Thursday, May 26, 2022

Seize The Typewriter



In Publishing News this week,

Amazon has made some changes to what they refer to as low content. These are journals and workbooks, which are now being filed under stationery items. If you create workbooks for your books or seminars you may want to check out the new rules. First up you will need your own ISBN for them.


Publishers Weekly reported on a panel discussion at the US Book show on what a healthy publishing industry looks like. There was a general consensus that publishing is feeling the miasma of the last few years. Just in time supply chains have been hit with delays… Writers have been hit hard… Publishing has to compete with other forms of entertainment. Who knew? The CEO’s discussing these woes almost want a back to the future style intervention. 


Meanwhile over in Canada, Kobo has been quietly adding Arabic to their list of publishing languages. CEO, Michael Tamblyn addressed the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair announcing the move and talking about the advantages of having a global perspective on publishing and cultural understanding. 


Amazon has started a monthly Book Club. I guess it was inevitable with the rise of book club influencers that Amazon would begin to carve out a space. Amazon’s editorial director, Sarah Gelman, is running Sarah Selects. However, in a nice twist, Amazon is opening up Book Clubs to everyone. You too can host a book club.  


The Hollywood Reporter has an interesting article on the rise of Literary Agents producing content for streaming services, film, and TV. Meanwhile, magazine publishers are building in-house production arms to take advantage of properties they already own.


Recently Joanna Penn interviewed Derek Sivers on selling direct, independence, and being open to technological change. Derek has some interesting ideas on publishing, describing it as ‘Networking for Introverts.’ 


Sandra Beckwith has a great article on how to position yourself to get local publicity for your book. You may think any publicity is good publicity but Anne R Allen has a great article on when this is the wrong idea. How bad marketing can destroy your author brand, lose friends, and influence nobody


Kris Rusch continues her How Writers Fail series. This week she looks at expectations. Are you putting unrealistic expectations on yourself? Are you unconsciously loading the dice against your own writing succeeding?


Stephanie Morrill wrote an interesting article on The Go Teen Writer website- 7 ideas to help you get through a hard writing season. These hard writing seasons strike everybody, even multi-published award winners. Sometimes there seems to be no outside reason for a writing slump. Stephanie has some ideas to help. 

Elizabeth S Craig looks at how maintaining a regular writing habit in times of stress can trick you into feeling more in control of the situation.


In The Craft Section,

How to write realistic sex scenes- Ari Meghlen

3 important things to learn from editing- Colleen Story

Avoid repetitive scenes- K M Weiland- Bookmark

The importance of character psychological development- Becca Puglisi

3 ways to ramp up fiction pacing and tension- C S Lakin-Bookmark


In The Marketing Section,

9 tips for marketing your first book- Penny Sansevieri

Promote your book with your own values- Sonya Huber- Bookmark

The ins  and outs of blurb requests- Liz Alterman

Market your audiobook- Joanna Penn- Bookmark

7 easy ways to refresh your website- Pauline Wiles- Bookmark


To Finish,

A few months ago the news was all Brandon Sanderson. If you have been under a writing rock and haven’t caught up on the phenomenon check out previous blog posts. James Scott Bell has an interesting post on how Brandon connected with his readers and puts it down to knowing yourself and what kind of writer you want to be. He has 3 tips to help you figure this out for yourself. His maxim - Carpe Typem!





It’s nearly time for my monthly newsletter chock full of bookmarked links. When you subscribe you will also get a nifty mini book crammed full with marketing notes as a thank you. 

If you like the blog and want to shout me a coffee, hit the coffee button up top or here. I appreciate the virtual coffee love. Thanks.



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Thursday, May 19, 2022

Take A Chance



In Publishing News this week,

Publishing Perspectives reported on the exit of Andy Ventris, London Book Fair’s new director. He was tasked with getting LBF back after covid… but only directing one fair and then leaving was not foreseen by anyone. 


The Germans are serving up NFT’s with their premier non-fiction prize. This is a tentative step by the book industry to admit that NFT’s might be something to keep an eye on. However, if you want to get into NFT’s you need to know a little bit about cryptocurrency and this week has not been good in the cryptocurrency world.


Melodie Campbell has a guest post on Anne R Allen’s blog on why writing in a series is a good idea. It’s all about money… 


Jennie Nash has shared an excerpt from her book, Blueprint for Non-Fiction on Jane Friedman’s blog. Do you know your internal why and your external why? They are different and both are important.


Kris Rusch has the second in her current series on Why Writers Fail. This week she is delving into why established writers fail, it is all to do with FEAR.


On the Writers Fun Zone blog, D F Hart has a guest post on accounting for authors. This is a fascinating post – I know it doesn’t sound like it, but it is. This is a romance/crime writer with an MBA explaining how to look at the numbers in your writing business.


Sticking with numbers, Mary Moore has an interesting post on word count goals in the three act structure. This also applies to memoir and non-fiction.


This week Sandy Vaile tackled the four essential elements you need to nail to have a workable novel.  Sandy dives into explaining transforming ideas, story purpose, and driven characters along with conflict!


In the Craft Section,

How to outline a memoir- Reedsy- Bookmark

Archetype and Story structure K M Weiland- Bookmark

Stand out Characters- Angel Ackerman

2 great posts from Colleen Story- How to get back into writing and How to get over the feeling that your 

story is stupid

Plot Twists- Jerry Jenkins- Bookmark


In The Marketing Section,

Content Marketing- Grindboss- Bookmark

Savvy copywriting-Angela Booth

Author websites in 2022- Alliance of Independent Authors- Bookmark

How to pitch a story- Now Novel- Bookmark

18 Book Marketing tips – Sandra Beckwith – Bookmark

Why branding confuses you- Rachel Thompson 


To Finish,

Lately, I’ve been checking in with writing friends, long phone calls, and texts along with in-person hanging out at Book launches. I am blessed to have some great writing buddies who can pick me up, sort me out or just provide a listening ear when I’m angsting about something. This great post from Cindy Sproles explains why you need good writing friends. If you find yourself sitting in a conference somewhere feeling lost, take a chance, and reach out to someone. It might be the best thing you ever do for your writing.





Do you want the best of my bookmarked links in a handy monthly newsletter? When you subscribe you will also get a nifty mini book crammed full of marketing notes as a thank you. 

If you like the blog and want to shout me a coffee, hit the coffee button up top or here. I appreciate the virtual coffee love. Thanks.



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Thursday, May 12, 2022

Lending A Helping Hand


This week in publishing news,

The Los Angeles Times published a big article on the #Disneymustpay saga with quotes from the action team and a deep dive into the way Disney interprets contracts. I’ll bet there were fist pumps everywhere…also a lot of L A creators and lawyers checking over contracts. Hometown karma for Disney.


Instagram is flirting with NFT’s. This story from Techcrunch is interesting because Instagram is opening up a marketplace that a lot of people have access to. If you aren’t sure about NFT’s yet, keep an open mind and read the article. When we all live in our virtual reality life it might be handy knowledge.


The Society of Authors in the UK has a campaign running for the reform of hybrid publishers. There are legit hybrid publishers out there and there are some shady ones, very shady ones. Check Writer Beware if you want to be really sure about how your publisher stacks up.


Meanwhile, across the pond, The American Library Association is fighting back against all the book banning that has been going on. They have collected a formidable group of organisations to help them highlight this growing problem. I was shocked when I realised that ¾’s of the books banned were from marginalised writers. I didn’t realise it was so high. 


The New Publishing Standard always has an eye on what is happening around the rest of the world. This week they published an article about Sweden’s very high take up of audio subscriptions. 


Juliet Marillier has a great article on Writer Unboxed this week on supporting other writers. She lists a few ways you can do this. One of the easiest is to write a review as everybody knows that each review is gold. Juliet has a few other ideas to add and there are more in the comments.


Kris Rusch has an interesting article this week on How Writer’s Fail. As I was reading it I was thinking that optimism is a key ingredient for being a writer. You have to be optimistic to start writing, to continue writing, to finish, to revise, and to keep writing in spite of everything trying to stop you. Nurturing this mindset is the biggest and best thing we can do for ourselves and others. 


Colleen Story has a great website, Writing and Wellness. Here are two posts that nurture writers if you need a mental hug. Quotes to encourage you to keep going and Ways to make your writing mornings more awesome.


In The Craft Section,

Plot vs Story- September Fawkes- Bookmark

Can a writer quote song lyrics?-Anne R Allen- Bookmark

The difference between plot and story and why you need both- Heather Davis

Ten tools for writers – Kathy Steinemann

Bad Book Descriptions- Book Riot


In The Marketing Section,

How to write an author bio- Beth Barany- Bookmark

Can you revive a dead book- Dave Chesson  Bookmark

Book Launch Calendar- Scribe Media

Creating your copyright page – Alliance of Independent Authors – Bookmark

How to work with your graphic designer- Colleen Story

To Finish

The dream team of Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi are celebrating this week. It is ten years since they launched the Emotion Thesaurus. This blue book has been bought by writers all over the world and translated into other languages. Along the way, it has been joined by other books in the series. They reach out to help writers every single day with their resources. Angela and Becca have put together a fantastic prize pack of resources as a 10th anniversary celebration. Enter to win or send a message of congratulations for a top notch resource. 





Do you want the best of my bookmarked links in a handy monthly newsletter? When you subscribe you will also get a nifty mini book crammed full of marketing notes as a thank you. 

If you like the blog and want to shout me a coffee, hit the coffee button up top or here. I appreciate the virtual coffee love. Thanks.


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Thursday, May 5, 2022

Checking off Resolutions



This week in publishing,

Amazon have decided to do away with Mobi files except for certain fixed formats like picture books. The ePub format can now be loaded onto your Kindle without being converted. As publishing commentators say… it’s about time. The ePub format is accepted everywhere else.


Down under, there is a ripple of concern over Booktopia, Australia’s online bookstore. The CEO resigned which triggered a share price plunge. Newspapers speculate it was over a huge earnings slump… the book business is alright isn’t it?


This week Darcy Pattison highlighted a problem with ISBN’s. Apparently, the 13 digit ISBN starting with 978 is running out. New ISBN’s are being issued and they aren’t being accepted anywhere as distributors haven’t caught up with the news. 


Joanna Penn recently interviewed small business guru Elaine Pofeldt who has a new book out. Tiny Business Big Money. This interview is a deep dive into running an author business and what is essential to get right.


Anne R Allen has a post on debut author book marketing. There are some scammy operators out there who target debut authors with junk marketing. The worst I’ve seen is an outfit wanting to take your book to Frankfurt to go on display…and charging a few thousand. In reality, there was an out-of-the-way stand with some books chucked on a table. No human presence at all. If you know anything about Frankfurt Book Fair, this is scammy on so many levels. Anne details other insidious practices.


The Alliance of Independent Authors has a new Ultimate Guide out- The Ultimate Guide to Estate Planning (part one). This is a must-read for everyone. Make a time to put down what you want to have happen in the future. Things like social media executors, where all your passwords are, who gets the film royalties…. 


Kris Rusch has a great post on endings and how important they are in selling your next book. Are you paying attention to the payoff? Loads of food for thought in this post.


Written Word Media has an in depth article on dictation. If you have been flirting with the idea, take a look at their tool comparison.


Do you need to write every day? On one hand, you are teaching the muse to show up. On the other hand, you could be feeding a destructive guilt cycle. Check out Katie’s Weiland’s list of pro’s and con’s.


In The Craft Section,

The definitive list of cliched dialogue- Scott Myers


2 Great posts from K M Weiland -Why your story’s premise is important and

The role of the antagonist in story structure- Bookmark Both

Using crisis to reveal character- September Fawkes – Bookmark

Setting goals, Writing to win- Beth Barany- Inspirational


In The Marketing Section,

Top 5 Strategies for promoting books on Social Media- Penny Sansevieri- Bookmark

2 in depth posts from Bookbub Insights- How to sell more copies of a book you published years ago  and How an anthology got boosted rankings

Instagram stories for authors – Sandra Beckwith- Bookmark

Republish vs Updating- Dave Chesson- Bookmark

Why a good book cover is crucial- Thao Nguyen


To Finish,

We are heading for halfway through the year, how are your New Year’s Resolutions holding up? If you made publishing that novel as a resolution and you are feeling a bit lost, Jordan at Now Novel as the definitive How To Publish A Novel in 2022, post for you.

For all the other writers who are on top of their resolutions… send encouraging energy to the rest of us. 

There is only one week to go for the Storybundle of Writing Craft books. Grab them while you can.



Do you want the best of my bookmarked links in a handy monthly newsletter? When you subscribe you will also get a nifty mini book crammed full of marketing notes as a thank you. 

If you like the blog and want to shout me a coffee, hit the coffee button up top or here. I appreciate the virtual coffee love. Thanks.


Pic: Photo by Isaac Smith on Unsplash

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