Site functionality, Books on Board mystery, Tharp.
1. Good news: According to our developers, the last of the bugs have been worked out, and the BookCyclone site is fully functional. One thing we had to sort out was the downloading issue. There was a disconnect on account of philosophical differences: they felt that we should allow multiple downloads, in case the customer’s browser quit or their connection timed out. This is a good point, but the problem is that it would have opened the door to piracy. (We’re already not supporting DRM. There’s an upper bound to our generosity.) If anyone has trouble with a download, we’d prefer to send the e-book file ourselves, via e-mail. I don’t think this is specified anywhere in the site, so we’ll have to add the text somewhere appropriate.
There’s still one glitch that I’m aware of. It concerns attempts by non-customers to send us payment. Weightless Books pays via PayPal, and one author has tried to send us a payment for extra copies of her book. In both cases, their transactions were declined; they got an error message from PayPal stating that we only accept payments via our website (i.e., bookcyclone.com). This was strange and random. We’re working on it. But it should have no bearing whatsoever on the site’s functionality.
With all this taken care of, we can now start the next stage of our nefarious plan: publicity.
2. A deepening mystery: I have previously announced a supplier relationship with Books on Board. Then their publisher accounts rep guy apparently quit answering e-mail. They’ve got our contract and they’ve sent the uploading guide. If we have an account there, I’m following up on this, because although I’m very comfortable with the need for course correction, I don’t like announcing things that subsequently don’t happen after we’ve been told they will. With a bit of luck, we’ll figure out what’s going on.
3. Chris Tharp’s Dispatches from the Peninsula, our 3rd S8P book, is attracting quite a bit of attention prior to its release. Several newspapers in Korea and on the US West Coast have taken notice and will be doing features and/or reviews. I’m optimistic about this one, just as I was optimistic about When the de la Cruz Family Danced (there have been quite a few requests for review copies, and so far the book has gotten raves).