To be avoided like the plague!

It’s advice time again…

Have We Had Help?

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It would be fair to say that some new writers fall into one or two of the inevitable hidden traps lurking within the world of words from time to time. Here are just a few examples.

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Let’s start by talking about one aspect of your book’s characters. Never ever reveal everything there is to know about them in one go. Think about it for a moment. Isn’t it far better to gradually find out tidbits of information about your friends, family members and work colleagues? Of course it is. The same applies to your characters. So why tell your readers everything you feel they need to know about them within the first few paragraphs?

Next we come to one of my pet hates – stating the obvious. Just because most of us at some point or other have done it in real life, doesn’t make it acceptable. You don’t…

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The Happiness Diaries

The Happiness Diaries

Something from Justin…

The Champagne Epicurean

The flag bearing the fleur-de-lys waved dementedly over the still river. The muted buildings over the Arno were all painted in the uniform colours of sunrise. A kayak rowed past as if sailing through thin air. Where the sun rose over the hills there descended a veiling haze.

It was Christopher’s last day in Florence. Soon he would have to return to his hotel to check-out and get a taxi to the airport. But he was reluctant to move. Over the last week he had become intimately acquainted with the city and it suddenly felt like leaving behind a star-crossed lover.

He was in Florence alone. He needed to be alone after what happened to him. Christopher needed to rediscover what happiness meant. And he felt it impossible to do trapped inside his own fatigued mind.

In his week in Florence he met a lot of people. Some travellers, some…

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Why should I consider self-publishing?

Why on earth not?

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Well, lets consider for a moment…

Since Ernest Hemingway got his break when the enlightened owner of a small book shop published his first work, the concept of independent writing as opposed to the long preferred method of large publishing houses with their contract or book deal for a chosen few has always been with us, as has self-publishing which has been around forever – a fact not widly known!

Don’t for one minute confuse self-publishing with vanity press. The two are complete opposites. Self-publishing literally means what it implies. You write, prepare and publish your book using one of the platforms currently available like Amazon’sKindle Direct PublishingorSmashwords, to name just two of those currently available.

The term Indie, used today when talking about self-publishing, is only its latest identity in the twenty-first century. There is absolutely no doubt that Amazon and Smashwords freed up…

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My Review of Dangerous Obsessions

Remember this?

Have We Had Help?

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Tight, taut and shocking, these stories all have warped love as the source of violence. Belgian/Flemish author, Bob Van Laerhoven, winner of the USA Best Book Award 2014 in the category “Mystery/Suspense” and the Hercule Poirot Prize with his controversial novel, Baudelaire’s Revenge, connects the fate of individuals with profound social changes. Van Laerhoven has been a travel writer in conflict-zones from 1990 until 2003 and echos of his experiences trickle through these confronting and thrilling tales, set in civil war-torn Algeria in the fifties, in a gypsy populated Polish concentration-camp during WWII, in a Peruvian border-town where stealing is a deadly art, in Liberia during the civil war in the nineties, and in Belgian Congo during the bloody uproar in the sixties. Omnia vincit amor—Love conquers all—the saying goes. But not our Dangerous Obsessions.

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If you enjoyed my post about Bob Van Laerhoven the other day here

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And I face the sunset

Hmm – food for thought…

Ephesus

I am back,
Famous words right? How many times have I said that? We will see this time. I have been under some pressure, like everyone else I guess. So what else is new?
have thought about a lot of things. Should I wind down? Stop thinking? Just curl up? There must be something to look forward to. there must something I would love to leave behind. Have I done enough?. There comes that urgent question that leaves one restless. Is there a bucket list for me? If I think of one, what will it serve? Leave me more restless than I am already. I am looking forward to leaving. I am curious and anxious about my next stop. Prayerful too. No, I did not return to church. Just curious sometimes and yes, even eager those times when I watch some of our political and spiritual leaders. I am curious…

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Writers, Believe in Yourselves – Stand On Your Own Two Feet

More advice from yours truly…

Have We Had Help?

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A comment on my blog post yesterday about obsessive writers, editing and layout errors got me thinking. The commentator said she had used the services of one of the thousands of Vanity Press publishers out there, waiting for the next sucker to fleece. She found out that after publication the end product had spelling errors. Despite them reassuring her that it would be taken care of, it wasn’t. Why do people still fall for the unmitigated BS that all Vanity Press continue to spew out I wonder? If you want my advice, don’t go there.

Sad to say but in the independent editing fraternity, there are some individuals only too willing to relieve you of your hard earned money, often leaving you with a shoddy product.

Far to many ‘wet behind the ears’ new writers these days think that they should pass their manuscript on to an expert. So they…

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