Autumn 2021

It is the time when days get overcast and cool

When the leaves on trees change from green

To yellow, rust or brightest red

Unless you live in Southern California, I mean.

**

But even here trees lose their leaves

Prepare for the colder wintertime

The world gets tired after a vivid summer

Some rest more often, write, or read – or rhyme.

**

The ocean’s breeze feels cold by now

And so does the sky which’s overcast.

Sometimes even here, we expect a few raindrops

Sometimes I wish the rain would last.

**

Occasionally I miss the third of four seasons

As others have them on the Earth

Before winter comes and fall prepares

Everything for the new year’s re-birth.

**

I always thought, here in the land of eternal sun

I’d never be cold, freeze or even wear long sleeves

But I was wrong, and I search for my fall clothes

Once I see the trees and watch the falling leaves.

*****

(Copyright, Aurora Jean Alexander, October 2021)


Picture courtesy of Google.com

How to Find New Readers for Your Self-Published Book – Guest Post Written By Savannah Cordova

Every self-published author knows that getting your book out there isn’t actually the finish line; it’s really only reaching the three-quarters mark. The rest of the ride is all about making sure that the right people pick it up!

Without an established publisher, indie authors have to put in a little extra elbow grease — but that doesn’t mean the marketing journey has to be unpleasant. To help you out, here’s how to find new readers for your self-published book, and maybe even have some fun along the way.

1. Make sure your cover fits industry standards

We’re told not to judge books by their covers, but your cover is a crucial part of getting new readers to notice your work! In ebook stores, independent bookstores, Goodreads feeds, and more, your book will almost always be displayed alongside many other titles of the same genre… which means you’ll lean on your cover to help it stand out.

You want this cover to be professional and comparable to similar books, while remaining unique and eye-catching. At bare minimum, your cover should be professionally up to scratch — no clipart, no poorly formatted title text, etc. If it doesn’t appeal to readers in the first place, the following tips won’t be nearly as effective in getting them fully on board.

2. Choose your keywords wisely

On Amazon, you get to choose keywords for your book when you publish it. These are what readers will search up when they look for something, meaning that keywords are one of the most useful tools for directing your target audience toward your book.

Each book is allowed seven Amazon keywords, so do your research and pick those that have a decent amount of search volume, but aren’t too competitive; for example, a household-name bestseller on the first page usually means that keyword is difficult to rank for. And always choose keywords that represent your book — if your novel has no romance elements to it, for example, don’t select a romance-related keyword simply because the search volume is higher!

3. Discount and promote your book

The next thing that you can do to get more traction for your book on Amazon (and various other ebook publishing platforms) is to put it on sale. If any reader were on the fence about buying before, you knocking a few dollars off the price will certainly nudge them in the right direction.

Sales are also great for getting wider-scale promotion. Amazon already sends personalized emails about on-sale books to its customers, but what’s more exciting is that discounting your book can give you access to book promotion services.

Newsletter services like BookBub — which has millions of subscribers across multiple genres — are dedicated to spreading the word about book deals to readers. In other words, by cutting the price of your book by a little, you potentially open your doors to thousands of new readers!

So don’t be afraid to drop the price for a limited period. That said, the problem for many self-published authors often isn’t the money, but the accessibility of newsletter services that help make a discount work. Popular newsletters with huge mailing lists like BookBub and Freebooksy are very sought-after avenues, which means that the number of authors submitting their books far exceeds the slots available in the newsletter.

But all hope isn’t lost! There are plenty of promotion services out there, many of which are smaller but much less competitive — it’s definitely worth applying to a few of them to accumulate their effects.

4. Try a newsletter swap

Another way to access a new audience is to find another author who writes in the same genre as you and arrange a newsletter swap. This is pretty straightforward: in an upcoming newsletter, this author will promote your book to their subscribers, and you’ll do the same with their book.

This is why it’s best if the other author is someone with a similar follower base to yours — with a swap, each of you gets access to a new pool of highly relevant readers who might not have heard of you. Not to mention the added benefit of not costing a penny!

To be extra-effective, organize your swap around the time of your discount deals. We know that deals are a great promotional tool, and since you’ve already agreed to forgo some of your revenue anyway, why not make the most of this investment by compounding your sales boost with a newsletter swap?

In terms of finding a partner for this cross-promotion, you can discover plenty on Twitter’s #WritingCommunity, or simply by searching for books and authors in your genre. Remember to ask someone with roughly the same following as yours, and get to know them and their book first so that you can personalize your pitch to them.

If this swap goes well, you can carry on with other cross-promotions down the road — or maybe even work on a project together to pool your influences and increase visibility!

5. Reach out to “bookfluencers”

Another vital aspect to a book’s success is word of mouth; for most readers, nothing beats a wholehearted recommendation from a fellow bibliophile. Which is why you might also want to get in contact with the best-connected readers there are: Bookstagrammers, BookTubers, and yes, BookTokers.

These portmanteaus refer to influential readers on Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok respectively. On such platforms, book lovers can display their books with style yet intimacy, which means that they’re incredibly popular and often trusted for recommendations… and one influencer’s TBR or book review will influence another, and another, and another. Done right, a bit of social media promotion can create a wave of enthusiasm for your book that just keeps rolling and rolling.

To promote your book, get in touch with some of these influencers — they often have a work email listed somewhere on their platform — and offer an ARC in exchange for an honest review. You can also organize a giveaway with them, or suggest doing a live Q&A to show the friendly voice behind your book.

Hopefully these tips have given you a few solid ideas on how to market your self-published book and find new readers for it. It may take a lot of trial and error in order to find what works best for you, but just keep at it, and maybe one day your book will top the charts!


Savannah Cordova is a writer with Reedsy, a marketplace that connects self-publishing authors with the world’s best resources and professionals. In her spare time, Savannah enjoys reading contemporary fiction and writing short stories.

How to spot common red flags in phishing emails – Written By Tim

You clicked the link in the email to reset your online banking password. But are you really sure that the bank security team sent that email? Too late. You just fell for a phishing email scam, and now your account data is compromised. 

However, most phishing emails contain glaring red flags. You just didn’t spot them in time—but you can learn how to. Sometimes it’s still the most obvious tricks that catch people out, and phishing emails are a common example.

What exactly is phishing?

Phishing is a type of social engineering designed to manipulate you into giving up sensitive personal information like your passwords, credit card, or bank details, or installing malicious software on your device. 

Phishing uses communication—usually in the form of emails or text messages—pretending to be from someone you trust, such as a company whose services you use. This is why you are willing to give your information to them.

Once an attacker has successfully duped you and has stolen your information or gained access to your device, they can log in to your accounts, change the password, and potentially access other linked accounts. 

Read more: Before your download: Is that app a scam?

According to an Avast survey of its users, 61% of Americans are at risk of falling victim to phishing scams. Phishing emails accounted for 59% of the cases where users admitted to falling for a phishing scam.

While it’s true that it’s increasingly difficult to distinguish a fake email from a legitimate one, most phishing emails still contain red flags that should make you suspicious—if you know what to look for.

So let’s take a look at an example of a phishing email and the red flags contained within.

Example of a phishing email scam with glaring red flags.

1. The email was unsolicited

As a rule, most companies won’t send you unsolicited emails. So ask yourself, why should you have received this email at all? Attackers expect you to open these emails and click the links without verifying their authenticity.

2. A shouty subject line

Attackers know they’re competing for your attention in a crowded inbox. So a common tactic is to use shouty subject lines—in this case: “Important! Your Password will expire in 1 day(s).” 

Such threats and a sense of urgency are designed to make you click suspicious links within the body of the email. This should put you on alert that something phishy might be going on. 

3. Slightly misspelled email address or domain

If you’re suspicious about an email’s origins, check the sender. Scammers often use an email address that looks very close to a legitimate one. Close, but no cigar: and that difference is vital. 

The sender name, “LegitBank Security Team,” sounds legit, right? But notice the two spelling errors in the email address: “securiity@legitbamk.com.” 

A top tip is to type the company’s name in a search engine to see what email domain it uses, or by looking up an email you’ve previously received from them. 

4. Unfamiliar or vague greeting

Organizations like your bank have personal details, including your name—so receiving an official-looking email with a vague greeting like “Dear LegitBank user” should put you on alert. If the tone of the rest of the email also sounds out of character, that’s another huge red flag.

5. Obvious spelling and grammar mistakes

Many phishing emails contain several spelling and grammar mistakes, which is uncommon from large, professional organizations like banks.

In this example, you can see the inconsistent capitalization of the subject line, the bad grammar in the email text (“Your account password is expire in 24 hours”), and even spelling mistakes in the link URL.

Don’t click suspicious links

If you’re suspicious about an email’s origins or intent, definitely don’t click any links within. 

You can even see that the link in this phishing email has a spelling mistake in the URL (LegitBank is spelled with two “i”s). If you click on the link, you’ll be taken to a fake site that may look identical to the original, where you will be prompted to enter your login details or other sensitive information like payment details. 

Sometimes, the fake site will even redirect you to the legitimate site, where you will log in again (this time for real). But it’s too late: Your logins are compromised, and the attacker can access your account. By the time you notice something amiss, they might have already changed the password and the email address for account recovery, locking you out.

Don’t click on suspicious attachments

Attackers need you to open malicious attachments, so will make them look as harmless as possible. The attachment on this phishing email appears harmless enough, instructions for updating your password—but if you’ve already spotted red flags elsewhere, think before you click.

Once opened, the harmless-looking ZIP file could spread malware onto your device (though a malicious PDF or DOC could be just as devastating), which may allow an attacker to log your keystrokes (capturing logins, passwords, email addresses, bank accounts) or install ransomware on your device, encrypting your documents to block access unless you pay a ransom. (Which is another good reason to back your data up regularly.) 

Keep an eye out for things that just look odd

Did you notice that the copyright notice at the bottom of the email is out of date? It says “2011” instead of “2021”. Big corporations are unlikely not to have updated such details in over 10 years, so even small details could be red flags.

At the end of the day, attackers who send phishing emails are relying on you to drop your guard and trust that everything is normal. So always be on alert for glaring red flags that mean something phishing may be going on. 

For more tips on cybersecurity awareness and the biggest news in tech privacy, sign up for the ExpressVPN blog newsletter.

Tim likes to keep an eye on the exciting developments in cryptocurrencies and data privacy when he’s not deep in a podcast, a TV show, or new albums.

(Source: https://www.expressvpn.com/blog/phishing-emails-red-flags/?utm_source=blog_newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=blog_newsletter_20211014)


I thought, this was a warning that needs to be spread. There are still far too many people falling for pishing. I found that article on my VPN provider’s newsletter, which I get regularly. I’m using VPN for quite some time now and find it extremely useful. It offers me safety and protection. If you’d like to try it, you can do so for one month, or longer. Click here to check it out: https://www.expressvpn.com/what-is-vpn – Let me know if you’d like a link to subscribe, I’d be happy to assist you!

Relationship Advice By ‘LawCrossing’

Sometimes I surf through the internet, a little here, and back, a little there and back… and lately I was searching for an answer for my new book and found LawCrossing, ‘America’s Top Legal Job Site’. An interesting article there caught my eye: What You Should Know Before Getting Into A Relationship With A Lawyer.

I will show the entire article here because I’m not sure everyone can read it on it’s original pate. The link will be here on top and also on the bottom.

But what interests me most: Who can confirm if that’s true? Let’s say I’m curious for personal reasons. Let me know in the comments.


What You Should Know Before Getting Into A Relationship With A Lawyer

  • Attorneys are aggressive and argumentative.
  • They are also very busy and difficult to keep plans with.
  • So knowing this, how can you still be attracted to an attorney?

If you don’t know so by now, you should realize attorneys are a different breed of human. No, they’re not zombies, at least not some of them. Nor are they some throwback pre-human, like for instance, the Neanderthal, though some may question even that.

Nonetheless, attorneys are different. They think differently and at times tend to behave differently. Attorneys are deductive, tend toward the darker sides of issues, and if an attorney is good at…well…being an attorney, they are more than likely doggedly tenacious toward their knowledge and beliefs.

But let us not forget that with all the toughness that calluses beneath their Brooks Brothers’ suit and tie, there still stands a human. The question, however, remains; are they the correct type of person for a long-term relationship?

The fortunate aspect of lawyers is that their personalities are about as apparent as a muzzle on a dog’s face. This means you will get to know rather quickly if any lawyer is worth investing your time, and most importantly, your emotions into.

In fact, there have been people who have learned within a single day if they are or are not lawyer material.

“These (certain) characteristics make great litigators especially, and great lawyers as a profession. But they counter to what works in emotional intimacy and even in good parenting skills.”

The above are words from psychologist Fiona Travis, author of “Should I Marry a Lawyer: A Couple’s Guide to Balancing Work, Love and Ambition,” which can resonate strongly with those who are in relationships with an attorney.

And while there’s quite a bit of distance between being in a relationship with an attorney and marrying that attorney, there is some validity to Travis’ comment. Lawyers do not necessarily make for good mates, while others have experienced the polar opposite.

With that established, instead of arranging the pros and cons of getting involved with a lawyer into a typical (albeit overused) list, this article instead puts a relationship with an attorney into real-world context where a person and their attorney “friend” spend a Sunday together.

So hold on tight as we slide down the legal rabbit hole in pursuit of, or at least to better understand, our prospective lawyer boyfriends and girlfriends.

  • Sunday brunch can be a bit trying.

Lawyers are direct. When they say they want their eggs scrambled soft, no two ways about it, they better be scrambled soft. This is one aspect of lawyers every prospective mate should know about. Attorneys are demanding. Life, life’s circumstances, and its various scenarios, have to be their way, or it is the highway for any person or issue that stands in a successful, yet demanding attorney’s pathway.

Lawyers, by their very nature, are extremely detail oriented. Their work has to be meticulously completed with every detail accurately showcased and put perfectly in line. Of course, these work traits can spill over into a lawyer’s personal life, where such a meticulous and demanding attitude can have a strong effect on anyone who is close to this lawyer.

  • Attorneys are very Type A

So brunch is over, and one of your Sunday plans is to check out this month’s swap meet at the nearby Rose Bowl. And yet, riding in your lawyer friend’s gleaming high-five figure German sedan quickly becomes a needling, if not annoying scenario in which you can crack the passenger’s side window only so low, adjust the seat only so far back, and turn up the stereo only so high when you hear a song that you like.

This can explain the attorneys much talked about and very little revered (except in a law firm) Type-A personality. For an attorney, everything has to be planned out, and when it’s not, such as you two getting a bit lost on the way to the swap meet, the conflict of trying to get back on track can mount with anger, disappointment or bewilderment.

  • Lawyers Don’t Think or Analyze Issues Like the Rest of Us

Lawyers are objective thinkers. Essentially, the black does not mix with the white, leaving very little room for the subjective gray. So, while at the swap meet, where you stumble across a very nice coffee table, your lawyer friend may not see the potential you do for how the coffee table can be utilized. Aside from using it as a table and nothing more, your attorney friend can’t imagine the numerous uses you plan for the coffee table as, for example, an end table or a surface on which you could put plants or cherished photos of loved ones.

What the attorney sees is an old, half-beaten, nicked-up table that can’t be worth the money the seller wants for it. If the table were new, then yes, the price might be worth it. Or if the table had an incredible pedigree, then sure, the price makes reasonable sense. But for the attorney, the cost is not rooted in emotion, desire, or even lust. The table’s wherewithal comes from objective reasoning that has been instilled in him or her since law school. In short, they know no other way of thinking other than with pure and steadfast objectivity.

  • Conceited to the Max

Law school and the practice of law within a Big Law firm can leave an attorney confrontational and jaded, both of which are masked over with a strong sense of confidence. While it’s nice to have a significant other who is confident, that confidence can seep into everyday life, putting your relationship with your lawyer friend at risk.

Case in point: You two are still at the swap meet, and though you missed out on the coffee table, you do see an armoire you like. Your lawyer friend recognizes that you like it, yet they insert themselves between you and the seller to haggle and negotiate to the point that the seller is exhausted and simply gives up.

The problem is, just because the seller gives up doesn’t mean you get the armoire at a reduced price. It only means you are now associated with a person who thinks highly of him or herself for having won another argument while the armoire salesperson considers your attorney friend as just another holier-than-thou a-hole who probably wasn’t going to let you buy the armoire in the first place.

  • Lawyers are always on call

Your attorney friend’s cell phone rings, and for reasons you’ve experienced in the past, you understand a phone call at this hour on a Sunday means your Sunday may effectively be over – at least your Sunday with your attorney friend.

While on the phone, he or she nods. They ask follow up questions. They say, “Right away – on both accounts.”

“Both accounts?” you later ask.

Your attorney friend answers that there’s an afternoon party they now need to attend, then afterward, they have to go into the office for a post-party meeting.

This shows you another aspect of what life can be like when dating a lawyer. Attorneys are always on call. Yes, they are given assignments throughout a typical weekday morning to the early evening schedule. However, attorneys are also assigned tasks late at night, early in the morning, and even during dinnertime. Now, when it was promised both of you would have a nice Sunday together, it’s all dashed since your lawyer friend now has to get ready for a sudden Sunday afternoon cocktail party, and afterward, what will probably be a near all-night stint at their firm.

Sure, it may seem unfair, but again, this is the profession of law; a profession which knows no time off. And as your lawyer friend wants to make partner someday, bring in tons of business which for him or her means tons of personal revenue, they can’t afford to pass up work, a social obligation or any other duty that goes with being a lawyer. As for you, these are the breaks, negative as they are that you have to be aware of while in a relationship with a lawyer.

  • Dating a lawyer can legally empower you while distancing you from others.

If you’ve ever wanted to read your cable contract with more clarity, understand the warranty buried deep inside the paperwork given to you by a local car mechanic, or realize your rental agreement isn’t as watertight as it should be, then dating a lawyer can have its advantages.

Where the disadvantages lie are with the preconceived notion of what an attorney is – some of it being true of course. Your family friends may, in fact, not like that you’re dating a lawyer. They may think of attorneys as pushy and arrogant, regardless of the money they make now or in the future.

Then there are other family friends who might applaud you for your lawyer friend, simply based again upon the money your friend makes now and may make in the future.

  • Student debt, regardless of an associate’s salary.

Law school is as fleetingly expensive as buying a pricey sports car. In other words, for some, the return for the money spent may take a while before any value comes to fruition. All that’s directly apparent about a legal education is that it is very expensive, and will take a long time to pay off.

While an associate’s fee isn’t too bad these days as it lies comfortably in the world of six figures, paying that fee off can be a burr in both your saddle as well as your lawyer-friend’s saddle.

This is what you might forget as you imagine life outside of an apartment dwelling and inside a cute little starter home you pulled to a stop next to at a traffic signal – a little house that eventually your attorney-beau or lass shakes their head against.

“Remember, I have law school to still pay off,” he or she says, dashing the notion of cozy fireplaces or warm evening sit-downs on the back porch overlooking the pool and yard.

Well, at least undergraduate student debt wasn’t brought up, although who’s to say that isn’t part of the money-owed equation for you two as well.

  • You’re dead in the water as far as arguments go.

Argue about anything. Argue about how today – Sunday – hasn’t gone along as planned, and if your attorney-friend decides to argue back, good luck defending yourself.

Just in the way an attack dog is designed to sink its incisors inside anyone it’s told to attack, it is the same case with an attorney and his or her instinct to argue. If you choose to argue with an attorney, you’re in for a rude awakening of what it’s like to word volley with a pro that was trained to do this mercilessly.

In short, be prepared to lose.

  • You’re going to be lonelier than hell.

Those social parties like the one that for the most part, put a damper on your Sunday, those late nights at work, the continual need to argue, out-negotiate, crush an opponent during litigation, that desire to win – no matter what, can amount to a lot of lonely days and nights on your part.

While nearly all nine observations above suggest a rather gloomy, argumentative and stressful existence, all of which are the cons of being in a relationship with an attorney, there are some pros that should be considered. For instance, some of those pros are:

  • Accompanying your attorney friend to business parties.

By now you probably know that your lawyer friend is obligated to attend social gatherings where contacts can be made for future business opportunities. Well, as boring as that may sound, these parties can in fact be fun, in which there’s a strong possibility you will meet interesting and compelling people.

  • Free negotiations on your behalf.

If there is one way a person will nearly always offend an attorney, it is by engaging in what the attorney presumes are unfair business practices. Whether purchasing a piece of furniture at the now-forgotten swap meet, contesting a perceived imbalance to a rent increase, or any other scenario that appears biased, it’s good to have an attorney in your corner, better yet if that attorney is a boy or girlfriend.

  • Attorneys are not boring.

It would be a mistake to think that a person who spends his or her day reading, writing and arguing will be an abject bore to a significant other. On the contrary, legal cases of all types can be compelling, lyrical, and even poetic.

Sure, your attorney-friend may relay a case in a deductive, fact-by-fact manner, yet remember, by nature of their ability to interpret the law and legal issues, attorneys can be very creative as well as intriguing while they relay points, findings and incongruences of a legal case.

Whatever negative characteristics people note as part and parcel to an attorney, the flipside is attorneys can tell some damn good and forceful stories, particularly about their cases.

  • An attorney’s success can be infectious.

Successful attorneys are built to win. While that building process begins in law school, then further intensifies once an attorney begins working at a large, prestigious law firm, much of what makes up a successful attorney is pure raw personality and survival instinct.

A definite positive of being involved with an attorney is that their hunger for success, not to mention their confidence, can rub off on you and potentially add to your own confidence and desire to win throughout aspects of your own life.

  • Attorneys are heroes.

While generalizations of lawyers as money-grubbing, selfish a-holes can have some validity toward some attorneys, “heroic” has as much validity, if not more for the majority of attorneys.

Believe it or not, most attorneys want to be helpful. If they perceive an injustice of any type has or is occurring, many attorneys will spring into action. In some cases, if an attorney deeply believes in an angle toward a certain legal issue, that attorney may forego charging the client altogether, opting instead to work the case pro bono.

As difficult as it may seem given the broken plans, the late nights at work, the ‘til death do us part dedication to their job and overall aggression of their personality, to imagine your attorney friend as having compassion and concern for a person’s case, can be utterly heartwarming.

This reveals to you as well as to your family and friends, that while attorneys probably do have a tougher exterior shell than our own, they are still humans with human instincts.

Attorneys are heroes, not heels. The sooner this is known to the public at large, the sooner attorneys will be accepted for doing good by people, as opposed to being negative and selfish.


In Conclusion


To be honest, there is a risk when getting involved with anyone. The question is, do the benefits outweigh the risks? The same must be asked with attorneys: in short, are the long lonely nights worth the deep, albeit sometimes argumentative conversations over dinner (or Sunday brunch)?

Are the long hours, continual evening and weekend interruptions, and the overall hunger to make partner a bumpy journey that you can withstand as well as your lawyer friend?

If yes, then you may have yourself a keeper.

Just remember, every profession is hard and can put a strain on not just a Sunday spent with your legally assiduous boy or girlfriend, it can significantly affect the relationship you share with them. If a profession is worth vigorous pursuit, then it must be a good profession that is worthy of a significant other’s support and understanding.

Given your relationship is strong, with both sides applying as much effort into the relationship as they can, the relationship itself will have the wherewithal to outlast any type of law practice.

Now that is commitment.

(Source: https://www.lawcrossing.com/article/900049095/What-You-Should-Know-Before-Getting-into-a-Relationship-with-a-Lawyer/ )

Soul Taker Secrets – Exotic Salad For Busy Council Members

In the past ‘Soul Taker Secret’ posts, we learned that Katie loves cooking, not only for Raphael but all Council members with their consorts. Now, Katie is an enthusiastic cook, but not a particularly good one, even though she made progress by constant learning and her consort friends’ help.

With the help of her ‘sisters,’ Katie developed an exotic salad for the busy members of the ‘Council of Twelve.’

I heard they all loved it – and so do I.


Ingredients:

  – 1 1/3 cups brown rice

  – 5.29 ounces salmon (steamed)

-   2 slices fresh pineapple

-   1 mozzarella (ball)

 – 1 bunch fresh thyme

 – grated lemon peel (as needed)

 – salt

  – ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Cook the rice in a stockpot full of boiling salted water for approximately 45 to 50 minutes.
  2. Drain the rice and allow it to cool.
  3. While the rice cools, prepare the dressing by steaming the salmon with lemon peel and thyme.
  4. Cook the salmon for approximately 10 minutes, let it cool slightly, then break it up delicately into small pieces.
  5. Next cut up the mozzarella into cubes and place it on a paper towel for 10 minutes.
  6. Peel the pineapple and cut two slices into small cubes.
  7. Plate the salad by placing the cooled rice in a large bowl, add the salmon pieces, the diced mozzarella and pineapple, some grated lemon peel, salt and pepper to taste, and the fresh thyme.
  8. Refrigerate the salad for a few hours before serving.

Picture courtesy of: Yummly.com

(Source: https://www.yummly.com/recipe/Exotic-Salmon_-Mozzarella_-and-Pineapple-Salad-632343)

5 Reasons Tech Can’t Replace Editors – Written By Lisa Norman

on Writers in the Storm Blog:

Have you seen the new products on the market to replace live editors with an automated intelligence? I see authors spending a lot of money on these services, while being excited that they can now save the money they used to spend on editors.

I see editors moving to other careers or accepting impoverishing fees just trying to stay marketable.

Pick up a newspaper and you’ll see that more and more publications are using automation instead of live, intuitive, experienced editors.

A friend recently asked me to help decipher a recipe that was in a published, highly rated cookbook. It included such ingredients as “tortured cream” (whipped cream) and “evening meal exercises” (dinner rolls).

Aside from the above silliness, here are my top 5 reasons why I was horrified to learn some publishers are switching to automation for editing their clients’ books:

Continue reading HERE

TOP TEN THINGS NOT TO DO IF YOU DECIDE TO SELF-PUBLISH YOUR BOOK – Written By John W. Howell

Photo by ron dyar on Unsplash

This post originally ran on October 12th, 2015. Those with memories of an elephant might like it again. For the rest of us, I hope you enjoy it.

* * *

The inspiration for this list is my latest effort to self-publish the next John J. Cannon story titled His Revenge. Since I had absolutely no experience in publishing, the journey was a long winding road marked by plenty of mistakes. I’m sure the trial and error method is not over yet, but here is some of what I learned. Don’t forget I’m a fiction writer, so some of these lessons have been enhanced with dubious facts to make them more exciting and hopefully humorous. I would, therefore, resist publishing this list on the Huffington Post. (hear that, Arianna?)

Top Ten Things Not to Do if You Decide to Self-Publish Your Book

10 If you decide to self-Publish your book, do not drink any alcoholic beverages four weeks before and two weeks after you hit the publish button. If you do, at best, those little things you forgot are not necessary. At worst, you find out after six weeks you submitted the wrong cover with the manuscript. (You know the one. It has “fiction” spelled “fuction”).

9 If you decide to self-publish your book, do not try to edit the manuscript yourself. If you do, at best, you will have a fool for an editor. At worst, your book will be featured on a blog with the lovely title of “The Poorest Written Books of the Year.” (You are so lucky to have the top position)

8 If you decide to self-publish your book, do not think you don’t need to know how to format the interior. If you do, at best, your readers will be treated to several blank lines. At worst, your book will resemble something created by a room full of monkeys on keyboards. (Yeah, it can be done, but that one page with only the word “then” on it took the cake)

CONTINUE READING HERE

What to Do When You’re Approached by an Overseas Publisher – Written By AskALLi Team

on Self Publishing Advice:

The moment you receive an email from a publisher or licenser pitching you for a potential rights deal, is an exciting moment.

While there are also lots of scammers in the world, there are also many genuine publishers and licensers out there who really do want to partner with you.

Today, the Alliance of Independent Authors AskALLi team looks at what you should do when you’re approached by an overseas publisher.

As soon as you achieve success as an indie author, you’re going to be approached directly regarding foreign rights or other rights deals as–unless you have an agent–you are the point of call for your books.

This might feel odd at first. You might instinctively think it’s a scam, as we’re so used to doing things independently, with no help or support. This post will help you weed out the scam from the genuine deal and tell you what to do when you’re approached by an overseas publisher or other rights buyer.

Continue reading HERE