TKC 431 Earplay CEO Jon Myers

partners

Executive Team at Earplay

Interview ‪starts at 10:28 and ends at 44:37

Left to right: Dave Grossman, Chief Creative Officer; Bruno Batarelo, Chief Technology Officer; and Jon Myers, Chief Executive Officer

News

Charlie Rose interview of Jeff Bezos (video) – October 27, 2016

Interview with Jon Myers

Earplay site

Western Dramatic Literature: A Micro-Anthology by Jonathan Myers & Jennifer Bean

Codename Cygnus

Blackstone audiobooks

Audible

Codename Cygnus Kickstarter campaign

Virtual Worlds Invite Visitors Into the Story” by Chris Suellentrop at The New York Times – November 23, 2014

“Earplay: An Interactive, Audio-Only Storyteller, Made Even Better by Alexa” by Zoey Collier at Amazon’s developer site – November 3, 2016

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Perspective” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

Right-click here and then click “Save Link As…” to download the audio to your computer, phone, or MP3 player.

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TKC 430 Robert Masello

robert-masello

Author of  The Jekyll Revelation

published by Amazon Publishing’s 47North Imprint

Interview ‪starts at 10:00 and ends at 43:22

I used to joke around that I could walk up to a table at any bookstore, and any book that wasn’t published by the major houses—I could smell it a mile away. There was something wrong about the typography. The cover was somehow cheap looking. I didn’t feel quite right. The margins weren’t right when you looked at the text inside, that sort of thing. They have corrected that now. And The Jekyll Revelation, which they just recently sent me a box of is an absolutely beautiful book that I am proud to put on my shelves. The cover art is spectacular. It wraps around from the front all the way to the back. It’s indistinguishable from anybody else’s books. In fact, in many ways its better.

News

Earplay skill on Alexa

“Earplay: Alexa Hosts a Transformative New Way to Tell Stories” by Len Edgerly at Medium – October 28, 2016

Earplay website

Eastgate Systems, creator of the Storyspace hypertext tool

Tech Tip

Prime Photos

Interview with Robert Masello

The Jekyll Revelation by Robert Masello

The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley

Dracula by Bram Stoker

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

The Master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis Stevenson

“Invictus” by William Ernest Henley

The Romanov Cross: A Novel by Robert Masello

The Medusa Amulet: A Novel of Suspense and Adventure by Robert Masello

Blood and Ice by Robert Masello

Content

New York Times 2016 Bestseller List at the Kindle Store

Next Week’s Guest

Jonathan Myers, co-founder and chief executive officer of Earplay.

A tool for sharing Kindle Chronicles episodes: Overcast.fm

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Perspective” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

Right-click here and then click “Save Link As…” to download the audio to your computer, phone, or MP3 player.

 

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This Week’s Kindle Chronicles Guest Is the Author Robert Masello

robert-masello-1For Friday’s show I recorded a Skype interview today with Robert Masello, author of The Jekyll Revelationset for release on November 8. Masello’s new novel is an imaginative, richly layered story that weaves Jack the Ripper and Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde together with environmental threats California. I am about a third of the way through the Advance Reading Copy (ARC) provided by 47North, Amazon Publishing’s mysteries imprint.

Masello previous novel was The Einstein Prophecypublished in August of 2015 by 47North. Before that, his numerous bestselling books, including The Romanov Cross, were published by Random House’s Bantam imprint and other Big Five publishers. One reason I made a note to catch up with him for today’s interview was that I learned at BookExpo America in May about his switch from the biggest of the Big Five to Amazon Publishing.

To say this prolific, talented author is happy with his new home at Amazon Publishing understates what I heard this afternoon from Santa Monica. There are drawbacks, he said, the most notable being that he never sees his APub books displayed on a table at Barnes & Noble and most independent bookstores. Those retailers, who in their high-minded commitment to free access to ideas, refuse to display Amazon’s books because– well, I’m not really sure what the reason is except that they really, really don’t like Amazon.

The traditional publishers also have an advantage in generally offering larger advances than Amazon, Masello said. But Amazon pays royalties every month instead of every six months, and Amazon provides sustained marketing and promotion for books that results in a steadier income stream after publication.

I loved hearing about Masello’s creative process for his books, which pose daunting historical mysteries that he writes his way toward solving, without an outline. In the case of The Jekyll Revelation, the mystery includes the identity of Jack the Ripper. His historical research is extensive, backed up by APub’s meticulous proof-reading and fact-checking.

After we concluded the recording, Masello told me Amazon had sent him an Alexa-powered Echo to celebrate a sales milestone for The Einstein Prophecy. “I haven’t opened it,” he told me. “I need to find someone who will help me set it up.” If I’d been in Santa Monica instead of Cambridge I would have loved to do the honors!

 

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TKC 429 Bufo Calvin

ILMK Blog pic short 660 pixels

Bufo Calvin is the creator of the I Love My Kindle blog and The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip

Interview starts at 9:49 and ends at 36:45

If you want to watch “Devil Girl from Mars” you can go and watch it on this site. What’s happening so far is that I’m having a great time with it. I’m adding stuff to it. Virtually no one else ever goes there. I kind of feel like I’m up in my attic, and I put all these things on the wall and that’s great and I’m sort of obsessed with the idea of that. But nobody is ever coming up the ladder into the attic at this point.

 

News

“Amazon Japan introduces ‘Manga Model’ Kindle Paperwhite with eight times more storage” at The Verge – October 18, 2016

Amazon press release in Japanese announcing “Manga Model” Kindle Paperwhite – October 18, 2016

Kindle Paperwhite

“Amazon Music Unlimited” at The Lefsetz Newsletter – October 10, 2016

“Music Streaming Showdown: Amazon Music Unlimited vs. Spotify” by Alex Fitzpatrick at Time – October 18, 2016

“Apple lawsuit says 90 percent of ‘official’ chargers sold on Amazon are fake” by James Vincent at The Verge – October 20, 2016

“Amazon could be a lot bigger than we think” by Elizabeth Weise at USA Today – October 20, 2016

 

Interview with Bufo Calvin

I Love My Kindle blog

The Measured Circle’s Geek Time Trip at The History Project

TMCGTT links mentioned: H. P. Lovecraft, Devil Girl from Mars, Night of the Living Dead directed by George Romero, Piers Anthony,

Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D. H. Lawrence, Strange Worlds comic debut on November 1, 1950, Batman radio show on September 5, 1950,

Amazon Prime Reading

One Murder More by Kris Calvin

 

Content

Ken Gunther’s list of free eBook sources:

www.freebooksy.com has an amazing collection of free books. I am on their mailing list and every day get an email with links to free books available from Amazon. You can filter your list and only get notified about books available in your favorite genres (science fiction, legal thriller, etc)

www.bookbub.com – every day I get an email from the folks at Bookbub with a list of books available for free, 99 cents and $1.99.

The above sites apparently carefully monitor amazon.com and when Amazon is having a free book promotion I get notified by email.

I also use ebook.bike – This site used to be called TUEBL.ca which is an acronym for The Ultimate E-Book Library. You need to go to the web site and can search for the title or author you are interested in. You can download the books as Epub or text files and then use a tool like Calibre to convert them to azw files for the Kindle. You need to click on the download link and then “Download Epub” or “Download Text” to select the format you want. There are lots of other links on ebook.bike, I stay away from them.

Calibre

Amazon’s new “100 books for a lifetime of eating and drinking”

 

Next Week’s Guest:

Robert Masello, author of The Jekyll Revelation

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Perspective” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

Right-click here and then click “Save Link As…” to download the audio to your computer, phone, or MP3 player.

 

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TKC 428 Tina Pohlman

tina-credit-ric-kallaher

EVP and Publisher, Open Road Integrated Media

Interview ‪starts at 15:33 and ends at 43:28

We are not an agency publisher. So we don’t have any control over the consumer price. We set the digital list price, and we don’t have control over the consumer price. And Amazon is free to discount it to whatever price they want. And I would also point out that we are very aggressive in the number of and the frequency with which we promote our books in price promotions. (Photo credit: Ric Kallaher)

News

“Amazon Music Unlimited versus Prime Music: What’s the Difference?” by Jeff Gamet at The Mac Observer – October 12, 2016

Amazon press release on Music Unlimited service – October 12, 2016

“Amazon to Expand Grocery Business With New Convenience Stores” by Greg Bensinger and Laura Stevens at The Wall Street Journal – October 12, 2016

“If Amazon is really opening brick-and-mortar grocery stores, it’s a big deal” by Sarah Halzack at The Washington Post – October 11, 2016

Wall Street Journal Tech News Briefing podcast – October 13, 2016

Tech Tip

“New! Collection management comes to MYCD (Manage Your Content and Devices)” by Bufo Calvin at I Love My Kindle – October 13, 2016

Interview with Tina Pohlman

Open Road Integrated Media

The Corfu Trilogy by Gerald Durrell: My Family and Other Animals (Book 1), Birds, Beasts, and Relatives (Book 2), and The Garden of the Gods (Book 3)

The Durrells in Corfu Season 1 on PBS Masterpiece

The Alexandria Quartet by Lawrence Durrell

Click here to sign up for the Open Road Early Bird Books email list

Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street by John Brooks

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

Wittgenstein’s Mistress by David Markson with Afterword by David Foster Wallace

Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus by Ludwig Wittgenstein

The Sympathizer: A Novel (Pulitzer Prize for Fiction) by Viet Thanh Nguyen

Content

“PBS’s ‘Durells in Corfu’ gets its glow from the Greek Island” by Matthew Gilbert at The Boston Globe – October 13, 2016

“‘The Durrells in Corfu’ Review: An Island of Charm” by John Anderson at The Wall Street Journal – October 13, 2016

Next Week’s Guest

Bufo Calvin, creator of the I Love My Kindle blog

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Perspective” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

Please feel free to leave a review of my podcast at the iTunes Store. It will help spread the word to new listeners!

Right-click here and then click “Save Link As…” to download the audio to your computer, phone, or MP3 player.

 

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TKC 427 Chris Brogan

chris-brogan_profile-2015_please-credit-vendela-media-1

Author of  Find Your Writing Voice 

Interview ‪starts at 16:18 and ends at 42:39

I don’t think books are going to evolve, because I think other things are there to take that slack up. And I think that’s okay. The one thing I can tell you is I have a lot of print books in my life, even though I read mostly digital now. Every time I have a print book I always want to be clicking a link or something. I always want to be grabbing some text and dropping it into Evernote. There are a lot of moments where the technology of paper is frustrating to me. And yet, I write on paper every day. I have a paper notebook beside me at all times every day, and I like getting a physical book. I have the new David Eggers, and it’s beautiful. It looks beautiful. It smells nice, and there’s nothing like that. I don’t know. I don’t think the future of books is as cool as we thought it might be. There’s no jet pack. (Photo by Vendela Media)

News

Up to $50 off Kindle eReaders – limited time offer for Prime members

“Amazon Prime Reading gives members even more e-books” by Ben Fox Rubin at CNET – October 5, 2016

“Amazon introduces Prime Reading…and hits a sweet spot for many customers” by Bufo Calvin at I Love My Kindle

“Amazon’s Alexa group is on a massive hiring spree” by Jason Del Rey at Recode – October 1, 2016

Tech Tip

IFTTT recipes for Amazon Alexa

Interview with Chris Brogan

Find Your Writing Voice: How to write more like your amazing self, for books, blog posts, and email by Chris Brogan

Essential Zen Habits by Leo Babauta

Trust Agents and The Impact Equation, by Chris Brogan and Julian Smith

Canva free book covers

Pressbooks

The Freaks Shall Inherit the Earth: Entrepreneurship for Weirdos, Misfits, and Word Dominators by Chris Brogan (2014)

Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade by Robert Cialdini

How to Live a Good Life by Jonathan Fields

The Story Grid: What Good Editors Know by Shawn Coyne with introduction by Steven Pressfield

Assassin’s Creed videogames

Heroes of the Frontier by David Eggers

Next Week’s Guest

Tina Pohlman, executive vice president and publisher at Open Road Integrated Media, which is releasing The Corfu Trilogy by Gerald Durrell on October 11, 2016

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Perspective” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

Right-click here and then click “Save Link As…” to download the audio to your computer, phone, or MP3 player.

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Amazon Introduces Prime Reading, a New Benefit for Prime Members

screen-shot-2016-10-05-at-6-32-00-amAmazon this morning introduced an additional, free benefit of Amazon Prime membership. It’s called Prime Reading, and it enables Prime members to borrow up to 10 titles at a time from a rotating selection of books, magazines, and comics. If you are already paying $10 a month for a Kindle Unlimited subscription, the new Prime Reading content will be in addition to the 10 KU titles you can borrow at a time.

In a press release last night that was embargoed until today at 6:30 AM ET, Amazon said Prime Reading features the following:

  • “Over a thousand popular books: Enjoy a diverse selection of titles including Red Sparrow, The Butterfly Garden, The 5 Love Languages, The Atlantis Gene, Lonely Planet travel guides and books from best-selling authors Brad Thor, Barry Eisler, Stephen Covey, James Altucher, Rachel Abbott and more.
  • “Premium Magazines: Stay on top of current trends with a rotating selection of fresh, full issues of top magazines covering sports, technology, cooking and home improvement, current affairs, notable people and more.
  • “Exclusive short content: Read Kindle Singles Classics classic short-form reads by the world’s top writers, from Susan Orlean to Norman Mailer. Also read from hundreds of Kindle Singles short stories, memoirs and essays from a variety of top writers.
  • “All your favorite Kindle features: Enjoy all the great Kindle features customers love such as Page Flip, Popular Highlights, X-Ray and Goodreads integration, all while using your favorite Kindle eReader or Fire tablet or free Kindle app for iPhone, iPad, Android phone, tablet and more.”

“Prime is the best deal in the history of shopping and today it got even better,” said Greg Greeley, Vice President Amazon Prime. “Prime members can now enjoy an awesome selection of books including The Hobbit, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, The Man in the High Castle, plus magazines and more with Prime Reading – all for free on any device.”

I will have more about Prime Reading on Friday’s Kindle Chronicles show, which will also feature an interview with social media pioneer Chris Brogan, author of an excellent new book titled Find Your Writing Voice: How to write more like your amazing self, for books, blog posts, and email.

 

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The Power of Habit – in 50 Words

2016-09-26_105225382_94b9e_ios

I want to write 500 words daily, so I’m starting with 50. I love Leo Babauta’s six-week habit-formation plan. It’s why I now begin my day with 15 minutes of sitting meditation, eat vegetables at lunch, and practice my guitar for an hour each afternoon. Habit trumps discipline every time.

(Cross post at LenEdgerly.com)

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TKC 426 Andrew Richard Albanese

Andrew Albanese

Senior Writer and Features Editor at Publishers Weekly

Interview ‪starts at 18:17 and ends at 41:59

The fact that we have rapidly declining eBook sales from major publishers and that we see for two years running now in the Pew surveys that eBook readership is not growing is stunning, considering the vast offerings that are now available in digital format. I just hope that the publishers haven’t, if not killed then wounded their golden reader, which is a reader that will read on any device, and certainly the data show they will read print and eBooks, toggle from one to the other. They’ll buy more books, they’ll check out more books. I think as reading becomes more pressured by other media, to hold back your power readers like that can’t be considered a wise strategy any more.

News

Amazon introduces all-new Fire TV Stick (press release) – September 28, 2016

“Amazon’s Fire TV Stick gets a smart upgrade to work with Alexa” by Amelia Heathman at Wired – September 29, 2016

All-new Fire TV stick at Amazon.com

Fire TV

Variety review of Woody Allen’s Amazon comedy “Crisis in Six Scenes” – September 29, 2016.

“Crisis in Six Scenes” at Amazon Prime instant video

“Introducing the Alexa Prize” (press release) September 29, 2016

Twitch Prime Guide

Tech Tip

All-new Fire HD 8

Interview with Andrew Richard Albanese

“Print or Digital, It’s Reading That Matters” by Andrew Richard Albanese at Publishers Weekly – September 16, 2016

“Book Reading 2016” Pew Research Center study – September 1, 2016

Author Earnings

Wattpad

The Frankfurt Book Fair October 1-23, 2016

Next Week’s Guest

Chris Brogan, author of Finding Your Writing Voice: How to write more like your amazing self, for books, blog posts, and email

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Perspective” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

Right-click here and then click “Save Link As…” to download the audio to your computer, phone, or MP3 player.

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TKC 425 James McQuivey

mcquivey-e1461937410463

Vice President and Principal Analyst at Forrester Research

Interview ‪starts at 14:34 and ends at 44:17

It’ll happen in the cloud, and it will get propagated out to eight, 10, 15, 20 million households that will have the more rudimentary voice enabled [Alexa device], and then suddenly it will become like magic. Suddenly that device, that Trojan horse that Amazon has gotten into your home, will suddenly unleash itself and become a truly intelligent agent. Is that a year away? At least, but we’re going to start having the feeling that there’s a real person there pretty soon. There are already people who feel that way today.

News

“Print or Digital, It’s Reading that Matters” by Andrew Richard Albanese at Publishers Weekly – September 16, 2016

BookRiot podcast Episode 174 – September 12, 2016

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz

“Amazon isn’t just online—it’s opening a real bookstore in Dedham” by Curt Woodward at The Boston Globe – September 19, 2016

“Amazon Says It Puts Customers First. But Its Pricing Algorithm Doesn’t” by Julia Angwin and Surya Mattu at ProPublica – September 20, 2016

Amazon statement related to ProPublica story and statement issued after the story was published

The New Yorker Radio Hour Episode 48 (Jeff Bezos reference ‪at 11:40)

Transparent on Amazon Video

Kindle for Kids bundle

Interview with James McQuivey

“Quick Take: Amazon Extends Its Lead By Taking Alexa Intelligent Agent Global” at Forrester – September 14, 2016

“Print or Digital, It’s Reading That Matters” By Andrew Richard Albanese at Publishers Weekly – September 16, 2016

All-New Echo Dot (2nd Generation)

Amazon Echo

“I’ve Got a Rant in Me” – Episode 174 of the BookRiot podcast

Content

Bourgeois Dignity: Why Economics Can’t Explain the Modern World by Deirdre N. McCloskey

Bourgeois Equality: How Ideas, Not Capital or Institutions, Enriched the World by Deirdre N. McCloskey

Blog Nation list of book review blogs

Next Week’s Guest

Andrew Richard Albanese, author of “Print or Digital, It’s Reading that Matters” at Publishers Weekly

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Perspective” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

Right-click here and then click “Save Link As…” to download the audio to your computer, phone, or MP3 player.

 

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