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456 Posts tagged with the self_publishing tag
1

In a recent post I suggested carrying a book wherever you go in case you have the opportunity to sell it and/or give it away. I realize, however, that it's not always practical to lug a book around. But it is practical to lug a wallet around, which is why I also recommend getting business cards made with information about you and your book(s).

 

If you have just one book out, here's what I recommend including on the card:

 

  • Cover image of your book
  • Brief tagline/description (this is good because it forces you to be creative and concise)
  • Your name, followed by "author"
  • Your website (if you have one--if you don't have one, get one made soon!)
  • Your email address
  • Your twitter handle if you have one

 

If you have more than one book out, here's what I recommend including:

 

  • Your name, followed by "author" (could also include something like "author of books about XX" or "author of books that YY," etc.)
  • Your website (if you have one--if you don't have one, get one made soon!)
  • Logo of your website (see above if you don't have a website)
  • If you don't have a website, include images of your book covers as long as they're not too small
  • Your email address
  • Your Twitter handle if you have one

 

Business cards are easy to get made and cheap to buy. Some resources include Vistaprint, Got Print, and Zazzle. These sites also include options for other marketing materials, such as postcards, bookmarks, etc.

 

As with any marketing effort, you'll have no idea which of the cards you give out are going to end up in the recycling bin and which might lead to a sale. But at least you'll be doing what you can to get the word out about your writing--and that's what matters!

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

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Marketing Tip: Always Carry a Book with You

Marketing Tip: Are You Making the Most of Your Email Signature?

855 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, marketing, author, writing, business_cards
0

Recently, I have joined a playwrights' group to learn how to write for the stage. It's been a blast, and I've enjoyed the collaborative atmosphere the group provides. What I didn't expect to get from this experience is insights on how to improve my writing as a novelist.

 

The group meets once a month. The playwrights bring ten pages to be read onstage by actors who attend to sharpen their own skills. After each reading, the playwright takes the stage and answers questions from the audience. Here are the benefits I've discovered by participating in an ongoing workshop for playwrights:

 

  1. The obvious benefit of participating in a playwright group is that there is a premium on dialogue in a piece written for the stage. What you are writing is meant to be said aloud. You'd be surprised how that changes the way you write dialogue. Beyond focusing on the words used by the actors, you consider the rhythm of a conversation. Not only do you want to have impactful dialogue for the actors to say, you want give them clear and concise language to free them up as they perform. It helps you produce cleaner dialogue.

  2. Normally in a playwright group, the facilitators do just that; they facilitate a discussion about your piece after the reading. In my experience, they push the discussion along and keep things organized. I have found that theater people, especially those who serve in a supervisory role, are not short on opinions and advice. Every reading I've participated in, either as the writer, audience member or even "actor," has provided no shortage of discussion. Your piece is dissected and examined in a way that challenges you.

  3. Character development plays a big role in these readings as well. Even though what's normally read is a small portion of a full-length play, the audience will let you know if they connected with your characters or not. They will let you know if the dynamics of the various characters in your scene work.

  4. What's not read will be addressed too. The audience will likely ask you questions that have nothing to do with the scene they saw performed. What comes before or after the scene is a popular topic, and they will want to know what the purpose of the scene you presented serves. How does it move the story along?

  5. Excessive exposition is easy to spot when you hear it read aloud. Those moments in a conversation when one character is explaining what's going on or what's about to happen are painfully obvious as you see actors wade through the dialogue on stage. As you write a novel, you can't help but see it in that context, and you learn to scale back.

 

I highly encourage writers of fiction in any format to take part in a playwrights' group. The atmosphere helps hone your skills and even helps build your confidence as you see yourself improve over the course of the workshop.

 

-Richard

 

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Participate in Online Book Clubs

Be Open to Constructive Criticism

919 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, author, writing, playwright, screenplay
1

Despite the success I've had with my books, I still experience the same sense of fear every time I begin a new one: What if this one isn't any good? What business do I have trying to write a book?

 

You'd think after seven novels I would be over this by now, but I'm not--at all! So if you want to write a book but are worried about what people are going to think about the end product, trust me, you're not alone. (I imagine there are some authors out there who never suffer from the occasional bout of anxiety, but probably not many.)

 

Here's what I recommend: when that feeling of panic hits, take a deep breath and ask yourself why you wanted to write a book in the first place. I'm guessing you wanted to do it for yourself and not for anyone else, right? So who really cares what anyone eqlse thinks? This is what I tell myself when self-doubt begins to creep in. It's not easy, but I try my best.

 

After several years of speaking with both aspiring and published authors at events across the country, I've come to the conclusion that while a lot of people say they want to write a book someday, or that it would be fun to write a book someday, there is a distinct breed of people out there: those who know they have a book inside them. If that's the case for you, if there's a story you just have to tell, stay true to yourself, and give birth to your book! No matter what happens to the manuscript once it's done, the sense of accomplishment you'll feel for having completed such a monumental goal will be reward enough. I promise.

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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Unblocking Writer's Block

Tips for Managing Writer's Block

1,612 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, author, publishing, writing, fear_of_writing
0

One of the basic tenets of life is that growth is a key component of survival. Physically, intellectually, spiritually--growth is how we advance and reach new phases in life. Put another way, change is healthy and at times, necessary.

 

One of the basic tenets of building a brand, we are told, is consistency. If you look at some of the most successful corporate brands, you'll notice very little variation to their message from year to year or even decade to decade. Coca-Cola is a refreshing drink that makes you feel good. McDonalds provides tasty food that's fast and cheap. Amazon offers a customer-centric, convenient shopping experience with a hugely diverse selection of products and services. The list of successful companies with clearly-defined brand identities goes on and on.

 

So, the question arises, is what's good for life--growth--bad for brands? After all, growth is change, and change is the antithesis of consistency. The answer is simple. Growth is essential to brand success. Yes, it is change, but it is a gradual change that prevents stagnation, and stagnation is lethal to a brand. The companies I've mentioned above have all adjusted to societal and/or technological advancements, and while their basic messages have remained steadfast, the mechanisms around their messages have been altered significantly.

 

Building an author brand requires a clever ability to balance consistency and growth. It's not always easy, but here's the great thing about author brands: they follow the path your growth as an artist takes. As your desires to explore and expand your creative nature take hold, your brand comes along for the ride. As long as you're consistently evolving as a writer, your author brand will resist stagnation and be stronger for it.

-Richard

 

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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The Brand and the Pseudonym

Looking for Marketing Tips? Here's What's Working for One Indie Author - and What Isn't

1,323 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, marketing, writing, promotions, branding
1

When you first begin working on a book, it's easy to go back and read from the beginning to refresh your memory about key plot points, timelines, character insights, etc. The deeper you get into the writing process, however, the more unwieldy and time-consuming it becomes to read the entire thing. To avoid getting derailed by that habit, I suggest creating a chapter-by-chapter synopsis that you update as you progress. That way you can quickly reference the synopsis as needed instead of spending valuable writing time searching through your manuscript.

 

To give you an example, here are some snippets from the synopsis I wrote for my novel Wait for the Rain, which came out earlier this year:

 

Chapter 1- winter Sunday

Daphne is at her house in Columbus waiting for her neighbor, Carol, to take her to the airport for a week trip to St. Mirika to celebrate her 40th birthday with her two best friends from college. We learn that Daphne's ex-husband Brian has recently moved in with his girlfriend, and that the two of them are taking Daphne's 15-year-old daughter Emma skiing for spring break.

 

Chapter 2- Sunday

On the way to the airport Daphne tells Carol about her friends. Skylar is a successful sales executive in NYC, and KC lives with her husband in Southern California. We learn that Daphne started at the same company as Skylar years ago but quit to get married and have Emma. We also learn that she hasn't seen her friends in years and is anxious about what they will think of her now.

 

As you can see, the synopsis doesn't have to be pretty, but jotting down the basics will help keep you focused on moving the story forward, which is critical if you want to finish that elusive first draft.

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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A Synopsis Can Be Quite Helpful

Writing Tip: Keep the Story Moving Forward

1,586 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, author, writing, synopsis, writing_tip, first_draft
1

It cuts like a knife. It feels like a punch to the gut. It's not fun. I'm, of course, talking about a bad review. We've discussed it many times on this blog, and it comes up frequently in various online communities for writers. Bad reviews hurt, and when we're hurt it feels unfair. I've been there. I know.

 

But my wife once said something to me that made me see bad reviews in a different light. I released a book a few years ago under a secret penname, and when it came out, the first dozen or so customer reviews were five stars. I was elated and relieved because you never know how a book is going to be received. It was particularly gratifying because no one knew I was the author. I promise I'm not brag-splaining. The downside is coming. One morning, I woke up, and I had a new review. It was three stars. I grumbled and tried to convince myself that three stars isn't bad, and it isn't. I had just gotten spoiled by the early feedback. It took the better part of breakfast to accept the review and move on. By that evening, I was faced with reading a one-star review. There was no convincing myself that was good news. I had failed a reader. It felt horrible.

 

When my wife got home that evening, I told her about my horror and without skipping a beat she said, "Good. Bad reviews give you legitimacy." I thought she was insane at first, but upon some reflection, I realized she was right. Bad reviews do give you some credibility. Every literary legend suffers the fate of the bad review, and it doesn't make them any less legendary. Bad reviews are battle scars. Accept them for what they are, opinions and nothing more, and as I always advise, whatever you do, don't respond to the reviewer. Doing so can only damage your brand. Just let it go and move on.

 

-Richard

 

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Bad Reviews & Great Company

Use Good Judgment When Asking for Reviews

1,605 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, marketing, author, promotion, writing, book_reviews
0

Are you confused about the difference between she/her and he/him? Here's a quick lesson:

 

She and he are subject pronouns. That means they are the subjects of a sentence, i.e., they represent a person doing something. For example:

 

  • John wrote a book becomes he wrote a book
  • Maria wrote a book becomes she wrote a book
  • John and Maria co-wrote a book becomes he and she co-wrote a book

 

Her and him are object pronouns. That means they are the objects of a sentence, i.e., something is being done to them, for them, with them, etc. For example:

 

  • Maria saw John becomes Maria saw him (him is the direct object here)
  • Maria gave John the book becomes Maria gave him the book (him is the indirect object here)

 

The above examples are pretty straightforward. Where I've noticed that many people get tripped up is when there is more than one subject in a sentence. For example:

 

  • Maria and he co-wrote a book (Correct)
  • Maria and him co-wrote a book (Incorrect, but I hear this all the time.)

 

If, after those examples, you're still confused, try rearranging the subjects:

 

  • He and Maria co-wrote a book (Correct and sounds correct)
  • Him and Maria co-wrote a book (Incorrect and sounds weird, right?)

 

If you're still furrowing your brow about whether to use him/her or he/she when you have two subjects, try dropping one of the subjects:

 

  • She wrote a book (Correct and sounds normal, right?)
  • He wrote a book (Correct and sounds normal, right?)
  • Her wrote a book (Incorrect and sounds super weird, right?)
  • Him wrote a book (Incorrect and sounds super weird, right?)

 

I hope the above examples help. We all know the basics, so when you're confused, bring it back to that. Your ear should guide you.

 

-Maria

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

 

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Grammar Tip: She and I, Not Her and I

Why Good Grammar Matters

1,695 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, author, publishing, writing, grammar, author_tips, grammar_tip, author_advice
1

The best way to make a signing successful is to make it an event. Here are five tips to make your next appearance eventful:

 

  1. Use a wrangler. Bring a friend or family member along who can wrangle in passersby and get them excited about meeting an author. Find someone who is outgoing and energetic. Compensate them in some way, and show them gratitude at the end of the event. Make sure they know the one-sentence pitch for your book.
  2. Bring a bowl of hard candy to place on your table. It's an icebreaker and a cheap gesture of goodwill to all these strangers you're meeting. It's also a way to get them to smile, which will be needed for the next item on our list.
  3. Hire a photographer. Whether it's a friend with a smartphone or a professional photographer with a DSLR camera, have someone there snapping photos. Let everyone know you'll be posting the photos to your social media sites, and invite them to follow and/or friend you.
  4. Come bearing gifts. Reward those who visited your table with an opportunity to win a free gift in a drawing later in the day. It can be a gift card, an e-reader or a free copy of your next book. They don't have to be present to win, but they do have to provide their contact information to receive the free gift.
  5. Bring signage. Don't just set up a table. Place professional grade signs throughout the venue to let everyone know there's an author on the premises. Work out the particulars with the management to make sure you're not violating any rules.

 

One last piece of advice - after an event/signing, make sure you leave the employees and management happy. Write them thank you notes. Maybe even bring them donuts the next morning to make them feel appreciated. You may want to come back some day, or you may want a reference from the venue for your next event.

 

-Richard

 

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.


 

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Preparing for a Personal Appearance

Book Launch Sponsors

1,672 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, selling, distribution, author, promotion, writing, book_signing, branding, book_tour, book_launch, personal_appearance, author_appearance, appearnace, tradeshows
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By now many of you know that I began my career as a self-published author, and that one of the reasons (if not the reason) my first novel (Perfect on Paper) got picked up by a publisher was because of all the grass-roots marketing I did to get it noticed. (Click here to check out my webinar explaining exactly what I did.)

 

One key component of my marketing campaign was to apply for awards. I knew that with awards comes credibility, and I was right! Perfect on Paper won almost all the awards for which I applied. That helped open doors to organizations such as book clubs, which led to more positive reviews, which led to speaking engagements, which helped open more doors, etc. That's the thing about marketing - it's all about getting one thing to lead to another. You never know what's going to work, so you have to keep trying a lot of things.

 

While some of the awards Perfect on Paper won are no longer around, here are some still available to indie authors:

 

National Indie Excellence Book Awards

 

Independent Publisher Book Awards

 

USA Best Book Awards

 

eLit Book Awards

 

Global eBook Awards

 

This article lists some more.

 

Applying for awards takes time (and sometimes money, depending on whether or not there's an entry fee), but I can say from personal experience that if you win, it's worth it! And even if you don't win, going through the process of applying for an award is a good experience because it shows you the importance of presenting your work in the best light, from the description and cover design to the manuscript itself.

 

You can also use the materials you prepare for an award application for other marketing purposes, such as reaching out to book clubs, newsletters, alumni magazines, etc. Now get applying!

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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Using Book Awards to Market

Book Marketing Is a Numbers Game

1,975 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, marketing, author, writing, book_awards, promotions
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Tick. Tock. That is the sound of suspense. In real life, deadlines are points on the calendar that are, more often than not, sources of anxiety. As an example, April 15 is a "taxing" day for a lot of Americans. It's a race against the clock that many don't look forward to running. In the suspense novel, a time-sensitive plot device is almost imperative. The reader is drawn deeper into the story as each tick of the imaginary clock sounds out on the page.

 

Here are four tips to writing a "race against the clock" thriller:

  1. The deadline should be clear. Don't be ambiguous. Readers have to feel time running out. That can only happen if they know the time frame that your characters are dealing with.

  2. Give the readers a sense of where the story is in relation to the deadline from chapter to chapter. Be careful that you're not too on-the-nose with your references to how much time is left. It can feel like you're spoon-feeding your readers. Find a way to let them feel the pressure of another hour or day passing without resolution.

  3. Make the consequences for not meeting the deadline clear. If readers know the price of failure, they will feel more invested in the story.

  4. Your characters should have to suffer personally for their pursuit to meet the deadline. They should be so desperate that they will step outside of their normal behavior to beat the clock. It has to mean that much to them.

 

Writing a story with a time-sensitive plot device is a blast. If you do your job right, it can be a blast for your readers as well.

 

-Richard

 

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Elements of a Page-turner

Mystery, Thriller, or Suspense?

1,111 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, writing, triller
0

A few weeks ago I received a nice email from a reader of my blog named Tanja. She had recently self-published a book and had a brief, specific question for me about contacting reviewers. (I appreciated that because I get a lot of emails that simply ask "How should I market my book?")

 

She and I chatted a bit, and she asked if I would have a look at the first few pages of her book on Amazon's "Look Inside" feature. In our conversation she had mentioned that she planned to buy some of my books, so I figured I would check out hers in return. However, I immediately noticed some big grammatical errors, so I stopped reading. I was hesitant to tell her, but I decided to be honest.

 

Her response? She was extremely gracious and appreciative. She explained that she'd had the entire manuscript professionally edited except for the initial pages I'd read, which she had tweaked slightly and forgotten to send back to the editor. She said she would correct the mistakes immediately.

 

My response? I told her I wanted to write a blog post about her response.

 

The last time I encountered a similar situation, the (many) errors I encountered were in the author's bio on Amazon. However, when I pointed them out and explained that they made me wary of reading his book, his less-than-gracious reply was along the lines of "no one reads author bios anyway." Thus my joy at this recent experience.

 

I hope you will check out Tanja's book, Heroes and Heroines, Stories of Love. I think she deserves a little love herself for allowing me to use her errors as the basis for this post. That takes courage!

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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Why Grammar Matters

When YOU'RE Writing Marketing Materials, Be Careful with YOUR Grammar

1,606 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, books, editing, author, writing
3

Welcome to the wonderful world of the author pitch, that tool in your brand-building arsenal where you get to talk about yourself in a glowing and weighty manner. I know, yuck, right? There are enough megalomaniacs out there tooting their own horns on social media. We don't need to add one more braggart to the mix, right? No, we certainly don't, but when you're a brand, you have to present your credentials. So, obviously the answer is to present your indie publishing achievements humbly and with palpable reluctance, right?

 

As it turns out, that's not the correct approach either. According to a Harvard study, the humblebrag - an attempt to tout one's own achievements using self-deprecation as a way to hide the fact that you are trying to draw attention to your accomplishments - is an ineffective tool to build a brand. The social media citizenry has caught on to the tactic, they see it for what it is and they are not amused. In fact, it could do more harm to your brand than good.

 

The study suggests that outright bragging is more acceptable than the humble, awe-shucks, announcement. Personally, I'm not comfortable with boasting about my achievements even though it is the preferable approach. Fortunately, there is a middle ground. There is the gracious method where you present your accomplishments to enhance your brand and make your author pitch pitch-worthy. Be straightforward with a touch of just how thankful you are for the acknowledgment.

 

As an example, which sounds better?

 

  • I don't know how, but I've managed to win a lot of awards here and there.

  • I've won a lot of awards.

  • I'm grateful to have received numerous awards over the years.

 

I think most people are drawn to gracious winners, so in my mind the third option, the one that features gratitude, is a way to work achievements into your author pitch without alienating friends, fans and followers.

 

-Richard

 

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Zen and the Author Brand

Be Authentic to Build Your Brand

4,755 Views 3 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, marketing, author, writing, promotions, author_pitch
1

In last week's post, Book Marketing Is a Numbers Game, I discussed how important it is to cast a wide net when reaching out to people and organizations about your book. Today I'd like to address the difference a personal touch can make once you've established contact with an individual who has agreed to help you in some way.

 

Several weeks ago I received a donation request from a woman I consider a casual friend. She was entering a bike race for charity, so I chipped in some money. A day or so later I received an e-mail from her and was excited to catch up a bit because I hadn't seen her in over a year. However, when I opened the message I was disappointed to realize it was a short, generic thank-you for my support. There was nothing personal in the message. And you know what? It made me feel a little used. Maybe that's childish on my part, but it's how I felt, and most likely I won't donate to her event next year.

 

Whenever I receive a message from someone about my books, whether it's to let me know one will be featured in a newsletter, book club, review, etc., or just to tell me they've enjoyed reading them, I make a point of replying with a personal note. (If you've ever contacted me through my website, you will know this is true.) It's important to me that my fans know how much I value their support, and that's hard to do with a generic auto-reply.

 

Keep this in mind as you approach your book marketing. It's completely fine to use stock copy about your book, but personalizing the messages even a little bit will make a big difference to the recipient. If you respect and appreciate people, people will respect and appreciate you back!

 

-Maria

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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The Power of a Personal Connection

Remember to Say Thank You

1,617 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, books, marketing, author, writing
0

Twist

Posted by CreateSpaceBlogger Jun 15, 2015

We all want to sneak up on a reader, to give them an unexpected turn in a tale that leaves them floored, emotionally spent and elated all at once. It's what's known as a twist in the publishing biz, and it's a target that is hard to hit.

 

There's no magic formula for setting up a plot to end in a twist. The most obvious piece of advice I've received over the years is to avoid just that, the obvious. But, as I have learned writing and rewriting book after book, it's not that simple. Writing a twist takes a great deal of finesse. Here are some general rules of thumb to observe as you construct your grand twist.

 

  1. It can't come out of the blue: You can't expect your readers to accept the unexpected unless there's a logical path that has been secretly leading them to that conclusion. Revealing Bill as the killer only works if he has had some role in the story other than the killer. If Bill only shows up in the last chapter to claim the mantel of murderer, that's not much of a twist. If Bill plays a minor role and makes frequent innocuous appearances throughout the story, casting him as the killer could be a welcomed surprise.

  2. Temper the foreshadowing: Making it obvious that the perpetrator possesses special knowledge that only a skilled outdoorsman would know is fine, but referring to someone's role as an Eagle Scout as nonessential information to their role in the story is a dead giveaway that he will, in the end, be the guilty party. Some foreshadowing is necessary, but too much dilutes your twist.

  3. Avoid the obvious: I know I just said it's not that simple, and it's not, but avoiding the obvious is still a piece of the "twist" puzzle. As you develop your plot, come up with the most obvious ending to your story. Write it down. Keep it near your computer. Read it every day as a reminder of the route you don't want to take.

  4. Some people won't see it coming, others will: You aren't going to surprise everyone, and you'll most likely hear from either extreme of the twist spectrum. People who were totally surprised will be eager to seek you out and let you know. Unfortunately, people who weren't surprised at all will do the same thing. People love to be surprised almost as much as they love to be right.

 

Twists are lovely little story devices. The best way to master the art of the unexpected is to read as much as you can and write even more.

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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A Satisfactory Ending

When Writing, Don't Outsmart Yourself

2,112 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, writing, unexpected_turn, foreshadowing
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I often say that it's important to make it easy for people to help you promote your book. One great way to do that is to offer to send them a free copy! I know that sounds obvious, but given how many emails I receive from indie authors asking me to review their books without offering to send me one, I think it is worth repeating. (I've also said many times here that I don't review books, so now I'm wondering if anyone is actually reading my blog. Hmm....)

 

Anyhow, when reaching out to people/organizations with news about your book, offering to send a copy isn't required, but I highly recommend it. You never know what might happen if the right person reads your book - and loves it!

 

Some examples:

 

  • Alumni magazine of your alma mater
  • Regional alumni clubs of your alma mater (and their newsletters and book clubs)
  • Fraternity/sorority national magazine
  • Fraternity/sorority regional alumni clubs (and their newsletters and book clubs)
  • Local newspapers
  • Other book club organizers (www.meetup.com is a great way to find them)

 

While "gifting" a book to an e-reader is possible, I much prefer sending a signed physical copy along with an old-fashioned note. This way the recipient's experience is much more personal. And who doesn't love receiving a package in the mail? Note: when sending books from the post office, be sure to request the book postage rate. It's much cheaper that way.

 

In my personal experience, it's much easier to ignore a book on my e-reader than one on my desk or nightstand. Plus, a signed book is special, period. So there's another reason to go the old-fashioned route if I hadn't already convinced you.

 

Now get signing - and sending!

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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