Sunday, August 31, 2014

Kindle Unlimited Sucks

Kindle Unlimited Sucks! Yes Kindle Unlimited Sucks, plain and simple, and there is now question about this .. At first I just thought it Sucks from an authors standpoint. A authors whose books wear selling pretty well in 20014 ...  Selling well until Amazon had the bright idea of this thing called Kindle Unlimited, a sort of Netflix for Books .. Well Kindle Books anyway. Kindle Unlimited is a monthly subscription service, whereby a subscriber can get unlimited downloads of Kindle Books on Amazon, 10 books at a time for the cost of $9.99 a month ... If you're an avid reader, this might sound good to you, good if you can get  and read numerous books a month for $9.99  ... Yes, good if you can get books, or more like, good if there was a good selection of books for you to get (Download) and read ... But guess what my friends? The selection of books Sucks "Big Time." There practically is none. The selection is "Pitiful" scandalous actually. Anyone who has signed up for the free month of Kindle Unlimited no-doubt already knows this. I don't know what the figures are, but I'd wager to say that percentage wise the number of books available on Kindle Unlimited against the Total Number of Books sold on Amazon is far less than 1 % .. That's dismal, to say the least .. Think I'll see if I can find out the figure somewhere, and if one of you dear readers happens to know, please let me know by leaving a comment in the comment box. Thanks for that!

Dodo Bird

Anyway, I first starting hating Kindle Unlimited in the beginning of the month (August 2014). Anyway last Christmas Season my book sales spike to pretty good numbers for the first time. Nice! Yes it was. The first 4 months of 2014 sales were so-so ... Then all of a sudden in May 2014, sales of my book Sunday Sauce started spiking  in a big way. They went from about 20 a month to more than 600 ... I was loving it .. In June and July I was selling close to 850 units a month with about 50 borrows from Kindle Prime subscribers that are worth 2 Bucks a Pop .. Sweet! Then came the dreaded month of August 2014 ... Dreaded for me anyway .. All of a sudden, my sales dipped overnight, and "Drastically" !!! My sales went from around 33 a day, down to a meager 3 !  "What The Fu_k ???" I didn't know what hit me. Seriously, I didn't .. I didn't ever know what the Hell Kindle Unlimited was ... I soon found out .. I went on the Forum for Kindle Select Authors and soon found out. A number of authors had seen sales drop dramatically as soon as Kindle Unlimited came on line. They were in the same boat as me .. Others were not. They were the fortunate ones, their sales had soared. Soared upwards that is .. Well goody for them, but not me and others. Some authors said their sales went down but their "Borrows" were up dramatically. Up enough for them to be happy .. But how bout us other guys? Guys (and Girls) whose sales not only went down, but went down drastically, and overnight? And all because of Kindle Unlimited .. I posted on the KDP Forum, "I Think I Hate Kindle Select." I wasn't really sure cause as a number of authors stated and suggested for everyone (authors) to wait and see when the dust settles.

Dodo Bird

OK, so I would. I didn't have a choice ... I was reading some articles and forums about this whole KU thing and how it was affecting authors, either badly, like me, and for some, it was good.  Amongst all the talk, some were thinking that if your book was priced at a higher price-point it might tend to attract KU Subscribers to download it more than over titles that were cheaper, like mine at just .99 Cents ... The subscribers would feel like they were getting a better deal by getting more expensive books free as opposed to getting a cheaper book free. Makes sense to me!
So I started experimenting. I had to get my sales up after the KU bashing. So I raised the Price to $9.99 hoping to attract more KU Subscribers to download my now more expensive book. Nothing !!! I tried putting it to $5.99, Nothing! So I put it back to .99 Cents and figured I'd wait out the storm ... 
Well it's August 31 and the first dreadful month of Kindle Unlimited is over .. But Kindle Unlimited is till there, and new subscriber will be going for the Free Month of KU  .. Hey, I did myself. Mainly as an author who saw his Kindle Sales Annihilated as a result of Kindle unlimited, I wanted to get it to see how it all worked and what was available. Boy I'm glad I did. I signed up for my Free Month of Kindle Unlimited, went on and started looking for books. Guess what? Well I think you already know? There's hardly anything there. I couldn't find any books I wanted to read. Well a couple. But I don't think I'll even find ten. Why? You know. The selections Sucks. There's hardly anything there. The selection is quite pitiful and I'd have to think the majority would agree, especially those who might read 6 or more books a month and thought KU might be a great deal. Not !!!!!
 So, I'd have to say, it looks highly likely, that eventually this thing called Kindle Unlimited will one day in the near future go the way of the Dodo Bird, and off into extinction .. Time will tell. What do you think?


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Chicken Dinner & Chet Baker

Chet Baker

Came up with a new one the other night. It was at one of our dinners that we have a coupel time a month, when we cook, drink wine, and listen to some great music on Vinyl .. Vinyle Records that is, and some great music, not like any of the crap they make today, but great artist of the 20th Century like; Frank Sinatra, Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Winter, Albert King, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and greats like Chet Baker. What's that? You never heard of Chet Baker? You're forgiven, many have not.
Chet Baker was one of the 20th Cenury's greatest and most unique Jazz Artist. He played Trumpet and had a positively unique singing style that was Super Cool and all his own. Baker played with Jazz Greats Charlie Parker and Jerry Mulligan before forming his own band and going out on his own in 1953, when he recorded and released Chet baker Sings ...
Chet Bakers most famous recordings are; My Funny Valentine and Let's Get Lost ...

OK, back to the Chciken & Chet Dinner ...  So my friends and I were having one of our little dinner parties at Chris's place on Thompson Street (Greenwich Village) .. As we usually do, we decide what we are gonign to eat, we buy the food, get some wine and cook dinner. As always the elements of our little dinner parties are; the food, some very good wine, and lots of great music, some on vinyl, some on CDs ... No matter what we make, we usually always have some nice cheese to start the meal, we decide on some music, and crack open our first bottle of wine. This night, Chris had already decided on chicken, which we all agreed would be great. He made some buttered carrots and Couscous to accompany the Chicken. Chris picked up a nice bottle of Au Bon Climant Pinot Noir from Santa Barbara that was quite nice, and I brought a bottle of Fausto Maculans Brentino ...

Chris was cooking the chicken, and we were listening to Eric Clapton, Ron Wood, and Pete Towsend's Raibow Concert LP .. A great album that's a bit obscure, but can you imagine, Clapton, Pete twonsend and Ron Wood all playing together? Friggin amazing. I myself had never heard of this concert and live recording album until Chris turned me on to it. It's awesome. Chris had some Zeppelin playing when we sat down to dinner, and I told him we had to tone the music down while eating. Like most civilized people I can't listen to loud music when eating so I requested a slow down. Chris asked what I wanted? He had been playing some Chet Baker when I arrived at his apartment, so I said I could go for some more Chet. He obliged.
The chicken was quite tasty, the wine was flowing and Chet Baker sounded just fine. 
The next day I sent Chris a Text thanking him for the Chicken & Chet, and so it's been coined. Everytime we have a Chicken Dinner now, we must also have some Chet, Chicken & Chet, it's our latest thing .. A dinner theme to add to our already famous Chianti Rolling Stones & Newport Steaks (dinner), as well Pork Chops Vino & Soul ... 
Oh and by the way, dessert is always Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and all is well with; Chianti Steak or Chicken, The Rollign Stones and Rock N Roll, R&B, Chet Baker and Peanut Butter Cups .. What more could one ever ask for?

by Daniel Bellino-Zwicke


Monday, August 25, 2014

Sad Goodbyes at ONCE UPON a TART


Soho / Greenwich Village,  New York

It was sad goodbyes at The Tart today. That's Once Upon a Tart in Soho (Greenwich Village) for those of you who may not know. After 23 years on Sullivan Street in what is technically known as Soho, but truly for those of us who really know, this charming little block of Sullivan Street between W. Houston & Prince Street will never be Soho, but The Village ...
Anyway this is where Jerome Audureau opened a lovely little bakery / cafe some 23 years ago .. This was even before Starbucks was even a twinkle in its evil fathers eye, there were none. Well not in New York anyway. Back then, the only cafes for that matter were a few Italian Caffes in The Village (Dante, Reggio, & Borgia), a few in Little Italy, a couple in the East Village, one or two on the whole Upper East Side, and not a one cafe in the whole Upper West Side of 
New York.
Jerome and his partner opened this wonderful little bakery Once Upon a Tart which over time became a second home to neighborhood people like me and others who could go for a nice morning cup of coffee, and a muffin or scone for breakfast, or at lunch for a sandwich, salad, soup, or one of the signature Sweet or Savory Tarts as the name implies. Yes the Tart was a wonderful haven for people like me and others in the neighborhood as well as a great little pit-stop for countless tourist roaming the streets of Soho in search of a quaint little cafe to sit and rest, have a coffee, Tart or little bite to eat. 
I loved the Tart. It may sound cliche, but it isn't when I say it was a second home and like family to me .. I'd go each and every morning for my morning coffee and a sweet hello and morning greeting from; Cleo, Anna, Kanae, Samena, and Emmit and a score of girls who worked there over the 23 years that I went there. That's all I needed, my coffee, a greeting from Cleo and a seat at The Tart and I was as happy as can be. I was content with these simple little pleasures of life.
But now they have been taken away, and it truly saddens me. I actually broke down as I got all choked up and started shedding tears as I said goodbye to the girls, saying I'll see you around as that's the thing to say, but knowing full well that was the last time I met ever see their sweet faces again. Yes I cried, I get emotional that way. And then I composed myself, we talked a couple minutes more, I said goodbye again and then I left. I walked out of the door where Jerome was. I gave Jerome a hug to and thanked him for the 23 years he opened his doors to us and brought joy and naturalness in a business to our little neighborhood.
I said goodbyes and walked away, and as I walked up Sullivan Street I had such an awful feeling, the kind you get when you breakup with a great love of your life. A deeply sad, sick to your stomach, the kind I felt when the-love of-my life Iris split up with me, or the day my father died. I felt a great loss. This is how I feel today, I lost something great in my life, something I cherished and may never have or see again. It may sound sappy, I'm sorry but it's true. Goodbye my dear and sweet friends; The Tart itself, Jerome, and especially, Cleo, Anna, Kanea , and Samena. Thank you girls. Thank you and goodbye.

My Sweet Friend Cleo

Me Jerome Chris & John

Once Upon a Tart August 24, 2104


August 24, 2014

Jerome Made Us Gigot

Roast Leg of Lamb

"It Was Yummy of Course"


Just a Few of Jeromes 
Many Wonderful Decorative Objects
Over The Years

Not Potheads !!!





Saturday, August 16, 2014

Sunday Sauce Bellino Beating Batali Hazan Bastianich Giada


Beating out books by famed Italian Cookbooks Authors; Marcella Hazon, Mario Batali, Lidia Batianich, Giada DeLaurentis and others. Sunday Sauce -When Italian Americans Cook is by Italian AMerican New York author Daniel Bellino Zwicke who specializes in both Italian-American Foods and Cuisne as well as Italian-American New York, the food, the people, places, and all things Italian; reataurants, bakeries, caffes, butcher, pork stores, markets, etc..

                                                            ITALIAN COOKBOOKS
                                                                 SUNDAY SAUCE 

                                                             by Daniel Bellino Zwicke

                                              Is # 1 BEST SELLER ITALIAN COOKBOOKS


Tuesday, August 12, 2014


ROBIN in Good Morning Vietnam Where He Turned in


A Chicago native, Williams spent time at Juilliard, where he was briefly classmates with Christopher Reeve. 
After an appearance on NBC's Richard Pryor Show, he got his big break, playing the wacky alien Mork in what was supposed to be a one-off guest role on ABC's Happy Days. "We started rehearsing and I realized that I was in the presence of greatness," star Henry Winkler recalled on CNN Monday night. "No matter what you said to him, no matter what line you gave to him, he took it in he processed it and it flew out of his mouth never the same way twice and it was incredibly funny every time."
The character proved so popular that he commanded his own spinoff. Mork & Mindy, costarring Pam Dawber and Jonathan Winters, became a phenomenon, spiking sales of rainbow-colored suspenders and adding "nanu-nanu" and "shazbot" to the lexicon. The sitcom ran from 1978 to 1982. "I am completely and totally devastated," Dawber said in a statement Monday afternoon. "What more can be said?!"

Robin Williams With Bruno Kirby


Sadly Bruno Passed Away in 2005 at Age 57 (Leukemia)

Williams made the leap to film with a string of wildly successful movies, showcasing a range beyond the motor-mouthed improvisation he built his standup career on: The World According to Garp, Moscow on the Hudson, Awakenings, The Birdcage, Mrs. Doubtfire, Patch AdamsA.I. Artificial Intelligence, and InsomniaHe carved out a rich career as a voice-over actor in such animated features as AladdinHappy Feet, Robots, and FernGully
He earned Oscar nods for Dead Poets Society, The Fisher King, and Good Morning, Vietnam, before finally capturing the elusive statuette by upstaging Matt Damon and Ben Affleck with a touching supporting role in Good Will Hunting.
Among the films he completed before his death were May's The Angriest Man in Brooklyn, with Peter Dinklage and Mila Kunis, and the upcoming Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb, where he reprised his role of Teddy Roosevelt in the Ben Stiller-led franchise. The latter is slated to open in December. 
Despite being one of Hollywood's most bankable movie stars, Williams never forgot his TV roots. Through the years he fronted several standup concerts and joined with Whoopi Goldberg and Billy Crystal to launch the Comic Relief television specials. Williams also made memorable appearances on FriendsHomicide: Life on the Street, Law & Order: SVU, and The Larry Sanders Show.
He returned to television in last season's CBS comedy series The Crazy Ones opposite Sarah Michelle Gellar. The show was canceled in May.
In addition to his Academy Award, Williams won two Emmys, five Grammys and six Golden Globes (including the career-capping Cecil B. DeMille Award). He also won the admiration of generations of top comedic talent.


When Italian Americans Cook




Friday, August 8, 2014



Elvis Aaron Presley

1935 - 1977

Tupelo Mississippi

Memphis, Tennessee

REMEMBERING ELVIS? The KING of ROCK & ROLL !!! No Doubt About It !  Elvis was The King. Love by Millions .. He died on August 16, 1977 , a Sad day for his many Millions of Devoted Fans. We remember Elvis, The King of Rock & Roll and one kind man. 



Another Dude !

"Not So HANDSOME" ???


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