Welcome to the September edition of the Book Notification newsletter.
The priority work continues to be adding authors. We have now passed the 29,000 mark with over 2,000 authors added since last month. I would estimate there are still approximately 15,000 to 20,000 authors to add before we are caught up with all that. It’s a big task, but an important one.
Behind the scenes, we also built a whole new engine in regard to retrieving new books. It was a lot of work, and has caused extra work for us due to different editions of books we already have coming through, but well worth it in regard to having the most comprehensive and complete listings possible.
While adding authors is the priority job, we still want to try and add a couple of new features each month. We’ve got a few quality of life improvements listed below.
Last month, I ran a contest where every comment you make on an authors page will earn you entry into a draw with 10 $25 Amazon gift cards as a prize.
We actually only had about 20 comments overall, so if you commented then there was a good chance you would win. We’re running the same contest this month (see the bottom of the newsletter for details) so if you want an easy chance at a $25 gift card, get commenting!
Winners of the contest – their partial display names are below:
- Chris (christinee)
- Kelly B
- Lisa C. M
- Lou K
- Phil A.
- Phoenix H
I’ve sent you all an e-mail.
Thank you so much to everyone who took the time to comment. It’s very helpful for the site – especially when our focus is currently on adding new authors at the moment and not on enhancing the content on authors pages.
Website / Mailing List Exclusive Books: This is a key feature I am really happy with.
There are many authors out there who run a website and mailing list, and they release free ebooks exclusive to the website or mailing list. For the longest time, there was nothing we could do about that. Links would still lead to Amazon due to our system being unable to handle that specific situation.
That is now changed. If the book is not available for purchase, the links to bookstores will be replaced with an information button on desktop. If you hover over it, it will provide the details. Example below:
If you are on mobile and click the book title, it will pop up with that message about the book instead of taking you to your default bookstore. So that should lead to a lot less confusion in the future!
Hide “The Little Man”: There is an icon on the right of the website which many visitors have referred to as “the little man”. If you click it, it allows for accessible options for users who need that. Of course, the majority of users don’t actually need that, and I’ve received a few frustrated e-mails about it.
Now, you are able to hide that icon. Visit the settings page and under Website Settings, checkmark “Hide Accessibility Tools”. The little man won’t get in your way again!
Series and Book Number: Now in the weekly book notifications, rather than just list the book title, we also list if it is part of a series, and if so what book number it is. I’ve received so much positive feedback related to that, and I appreciate that. Always nice to know we’re on the right track!
We have now made the same change in your personalized book calendar. When you click on a book, along with the author name it also lists what series it is part of, and what book number if applicable.
Calendar Update: I love the personalized book calendar, but it’s so hard to display that sort of thing on mobile. So thanks to popular request, now below the calendar is a complete list of upcoming books. Sorted by the release date, it’s also searchable and sortable. The list is available on both desktop and mobile. Check it out.
New Content Added
We don’t just add authors to Book Notification – we post news and write some fun blog content too! Here are posts in that category from September:
Having quality content and discussion is always beneficial for our website. This month, I am asking you to write a comment on an authors page. It can be whatever you want. You can write about how they are your favourite author, or what their best book or series is. You could write about an adaptation of their book. Any and all comments are welcome.
We will give away ten $25 USD gift cards to random people who have submitted a comment from the day this newsletter was published, up until the beginning of the next newsletter. Every comment earns you a “ticket” into the draw and you can enter multiple times.
You can find the comment form at the bottom of every authors page.
Thanks to everyone for your support. It’s been a fun ride so far, and I’m excited for everything that we have planned.