Thanks so much for the Monday Funnies, Chris! It gave me quite the chuckles. Spreading the smiles!
on Bad Redhead Media:
When I first started in the publishing industry over ten years and seven books ago, the nebulous concept of an author platform sounded like a vague box of ‘things’ a writer would buy at the Invisible Writer Internet Store.
“Want the deluxe package?” an oily salesman with an extreme side part would ask. “I don’t know,” I would shrug. “How much does it cost?” I’d ask this snake-oil dude. He would smile, wryly, “That depends.”
Sound familiar? Still confusing. I know.
This is how a seasoned writer explained an author platform to me at the time that helped me make sense of it all:
Think of your author platform as a deck. Each tactic is a plank. Without a full deck, your platform isn’t solid. It’s flimsy. Building each plank will give you a solid foundation to work from when selling your book so nothing falls through.
This helped. A lot. And make no mistake: while you may tell yourself you’re allergic to marketing, don’t know what it is, or that it’s all ‘shameless self-promotion’ (it’s not if you’re doing it correctly), you DO want people to read your work, right?
You have a choice here: be the oily salesperson or be strategic about it. Time to stop covering up your eyes and ears and do the work.
Let’s talk about all the planks. Well, at least the most important ones and why they matter, as well as how they impact your platform.
on Self Publishing Advice:
We’re sensible indie authors, we can often sniff a scam out. But scammers are getting smarter and it’s getting harder to tell a legitimate email from a scam. In today’s Alliance of Independent Authors Watchdog post, John Doppler explains how to tell the legitimate from the scam.
Your book has been on the market for a few months now, and maybe sales are starting to lag. Then one morning, you open your inbox, and a wondrous email springs forth with a fanfare of trumpets:
This is Joseph Monicker from Reputable Press Solutions, a traditional global publisher affiliated with Penguin Random House.
We are very interested in the book that you published and we would like to help you get a contract from one of the biggest traditional publishing companies…
Because you are a wise author, you immediately suspect a scam. But how can you know for sure? Are you passing up a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity?
on Live Write Thrive:
Today’s post is a reprint from some years back, but it’s one that deserves revisiting!
Sound may not be something writers pay much attention to when they work on their novels. Of course, there usually is a significant amount of dialog, and there may occasionally be found a noise shown in the scene, such as a branch cracking underfoot, the whoosh of an arrow zipping by, or the hiss of a snake. But other than the obvious, basic sounds, novelists don’t usually think much about this sensory element.
By looking at some of the ways filmmakers deal with sound, we can see many possibilites of how writers might enrich their books with this often-ignored component.
In the book Cinematic Storytelling by Jennifer Van Sijll, we read this about sound: “Sound effects are as much the purview of the writer as are visual symbols . . . Sound effects can also suggest an extended aural metaphor. They can add layers to a film that are hard to achieve in other ways. Sound effects can be obvious or quite subtle. They can intentionally draw attention to themselves or manipulate with stealth. They can expose, disguise, suggest, establish, or reveal.”
Sound is a terrific tool for a writer’s toolbox, so let’s expore!
on Writers Helping Writers:
Quick, what’s one thing you need in every scene?
This question can have a lot of answers – tension, conflict, stakes, emotion, action…on and on it goes. But I would argue one of the most important is one of the most basic: choice.
As of yesterday East Wind is uploaded and available for pre-ordering from all Amazon sites. As I hoped, here in the UK its priced at £0.99. Officially it will be available to the general public on the 1st of January 2022. That is the date when your pre-ordered copy will appear on your Kindle. I really hope you enjoy reading East Wind and Arvo’s journey together, and the heart warming love story which they both share in when Arvo (Bill) meets not one but two loving souls that he falls in love with. First Lin Mae who gives him a precious daughter – Tilde. Then his true soul mate Katya who he remains with for the rest of his days.
on Just Publishing Advice:
There are many reasons why you might want to publish writing anonymously.
Many famous writers and authors have used pen names or pseudonyms, so it’s nothing new.
However, most writers today publish online, making it more challenging to keep your identity a secret. So how do you publish anonymously?
The internet has made it easy for new writers to find readers. But if you want to publish on the quiet, you need to take care.
on Publishing … and Other Forms of Insanity:
This December there are more than five dozen writing contests for short fiction, novels, poetry, CNF, nonfiction, and short plays.
Prizes range from a gold medal to $25,000. None charge entry fees.
Some of these contests have age and geographical restrictions, so read the instructions carefully.
on Writers Helping Writers:
There are as many ways to tell a story as there are stories in existence. That means not all writing advice will be a good fit with the story we’re trying to tell.
An important step in knowing which advice to heed and which to ignore is being aware of the type of story we’re writing, specifically how we focus on the plot arc versus the character arc. So let’s talk about how we can discover our storytelling focus and what it means for our writing.