Link of the Week – #cockygate continues

June 5, 2018

Forward motion and a win in the #cockygate debacle from Authors Guild posted on June 1st.

https://www.authorsguild.org/industry-advocacy/authors-guild-rwa-prevail-court-defending-authors-cocky-trademark-dispute/

The court transcript as provided by Courtney Milan.


Link of the Week – #cockygate

May 8, 2018

Here in Romancelandia, we’ve had another kerfuffle that has left us a bit dumbfounded. It has been dubbed #cockygate, among other clever hastags. Seems an author is sending takedown notices to other authors who use the word “cocky” in their titles. This author is threatening legal action if they do not comply. You see, she has a registered trademark on the word. As you might imagine, this isn’t going to go well.

For those of you who haven’t watched this train wreck unfold, here are a few links for your amusement to get you up to date.

One by Legal Inspiration to help decipher what this means.

http://legalinspiration.com/?p=503

Here’s another post by The Digital Reader to show you first hand the goings-on.

https://the-digital-reader.com/2018/05/05/cockygate-faleena-hopkins-has-registered-a-trademark-on-cocky-and-is-using-it-to-threaten-other-romance-authors/

One to a Twitter thread to a well-known, best-selling romance author, Courtney Milan, who also happens to have legal experience.

And now one of our own, who happens to know a thing or two about intellectual property being a lawyer, and all, is about to go after the author like a dog with a bone.

 

 

 


Link of the Week – Amazon and Money Laundering

March 20, 2018

There seems to be no end to scams and the author is always on the raw end of the deal. Read, or watch the short video, on Fortune.com about a money-laundering scheme using independently published authors’ Amazon accounts.

http://fortune.com/2018/02/22/money-laundering-books-amazon/


Link of the Week – Rank Stripping

January 3, 2018

Instead of a Hump Day Kick Start today, I am posting a link to writer David Gaughran’s blog Let’s Get Digital. He outlines one author’s ongoing rank-stripping issue by Amazon. It’s a serious problem for innocent authors following the rules and it’s costing time, ranks, sales and marketing dollars. Ultimately, it’s just another punishment to authors trying to get any type of visibility in Amazon’s crowded marketplace using legitimate marketing techniques. It’s an outrageous abuse by Amazon’s KDP program—stripping ranks, deleting reviews, jacking with but buttons, burying discoverability in favor for Select authors, and more!

This is a must read!

https://davidgaughran.wordpress.com/2018/01/02/new-year-old-problem-innocent-author-rank-stripped-for-third-time/ 

We need to make a lot of noise over this. We must put on pressure for viable change. Spread the word and let Amazon know how you feel.


Happy Holidays!

December 25, 2017

MuseTracks wishes you a safe, joyous holiday filled with peace, love, and laughter.

 


2017 RWA Orlando in Pictures

August 2, 2017

Did you miss us? Sure you did!

The Romance Writers of America conference was held at Disney’s Mariott Swan and Dolphin last week. Naturally, it was an opportunity to take the kiddos on a magical vacation. So I came to town five days earlier, building memories. Nine to twelve hour days for three days at the Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, and the Magic Kingdom. My feet were screaming for mercy before the conference even started. Still, the awe and wonderment in my youngest daughter’s eyes when she met her favorite Disney characters, the laughter and squeals of my oldest daughter as we rode coasters, and the speed at which my hubby whipped out his camera to take pictures of Storm Troopers marching through the park made it all well worth it. Most definitely a vacation to cherish.

After the fam returned home, I stayed behind for the second leg on my Florida stay. I can’t say I was disappointed. How could I be? Workshops, education, networking, inspirational keynote speakers, meeting new friends, hugging old friends, yummy cocktails, and dancing—it was all so wonderful! See for yourself.

Arriving gives me the giggles.

We start off the conference with Level Up workshops on Wednesday. Stacey and I took a Master Class and an Indie Track class, each lasting 2 hours and each chock full of great information.

Intensive Workshop with Mark Dawson.

Another great workshop with Roxanne St. Claire and Kristen Painter.

Thursday was filled with more workshops, book signings, the Golden Heart luncheon, and the Rita Awards. Avon Books sponsored a dance party following the Rita ceremony. Dancing, drinking, laughing, nonsense ensued. It’s not a party until you break your favorite pair of kitten heels.

The Golden Heart luncheon with our friends from our local chapter, Northwest Houston. Amazing ladies, they are.

Posing with our superstar sister and Rita finalist, Sarah Andre.

Dancing the night away!

Drinks while strutting to the music with Rita finalist and fellow Ruby sister, Vivi Andrews.

Fun with friends Chloe, Eliza, & Ruth. Pics were taken for prosperity, of course.

Friday ushered in tired feet, more workshops, the trade show, networking, an impromptu podcast, another luncheon, RWA’s AGM, and volunteering to set up the literacy signing event.

This was just the beginning of getting the massive event set up. Even better when you have friends like Becca St. John (who took this pic) toiling away with you.

Throughout the conference, there were so many opportunities to meet new friends, catch up with old pals, finally meet online buddies, and make connections, usually with a nice relaxing cocktail.

One of my newest friends, my kindred spirit and fellow pirate wench, Chloe Flowers.

Finally meeting in person after being friends for years, Pam Stack, executive producer of Author on the Air Global Radio Network.

Are we ever serious? No…not really.

Stacey chilled with a (literally) smoking drink.

Saturday brought in, you guessed it, more workshops, the leadership breakfast, posing for a new author photo, the literacy signing, and a special book launch for one of my all-time favorite authors, Sherrilyn Kenyon.

2017 Readers For Life Literacy Autographing!

Stacey and Jami, beautiful ladies with beautiful smiles, showing us how it is done!

Lark and I were ready to sell out!

Girl crushing on Sherrilyn Kenyon. What a great way to end the week!

Last night at the Dolphin. So pretty!

No conference trip is complete without the TSA rummaging through my (locked) suitcase. Again.

Musetracks had a great time in Florida. Next year…Denver, Colorado. I can’t wait to see what’s in store.


Link of the Week – Amazon’s Buy Button (and it sucks)

June 20, 2017

So Amazon has quietly made more changes in the selling of books. One that seems to benefit everyone but the author. Third-party sellers can now “win” the Buy Box. What does that mean? It means this seller would be listed as the default for the Buy Button. It means that these third-party

Book Burn Open Knowledge Hot Fire Paper Old

sellers can mark books down to whatever price they want (so long as the meet some Amazon criteria…haha).  It also means that slices into any profit the author MIGHT make. I say might because there are various ways these third-party sellers can get their hands on “new” copies that would cut the author completely out of the sale. And it could mean that potential customers may only have a third-party seller as a choice to buy from.

This went into effect back in March and a buzz about it was made last month, but it has only been recently that authors have noticed and/or felt the pinch.

To read more about it, check out the links below to articles from Publisher’s Weekly and Huffington Post (with visuals). Definitely worth the read.

https://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/industry-news/bookselling/article/73542-new-amazon-buy-button-program-draws-ire-of-publishers-authors.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/590b309be4b05279d4edc31f