My interview on Chris Devlin’s Blog

Guest Author Daven Anderson on Vampires, Classic Cars, and Forks

Devlin: Where’s the best place to eat in Forks?

Daven: Outside the city, in the dense forest, when the Twi-hards are out at night looking for vampires.
“Pardon me, young ladies. It appears you’re looking for vampires. Forgive my impertinence for asking this question, but what exactly were you planning to do if you found one?”
*(screams)*

😈

Chiseled in Rock: What’s New from Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers?

Deleted scene: “What’s Going On”

Here’s a deleted scene from Vampire Syndrome, taking place at the same time as the first scene in Chapter Thirteen, “Black And Blue Mustangs”…

Damien:

Unmarked silver Charger in the Jacksons’ driveway. Yep, Curtis finally got a night off. Between us and the Normal police, I’m amazed poor Curtis gets any time at home.

Always liked this little Victorian of theirs in Park Hill. Been re-painted 32 times, in every shade of the red rainbow.

I still remember when those young gang-bangers tried to rob me on this very sidewalk a few decades ago. Now, fixie bicycles are parked on the neighbors’ front porches, unlocked.

Gentrification marches on. Too bad. Ripping heads and limbs off those little gangsters was much more fun than walking past roving packs of hemp-and-jeans-clad hipsters in Civil War beards talking about indie bands.

I march up the Jacksons’ front porch steps and tap my knuckles on the door screen thirteen times.

Curtis whips open the door. “Oh, come on, brother…”

“Chill, C.J., I just want a beer.” I pat his shoulder and smile.

Curtis’s wife Tamika saunters up behind him. “Don’t be givin’ him that ‘I just want a beer’ shit, peckerwood.”

I add fangs to my smile. “A beer and a chat, Tammy. Off-duty, of course.”

Her eyes blacken as her fangs extend. “What’re you up to now?”

“I have a new plan. Gotta keep Curtis in the loop.” I smirk at Curtis.

“Who you gon’ fuck up now, white boy?” Tamika demands.

“More like who else will fuck who up.” I reply. “May I?” I wave my hand toward the living room.

Curtis and Tamika lead me into the room. Their old posters always catch my eye. Scream, Blacula, Scream! Super Fly. Cleopatra Jones and the Casino of Gold. Slaughter’s Big Rip-Off. Shaft in Africa. Dolemite. And my favorite.

Coffy. She’s the godmother of them all. “I’m not worthy,” I whisper.

Tamika touches my cheek with a handkerchief. “Here, lemme help you with some of that drool, Damien.”

“Pam Grier.” I smile.

Tamika playfully nudges my shoulder.

Curtis, carrying three brown bottles, strides to the couch. He places the brews on the coffe table and motions us over.

Tamika and I sit down at Curtis’ sides.

I state, “This Jack thing is getting out of hand.”

“You’re mad cause he got away,” Curtis says.

“No,” I reply, “I’m mad that he’s still at large. And I intend to correct this state of affairs.”

I fetch my phone from my coat pocket.

“Who you calling?” curtis asks.

I answer Curtis and Tamika with a smirk as I dial Lilly.

She picks up and says “I’m almost there, honeybun.”

“Thanks for picking up Zetania, sweetheart.” Curtis and Tamika’s expressions change to quizzical, yet mean, stares. I knew they’d like this. Tamika taps my shoulder, wanting to speak, and I wave her silent.

“Mamuwalde’s showing off the new gold caps between his fangs,” Lilly says. “They’d look pretty good on you, honeybun.”

“Practical, too,” I reply. “If he ever ran out of Normal money, he can just go to a We Buy Gold shop and pull those caps out with pliers.”

I shake my head and whisper “No, not Jack” to Curtis and Tamika.

“I think he’d sell his gold necklace or rings first, don’t you?” Lilly asks. “Anyway, I gotta go, honeybun. I’m almost at the entrance.”

“Bye,” I say before I hang up.

Tamika fangs out. “Why the hell is Zetania Vinescu coming here?”

“I decided I need some outside help.”

“To kill innocent Normal bystanders and cause massive car wrecks?” Curtis asks. I can see my face reflecting in Tamika’s raging black eyeballs.

“Zetania doesn’t fuck around,” I state.

“She hunts Pures,” Tamika snaps. “That shit’s okay when you’re chasing Pures, but she can’t come here and pull that crap just to get some handicapped kid. Zetania might give us all away by accident.”

I fang out. “And Jack will give us all away by accident.”

Tamika and I leap off the couch. Curtis slips between us, fanged out and ready.

“As you heard, Tammy, I have Lilly’s okay.”

Curtis glances in our directions, then sits down. Tamika and I reluctantly seat ourselves.

“That bitch has lost her mind,” Tamika whispers to Curtis.

“I don’t think so,” I reply. “Even she couldn’t catch Jack last night.”

YA or Erotica? Get both and save!

My publisher is now offering both versions of Vampire Syndrome (Young Adult and Erotica) as a two-book set in their online storefront:

PDMI Store: Vampire Syndrome Erotica and Young Adult two-book set

You get both versions for $19.95, a $9.95 savings. 😀

Should Barnes & Noble drop the Nook?

You read this post’s title and thought, “My god, Daven must be joking. How could he even suggest such a thing? Even the most die-hard paper book lovers can’t dispute that e-books are the main-volume product of the future.”

A “future” that is already slipping out of Barnes & Noble’s grasp:

Digital Book World: Barnes & Noble Bookstore Sales, Nook Sales Down Over Holiday Period

Nook Media sales declined 12.6% versus a year ago.

Forbes: Barnes & Noble’s Big Problem — and What to Do About It

– Nook is losing money
– Nook isn’t growing
– Nook is sinking when a rising tide is lifting all other boats

LA Times: Should we be crying for Barnes & Noble?

“You say you are closing a third of your physical bookstores over the next decade, all while admitting they are not unprofitable?” Petri writes. “Please listen to yourself.” Petri says she’s afraid Barnes & Noble will give up brick and mortar bookstore in the name of chasing e-book profits.

Chasing e-book profits would make much more sense if they were making e-book profits. 😈

LA Times: The incredible shrinking Barnes & Noble

Barnes & Noble’s retail stores do sell the Nook, but that’s not what Klipper points to as setting the chain apart. He told the Wall Street Journal that less than 3% of the company’s stores lose money — because they’re a destination for people in a way other retailers aren’t. “You go to Barnes & Noble to forget about your everyday issues, to stay awhile and relax,” he says.

So Barnes & Noble is closing profitable bookstore locations to divert the funds to the money-pit Edsel of e-readers? Not a good business model. We all know what happened when Borders outsourced their .com to Amazon. 😈

The strength of Barnes & Noble is that they are a brick and mortar retailer. Period.
The Atlantic: The Endangered Fate of Barnes & Noble

The same newsletter quotes Daniel Raff, a Wharton management professor, suggesting that the pessimism toward the bookseller may be overstated:
[He says that] Barnes & Noble was resourceful in devoting store space to the Nook and has assets that could be utilized. “When you talk ecosystems, it’s not just the digital stuff. . . . The comfortable majority of publisher profits are physical books, and they need distribution.” Indeed, Barnes & Noble’s biggest asset may be the reality that publishers need shelf space to sell books.” Ultimately, he and other observers have concluded that bundling print books with digital versions may be the next phase of bookselling and that would be a plus for Barnes & Noble.

When it comes to e-readers and digital content, Amazon has eaten B&N’s breakfast, lunch, dinner and they are now licking the last few crumbs of apple pie crust off of B&N’s dessert plate. The problem here is B&N’s myopic view from within:

Digital Book World: Revenues Increase for Nook in Second Quarter Even as Losses Mount

Internally, Barnes & Noble leadership is still optimistic about Nook’s long-term prospects.

“The Nook business will scale in 2013,” said Lynch on the call. Helping it scale will be its partnership with Microsoft, which will pay Nook $50 million a year for the next three years as an advance on profits (read: unless there are profits, it’s financing for Nook).

“We expect our two highly acclaimed new NOOK products, and our Microsoft partnership on Windows 8 to further fuel the growth of our digital business…”

If Windows 8 wasn’t laying a Vista-size turd in the marketplace and handing the tablet market to Apple on a silver platter, I might share a bit of their optimism. Having Microsoft throw money into your money-pit does nothing to solve the fundamental problem, indeed the only real guarantee B&N gets here is “three years of life support” for the Nook.

The most important sentence quoted above: Barnes & Noble’s biggest asset may be the reality that publishers need shelf space to sell books.
A considerable percentage of B&N physical shelf space is being occupied by Nooks.
Did the Kindle win the market via physical shelf space allocation?
No.
In fact, Kindle has much less shelf space now that Target and Wal-Mart have decided to stop selling it, but does anyone think this will be a major factor in Kindle’s future?
No.

Barnes & Noble is a brick & mortar retailer. It’s time for them to act like one. People go to B&N to browse printed books, not Nooks.

The root of the Kindle’s success is its online content environment.
Even if B&N wishes to burn through tons of money trying in vain to compete with Kindle continue to sell Nooks, the Nook belongs online.

For the stores, it’s time to replace the Nook space with book space.

Update 25 February 2013:
Barnes & Noble Chair wants to buy retail business

Barnes & Noble’s founder Leonard Riggio disclosed in a regulatory filing Monday that he wants to acquire the company’s stores and website, but not the business that makes the Nook e-reader or the company’s college bookstores.

N.Y. Times: B&N Vs.Simon & Schuster Dispute Said To Hurt Sales

Update May 2013: Yahoo Finance: Ten Brands That Will Disappear In 2014
(note what brand #2 is) 😈

Update June 2013: Forbes: Barnes & Noble Bows To Apple And Amazon; Exits Tablet Business

Nothing sells e-books like…

…paperbacks! 😈Vampire Syndrome Paperbacks