• Photo by Maggie Lynch. First chapter edits on left with notebook of chapter planning on right.
    Throughout my publishing career, there have always been authors who complain that they are not fairly compensated for their writing. That complaint is often couched in a comparison of their income to someone else writing in the same genre who is doing significantly better. Furthermore, the complaining author has judged that person to be undeserving of their success. Most complaints fall into two categories: 1) The book or article is deemed poorly written. Usually words like “pedestrian” or “lazy” are used in the description; or 2) Distributors (ebook vendors, bookstores, social media) don’t have a fair playing field and allow
  • woman in shadow with her hand against a pane of glass with rain on it
    8 minute read We seem to live in a world where stress has been demonized to the point that people seek to avoid it at all costs. And we use the possibility of experiencing stress as an excuse to do nothing — to opt out of society and responsibility. Here is a list of the top 10 Health Problems Related to Stress as found on WebMD. Heart Disease Asthma  Obesity Diabetes Headaches  Depression and Anxiety Gastrointestinal Problems Alzheimer’s Disease Accelerated Aging  Premature Death With a list like that one might consider taking tranquilizers or mind-altering drugs and skip reality altogether
  • Caucasian redhead teenage girl looking in mirror
    Most people, starting out as career writers, confuse branding and marketing. Authors are often the ones who have the most difficulty with this distinction. Part of that is because many people who teach workshops or have courses aimed at authors are teaching marketing, not branding. Yet the instructors often conflate the two in their instruction. Also, most writers don’t think of their articles, books, short stories, or poems as products. Therefore, branding seems to be something they can ignore. I certainly made this mistake at the beginning of my writing career. I read lots of books and attended plenty of
  • picture of the interior of a slot machine, the winning number is spelled out as Y O U
    9 minute read Ignore the Siren Call of the Easy Button I subscribe to a lot of guru newsletters, and I’ve taken a number of paid courses from some of them. I’m pretty good at finding salient nuggets of information I can actually implement. However, their marketing engines selling new courses and opportunities can really make me question what I should be doing and if I need to change my direction yet again. I’m twenty published books into my career now, not including short story anthologies or collections and box sets. I’ve always been a goal setter and a planner.
  • young woman standing on the top of a brick building with a long hook appearing to pull the moon toward herlong hoo
    9 minute read Darn, I thought I made up the word comparisonitis myself. It ends up someone else beat me to it. I can’t even be first in making up a word. Comparisonitis: The compulsion to compare one’s accomplishments to another’s to determine relative importance. — Wiktionary I’ve never kept score between myself and my friends. I come from a large family. If I kept score of every perceived slight or outright deception, I would have no siblings. With friends that is even more true. If anything, I let people take mulligans more often than I should. I’m not a
  • Woman putting hand on large electronic display
    7 minute read In July I read two articles that really challenged my perceptions of the creative writing business. It was like going from a mind-set that had two or three dimensions in black and white; suddenly realizing there are multiple colors and multiple dimensions and multiple ways to approach my writing career that I hadn’t even begun to explore. As many of you know, I am a technology person from way back. I started programming in the 1970’s using punch cards. I’ve always been comfortable with technology and felt like I could keep up — for the most part.

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