Communion Of Dreams

Another take.
January 31, 2012, 2:40 pm
Filed under: Amazon, Kindle, Marketing, Promotion, Publishing

Via my friend Wendy, another take on the experience of offering a book for free in conjunction with the KDP Select program:

How Amazon’s KDP Select Saved My Book

Good read. This is just Day Two for the end to my promotion, so perhaps I haven’t yet seen the kind of bump in sales I yet might. But this post, and my own experience, has given me some additional ideas about how to schedule and promote the next time I offer Communion of Dreams as a free Kindle download (or Her Final Year, for that matter.)

Oh, and if you have Amazon Prime, and haven’t yet downloaded Communion as a ‘loan’ – please, go do so. Thanks.

Jim Downey

Boy, howdy.
January 31, 2012, 1:41 pm
Filed under: Kindle, Marketing, NPR, Promotion, Society, Writing stuff

Heard a particularly interesting interview on NPR yesterday, as I was quietly working away in the bindery. Here’s a bit from their website about it:

In the 1940s and ’50s the message to most Americans was: Don’t be shy. And in today’s era of reality television, Twitter and widespread self-promotion, it seems that cultural mandate is in overdrive.

Boy, howdy.

Yeah, it’s about introverts, and how our culture today considers extrovertism not only the default, but that there is almost something *wrong* with you if you’re not an extrovert. As I noted yesterday, just doing the online promotion of Communion of Dreams over the weekend was psychologically exhausting for me.

Because yeah, I’m an introvert. In taking the little quiz that NPR has up, all but two of my answers clearly point to my introvert tendencies. (Any guess which two I answered the other way?*) Which makes it all that much more difficult for me to step into the limelight and demand attention from the world – even though this is exactly what is needed to be a successful author in this day and age.

Which is part of the reason why I ask people for their help. For each and every person who tells a friend about the novel (or the care-giving memoir), or who posts a review somewhere, that’s one small straw I don’t have to carry, and makes life much more enjoyable. If you’re not an introvert, this may not make a lot of sense – but believe me, it matters a great deal, and is part of the reason why I am so appreciative of any such help.

And now I need to go get some writing done. Some nice, quiet, introspective, introverted writing.

Jim Downey

*7, 20.

January 30, 2012, 6:33 pm
Filed under: Book Conservation, movies

Via John Bourke, my co-author of Her Final Year, this truly delightful (and poignant) little story:

How completely wonderful. Thanks, John.


I feel like . . .
January 30, 2012, 10:10 am
Filed under: Amazon, Kindle, Marketing, Promotion, Publishing, Science Fiction

. . . I’ve been on a three-day bender or something. Such was the heady experience of the ‘launch’ of Communion of Dreams.

Thank you. Together we managed to give away right at 700 copies of the Kindle edition of the book, as well as selling some paperbacks and getting orders for signed copies.

I wasn’t sure what to expect. But I have to consider this to have been a huge success, given the downloads and preliminary feedback about the book.

Now I would ask for two things from all those who got a copy of the Kindle edition: please, please, please tell your friends about the book. Seriously, your recommendation will help immensely.

And closely related to this is helping me out by going to Amazon and rating the book, perhaps even writing a review. Such reviews help others who may hear of the book make an intelligent decision about whether to get it. It doesn’t have to be long – just tell people what you think.

Thank you. Seriously. This has been a very long and difficult road, filled with more than my share of frustrations and disappointments. But you – each and every person who downloaded the book, told others about it – YOU have helped to make the journey worthwhile.

Jim Downey

Share the joy.
January 29, 2012, 9:59 am
Filed under: Amazon, Kindle, Marketing, Promotion, Publishing, Science Fiction

Well, the response has been pretty remarkable to the launch of Communion of Dreams. Over 600 copies of the Kindle edition have been downloaded, paperback editions sold, orders placed for signed copies.

And I’ve heard from a number of people who have dived into reading the book. So far, all the reports have been very positive. Here’s one from Jane, posted to her Facebook profile:

OK people. Really. I just spent the better part of the day sucked into Jim Downey’s book. You so need to go download it while it’s free! Great book Jim. Loved it!

And that prompts me to ask for something in this final day of the promotional push: Please, if you’ve read the book (or just part of it) tell your friends what you think.

This is the flip side of just getting the word out. I really appreciate everyone helping me out with the initial news of the book’s availability. But now I would very much appreciate your saying what you think about the book.

Today’s the last day of the free Kindle version promotion. And if you’ve been enjoying the book – if it has given you food for thought, challenged your expectations, or prompted you to consider prior assumptions – then tell others that. Share your joy. It doesn’t cost you anything but a few moments of time and a little effort. You’ll be helping me, and perhaps helping brighten the day for your friends and others who respect your opinion.

Thank you. It’d be fantastic if we can break a thousand downloads before midnight Pacific time tonight. That’s certainly possible – Friday had more than 450 downloads – if you’ll just take a little time to spread the word.

Jim Downey

500 so far.
January 28, 2012, 12:27 pm
Filed under: Amazon, Kindle, Marketing, Promotion, Publishing, Science Fiction

Well, yesterday’s launch of Communion of Dreams was a great success. Thanks to all who helped to promote the book! Some 500 people have downloaded the Kindle edition so far, several people have ordered the paperback, and I have orders for a number of signed copies of the paperback.

All this has contributed to push the overall ranking of the Kindle edition to #662 at last count (lowest I’ve seen was 641), and #3 in the ‘High Tech’ subcategory of science fiction titles. Pretty amazing.

The free Kindle edition promotion will last through midnight Sunday night. If you haven’t yet had a chance to get your free copy, please make sure you do. And tell others who may find the book of interest – as I said yesterday, word-of-mouth is the best possible advertising and will really help me make a success of this book.

Thanks again, everyone!

Jim Downey

Help a guy out.
January 27, 2012, 11:02 am
Filed under: Amazon, Kindle, Marketing, Promotion, Publishing, Science Fiction, tech, Titan

Well, it’s official:

To ‘launch’ the publication of Communion of Dreams, the Kindle version will be free to download for just three days: January 27 through 29. Of course, you’re welcome to buy it outside of those dates, to get a paperback copy, to get a signed copy, or to even just make a donation in appreciation. The links for all those are there on the side.

I’d really appreciate your help, and ask for it with the following:

  1. Please just go download the Kindle version during this free period. It’ll cost you nothing. Even if you don’t have a Kindle – you can get the free Kindle app for a wide variety of electronic devices. Just by downloading it you help boost the ranking, and that helps me a lot.
  2. Tell others about the book and this free offer. Please – word of mouth is far & away the best advertising. Don’t spam people/sites, but if you know anyone who likes speculative/science fiction, please let them know about the book & free offer this weekend. And this goes like triple for any well-known writers/bloggers/personalities you may have a connection to. This would be a *huge* help to me.
  3. Lastly, wherever possible please “like” or “+1” Communion of Dreams.  On the homepage. On Amazon. On Facebook/Twitter/G+/whatever. Each time you do this it helps to boost the ranking in search engines, and so will be a great help in the long run.

And if/when you actually read the book, you’d be willing to write a review or give a ranking on Amazon, that would be very much appreciated. But I want this to be an honest review/ranking – BS doesn’t help.

Thanks – it has been a long haul to get to this point. Now it is a matter of marketing. The next three days are critical, as they could help get enough attention to get the book established. Already today (just about 7 hours after the promotion started) there have been well over 100 downloads of the book and the page rank has jumped to under 5,000. I’d love to give away a thousand books this weekend – help me out.

Cheers, one and all!

Jim Downey

January 24, 2012, 6:57 pm
Filed under: Predictions, Publishing, Science Fiction

…ain’t that just a hell of a thing:

Yup, that’s me holding the proof copy of the paperback version of Communion of Dreams. As predicted, it’s arrived, looks good, and so we can move forward with setting everything up for people to order their own copy (signed, even!) later this week.

Cool. It’s a real thing. This is even better than with Her Final Year. No mixed emotions today.


Jim Downey

Coming Attractions…
January 24, 2012, 1:19 pm
Filed under: Amazon, Kindle, Marketing, Promotion, Publishing, Science Fiction

“A story of love, sacrifice, and honor.




This weekend, prepare yourself for the blockbuster of the season:

Communion of Dreams:
The Free Kindle version!

* * *

OK, here’s the deal: Coming this Friday, we’ll have the new paperback version of Communion of Dreams ready for ordering off the website. And to kick-off the book, I’m going to offer it for *FREE* download in the Kindle version for anyone who wants it. Yeah, anyone. You don’t need to be an Amazon Prime member. You don’t even need to own a Kindle. Just get the free Kindle app for your favorite electronic device, and download the sucker.

Please – help spread the word. I want lots and lots and lots of people to check out the site, get the book, and tell their friends. Make this book insanely popular, please. Well, beyond the 35,000 people who have previously downloaded the .pdf version of it, I mean. But them too, come to think of it.

Also, for those who want them, you can place a pre-order now for a signed paperback copy. Cost is the same as the paperback will be ($11.95), plus enough for me to cover the shipping charges, for a total of $15.00. Yup. Just send me $15 via Paypal to to get your order in. It’ll probably take about 10 days for you to get your signed copy. But see, that’s part of the reason that you can download the Kindle version for free this weekend – so you can actually read my brilliant prose while you wait to get my even more brilliant signature. Or something like that.

Let’s see . . . plenty of hype . . . I used the word *FREE* . . . there’s something else the marketing guides say . . . oh, yeah, a ‘call to action’:

Act Now for this Limited Time Offer!

Jim Downey

Now you see it . . .
January 23, 2012, 12:53 pm
Filed under: Amazon, Feedback, Kindle, Marketing, Promotion, Publishing, Science, Science Fiction, Titan

Getting ready for the official ‘launch’ of Communion of Dreams. I should have the proof copy of the paperback in hand tomorrow or the day after, and if it looks good I hope that the launch can come later this week. Have already had some sales of the Kindle version of the book, and some people have already downloaded a ‘loan’ copy under the Amazon Prime program. If you want to dive in, that’s great – but here’s another little secret: I’m going to run a promotion during the official launch whereby *anyone* can download a free copy of the Kindle version. Yup. So you might just wanna wait . . .

And in working to put the various components of all this together, I stumbled across this fun little optical illusion: The Eclipse of Titan. Check it out!

Jim Downey