Tag Archives: publishing

The Truth About Being “Published” | Savvy Book Writers

. . In a recent meeting of authors I overheard one of them to talk about his publishing contract, and that he was surprised to find a clause “that the

via The Truth About Being “Published” | Savvy Book Writers.

Savvy Book Writers: The Truth about Being Published

Author Solutions and Friends: The Inside Story

Excellent information from David Gaughran

David Gaughran

ASandfriendsweboptAuthor Solutions has forged partnerships with a long list of famous names in publishing – from Simon & Schuster and Hay House to Barnes & Noble and Reader’s Digest.

Recent disclosures in various lawsuits, along with information sent to me by a Penguin Random House source, detail for the very first time exactly how these partnerships work and the damage they are causing.

Since a second suit was filed at the end of March, Author Solutions is now facing two class actions, with the new complaint alleging unjust enrichment and exploitation of seniors on top of the usual claims of fraud and deceptive practices. It also has a wonderfully precise summary of Author Solutions’ operations:

Author Solutions operates more like a telemarketing company whose customer base is the Authors themselves. In other words, unlike a traditional publisher, Author Solutions makes money from its Authors, not for them. It does so…

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#Authors #Marketing Yourself and Your Work (Final) Part FIVE

Part Five of the Authors Marketing Yourselves by Susan Toy featured by Chris The Story Reading Ape.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog


Cartoon from Toonpool.com

The following is an extract from a talk delivered at the Calgary Public Library in Feb. 2011.

Part 5

Another area of promotion you should consider developing – and only do this if you are comfortable with it – is speaking engagements. Speaking engagements are something your publisher will not arrange for you, unless they are approached directly by a group inviting you to speak. Make sure you are either allowed to sell books or that a bookseller has been asked to look after sales wherever you appear.

Here’s another important statistic I gleaned from reading Get Known Before the Book Deal: Authors who speak at events sell three times as many books. (This book is listed in the bibliography at the end of this post.)

You can give a straight reading from your book, but my preference is to hear an author talk about how…

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#Authors #Marketing Yourself and Your Work Part THREE

Part Three of the Author Marketing Yourselff series by Susan Toy featured by Chris The Story Reading Ape.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog


Cartoon from Toonpool.com

The following is an extract from a talk delivered at the Calgary Public Library in Feb. 2011.

Part 3

Once the contract is signed, and while the manuscript is being worked on by the editor, is the best time for you to ramp up your web presence. While you wait for the edited copy to be returned to you – and this could take several months – is when you should work on further developing your blog and Facebook presence. This may be a good time, as well, if you haven’t done so already, to create a website (and your publisher may help you with this as they will want you to link to their site), and prepare yourself for the time in the very near future when you can actually call yourself “a published author.”

It’s not too early to announce that you have signed a…

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#Authors #Marketing Yourself and Your Work Part TWO

Part Two of the #Author #Marketing Yourself and Your Work by Susan Toy featured by Chris The Story Reading Ape.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog


Cartoon from Toonpool.com

The following is an extract from a talk delivered at the Calgary Public Library in Feb. 2011.

Part 2

The best time to begin building your readership is while you’re still writing the manuscript. The very first thing you need to do is create a web presence of some kind or another. This can be as simple as building a blogsite (always free) and writing posts for it on a regular basis. Encourage your friends to subscribe to this, and ask them to ask their friends to do the same. Then write something meaningful, as often as you can, even if it’s only once a week. You should never have to ask, “But what should I write?” You’re a writer; you’ll think of something! Write regularly, keep it positive and upbeat, and post, or repost, articles that will create a discussion in your comments. When people comment…

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Top 10 Commands for Author-Publishers | Savvy Book Writers

open for business

Excellent advice from Doris-Maria Heilmann with 111Publishing (Savvy Book Writers) about having a clear goal for your writing career.

. . Do you have a clear goal for your writing career – and a plan how to reach your “dream job” – becoming a successful full-time writer? Or do you

via Top 10 Commands for Author-Publishers | Savvy Book Writers.

6 Things You Didn’t Know About Publishing on ACX | Author Marketing Institute

Excellent article from Author Marketing Institute about Audible ACX from Amazon audio books. Did you know “The Wolf’s Moon”  is currently in production at Audible ACX?  Do you like the new cover for the audiobook? Mark Westfield will be narrating the audiobook!  I can’t wait for the final copy!!
The Wolf's Moon by Patrick Jones Audible ACX Audiobook Cover The Linden Chronicles Book 1

6 Things You Didn’t Know About Publishing on ACX | Author Marketing Institute.

Authors: Have Your Manuscript Ready for a… Surprise?

Great Information from Chris McMullen!


Cover Problems Pic


It appears that Amazon is launching a new publishing program. Look for an announcement to come in the next couple of weeks.

The reason for this article is just to give a heads-up. If you happen to have a novel in the works and this program may be of interest to you, you have a chance to get your manuscript and packaging in gear.

The terms may not (but may) interest bestselling published authors or thriving self-published authors, but may attract midlist published authors and many self-published authors.

Evidently, the program will include Amazon-featured marketing. This is likely to draw huge interest, assuming that it means more than the usual customers-also-bought lists and such. For example, if it includes featured placement or small ads, that could make an incredible difference. Amazon will have a vested interest in these books, so there is compelling reason for Amazon to include…

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Book Cover Design 101 OR, “That which does not kill me, makes me stronger” – Friedrich Nietzsche

By Sandra L. Jones, wife of The Author, Patrick Jones

SO…He wrote a book…Now what do we do??

As The Author and I continue on through the Indie Author self-publishing platform, it is very obvious that the process typifies a continuous learning model.  It never ends!!  We continue to read, learn and implement our strategy toward discovering new and better ways from the ground up. The publishing industry changes logarithmically, and the speed at which the current “Information Age” progresses is unprecedented.

This particular project has taken us about a year to complete.  Anthony Wessel with Digital Book Today suggested that we recount our journey so that others in the industry may learn from our experience.  Collaboration is essential in the process of brainstorming.  That is key to the equation.

Significant Points to Consider:

  1. We worked with a print on demand publisher, Create Space.  We continue to have a terrific experience with this company.  They are a subsidiary of Amazon and serve as a “bridge” to the world of publishing your book.  Just make sure to do your homework on the organization you choose to work with and make sure they are reputable.  Research at least 2-3 companies before you make your final decision.
  2. I started with the template format at Create Space for creating the book cover.  I had never done one before.  It was fairly easy…but I learned it.
  3. If you don’t like the cover, remember –  you can always change it.  That’s the beauty of electronic media!
  4. We learned to take baby steps in that we had to focus on one thing at a time.  Narrow your focus so that you concentrate on one goal.  Remember, Doris-Maria Heilmann with 111 Publishing says, “It’s a marathon, not a sprint”.
  5. Finally, never give up.

The first cover I did was with the template format with Create Space.  They talked me through how to do it on the phone.  What is neat about Create Space is that you can put your phone number into the message and opt to have them call you back whenever you want them to.  It really works.  I used it a lot!

First…You need a cover.

This was the very first cover I made with the template format:

The Wolf's Moon by Patrick Jones
Copyright (C) 2012 Sandra L. Jones, All Rights Reserved

It was OK…one step closer.  I learned how to make a cover. That is when we brainstormed and decided we wanted a more professional appearance.  We settled on one of the pictures that I took on the Wolf Moon cycle in 2012 from just outside the back door!  I got Adobe Photoshop and decided I could surely do this myself.  Note:  Significant learning curve here! MM900040998 I watched hours of self-help videos and finally got the hang of it.  That is when we used this picture as my first ever try at Photoshop.  A work of art, for sure!

And Then…You have to Publish it!

This was the second cover we went with to publish.  A funny story is that now when Pat (The Author) goes to the grocery store, they think he is Mark Lansdowne.  Too funny!  It does work in some fashion as the readers associated the picture with the main character in the story.  Interesting.

The Wolf's Moon by Patrick Jones
Copyright (C) 2012 Sandra L. Jones

We were featured on Digital Book Today on  June 12, 2012.  After the article, Anthony sent me an email and said, “…I don’t mean to overstep my bounds…but…while your cover is good, it needs some work”.  How much more diplomatically could he say this!!  And I am glad he did.  That precipitated another brain storming session that lasted the rest of the year in 2012.  He continued, “Your name is your asset and therefore must be prominent.  Your readers will follow your name.  It is not big enough.” He sent me a few examples of book covers that were created with this concept in mind.  I was able to visualize what he meant by looking at examples of other covers. Clicking my red studded heels three times and uttering something like, “There’s no place like home,” I went back to Book Cover Designing 101.

The Journey

I set out to find the perfect picture for the book cover, because I certainly didn’t know what I was doing.  I looked at thousands of pictures at iStock Photo, Deposit Photo and the like.  I was redoing the website as well, so I got some really good ideas.  (That – is another saga, to be continued).  So I found a great picture of a wolf but not the moon.  I kind of liked it until my son-in-law said it was beautiful, but looked like a laid back German Shepard.  Back to the drawing board.  Not the “wow” effect we were searching for.

This was the third book cover.  I was really not unhappy with what I had done with this one, but something was missing.  It looked as though I had done it, which is OK…but we wanted some validity to the first decision and subsequent purchase of the book by the reader.  Once again, the project was re-opened!  (2 renditions here!)

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000026_00039]
The Wolf’s Moon by Patrick Jones with iStock Photo
The Wolf's Moon by Patrick Jones
The Wolf’s Moon by Patrick Jones with iStock Photo

So, then I decided I REALLY did not know what I was doing!  I happened upon a photographer in Canada, David C. Cassidy.  He did a super job on the book cover and it was reasonably priced, so I went with his vision of the book cover for the book.  The key point here is that although it was The Photographer’s vision, it was not The Author’s vision.  Pat had a particular vision in his mind of how he wanted the book to “grab” the reader if it was sitting on a coffee table.  As good as this cover was, he, after all, is The Author.  I couldn’t argue with that, although I give it a try every chance I get!

This was the proof of the fourth cover.

Cover Proof David C. Cassidy
Cover design by David C. Cassidy
Moon Photograph by David C. Cassidy © 2012
Used by permission.

By this time, I had learned about Adobe Photoshop 6.0 where the 3D text was outstanding.  David had introduced me to Sinister Fonts by Chad Savage.  He also suggested that we have a photograph professionally done to demonstrate validity.

Then, you FINE TUNE!

We went back to the very beginning and started trying to find the perfect picture again, given the knowledge I had acquired.  This time, it was a little easier.  My brain had processed the information.  Little did I know that once I knew what I was doing (sort of)…all of the pieces started to fit together just like the pieces of a puzzle. Pat liked one picture when we had first started this journey which I thought was too fuzzy.  I thought it needed to be done by a professional, but it was simpler than that.  Pat insisted that one picture was the look that he wanted for the book.  Bless his heart, I think he may have been humoring me, but it worked.  So we went back to the original picture that we had both liked from the beginning.  I had to really think about Adobe Photo Shop 6.0, but that is what made it a challenge.  Since I am rather an extroverted personality, I again danced the “Victory Dance” around the house!

This is the fifth (AND LAST!) book cover…

Final Book Cover The Wolf's Moon by Patrick Jones
Copyright (C) 2012 Sandra L. Jones
All Rights Reserved

Validate Your Results with an Objective Critic

I ran this book cover by Anthony Wessel of Digital Book Today.  I didn’t want to be overbearing, but did want an opinion from an expert (especially since he was the one that started this brainstorming cascade!).  Mind you, Anthony would never tell me yay or nay along the way, just little hints that he had stored in his memory.  I liken it to a treasure hunt!  Anthony said, “Your name is your asset…that is where your reputation comes from.  Your readers will follow your books and therefore the author’s name needs to be prominent.”  At the end after we made the decision, he did say, “I like this one the best anyway!”  So we knew we must have a winner!  So far, we have had a lot of great compliments from our readers and other authors, in addition to more sales and reviews.  The book cover makes a difference because you have to “grab” the reader within the first 8 seconds.  You have to stand out in the crowd, somehow, so that people will pick your book up and give it a try.  We are thrilled about it (pun intended) and are now finished with THIS book cover.  The sequel will follow toward the end of 2013 as well as a short story.

Thank you to Anthony Wessel for taking the time away from his busy schedule to pay credence to our endeavors. He didn’t have to mention anything about the book cover, but he felt it was necessary from his perspective.  He did not want to be remiss by not pointing out something that was so obvious to him, but obscure to a new author trying to figure it all out.  I have learned in this industry that you call it, “paying it forward.”  Now I know what that means.  Thank you for inviting me into your world with your friendship.  The quote from Friedrich Nietzsche says it all, “That which does not kill me, makes me stronger.”

Take care,


Copyright © 2013 Sandra L. Jones, All Rights Reserved.

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