I’m guessing that most of us are always on the outlook for ways to increase our productivity, to open wider to inspiration, and get/keep the ideas flowing. But writing, like any art, is a process that defies capture, that eludes attempts to analyze, to reduce, to constrain. What works for one person won’t work for the next. All we can do is keep trying new things, or simply keep doing what has worked for us in the past. On a whim, I wrote my latest book in longhand.
Yes, I heard the gasps, the sudden intake of shocked breaths. Longhand?? Like on lined paper? With a pen? Yes, exactly. Continue reading “Handwriting Your Book”
I’m sorry to inform my dear friends and readers (more on that later), but after exhaustive research and continuous toil involving the consumption of 235 megs of information, 84 gigs of bandwidth and 753 bags of taco chips, I have come to the undeniable conclusion that the independent reader no longer exists. The reader, that is, who simply purchases a book and reads it, with no intention of reviewing, commenting or writing something similar.
As near as I can make out, the last extant reader of books for her own enjoyment is Mrs. Fanny Bruce of Nottinghamshire (pronounced “Notshur”) in England. This poor lady is in the middle stages of dementia. Her family gave her three Agatha Christie mysteries for Christmas in 2013, and her caregiver reads them to her in a continuing sequence. The dear old soul lives in an imaginary world where Agatha Christie is still alive and putting out a new mystery every few months. Continue reading “The Myth of the Reader”
Ode to the Reader
Twas the night before I uploaded to KDP and all through the house,
Not a creature was stirring as my hand hovered over my mouse.
My masterpiece had been edited and formatted with care,
While visions of soaring up Amazon’s rankings floated through the air.
Okay, I’ll stop now.
You know that feeling you get when you check your dashboard and you’ve sold another book, or a reader has borrowed your book through Kindle Unlimited? You know what I’m talking about. It’s that little jolt you receive. It doesn’t matter if you’re selling thousands of books a month or a handful, there’s still some kind of a charge. I can attest to this because I’ve been in both camps. I’ve had months where I’ve sold tens of thousands of books and I’ve had months where the sales barely trickled in. Yes, ‘tis a fickle vocation we find ourselves in, isn’t it. As the jolly season approaches, I find myself in a contemplative mood, and I was wondering – what is that little burst of energy we feel when the numbers increase on our screen? What does it really mean? And, what should we do about it? Continue reading “The Self-Publisher’s Dashboard of Gratitude”