May 5, 2020

5 Things to Consider Before Starting Your Fantasy Novel

By Paul Goat Allen

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 […]

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April 28, 2020

Familiar but Unique: The First Rule of Selling Your Novel

By Paul Goat Allen

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 […]

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April 21, 2020

5 Ways a Bad Back Cover Blurb Can Kill a Good Book

By Paul Goat Allen

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 […]

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April 14, 2020

5 Mistakes That Will Doom Any Self-Published Book

By Paul Goat Allen

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 […]

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June 19, 2017

5 questions to ask before hiring an editor

By BlueInk Staff

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 […]

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June 5, 2017

Looking for an editor? First, know what type of editing you need

By BlueInk Staff

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 […]

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July 26, 2016

The art of pacing

By Heather Seggel

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 […]

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July 11, 2016

6 ways authors go wrong writing their memoirs

By BlueInk Review

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 […]

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