One Indie Author’s Techno-Terror and Promo-Phobia

anxious author at work laptop-868501__340It is an accepted truism that those of us with high artistic aptitudes often lack business aptitude and vice-versa. Many writers bemoan the necessity of and time spent on promotion. We want to write. Most of us do not enjoy the aspects of our craft that involve promotion, marketing and the non-creative side of our profession.

Let’s say that I am the poster-child for this problem. I have a website. When it was set up, (and I needed someone to do that for me) I promised myself I would post regularly on it. I don’t. We are told by those who know that we need an email list and a newsletter to let fans, friends and followers know what’s new, what’s coming and generally stay in friendly contact. In spite of repeated self-flagellation, I have not done so. Continue reading “One Indie Author’s Techno-Terror and Promo-Phobia”

The Importance of Categories and Keywords for Your Books on KDP

dealing with book keywords on amazon headache-1557865_960_720I hate keywords. “Use keywords,” they say, for your blog post, your KDP book, your website, your AMS ads. Figuring out which keywords to use is harder for me than writing the actual post/book/ad. But I’m learning.

An example:  the other day while checking the Amazon rank of one of my books after a sale, I noticed something odd. The rank in three different categories was showing. The first one was: Continue reading “The Importance of Categories and Keywords for Your Books on KDP”

Writing and the Tarot

tarot cards for writers fortune-telling-2458920_960_720Everything old is new again, if you wait long enough. Every now and then, I run across an author on the internet who says, “I just had an amazing idea! I’m going to use Tarot cards in my next story! I bet nobody’s ever done that before!”

Um, well, actually, lots of people have. Goodreads even has a list of books in which a Tarot reading figures in the plot. And that list is hardly exhaustive. I can think of two books published in the late 1960s whose authors used Tarot, or a variation on Tarot, as a plot device. One is Samuel R. Delany’s Nova, in which the main character, a member of a spaceship crew, palms the Sun card so that a crucial reading cannot be finished – thereby jeopardizing the ship’s mission. The other is actually a series: Roger Zelazny’s Amber novels, in which the characters correspond to certain cards in a Tarot deck. Continue reading “Writing and the Tarot”

4 Bits of Bad Advice for Writers

BAD ADVICE for writersMaking a superficial scan of the thousands of bloggers, promoters, DIYers and wannabe gurus on the web, we find tons of tried-and-true wisdom about how to be a writer. Even how to make money at it. Some of that advice needs to be taken with a grain of salt. Some of it with a huge, horse-pasture-sized block of salt. Especially if we have illusions about making money at writing.

What Does Everyone Tell Us?

What we want to hear, of course: Continue reading “4 Bits of Bad Advice for Writers”