Tag Archive - writing tips

Targeting Genre with the KDSPY Kindle App

Recently I wrote some posts on targeting genre for big sales, as this is a topic that I’ve been very interested in, personally, for years. I always wondered just how much genre had to do with a novel’s success, and when I did my “experiment” a couple of years ago by writing in a genre that purportedly “sold itself,” I proved to myself (and perhaps to many others) that genre really matters. (If you didn’t read my blog post on The Book Designer that went viral in the writing world, take a look at it here. )

My aim was to write a novel that carefully fit a big-selling genre and see if it would sell with little effort on my part. I used a pen name, and although I did a little bit of marketing—similar to what a new author would do—I was astounded by the sales I saw. Way more than all the sales I got from my other half dozen self-published novels.

Whether You’re in It for the Money or Not

You might not care about making money off your books. But some of us have families to support and bills to pay. I felt guilty for years writing novel after novel that didn’t sell, “wasting precious time” (my assessment) when I could have been working at Wal-Mart for minimum wage and at least bringing some money in. Continue Reading…

3 Simple Ways to Boost Your Confidence As A Writer

Today’s guest post is by author and blogger Jennifer Blanchard:

As a fiction writer, you likely compare yourself to the novelists that you love. People like Stephen King and Jackie Collins and J. K. Rowling are your favorite writers, and they make you feel like you’ll never measure up. And maybe this has kept you from writing (or finishing) your story.

But no more.

Because here’s the thing. Even the pros have bad days. Even the pros have moments where they lose their confidence and feel like they have no clue what they’re doing.

Take for example, my dog, Weiland. He’s a pro at climbing the stairs in our apartment building. He’s been doing it since the day we moved in almost two years ago. But the other night, we were coming in from a car ride and he wouldn’t climb the stairs. He just sat there at the bottom of the steps, wearing his plaid jacket, cowering and making crying noises. At first my husband and I laughed and tried to coax the dog up the stairs. But he wouldn’t budge. My husband ended up going downstairs and carrying him up. But then later that night, I took Weiland out to potty. He went down the stairs and he climbed back up them with no problem.

So what happened? Why did he for one moment freak out and think he couldn’t climb the stairs? Continue Reading…

7 Mistakes to Avoid When Writing about the Military

Today’s guest post is by authors J. R. Olson and David Bruns:

As long as there’s been a military, there have been authors writing about the military. It’s a natural fit. The military provides the perfect combination of conflict and character, adversary and attitude. Some novels, like Joseph Heller’s Catch-22, seek to satirize war and the military, while others, such as Steven Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan, offer a more serious view of the battlefield. Whether your literary goal is to honor or skewer the armed forces, nothing bothers military veterans more than when well-meaning authors make factual errors about simple military customs.

We’re a pair of US Navy veterans with a combined thirty-five years of service who blog and write under the moniker The Two Navy Guys. We’re here to dish out the truth about 7 common mistakes we see from authors writing about the military: Continue Reading…

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