Posted on Jan 18th, 2016 | 16 comments
Got a terrific nonfiction project you’re trying to sell? Wondering if you have what it takes? Here are some signs of potential future success as a nonfiction author:
1. You’ve previously written a book that was at least mildly successful… maybe something like The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.
2. You have a recognizable name. For instance, Bradley Cooper. Or Oprah.
3. You are currently a top candidate for President of the United States.
4. You have recently won several gold medals in the Olympics. In a sport people care about.
5. You have come up with a life-changing, magical method of organizing people’s stuff. And it involves talking to your stuff.
6. You are the founder of Microsoft.
7. You are the…....
Posted on Oct 1st, 2015 | 10 comments
More writers are hiring editors these days, whether they’re going indie or just making sure the manuscript is polished before submitting to agents and publishers. If you’re a newer writer, unpublished, here are some things I think you should do before spending your hard-earned money on a freelance editor.
(1) Get objective feedback.
It’s best to have a critique group or partner, if possible. Try to get the most honest feedback you can—not on grammar and punctuation, but on the overall content of your book. Are readers finding the book engaging? Are they reading to the end? Are they confused?
(2) Edit & revise your book using reputable sources.
Find fiction resources HERE. My favorites for the revision phase are Self Editing for Fiction Writers by Browne &...
Posted on Feb 2nd, 2014 | 46 comments
I spend a lot of time working with my clients to edit and revise their proposals and manuscripts. I give notes and suggestions for improvements. Sometimes I take them through draft after draft, until everything seems just right.
I know it’s tiring for them, and sometimes frustrating to be pushed to go over it again and again, especially when they know they’ll go through more edits with their publisher. I admire every writer who does whatever is necessary, who keeps pushing through, who remains dedicated to making the work the best it can be.
This is what it takes to be good. When an editor pushes you to be your best, or when you push yourself, you’re doing exactly what’s necessary to rise above the hordes of regular writers to become a good writer....
Posted on Jan 19th, 2014 | 112 comments
I just finished reading a self-published book on a topic I’m passionate about, by an author whose blog I occasionally read. As I’ve mentioned before, I regularly read self-pubbed books, and the fact that I work in traditional publishing doesn’t mean I’m biased against them.
It does, however, mean I’m aware of the ways a book could have been better, had the author availed themselves of the best assistance available, whether in design, writing, editing, cover, or even title.
I was excited to read this book—a memoir—and it started out promising. But it quickly devolved into a self-focused, rambling hodgepodge of preaching interspersed with bragging. I did finish the book (luckily it was rather short) but I ended up with strongly negative...
Posted on Nov 28th, 2013 | 14 comments
Guest Blogger: Bryan Cohen (@bryancohenbooks)
Self-motivation is crucial for authors, regardless of which publishing path you choose. Writing a book is difficult enough, but when you add on editing and marketing, it can feel impossible. And I’m crazy enough to have self-published 32 times. How did I do it? I learned a few ways to trick myself into doing work when my brain wants nothing but mindless entertainment.
Tricks for Writing
My inner critic hates it when I write. This voice in my head enjoys pointing out all the faults in my work and howls with laughter when I close up shop early for the day. My most prolific writing periods came after I silenced the inner critic.
I accomplished this in two distinct ways. The first method was writing so early in...