Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Booklife Strategies And Survival Tips For the 21st Century Writer by Jeff Vandermeer

Booklife Strategies and Survival Tips for the 21st Century Writer by Jeff Vandermeer

Booklife is about the process of becoming a better writer. It is not as focused on how to write, although there is an essay called How To Write A Novel In Two Months. The author suggests
you should have a blog, be part of social media, and participate in online activities.

The language is very clear and concise. We learn about what an agent does, the process of how a book goes from a submitted manuscript to a published book, how book public relations and marketing are done, and many other skills a writer needs to understand to succeed.

The book is not just about the public aspects of writing. It is also how about how to manage your time as a writer, keep healthy and focused, and have good relations with other writing professionals like librarians, booksellers, editors, and agents.

I enjoyed reading the book. For those interested in learning what a writer does, or who are seeking a better understanding of how social media and new media changes a writing career this book would be a useful tool.

In order to get the full benefit of the book, I think it is necessary to take a little time to look at the blog as well, Booklife Now, http://www.booklifenow.com . Jeff Vandermeer includes many useful tools which are not in the book in the associated blog including a blogroll and numerous additional essays on writing.

The main complaint I have about the book is that there is no index in the book. This made it hard to backtrack to find certain subjects. The layout of the book was excellent. It had wide paragraph breaks, bolded headings, and many bullet pointed suggestion lists.

Jeff Vandermeer invited a variety of guest writers for the appendices. The two essays which I liked were Marketing Versus Publicity by Colleen Lindsay and Additional Notes on New Media by Matt Stagg.

This is well worth reading. Jeff Vandermere has a blog at http://www.jeffvandermeer.com . He has written many fantasy novels including Finch and edited a variety of anthologies including Steampunk which he co-edited with his wife, Ann Vandermeer.


Walter Knight said...

I am learning about being an author through the school of hard knocks. I have two science fiction books published this year, and 11 more in the series on the way.

I advsertise for free every two days on craigs list. I have done two newspaper interviews. I created a website. I network. I got one important positive review from Piers Anthony, and several minor reviews.

Because I published with a small publisher, I have to do a lot my self. POD books are locked out of brick and mortar bookstores, so all selling is done online.

However, my efforts are finally paying off, but in an unexpected way. Kindle sales of my books are now outpacing the paperbacks, to the tune of 2 or 3 a day. Wow.

My third book in the America's Galactic Foreign Legion series will be out in August. I sent the final proof back today. The momentum of each book builds. Sales are coming two at a time. Soon that will be three.

Good luck to all writers. Your dreams can come true if you keep working at it.

Walter Knight said...

An update:

My America's Galactic Foreign Legion series sold 500 books in August, most of those books Kindle E-books. AGFL now enjoys very good Amazon Kindle sales rankings.

Amazon ranks it's books in categories, making it easy for shoppers to find the books they want. Also, each book has a list of similiar books shoppers also bought. This great marketing scheme promotes more sales.

Now that my AGFL series is associated with top selling Sci/Fi books, they too have become a top selling top selling Kindle Sci/
Fi books.

This Christmas when everyone gets a new Kindle eReader under their tree, Kindle book sales will soar. Kindle is a savior for small publishers and new authors.

Walt Knight