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News You Can Use – June 11, 2013

How to Launch a Bestselling Book – Michael Hyatt reveals some tremendous tips to have your book make a big splash. One of our clients followed some of these ideas along with some of their own. They sold out every online bookseller in the country withing four days (Amazon, B&N, Ingram, Books-a-Million, Lifeway, ChristianBook, Mardel, etc.) It can work if you have the right platform established ahead of time.

7 Minutes to a New You – Simple exercises you can do in your office to increase your health.

8 Myths About Audiobooks – Have you ever made any of these assumptions? Well done article.

The Art of Book Stacking – I have to admit to being a little geeky about this post. These are the kind of towers I used to build when I was in the bookstore business. I still remember the six foot mountain we built out of a new Frank Peretti novel using nearly 500 copies. The key is to make is so the customer can still buy a copy and not feel like they are playing a game of Jenga.

Twitter is Changing the English Language – Do you agree or is this an overstatement?

Man Writes the Entire Bible in Longhand – Took him four years. If you’d like to do this kind of thing yourself on a smaller scale, check out the Journibles from Reformation Heritage Books. This is a very cool way to devotionally hand-write books of the Bible like using a journal. Try out the booklet on Psalm 119 to see if it works for you (only $4.00).

C is for non-Compete

by Steve Laube

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Both Tamela and Karen wanted “C” to stand for coffee or chocolate since both seen to be must-haves for any writer. Instead I’m going to fudge a little (pun intended) and write about the “non-Compete” clause in your contract. This clause has become the latest playground for negotiations.

Here is a simple version of a non-compete clause:

The Author will not publish or authorize the publication of any other work which would adversely affect the sale of the Work without the Publisher’s prior written consent.

Seems fairly innocuous, and it is. This publisher is basically saying “don’t write another book similar to this one.”

Take a look at this language from another publisher’s contract:

Author will neither publish nor authorize the publication anywhere of any Competing Work, including any Competing Work co-written by Author, in any form equivalent to a Physical Version, Digital Version, or in any form hereafter devised. A “Competing Work” shall be any work on the same or similar topic contained in the Work, treated in the same manner and depth, and directed to the same audience.

Imagine you have written a book about anger in the workplace and then later want to write about anger as a parent for a different publisher. Are those “competing” works? Would the second adversely affect the sale of the first?

Fun Fridays – June 7, 2013

Rhett and Link have provided us with a song to celebrate the Graduation season.
They composed this as part of the commencement address at their alma mater last year. So many wanted to hear it again they produced the song and then this video, which was done in one take.

Happy Graduation!

News You Can Use – June 4, 2013

Special Days in June to Market You Book – Edie Melson does it again! Did you know this week is “Fishing Week”?

Publishers Should Invest In Authors, Not Just In Books - from Forbes magazine online. What do you think of what she is saying?

The Seven Deadly Myths of Digital Publishing – I found myself nodding in agreement while reading this article by Bill McCoy the executive director of the International Digital Publishing Forum.

Are You Ready to Contact an Agent? Take This Short Quiz and Find Out - A clever way to ask yourself some key questions in your pursuit.

 - This is an ongoing debate within the publishing community. What is the value of a book? $2.99? $5.99? $0.00? $9.99? The implication have enormous economic consequences.
Note how one self-published author uses Pulsing and Pacing in her ebook pricing strategy.

21 Platform Building Insights from Authors and Experts Who Excel at It - Wow.Far too much good advice to absorb in one sitting!

B is for Buy Back

by Steve Laube

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Many authors are also speakers and as such usually have a book table in the back of the room where the audience can purchase a copy of their book during an event. This can be a very valuable source of income for the author if they have negotiated a “buy back” price (also known as the author’s discount) at the time of signing their book contract.

Check Your Contract Restrictions
It is crucial that you read your contract if you plan on selling copies of your book. No publisher will allow you to resell your books to a commercial account. In other words don’t try to buy thousands of books at your author discount and then re-sell them to Wal-Mart at a special price. That is a no-no. And is a logical restriction.

Also, there are a couple publishers that do not allow you, by contract, to sell your books in any public venue. If you scoff at this after signing the contract and are caught, you are in breach of contract and could face the consequences.

Fun Fridays – May 31, 2013

Oh my, this was too funny.
Been there. Done that.
Don’t try to fix it!

News You Can Use – May 28, 2013

Create a Great Title for Your Book – A well done article that could help your Muse

Five Things Indie Authors Do Very Well – Dr. Alison Baverstock makes some solid observations.

Cover Letters and Book Proposals – Looking for some help with these? This article provides the basics.

Proofread Like a Pro – Never hire me as your poorfreader. Need I say more?

Are E-Book Sales Declining…in Canada? – Don’t forget that Publishing is a global concern.

Why American Kids Have ADHD and French Kids Don’t – Fascinating. Do you agree or disagree?

Enjoy these definitions of “Biblio” (via tumblr)

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From A Passion for Books by Harold Rabinowitz, Rob Kaplan

A is for Advance

by Steve Laube

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Whenever I lecture about money the room becomes unusually quiet. Instead of a common restlessness from listeners there is a thrumming impatience to reveal the punch line. The punch line that declares every writer will be rich.

Now that I have our attention let’s turn to the topic of the day. The Advance. This is defined as the money a publisher pays to the author in “advance” of the publication of the finished book. We read about the seven-figure advances in the news because they are unusual and quite substantial. The amount given to everyone else can be rather different. (Read the article where Rachelle Gardner answers the question “What is the Typical Advance.”)

Payout Schedule

The money is not given all at once. There is usually an amount given for signing the book contract and the balance comes at various stages of the writing process. Some pay half on signing, half on acceptance of an acceptable manuscript. Some pay one-third on signing, one-third on acceptance, and one-third on publication. There can be other triggers to create payments like an acceptable proposal for subsequent books in a multi-book deal. We even had one highly unusual situation where the total amount of the advance was divided up over the course of 15 months and the publisher paid the author monthly.

Fun Fridays – May 24, 2013

I love Henri the Cat. (aka “the existential cat.”)

Enjoy his most recent adventure “Cat Littérature.”

and one of our favorites:

News You Can Use – May 21, 2013

Happy 8th Birthday to YouTube – Yesterday was the day. Who could have ever imagined? (It also happened to be my daughter’s birthday. Happy Birthday Fiona.)

Stephen King Delays E-Book! – In an effort to support physical bookstores he has delayed the ebook edition of his newest release.

The Anatomy of a One-Sheet – Barbara NcNichol provides a simple explanation that you can use to help promote your book idea for speaking and to the media.

A Free Membership to CopyBlogger – Access to 13 major articles and a 20 part video series on how to write good copy. This is where sales are made, in the back cover copy, in the one-sheet copy, and on your web site.

5 Reasons Why Libraries Will Fail – First published in 1864.

Tsundoku – Your word for the day. Expand your vocabulary with this one illustrated below… Books purchased but left unread. Even Goodreads has an entire bookshelf of popular tsundoku titles.

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