IWSG: Ask PZM April 2015 and A-Z Challenge

It’s that the first Wednesday of the month, which also means it’s Insecure Writer’s Support Group Wednesday. Thanks to our noble Ninja Captain Alex J Cavanaugh, it’s time to share our fears and insecurities, or support and assistance. Doesn’t matter which.

If you’d like to join Insecure Writer’s Support Group, click hereBe sure to link to this page and display the badge in your post.

Our hashtag is #IWSG

The awesome co-hosts for today are: Suzanne Furness, Tonja Drecker, Toi Thomas, Rachna Chhabria, Fundy Blue, and Donna Hole!

Please stop by and thank them for their time. Yay co-host/minions!

It’s also April, which means the A to Z Challenge. Over at IWSG, we’re spreading encouragement and inspiration the entire month. Should be a good one. 


Q:  I have noticed that there have been changes to the format of Amazon’s Author Pages.  What are these changes?

When I emailed Amazon recently about the Author Page for my 90-year-old father (see www.amazon.com/author/albertzimbler) in connection with the book feed(see explanation below) of the covers of his five humorous short story books about love and sex, here is the answer I got from Amazon:

“The default edition [paperback or Kindle] reflected on Author Pages are sorted based on actual customer shopping behaviors and we’re not able to manually adjust the titles shown in this feature.

“Author Pages were redesigned to be more visually engaging and to make it easy for readers to learn about authors as they shop for books on Amazon.

“Below are the updates we’ve made to the Author Page:

“A book feed at the top of the page with large book covers.

 “Biographies are now located below the profile image on the left column.
“Social network updates (Tweets, blog posts, image and video uploads) are ordered from newest to oldest in a new ‘Author Updates’ feed.
“The old Author Pages only showed the most recent Tweet and blog post. In the new design, we show up to 20 Tweets and all the blog entries in the RSS feed.

“We do hope you have a better understanding of how our system works at present.”

(Do note the words “at present” – with Amazon things can and do change frequently.)

If you’re an author in the U.S. with books on Amazon and you have not yet claimed your free Author Page, go here now to do so – www.authorcentral.amazon.com

Q. What are Amazon giveaways?

Amazon now has provided a way to give away physical productsincluding books directly from Amazon. 

You won’t see this option on your book’s Kindle page on Amazon, although you will see it near the bottom of your book’s paperback page on Amazon:

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers.
What is interesting about this new opportunity is that you do not have to be the author of a book to do this.  Anyone with an Amazon account who meets the criteria for setting up a giveaway can give away your physical books.

Your giveaway type can be a lucky number (for example, every x entrant wins) or first-come, first-served (for example, the first x entrants).

Amazon says the lucky number type “lasts longer and has more entrants; works better to grow fans or followers” and the first-come, first-served type “creates a sense of urgency; rewards fast action time.”

And there is a field in the setup if you want to require entrants to follow you on Twitter.

While I have not yet tried out this option, I do plan to do so in the future.  Meanwhile, go to www.amazon.com/giveaway for more details.

Phyllis Zimbler Miller blogs on book-related topics at www.PhyllisZimblerMiller.com and her Amazon Author Page is at www.amazon.com/author/phylliszimblermiller

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