I’ve often found great advice on Anne’s site. This post about what readers are likely to find when they click on that “Look Inside” invitation on Amazon echoes one I recently did about the first page of your book and why it matters, except that Anne goes into more detail and offers excellent examples of how you can make your “Look Inside” sample sing.
I especially want to endorse Guidelines Nos. 2 and 3.
No. 2 tells us to “start with conflict, not crisis,” advice I’ve encountered before, and which has ranked up there as the most useful advice I’ve ever received. As Anne points out, who cares if bullets are flying and bombs are going off if we don’t know the characters and couldn’t care less about them. “What the reader wants is emotional conflict,” Anne writes. And you get that by putting characters together in a demanding situation and finding out what they do about it—basically Anne’s Guideline No. 5.
No. 3 tells us that any opening scene that consists of some character musing away about some off-stage event is a huge turn-off unless you have an incredible voice and a mesmerizing character. While we’d all like to think we can produce such prodigies of characterization and style at will, the evidence suggests otherwise. You don’t have to create a character worthy of the ages in a Nobel-prize-winning style if you place your readers at the heart of a conflict, right there, in the middle of it all.
An additional turn-off I’d personally cite for “Look Inside” samples is more subjective: I respond to voice. Yes, I’ve got to have conflict; things have to happen for me in those first pages. But even if I’m thrown into the middle of conflict, a pedestrian voice stuffed with clichés and unimaginative or, for that matter, forced description can kill my buying urge. Lure me with a voice that breathes with the magic of language used in new and illuminating ways. If you can’t, make your conflict mesmerizing and original. Ideally, do both.
So check out Anne’s list of ways to keep your first pages from killing your sale. What makes you put a book back on the Amazon shelf?
Source: Do you know how to publish an ebook with pictures?
Here’s a post from last fall that I swiped from Jean’s Writing! Now that I’m about to epublish my “Beginner’s Cheat Sheet” on formatting your own Print-on-Demand book using InDesign, I’m going to need all the help I can get on formatting ebooks with graphics! What I like in Jean’s video is the idea that you can force text and image to stay together. Does anyone have any experience adding graphics to Kindle ebooks? Does this look like a good process to you? Any help will be WELCOME!
Some useful information about those pesky Amazon Review rules from Build Book Buzz. Share your own methods for getting reviews.
Filed under Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, business of writing, ebooks, indie publishing, Marketing books, Myths and Truths, novels, Print on Demand, Reviews, Self-publishing, Writing
Here’s a post about some of those mysterious tech skills that can confound non-tekkie verbal people like us writers. Check it out—whether you need to communicate with editors or with beta readers or if you just want to format your own book for Amazon or Smashwords. I can attest that you DO need Styles, and I’ve found GIMP, a free program recommended by this post, to work wonderfully as a graphics editor. You’ll need this information to format your hard-copy editions as well. Let me know what you think!
Filed under Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, ebooks, indie publishing, novels, Print on Demand, Publishing, self editing, Self-publishing, Smashwords, Tech tips, Working with editors, Writing
A comprehensive list for producing your own book for ingram, CreateSpace, KDP, and others! Lots of links and resources. Thanks, Chris!
Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog
An extract by Carla King, on BookWorks Site:
Are you ready to upload your book for sale to the online retailers?
Got all your front and back matter, images, fonts, and ISBNs?
Use this checklist to make sure you’ve done everything you can to create a quality book that competes with books produced in the traditional publishing houses.
But first, here’s a quick overview of the entire book production process.
It begins with an unedited manuscript and ends with a check of the final proof before distribution.
Continue learning at the following link:
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Filed under Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, book design, business of writing, ebooks, indie publishing, novels, Print on Demand, Publishing, Self-publishing, Tech tips, Writing
Here’s some simple advice that may prove useful even if you’re not working on a children’s picture book! Jean Cogdell tries things out for us and shares!
Success at last! When I loaded it up to KDP, everything worked!
If you write children’s books or comic books, I’m sure you’ve heard of Kindle Kids’ Book Creator. This program is terrific. However, the program limits which electronic devices that can open and read the book.
I wanted my picture books to be available on e-readers and tablets. I found out after using KKBC for A Most Reluctant Princess; this wasn’t possible. Using KKBC limits which electronic devices available. Since publishing my first picture book, I’ve read tips, blogs, instructions, and watched videos searching a way to use MS-Word.
No one had the answers I needed. So, I began experimenting until I figured out a process that worked.
My new book, A Reluctant Little Prince, in e-book form, is written on MS-Word and can be read on a Kindle. Yay!
For the print version…
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