I’m an editor, but also a writer. This is the second in my series on why book editing costs so much!
I’m an editor. But I’m also a writer. I hire editors for my own projects, out of my own funds, and it hurts! Why are editors so expensive?
There’s a lot of kerfuffle on the net about whether authors need to blog, and people coming down on both sides of the debate.
Just this week, I was thinking about the one big reason why it’s good to blog if we possibly can.
Yes, it’s good to get some writing practice, it’s good to build community, it’s good to have a “marketing hub” for our efforts, but the clincher for me — the thing that’s hard to get any other way — is this one…
The world is abuzz with how ebooks have revolutionised self-publishing. However, their “comrades” in the publishing revolution — print-on-demand paperbacks — are the often-overlooked Quiet Achievers.
Someone working in their pyjamas can now supply a professional-standard paperback to a global audience, without spending the kids’ inheritance or becoming a slave to the post office.
Let’s look at how this works, and how to tell if it’s a good path for you to take.
Roll up! Roll up! Make a book from your blog today in ten minutes and sell it to naive readers!
Hmmm. [makes frowny face]
Creating a book from your blog is a fantastic idea… but I wish there weren’t so many “gurus” luring writers into creating poor-quality books that may damage their careers, on the chance of making a quick buck.
If you’d like to create a book from your blog that will:
–Boost your credibility and reputation as a writer and/or in your chosen field
–Be something you’ll be proud of for many years to come
–Actually HELP people
…then read on. 🙂
I encounter a whole swirl of opinions about self-publishing, from naivete to quiet confidence to militant opposition to strident support.
And I run into a lot of myths. Oh. My. Gosh. So many myths.
It’s much easier to decide whether or not to self-publish if you have a clearer picture of the facts.
So let’s see if we can debunk a few of those myths, shall we? 😉
Beta readers are those wonderful people (often volunteers) who read and critique the manuscripts of our books. Chosen carefully, briefed effectively and “heard” with discernment, I regard them as the superheroes of self-publishing. They can provide forms of editing – especially in the developmental stages of a book – that many self-publishers miss out on.
Traditionally-published writers need beta readers, too. You’ll find that most successful authors have at least one and often a team of them, whether they are other writers, editors, or trusted advisors who read their work before it reaches the publisher.
Last time in our beta reader series, we talked about a wise general approach to briefing a beta reader. This time, let’s look at some tips for the logistical side of your briefing.
Writing that gives us insight into the writer’s life and emotions makes a personal story come alive.
And the techniques we learn from releasing our own stories can be used in a variety of writing situations and genres: memoir, self-help, how-to, anecdotes for a variety of non-fiction projects, blogging and even fiction.
In Exercise 1: Time Travel we used introspective methods to extract life and colour from our memories.
Exercise 2: The Interview is a completely different approach. This time, you ask someone to assist you by asking questions, and you record the conversation for later review. It’s similar to techniques I’ve used myself a number of times over the years, when helping authors bring a dry or incomplete story to life.
Check out these “interview” tips, to see if they could help you with your story.
I’ve heard horror stories of people receiving snarky and offensive beta reports on their manuscripts — the kind of thing that can crush your soul. I’ve also known of beta reports that were so fluffy and insubstantial that they were a waste of everyone’s time.
Beta readers are those superheroes who read the manuscript for our novel, memoir or non-fiction book, and give targeted feedback to help us improve it. (Check out my beta reader series for more.)
Some beta readers are just a bad match to a particular writer or book. But often, that’s not the cause of those disappointing beta reports.
What’s the secret to getting a beta report you can actually use? I’ve found that the key is in the briefing. A thoroughly briefed beta reader, even one who is inexperienced or lacks confidence, can often give useful tips, if they know exactly what you want.
Writers often feel pressured about writing their Twitter bio. Here are some tips for making the most of those 160 characters, without the stress.