Archive for May, 2013


Donald Douglas Sr. met Tip in 1936 as Tip joined the Douglas Aircraft Company workforce. Thank you Boeing.com for the photo.

Donald Douglas Sr. met Tip in 1936 as Tip joined the Douglas Aircraft Company workforce. Thank you Boeing.com for the photo.

In June, 1936, Cloyce Joseph Tippett was 23 years old looking for a job in aviation.

On the one hand, it was the Great Depression and finding any kind of job was a challenge.

On the other hand, he was in California and he had connections through his fiance’s father, Harry Hossack.

Tip wrote about his ambition in a memoir that has now been turned into the book “When No One Else Would Fly,” now available on Amazon.com.

“…Aviation per se was in the doldrums. Pilot jobs were few and far between in the San Francisco area. However, things were picking up in Los Angeles. Douglas Aircraft was building the DC-3 and the airlines were buying them. Once again, Mr. Hossack came to the rescue with his good friend, Sheriff Eugene Biscailuz, a potent political lawman who had been sheriff for years. Sheriff Biscailuz was a very good friend of Mr. Donald Douglas, President of Douglas Aircraft in Santa Monica, and at Mr. Hossack’s suggestion, wrote a letter of recommendation to Mr. Douglas for me. I presented the letter to Mr. Douglas’s secretary early November 1936 and was sent to the office of the Vice President of Engineering. I was told to start work the next day on the three o’clock shift as a junior project engineer…”

This was just the beginning for Tip and it wouldn’t be long before he would go from helping to build the DC-3 to flying it.

For more of this story, check out Amazon.com for the book, or sign up to keep current with this and other book announcements.

 

Colonel C. J. Tippett's biography is now available on Amazon.com ... and the ebook is coming soon!

Colonel C. J. Tippett’s biography is now available on Amazon.com … and the ebook is coming soon!

One thing I’ve learned from publishing my second book, “When No One Else Would Fly” is how much finishing something is not the end of it.

When I finished writing my first book, “Just A Couple of Chickens,” I thought I had climbed the top of a literary mountain – I’d finished a book!  And then I realized that I was just getting started regarding getting it published.

Another long climb later, when I finally accomplished all of the things required to self publish, I thought I had reached the summit when I clicked “Publish” on Amazon.com’s Createspace. (These days, it’s “Approve Your Book Proof”.. not “Publish”… but clicking that button publishes the book – just in case you are standing by with glasses raised ready to set off fireworks when you click “Publish”…)

And then I realized that I was just getting started regarding marketing the book.

So this month, as I celebrate the publication of “When No One Else Would Fly” about my grandfather, aviation pioneer Colonel C. J. Tippett, I am trying to enjoy the moment and deflect queries regarding when I’ll be releasing the ebook version.

The answer is …… soon!  And in the meantime, “When No One Else Would Fly” is now available on Amazon.com!

This used to be the world record Roosterfish catch, back in 1954. Col. C. J. Tippett pulled in this 80 lb fish on a 50 lb line at the Cabo Blanco Fishing Club.

This used to be the world record Roosterfish catch, back in 1954. Col. C. J. Tippett pulled in this 80 lb fish on a 50 lb line at the Cabo Blanco Fishing Club.

The Cabo Blanco Fishing Club on the Peruvian coast was the most famous big game sportfishing location in the world in the 1950s, and Col. C. J. Tippett was the Club’s Director during the height of the Club’s fame.

He caught many huge and amazing fish, and he was present when many more were hooked – by famous and amazing people.

Among those remarkable fish is his own world record catch – a fish that may seem, at first glance, a little less remarkable than the rest, but it was a true world record catch, and it was Tip’s.

This 80 lb Roosterfish, caught on a 50 lb line, was taken at the Cabo Blanco Fishing Club in, I think, 1954.

I’m sure that Tip hooked it, and I’m sure that it was 80 lbs, and a Roosterfish, and on a 50 lb line… but I’m not sure of the date. Because Tip faithfully recorded everything except the date. sigh. So based on how he looks, I’m pretty sure it was between 1953 and 1956… and I’ve picked 1954 as my best guess.

Tip’s adventures at the Cabo Blanco Fishing Club are detailed in several chapters of his biography, “When No One Else Would Fly” now available on Amazon.com.

The Roosterfish, Nematistius Pectoralis, is a member of the Jack Family. I’m taking another wild guess that it is named for that wicked spiny fringe on its back. Roosterfish live only in the Pacific Ocean and like rocky areas right behind the surf line. They can be caught from shore. Today, it is a good candidate for catch and release as it is not considered a delicacy, although it is edible. They are usually about 15 – 20 lbs, so an 80 lb fish was something special. The world record today is 114 lbs, caught off Baja California. There have probably been quite a few bigger catches but because the fish has to be killed to be weighed to qualify for a record, some fisherman decide to let it go; both the record and the fish.

Roosterfish fishing has it’s own big fan base; anglers with an angle of their own on fishing for this dramatic looking fish. Tip would have fit right in!

 

 

"When No One Else Would Fly" is now available on Amazon.com !!!!

“When No One Else Would Fly” is now available on Amazon.com !!!!

It is finally, finally, finally time to announce that Col. C. J. Tippett’s aviation history biography is now available on Amazon.com.

It has taken me 23 years to pull Tip’s handwritten memoir into a full-length book, filled with research, stories, background, foreground, and now it is ready to read.

Anyone interested in aviation history, aviation pioneering, the history of planes, big game fishing history, sportfishing history, celebrity history, civil aviation history, … in fact, history in general… is going to enjoy this book.

Col. C. J. Tippett was an extraordinary aviation pioneer who took himself from working class origins to one of the highest leadership positions in international civil aviation.

Between 1929 and 1961, he logged over 10,000 hours of flight time and piloted more than ninety-eight different aircraft models.

In an untiring pursuit for access to aircraft, and in his commitment to civilian flight safety, Tip climbed into the cockpit when no one else would fly.

Tip trained some of the earliest Flying Tigers, certified the first class of Alabama students who would become the Tuskegee Airmen, and shared a boarding house with Major Tooey Spaatz and Major Ira Eaker as they made plans for war.

He made record-setting solo flights over the Amazon Jungle in 1943 and fished for black marlin with Ernest Hemingway in Cabo Blanco, Peru in 1956.

Now Available on Amazon.com!!!

Now Available on Amazon.com!!!

When sixteen-year-old Tip saw his first airplane in an Ohio field in 1929, he knew that he must learn to fly. He didn’t know that he would become the first Director of the South American Office of the International Civil Aviation Organization.

Or that he would live in an elite world of political leaders, millionaires, socialites, and celebrities. When Tip finished his memoir, he encouraged his granddaughter, Corinne Tippett, to turn it into a book. Because by the end of his life, he knew that he’d made history.

“When No One Else Would Fly” is now available on Amazon.com!

Before he was a Colonel, C. J. Tippett flew the Lycoming Stinson out of Clover Field in California.

Before he was a Colonel, C. J. Tippett flew the Lycoming Stinson out of Clover Field in California.

One of my blog post series about my grandfather’s aviation pioneering life is “Where In The World… On This Day”… because he left such an awesome, museum-quality collection of documents, photos, logs, articles, memos, letter, photos and more that I can track where he was on a given day. Like today, for instance.

76 years ago, on May 16th, 1937, Tip was beating the Sunday sunrise at Clover Field, Santa Monica, California. He was running pre-flight checks on a Lycoming Stinson, registration number NC-13843. I know this from his pilot’s log, which he not only kept in great detail, but he had it notarized and signed off with each new flight certification. At age 24, he was aiming for a career as commercial pilot and he needed this flying time to count.

He would eventually go far beyond the career of a commercial pilot. He would become the Director of the South American Office of the International Civil Aviation Organization – and more. The story of his life, including his flights out of Clover Field, is told in his own words, as well as with my background, in “When No One Else Would Fly,” soon to be available on Amazon.com.

The Lycoming Stinson that Tip was flying that day was a day hire. Tip often flew passengers, flight students, or business men needing fast transport out of Los Angeles. Or he traded flight time with local fleet operators, but he flew almost every day. In this way, Tip flew every model of aircraft that was commonly available on 1937 civil aviation airfields, and some that were not so common.

The Lyoming Stinson was also known as the “Reliant.” It was a tail dragger, meaning that until the pilot had enough runway speed to take off, his view out the windshield was of everything except the ground in front of him. The airplane had a single overhead wing, and one engine on the nose. It could carry two passengers in addition to the pilot. True to its name, it was reliable and rugged.

“Lycoming” refers to the engine, and “Stinson” was the aircraft’s maker. This common standard for referencing aircraft in Tip’s day illustrates how important the two pieces of information were to pilots like Tip. The engine and the aircraft were two separate entities, and Tip knew them both intimately well.

Clover Field was the flight testing base of the Douglas Aircraft Company, and the maiden runway for the Douglas DC-3. Tip also knew that aircraft and company well, as they provided his day-job when he wasn’t flying overhead… as he did on Sunday, May 16th 1937.

 

Trying to determine monthly book sales from the Amazon Best Seller Rank is not black and white.

Trying to determine monthly book sales from the Amazon Best Seller Rank is not black and white.

How does Amazon sales ranking relate to monthly book sales?

Nobody knows. Except maybe Amazon, and they aren’t telling.

But some very determined, diligent, and intelligent people have taken on the challenge of trying to find an answer – and they’ve posted some tools and guides.

They are mostly authors who have self published books for sale on Amazon.com and have found, as I have found, that there is no way to independently verify how many of our books have sold on Amazon.com. We have to settle for Amazon’s report each month… and be patient with the fact that some kinds of sales have several weeks delay in posting on that report.  (I should say here that this whole situation isn’t much different from having to rely on a traditional publisher for a report of monthly sales – and in those cases, the delay can be much longer… but still… inquiring authors want to know.)

At first I wanted to know because I was concerned that maybe I was selling hundreds of thousands of books but only getting paid for about ten. But once I cruised the reports and sites and saw the general overviews of Amazon book ranking translated to estimated overall monthly sales, I accepted reality, (not really, but I pretended to)… and Amazon’s reporting.

Then I wanted to know how many books other authors were selling, particularly my favorite authors or some of the successful self published authors I’ve been following.

Amazon.com shows a book sales ranking as Amazon Best Seller Rank, under Product Details” on the book’s Amazon.com listing – you scroll down past “Description,” past “Customers Viewed This Item Also Viewed,” past “Editorial Reivews,” and you are there.

The rank changes every day, depending on your own book sales, and other people’s book sales. It is a complex algorithm (or a bingo cage at Amazon headquarters) and it can be very volatile.

The most interesting thing about the ranking is the general number range; like less than 100,000 or more than one million. All the info I’ve gathered about this number range is from people observing on their own, not from Amazon.com’s CFO, but I’ve done enough of my own double checking (on my own numbers and through other sources) that I think it is somewhat accurate.

In general, if your ranking is less than 100,000, you are probably selling several books every month. If your ranking is more than one million – meaning that there are at least one million better selling books on Amazon.com than your book… you are probably only selling a couple of books a month (or less), or haven’t sold a book in a couple of weeks (or more) – and you should probably stop checking your ranking and start doing more marketing.

But sell two books in two weeks and watch that ranking climb!  For one day.

Another resource, which is far more iffy, is a site that offers you a chance to enter your actual sales ranking and see what you actually might be selling monthly or daily. I found this calculator a little buggy – make sure you zero it all out and try it several times with slightly variable numbers. But it did show me numbers that made sense on my own ranking, and some test rankings where I already knew the monthly sales of other books.

There are also sites that helpfully offer, for free, to track your Amazon.com sales ranking; presumably so that you can have an average to plug into the calculator.

For me, having yet another numerical measure in my life is unappealing, especially because it does not generally make it under 100,000 on any given day, so I am satisfied with the occasional overview.

I could toss it into my goal pile, but instead, I’m going to get ready to release my grandfather’s aviation biography and see what happens to THAT sales ranking… wahOOOOOO!

 

 

Colonel C. J. Tippett in the cockpit of a Lockheed T-33 in Panama, 1955 - 1960

Colonel C. J. Tippett in the cockpit of a Lockheed T-33 in Panama, 1955 – 1960

For Colonel C. J. Tippett, aviation pioneer and Director of the South American Office of the International Civil Aviation Organization in 1960, active duty orders were literally a license to fly…. the T-Bird, the Lockheed T-33 jet trainer!

Tip, while living and working in Lima, Peru, had qualified in the T-33 in 1955 and any chance to report for duty at Albrook Air Force Base in Panama was a chance to climb into the T-33 cockpit.

Tip’s orders speak for themselves:

“Headquarters 

Caribbean Air Command 

United States Air Force 

Albrook Air Force Base 

Canal Zone 

Reserve Orders Number 13 May 5, 1960

Personnel Data: By direction of the President Colonel Cloyce J. Tippett AO (redacted) (Ready Reservist) (Command Pilot-On Flying Status) (Primary AFSC-redacted) (Present Address: Apartado redacted Lima Peru) is ordered to active duty for a period of 15 days for the purpose of training.

Security Clearance: Secret.

Assignment: DCS/Operations HQ Caribbean Air Command Albrook Air Force Base Canal Zone.

Reporting Data: Effective date of training 16 May 1960. Report to DSC/Operations this headquarters not later than 16 May 1960. Officer will be released from organization assigned in time to arrive at place from which ordered to active duty on effective date of release from training 30 May 1960 on which date he will revert to inactive status unless sooner relieved. (this is not my syntax, I swear – it is gen-u-ine USAF order speakery)

General Instructions: Officer is authorized to participate in flying activities during the period of active duty covered by this order.

Authority: Paragraph 1b. AFR 45-28 6 3 1957.

Transportation: You will proceed from present address on effective date of training. Travel by military aircraft is directed when available. PCS. TDN. Pay and allowances are chargeable.

For the Commander: W.H. Fleetwood 

SIGNED CWO. W-4 USAF Asst Director of Administrative Services”

For more T-33 flight adventures, and the full story of Tip’s aviation history life, check Amazon.com for the book “When No One Else Would Fly” or contact us to be added to the list for upcoming release.

 

Copyright 2012 Corinne Tippett & The Westchester Press
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