Talking Writing

Some great advice on writing the first draft of a story.

N.J. Nielsen /Saddington

20151022_083954Writing a story is different for everyone… no two authors write exactly the same. Sometimes I wish I could write like so many of the people I admire, but then, if I could I wouldn’t be me.

I often admire they way other authors explain stuff… and try and emulate the way that they do things—without coming off like I’m stuck in description mode. The truth is, I get so caught up in the dialogue I most often forget to describe the setting at all… Thank God for beta readers and editors.

Writing can be very time consuming… so set yourself daily wordage quotas… For me I usually divide the ultimate wordage for the story by the number of days to give me my daily quota EG:40,000 / 30 = 1,333.333333 (1,334) daily count. This might not wrk for everyone but I know it works for me… in me…

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Alison Reviews: Book, Line, and Sinker by LJ LaBarthe

Definitely a recommended read!!

Title: Book, Line, and Sinker
Author: LJ LaBarthe

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 200
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: Contemporary Australiana
Kisses: 5

Source: Alison Reviews: Book, Line, and Sinker by LJ LaBarthe



Food for thought about what people think of the people around them and who those people really are

Autism and Expectations

You don’t look autistic.

Yes I do.

You don’t act autistic though.

Yes I do.

Yeah, but you’re not like “properly” autistic.

Yes I am.

You can make eye contact.

Yes I can.

You don’t flap all the time.

I do at birds.

You flap at birds?

I flap at birds.

Why do you flap at birds?

It would be rude not to wave at them when they wave at me.

That’s a bit weird.

Is it?

But you don’t do all that proper stimming and stuff, do you? Or do you?

Every day. Most moments of every day. See this?

Looks like a tiny bead mat.

Yup. I made it, I made lots of them, for when I lose them. I get distracted easily.

Can I have a go?

Go for it.

It feels nice.

It feels essential.

Why do you do it?

I’m an addict.

But it’s not…

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Ebook Pricing, Expectations and Needs

Unfortunately, art of any type is still not seen as being “a real job”, despite how much time and energy goes into it. With publishing, many readers just aren’t aware of just how much work goes into a story. Maybe it’s time to change that.

Personally, I have been asked more than once by acquaintances what they’d need to do to publish a book and each time recieved shocked replied when I went sent off a basic list. A basic list. Not comprehensive. And all these things contribute to the cost set for an ebook.

For those who are interested, some of the basics of writing (and publishing) a book are:

  • Research, usually quite comprehensive, about a wide range of things. Only a small percentage actually makes it into the book in an obvious way
  • Plotting, whether general or specific
  • First draft (just sitting down to write)
  • Revision, which can result enormous changes to the story
  • Beta reader(s), usually each with specific knowledge bases
  • Revision (again)
  • Beta readers(s)
  • Revision (again)
  • Proofing
  • Hiring an editor (or two), preferably the editing process will include body/content editing (for continuity, characters, and pacing), line editing (grammar, word use, punctuation), and copy editing (proof reading and examination of other two processes). Edits often mean multiple rounds.
  • Finding a cover artist whose work will best reflect the story, discussing ideas, and paying them.
  • Formatting, not only epub, mobi, and pdf, but also print, whether you do it yourself or hire someone else.
  • Obtaining an ISBN
  • Releasing the book and placing on distributor sites
  • Publicity, which can include contests, blog hops, social media, physical book stores, interviews (generally in person, over the phone, or in writing)
  • Answering fan mail (which most authors love to do because they love to hear what you think, but it is time consuming)

There you go. And I’m pretty sure that’s not even all of it; I know it doesn’t go into the complexities of every step, (if you can think of any other steps, please let me know in the comments).

So, please, before you complain about the price of any time of art, whether literature or otherwise, stop and think about exactly what goes into it first. (And yes, I am well aware there are people out there who put barely any effort in and then sell it, but most are not that way.)

And remember,  if you think a book’s too expensive, either don’t read it or borrow it from the library. It’s your choice. Goodness knows I’ve not read/bought books that looked interesting but felt were too expensive considering their word count and likely quality. Of course, the flip side is that I have paid a little more for those books I knew would be high quality.

Real Writers Don’t Self-Publish

I agree with a lot of what is said here, however I will state that A) a good small publisher will publish for merit (as long as it fits within the guidelines of their business, obviously a horror publisher won’t publish a sci-fi romance unless it is also a horror). And B) I don’t agree with the comments about Amazon. Considering their biased algorithms, Kindle Unlimiteds strange policies, and their unevenly applied rules, I don’t beleive they are good for publishing despite the fact they do make it easy to reach a large number of people. There are plenty of other good distributors out there (eg, ARe, Kobo, Smashwords, just to name a few) who do not have the same skewed rules for small and self publishers. Lastly, C), if you self publish, please make sure your story goes through a rigorous editing system that may include beta readers; body editing (for plot, character, and consistency), line editing (grammar, punctuation, and word choice), and proof reading. Many great authors already do this, and although it can be pricey it is worth it.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

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One of the things I love about doing what I do is that I have the ability to connect so closely with you guys and speak on the topics that matter to you. Yesterday, a fellow writer shared an article from The Guardian, For me traditional publishing means poverty. But self-publish? No way. She wanted my take on what the author had to say.

All right.

For those who’ve been following this blog for any amount of time, I hope I’ve been really clear that I support all paths of publishing (vanity press doesn’t count).

All forms of publishing hold advantages and disadvantages and, as a business, we are wise to consider what form of publishing is best for our writing, our work, our goals, our personality, etc. But my goal has always been to educate writers so they are making wise decisions based off data, not just personal…

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‘Penal Station 05’ by Valentina Heart #LGBT #Spotlight #RGRgiveaway

‘Penal Station 05’ by Valentina Heart #LGBT #Spotlight #RGRgiveaway

A great book, well worth the read.

Rainbow Gold Reviews


Book Name: Penal Station 05

Author Name: Valentina Heart

Series: With this mark (Book 1)

Publisher: Loose Id

Publication Date: February 2nd 2016

Word Count: 65 372

Blurb: Jared, a guard on one of the many penal space stations, is good at his job, but painfully naive. Getting convicted of a crime he didn’t commit and being sentenced to a life in prison did not feature in his vision of the future. When he gets rescued–then promptly claimed as property by Sar, the most dangerous and biggest man on the penal station–he’s just about ready to faint…gracefully, of course.

But Sar is a genius with a hidden face and big expectations. Sar expects Jared to learn to fight, to serve his sexual needs, and to socialize with Sar’s friends. So while Jared works on his stances and, surprisingly, can’t get enough of sex, he still has trouble cheerfully conversing with…

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Update 2016

A quick update from Dawn H Hawkes, just in case you wondered where she’d gone:

Dawn H. Hawkes's blog

Hey guys, time for an update.

The last month has been crazy busy. After Christmas/New Years I’ve moved, started on my masters degree, gotten a new part-time job (besides the writing, of course) and I’m still getting my s**t together. But I’m still here! And hopefully things will flow better now. 🙂

First, Rooster and Pig update. I’ve gotten some more information and the edits on my books are a go again – there’s been some back and forth with editors and such due to the amount of books that’s been submitted vs the amount of editors, where some have taken on too much. Of course, the holidays slows everything down, but there have also been some health issues and rearrangement of positions in the company. For the moment they’ve closed the submissions at the company to allow for them to catch up. Won’t be a problem when it comes…

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