From the time Gutenberg invented the printing press in 1456, people have been self-publishing books. By the mid-1500s, traditional publishing companies were being formed with the publishing company paying the author a royalty while taking on the hassles of production and distribution. However, some authors continued to self-publish successfully. Thomas Paine’s book Common Sense, released in 1776, was one of the biggest selling books of its time and was self-published. Benjamin Franklin, William Blake, and even Jane Austen’s book Sense & Sensibility were self-published. Continue reading “You’re So Vain – The Evolution of Self-Publishing”
If you’re like me, you have different groups of friends, both in real life and on Facebook. I have my bookish friends (that’s you guys), my music friends (music fans, music writers, and a few actual musicians), my poker buddies, family, and the list goes on and on. As a rule, these groups don’t intersect very often, and odds are that people in group A don’t even realize that you’re involved in subject B. Twice lately I’ve seen someone from a group other than my bookish friends talking about a book they’re writing or hoping to see published, and my immediate thought is, “I wonder if they know …” After writing a couple of emails that were way too long, I realized it would be great if I could just send them a link saying “read this.” Even better, those IU readers who don’t think my take is too far out there can do the same.
Dear <friend, acquaintance, or random person I saw on the internet>, Continue reading “Dear person who wants to publish a book…”
This post is going to have a bit of a split personality. Two entirely different subjects with the flimsiest connection. Consider yourself forewarned.
The inspiration for this is a blog post from Nora Roberts who many of you will recognize as one of the most successful and prolific romance authors in the world. Those who don’t know that name might still be familiar with her pen name of J.D. Robb, also extremely successful. For those who don’t want to read her full post, I’ll give a quick summary. (If you’d prefer you can go read the whole thing. Just remember to come back here afterwards.)
Another author, unnamed in Ms Robert’s post, noticed that Ms. Roberts had a book with the same title. So, she did what anyone with a hair trigger temper and a persecution complex would do. She posted on social media, accusing Ms. Roberts of stealing from her. By the time Nora heard about this, pointed out to the other author that her theory had some major holes, one of the biggest being that Nora’s book had been published first, and the other author posted her retraction, the damage was done. Continue reading “Mob Rule and Other Rules for Authors”
This article has two purposes: The first is to discuss a specific question. The question, in its most simple form, is how do you know whether your writing is any good? Specifically, are you good enough to publish your first book and expect to be able to attract and satisfy readers and, if you aren’t, how do you figure out what areas to focus on improving to get there? Continue reading “How Do I Know if My Writing…. Sucks?”