Tagged with "abroad"
Self-publish and be damned? Tags: writing Writers Abroad self-publishing Kindle Amazon

This yearís NaNoWriMo is approaching the halfway point. Congrats to everyone taking part. Even if you donít make the 50K words, the commitment is still a great achievement.

Once the month is over, the dust has settled, youíve added another 30K words, rewritten it, had it beta-read and edited it again for the nth time Ė what do you do then?

  • Chalk it up to experience and put it in the proverbial drawer?
  • Submit it to agents or to the rare publishers that accept unagented submissions?
  • Self-publish it?

The first option would be a pity after so much effort, but itís your novel. We all know how difficult the second is. So what about the third option?

Self-publishing became a lot easier after the advent of e-books and print on demand. For some time, though, it was widely regarded as an option for work that wasnít good enough to be published by traditional means. Fast forward to 2017 and some of the most successful authors are self-publishing their books. Itís not necessarily an either/or: some of those authors, such as our own Nicola (Nina to her fans), continue to be traditionally published as well.

The stigma that once applied to self-publishing has been largely dispelled. There is still a quality issue in some cases, but that also applies to traditional publishing.

I never thought I would self-publish a book, because I was afraid of everything that went with it. You are responsible for the whole thing: writing, quality control, editing, production, cover design and sales and marketing. This is not to say that you do all of these things yourself Ė in fact, I would always advocate commissioning professional editors and designers Ė but you are the driving force behind the project.

I dipped a toe in the water when I recently self-published via Amazon a collection of my short stories set in France. Having already been traditionally published, this was an experiment and I started off with something short (itís 104 printed pages) and uncomplicated.

A great deal of advice exists, but sometimes you donít find it until itís too late. I learned many things in a short time, but these are the key ones:

Research as much as you can beforehand.†Amazon provides guidance, but itís always good to talk to other authors who have done it. This can save you from irrevocable mistakes.

Allow enough time to do everything and do it in the right order.†I almost came a cropper here. For various reasons, I wanted my own ISBNs. Since I live in France, I had to apply to the French ISBN agency. They said it would take three weeks. This almost scuppered my already-announced publication date. Fortunately, after I pleaded urgency, they emailed them the following day.

Donít try to do everything yourself.†A three year-old has better design skills than I do. Amazon provides its own cover design templates, but itís difficult to make them look professional. In my view, a professional-looking cover can make a lot of difference to potential buyers, so I commissioned a designer and was delighted with the results. As I said above, a professional editor is also a good idea.

Fortunately, Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing and CreateSpace (Amazonís paperback production arm) allow you to amend and upload your manuscript and cover countless times before you hit publish. Itís still a scary feeling when you do. Then you have the nail-biting wait to see if anyone will buy it, but the marketing side is another story.

Clearly, thereís much more to self-publishing than I can go into here. But if I can do it, anyone can. Here's the result and it looks like a book!

This Week on WA 30th October 2017
Category: Site News
Tags: Writers Abroad writing

I hope everyone is enjoying the last few days of October and a few Halloween treats before many of you settle down on Wednesday to the intense concentration of NaNoWritMo. Before you lose yourself in it, hereís a roundup of whatís happening at WA this week.

Monday Muse: Jo is mostly in ghoulish, gory mood this week as she gives us the bare bones with which to create new stories and poems.

Blog: Lesley has given us an insight into whatever happened to the iconic English telephone box and an intriguing marketing tactic for authors.

Bragging Stool: The stool is spinning wildly this week with everything thatís been happening.

Five of our members have been published in Ad Hoc. Congratulations to Sue, Crilly, Maggie, Laura and ? (I havenít discovered who the fifth person is Ė please step up and take a bow if itís you!). Jill has been busy Ė she has a story included in Kosta Olive Treeís shortlist and a flash fiction in Ink Tearsí longlist. Bruceís photo and epigram have been included in Maintenant II.

Nicola has released a Christmas novella and Vanessaís French Collection will be released on 9th November.

November Challenges: Probably the biggest challenge for the coming month will be NaNoWriMo but Vanessa will post a November Challenge forum where we can add any others we discover.

WA Magazine: Jo has posted the Joomag link to the final version of Issue 7 on site under WA Publications. Please send Jo any comments so the magazine can be finalized by the end of the week.

Next Formal Meeting: The next formal meeting will be on Sunday, 26th November, 11am CET.

Poetry Project: The next meeting will be on Friday, 24th November, 3pm.

Good luck to those who are embarking on NaNoWriMo and happy writing to all of us this coming week.

This Week on Writers Abroad 25th September
Category: Site News
Tags: Writers Abroad writing ex-pat writers

The news feed is whizzing past at the moment, so it is not easy to keep up, but great to see so much activity. I have added an image at the top to see if we can stop Facebook posting our mug shots! (It didn't work...).

First and foremost, we have two new members this week, both of whom have contributed to Writers Abroad anthologies. Welcome aboard, Susan Eames and Bruce Dodson!

Monday Muse this week is a great selection of word prompts and picture prompts from Crilly. Alyson has posted them on behalf of Crilly, who is recovering from a hip operation Ė see below. Usual drill Ė 500 words (or poem) in 20 minutes or so. Just go where the inspiration takes you.

Richard is down for this weekís blog post and we wait with bated breath to see what topic heíll cover.

Apologies if Iíve missed anything, but the Bragging stool was unoccupied last week. Considering the fabulous run of WA successes recently, members have to have a break sometimes! But I can mention that Nicola has a new release today: Unspeakable in her ĎBeyond Humaní series. Dianne recently released the fifth book in her WWII series ĎThe Yankee Yearsí, Only One Remedy. Those are certainly worth a brag.

Contributions are due for the WA Magazine 7th edition by 30th September. Ideally, please post yours onsite for others to comment on if you have time. Mea culpa, just about to post mineÖ

The October Challenges and Opportunities are still on, but the November ones will be posted soon. If you know of any appropriate competitions or opportunities, please post details and links in the forum once itís up.

Crilly has been out of action for a short time while having a hip operation. We wish her all the best for her recovery and trust that she is using any period of immobility to get a lot of writing done!

Thatís all this week. If Iíve missed anything or got anything wrong please let me know.

Have a creative week.

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Writers Abroad's Bookshelf

The House at Zaronza
tagged: writers, abroad, vanessa, couchman, historical, and fiction
Love is All You Need: Ten tales of love from The Sophie King Prize
tagged: writers, abroad, sophie, king, prize, alyson, and hillbourne
Out of Control
tagged: writers, abroad, nina, croft, members, and publications
The Duke's Shadow
tagged: the, duke-s, shadow, louise, charles, debut, and novel
Foreign & Far Away
tagged: writers, abroad, amanda, hodkinson, books, charity, anthology, 2013...
Losing Control
tagged: writers, abroad, nina, and croft
Enchantment
tagged: nina, croft, writes, and abroad
Conversations with S. Teri O'Type
tagged: writers, abroad, christopher, and allen
Break Out
tagged: writers, abroad, ninca, and croft
Deadly Pursuit
tagged: writers, abroad, nina, and croft
The Calling
tagged: writers, abroad, nina, and croft
Big Book of New Short Horror
tagged: featuring, wa, member, alyson, and hillbourne
Tiger of Talmare
tagged: writers, abroad, nina, and croft

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