2016 CVTech Writers Class graduates & shows off new book! 2017 workshop begins!

The CVTech writers from the Write Publish & Market Your Book II Workshop class have finished up this semester with many accomplishments.  Debbie Fogle has uploaded a new book to Createspace.  Hart Tillett, Carol Nichols, and Rosemarie Durgin are working at uploading their book and formatting their books right now.  Judy Bishop has created a blog and is formatting her new poetry book for uploading.  Clay Fees is writing and revising his book on muscle cars!  Tanner Milgrim is still writing and revising his sci-fi novel.  Chuck Baker has compiled all his short stories, created a cover, and is preparing to upload his book.  shane Smith has written synopses, sent query letters, and is editing and revising his book for sending out to traditional publishers.  Julie Marquardt is also preparing her book for submission to traditional pubs, but she also may create an on-demand book for the new semester.  Many of our writers are ready to upload their books and get hard copy!  Yeah!  This semester, we also have Connie Sweeney working on her children’s book and deciding how to proceed with illustrators and the like.  Many different wonderful projects.  See the picture below with our writers and their new book of Western short stories, Tales & Trails: A Western Odyssey. http://www.okwriters.com Off we go!  Yeah!

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Book Covers & Titles: Tips

CVTech writers are working on blogs and websites tonight.  Some folks are editing.  We are talking about titles and book covers.  Here are some recommendations for your title: 1) Be short and catchy.  2) Alliteration is good: ex: Saddles and Spurs  3) Pick something that has the flavor of who you are.  ex: Twisted Sister  4) Use words that are easy to spell.  ex: The Red Shoes   5) Use a phrase that might be an adage or have some mystery: The Meaning of Nothing  or Measure Twice, Cut Once.  6) A good one word title that easy to spell is always great: Interstellar.  

Covers need to have excellent, striking art with easy to read graphics.  Look at covers of books in your genre to get an idea.  Suggestion: Buy the art outright. Go to your local college and find out who the best artist is there by going to student art shows.  Set a budget, and offer a price for what you want.  Make sure the colors are vibrant and catchy.  Use a good graphics or cover art template for the title and author pages, or get a graphic artist to help you.  Make sure your fonts are easy to read and evocative of your genre.  (Western style fonts for a Western)  Make sure the color of the font contrasts with the whatever is behind it, so that the font is easily readable.  Use simpler rather than more elaborate fonts.  Make them visible, size wise.

This is good advice for your website and blog too!  My suggestion is, get a FREE blog that you change on a regular basis with updated material, and get a website as your home base, or resume page, and where you can sell your book.  Give freebies occasionally to tempt people to buy your book.  I never pay anyone else to do my stuff, because sometimes website builders disappear, and then you can’t control your own website.  You can make a good website all on your own with a little help, for not a lot of money, and then YOU are in control.  have fun becoming a writer, an expert, and an all around creative person!

Need to contact the media in Oklahoma or elsewhere? Here’s how!

How to Contact Media for Oklahoma

  1. Oklahoma Press Association http://www.okpress.com/     This contains list of newspapers, contests, jobs available, and more.
  2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_newspapers_in_Oklahoma
  3. TV: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_television_stations_in_Oklahoma
  4. Radio : http://www.usnpl.com/radio/okradio.php
  5. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_radio_stations_in_Oklahoma

All forms of media: http://www.usnpl.com/

ok-media

Find out more at http://www.creativequills.com  http://www.okwriters.com

altpersbk  Buy our book! https://www.createspace.com/6429927

We’re writing Westerns!

cowboys I was re-reading Lonesome Dove a week ago, and that inspired me to ask my writing group if they thought they could each write some western short stories so we could then publish a book!  I love all the amazing ideas they come up with, so I posited the question, and they were enthusiastic, and we’re going to try it.

The story has to take place prior to 1910, at least.  Other than that, there are no requirements.  Lonesome Dove reminded me of a Western (and shorter) version of Game of Thrones, with lots of killing, raping and pillaging, (or at least “sportin'” and “thievin'”) and great characters.  So I’m putting this out there…how about it?

We have already put together one group of short stories that we are turning into a book.  This book is comprised of stories from the points of view of non-humans.  This will be called Alternate Perspectives, and we have some great stories in that genre!  Fun to write and to read!

We have had nearly ten people showing to each meeting, and we are going to move to a larger room!  Lately, we have been doing pass-along stories.  This is where one person writes a scenario, and a second person continues the story, and then a third continues it further.  We’ve had some wild dips and turns with those stories too, so if they’re good enough, we may just publish them somewhere as well.

Check out http://www.writeok.com for writer’s prompts and http://www.okwriters.com to see what happened after using some of those prompts.

Last week, we also did one liners.  Practice writing a smashing first line and/or first paragraph, because remember, if you don’t grab your reader by the throat right away, he or she might put you aside.  This is especially true of editors and agents.

Put together your own writers group, and use each other for Beta readers.  Find some people who will be kind but honest.  This has really worked out well for us.  We have learned a lot!

As always, have fun with writing!  There’s no reason for stress: we have Spellchecker and Grammarcheck and editors for the fine-tuning.  You can do it!  Now, write on!

P.S. My CVTech classes on How to Write, Publish & Market Your Book will be coming again on Mondays in mid-April.  This is an 8 week crash course on everything you need to do to get published and SELL SELL SELL, for only $69 for the whole shebang.  This semester, we’ll also be offering Wednesday Workshop class where we MAKE STUFF HAPPEN: websites, blogs, self-publishing, query letters, the works.  If you live in the greater Oklahoma City area, check it out!  Call Http://www.cvtech.edu or me at http://www.meetup.com/CreativeQuills/.  My goal is help you make your writing dream a reality!

Creative Quills Writers Work on Novels & Interviews at Iron Tree Coffee Company!

There’s no better place to write than at a coffee shop, and in El Reno, that’s the Iron Tree Coffee Company on Woodson.  Today, Creative Quills writing group is meeting on final Sundays to work actively on our novels, interviews we’re doing for an upcoming magazine, and all kinds of other writing projects.  This is a great place to meet Beta readers, if you need people to read what you’ve written and give honest feedback on your stuff.

Today, we have Sue, who is working on a romance/mystery set in France; she’s also our group’s photographer!  We also have Shane Smith, working on a query letter for his book The First & the Last, a deep novel reminiscent of C.S. Lewis or J.R.R. Tolkien.  Julie Marquardt is here to work on her young adult historical novel about a 19th century girl who loves sailing ships–and who ends up battling pirates and other sundry villains.  Rosemarie Durgin is a prolific writer who is currently editing her book about young children in war-torn Germany who get separated from their parents.  Debbie Fogle just got her first book published, Happiness is Hard to Find!  

We are going in a million different directions!  Coming to this writing group is a bit chaotic because we have so many projects.  We have several people researching pieces on buildings in downtown El Reno, some projects on animal personalities, one article that is a band interview, and some articles in the works about downtown businesses and their book connections.  So many things to write, so little time!  The writing life here in El Reno is a whirlwind!  In fact, many of our writers show up for open mic at The Bick, right around the corner, on Saturdays.

And me…I am writing a YA paranormal novel, several human interest (true) stories, lots of website content, editing one YA novel, and orchestrating all the creative writing groups.  Our group intention is to publish a book of short stories both as an E-book and as a trade paperback before the summer is out!  Meanwhile, I am teaching Comp I at Redlands Community College and am grading 20 papers a week!  What else is new?20160626_151542I don’t know!  I do what I can!  All I know is, we’re having a ball!  Look at the look on my face!  Eek! 🙂

 

 

Pros & Cons of Self-publishing an E-book

Pros & Cons of self-publishing an e-book

The Pros

  1. Uploading is easy.
  2. If you go with a company, you can leave it be & let go!ebook.
  3. Large companies have people come to them.
  4. Passive marketing-or none- is possible.
  5. Your book can go international.
  6. You can choose an “on demand” printing option.
  7. You have lots of control over the cover and the looks of the book on the inside.
  8. You can do-it-yourself
  9. You can pay if you need help.
  10. It can be quick and easy.

 

The Cons

  1. Marketing is more difficult.
  2. You may not earn a lot, because…
  3. It’s harder to sell.
  4. If you upload to your own site, marketing is hard.
  5. You have to work twice as hard to promote it, and…
  6. You don’t have any hard copies, unless you order and pay for some.
  7. You can do this with little to no money up front.

Our last class is only the beginning!

Our last class is only the beginning!

Here we are at CVTech in El Reno, OK, and this is our last class for The “Write It, Publish It, Market It (Your Book)”, but the truth of the matter is: this is only the beginning!!! Now that we have a laundry list of things to do on our books, we are going to support each other by helping read, edit, and put into effect our querying efforts and marketing plans. We have some Sunday afternoons planned for proactive workshops at IronTree Coffee Company!

Next on deck is our interview on local radio coming later in March, and watch for an article on our group in Cheyenne Arapaho Tribal Tribune also later in March.  We are still doing Creative Writing Group at the El Reno Carnegie Library, and we are talking about doing a mini-publication of short stories and perhaps sponsoring a booth at a city festival in the spring.  We’re also talking of showing off some of our writing skills on the blog, so stay tuned!

For those of you wanting to join us, please contact either CVTech or El Reno Carnegie Library, or go to http://www.meetup.com/CreativeQuills/ or write me at booklady@thebooklady.info.  Can’t wait to hear from you!