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Friday, December 31, 2010

Playing With Covers

I just spent the last half hour doing up another cover for my short story Jumping Thoughts. Tell me which one do you like best?
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Thursday, December 30, 2010

An Adventure Into Kindle

A Short Story on Kindle

Yep, I am experimenting with putting a previously published story up on Kindle. I'm preparing to put a novel up and had heard it recommended to experiment with a short story first so you can work out the tweaks with a much smaller file. Very good advice I might add.

So, that's what I did. I took my short story "Jumping Thoughts" which was originally published in Ride! Magazine in 1997. It has sat on my hard drive since then. Might as well put it to some use now.

Putting something up on Kindle really isn't that hard. I probably spent most of my time working on the cover which I'm sure I'll continue to tweak. The digital file for amazon was very easy to put together and I only needed to fix one thing after the preview. The cover was as I mentioned a little more time consuming as I worked on colors and the lettering. I took an old photo of me jumping one of my horses though I am still looking for a photo of the horse which inspired the story.

I'm getting kind of excited about the prospect of putting some of my other old stuff up. Next item is to play with the Smashwords and PubIt systems to get the story available at Barnes and Noble, Apple, and other ebookstores.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Publishers Overpricing Middle Grade and YA Books

Okay, here is a rant which probably won't make me very popular, but I am extremely frustrated with the practice of publishers putting middle grade and young adult fiction in hardcover. My pre-teen daughter gets $20 a month of allowance which will allow her to purchase one book a month. Yep, only one book a month. What happened to the five dollar paperback (well they were $2.99 and $3.99 when I was a pre-teen and teen)?

I personally believe these publishers are ripping off our youth. I am sorry, but those books are not worth $17.99. My daughter should not have to pay $17.99 plus tax to get the next in a series she seriously enjoys.

Shame on you publishers for taking advantage of children on the premise that adults will spend money on their kids which they wouldn't spend on themselves. What you might not be considering is I won't allow her to buy a lot of these books. I can't count the number of times we go to book stores and walk out with nothing because every book she wants to buy is above $15 and is not available in paperback. Guess where my daughter gets her books. The library. Yep, she borrows every book she can, she would and I would happily buy these books if there were priced below $10, but if she can find them in a library we won't be buying them. We occasionally have to bite the bullet when it's a book or series not carried by our library exchange program, but this rarely occurs.

I would love to see more publishers going back to releasing youth books in paperback and stop selling hardcovers to children.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Finishing a Book

You know there is just something about finishing a book. You actually get to do it twice. There's the first draft The End and then there's the The End when you are ready to send it out on submission. I know for some writers the second The End can be months after the first one while others it might only be a couple of days depending on if you're a re-writer or a clean up typo-er.

The book I just finished has been a long time coming. It took me a lot longer to finish than I had planned as I allowed myself to be derailed from my original intention. Once I was able to get back to the original vision I was able to get it done.

And today I did get it done. I've spent the last four days doing typo edits and filling in little tiny plot typos and holes. I had one particular scene which was really kicking my butt because it was such an important scene and I was just not happy with it. But I conquered it today and I was so happy when I scanned it and realized I had fixed it. The scene does exactly what I wanted it to do.

So, are you a re-writer or a clean up typo-er?