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Category: Productivity

Exclusive, Or Wide?

Exclusive, Or Wide?

Last time, in my post How To Sell In Peru, I discussed the decision self-published authors have to take about being exclusive to Amazon, or going wide. This is because when we upload our material to Amazon we’re given the choice to join their Kindle Select scheme. Signing up to this scheme requires giving Amazon exclusivity to your eBook.

Seasonal Scribblings

Seasonal Scribblings

Having just been commissioned to write a feature about a tinsel factory for a weekly magazine, it’s reminded me that while it’s currently the summer school holidays, I’m actually working on Christmas material. (Eek! Sorry. I’ve mentioned the C word!) But that’s what the business of writing is all about … being about six months ahead of schedule. (Indeed, for some markets, particularly the monthly ones, it’s already too late for this Christmas.)

A Room Of One’s Own

A Room Of One’s Own

Last week, I decided to take myself away from any distractions and work in the library in my county town. I could have worked in the library in my village (which we’re still fortunate to have), but the chances of bumping into people I know, who would then stop to chat, would be much greater … so I decided for the relative anonymity of the larger library in town.

So Near, Yet …

So Near, Yet …

It was an opportunity I had to take. Here was an editor keen on my novel. But a few others in the acquisitions meeting had reservations, so a contract wasn’t quite in the offing just yet. A few tweaks, though, could make all the difference.

A Play a Hay Day

A Play a Hay Day

As the proverb says, All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, so last Saturday I had a play day at Hay. I, along with a group of writers’ circle friends, minibussed it down to the Welsh Border village of Hay on Wye for the 32nd Hay Literary Festival. I’ve always had mixed feelings about some of the larger, well-known literary festivals, because, historically, authors haven’t always been recompensed properly for the work they put in when attending such…

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Success Is Built On Habits

Success Is Built On Habits

As writers, it’s important that we come up with fresh new ideas on a regular basis. However, we’re wasting our time if we don’t do anything with them. Much better to have a habit of developing ideas and then either writing them up (if it’s fiction) or pitching them (if they’re non-fiction).

Tandem Teamwork

Tandem Teamwork

Inside the May 2019 issue of Writing Magazine is my Business of Writing piece about Writing Tandem. We know that writing partnerships can work well in some writing formats, such as comedy (particularly sitcoms), films and even theatre work. But what about books?

Happy 2019/2020 Financial Year!

Happy 2019/2020 Financial Year!

Saturday was a financial admin day for me. Oh, the heady world of being a writer! For me, Saturday marked the start of the 2019/2020 financial year, and therefore the end of the last financial year. While many people use the end of the calendar year to look back on their achievements, I also use the end of the financial year to look back too. 

Zzzzzzzzz

Zzzzzzzzz

Sleep. We all need it. But do we get enough of it? And if we don’t … could it be affecting your writing business? How creative do you feel after a bad night’s sleep? I recently read Matthew Walker’s Why We Sleep and can thoroughly recommend it. It’s a fascinating read (and one of those books that is so well written it’s an easy read even though the subject matter gets quite complicated at times). How many times have we found ourselves…

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Giving Up? Or Taking A Pause?

Giving Up? Or Taking A Pause?

The latest issue of Writing Magazine carries a piece by the brilliant Patsy Collins (who runs the Womagwriter blog) concerning changes at Spirit & Destiny magazine. This magazine is now taking all rights in material, including fiction. As a result, some of the writers Patsy quoted in her piece have said that they will no longer write for them. (Note, some last minute editing as the publication went to press means the sentence about those writers not writing for Spirit & Destiny could…

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2019 London Book Fair

2019 London Book Fair

This year’s London Book Fair takes place between 12th and 14th March at Olympia. Like many of these events, if you’ve never been before it’s worth making some preparations to ensure you get the most from your visit. Time will fly!

The All-New Kit-Kat-Crunchie-Creme-Egg Mash Up

The All-New Kit-Kat-Crunchie-Creme-Egg Mash Up

I know I’m getting old when I see an advert on television for a popular confectionary treat that’s got a new added twist (Peanut butter flavoured Kit Kat Chunky, anyone?) and I think to myself, ”Why can’t they leave products alone? Why do they have to keep messing about with stuff?” However, there are times when an update is needed, and I’ve been working on two over the Christmas period (one is still under wraps at the moment). 

Away Days!

Away Days!

If you read my Business of Writing column in Writing Magazine you may recall that I’m currently working a Short-term temporary employed contract for a couple of days a week. Last week, I had to reacquaint myself with the joys of the Staff Away Day, when everyone in the organisation gathered together in a village hall (in the middle of nowhere) to make complete fools of ourselves. There were the usual team-building exercises: people being blindfolded and others describing pictures…

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Festive Frustrations

Festive Frustrations

As Christmas draws closer, I thought I’d look back a couple of years to when I chatted to three writers about how they manage their writing businesses during the festive period. In the world of paid employment December is one long month of office parties, Christmas lunches, and arguing with Health and Safety about the fire risk of the red tinsel framing your computer monitor. It’s an entirely different matter for writers. Working in our isolated garrets means the office…

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How To See New Readers For Old Ideas

How To See New Readers For Old Ideas

As part of the Shrewsbury Literary Festival, one of the The Guardian’s regular contributors to the Country Diary series, Paul Evans, spoke about his new book: . He explained how the publishers, Batsford Books, were keen to re-vist some of their earlier published works with a view to updating them for a new, modern readership.