So you’ve written your first book. Or maybe this is not your first, so you feel even more confident. You’ve put your heart and soul into it. It took so long and now you think it’s ready. You’ve even had a few family members and friends read it and they tell you it’s great. You’ve heard about how easy it is to publish on KDP, CreateSpace – even Smashwords.
It’s November and you really want to hit that holiday market. After all, that’s the time the most people buy books for gifts. The timing is perfect and you’re itching to push that publish button.
Whoa! Hold on a minute. Do you really want to take that risk? Continue reading “4 Reasons not to Push that Publish Button”
You have probably already heard about the latest sky-is-falling report involving KDP. An online publication (which shall remain nameless, as it’s well-known for publishing unsubstantiated clickbait, but whose initials are Good Ereader) struck fear into the hearts of many indie authors last week, when it announced that starting February 3rd, Amazon would begin pulling from sale any eBooks reported to have typos or formatting issues. Continue reading “KDP Error Messages: The Sky Is Not Falling”
Recently I’ve learned about a new (to me) term: catfishing. It means someone pretending to be what they are not. In terms of selling books on the Internet, this basically boils down to someone posing as an expert in a given field, then writing short, pithy eBooks using information easily and freely accessible on the Internet (think Wikipedia) and then passing it off as a definitive guide on Amazon.
The Washington Post recently ran a very thorough article on the phenomenon. The upshot is that (1) this is nothing new; there have always been people gaming every system ever devised and (2) most of these catfishers operate at least nominally within Amazon’s guidelines with the exception of paid reviews, the thing that Amazon is really cracking down on lately. Continue reading “Et tu, Catfish? Writing with Integrity”
Okay, I’ve written my magnum opus. I’ve elicited friends, family and beta-readers to read it, and I’m waiting on pins and needles for the feedback. I’m sitting with fingers and toes crossed, holding my breath, checking e-mail every five seconds, hoping against hope that the readers will like it. Then I get the first response: “I liked it. It’s good.”
Helpful? Yeah, no. Of course I would love to have my first readers ooh and ahh over the book, but this very non-specific comment is not constructive. Nice as it is, it tells me nothing.
The purpose of beta-readers is not to stroke my writer’s ego. That job belongs to my mother. The purpose of beta-readers is to find all the shortcomings in my writing before I push the publish button. They need to take that puppy out for a rigorous shake-down cruise and find every bug, every glitch, every typo, misplaced comma, and inconsistent tense. It’s painful to get feedback with a laundry list of problems, but would I rather see that list now, in a private e-mail before publication, or see it pasted up in a lambasting Amazon review for all the world to read? Continue reading “Open Letter to Beta-Readers”