Sunday, 23 December 2012

Stags! Tumbattle and Mmm...No1 in Christmas Giveaway

After much deliberation I have decided to make all three of my titles free over the Christmas period, so you can get Stags! Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle and Mmm...No1...Cookbook free from 23rd to 27th December.

Stags! free on Kindle

Stags! free on Kindle (US)

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle free on Kindle

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle free on Kindle (US)

Mmm...No1...Cookbook free on Kindle

Mmm...No1...Cookbook free on Kindle (US)

Already getting good results, especially with Mmm...No1...Cookbook in the top 100 food & drink in the US.

In other news, there has been a copyright issue with Mmm...Student...Cookbook but that should be resolved soon.

The Mike Sanchez biography is progressing really well. Expect some news in the New Year.

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

KDP for Christmas and Mike Sanchez

After a bit of thought I've decided to run free promos on all of my titles from 23rd December to 27th December inclusive. This gives me a couple of days either side of Christmas for people to fill up their new Kindles! I'll let you know how I get on.

Exciting news on the bio front - I met Mike Sanchez on Sunday evening and he passed to me a very comprehensive timeline of much of his time in the music industry, including with the Big Town Playboys. Check him out at www.mikesanchez,com. Anyway, his bio (or ghost written autobiograhy) will contain a significant number of pages of photos, and of course large amounts of text, so Createspace is not really appropriate, as it appears to only allow either full colour or black and white interiors. Fortunately there are tons of "publishers" or printers that do really cost effective short run prints, but it will mean a lot more work u front. Mike is 50 in February 2014 and he wants the book out by then - so there is lots to do.

I will keep you posted with progress here.


Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Mmm...Student...Cookbook - Facebook and more

The Facebook page went live today - just a pic of a Pot Noodle and some packet soups but already got over 50 Likes.

Mmm...Student...Cookbook on Facebook

I've also got the first draft of the recipes, and I am ploughing through them, proof reading and making appropriate amendments.

If all goes to plan the book will be out sooner than expected. Check back later for more details.

Thursday, 1 November 2012

Mmm...Student...Cookbook - now under way

I met with a group of 7 students at Salford University on Tuesday and I outlined my plans for Mmm...Student...Cookbook. They were sceptical at first, after all, this is only a project to fit in with their course work and they thought that they wouldn't have time, but when I explained the Createspace and Kindle aspects they said they could do it by Christmas!

That is probably a bit too ambitious, but it will certainly be published in time for their Live Project EXPO in May.

They were particularly enthusiastic when I told them that their work would be accredited in the book, and they would definitely appear in an Amazon bestseller list.

So, they are looking for 50 recipes, and I will help them along the way with any that I can get hold of. I don't want to fall into the "50 ways to cook a Pot Noodle" trap, but I'm looking for simple, cheap fare, something that most students could turn their hand too.

Interestingly, I've had two suggestions so far, and both involved pasta and cheese. There could be a theme developing!

If you have any recipes you think might be worth including, please send me the details, including a bit of background (university, course, when and where you cooked it).

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Stags, Tumbattle, and Mmm...No1...Cookbook - No Publicity!

Well, I'm enrolled in KDP Select but didn't really have the time to put in a full promotional effort, but I thought I might as well make them free anyway. So I did. It took less than a minute, and all three titles have been free all weekend, with surprising results. All three have had considerable numbers of downloads, with the cookbook going well over 1,000 on Amazon.com, however this is probably to do with the fact that Amazon.com now includes India. Cant wait for them to open it up to the Chinese. Stags! did very well in the UK, and both Stags! and Mmm...No1...Cookbook reached their respective top 20s.

Just waiting to see if these new downloads translate into sales. I'll let you know.

Anyway, here's some interesting news. I have a cousin in Canada and it turns out that he is a professional wrestler. Mark Posey goes by the name of "Mr Intensity", and the kids loved telling everyone at school that they are related to a wrestler. Well it got even more interesting this week when Mark's wife, Tracy Cooper-Posey is a writer. Details of her latest release can be found here:-

Blood Knot by Tracy Cooper-Posey

Its a vampire romance, not my favourite genre, but Ole is certainly interested!

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Its All Gone Quiet

My KDP Select promotions have finished, and Ive no plans for any more, so there is nothing to do now but write!

Ive already completed an article on Care Farming for the High Peak Review, and submitted a poem "The Creature" to Purple Tall Tales. Its really a tribjute to Edgar Allen Poe's The Raven. You can get a sneak preview at http://www.michael-madden.co.uk.

Then its back to completing The Hole, and getting into the juicy parts of Infidelity.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

KDP Select Free promo update

Interesting stats on the KDP Select promotions.

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle has had 21 US and 8 UK downloads, resulting in Amazon rankings of and 4702 and 4659 respectively.

Stags! has done better, with 12 US and 39 UK downloads, resulting in Amazon rankings of 6231 and 606 respectively, with a UK ranking of 19 in Kindle Books humour which is a great start after 12 hours.

Update: More downloads for Stags! overnight - now 29 and 56 (US and UK) translating into rankings of 4069 and 648.

Update: Stags! now reached #99 in Amazon Kindle ebooks humour in the US with a ranking of 3755 overall. Still going well in the UK too.

End of promo for Stags! sees 88 downloads in the US and 104 in the UK. A little disappointing perhaps, but it has been free twice before, and it did generate two new reviews.

The sequel to Stags! is now well into the planning stages, whilst my sci fi short story The Hole is starting to take shape.

Friday, 24 August 2012

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle FREE on Kindle

Today is the first (and only) time Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle will be offered free on Kindle. Without the benefit of reviews sales will be difficult, and in the 3 hours since the promo went live there have been precisely 3 sales! Two in the US (including India) and one in the UK.

Tomorrow Stags! will be free (for 3 days), whilst the Tumbattle promotion lasts 5 days. I will keep you posted on progress.

http://www.amazon.com/Ole-And-Port-Tumbattle-ebook/dp/B0089PD38O

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Now Available In India!

Announcement this week that Amazon.Com is now availabel in India, and this has led to a surge of a total of 4 additional downloads of Mmm...No1...Cookbook (not quite retiring just yet)! It will be interesting to see the response to Stags! and Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle when I offer them free this week, starting tomorrow with "Tumbattle".

I read quite a lot of Indie Kindle books last week whilst on holiday in Portugal, and the most common theme throughout is....they all need a good edit!

In the main they were good stories, but lets be honest, I'm only reading the majority of them as they are the work of indie authors who, like me, deserve a bit of help. But, indie authors, more than published authors, need to help themselves. Every step of the publishing process has to be undertaken, and that includes editing. One book, that shall remain nameless, could also do with a good spellchecker!

The mistakes were that common across all titles and all genres that I started to wonder if it was a quirk of Kindle publishing that it occasionally added or removed key words and misspelt others. I suspect not, but I have contacted one indie author directly to ask his advice!

Friday, 10 August 2012

Stags! And Tumbattle Promos

Its going to be a lazy afternoon after sampling another Special at Almost Famous Manchester! This time it was the Insane Bolt - you have to see it and sample it to believe it! Check it out and give it a try (if you can find it!!!)

http://almostfamousburgers.com/

Planning a big free promo launch for Stags! and Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle at the end of the month, with lots more free avenues to explore. Definitely won't be going down the Independent Author Success route as the results for Mmm...No1...Cookbook were very disappointing.

I will try to update the stats regularly so you can see how the downloads progress.

Monday, 6 August 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Post Free KDP Select promo

Mmm...No1...Cookbook is no longer free on Kindle, but I have decided to use IAS (Independent Author Success) to see if sales get a boost. For the latest promo there were almost 600 downloads in the US, around 80 in the UK and bizarrely, 13 in Germany. Not as spectacular the first promo, but not bad. Next up are promotions for Stags! and Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle, but they are a month away.

Stags! on Amazon

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle on Amazon

Friday, 3 August 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook Free on Kindle

Friday August 3rd through to Sunday August 5th Mmm...No1...Cookbook is free on Kindle.

Every Day Cooking For Every Day Lives.

Its already into the top 100 in Food & Drink - aiming for number 1 (again!)


Mmm...No1...Cookbook on Amazon (UK)
Mmm...No1...Cookbook on Amazon (US)

And you can see how the cover shot was made here (UK)
Paella on Youtube (UK)
or here (US)
Paella on Youtube (US)


Thursday, 2 August 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Promotion Time

Ive given the blog a new look and feel, actually I've just changed the title and "Amazoned" it. I'm going to experiment with a few different Amazon widgets, and maybe an aStore! I'll let you know what seems to work best.

In the meantime I have created three free promotions through KDP Select. Mmm...No1...Cookbook will be free Friday 3rd to Sunday 5th August. Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle and Stags! will be free over the Bank Holiday weekend at the end of August.

All books can be purchased via the links on the righthand side.

For the ccokbook promotion I have included Independent Author Success at a cost of $40 (£26.79), this replaces the Kindle Nation Daily promotion at £29.99. Again, I'll let you know the results.

Now its back to the Olympic sport of being a couch potato (well I did score a century at cricket at the weekend - so I deserve a rest!)

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Paella From Mmm...No1...Cookbook On Youtube - Unblocked

Now got a totally unblocked Youtube video of Paella!

Paella On YouTube (Unblocked)

The music is a version of Stand By Me from the Youtube collection, and after scouring their music library it is definitely one of the better tracks!

All geared up for the free promotion of Mmm...No1...Cookbook on Friday and over the weekend, so if you want to avoid it stay away from my Facebook and Twitter accounts!

Monday, 30 July 2012

Do You Write? A Question by Michael Madden

So, I'm about to go on holiday, and that is where I get most of my inspiration, when the kids are otherwise occupied. I normally take a pad and a few pens, ideal for sketching out ideas, plots, characters, or just odd ideas. The laptop comes much later, when the scribblings have shaped themselves into a project. This may be more time consuming, but it works for me. What works for you?

I've been working on promoting my last 3 days of Mmm...No1...Cookbook free on Kindle. I'm not marketing the book beyond this weekend, but I am hopeful of some good stats before I engage with Salford University on Mmm...Student...Cookbook.

I use any or all of the following:-

Pixel Of Ink
Kindle Nation Daily (paid)
EReader News Today (for books with enough quality reviews)
Digital Book Today (for books with enough quality reviews)
Book Blogs
Facebook
Twitter
Goodreads
Authorsden
TheDigitalInkSpot
Freebookfinders.com
kindlebookblast
 
I'm also looking at the following:-
 
Kindle Book Promoter @Kindle_promo
Indie Author Success 
WriteIntoPrint
 
What do you use? Any advice?

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Paella - On Youtube

Finally got round to posting a video on Youtube. It was created a couple of months ago, in fact the final dish is the one that we used for the cover photo of Mmm...No1...Cookbook. The video is quite simple, it shows the ingredients followed by the step by step cooking method, with brief instructions in caption form, and all with a rocking Chuck Berry soundtrack. And therein lies a problem! The copyright on the Chuck Berry songs is dubious, but one thing is for sure, I don't own it! Youtube have suggested taking music from their library, but this is quite restricted at the moment.

This has led to the video being blocked in the US, Germany and St Barthelemy, however it is still ok everywhere else. My intention is to create another version with Youtube approved music, then se whether the Chuck Berry issue can be resolved.

If you want to take a look its here (except the above countries):-

How to make Paella

I am also keepin an eye on KDP free promotions. Mmm...No1...Cookbook will be free 3/4/5 August, and that will be the end of promotions for that book. It was only ever intended to give me a good place to keep all of my recipes, however, watch out for Mmm...Student...Cookbook that could be out for Christmas!

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Kindlegraph Requests Now Available

Just a quick update this morning. I have added a gadget on my blog to allow readers to get personalised messages for their Kindle. Just click on the icon in the top right hand corner and it will send me a request.

Quite excited about this as its always been a disappointment that you cant sign Kindles!

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Planning Day

Well, I finally got round to something constructive activities in the writing process. Not actual writing you understand, this was just planning. Thinking of engaging in Write-Connections Publishing Hour using their Skype connection, so Ive prepared for that session, and Ive also planned the plot for a couple of Sci Fi short stories that Ive had in mind for some time.

A zombie poem in the style of The Raven and a Cat In The Hat type tale for my wife's birthday are next up, but the real big one, and the subject of most of my queries for the Publishing Hour, is the bio of Mike Sanchez.

Managed to finish off three articles for High Peak Review, one about Mmm...No1...Cookbook, one about my next door neighbour Jenni Pinches who is in the gymnastics Team GB at the Olympics, and one on Care Farming. The Care Farming one will be held back until September, but you can read the other two on my website 


Michael Madden's website.

My Man United Fan Blog is going well, starting to develop a regular following.

Man United Fan Blog

Nice surprise this morning, as Mmm...No1...Cookbook has crept back into the top 100 in Kindle Food & Drink, and Stags! is still selling well. I've got loads more followers and friends, so looking for a good impact when I make them free again in August/September.

Monday, 16 July 2012

The Olympian Next Door

Ive had a hectic couple of days trying to find some time to interview my next door neighbour for the High Peak Review. Jenni Pinches has been chosen to represent Team GB in the gymnastics competition, and I also offered to provide a collage of Youtube clips to show at her Olympic send off party. She has had the ambition to perform at the Olympics virtually all of her life, and now she will get to realise her dream. Her family and friends are all very proud of her, and you can follow her on Twitter @jempin515.

Meanwhile, Stags! continues to sell well, though sales of Mmm...No1...Cookbook have dropped off. I will be using free promotions in the next month or so to boost sales of all of my titles.

Incidentally, I had some rather strange news at the weekend. I have a cousin in Canada (actually I have three, and thats not the news), named Mark Posey, and Mark is a professional wrestler who "performs" under the monicker of Mr Intensity. More news on this when the kids have stopped telling everyone in the school yard.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Facebook Fan Page

Ive finally got round to creating Facebook Fan Page, and it really is thanks to all of my FB and Book Blogs friends for nudging me in that direction. Hopefully you will "Like" it as well as like it (Oooh - very social).

My author page on Facebook

While I was at it I started working on my business page, and I would appreciate a "Like" here too.

Legacy IT Consultants Limited on Facebook

Have you checked out my new Man United Fan Blog? Man United Fan Blog

Its about all things football related, though with a Man United bias!

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Man United Fan Blog

Finally got round to starting some new writing. My Man United Fan Blog can be found here

Man United Fan Blog

with my take on Man United matters etc in June. I will start posting July's updates tomorrow.

Hopefully start work on Infidelity, my latest children's book, and various High Peak Review articles later in the week.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Projects In Limbo

Do any of you go through periods like this? Ive got two books floating around the Amazon lists but I really should get on with my other projects. Maybe I have too many on the go, maybe the constant rain is not providing any inspiration. Fifty Shades Of Grey? Thats just the clouds out front. There are even more out back.

Cricket will almost certainly be off tomorrow. Maybe that will convince me to sit down and write. But I want to learn Portuguese before I go to Lisbon in August, and I want to learn guitar too. Maybe I just need to give up work!

Monday, 2 July 2012

Michael Madden on Kris Wampler's Blog

This week I am featured on Kris Wampler's blog that can be found here:-

Kris Wampler's Blog

Kris has a fantastic blog and features a different indie author each week. He is also successful in hos own right, having written "Love Train" that is now available on Nook here:-

Love Train Nook edition

Not keen on the first of the month - my Amazon sales go down to zero!!! Quite pleased that Mmm...No1...Cookbook and Stags! both keep tiptoeing into the Amazon top 100 rankings in their own genres.

Fantastic trip to Alicante with the lads last week - plenty of stories for Infidelity the sequel to Stags!


Next up, though, is my Manchester United blog that will be on sale, warts and all, at the end of the season. Got plenty of material for June, starting with the end of season disappointment, right through to David Beckham not being selected for the Olympics.

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle Audio

The Audio from Its Story Time For Kids can now be found by clicking on the icon in the top righthand corner.

Enjoy.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Tumbattle Story Time on Saturday

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle features in Its Story Time at 3pm UK time this Saturday.

Ole And Zac On Blog Talk Radio

The Blog for the show is here

Its Story Time Blog

Meanwhile, sales are still coming through for Mmm...No1...Cookbook (#33 in Kindle Food & Drink) and Stags!

Not got round to starting any writing projects this week yet - but with more rain forecast Saturday could be the day!

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Guest Blog Spot - Amelia Curzon

My thanks to Amelia Curzon for the opportunity to be her Guest Blogger this week. Amelia Curzon

Meanwhile, my wife is reading Fifty Shades Of Grey, the hugely overhyped bestseller. Dont think shes very impressed.

Hoping to start one or two writing projects this week - a Manchester United Blog and an kids one. When will the Stags! sequel get some traction?

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Its Story Time In Tumbattle!

Actually been a quiet week, with a somewhat therapeutic trip to the Williams F1 centre for a conference being the highlight.

Stags! continues to sell and is in the #6423 in paid Kindle store. Unfortunately this is not enough for any bestseller categories, but other promotional activities over the next few weeks may give it a boost.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook hasnt sold anywhere near as many copies, but is #8,986 in paid Kindle store which gets it to #25 in Kindle Food & Drink. Staying above Anthony Bourdain and Thomasina Miers amongst others!

Should be featuring on Amelia Curzon's blog this weekend Amelia Curzon's blog

Next weekend promises to be interesting, with Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle featuring on Blog Talk Radio.

Here are the links:-

Its Story Time

Its Story Time Blog

It airs at 10am EST which is 3pm UK time. After the show I will post the link so that you can listen at your leisure.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Stags! And Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Free Weekend

Well, the results were interesting if a little disappointing. Stags! was definitely offered free too soon after my previous promotion, but no real harm done as I still have 3 days left this quarter and they can wait for 2 and a half months. Need to build up a bigger network.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook was a strange one. Loads of downloads, over 2,000 combined in the UK and US, but these did not really translate into sales afterwards? Could this be down to a really negative review on Amazon? Possibly, but I welcome all reviews. They at least prove that someone is reading the book, and their comments can be used to improve future offerings.

So, for now, the euphoria is over. Time to concentrate briefly on Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle that will be on Blog Talk Radio on 23rd June. Ive also got a couple of blog appearances this weekend, particularly with Amelia Curzon. This may generate new sales, but for now the rankings area as follows:-

Stags! #9,925 (I'm sure this would have been higher without the free promotion!)
Mmm...No1...Cookbook #24,035
Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle #104,288

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - climbing the charts

Mmm...No1...Cookbook has not had as many downloads as Stags! in its first free promotion, but it has excelled in its category. Currently #104 in free Kindle books, and #1 in Kindle>Food & Drink.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook Free On Kindle (UK)

Its also doing well in the US #484 Free in Kindle store and #35 and #41 in two sub categories.


Mmm...No1...Cookbook Free On Kindle (US) 


Stags! starts is free promo tomorrow and Mmm...No1...Cookbook ends its free run tomorrow night.

Free on Kindle - Oops!

Stags! and Mmm...No1...Cookbook should have been free on Kindle today and tomorrow - but there's a bit of a prpblem. The KDP Select period for Stags! expired on Tuesday. I'd made a mental note to set the free promotion when the new period kicked in on Wednesday - but that mental note must have got erased in a big brain clear out!

Anyway, Mmm...No1...Cookbook still free for these two days, and I've actioned Stags! from tomorrow.

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle also available on Kindle - but I gave up with the pictures. The frustration of trying to format them is probably where my mental note got lost!

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle on Kindle (US)


Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle on Kindle (UK)


Mmm...No1...Cookbook Free On Kindle (US)


Mmm...No1...Cookbook Free On Kindle (UK)

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle on Kindle

Excited about the potential for 2 books this weekend. Stags! is entering its second free promotion, just for 2 days, and I want to gauge how successful this will be following close on the heels of the previous free promo. Its still at #62 in Books>Fiction>Humour so I will be very interested to see if it can get back towards the top ten.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook got to #34 in Kindle>Food & Drink when it was first launched. This is its fits freebie and it has not got the reviews of Stags! so the advertising will be limited.

I received two copies of the Createspace edition of Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle today, and one of them will be immediately despatched to Christy Condoleo for the "Its Story Time For Kids" broadcast on 23rd June. Its now available on Amazon and I am desperately trying to get it into an acceptable condition for release on Kindle. The problem is that the story is really brought to life by the pictures, and pictures and Kindles don't really go together. Its also somewhat unpredictable as to where they will appear in relation to the text, but I will persevere and let you know when it is available.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Stags! and Kris Wampler

Been catching up on some stuff today whilst watching Stags! unfortunately fall down the Amazon lists. Once it leaves the top 20 of a bestseller list it is all downhill as there are 20 books on a page. Not many people will click beyond the first page - its a bit like needing to be on the first page on Google. Anyway, its free again next weekend, as is Mmm...No1...Cookbook, and it should be featured on Digital Book Today which is an improvement from last time, so looking forward to exciting times ahead.

Did my piece for Kris Wampler's blog, Kris is the author of "Love Train" Love Train by Kris Wampler on Amazon and he has a Facebook Page Love Train on Facebook

You can also follow him on Twitter @KrisWampler.

His blog is a really interesting one Kris Wampler's blog and great for indie authors

Ive also done some work on the Bio of a rock & roll singer that I am collaborating with. We've both been very busy but hopefully we can sort it out before the end of the year.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - time for action

With the relative success of Stags! and the upcoming Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle radio appearance, Mmm...No1...Cookbook has been a bit neglected, but now its time for action.

Its free next weekend (9th/10th June) on Kindle, and if the weather holds that's when I will be wheeling out my giant paella pan for an initial launch!

Pixel of Ink

Pixel Of Ink is the first port of call for promotion and there are many others. So based on Stags! what are my aims? Well, in terms of food & drink there are not many out there - so top 10 in free books should be achievable, however top 100 in all free Kindle would be optimistic.

Once it is paid again I would hope for top 50 food & drink - its been as high as 34 previously, but lets see.

Ive notified ereadernewstoday - but need more reviews to get it mentioned. Paid for promo on Kindle Nation Daily - works out at 20.13 but well worth it.

Incidentally - I have made Stags! free on the same dates, and hoping for more extensive coverage based on number of reviews. Its a bit of a catch 22 - if you havent got the reviews you cant get the free publicity and if you havent got the free publicity its difficult to get the reviews!

Stags! has now been accepted onto Digital Book Today for inclusion in their Top 100 Free Kindle Books list - based on its number of 5 star reviews. My thanks to Anthony Wessell for the inclusion.

Friday, 1 June 2012

Stags! and a dark poem

Where does all the time go? Would love to find time to write but this week all I've managed is a poem, and its darker than my normal style. Thats because a friend of mine, Dominic Keefe, has offered to illustrate a piece of work, and his illustrations are generally very dark and detailed.

Here is the poem:-

Where Did All The Children Go?


Where did all the children go
That played in hail and played in snow
That played in sun and played in rain
Now never to be seen again?

I hear their cries but not their screams
For they were taken in their dreams
Where once were legion now they're none
Unspoken innocence has gone

Into the darkness do not speak
Their bones to break as hearts are weak
And soon the coffins will be filled
As on the ground their blood is spilled

Anguished cries when hands are wrung
And then their weeping song is sung
To hail their memory rue their fate
We could do nought we were too late

But still we wonder where they've gone
And just who took our little ones
That used to look to us in fear
Now all that's left are hollow tears

Meanwhile, Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle has been republished using Createspace. It actually looks quite good, but I think I still prefer the original. The date of June 23rd has been set for a reading on Blog Talk Radio, I'll be posting links here nearer the time.

Stags! is till in 3 bestseller charts, and its first KDP Select term runs out next week, which means I will have the opportunity to offer it free again. Need to evaluate the best strategy for that one.

Finally, Mmm...No1...Cookbook is still making occasional sales - may be time to give that a push and make it free on Kindle. Got some guest blog appearances coming up and again I'll post the links here nearer the time.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle

There has been a flurry of activity this week. I'll start with Mmm...No1...Cookbook as I received my 20 author copies ordered from Createspace in the US. Earlier than expected and all very high quality. I also received the single copy I ordered from the UK distribution of Createspace and it is of the same high quality. This is a major plus and will probably encourage me to use the excellent Createspace even more.

Stags! continues to sell week, though not as fast as this time last week. 248 paid downloads, though as sales have declined I have dropped the price to 99p. Actually when I did this it came up as 1.02 so I dropped it to 95p and its now listed as 98p! Anyway, sales continue and I am still in 3 Amazon Bestseller lists, with a new free promotion due in June. I've had 3 new reviews as a result of this, all 5 star, and two of them had accompanying emails which was great. Royalty cheques imminent!

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle is an interesting one. Released in 2010 using Fast-Print publishing it is a really good quality book, but there were significant overheads in producing it. I gave all of the profits to the local school charity, only fair as the produced most of the illustrations. Anyway, I was considering having it removed from the Fast-Print catalogue as I am not expecting any more sales, then along came an email from Christy Condoleo who wants to feature the tale in a Blog Talk Radio show

Its Story Time For Kids

Christy has her own fantastic website here

Eppys Creations

And this is another website connected to the show

The Book Garden

You can buy the original here

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle on Amazon

My first thought was "Great" but my second was "How will Americans buy the book if they like what they hear?" and then I thought of Createspace. I quickly set up the basic book and hit two problems. The Createspace covers are not as inspirational as that designed (at some cost) by Fast-Print, but the one I chose should be good enough, and the US printing format is not quite the same as the UK. This means that the A4 size of the original is slightly different to the Letter size of the US one which led to a little extra formatting. Most of the blurb was already available so the set up wasn't too arduous, and within 36 hours the proof was ready to order. I was pleasantly surprised to find that although the bill is in dollars the shipping cost and expected delivery date leads me to believe that it is being printed and despatched from the UK. Should be here on Friday! Createspace did report that some of the pictures were low resolution, but they were originally drawn by children and scanned in so this was to be expected, and it gives it a more authentic feel. More news on when the show airs coming soon.

The new cover will look like this


Sunday, 27 May 2012

Stags! 200 and counting

Stags! has now reached 200 paid downloads since Tuesday - a great achievement that is keeping it in three of the Amazon bestseller lists. Had two really nice emails from people wanting a sequel - and if my knee operation goes ahead next week then I will have plenty of time to get on with this.

Really should do some promotion of Mmm...No1...Cookbook - got some guest blog spots coming up and hopefully an article in the High Peak Review.

Interest is also stirring again for Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle. I may even make the effort to do a Createspace version, though still not convinced about the Kindle edition. Ive been asked about featuring it on a Blog Talk Radio Show. Never done one of those before so should be interesting.

Friday, 25 May 2012

Stags! Fan Club

Stags! is still selling well enough to keep it in 3 bestseller lists, but it has dropped from 11 to 14 in the Books>Fiction>Humour category.

Approaching 150 paid downloads since the free promo which is good, and Ive received my second piece of fanmail.

Once again its from a female - so those smartarses who told me that women dont read books like this are wrong - I know at least 2 who have done so!

"Infidelity" will definitely be given some serious treatment this week.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Stags! by Michael Madden - Downloads For Fun

Last weekend I made Stags! free on Kindle for the full KDP Select 5 days, and that got it to number 1 in the free Kindle humour charts and number 11 in free Kindle overall. There was quite a bit of other promo stuff too, such as blogs, Goodreads, Twitter, etc, as well as Pixel Of Ink and other Kindle specific newsletters.

Anyway, I expected that once it was not free it would drop down the charts to around 200k which was where it was before the promo. I am delighted to say that in the 3 days since I have exceeded 100 paid downloads and am in 3 Amazon bestseller lists. I am hoping for a bit of a snowball effect, as the more downloads you get the more Amazon pushes you. Seeing your name in the "People who bought this also bought..." is really exciting!

This morning, I received an email from a reader saying how much she enjoyed Stags! and will there be a sequel? So, in a small way at the moment, the free promo reallly does work, and it doesnt matter if your network of friends and social media contacts are all writers - their circles and their friends circles will almost certainly include some readers! Its all about exposure. Many thanks to everyone who helped to get this far.

Stags! on Kindle

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - UK Paperback

Some great news came through yesterday, Createspace have now made their titles available for UK distribution. This means that Stags! and Mmm...No1...Cookbook are now available in paperback on Amazon.co.uk.

Stags! in paperback in the UK

Mmm...No1...Cookbook in paperback in the UK

Stags! is already available, but the Createspace edition is a superior quality to the one through Fastprint. I never really intended to make Mmm...No1...Cookbook available in paperback but as I did not have to put any effort in its a real bonus.

The Createspace move could signal a killer blow for Print On Demand publishers such as Fastprint, as I'm sure they won't have the muscle of Createspace, and having published two books through Createspace already I will certainly use them again, not only because of the superior quality, but also because of the significantly lower initial outlay.

I may even become a prolific author in the next few months!

Incidentally, Stags! is no longer free on Kindle, but the benefits of the campaign are showing as it is currently in 3 bestseller lists on Amazon.

#29 in Books>Fiction>Humour
#54 in Kindle Store>Books>Humour
#59 in Books>Humour>Fiction

It has also gone up in these categories today, which may be to do with the vagaries of the Amazon ranking system than any increase in sales.

Still, its ahead of such notables as Oscar Wilde (I bet he'll be upset), Sophie Kinsella, Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, and, of course, PG Wodehouse.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Tumbattle - To Kindle Or Not To Kindle?

This Kindle stuff is great fun, but should I make Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle available on Kindle? Its essentially a picture book, but the story did come first. I should also look at Kindle Fire. Can I release a text only version and a full version for Fire?

Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle

Stags! Last Day Free

Stags! returned to the coveted number 1 spot in Free Kindle Humour (UK) last night, and remains there right now. Not expecting it to last as the legendary Terry Ravenscroft has made his Stairlift To Heaven free today and tomorrow. Its a great read and you should check it out (after Stags! of course).

Back to Mmm...No1...Cookbook, and it looks like June 10th will be the big cookfest (weather permitting). Got to measure the capacity of the big paella pan compared to the little one - Sally reckons its at least a factor of 10!

Keep checking back here for updates and venue information.


Last day for Stags! free on Kindle - and its back at number 1! Stags! free on Kindle

And here's the link to the Terry Ravenscroft classic:-

Stairlift To Heaven free on Kindle

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Stags! by Michael Madden - Still Up There

Didn't get much chance to push Stags! yesterday as was playing cricket - but it has managed to stay near the top, currently residing at number 2 in Free Kindle humour and number 18 in Free Kindle overall. Its free all day today and tomorrow so if you've not got your copy yet you still have time.

Its been an interesting exercise and one that has taught me a lot about what does and does not work, the value of a good network, and not to be afraid to push it.

Looking at getting serious about the sequel to Stags! (working title "Infidelity"), but so many other things on the go at the moment!

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Stags! - Officially a UK Bestseller

At around 1 o clock this morning Stags! finally dragged its sorry ass to the top of the charts. I thought it was going to get stuck at number 2 but no. It took the final leap - and 9 hours later it is still there. Number 1 in Free Kindle Humour (UK).

Say what you like about the book, but it has reached a status that many others aspire too, and quite frankly I am very excited about it!

Learning how to play the market and the rankings is as much a part of being a self published author as writing the book in the first place.

I suppose it would be too optimistic to hope for Stags! to reach number 1 in Free Kindle overall. 13 places would be a massive climb in that list, but its free all weekend so Ive not given up hope completely.

Planning to give away 100 signed postcards/flyers from the book's promotional material (its a bit hard signing a Kindle) as a gesture of thanks to everyone who downloaded it.

Friday, 18 May 2012

Stags! by Michael Madden - Almost A Bestseller

Stags! has another 3 free days on Kindle, and it has reached some heady heights. In the US it is at number 53 in Free Kindle Humor, and around 2,900 in Free Kindle Overall. In the UK it has done fantastically well, reaching number 16 in Free Kindle Overall and number 2 in Free Kindle Humour. Another push over the weekend and it could well hit the number 1 spot!

Ive also discovered that theres a free Kindle app for iphone and ipad, so I am going to plug that over the weekend.

Might have more time on my hands as its pouring down again, and the prospects of cricket are slim.

Preparing for a cookfest on June 10th when my huge paella pan will make its debut, using the famous paella recipe from Mmm...No1...Cookbook. Might be a bit tricky scaling up the ingredients but should be a lot of fun.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Stags! Free on Kindle

Well its been an interesting day. Stags! has been free on Kindle for the first of 5 days today, and the rankings are in. In the US store it has been a quiet start - but they are several hours behind! As I write it is number 2,444 in the free Kindle store, and number 71 in free Kindle humour (or should I say humor). In the UK it has been somewhat more spectacular, reaching number 65 in the free Kindle store and number 7 in free Kindle humour. Hoping to stay in the top 100 UK humour over the full five days which would be an achievement. Lets hope the exposure generates plenty of reviews and follow up sales.

Meanwhile, the press release for Mmm...No1...Cookbook has received plenty of hits, though no sign of sales yet!

Wrote the first few pages of "The Day The Animals Went To School" today, aiming to complete 28 pages so it qualifies to be made up into a 32 page picture book.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Press Release

Just created my first press release for Mmm...No1...Cookbook. I generally use WIDEPR for this. Its easy to use and its free, and Ive had reasonable results from it in the past. I know there are lots of other Press Release companies out there - anyone got any other suggestions?

Mmm...No1...Cookbook Press Release

Stags! is available free on Kindle from today until 21st May. Unfortunately the Amazon ranking has disappeared this morning - not sure why. Maybe something to do with the price change.

Stags! Free on Kindle

Finally, for now, the wonderful read of the month May edition is now available here:-

Wonderful Read Of The Month

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Stags!

Been neglecting Mmm...No1...Cookbook this week to concentrate on 5 days on Amazon where Stags! will be free on Kindle. Expecting some good "sales" but ultimately that does not bring in revenue, however once it is NOT free if there have been enough downloads Amazon may well decide to "recommend" your book, obviously generating more sales.

Stags! on Amazon (UK)

Stags! on Amazon (US)

Mmm...No1...Cookbook (UK)

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook And Nigella

The initial sales have levelled off now, but for a moment I was up and down with Nigella Express. At one point yesterday Mmm...No1...Cookbook was at 34 in Kindle Food & Drink, above such greats as Nigella, Raymond Blanc, Madhur Jaffrey, Clarissa Dickson-Wright, etc. Unfortunately the initial euphoria has eased off and I am down at around 30k in Kindle books.

I will try to generate some impetus over the next week or so, then I have some book blogs to appear in.

Been out at cricket today watch Ole play (and win) for High Peak district, and diligently avoiding the football. Neglected my blog and FB ad Twitter feeds - might have another go tonight.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Heading For Top 50?

Mmm...No1...Cookbook available on Kindle here (only £1.26)

What a pleasant surprise this morning. Mmm...No1...Cookbook has not only managed to stay in the top 100 overnight - its also moved up to number 54. Zoomed ahead of Heston Blumenthal's biography! With YOUR help I could get into the top 50! XXX

Also received nice email from Kris Wampler, author of Love Train
Love Train by Kris Wampler on Amazon

Hopefully doing an author interview on his blog in the near future. Kris Wampler's blog

Friday, 11 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Ratings War!

Its been a rollercoaster day on Amazon.co.uk - with Mmm...No1...Cookbook ebook coming in just behind Gordon Ramsey at number 100. It dropped out of the 100 for a while, but now it is back at 71, ahead of Madhur Jaffrey and Raymond Blanc - with Ramsey nowhere to be seen! That translates to 15,183 overall in Kindle store, which to be honest reflects more on the vagaries of the Amazon ranking system rather than a huge volume of sales. Still, its nice to be up there, and Ive printed the pages off for posterity!



70.
The Everyday Halogen Oven Cookbook
Sarah Flower
4.4 out of 5 stars (136)
Available for download now
£3.42

71.
Mmm...No1...Cookbook
Michael Madden, Sally Madden
5.0 out of 5 stars (1)
Available for download now
£1.26

72.
Relish: My Life on a Plate
Prue Leith
4.6 out of 5 stars (7)
Available for download now
£9.17

73.
My Kitchen Table: 100 Essential Curries
Madhur Jaffrey
4.1 out of 5 stars (9)
Available for download now
£4.93

74.
Thai Cookery Secrets
Kris Dhillon
4.1 out of 5 stars (7)
Available for download now
£3.30

75.
Curry Easy
Madhur Jaffrey
4.6 out of 5 stars (48)
Available for download now
£10.79

76.
My Kitchen Table: 100 Recipes for Entertaining
Raymond Blanc
4.0 out of 5 stars (7)
Available for download now
£4.49

77.
What to Eat: Food that's good for your health, pocket and plate
Joanna Blythman
4.4 out of 5 stars (16)
Available for download now
£9.99

78.
The Low Carb Revolution: Why the Secret to Losing Weight is to Fall Back in Love With Yourself!
John McLean
5.0 out of 5 stars (1)
Available for download now
£1.91

79.
21 Low Carb Breakfast Recipes For Accelerated Weight Loss (21 Low Carb Recipes For Accelerated Weight Loss)
Nita Anderson
5.0 out of 5 stars (1)
Available for download now
£0.77

80.
The Intolerant Gourmet: Delicious Allergy-friendly Home Cooking for Everyone
Pippa Kendrick
4.8 out of 5 stars (38)
Available for download now
£9.99

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Now Available On Kindle

Mmm...No1...Cookbook is now available on Kindle in the UK

Mmm...No1...Cookbook available on Kindle (UK)

And in the US

Mmm...No1...Cookbook available on Kindle (US)

It is also available on all other Amazon Kindle sites.

Its a shame the sales stats cant be combined.

Incidentally - another silly mistake on the Creatspace site - I password enabled my eStore so no one could get to it without my password! Easily rectified, and now on sale in paperback here:-

Mmm...No1...Cookbook on Createspace

Woohoo - Mmm...No1...Cookbook now also available on Amazon.com Mmm...No1...Cookbook on Amazon

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Now on sale!

Finally managed to get the job done! Mmm...No1...Cookbook is now available from the Createspace store:-

https://www.createspace.com/3853171

The Amazon version will take a few days longer. Hoping to get round to tackling the Kindle edition later tonight.

As any of you self published authors will know - now the hard work begins! Now where's that marketing plan????

Unfortunately that will have to wait. Its my daughter and son-in-laws first wedding anniversary on Saturday and Ive promised to make them three different versions of Rocky Road Bars, as well as a huge pot of Garlic Chilli Chicken.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - When Is A Kindle Not A Kindle?

Well the answer to that one is "When its a paperback!" I submitted my "final" version to Createspace yesterday and when reading the proofs today I noticed that there were no page numbers. The reason was simple - I had submitted the Kindle manuscript rather than the paperback one. Fortunately I had not ordered printed proofs and the mistake was easily rectified. This self publishing business is not as glamorous as its made out to be (ha!), or as my wife would say, "its not all rock and roll"!

This may sound a trivial mistake, but I bet lots of other authors have done the same thing! Or perhaps even worse. Feel free to share your bloopers so that we can all avoid the same.

Currently sat with my leg up on a hot water bottle nursing potential torn cartilage, a cricket injury from last Saturday. I'm sure this isn't a healthy position for using a laptop, but what's a writer to do?

Anyway, cover of Mmm...No1...Cookbook is now available.


That's my paella on the cover!

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Loyd Grossman!

Good job I checked! I make reference in Mmm...No1...Cookbook to Loyd Grossman's tomato and basil sauce (you will have to read it to find out why!), and thought that I should check whether there are one or two esses in his surname. Turned out that I was right, there are two, but there is only one L in his first name (Loyd not Lloyd)!

Manuscript has now been changed and it has been resubmitted for review. This really should be the last one and it should be approved by tomorrow.

Met an old friend Matt King last night and will hopefully be able to help him with his dissertation on self publishing. My apologies if thats not exactly right Matt, I guess I had not had enough fish finger butties to soak up that amount of Peroni!

Now working on my next High Peak Review article and a guest blog spot on Amelia Curzon's blog http://ameliacurzonblogger.wordpress.com/

Monday, 7 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Maybe today!

Its been a rather hectic weekend with cricket practice Friday evening, cricket match Saturday and junior cricket match Sunday. Hopefully today I will get to complete the proof reading of Mmm...No1...Cookbook. Sustained significant injury on Saturday so am sat with my leg up nursing swollen knee (hopefully its just a tweak of the ligaments but cant really tell yet).

Ole is cooking at school tomorrow, and his finished dish will be marked as part of his overall food technology assessment. He has chosen chilli chicken as his recipe - one of the 50 in Mmm...No1...Cookbook!

Stags! freebie on Kindle starts next week so need to start promoting that too!

Thursday, 3 May 2012

A diversion - The Day The Animals Went To School

Another children's book for a rainy day. Got quite a few verses done already, but my own particular favourite is..,.

The Cheetah, of course, had every intention
Of cheating, and so ended up in detention

More coming, and then I will be looking for illustrators again.

Incidentally, my daughter thinks that she should be in my profile picture. What do you think?


She's not happy with that pic - lets get the public to decide....
OR



Michael Anthony Madden's books on Goodreads
Stags!Stags!
reviews: 1
ratings: 2 (avg rating 5.00)

Ole And Zac And The Port Of TumbattleOle And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle
reviews: 1
ratings: 1 (avg rating 5.00)

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Proofs Have Arrived!

Well, Createspace have come up trumps again. The proofs for Mmm...No1...Cookbook arrived today, and they are impressive. Its amazing that Createspace can produce something of this quality delivered to the UK just 4 days after I completed the submission. If only they distributed in the UK!

Anyway, not found any errors yet so may well be able to approve them tomorrow. I will then get them on the Createspace eStore where I will be able to download the cover for the Kindle edition (that has already been approved).

Still not uploaded the video of the making of the cover dish, paella, to Youtube, must try to get that done this weekend.

Before the launch I am genuinely interested, what have you cooked in the last 7 days?

On a completely different subject, good luck to Jenni Pinches as she competes in the European Gymnastic Championships in Brussels this weekend.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Proofs

The Createspace proofs should arrive tomorrow, then there's the laborious process of actually checking everything. Off to Salford University Live Projects EXPO today, which has given me an idea for next year's EXPO. Mmm...Student...Cookbook. Get them to do all of the hard work!

Still making loads of new friends through Book Blogs and Goodreads. Sorry I've not been able to put any more reviews on Goodreads yet. May get chance at the weekend.

Monday, 30 April 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Kindle Formatting

I'm fully familiar with issues around Kindle formatting, but the issue I got last night was beyond me. I've got a simple Word document using Arial fonts of 12 and 11, but no matter what I tried I ended up with a double space between a heading and some text, rather than single. I even deleted all of the text and retyped it, setting the font before or afterwards or even both! Anyway, its only in one minor place in the document so I let it go. I may resolve it before the final edition goes out. I've set the price at $1.99 which should be attractive.

Better news of Createspace. Mmm...No1...Cookbook is ready for review so I ordered 2 proof copies. I've already done the editing and checked the layout, so although I could have used the Createspace electronic proof I much prefer getting the hard copy of the book. It gives you so much more to go on, for instance when I see the finished article I may change the colour scheme or even the entire design! I opted for expedited delivery so it should arrive by Thursday which is pretty amazing, and it was only just over $32.

Working on High Peak Review article and guest blogs today, plus planning our annual boys Trip to....now that would be telling!

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Final preparation

Today has been a good day! Stayed in bed until 11am, mainly because I was reviewing the Cookery Book on Createspace on my laptop. Createspace has improved a lot, and the interior review feature is fantastic. I am not expecting to sell many paperbacks (this is essentially a Kindle venture), but for those of you that are interested the price has been set at $4.99.

Just waiting for approval before ordering a proof, and I'm hoping to get round to uploading the text for Kindle later this evening.

Ive also dug out an old fantasy manuscript that I penned some 25 years ago. The thing with fantasy is that it doesn't really age (think Lord Of The Rings). I may well polish it up, type it all in again (I have it on a diskette that is probably corroded with age, even if I could find a computer old enough to read it, and the correct version of the word processing software), and get it out there on Kindle to see if there is any interest.

I must also get round to speaking to a Rockabilly acquaintance of mine as I am supposed to be writing his bio, constructed around his 50 favourite songs to commemorate his 50th birthday.

Got a nice response from the British Library detailing where I need to go and what to look for as I start my research on the career of the Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson as seen through the press. This is a huge piece of work, but I have set myself a six month target to complete the research, and another three months to complete the book.

Will I ever get round to completing my works in progress that include a children's poetry compendium, a scifi short story and a ghost story?

I'm also trying to get guest blog spots as well as maintaining the Whaley Bridge Cricket Club website www.whalyebridgecc.co.uk.

If only I didn't have a day job!

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Goodreads

Ive managed to complete the addition of 50 books on Goodreads which gives me "Librarian" status. This means Ive been able to upload the UK version of Stags! as well as Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle.

The number of followers on my blog is increasing, and I seem to have friends emerging from everywhere. I hope people are enjoying the Rocky Road recipe, I've got some great variations to this including the addition of hazelnuts and almonds, and I've also create The Rocky Road Of St Patrick, a green version made using white chocolate. Hopefully I'll get round to completing Mmm...No1...Cookbook tomorrow. Weather forecast is not great so I should have plenty of time for this.

Incidentally, if you have not thought about all of the books you have read, something I did whilst posting reviews on Goodreads, you must try it. It brings back some fantastic memories.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Rocky Road

Its been a hectic morning

Went for a peaceful stroll around a very wet Fernilee reservoir, and returned to a full inbox. Spent an hour or so responding to requests and comments, and now I'm ready to start something new. Might tackle my Goodreads page, post a few more reviews (which was your favourite book in the Lord Of The Rings trilogy? Mine was The Fellowship Of The Ring), and then get back onto Digital Book Today to push the May Stags! promotion. So much for a relaxing weekend, Ole wants me to go up to the cricket nets with him this afternoon.

Anyway, as promised here is one of the 50 recipes from Mmm...No1...Cookbook. Enjoy.

PS I would be particularly interested to hear non UK views on this recipe, as plain or dark chocolate is very popular over here but I'm not so sure about elsewhere, and do you know what Crunchies or Matchmakers are?!


50. Rocky Road Bars

There must be a million and one recipes for Rocky Road, and probably the best that I have found is Nigella’s. However, with a little bit of experimentation this one is better, and the variations are endless!

Ingredients

75g/3oz butter
300g/11oz dark chocolate (not cooking chocolate or sweet chocolate – minimum 70% cocoa solids)
2 tablespoons golden syrup
2 Crunchie bars
120g/5oz Ginger nuts
100g/4oz large marshmallows
Icing sugar

Method

1. Melt the butter, chocolate and syrup in a saucepan.
2. Crush the Crunchies and Ginger nuts into crumbs (don’t worry if you still have some larger chunks).
3. Slice each marshmallow into 8 pieces (this can be a bit fiddly but if you have a straight edged, sharp knife and a cup of very hot water to dip the knife into it is much easier).
4. Stir the crumbed mixture and the marshmallows into the melted ingredients.
5. Line a 20cm/8 inch square dish with tin foil and pour in the mixture.
6. Allow to cool in the fridge for 2-3 hours.
7. Turn out onto a worktop and remove the tin foil.
8. Slice into however many pieces you like (a pizza cutter can help with this – but watch your fingers).
9. Arrange on a plate and sprinkle with icing sugar.

Variations

You can use milk or even white chocolate for this but it ends up incredibly sweet, and you have to keep a close eye when melting the chocolate to ensure it does not separate. You can put whatever biscuits you have to hand instead of Ginger nuts, and the same goes for the chocolate bars. Kit Kats are good, as are Toffee Crisps. Finally, after pouring the mixture into the dish to set, you can finish it off with orange or mint Matchmakers arranged neatly on the top.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Progress!

Sally has finished the proofread. Only 5 errors in 118 pages! I've got a lazy weekend (inevitable with all of this rain) so should get chance to make the changes and sort out first proof from Createspace. Might get some feedback from my trained chef, but then again might not.

It rained one two and it rained three four
It rained five six then it rained some more
It rained five six, six five and then
It rained on past the count of ten
(Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle)

In other news, my Goodreads author page has been set up, so I'm about to start modifying that. Should I blog on there, or just update this blog? Who knows? But thats for the future. Also concentrating on reviewing many of the books I read in the near and far past. Dennis Wheatley, John Wyndham, Tolkien, memories come flooding back. Lots of Stephen King too, and some sports autobiographies and some humour. And, of course, The Cat In The Hat!

You can pay it a visit here:-

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5021995.Michael_Anthony_Madden

It should look very different by Sunday! Need to get to 50 books to get librarian status and then I can add the UK and Kindle version of Stags! and Ole And Zac And The Port Of Tumbattle.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Goodreads Reviews by Michael Madden

Spent loads of time tonight reviewing books on Goodreads. Didnt realise I had read so many. Covered off most of Stephen King and Frank Skinner, now moved on to Dennis Wheatley. I read dozens of his in the 70s/80s - I think I bought a set of 56. Didnt get through them all, and cant remember some of them. Maybe I'll dust them off and start again.

Up to 10 reviews for Stags! on Amazon, but there's only the Createspace version on Amazon and no sign of "Tumbattle". I'm planning to add them when I reach Librarian status.

Not much time for Mmm...No1...Cookbook today - but there's all weekend for that.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Google Friend Connect

I've heard from more than one source that I should encourage people to follow my blog using Goggle Friend Connect (GFC), but Ive also discovered that GFC is about to be discontinued. What this means for my existing follows, that were almost all done by GFC, I have no idea! Anyway, Ive added the Bloglovin icon to my blog to add more choice.

Any thoughts on this?

In other news - theres no cricket againthis weekend so I should definitely make good progress on the recipes, whilst I am also hoping to get some publicity for my KDP Select giveaway for Stags! from 17th to 21st May on Digital Book Today. Just need a few more reviews but Ive handed out a few paperbacks recently so that shouldnt be a problem!
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Stags-ebook/dp/B004PLNO8A

I've also just discovered the benefits of Goodreads, even though Ive been following on Facebook for ages.

Its Gabi's wedding anniversary party in two weeks - so I'm going to make lots of different versions of Rocky Road. I'll put the original recipe on here in the next day or so.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Wonderful Read Of The Month

Check out this monthly newsletter blog. Its well worth a read.

http://wonderfulreadofthemonth.blogspot.co.uk/

Hoping to have something featured in the coming months.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Blog Layout

I've looked at hundreds of blogs over the last couple of days, and followed a lot of them too (come on guys - where are the follow backs?). The majority of them look extremely professional, so I've started to make mine a little better. I need to upload some more photos to polish it off, but just in the space of a couple of days I've made vast improvements. Yes, I know I've still got a long way to go!

The final proofreading and editing should be done today - I will then need to complete the cover notes and its off to Createspace (metaphorically speaking).

Still found time to pen the bulk of my next article for High Peak Review, which was quite easy really as it is about my son's visit with his friend to Derbyshire CCC as the 999th and 1,000th junior members.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Blogging

Spent a lot of time trying to look at the power of blogging and engaging with other authors. Its great to meet you all, but a little overwhelming at first. Its amazing how much free stuff there is out there. Not just books to download, but also great advice. Hopefully get myself sorted out by the end of the week, then it looks like a full time job keeping up with it all!

Ive been on Twitter for ages, with over 700 followers, many of whom have Manchester United as a common interest. My next book could well be on that subject, and hopefully it will be a real eye opener.

The problem with all of this blogging and social media is that I am struggling to find time to do any actual writing.

Got a visit from a friend today who is a qualified chef. He thinks the idea of a cookbook on Kindle is a great idea, and I am going to use him to verify my recipes.

Still expecting Mmm...No1...Cookbook to be out before the end of May.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - The Video!

Final draft editing well under way. May need to touch up the paella photo to make it acceptable for the Createspace cover, even though I'm not really gearing up to sell the paperback. This really is a Kindle only venture. The paella video still needs to be uploaded and edited before it is fit for Youtube, then I will start recording some of the other recipes. I'm going to start putting some of the recipes on here, so keep watching this space.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Ready For The Next Steps

Finally finished proofreading and editing the first draft. Reprint tomorrow, then I will pass it onto an independent "editor" for final checks. Should be able to finish that within a week, then I need to write the cover notes. After that I will be ready to use Createspace for a proof. Should be available on Kindle by the end of May.

Mmm...No1...Cookbook - Proofreading & Tasting by Michael Madden

Still going through the drafts of each recipe, and when I'm not sure about ingredients, quantities or steps there is only one thing I can do - make the dish again! Could be quite fat by the time this goes to "print". Hoping to have the final version ready to proof by the end of this week, then available on Kindle 1-2 weeks later.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

MMM...No1...Cookbook - Fun With Fonts

Fonts are not something that I normally concern myself with, but when I published Stags! I realised there was a whole world of pitfalls waiting out there. For text such as that in a book I chose Garamond, but for Mmm...No1...Cookbook there are a lot of figures that wouldn't necessarily show up well in Garamond, but there are also descriptive paragraphs. In the end I opted for Arial, with a mixture of 11, 12 and 14 point for the bulk of the text. The reason is simple, the book is really meant for Kindle - and that has its own font!

Going through the tedious task of proofreading and editing the recipes. Done 4, another 46 to go. And its making me hungry.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

MMM...No1...Cookbook - A Gap In The Market

If you do a search for "Cookery Book" in the Amazon.co.uk Kindle store there are 724 matches. If you do the same search in all departments there are over 90,000 matches. I suspect a gap in the market, but I also suspect that the public may need the advantages of a cookery book on Kindle explaining to them. Here are my top 3, I would be interested to hear yours.
1. Ready made shopping list for your ingredients
2. All of your recipes in one place
3. No more pages splattered with ingredients!

Its not that people would be less messy using a Kindle, but they would probably take more care of it than newspaper cuttings, cookery books, magazine cards, etc.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Mmm...No1...Cookbook by Michael Madden

Take your pic of these photos of Paella! One of them will form the background of the cover of Mmm...No1...Cookbook. You may have noticed that I have changed the title. Still not what I wanted but Sally was insistent. The book will be made available on Kindle - the cover is so that it looks like a real book on Amazon.















Monday, 16 April 2012

Extra copies of the High Peak Review delivered today, thanks James. Ole joined Derbyshire CCC last week, and is the 1,000th member. For that he gets a full day of hospitality for him and his family this Saturday at the County Ground. Unfortunately I will be playing cricket at Charlesworth, or at least holding an umbrella to shake hands. Anyway, Sally will take him and we should get enough material for the next HPR.

Reconsidering the title. Sally wants MMM because its almost like mmmmm showing approval, however I believe it should have Home Cooking in the title as that what it is all about!

Sunday, 15 April 2012

MMM Number 1 - Pictures Of Paella Available


The first pictures of the paella have now come through - unfortunately they are on Sally's laptop. I'll transfer them across and then you can have a look at them.

Obviously the pictures are only for the cover - the Kindle edition of MMM Number 1 will just be the recipes themselves. I don't see this as a problem, as most people should know what the finished dishes will look like.

I have been at Tabley races today, sharing my latest article with its subject Steve Evason. You can read the full article at http://www.michael-madden.co.uk/cheshire-farmers-drag-hunt

Saturday, 14 April 2012

MMM Number 1 - A Cookery Book By Author Michael Madden


This is the home of my latest project, "MMM Number 1". My wife Sally came up with the name - I'm not convinced. The project was originally started to allow me to keep all of my recipes in one place, but then it sort of grew. I have selected 50 for this volume (hence Number 1), but I already have dozens awaiting future volumes. Further issues could well contain guest recipes, so please feel free to email me your favourites to Mikemadden3@gmail.com.

I will post a couple of recipes here in the near future.

Today, April 14th, I prepared, cooked, filmed and photographed my signature dish, paella. The video will appear on Youtube in the near future, and the photographs will form part of the cover. I am going to create a paperback edition through Createspace, but this is really only to provide me with a decent cover for the Kindle edition on Amazon.