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The Perfect Is the Enemy of the First Draft

May 10, 2016 by Sam Henrie, President

writing

Many writing coaches recommend writing the first draft of a blog post, chapter, or scene as quickly as possible without stopping to rewrite or edit. The idea is once you’ve got that first draft down, however imperfect, you’ll have broken through your writer’s block and procrastination, and accelerated the entire writing process. That’s not how I do it. I rewrite each sentence several times before moving on to the next. I pause to fact check, to look in the thesaurus for the exact right word, to get more coffee, to watch of few minutes of “Better Call Saul”...

Though I knew it would be difficult for me, I decided to try the technique to create the first draft of this article. I started my timer and set about getting four hundred words down in the shortest time possible, without rewriting or editing. My subject: The First Draft. It took me thirteen minutes! But, the result was horrifying! Here’s a sample:

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Price your book to make a profit

April 05, 2016 by Sam Henrie, President

how to price your book

There’s plenty of discussion about the retail pricing of independently published books, most of it centered on self-publishing book companies setting list prices too high. I get frustrated when industry experts write that these higher prices are a problem, without offering any evidence that this is the case. In the absence of price sensitivity studies, or of testing book sales at different price points, the “experts” are simply offering a guess based on their experience. I suspect that their experience comes from pricing books for the brick-and-mortar bookstore market. What a company like Barnes & Noble suggests for list prices for their stores isn’t necessarily right for a self-published books that will primarily be sold through online bookstores.

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In praise of editing

March 08, 2016 by Sam Henrie, President

editing

Years ago I was reading the bestselling A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson (on which the 2015 motion picture of the same name, starring Robert Redford and Nick Nolte, is based) and found a typo on one of the first pages. The word the was spelled “th”. How could this be? The book was published by Random House, one of the Big Five! How had all of their copyeditors and proofreaders, not to mention spell checkers, missed it? How had the hundreds of advance copy readers failed to report it?

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The one-step method to make your website work

March 01, 2016 by Atilla Vekony, Vice President

one step method to make your website work

What’s the most efficient, as well as most effective, way to get from your couch to the fridge? Is it a shortcut such as taking a giant leap? Or is it taking a number of comfortable steps?

Walking, which is one step—and always and only one step—at a time, has been the winning transportation tactic employed by people since the dawn of time. Gliding and flying aren’t possible in a living room setting, while jumping and leaping are just too energy consuming to make it worthwhile. If you kept exerting the amount of energy needed for jumping, you’d end up having to make more frequent trips to the fridge than otherwise needed. So “one step at a time” is the best way to get from your couch to the fridge.

What does this have to do with book marketing?

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Ten Steps to a Finished Book

February 08, 2016 by Sam Henrie, President

finished book

At Wheatmark we’ve worked with thousands of authors, and based on this experience I am proposing this ten-step process for writing your next nonfiction book. This process incorporates blogging in advance of your book’s release, so that you get a head start on building an audience for your book.

1. Make a chapter outline of your book. All you need is enough detail to describe what you are promising to give the reader in each chapter.

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The Egg That Hatched The Martian

January 11, 2016 by Sam Henrie, President

The Egg That Hatched The Martian

By now many of you have seen the popular science fiction movie released in October, The Martian, starring Matt Damon. I’m sure that many of you have also read the bestselling book of the same name by Andy Weir on which the movie is based. But, I suspect, that many of you don’t know the story of Weir’s journey from aspiring author to publishing phenom.

Weir’s lifelong ambition was to become a published working science fiction author. In the late 1990s and early 2000s he wrote a couple of sci-fi novels and submitted them to multiple agents and publishers. He even took a couple of years off from working as a computer programmer to focus exclusively on his writing career. Unfortunately, he received rejection after rejection from both agents and publishing houses.

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Procrastination

October 26, 2015 by Grael Norton, Director of Marketing

Procrastinator“Procrastination.” In many circles, it’s a dirty word.

“Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can accomplish today,” it’s said.

All of us are guilty of it, though… at least a little bit, from time to time.

For many of us, one of the activities we’re most likely to procrastinate over is also one of the most important: writing.

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How big is your audience?

October 12, 2015 by Sam Henrie, President

How big is your audience?

A few years ago I had a weekend evening to myself, and decided to go to a play. I found a performance of the 1983 Pulitzer Prize-winning ‘night Mother by Marsha Norman showing at the Tucson Temple of Music and Art.

I arrived very early, so I wasn’t surprised that there was only one other person in the audience, but was surprised when no one else showed up. The play started, and I thought to myself: “Now I am stuck here, even if the performance is terrible. I’m 50% of the audience. I can’t just stand up and walk out.” That turned out not to be a problem. The performance was completely engrossing.

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Writer’s Block

October 09, 2015 by Sam Henrie, President

writer's block

Hypergraphia is a behavioral disorder I sometimes wish to be stricken with, if only temporarily. People with hypergraphia have an intense and uncontrollable desire to write, and usually churn out page after page, hour upon hour, day after day. Sometimes what they write is chaotic and disorganized, but other times they write The Brothers Karamazov or Alice in Wonderland. (Both Dostoevsky and Carroll are thought to have had hypergraphia.)

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Steps to Publishing a Book: The Timeline

October 01, 2015 by Wheatmark, Admin

Steps to Publishing a Book

For first-time authors, the book publishing process can be a daunting one. Writing and publishing a book is not just a creative endeavor, it’s a job. As with any new job, there’s a learning curve. So to help you over the hump, the following is a step-by-step approach to the book publishing timeline:

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