Hello all! Below are the notes Nicole Grane shared this past Thursday about how to format a Word document for a Create Space book.
- Susan Kaye Quinn’s book Indie Author Survival Guide can be found here: http://www.amazon.com/Indie-Author-Survival-Guide-Susan/dp/1492972851/ref=la_B003TTJRXU_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1392956798&sr=1-5
- Fast release dates (one right after another in a series) seem to boost book sales.
- Laura Bastian’s book Eye on Orion will be available this coming Tuesday. She is hosting a virtual release party on Thursday, February 27 on Facebook.
- Resources for authors:
- Authors Think Tank: http://www.foreverwriters.com/
- I Write Network: http://www.iwritenetwork.com/
- The Passive Voice: http://www.thepassivevoice.com/
- If you have news for the blog or want to write a guest post on a particular topic, or if you want to have a topic addressed, please e-mail Gwen Bristol at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s a lot of fun learning new things. Watch for more news and updates soon.
Hello Friends! Jennie here 🙂 Wow I’m late doing this! It totally slipped my mind, but I remembered today and here we are. The first post since April, wahoo!
Why am I so late? Well it’s November, duh, and that means NaNoWriMo for us writers! First up, the five of us that came to the meeting gave updates on our writing (we will be doing this in every meeting from now on) and we also welcomed our new member David! Or was it Harry? Oh yes, I remember now, Justin!
Then we decided to plan the entire years worth of meetings because no one showed up. Just kidding, we were going to plan the meetings with whomever showed up, no matter what. I’m also posting a poll below so that we can vote on other meetings.
The purpose of having the year planned is so that everyone can know what meetings they want to attend and plan ahead of time. Here’s a list of each month, which can be changed depending on what you guys want.
(Reminder: Meetings are on the 3rd Thursday of every month, 6:30 pm, Tooele City Library)
January – Social Media. This one is cemented in. Terron and I will be talking about platform building and general computer-ish things. Then you all can be as awesome as I am 😉
February – Self-publishing workshop (Roseanne and Nicole – surprise! We want you guys to host this one.)
March – Writing Prompts working with Voice and Style. There will be live writing so bring a notebook and pen.
April – Guest Speaker – Kelley Lindberg, Query Letter Workshop
In Kelley’s query letter workshop, you’ll learn the dos and don’ts of query letters, then take what you’ve learned and tackle each other’s query letters. So bring a draft of a query letter for something you’d like to submit. After exploring what makes a strong query letter and deconstructing some examples, we’ll look at your letters together to find ways to make them even better!
May – LUW social! Food, games, and good company. (maybe not the games ^_^)
June – Conference follow up. Anyone who attended LDS Storymakers will share tidbits learned from their favorite classes.
July – No Meeting (too many fun things going on during the summer)
August – Guest speaker. (if we can find someone who’s not booked. Look at this list if you want to help us decide who should come.)
September – A publishing house will visit us to talk about publishing! (Redundant, I know. No publishing house selected yet)
October – Conference follow up. Anyone who attended LUW Roundup will share their favorite classes.
November – Not yet decided (please take the poll below)
December – No meeting. Happy Holidays!
Okay, now for the poll!
http://www.blogpoll.com/poll/view_Poll.php?type=java&poll_id=214576Free Blog Poll
See you all in January!
Thank you Terron for continuing to lead our group for the next two years!
And thanks to J.A. Bennett for this blog update!!!!!
Our fabulous resident blog expert J.A. Bennett addressed our group last night at our monthly meeting. She gave a fantastic tutorial on how a personal blog can benefit you as a writer, and shared some tips on how to get started.
She began by discussing how having a strong internet presence helps others find you, including publishers. Agents want you to have a blog, as now the standard seems to be publishers will google your name as an agent is pitching them your book.
Having a strong following increases your internet presence, but how do you gain a following?
Jennie shared 3 tips to get you started.
1. Be consistent.
Blog at least once a week, if not more. If your blog runs dry, so will your readership. The more you blog the more search engines will start to pick you up. Expert tip: Don’t make your blog posts too long!
2. Comment on other blogs.
Find other bloggers like yourself, who blog things you are interested in. Not only will you gain more followers for your own blog, but you’ll create an entire network of support and find loads of helpful information. You’ll be surprised what you can learn from other writers!
3. Participate in bloghops.
This is a good way to gain followers for your blog, and to discover blogs that interest you.
Twice a year blogger Rachael Harrie runs a writer’s platform building campaign that helps connect bloggers and readers. Many blogs participate in bloghops so check them out!
Other tips to increase your internet presence and following are:
Using Twitter and hashtags. Good hashtags to get you started are #amwriting, #pubwrite, and #mywana. Check out Terron James’ blog post, The Hidden Power of Twitter for more detailed Twitter information.
Using these hashtags connect your tweets with other people doing the same things you are. Your network will grow and grow!
Also check out inkpageant.com to find other writer’s blogs. You can even submit to have your own blog included.
Thank you to Jennie for her knowledge and advice, and to League President Tim Keller for joining us this month!
As always thank you to Chapter President Terron James for hosting and leading our group!
Good luck and happy blogging!!!!
The holiday hiatus is over, and I’m happy that our group is back to its regular meeting schedule.
January’s meeting was, in a word, SERIOUSLY AWESOME. Oh, was that two words? Shame on me!
We were very pleased to have Christopher Loke, the Executive Editor of Jolly Fish Press come to our group and speak to us.
Mr. Loke is experienced in the publishing industry, passionate about what he does, and pretty darn fun to listen to! We learned a lot, laughed a lot, and I think we all left with a renewed passion.
Having learned the ropes working for Penguin Publishing, (yeah, I know, drool right) he has branched out and started his own publishing house. We discussed the differences between self publishing and traditional publishing. Jolly Fish Press is a traditional publisher that strives not only to sell books but to nurture the career of authors.
They are looking for passionate writers who want to make a career out of writing! And don’t we all dream of that? We learned about the extensive editorial process, marketing, and distribution. Mr. Loke knows the industry inside and out and it was very informative. He was also kind enough to hear pitches and offer feedback and advice.
Check out their website, www.jollyfishpress.com to see more. And the best news? They are accepting submissions! The guidelines can be found on their website as well.
Thank you Jolly Fish Press for your time. It was a great night!
If you missed our gathering last night, we missed YOU!
We had about eight couples attend and we had a great time visiting over some fantastic food! It was great to meet the spouses!
Okay, so that’s NOT us and my stairway is not nearly so grand. But I failed to take any pictures I was too caught up in chatting! Just imagine us sitting around stuffing pasta and bread into our mouths and you get the idea!
At our October writer’s meeting, we were plotting. Fill in the blanks as to what we were plotting, if you weren’t there. Were we plotting how to toilet paper the members homes who didn’t come? Hmmm. Time will tell!
Actually, we had a most amazing turnout last week! The room was packed! And no, we weren’t plotting mischievous schemes. We were talking about plot creation, and brainstorming ideas on how to overcome obstacles when writing.
We all know there is a difference between a real plot and a series of events happening to your character, but it can often be difficult during the writing process to put everything together the right way.
Perhaps you start out with a great beginning, but struggle with the middle and the ending. Or things just don’t feel like they mesh together well. How do the little details fit into the story? Sometimes our characters almost conflict with our desired plot. Or the dreaded, gulp, don’t say it…..writer’s block.
So what do you do? BRAINSTORM! And lots of it.
It’s been said that the power of the brainstorm is underrated. I agree. Racking your brain can have all sorts of fantastic results, once you get through the hard work. As a writing group, we had our own version of a group brainstorm, on how to hone in on the plot development process. Each member of the group shared their techniques that help them the most.
Welcome to the blitzkrieg portion of this post! Read on to see what we came up with!
*Make comments in your manuscript as you go, and return for edits later. Don’t stop writing when you’ve got a good flow.
*Interview your characters! Make it in depth, and you’ll be surprised at what you discover.
*If you use plot outlines, make sure they are flexible.
*Remember what the problem is in your story. Ask why, what if questions.
*Talk it over with someone. Or for some, talking out loud to themselves works. Our fellow writers are great tools for having useful discussions about our work. (Please note, there was no comma or period after “writers are great tools, so they’ll be no jokes about that.) 😉
*Debate it with someone. You don’t need someone to always just tell you it’s great. A devil’s advocate is often the most helpful.
*Flip a coin when making a choice between two routes. If you are secretly hoping it lands on tails, then you get heads and feel bummed, then now you know to go with the tails option.
*Read something, or watch a movie that evokes the same type of emotion you are hoping to create in your writing.
*Get a change of scenery, take a walk, or trip.
*Listen to music! Choose music that inspires you, and has the same mood as the scenes you wish to write.
*Let it simmer. Or for some of us, let it”ferment.”
*Talk to yourself in the mirror, or talk to the computer.
*Don’t push it, take your time.
*Do some writing exercises. Pay attention to your dreams.
Jennie Bennett also shared a few websites for plot help. Thank you Jennie!
If you have other ideas that get you out of your writing jams, leave a comment, we’d love to hear it!
Next Month: November 17th is our Chapter Party!!! Hope to see you all there! Details to be coming soon!
What is an RSS Feed?
An RSS feed is basically something that you can subscribe to and get updates from. Here is how it works. A person is surfing the web and finds a website or a blog that they really enjoy and want to keep up with. Instead of having to remember to go back to the website regularly to check for updates the person can subscribe to the RSS feed (assuming the site or blog has one). The person then sees instant updates from the site or blog in their favorite RSS feed reader (i.e. Google Reader). Giving your readers the option of subscribing to an RSS will help them stay more active in following your site or blog.
Also, providing an RSS feed broadens your audience of followers. Not everyone has the appropriate account to use the various following methods. And some do not like receiving updates through email.
How do I set up an RSS feed?
If you have a blog – chances are it is already an RSS feed. And there is probably a widget for adding a button to your blog. Here are instructions if you use blogger (new interface):
- Open your blog and select ‘Layout’
- Click one of the ‘Add Gadget’ links in the area you want the widget to appear.
- Choose ‘Basics’ and scroll down the ‘Subscription Links’
- Click the plus button, give it a title, and click ‘Save.’
I am sure that there are similar ways to add it to other blog platforms.
Adding an RSS feed to your website is a little more involved. First do a search for an ‘rss feed generator’ and pick one out you like. Once you have set up a feed for your site – you will need to have a link to that feed that allows the user to subscribe to it. I have never done this – but I am sure a google search would produce some excellent resources.
Other uses of RSS feeds
Another way to use RSS feeds on your blog or website is to embed a related RSS feed. My blog, for example is about writing. I could find another site that talks about writing – say for instance one that talks about what is going on in publishing. If I embed that RSS feed into my blog – then users could see the updates from those feeds when they visit my site. The benefit of using a feed is that it makes you site appear to be updated more often.
This is also simple for most blogging platforms. Just add a widget (the ‘Feed’ widget on Blogger) to your blog or site that pulls from the RSS feed. Again, I have never added an RSS feed to a website.
You can also use third party tools to find out how many people subscribe to your rss feed – such as http://feedburner.google.com”>Feedburner. This can help you see how many people you are reaching with your feed.
Posted by Krista Wayment Thank you Krista!!