I imagine all of my subscribers wondered if I was ever going to send another edition of Writing Hacks.
As you can see, the answer is yes! I've spent most of the summer re-tooling various aspects of my writing life in an effort to make things run smoother and be less time-consuming.
I've emailed everyone--I think--who should have received a signup gift to see if the assistant I had at the time followed through.
I've also been investigating various ideas like placing a shopping cart on my website and blog to sell directly to visitors.
Actually, I'm not wanting to sell so much as find a convenient way to give away reports and compilations of posts to subscribers and others as a gift. I've set up a couple of e-commerce accounts to test them before recommending them to you.
I'll continue offering a writing tip for beginners since so many have requested this. I'll also be asking my author friends if they have a tip they'd like to pass along to you.
So I've renewed my commitment to Writing Hacks. Please enjoy the newsletter and pass it along to your friends.
Celebrate Fall, the Season for Falling in Love!
COPYRIGHT APPLICATION TIP
I filed an application recently for Copyright Registration on two of my published books. One of the applications was a re-application because of a dumb mistake I made.
My first mistake was trying to complete several pending issues during the week my brother in law went into hospice care. One of those matters was copyright registration which I'd put off because I was too busy.
So I raced through the online application, paid my $35.00, and uploaded the file.
My second mistake was the file I uploaded. I just opened my Word .doc file, saved it as a PDF, and then uploaded it to the Copyright Office.
Weeks later, I received an email that my application had problems with it. The problem? The file I uploaded also included an excerpt of my next book.
Proper Upload File Protocol
The file you upload must contain only the actual book text. No excerpts, no note from author, no book list, etc. I knew that, but I'd been in a hurry.
Here comes my third mistake. I had 45 days from the date of notification to correct the application. However, I was out of town when that email came in. Then with all the promotion I was doing for 2 box sets (Love Blooms on Main Street and Summer Fire) and various personal family emergencies, I completely forgot about the needed correction.
My initial haste and being the "go-to" gal for everything and everyone cost me the original $35.00 because the fee you pay when you file your application is non-refundable.
So I had to pay another $35.00 to file the application again. Dumb, right? I learned my lesson so I'm passing it on so you won't make that mistake.
1. Create your story-only PDF file first.
2. Proof the application carefully before you click SUBMIT.
3. Respond in a timely fashion if you receive correspondence from the Copyright Office.
I read a book recently that prompted this tip.Before I reached the end of the first chapter, I was flipping back in an effort to figure out who all the characters were. It was like an old movie advertisement: "A cast of thousands."
Take care when introducing characters. Here are a few tips to help you.
1. Always remember that simplest formula for a story: a compelling character strives against great odds to achieve a worthy goal.
2. Make your characters compelling.
3. Introduce your main characters one at a time and give enough "space" for the reader to acquaint himself with that character before moving to introduce another.
4. Give enough description to cement the character in the reader's head.
5. Make it apparent who your main character is. I've judged a lot of manuscripts in contests where I'm trying to guess who the storyis about. Smart writers make it known from the get-go.
6. Beware introducing a character, making that character compelling and fully realized--and then killing that character off to turn the story over to a different character. This seriously annoys readers.
5. From the simplest formula above: give your compelling character believable obstacles to overcome.
6. Again, from the formula, give your character a worthy goal.
See you next month!
From now until September 16, THE TROUBLE WITH LOVE is on sale for only 99cents.