Tangling with Titles : enter a title survey to win!

Virginia King wrote the first sentence of her psychological mystery over ten years ago. She’s been a children’s author and prize-winning publisher, but she had to teach herself to write a novel by writing it … and writing it. Now it’s finished with the next book in the series well underway. It’s professionally edited with a stunning cover, ready to go – except for the title!  She shares her tangles with book titles from a marketing perspective. Then she invites you to enter her Title Survey for the chance to win her books. Anyone who knows how long I’ve been writing my novel can’t believe I’ve kept at it for so long, gone through so many drafts and versions, ditched so many characters and discovered others, burnt out editors and agents, (kept my husband), only to falter over the title in the months before publication. A title is only a

Don’t be too eager to sign on the dotted line!

In this guest post, David Menon talks about his experiences when he signed with a small publisher.  Some of you will know what it’s like as an independent author. You lose all your friends because you’re always ‘on a book’ and so they get fed up of inviting you to stuff to which you never turn up. You get so preoccupied with writing an original take on murder that you can’t make up your mind between an Indian takeaway and a pizza when you suddenly remember you haven’t eaten since breakfast last Tuesday. Then when the delivery boy arrives with your dinner you give him a whole back story of useless parents, teenage delinquency, falling in with the wrong crowd, ending up in the youth justice system and now turning it all around with a job delivering Chinese takeaways (The Indian restaurant was engaged and you couldn’t find the number

Two Sides of the Publishing Coin – a guest post by David Treanor

As the debate about traditional vs indie publishing goes on – and probably will do for some considerable time – it was great to hear from one author who has experienced both. Author David Treanor has kindly given us his perspective on the two sides of the publishing coin. In my old life as a BBC journalist I would occasionally have to interview people for jobs. I’d take home a stack of application forms — maybe a-hundred or more — and try to draw up a shortlist of twelve. I used to like it when people made spelling mistakes. It meant I could rule them out right away. But I know I didn’t always get it right. Then would come a couple of days of interviews. Sometimes I felt that half the people I’d seen would be great at the job. But there was only one vacancy. So I did

A Champagne Moment – indie author turns traditional?

Most of the regular readers of this blog will know me as an indie author – ie self published. I have spoken at length about my fantastic and exciting experiences over the last twelve months or so, and written about more or less everything that I have learned. Well, today is another landmark in the journey – because my first novel, Only the Innocent, is today being published in paperback and audio formats as well as the original Kindle format in the US and Canada. This is my first ever traditional publishing deal, and it is so very interesting to compare the experiences.

Formatting your ebook – part II

In the last post, we managed to get rid of all the unnecessary formatting – the stuff that e-readers hate. And now, if you haven’t been using styles, you will have ended up with a whole mass of text without any apparent breaks. So we can fix that now SO easily. I’ll give you a step by step breakdown with explanation, and then a summary that might be quicker and easier to follow. Just remember, this is only the first phase of editing for Word uploads only – there’s a lot more to come!

Formatting your ebook

It’s taken me a long time to get round to writing this post, because it is complicated and I want to make sure that I get it just right for everybody. When I had finished my novel Only the Innocent, I wanted to get it uploaded as quickly as possible – but I also wanted it to look good. I read so many bits of advice all over the web, and much of it was conflicting. But in the end, I managed to pull some different strands together that worked for me. So in this post, and possibly one or two more to follow (as this takes some explaining) I will explain which bits of advice I used, which I rejected (and why) and my ultimate conclusion. I really hope this helps.

Preparing your ebook for publication

There are a number of very specific elements that you need to consider when you are preparing your ebook for publication. It’s not just about writing a good book, editing it and formatting it. At each stage of publishing your ebook, you will be asked for information and it certainly helps to have it all ready before you start. It will dramatically save time – particularly if you keep everything in one place on your computer. Here’s what I would suggest.

Creating your first ebook – preparing the ground

Just to reiterate some of the information from the last post, there are several stages to getting your book ready to publish. It’s not just a matter of writing it, and then uploading it. At least, not if you want to be successful (and I have yet to discover how successful I will be!). The main phases are : writing a good book (obviously); proof reading until you are blind – some notes on this below; preparing your social networking sites, at least in a rough format so that you can add links within your book – you don’t want to be doing this later. This is covered briefly in the previous post, but there will be more on getting the most of your social networking sites later; preparing all the other stuff you are going to need – photos, blurbs, book cover images – more below; formatting your book

Publishing your first ebook – preparation

The earlier posts reflected what I was doing, how I was doing, and how frustrated I was getting with the whole process. But now my ebook is published and is available from Amazon.co.uk here and Amazon.com here. However, the journey was not quite as easy as I thought it would be, so I am going to concentrate the contents of the following few blogs on the process I followed, and the issues that I experienced along the way. The process will be covered in several posts, and as I continue to market my book, I will share the process to the best of my ability.

Wrestling with html editors

Well, this isn’t the complete blog post that I was hoping for by the end of the week. After spending too long trying to sort out the best way to tweet, have people “like” me, and join various LinkedIn groups, I thought I should get down to the real business of sorting out my book. I had been working under the misapprehension that actually this last bit was going to be easy.