Posts Tagged ‘self-publishing’

Collaboration – Writing

January 21, 2019

Tri-Valley Writers published its fourth anthology last year. We had a party to celebrate, and in the spirit of collaborative writing we gave ourselves a challenge. Each table (of seven people) was given three prompts and ten minutes to come up with a scene. My table’s prompts were exaggerate, climbing a hill, and an unexpected gift. In ten minutes we had written a scene where a man is certain a mountain lion had pushed him down the hill at the back of the yard, but he would continue pruning the undergrowth. His wife says it was the neighbor’s cat, and he slipped on the ivy, but never mind she’s already called a gardening service. It was a silly scene – and great fun. If you want to bring out a different side of your writing brain, get a group together and toss out the prompts like candy at a parade.

Publishing an anthology is another way to collaborate with writers. Finding a way to agree on editing standards alone is worth the effort. You’ll be amazed at what you learn in that process. At the end, you’ll have a book of stories, and that’s always worth the effort. Voices of the Valley: Journeys may only get local notice, but you never know what that attention will bring. If you have a large enough group to share the expenses, consider publishing your own anthology to see your work in print.


                                                         

                                                    Luck and wisdom!

Becoming an Author

May 21, 2018

My writing club offers a scholarship at the local community college. The president of the club and I went to the awards ceremony and met this year’s recipient. She is planning a career in teaching, and hopes to encourage her future students to write well. She said she had no plans to be a writer, but she asked about the process. When we described all the ways one could bring one’s work to readers, she changed her mind. Here are some resources for you to become an author.

Smashwords.com

This is for ebooks only, but it is free for authors and offers a boatload of tutorials and help. I convinced my co-author to publish Death By Chenille on Smashwords. We were so energized by having a book on-line that we wrote a second book, then a third, and now we’re working on a fourth.

Small Publishing Houses

Just because you don’t have an agent to shop your manuscript to the big publishing houses doesn’t mean you’re done. A small publishing house might be interested. We published our third book (shameless self-promotion, that book is now available here) through Russian Hill Press.

My books, on my bookshelf – woo hoo!

Createspace/Amazon

Createspace is the go-to place for many independent authors. My uncle, Philip Gordon McGirr, just published a book of short pieces. He is another who never thought about being an author until a friend of his started writing and inspired him.

Booktrack.com

Booktrack lets you score your work. Yup, you can put music, ambient sounds, or special effects sounds together with your written word.

Local anthologies

Not sure your work is ready for a large audience? Check around and see if there are any groups in your area that publish an anthology. Our community college publishes annually, and you don’t have to be a student to submit. Julaina Kleist-Corwin, a local writing teacher, published a book of her students’ work.

All authors struggle to find readers, so don’t be discouraged that your book might sell only enough to buy you a really good lunch. This has been my experience, but I’m okay with that. Becoming an author, even at my level, has been worth it.