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I love to hear other authors ideas about writing or publishing. In a setting where you can bounce ideas of each other and get great feedback, there are many places to do this. There are writing forums, writing critique groups, and of course writers conferences.  So which one is right for you?

Do you like to get together with large or small groups? If you answered large groups than a writers conference sounds like the place for you. How do you get started with attending a writers conference?

  1.  First, join a writing group or organization. If you don’t want to pay annual fees that’s fine. Most conferences allow non-members to attend but pay a little more for the event.
  2.  Check out local, regional and national writers conferences. Many are in New York City. But hey that’s where all the publishers and editors are mostly at.
  3. Subscribe to newsletters so you can keep apprised of the conference dates.
  4. Attend a conference and make connections. This is your moment to have fun and make friends. If you are shy that’s okay because most writers are also shy.

Writers Digest publishes a lot of great information about their conferences. Here is the date of their annual one: August 10-12, 2018 at  New York Hilton Midtown

1335 Avenue of the Americas, New York, New York 10019 . Look up more about this event at http://writersdigestconference.com/   
Besides Writers Digest there is SCBWI (Society of Children Book Writers and Illustrators). They also have a large conference in New York City and one in Los Angels twice a year. Find more information about them on their web page at https://www.scbwi.org/
If you feel that a large conference is too much well, there are other options.  Now you can attend virtual conferences. Here is one I found recently that will be happening soon.
If you’re just not ready to attend a conference than start small. Build yourself a small community of fellow writers or lovers of books. Follow the organization, you want to join, on social media. Find any other publishers or agents on social media and follow them too. This is a great way to see if they are a right fit for you. Being informed is the best thing in this business.
Have fun and enjoy the creative process of writing.

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After much anticipation of the finished product, my book is live on Amazon!

Here is the link:   http://amazon.com/dp/B06Y6C8687

If there is a problem with the link or anything else please let me know.

Thanks everyone for being so patient.

download (1)

 

 

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There are some books I love to re-read just because they were so much fun the first time like Harry Potter, The Last Apprentice, and The Sword of Shannara.  But what makes your all time list of favorite books?

 

 

Which book have you read the most times? | Nathan Bransford, Author.

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Why is your manuscript being rejected?  Mike Wells, a bestselling author, lists some reasons why.

Mike Wells Official Website: A Dozen+ Reasons Books are Rejected by Agents & Editors, and Set Aside by Readers.

 

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In  previous posts I have discussed the pros and cons of traditional publishing versus self-publishing.  Here is an update to help clarify any misconceptions about the topic.

One route is DIY for tech savvy people.  The other is for royalty, where the butler waits on you hand and foot.  I would rather have the butler, but we all cannot be born with a silver spoon in our mouths.  DIY also costs money and time.  With traditional, if you are picked up, you could see an advance.  The down side to traditional is you could spend years in the rejection zone.

A pro for DIY is you keep the creative rights of your book.  With all the different companies to help you publish your dream book it seems easier now to see your book in print.  Another pro for DIY authors is that some publishers (Penguin) picks up indie authors to publish.

The list goes on and on with both sides.

If you cannot decide which route is best for you then check out some tips below.  This article was first published on Forbes.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/juliapimsleur/2014/11/04/traditional-publishing-vs-self-publishing/

Another great article, about an author who is a “hybrid” author ( self-published and traditional), on the topic of the pros and cons of DIY versus legacy (traditional) publishing.

http://blog.nathanbransford.com/2014/04/self-publishing-vs-traditional-some.html

Some authors like both routes and choose to use them on separate book projects.  It’s whatever works best for you.  Don’t limit your decision on one factor. Take everything into account and ask advice of others.

So which route will you choose?

publish

 

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Cover of "Ender's Game (Ender Quartet)"

Cover of Ender’s Game (Ender Quartet)

Being a fan of Orson Scott Card I have read many of his books.  So how did I miss this one?  Or the fact that it is a series?  The only reason I even knew about it was because of the movie coming out later on this year.
I loved this book and was shocked at the end.  Who would have guess?  But I kept wondering. Card takes a young child and puts him in adult situations making serious decisions. Very thought-provoking and intense scenes with bullies and fights.  Children are so innocent and usually make decisions based on what they have seen other children do.  Ender Wiggins was a genius and did things that some adults would never even thought of doing. I was glad in the end when Ender was able to reconnect with his sister.  It would have been a sad life if not.
Now I can’t wait to read the next books in the series. Card has a way with words giving them a deeper meaning.  Philosophy classes or even theorists could spend years psychoanalyzing his work.

http://www.goodreads.com/review/list/3252247-jessica-wilson”>View all my reviews

 

Does anyone have a favorite Orson Scott Card novel?

 

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Learning by internet is so fun! Not only do you get to come as you are but you can do whatever else too. I have taken college courses online and now I attended a webinar online. It was hosted by Writers Digest and featured agent Jennifer Laughran. She gave great advice about what is hot now in Middle Grade children’s books. Lots of facts about what is selling and what is not. Also we were told what to expect from agents in general to query letters.
I have lots of new websites to check out like Queryshark and Preditors & Editors.
Jennifer Laughran also will be giving those that attended a critique on the first 500 words of their middle grade manuscripts. That’s exciting!
Now I am off to a library to check out some middle grade books like “When You Reach Me” and “Penderwicks”.

Cover of "When You Reach Me"

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Oh my heck! This is great. Now all my books I read and buy on Amazon will be linked to Goodreads. I already have an account with Goodreads and share my reviews with readers everywhere. This is big news for book lovers everywhere.

Nathan Bransford, Author.

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English: This is a picture of bookshelves in a...

English: This is a picture of bookshelves in a tiny library in upper New York State. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What Role Should Libraries Have in an Electronic World? | Nathan Bransford, Author.

I have said this before about libraries.  But I like how Nathan Bransford puts it.  That libraries could be going the way of the dinosaurs.

The only issue I have is that if I don’t want to buy a book but I have to read it then I want to borrow it from the library.  I would hate to lose an institution that provides a big service to those of us who just wants to read a book and give it back.

Only time will tell what will happen to the libraries in the world. What are your thoughts on this issue? Do you support your local library? Do you use a library to check out an author’s books before deciding on buying?

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In John Grisham‘s novel “The Litigators” he takes the dark world of lawyers and brings some light to it.  While reading other Grisham novels, they all feel the same, but this one stands above the rest.
It starts with the main character, David Zinc who finds himself suffocating at the law firm he works for.  He arrives at work one day and immediately leaves.   David discovers himself drunk at a bar when he hears a wreck down the road.  He notices some lawyers running to the scene and then fighting over the victim.  This somehow gives him the inspiration to switch to a small boutique of ambulance chasers.
At Finley and Figg, David sees that Oscar Finley is ready to retire and just counting the days and Wally Figg seems to find the most unlikely cases.  They handle everything from divorces to estate settlements.  The two lawyers “fight like a married couple” or two drama queens.  The secretary they have in the office and the dog, who barks when an ambulance is coming, add humor at all the right moments.
David left a huge law firm where they made millions.  But he worked more than 70 hours a week.  With no time for his new wife and a job where he was drowning he felt that F&F was the answer he was looking for.
Money is running low and now all three lawyers are feeling the pinch.  Until Figg discovers a class-act against a drug company.  He talks his partners into signing up and taking on cases in the Chicago area.  The drug company they are up against doesn’t play nice though.  The other class acts in Florida and other areas drop out when they hear about stipulations against the lawyers.  Now with Finley in the hospital and Figg on a bender it is all left up to David. When some say they have a hero most people think of superheroes not lawyers.  David Zinc was a hero that day.  He opened a door which led him to present evidence that the defense could not dispute.  Even though they lost the case, David had made a name for himself.  With their first litigation case behind them and Finley saying he is retiring now, David announces that he has another litigation case against a toy manufacturer.  The toy company though doesn’t want the publicity of the damage the toy caused to a young boy.  So they settled out of court with David and the family.  The heartbreaking thing was that the boy died days before the papers were filed.  The President of the toy company amazingly said he didn’t want anything to change and would still give them the money.  It is nice to see in a novel the bad guy do the right thing for once.  This small family went through so much and David had promised them that even if they didn’t win he would still help them with medical bills.  David and his wife later had a baby and named him after the boy who died.  David expanded his law firm and has no problem litigating cases.

Grisham uses a lot of lawyer jargon but doesn’t dumb it down to help you understand.  Readers of all levels can read this novel without feeling that they were talked down to.  The story is believable enough to be a non-fiction novel.  Something that could be seen in the news or read about is drugs that have class-act law suits against them.  Grisham’s characters were not over the top or too dramatic either.  At first I thought there was no way a lawyer would leave a big law firm where there are company perks like cars, vacation pay and a fixed salary.  After reading David’s problems about working more than 70 hours a week and having no time with his wife you start to understand why he snapped one day.

This novel brought tears and laughter, which makes it to the top of my list.

http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/360371749

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