Book Reviews: The Why and the How?

Here’s a great link to an article by K.S Brooks from Indies Unlimited on why leaving book reviews on Amazon or Goodreads matter to all authors, but especially independent authors like me.

Why book reviews matter?

Everything she writes in this article is spot on, and I couldn’t have said it any better.

I’ve also included a link to a blog post from 2017 where I explain step by step how easy it is to leave a book review (or any review) on Amazon. I hope this will be helpful to folks out there who might be intimidated by the review process.

How to post a book review on Amazon?

I trust you’ll find these articles both informative and perhaps, inspirational. 🙂

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The Little Things

Every year around Christmas time, I like to give or send copies of my latest book to family, friends and co-workers who I think might enjoy a good read. I’ve done this for the last several years without any pre-conceived notions or expectations of ever hearing back from any of the recipients and that’s what usually happens.

Under those circumstances, I like to assume that they read the book, enjoyed it and didn’t feel the need to mention it, because the alternative would be that they didn’t enjoy it or even worse they didn’t bother reading it. Both of those options are not things I like to dwell on, but I have to admit that sometimes those thoughts creep into the back of my mind.

This year just before Christmas, I was pleasantly surprised when a co-worker told me they’d started reading, ‘The Twisted Road Ahead’ and couldn’t put down. They were so pleased with the book that they bought copies of the rest of my paperbacks.

After Christmas my supervisor stopped by my desk to tell me that he hadn’t had a chance to read ‘Twisted’, but his wife (an avid reader) had and she thought it was well written and the stories were wonderful.

Lastly, I received an email from an Aunt (I hadn’t heard from in awhile) to thank me for sending her a copy of my book. She wrote that once she started reading it she couldn’t put the darn thing down. That was so nice of her to say, but the thing that really got me was that she told me she was very proud of me. Sigh!

My Mom & Dad passed away before I published my first book and I’ve often wondered what they would have thought of my writing. I know it wasn’t my parents speaking, but I can’t begin to tell you how much my Aunt’s words of kindness meant to me.

So what’s my point? 

Sometimes, it’s the little things that matter. A thoughtful gesture, an unexpected expression of praise and considerate words of truth are all we really need as writers, and as human beings.

Thank you for reading my books.


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Literary Humor

Visions of every first draft I’ve ever written. 🙂


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A Banner Sales Year

Thank you for making 2018 my best book sales year thus far.

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Happy New Year

Thank you for reading my books, following this blog and for making 2018 my best book sales year ever.

I wish you and your loved ones a very happy and healthy New Year.

Let’s make 2019 a joyful and productive year.     JDO



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Always a Thrill

It’s always a thrill when I find one of my books being sold in faraway places.

I just discovered that my latest book The Twisted Road Ahead is being sold on the booktopia website.  booktopia is Australia’s #1 Online Bookstore.

How cool is that?


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Literary Humor

Been there, done that. 🙂

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Why not traditional book publishing?

As an Indie Author, I’m often asked why I don’t use a traditional book publisher. Why not chase one of the big-five publishers for a book contract?

Well, here’s an interesting link to author Dean Wesley Smith’s article on eight good reasons to Stay Away From Traditional Book Publishing.

The man speaks from experience and honestly, I couldn’t have said it any better. 🙂

Stay Away from Traditional Book Publishing – Dean Wesley Smith.


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Have A Very Furry Christmas?

Every year since I first released A Very Furry Christmas back in 2015, November and December (for obvious reasons) have always been the two months when I sell the most copies of the book.

This trend has continued this year, but to my delight, I’ve also noticed that I’ve received several new book reviews and ratings on both Amazon and Goodreads, something that hadn’t happened in the past. I’m not sure why that is, but nevertheless, I’m very great full to everyone who has read the book and has taken the time to write a review.

Although I’m proud to report that all the review and ratings (thus far) have been wonderfully positive and I’m fascinated by the wide range of emotions expressed by the readers who left reviews.

When I wrote the stories, I was attempting to write positive portrayals of real people and how their interaction with their feline friends enhanced their lives. I also wanted to make sure that the stories had a message and that the endings were perceived as happy ones. I used the season of Christmas as a back drop because; as they say on The Hallmark Channel, it’s a magical time of the year where anything is possible. 🙂

I think that for the most part I accomplished my goals, because most readers found the stories to be sweet, heartwarming, endearing and the perfect read to get you into the Christmas Spirit.

If you haven’t already done so, I encourage you to check out the book by using the ‘Look Inside’ feature on Amazon’s website. You can also download a sample of the book to your Kindle device or App and check it out there..

The Kindle version is available for only $0.99 USD or if you prefer the paperback, it’s $5.99 USD. Either one would make a great Christmas/Holiday gift for friends and family.

Lastly, let me remind you that if you purchase the paperback version directly from Amazon, you get the Kindle version free.

A Very Furry Christmas – Kindle

A Very Furry Christmas – Paperback

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The Twisted Road Ahead – eBook

The Twisted Road Ahead: An Anthology of Short Stories is now available in eBook format for only $2.99 USD.

The Twisted Road Ahead – Amazon

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