Category Archives: Uncategorized

REALLY GOOD ARTICLE on INDIE It’s insightful and informative and makes you really think “What would I do if Amazon charged to publish books”. Whether you have books to publish or are like me, researching before publication, the article is an important one to read.

ChickletsLit

My great friend, Rob Guthrie, has brought to the forefront probably the most controversial subject I’ve ever seen highlighted on his blog.

AMAZON CHARGING FOR DIGITAL PUBLICATION?!

As an author working on her first novel I have chosen to go the self-publishing route. Join the growing rank of Indie Authors. I have already received advice from some of those I follow on Twitter as to why I shouldn’t be an Indie Author but rather find an agent and go through a publisher. I have done my research and homework, talked to other trusted authors. Some of those authors have agents, some had agents and fired them, some are already self-published on Smashwords, Barnes and Noble, and Amazon. The more in depth I went into researching the publishing arena, the more I became convinced to self-publish.

Why?


Let’s start with if I decided to go the way of what I now…

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Book Review – You Are A Writer, So Act Like One – Jeff Goins

Cover of "Kindle Wireless Reading Device,...

Cover via Amazon

The title made me notice this book. It was offerred for free on Amazon last week, but I missed that offerring. I bought it, since the author seems to be everywhere. He seems to know what he’s talking about, so I took the plunge and paid for the book.

As a beginning writer seeking out information on publishing and the writing life, I am doing a lot of reading. Some of the information is redundant. The basics being touted by everybody. Goins take on it seemed more believable than others, like he was writing from experience not unsubstantiated research. Why do I say experience, again, I’ve seen him around the internet at prominant websites that he couldn’t be on if he wasn’t the writer he claims to be.

His premise is simple. You have to write. You have to market yourself and build a platform. He gives you his take on that. But the message he keeps coming back to is doing the work of writing. Unlike other “experts” that tout the riches to be had freelancing, Goins says the pay isn’t good (when you are starting out, it isn’t) and I believe it make always stink for some people. Since marketing is so vital to progression in this industry. Not everyone can market themselves effectively.

I have yet to read an author other than Goins that says you have to write for yourself, not for others. By writing for yourself, the following will come as a result, if you are authentic. He says you do have to have talent, but that the platform will “bring the gatekeepers to your door”. He does say you can accomplish this in a short period of time, which I question. It isn’t easy to build a platform and it does take a long time to accomplish, no matter what he says. It’s part of doing what he says to do; do the work of writing. Platform is a numbers game, and he says it’s about building relationships. Well, it’s been my experience that relationships take time and effort and they will yield positive results if you work at it. So his saying it will happen in a few months, I don’t believe to be the case.

For those of us working towards our first book, he does reccommend building your platform early on. Do not wait to do this. This I believe to be true. Because it takes time. OK enough about time, I’ve made my case for it. I say read the book, and then apply what you’ve learned, and do what he says: Write. Keep writing. Keeping working and dreaming and moving forward. I say, buy the book if you are at the beginning of your writing career. He practices what he preaches. I am glad I read the book and spent time with this author. Now we will see how his advice works for me.

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The Virgin and the IRS

International Money Pile in Cash and Coins

International Money Pile in Cash and Coins (Photo credit: epSos.de)

I’m about to pay my first quarterly tax on money I received from writing. That makes me a writer, doesn’t it? OK, many writers look down on the type of writing that paid me my first revenue, writing for content mills is not deemed worthy of mention in the writing community. I beg to differ. I am not making a lot of money, except for the Ebook chapter I wrote, but I am producing good work and meeting deadlines and client expectations. I am learning about research and SEO writing. I am paying my  dues. It is worthy work for a neophyte.

Paying taxes is such an adult thing to do. It is a form of validation in my eyes. I did work that was good enough to be paid for, and I did it doing something I love, playing with words. This is the beginning of a new chapter in my life, one where I am literally writing new rules to live by. My dreams, and goals are not grandiose and naïve. They are grounded and honed by someone experienced in life’s realities. I do not believe I will be on the NYT Bestseller’s list. I do not picture myself on the Today show. No, I seek simpler triumphs that are based in realistic attainability.

There are a great many sources of information for new writers to research. I am on overload with instructions on building my platform, querying, honing my craft, watching my punctuation (my Achilles heel). Sometimes I think I will explode from all the information I am ingesting. And what is the loudest message I am receiving? Write. Just Write.

It is easy to get side-tracked by social media, by reading the endless amount of relevant blogs. It is easy to get too absorbed in the technical manuals of writing and craft. The thing that matters most is the act of showing up at the blank page and creating magic with words. Practice, Practice, Practice, it’s how we learn anything new.

Writing for me is still a mysterious act. Where do the words come from? Why can I put them together and other people can’t? Why can’t I write creative non-fiction on demand? I am forced to wait for the inspiration and the mood to be “just right” before the words flow. I read that you are to write even when you aren’t inspired. Is writing like a muscle that needs development and constant training for it to perform well? I don’t do well with mysteries. I like answers to questions, and I fear my questions will go unanswered for the duration of my writing career because writing is a mysterious process.

The act of creation cannot be accurately defined. I remember trying to explain the creative process to a very analytical lawyer, and failing miserably after three hours of attempts.  I simply couldn’t give him the exact reason I had created a work of art. It simply had to come into this world by the actions of my hands didn’t cut it for him. He wanted to know what need the object fulfilled. There was no specific, tangible need. It was created from a stirring in me to express myself, but no other outward need. For him, the quilt had to be created because someone was cold and needed a blanket. I created it because the design was in me and needed to come out and be in the world. He never understood art; I never understood not understanding art.

What is in me now, stirring to get out? A book certainly, but the work the book will be chronicling is not done yet. It will be years before the weight-loss journey will be done. So in the interim I write essays and blog posts, and articles I ghost- write for others. The smaller pieces I am writing fulfill the need to create. Whether I am creating art or not is up for debate. What is important is that I am writing. Doing what the sage instructors and mentors of the craft recommend above all else; write, always write. I say, write and pay your taxes. You do the first to pay the second. But if you don’t do the second, you can’t do the first. Pay as you go, write at all costs, and tweet about everything, grounded lessons for a grounded neophyte. Now, where’s my checkbook?

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