Other Stories

Playing Dress-up: Is Your Book Ready for its Big Date?

By Sheila Parr Sending a book to press is a lot like putting together the perfect outfit for a big event. Every piece of the ensemble must work together and complement each other nicely, and it’s the little details that make it really dynamite. If you want to be the hottest, baddest lady in the […]

It’s Only Money

By Brian Viktorin Actually, it’s a little bit more than that. Specifically, it’s the lifeblood of a business, whether it be a lemonade stand on the street corner or a book publisher. And when it comes to the latter, we all love to see an endless stream of book sales roll in. But turning that […]

Lies Your English Teacher Told You

By Erin Nelsen Picture the worst English teacher you ever had. The one who made you diagram sentences and say “May I” instead of “Can I” and never, ever laughed, even if you packed five vocabulary words into one demonstration sentence. The one who made you read The Scarlet Letter. The one who told you […]

Don’t Print Off More Than You Can Sell

By Candice Adams Book publishing is a lot of things, but an exact science it is not. In fact, it’s an educated guess at best. So what do you do when you finally get down to deciding the hard numbers of how many books you need for an initial print run? First day sales for […]

Gurus Gone Wild!

By Tanya Hall As the number of independent authors continues to grow, more and more writers are looking for expert advice. When everyone claims to have all the answers, how do you sort the reputable from the riff-raff? Well, the Big Bad Book Blog is a good place to start. Our Guru Who’s Who will […]

In Defense of the Passive Voice

By Erin Nelsen Passive voice: one of the most commonly vilified, frequently bemoaned, and terminally misunderstood constructions in English. Yes, it’s true—the active voice is more vigorous, more forceful, more natural, and simpler in many cases. Sentences like “The book was put down by Mary” or “The dog was walked by my brother yesterday” make […]

Big Bad Weekly Tip: Does Your Press Release Bite?

By Ryan Wheeler Launching your own publicity campaign can be a daunting task. You’ve spent years writing your masterpiece, and now you’re faced with writing a killer press release the gets the media’s attention. Here are a few press release writing tips: The most important piece of a press release is the headline–make it count […]

Countdown to ISBN-13: Don’t Let Three More Digits Add Up to One Big Headache

By Nathan Delacretaz Remember the Y2K scare? What if a similar digital dilemma threatened the book industry? As the pros know, January 1, 2007, isn’t just another day of college bowl games and crushing hangovers. It’s the date of the official, indelible, unavoidable introduction of the ISBN-13 system. The ISBN-13 system is a 3-digit expansion […]

Communication, Censorship, Corruption and Courage

How to create an atmosphere where writing is dangerous: censorship. How to suppress the creative spirit: censorship.How to build a following despite censorship: online. Even in an authoritarian state that wields enormous economic muscle and instills fear in free markets, the writer Murong Xuecun (a pseudonym for the writer Hao Qunhas) managed to build a […]