Book review: Cover to Cover: What First-Time Authors Need to Know about Editing 

Periodically I share info about editing. It’s not cheap to have your manuscript edited so for indie-publishing it’s tempting to try and work around paying someone else to do it. Here is another source that doesn’t recommend doing that (and, of course, neither do I. And it’s not just because I am an editor. If you’re serious about making money on your book, you need to have an editor look at it).

As you may have read on this blog, I think you can avoid hiring a proofer if, if, if, if you get at least 3 people to proof your book, three people who haven’t read it yet. Three people who know basic grammar and punctuation. That may be a big IF for some. (For print, it has to be on the actual book – the ARC [Advanced Reader Copy] – because you need to have people make sure things like the headers and footer are correct and the text is formatted correctly [no widows or orphans – lines of text or words left at the top or bottom of a page).

Sandra Beckwith (great book-stuff blogger) reviews this book about editing by Sandra Wendel.

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If you question the need for a book editor, be sure to read my review of “Cover to Cover: What First-Time Authors Need to Know about Editing.”

Source: Book review: Cover to Cover: What First-Time Authors Need to Know about Editing – Build Book Buzz

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Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

 

Another Book Scam

As you are looking for help with your writing or publishing, remember, there are a lot of scammers out there ready to take advantage of what you don’t know.

Of course, there are many who are legit.

So how do you know the difference?

  • You go on sites like the one I’ve linked to below (Writer Beware), or join a group like the Alliance of Independent Authors. They have an Approved Services list that can help you find reputable services.
  • You can join a local writers group and when you get one of these odd emails noted in the linked post, you can ask other writers what they know about the company. Though, really, if a publishing house is contacting you, chances are they are not legit.
  • When you are looking for services, you can ask your fellow writers who they have used.
  • You can use the “googlizer” and search for warnings about the company you are thinking of working with, but the sites google might send you to also might not be legitimate. This is not your best option.
  • Contact me. I keep my eye on this stuff and probably know if a certain company is okay to work with.

And always read the fine print of any contract. Even legitimate companies may offer you things you don’t want.

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Scam, Right Choice Multimedia, West Literary Agency, Philippines

Source: Writer Beware®: The Blog: Scammers Taking Big 5 Publishers’ Names in Vain: A Growing Trend

CKBooks Publishing
Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

5 Easy Steps to a Successful Media Appearance

The opportunity to talk on the radio, on a podcast or even on TV may not come up very often, but you want to be ready when that opportunity does arrive. A.G. Billig gives us 5 good items to consider.

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Getting ready for a podcast, radio, TV, or summit appearance? Here’s how to make sure you have a successful media appearance.

Source: 5 easy steps to a successful media appearance – Build Book Buzz

Amazon Verified Purchase Reviews: Fact versus fiction 

Sandra Beckwith checks out the question of Amazon reviews and gives us the latest information:

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If you’re like most authors, you have questions about Amazon Verified Purchase reviews and what they mean for your books. Here’s the scoop.

Source/link: Amazon Verified Purchase reviews: Fact versus fiction – Build Book Buzz

CKBooks Publishing
Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

6 (7) Ways You Are Destroying Your Chances of Finding Readers 

Laurence O’Bryan of BooksGoSocial makes some very good points about how to find readers.

And as he says, it’s a long haul game. It takes time and effort to do these things, but they are all doable. Make a “to do” list and slowly work your way through it, making sure you acknowledge your accomplishments along the way. It’s a learning experience, so don’t expect perfection. Miss-steps are part of the process (especially if writing and publishing is a new “game” for you), but you can decrease some of that by checking out Laurence’s list.

And I’d add one more way:
-7)  Not connecting with other writers.
So much can be learned and eased on this journey by connecting with other writers. There are lots of online writer’s groups out there (SCBWI, ALLI are just two examples) which can give you loads of help, information, and connection. And when writer’s conferences are again a thing – and they will be! – they are a great place to connect locally, in addition to a fun way to learn ways to up your writing game.

(Note: I can not give a thumbs up or down for the services mentioned in the post, but I have used their Netgalley services with good results.)

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Source: 6 Ways You Are Destroying Your Chances of Finding Readers |

CKBooks Publishing
Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

Chekhov Never Said That – Writing Tip

Daniel David Wallace shines a bit of light (pun intended) on the advice “Show, don’t tell” writers often hear. (link to post is the image and below)

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Sorry! Chehkov never said “Show, Don’t Tell”

Source: Chekhov Never Said That

CKBooks Publishing
Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

Words Bubbling Up

Okay writers. This post if for you 🙂

ckbooksblog

The meaning and symbolism of the word - «Bubble»

Do you have some words bubbling up inside you, just waiting to get out? 

We have all been hunkering down from this virus, from unrest, from…

NPR is giving us an outlet. 

Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, I know you have words you can use to describe how you’re feeling. Write them down and send them to NPR and Kwame Alexander, Morning Editing’s resident poet – yes the show has it’s own poet, who knew? – will pick out words from our entries and create a poem for us!

The NPR piece and info on how to enter is here: https://www.npr.org/2021/01/18/956827920/poetry-challenge-honor-mlk-by-describing-how-you-dream-a-world

Here is the except from the Langston Hughes poem “I Dream a World”

I DREAM A WORLD WHERE MAN
NO OTHER MAN WILL SCORN,
WHERE LOVE WILL BLESS THE EARTH
AND PEACE ITS PATHS ADORN
I DREAM A WORLD WHERE ALL
WILL KNOW SWEET FREEDOM’S WAY,

View original post 63 more words

A Writer’s Wish List – Books, Of Course

Yes, what does a writer need for Christmas? (notice the word “need”?) More books to sit on desks and tables and in bookshelves that you may or may not read!

Is this silly?

Yes, but we want them anyway 🙂

I have read a few on K.M. Weiland’s list and agree they are good: Story, Techniques of a Selling Writer, The Emotional Craft of Fiction, though Story is a bit of slog to get through and is set up for writing a screenplay, it does have good bits. If you’re a regular reader of K.M.’s blog, you know she follows the structure of screenplays with her story writing. Probably not exclusively (I don’t like to pigeon hole anyone) but in general she does, which is not a bad thing.

I would add: #1! – Roget’s International Thesaurus (I have the 6th edition but there may be newer ones). If you are ever stuck for words, this is a wonderful book! A must for any writer’s bookshelf.  Then The Writer’s Journey (3rd edition) by Christopher Vogler, Story Genius by Lisa Cron and Story Physics by Larry Brooks. On the grammar and punctuation side, (and yes, writers need to learn basic grammar and punctuation) is Eats, Shoots and Leaves by Lynne Truss (so funny for a non-fiction book on this subject matter), and Woe is I Patricia O’Conner (very practical and easy to use and understand!) And if you want a bit more: Dreyer’s English by Benjamin Dreyer (which hits on things that aren’t covered in the other two, if you can believe it).

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Here is K.M’s list:

Looking for Christmas gifts? Here are what I currently consider the 10 best books to buy a writer for Christmas.

Source: 10 Best Books to Buy a Writer For Christmas – Helping Writers Become Authors

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Help Disabled Writers: Here’s How

Hey all you book people out there looking for a book related charity to give to… have I got the opportunity for you!

SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators – what a mouth full!), which I am a member of, is participating in #GivingTuesday by setting up a giving link for scholarships, grants, and accessibility resources for  writers with disabilities.

What could be better than supporting a fellow writer that has a disability?!

So click this link and donate to SCBWI and tag the donation with #GivingTuesday and SCBWI will use you donation to help disabled SCBWI writers.

Click the link below for more details:

Source: SCBWI | Let’s Celebrate GivingTuesday Together – Here’s How

The Book Review Rumpus

What’s a Rumpus? The dictionary describes it this way; noun: a noisy disturbance; a commotion.

That’s what it feels like when I’m trying to get a reader to ask for a review. I feel like I’m disturbing them, causing a commotion, maybe not a noisy one. I’m usually quite polite about it but I get the feeling that they would prefer I didn’t ask. I’ll ask anyway, of course. We have to, right?

Now, if they like the book, then most people will say they will leave a review, but there are lots of things that get in their way: other things in their lives, amazon’s review policy, their memory, their need to go a bit out of there way to pull up a website to put the review on . . . just to name a few.

One thing you can do is ask for reviews from places like Publishers Weekly or Library Journal. And Kirkus even has a review you can get for free, or it used to be. But with these places, you have to do it at least 3 months before you even publish. You can do that if you create an ARC (advanced reader copy – book form or pdf) and you can hold off publishing.

I have to admit, I haven’t been very good at waiting, especially since I usually have spent a lot of time and money on creating my books and I’m anxious to get it out there, see what people think and recoup the costs of publishing.

There are paid services for reviews too. And I usually tell my clients not to use those, unless they want to, of course. But it’s a bit of a gamble.

NetGalley Discount

However, the one review service I have paid for that I thought was a good deal is NetGalley. NetGalley is a service that has lots of lots of people that have signed up specifically to review books, I am guessing they do this just because they like reading. They don’t get paid to do it but they do get free books to read from any genre they choose. There are over 360,000 reviewers on NetGalley – All pre-approved! Many are librarians, newspaper reviewers, top Amazon reviewers, and influential bloggers.

Getting into NetGalley is normally not cheap. The company I used was BooksGoSocial. And just like now, on occasion they have a sale for their Netgalley service, which is when I signed up.

So right now you can get their NetGalley service for 40% off (normally $79-$199 depending on now many months you want your book up on NetGalley). Click on this NetGalley Link, and enter the code ntgdisc and you’ll get 40% off whatever NetGalley service you choose.

BooksGoSocial will give you great information about your book from the reviewer (Here is a video that explains more) and even email address of all who sign up to review your book. Quite valuable information! It was over a year ago that I did this so I don’t remember how many reviews I got (I know it was at least 4 or maybe it was 6) = but I remember one reviewer was very popular on Goodreads, so she shared her positive review of my book with her many followers and I did get a couple sales from that one reviewer!

I only recommend things to authors that I’ve tried or that I know from other reputable authors recommends. This service I would recommend.

And they have other services too. I am seriously considering their Amazon ad service. I’ve set up an Amazon ad before (I broke even, basically), but it’s a royal pain in the you know what. When I break down and try their ad service, I’ll let you know how it goes. For any folks who read this blog and want to get a $20 discount on any of BooksGoSocial services, just contact me and I’ll email you the discount code.

Image: Business photo created by pressfoto – www.freepik.com
Note: I am an affiliate of BooksGoSocial, so I get a small compensation for any sales from this post. But I still would recommend them (and I have before I became an affiliate).

If you give them a try, let me know how it goes. I like to keep up on what works and what doesn’t work for people.

Happy writing!
And Happy Turkey Day – for those in the US!

CKBooks Publishing
Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality