Every writer, every author, hits the wall some time … sometimes, lots of times. Oh, we can bring it all on ourselves, allowing and enabling a slew of distractions to create the detour. Or, some cosmic force comes into play—totally unexpected and totally uncontrollable. It’s called life, and yes, it does happen.
What happens if you routinely get waylaid … or you are on a true crunch deadline and you have got to get the chapter finished by tomorrow am or the book out the door within the next two weeks?
Are you a procrastinator? Do you need a nudge to get you, or keep you going? A gentle one … or an evil one? Here’s something that just might do the trick to pull you out of a funk and kick-start your fingers and mind.
It’s all here in the Write or Die app available for PCs and MACs for only $10 (www.WriteOrDie.com). You …
One question that most authors don’t know to ask is, “How do I get the LCCN?” What’s a LCCN? Good question—it’s the Library of Congress number that shows that you exist, and the one that any library that you are pitching your book to wants to know you have.
The good news is that these are free (although going through the two steps to get them can sometimes be a pain in the tush.
Here are your steps:
The LCCN: The Library of Congress Control Number. It is free and can be obtained fairly quickly―a week or less― although we’ve received them within just a day or two. You must have your ISBN to get it. Once you have the LCCN, it will cover case bound (hard, paper, eBook)
Beware: The websites are occasionally updated—changed—so these instructions may also require updating.
It is a two-step process:
- Go to Google.
- Enter: “Library of Congress book number” and click on
Summer has passed and Fall is here, authors start thinking book marketing and business again. Book award possibilities are at every corner. Your email may be loading up with a variety of solicitations to enter book awards. Do you … or don’t you? Are they worth the entry fee? Which do you submit to? And what do you do if your book is recognized … besides telling all your friends?
Book Awards … Some Have Deadlines Soon … Including Special BONUS from USA Book News for Author U!
Which book awards do you enter? Do they matter?
Let’s start with the second question first. The answer: sometimes. Depending upon the tenacity of the author/publisher in getting the word out about the book and the award, you could be wasting your money. Awards can be used to market your book, but it doesn’t happen by itself. You will be the primary promoter. Always.
Some of the more established awards—USA Book …
… did you do the traditional Spring Cleaning before it arrived …
with your old stuff? And old ideas?
When it comes to writing, and publishing, the fabulous concept you had a few years ago may need to be rethought, revamped, or, gulp, tossed out.
Is the idea you have current? Leading Age? Has it been done been done before and have you come up with a whole new twist? Or is it … yawn … old hat?
For non-fiction, would doing a survey spark up some interest? How about conducting interviews with controversial or “in the news” personalities? Or, facilitate a focus group that might reveal new thoughts, trends or twists?
For fiction, just how clever or unique is your story line? Is it more like a “fill in the blank” that are common in the formula books that liter book store shelves or a true page-turner? Have you spent some time with a creative writing coach …
Who’s in Your Village? … Who Are You Going to Thank?
Everyone … That’s Who!
One of the last items on the book publishing “to do” list is to create the Acknowledgement Page … the Thank Yous to the team that assisted you in creating your baby. These are the people who got you here … don’t ignore them. Think in the narrative … let your readers know what your team did to get your book birthed.
An Acknowledgement Page is not a Dedication Page—those are usually short, minimal words and don’t include an entire village. Acknowledgements are different.
Many authors start with their family and friends, and forget the designers, consultants, printers and anyone who was a massive encourage in getting their book done. Don’t.
Let’s start with the obvious:
Family: Parents, kids, siblings, aunts, uncles. Family. They are a tremendous part—from giving you “time away” to create and finish your book—to do errands for you so you …
Publishing Blunders to Avoid … Part 2
Publishing Blunders aren’t fun … they can knock down your confidence, sabotage your bank account, and diminish your credibility. The savvy author can side-step many of them by not rushing to publish and getting educated to the publishing process. And, by using common sense.
Everywhere you turn, there is info via the Internet , on the bookshelf, via videos, and certainly from workshops. You would think that any beginning author would start with a quick search on the Internet to begin their quest. It would certainly reveal a plethora of information—how to do it; what not to do; publish your book for a few hundred bucks, become a best-seller; sell books by the boatloads—you name it, it’s out there.
Yet, a huge number of would-be authors start the process clueless … compounded blunders and mistakes … many that could have been prevented with a little prep work. Here’s the final five:
6 Believing …
Are You the Sardine in the Sea?
Yep, there are millions of books out there … is yours contributing to book pollution … or do you have a unique voice, something new to bring to the party, a twist to something old … in other words, can you break from the pack? Or, will you continue to be a sardine in the vast sea?
And the answer is … yes indeed.
There are a variety of ways to stand out from the crowd. Start with:
1. Decide you want to do it. Good idea … It will take some effort on your side to shine above, to create the hook and twist that allows others to see you in a different way. It doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune in the process … what it does mean is that you have to bring some vision and passion to the process. Tis also a good idea to go with …
Persistence, Perseverance and Passion … That’s the Ticket
Two publishing scenarios …do you choose self-publishing/independent or traditional? … that’s the question.
Here’s an astonishing fact: Three books on the top 10 titles on the Combined Print and E-Book Fiction Best Seller List last fall were self-published: #4 Blind Faith by CJ Lyons, #5 The Mill River Recluse by Darcie Chan, and #6 The Abbey by Chris Culver. All published under the own imprints—all very successful.
Self-publishing is increasing exponentially. It has moved into the ranks of the honorable—authors who felt that … and publishers who believed—that New York was the only true way to publish are quickly becoming the dinosaurs of the literary world.
Publishing your own books isn’t easy. You still have to write a good book and sell it largely on your own. You have to work your tush off … no exceptions. But it’s faster, you have more control over it, and you get a bigger share …