I found a phenomenal article written by Nicholas Rossis, where he writes about witches, in a very unique and still sensitive way, combining myth and history, as he usually does. Thank you for a fascinating post, Nicholas.
I kick off the new year with a matter close to anyone who’s ever flirted with fantasy writing: witches. I mean, what’s fantasy without witchcraft? Probably a rather boring Medieval existence, that’s what.
Of course, there’s a big difference between fantasy and reality. Witchcraft has been a topic for discussion since forever and witches have been surrounded by countless myths through the centuries.
This guest post by John Dickinson, a writer from SuperiorPapers, discusses the myth and reality of witches.
The Real Witches
Witches were traditionally pictured as ugly hags with warts on their faces, a pointy hat with a wide brim, stirring a huge cauldron with a green liquid or cackling through the sky. However, modern pop culture has portrayed them as a kind, nose-twitching suburban housewife; an awkward teenager learning to control her powers, and a trio of charmed sisters battling the forces of evil.
A similar confusion seems to surround their punishment. We believe that witches were burnt for their sin of practicing witchcraft. But this, along with other myths, was an unusual punishment that probably became popular because of Jean d’Arc.
Here are some more interesting facts about witches I hope you will find at least as interesting as I did!
Quite frankly, Jane’s post made me sad. The latest chairman, James Daunt, is credited with saving UK’s famous bookstore, Waterstons. However, all you got to do is read the following quotes to understand that he really doesn’t get B&N – or books.
Early on, when Daunt was asked what he thought of Barnes & Noble on his last store visit, he said, “There were too many books,” by which he meant that featuring the right inventory is more important that stocking a big blur of titles. Back in 2015, he commented to Slate, “My faculties just shut down when I go in there.”
So… the big problem with a bookstore is that it has too many books.
And this gem:
Daunt loves the physical book, but he wants to give customers a digital option to get them into reading as an entry to physical books.
An entry. To physical books. Like, kids use digital books but us, highbrow grownups, know better. “Thank you, Amazon, B&N will stick to our guns and our lovely paper. No need for this new fandangled way of doing things.”
Nicholas Rossis gives us insight into seven ways to boost our author brand. Thank you so much for this great post, Nicholas!
The inspiration (and Infographic) for this post came from Resume Now, which has an article about branding yourself. While they are focusing on job applications, what they say is remarkably useful for those building an author brand, too. I am summarizing below, but I suggest you also visit the original post for more ideas and examples of successful brands.
How to Develop an Author Brand
Developing an author brand helps add value and credibility to your books. Here are seven steps to help you get started.
1. Find a Niche
The first step in building your author brand is to find your niche. Some questions to help foster this process are:
What are your passions and interests?
What credentials do you possess?
What types of writing do you particularly love working on?
What makes you forget to look at the clock?
It’s crucial to find a niche that can evolve with you. Your interests are not stagnant, so choosing an area of focus with growth potential is crucial for long-term satisfaction.
2. Determine a Target Audience
Once you’ve identified your niche, you should figure out who your target audience is and how to tailor your author brand to them.
This week Nicholas Rossis was busy blogging… I couldn’t decide which tones to re-blog – and decided to just publish his entire collection. He has fascinating and informative posts and this way you can decide for yourself which ones are interesting to you. Thanks a lot, Nicholas!
As anyone who’s been following my blog for a while surely knows, I love puns and bad dad jokes (often the same thing). And I often use them in my work, especially in my children’s books. Which becomes rather problematic when translating them into Greek. How can someone translate puns decently?
Rick van Mechelen, aka “that translation student“, recently shared an interesting post on this very subject. He cites Dirk Delabastita 1996 work* to divide puns into four categories of ambiguity. These are homonymy, homophony, homography, and paronymy, each of which is better suited to different forms of communication:
A pun where a word with multiple meanings is used to give multiple meanings at once.
A hard-boiled egg in the morning is hard to beat.
A pun using two words that sound identical, but have different spellings.
First, a caveat: the Middle Ages lasted a thousand years in places as different as Iceland and the Holy Land. So, things differed from place to place and from time to time. After all, did your grandmother get married in a similar way to you?
No matter where and when, though, a general fact about marriage in the Middle Ages is that it was usually an economic affair.
This is not to say that the parties to a medieval marriage inherently lacked affection, passion, or sexual attraction. However, economic considerations played an important role in marriage negotiations and contracts…
This is a guest post by Daniela McVicker. Daniela is a contributor to Essayguard. She has a master’s degree in English Literature and is truly passionate about learning foreign languages and teaching. Daniela works with the students to help them reveal their writing talent and find their one true calling.
7 Tips to Write a Killer Book Presentation
Sometimes, a book you have written draws enough attention that you are asked to speak about it to an audience. You may be asked to present as a subject expert, talk about your material at a conference or convention, present at a book fair, or give a quick presentation as part of a book signing.
As they say, more people are afraid of public speaking than of death. Which means that most people would prefer being in a casket than giving the obituary.
My Ph.D. thesis, Design in the Digital Age: In Search of a Collaborative Paradigm, was all about finding novel ways to help designers interact with their clients. I had envisioned a tablet-based Virtual Reality environment with Augmented Reality elements for the client, thus allowing them to better understand what the architect or designer was trying to achieve. As for the architect or designer, Artificial-Intelligence software would significantly speed up the design process.
My thesis was published in 2000. Unfortunately, my vision has yet to be brought together by a software company, even though most of the elements I was describing are now widely available.
However, that doesn’t mean that technology hasn’t changed in other ways. As an article in IndiaCADworks explains, in the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industries, new technologies are advancing with each passing day that makes the process of construction smarter, more streamlined, and indeed futuristic.
Nicholas C. Rossis is a very talented author I know mostly from his blogs. He’s an excellent blogger too and educates young writers on his blogs on how the business works. Thank you so very much for featuring Demon Tracker and me on your blogs today, Nicholas. I’m honored!
Aurora J. Alexander is launching Demon Tracker, the third book in her Council of Twelve series.
Zepheira is the best Demon Tracker working for the Good side. With her unusual looks, her phenomenal sense of smell, and her bravery, she quickly draws ‘The Big 7’s attention to her talent. They hire her to find one of them. Leaving her familiar surroundings and regular work environment unsettles Zepheira at first. But the challenge to prove herself and to increase the reputation of her infallibility tempts her.
She is convinced she will be a great asset to ‘The Big 7’. Little does she know she will be a much greater asset in Heaven’s fight against Evil. Zepheira suddenly becomes more than a hired tracker. She finds herself an important pawn in the game of love, heat, and fire. Will her courage and sacrifice be sufficient to dance with the flames?
Less than twenty minutes later, I received a message from Michael. I was strictly ordered not to do anything but stay where I was. Andreas would pick me up a little later. In the meantime, I could work out in the gardens with some of the angels if I wanted to.
Nicolas Rossis informs us on his blog on how to sell our business with ebooks. He posted an infographic that is simple and self-explanatory and very, VERY useful! Thank you, Nicholas!
Did you know that a great way to promote a business is through an ebook?
As regular readers of this blog know, I have been focusing on freelance writing this past couple of years. So, this is a tip that may be of particular interest to non-fiction writers and anyone else who is looking to make a living through their writing.
Good content has become the brute force that drives a majority of the marketing strategies on the internet today.
Indeed, that is why writers are as popular as ever – it is a golden era for content marketing (although things are still hard for fiction writers). Whether it is explainer videos, blog posts, or infographics, every form of online marketing requires high-quality content that attracts more clicks and revenue.
Nicholas C. Rossis informs us in his latest blog post about the evolution of blogging and what and how it had developed since he joined the great group of bloggers, a long, long time ago! Thanks so much for sharing your experience with us, Nicholas!
I have been online since 1985. I was one of the first members of the BBS (Bulletin Board) scene in Greece back when we connected to a server using landline modems. I still remember my thrill when I finally got my hands on a 9600 bps modem and could download pictures as well as texts.
In 1995, I developed my first website. Even then, I had identified a need for regularly updated content. While some pages were meant to be static, there were news and events to share. Web developers usually met this need by introducing a News page and placing there any related items. As the new millennium approached, we started placing some of these on the home page, too.
Nicholas Rossis provided us with a very interesting and highly educating blog post about medieval wardrobe – reality vs. Hollywood. Even though I called the article educating and interesting, which it is – I still think Nicholas just ruined my day. (Just kidding!)
Contrary to popular belief, people in the Middle Ages loved color – and could afford it. They also liked to be, well, naked. Which makes sense, considering how much Medieval people liked throwing rotten vegetables at each other.
Some people take the term “Dark Ages” a little too literally. There is a notion in popular culture that the Medieval Period was a time when everyone lived in absolute poverty, wore clothes that looked like they were sewn together by a 6-year-old, and bathed zero times during their entire lives. The dark-filtered movies and shows depicting the Medieval period are supposed to symbolically reflect how bleak everyone’s life was.