Archive for November, 2009

WRITERS & SCAMMERS – REVIEW PURVEYORS…

Sunday, November 15th, 2009

Looks like there was some unfinished business in last week’s piece…too much for a single additional blog, so let me take it one subject at a time.  Let’s settle, this week, on a relatively quick discussion regarding book reviews and their purported suppliers, the review purveyor.

Anyone who publishes (whether through a NY Trade house, or via the self-published, POD route) comes to the realization that their book must be reviewed many times, and each time as well as possible. I don’t speak for authors published by major Trade Publishers, but am assuming their publishers have made arrangements to have their books reviewed in venues such as the New York Times, Publishers Weekly, Poets and Writers, etc. This may NOT always happen; I have been told that, in some cases, the author has been called upon to assist in lining up reviews for his or her book. Should the reviews disappoint, or the cover, title and edited contents not enthuse the publisher’s marketing & sales department, money and effort earmarked for the promotion of that book may be applied elsewhere. The author is deprived of a sincere sales effort by the company’s distribution arm; book tour and advertising money is diverted. What else might set off this ugly chain of events? Perhaps a block-buster book by a certain celeb. needs a greater initial push (if only to recover a huge advance). Suddenly, a chill wind is felt – you are left very much alone. At publishing conferences, I’ve heard several such stories directly related by the victims. (more…)

WRITERS AND SCAMMERS – ODD COUPLES…

Sunday, November 8th, 2009

When an author finishes writing a cherished piece of work – be it poem; an essay; a memoir, popular, or paranormal novel; perhaps even a humorous work – at that very moment, the writer’s creative enthusiasm has him teetering at the edge of a precipice. If he hasn’t already landed a book or magazine deal, he’s either looking for an agent, or thinking deeply about having the work printed and distributed independently. Let us then count the peddlers of provender gathered in the valley below.  In a great sweat, without an agent or a trade publisher, that writer is virtually forced to take the independent leap…possibly into the arms of one or more scammers.

Need a POD publisher?.. A website?.. Editorial help?.. Guidance in finding an agent?.. Promotional help?.. A distributor?.. Book designer?.. Cover artist?.. on and on goes the list. No end to the services available, ’til your credit card  registers dry on an emptied checking account. (more…)

SO YOU WANNA CREATE YOUR OWN BOOK COVER?…

Sunday, November 1st, 2009

Hmm… I wanted to. And I did. And I’m now having second thoughts about what I did. Let me provide the final chapter to the “3 ACES Cover Story” as presented in my August 3rd, 2008 blog…

Now that the book has been read by a good number of folks, gone through the hands of more than a few critics, contest judges, etc., the feedback cometh in strong (whether I welcome it, or not). THE most negative feedback has been centered around my vaunted 3 ACES front cover, which I conceived all by my lonesome and had executed by two local artists, with the desert background brushed in by my book designer. The story inside (by those brave enough to ignore the front cover) has been well received, and granted a Book Of The Year award in November, 2008, by THE INFINITE WRITER ezine,

Unfortunately, my front cover does NOT tell the book purchaser what type of story lies beneath its surface – and, as far as I am concerned, that’s a disaster. Worse, it leads some to think it’s a Harlequin Romance; others tell me it’s a book about gambling; still more tell me they really haven’t a clue what the hell the book is about. If that isn’t a publishing disaster, what is? (more…)

 

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