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15 powerful quotes from writers we lost last year

15 powerful quotes from writers we lost last year

15 quotes from famous writers that died in 2014Buzzfeed compiled a series of quotes from some of the influential writers that passed away in 2014.

Inspiring. Grumpy. Funny. Wise. The quotes run the gamut, but they’re all worth reading.

Here are a few of my favorites:

“Each moment is a place you’ve never been.” – Mark Strand

“Once I began to read, I began to exist.” – Walter Dean Myers

“It is not true that people stop pursuing dreams because they grow old, they grow old because they stop pursuing dreams.” – Gabriel García Márquez.

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The key to your writing career? Ask a faux cable repair guy

The key to your writing career? Ask a faux cable repair guy

Git-R-DoneFor my first post in the new year, here’s a little story for anyone who has yet to publish a book:

A failed comic strip artist, a faux cable repair guy, and you walk into a bookstore.

OK,OK…so it sounds like the start of a bad joke. It isn’t, I assure you. Just stay with me:

The comic strip guy, Jeff Kinney, goes to the children’s book section and sees an entire shelf of his “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series. The books already look well used; probably dozens of kids have already thumbed through them without buying.

The cable guy – otherwise known as comic Larry the Cable Guy – walks to the comedy book section. Near the shelf full of Dave Barry, Tina Fey and even Grumpy Cat he finds a single dusty copy of “GIT–R-DONE”, his 2006 New York Times best seller. (Yes, really.)

As for you….well, that’s where the story ends. Because your book isn’t on these — or any other — shelves. Because you’re not an author. At least not today.

Every time the calendar rolls over and adds a digit, the media is full of …

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The bookshelves of your dreams and nightmares

The bookshelves of your dreams and nightmares

Creative bookshelf ideasIf we book geeks played our cards right, we got a bunch of new books for the holidays. New books that now need a place on our beloved bookshelves.

In my case that means cramming a bunch of poetry collections into tiny spaces in already overstuffed bookshelves, which inevitably leads to me rearranging the books and dreaming of a completely new shelving system.

The folks at Bored Panda have been dreaming of new bookshelf options too, and they’ve featured a bunch of interesting, ugly, beautiful, impractical, weird, and wonderful designs for us book lovers to ponder. Check out “33 creative bookshelf designs.”

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The prolific author: how many words per hour can you write?

The prolific author: how many words per hour can you write?

How to measure your productivity as a writer[This is a guest post by Bob Baker of www.FullTimeAuthor.com.]

Would you like to be much more productive as a writer? It’s possible, and you don’t have to turn into a machine or ingest huge amounts of caffeine to do it. (Although a bit of coffee might help goose your enthusiasm.)

If you’re like me, you wouldn’t mind increasing your writing output so you can get more books and information products to market.

This aspiration naturally leads to the question, “How much content can I reasonably expect to produce?” The best way to quantify it is to find out how many words you actually crank out per hour.

I wondered the same thing recently.

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Be a part of BookBaby’s first Twitter chat on January 14th

Be a part of BookBaby’s first Twitter chat on January 14th

UnknownJoin BookBaby and our community of authors in a Twitter chat about new trends in the world of eBook retail

Twitter chats, sometimes known as tweet chats, take place when a group of people all tweet about the same topic using a specific hashtag (#), which links tweets together in a conversation. They are frequently moderated by a host and focused around either a static or rotating topic. The chats are usually held at a specific time and often repeat weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly.

Weekly chats such as #litchat and #futurechat have been well received by authors of all genres and friends of the literary world alike.

This post is to give you a quick overview on how to join a Twitter chat, as well as information about BookBaby’s very first Twitter chat on Wednesday, January 14th from 4-5pm ET!

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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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