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Scammers Break The Kindle Store

Worth a read for any reader or writer.

David Gaughran

On Friday, a book jumped to the #1 spot on Amazon, out of nowhere; it quickly became obvious that the author had used a clickfarm to gatecrash the charts.

The Kindle Store is officially broken.

This is not the first time this has happened and Amazon’s continued inaction is increasingly baffling. Last Sunday, a clickfarmed title also hit #1 in the Kindle Store. And Amazon took no action.

Over the last six weeks, one particularly brazen author has put four separate titles in the Top 10, and Amazon did nothing whatsoever. There are many such examples.

I wrote at the start of June about how scammers were taking over Amazon’s free charts. That post led to a phone conversation with KDP’s Executive Customer Relations.

Repeated assurances were given that the entire leadership team at Amazon was taking the scammer problem very seriously indeed. But it was also stressed that the…

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CyberWitch Press Short Fiction Anthologies 2016

I love the written word. (Not a secret.) Books are my narcotic, my raison d’etre. I can spend hours lost in a good novel, where chores don’t matter and sometimes my dogs get fed later than they’d like.

But I really love the short story. I think this particular medium often gets overlooked in a society obsessed with BIGGER IS BETTER. A great short story can pack a punch in less than a few thousand words. To me, that is the signature of a phenomenal writer.

eclectivecovers

About four years ago, I was part of a great group of authors. We released fun, quirky short story collections every few months. (Click here to see.) They were by no means professional, as we were all pretty new to the game. We edited each other’s work. My friend and cowriter Tara West created eye-catching cover art, and I did the formatting. Not to mention, the genres were alllll over the place. But surprisingly, they’re still pretty popular. We see hundreds of downloads a month, and an interesting percentage of people who buy my novels have found me through those collections. They have remained free to download for years, and thus have become free, eternal promotion for all the authors involved.

I’ve been thinking about doing this for a long time and decided to stop thinking and do it: CyberWitch Press is branching out into releasing short story anthologies. Now, because paranormal is my genre of choice, and I want the authors in these anthologies to be able to market to their fans for each other, these will be paranormal/urban fantasy/high fantasy anthologies.

For 2016, I’m tentatively planning three anthologies.

Current anthology call for submissions:

 

A Midsummer Night’s Sidhe

Broomsticks

Carol of the Spells

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