Looking Back and Moving Forward

~ By Margaret Ethridge I’m looking back toward my future. It will be about maximizing income from backlist titles. Something I’ve been neglecting. Whether you have forty books in your backlist or four, your front list should be driving readers to backlist, and backlist driving readers to front list and preorders. I know this is an area in which I personally have fallen down on the job. I’m not sure if it’s because I rarely read my work once it’s through the editorial process, or because as writers we’re always told to get on to the next book. One of...

RWA 2018 – Speed Pitch event and the Industry Marketplace

~ By Stephanie Haefner This year, more than others in the past, my main goal for the RWA National Conference was to make connections with agents and editors, and boy did I ever! The main sources for amazing networking this year were the Speed Pitch event and the Industry Marketplace. In past years, RWA members attending the conference had the opportunity to sign up for two ten-minute pitch sessions. One with an agent and one with an editor. Prime picks were often gobbled up quickly and attendees had to move on to their 2nd, 3rd, sometimes 4th picks, even if...

My Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Week

(Or how I eventually got an agent) ~ By Laura Trentham  I’m casting back a couple of years to tell you about my worst writing week ever. What’s the old adage? Bad things come in threes (or more!) Alexander had lots of bad things happen to him over a long, miserable day. My bad stuff was spread over a week. Your bad stuff may happen over a month or a season, but it never fails to come in a clump, in my experience. Let me set things up by saying the months leading up to my terrible, horrible, no good,...

Interview With Book Blogger Lia Covington

~ Lia Covington It’s such an honor to have such a fun, book-loving guest on the blog today! Not so long ago, I heard this guest speak on the Smart Podcast, Trashy Books podcast and I knew she had to come hang out with us. So, without further ado, here’s Lia Covington from Lia’s Booking Obsession. Enjoy. ~ Melina (aka Melissa) Welcome, Lia! Contemporary Romance: It is a truth universally acknowledged that your lovely husband enables your reading obsession. Care to elaborate? Lia Covington: Gladly! Larry Jerome Covington III is the most unbelievably stubborn man I have ever meet...

From Solitary Writing to Collaborating on Joint Ventures

~ By Milou Koenings Like most writers, it tends to be just me and the keyboard. And I like it that way. But when it comes to book marketing, I decided a few years ago that it was time to break out of my comfort zone and start collaborating with other authors. I had seen what could happen for my author friends who were brave enough to try it, and I wanted in on some of that collaborative magic. For me, the first step was joining a group blog. I was incredibly fortunate that the week I’d decided to start looking...

Ready, Set, BAKE!

~ By Carole Matthews A Note from Melina (aka Melissa):  I may not bake as well as Mary Berry (though not for lack of trying). But I’m proud that that we have one thing in common.  We both adore Carole Matthews.  It was from Carole Matthews that I learned about The Great British Bake-Off, and I’ve been an addict from the first episode I was able to get my hands on.  The show is so soothing, with its rivers, fields, and adorable animals walking around. Even the music relaxes me.  The encouraging atmosphere in “the tent” reminds me of...

Top 5 Takeaways from My RWA 2016

~ By Kris Jayne Note: This post originally appeared here.  RWA’s program amazes me every year. It offers information and guidance on everything from craft to business to wellness. The worst part? I can’t attend every session. So I’d love to share my top takeaways from the sessions I attended — small and large. Maybe in the comments, we can compare notes. 1) Boost your back matter (“Newsletters, Back Matter, and Other Indie Marketing Strategies,” Deanna Chase and Violet Vaughn) I self-publish, so I know the importance of back matter. I include the blurbs for the next books my...

On Competition and Writers

~ By Marilyn Brant  Note: This post originally appeared here.  At the end of last year, I’d spent a lot of time pondering Criticism and Writers. This week, having reread those reflections, I realized I didn’t have much to add to them after another year amidst the thrill, the chaos and the frequent insanity of being a part of the publishing industry. What was true for me 12 months ago is still true for me now. Although I have to admit, my determination to pull away from the gossiping maelstrom wasn’t without consequences… Two friendships I’d valued came to an end...

Self-Publishing or Traditional: Which One is Right for You?

~ By Katie McCoach Note: This post originally appeared here.  FOR THOSE THAT are planning to self-publish a book, you may have heard by now that self-publishing is a business. It’s your business, and treating your business with professionalism and enlisting in the required help will help your business (books) succeed. For those seeking agent representation, this idea also holds true, however a publisher is in charge of many of the business decisions instead of you. How do you decide which option is best for you? Traditional Publishing—The Steps: Seeking agent representation is your first step in hoping to land a publisher. Yes, there are some publishers that...

What Are The Odds? [REPOST]

~ By Jill Beck  What are the odds? Do you ever ask yourself this question? For me, it rears its ugly head on the days my thoughts go over to the dark side. It’s my brain’s more subtle way of saying, “This is too hard. We might as well quit.” When I first started writing, I spent a lot of time worrying and the question wore a path, pacing back and forth through my mind. “How many people are writing books? Thousands and thousands. So, what are the odds that my little book is going to go anywhere?” Writing is...

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