A Full Accounting of the Error

So, as we mentioned on the last post, the book (which was intended for release on the 31st) is currently up on Amazon. Now, for those following the blog, you know that this isn’t what was planned. So, here’s what happened…

The process of digitally publishing a book has been a learning experience. The chief thing I have learned is that I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. We shall refer to this as Point #1 further down this page in order to conserve space and time. What we attempted to do was a ‘soft launch’, putting the book online before the “grand opening” date, so that our beta readers, friends, family, etc, could all get an official copy of the book, with the hope that some would rate and/or review the book so the page wouldn’t be completely devoid of feedback at release. Now, it didn’t feel right to either make them pay for the privilege of reading a book they’ve already seen through 4 revision passes, or to shell out $3 to each person to compensate them for the buy, so we used one of the free promotion days that you get from Amazon.

So, in the process of getting word out to people, there was a communication error (see Point #1); while we’ve been posting on various places in the web presence that we had a functional “street date” of this Friday, we didn’t make that clear to some of the beta readers. As a result, some of them made posts on their social media (effectively a public announcement) that the book was up for free, essentially breaking the street date that they weren’t told about. The original intention was for about 10-15 people to get the book, but by the time I made it home from work (I found out about it at lunch time, but didn’t have the means to update the blog or Twitter from work, see Point #1) it was closer to 30. In essence, complete strangers were getting the same advantage as our family, and greater advantage than those who were actively following us on the web. At that point, since Amazon won’t let you shut down a free day promotion and sold product operates on the “no takebacks” model, the best damage control I could do was announce that the book was available to the readers of the blog. Final count for the day was just short of 40, which I hope includes at least some of the regular readers. For those who didn’t get the message in time, I am sorry. I have communicated privately with the people involved with the incident, but I also wish to make a public statement that any and all blame for this situation lands with me; it was my call to make the soft launch, and my job to properly inform the readers of my expectations.

While Yvonne intends to continue the official “street date” countdown on the Facebook page, as far as I’m concerned the book is released. Per the link above, it it available on Amazon for $2.99 as a digital download, with no immediate plans for a ‘hard copy’ release. If interest emerges in an audiobook we may go that route, but that’s pretty well into the future at this point.

-PTK

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