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How to know when you’re done writing your novel

How to know when you’re done writing your novel

How to know when you're finished with your novelWhen you finish writing the first draft of your manuscript, there’s a damn good chance that your novel is NOT done. In fact, if you expect your novel to be a work of permanent perfection, it probably never will be “done.”

Think of yourself more like a parent who will inevitably still see a grown child as a work in progress. Ten years later, after professionally editing and publishing your novel, you’ll wake in the middle of the night with some new idea for the book. “Ahh,” you’ll think. “How could I have missed that? It would’ve made a huge difference! But oh well. No going back now.”

Sure, you could just wait ten years to publish your novel, but who’s to say that after twenty years you won’t have the same “how could I have missed it” experience? There comes a time when “good enough” is good enough. So how do you know when you’ve reached that point?

Is it finished?

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The BookBaby Blog’s top 10 articles from 2014

The BookBaby Blog’s top 10 articles from 2014

Top 10 articles for self-published authorsWow. Only a few more days left in 2014…

We published a lot of articles this year, providing independent authors with free tips on how to write, publish, and market books successfully.

Now that 2014 is nearly behind us, I thought we should list some of our readers’ favorite articles this year:

1. Seven deadly sins of book promotion

2. Where do you write from: the head, the heart, or the mouth?

3. Why you don’t need (and shouldn’t want) a publishing deal

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The life cycle of a self-published book manuscript

The life cycle of a self-published book manuscript

The life-cylce of a self-published book manuscriptDraw a diagram of the traditional publishing process and it’ll probably look something like a model of a complex molecule undergoing chemical change.

What might be involved in the traditional publishing process? Pitching your book to agents, shopping the manuscript to acquisitions editors, conference calls between the marketing and editorial departments, changing the ending to give your book broader “appeal,” letting someone in New York decide on the title and design, and a hundred other things that are outside of your control.

When you self-publish, on the other hand, the road is straight. The process unfolds like a linear narrative, and YOU are in the driver’s seat. Of course talent, hard work, and luck are as important as ever to your success — but when you find your loyal readership, YOU reap more of the rewards, and you’ll have done so without compromising the thing that matters most: your writing!

How a self-published book moves from your imagination into the hands of readers

The idea! It’s a beaut. Truly inspired. Now set a schedule and start writing.

Write, write, write. Don’t be overly critical. Just get it into words.

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How to conquer your fear of putting your writing out there

How to conquer your fear of putting your writing out there

How to get over your fear of publishingThe biggest hurdle to publishing isn’t cost, or distribution, or lack of an author platform. It’s FEAR.

How many people have that spark of inspiration but smother it before they even put the first word on paper? How many more work almost all the way to the finish line only to hold back at the last minute?

Fear of judgement. Fear of failure. Maybe even fear of success. So many fears creep up when we’re about to put our writing out there into the world.

Thankfully, there are ways to conquer these fear. Well, “conquer” might be too strong a word. Let’s say “manage.” Many successful writers have developed skills that help them manage their anxieties around publishing.

Leo Babauta, in an article called “How to Put Your Writing in Public,” has written about his process for moving through these common fears.

Check out the full article for all the details and context. But I’ll summarize below:

1. Write for one person. There’s no use writing with an imaginary audience of thousands in mind. That’d get confusing pretty quickly. Instead, write as if you’re having a conversation with a single person (a friend, a family member, a specific reader, etc.).

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All in the family: the powerful connection between CD Baby and BookBaby

All in the family: the powerful connection between CD Baby and BookBaby

5 Star Points for Success“The bond that links your true family is not one of blood, but of respect and joy in each other’s life.”

RICHARD BACH, Illusions

When we launched BookBaby back in 2011 we had a strategy to get the word out about our new brand:

“Book Barnstorming” – traveling across the country to book fairs, trade shows, author conferences and more. The BookBaby team pitched our products and services to thousands of would-be authors, talking up our global eBook distribution, our payout of 100% of net sales back to authors, and all the rest.

Most folks listened politely, nodded pleasantly – and little more than that. Invariably there was one key line in our pitch that turned the conversation around:

“Our sister company is CD Baby, the indie music giant….”

“Oh! CD Baby!,” they would exclaim, suddenly more engaged. “Of course! I know them!” And the lights would go on. People would launch into their own stories about buying music from CD Baby or how their brother’s band has their music on the website, and a 100 more stories like it.

Connection made: BookBaby was already part of the family.

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The 30 best book covers of 2014

The 30 best book covers of 2014

Are you in the process of designing a cover for your next book? Need some inspiration?

Check out this article from PASTE Magazine, featuring (in their opinion) the 30 best book covers of 2014.

What do you think? See any design ideas worth borrowing for your own book?

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BookBaby leaves eBook authors with no choice.  Thank goodness!

BookBaby leaves eBook authors with no choice. Thank goodness!

Self publishing for authorsRed, blue or green? Large, medium or small? No matter what we’re talking about, most people love having choices. Fifty seven varieties. Thirty one flavors. Bring it on! In fact, the more the choices, the better. Right?

Well, not always. And that’s why BookBaby has decided to go against the grain this week with our new and improved eBook publishing offer. We’ve gone from three eBook packages to just one. And authors will be better off because of it.

People who make it their business to study stuff like this have long known that having too many choices is a bad thing. Psychologist Barry Schwartz coined the term “The Paradox of Choice” in his 2004 book and theorized why more is less when confronted with too many options.

But were three options too many? Yes – at least it was for the authors we serve best, and here’s why:

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The best Christmas books of all time [infographic]

The best Christmas books of all time [infographic]

What are your favorite books that take place during the holidays?

Here’s an infographic from NinjaEssays showing the “best” Christmas books of all time (according to Goodreads and Stylist).

But we want to hear about your favorites too. Let us know what you think are the greatest holiday books in the comments section below the infographic.

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[Infographic] What to post & when to post it on 9 important social networks

[Infographic] What to post & when to post it on 9 important social networks

Social media tips for authors

Great content. Good timing.

That’s the key to successful social media marketing in a nutshell.

But quality content and appropriate timing look different on every social media platform.

To help you keep all the details of your social strategy straight, here’s an infographic from Business 2 Community about WHAT, WHEN, and HOW OFTEN to post to the 9 most popular social media sites:

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eBooks will outsell print by 2018, predicts PricewaterhouseCoopers

eBooks will outsell print by 2018, predicts PricewaterhouseCoopers

pwc eook 2018 prediction

According to The New York Times:

In the United States and Britain, sales of e-books represent between a quarter and a third of the consumer book market and, by 2018, will edge out printed and audio books as the most lucrative segment, according to projections by the consulting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.

As Nate Hoffelder of The Digital Reader points out though, the “perennial ebook optimists” at PricewaterhouseCoopers have now moved that goalpost back two years running. In 2012 they predicted that eBook sales would outpace print by 2016. In 2013, they said it’d happen in 2017. Now… it’s 2018.

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