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News and Blog

In our blog we post interesting news, events, member specifics and other items. You can subscribe to our blog or categories of our blog. If you do you will be notified by email whenever we post a new entry in our blog.

PERFECT IS BORING

Perfect is Boring

Wayne Zurl

 

When I began writing police mysteries I said to myself, “Aha! This is fiction, not a documentary. I have the opportunity to make everything come out perfectly.”

           

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Recent Comments
Wayne Zurl
I guess all charterers should be dynamic as opposed to static. Each character should be memorable regardless of their standing in ... Read More
Thursday, 27 April 2017 16:24
Cheryl Peyton
Ha! I was able to give you five stars. I would say that you're exactly right that a hero must be flawed to be interesting and t... Read More
Thursday, 27 April 2017 16:59
Tilmer Wright Jr.
Great points, Wayne. This, of course, is the tried and true method used by authors of horror novels all the time. How many times h... Read More
Thursday, 27 April 2017 17:00
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5 Comments

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Listened to a Webinar today given by Jason Schmetzer, Marketing Mgr. for Authors Learning Center. He is a writer, teacher, website designer and marketer who works with SEOs every day. Here's some of what he had to say.

I. WHAT SEO IS:

It's growing your site's visibility on the Internet by improving your ranking by search engines like Google and Bing. Your ranking is determined by the number of times people go to a site based on its relevance and popularity.

Relevance: How well does your site answer queries?

Popularity: How many people go there and how long do they stay? 

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Recent Comments
Cheryl Peyton
I just tried the rating and inadvertently gave myself 5 stars. Maybe I'm the guest. I'm also the member who had to moderate your c... Read More
Wednesday, 26 April 2017 20:14
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Another Suggestion To Make Your Writing Better.

 

Yesterday I posted the late Elmore Leonard’s best advice for good writing. Not everyone agreed with the old boy. Neither did I. Well, I liked 3 or 4 of his rules, but didn’t exactly agree with the rest. But those were his ideas and he has been successful.

 

Today I’ll try to get back into everyone’s good graces with my own advice. This is one I believe in—100%.

 

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Recent Comments
Kaye George
I tried to give a 5 star, but it kept saying 4 1/2! Sorry.
Friday, 21 April 2017 12:28
Wayne Zurl
Thanks, Kaye. I never noticed the star ratings before.
Friday, 21 April 2017 13:27
Cheryl Peyton
I still like most of Elmore Leonard's rules, except for 'never use a Prologue or start a book with weather' as there can be valid ... Read More
Friday, 21 April 2017 14:53
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Elmore Leonard's Ten Rules of Writing

What was Leonard’s secret to success as a writer? Here are 10 tips which were taken from a New York Times article, “Easy on the Adverbs, Exclamation Points and Especially Hooptedoodle.”

1.      Never open a book with weather.

2.      Avoid prologues.

3.      Never use a verb other than “said” to carry dialogue.

4.      Never use an adverb to modify the verb “said”…he admonished gravely.

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Recent Comments
Tilmer Wright Jr.
Wayne, This is very insightful. So much for opening with, "It was a dark and stormy night." I find myself struggling mightily w... Read More
Thursday, 20 April 2017 11:33
Wayne Zurl
It's too bad Elmore is no longer around for us to ask more questions. I doubt any writer had a better love affair with the Hollywo... Read More
Thursday, 20 April 2017 13:11
Kaye George
And, of course, rules are made to be broken, right? My favorite set of rules: There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortuna... Read More
Thursday, 20 April 2017 23:16
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6 Comments

Google Analytics 101

Google Analytics 101

All members receive, or should receive, a report on your page(s) on the AGT site. If you want to know a little bit more about terminology used on the report, I invite you to read attached document. One may also be interested to do some training to get even more familiar. I hope you get something meaningful out of this.

 

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The Length of What You Wrote & Other Things That Will Drive You Crazy

THE LENGTH OF WHAT YOU WROTE AND OTHER THINGS THAT WILL DRIVE YOU CRAZY

By Wayne Zurl

 

My problem isn’t unique to writers. If your personality demands that you and other people get the facts straight, you might cringe when you hear blatantly incorrect statements.

 

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Recent Comments
Tilmer Wright Jr.
My debut novel, Motes, has a length that I believe has hampered my marketability. I'm a nobody. In the universe of nobodies, I am ... Read More
Friday, 31 March 2017 15:24
Wayne Zurl
Tilmer, When I hired a "book doctor" to help me finalize my first novel, he told me that a new kid on the block should not exceed... Read More
Friday, 31 March 2017 16:04
Cheryl Peyton
Wayne, You have to calm down, although it also bothers me when people use misnomers. Our Havanese dog is never correctly identifi... Read More
Saturday, 01 April 2017 08:17
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5 Comments

Taxes for Writers

Taxes for Writers

I post about taxes yearly since there always seem to be writers whose accountants have steered them wrong, saying that they can't take tax deductions unless they're making money. Not true! The IRS hobby rule doesn't have to apply to writers if you're serious about your writing. All of you need to know that you CAN deduct expenses--and for many, many years. Below is my standard post and at the bottom is a link to changes for this year.

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Kaye George
That would be fun! I'm signing books in Lenoir City, at the American Commissary's Spring Fling, April 7th, 2-4. That's the only lo... Read More
Monday, 13 March 2017 14:31
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REVIEWING MEMBER'S BOOKS

One of the great ways we can help other members is to review their books and post those reviews on Amazon, on the member's Authors Page and on GoodReads. 

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Tilmer Wright Jr.
Sam - I certainly appreciate the notes you made about my book. The one typo you found has been there a long time and has been miss... Read More
Thursday, 02 March 2017 15:03
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How to protect yourself again Ransomware

In today's world of hacking, spamming, phishing & all kinds of other threats, that makes life using internet via all kinds of devices more and more cumbersome, for the every day user - we need to protect ourselves and become more aware of these threats.

Even high-raking politicians apparently are not as aware as they ought to be. A small reminder is the current election in the USA. However it is also ones reponsibility in todays age to become more aware and learn what to do to stay protected. The blog is specifically about Ransomware and how to be more proteced against it. You do no want to pay people who have succesfully taken over access to your computer and information on it.

Ransomware threats like Cryptowall, TeslaCrypt, and Locky are on the rise, targeting organizations of all sizes. This paper explains how these attacks work, and why a large number of new infections continue to surface despite existing protective measures. It also provides practical short- and long-term steps that organizations should take to protect against them.

This documentent may be a bit technical, but surely one can get some great advise from it, as to what to do and what NOT to do.

Enjoy!

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Boost Sales attend a Farmer's Market

Boost Sales attend a Farmer's Market

I read in one of my writing magazines about attending a farmer's market.  Yesterday I attended the farmer's market in Tellico Village at the Yacht Club.  It took me 15 minutes to set up.  I had a folding table, folding chair, metal rack, and books.  I could park either in my designated spot or close by.

It is open each Wednesday in the summer from 9 to noon.  In that time, I sold 11 books, was asked to speak at two book clubs, and had three future buyers.

There is NO COST and you can cancel at any time according to your schedule or weather.  You just show up and start selling. The earlier you go, the better spot you'll have.  I arrived at 8 am with a cup of coffee and a breakfast bar.

Is there anyone who would like join me for next week, Wednesday, June 22nd? Let me know.

Check out your own town's market.  Some charge a yearly fee, some charge per time, and some are free. Let AGT know what you found out so we can participate if we want to.

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