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Kindle Unlimited, and What it Means for Authors

Yes, the hermit has left the cave.  I know I haven’t updated in a while.  Sorry about that.  My day job has demanded increasingly close to full-time hours, and the summer classes in addition to the married life have sucked up a lot of my time to where it’s all I can do to write.  So sadly, this has gotten pushed back.  Hopefully it won’t in the future.

But I’m back.  Because there’s a new development in progress in the book industry, and I feel obliged to weigh in on it.  As a a typical Amazon worshiper, I noticed when they instituted a new program: Kindle Unlimited.  If you haven’t heard of it, it’s essentially Netflix for books.  You can read unlimited books and listen to unlimited audiobooks for only $9.99 per month.  Awesome, right?

Well, sort of.  It’s not quite all it appears to be, for both readers and writers.  Publishers have to agree to opt in to the program, and as of yet, some major players have not, with HarperCollins holding out on the program.  So the program has some big names in it, heavily advertising titles like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, The Life of Pi, and other popular works in their advertising, but are conveniently forgetting to mention that not every title is available.  Still, there’s a lot available, and that’s why I’ve spend the last half hour looking through the Fantasy and Science Fiction sections, not to mention getting books from some of my indie role models (namely Joanna Penn, J.A. Konrath, and Hugh Howey).  As a reader I love it. But what about as an author?

I’m an indie author because I’m a control freak.  I love Amazon because Amazon gives me control.  I can upload and edit my manuscripts whenever I want.  I can change the price of my books whenever I want.  I can edit the description whenever I want.  That’s what I love about independent publishing.  But Amazon’s taken some of that away.  If you’re in KDP Select (meaning you agree to only sell your e-books on Amazon, in return for some special features like free day promotions), which I am, then you don’t have a choice whether or not to be in this program.  Whereas Amazon has to ask traditional publishing houses if they want to opt in, KDP Select authors have no choice, nor were they given any notice whatsoever about the program or how it would work.

That’s strike number one.  That’s a really low blow, forcing their most dedicated authors to take part in something that may not be the best for them.  I don’t like that at all.  But is it really a bad thing?  Hugh Howey wrote a pretty interesting blog post on the subject, and he concluded by saying this:

“While I’ll be keeping a very close eye on what this does for author income, my main reaction to this is that reading is the best thing you can do with your free time, and it just got easier and more affordable. Will we be subsisting on crumbs in the future? Or will we see the entire pie just get bigger? Right now, I would bet on the latter.”

This is the first book subscription service on a massive scale, so it’s too early to know for sure, but I’m inclined to think that this is correct.  For Hugh Howey.  It’s going to allow readers to read a ton more for a fraction of what they would normally pay, which means as a whole that authors are going to get more exposure.  And more exposure is good.  But it doesn’t necessarily mean more sales, which means it doesn’t necessarily translate to a sustainable income, which is the ultimate goal of most every author, myself included.

Now the reason I say it’s good for Hugh Howey, but not necessarily for the rest of us who aren’t #1 bestsellers, is the way that the income is generated.  When someone downloads your book, you don’t get a set price the way you do when someone buys your book.  Instead of getting 35% or 70% of the royalties, you get a set percentage of the program’s funding, which according to the explanation in my Author Dashboard, could vary from month to month.  Your cut is based on how many times the book is downloaded, as well as the funding for that month.  Now, let’s say I do pretty well in a month’s time, and I sell 100 books.  That’s not too bad for an indie who still needs his day job.  Based on my current pricing of Finding Sage, I’d make roughly $300 from that, if we’re talking strictly e-books.  But under Kindle Unlimited, my income isn’t just based on the number of copies that are downloaded, but the percentage of all Kindle downloads that are my book.  So while 100 people download my book, millions are downloading other titles, and for every person that downloads Hugh Howey, J.K. Rowling, or Charles Dickens, my cut gets smaller and smaller.

Now, there’s a flipside to this, too.  Because that means that if you get more popular, your increases in income will come exponentially.  But only if you get more popular.  So what Kindle Unlimited has really done for authors is taken an already risky game and made a higher-risk, sweeter pot game for authors.  If you get more popular, and more people start downloading your stuff, then you’ve got the potential for even more income.  But if you stay about the same, your income is most likely going to drop.

But even as I whine and complain about what this means for authors, I’m still not willing as a reader to pass it up.  And I like having free promotion days too much to give up KDP Select.  So we’ll see what happens.  If it proves to be a bust for me, I might pull out of KDP Select, if for no other reason for the principle of the thing.  Or I might like the idea of contributing to something that’s, quite frankly, fantastic for readers.  Most of all, I’m just really irked that the reader in me and the writer in me are at odds.  I don’t like it when that happens, and I really don’t think it ever should.

Yes, I’m an idealist.  Why do you ask?


Finding Sage For Free


I’ve decided to do something that is, if I may say so myself, rather remarkable.  I’m offering Finding Sage for free.

It’s only today and tomorrow, so be sure to get your download while it still lasts.  The download link is here.


Praise for Finding Sage



I continue to be humbled by the things people are saying about Finding Sage.  This is from a review that was posted on a book blog yesterday:

One word. Brilliant!! 
This book was such an amazing read and an amazing adventure to go on.
You can read the whole review at this link.
There have also been some very positive Amazon reviews, such as this one:
Get ready for the ride of your life! This story pulls action from the beginning to the end. It is going to be one amazing series! There are lots of unexpected events, as the characters do things that surprise even themselves. It is very well written in several points of view. You will be guessing what is going to happen at every turn. If you love paranormal or dystopian books you will love this!
It’s really cool to see people see these kinds of things about my work.
In other news, I wrapped up a book tour last week, and now am starting another one!  Here’s the tour schedule:
June 2-9
June 2 Spotlight
Jacqueline Paige
June 2 Spotlight
Booklover Sue
June 2 Spotlight
CBY Book Club
June 3 Guest blog
D’eBook Sharing Book Reviews
June 3 Spotlight
Beverly @ The Wormhole
June 4 Interview
Mythical Books
June 4 Spotlight
The Reader’s Hollow
June 5 Interview and review
happy tails and tales
June 5 Spotlight
3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too!
June 6 Spotlight
The Tome Gnome
June 6 Spotlight
Mom With A Kindle
June 9 Guest blog and review
Cabin Goddess
June 9 Spotlight
Cassandra M’s Place

This is me saying things

I’ve done a lot of blogging.  I started a personal blog for whatever random things I wanted to write about when I was in high school.  In college, I’ve mostly blogged about entertainment, but also about some other occasional topics I wanted to write about.  But when I started an author blog, I had no idea what I was supposed to write about.  Then I decided, what the heck, I’ll write what I want to.

So here’s what to expect from me.  I’ll be blogging about writing stuff.  Because I’m a writer and I like to talk about it (it’s worse if you catch me in person, believe me).  I also figure you might like to know a little about me beyond the stuff I write about, so I’ll try to give you some interesting tidbits of my life as well.  This is the first of those.

Speaking of writing, I should be doing more of it.  I was doing great about writing all of the time, but it gets hard when you’re a college student.

Oh wait, had I told you that before?  Maybe not.  Well, I am a college student.  I’ve been at Purdue University for a couple years now and I will be graduating in May.  In the meantime, however, I’m taking three summer classes.  I only have one right now, but it’s what they call “Maymester,” (which is weird, because only half of it is actually in May).  Basically it’s a 16-week course packed into 4 weeks.  That sounds like torture, I know, but I’m somewhat enjoying it.  It’s about technology and communication (my major is Public Relations, which is a major in the Com Department here), which is pretty fascinating.

It’s a cool class.  But it’s also very time consuming.  For example, next week in that one class I have an exam and two presentations to do, in addition to keeping up with the readings.  Oh, and by the way, I’m starting a new day job tomorrow.  I’m also married, in case I hadn’t told you that yet.  I also write on four different entertainment blogs.  Is your head spinning yet?  No?  Maybe it’s me.  My head’s always spinning . . .

Regardless, I still manage to find the time to write, even if it’s not always as consistent as I’d like it to be.  I am sad to say, however, that my progress on A Gray Crusade has been slowed by the many facets of my life.  I’m not going to venture to say how this will affect the release date because frankly, I haven’t a clue.  I will say, however, that I recently did some reworking in the plot that I believe will make it better and stronger.  I’m looking forward to it.

So until next time, keep in touch.  Be sure to follow my Facebook and Twitter accounts, and to sign up for my newsletter if you haven’t already.

Live Long and Prosper.



The Beginning of a Blog Tour & a Free Giveaway

First of all, I haven’t updated this blog in a while.  Sorry about that.  The beginning of summer classes and the need to revamp the website caused me to push updating back.  So now, I’m making a public announcement: this is going to be a once-a-week thing.  Believe it.  It’s happening.

Second, props to my good friend William Sipling for giving a killer new design to the website.  It looks beast.

Now for the real news.  Today starts a blog tour!  What’s a blog tour, you say?  Well, I’m glad you asked!

When most traditionally published authors release a book, they go on a tour to different book signings and interviews.  Indie authors, however, often don’t have the same resources.  One of the sacrifices of self-publishing is that you don’t have PR people to set these things up for you (although not all publishing houses even do that anymore).  A good way to get around this is by doing blog tours, and using the internet to get the word out about your book.  Today is the start of one of those, and I’m really excited.  It will have book reviews, interviews with me, the music I listen to while I write, my dream cast, and more for Finding Sage.

Here’s the schedule and links to the websites.  Be sure to stop in the websites and see what they have going on.

Tour Schedule – One Week Blog tour for Finding Sage by Logan Judy from May 26 to June 1, 2014.


May 26

The (Mis)Adventures of a Twenty-Something Year Old Girl – Spotlight with Excerpt

The Idle Musings of a Writer’s Mind – Spotlight with Excerpt & Top Ten

Karen Swart – Spotlight with Excerpt, Author Interview, Dream Cast & Playlist

Eclipse Reviews – Spotlight with Excerpt, Dream Cast & Playlist


May 27

Deal Sharing Aunt – Spotlight with Excerpt & Author Interview

Our New Generation for Reading – Spotlight with Excerpt

Becca Anne’s Book Reviews – Spotlight with Excerpt & Dream Cast

Night Owl Reviews – Spotlight with Excerpt, Dream Cast, Top Ten & Playlist


May 28

Cofffee Books & Art – Spotlight with Excerpt, Guest Post, Top Ten & Playlist

MI Bookshelf – Spotlight with Excerpt

Bookworm for Kids – Spotlight with Excerpt

MHZ Book Reviews and Giveaways – Spotlight with Excerpt


May 29

Book Hostage – Spotlight with Excerpt & Author Interview

Bajgajka Loves Books And Giveaways – Spotlight with Excerpt, Dream Cast & Playlist

The Avid Reader – Spotlight with Excerpt, Author Interview, Dream Cast, & Playlist

Raven Reviews – Spotlight with Excerpt & Top Ten


May 30

Breny’s Book Obsession – Spotlight with Excerpt

Indy Book Fairy – Spotlight with Excerpt

A Cauldron of Books – Spotlight with Excerpt, Dream Cast, Top Ten & Playlist

Booky Ramblings of a Neurotic Mom – Spotlight with Excerpt


May 31

2 Girls & A Book – Spotlight with Excerpt

Bound 2 Escape          – Spotlight with Excerpt

Angels with Attitude Book Reviews – Spotlight with Excerpt, Author Interview, Guest Post & Playlist

Bookraptured – Spotlight with Excerpt & Playlist


June 1

Sweet Treat Reading Reviews – Spotlight with Excerpt

Step Into Fiction – Review

Author Christy Sloat – Spotlight with Excerpt  & Guest Post

Fiction Dreams- Spotlight with Excerpt


There will also be a free giveaway for an E-copy of Finding Sage, which you can enter by clicking on the link below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


A Title Reveal and Back to the Writing Cave


At the beginning of this month, I was determined that I was going to have the first draft of my newest book done by the end of the month. I’m estimating it to be around 80,000 words. That’s right. I was going to write 80,000 words in a day. NaNoWriMo is only 50,000 words and a lot of people don’t make it, so I knew I was being ambitious. I was going strong, writing about 3,000 words a day, when something hit me.

My research paper.

Sometimes I forget that I’m still in college.  It really sucks remembering that, especially when you have a 3,500 word research paper to write.  Plus, there’s also your day job.  Because of these responsibilities, I had to push drafting the novel back.  It pained my heart to do so, but I’d really like to graduate with grades other than D’s, so it had to be done.  However, I’m now proud to say that the paper in question has been submitted, and my coursework for the semester is completed.  I do have summer classes, but those don’t start for another month, leaving me with quite a bit of time in between now and then to get some work done.

So it’s back to the writing cave.  I’d like to say that I can work overtime and still get the book done on time, but I’m not that stupid.  I’m only about a third of the way done, and there’s no way I’m writing 60,000 words in a week.  I’m not that stupid.  But all is not lost.  I still plan to release the novel in the summer, and if I’m lucky, July, but I realize that things often get pushed back.  It took me two years to write my first book, and with good reason.  I was still figuring it out.  Heck, I’m still figuring it out right now.  But it’s coming.

Before I go back into the cave, however, I do have some exciting information.  I have settled on a title for the second book of The Rogue.  I’m throwing it out on the internet so that I can’t change my mind, as I’ve already done half a dozen times.  I do really like this one, and I’m so confident in it that I’ve already ordered the book cover, which I hope to be able to show you sometime fairly soon.  The title is (drum roll, please) . . . . . . . . . . .

. . . . .

. . . . .

. . . . .

. . . .

A Gray Crusade.

Like it?  I hope so.  Otherwise all of that drama will have been incredibly childish.

Maybe it was anyway.

Oh well.



An Update to the Finding Sage Sequel


The time has come for book signings!  The first shipment came to my house on Wednesday and I’m thrilled to start looking into doing book signings in my local area.  And if you want one but don’t live around West Lafayette, IN, that’s not a problem.  Just email me at and I can send you one.  Due to the time-consuming nature of mailing them, however, I can only do 20 of these per month, so keep that in mind.  The price is $14 including shipping.

As I hope you know, I’m hard at work writing the sequel to Finding Sage.  Here’s a little update on how that’s going.

I’m loving the story.  When I write, I’m not one of those people that can have an outline of everything that happens beforehand.  I’ve tried to do that, but it just doesn’t work for me.  Instead, I end up changing the outline so many times that I might as well trash it.  So writing is an adventure for me, because I discover the story as I’m writing it.  And I am really enjoying this story, and hopefully you will too!

This book follows two primary things that were left unanswered in Finding Sage.  The first is the phoenix symbol.  What does it mean?  Why is it showing up in Silas’s dreams?  Why did the prime minister have a pendant of it?  What’s the significance?  That is a big deal in this book, and the book also follows Grayson.  After the debacle in New York, will he still pursue the life of his best friend?  Does he still think that’s the right thing to do?  What will happen when he finally faces that moment?  Also in the story are some new characters that are a lot of fun, plus one returning minor character from the first book.

My original plan was to release this book in the middle of June, but alas, classes and my day job have gotten in the way, so I must push the date back.  Now I’m hoping for the end of June or early July.  Rest assured, I will get it to you as soon as I can!

So I leave you for now.  If you want to hear from me more often, as I’m terrible about writing regular blog posts, sign up for my newsletter.  Not only will you hear from me more often, but I also do things like cover reveals and title reveals early through the newsletter. I also have Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr pages, and I just started a Pinterest.  Follow me on stuff.  I like interacting with people, so don’t be shy!


One Week Mark

I’ve been a self-published author for about a week.  I’ve thought about how I’m going to address my “public image.”  Whether I’m going to pretend to be some big time author or if I’m going to be honest with myself and what few fans I have.  I’m going to be honest.

There are a lot of dreamy pictures associated with being an author.  A lot of things are left out.  Like how many traditionally published authors are making ridiculously low royalties on their work.  How authors need to do their own marketing.  How you have to work to gain a fanbase.  I’ve known all of those things because I do a lot of reading about this trade (as every aspiring author should do, and precious few actually do).  However, they’re sinking in quickly.

The end result?  I love it.  Every bit of it.  I love emailing book blogs and updating my social media sites and writing newsletters and blog posts and planning promotion ideas and thinking about my next books and, most especially, writing my next book.  It’s incredible.

Now, as of the time I am writing this post I am not a full-time author.  Far from it.  I’m still in college for Pete’s sakes, and I haven’t even made $100 on the book yet.  But I absolutely love the process, and I’m proud of my work.  That makes it a whole lot easier to be okay with the fact that I’m not successful yet.

I’m being pretty transparent.  Consider that a sign of things to come. I’ll be writing til I die, so I’m not going to drop off the planet because I’m not an overnight success (hello, no one is.  This is an oversaturated market, after all).  So stick around, because I’m here to stay.  And if you don’t like my work, that’s fine.  Thankfully the internet is pretty non-discriminatory.  If you like it though, I’m very grateful to have you as a fan.  And you should sign up for my newsletter.

Hey, I said authors have to do marketing.