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Monthly Archives: March, 2014

Disney Characters + The Walking Dead = The Walking Disney [Geek Art] | Geeks are Sexy Technology News

Pocahontas-John

Meg-Hades

Disney Characters + The Walking Dead = The Walking Disney [Geek Art] | Geeks are Sexy Technology News.

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Want really cool books from very different people? Try Crime Wave Press

Irreverent, informed and downright eclectic crime fiction and reportage from Southeast Asia and beyond

Tom Vater

My Special Needs Baby’s Long and Roundabout Road to Publication

Gwousz-net

Crime Wave Press author Gary Anderson recounts how he found a home for his excellent and hilariously transgressive Sci Fi Noir novel The Gwousz Affair.

I’m going start by making what might be a startling admission: I came to noir late. The Gwousz Affair is my first attempt at what might be if not partially classified as noir, then at least clearly influenced by it. In fact, I didn’t read Hammet or Chandler until a few years ago. I didn’t even watch Out of the Past and In a Lonely Place until well after my college years. Yet, I’ve recently come to realize that noir has always been with me, looming somewhere in the background, hiding in the shadows of my subconscious with a cigarette crushed between its teeth. Let me explain….

Read the full guest blog over at British crime writer’s Paul D. Brazill’s website.

via My Special Needs Baby’s Long and Roundabout Road to Publication | Tom Vater.

How the Invention of the Alphabet Usurped Female Power in Society and Sparked the Rise of Patriarchy in Human Culture | Brain Pickings

[Terry: I’m sorry but this one has to go into the Hey Wait A Minute! section. “writing of any kind, but especially it’s alphabetic form, diminishes feminine values.”  Say What???

Jump to the original article for the part that claims that television is a far more feminine medium. Yeah, try that on a Sunday afternoon.]

A brief history of gender dynamics from page to screen.

by Maria Popova

The Rosetta Stone may be one of the 100 diagrams that changed the world and language may have propelled our evolution, but the invention of the written word was not without its costs. As Sophocles wisely observed, “nothing vast enters the life of mortals without a curse.” That curse is what Leonard Shlain explores in The Alphabet Versus the Goddess: The Conflict Between Word and Image (public library) — a pause-giving look at the relationship between literacy and patriarchy. Without denying the vastness of the benefits literacy bestowed upon humanity, Shlain uses Marshall McLuhan’s famous dictum — “the medium is the message” — to examine how the advent of the written word and our ability to read reconfigured the human brain, effecting profound changes in the cultural dynamics of gender roles.

“By profession, I am a surgeon… I am by nature a storyteller,” Shlain tells us, and it is through this dual lens of critical thinking and enchantment that he examines his iconoclastic subject — a subject whose kernel was born while Shlain was touring Mediterranean archeological sites in the early 1990s and realized that the majority of shrines had been originally consecrated to female deities, only to be converted to male-deity worship later, for unknown reasons. (Beyond the broader cultural appeal such an observation might hold for a mind as inquisitive as Shlain’s, it’s worth noting that he had just sent off his own young daughter — one very special daughter — to college and into a world still very much shaped by gender dynamics.) A major culprit in the shift, Shlain argues, was the invention of the alphabet. (He takes great care to avoid the trap of correlation vs. causation and offers a wonderfully poetic formulation of the danger of conflating the two: “Correlation … does not prove causality — the disappearance of the stars at dawn does not cause the sun to rise.”)

Illustration by Giselle Potter for Gertrude Stein’s posthumously published ‘To Do: A Book of Alphabets and Birthdays.’ Click image for details.

Shlain frames the premise:

Of all the sacred cows allowed to roam unimpeded in our culture, few are as revered as literacy. Its benefits have been so incontestable that in the five millennia since the advent of the written word numerous poets and writers have extolled its virtues. Few paused to consider its costs. . . . One pernicious effect of literacy has gone largely unnoticed: writing subliminally fosters a patriarchal outlook. Writing of any kind, but especially its alphabetic form, diminishes feminine values and with them, women’s power in the culture.

More at  How the Invention of the Alphabet Usurped Female Power in Society and Sparked the Rise of Patriarchy in Human Culture | Brain Pickings.

Making Susannah Run! Author Susannah Cord On Record | Novel Ideas

Author Susannah Cord on the Record

Good children’s authors are a rare commodity. Susannah Cord is one of those rare children’s authors. Her book “Fenella: A Fable of a Fairy Afraid To Fly” is a really special book. “Fenella”  is a beautiful young fairy with a wonderful family and a perfect life – except for one thing. Unlike the other fairies in the fairy kingdom, Fenella is afraid to fly! How will she ever get over this fear and discover her true name? Join Fenella on an exciting journey as she discovers that maybe flying isn’t so scary after all.

Pure class!

Q) Good morning! So let me start by asking you a short, sweet and simple question. How would you describe your writing style in two sentences?

A) From the heart.  I have to feel it to write it.

Q) How long does it take for you to write a chapter?

A) That depends upon the length of the chapter! I really have no way to give a clear answer, because I don’t write chapters to fit a number of pages, but to tell their part of the story, then shut up.  Each chapter has a life of its own, and I don’t really get to say how long a lifespan it gets! In my book Each Wind That Blows, some chapters are maybe 10-15 pages long, others only a page or two. But I can write a lot in a short time when things are really cooking. One drawback is that I spell a lot better than I type, so I have to go back and fix a lot of typos if I’ve been flying along.

Q) What is the best part of the writing process for you?

A) Both the beginning when the wall crumbles and the words start to flow, and hitting ‘Save’ with a big sigh of relief. That feeling of having said all I wanted to say in a way I feel expresses what’s been tumbling around inside me. The afterglow of a really good writing session! I feel peaceful, content, I am able to put my mind to rest, something I am not generally good at.

Q) If you had the opportunity to get a message across to a lot of people—what would that message be?

A) Don’t take yourself for granted. Time flies. Be who you came to be and to hell with the rest.

Q) Do you ask yourself questions or do you settle for what you know?

A) Oh, I ask questions to the point I want to mute myself. Sometimes I wish I had a mute button for my brain.

Q) When it’s all said and done—will you have said more or done more?

A) I hope that’s a question I won’t be able to truly answer for a very long time! My bucket list is about ten miles long.

Q) Which activities make you lose track of time?

A) Anything creative. Writing, of course. Time in nature – riding safaris completely lose me time-wise; by Day Three I have no idea what day it is or how long I’ve been there. Photography. Drawing and painting, which I don’t do enough anymore at all. Designing anything. My mockbook for my children’s book Fenella is legendary at the publishing house. They asked for something simple, and I gave them this book of text, drawings, doodles, ribbons and so on. I didn’t intend to – it just happened, and time took a back seat to the process.

My horses are great time assassins. I look up and 6 hours just flew by while I played at the barn. People may not think being with horses is particularly creative, but when you train with the horse in mind, you have to be open to your creative instincts because they will tell you what the horse needs, whereas know how and technique only ever tell you what you want (but usually aren’t getting). And to be a good trainer, you have to answer the horses’ needs to get what you want.

Much more at  Making Susannah Run! Author Susannah Cord On Record | Novel Ideas.

and on Amazon

 

Interview with Matteo Strukul – Sugarpulp Magazine

Matteo Strukul is a 40-year-old Italian writer whose first novel, La ballata di Mila, is published in English by Exhibit A

“Sponsored” by Massimo Carlotto, Strukul wrote a second novel featuring Mila, Regina nera, also optioned by Exhibit A.

His first non-Mila novel, La giostra dei fiori spezzati, is a gaslamp thriller that will be published in Italy in April 2014.

 

Please introduce Matteo Strukul to us.

Well, first of all, I’m a man who loves life, ice hockey (I’m a huge fan of Asiago Hockey 1935, Montreal Canadiens and Berlin Eisbären) and rock ’n’ roll music (The Black Crowes, Rival Sons, Buckcherry and all the old stuff like Led Zep or Skynyrd). I like dark beer and adore American pulp-crime fiction novels and movies. At the same time I read so many European authors and literature and my favourite wine is an Italian red wine: Raboso del Piave. I think that my land – Veneto, in the Northeast of Italy – is the most beautiful piece of Earth in the world. I’m so lucky to have grown up here, in this area, in towns like Padova, Venezia, Verona: some of the jewels in the crown of Veneto.

Who is Mila Zago?

Mila Zago is a bounty hunter, but before of this she was and is a victim, a girl violated by men, a girl who grew up just to have her vengeance. So she is merciless now, strong and beautiful, but she feels she is damaged goods, she doesn’t like what she became. Finally, Mila is a broken soul. Anyway, we will fully understand how broken she is only after the second novel, Black Queen. Anyway there’s something wrong and dark with her, she is a kind of mixture between Luc Besson’s Nikita and the Punisher.

What inspired you to create such a character?

I think it was the woman I love. Her name is Silvia and she’s my wife. She is so courageous and generous and she is full of beauty and grace. But I think that every woman we love and we know has a beautiful way to show us how powerful a woman could be. Man, they are sincere and strong, and in some way that I can’t explain, they are incorruptible and incredibly honest, well more than men that’s for sure, ha ha! And if you think of characters like Tarantino’s Beatrix Kiddo or Luc Besson’s Nikita or Stieg Larsson’s Lisbeth Salander, wow they are wonderful and very incorruptible. In some way they just want two kind of things: vengeance and love or rage and grace you know what I mean? There’s a kind of German Romanticism, you know, that you can feel and touch with characters like those, especially thinking about Friedrich Schiller’s The Robbers or Mary Stuart, Wolfgang Goethe’s The Sorrows of Young Werther. Those stories have that kind of integrity, purity and desperation. Also, I wanted to create a woman with that kind of backstory, created in cold blood: some evil men have made Mila what she is now, but they can’t change her nature, she is still a wonderful, pure woman.

Tell us about the other media in which Mila Zago appeared: a comics mini-series (still unfinished), a movie trailer… is there anything else?

Not at the moment, indeed, even if I know that the two books are going to be optioned for a film adaptation. So we have to keep our fingers crossed. I’m working on the third novel, ‘cause Mila is doing well in Italy. Of course, a videogame, based on the novels, would be a fantastic idea! Come on video game mofos. Give a guy a chance!

Interview with Matteo StrukulWhat does it mean to you to be publishing Mila in English?Well, it’s amazing, it’s like when a dream comes true. You know, I have some authors who I simply love as a reader. People like Allan Guthrie, Joe R. Lansdale, Victor Gischler, Jason Starr, Tim Willocks, Anthony Neil Smith, Duane Swierczynsky, Gregg Hurwitz, Greg Rucka, Chuck Wendig, well all those kind of guys and novels: pulp-crime-dark-urban-fanta-thriller, such things. I read hundreds and hundreds of those kind of books and comics. And I have all these names in my minds, and now, well man, my little Mila is on the same shelves not far from those giants? I could have killed for this some years ago, ha ha, and if someone had been so kind to tell me that one day that dream would come true, well I think that I would have told him just: “Man, are you kidding me?” And now… More than this I’m very proud to be part of a fantastic team like Angry Robot’s crime fiction imprint Exhibit A. I do thank so much Allan Guthrie for his fantastic work as scout and agent and friend and master and of course Emlyn Rees and Marc Gascoigne to be so crazy to think that this Italian guy could do something good for the imprint! They have done a hell of a job. Angry Robot and Exhibit A are purely pop culture, and I’m very proud to be part of it, my new editor, Bryon Quertermous is a cool guy and I feel at home at Exhibit A, really the best imprint that I could dream of.

More at Interview with Matteo Strukul.

Give us a soundtrack for The Ballad of Mila.

 

1 “Black Moon Creeping” (The Black Crowes); 2 “Keep on Swinging” (Rival Sons); 3 “Bartholomew” (The Silent Comedy); 4 “D’Yer Mak’er” (Led Zeppelin); 5 “Spanish Stroll” (Willy De Ville); 6 “Angels of Silence” (Counting Crows); 7 “Interstate Love Song” (Stone Temple Pilots); 8 “Layla” (Eric Clapton); 9 You Wear It Well (Rod Stewart); 10 “Cochise” (Audioslave); 11 “Sweet Home Alabama” (Lynyrd Skynyrd).

via Interview with Matteo Strukul.

We are a legitimate business! |Catching up with Playing in the World Game

Playing in the World Game

spam

Have a look at this bit of processed meat that appeared in my inbox yesterday:

We are looking for some people that are interested in working from their home on a part or full-time basis.If you want to earn $100, $200 or even up to $500 a day, and you don’t mind writing some short opinions up, this is the perfect opportunity for you!We work with hundreds of companies such as 20th Century Fox, Paramount Entertainment, Ford Motor Company, Google and more!We recruit people to fill 1000s of jobs for companies like this every year.Some of the positions that are available are:

  • Write Short Reviews Of Restaurants (Up To $150 per review)
  • Write Simple Blog Posts (Up to $30 per Blog Post)
  • Review Hollywood Movie Scripts (Up to $500 per Movie Script)
  • Write Short Articles About A Variety of Topics (Up to $200 per article)
  • Review Websites For Inappropriate Content…

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we’re both heading home |Catching up with Chester Maynes

chester maynes

eyes closed to
the mad world
animals move
and something
there is beautiful
crazy hell
imperfect real

freedom is seeing
ghosts and shadows
in the sky
foreign love
locked us in
a room where
we confess
our secrets

we feel
the leather
seats of the car
close to each
other and we
feel the heartbeats
of our souls

we drive until
we know that
we’re heading
nowhere but home

2014

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Prejudice | Catching up with Theft and Sorcery

Theft and Sorcery

I’m running out of ways to start these posts. It’s always a bit of a struggle to come up with a paragraph that’s long enough to function as a good opening while at the same time not giving away the subject of the post. Well, other than the title, of course, but since I suck at titles they don’t necessarily cover what I ramble on about. So anyway, this is part 23 of my 26-Week Book Challenge, and this week I’m covering a book that changed my opinion about something.

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a social network that allows users to share their innermost thoughts, secrets, and confessions with complete anonymity | Welcome to a new friend: ChronicleMe

welcome email header 2

 

Welcome to ChronicleMe’s Blog!

ChronicleMe (CMe) is a social network that  allows users to share their innermost thoughts, secrets, and confessions with complete anonymity in a safe, judgment free environment. Users select when and to whom they are anonymous thus creating a safer, more meaningful way to communicate online. The results of our positive community are absolutely gorgeous. Join today for free at www.chronicleme.com and enjoy the “Freedom of Anonymity!”

National Self Injury Awareness Day

ChronicleMe.com is pleased to partner with S.A.F.E Alternatives, the world-renowned treatment program which has helped thousands of people successfully end self-injurious behavior.

March 1st is National Self Injury Awareness Day. From February 24th to March 3rd, ChronicleMe will donate one dollar to S.A.F.E. for each new user that signs up. Please help us by inviting your friends to www.chronicleme.com through text, email, and/or social media. Campaign details are available on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

On behalf of ChronicleMe and S.A.F.E. Alternatives, thank you for your potentially life-saving generosity.

Sunday Secrets 3.16.2014

Here are a few of the most shared secrets this week from ChronicleMe.com, the anonymous and positive social network!

“I came out to my parents the other day. After they nearly kicked me out and kicked me on my way to my room (leaving a bruise) they had the gall to tell me that I’m making it up… I’ve been dating girls for 5 years now.”

“i make up stories to impress my son”

I threw a surprise bday party for my sister and none of her friends showed up so I threw away the cake, popped the balloons, and put away the games. She will never know.

“Never thought I would say this but I miss my older brother. He went off to college and ill never say it to his face but I really really wish he was here to get me through tough times.”

“I wish my boss spent more time with us than with his mistress”

About Kate Burton | Welcome to a new friend; Kathryn L. Burton

Book Art

Children’s Verse Essays Notebook Pages Paintings Political Poetry Recovery/Treatment Sonnets

Poet & Artist

 

About Kate Burton

 

Burton lives in the South End of Boston with her family. She received her MFA in poetry from Emerson College. She’s been published in The Endicott Review, and the Port Planet—she has also self-published Hinterland, a Chapbook, and Words and Pictures with Gordon Przybyla. Caveat: some of these poems are a work of fiction…names and places and events may have been altered.

Please consider donating by going to the donate page on this blog. Your support is appreciated.

 

Fiction, Poetry AS. In English the term fiction is apposite to the novel and the short story, but not necessarily to poetry. Readers assume that novelists draw loosely on facts and freely on the imagination to create characters, stories, and objects; but they know that poems can—but do not have to be—fictional. The fictional status of a work of literature depends not on linguistics or formal considerations but on cultural conventions such as the suspension of disbelief or the willingness to entertain possibilities and impossibilities. In a work of fiction, the audience is willing to approach what it is being told in a spirit of make-believe and to allow that the pronouncements of a narrator or a lyrical voice may not correspond to the beliefs of an author. Moreover, the relation between a writer and his or her audience is a social one based on the understanding that imagination does not have to adhere to facts. The social, almost contractual nature of this relationship is underscored by the sense of betrayal some feel when a work they thought was autobiographical or historical turns out the grounded on the kind of fabrication that would have been readily accepted in a work of Fiction. ….(Princeton Encyclopedia)

via About Kate Burton | Kathryn L. Burton.

Book Art

 

redblock 1

 

 

 

Hilja

 

anofloveThe Anatomy of Love (Book of Sonnets)

 

Two love poemsTwo Love Poems (Book of Poems)

IMG_0345

Much more – Click Here

Essays

The abusers by using Feminist Theory

This is an essay of my opinion of women in the arts. Like knowing art is beauty, thus able to weed through destructive forces of an art, like say the current barbaric focus with women’s “erotic poetry.”  Which is bullshit. Surely any focus on the lower senses restricted to a gender, women’s poetry specifically, is not only an insult to women, but a failure to progress the art of poetry, in that I would hope any feminist school within the scope of poetry would strive for maturing the female poet, especially in the history of the collective with spirituality, beauty and art, which women have fought the long battle for name, title, intellect, property and rights. For example, Sappho to Rossetti, to Woolf and to Dickinson, to Sexton. To me it seems contemporary criticism focuses on women’s obsessive self and destructive forces and those of the sexual, rather than her art. Perhaps first was the attack on the women’s ability to write, as with social class, than intellect, then emotional weaknesses, so to manipulate insults and funding for education, but in general serious attacks are usually made on the artist personality, whether woman or man, but especially the woman.

I think if I were to build a school of criticism, say men, which looked to dissect the imagery or symbolism of sexual images, I’d look in Longfellow, or Donne’s poetry in the pursuit of his sexual images, like the penis, or the genitals. However, anything like it would consider myself in a bout with serious folly. Imagine, a literary group hoping to draw the curtain, like on women’s art, on men’s pursuit of the penis as the source of his art, like women to the vagina? Ha!

In all seriousness to degrade an art by theories on sexuality is to relieve the artist of any faults, like that of self-destruction, in that criticism and theories are deconstructing the beauty,

Much more Click Here

“Writing Your Way To The Top Isn’t Hard!” | Novel Ideas

Bestselling Author Cliff Roberts – “Writing Your Way To The Top Isn’t Hard!”

Cliff Roberts wago wheel

 

“Reprisal! The Sorrow,” the book cover says.

This is Cliff Roberts — a talkative guy in a pair of slacks with a manuscript in in his hand.

“I just gave up cigarettes and wrote better than I ever believed I could have,” he says, sitting in his office. Sales awards litter the walls.

This is Roberts — Clifford Ezekiel Roberts from Dearborn, Michigan, where he almost became a life-long politician instead of one of the most popular Indie thriller authors of the year. His success grew quickly simply because he has both adult and juvenile appeal.

The Kindle-after-dark sets dig him the most.

Republican hearts turn misty when they read his books. Democratic eyes take on a far-away stare.

Like his peers in the thriller business– Roberts is a man with a story on his mind every single minute of the day. The trade is saying that if Cussler had Roberts self-assurance, he could be another Cliff Roberts.

This is Roberts, with the two personalities, telling me he has “a desire to be the biggest writer in the world because his stories can’t be held back.”

He said, “There are two Robertses — the one the public sees, and the poor boy from Dearborn who wants to make enough dough to eat.

“Roberts is me in this room where I worry about the next book for weeks. Roberts is also the guy who goes out there and moves books. The struggle is between Roberts and Roberts.

“Some night I’ll probably write something I will feel confident with from it’s moment of conception.

“The struggle is to match a book with it’s audience. I have to struggle to bring Roberts home and write the smash hits he’s capable of.”

Roberts is controversial — and as self-assured as an bomb.

“How do I feel about publicity?” he asked me with a serious look on his face, and then answered, “I love it.”

He continued, ”I guess I’m controversial because I say what I feel. I can’t tell anyone I don’t worry about the threat of terrorism. I do and I worry that we are all in danger. I get into trouble because am too vocal about my beliefs at times. My PR guy hides his face.

Much More at Bestselling Author Cliff Roberts – “Writing Your Way To The Top Isn’t Hard!” | Novel Ideas.

Welcome to a very old friend: pigeon lips :You’ll be older too…

 

You’ll be older too

Will you still love me
When I’m 64?
Well, yesterday I turned 65
And here we are.

Long partnerships share the essence of Life itself;
An unflinching WILL to go on no matter what.
Disappointments seem beside the point;
After all, we did do this together.
With laughs sometimes and loads of ironic detachment;
Its ALL we were meant to do.

I wake in the morning before you do.
I stroke your cheek with my fingers,
I feel the soft warmth of your shoulder,
I think,
Oh good, another day.

Bob Solomon

via .

Touching the toes of the Gods

Touching the toes of the Gods

 

 

I had an interesting encounter – albeit a very brief one – with a top shelf, class A author last week.reaching

 

As you know I’ve been struggling with the concept of PR of late, trying to figure out what I can do to help get the word out on The Clearing and give the book a fighting chance in the market. Among the many ideas I had was to just ask for advice. That’s right, just ask. And who better to ask than someone who had been at the lowly rung I’m on now – and had managed to push on upward.

 

And so, in the spirit of ah-what-the-heck, I shot for the moon.

 

I won’t tell you the name of the author, because I think that would be an invasion, but I will tell you that I got a personal reply – and within hours – and I was pretty damn thrilled. And we’re talking a top-of-the-game name here.  (And yes, I know it’ll drive you mad trying to guess who it is).  Now, I wish the story could get a little more exciting here, and that I could report back that he and I are now set to meet over a coffee where he would spin yarn after yarn about his own experiences in book promotion in the lean years.

 

But no – that’s not happening.

via Touching the toes of the Gods.

Business Arabic : be’day’ah qa’wi’yah li mo’sim almab’yi’aAt

NOTE TO SELF & DEMONIC WINDBAG IN MY HEAD |Catching up

Celebrating Pancake Day

allaboutmanners

Pancake day

Pancake Day also known as Shrove Tuesday in Britain. Pancake day is the day before Ash Wednesday and the start of Lent. ‘Shrove’ – as in Shrove Tuesday – stems from old English word ‘shrive’, meaning ‘confess all sins’. It is called Pancake Day because it is the day traditionally for eating pancakes as pancake recipes were a way to use up any stocks of milk, butter and eggs which were forbidden during the abstinence of Lent. 
Pancake Day, Pancake Recipe 
Pancakes Recipes from Around the World 

History

The earliest records of pancakes and pancake tossing appeared in the fifteenth century when the pancakes were a little thicker than the modern pancake; they would also often have added spices for a little decadence. It wasn’t until the eighteenth century and the influence of French cooking and their thin crepes that pancakes more as we know them now. 

Pancake Customs in…

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Higgins Beach

Getcha Free Copy of Courier Right Here! Extra! Extra!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Courier by Terry  Irving

Courier

by Terry Irving

Giveaway ends April 10, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

 

Author’s Earnings Part 1 -“Don’t quit your day job” Amazing Stories

Michael J. Sullivan

 We’ve all heard the old adage, “Don’t quit your day job” when it comes to writing for a living. It’s true that there are far too many authors who have to squeeze writing around the dreaded “day job” to keep the bills paid. Also, there is no question that self-publishing, has proven itself to be viable for some…but exactly how many is always in dispute. There has always been secrecy surrounding how much income a traditional published earns, and when many self-published authors share their numbers it is met with skepticism.

In the past, self-publishing was a “fallback” position, the option many took when they couldn’t get a contract. But more and more authors are choosing this option, even turning down very lucrative offers. H.M. Ward turned down more than 1.5 Million in contracts to self-publish and she became the #1 Bestselling Kindle Direct Author over the Christmas season (even though she has NEVER traditionally published). Likewise Brenna Aubrey turned down $120,000 for a three-book deal and instead went the do-it-yourself route. I myself calculated that I would lose $200,000 – $250,000 by going traditional, but I thought it was a price I should pay to further my career. As it turned out, that didn’t happen, but it is in large part due to larger than expected audio sales and foreign contracts.

So the question that is on every author’s mind is, “Which path should I take?” For the record, I see benefits in both routes, and actually think there is a good argument to be made for hybrid authorship. Then there are the people who have no interest in one or the other. Entrepreneur authors who can’t bring themselves to signing contracts that are too weighted in the publisher’s favor, as well as those who don’t want anything to do with taking on all the responsibilities that the publisher does for them, have a pretty clear direction. But increasingly there are those who feel they could go either way and just don’t know which way to turn.

While money isn’t the only consideration, it certainly is a large one. The problem is getting good data on this is nearly impossible, as we shall see.

DBW & Writer’s Digest Survey

Recently DBW and Writer’s Digest teamed up to do an author survey, collecting data from more than 9,200 authors. I myself took it, and found the questions to be really well thought out. The best part was they divided up authors into four distinct types: Aspiring, Traditional only, Self-publish only, and Hybrids (who both self and traditionally publish), which is exactly the way I think about the pool of authors. The data has been analyzed by Dana Beth Weinberg, who is well qualified to take the mass of information and try to break it down to chunks that can provide insights.

It was an ambitious project, and generally well executed, but there are some significant problems. I should note that these aren’t introduced by Jeremy Greenfield and Dana Beth Weinberg, but problems with surveys in general.

More at  Author’s Earnings – Amazing Stories.

 

Author’s Earnings: Part 2 – Amazing Stories

Michael J. Sullivan

As I wrote about in my last post, the data that Hugh Howey and “Data Guy” are extracting from Amazon is quite interesting. With it we can see how authors who have taken various routes are selling at the world’s largest bookstore. Amazon is of course just one venue, but if authors are able to earn full-time livings off of it alone, than it really doesn’t matter (to some) that they don’t have books sitting on a shelf at Barnes and Noble.

Data Guy was nice enough to provide me with a data pull of just fantasy titles (as that is the genre I’m most concerned with). And I’m going to share some of the things I found from it. So let me tell you a bit about the data set:

  • Taken on 2/7/2014
  • Consists of 1,452 Fantasy Titles
  • Rankings range is 17 – 556,100

I like this pool of data because it represents a large range of different types of authors, including the mid-list. I took this data set and divided it into 7 groups:

  • Extreme Best Sellers (Rankings 1 – 100): Most authors will never have a book that hits this range, and if they do it may be very short lived. It usually occurs when a highly anticipated book is first released or (more often) when a well selling book becomes heavily discounted or is picked for an Amazon promotion such as the Daily Deal. To give people an idea of the sales at this level, I broke the top 100 on two occasions with Theft of Swords (both due to a Daily Deal). One was in December 23, 2012 the other was June 29, 2013. In both cases I hit #17 and the rise and fall from that rank showed similar patterns. One day sales on Dec 23rd  was more than 4,700 copies and on June 29th the sales were 3,400.
  • Bestsellers (Rankings 101 – 1,000): Any author selling in this range should be a pretty happy camper. They will be selling about 100 to 1,000 books a day or 3,000 to 30,000 books a month. Considering a solid mid-list trade paperback will sell 5,000 -10,000 copies over its entire time in print, this level of sales is a good place to be. Also because there are 900 potential slots, the likelihood of reaching these levels is more obtainable. I even know of books that have spent months or even more than a year at these levels. Still, while easier than the Extreme Best Seller status, I’m going to consider people in this category as close enough to the top of the pool that I don’t want to spend much time with them, as few will reach this standing.
  • High Mid-list (Rankings 1,001 – 3,000): At this range authors are selling 80 – 100 books a day and hitting some of the secondary bestsellers list (such as Epic Fantasy or Sword & Sorcery). Top ranking at the time of this article for Epic Fantasy was 5,551 although in the past I’ve seen this as low as 3,000).  People with ranking as this level are doing very well and can be considered successful authors if their appearance at this (or the next level) isn’t a momentary blip of just a few days.
  •  Mid-list (Rankings 3,001 – 10,000): This is a range I’m very familiar with as my books have been there for more than two years. Sales are generally 15 – 80 books a day which still produces 5,475 – 29,200 books a year. At this level of sales it only takes a few released titles that are priced well to earn a living wage. I think this is an obtainable level that “a good” author can obtain. What do I mean by “good” – a book that gets good ratings and is recommended by those that read it. Because there are 7,000 slots, this range represents a band that allows for a good number of authors.
  • Low Mid-list (Ranking 10,001 – 25,000 range): Those selling in this range will sell a “respectable” number of books over the course of its time in print only 5 – 15 books a day but they will add up: 1,825 – 5,475 over the course of the year. Authors at this ranking aren’t paying all their bills (unless they have many titles out), but they have some nice extra money for a trip or to pay some of their expenses. They can hang their head proudly by producing a book that isn’t a failure.
  • Low Selling (Ranking 25,001 – 100,000): Those at this level sell 1 – 5 books a day. No one is making any serious money at this ranking level, and generally it is a level that books fall to after they have seen their peaks, but are still generally well regarded by readers. If this level is the height of a book’s ranking it would have generally been thought of as a failure by traditional publishing standards and would only sell a few hundred (or thousand) over its time in print.
  • Not Selling (Ranking 100,001 – 500,000): Books at this level are selling a book every few days or maybe once a week. More often than not, they will be: poorly execute books; those written by inexperienced authors; or books that have fallen off the radar even if they had some popularity at some point. For those with rankings over 500,000 they might only get 4 or 5 sales in a month. These are books that are generally thought of as “self-published dreck” who fall into the abyss of obscurity. From an income perspective these books are pretty much non-existent.

 

Go to  Author’s Earnings: Part 2 – Amazing Stories.

Author’s Earnings: Part 3 Mid-list Print Sales – Amazing Stories

Michael J. Sullivan

This week I’m continuing in my series regarding Author’s income. If you haven’t read the other posts here they are:

One of the advantages that traditional publishing has is extensive print distribution. When I was self-published my print sales were a small fraction (about 5% or less depending on the month) of my total sales. Most self-published authors I speak to only see 1% – 2%.  But what kind of money are we really talking about?  Today I want to explore a typical mid-list author’s sales.

To do this analysis I used Bookscan data. Bookscan is the industry standard when it comes to how many print copies are sold in the United States. Run by the Nielsen Organization (the same ones that track TV shows), they track weekly point-of-purchase sales for books.  This means books that actually walked out the store, bought by a real person…not books that left a warehouse and may or may not be on a shelf in a store.  Nielsen estimates their numbers to account for 75% of all sales made.  Depending on whom you are published through, Nielsen numbers could be way off. I’ve heard some people from small presses complain that bookscan is only picking up 20% of their sales, but for a book from a major publisher I do think they are capturing pretty accurate data.  For my own books, I’ve seen that Bookscan is pretty consistently at 68% of my net sales.

To run the numbers I picked a “representative” mid-list author. The book I selected came out over a year ago, is the first in a new series, is released as a trade paperback, and the author had previously published six books across two series.  They are well known and well respected and based on my knowledge of the industry I would call them a “good solid mid-list author.” This is the type of author who has established themselves as a “name” in the industry and would likely not have any problem getting any new books picked up.

More at Author’s Earnings: Part 3 Mid-list Print Sales – Amazing Stories.

Haiku: Rebirth

Rob's Surf Report

Rebirth

Early Spring at the Station (Photo credit: Ian Sane)

Spring flows like iron
melting in time’s ruthless forge —
called forth from slumber.


Books I've Read: Ender's Game (Photo credit: Myles!)

Today is so nice, I had to just enjoy the effortless morning. We got up and had our Sunday caramel rolls and coffee, and watched Ender’s Game. Being a fan of that series and of Orson Scott Card (the big-name sci-fi author who wrote that book), I have to say that I’m torn between the feeling that that movie was way overdue, and the feeling that it would not have been nearly as good had it been made earlier. Then we ended up putting together videos in iMovie (which I have no prior experience with) just for kicks, and then I was like, “hey. I need to post a haiku and go running. The weather says it’s fifty-two degrees outside, and it’s nice.”

I stepped outside. It feels…

View original post 76 more words

poem-spring melt

Shawn L. Bird

The snow is melting!

I hear water tumbling like a waterfall

dripping into pool.

Cascading down my window blinds

puddling inside my door.

The snow is melting!

and I need a new roof.

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View original post

Ryan Gruss | Inspirations & Ideas from a young entrepeneur

About

RG Blog About Me Pictures

Hi there, my name is Ryan Gruss and I’m a young entrepreneur out to change the world. I’m currently working with my dad, brother and a team of others on Showzee, a beautiful new platform for people to showcase their talents & interests and connect with likeminded people. Showzee will be launching into a beta phase early next year!

Our goal with Showzee is to inspire people to show the world what they can do. For me, being inspired is what helps us to feel empowered and to be creative with our ideas.

This blog is a collection of my inspirations & ideas from across the globe – including technology, food, travel, culture, history and current affairs among other things.

If you’d like to get in touch, send over an email to ryan.gruss@showzee.com

Thanks for reading my blog, I hope it inspires you to explore something new!!

Ryan Gruss | Inspirations & Ideas from a young entrepeneur.

#19 – 10 Strange Restaurant Concepts

The last few weeks have been very hectic for me, so it’s great that I’ve finally had the chance to write a new blog post.

As many of you would have seen, I’ve previously done 2 posts showcasing some of the San Pellegrino Best Restaurants in the World.

For this post, I’m sharing 10 more restaurants with you, which have a different kind of uniqueness:

#1 – Modern Toilet Restaurant, Taiwan

Whilst the mere thought of eating a toilet-themed menu off a table made from a bathtub would put many of us off, the Modern Toilet Restaurant in Taiwan is a big hit with tourists & locals alike.

#2 – Disaster Café, Spain

What could be better than enjoying a 3 course Spanish meal in the beautiful seaside town of Lloret De Mar? Enjoying your meal whilst experiencing a 7.8 magnitude earthquake! That’s what diners at the Disaster Café undergo as their meal (& nerves) are tested under the force of the restaurant’s quakes.

#3 – Ithaa Undersea Restaurant, Maldives

Created as part of the Hilton Maldives Resort, the Ithaa Restaurant is the first restaurant of its kind. Sitting almost 5m below sea level, the restaurant offers up to 14 diners a 270 degree panoramic experience with views of the clear waters and abundant coral reef around them.

For the rest Click Here

#18 – A Poem for my Dad!

I’ve been really flattered to see such praise for the poems I’ve posted recently. It’s great to see such a positive reaction to some of my musings!

As they seem to be popular with everyone, let me share another of my personal poems. This was written a couple of years back for my dad.

Take a look below and I hope you enjoy!

He took the strength of an earthquake,
The splendour of a tree,
The warmth of a summer sun,
The calm of a gentle sea,
The generous soul of nature,
The comforting arm of night,
The knowledge of the ages,
The power of the eagle’s flight,
The joy of a morning in spring,
The faith of a mustard seed,
The patience of eternity,
The depth of a family need,

 Then he combined these qualities,
When there was nothing more to add,
He knew his masterpiece was complete,
And so,

He called it … Dad

Thanks again for checking out my blog and let me know your thoughts below!!

Failure is NOT Final |Welcome to a new friend: Be YOU Jewels

Empowering women to look stunning & feel resilient through inspirational quotes & stories.

The Owner

IMG_20140114_090421

Be You Jewels was started in 2013 by G’Mesha Blake. G’Mesha is a devout Christian mother and wife who hails from McClellanville, SC, a small town on the outskirts of Charleston, SC. G’Mesha currently resides in High Point, NC. with her husband and daughter.

G’Mesha obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting from the Alice Carson Tisdale Honors College at Claflin University in Orangeburg, SC, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude in 2009. She also became a member of the Gamma Chi Chapter of the Illustrious Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., at Claflin University, on March 30, 2007.

After starting her career with a higher education institution in 2010, G’Mesha returned to school to receive a Masters of Business Administration which she obtained from the University of Phoenix in 2012.

G’Mesha has always loved bargain shopping for clothes, shoes, and accessories which is why she has priced all items in the store $15 or less. G’Mesha has also always been an “open book” and had a passion for uplifting and encouraging other women to love and embrace their authentic selves, flaws and all, so they can live freely while striving to be better in all aspects of life.

As a result, G’Mesha took a leap of faith and started Be YOU Jewels to empower women to look stunning and feel resilient through inspirational quotes and stylish jewelry and accessories!

 

Failure is NOT Final

Hello JEWEL! I hope you had a great weekend and start to this new week that will bring you brand new opportunites!

Today my post is inspired by a personal business failure. Several months ago I decided to be long eyed and took on a little more than I could chew. I tried having an online presence on all social media sites, a blog, email subscription and everything else a registered, start-up small business must do. And, boy did I fail horribly!!

However, when you’re an opportunist like myself failure is not final. Failure, instead, is an opportunity to rebuild and restart. Not with the same mindset, not feeling defeated, not replaying the failure but with purpose and vengeance!!!

If you’re smart and serious about being the best, you’d also have done your research & gained some knowledge about how to turn your failure into a success story!

Today, by the grace of God, I’m proud to say that I have, and I’m a living witness that FAILURE IS NOT FINAL!

I encourage you to push through the hurt, fight through the feeling of defeat. Failure is not final! Success is waiting for you!

Subscribe to my mailing list for weekly inspiration http://eepurl.com/PunFn

via Failure is NOT Final | Be YOU Jewels.

More of Him

image

Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and all other things will be added unto you (Matthew 6:33)

If you don’t want to stay stagnant and want more than a mediocre life then you’re always looking for “the next best thing to do.” Your mind hardly ever settles and you’re always thinking about the next level and what it’s going to take to get there. If that means sleepless nights, so be it. If that means sacrificing no days off, bring it on. We’re willing to do whatever it takes because we want it. Constantly thinking “if I get one more…” And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, BUT….

Don’t let your want for more THINGS make you forget about your need for the maker of ALL things! He knows and promised to supply all our needs according to His riches and glory in Heaven (Philippians 4:19), which is limitless, so don’t think for one second He doesn’t know or can’t do anything about your situation! You are not in it alone! What is impossible for man is possible with Christ (Philippians 4:13).

When there’s a shortage, you don’t need more RESOURCES (money, people, attention, followers, etc). Go to the SOURCE of ALL things (the One who blesses you with the resources). See the NEED for more of Him, and an abundance of everything you need will be added unto you! (Jeremiah 29:12)

Stay BEYOUtiful JEWELS!!

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