December 16, 2018

When should authors enter contests?

Recently, a good friend contacted me about helping her nomination to final in Circle of Moms Top 25 Book Author Moms contest for 2012. The contest is sponsored annually by the Association of Journalists and Authors. This contest simply counts votes, and she earned enough to place among the top 25 authors. Her book is […]

How Much Should an Ebook Cost?

Simon and Schuster (one of the big six publishers) has purchased Author Solutions and opened a self-publishing service called Archway Publishing. Author Solutions is big, but not my favorite. I have worked with authors who have paid more than $10,000 (without marketing or publicity) to get their book published. Pearson paid more than $119 million […]

Get a Fresh Angle in Author Book Proposal–Don’t Just Be Persistent

  USA Today posted an article about Tom Fields-Meyer who shopped his proposal for a book about raising a son with autism. His persistence over several years finally paid off in that his book is now being published. Persistence–sustained action in making an outcome happen–is not the key take-away, in my opinion. The fresh angle […]

Self-publishing eBook marketing essentials

Alison Horton has posted “5 Essentials of eBook Marketing.” They are: Create a killer cover Build your own bookstore Build and talk to your fan base Be your biggest fan Leverage that metadata, especially keywords The biggest surprise for me was item 4 and the way item 3 was described: To build your fan base, […]

When Is Creative Nonfiction Too Fanciful?

Dave Hood has a great blog on “The Ethics of Writing Creative Nonfiction.” His considerations are even-handed, and his central point is spot on: Readers expect you to paint an accurate portrait of a person or an event with words. They expect that the writer will accurately describe events that have happened, and not add […]

6 Notes about the Book Proposal that Got Lena Dunham a $3.7 Million Deal

Lena Dunham’s Not that Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She’s “Learned” garnered a $3.7 million book deal from Random House. Download the 66-page proposal. Here are some of the things I see. 1. I usually recommend that the entire proposal be in Times New Roman, 12-point. Lena has gotten into character […]

Sell Books through Twitter?

GalleyCat has a story about David Wolman, contributing editor to Wired, testing out Chirpify.com software that permits users to conduct purchases (or make donations) without leaving their Twitter.com or Instagram.com stream. The video on Chirpify says, “No more ‘add to cart.’ No more ‘check-out.’” And, “no more credit card forms.” The video gives the impression […]

Authors, Engage Readers with QR Codes

Emily Craven, guest blogger at The Creative Penn, has an excellent article on how authors can use QR codes to engage readers. QR codes are free to generate, and they can direct a smart phone user to any website or media link, such as a YouTube video, a donation page, or a discount coupon. The […]

Nonfiction Book Proposal Voices: Can You Find Your’s?

Carol Penn-Romine at BookLife offers insights into writing a nonfiction book proposal. Her comments on voice are especially worth repeating and underlining: Show your personality, but be sure the prose is tight. Publishers already have way too much to read, so get your point across as succinctly as possible. If you’re relying on your folksy […]

Are the New Short Book Proposals for You?

Lisa Tener, literary agent, posted “The New Short Book Proposal” on Huffington. Is this something for you? Going short means removing some of the length in your strong areas in order to give literary agents or publishers’ editors a quick read–and the possibility to pick it up sooner and make a favorable decision (the short […]