Becoming a Best-selling Author

You can reach national bestseller lists in any of four different ways:
1. You work hard and you spend hard.
This the tried-and-true way. You do all the work from the ground up.
• Begin with a universal topic that no one can afford to ignore.
• Create a compelling book out of that topic.
• Spend millions to run…


Publishing-Model Options

For many aspiring writers, the process from finished manuscript to printed book on a shelf in a bookstore is mired in mystery and misunderstanding.
With co-publishing and self-publishing as viable alternatives to traditional publishing, authors today have options that can be a little confusing.
The first step to dispelling confusion about publishing a book is to look…


Uncovering the Story That Is Uniquely Yours

“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.”  ~Judy Garland
There is no substitute for you
What is your story? What makes your business special?
Is there anything unique about it, or do you look, feel and sound like your competitors?
If you find it hard to answer these questions (most people…


Are You Writing What People Want to Read?

“When I get ready to talk to people, I spend two thirds of the time thinking what they want to hear and one third thinking about what I want to say.”
~ Abraham Lincoln
You need to speak the language your audience understands.
In writing your book do you think you’ll simply sit down and start pecking out…


The Steps to Making a Book

“Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no help at all.”
~ Dale Carnegie
My colleague Michael R. Drew has been involved in the making of over 200 books and some 80 national bestsellers. We’ve identified several major steps in the…


Setting Sail with Your Book

What does it take to make you a legitimate force in publishing? Is it a big book contract? Is it being widely reviewed? Is it getting prizes? Is it sales? Or is it how your book affects your business?
If you’re a nonfiction writer, especially one who’s writing or who has written a book to attract…


Finding the Fans for Fiction

An app built for readers has become one where writers can find a fan base. Fiction writers in particular. Wattpad, which has been around since about 2006, allows readers to directly comment on a writer’s work-in-progress. Just as with a platform for a nonfiction book. But Wattpad is more in keeping with the old-fashioned serial-style…

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Travoltifying Your Book Title

You have probably heard how John Travolta mangled the name of the actress Idina Menzel when he introduced her on the Oscar broadcast earlier this week, as she was to sing “Let It Go,” the nominated song from the hit movie “Frozen” (the song went on to win the Oscar, by the way). Travolta referred…


The Company of Self-Published Authors

It bears repeating that you’re in good company if you choose to self-publish. After many publishers rejected the first volume of his “Remembrance of Things Past,” Marcel Proust underwrote the publishing of “Swann’s Way.” Edgar Allan Poe published a book of poetry, “Tamerlane,” when he was young. Walt Whitman self-published “Leaves of Grass.” James Joyce’s…


Deciding to Self-Publish

Mistakes happen. In books, you can’t correct them. Unless you’ve self-published. Then you can fix things.
And update data.
And adjust pricing.
And try different covers.
And offer your book for free.
You have freedom.
If you’ve considered trying to publish with a traditional, or legacy, publisher, you can’t really do any of that. And it’ll take you a long time…