Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Digital/Printed Book Statistics

With all the eBook craze, you would think that printed books have a bleak future. But a recent survey shows this is not the case. Below is a chart showing different statistics for printed books and eBooks. The results might surprise you. Below the chart, I give my answers to all the points in the survey.

My Reading Stats:

  • I had an eReader prior to the 2011 holiday season

  • I have read a printed book in the past year. I have not listened to an audiobook

  • I mainly read eBooks but will read a printed book if it is unavailable or cheaper in printed form

  • I own a Kindle

  • I spend more time reading as a result of having an eReader

  • Most of my reading is for pleasure

  • I am under 50, have not gone to college, and have an household income over $50,000

  • In the past year I have read 25 books

  • On any given day I'm reading an eBook

  • I prefer to purchase an eBook, if it is not available to borrow from the libary on my Kindle

  • My most recent eBook was borrowed from the libary

My Reading Preferences:

  • Read book while traveling: eBook

  • Have a wide selection of books: eBook

  • Read with a child: printed book

  • Sharing books with others: eBook

  • Reading books in bed: eBook

  • Being able to get a book quickly: eBook

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Revised Book Covers

This past week, Dean Wesley Smith had an interesting blog post about how authors shoot themselves in the foot. He gave five reasons how they do it and suggestions on how to correct them.

Of the five, Shot #5 grabbed my attention. It talked about book covers and how to make them more professional. I took the advice to heart and decided to do revisions for the covers to my major books—the Fram Gage series and Miscorrection trilogy.

On a side note, August will not have any eBook Weekly Deals.

Below, you will find  the previous cover and the new cover for comparison.

[caption id="attachment_2193" align="alignleft" width="200"] Old Cover[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2698" align="alignleft" width="200"] New Cover[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2311" align="alignleft" width="200"] Old Cover[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2699" align="alignleft" width="200"] New Cover[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2055" align="alignleft" width="200"] Old Cover[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2693" align="alignleft" width="200"] New Cover[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2493" align="alignleft" width="200"] Old Cover[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_2694" align="alignleft" width="200"] New Cover[/caption]

Friday, August 3, 2012

Password Recovery Answer Suggestions

[caption id="attachment_2681" align="aligncenter" width="502"] Photo © Pdiaz | Dreamstime.com[/caption]

What is your mother's middle name? What was your high school mascot? What year did you learn to talk? When do you think you will die? How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?

Ever get tired of the password recovery questions? I know I do.

Sometimes I go through the list and I realize I don't even know the answers to some of the questions. It's my own life! But I'm not sure what year in which I bought my first car, bought a home, or washed my hair with Selsun Blue.

The best is when they ask a question not about you but someone else you know: What year was your father born? What is mother's middle name? What is your sister's favorite food to eat? What is your best friend's, cousin's, uncle's, father doing right now?

I have a hard enough time remembering stuff about me, let alone my family and friends.

The reality is, with all of these questions, you shouldn't answer them with the true answer. "They" say it is because other people might know the answers, too, and use it to hack your account.

That's right! Other people may know more about you than you do.

So what is the solution? Don't actually answer the question. Bank of America, Google, and any other site aren't going to give you a game show error buzz for entering the wrong answer.

Instead, put simple words or phrases that only you know. Memorize them! And in the process, you'll get to have fun with making up your recovery answers instead of referencing the genealogy of your family for the facts.

Here are a few suggestions I've come up with. Enjoy!

Password Recovery Answer Suggestions

  • In dog years I'm dead

  • Show me the money!

  • I would gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.

  • Hippo (I strongly recommend not using this one in regards to any question about your mother or wife.)

  • Purple monkey dishwasher

  • It was the one armed man

  • I got the moves like Jagger

  • The sea-monkey made me do it

  • Go ahead ... make my day

  • Poughkeepsie

The best thing about these suggestions is if you have to call up the company to do something with your account. They might ask you for your phrase or word to access it. Imagine how funny and satisfying it would be:

"Okay sir, I just need to verify your account with your secret password."

"I got the moves like Jagger."

"Excuse me."

"I said, 'I got the moves like Jagger.'"

"That's nice, sir, but ... oh wait. I see. You're correct."

That would be wonderful!

Any more password recovery suggestions? Feel free to put them in the comments below.