Yay! It’s the Long Weekend (at least for my fellow Canadians)….
There is a plethora of information out there about how to market your work when you are self-publishing, but this is the best piece of advice I have found – short and sweet and to the point.
People ask my why I am self-publishing. This article sums up one of the biggest reasons. Why would I go to so much work putting my ideas and thoughts on paper only to hand it over to someone else to profit from my efforts? Do I really want to ‘sell my soul’ to a big traditional publisher just to get a feeling of validation?
Check out Dean Wesley Smith’s informative article The New World of Publishing: The Real Price of Traditional Publishing
I just finished a very informative series called Doing it Better by Polly Courtney. In this six part series, Ms. Courtney states that
“As an author looking to self-publish, what’s the number one rule? Do what publishers do, but do it better.”
I couldn’t agree with her more. I am a voracious reader and I’m always looking for new authors to try and I’m more than willing to give an indie author a go, but nothing turns me off quicker, and gives self-publishing a bad name, as a poorly delivered book. Lack of editing, poor cover design, plot holes big enough to drive a truck, and flat characters that just don’t make the cut. These are all signs of an author that rushed to publish, that didn’t take the time to do the work to ensure they were delivering the best quality product they could to their readers, or that didn’t want to make an investment in their own work in order to ensure that the quality was there.
If you are thinking of self-publishing, I highly recommend Ms. Courtney`s series. The first three parts apply to authors like myself that are just getting into the business of self-publishing. The final three parts….well, if you’re like me, you’ll watch them and laugh and think to yourself maybe someday.
Doing It Better: Editing Your Book
Doing It Better: Getting an Awesome Cover Design
Doing It Better: Publishing Your Book
Doing It Better: Getting Press Coverage
Doing It Better: Making a Book Trailer
Doing It Better: Holding an Epic Book Launch
Here is a little teaser for your Tuesday reading enjoyment. I think this one sums up Harry to a tee. She has a wry wit and can think on her feet. And, as she is wont to say, she can take care of herself.
…I crept as quietly as I could, but it was pretty much a given that I couldn’t hide from a vampire’s amped up hearing or sense of smell. When I reached the end of the wall dividing the hall and the kitchen, I started to peek around the corner only to be abruptly grabbed and thrown against the wall.
“Gaak!” I said. Hey, you try talking when a six foot goon with the strength of a vampire has his arm cross your windpipe.
Tomas had pinned my knife hand as well as my throat. He grinned at me smugly. I could see Salvador lounging unconcerned across the room. My vision began to blur from the lack of oxygen as I let my knees give out a little, shifting more of my weight onto his arm. Surprised, he loosened his grip enough that I was able to take a rasping breath. I quickly brought my knee up to his groin as hard as I could. It was satisfying to know that whatever he was, he still felt it when he got one in the ‘nads. Tomas let go of my arm and I slid down the wall. Unwilling to hope that a shot to the junk was enough to keep him down, I followed through with a quick punch to his throat. He fell to one knee and I sprang away…
–Dead and Kicking, by Lisa Emme
Remember in primary school where you learned about punctuation, nouns, verbs and adverbs? Yeah, me neither. It’s all a vague recollection now. I do remember standing at the chalkboard (hmmm, am I dating myself with that? Do they even use chalkboards anymore?) staring at a sentence with no punctuation and the goal was to identify the parts of the sentence and correct the grammar. But that’s all I can remember. I can’t actually remember any of the rules I might have learned. Nope. Nada. I’ve got nothing.
You would think that being a voracious reader, I would instinctively know what is proper grammar and maybe in some ways I do. I certainly know when a particular bit of prose stinks, grammatically speaking. Some mistakes are so obvious, you wonder how an author ever let their book go to print with the error.
The main problem is that as an author you are too close to your own writing. You have read and re-read it over and over. You know what you meant to say and so you miss the glaring mistake. Reading your work out loud is a big help, but having a fresh set of eyes is the best thing to do. Beta readers are a very important cog in the wheel. Don’t try and publish without them.
I found this article online that offers some great tips about editing.
Check out The Ten Mistakes (that writers don’t see but can easily fix when they do) by Holt Uncensored.
I don’t understand the selfie craze and don’t get me started on what I think of the selfie stick, but I really like this new improved idea.