Sunday, May 26, 2013

Introducing "Rogue"


ROGUE

D.J. Gelner


Orion's Comet, 2013

114 pages

$0.99 for a limited time only!

Available in Paperback, Kindle, Nook, Kobo and Smashwords

Coming Soon: iBooks

Men and women huddled hundreds deep, hoping to will their way into the secretive facility. Struggle or interfere on the long desert trek and they’re shot. Getting in is tough; thousands will be turned away. Once inside, hard labor and years of servitude await.



Far fewer still will accomplish their ultimate goal, a whisper of a shadow of a dream in the face of soul-crushing hopelessness.



So why do those who make it inside consider themselves the lucky ones?


Hope everyone's having a great Memorial Day Weekend!

-D.J.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Amazon Associate Links Made Simple (Especially for Scrivener)


This is a bit of a PSA to all interested indie writers, bloggers, and other internet types out there. The usual frivolity will return shortly.


I recently tore through David Gaughran's Let's Get Visible: How to Get Noticed and Sell More Books in a single session.

It's a fantastic resource for any indie author; I highly recommend it. One of the things that David mentioned at the end was that one could easily make an Amazon affiliate link by adding their Associates ID to the end of a product link.

I was immediately like:








Let me back up: I write in Scrivener. For the longest time, I thought that affiliate links involved cutting and pasting HTML code into blog posts or documents, largely because whenever you click the "Link to This Page" button in the Associates toolbar, all it gives you is awful, horrible, no good HTML code!

It's really a pain to insert said code into blog posts, and, as far as I can tell from my intermediate-level knowledge of Scrivener, impossible to do so in Literature and Latte's otherwise sterling program.

It's also entirely possible that I'm just an idiot when it comes to HTML/programming (which is absolutely true), and everyone already knows this, but I sure didn't, so I thought folks in a similar situation might enjoy a handy little how-to guide.

When David's book kindly alerted me to the fact that my days of cutting and pasting HTML might be over, I had to investigate.

Turns out he's mostly right. It's a little more complicated, but it is indeed possible to turn a regular old Amazon link into an Affiliate Link in a few easy steps (big thanks to DesignPX for the help):

1. Get an Amazon Associates Account. Join the program HERE. It might take a few days for Amazon to approve your account.

2. Log in to Associates Central.

3. Find Your Tracking ID in the Upper Left-Hand Corner of the Screen. It should be a combination of letters and numbers with a dash in the middle.

4. Copy this Tracking ID. Preferably to a word processor or notepad, though I suppose you can also do it by hand.

5. Add ?tag= to the front of it. So if your tracking ID was boom5612-458, you'd have something like this:

?tag=boom5612-458


6. Find the product you want to link to on Amazon.

7. Under the boxes on the right side of the page, there will be four or so links: "Share, e-mail envelope, facebook, twitter, pinterest."
Okay, I guess that's technically five, but that doesn't matter.


8. Click the e-mail envelope. Amazon will give you a Permalink, shortened to "amzn.com" with the ASIN.

9. Copy the Permalink Address and paste it as the link in whatever you're linking to, making sure to add a backslash at the end.

10. Add the ?tag=[YOUR TRACKING ID] to the end of the link. So if you're linking to Hack: The Complete Game (because why wouldn't you?), the link would look something like this:

http://amzn.com/B00CP8HHSS/?tag=boom5612-458

11. Run the New Link through Amazon's Link Checker to make sure that it works.

Voila! An easy Amazon Affiliate Link without html code. Embed this in your Scrivener files and websites quickly, easily, and painlessly to start earning an extra 4-6% from Amazon, all for directing traffic to their site. Not bad, huh?

Questions? Ask away in the comments. Hope this helps!

D.J. Gelner is a fiction and freelance writer from St. Louis, Missouri. Check out his books, available at his Amazon Author Page and on Nook, iBooks, and Kobo. Follow him on twitter (@djgelner) or facebook (here). E-mail him at djgelbooks@gmail.com.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Thirty


Today’s my 30th birthday.

Even though a lot of people think of thirty as some kind of “OHMYGOD I’M SO OLD WHAT AM I DOING WITH MY LIFE?!?” wake-up call, I’m happy to report that I don’t feel that way.

It probably has something to do with how I’ve always approached birthdays—basically with a nagging sense that it just means I’m one year closer to being put in the ground. Just another shovelful of dirt out of the hole that will eventually house my bones.

You know what would get me? Something like needing bifocals. That would be a “YOUR BODY IS FAILING YOU!” alert.

Maybe even more than that, though, I guess I already had that wake-up call a couple of years ago when I decided to make a go of it as a writer.

Would I do it again? In the words of Lt. Sam Weinberg, “Every day of the week and twice on Sundays.” I’ve learned an incredible amount about the craft of writing, business, sports, and most importantly, myself, over this past two years. I can’t tell if it’s personal growth that’s been accelerated by the past two years, or two years of making up for many more years before of personal neglect and retardation.

I mean, I’ll admit it; I once was incredibly lazy. Not in terms of my school work or, later, my professional work, mind you; I always put in plenty of “work” in both regards.

Rather I speak of neglecting the stuff I really wanted to be doing: writing books, writing scripts, just flat-out writing. Pursuing what fulfilled me, and caused me to work late into the night for no good reason, other than “this must be done.”

It’s something to think about: do we hold ourselves back when we’re not pursuing fulfilling work? Do we prevent ourselves from reaching our true potential, the self-actualization that this blog used to preach?

I’m not entirely sure. I’m just having a blast.

To celebrate this year, the paperback of Hack: The Complete Game comes out today for those of you who don’t have ereaders or who just prefer paper to pixels. It’s up on Amazon here, so take a look if interested.

Here’s to thirty more…and hopefully another thirty after that…and, well, with the way modern medicine is going, you never know…

My most sincere thanks to all of you who have been along for the ride thus far, and to those who will hop on board in the years to come.

-D.J.

D.J. Gelner is a fiction and freelance writer from St. Louis, Missouri. Check out his books, available at his Amazon Author Page and on Nook, iBooks, and Kobo. Follow him on twitter (@djgelner) or facebook (here). E-mail him at djgelbooks@gmail.com.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Writing Update



A lot of stuff's going on right now with my writing, so I thought I'd give those who are interested a brief update:

Hack: The Complete Game Ebook is Out:
-Hack: The Complete Game is...well..."complete." You can even get the whole series as one ebook (still Amazon only right now ) HERE. I priced it so that if you got Innings 1-3 for free or $0.99, you can save a few bucks by buying The Complete Game for the last two parts. Ebook economics are an odd topic, one that I can address in a future post if there's enough interest, though I certainly won't blame you if there's none.

Hack on Other Platforms?
-A lot of folks have been asking when the Hack books will be available on Nook, iBooks, etc. I finally have an answer: June 24th. That's when the exclusivity period with Amazon lapses. So...uh..."mark your calendars." (Does anyone still do that? Actually mark a calendar, like in an eighties sitcom, putting big red "X"s through each day in anticipation of some big occasion? I think sitcoms ruined the practice for all calendar-markers, since the big day would finally get there, and something would go horribly wrong. Thanks, Hollywood!).

Hack: TCG Giveaway
-Hack: The Complete Game is also going to be out in paperback on May 21st, which, coincidentally, is my 30th birthday. To celebrate, I'm running a Goodreads giveaway of a few signed copies, which you should be able to find over there on the right sidebar. If you're in the U.S. or Canada, feel free to sign up. After all, it's FREE! Note: The giveaway ends on the 21st, so be sure to enter before then.

Rogue Update
-Rogue is with the beta readers. I apologize for the delay, but it ended up being 23,000 words plus, instead of the 10,000-15,000 I was initially after. The good news for you is that I think it creates a richer, fuller Rogue universe (not, like a renegade universe--YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN!) that I can explore in future books.

What's Next? What about JWATT 2?!
-I think I'm going to buckle down and get back to the JWATT universe with Corcoran Was a Time Traveler and Corcoran's Log. CWATT is the true sequel to JWATT, while Corcoran's Log is a companion piece to JWATT, told from the Commander's point of view, which has obviously been pretty damned fun for me. It gives you more of Corcoran's backstory, and fills in some of the blanks between the last two chapters of JWATT (and that's all I can really say about it without spoiling it).

I imagine that Corcoran's Log will probably be released a couple of weeks before CWATT, but I'm aiming for a fall release for both.

Other than that, I'm working on a bunch of exciting non-fiction and side projects that I'll announce as completed.

Thanks to everyone who's already checked out some of my stuff--definitely appreciate it!

-D.J.

D.J. Gelner is a fiction and freelance writer from St. Louis, Missouri. Check out his books, available at his Amazon Author Page and on Nook, iBooks, and Kobo. Follow him on twitter (@djgelner) or facebook (here). E-mail him at djgelbooks@gmail.com.