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?
Writing and Editing tips
These articles for writers and editors help you manage your workflow, stay motivated, understand possibilities, and find solutions to common problems.
How to create a (professional) book from your blog
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. 🙂
Briefing a Beta Reader: Practical details
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.
Putting your SELF into your writing: Exercise 2
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.
Briefing a Beta Reader: The Approach
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.
Putting your SELF into your writing: Exercise 1
Memoir is just one genre which benefits from personal stories, told well. They bring other types of books alive, including self-help, travel narrative and how-to.
Learning how to write our memories comes in handy for novelists too, as events from our own lives influence the experiences our characters enjoy or endure.
Use this practical exercise to help you access the rich personal stories that live and breathe inside of you.
The difference between editing and proofreading
Editing and proofreading are two separate parts of the publishing process. Every book needs both editors and proofreaders, and this is what they do…
How to get that book written this year
If your book is the one thing in your life that never gets finished (or started), what is the answer? The solution is to treat it like a project that actually MATTERS! Listen to some tips from management consultant Monique Beedles about organising the writing process to get results.
How to write a Promo Ebook for your business or blog
A promotional ebook can be a powerful tool to encourage people to sign up to your email list. So, what do you write about, and how do you design it?
Writing memoir: Truth, fiction or something in between?
If you’re writing memoir, you’ve made a good choice. Along with vampires, it is a genre du jour. People love to read the lives, struggles and joys of other real people, when they are told with honesty and energy. Here are some practical tips from award-winning Australian memoirist, Kristina Olsson.