Amazon announced a couple weeks ago that it was cutting out the middleman by directly signing on 122 titles. Now comes the news that Kobo will turn publisher as well.
American thriller writer Barry Eisler gave up a $500,000 US two-book offer from his long-time publisher to go with Amazon because he expects to make a lot more per copies sold, and also sell more number of copies.
So, instead of chasing literary agents, will aspiring writers have to chase Amazon, Kobo and whoever chooses to jump into the fray?
Get details from this cbc news article.
Publishing companies are toying with populating ebooks with ads. The idea is to have these ads pay for themselves in increased sales for the product, the incentive for the reader being free or reduced priced books.
Personally I think it is a terrible idea. I’d hate to have the flow of reading broken up by randomly popping ads. As a writer, I don’t think it is such a hot idea, either. (Never say never, I know.)
Check this article on goodreader.com for details.
I’ve created two groups on Facebook:
Recommendation for Readers
Feel free to post information about your own book, but only once please.
If you’ve read a book you feel deserves wider audience, please post.
I’ve started off with Bob Sanchez’s When Pigs Fly.
Resource For Writers where you may post:
a. Tips for writers
b. Resource of use to writers – editors, kindle formatters, writing opportunities etc
I’ve started off with information about a book cover designer.
The (US-based) National Book Foundation goofed up big time. After announcing Lauren Myracle‘s Shine as a finalist for the NBF, the organization asked Myracle to withdraw from the nomination.They apparently meant to shortlist Franny Billingsley‘s Chime, but got it confused with Shine. Since Myracle’s book is about a teenage victim of hate crime, at least the Mathew Shepard Foundation got $5000 out of it (in apology from the NBF).
If you come from any one of the Commonwealth Group of countries, there’s a contest in it for you. From the press release:
“Awarded for best first book, the Commonwealth Book Prize is open to writers who have had their first novel (full length work of fiction) published between 1 January and 31 December 2011. Regional winners receive £2,500 and the overall winner receives £10,000. The Commonwealth Short Story Prize is awarded for the best piece of unpublished short fiction (2000-5000 words). Regional winners receive £1,000 and the overall winner receives £5,000. The winners will be announced in June 2012.”
Details at http://www.commonwealthwriters.org.
Writing contests are a great way to get noticed, especially if they’re free. There are quite a few of those around. If I do apply to a fee based one, one thing I do is to check to see if the prize money is at least twenty times the fee. Here’s a good site I often use. Do the research before applying. In other words, don’t sue me.
I self-published my debut novel, Fezariu’s Epiphany, in May 2011 and it’s been a long but enjoyable journey both before and since. I have learned many valuable lessons along the way and here’s just a selection of general things which have helped me immensely:-
I started my blog, The World According to Dave, in May 2010 and it’s been nothing but a pleasure to work on. Blogs are a great way to keep yourself writing regularly and they’re only short pieces so you shouldn’t have too much difficulty finding time for them. Blogs can be about absolutely anything from book reviews to an encounter at a bus stop with a man called Gerald. You name it, you can write about it.
2) Social Networking
Twitter and Facebook are a writer’s perfect communities. There are many thousands of readers and writers out there sharing their thoughts and work on various networks. Not only is it beneficial and insightful to join the many communities but it’s also a great way to promote not just that upcoming novel but to post links to your blog or anything else of interest. Posting comments or links regularly will build up a loyal fan base over time and if you’ve done that then you’re already one step ahead of the game when your book is published. I’ve been blessed with knowing some fabulous people on Facebook and Twitter.
3) Blog Tours
These are a great way to promote your book once it’s been published. You may be asked to do an interview or write a guest post but whatever the request it’s always a delight. The interviews are always good to do but I’ve particularly enjoyed the blog posts as they’ve taken me back to the moment I first conceived the idea of both Elenchera and Fezariu’s Epiphany and taking myself back to that time has been insightful. I always thought Fezariu’s Epiphany was quite a simple story but thinking back to its construction there was a lot of layers to the narrative in the end.
4) Someone Who’s There
Prior to meeting my wife, Donna, in late 2008, writing had been a lonely experience. Friends and family had read some of my work and found no problems with it. I knew they were just being polite. With Donna I received honest feedback for the first time. Even though we’re married Donna isn’t afraid to tell me if something doesn’t work in my novels or short stories. She’s quick to praise the good but equally fast in lambasting the bad. Having a critic you can trust to be honest is a vital necessity for any writer. If your critic is telling you something is wrong with your work then listen to them, address the problem and then decide if you’re going to do anything about it. At the end of the day the novel is your baby but if you ignore any weaknesses your critic identifies then it’s likely to backfire when other readers begin to sample your work. Thank to Donna, I was able to iron out the weaker points of Fezariu’s Epiphany and I’m proud of how it turned out.
Those are just a selection of the lessons I’ve learned bringing Fezariu’s Epiphany to life. I expect to learn many more as I now turn my focus to my second novel, A World Apart. I want this book to be better than my debut and so far it’s shaping up well.
David M. Brown was born in Barnsley in 1982 and first conceived the idea of Elenchera in college. His love of history and English led him to read these subjects at Huddersfield University. David is inspired by medieval history, Norse mythology and Japanese role-playing video games and anime films. He lives in Huddersfield with his wife Donna and their six rescue cats.
The Elencheran Chronicles: http://elenchera.com
The World According to Dave: http://blog.elenchera.com
Book Video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=mPgcNNLMBvY
If you can, there’s a contest in it for you. The only rules – the story should be encapsulated in 60 words or less (also called a logline). Chuck Sambuchino (of the Guide to Literary Agents) and Literary Agent Rachelle Gardner are getting together to give you the opportunity to do your worst.
Click here for details.