Those of us who don’t work in a creative environment think it must be very hard for those ‘arty types’.
All that sitting around waiting for the inspiration to hit them.
Artists, musicians, writers… What do they do all day while waiting for the lightning bolt idea to strike?!
In fact, any designer, actor or author will tell you that waiting for the ‘sunbeam through the clouds – ta da!’ is total nonsense.
You have to practice your craft ALL the time. Even when you have no ideas. You keep going.
I want to start this blogpost firstly by saying: don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
That’s how we all learn. When we’re children, we try to walk, fall over, get up and try again, and think nothing of it. As adults we’re just out of practice at getting things wrong, or perhaps we never put ourselves in the position where mistakes are possible.
The best thing you can do to avoid unnecessary mistakes is to arm yourself with as much information about writing and publishing as possible. But life is a learning curve and none of us would be where we are today if we didn’t get it wrong sometimes.
Here are some tips to help you on your way:
Author Q&A with LeAnne Burnett Morse
A professional writer for TV, LeAnne Burnett Morse has just published her first novel ‘The Willard’, a historical fiction set around the real-life Willard Hotel in Washington D.C.
LeAnne talked to us about where and when she writes, the differences between writing for TV and writing books, and the college professor who had a huge influence on LeAnne’s early writing career.
Author Q&A with Tammy Bench
Tammy Bench is a busy writer and mum, whose nostalgic writing shows her fondness for days gone by and echoes experiences from her own life.
We worked with Tammy on a cover for her book ‘Mr Chambers’, and are due to start work on a new cover for ‘The Not Gate’ shortly.
Tammy gave us some insight into her childhood writing, how her old school friends have inspired some of her characters, and about her past life as a magician’s assistant!
Do you ever get writer’s block? Not sure how to complete the sentence, round off the scene or develop your character?
There’s a lot more to writing a book than just an idea for a story.
But, there are no hard and fast rules. Every writer has a unique style and approaches their writing in an individual way.
Your editor can help with grammar, spelling and punctuation, but no-one can create the heart and soul of your story but you.
So, here are ten top tips to hone your writing and allow it to flow: Read More…
Author Q&A with Natalie Debrabandere
Natalie Debrabandere is a writer of both fiction and non-fiction. We first worked with her on a cover for her book ‘Switch On!’, a non-fiction book about NLP. Then we were thrilled to help her update her covers for two of her novels, ‘Strong’ and ‘Unbroken’.
We talked to Natalie about her writing career, and found out about her preference for background noise when she works, that she likes to acts out the scenes from her book when editing, and how one day, she might just travel into space.
Here’s how it all started for Natalie at 11 years old with her sister, her dad and a hand-made newspaper…
Last week I was reading some content online about self-formatting the interior of a book, typesetting and making the layout work. I was struck by how ‘jargony’ the terminology is, like a lot of industries I suppose.
Don’t forget, when typesetting language was first created, all type was set in blocks, by hand. Not on computers!
So here’s a summary of some jargon you might come across when formatting your book ready for self-publishing, and what those terms actually mean:
We all know the importance of a book cover.
It’s the window to your book’s soul. The thing people will judge your book on in a split second.
But don’t forget it’s main job is to get people to buy your book.
NOT to convey accurately the small freckle on the left ear of your heroine.
NOT to show the exact shade of sandy brown of your leading man’s hair.
NOT to depict a purple octopus with yellow spots and the wings of a dragon, attacking a troll with rainbows for eyes, all set in a post-apocalyptic backdrop complete with high-rise buildings and flying cars.
You get the idea.
First and foremost, the purpose of your book cover is to make people pick up your book, or click on your virtual book.
This is a question we get asked a lot by authors.
I don’t know about you, but I had never really thought about books being published in different sizes. When you stand in a bookshop, it’s obvious of course, but it’s not your first consideration when you’re thinking about self publishing.
These are the traditional sizing conventions publishers tend to use:
One of the best ways to sell more books is to build a relationship with your audience. Once they engage with you, your stories, and your characters, readers are much more likely to continue to buy your work, and will become lifelong fans, just waiting for your next publication.
A great way to communicate with your readers is by email.
You can set up a form on your website to capture visitors’ email addresses. Then you will be able to keep in touch, and build your relationship with them. Here’s how to do it: