A Quote from my New Novel: One Mustn’t Begrudge Sorrow

My new, yet-to-be-released novel is on Kindle Scout through May 15. Please head on over and read the first couple chapters and if it looks good, please nominate it. If you nominate it, then:

  • I could win a publishing contract with Kindle Press. That’s pretty cool for me!
  • If I win a publishing contract, then you, who nominated it, will get a free copy of the Kindle version of the novel upon release. That’s pretty cool for you!

Nominate on Kindle Scout HERE!

I’m really fond of this novel. I’m not sure if others will be, but it is focused around a remarkable character – a former writer and revolutionary who turned his back on everything for love. But when his love encourages him to once again get involved, he reluctantly takes up his pen and writes a love story for an entire nation.

I hope you will like it. Here’s an exclusive excerpt. I don’t want to give you any details about the setting of this quote because it might give too much away. No spoilers here. But here goes anyways. Thanks for your nomination on Kindle Scout.

“We mustn’t begrudge sorrow, for it will always be with us. It will be our companion throughout our entire life, so we should learn to live uncomfortably with it, like a battle wound that will never fully heal. The only moment we control is the present. And the only emotion which will help one to embrace life in the present is happiness. Smile and live. Be happy and live. In trials, live. In sadness, live. Live at all times with a smile on your face and hope on your tongue. For what else is there in this life to be worthy of your time?”

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One More Day, the Thunderclap will Sound

On April 28, 12:00pm EST, my Thunderclap campaign which is supporting my Kindle Scout campaign will sound. About 1 day from now.

I have absolutely no idea what it will mean to my book in the long run, but I’m excited to find out. Here are the current numbers for my Thunderclap campaign:

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I pushed hard to get to 100 supporters and I’m so grateful for everyone who signed up. Of course, the big number sitting there is quite enticing: 122,819.  Naturally, that is the total possible social reach and the actual post/twitter will not come close to that. It will be a fraction. But the network is built around two key constituents: my friends who have shown interest in my writing and readers/bloggers who are consumed by books. That’s a good combination. Even if just a tiny fraction of that 122,000 clicked on my Kindle Scout account, it would make a difference. I mean tiny. Like 0.5% or 0.25%. Once the original number is so high, it doesn’t take much to make an impact. I suppose that’s the point and genius of Thunderclap.

My novel will be on Kindle Scout until May 15. This Thunderclap is, I believe, perfectly timed to help push me during the final two weeks to a strong finish. I have no idea what may happen, but it’s been enjoyable to join Kindle Scout, and whatever happens, I’m prepared for it.

If you haven’t joined my Thunderclap campaign, you have about a day to do so at this LINK!

If you want to check out my new novel on Kindle Scout and possibly nominate it for a publishing contract, you may do so HERE!

Thanks for your support!

The Trade-offs of Promotion

As anyone familiar with this blog is aware, I’m in the middle of a campaign on Kindle Scout to, hopefully, get a publishing contract for my new novel.

One of my on-line book reviewers suggested that I start a Thunderclap campaign to help get the word out about my Kindle Scout campaign.

I looked into it and thought it would be a great idea. But then, as I started moving forward with both campaigns at once, it became obvious that the people I’m contacting began to see both as one and the same. Hmmm. What to do?

During the first 5 days of my Kindle Scout campaign, I pushed the promotional button hard, trying to get people to nominate me on my Kindle Scout page. It worked. I got a swell of early support that put the novel on the “Hot and Trending” track.

I was getting very little traction with my Thunderclap campaign, which meant I had some decisions to make: should I continue promoting my Kindle Scout page OR should I stop promoting my Kindle Scout page and, for a while, exclusively promote my Thunderclap campaign which would, if successful, eventually directly promote my Kindle Scout campaign? Yes, kind of confusing. I know why my supporters were confused as well.

So here’s what I have done. I’ve stopped promoting my Kindle Scout page UNTIL I get enough people joined on my Thunderclap campaign that is scheduled to send the promotional blast on April 28 IF I get at least 100 people.

Is there a danger in stop promoting directly my Kindle Scout campaign? Yes. Might there be great rewards if I can get the Thunderclap to work? YES!

I’ve been pushing my Thunderclap HARD the last couple of days and my amazing friends and acquaintances are really coming through. I’m currently (as I write) at 83% of my goal, and the Thunderclap potential social reach is up to 79,614!  (Update: just hit 99%)

If I’m right, by pausing to focus on Thunderclap, I’m going to have a far bigger reach in the end. Plus, the blast will come out about 2 weeks before my Kindle Scout campaign finishes, hopefully perfect timing to help the novel to finish well.

As with any sort of promotional strategy, I could be completely wrong. But the broader point is this: one has to make the best possible decisions one can make given all the information one has. Once the decision is made and proper effort is put into it, the results are no longer up to you. So sit back and smile, regardless of what happens.

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Here’s my Thunderclap campaign page: THUNDERCLAP CAMPAIGN

Here’s my Kindle Scout campaign where you can nominate my new novel: KINDLE SCOUT CAMPAIGN

About that artwork…

In a recent Facebook ad I created, concerning my new novel on Kindle Scout, I pulled out this old picture. Jonnywhostood   This awesome drawing is the creation of Woon Bin Chang, an artist who saw a production of my play, “Almighty Might” in 2013 in Kuala Lumpur.  Woon-Bin was so moved by the piece that he drew this amazing piece of art which perfectly captures the mood and scenes of the mini-play. It was also this photo and that 2013 production which made me re-think this simple story about a man, standing in front of the presidential palace, waiting for the revolution to come. Eventually, I decided to give the story a full novel treatment. I changed the name to “Jonny who stood on the world” and then eventually changed it again to “A Love Story for a Nation.” Originally, Woon-Bin’s artwork was meant to be part of the cover design, but in the end I decided  to go with a more minimalistic look as you see above. But with Facebook’s limitations concerning the amount of text allowed in ad photos, it was the perfect time to bring out Woon-Bin’s artwork once again. It matches the tagline well: The revolution begins with an innocent smile. This novel is now on Kindle Scout, as it vies for a publishing contract with Kindle Press. If you haven’t done so already, please head over to its Kindle Scout page, read an excerpt, check out the synopsis, and, if it looks good, nominate it. It means a lot to me. The Kindle Scout campaign runs through May 15. Thanks for your support! You can nominate this novel for a publishing contract on Kindle Scout: HERE!

Will you join my promotional campaign on Thunderclap? Please. It’s free and easy!

I’m in need of 100 people willing to help my promotional campaign on Thunderclap a success in helping to promote my novel on Kindle Scout

What’s Thunderclap? It gathers folks with a common promotional goal (like those wanting me to succeed on Kindle Scout) and when 100 (or more) people join, it BLASTS out 1 message through all 100 people at a time. It’s the power of numbers which makes the difference.

It’s free!

It’s extremely easy to join a promotional campaign. How about 5 seconds?

It will only send ONE message on April 28 through your Facebook or Twitter concerning my novel on Kindle Scout.

It’s super easy, but it could mean a lot to me.

Please join my Thunderclap campaign HERE!

And if you haven’t nominated my novel for a publishing contract on Kindle Scout yet, please do so HERE!


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Kindle Scout Kick-off: Hot & Trending

My fourth novel’s Kindle Scout  campaign is off and running. Early results? HOT & TRENDING!

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I really appreciate everyone  who has nominated it so far, and if you haven’t checked out the  site yet, you can do so HERE!

If you nominate my book and it is chosen for publication through Kindle Press, you’ll receive a free Kindle version! Great for you, great for me!

I’m really fond of this novel. Quite different from my other ones with no mention of Vietnam. Shocker! Actually, the way I wrote it, there’s no mention of the name of the country at all. There’s a specific reason behind this, but I won’t go into that now.

Here’s the synopsis. If you go to the website, you can read the first three chapters.

Thanks again, and here’s hoping the hotness doesn’t flame out too soon!

The revolution starts with an innocent smile.

As nightly raids burn the capital city, the mundane existence of Gerald Sanpatri takes a dramatic shift when Rosia walks into his life bringing laughter and unexpected love. She inspires the ex-writer to once again take up his pen and write the impossible: a love story for an entire nation. A Love Story for a Nation chronicles the explosive and heart-warming journey of one country’s brush with history through the eyes of a courageous man who dared to stand up, smile, and think the unimaginable.

Help! My new novel on KINDLE SCOUT until May 15.

I’m excited to announce that my brand new, unpublished fourth novel, A Love Story for a Nation, is now on Kindle Scout in search of a publishing contract.


Readers (or anyone) can nominate my book. The more nominations my book gets, the more likely the Kindle Press editors will take a closer look and possibly offer me a contract.

You can help by:

  • Visiting my Kindle Scout page. If you like the excerpt or the sound of the novel. Nominate it!
  • Spread the word on your social networks. Any shared link is greatly appreciated!
  • Join my Thunderclap campaign to get the word out. It will start soon. More to follow.

PLUS – if you nominate my book and it gets published, you’ll get a copy for FREE!


Thank you for your support!

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