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Showing posts from October, 2015

This is not a sprint

Although, to be honest, I hit the ground running with writing, and I'm still going.

Anyway, a few thoughts to sign off for a week enjoying my small family, and friends, and generally not doing a lot other than shooting the breeze about life, the universe, and everything.

This writing thing is intense. It's all-consuming. There are so many areas where it's possible to get hellishly obsessive about. The writing of it, the plotting, the characters. The title. Hot dang (apparently that phrase needs used more) but the title. The editing.

Add publishing the darn thing into the mix, and we can get started on the next ten things to obsess over. Covers, blurbs, fonts, formatting, marketplaces, POD, agent and trad vs self publishing.

When it's published? Oh, boy, yeah, we can add in KDP tracking graphs, interviews (if you're lucky), obsessive review checking (hiding behind hands optional), amazon sales ranking. And in between that, you've got all the fun of the earlier s…
ON THE NOBLE ART OF BLAGGING

One question I've been asked a lot this year is how I've managed to get coverage of myself as a writer, so I thought I'd do a blog about it. Sadly, the main advice I'm going to give is to seize opportunities - and my main message is going to be a huge, heartfelt thanks to those who have given me a chance, supported me, or even just lifted me when the road seems long.

So, the bad news. You are one writer amongst thousands out there. Each has worked hard on their book, each wants to promote it. Mostly, each is doing it in the same small channels. 'Word of mouth,' is king, we get told - but what if no one is reading? How do we get word of mouth? How do we compete against internet-savvy authors who know more about Amazon than we do, or seem more able to promote?

For me, the answer has been through people. I used blagging in the title, but that makes everything seem seedier than it should be, as if we're asking something for nothing,…

Review - the long way to a small, angry, planet and Mother of Eden

A couple of reviews – The Long way to a Small, Angry Planet, Becky Chambers, and Mother of Eden by Chris Beckett.
My work-work has been busy this last few weeks, which means I’m not writing much. And, when I’m not writing, I read. Which was great because I had a couple of books I really wanted to get to.
I’d been hearing a lot about The Long way to a Small, Angry Planet and was really looking forwards to it.
On a lot of levels, it didn’t disappoint. The alien portrayals were well done, thoughtful and clever. The writing was easy to follow with a light touch that kept the story moving along nicely. The scenario was a clever one, and nicely executed, and the characters were likeable.
All of which meant, when I was struggling to fully engage, I found it hard to put my finger on exactly why. Eventually, it came to me – I think – and the answer lay around tension.
There are plenty of areas where tension should be introduced, but wasn’t fully explored to my mind. The trip is rife with…

Book signings - hints and tips

I'm joined on the blog today by Amy Cook, author of the Rabids series (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Amy-Cook/e/B00MQGKLOG), who recently ran a book signing with awesome book topiary, and a nice buzz to it, so I thought I'd get some tips on running one.

Book signings; the big events that can leave any author weak in the knees with excitement and terror all in one. I held a signing last night for the release of my book, “Instinct Ascending Rabids Book 2”. Here are a few things that I learned along the way. 

Preparation- 

#1. Network, network, network.Weeks before the signing, you need to start sending out all those different pleas for people to come. Thankfully I had a few friends that were heading that end of matters for me. They printed up snazzy little ‘save the date’ cards featuring my book cover, with info about the event itself. They then placed these at the library and other high traffic areas in town. We pulled in more networking help by having it announced in newsletters of loc…