I am sending this out to all six of my blogs, and I hope other blog publishers will also pass this along as we try to help others.
First, a little bit of history before I get to the main point of this post….it’s Thanksgiving week and time to give back!
The way many of you found this and my other blogs was via a link in my book called “Free Kindle Books and How to Find Them.” While the title may not be too original, and some blog posts contradict the next statement, I like to think in most things I am short, sweet, and to the point – hence the title.
I actually compiled the first version of this book while my wife was in the hospital a few years ago. I had a list of websites that offered free books in the Kindle format, and I was having a good time just reading away obtaining books for free. While sitting in the hospital room, I finished a book and starting shopping in the Kindle store looking for something else to read: I typed in the phrase “free kindle books” and, in addition to a lot of free books on the Amazon website, I saw about half a dozen books for sale that purported to tell you about sources of free Kindle books.
My curiosity was aroused and I bought several of them: I wasn’t very impressed, as true to my typical self-confident nature I felt like my list of links was better. So, I fired up my laptop in the hospital room and started banging away with my list of third-party websites offering free content in the Kindle format and created the book. I also figured people similar in experience to my Mom and mother in law would be reading this book, so I also tried to give some detailed instructions for the technologically-challenged not only on how to download / get the books but also on how to transfer them to your Kindle (while I technically should apologize to both my Mom and mother in law for the preceding comment, while I love them to death they would both be the first to raise their hand and say they need a little help with electronics).
I guess people like the book, as each month when I review the sales report from Amazon I am amazed at its success. Last Christmas, it reached #10 on the Kindle bestseller list!
This book led to the Free Kindle Books Plus a Few Other Tips blog, which has been the #1 blog for over a year now in the Amazon Kindle store. That one has been the bigger surprise to me, as I am humbled that many of you keep reading the posts of a gray-haired middle-aged guy from Texas: I appreciate your sticking with me as it has been fun!
So, what’s your point, Michael (and I said I was short, sweet, and to the point a few sentences ago)?
This week marks the celebration of Thanksgiving here in the USA – a time to be reflective of all of our blessings and to give thanks for what we have, our family, and our friends. In honor of you sticking with me, I’d like to give something back: for all purchases of my book “Free Kindle Books and How to Find Them” between 4:00 p.m. central time today to 4:00 p.m. central time Wednesday the 23rd, I will donate 100% of the proceeds to the Salvation Army’s Christmas Kettle campaign.
What’s in it for you as a purchaser? Well, think of it as a handy reference of sources other than Amazon for free Kindle books. With the release of the Kindle Fire, I updated it last week with a few more sources as well as instructions on how to transfer books to your Kindle Fire from non-Amazon sources.
Sure, this book has a lot of links that you could find if you did a lot of Google searching – but I’ve already done that for you. I look at it as a time-saver as the sources I point out have over one million books available for you to download and read for free (that was not a typo – there are really over a million free books with the sources I list).
It costs just 99 cents, and from this amount approximately 30 cents will go to help the less fortunate while the rest goes to Amazon. As you can see, I’m certainly not getting rich off of the proceeds of this book; however, we can certainly help out others with the proceeds.
Why choose this charity vs. another charity? A couple of reasons:
- The primary reason is the various food banks across the country are hurting for donations. I have read of people being turned away due to a lack of food at food banks across the country.
- Despite what our elected officials in Washington may say and want you to believe, we’re still in a recession and more people are out of work than ever. In addition to providing food, the Salvation Army provides other assistance such as clothing.
- The Christmas Kettle campaign is not just about food and clothing: they also give toys away to children. I don’t know about you, but it makes me really sad to think there are children who will not receive at least one new toy to play with during Christmas.
- The Salvation Army doesn’t care if you are white, black, brown, pink, purple, gay, straight, Christian, disabled, bald, too fat / skinny, or any other thing. The main focus of the Kettle campaign is to help others.
- The final reason is I have worked as a bell ringer for the Salvation Army during three different Christmas campaigns in the past. I have seen this organization stretch a dollar beyond belief, and the gratitude expressed by the recipients of this campaign is beyond words: I don’t care how hard-hearted you may or may not be – it will bring a lump to your throat and tears to your eyes.
I’m also having the cutoff on Wednesday for one simple reason: the bell ringers come out in force on this Friday right after Thanksgiving. While Amazon won’t remit the funds to me until the end of January (they pay two months in arrears), I will pre-fund this and give it to the Salvation Army on Friday.
I did a similar campaign last year with another one of my Kindle-themed books, and two other blogs also participated in the promotion: thanks to your generosity we raised $175.70 for the East Texas Food Bank – believe it or not, that was enough money to feed 1,400 people in the month of December. I think we can do better than that this year as the number of subscribers to each of my blogs has more than tripled since that time. I guess it is now time to call this the annual Thanksgiving Kindle challenge.
Thanks for reading this far! If you are able to participate in this campaign to help others – thank you! Once the Wednesday cutoff passes I will update you on how we did. If you are unable to participate, I hope you will please consider helping out the charity of your choice and give back just a little bit.
Have a great week-
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