Tag Archives: authors

Hugh Howey: Self-publishing is the future — and great for writers

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“Books have changed forever, and that’s good. Writers will find readers and make more money going it alone, like me.”

Penelope‘s insight:

 

Hugh Howey wanted to find out if there were other success stories out there when he posed a question on the Kindle Boards. He started a thread entitled “The Self Published Authors I Want to Hear From.” He wanted to find those making $100 to $500 a month. He had a sneaking suspicion that there were many. He said that every response he received started with a variation of: “I’m actually making a lot more than that.”

 How about these stories:

o JAN STRNAD, a 62-year-old educator hoping to retire in four years. In 2012, he made $11,406.31 from his work.  He now makes around $2,000 a month.

o ROBERT J. CRANE, His monthly income had gone from $110.29 in June to $13,000+ in November.

o RACHEL SCHURIG has sold 100,000 e-books and made 6 figures last year.

o RICK GUALTIERI cleared over $25,000 in 2012 from his writing.

o AMANDA BRICE writes teen mysteries and adult romantic comedies in her spare time. She averages $750 a month with her work.

Do you have story inside of you just waiting to be heard? Never has there been such a time in history that doors to publishing success are flung as wide open as they are today. Just think–if you start your writing today, you could be the next self-publishing success story tomorrow!

 ***This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing for Kindle”***

Link to the original article: http://www.salon.com/2013/04/04/hugh_howey_self_publishing_is_the_future_and_great_for_writers/

 

 

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50 pieces of writing advice from authors

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Writers – well, good writers anyway – understand words. They have this uncanny knack of knowing which one to use and when – and just think, there are thousands upon thousands upon thousands of the blighters.

 

Penelope‘s insight:

 

Hover over a picture and mine yourself a quote from one of 50 Writers that you can latch onto and gleen from. Here are a few of my favorites:

ERNEST HEMINGWAY – “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

HARPER LEE – “Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself… It’s a self-exploratory operation that is endless. An exorcism of not necessarily his demon, but of his divine discontent.”

SYLVIA PLATH – “And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” 

EDGAR ALLAN POE – “Words have no power to impress the mind without the exquisite horror of their reality.” 

W. SOMERSET MAUGHAM – “There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.”

  ***This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing Rightly”***

 Link to the original article and all the quotes and quotees: http://shortlist.com/entertainment/50-pieces-of-writing-advice-from-authors

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Authors: when is the most productive time to write?

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I read this article on cracked.com yesterday, entitled “5 things you can do right now to be instantly smarter.”

Penelope‘s insight:

 

Could the best time of day to write be when you are tired, frazzled, and at your worst? Apparently, experiments have shown that our brain adapts to new and crazy ideas when we are annoyed. When we’re at ease our brain is comfy and rejects ideas that seem too weird. Huh? 

I am trying to get my writing done first thing in the morning when I am fresh, and my mind hasn’t been overtaken by all the gobbledegook on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and e-mail. This seems to be working for me. I jump in with both feet, get the required (my own goals) amount of writing done, and get out.

The ideas that come to me are fresh from the dream state, and not affected by all of the other social interference out on the web. I think each person has to find their own writing bliss, embrace it, and reject what doesn’t work. The whole point is to get it done, and be pleased with your finished work.

 

***This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing Rightly”***

 Link to the original article and the full interview: http://crimsonleague.com/2013/03/31/authors-when-is-the-most-productive-time-to-write/

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Pixar’s 22 Rules of Storytelling

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These rules were originally tweeted by Emma Coats, Pixar’s Story Artist. Number 9 on the list – When you’re stuck, make a list of what wouldn’t happen next – is a great one and can apply to writers in all genres.

 

Penelope‘s insight:

I am tucking this list of Pixar’s “22 Rules of Storytelling” into my writer’s toolbox to pull out when I am working on my writing for Kindle. I can readily pick up some new ideas by quickly scanning the list, and referring back to these rules could truly get you out of some stuck-in-the-mud storylines.

I’m fondly recalling Pixar’s Movie, “Up”. If they used these rules in writing the love story of Carl and Ellie, then these rules would also work great for romance stories written for Kindle. Their beautiful story in the movie is the shortest, most eloquent and touching love story I think I have ever seen. Although it was between two digitally created characters, every time I watch it, I sob like a baby.

Pixar knows of which they speak. This one is a keeper.

***This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing for Kindle”***

Link to the original article: http://aerogrammestudio.com/2013/03/07/pixars-22-rules-of-storytelling/

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This Itch of Writing: Showing and Telling: the basics

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Writing, talking about writing, reading writing and sometimes hating writing:
a blog by novelist Emma Darwin

Penelope‘s insight:

 

This is one of the best articles I have seen on the Writing Basics of “Showing” and “Telling”. The author would rather call it “Evoking” and “Informing” and I tend to agree.

Beginning writers naturally do more telling than showing, which is usually where we all begin. Once you get into the process of writing on a regular basis, you want your writing to “evoke” some kind of emotion in the reader.

Not that telling is wrong. There is a place for telling. Children’s stories will use the “telling” or “informing” of a narrator more than the “showing” or “evoking”. Once upon a time…

Take a look at the article for some very specific examples, and another helpful writer’s tip about “psychic distance”.

   

***This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing Rightly”***

 

Link to the original article and the full interview: http://emmadarwin.typepad.com/thisitchofwriting/showing-and-telling-the-basics.html

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The Self-Pubbed Writer Who Wrote the Next Great Sci-Fi Saga

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You can also listen to this article. When bookstore employee and indie author Hugh Howey published his short story “Wool” as a 99-cent e-book on Amazon in July of 2011, he wasn’t banking on the story transforming his career.

 

Penelope‘s insight:

  

I’m in the middle of reading the wildly successful “Wool” permanent free book that sits out on Amazon. Sci-fi fan, I am not, but the story is intriguing. Bookstore employee and indie author, Hugh Howey had no idea that publishing his short story out on the web would completely change his life. He had written nothing else after this one, but fans reached out to him to finish his futuristic short story to satisfy their desire for more work from this author.

As Wool opens, Holston, the sheriff of the silo is being sent to “cleaning,” a punishment that takes him to the toxic surface to scrub the sensors that project a view of the world above to the silo below. The description of the view is one of the only clues Howey provides about the world before the silo was created. It’s a “familiar and rotting skyline” in which “ancient glass and steel stood distantly where people, it was suspected, had once lived aboveground.”

 By reaching out to Howey and leaving reviews that asked for more, fans helped conjure the fictional world that has come to mean so much to them. And through the power of self-publishing and social media, Howey converted interest in the first story into dedicated fandom and hundreds of thousands of e-book sales. Self-publishers can always learn from studying what is currently working, and tweak it to fit into their own self-publishing.

 

***This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing for Kindle”***

 

Link to the original article: http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/books/2013/03/hugh_howey_and_wool_how_the_self_pubbed_sci_fi_writer_relates_to_fans.2.html

 

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The 5 Fingers To Social Media Learning

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5 Finger Social Media Learning We all know how important Social Media is and we all know that it HAS to be a part of your blog or business marketing game

 

Penelope‘s insight:

 

I remember names by “associating” the person’s name with a picture. This picture should be an easy way to remember your social media “dos” for building up your community that will like your books–and you as author.

OK, class, here are the 5 Fingers to Learning Social Media:

o Index Finger – Know Your Goals

o Middle Finger – Share the Luv

o Ring Finger – Build Your Community

o Pinky Finger – Share You Share Yours

o Thumb – Be Supportive and Helpful

Now you will be looking at your hand in an entirely new way. Just make sure if you mark it up, you use a washable marker! 😉

 

***This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Ebook Promotion and Marketing”***

 Link to the original article: http://www.johnpaulaguiar.com/the-5-fingers-to-social-media-learning/

 

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Beware Random House’s Ebook Imprints – Forbes | Self-Publishing

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Random House’s ebook-only imprints have come under fire for having predatory and abusive contract terms.

Penelope‘s insight:

 

Another great case made for self-publishing: YOU RETAIN CONTROL and PROFITS and the KNOWLEDGE of the ANALYTICS of your book. Sure, your book may be sitting out on Amazon, or Smashwords, or the i-bookstore, but you can pull it at any time and put it on your own website for sales.

I have heard the same story time and again from friends who have had their books published by one of the big publishers. They sign a contract, which pretty much signs away their rights. They pay out thousands and thousands of dollars for what? The book is published, but that didn’t include any promotion. These authors are kept in the dark about the number of sales, they don’t see royalties, and they are being treated as if they absolutely have no right to know how their books are doing. They are frustrated and discouraged.

Personally, I will stick to self-publishing and my books will remain my sole property.

 ***This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing for Kindle”***

 Link to the original article: http://www.forbes.com/sites/suwcharmananderson/2013/03/10/beware-random-houses-ebook-imprints/

 

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Serials Can Be Challenging, For Writers and For Amazon – The Digital Reader

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Penelope‘s insight:

 

Is taking on the challenge of writing “serials” for Amazon right for you and your audience? It can be lucrative, but very tricky. As you are writing your story, you are also posting the chapters for readers to pick up on and pass on to others. 

“50 Shades of Gray” started out as FREE serialized Twilight fan-fic. It then built up its audience over time–and we know the rest of the story.

 

*****This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing for Kindle”*****

 Link to the original article: http://www.the-digital-reader.com/2012/09/19/serials-can-be-challenging-for-writers-and-for-amazon/#.UFz3xY1lRVU

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allAfrica.com: Africa – Travel Writing and Africa in the 21st Century

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allAfrica: African news and information for a global audience

 

Penelope‘s insight:

 

Are you a traveler? Even if you don’t travel to the far reaches of the world, you could write a travel book for Kindle. They are hot, and if you are an international traveler, you could piggyback off the success of HGTV’s “International Homes”. Match the books to their episodes.

People always want to know what is in different parts of the county–and the world. If you’ve traveled to a wonderful, exotic locale, write about it!

Here’s what you can do:

1) Pull out all your PICTURES – People want to SEE what you are talking about! You can easily scan in those pictures to add into your book.

2) Recreate your STORY from your pictures. If you can’t remember a lot of the details, another idea is to create a children’s book from the pics if you snapped lots of animals, flowers, trees and things that kids like.

3) Break down your travel story into a SERIES of books. You can use the same trip, but give each book a different subject, different title, but bundle them together.

Let your imagination run wild. If you are a journaler, even better! Pull out those journals and your pictures, and pore over them to recreate your story–and your book for Kindle.

 

*****This review was written by Penelope Silvers for her curated content on “Writing for Kindle”*****

Link to the original article: http://allafrica.com/stories/201302221181.html

 

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