Tuesday, December 29, 2009

...price-point on books?

...where exactly is the perfect price-point on books? Mark Coker, CEO of Smashwords, an ebook publisher and distributor believes it to be $4 bucks. Who’s to say, maybe he’s right...naturally he, a benefactor of ebook sales growth would delight in readers balking at $30 hardcover prices and $17 paperbacks. I’ll admit I too am an advocate of the ebook phenomena...but for an entirely different reason.

Books should be a commodity. There contents dispersed widely...more widely than current times...in a media best served by each respective reader population. Let it take form in massive hardcover’s like my 831 page classic; The Book of Virtues by William J. Bennett. Or perhaps my sticky-note laden paperback of; How Good People Make Tough Choices by Rushworth M. Kidder. Then again my useful ebook acquired free; JA Konrath’s, A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing Book, like each and every one—cherished equally. Is there a reader population for free books? I believe there is.

A time will come when book writers’ income is derived from those who subscribe to what they say. Sponsors, endorsers, advertisers, benefactors, even angels will finance book/author content dissemination. Corruption you say? Buying of configured sentiment...spinning stories to persuade the simpler population’s? Sure, there will be some of that in a democracy. The ancillary will be readers having content where before they had none.

Ebooks costing $4 or $2 or $0 is a good thing. How can it not be? There are those who cry foul at the notion...but their self-interest is plainly visible. Books on paper will not die soon and for those who cherish the paper version, good for you. However, your pronouncement of paper over ebooks will define your character from now on. My father advised me one time, when I was feeling (and speaking) particularly intelligent in front of extended family...shut-up!


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

...why anxiety?

Since my last post...’scrapping the December book delivery’ seems still to have me in its grips. Not being able to deliver on my tentative ship date of before Christmas created additional anxiety. Why do we worry so? What is anxiety?

A friend of mine...a long ago friend, is dying of cancer this very moment. Years’ passed since we’ve talked face to face, his then image fresh in my mind today. Thoughts of his last conversations with family and friends quench my anxiety. My friends resolve comforts me.

Most of us can look back on our conquests...pointing to a few which stand as testament of our being. Whatever we want that to be. Some will acclaim industry; some, giving to others...most will note setting a good example for the family.

Even though my friend was accomplished...he would note this good example as his legacy. All of us should strive for this one.

Monday, December 7, 2009

...December book delivery

The December delivery has been scrapped. Sorry.

9/22/09: [My tentative schedule is to finish and final edit the book by the middle of November, 2009. The word tentative is not my “out” so to speak...from my pronounced delivery date of “Before Christmas.” It is only the reality of this (like any other) business...whereby numerous events (beyond my control) can cause delay in its being printed, bound and shipped to me in early December...for shipping to purchasers prior to Christmas, 2009.]

It would be easy for me to say “through no fault of my own,” but that’s not the case. Personal factors causing the delay, not given greater consideration on my part are: anxiety, editing, formatting, anxiety, completing last chapter, more editing, anxiety...more anxiety.

Why anxiety? Simply...a personal character flaw that has cursed my life from the beginning. Particularly when a writing project is the mission. Substituting a full blown class with added time and expense instead of doing the masters thesis...my anxiety with writing projects continued. Completing the entire coursework and comprehensive exams...minus the dissertation, caused the DBA designation to be missing from my educational credentials. This writing-project anxiety DNA continues today making the book project stretch from an early 2004 to present day.

When will the book be completed and shipped? January? Maybe. February, March...sometime in the first quarter? Hopefully. It’s like giving birth I can only surmise. Contractions should start soon...I’m hoping.

Thanks for your patience and understanding.
Sincerely, Garry M. Graves

What are "The 5 Most Important--But Fleeting Virtures?"

Honesty, Integrity, Courage, Compassion and Humility.

.....this is a portion of the "introduction" or prologue to the book (not yet completed)...email with your comments.

The books title; Character Happens! The 5 Most Important—But Fleeting Virtues, describes my belief these five important virtues (Honesty, Integrity, Courage, Compassion, Humility), are sporadic in use and diminishing in personal character. The books message is in recognizing this “fleeting” nature and from that reinstitute a more virtuous choice in your decision making.

The paradox of the two words; Character Happens, with another two words: “S### Happens”* (decorum prevents use of actual word) is not without merit. My belief is that observed human character is much like, well...s###! This kind of observation can be disconcerting at times. So confusing that society can hardly make the distinction between the two words and there obvious different meaning. Individuals make virtuous and un-virtuous choices/decisions for innumerable reasons, both consciously and without deep thought. If we postulate; can an individual make a 'more' virtuous choice in life’s decisions should they want to do so? Answer—perhaps. How does one 'reinstitute a more virtuous choice' into their personal makeup...making the response more automatic? Answer—practice. With a concerted effort at 'practice' I believe...an individual might just develop a more 'repetitive' decent response...much like grooving a golf swing.

I love golf. I think the game is like no other. The five stories that make up Character Happens! have a golf storyline. Some readers may not be able to relate to the game of golf or its vernacular or for that matter, why people...a large number of people...love golf. Too bad! You should try it sometime...because it’s more than a game...it can be a life experience. The golf course environment alone is enough to put most people at ease.

Golf is a game played by the individual as opposed to being a member of a team, like baseball. Baseball has umpires who enforce the rules of the game. In golf you are the umpire. Because of this unique method of enforcing the games rules—golf is a “hotbed” for testing the players character...their honesty, their integrity, their courage and sometimes their compassion. And, because all golfers started from knowing nothing about the game; like how to swing, how to putt or chip... they also learn of humility. Now doesn’t it make perfect sense that a book about character would juxtaposition a storyline with the game of golf? Anyway, I thought so.

There are five stories, one for each virtue. The book has six main characters that make up a group of what I call 'golf buddies.' The storyteller, Spencer Madison, in reality is me. Well, somewhat like me...as I have a better golf game than Spencer. The five others vary in age, gender, education, religious beliefs and definitely personality. The 'binder' of the group or what brings them together; golf.

The reader will hopefully discover in their own lives a similar incident with one of the story’s in Character Happens! If not, that’s okay too...as the stories are earnest while humorous, carefree yet compelling. And, I believe each chapter or story makes a 'point' in this wonderful, wacky, dynamic world in the 21st century.

The stories are fictional as are the characters. Names, personalities or incidents are fictional and in no way resemble or refer to a living person. I’ve used paraphrasing of many authors’ ideas and concepts and have referenced them in a special section. Because of these references and the specific genre where the book is to be found, it’s categorized as a non-fictional, personal development book.

for the language but this word best describes the thought I want to convey. In Forrest Gump the term was used to describe situations that happen to all people for no particular reason.