience: - Your landing page should provide useful information to the end user. It should not contain only ads and sponsored links to other websites. You need to maintain a balance between informational aspects and commercial aspects of your landing page. If you want users to register for something then give them information about what they will get after registering. If your landing page contains sponsored links then you need to distinguish your sponsored links from the rest of the content.

Simple Call to Action Process: - If your landing page wants a user to take a desired action like buying a product then you should make it simple and easy to follow. According to Google, your landing page should provide a short, simple and easy path for a user to buy products or get an offer mentioned in your ad.

Transparency: - Your Landing page should share information about your business and TOS. If you need personal information from your customers then your landing page should disclose how this personal information would be used.

Loading Time: - Google always checks the loading time of your landing pages with the average loading time of pages in your server’s geographic location. If you keyword is graded “This page loads slowly,' then your landing page quality score would be negatively affected. Avoid use of flash, iframes, pop ups and other obtrusive elements to reduce the loading time of your page.

Tom Baron is a freelance web designer and likes to write on web design, technology, landing page design and testing, SEO and affiliate marketing.  To learn more, please visit Tom on his website: Landing Page Optimization.  

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Extension Granted in Google Settlement

Reprinted with permission of Publishers Weekly.

By Jim Milliot 

Judge Denny Chin has granted a request by attorneys representing the Authors Guild and the AAP to move the deadline for submitting revisions to the Google Book Search settlement from November 9 to “no later than this Friday, November 13.” In the letter requesting the extension, attorney Michael Boni explained that: “The parties have been in discussions with the Department of Justice both prior to and since the October 7 status conference. We met with the Department as recently as this past Friday, November 6. In light of the above, the parties respectfully request this additional time to file the motion.”

Monday, November 9, 2009

Leads From Linda - To Catalog or Not to Catalog

We're excited to welcome Linda F. Radke of Five Star Publications to the Feathered Quill Book Reviews Blog Family.  Linda will be posting a weekly (every Monday) column on marketing your book.  She has some fantastic suggestions/ideas so keep reading.  (We've had a sneak peak of the next several posts and they offer some GREAT advice.  Enjoy!)

What are you doing to market your book? You might want to research “Catalogs” online and pitch your book to different folks who publish catalogs. You may be able to find a copy of “Catalog of Catalogs” at your local library, though it might be outdated. Don’t limit your pitches to catalogs that offer books. Get creative. Think outside the book. For example, a garden catalog might accept a book like; a catalog for kids might feature books for kids; a catalog featuring coffee products might consider a book like; a catalog that offers pet products might consider distributing and; a Western catalog might offer or; and a catalog that features food products might consider adding to their list of items. Get the picture? Don’ t wait for sales to come to you. Find new distributors – make a home for your book in the least likely place. What are you waiting for? Start pitching and share your success stories with us.

Not finding a catalog that works for your book? How about starting your own co-op catalog and featuring books of similar topics? We have been offering authors co-opportunities since 1985. It’s a great way to expand your horizons and save money in the process. Five Star recently started their own Five Star Gift Guide. We allow other authors to co-op in this catalog. Sample of this catalog can be found by visiting:

Here are a few websites that feature catalogs:

WHAT IS CATALOGLINK? is the premier catalog directory on the Internet.

We started in 1997 with only a few dozen catalogs, but we have grown to become Earth's Biggest Catalog Directory™.  Our catalogs are always being updated, and new catalogs are constantly being added. Whether you're looking to search, browse or request catalogs for free, is the catalog directory for you.

Search our 19,000+ catalogs by name
Browse catalogs by category (to the left)
Request catalogs for free (Catalogs a-z)
Search, find and request over 10,000 catalogs all at

Please be sure to visit Linda at Five Star Publications.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Author Interview with Jonathan Maxwell

Today we're speaking with Jonathan Maxwell, author of Murderous Intellectuals: German Elites and the Nazi SS.

FQ: There are a lot of books written about WWII and the Nazis. Yet, your book uses a slightly different angle to investigate the root causes for the Holocaust. What made you decide to view WWII through extensive background research of many of the leaders of the Nazi party?

I’ve always had an interest in the Holocaust- I’m not sure why. Being so interested in the subject, I read many books about the Final Solution. These were all great books about the Holocaust, but, as the years passed, I noticed that there was a dearth of information in one key area. The Nazi party was filled with intellectuals, but, to my knowledge, no other writer examined this phenomenon in depth. At times, writers alluded to it briefly, but no one had written a book about it. Because of this dearth of information, people don’t know the full truth about the Nazis. Most people know that they were evil, but few persons realize that the party was full of smart, educated professionals. Perhaps the most famous Nazi intellectual was Dr. Josef Mengele, but there were many more of them. Two prominent Nazi scientists had won Nobel Prizes. One death squad commander possessed doctorates in law and economics, while another one held a doctorate in political science. Many-if not most-Gestapo leaders were lawyers, and the typical Gestapo operative held at least a bachelor’s degree.

These men and women weren’t just following orders, either. These intellectuals helped usher Adolf Hitler into power and allowed him to stay in power. Because of their generous financial contributions early on, the National Socialist party became wealthy and influential. Simultaneously, right-wing doctors fabricated dubious research results that “proved” the genetic superiority of the Aryan race. Nazi teachers, professors, and journalists helped to disseminate such corrosive messages. The Nazi scientists produced for Hitler one of history’s greatest military systems, and respected officers gladly supported him. Hitler could not have assumed or maintained power without the backings of the intellectuals.

I looked for books that specifically addressed this particular topic, but I never found one. Finally, I got frustrated, and I wrote a book about it myself.

FQ: As mentioned, Murderous Intellectuals contains an extensive amount of research. How long did it take you to research your book?

I would say a year-and-a-half, off-and-on. People say to me that it must have been daunting to perform such research. Actually, it wasn’t so bad. You just take it one day at a time. In addition, I possessed a genuine interest in the topic, which made performing the research quite enjoyable. This is perhaps my best advice for fledgling non-fiction writers: write a book about something that fascinates you. If you don’t, you’re going to find the writing project to be exhausting and pure drudgery.

FQ: The book is broken down into numerous categories of Nazi “intellectuals” or “elites.” How did you decide who to include within each category?

I chose such persons based on three main criteria. One was educational: I especially focused on persons who possessed at least a bachelor’s degree. This was actually quite shocking. About one-third of Nazi SS officers possessed a four-year-degree. This was at a time when the number of college graduates in Western Europe was minuscule.

Another criterion was social background. I selected individuals who came from upper-middle class or upper-class backgrounds. This was surprising as well: from the beginnings of the Nazi party, it enjoyed support from the wealthy or the affluent. Much of this was due to the fact that wealthy Germans hated communism and liberalism as much as the Nazis did. However, many wealthy Germans joined the Nazi party simply because they were anti-Semitic. In German society at the time, hatred for Jews seemed to run across all class lines. Many Germans-whether rich or poor-were anti-Semites.

Finally, there were the “self-made” elites. They were not particularly well-educated, and they didn’t come from affluent backgrounds. Nevertheless, through fierce intelligence and a good work ethic, they became top-level bureaucrats within the Third Reich. These individuals are perhaps the most surprising. They were tireless workers and superb organizers, and one almost comes to admire their drive and ingenuity. In another place or time, they could have become respectable corporate officers or helpful government officials. Instead, they got mixed up in Nazism, became criminals, and squandered their considerable talents.

FQ: You go into great detail with background information on the "murderous intellectuals." What was the most surprising thing(s) (character flaw, illness, etc.) you learned about one particular Nazi while researching this book?

The physicist Johannes Stark comes quickly to mind. On one level, he was simply brilliant, so much so that he won a Nobel Prize. On another level, he was a seething fanatic. He was one of the main supporters of what was called “Aryan physics,” which was a ridiculous idea. Stark actually helped Germany lose World War II by continually reminding generals that nuclear fission was an idea espoused by Albert Einstein, a Jew. Many German generals wanted the Fatherland to develop a nuclear bomb-they thought it was the only way to defeat Russia, the United States, and Great Britain. Thanks to Stark’s many interventions, the German fission program was abandoned-and Germany would be pulverized by the powerful Allies.

Stark was more than a quack, though. He held a very prominent role in Germany’s university system, and he imprisoned many liberal academics in the concentration camps, where more than a few perished. Stark’s life was so bizarre, I think he symbolized Nazi Germany to a considerable extent. Like Stark, Nazi Germany was idealistic and passionate-but ultimately ludicrous.

FQ: Racism has been in the news lately and you have a whole chapter devoted to both it and ethnic hatred. Do you see these two bubbling to the surface of our society today?

Happily, I do think that racism and ethnic hatred are in decline. Thanks to the Holocaust and incidents like the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., societies are all-too-aware of the devastating effects of racial hatred. I think that most modern people just grew weary of it. People are finally realizing that love-or at least acceptance-feels much better than hate.

FQ: In your chapter on the SS doctors, I was struck by mention of a photographer who was threatened with murder when he expressed discomfort with his job. Do you feel that many people in today's world would simply go along with the powers-that-be in order to save their job/life or have we evolved beyond that?

Personally, I discount the photographer’s story. After the war ended, virtually everyone involved in the Final Solution claimed that they performed their jobs against their will. The enlisted SS members made such claims, and the powerful SS officers made them as well. Therefore, you have a vast army-and an entire society-making the claim that they were innocent in the entire affair. Adolf Hitler was just one man. Germany was and is a massive nation, and Germans could have stopped him quite easily-if they had wanted to. The sad truth of the matter is that the SS elite didn’t need to threaten people to ensure that they did their part to help perpetuate the Holocaust. Almost always, SS elites attracted recruits by making the jobs especially desirable. At the concentration camps, the SS workers-whether they were enlisted persons or officers-enjoyed excellent pay, generous leave programs, good food, warm, comfortable uniforms, and other amenities. The SS elites even supplied them with unlimited quantities of free alcohol.
This provides a horrifying lesson: many people-then and now-are often willing to do horrendous things just for comfort or self-gain.

FQ: You discuss the importance of the moral education of young people to avoid the tragedy of another Holocaust. Would you discuss this belief a bit further?

Ultimately, I think that the schools should try to instill within young people a moral compass. I’m not advocating teaching from a religious perspective. Rather, I think that we should emphasize a system of values that history has proved desirable repeatedly. I think that most modern people can agree on the validity of these values. These would include critical thinking, individualism, the importance of human dignity, egalitarianism, and a respect for other cultures. I find it more than coincidental that German schools prior to 1945 taught none of these values. Indeed, traditional German education-so authoritarian and hard-nosed-helped to bring on fascism rather than hinder it.

To learn more about Murderous Intellectuals: German Elites and the Nazi SS, please read the review at: Feathered Quill Book Reviews.

Friday, November 6, 2009

New Marketing Column Coming!

We're excited to announce that we've got a brand new marketing column starting up next week.  Linda F. Radke of Five Star Publications will be offering her wisdom for producing and marketing the small-press/self-published book.  

Since 1985, veteran publisher Linda F. Radke, owner of Five Star Publications, has been ahead of her game––self-publishing before it was commonplace, partnership publishing before the rest of the world even knew what it was and producing award-winning traditionally and nontraditionally published fiction and nonfiction manuscripts for adults and children.

Radke’s odyssey to becoming one of the nation’s leading consultants in the areas of book production, marketing, publicity and distribution began simply enough with the desire to print a few books to complement the household employment agency she owned. For Radke, who on more than one occasion has been teased about having “printer’s ink in her veins,” the experience of publishing the books was exhilarating, prompting her to change careers and launch Five Star Publications without looking back.

Eventually, Radke added services and acted as a publishing consultant for other self-publishers, ventured into traditional publishing and pioneered partnership publishing to allow her to publish more authors and make them a more integral part of the creative process of publishing.

Among her many accolades, Radke is author of The Economical Guide to Self-Publishing (a Writer's Digest Book Club selection that is now into its second edition) and Promote Like a Pro: Small Budget, Big Show (a Doubleday Executive Program Book Club selection). She is a founding member of the Arizona Book Publishing Association and was named Book Marketer of the Year by Book Publicists of Southern California. 

Linda's column will begin on Monday, November 9th.  Stay tuned for some great advice!