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Month: December 2018

How to “Show, Not Tell” with Emotions

By: Ginger | Posted on December 21, 2018

Author Ginger is back today, with some tips about how you can show, not tell, by using descriptions of body-language to convey your character’s emotions.  He even provides a few examples to get your creative juices flowing, but if you have some other favorites sound off in the comments below! One of the most oft-repeated pieces of writing advice is to “show, not tell” – which means that you use instinctively-identifiable actions to explain events and emotions rather than just describing what happens. When it comes to demonstrating a character’s emotional state, this advice holds up especially well – even more so when you pair it with some advice I suggested a couple of months ago to “stop saying said.” Trends in writing shift and change, but one shifting preference that seems to remain headed in the same direction is the use of dialogue to push a story along. Back… Read More >

Five Fantastic Festive Romances Recently Reviewed

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on December 18, 2018

Hidden Gems offers subscribers the chance to review FREE books each and every day, from over 15 different genres. As a continuing feature of this blog, we’ll be looking back every now and again at the best recent books from individual genres or themes; and sharing why we liked them. Keep checking for the latest lists, and become part of the action yourself by signing up to Hidden Gems.  Whether you’re a fan of Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah or Festivus, there’s no denying that there’s something magical about the holiday season. In addition to all the real-life family fun, it’s the perfect backdrop for countless timeless stories – from It’s a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Carol and A Christmas Story to the ultimate holiday-themed tale of all time – Die Hard. In the lead-up to the holidays, Hidden Gems shared a few festive-themed romance reads with our subscribers – and here are five… Read More >

Kindle Select – Are Page Reads Good or Bad for Authors?

By: Ginger | Posted on December 14, 2018

Since the introduction of KU, authors have argued about whether it’s a good deal or not, given the ever fluctuating payouts and Amazon exclusivity they paid as a price for participation. On one hand, it does seem like more and more authors are going wide, but on the other hand, the KU program continues to grow and authors like Ginger have an overall positive experience with it. Here are some of the pros and cons about the program, as well as how Ginger has used it to enhance his own career as a writer. Amazon pays self-published authors on it’s KDP Select program in two ways – royalties from book sales, and a share of ‘page reads’ from Kindle Unlimited subscribers. But is the fluid and unpredictable nature of the Page Read payout a good thing, or a bad thing for authors? When I first moved to America, two things… Read More >

Author Spotlight Interview: Rachel Ellyn

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on December 11, 2018

Writing successful children’s books is anything but child’s play – which is why we were excited to sit down with Rachel Ellyn, author of the popular Hamlet the Pig books, which have become especially popular as audio books. A self-described ‘publicists nightmare’, Rachel has written in multiple genres – from kid’s books to romance and thrillers – and continues to focus on telling stories in whatever format she feels suits them best. There are countless quotes about how everybody is several different ‘people’ throughout their lives – and that certainly seems to describe Rachel Ellyn. With degrees in finance and economics, Rachel’s first career was in the high-flying world of I.T. and financial process consulting – which took her all over the world, including an extended stint in London. Yet that life wasn’t true to what Rachel truly wanted – and the Rachel we talk to today seems the antithesis… Read More >

Make Newsletters A Part of Your Marketing Plan

By: Jane Ryder | Posted on December 7, 2018

Newsletters are one of the best ways for authors to reach their audience, and should be part of any overall marketing or promotional strategy.  Yet many authors are hesitant to get started with one, for a variety of reasons – all of which Jane Ryder has heard before. Jane’s been helping authors succeed for many years, and today she’s giving us all some tips on not only how to get started with your newsletter, but how to make it as painless as possible! A lot of authors I work with fight the idea of sending out a regular newsletter even more than they fight the idea of regularly engaging on social media (which is saying something). I understand you would rather be devoting your writing time to, you know, writing, but if you want to sell the books you write, you have to spend some of your coveted writing time… Read More >

5 Female-Focused Memoirs like Michelle Obama’s ‘Becoming’

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on December 4, 2018

Looking for an uplifting, witty and personal memoir? Here are five recommendations just like Michelle Obama’s top-rated ‘Becoming.’ Michelle Obama’s memoir of her life before, during and after life in the White House has become 2018’s best-selling book – with over a million hardback copies sold in the first two weeks alone; surpassing its predecessor, Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury, by racking up more hardback sales in the first ten days of release than Wolff’s book managed in the entire ten months since it was released.  With a resume that includes graduating from Princeton and Harvard Law, a celebrated career in law and public service, plus crushing it in Carpool Karaoke, it’s perhaps not surprising why so many people gravitated towards Obama’s eminently-quotable book. Yet it’s just the latest in a series of really fantastic female-focused memoirs released in recent months – and here are five more that might interest… Read More >