Evolution of a Book Cover

Evolution of a Book Cover

We’ve all heard the adage: Don’t judge a book by its cover. But most (all?) of us have been attracted to a book solely because of its cover. A book’s cover is its strongest advertisement, ideally conveying all the pertinent information in one handy little graphic: Title, Author, and Genre (plus, sometimes other details, like reviews, cost, awards won, etc.) Books in series raise even greater challenges to cover designers....

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Stake Me Out to the Ball Game

Stake Me Out to the Ball Game

A couple of years ago, I heard about a brilliant publishing effort:  The Uncollected Anthology. Seven authors banded together to publish urban fantasy short stories.  Each quarter, they chose a theme, each author wrote a story centered on the theme, each author published her story independently, and all the authors shared telling the world about their work. Imagine how excited I was when the Uncollected Anthology invited me to be a guest...

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The Power of One

The Power of One

A couple of weeks ago (in other words, centuries in the past, in Internet time), someone (let’s call her Naive Non-Fiction Author) published an article on one of the big aggregator sites, saying that all self-published books were terrible, and that all self-published authors were deluded fools who write drivel in hopes of parting honest readers from their hard-earned cash. Predictably, sparks flew. Authors wrote responses to Naive...

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Amazon’s Pre-Order Quagmire

Amazon’s Pre-Order Quagmire

About fifteen months ago, Amazon took a major step to level the playing field for self-published authors: it allowed us to offer books for pre-order to our readers.  Pre-orders provide several advantages to authors, including: Fans can order not-yet-published books on an impulse after finishing and enjoying earlier books by an author; Authors can guarantee a certain release date, rather than relying on the approximation of processing time for...

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Writers Helping Writers

Writers Helping Writers

My mother (who is an avid reader, but not a writer) is consistently amazed by the way writers help other writers, especially with regard to self-publishing.  I tell her about the conversations I enjoy at writers conferences or about the way New York Times bestselling authors take time out of their production schedules to beta read my work or about asking my writer-idols to breakfast so I can pick their brains about new-to-me subgenres, and my...

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