This week I attended the NZ Children’s Book Awards. As in recent years Indie publishers were 25% of the finalists and winners. Some of the small publishers from a few years ago are growing, which is good news. This year’s winners came from a group of writers who have consistently produced great work but have never won big awards. We all celebrate their moment in the sun.
I have been thinking about stickability, especially from the writers that keep producing good work year after year. They barely make a living yet they still keep writing and contributing their time to the writing community. All of the winners of the children’s book awards this year exemplify this. Finalists have to take unpaid time off work to visit schools and libraries as part of an awards roadshow. Kristen Lamb has a great article on embracing the grind. Ann Kroeker also has a wonderful article about writers seeing the 3D sound effects movie in their heads and the feelings when this translates as 2D flatness of their writing.
We’ve all been there. We are there still. Someday we will crack it!
Chuck Wendig wrote an interesting blog post this week, 25 reasons why I put down your book. This is a great list to remind authors that first and foremost you have to entertain the reader. (Warning it is Chuck so be prepared!)
From the writers point of view sometimes things can get a little dicey in your head. Stuart Nadler has written a moving tribute to all the characters he has killed off who haunt him still. Every writer has struggled with their conscience as they killed off a character... but sometimes the ghosts live on....
Writer Unboxed had an interesting article from Jo Eberhardt that garnered over 290 comments. The problem of female protagonists. If you look at your bookshelves how many of your books have Female protagonists or are written by women? Jo highlights recent research into the myth that we are writing gender balanced books. A very interesting read.
Jane Friedman has an interview with two literary agents on hybrid authors and how they can navigate their way in the publishing world.
David Gaughran reminds all authors to research who you are working with and go in eyes wide open.
In The Craft Section, (A fabulous list today)
13 ways to add depth to your novel- Victoria Mixon- Bookmark
How your characters failures are a recipe for self growth- Angela Ackerman- Bookmark
Choosing your antagonist- Blood Red Pencil- Bookmark
How to write a synopsis- Bookmark
How writers can stretch their creativity- CS Lakin- Bookmark
When Theme smothers premise- Larry Brooks- Bookmark
How to write stronger characters- SheNovel- Bookmark
Sequel scenes- K M Weiland - Bookmark
In The Marketing Section
Do Indies have to do print- Digital Reader
7 tips for blog traffic- Anne R Allen – Bookmark
Tips for branding your book series- Book marketing tools – Bookmark
How I launched my book and sold 20K copies- Daniel Arenson- Bookmark
2 Goodreads features – Frances Caballo
Indie publishing paths- Janice Hardy
Angela Ackerman has written a fabulous article on influencers. How to find them, what they can do for you and more importantly what you can do for them. This is a must read! All authors need that helping hand... and big mouth to spread the news about your latest book.
You can’t rely on winning an award right off the bat. It takes years of crafting relationships and being prepared for the long haul before the sun comes out. Then it will feel absolutely blinding if the reaction from one of my friends who won this week is anything to go by.
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Pic From Flickr/ Creative Commons/ John Taylor
You thought I was going to post a picture of the sun.... hehehe. TA DA!