Book Publishing / Writing Guide Thread -

Books and Writing

  • Books really aren't my thing.

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griefsquirrel

kiwifarms.net
Do you actually earn money with this or is it a hobby? Serious question. I have checked your output on amazon and it doesn't really look like you sold much judging from the reviews. I don't wanna be mean as you put effort into your posts but I don't think I'd take advice from somebody who can't really prove he was successful with that advice himself, no matter what it is about.

Also I'm sorry dude but as an avid reader I would not touch a book with that cover you made yourself, I would not even look at the description. I very much judge a book by it's cover which means in my case that I think if the author can't even get a cover that doesn't look like that the content of the book will likely not be much better. The "professional" one is passable.
 

Fashy Airship

Baron's Aircrew
kiwifarms.net
Do you actually earn money with this or is it a hobby? Serious question. I have checked your output on amazon and it doesn't really look like you sold much judging from the reviews. I don't wanna be mean as you put effort into your posts but I don't think I'd take advice from somebody who can't really prove he was successful with that advice himself, no matter what it is about.

Also I'm sorry dude but as an avid reader I would not touch a book with that cover you made yourself, I would not even look at the description. I very much judge a book by it's cover which means in my case that I think if the author can't even get a cover that doesn't look like that the content of the book will likely not be much better. The "professional" one is passable.
Good question, basically if you'd have read my first post you'd have learned that I'm unironically shadow-banned on Amazon, my feeder-channel on a busy forum was nuked, my reviews are blocked and Amazon claims it is a technical issue that is beyond their control. What I do is print my books out via a printworks then sell via my own side-channel. Fortunately maybe that's a good thing as I've only ever had one 1-star review and since the SJWs have arisen it makes me brigade resistant.

Some bright spark claimed 'It's because you posted nationalist stuff dude', when I first started writing you could have been a glow-in-the-dark hollywood nazi off the set of Schindler's List and sell books on Amazon. They didn't give a shit how edgy or 'intolerant' you were back in those days. In fact it seemed as though Amazon had a good lawful-neutral thing going back then too, only changing it's tune in the recent times. But I digress.

Do I make money for quiting my day-job? Well put it this way, if I made money from writing I wouldn't be bothering to even come on here. Reason being I wouldn't have the spare time as I'd be pumping out books 24/7. I'm not forcing anyone to take my advice dude, you can take it or leave it, but the fact you posted seems to indicate otherwise.

I don't write for the mainstream with my home-brew cover-art either, I use artists that are pure naturals for that sort of thing. Interestingly one of the most prolific writers I've known didn't even bother with cover-art for his books and was raking in the coin, his methodology was different to most and was from a time when e-books were in their infancy though. More on him later.
 
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Terrorist

Osama bin Ladkin
kiwifarms.net
No offense but all of your books sound super gay, and I'm not impressed with your writing skills from what I've seen of your posts. The real advice here should be "throw a bunch of word salad into an ebook, and you're guaranteed a couple bucks from algorithms alone". It's a very easy side hustle if you've got free time and want a little beer money.
 

Fashy Airship

Baron's Aircrew
kiwifarms.net
Digital Format

E Books are a rising popularity in the book scene. Kindle and other hand-held readers have led to an explosion in their popularity. Most of the 'cool kids' like all the digital shit too so they'll be lapping e-books up.

As a writer you can write, format and edit e-books a lot faster than a paperback typically. There are some things to keep aware of though.

There's no need to use a Table Of Contents (TOC)with page numbers, in fact there's no need to even have a footer with page numbers as the Kindle format adds these automatically. To have your TOC with numbers would therefore not even make sense. That being said the TOC, if you add one, should ideally have a clickable link for each TOC chapter that is anchored to the chapters throughout the book. This separates the casuals from the people who know what they are doing.

Now some of the window-licker types on here will say 'Why do you need a Table of Contents'? You don't! But on an Ebook it's a lot more of a grind to scan forwards and backwards to different chapters, especially if it's a large E-Book. You're done reading an e-book half-way through, come back to it after a few days and lacking a TOC you are messing about trying to scan back to where you've last been. You can use e-bookmarks too, but most tend reach chapter by chapter and with a TOC you can make this a breeze.

How do you make an electronic TOC? This will take some tech savvy. Basically what I do is save my book file as an HTML (having first removed the page numbers and TOC page numbers).

Next open up an HTML editor and start making the TOC chapters linkable to anchor points. These anchor points go to the actual chapters themselves. Obviously the bigger the book the longer this job is usually.

1. Table of Contents (left column is html code (not essential to know with a GUI but handy for proper editing)



Web Editor used - Dreamweaver (You can get this for free on a trial period or pay)

2. Chapter Heading (This is where the anchor goes to link to the TOC properly)



After you're done with the TOC get the previewer open in your browser and start clicking those links!

If you've done it right the screen should jump on down to the corresponding chapter!

Now if all is right with the other parts of the book etc get that thing launched onto Amazon, Barnes and Noble! :)
 
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Fashy Airship

Baron's Aircrew
kiwifarms.net
Inspiration

Inspiration is a hard thing to come by sometimes, it can take a lot of different factors to get into it, come by it or just tap into something.

I can't bottle the stuff for you, but I can tell of what works for me when I'm just writing out stories for clients and so on.

Music

Music is wonderful to use in this way, silence when it's right also. But for intense scenes and action, music is often a good fuel for getting those lines down, making your 1,000 - 2,000 or even 3,000 a day deadline. The type of music can vary, but you don't want it to be too vocal, in fact vocals I find can over-ride your cognitive thought process and end being a pleasant distraction instead of a 'catalyst'.
So high-grade instrumental tracks and so forth are more effective than say some shitty pop music with whiney vocals.
Environment and Time of Day
Finding the best location for the muse to flow those words onto the screen is just as important too, as is the time of day. I produced my most words in a day at the mid-day to evening for example, but some might have the right sort of creativity and outpout being a night owl.

Distractions from the environment may be a problem, your apartment could be in a noisy area and getting away from it to a public place may be a benefit, in fact if you you are able to get the lines down and craft the story well. This is how JK Rowling wrote her Harry Potter books (she used cafes in Scotland's capital city of Edinburgh). On the other hand the calm, hushed-silence of a public library may be a more ideal choice.

Well this ends Fashy's tips of the day! Hope you are finding them helpful. :)

Please help support us starving artists!

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And I could do with a shekel or two for the ink-well if you can spare it...

 
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Puddleduck

kiwifarms.net
Is there anything a medium/independent publishing house can do that I can't? Let's assume I know how to:
  • Publish with KDP as ebook and print
  • Publish through IngramSpark, so shops can buy the books
  • ISBN shit
  • Find editors/proofreaders
  • Find cover designers/illustrators
  • Advertise

I don't think I've ever seen paperbacks from indie houses in actual shops, so what would be the advantage in going with a small press, if I couldn't hook a larger one?
 

Finrod Felagund

Cannot seem to stop rap-battling.
kiwifarms.net
Is there anything a medium/independent publishing house can do that I can't? Let's assume I know how to:
  • Publish with KDP as ebook and print
  • Publish through IngramSpark, so shops can buy the books
  • ISBN shit
  • Find editors/proofreaders
  • Find cover designers/illustrators
  • Advertise
I don't think I've ever seen paperbacks from indie houses in actual shops, so what would be the advantage in going with a small press, if I couldn't hook a larger one?
You contributing to small presses would help them boost their competition in both domestic and global markets and in turn promote sales of your publications. After all, publishers need authors to keep their roof up and authors need publishers to get their books on the market. Indie houses often have their own shops (online or physical) and produce their own catalogs (we call them publisher's catalogs) if there are any interested parties (namely vendors, retailers and libraries).
The red flags you should look out from indie houses are to whom, how and where your books are being sold. Those ISBNs are literal tracking devices for the national union catalog, so any business malpractice that challenges bibliographic control could potentially get your work in jeopardy.
 

Fashy Airship

Baron's Aircrew
kiwifarms.net
Is there anything a medium/independent publishing house can do that I can't? Let's assume I know how to:
  • Publish with KDP as ebook and print
  • Publish through IngramSpark, so shops can buy the books
  • ISBN shit
  • Find editors/proofreaders
  • Find cover designers/illustrators
  • Advertise
I don't think I've ever seen paperbacks from indie houses in actual shops, so what would be the advantage in going with a small press, if I couldn't hook a larger one?
I think it's generally harder to get published by a larger publisher as they tend to do larger print-runs on books and expect a better return (ideally a best-seller). But a smaller publisher is great for niche genres and so on.

On the actual bookshop question, when I just published Air Captain the option for expanded distribution in stores was an option, but through amazon you don't get it on the shelves, it's just linked to the big book computer so that if someone asks for it at the counter they can order it in.
 

Puddleduck

kiwifarms.net
On the actual bookshop question, when I just published Air Captain the option for expanded distribution in stores was an option, but through amazon you don't get it on the shelves, it's just linked to the big book computer so that if someone asks for it at the counter they can order it in.
It's better to do that through IngramSpark. A lot of publishers use that, so it would be less of a "red flag" for potential buyers seeing it as a distributor. They're often reluctant to order books from amazon. Bu that's only relevant if you're trying to get it more out there instead of just being available on request.
 
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Puddleduck

kiwifarms.net
This is as good a thread as any to ask - could I have some feedback on this as a cover? It's for a scary book for kids.

Does it look like what it is - CGI boy over a photograph, with a filter run over it?

(Obviously I wouldn't use this, it's a practice version, but I'd be interested to see if "it works" so it's worth remaking with more effort)
 
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Fashy Airship

Baron's Aircrew
kiwifarms.net
The young lad in the pic looks fairly matched in my view, you may want to move him down a little in the frame as he looks too tall as is.
 
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Puddleduck

kiwifarms.net
Thanks for the feedback!
I'll probably make the background bigger instead, so there's not too much empty space over his head. I'll also change the character's head/limb/body ratio, he's currently got adult proportions.
 
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Burro

kiwifarms.net
This is as good a thread as any to ask - could I have some feedback on this as a cover? It's for a scary book for kids.

Does it look like what it is - CGI boy over a photograph, with a filter run over it?

(Obviously I wouldn't use this, it's a practice version, but I'd be interested to see if "it works" so it's worth remaking with more effort)
Go here: https://covercritics.com/
You can submit your cover to this website for critique. They also suggest changes based off the summary you supply to better match the theme of your work with your cover. It also has contacts for professional designers in case you decide to go that route.
https://lousybookcovers.com/ also has some more advice on the topic, but its more of a mockery site.
 
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Puddleduck

kiwifarms.net
Go here: https://covercritics.com/
You can submit your cover to this website for critique. They also suggest changes based off the summary you supply to better match the theme of your work with your cover. It also has contacts for professional designers in case you decide to go that route.
Thanks for that, it looks like a good resource! Similar to QueryShark
 
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Fashy Airship

Baron's Aircrew
kiwifarms.net
@Fashy Airship What's your opinion on the efforts by the Sad and Rabid Puppies?
Off hand I don't know who or what the Sad and Rabid Puppies are.

EDIT. I just checked them out and they seem a good tonic for the issues that have been plaguing the Science-Fiction and the Fantasy genre for several decades.

I noticed this quote from Slate in particular...

A few decades ago, if you saw a lovely spaceship on a book cover, with a gorgeous planet in the background, you could be pretty sure you were going to get a rousing space adventure featuring starships and distant, amazing worlds. If you saw a barbarian swinging an axe? You were going to get a rousing fantasy epic with broad-chested heroes who slay monsters, and run off with beautiful women.
But now:

The book has a spaceship on the cover, but is it really going to be a story about space exploration and pioneering derring-do? Or is the story merely about racial prejudice and exploitation…
A planet, framed by a galactic backdrop. Could it be an actual bona fide space opera? Heroes and princesses and laser blasters? No, wait. It’s about sexism and the oppression of women.
Finally, a book with a painting of a person wearing a mechanized suit of armor! Holding a rifle! War story ahoy! Nope, wait. It’s actually about gay and transgender issues.
No longer interested in adventure, argue the Puppies, the Hugos have grown elitist, academic, and overly ideological—irrelevant to the average fan.
The Puppies are bang on.

I've also personally noticed in at least one reprinted books (from the 1990s) the words being being deracinated from the actual meaning in the originals that were written in the early 20th century. Literally rewriting the intent and character in a subtle way.

Unfortunately it seems the Puppies have been inactive since 2017?
 

ProgKing of the North

Close to the edge, just by the Riverlands
kiwifarms.net
Seems like their complaint is that the stories seem to be metaphors for real world issues instead of cliched escapism?

There's room for both, but they should hardly be surprised that one tends to win more awards than others.
 

WaltherPPGAY

kiwifarms.net
Seems like their complaint is that the stories seem to be metaphors for real world issues instead of cliched escapism?

There's room for both, but they should hardly be surprised that one tends to win more awards than others.
Everyone making this argument ought to be forced to read a N.K Jemisin book.
 
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