Journal of an Extreme Horror Writer

Early Praise for Invisible Children's Book Instruction Manual
nickatillemans
InvisibleChildrensBookCover2

I magically produced an invisible book for my son one night and read it to him. I find it once or twice a week now; and he reads it to me. The story changes each night we read it. I wrote this manual to help others recreate our experience.

Anyways, I sent some copies out for review last weekend. Here's a link to the first review:

http://www.hopelessbibliophile.com/2014/10/book-review-invisible-childrens-book.html

You can purchase an ebook for $2.99 here:

http://www.amazon.com/Invisible-Childrens-Book-Instruction-Manual-ebook/dp/B00O7DNSF0/

Or a print copy here for $5.99:

http://www.lulu.com/shop/nicholas-tillemans/invisible-childrens-book-instruction-manual/paperback/product-21848734.html

The Torture of Girth $0.99 ebook promotion
nickatillemans
It was a good first day of The Torture of Girth $0.99 ebook promotion. I've sold the most copies for any single day of any reduced-price promotion I've run on Amazon. The book peaked tonight at #14 in horror comedy ebooks on Amazon.com, making it to the first page of that category! If you've been thinking about picking it up, now would be great time to purchase it at its ultra low (lowest) price and be a mega help to me in building even more momentum. For those of you across the pond, it is on sale at Amazon.co.uk for 0.99 GBP as well. If any of you can help spread the word, I would appreciate it greatly. Cheers!

http://www.amazon.com/The-Torture-Girth-Nicholas-Tillemans-ebook/dp/B00I6VZ4XI/

Thinking Better of the Goodreads Winners/ Kegged a Rye IPA/ Taking Up the Anglo Concertina
nickatillemans
I was originally disappointed with the winners of my latest Goodreads drawing for my extreme horror novel; but I think I've changed my mind. While it is a mystery to me how some of them landed on my novel, I've taken a closer look at some of them. I can see how about half of them genuinely wanted to win my book. At first, I thought these must all be the ones who enter every contest, hoping to win something/anything; but I've noticed how some entered the drawing to win my novel while entering none of the other hundreds of drawings they could have entered. That means my novel resonated with them in some way. So, on further investigation, I'm thrilled and flattered. One of the winners is currently reading Naked Lunch. One of them seems to be fond of Richard Laymon. The others read my book description and took the plunge! BRAVO! I can only hope they will help other people make up their minds about the book. They are in a unique position to do so!

I touched base with two bloggers who said they would review my book in May. I've heard back from one of them. She said I haven't been forgotten. I haven't heard back from the other one yet. A third blogger had contacted me last month, asking for more time because a family member had passed away. Anyways, I've confirmed that at least two more professional reviews are in the pipeline. But there's no ETA. They're not on my payroll; so, they'll get to it when they get to it.

Last weekend, I kegged up a Cascadian Rye IPA with a friend of mine. We drank as much as possible; and he left with his keg. My keg is sitting awkwardly in the middle of my living room at room temperature until I can bleed one of the other kegs in the kegerator to make room for it there.

Besides that, I have ordered an Anglo Concertina, which is essentially a super deluxe harmonica with bellows. I've wanted to play this instrument since I was a child learning the merits of saying please and thank you. My parents thought I wanted to play the accordian; but I really wanted to play the concertina. I never took up the accordian. I was looking for something else. I just never knew what to call it.

I wait with baited breath. I'm like a child again waiting for this fantastic instrument to arrive.

Second Goodreads Giveaway Results
nickatillemans
This time, I gave away 10 books on Goodreads, hoping to put my book in the hands of some extreme horror fans. Initially, I was excited that more horror fans were signing up for the giveaway. Within the first week or two of the giveaway, I was very pleased with the mix of people who had entered the contest. Many of the entrants were Stephen King fans. It seemed that my warning had frightened off some of the people who weren't really into extreme horror. But, during the last two weeks of the giveaway, hundreds of new people entered the giveaway; and I couldn't see how many of the new entrants would necessarily get into my extreme horror novel, based on other books they had rated. I've clearly warned them with my description. So, I should remain open-minded. Some of them may really enjoy the novel. They could be looking for something really different; and my novel is very different from the standard fare.

In the end, there were 500 entries and none of the horror fans who entered in the first week or two of the giveaway won. While I am disappointed that the best matches didn't win, I am happy to get my book into more hands. And no one can say that I didn't warn them. In this final round of my giveaway, I have given everyone a Badi2d/MuscularFiction.com bumper sticker; and I have put a postcard into 4 of the envelopes.

So far, it seems I have built some momentum for the novel. I have given away 20 print copies of The Torture of Girth; and I did a giveaway of Acetone Enema, which put 378 copies of the Acetone Enema ebook in circulation.

I am seeing multiple sales/borrows of my books on Amazon each week; and I have sold hundreds of dollars worth of books since March. But I have been putting hundreds of dollars into marketing the book via giveaways and a book launch event. So far this year, I am breaking even. I know I need to make a splash to spread the word; so, for now, I'm putting everything back into promoting the book.

I still have several reviews in the pipeline. I have solicited dozens of reviews from pinpointed sites; and a handful of those sites have agreed to review the novel. Yet, I can't tell how many of them will materialize. We're months past the dates I've been promised on every single site that agreed to review the book. But I know so many of them are overwhelmed.

If you've read my novel, please write an honest review. Your review will help my sales, good or bad. People will take your opinions as they will.

So far, I haven't landed any reviews from my first 5-book giveaway. But, to be fair, my novel is a long one. So, I should take a long view and be patient. Only time will tell how everything will pan out in the end.

I'll keep you posted.

For now, here's the stats on the last group of ten Goodreads winners. I'll send their copies off this weekend.

GenderAgeCityState/ProvinceGenre
F52BOONEVILLEMS?
F48grovetownGAghost, drama
M48AtlantaGALiterary fiction, thrillers
F?HarrisvilleRI?
F26SpringfieldMO?
F?FairbanksAK?
F53Des moinesIa?
F43fredericktownMoSuspense
F30jacksonMi?
F?KapoleiHIFiction, Paranormal, Ebooks

Soul Searching
nickatillemans
Almost a decade ago, I accused a group of people on a message board of being bullies for making fun of a learning disabled writer. He was banned from the board and, so, couldn't speak in his own defense. Having distantly known the writer for years, it upset me and I spoke openly of my disgust. Immediately, I found that people were putting my words under the microscope; and I had to watch every word I said. After an ugly week on the board, things tapered off and the battle died down. A few people actually left the board; because they were offended that others took my side and actually helped me smooth things out. I paid attention to the drama for a couple of years; but, finally, I just gave up on it. I had too many other things going on; and I hardly had any time to even write at all.

Now, fast forward seven or eight years. That same learning disabled writer is still battling it out with these people. The people who were bullying him so many years ago are still at it, only now they are the victims of his idle verbal threats (made in anger). Because he has made every possible idle threat he could to men and women alike, these people have made the social media case against him.

This doesn't stop him. He's ready to keep fighting. There is no dissuading him from getting even with them…by "putting them under the microscope" or whatever the new tactic is. It continues to escalate.

So, he's a culprit too. But the odds are stacked tremendously against him; and people are sniping at him from all sides.

The unfairness of this is what makes my blood boil.

He's not an easy person to defend, especially not now. He has revealed that he rigidly holds ultra conservative beliefs, which are at odds with mine. He says to women he perceives as enemies that they should gang-raped and other ugly things like that, because those statements are probably the worst things he thinks he can say to them. He openly celebrates the deaths of people he dislikes and/or their relatives.

I've been trying to parse out the truth for the past week or so; and I've been doing a lot of soul-searching. I continue to speak in his defense where it seems warranted; but, at the same time, a lot of his beliefs and actions run counter to what I believe and how I would behave. So, I worry about what I'm defending in the end.

And, personally, I reap no benefit from it. I'm making enemies all over the place by simply showing kindness to this person and listening to his side without joining the attack.

Borders on crazy...
nickatillemans
Someone just gave Acetone Enema its' first post-giveaway review. It's a five star review. "Great book." "He has a very warped mind that borders on crazy."

I am thrilled...as with any review that doesn't nearly give me a heart attack. It is the first review Acetone Enema has seen in over a year. And the fifth review triggers three prominent quotes from the reviews to appear beside the breakdown of ratings on Amazon.

So, I feel like a big shot until I realize that my sales rank is rapidly slipping towards # 1 million.

That's okay. It could easily be 12+ million. It's sales are still in the top 10% of ebooks on Amazon.

Of course, I need more reviews. Please write a review on Amazon and Goodreads if you've read anything I've written.

Acetone Enema Book Giveaway Results
nickatillemans
There were a total of 378 free downloads over the 4 day giveaway: 228+60+48+28+20=378.I expect that the sites to which I submitted the giveaway had the biggest impact over the first two to three days. It would appear that simply being in the top 20 free horror short stories category over the course of the five day giveaway contributed to maybe 20 downloads per day. The free listing appeared on Book Goodies, Read Cheaply and Frugal Freebies. People downloaded books in the USA, UK, Germany, Japan, Canada and Australia. I've entered the spreadsheet data below. Hopefully, some of these people decide to read and review the story collection. That's my hope.


10-Jun11-Jun12-Jun13-Jun14-JunTOTAL FREE DOWNLOADS
USA22251461718354
UK4613216
Germany021104
Japan100102
Canada100001
Australia010001
       
TOTALS22860482220378

Acetone Enema Book Giveaway on Amazon: Day One
nickatillemans
Acetone Enema reached a #3 ranking in the top 100 Free Kindle Horror Short Stories. It reached a #11 ranking in the top 100 Free Kindle Single Authors Short Stories and a ranking of #1,114 in Free Kindle Ebooks. This is helping me reach a lot of people. As of my last count, 230 people have downloaded the free ebook since Tuesday morning. People looking on Amazon for free horror short stories or free single authors short stories will find it. It's free for the rest of this week on Amazon, so time will tell if new people continue to find it and download it.

A little over a week ago, I spent hours submitting my free ebook listing to twenty different giveaway and bargain ebook sites. So far, the listing has appeared on two of the sites: Frugal Freebies and Read Cheaply. From all the downloads I'm seeing, it looks like those sites have generated enough attention to help me hit a tipping point. I've also posted two links on Facebook, one of which cross-posted on Twitter. I think the posts on Facebook and Twitter may have helped some as well.

All in all, the first day of the giveaway has been a successful one. Thanks to Frugal Freebies and Read Cheaply for listing my book and to my friends on Facebook and Twitter who are helping me spread the word. Most importantly, thanks to those of you who are taking the time to read my books. That's the point of all this, isn't it?

Cheers!

By the way, here's a link to the Amazon page if you haven't picked up the book yet:

http://www.amazon.com/Acetone-Enema-Collection-Stories-ebook/dp/B007TK5FVI/

My 3-and-a-Half-Year-Old Son Wanted to Sit in a $4-$5K Massage Chair at Costco Last Weekend...
nickatillemans
My son climbed up into the chair and was looking for the remote control. I found it sitting on the back of the chair and handed it to him. My son understands how to work remote controls. He doesn't suck or chew on them. He's almost four years old. But he loves massage chairs. There is a massage pad at home, which he calls "The Tickler."

I can't imagine that my son will find a button on the controller that will destroy the chair. For $5K, there had better not be any such button on the remote control.

Suffice it to say that my son is ready to have a bit of fun. Maybe Daddy will sit in the chair next to him and give the extremely expensive chair a spin. Of course, I'm skeptical. I don't routinely spend $5k on a single chair.

Anyways, as soon as I hand the remote control to my son, some sales guy rushes up behind me as if I'm some idiot child, saying "Don't just hand it to him!" with that scolding tone of voice.

I did not engage the man who was trying to sell these apparently fragile, preposterous chairs (unsuccessfully). I simply turned my attention to my son; and quietly told him we should leave. And we left.

The chair should have a special attachment, just for that guy. Maybe it does. Perhaps, that's why he's so covetous of it.

Free Acetone Enema Ebook Giveaway Next Week/Brewing 10 Gallons of Cream Ale Tomorrow
nickatillemans
The free promotion will run from June 10th-June 14th. This is the first time I have ever run a free promotion on Amazon. So, it will be a new experience for me. I've held back, because I didn't want to give anything away without having something else to sell. For that matter, I didn't even think about running a discounted promo until I published The Torture of Girth. Acetone Enema will be what they call a lead book. Hopefully, people who enjoy Acetone Enema will buy The Torture of Girth. Of course, that's the hope. What I've read more recently suggests that free promotions are pretty much always a good idea. It makes sense in my experience and by introspecting.

There are people who will go to almost any length to get things for free. Those people will find them in abundance. I won't ever lose a sale on them by giving the book away. After all, why buy my book when they could download another one for free? Sales copy can be compelling; but, face it, we're all jaded. They may never encounter my book or read my pitch; and, if they do, so what? It couldn't be compelling enough to entice them to pay to take a chance on me. If they read my book, I may win some of them over. They may buy my next book. If they talk about my book or review it, they'll do me a great service by putting the book in front of more people who may be in the purchasing window when the book is selling for $2.99.

Some people will only buy whatever they like on their own timeline. Something looks interesting; and they buy it before they forget about it, whether or not it is free or discounted, or what-have-you. They follow their gut instincts. They'll give the book a try and cut their losses if it doesn't pan out. Either they don't have time for coupon clipping or it's just not their thing. It's a zen thing. The odds of them running into my book while I happen to be giving it away for free are pretty slim.

Still, others won't even look at anything that doesn't come with a lot of balanced reviews. They aren't looking to buy something on a lark or even download something for free. Unless I can put the book in front of a lot of people and amass a lot of reviews, they'll never take a chance on my book.They don't download free ebooks.

This is the reason many authors immediately do free promotions. Ultimately, I'm doing the same thing, only rolling it out with more restraint. As writers, we practice a lot of restraint from the start. By the time we publish our books we're ready to go. Of course, it's easy to lose sight of many crucial things in the process. We need to practice even more restraint. It's a long way to love. This is why I think brewing my own beer has helped me.

Did I mention that I'm brewing 10 gallons of Cream Ale tomorrow? I've been brewing beer for six or seven years now. The craft has taught me practical restraint, which spills over into how I approach writing and selling my books these days.

Since I haven't quit my day job, time is on my side. Better that I do it right than do it right now. Hurry up and wait. I think we could all use a little more practice.

That's all for now. It's time to add the yeast to the starter wort in the Erlenmeyer flasks I've been chilling for the last two hours. Nothing is immediate with brewing. We'll have Cream Ale for the 4th of July (as well as a few other things I've had in the works for several months)!

Cheers!

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