Showing posts with label nanoprepmo. Show all posts
Showing posts with label nanoprepmo. Show all posts

Thursday, October 5, 2023

Preparing For The Future



In Publishing News this week,

It’s Banned Books week in the United States and Penguin Random House has pushed out the truck on this literally. They have a huge truck visiting neighbourhoods and giving out children’s books that have been banned from their publishing house.


It was big news when Spotify bought Findaway voices last September and we waited to see what they would do. A year on and Spotify unveil their audiobooks in premium memberships in a trial run with Australia and the United Kingdom. They have negotiated deals that Publishing Perspectives report will shake Audible’s hold on the audiobook market.


Publisher Weekly reports on the Authors Guild author income survey- Why do we write again? It’s not for the money.


Wattpad wants to offer its creators more money so they have launched a new tier called Originals. You can pay for the latest chapter in your serial story or wait until it’s all finished. It’s like Netflix for authors.


Mike Shatzkin writes this week about AI and publishing. Mike has largely retired form advising big publishing companies so it’s always interesting when he writes an article on current trends. Just when you think you know what a commentator would say- they surprise you. Mike thinks AI is a good thing for publishing.


Another who thinks the Publishing industry is short sighted on AI is Mark Williams. He has a long form essay on how Publishers are tackling issues around AI- is it a tool, a threat, a higher form of achievement or copyright theft?


Seth Godin uses Chat GPT to come up with good questions to ask Chat GPT. An interesting way of editing your work.


Copyright is at the heart of AI. Who owns AI copyright. The machine or the prompter? Is it fair use to train AI on whole books? If a machine can replicate someone’s style is it a breach of copyright? Whatever you think, you do need to have a working knowledge of copyright and how it impacts your publishing business.

Kris Rusch writes about making sure you have the right licenses and why you need to print them out.


People who have mastered dictation swear by the ease of writing. You get articles like this one- I wrote a novel in a day- Nick Thacker on Writers in the Storm. Nick goes into detail about what tools he uses. Meanwhile, over on Jane Friedman’s blog Sarah Sawyer talks about how dictation can free up your writing time.


It’s that age old writer struggle- How do you feel when you kill off a nice character? 

Robin Rivera writes that picking the reason you want to kill off the character is just as important as choosing the character you want to kill- She has four reasons you might want to do this.


In The Craft Section,

Crafting unforgettable character arcs- C S Lakin- Bookmark

Fake swearing and how to write it- StopGap

5 mistakes that reverse social justice messages- Mythcreants

Mastering character description without info dumps- Lisa Hall Wilson- Bookmark

Going to your unhappy place- Donald Maass- Bookmark

Writing Mystery – DabbleWriter- Comprehensive


In The Marketing Section,

Honesty in book marketing – Sandra Beckwith- Bookmark

Your books most powerful marketing tool- Greer Macallister

Playlists for your books- Heather Weidner

Non salesy social media content for authors- Dan Parsons- Bookmark

10 easy steps to get your website back to life- Karen Cioffi- Bookmark

October Social Media content- WolfSparrow- Bookmark


To Finish

October – or in the publishing world… getting ready for NaNoWriMo. 

There are a few good articles out there on NaNoPrepMo but if you go to the source- The NaNoWriMo official website,  you can get a huge checklist of ideas and resources to get your preparation for National Novel Writing Month underway.





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Pic: Photo by Sylas Boesten on Unsplash

Thursday, October 27, 2022

Planning For Success



In Publishing News This Week,


Frankfurt. Are we back to normal? That seemed to be the question on everybody’s lips. There was a lot of chat amongst the publishers, sold-out sessions, and positivity everywhere.

Publishing Perspectives interviewed various publishers and agents about the hot new trends they were seeing.


Audiobooks got a lot of attention in Frankfurt with many saying that they were now a mainstream format. The ways for the public to acquire them seem to be all over the place though. You would think that Spotify with its streaming model would extend this into audiobooks – not so. Which audience model will win out was a hot topic discussed at Frankfurt.


Over the last month, the spotlight has been on AI generated art and its copyright ownership.  If you buy art for book covers or fan merch this seems to be a rising trend, to generate AI art. However, the AI’s are sampling artists' portfolios and styles and so the ownership is murky. After many photo stock dealers saying they wouldn’t deal with AI art, Shutterstock changed its mind and is trying have it both ways by attempting to pay the sampled artists if they can prove it. This has annoyed many in the industry.


It always pays to drop into Writer Beware occasionally to keep on top of ways that authors can be parted from their money. Recently Victoria had a long form piece on anthologies and how one anthology publisher collapsed and was exposed as probably running a Ponzi scheme. Anthologies can be great…but you must go in with your eyes wide open.


Today I was listening to an interesting conversation between Orna Ross and Joanna Penn on publishing values. It was wide ranging and referred to Orna’s recent article. This is a meaty topic. What do you wish to be known for and are you sure that’s what you are projecting to the readership?


Kris Rusch has an interesting article on Thinking Big. Do you note down your success? What about your positive reviews? Kris talks about exposure and when someone goes from chugging along to breakout.


Elizabeth Sims has an interesting post on short stories over on Jane Friedman's blog. 20 reasons why everyone should write a short story. I have been trying my hand at these this year and not managing to finish them. This article makes me look at short story writing in a different way. Let it go and have fun.


In The Craft Section,

Where do Ideas come from- Randy Ingermanson- Bookmark

4 writing pitfalls to avoid- Laurence McNaughton- Bookmark

Writing beginnings- Interview with Shane Millar- Joanna Penn- Bookmark

4 tips for writing effective backstory- Carolyn Arnold

The perils of not knowing what happens next- Janice Hardy


In The Marketing Section,

Update your Amazon book pages- Elizabeth S Craig- Bookmark

Book cover design ideas- Penny Sansevieri- Bookmark

3 ways to promote poetry- Raegen Pietrucha

Reaching readers for the long term- Becky Robinson- Interview with Joanna Penn- Bookmark

Instagram Book marketing ideas-Bookbub


To Finish,

This weekend is The Alliance of Independent Authors 24 hour conference, SelfPubCon. It’s free. Sessions are recorded and you get three days to go over them.

If you intend to attempt NaNoWriMo this November hopefully you will have everything organized. Check back over the last few blog posts for handy prep links. Don’t forget to check out your local library. Quite a few have embraced the NaNoWriMo experience and have spaces for writers to go and pound out their words.

Good Luck with your final days of preparation.





It’s nearly time for my monthly newsletter of the best of the bookmarked links and other handy items Don’t forget to subscribe.

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 krakenimages on Unsplash

Thursday, October 6, 2022

Publishing Sustainably



In Publishing This Week,

The weather and its effects are starkly reminding people that they have to take the changing climate seriously. The time for talk is over says the Publishing 2030 Accelerator manifesto. There is a concerted effort for the publishing community to get on board and start doing things sustainably instead of just publishing books about climate change. Richard Charkin has a checklist of things that publishers can implement immediately to get the ball rolling.

This is a great chance to show the world that you are walking the walk by changing your publishing business practice to be more sustainable. 


This year Frankfurt Bookfair being held in October. They have put together free online masterclasses on Tiktok, AI, and Distribution this coming week before the fair begins.


This week Melanie Walsh shone a spotlight on the lack of access to book sales data for academics who are studying the industry. The more she investigated the more perturbed she was as she realized that book data was held tightly by a few companies but mostly by one. This lack of transparency into the book industry is concerning. Having access to the data would show reality. Are black authors really not selling? What is a break out book really selling? It is an interesting read. 


Mark Williams of The New Publishing Standard has an interesting article on the latest numbers of Internet penetration. The world is growing more digitally literate if most of the world has a mobile phone. Publishers haven’t kept pace with publishing in a global digital space yet.


Publishers Weekly has a feature article on writers over 50 who are debuting Young Adult books this year. It’s never too late to get that story written.


The Alliance of Independent Authors has a comprehensive article on crowdfunding for authors. If you have been wondering where to start, or which platform is best check out the article.


Kristine Rusch has an interesting article on advertising. It now takes many more channels and effort to reach your target demographic. What to do? How good are you at making connections with your readers because that is the only sure fire way to get an audience. 


Joanna Penn interviewed Georgina Cross about writing for two traditional publishers and how she juggles the different demands of both of them. 


When your plot begins to take on a multiple points of view and you realise that your mystery is starting to look like a GRR Martin epic that has you lost, what can you do? 

Bang2Write has a great guest article from Antony Johnston about complex structures and how to make them workable.


In The Craft Section,

Excellent writing trick- Scott Myers

How to build tension- Angela Ackerman- Bookmark

How to introduce your character- Dana Issacson

Writing a great opening chapter- Anne R Allen- Bookmark

A guide to story plotting- Now Novel


In The Marketing Section,

When your book marketing has stalled- Sandra Beckwith- Bookmark

Creating an easy blog calendar

Market research checklist – Reedsy- Bookmark

5 pro tips for podcast guests

Strategic non–fiction publishing- Anna David

3 easy book marketing tips- Colleen Story


To Finish,

It’s October or NaNoPrepMo (National Novel Preparation Month) The month where you are supposed to get all your ducks in a row, i.e., story plotted, calendar scheduled, meals prepared, ready for NaNoWriMo. The dream team of Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi have a page on their website with all sorts of links to help out your writing prep.

Every year at this time, Kevin Anderson puts together a bundle of writing craft books on Storybundle. This is a great resource for new craft books from some industry big names and it benefits charity for not much money. Go take a look.





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 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.


Pic: Photo by Casey Horner on Unsplash


Thursday, October 28, 2021

Give Me The Money!


This week in publishing...

Wouldn’t it be nice if someone said 'here, have some money for your art?' If you work in the creative arts and live in Ireland you might be the lucky recipient of a trial Guaranteed Basic Income for artists from the government. It is being called a game-changer by the artists who receive 325 euros a week. Read the article and weep with envy.


Last week I mentioned a couple of news items on startups in the publishing sphere who didn’t seem to know what they were doing but had been given money to make an impact of some sort in publishing and book discovery. Ireland again is at the forefront in creating an Irish author website store. The website showcases Irish authors, provides them with a sales page the author controls, and sells print books directly. Author collectives can do this to take advantage of group niche markets or marketing but I haven’t heard of a country doing it. It’s still in start-up mode but will be interesting to see where it goes.


Author Ryan Holiday has taken a different route to get money- he has opened a small bookstore in a small town. He is offering a curated book store of his picks and he has an interesting drawcard. 


This week Richard Charkin wrote an interesting opinion piece on his experience of The Frankfurt Bookfair which has just concluded. Richard focused on the slogans that publishers use to try to differentiate and explain what type of books they publish. If only they were truthful, he muses. 


Last week Kris Ruch published part one in looking at IP and its value to a publisher. This week she continues the theme of value and compares publishers with Netflix et al. One phrase that struck me in this great article,  readers don’t care about new. They care about new-to-them.” Netflix understands this, publishers don’t. Do you know the value of your IP and what you as the author and owner of that IP can do with it to make money?


Joanna Penn produced an in-depth article on IP this week to explain all the ways you can use and exploit what you create to make money.


Draft2 Digital has just added a nifty feature to its free reader links sell pages… you can now link print books.


Anne R Allen has a great guest post from William Hahn an audiobook narrator on audiobooks. If you were wondering if it is worth it- take a look. 

I listened to an interview today from Judith Briles from Author U with an audio producer who was reading picture books and using image descriptions for blind children and recording video with sign language for deaf children. The audio format is just a springboard to other audio innovations.


In the Craft Section,

World building basics- K M Allen- Bookmark

Common writing mistakes- K M Weiland

What are pinch points and where do they go- Sue Coletta- Bookmark

Character traits that hike up tension- September Fawkes

How to make your characters' choices more difficult- Angela Ackerman- Bookmark


In The Marketing Section,

Author and Book publicity- Sandra Beckwith - Bookmark

5 tips for scoring more book reviews- Veronica Mixon- Bookmark

Best ways to grow social media following Rachel Thompson

Are you ready for book marketing- quiz- Frances Caballo

Publishing resources- Bookbub- Bookmark


To Finish,

Angela Ackerman has a nifty newsletter full of interesting tips. This week she rounded up some great resources for authors – including a Pomodoro timer app and links to other great research resources. 


It is nearly November, National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) If you are taking the plunge to write a 50,000 word novel in a month, GOOD LUCK. If you want to find out more and register, check out the official NaNoWriMo blog. Check back over the last few posts to find great resources for planning and getting ready for November 1st.





It’s nearly time for my monthly newsletter of best bookmarked links and extras.  If you would like to 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. I appreciate the virtual coffee love. Thanks.


Pic: Flickr Creative Commons – Pictures of Money



Thursday, October 21, 2021

Conflict, Disruption and Scandal.


In Publishing news this week,

Scandal, shock, and naughty words were muttered around author communities this week. 


In New Zealand, a government ministry gave money to a start-up. (It can’t be called a start-up if it is 6 years old, but I digress) The Start-Up’s innovative idea was to find out what New Zealand readers are searching for and make appropriate recommendations. This is a big project. They asked and got a big grant of money. But then the flaws in their idea were exposed. One of their recommendations, buy your content (books) from Amazon. (Shipping costs from the US are astronomical.) Had no one in the ministry heard that local indie bookshops do a similar job? I see that Publishers Weekly has picked up this news item. (Shakes head sadly.)


News broke that a group of prominent American Young Adult authors were touting NFT’s to their fans to write content for them in a murky publicity stunt. Their publisher really hadn’t thought through the copyright implications of this. Many authors yelled naughty words this morning and the project has been quickly taken down… but mud sticks.


Forbes breathlessly announced the arrival of a wonderful social media platform that aims to disrupt the publishing industry by… gathering readers in one place to talk about books. 

This is an innovative idea. I wonder that it hasn’t been tried before. There have been howls of laughter around the publishing world. But maybe this Oxford MBA grad is onto something.


Mark Williams of The New Publishing Standard always has a well-researched take on international publishing news. He takes a look at the quiet takeover of a French ebook subscription company and the gateway into a huge market it promises for this Swedish company.


This week the children’s writing community around the world lost the king of the-coming-of -age survival story, Gary Paulson. Hatchet made an impact in gritty boy alone survival stories even down under. Gary wrote other great stories that slipped under your skin when you read them. Here is a great tribute to a great writer.


Recently KDP slipped in a new feature to the barcode section on the print book cover. If they provide the barcode they will add a transparency QR code which you can load with extra information about the book. Lots of possibilities here.


Don’t forget to sign up for the free Alliance of Independent authors 24 hour craft conference. It’s happening this weekend!


Kris Rusch has an interesting article on IP. How much do you know about your IP? What about books that are out of print and still relevant- shouldn’t they be saved? She takes a look at an Australian project to save cultural works of art that are still in copyright but out of print. Have the publishers missed a cash cow here?


Chapter titles, do you agonise over them? Children’s writers know this can be an important touchstone for children when they are learning to read. Anne R Allen has a great post on why she thinks they should be important for adult readers. Namely the eBook. What better way to advertise your book than the chapter titles- after all we do it for non fiction.


October is National Novel Preparation Month- The month where you get all your planning done so you can start November with a roar. Stephanie Bourbon has a great article on how to plan as a Pantser writer and hit a winning streak. Angela Ackerman also has a great nuts and bolts article on NaNoWriMo prep. It’s time to sharpen your pencils.


Are you addicted to research? Recently editor Denise Willson wrote on Writer Unboxed an excellent article on how to tackle plot holes, dragging middles and spicy events that have lost their fizz. It’s all in your research.


Bridget McNulty has a great article on Now Novel which breaks down the 6 types of Story Conflict. This is a useful resource to remind you that there are other conflicts besides name calling and punch ups.

In The Craft Section,

How to make the reader care- Ross Hartman- Bookmark

Top 5 Subplot mistakes- Lucy Hay- Bookmark

Two great posts - Internal conflict and Using conflict to build tension- Becca Puglisi- Bookmark Both

Capturing complex emotions- Tamar Sloan


In The Marketing Section,

November holidays for promo- Sandra Beckwith

Comp authors and marketing- David Gaughran – Bookmark

Why understanding categories is critical- Penny Sansevieri-Bookmark

Nonfiction Keyword strategy- Dave Chesson- Bookmark

12 things about book marketing and social media- Indie Reader


To Finish,

October is rapidly disappearing, and the problems of the supply chain are about to bite. It might be doom and gloom for print over Christmas, but have you thought about innovative ways to highlight eBooks and audiobooks? Lisa Norman writes about a different way of viewing the coming supply disruption. She has some brilliant ideas. It has changed my thinking… off to make notes.




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 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. I appreciate the virtual coffee love. Thanks.


Pic: Flickr Creative Commons – Jean Phillipe Bourque


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