With the most innocent of intentions, I decided to post an Amazon “click ad” for my novel “The Dangerous Thaw of Etta Capstone.” If you have an ereader, you know the kind of ad I mean. The full screen ad that appears & wants you to click on it so you can learn more about whatever the ad is hawking and ultimately (of course) buy that item. Amazon in its omniscient, self-satisfied way knows exactly what you’ve been browsing on their site. Knows, too, what you like to read, so any ad for Etta goes to readers who in the past showed an interest in the kind of book Etta is: adventure, Americana, western, historical romance. The best part is that I pay Amazon only when someone actually clicks on the ad. I’ve done it before, and it’s a cost-effective way to garner screen time and name recognition.
This time, though, I made a colossal and insensitive error in ethical judgment because here’s Amazon’s response to my ad:
“Unfortunately, your ad campaign has not been approved to run on Kindle E-readers for the following reason(s):
This ad contains an image of a realistic firearm, or a firearm pointed at the reader or a character, or a firearm being used. ”
Whew! When I think of the mayhem and savagery Amazon avoided by refusing to show this cover on an ereader screen ~
~ I am limp with relief and gratitude.
Amazon, get a grip. The vast majority of my generation who came of age in the 1950’s & 60’s managed to survive seeing Matt Dillon shoot a bad guy EVERY SINGLE WEEK of our young lives without experiencing a moment of paralyzing trauma because of it, either then or now.
And — trigger warning! ha! That was a cheap shot! ha again! (I can’t help myself. Sorry.) — every Saturday night many of us watched a show called “HAVE G-N — WILL TRAVEL”. (1957-1963) (Talk about a firearm “pointed at the reader”!)
Sadly, while I may forget to put water in the vase of flowers, I can still sing most of that show’s theme song. Yet somehow, I and kids like me managed to make it to our present advanced years without ever committing a violent act. (I don’t count spiders.)
If the sight of a book cover showing an old-timey six-shooter resting in a field of bluebonnets distresses someone, I’d venture to say that person needs more help than Amazon can offer.
“The Dangerous Thaw of Etta Capstone” is a fictional story that takes place in east Texas in the mid-1800’s and has as its hero a Texas Ranger. This may come as a shock, but my research showed that the Texas Rangers carried guns in the mid-1800’s. Check this out- (yowza! don’t cross these guys!)
I’d guess that today’s fine law enforcement agency, still called the Texas Rangers, btw, may carry guns as they go about their business even now. Take a look at: https://www.dps.texas.gov/TexasRangers/
OK. Rant over. I feel better. I can go on. I will survive to write another day.
Thank you for your audience, friends, and enjoy your day.
(Since The Dangerous Thaw of Etta Capstone won’t be advertised on Amazon any time soon, please ask your ereading friends and acquaintances to head on over and buy a copy. And all of you could leave a review on Amazon expressing heartfelt admiration for the book’s cover. Just a thought.)