Formatting Manuscripts – What you need to know!

Some good information here, but note – this publisher is in Australia (I think) so the quote and line spacing thing is different than in the US.

In general, you don’t have to do any formatting to your manuscript if you plan on having someone else format it for you. They can do all that. You just concentrate on creating a great story! 🙂

Plaisted Publishing House

What You Need to Know!

This isn’t about how to format.  It’s about what you need to format for some of the different areas of writing, editing and publishing.

Formatting is something all writers need to learn at the start of their career.  It will save you time, money and gain you experience of all the different types of formatting that are around today.  Remember as technology improves, formatting is likely to change too.

I have blogged about formatting before.  As a professional formatter and publisher it can be very irritating when work arrives with tab indents.  To me this is one of the biggest NO’s there is.  The other problem is all the different types of formatting needed for editors, submissions, publishing and even writing, never mind the different genre’s there are in the world today.  

So how do we start?  Great question!

First are you…

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Advertising Your Books – Part One: BookBub Ads 

Great post by Valarie Biel on Book ad, with details on book bub! Thanks Val!

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We often discuss the free ways to achieve attention for your books through social media and traditional media publicity. But what about paid advertising? Is this ever a good idea? Yes, paid advertising can give your books a sales’ boost. Particularly, after the buzz of your book launch has died down and you’re trying to gain some traction with sales. However, there’s a lot to know, and it’s important not to spend your advertising dollars before you’ve done your homework.

Source: Advertising Your Books – Part One: BookBub Ads | Valerie Biel

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Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

Novels rule when it comes to e-book sales, children’s books dominate print – kind of.

The headline for this article is a little misleading. If you look at the stats the writer supplies, 4 (maybe 5 – don’t know the novel “Milk and Honey”) of the top 10 print book sellers are kids books, the other are other books.

For ebook sales – 4/10 are “kids” books – all Harry Potter books, which are novels, yes, but really written for kids. They are enjoyed by people of all ages, but again, the headline is misleading.

And this is just Amazon sales. People do buy books in bookstores (print) and other ebook retailers (B&N, ibookstore, kobo, Scribd, smashwords…)

Interesting stats, though.


Some people love their e-books. Others, like me, not so much. I’ll read e-books, especially if I’m traveling or if the book is a thousand-page tome, but otherwise I like the tactile nature of a good book. I like the smell of the paper. I also don’t like to have to think about charging an e-reader.

Source: Novels rule when it comes to e-book sales, children’s books dominate print | Thinknum Media

CKBooks Publishing
Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

Writing Tip: Conflict

I’m working with a client that has written a story – the pantser method – that now needs some plotting work. This is not a bad way to write. I write this way most of the time. It is a slower way to write but if, like this writer – who is retired, you aren’t particularly in a hurry, it’s a fine way to write. I’m not about to tell anyone how to write.

But the story, now done, does need plotting work to pull the story theme together in a compelling way. I was reading a post on plotting vs panting on Valerie Biel’s wonderful writer’s site and came across this wonderful tip by Deeanne Gist.  It is a very helpful tip when taking a second look at your story, or planning it out for the first time (whatever way floats your boat). Take a look:

Lessons From BuzzFeed on How to Grow and Engage Your Audience

Dan Blank (WeGrowMedia) talks about growing your audience, as a author, with Ze (Zay) Frank of Buzzfeed.

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As with many things Dan talks about, it seems to be a matter of connecting and “collaboration” on a personal level with people. I think you can use that word “collaboration” in a few different ways. But I took it more as connecting.

And the fact that Ze says with some of his more viral posts, he doesn’t really know why they went viral, says a lot too.

Dan even says: But for the 1,000 other things you do to try to develop an audience for your work — articles, events, interviews, blogs, newsletters, social media — don’t assume you know what will work. Experiment and allow others to help you learn what does and doesn’t work to engage them.

That means trying a lot of different things. What I have found is things I do in person, work the best and sometimes lead to things I can’t predict (as I mentioned in this post I did on marketing).

Another point they make is you can’t be in one place (online or in person) and expect to reach a lot of people.

Ze says that only 15-17% of views of Buzzfeed content comes from Buzzfeed’s website and the same percent from their other channels: emails, social media… I think that is amazing! A big company like that and that’s how many people come to their site or visit their social media and share their content?!

What does this mean? Same thing, really. You can’t put up a website and decide that is good enough. You need to be in a lot of different places. And some (most?) of the sharing, of course, you have no control over.

Here is the whole post, if you want to read it.

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Source: Lessons From BuzzFeed on How to Grow and Engage Your Audience – WeGrowMedia – Dan Blank

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Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

Spring with Emily Dickinson – Brain Pickings

We always need inspiration. Spring definitely gets me going! How about you?

ckbooksblog

Feeling inspired by spring. Here are some thoughts from Miss Emily on the subject. Thanks to Maria Popova

“Today is very beautiful — just as bright, just as blue, just as green and as white, and as crimson, as the cherry trees full in bloom, and the half opening peach blossoms, and the grass just…

Source: Spring with Emily Dickinson – Brain Pickings

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Reader’s Favorite Award Deadline Soon

Spring is the time to enter book award contests.

There are a limited number of big-name books awards available to self-published authors. Reader’s Favorite is one of them.

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Jim Carrey Gold Medal

Jim Carrey

The regular deadline for this year is May 1, so you’ve got time yet to sign up. If you’re not quite ready, June 1 is the drop dead deadline, which will cost you more, of course.

I have entered this contest a couple different times. Have not won yet, but earned a very nice 5 star review. You can also request more than one review, whether you win or not.

The cost is $109 now or $119 on June 1.  They have 140+ genres. You get a chance to get a traditional publishing contract, win money, be represented by a marketing and PR firm, and have your book made into a movie. And of course the publicity would be wonderful with such a large, international award.

I also recommend the IPPY Award, The Brag Award  (adult and children’s books), the Moombean Children’s Award (for children’s stories, obviously),

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Eriq La Salle

Eriq LaSalle – Actor/Director

Happy Spring!

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CKBooks Publishing
Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality