My daughter TALIA used to sing this song
The Brave New World of epublishing and print on demand has brought with it more freedom for writers than ever before, but it also brings with it (for the would-be professional writer) responsibilities and obligations.
I am not a multi-published, award winning, best-selling author. I once won a school prize for a 500 word essay on taking care of your pet cat, but that doesn’t seem to count for much in international literary circles.
Here is what I am. I am a new writer who believes he has something to offer, who learns fast unless it’s anything to do with IT – I have the attention span of a goldfish and the comprehension of a biscuit when it comes to anything electronic or wwwebby. It frightens me more than werewolves / vampires / zombies combined. But, I do have determination, and what I do not understand, I will either persevere with until I do, or (preferably) pay, bribe, extort, bully, or as a last resort, ask nicely for someone to help me.
A disturbing and rising phenomenon I have observed is a new breed of ‘publisher’ who will do work that you can mostly do yourself, then take up to half of whatever money you may earn. Be afraid, be very afraid. I have seen the results of some of these companies.
I am sure there are good ones and genuine people doing this who will make sure your book is well-edited, has a great cover, and will put a good cover on it – then spend time, effort and money in promoting it.
However, I have seen published books – with a ‘publishers’ imprint – that would embarrass a proverbial monkey at a typewriter. The aim of these organisations seems to be to (sometimes) take money from you, do as little work as they can to squeeze you into kindle/amazon – then sit back and hope your book makes money.
My advice ALWAYS to first time authors now is to do as much work as you can. THEN – PAY for a professional EDIT (even if you have three MFA’s and a couple of Pullitzer prizes, you are STILL unlikely to spot your own mistakes) and get a PROFESSIONAL cover designed. Your cover is your first hook to catch a reader – a badly designed cover will put them off straight away.
Don’t be tempted by the cheapest services (especially editors) – you should expect to pay $3 a page upwards – and to pay $100 upwards for a good cover.
That’s the lecture over for this week. I am happy to give advice, recommendations, assistance – all you have to do is ask – please register for my newsletter – over there on the right ->
Now - check out my book - or else!
I keep my facebook pages updated with great editors and book designers who will help you at a reasonable rate – please go and like my facebook page - www.facebook.com/arthurcrandonauthor and I tweet about them also - @arthurcrandon, so make sure you follow me on twitter.
Finally, you can see the results of my long and painful journey to my first published book Deadly Election – I hope you will read and enjoy (and review) – please let me know what you think.
Here are the cats – they are back again, due to public uproar at their absence. I have learned my lesson – Pussycats Rule!!! See you next week.
Meet the author
Arthur Crandon is a lawyer, the boring office kind, not the exciting (and much better paid) courtroom type. He worked as a solicitor for a while before embarking on an interesting life overseas. He has spent most of his time in recent years in South East Asia, more recently in Hong Kong. Before that, Arthur lived and worked in the Philippine Islands.
He loves to fish, and play the piano – but spends most of his time writing, eating, drinking and sleeping
– usually, but not always, in that order.
His first book, Deadly Election, draws on his strange imagination and his
experiences, together with those of others, in a land that, beneath a veneer of civilisation, operates like the Wild West and is very
dangerous to innocent and gullible foreigners.
STAY IN TOUCH
Subscribe to the blog and don't miss out on regular features, offers and help - as well as a bit of humour!
My thriller - Deadly Election - is now on sale at Amazon. Anyone who buys the book and leaves a review will get a signed paperback. Please subscribe to my blog and newsletter here