Posts Tagged ‘books’

How to Start a Memoir…

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I like to share information, tips and inspiration with writers and bloggers. The kind of information that I wish someone would have shared with me back then.

For those of you participating in NaNoWriMo can you believe we only have one more week to go? I am a little less than ¾ of the way to the finish line. Whether I make the 50,000 word goal or not isn’t concerning me. For me making writing urgent again leaves me feeling like a winner.

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How to get your book or blog on TV


Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I like to share information, tips and inspiration with writers and bloggers. The kind of information that I wish someone would have shared with me back then.

How To Get Your Book or Blog On TV

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Sharpening my pencils…

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us…

NaNoWriMo Preparations

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A little bit of fragging…

Traci has taken the reins at Friday Fragments!

Welcome to Friday Fragments. If you haven’t fragged before, Friday Fragments is a place to share those thoughts, quips, and tidbits that don’t quite make a whole post, e.g. fragments or frags. I host every Friday and would love for you to join in. Please link up and visit other Fraggers.


My week was pretty unremarkable until yesterday.

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The Perfect Book Length…

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us…

How long should a book be?

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What’s Your Style?

                                                        Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink


Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us…


                                                       What’s your Style?



Our writing style refers to the manner that we authors choose to tell our stories to our readers. Our style is defined by our voice, word choice and our tone.

There are four basic literary styles. The Argumentative style is one in which the writer tells the reader about a person, place or thing and leaves out his or her personal opinion on the topic. This is the style professional journalist should use.

The Descriptive style is when the writer describes their characters, events and places in great detail. Sometimes this type of writing style is poetic and it can also include sensory details.

Writing style

Persuasive style is a style the writer uses to persuade the reader to believe and support his or her point of view.

The Narrative style is exactly what it sounds like. The writer tells a story.

What’s your style?

Happy writing,


To Editor or Not…

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

On Wednesdays I like to share information I picked up on my journey to being published, marketing my first book, editing and preparing to be published again. Information that I wish someone would have shared with me, back then…

If you like the information I hope you will share it!

It’s the first Wednesday of the month so it’s time for another group posting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group! Time to release our fears to the world – or offer encouragement to those who are feeling neurotic. If you’d like to join us, click on the tab above and sign up. We post the first Wednesday of every month. I encourage everyone to visit at least a dozen new blogs and leave a comment. Your words might be the encouragement someone needs.

Our awesome co-hosts today are Julie Flanders, Murees Dupé, Dolorah at Book Lover, Christine Rains, and Heather Gardner!

For more information, A BIG ANNOUNCEMENT and to sign up…

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Professional Editing

You have created an outline, a proposal, plotted your story, developed your characters, and written your first draft, edited, revised and ended up with a second draft. You had that draft read and critiqued and wrote your third draft. You are sure that in this draft:

You have used few if any adverbs

Removed the word ‘very’ from the entire MS

Taken out every word, sentence or phrase that is not relevant to the story and your critique partner says the story flows nicely, the points are clear and concise and the story is interesting. You have polished and feel confident (even if just a teeny bit because writers are not known to be the most confident type.) Congratulations you are ready to hire a professional editor!

Do I need a professional editor? Yes you do.

I can’t afford a professional editor? If you want to make writing your career then you must treat it like a business. When starting any new business financial investment is necessary for success. It is the same in the book business.

Where do you find a professional book editor? Ask your Facebook or other social media friends, do a Google search or ask other writers. Once you receive a couple of referrals they will probably ask you for a few chapters of your MS to do a sample edit for you. They will return it with suggestions and offer you a contract or they will pass. Before signing a contract make sure it includes time frame (both ways,) charges and how they are calculated and the editor’s method.

How much will it cost? If you are a starving, new writer you may be able to find a starving new editor who will be more than willing to negotiate a great price for you and do a great job for you in exchange for a reference. The average rate is $30-$65 an hour (10 pages per hour, a page being 250 words.) Well established editors with a client list of best sellers will charge much more. This is why you want your MS in the best shape you can get it before it goes to the editor. The fewer changes needed equal less time and that means less money out of your pocket.

What exactly does an editor do? Besides suggesting corrections for grammar, punctuation, technical elements and spelling your editor will organize your MS for the greatest impact and clarity. They will make sure all of your conclusions are supported and that you did not overuse certain words. A good editor knows what publishers are looking for, what readers expect and is able to balance that with what the author wants to say. A good editor will enhance your work and challenge you as a writer.

Your path from writer to successful author will be much shorter with a good editor in your tribe.

Happy Writing,


Write Drunk, Edit Sober.~Earnest Hemingway

Your tribe keep those wierdos








Preparing for Author Events…


Typewriter Pink

On Wednesdays I like to share information I picked up on my path to publishing, marketing and preparing to publish again. Information that I wish someone would have shared with me, back then.

As much as I intend to stay in the moment and enjoy every single second left of summer it is time to plan for the fall, winter and spring.

Florida Does Beach Feet

If you are like me, achieving your writing goals is nearly impossible during the summer. Having a book to market, a new one coming out this fall and writing another has kept me busy and I didn’t quite meet my goals so of now I am in panicked catch-up mode.

How did you do with your writing goals over the summer?

I have a few author events coming up and I need to start preparing for them so I thought I would share what I’ve figured out with you.

Preparing for Author Events

I’ve been reading a lot lately about authors that no longer want to do book signings because they have no luck with them. While I agree that there are times when no matter what you do to prepare for the event people just don’t show up and other times there can be a line out the door.

What I have learned is there are things you can do to improve your chances for a successful event. The fact is publishers are not doing much these days to market and or promote their authors. Book stores depend on the author to bring the crowd to their store. It is up to us to advertise; market and promote ourselves.

Two months before the event:

Contact the community relations manager (CRM) and ask if they have ordered your books from their distributor or if they need you to supply them. Ask if he/she sends out press releases and if they do provide them with your bio, high definition book cover and author photos. I always send my own press releases too.

Barnes and Noble

Most newspapers have an event calendar online that you can add your information to. Place a series of ads in your local newspaper or magazine advertising the event. Ads can be pricey so ask about specials or discounts and check the rates of large and small publications. You don’t want the ads to run sooner than two-weeks before the event but they may have to be ordered weeks in advance.

Create and order postcards. I use Vista Print and use my book cover, author photo and the bookstore’s logo or a photo of the front of their store. Ask the CRM if they will put the postcards on their counters.


Create a Facebook event. I always mention that I have a gift for the first ten people that buy the book. I get ten gift bags from a dollar store and pens, candy, small notebooks, bookmarkers and other small items from Sam’s or BJ’s. It doesn’t have to be much and the ten small bags with bows look nice on your table.


Send pitches to your local TV and radio show producers.

Six weeks before the event:

Send out an announcement to your e-mail list. Add the event to your website/blog and check with local bloggers to see if they will do an ad for you on their blog. These can be as inexpensive as $15.00 a month. Some will offer to do a write up and a review as well.

Mail postcards to everyone you know, friends, family and co-workers. Ask them to spread the word.

Book Signing Postcard

One Month before the event:

Think about how you will set your table up. You may want to bring a table cloth that matches your book cover, business cards, bookmarkers, a stand to put your book or poster on and a big bowl of candy. I put a sign up on my table that says ‘Meet the Author.’ Believe it or not sometimes people just have no idea what you are doing there.

Attend one or two author events at the store and network while you are there.

Big Blue Marble Book Store

If you can afford to hire a professional photographer to take photos during the event it can create a lot of interest in you and your book.

Write an announcement for the store to use. I write three so they aren’t repetitive.

Two weeks before the event:

Follow up with whoever you invited. Place reminder calls. Create social media posts. Do not post about the event more than once a day. It can annoy people. Two or three times a week is plenty.

What are you going to wear? Whatever you decide on it should be business casual.

The Event:

Plan to arrive ½ hour early so you have plenty of time to set up your table and deliver the announcement you wrote to the person who will be doing the announcing.

Bring a small gift for the CRM. One of the small gift bags is fine.

Get out from behind your table and mingle. Always have a book in your hand. If someone ask you what the book is about hand them the book with the back cover up and invite them to read the synopsis.


No matter how many people show up, have fun. I once had a signing and only two people showed up. One of them was the host of a radio show, she invited me on her show and I sold dozens of books because of that appearance.

Ask the CRM if you can sign a few books to leave in the store. Post on social media that you left signed copies at the store.

After the event:

Send a thank you card to the CRM and let him/her know that you are available for future events, author panels etc.

Good luck and happy writing,









Politically Correct or Not…

It’s the first Wednesday of the month and that means it is:

Insecure Writer’s Support Group Day

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I am SO excited to be co-hosting this month along with Nancy Gideon, Bob R Milne, Chrys Fey, Bish Denham, and Pat Garcia!

Post your thoughts on your own blog. Write about your writing doubts and the fears you have or have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group as well as the other co-hosts and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers at all stages of writing.

To join us, sign up here:

Visit our Facebook Page here:

Twitter: #IWSG

Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!

Wednesday is also Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Writing Wednesday is the day I like to share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publishing to marketing my first book and then doing it again. The type of information I wish someone would have shared with me, back then.

Politically Correct or Not

My summer was so laid back. I was relaxing and enjoying the slow pace and occasionally working on my third book, anxiously awaiting the final proofs and the release date for my second book.


And then it happened. Somebody posted something that I knew was not true and going against that little voice screaming from deep down inside of me, I went about trying to prove that person wrong. It got ugly fast and I wasn’t the only one that day whose comment and inboxes were flooded with the ugliest, hateful and most vial messages.

I was so hurt and angry with myself for falling into that trap and going against my own rules of not getting too awfully deep with politics or religion on my blog or on social media.


What happened to the art of debating? There were rules. You stick to the issue and the facts. You don’t get personal. We accepted defeat gracefully or we accepted to agree to disagree. Now it seems we are not happy until we have driven the last nail in the coffin of the person that dared to offend us just by having a different opinion than our own.

Last week I saw posts that wished evil things on our president and other posts that called half of the women in America f*&@ing idiots.

I’m not sure if I am more embarrassed or more frightened for our country. I am definitely worried about the example some women in prominent positions and older women are setting for younger women. They are watching, listening and paying attention.

My Grand girls

How do you decide what is appropriate or not appropriate for your blog, social media or writing in general?

Happy writing,


Quote always be kind




Self Publishing?


Typewriter Pink

On Wednesday’s I like to share information I picked up on my path to publishing, marketing and preparing to publish again. Information that I wish someone would have shared with me, back then.


I am not an expert in Self-Publishing but I know a lot of self-published authors and I am planning to self-publish myself, in the future so I have been taking notes.

There are a lot of advantages to Self-Publishing:

  • The Author has total control
  • The time frame. Your book can be published in a few months vs. 18 months-2 years
  • Royalties of 20-80% vs. 5-15%

The disadvantages of Self-Publishing are evaporating quickly. The success stories are mounting. Like any business venture (yes writing is a passion but publishing is a business) it will take research, investment, hard work and most importantly a great product to have any chance at success. No matter which publishing choice you make it will be difficult at times and will take time and patience but it will be so worth it. I cannot even describe how amazing it feels to hold your first book in your hands.

Bristol boyz stomp Louie

Once your manuscript has been critiqued and professionally edited by a literary editor and you are planning to self-publish on your own, you will need an ISBN number [International – Standard Book Number] for your book. This is a social security number for the book. There are a lot of company’s out there that will be happy to sell you an ISBN # but BOWKER is the International clearing house for these numbers so you might as well skip the middleman and get it from them. The cost is $125.00. If you are using a company to assist you with self-publishing they may offer to get the ISBN# for you. Deep discounts are offered to companies that buy multiple #’s so they may offer it to you for less or include it in their package. If they charge more than $125.00 you can easily apply for it yourself.

Quote You are Amazing today!

You will need a business plan/proposal or an outline for fiction

If you are planning to self-publish 100% than Amazon is the place for you. Smashwords is One of the Amazon companies for e-books and Create-Space is used for print books.

If you use Amazon for publishing your book will never be available in an actual book store. This is because Amazon Publishers will not process returns. You will have to design all of your marketing around online booksellers. Amazon offers a KDP (Kindle Direct Program) a program that offers some marketing opportunities.


Lightening Source is a company you can use if you want your book to be available in book stores. They process returns, for a charge. All publishers, even traditional ones charge you for your returns.

To have any chance at having your book in a book store, your publisher has to be willing to offer your book to them at a wholesale discount price of at least 55% off the cover price. The books must be returnable if they do not sell within the stores allotted time-frame.

All print books are delivered through a book distribution center. The two major distributors are Ingram and Baker & Taylor. If the publisher you are planning to use does not use one or both of these distributors, move on from that publisher.

Here is a list of random Self Publishing Boutiques that offer a variety of packages to authors and come with some good references. As always never sign a contract unless you have had it reviewed by an attorney.

  • Blue Lobster Book Company
  • She Writes Press
  • Book Locker
  • Turning Stone
  • Lucky Bat Books
  • Assisted Publishing

Tate Publishing and Enterprises- Tate offers a publishing package that includes editing, formatting, cover design, ISBN#, copyrighting, marketing assistance and they handle returns. They deal with Ingram so your book will be available to any store, school or library that wants to stock it or make it available for order. Once your book sells 1000 copies, Tate refunds your investment. They basically operate like an Independent publisher. There are many other companies out there like this one and new ones are being started every day.

I cannot stress enough for you to have any contract reviewed by an attorney and ask for and check references. It is also a good idea to order books from several authors of any company you are considering, so you can check the quality of the printing etc…

A good book to read is Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur/ Guy Kawasaki

*FYI-Tuesday is the only day of the week that new books are released

Traditional Publishers make their money selling 100’s of copies of only several titles verses other publishers that make their money selling 100 copies of thousands of titles.

If you have any experience with self publishing it would be great if you could leave tips in the comments. Did you work with a company that you were thrilled with, please share.

If you have any questions please leave those in the comments and I will do my best to answer or find someone who can.

Happy Writing,


This Saturday August 1, 2015 (Can you believe it is almost August?) I will be at The Big Blue Marble Bookstore (7pm) with author friends, Maria Casale and Dylaan Rhea. We will be reading from our books and talking about writing and women under pressure. We are bringing snacks…

Big Blue Marble Book Store

551 Carpenter Lane /Philadelphia, PA 19119

I am SO excited and such a nervous wreck because I am going to be co-hosting (for the first time) The Insecure Writers Support Group for August! Next Wednesday right here!

Coming Soon!!

Sophie Book Cover


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