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Old 12-03-2018, 08:02 PM
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Gifts under US$6: ebooks, paperbacks, coloring books

This is a consolidation thread for all the threads I've made over the years for my books.

The occasion: I've done some tinkering with the shading on some pictures in my coloring book Wise Words from Shakespeare: A Coloring Book for Adults; the results are lighter. It's still not a 'black lines outline white space' type of children's book, but it may hit a middle ground that will please those who prefer that type.

I'm making this thread, mainly, because I had to change the hosting for images for all my books. Those links seem to be broken, so rather than ask a moderator to let me change each of the several threads, it seemed more reasonable to just put the new images in this thread, along with links to the original threads.

The illustrations in the Shakespeare coloring book departed from the usual 'thick black lines' style common in children's coloring books by including some dimensional shading. But since some people found the shading to be too dark, I corrected the images. Here's a 'before and after' example:



As you can see, the changes don't eliminate the shading but do lighten it.

Here's the original thread about the Shakespeare book:

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=773930

The book is still US$5.99 (or less depending on sales Amazon may run--and of course, the equivalent in other currencies). It's available at

https://www.amazon.com/Wise-Words-SH.../dp/0692538070



(Many thanks to Rico for letting me make this new version of the thread.)
  #2  
Old 12-03-2018, 08:09 PM
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Wise Words from Jane Austen: A Coloring Book for Adults is part of the same series as the Shakespeare book; it uses 'good advice' from Jane Austen this time, of course. I used a variety of period paintings, etchings, and drawings as inspiration for the pictures. These, again, employ dimensional shading:



The original thread:

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=860267

The book can be purchased at:

https://www.amazon.com/Wise-Words-Ja.../dp/194593901X

Here's a taste of the variety of the pages--each illustrates a wise, witty remark by Austen:

  #3  
Old 12-03-2018, 08:21 PM
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The third coloring book for adults* has a design that is certainly usable by right-handed colorists, but is expressly made for the left-handed--it has the text and pages-to-color on the left side of each spread, instead of on the right.

Wise Words from Left-Handers: A Coloring Book for Adults:




At Amazon I'm seeing, right now, US$1.60 as the price! Don't know how long that will last....they don't ask the authors for a yea or nay on the price changes. (!) The link:

https://www.amazon.com/Wise-Words-LE.../dp/1945939001

The original thread:

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=802402

This book collects wisdom from a disparate group of famous left-handed people--not about being left-handed, by the way, but about life, love, politics, art, sports, and so on. As I said in the thread:

Quote:
... I found hundreds of famous left-handed people and many potential "Wise Words" to illustrate. The research process included, first, making sure that the famous person really was left-handed (there's a lot of guesswork when it comes to people alive centuries ago), and second, making sure that the famous person had actually said or written the quotation in question.

Unsourced quotations are all over the Internet. Most of the sites that come up when any remark is searched will be the sites that let anybody post anything; the result is that famous people throughout history are routinely credited with having said things they never did. From "let them eat cake" to "blood, sweat, and tears" to "if you have to ask how much they cost, you can't afford one"---the people who are claimed to have said these things, never did. ...
Since the book was published I've heard from both left-handed and right-handed people who all said they had no problem using the book. For the right-handed, it was a bit of an eye-opener to experience something not made expressly for them.



*later in the thread you'll see a coloring book/workbook aimed at children.
  #4  
Old 12-03-2018, 08:32 PM
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Now for some books available both in paperback and in ebook formats. The ebooks will be, in some cases, free for Prime members.

Grey Fairy / White Wolf: Three Classic Lang Tales, Retold is fiction with an academic bent:



The book consists of "three of my expanded retellings of stories collected in Andrew Lang's 1900 The Grey Fairy Book. The original Lang versions are provided for comparison (along with commentary and historical information). The book includes three illustrations..." (As I said in the original thread--)

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=714273

Another bit of that thread:

Quote:
Usually when "fairy tales" are mentioned, what is meant are the thirty or so stories we're familiar with from childhood books and Disney movies: Cinderella, Snow White, Hansel and Gretel, Beauty and the Beast, Little Red Riding Hood, and so on.

Retelling these familiar tales has become quite an industry, in books, on television, and in the movies. The fine arts, too, are filled with reactions to the famous stories. And commentary and analysis--for example, Bruno Bettelheim's The Uses of Enchantment; M. L. von Franz's The Interpretation of Fairy Tales (and others); and many books by Jack Zipes (such as Breaking the Spell)--nearly always centers on the familiar tales.

There's good reason for that, of course: it's the often-retold stories that most effectively hook into our unconscious minds, and provide insights we find to be stimulating and significant. Through all the reworkings over the centuries, the familiar stories have been shaped to be accurate reflections of fundamental human truths.

But what about the less-familiar stories? What do they lack? Why aren't they being made into feature films and television shows? ...
The answer may be found in the ebook at:

https://www.amazon.com/Grey-Fairy-Wh...y%2FWhite+Wolf

Or in the paperback at:

https://www.amazon.com/Grey-Fairy-Wh...0866312&sr=1-1
  #5  
Old 12-03-2018, 08:42 PM
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I'll include a book by Argus Constant for which I did artwork, as it's similar in size to Grey Fairy / White Wolf, and like that book, is available in both ebook and paperback formats:



(^ Front and back covers, of course.) Donald the Employee is a darkly comic novel of post-2016 American politics, and of the personalities that have become so large a part--for better or worse--of our daily lives.

The ebook:

https://www.amazon.com/DONALD-Employ...=UTF8&qid=&sr=

The paperback:

https://www.amazon.com/DONALD-Employ...=UTF8&qid=&sr=

A long excerpt can be read at:

http://donald.sirtespress.com/

The original thread about the book:

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=848520

Speaking of excerpts-- for any not aware, Amazon lets you look at a fairly large chunk of most books through its "Look Inside" feature; you see more if you're signed in.

Last edited by Sherrerd; 12-03-2018 at 08:45 PM.
  #6  
Old 12-04-2018, 08:10 PM
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For those who still get a chuckle from the Far Side cartoon "Hell's Library"--a bookcase filled with The Big Book of Story Problems, Even More Story Problems, Story Problems Galore, etc. ...

LC4A and the Big Test is available as a full-color ebook, and as a workbook/coloring book paperback. The latter is greatly expanded, as I'll describe in the next post. For now, the ebook:



This story emphasizes the main character learning how to find clues in a non-routine word problem, in order to figure out what operations to use and in what order to use them. A sample problem from near the beginning of the story:



A more complex problem from later in the story:



The text offers strategies for attacking the problems, which include simple drawings, as well as math manipulatives such as counters, graphs, number lines, and base-ten blocks. Graphic "white boards" summarize key words and patterns to look for in a story problem, in order to get from 'paralysis' to 'solving'.

The thread about the ebook:

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=703391

For sale (under $2):

https://www.amazon.com/LC4A-Big-Test.../dp/B00FG0WKKM
  #7  
Old 12-06-2018, 08:16 PM
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A note on prices

The "under $6" tag works for all books but one, it turns out, and I apologize for the lapse: the LC4A storybook/workbook/coloring book described in the next post is $6.99. There are used copies for less, though I don't know their condition (it's third-party sellers, over which I have no control).

For all paperbacks sold through Amazon's old CreateSpace program (now KDP), authors are given a minimum price they can charge, which is set by Amazon to reflect the size of the files in the book. My LC4A paperback is longer and has more illustrations than my other books, hence the slightly-higher price.

If you have any interest in any of these, do check Amazon for their frequent price drops (which they make without any input from the author).

  #8  
Old 12-06-2018, 08:28 PM
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LC4A and the Big Test: A Math-Story Planet Workbook (The Duer Press Children’s Math Picture Books)



Thread on this is at:
https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...highlight=LC4A

This paperback contains all the contents of the ebook (describe two posts above), and adds a Parents' Guide section and a Problem Sets section.

Quote:
Word problems can be a special challenge for many math learners. This new edition of the popular ebook LC4A and the Big Test adds several new dimensions to the story of the little alien who has concerns about an upcoming math test on word problems. LC's vibrant world serves to introduce concrete, easy-to-apply skills that learners will enjoy mastering.

"Where to begin?" All too often, that is the mental block facing learners dealing with word problems. LC's story offers solid, research-based strategies for getting through that block--while enjoying the process. So that learners won't feel intimidated, the strategies are presented at the second-grade vocabulary level, and are richly illustrated throughout the book.

Ten new word-problem sets provide valuable experience and practice for putting the problem-solving strategies to work. The problem sets have been carefully constructed to expose learners to the full spectrum of word-problem types. This variety will help keep learners interested.

The word-problem types are explained in detail in the useful parent-guide pages. Those pages contain, in addition, tips on enriching and enhancing the word-problem learning process; information about the uses of math manipulatives, and ways to acquire them at no or low cost; and a specific run-down of the types of addition and subtraction word problems that learners can expect to encounter. Handy graphics summarize the top strategies for getting to a solution.

Dozens of fun-to-color illustrations make working through this book pleasant and entertaining, as well as educational. Word problems can be fun to solve: all that learners need is the confidence that they possess a toolkit of strategies and tips ready to apply. This storybook/workbook/coloring book will help give them that confidence.
I've heard from some adults who made use of this book themselves (they were studying for the GED). As mentioned, it's written with lower-grade-level vocabulary (except for the parents' section).

Here are some example pages:



Additional pages may be viewed at:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/06...api_taft_p1_i6
  #9  
Old 12-09-2018, 06:52 PM
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Counting Book

Surprises for Zu-Zu: a rhyming counting book. This is a full-color ebook.



The thread is at: https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=703391

The story involves a little alien critter who wanders off and has an adventure filled with lots of things to count--things that are intriguing, colorful, and in one case, a little bit scary. (But not too scary!) A couple of sample pictures:





The book can be found at:
https://www.amazon.com/Surprises-Zu-.../dp/B00FURS6A4
  #10  
Old 12-09-2018, 07:00 PM
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Arguing on message boards!

My first book (other than my dissertation) was Forum Finesse: A Guide to Impact and Influence in Online Talk. It's an ebook. It's got some usable advice, but it did come out five years ago. I seriously need to update it with the St. Petersburg "Internet Research Agency" (Putin's 'troll factory') and other realities of our current life.

Still, worth a free look at the Look Inside feature (and free altogether if you have a Prime membership).



The Amazon page for the book:
https://www.amazon.com/FORUM-FINESSE...=Forum+Finesse

The old SDMB thread: https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb...d.php?t=697865

Promo banner:
  #11  
Old 12-09-2018, 07:08 PM
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A note on the paperbacks

No prices are printed on any of these paperbacks; no one will know what you paid.

As with any online bookstore, beware of ordering from a third-party seller who charges more than the list price. For some reason I see a lot of that on my listings (maybe every self-publisher does).
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Old 12-10-2018, 02:51 PM
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Nice thread. Your books all look really good! I've been publishing on amazon since 2013, but very lazily. And I didn't do my first paperbacks until this year. It's great to see other self-pubbers on here. You inspire me!

I noticed with one of my paperbacks that has yet to sell a copy that there are already two other buy links for it. One from a third party and one from amazon itself. I was told in my FB group that third party sellers can somehow purchase options to sell your book without actually buying any, since it's POD, and then if someone buys from them, the seller buys the book from me at a discount, and then we both make money. So yaays for that.

I have never had amazon discount one of my books without me changing the price, but I never used createspace. All my amazon books have always been uploaded direct.

Good luck with your sales!!!!!
  #13  
Old 12-11-2018, 07:18 PM
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Thanks, and good to hear from another aspirant, TheMysteryWriter. Whatever sort of books do you write? (J/K.)

The whole third-party seller phenomenon is a hot topic on some self-publisher discussion sites; there's a sort of vulture/jackal feeling to the practice, but the way you describe it, it sounds potentially beneficial. (The real vultures and jackals are the many "PDF" sellers out there, who do buy one copy and then sell YOUR book as a PDF. That's tough to deal with mentally for those of us who lack the resources to pursue the thieves. )

Anyway, thanks again for posting. We selfers have to stick together! ^_^
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