We’re Not Gonna Take It…

I see it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. Actually, I’ve been spending the remainder of the summer hanging with the family and doing what moms do. (I love it.) But I miss writing.

I went to dinner with the family tonight and planned on coming home to write….but is that what I did?  Nope.

Instead of writing the YA story that I’ve been working on for the last few weeks, I spent the last hour and a half gathering information to send to google regarding pirate websites who are hosting copies of my books.

Yep – an hour and a half.

That really sucks, especially when there are so many other things I’d rather be doing like… watching TV, sitting with my kids, WRITING….all of those sound so much better than hunting down lowlifes who are insistent upon STEALING copies of my and other authors works – uploading them to sites where others can down-load them…FOR FREE!!

So you might wonder…

  • WHY? Why would you spend time sending DCMA Takedown notice after notice?? – Because STEALING is wrong and to ignore the issue would disappoint me.
  • Is it about the money?  Nope, not at all. It’s about stealing.
  • But, I can’t afford the $___ (name-a-price here) book and it’s easier/cheaper to get it…FOR FREE. – Yeah, and it’s easier to swipe the candy at the checkout counter instead of waiting in a long line to PAY FOR IT!
  • But the site I down-loaded it from said that it was legal! – WRONG! Absolutely FALSE. They will host thousands and thousands of books and allow down-loads UNTIL they get caught. Of course, it will be taken down, but for every one that comes down, more go up.
  • It’s only $___ (name-a-price) and the author makes so much money anyway. It’s not like they’re going to notice. – OMG….I can’t even begin to explain how incredibly INCORRECT this is! Allow me to explain.

AUTHOR INCOME on a $3.99 e-Book sold via Amazon:

  • For every $3.99 book a Indie author sells, we get approximately 70% – which is about $2.79
  • Out of that $2.79 – we have to pay for
    • Editing – Starting around $200 and up
    • Cover design – $200 and up
    • Cover photography sessions – Prices range from around $150 for 30 mins and up
    • Formatting – $100 and up
    • Proofing – Starting at $100
    • Advertising (including blog tours, release parties, swag for parties and giveaways, etc…) – AT LEAST $60 and up.
  • Oh yeah – did I mention we also have to pay taxes? Yep, because you know Uncle Sam likes to take a hefty chunk for himself.
  • This leaves us with mere pennies to save and spend on our next book. You know, the one we are hoping and praying is loved by readers because we bled and poured our soul into the story.

Let me state that I know the majority of readers buy the books they love. I also realize that many of us are on a budget so we can’t buy all the books we’d like. I’m in that category, too! There are so many books that I want to read right now, but I simply cannot afford to buy ALL of them right now. But, I’m not about to go and find a pirated copy. Nope, I’m going to wait until my next binge happens and buy them then.

In perusing the aforementioned pirate websites to gather information, I was beyond frustrated. If only there was a way to track down the offending individual(s) who shared the files to begin with so others could steal them. However, there are so many twists and turns these sites take to protect themselves and stay out there. All we can do is stay vigilant. But when I came across an ACTUAL person who was sharing a file of my book – my anger really grew. To put a name and face with someone who is actively stealing from me and so many others – well, let’s just say it took a lot of effort not to go after her and scold her with my words. Yeah, I agree….she probably wouldn’t have cared.

I know that I may offend some with this post, but those are probably the ones who have down-loaded illegal copies of books from myself and others. What I have to say to those individuals – IT IS STEALING. IT IS NOT RIGHT. YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOURSELF.

Real readers – real fans – don’t steal. These are the ones that authors rely on to share their love of our books. YOU are the ones that I want to thank because you respect the artist’s work and understand that $.99, $2.99, $3.99, etc… is not a lot of money to spend on hours of entertainment that you get lost in. THANK YOU for being true supporters and mostly – for being honest.

And if you stuck around to read this post in its entirety – well I ❤ you and think you are even MORE amazing! 😉

XO
~TK

😎 “We’re Not Gonna Take It”- Twisted Sister….ummmm, yep.

Find My Love…

Bully

It’s a word that is used often these days. It’s a powerful word. You hear it, read it or say it, and you likely cringe a little because of the image or feeling it invokes.

However, I know there are some people who hear the word and roll their eyes. They think it’s overused or say, “I was bullied, it happens to everyone.” Others say, “Eh, it helps you get tougher.”

The thing is, it does happen to many people, kids and adults alike. Every. Single. Day. That doesn’t make it right. What makes it worse, is that it seems there is a blind eye turned when it’s reported. No one wants to be “that” person, you know, the narc. And when it is reported, there seems to be this approach of holding hands and singing ‘Kumbaya’, and I’m sorry, that is a sorry solution. The only thing that seems to happen in that scenario is that the bully is empowered and the victim is left feeling powerless.

Me about 3 or 4 years old

Me: about 3 or 4 years old

As I kid, I was picked on, teased and put down. OftenBut, c’mon, who wasn’t in some fashion? It was crushing, and if I wanted to sit long enough to think about it, I can still recall how it felt. I remember hoping that, just once, I would fit in somewhere. Eventually I made wonderful friends. Some I still keep in touch with, and have grown apart from others, but all of those friends helped me become the person I am now. When you’re a kid, all you want is to fit in. Hell, as adults, isn’t that what we still want?

Fortunately, I can look back and wear the badge. Yeah, it happened to me, and I am tougher. I made it through, but some people aren’t so lucky. Whether it’s cyber, physical or emotional bullying, it’s painful and can cause real damage.

So why am I bringing this up in my blog today?

It’s simple. As a mom, I have tried to arm my kids with knowledge and I’ve tried to teach them compassion; to treat others with respect.

I look at kids and assume the best about them, assume their parents are instilling the same values. Yes, I realize we all have different values and morals, but I would like to think that the goal is the same: Kind, loving, smart, strong children. Right?

The thing about it is that some of those same kids, (you know the cute, popular and funny ones) are the ones who take food from other kids, who pass fake notes to embarrass classmates or who mock and tease for a laugh. So I am shocked when other parents don’t seem to care that their child IS that mean kid.

Is that a badge that is worn with honor? I don’t think so.

You might not know that October is National Bullying Prevention Month and it’s my hope that someday, all kids, teens and adults will be able to do whatever it is that makes them happy without fear of being bullied for it.

There are great sources of information at:

http://www.stopbullying.gov/what-is-bullying/

http://www.pacer.org/bullying/nbpm/

Thanks for reading and I’m hopping off my soapbox now. I really hope that if you were bullied, you leave a comment, however brief, to speak up and let others out there know they aren’t alone. Sometimes, just sharing that little bit with others can make a world of difference.

XO
~T

🙂 “Find My Love” by The Avett Brothers. OMG, this song, THIS song, just gets me choked up.