The war over e-book prices

Do you own an e-reader? Are you an avid reader and/or author? If you answered “yes,” read up on the current e-book pricing decisions of the Big 6 legacy publishers (Hatchette, MacMillan, Simon and Shuster, Penguin, HarperCollins, Random House). Here’s a quick  primer.  Otherwise, you might get sticker shock the next time you go e-bookContinue reading “The war over e-book prices”

Turning back the clock

Last year, my wife presented me with a wild idea for a science fiction book. I’m not a devotee to the genre, but I LOVE Octavia Butler, Ray Bradbury, and H.G. Wells, among others. Some of my favorite TV shows were sci-fi: Smallville, Quantum Leap, Sliders, and No Ordinary Family (yeah, I know that last one wasContinue reading “Turning back the clock”

The world of a Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder victim

The book I am currently writing follows a group of people picking up the pieces after a bloody war. One of those people suffers Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) because of experiences she won’t (or can’t) talk about. Instead of relying on antiseptic details and descriptions of PTSD (you can do that here), I like toContinue reading “The world of a Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder victim”

How to get unstuck with sales

Selling books is a tricky business. It’s about timing and (honestly) chance. The right book at the wrong time is the wrong book. It’s about finding who to buy and giving them what they want. If you ever get stuck with your sales, start with these tips: Stop pitching your social media followers ad nauseum.Continue reading “How to get unstuck with sales”

Editing: The boilerplate, the bold.

A first-time author once called some of my writing advice “boilerplate” which she could find “on any writing website.” I can find the lyrics to “A House is Not a Home” on the web, but it doesn’t mean I can sing it well. My critique of her introduction — that ten pages is too long,Continue reading “Editing: The boilerplate, the bold.”

How to plan a book wedding

I wanted to help plan my wedding. OK, not the flowers or colors. I didn’t pick the bridesmaid dresses. With some things, I asked “how much?” and passed off to my future bride. But I had a hand in the important things. Planning your book release is a similar process. Start with choosing a relevantContinue reading “How to plan a book wedding”

Don’t take it personal: Damaging the brand

FYI: I said “personal” not “personally” on purpose 🙂 I have strong opinions on many political and social issues, but you’ll never see them on my social media pages. There will not be rampant misspelled postings or off-the-cuff comments warranting a “sorry-if-that-offended-some-people” disclaimer either. Learn a little lesson called “social media policy.” But Brian, I’mContinue reading “Don’t take it personal: Damaging the brand”

Compelling characters create connections

Every author wants characters you, the reader, believe in, root for, love, or hate. You want your reader to care about your characters, no matter how prolific or damaged they are, and you do that by establishing a connection between character and reader. I’m willing to bet that most people who drive by a terribleContinue reading “Compelling characters create connections”

Happy endings and loose ends in fiction

Last week, I wrapped up writing my 2012 release, The Anarchists. It’s the story about the impact of choice, and how four people decide the fate of the planet in the year 2050. What I’m doing with it now is what I liken to post-production work on a film — adding in “effects,” and tyingContinue reading “Happy endings and loose ends in fiction”

Save time & money: Why you need a publishing mentor

I call myself a “publishing mentor,” and not because I like cutesy titles (I actually HATE them). Authors interested in indie publishing (ESPECIALLY self-publishing) need information to successfully navigate the publishing process. You could use someone on your team who’s not trying to hawk their wares instead of offering you another, efficient, time-saving way, couldn’t you?Continue reading “Save time & money: Why you need a publishing mentor”