The Proof is in the Proofreading

Many thanks to JW Manus for posting some very informative and helpful advice on proofreading.

QA Productions

quinnproofMy biggest gripe with ebooks is a lack of proofreading. (Trad pubs are the worst offenders–isn’t anybody at least giving the ebooks a quick scan before putting them up for sale? Judging by the multiple dumb errors and piss-poor formatting, I’d say the answer is no.)

When I produce an ebook I have two hard and fast rules, Number One: squeaky clean text going into production. Number Two: the ebook must be proofread post-production. I charge people to proofread their ebooks for them, and a lot of clients take me up on it, but I’m more than happy for the writer to do it him/herself or hire a third party. I even make it easy for them by providing a markup document and instructions (since they can’t make changes in the ebook itself).

Even though proofreading is essential, some would like to argue that they can skip it. They’ve already…

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So You Want To Make A Living Writing? 13 Great Truths

Great advice from Bob Mayer for writers. I particularly like what he says about focusing on content and thinking in terms of being a storyteller.

Bob Mayer

IMG_1494This is the flip side of my 13 Harsh Truths post of 29 April.

It’s a great life. I’m my own boss. I wear shorts and t-shirts to work, which is in my house. I sit at my desk with a great view of the TN River with a blank stare, drool running down the side of my mouth, and I’m working. Well, not really. Because no one’s paying me for my great thoughts. They’re paying for my writing.

I’ve been doing it for over a quarter of a century and here are some Great Truths I’ve learned about making a living as a writer.

  1. You can. You constantly hear “No one makes a living writing novels.” I’ve heard it for decades. In 2012 I was at a conference where I gave a keynote, then was listening to another keynote speaker saying “Don’t quit your day job”. And it started…

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Recent Article: 30 famous authors whose works were rejected (repeatedly, and sometimes rudely) by publishers

Take heart fellow authors, if your work has ever been rejected then you are in good company.
Nice post by Michelle Kerns, thanks to theowllady for sharing.

Schuler Books Weblog

A Great Article by Michelle Kerns that should give hope to struggling authors everywhere:

The revered sage Frank Sinatra once said, “The best revenge is massive success.”

He never spoke a truer word, particularly when it comes to aspiring authors who, after suffering severe smackdowns from publishers, went on to become renowned writers.

Think this has happened to only a select few? Guess again. Cast your eye upon this list of Cinderella authors (and the nasty little notes publishers sent them) and savor the taste of their sweet, sweet revenge.

1. Stephen King

Mr. King received dozens of rejections for his first novel, Carrie; he kept them tidily nailed to a spike under a timber in his bedroom.

One of the publishers sent Mr. King’s rejection with these words:

We are not interested in science fiction which deals with negative utopias. They do not sell.

2. William Golding


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Amazon, Hachette and Me

Amazon, Hachette and Me

Will books become victims of the fallout?

I have looked at both sides of the Amazon versus Hachette debate as open mindedly as possible and I’ve decided to be biased. This weekend I am going caravan hunting  because I earned the money to buy one from my book sales on Amazon. I have been helped every step of the way in my venture into self-publishing, by the advice freely available on both Amazon and Createspace. They have always been quick to respond to any of my emails. I am eternally grateful to the readers who bought my books and likewise to Amazon. If I were not able to self-publish, very few people would have read anything I wrote. Amazon helped me to realize a life long ambition. Of course it’s in their best interest for me to sell books, but it’s also in mine, too. Once my work started selling, thanks to my pathetic attempt at marketing and to those generous enough to buy it, Amazon got behind me and promoted my books – without charge. I didn’t even have to ask them to do it and they never deducted anything from my share of the royalties for the service.

High prices won’t affect me as I will never charge them for my books and I don’t buy any that are in a high price range – that’s where my local library comes in handy. Just as Hachette’s authors are remaining loyal to them, I am being loyal to a company that has supported me and I don’t believe they will be detrimental to books.
The Gutenberg Press made books available to people at a time when only the very wealthy could afford them. The translation of the Bible from Latin into the common language in Luther’s day meant the ordinary person in the street could read from a book that had been previously chained to a pulpit, written in a language only the well educated could understand. That’s called progress. Books flourished, readers grew in numbers and look where the book world is now. Are we on the brink of a literary Armageddon? I don’t think so, but if that IS the case, when the smoke clears, you will find me tucked up in my caravan (courtesy of You-Know-Who), clutching my kindle to my bosom and surrounded by the last remaining paperbacks that survived the ‘Abookalypse’.

See what Amazon has to say here.

Amazon vs. Hachette—and YOU!

If you can’t decide between Amazon and Hachette read what Chris McMullen posted on his blog. It gives the pros and cons for both and is well worth reading through to the end, including the comments.


Book Prices

Amazon-Hachette Dispute

I won’t tell you what to think.

  • I will make some points for both sides.
  • I will mention ways that this may impact both authors and readers.
  • I will show you what you can do, no matter which side you favor.

The main point is that Amazon appears to be pushing for more e-books ordinarily priced above $10 to be priced at $9.99. Hachette (and other publishers) appears to want the freedom to price e-books as they see fit, including those in the $14.99 to $19.99 price range.

A little clarification:

  • Amazon openly acknowledged that some books, such as e-textbooks, should be priced $10 and up (see Reference 1 below). Amazon is NOT insisting that ALL e-books should be $9.99 or less.
  • Hachette is NOT asking to price ALL e-books $14.99 and up. The issue arose over specific e-books.

Whether YOU read books or write them, YOU  are…

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a history of lovers

Beautiful poem, enjoy.

the medicine wars

For ten thousand years my bones
have ached and swayed along
to the thunderclap of your heartbeat
like water under the spell of the moon.
I remember each gentle movement
of the striking stick in the woods
reminding me to fulfill this purpose.
I remember the glowing promise of love’s preservation dance in your eyes.
Let the longest burning constellations
and the morning stars at dawn
witness these ceremonies of desire,
carry the burden of love in their light,
and tell this story to the unborn skies.
One day I will remember where to find
grandmother’s stone — moon rock,
and return the water to your spell.
I will howl, I will howl, I will howl.

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Learn Much about Self-Publishing by… Blogging

Really good comparison, Chris and very true.


Blog First

Hands-on Self-Publishing Experience

Blogging at WordPress can teach you more about self-publishing than you might realize.

Think about this, and strive to get the most out of it.

It would be wise to blog before self-publishing for the hands-on experience every authorpreneur needs to be successful.

But even if you’ve already self-published, it’s not too late to make the connection between blogging and indie publishing.

Here are several ways that blogging at WordPress can help you become a more successful authorpreneur:

  • Crafting the title. You have to write titles for your blog articles, so you get plenty of experience trying out titles and seeing how much attention your posts get. The title is a very important part of your book. Without blogging, most authors would have no experience or practice writing titles and seeing what interest they stimulate. Study the titles of articles from popular bloggers.
  • Content popularity

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