Are you looking for an easy way to create graphic designs? Several years ago I was introduced to Canva, an online graphic design program. You can use this program to make just about anything you need. Such as Social media posts, posters, business cards, book covers, and ads. I have used this online program to make posters for Facebook, thumbnails for some of the articles on my website and I even made a business card. Oh yes, I also used it to make my banner for the AGT website. I even plan to make a bookmark for my book to give to people. Another cool thing about this program is that if you want someone to work on the design with you they can, all you need to do is send it to their email address however they must have a Canva account.
Best selling writer Jerry B. Jenkins (no relation to my recurring main charaster, Sam Jenkins, or to my maternal side of the family) has asked me to post a link to his new guide on how to write a book in 20 steps from beginning to end on my personal website. After doing that, I thought the AGT members might be interested in obtaining a copy. Here's the link to Jerry's site. https://www.jerryjenkins.com/how-to-write-a-book/
How I Used Author Reach to Increase My List of eMail Subscribers
Many of us met Josh Wiley when he spoke at an AGT monthly meeting about his company Author Reach and how they could help a writer manage and build their email lists to reach more potential book buyers. I’ve been using them since their “Beta” days and continue to use them while marketing my books via mass emails.
But the story goes back further than that AGT meeting in Farragut. I received a tip from another writer who had extraordinary success with this method of book marketing. Here’s that story:
I listened to a Webinar last night given by "Story Merchant" Ken Atchity. I've summarized his 8 steps to sell your story to Hollywood:
1. Write a "Log-Line" which is a one or two-sentence pitch to capture the essence of your story. Ex.: "He was left behind. On Mars." for the movie The Martian with Matt Damon. This will be used in advertising to attact an audience.
2. Write up a one-page pitch that includes a description of a strong protagonist and his mission as well as your antagonist. Hollywood likes a story that is American-related, has 3 acts that are clearly defined to form a story arc, and has a strong theme.
3. Prepare a Treatment which is a short, written pitch that includes an emotional reaction to the story. Think of it as a letter to a friend describing your most exciting adventure -- written in present tense. Write only "obligatory" action, not any side activity.
4. Register your Treatment with Writers Guild of America at www.wgaregistry.org/registration. (Costs about $35)
Some time back I recieved an invitation to join this WordTips service for free and accepted. Since then, I have found it very useful and am recommending it to anyone who uses Word in their writing. It's a weekly brief newsletter regarding capabilities of Word that aren't well known. Subscribers write in their questions that are answered with a full, clear explanation with the Word task bar and windows on display to follow.
They're always great tips to simplify formatting and word processing (ie. typing with smart quotes instead of straight quotes).
There's no charge for this service and you can discontinue it at any time. You can also ask your own questions that will be addressed . If you'd like to try it, go to tips.net/subservices.html and sign up with your email address.
Perfect is Boring
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.”
I thought it would be cool to chronicle my old cases and correct any mistakes or ask the questions that never came to mind or make the clever comments I only thought of the day after. It looked like an “if only” moment—a chance for perfection.
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%.
For many of us writing is fun. It’s what comes afterward, the promotions and marketing, that’s too much like work. But that’s life, and something authors must do.