Tag Archives: small publishers

Still On The First Draft Beginning…

Okay, so you’ve written the first draft. You’re ready to go back and find your starting place. Don’t get discouraged if you restart your manuscript several times. Questionable Ethics, the first in the Mel Addison Mystery Series, had seven beginnings before I finally settled on the one that it has. They all started in the same scene, just differently.

First, it wasn’t a good hook. Two or three drafts later, I had a good beginning hook but had to work on the first line. That was another two drafts. Finally I narrowed it down to the one that ended up the as the finished product. I thought I would never be satisfied with it. Then it happened. It was good.

Most beginning writers go through this process, so don’t let it get you down. Even now after I’ve been writing for this long, I still rewrite the beginnings several times. I’ve generally can get it to just two or three drafts now. The latest in the series, the beginning was spot on, I just needed to work on the first sentence hook.

Here is what separates the hobbyist writers from the professional writers. Hobbyist writers are willing to get it mostly right, but since they aren’t really trying to get published they’re willing to stop at okay. And there is nothing wrong with that. However, if you are wanting to get published, you must be patient with the process and continue working until you know, I mean really know, that it’s the best it can be. Sometimes that means letting your agent/editor tell you it’s ready. And that’s okay too.

It is still a process. A craft. A work in progress. And we are only talking about the first draft and the beginning. There is still the rest of the manuscript to come.

Stay tuned.

Angela Abderhalden the author of the Mel Addison Mystery Series and an Acquiring Editor for Seventh Wave Books, LLC


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SOAP BOX ALERT! Pricing of books.

Okay today I’m going to step up on my soap box and rant a little. If you don’t want to read a rant, then you should probably skip this blog. What am I going to rant about? The price of e-books from the big publishers and others just really torques me off.

Here is what set me off. I’m currently reading several series of well known authors. As a Kindle lover, I prefer to read these books on my Kindle. Yes, I’ve converted from an ‘I love print books’ to an ‘I really like reading on my Kindle’. But it always bothers me the price that is being charged for the digital reading material.

For example, I started reading from Craig Johnson, the Walt Longmire Mystery Series. The cost of his e-books is $11.99 or more. The paperback, let me repeat that, the PAPERBACK version of the same books retail at $11.20 or more. $11.20! Less then the Kindle version!

Another example. I love Christopher Moore’s books. Love them. I have never laughed harder while reading a book. Seriously, read his stuff, you’ll be wetting your pants. However, I no longer buy them because the Kindle version is $9.99 and up. The print version is $10.19 and up. That’s only a 21 cent difference! Really. Really publisher?!

I haven’t read this one but I decided to find a best seller to see how they were priced. Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James. The e-book version sells for $9.99. The print version is $9.57. Forty cents LESS then the Kindle version.

So you are probably wondering why I’m so incensed. I’ll tell you. The publishers are ripping off readers. Okay maybe ripping off is the wrong term. Fleecing would be a better term. Heres the reason.

The cost of print books is pretty high. The average small printer’s cost on a paper version (a 6×9 trade paperback book) is around $5.50. That what it costs to print an average book. The bigger publishers probably get a much better price than that. They still have to pay the author royalties, the distributor (middle man), then there is the percent off that the book seller’s take. Therefore for the medium to small printer in order to even break even the print books have to, HAVE to be priced at $12.99 and up. Again the bigger publishers can cut this price down a bit, but even for them there are still costs associated with the actual printing of a book.

Now the outrage and a secret the big publishers don’t want you to know. The price of a digital e-book is minimal. After converting the manuscript file to digital, using the same cover for the book (already paid for because of the print version), and uploading it to the Amazon website, the cost is substantially less. And there is no overhead! No printing, no shipping, no warehousing the books, no paying for book space at book stores (Yes, that does happen, people!), no middle man (besides Amazon, B&N, etc.)! Yet they are charging as much if not more for the e-book, in this case Kindle version, of the book. They are fleecing the e-book readers of money. Knowingly, even doing it with glee. The publishers are raking it in. In huge piles.

I was outraged when I started in this publishing venture. Why make the reader pay MORE to read it on an e-reader? Why? Because they can, that’s why! When Jason and I started our publishing business, Seventh Wave Books, LLC, we decided to keep the price as low as possible on both fronts. Yes, our print books are priced at $12.99 or more. They have to be for us to be able to pay our authors and still make a small, and I do mean small, profit (we’re talking around $1.00 for us, not the authors). And we pledge to keep our e-books at $4.99 or less. We still make a small profit on them and pay authors well (I do mean good). Yet, we are still keeping the price of books at a reasonable cost. That is the promise we make to you the reader. Give us a try.

In the meantime, I will not buy a Kindle book that is over $4.99. It just doesn’t happen for me. I refuse. I keep a close eye on my favorite authors and when a book is put on sale, $4.99 or less), I buy it. But until then… no way. I’ll keep my extra money, thank you.

Okay, so now that I ranted, I’m stepping down off my soap box. Thank you for listening. Stay tuned.

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A Social Media Newbie

In the last blog I talked about social media sites. These are extremely necessary for promoting your book and company. I know very little about social media. I’m in my mid forties and this does not come easily to me. My kids are my mentors and teachers. (Yes, my kids are teenagers, the acknowledged experts in this field!) I am trying to make myself get comfortable using Facebook and this blog. I will soon be setting up a Twitter account. LinkedIn is also on the list, as is Google+. But one step at a time.

I’ve had a Facebook page for a couple of years, but am only really just starting to use it. Yes, for most of that time I was a lurker in Facebook. I try to post at least once or twice a week. I’m told I actually need to post more often. Sigh. I’m trying.

Twitter is going to be tough for me but I will do what I have to do. Luckily my partner is very talented at web design, so he is doing all of that. I suggest stuff that I like from surfing but I have no idea how to do it. If I didn’t have Jason, I would have to hire someone to do it.

Okay, so now you know my short comings in the social media arena. But I know that I need to improve my understanding and knowledge of these things. As with all things that I need to learn, I go out and find the information. I read books, talk to other authors, other friends on FB, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. And I have found some very informative videos about the subject. Right before I wrote this installment of the blog, I attended a webinar (free, my favorite price!) on social media.

It’s slow going but I am learning. And trying. And actually having fun doing it, most of the time.

Here is the book I’m currently reading this is very informative…. The Zen of Social Media Marketing: An Easier Way to Build Credibility, Generate Buzz, and Increase Revenue by Shama Kabani and Chris Brogan.

The webinar that I just minutes ago attended is given my Dennis J Smith. Excellent webinar on social media and it gave me lots to think about and implement. To contact him check out his website http://www.DennisJSmith.com. He also suggested another social media expert MariSmith.com. Check them out. Great information.

If you know of any great sites or places to learn more about social media, post a comment and I’ll pass it along. In the meantime, keep learning. Stay tuned.


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