Writing Quotes — Richard Bach

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Writing Tip — 3

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Writing Tip — 3

When you plan to proofread your work before submitting it or self-publishing, convert it to an ebook and place it on a Kindle or whatever you use to read eBooks. You will be surprised at how many errors pop out when you read it this way. Another tip to help catch mistakes in a word doc is change the font type and size. When you continuously read the same document with the same font and font size, your mind starts to play tricks on you. You end up seeing what you want to see, instead of what’s there.

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Seven Quick Indie-Publishing Tips

Don Massenzio's Blog

As I go flying down the road with trying to finalize two books and market the other seven that I’ve completed, I though I would take time out to post some tips that I’ve found useful on my Indie Publishing journey.


11) Volume is the way to go

If you have finished your first book, by all means, get it edited, formatted and published. You might, however, want to consider holding off aggressively marketing it until you’ve written your second or third.  Readers that gravitate toward indie authors like to read multiple works by the same author. You can build a loyal fan base more quickly if you have multiple books to offer.

Writersblock2) Writer’s block…what writer’s block?

Most indie authors have day jobs. We can’t afford to recognize and be incapacitated by writer’s block. I tend to keep multiple projects going. If I get stuck on one, I move to another…

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Writing Tip — 51

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If you are having problems rewriting, do a reverse outline for each chapter. Ask yourself the following questions:

Do all  the scenes have to do with the main plot and a couple minor plots in the book?

Do all the characters move the story along or are some bogging it down?

If any characters do nothing to advance the story, then get rid of them. The same goes for any subplots. If  the subplot has nothing to do with the main plot, get rid of it.

Once you have skinned your book down to solid bare bones, then comes the time to rebuild. The scenes and characters you have left behind need to be solidly connected and fleshed out. Yes, it is going to take time, but now you have two things in your favor.

  1. You have already written this once. You know how the remaining characters sound and act.
  2. You have a plan to work from, based on the notes you made when you were tearing it apart.

Once you have finished the rewrite, it’s time to send it back out to your beta reader to find out if the rewriting made a difference.

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Writing Quotes — Charles de Lint

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Excerpt from Ravynwyng Chronicles Universe Volume 1: The Beginning

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‘I had to call in quite a few favors to speak with you like this. Why don’t you wear the ring like I told you?’ The female voice sounded annoyed.

Ravyn spun about, seeing no one yet surprised by the view: A garden of night-blooming flowers shimmering in the moonlight. ‘Who are you? Show yourself!’

The air wavered before her and a raven surrounded by a silver glow appeared. ‘You needn’t shout!’

‘Who are you? Where is this place?’

‘We’re in your mind,’ she said. ‘My name is Cara and I’m supposed to be your raven companion.’

Ravyn plopped on the soft grass head in her hands. ‘I’ve gone off the deep end.’

‘Don’t be silly, you aren’t going crazy.’ Cara landed beside Ravyn, head tilted. ‘I was supposed to bond with you after your car accident, but a jackass had the ring.’

Ravyn stared at the bird ‘What the hell is that supposed to mean? Did you send me those dreams?’

‘The dreams are part of who and what you are. It’s a family legacy. Your mother had them as have other members of your family dating back hundreds of years.’

‘Did you know my parents?’

‘Yes. Their deaths were unexpected and more than suspicious. Several others knew your parents and you need to find them. You are a member of a unique group and it’s time you start your real work.’

‘I’m a writer and an owner of a used bookstore.’

‘Please don’t argue. You’re more than an author. The journals will explain what’s going on. As will the others when you find them. Don’t delay; you and those you care about are in danger. Those on the other side are not above committing murder to further their goals.’

‘There’s a simple way to end the danger, I’ll burn the journals and destroy the disk and ring.’

The bird shook her head. ‘You can no more do that than you can stop writing, Ravyn,’ she said. ‘If your parents had lived, they would have explained the situation to you. Without their guidance, you have limited options. You need to read the journals sent to you.’

‘Is Jennie really in danger?’

‘Yes. So are your friends.’

‘Suppose I believe what you’re saying…’ she paused, ‘… how can I figure out what the runes mean? Or, translate the writing in those journals? I’m not a scholar.’

‘The runes you have seen in your dreams are part of the key. Keep a journal of your dreams, particularly the ones concerning the runes and of me.’ Cara moved to Ravyn’s shoulder. ‘Once you wear the ring, you will see much more of me.’

The area around Ravyn wavered. ‘Wait! Who are the people trying to stop me?’

‘Read the journals, Ravyn. Many answers lie in them.’

Ravyn woke, face covered in sweat. After a glance at Jennie, she crawled out of bed and headed for the office. She grabbed a notebook and wrote everything she remembered from the dream. Finished, she gathered her thoughts to record the other strange dreams she had.

When she read what she wrote, Ravyn she shook her head. This is nuts! She started to tear out the sheets. That bird said there were others who’d stop at nothing to achieve their goals. So that means someone out there believes in this. Frustrated, Ravyn tossed the notebook on the desk. She grabbed her cigarettes and the panic button for the alarm and headed for the back door. “I need fresh air.”

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In the Limelight

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In the Limelight 

Lights! Camera! Action! A bright light blinds you; yes, you The Author are in the spotlight! You need to let people know who and what you are. Time to work on your Author Brand and your Author Platform.

Perhaps I should define these two very important elements for you.

Author Brand — The Author Brand is a trademark of the author in the genre they are writing in. It’s a promise to readers that they will receive consistency from the Author, a way to immediately identify who the author is and what they write. It’s your tagline, logo, font type, types of covers used for your books. Your goals, the way you see the world; things that tell a reader who and what you are. Everything that identifies you as the author. This also includes your author website and book(s) website. This also means select one name to identify yourself with. If you write strictly under a pen name, any posts you make on blogs or send out in email lists better be the name you write under. Don’t confuse the readers. This also applies to Social Media like Facebook and Twitter.

Author Platform — The Author Platform is the way you connect with your readers. Web sites, email lists, Facebook, Twitter, and Blogs.

Author Brand

You need to select a main genre for your writing, from that your Author Brand will follow. It’s your unique style of telling a story, the covers of your books, short stories you write. This can be applied to your author website as well. The images you use, what you post there, how the site looks. Just remember, the website should be easy to read for everyone. Too much multimedia, or backgrounds with hard to read text will turn people off. If you can afford it, have some design the site for you; just make sure you give the designer plenty of input on how you want it to look. The Author Brand will stay with you throughout your writing and publishing life, so make sure you get it right the first time. Think of it as a job interview with potential readers: Make a great first impression so they will remember you.

Now, if you feel a desire to write in a different genre: say you started in Contemporary and decide to write Horror, he switch can be made, but you will have to do some tweaking and maybe write under a pen name. Don’t confuse your loyal following by suddenly pulling the rug out from under them.

Author Platform

Now that you have your Author Brand, you need to let your readers and potential readers know you are alive.

Websites: Yes, you need a website to help promote yourself and your work. If you can’t afford hosting, There are two good places for free: Weebly and Wix. Since you are an author, the content on your site should be easy to read. Don’t use strange backgrounds and weird fonts. Don’t go overboard with videos and other multimedia. Create a logo that defines who you are and what you write. Something readers would recognize and immediately associate with you. Create a Tagline, against something readers would see and know it is you.

Facebook: Create and author page and a page for your books. Again, be consistent with the appearance of the images for the profile and the cover photo. Keep them up to day with what you are working on, any special events or giveaways, excerpts, cover reveals and release dates.

Twitter: Another great way to keep readers informed. Again, be consistent with the images you use.

Email List:  Another way to keep readers up to date with what you are doing across your various pages and sites.

Blogs: A blog is a great way to get the word out about you and your work. Another thing to keep in mind is hosting blog tours for other authors. More often than not, they will reciprocate when it’s time for you to promote your work. Great for cover reveals excerpts and free short stories connected to your book.

Yes, I seem to be stressing consistency throughout this article, because it is important. The use of images, and taglines and even a logo help readers identify you and your work. Think of all the brands you recognize by a logo or a slogan. The same applies to you, the author.

Pinterest: Sign up for it, set up categories for your work and the work of other authors that you like.

A couple of tips: Do not get involved in flame wars on your author pages or book pages. If you have something to say, say it in a well-thought out article for your blog. Don’t develop a negative image because of something you posted in response to another person. Yes, there are trolls out there: My advice — ignore them, block them you have to. Don’t Feed the Trolls! They love the attention you give them and that takes away from you the author. Don’t private message people to like your pages. Private messages should be for communicating with others, not a one time deal.

I’ve given you a lot to think about, but this is to help you grow your presence on the web.

May the words ever flow!

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