The Snoozeletter @ s.9TimeZones.com

 
Setting up author pages at Amazon's international sites. 

If you're an author with books (or anthologies or magazines) listed on Amazon.com, chances are good that your products are also listed on Amazon's international sites. And if you join Author Central:

http://authorcentral.amazon.com

, you can collect all your titles in one place, and provide readers with a bio+photo, like this:

http://amzn.com/l/B000APGB80

Then, a little down-arrow icon will appear next to your Author name, like this:

http://amzn.com/1448620805

, and when a mouse hovers over the icon, you'll see a link entitled "Visit Amazon's Your Name Page." You'll see a similar link (and photo) further down that page, under the "More About the Author" heading. [Hint: if Amazon's automated system won't add your title, just click the "Contact Us" link at the bottom of their page.] After you get everything set up at Amazon.com, you can join the Author Central areas at these international sites:

http://authorcentral.amazon.co.uk
http://authorcentral.amazon.fr
http://authorcentral.amazon.de
http://authorcentral.amazon.co.jp

[Hint: if you download and use the Google Chrome browser, you can right-click on any page that contains a foreign language, and get an instant translation. You can also get translations by pasting words or URLs here. Even though I don't read German or Japanese, I was able to set up Author Pages at those sites.]

Here are some samples:
http://amzn.co.uk/l/B000APGB80
http://amzn.fr/l/B000APGB80
http://amzn.de/l/B000APGB80
http://amazon.co.jp/l/B000APGB80

Update 1: Amazon.ca, Amazon.cn, Amazon.nl, Amazon.in, Amazon.it, Amazon.es, Amazon.com.br, Amazon.com.mx and Amazon.com.au don't have Author Pages yet, and Amazon.at simply re-brands pages from Amazon.de. But these 3 sites clone a portion of the Amazon.com Author Page: in, it, es. And these 4 sites offer a search result cloned from the Amazon.com Author Page: ca, cn, br and mx.

Update 2: You can obtain an Author Page URL by following these instructions, and you can use this prefix: http://amzn.com/author/???

Update 3: Amazon has a deal with http://bit.ly - so if you shorten any Amazon URL there, it comes out like this: http://amzn.to/???????

Update 4: Getting a Twitter feed into your Author Page is easy, but for a blog feed, they require the RSS or Atom URL, which is not readily apparent. For example, here are some details on Blogspot/Blogger feeds and WordPress feeds and Squarespace feeds and Tumblr feeds.

Update 5: Amazon also offers pages for musicians at http://artistcentral.amazon.com - they call it Artist Central. (Later: defunct.)

Update 6: Self-publish a book in 14 countries for under 10 bucks...

Update 7: Amazon's American site can be translated into Spanish (Amazon.com/?language=es_US) and back into English (Amazon.com/?language=en_US). Amazon's Canadian site can be translated into French (Amazon.ca/?language=fr_CA) and back into English (Amazon.ca/?language=en_CA). Amazon's Japanese site can be translated into English (Amazon.co.jp/?language=en_US) or Chinese (Amazon.co.jp/?language=zh_CN) and back into Japanese (Amazon.co.jp/?language=ja_JP). Amazon's German site can be translated into English (Amazon.de/?language=en_GB) or Polish (Amazon.pl) or Turkish (Amazon.com.tr) or Dutch (Amazon.de/?language=nl_NL) and back into German (Amazon.de/?language=de_DE).
 
An Imaginary Conversation About A Thieving Soda Machine.

ME: This darn soda machine stole 12 bucks from me. They tell me you give out refunds.
HIM: TWELVE DOLLARS?! But a soda only costs 75 cents!
ME: Yeah, but this machine stole from me 16 times.
HIM: SIXTEEN TIMES?! This week?!
ME: During the last 14 months.
HIM: Why did you keep trying to buy from it?
ME: My co-workers kept showing me new tricks on how to make it operate.
HIM: Did the tricks work?
ME: For a while.
HIM: And then what happened?
ME: It would steal from me again, and I'd walk downstairs, to use the other machine.
HIM: Why did you come back?
ME: Lazy. I buy 10 cans a week. And the other machine is down a hall, down a flight of stairs, down another hall, back through that hall, up the stairs, and back through the first hall.
HIM: So this machine worked most of the time?
ME: Yeah. Then it would steal from me again, and I'd get pissed off.
HIM: And you'd walk downstairs?
ME: Yeah. Until I got lazy again. This machine is only 5 steps away from the newsroom.
HIM: Why didn't you report these incidents to me when they happened?
ME: You normally work on the day shift. I work graveyards.
HIM: But surely you could leave me a note?
ME: 75 cents is not enough to quibble about. And don't call me Shirley.
HIM: So you just thought you'd save up all your refund requests and dump them on me all at once?
ME: Exactly. I felt I was being considerate. Not wasting your time.
HIM: You should have come to me after each incident.
ME: Why?
HIM: The government doesn't let you save up your taxes until you decide to pay them, does it?
ME: I don't know about you, but I pay my taxes once a year. In April.
HIM: So now you're asking me for 12 dollars?
ME: I figured it was about time.
HIM: You did, did you?
ME: Yeah. Um... you make it sound like I'm lying.
HIM: 12 dollars is a lot of money.
ME: This thieving machine stole more than that from me.
HIM: Really?
ME: Yup. I'm actually underestimating.
HIM: You're telling me you lost that much money?
ME: Yeah. I'm stupid. And lazy. Look...
HIM: And you expect me to hand over 12 dollars? Just like that?
ME: Why don't you get the vending company to replace this machine? One phone call, no more hassles.
HIM: It works well enough for most people. Why not for you?
ME: Hey, at least 6 other people have told me this machine stole from them, too. But you're really enjoying this, aren't you?
HIM: Enjoying what?
ME: Watching this machine steal our money and then torturing us, when we come begging for quarters.
HIM: You're pulling my leg, right?
ME: Nope. Look, this refund interrogation is suckin' the life out of me. Keep your precious 12 bucks.
HIM: Don't you walk away from me. Here's the 12 dollars.
ME: I don't want your 12 dollars.
HIM: Take the 12 dollars. But the next time you lose money, come to me right away.
ME: I'm not taking your f*cking 12 dollars. And I won't beg for quarters like some organ-grinder monkey. But why not fix this machine? You know it steals.
HIM [venomously]: This soda machine doesn't STEAL. It MALFUNCTIONS.
 
Heat stroke.

Here are some videos for Blast-Furnace season (Phoenix dipped under 100°F/37.8°C only one day in July):

Bananarama - Cruel Summer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3fdEKMCHvtQ
The Lovin' Spoonful - Summer In The City http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYuVPGmw3D4
Jerry Reed - When You're Hot, You're Hot http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bzewk-FMgS0
Buster Poindexter - Hot Hot Hot http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrhf_zgtmAg
Kool & the Gang - Too Hot http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o88PN3TnX3c
Smash Mouth - Walkin' On The Sun http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LQj--Kjn0z8