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Me and Lulu

I heard about Lulu.com from another ebook writer and after a bit of procrastinating (as I am wont to do) I decided to explore it. In a lot of ways, their system resembles the system of Smashwords. However, I found Smashwords’ formatting guidelines easier to comprehend and to follow. In any case, I was able to format my ebook according to Lulu.com’s standards and now, Testament is available at Lulu.com, aside from the Amazon Kindle Store and Smashwords.

And here is my author page in Lulu.com:

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Promoting myself

To generate buzz on my e-books, I decided to distribute a free e-book to readers who might be convinced to purchase my for-sale e-books. So I dug up an old story, which got published in Mirror Magazine in 1999 (if I remember correctly) and formatted it for Kindle and Smashwords. This story is, coincidentally, part of my second short story collection, which I hope to publish the traditional way here in the Philippines.

Unfortunately, Kindle DP does not allow free pricing for its e-books so I opted for the lowest price possible–which is 99 cents. Apparently, once they find out that an e-book is free in other stores, that’s only when they will allow said e-book to be free. So in Smashwords I chose the free option. Sooner or later, I hope the Kindle Store catches up and give my e-book for free.

After a day at Smashwords, The Loudest Unspoken has been downloaded 14 times. I have received 1 positive feedback from a colleague–though she hasn’t gone back to the website to post her feedback officially. I hope the Kindle Store catches up soon. And I hope this marketing strategy works, too. Curious, just follow the link above to get your free e-book. Enjoy reading it and please post a feedback or review on the site, if you can. It’d be greatly appreciated!

My second e-book

I intended Testament to be the twin novella of Remembering Jesus. I imagined it in book form; each story would be reversed so that there will be no back cover. I even have a name for the set: ELEGRAPHIES–a word I coined by combining elegy & biography. This is because both stories chronicle a life, and because death is a recurring theme.

I hadn’t thought of them as stand-alone books because they’d be so thin. Not until I read e-books, that is.¬†After releasing RJ exclusively in the Amazon Kindle Store, I decided I’d do the opposite with Testament. So I released it at both Amazon and Smashwords. To cover my bases, so to speak. Once it is approved by Smashwords’ Premium Library, it will be distributed in other ebook stores like iBookstore, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Sony, etc.

Testament is wider than RJ in terms of scope, grittier in some aspects, but both are life-affirming in the end. If you’ve got it, I hope you enjoy reading it. Please give me feedback if you can, too.

My first e-book

I started writing ‘Remembering Jesus‘ around 1996 as a short story. It sort of wrote itself into its current word-count of around 27,000 words, which is about the length of a short novel. The writing process was much easier compared to the years I spent editing the draft. ‘Remembering Jesus’ has a twin story: the protagonist is also gay but he is the opposite of Jesus. The stories share a character, as well. One minor character in ‘Remembering Jesus’ is a pivotal character in the other story, called ‘Testament’.

Between the two, ‘Testament’ feels more like a novel to me because of its sheer scope. I mean, the protagonist’s story is divided into chapters that coincide with our history such as the First Quarter Storm, the Martial Law years, the EDSA revolution, etc. This is not a political story, though. Anyway, I think this will be my second title for the Amazon Kindle Store. And I won’t make this title exclusively available in the Kindle Store. It’s time to look at the other markets.

I’d like to thank Mina V. Esguerra for wholeheartedly answering my questions on self-publishing. I have known about Amazon’s KDP program but my short Q&A with her gave me the necessary push to prepare and submit my manuscript to Amazon. And now that my first e-book is out there, I am more than ready to self-publish my other titles.

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