Link Of The Wekk

January 29, 2013

th_chain-links

I’ve found a web site that we should all be aware of in this fast and furious age of technology. This site is dedicated to defending your rights in a digital world. This is such a new frontier that laws are not set in place yet to protect you from this virtual cornerstone that we find ourselves relying on more and more. I especially like their “Deeplinks Blog” which discusses a whole range of matters. Be sure to read the article on E-readers and how much information is tracked from your reading habits….What???? You thought that was private- think again…..

https://www.eff.org

 

***My blog on Thursday will do a more in depth look into this matter.

Cheers,

Stacey

 


Link Of The Week

January 8, 2013

Hi Everyone-

I have a double gift for you today! While I was searching for a great link, I found this one by Max Barry. He’s an Australian writer who shares some great information about writing- when I saw his titles like Avoiding Assholes and The Syrup Experience, I knew I liked him!

http://maxbarry.com/writing/help.html

A great picture, just because I love it!

A great picture, just because I love it!

While I was reading through his material, he provided a link to another site that he really benefited from on his way to publication. It was too good for me to save for another week.

http://www.internetwritingworkshop.org/

 

I believe both of these places will provide you with some juicy information and will help our international friends as well. Enjoy the sites and keep your keyboards humming!

Cheers,

Stacey


Link Of The Week- Are You Tired Of Being A Starving Artist?

October 9, 2012

Candi’s article yesterday got me to thinking. (I know. I know. It’s a dangerous thing for me to do!)

The writing industry is changing and she’s keeping at the forefront by introducing Editor Shop. We all need to find ways we can make money doing this thing that we love. While we now have different avenues we can take to get our stories published, is it enough to survive? Can we make a decent living with our books, novellas etc.? The reality is that it’s still tough. How can we supplement that income? One way is through this web site. It’s free to join, but you must sign in before you can get to the meat of the web site.

“Triond is a complete publishing service that offers a new approach for publishing online. We publish your work on a network of niche websites so you reach a wider audience, gain more recognition and earn more revenue…Combining your knowledge and creativity with our publishing expertise will generate greater readership, wider recognition, and higher revenues for your work.”

Check it out for yourself!

 

http://www.triond.com/


Could Marketing Crash The Book Market?

September 6, 2012

The time to begin writing an article is when you have finished it to your satisfaction.  By that time you begin to clearly and logically perceive what it is you really want to say.  ~Mark Twain

 

Marketing. (AAGGHHHH!!!!!! …as she runs screaming out of the room.)

As authors we have to continually keep our eyes on that ball. Besides providing great content between the covers of a book, we now have to be masters of the business world as well. Sheesh- sometimes it feels overwhelming.

 

I have an interesting question that I will ask in just a minute.

 

There’s no getting around the business side of writing. There just isn’t. Let’s say you’ve published your book, you’ve blogged, you’ve Face Booked, you’ve had a book launch, you’ve done all the things you know how to do and your sales are still moving along at a sluggish pace. Many authors will offer their books for free on Amazon and other sites. While doing that, you can also contact sites such as www.indiebookslist.com, www.pixelofink.com, www.freebooksy.com, www.bargainbookhunter.com, www.flurriesofwords.blogspot.com, www.freebookdude.com, and www.snickslist.com. These types of sites will be happy to email or tweet your book to their followers which can run into the thousands. There are tons of sites out there to help you, too many to list them all here. I’ve heard of one author who offered is book on Amazon’s KDP Select, ran it through as many of these sites as he could (with no other promotion) and he ended up with over 4000 free downloads. This sounds pretty terrific!

 

Another interesting idea is to use something called Wattpad. I had never heard of it, but it could be a great place to start building a readership, get feedback, and build excitement for your next bit of work. It’s like a giant high school literary magazine where people can put up their work and there are tons of readers there. This site is most often accessed by smart phones where short stories, novels, poetry, and fan fiction are read voraciously. Many writers reveal their stories chapter by chapter so the readers anticipate new developments and can often be found asking the writer for plot shifts or new characters! If you think this is just another site among the millions out there, think again. Wattpad gets 9 million unique visitors a month! I think that qualifies as a good site to build a readership.

 

So here’s my question. With this fairly proven method of offering your work for free as a marketing tool, are we training a whole generation to expect free books?

 

What does that mean for a writer? Dale Brown, who is a very successful author, just offered his books for $1.99. That’s not free, but it is pretty cheap. My husband bought ten books at once. While that’s a win win for both my husband and Dale Brown, Peter will now think twice before spending a chunk of change on a new book. If he waits long enough it will go on sale or be offered for free.

 


Illuminating Blogger Award

August 3, 2012

Imagine how pleased and humbled I was to hear MuseTracks had been nominated for the Illuminating Blogger Award I was while away in Anaheim for the 2012 RWA conference. Many THANKS to the magnificent Melanie Macek of Feather Pens, Tartan Dreams  for selecting Stacey and I. How awesome is that?

Here are da rules:

Visit the Blog who awarded you and thank them.
Tell everyone who nominated you, thank the blogger and include a link back to their site on your blog.
Share a random thing about yourself.
Select five or more nominees — and notify them on their blogs.
Put the award on your blog somewhere.

That brings me to some random thing about myself. How about I’m an energy drink junkie.

For the bloggers I’d like to nominate, drum roll, please…

Eliza Knight with History Undressed

Jeff Salter, FourFoxesOneHound 

Suzan Harden, Wild, Wicked, & Wacky

Ella Quinn, Ella Quinn Author

Nina Cordoba, Nina’s Blog

I encourage you to check out each of these fine author’s blog. They are very different in content and I promise you, you’ll find gems in their posts.

Happy reading!

 


Link Of The Week

July 10, 2012

I’ve found the coolest web site for writers and readers! More than 500,000 new stories go up on this site every month and it gets 9 million unique visitors each month as well. If that doesn’t knock your socks off then maybe knowing that its users spent 1.7 BILLION minutes here last month might get you interested. Seriously, I can’t believe I hadn’t heard about this place sooner….of course, there is the distinct possibility that everyone else has been at the party except me…..I’m slow like that sometimes!

“Storytelling is all about connecting audiences and the people telling the story,” says Allen Lau, the company’s co-founder and chief executive, “So we are trying to re-create that environment through the internet.” (I think I’m crushing on this Allen guy!)

I believe this is a new wave to catch a ride on and seeing that it’s attracted $17.3 million in venture funding- It’s going to be around for awhile.

http://www.wattpad.com/

 

Enjoy! I’m off to sign up for it right now- and the best news? It’s free!!!


Link Of The Week

July 3, 2012

 

http://www.word-detective.com/

 

The Word Detective on the Web is the online version of The Word Detective, a newspaper column answering readers’ questions about words and language. The Word Detective is written by Evan Morris and appears in finer newspapers in the U.S., Mexico and Japan.


Link Of The Week

June 19, 2012

Litreactor!

“LitReactor is a destination for writers to improve their craft, a haven for readers to geek out about books and a platform to kickstart your writing goals.”

I’m so excited about this cool new site that I found a few weeks ago! It has a little bit of everything- writing competitions, a place to try new stuff and get feedback, lots of essays on craft, and plenty of workshops. Take the tour and find out about all the different aspects of this place.

http://litreactor.com

** Some of the craft essays require you to be a member, but several don’t. I will be siphoning all that I can without paying the $9 a month membership. At that point I’ll decide whether to invest my pennies or not.**


Link Of The Week

June 5, 2012

Figment- Write Yourself In (Become A Fig)

What is figment?

Figment is a community where you can share your writing, connect with other readers, and discover new stories and authors. Whatever you’re into, from sonnets to mysteries, from sci-fi stories to cell phone novels, you can find it all here.

This is a very cool, almost bohemian feeling website. You can find groups of writers or readers, submit pages to be reviewed, connect with readers etc. I haven’t spent a whole lot of time here, but plan to poke around some more. Intriguing idea.

http://figment.com/


Let Me Steal Your Book!

January 5, 2012

Publication – is the auction of the Mind of Man.  ~Emily Dickinson

 

By:Stacey Purcell

I would like to tell you a story.

Once upon a time there was an author who wrote a novel. This novel took two years to create, many dollars spent polishing their work, sleep lost worrying about their story, and hundreds of hours taken from their families and friends. This creative endeavor came at a high price.

The author persevered and finished. Hooray, a novel is born. Now what?

Now they spend months, maybe years, sending it out to agents and editors. More money, more worry, more time away from their “life”. Perhaps it works and they score an agent/ editor. Perhaps they decide to publish it themselves. Whichever road they take will require more of everything including ulcer potential. (And they say writing isn’t glamorous!)

One way or another, the book is published and available for sale. Their hard work will now pay off.

Not so quick. The book goes on sale at 10am. By 10:30 it’s offered for free at a variety of web sites and the author won’t ever see a dime. And they lived happily ever after…..

 

Unfortunately, instead of being a fictional piece of writing, this is more like a documentary. Music, photography, art, scientific discovery, books (and the list goes on) have all been stolen from their creators. I believe this not only hurts the creator, it hurts the economy and damages the driving force of what makes most countries thrive. Nations are built and maintained by the innovators, the creators of the next new thing to make our lives better- whether it is a new source of entertainment, a breakthrough in medicine or a streamlining of a business.

“Intellectual property is one of America’s chief job creators and competitive advantages in the global marketplace, yet Inventors, authors, and entrepreneurs have been forced to stand by and watch as their works are stolen by foreign infringers beyond the reach of current U.S. laws.” Rep. Goodlatte

If the reward for that hard work is stripped away, the innovations will slowly fade away as well. We compromise our health as a nation.

There are two Acts before our governing bodies that are designed to help protect the theft of intellectual property. SOPA and PIPA (Stop Online Piracy Act and Pro-IP Act/ Protect IP Act) Both are designed to do more than the current “safe harbor” system that is in place. If a creator finds that a web site is offering their material without their permission, they must submit a notice telling them to take down the material and then the site is given a certain amount of time to take it down. SOPA would override the “safe harbor” system and “allow a judge to immediately block access to sites that are found guilty of hosting copyrighted material.”

SOPA is a bill that expands law enforcers and copyright holders ability to fight online piracy. Actions, through this, could include barring advertising networks and payment companies, like Pay Pal, from doing business with the site in question. They can also require Internet service providers to block access to these sites.( At the moment, the most we can hope for is that a web site in another country will positively respond to our request to take down our books. Law suits would be completely futile.)

As with any other major change, it is difficult. Vehement, passionate arguments can be made for both sides. Companies like Google, Yahoo, AOL, Twitter, FaceBook, Zynga, Mozilla, eBay, and LinkedIn posted an open letter to the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives outlining their arguments stating that SOPA would stifle creativity and innovation on the internet that has created many jobs. It also said that it would be a threat to our cyber-security. (Not sure I understand that one.) Yahoo has also reportedly dropped its membership with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce over their support of this bill.

Naysayers state that it will threaten online freedom of speech, threaten users uploading content, have a negative impact on websites that host user content, it’s a general threat to web-related businesses, it’s a threat to internal networks, and threatens open source software. They agree that something has to be done about this piracy but think that the wording is too vague and is open to misuse.

So who’s right? I don’t know. I can only share what I think- I believe the spirit of SOPA is something that is desperately needed. Right now, the creator has to hunt down rogue sites, craft a letter and hope for the best. I know of an author who took it a step further and also contacted all the advertisers and host of the web site stating she would make it public knowledge that they supported online piracy by placing their businesses on said site. It seemed to work for her. So now we not only have to try and write books, juggle our private lives, and learn how to be marketers, we have to be internet sleuths and strategic blackmailers.

The spirit is right, but what about the wording. So much of it is in “legalease”, it’s difficult for a lay person like me to tell. I don’t want a community like they have in China where everything is censored or blocked. Would SOPA allow that to happen? Well, when they figure it out and put it in plain English- I’ll let you know.

 

 

If you are interested in this issue, this is a nice place to start.

 

http://www.theglobalipcenter.com/