Monday, August 4, 2008

The Savvy Self-Publisher, August-September 2008

Lead Story: Book Title Tips and Tricks

As explained in "Writing Nonfiction" by Dan Poynter, choosing
an effective title for your book is a BIG key to success.

Think of it in terms of a company name listed in a phone book:
suppose you run a veterinary clinic in San Francisco... would
you name it "San Francisco Pet Hospital" or "Pet Hospital of
San Francisco" instead? The latter choice is better, because
your prospective customers are MUCH more likely to look in the
phone book under "Pets" than "San Francisco."

The same is true for books. When people search online for a
book, they may not know a specific title or author... but they
do know the subject of the book they want to buy. For this
reason the subject MUST be part of your book's title for best

Dan Poynter's book "Writing Nonfiction" practices what it
preaches: it's almost always shelved correctly in bookstores,
and is the #1 listing for Google Book Search when readers
search "writing nonfiction" or "nonfiction writing." Use
Poynter's success as your guide, and pick a title for your
book that readers will find, even if they don't know your
name or book title!

The Writer's "Secret Weapon" Arrives

Is "there" or "their" or "they're" the right word you need now?

New software takes over where Word's spell checker stops:

Money back guarantee. Reviews from authors wanted.

How We Become Writers

If you are hesitant about becoming a published author because
you fear that you are not qualified, you should read about how
other writers got started. Writers become writers in some
strange ways. One noted animal writer, for example, was helped
by the divorce of a famous actress. Another writer got his
start when he applied for a job he was totally unqualified to
get. "How We Became Writers" tells how writers, some well-known
and others not well-known yet, got published for the first time:

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Guest Column

Bookstore Distribution: Self-Publisher's Dream Come True?
Or "The Emporer's New Clothes?"

by Ron Pramschufer of

Mainstream booksellers return unsold books to you for a refund
on a regular basis. There are better outlets!

Self-Published Authors in Action -- Success Story

Hal Runkel, author of SCREAMFREE PARENTING self-published his
book. He invested $25,000 in media outreach with Planned
Television Arts. PTA got him 60 radio interviews, lots of local
tour media and a regular gig on TV's The Daily Buzz, which led
him to a deal with Random House and a $500,000 advance. FMI:

Quotation of the Month

"No passion in the world is equal to the urge to alter someone
else's writing."

-- H. G. Wells
(re-worded by D.O. Snow)

When will the e-Book World Learn from Music?

Amazon is rumored to have a new version of the Kindle e-Book
reader ready to ship as early as October. Meanwhile, the buzz
over growth of e-Books continues:

Our predictions:

Single purpose devices won't prevail. Already there are real,
full featured computers like the ASUS that are the same size
and same price... but do much, much more.

Another battle will be fought between proprietary formats like
Amazon's Mobipocket versus cross-platform formats like PDF.

From music, we already know that copy protection won't work.
Amazon and Sony are trying to keep a captive market, while
music sites are now selling freely copyable MP3 downloads at
low prices.

From the success of iTunes we know that consumers will pay for
legal downloads if they're reasonably priced. And they want
files that work on different devices, without technical hassles.

When will e-Book leaders learn the lessons of history?

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