So, you’ve been contemplating writing a fantasy novel for a while—or maybe you’ve begun drafting it out or are already in revisions. Before you go any farther, I want you to seriously contemplate this question for a moment: “Why are you writing this particular story?” If you’re writing this novel […]
I’ve had enough conversations with publishers, agents, editors, and writers over the last few decades to know that for fiction releases—and genre fiction releases in particular—to have any chance at being commercially successful, those novels need to be familiar but unique.
Sounds like a contradiction, right? But it makes perfect […]
This may sound crazy but the back cover blurb for your novel—essentially a synoptic teaser—just may be the most important part of your self-published book. Here’s why: Some readers out there will buy a book solely on cover art—and cover art is hugely significant for that reason—but the vast majority […]
For the last 25 years, I’ve been a full-time genre fiction book critic—writing for companies from BlueInk Review to Publishers Weekly to The Chicago Tribune. I’ve evaluated titles in every genre category and reviewed both traditionally published and independently published titles.
I’ve read and reviewed enough books (10,000+) to know […]
Thanksgiving is just around the corner. And that means it’s time to start thinking of how you can plan an evening that will wow your guests. That takes time, attention to detail and care for the people you are inviting.
Come to think of it, it’s not unlike writing a […]
Hiring an editor can be a daunting task, especially for a first-time author. Aside from finding someone with solid technical skills, you also need a person whose personality meshes with yours, as a good editing relationship requires plenty of give and take.
Here are a few things to consider before contracting […]
Nothing detracts more from a book’s appeal than a bad back cover.
Whether your reader is a potential buyer, book reviewer, media professional or someone who wants to hire you for your expertise, your book’s back cover has to communicate to your target audience: “buy me, trust me!”
Authors often spend […]
Everybody needs an editor.
If you’re self publishing your book, you’ve probably heard this 1,000 times, and it’s true. Editors can help improve your book immeasurably. But what you haven’t heard 1,000 times is that not everybody needs the same kind of editor. Editors provide different services, depending on what sort […]
Let’s assume that you’re a fiction writer looking to self-publish. You’re a voracious reader and practiced writer, willing to put in the hours of writing and rewriting to make a story shine. And you’ve got a great story to tell, rich in memorable characters and set in a locale […]
You’ve lived an interesting and full life – and now you want to leave a legacy. It’s time to write your memoirs.
This is a laudable goal, and many, many authors have amazing stories to tell. But too often, they don’t deliver the sort of book readers at […]