9 October, 2015

Writer’s Block

By |2023-06-09T11:10:19-07:00October 9, 2015|Resources, Writing|Comments Off on 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.)

I, unfortunately, most often suffer from the opposite condition, writer’s block, sometimes called hypographia. We all know what a serious condition that can be! If left untreated it can lead to the loss of followers, a reduction in the quality and quantity of likes, being an unpublished writer, reduced earnings, and generalized anonymity. Fortunately, there is a lot of help out there. Just type “writer’s block” into your search engine and you will see what I mean. There are […]

1 October, 2015

Steps to Publishing a Book: The Timeline

By |2023-06-09T11:10:33-07:00October 1, 2015|Publishing, Resources|Comments Off on Steps to Publishing a Book: The Timeline

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:

Step One

You may be surprised to learn that the first step is not to write your book. We at Wheatmark encourage authors, even before they fire up their computer and crack their knuckles, to think seriously about who they believe is going to buy and read their book.

We sometimes hear, “This is a book anyone would want to read.” This is false. The best way to market your book commercially is to figure out your niche of readers first. There’s often an obvious answer for nonfiction books. For example, a book about succeeding in sales is likely to […]

29 May, 2015

Is the self-publishing stigma fading?

By |2023-06-09T11:12:17-07:00May 29, 2015|Publishing, Resources, Writing|Comments Off on Is the self-publishing stigma fading?

My colleague Roger forwarded me this article the other day.

It asks the question: “Is the self-publishing stigma fading?”

The author who wrote it notes that he jumped on the indie bandwagon back in 2010—“when the concept of being an indie author was still relatively new.”

That made my colleague Atilla laugh, since he helped launch Wheatmark back in the year 2000—ten years before that!

Anyway, the author’s point is essentially “yes.” The self-publishing stigma is fading… but it may never go away entirely.

I enjoy articles like this, but I’d take the author’s point even one step further: I think indie authors, or self-publishers (or whatever you want to call them), actually have an advantage in today’s market.

Case in point: check out the article at this link, which tracks e-book sales.

(My thanks to Simple Marketing System client Ginny Lieto for bringing this article to my attention!)

This article talks about the disadvantage that […]

5 May, 2015

There are only two words to describe this

By |2023-06-09T11:12:36-07:00May 5, 2015|Publishing, Resources, Writing|Comments Off on There are only two words to describe this

Several readers—including Wheatmark client Yasmin John-Thorpe—sent me the link to this article last week.

As I said in the subject line of this email, there are only two words to describe the piece, which is all about Author Solution’s (ASI’s) business practices:

“Horror show.”

It’s a lengthy article, and I recommend reading it in its entirety.

I also recommend forwarding it to any and all of your friends and colleagues—in particular, any one you know who’s contemplating self-publishing.

The only reason ASI is able to so easily prey on authors is a lack of knowledge on the part of the writing public—especially first-time authors.

Unfortunately, some of the US’ top trade publishers are complicit in this “deal with the devil,” including, of course, Penguin/Random House, who bought ASI three years ago.

You can read about the quotas the salespeople at ASI have to hit each month to keep their jobs, and you’ll also discover how many […]

26 January, 2015

Tips for Successful Blogging

By |2023-06-09T11:12:55-07:00January 26, 2015|Marketing, Resources, Social Media|Comments Off on Tips for Successful Blogging

As the marketing specialist for Wheatmark, I have the privilege to work alongside many authors as they take their first steps into the unfamiliar world of blogging and social media. For those individuals with little to no experience in this area, this step toward marketing themselves can feel rather daunting and unattainable. This feeling, however, is not unordinary. Maintaining a blog and staying committed to promoting your brand takes a great deal of effort, but having a persistent attitude and an openness to learning will allow you to be more successful in the long run.

I recently stumbled across an article with a list of valuable tips to help you become a successful blogger. Out of the 19 tips provided, here are five that I believe are the most useful:

1. Make sure you have an About page that represents who you are and what you do.
Who you are is entirely unique, […]

15 December, 2014

My Book Got Optioned. Here’s What Happened.

By |2023-06-09T11:13:57-07:00December 15, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing, Resources|Comments Off on My Book Got Optioned. Here’s What Happened.

I came across this article in The Chronicle of Higher Education and thought I’d forward it on to you.

As many of you know, I was a screen-writer in my former life, so I can really relate to this piece.

I was working in the indie world, and, since we’d arranged our own financing, my first professional writing gig was made into a finished film.

We sold it to a number of foreign TV markets, and landed several domestic DVD deals.

Yes, this was a “straight-to-video” project—domestically, at least.

But at least we got it made, and then got it out there.

To get a film or TV project made, you need to have three ingredients:

1. Material to develop
2. Access to distribution
3. Financing (money)

In my case, we had all three. But if you’ve written a book, you’ve got number one above covered, too.

That means all you need is numbers two and three, and you’re good […]

11 December, 2014

Do you have an unpublished manuscript lying around?

By |2023-06-09T11:14:06-07:00December 11, 2014|Publishing, Resources, Writing|Comments Off on Do you have an unpublished manuscript lying around?

If you have an unpublished Romance, Mystery & Thriller, or Science Fiction & Fantasy manuscript, Amazon wants to hear from you!

They’re running a new program called “Kindle Scout” that could result in your manuscript being published at Amazon’s expense.

Details of the program are here.

Basically, the program is a combination crowd-sourcing/rights-licensing publishing deal, where you grant Amazon exclusive rights to have beta readers review your work and vote on whether or not to publish it.

If readers give you a thumbs-up, you sign an exclusive 5-year contract to have Amazon publish your work in Kindle and in audio format.

I think it’s a cool program, particularly for folks who don’t have the means to publish their work on their own.

That said, it’s a really, really good idea to invest in a formal read by a professional editor before you release your work to the general public.

Our version of this service is called […]

5 December, 2014

Author Interview with Will Edwinson

By |2023-06-09T11:14:32-07:00December 5, 2014|News, Publishing, Resources|Comments Off on Author Interview with Will Edwinson

Will Edwinson is an award-winning storyteller for his fiction and also an award-winning columnist. His second book, Buddy … His Trials and Treasures, won a first place in state competition and a second place at national. His nostalgia column, which he wrote under another name, won second and first place awards in two separate competitions from the Utah-Idaho-Spokane Associated Press Association.

Will is also one of our long-time author clients, having first published with us in 2005 and now again in 2014. I’ve asked him about his brand new book, LouIsa: Iron Dove of the Frontier.

Tell us a little bit about yourself, Will Edwinson, and how you came to be a storyteller.

Ah … where do I begin? When I was young I always aspired to be a writer. But I was just a small-town farm boy with insecurities, some of which included, “How could I ever expect […]

2 December, 2014

The A-Myth

By |2023-06-09T11:15:23-07:00December 2, 2014|Marketing, Publishing, Resources, Writing|Comments Off on The A-Myth

Wheatmark’s Sam Henrie wrote in a previous post about The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber, one of the most important business books I’ve read, which helped me look at business in a completely different way.

Working on the business is quite different than working in the business. Just because you love cooking and everybody says you should open a restaurant doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. Being a great chef at your own restaurant might still mean doing a terrible job running the business and hating it. Michael E. Gerber talks about how business owners ought to view themselves not as technicians (chefs, dance instructors, editors, widget makers) but as marketers and savvy businesspeople. He exhorts entrepreneurs to become experts at making the business of their trade work better instead of getting caught in the daily whirlwind of working in the business. The e-myth is simply […]

15 October, 2014

Even Kerouac secretly did this

By |2023-06-09T11:16:52-07:00October 15, 2014|News, Resources, Writing|Comments Off on Even Kerouac secretly did this

I was reading this article my friend and colleague Jack Rochester mentioned on The Fictional Café recently, and it got me thinking.

Specifically, it got me thinking about the myth that your first draft is the “purest” expression of your work, and that editing it will somehow compromise your artistic vision.

Of all the authors out there, Jack Kerouac probably contributed to this myth the most, since he publicly railed against self-editing, and the story of how he drafted On The Road on a single, giant scroll in only three weeks is legendary.

However, if you read the article above, you’ll see that Kerouac both meticulously outlined his book and had already written portions of it before that inspired three-week period.

Not to diminish Kerouac’s accomplishment in any way—it’s still impressive—but the truth is that “Writing is rewriting,” as the saying goes.

So true: I wrote eighteen drafts of my first screenplay—and it’s […]


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