Quick Link: POD: Why Authors Should Handle Their Print-On-Demand

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

Michele DeFilippo at BookWorks makes the case on why indie authors should do their own print-on-demand. What have your experiences been?

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POD: Why Authors Should Handle Their Print-On-Demand

by Michele DeFilippo

Michele DeFilippo of 1106 Design is committed to helping indie authors succeed. She has shared advice on our Discussion Groups forum and here offers further support by presenting the case for setting up and managing your own POD.

Marketing your book is the final step in self-publishing; it’s also the never-ending step. Distribution—a way of delivering your book to readers—is a vital ingredient of your marketing plan. At one time, a printed book sold in a brick-and-mortar bookstore (or via mail order or out of the back of one’s trunk) was the only distribution method open to self-published authors. Today’s indie publishers have several options: print, eBooks, audio books, and print-on-demand (POD).

In this article, I’ll focus on POD: what it is, who does it, and how authors can manage their own POD and get paid more.

Read the full post on BookWorks.

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Quick Link: How Your Flexibility is Actually Hurting Your Writing Career

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

I chose to post this article because it is so me, just in case it is so you as well. Sometimes the best thing you can do for yourself is to learn how to say “no”.  At The Write Life, author Adam Hughes teaches us how to set boundaries.

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How Your Flexibility is Actually Hurting Your Writing Career

by

I hurt just looking at this

It’s fashionable these days to be flexible in all areas of life.

The demands of your job are always changing, your family dynamic is in perpetual flux and news breaks in a flash.You have to adapt or you’ll be left behind.

However, I’m here to tell you that being too flexible can actually hurt your writing career.

If you don’t have a strong, unwavering foundation, our frenzied world will swallow you up.

And nothing is more vulnerable in this regard than your writing — the next “urgent” matter is always waiting around the corner to commandeer whatever time you thought you had to write.

Only by standing steadfast in your convictions can you protect your writing career against the ravages of the mayhem.

Here are three ways being inflexible can actually make you a better writer.

 

Read the full post on The Write Life.

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Quick Link: How to Sell Thousands of Books When You Don’t Have an Audience

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

Sometimes it feels like a no win situation. People can’t find you because you don’t have any sales but you can’t make sales until people find you. Getting that initial lift is hard for a new author. Thankfully Frank McKinley from Postive Writer has some great basic tips on how to do the best you can to find your initial audience.

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How to Sell Thousands of Books When You Don’t Have an Audience

by Frank McKinley

Do you have a book inside you that needs to be shared with the world?

I know how you feel. You should write it and sell it, even if you don’t have an audience yet…

But I’m an Unknown Author

I started writing books 4 years ago.

It all started with a series of leadership articles I wrote for my client to give to his customers. As he read them, he told me time and again, “You need to make this into a book!”

I said, “You know. That’s a great idea!”

After the third time he told me, I knew he meant it.

Isn’t the Market Saturated?

The last time I checked there are almost 70 million books on Amazon.

That’s enough to make you wonder whether anyone at all will see your book.

Sure, there’s a lot of garbage uploaded to Amazon every day. After you read this, you won’t be one of those authors who set themselves up to fail.

Trust me, there is always room for good books. People are still buying them, reading them, and raving about them.

Are you ready to join the club of bestselling authors?

Get your marketing hat on and let’s get started!

 

Read the full post on Postive Writer.

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Quick Link: What’s More Important: Author Websites or Social Media?

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

At

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What’s More Important: Author Websites or Social Media?

In 2013, I observed a conversation on Twitter where a publisher said they didn’t believe in author websites “for a lot of authors”—that social was a better place for authors to spend time from a marketing perspective.

It bothered me, and I ended up writing a blog post about it, exploring why a publisher might think this—rightly or wrongly.

Since then, I’ve taught countless conference sessions and webinars about author platform development, content strategy, marketing and promotion, and long-term best business practices. Hands down, the No. 1 thing I’m questioned about is social media—by the unpublished writers, advanced writers, and well-established career authors. I don’t mind fielding such questions, but I find social media the most difficult topic to teach effectively, and I’ll have a separate post about that tomorrow.

On the flip side, I rarely field questions about author websites, aside from technical ones about what service to use or other fiddly details related to domains, hosting, and WordPress sites. I believe this happens for a few reasons: Website design and development is a more technical area, plus few authors actively engage on their site with readers. It can be something of a “set it and forget it” thing. Who’s really looking at an author website that much anyway, especially one without a blog or active updates?

Read the full post on

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Quick Link: Indie authors: Your Pub Date is Not As Important as You Think

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

In keeping with the “take care of yourself” vibe, I give you this article from award winning author Tabitha Lord at Writer unBoxed.

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Indie authors: Your Pub Date is Not As Important as You Think

by Tabitha Lord

The pub date: THE big day of an author’s life, right? All of the toiling, editing, revising and decision-making comes down to a fateful 24 hours — a speck on the calendar, but a very important speck.

Or so they say. But that’s not necessarily the case, at least, not for us indie authors.

We hear a lot about the all-important pub date as authors, but it’s important to parse whom the pub date really matters to and why. For traditionally published authors, a book’s success can largely hinge on early sales. Much attention is given to garnering pre-orders in hopes of pushing a book onto a bestseller list during release week and encouraging retailers to order more books.

Read the full post on Writer unBoxed.

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Quick Link: The Power of Decency in Fiction

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

Doing a quick Quick Link post for today. I am not close enough to the Anaheim fire to see it but close enough that I can’t breath or see from allergies. My good wishes to the poor communities to the north that are really being hit hard. So today’s inspired post is about the power of decency in a story. It is a great way to get your readers to connect to your characters and James Scott Bell at Kill Zone does a great job of explaining it.

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The Power of Decency in Fiction

by James Scott Bell

If you’ve been in my workshops or read a few of my writing books, you know about the “pet the dog” beat. The name is not original with me, but comes from the old Hollywood screenwriters. Blake Snyder changed it to “save the cat.” So pet lover-writers can choose their preferred metaphor.

I have refined the concept to make it something more specific than merely doing something nice for someone. In my view, the best pet-the-dog moments are those where the protagonist helps someone weaker or more vulnerable than himself, and by doing so places himself in further jeopardy. Thus, it falls naturally into Act 2, usually on either side of the midpoint.

I think of Katniss Everdeen helping little Rue in The Hunger Games. Or Richard Kimble in the movie The Fugitive, saving a little boy’s life in the hospital emergency ward (and having his cover blown as a result).

 

Read the full post on Kill Zone.

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Quick Link: How Do I Make Dialogue Meaningful?

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

Dialogue is one area that I struggle with. It is important for a story but you want it to have a purpose. Just in time to practice before NaNoWriMo Hyu-Wai Loucks, posting at Elizabeth Spann Craig, has some great thoughts to help you manage your dialogue.

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How Do I Make Dialogue Meaningful?

by Hyu-Wai Loucks

Because the best dialogue is done barefoot.

One of the most difficult aspects of writing a novel, or any narrative for that matter, is striking the delicate balance between dialogue and description. While insight into a character’s thoughts, emotions, and perceptions help shape the audience’s understanding of the character’s mind, dialogue aids readers in developing an accurate and full understanding of the character’s complete self. It offers an external glimpse into how a character moves, speaks, and reacts to the world surrounding them; dialogue is a character’s internal motives coming to life. Even so, it is difficult to develop a meaningful flow of speech which progresses the plot, rather than stagnating it.

Countless times while I have been writing, I will be immersed in the world of my own mind, putting down the situations being played out in my head by pen to paper, only later realizing that my dialogue loops in circles, or even worse, straying entirely from the point I am trying articulate.

How can I prevent this????

Read the full post on Elizabeth Spann Craig.

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Quick Link: Don’t Fall Prey to Publishing Scams: 7 New Writer Mistakes to Avoid

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

Congratulations to Anne R. Allen for the awards given to her blog. We know she totally deserves the praise. Especially for articles like this. There are so many scammy people out there, I do so worry about new writers being taken by them. So caveat emptor – buyer beware and become knowlegable with this great post.

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Don’t Fall Prey to Publishing Scams: 7 New Writer Mistakes to Avoid

by Anne R. Allen

We all make mistakes. It’s how people learn. But some new writer mistakes can end a writing career before it starts. They play into the hands of the predators who make money off the delusions of newbie writers.

Ruth and I are long-time industry veterans, and as we say “we made the mistakes, so you don’t have to.” We were jazzed when two organizations honored us for our work this week.

Author Marketing Services named us one of the “50 Kickass Resources for Indie Authors.”

And the site “10 Greatest” put  us on their list of “Top Writing Blogs

So here are some of the new writer mistakes we want to help writers avoid.

1) Writing-in-a-Garret Syndrome

It seems half the people I meet are “working on a book.” I met one at the supermarket this week. He wanted to tell me about struggling with his opus—at great length. I tried to be polite, but as my bourbon-caramel gelato began to melt, I suggested he join the Nightwriters in San Luis Obispo—an excellent group for writers at all levels. (And you still have time to enter their annual writing contest, The Golden Quill Awards. More info in Opportunity Alerts.)

“Oh no,” supermarket man said. “I’ll never show my book to anybody. They might steal my ideas. They can read it when it’s published.”

Read the full post on Anne R. Allen

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Quick Link: The Aspiring Writer: When you feel like giving up

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

The last couple of weeks have been unreal in the real world. So I thought this was a good time for an inspirational post. From Jodi Gibson, what to do when you feel like giving up being a writer.

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The Aspiring Writer: When you feel like giving up

by Jodi Gibson

Don’t throw in the towel, make a swan instead!

It’s been a while since I’ve written a post in my ongoing, although spasmodic, Aspiring Writer series, but I thought this would be a good one to add.

Have you ever felt like throwing it all in?

Every writer feels like giving up at some (or many) stages of their writing. Whether you’re in the throes of your first draft, or knee-deep in editing your umpteenth draft, there will be many times when you feel like throwing it all in.

Most times, this feeling passes. Whether you take a walk to clear your head, give yourself a few ‘writing-free’ days, or continue powering on, the urge will subside and you will rediscover your mojo and continue on.

But, what if that feeling doesn’t pass, or what if it seeds yourself in your brain and begins to take over?

With the rise of social media, we’re often drawn into the trap of putting forward ‘our best self’. We talk about our wins, and brush off our disappointments. Instagram is full of beautifully stylized picture-perfect moments or fragments of the best parts of our days. Sure sometimes the #keepingitreal hashtag raises its head, but they too are often carefully chosen.

But, sometimes writing feels too hard, pointless and fruitless. Sure, writing for yourself is a noble pursuit, but what if it’s not enough?

You want to be published, you want to be recognised, you want to be acknowledged. And not just by your mum or best friend.

 

Read the full post on Jodi Gibson

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Quick Link: Authentic Female Characters vs Gender-Swaps

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

Jo Eberhardt from Writer unBoxed explains this issue it well. There has been a trend lately to remake movies but to switch the gender. The most notable example is the recent Ghostbusters reboot. I enjoyed the movie but I have to agree with Jo that instead of following the original story they just made another Ghostbusters movie that was all their own. I mean every person in the cast is an amazing talent. What do you think?

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Authentic Female Characters vs Gender-Swaps

By

It’s recently been announced that there is a new adaptation of William Golding’s classic novel Lord of the Flies in the works. This isn’t a huge surprise. In the modern era of remakes, re-imaginings, and even more remakes (I’m looking at you, Spider-Man), it feels like half of the new Hollywood movies released aren’t so much “new” as repurposed. Besides, the most recent film adaptation of Lord of the Flies was all the way back in 1990. That’s basically the dark ages. (At least, it is if you ask my children.)

This announcement has been met with a whole passel of outrage from every corner of the internet. Why?

Because apparently Lord of the Flies is due for a gender-swap, with this movie to include an all-female cast.

Read the full post on Writer unBoxed.

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Quick Link: Fringe Highlight: Should Indie Authors Go KDP Exclusive or Go Wide?

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

For all you indie authors out there or even traditional authors who are curious, The Self-Publishing Advice Center has a great article/podcast on what you should think about when you decide to go KDP exclusive with Amazon or Go Wide.

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Fringe Highlight: Should Indie Authors Go KDP Exclusive or Go Wide?

By

As part of our new #AskALLi weekly podcast we’re releasing popular Indie Author Fringe speaker session highlights as podcasts. This means you can catch up on sessions you may have missed, and listen to them on-the-go or in your car. We are also publishing transcripts for those who prefer to read rather than listen.

This week, we’re showcasing the session between Pippa DaCosta and Susan Kaye Quinn. If you’re wondering about the pros and cons of being exclusive with KDP or going wide with as many retailers as possible, our show hosts will explain which model works best in different book distribution scenarios.

Susan is exclusively KDP, and Pippa makes her books available in as many outlets as possible and they deliver insights and experience from both ends of the spectrum.

Pippa DaCosta @pippadacosta is a hybrid author. Before securing a traditional publisher, she published the Veil Series (a x5 book urban fantasy series) independently in 2014. She has also published two science fiction books, with more planned for 2016. Pippa is traditionally published with Bloomsbury and Random House Germany. Her work has been featured in the Galaxy Chronicles anthology, part of the Future Chronicles series. Pippa continues to independently and traditionally publish her work.

Susan Kaye Quinn @susankayequinn is a rocket scientist turned speculative fiction author. She writes young adult science fiction, with side trips into adult future-noir and sweet royal romance. Her bestselling novels and short stories have been optioned for Virtual Reality, translated into German, and featured in several anthologies.

Read the full post on The Self-Publishing Advice Center

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Quick Link: Psychology 101: Knowledge That Will Improve Your Writing – Part 1

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

Of course I am going to like an article on phsychology and writing! But Robert Wood is correct, have some good psychological theories is key to understanding how we interact and how we are motivated. So head on over to Standout Books to check it out. You can lie on your couch if it will make you feel better but don’t blame your mother.

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Psychology 101: Knowledge That Will Improve Your Writing – Part 1

by

For many authors, psychology is a godsend, lending them new insights into the workings of the human mind that take their work to the next level. Not only that, but many psychological theories and experiments make their way into the cultural landscape, shaping what readers expect from their stories and what’s considered realistic in fiction.

Because of this, it’s necessary for authors to have a basic understanding of the most popular psychological case studies and theories. These are the theories that readers are familiar with, in one form or another, and which help to shape the artistic space into which new writing is released.

That’s why, in this article, I’ll be looking at nine cases and theories that authors should know about – a Psychology 101 for lovers of literature. I’ll cover some of the concepts that have most shaped art, or that are most likely to be familiar to readers. Some may help you write more compelling characters, some may help you understand what readers want from your writing, and some will just bring you up to speed with pop culture’s understanding of how the brain works.

 

Read the full post on Standout Books.

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Quick Link: How to Slow Time for More Relaxed, Creative Writing Sessions

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

It has been really hectic lately on the homefront so the idea of being able to do anything slow and more relaxed sounds wonderful. Check out Colleen M. Story’s post at Elizabeth Spann Craig for tips on how to have a more relaxed calm writing session. Now if I could just apply this to my life!

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How to Slow Time for More Relaxed, Creative Writing Sessions

by Colleen M. Story

“Oh, I want to write today, but I just don’t have the time!”

You’ve probably felt this way more than once. In fact, if you’re like many of us in today’s world, you’re feeling frequently pressed for time, and like you just can’t find enough of it—especially for writing.

The bad news is that when you’re constantly under the gun, creativity suffers. In a 2002 study, researchers analyzed more than 9,000 daily diary entries from people who were working on projects that required high levels of creativity. They found that stress, in the form of time pressure, resulted in less creative projects.

“When creativity is under the gun,” the authors wrote, “it usually ends up getting killed.”

The good news is that you don’t have to feel this way. Here are five tips that can help you slow your perception of time so that when you do get a moment to write, you can approach it with a calm, relaxed state of mind.

Read the full post on Elizabeth Spann Craig.

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Quick Link: What a Writer’s Conference Really Buys You

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

I have only been to one writer’s conference and that was as a guest expert in eBook formatting for mostly biographically typed authors so I don’t think that counts. I would love to go but I barely make it to the NaNoWriMo events that are near me. But after reading Heather Webb’s post at Writer unBoxed, I really want to go to one now.

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What a Writer’s Conference Really Buys You

By

I just attended the Writer’s Digest Conference and as always, I returned home tired and full of inspiration. But there’s something that has stuck in my mind that is nagging at me. Saturday afternoon, I was sitting in the lobby, chatting with several aspiring writers who had a lot of questions about the industry and genre categories among other things. At one point, I overheard a conversation between two attendees adjacent to me. One of the writers turns to another and says, “Isn’t this so great? I’ve met a lot of people, exchanged cards with them.” Etc. Etc. But the other person shrugged and said, “I guess, but I think it’s lame the way these things are all about sponging off of the wannabes to make a bunch of money.”

I couldn’t help but stare at this person.

Read the full post on Writer unBoxed.

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Quick Link: Orchestrating the End of Your Novel

Quick links, bringing you great articles on writing from all over the web.

The end of your story is just as important as the beginning. Especially if you want readers to give good reviews and buy more of your work! , posting at Writer unBoxed, gives some great insight on how to make your novel’s ending one that will leave readers asking for more!

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Orchestrating the End of Your Novel

By

I’ve spent the last eight months writing a novel, and I’m now closing in on the finish.  What makes a good ending? How do you know if you’ve landed it?

One of my favorite TV shows of all time is heading into the final season, and I am not happy about it ending at all, so the actual end had better really hit all the right notes, or it will be ruined for me.

Ruined for all time.

A couple of years ago, I wrote a new adult series of five books about a love triangle. As I came closer and closer to the end, I started to realize that the ending I though I’d be writing was not the ending the books needed. To write it the way that was right, deep down right, I would have to break a sort of rule about triangles, which is that the girl will end up with the first guy the reader met. It’s not a hard and fast rule, not like the happily-ever-after of a romance novel.  My protagonist had her happily-ever-after, and a happy romance.

 

Read the full post on Writer unBoxed.

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