My Personal Writing Goals for 2020 and Beyond

Hi Folks, I’ve long believed it’s important to make my writing goals public. First, knowing that others know what I’m attempting helps hold my feet to the fire. Second, publishing my own goals might help other writers set their writing goals. But remember, the overall goal of writing in the first place is to have fun. Seriously, if you don’t enjoy writing, find something else to do. (grin) So here goes…. My personal writing goals for … Read more

Warning—Safeguard Your IP

Hey Folks, Note: This post appeared in slightly different form over on my Journal. If you decide to use (or any other “free” website builder), READ THE TERMS SERVICE. The terms of service are a legally enforceable contract, and when you click that little box saying you accept them, you’re effectively signing that contract. If you don’t want to read every boring word, at least search for terms like “Content” and “Rights” and “Intellectual Property … Read more

The New World of Publishing

Hi Folks, Awhile back, I mentioned almost in passing that I love the new world of publishing. Here’s why: I’ve written for most of my life and have had two nonfiction works and two books of poetry traditionally published (back in the early ’90s). However, I’ve considered myself a professional writer for only about 5 years. Five years ago on April 15 I wrote my first short story into the dark. Five years ago in mid-October … Read more

Traditional vs. Indie Publishing: A Brief Comparison

Hi Folks, My first two nonfiction titles were traditionally published. The best royalty rate I received was 10%. So every time my book sold for $12, I eventually pocketed $1.20. That was pure profit, if you don’t count the cost of gasoline and hotels and all the other costs associated with traveling to writers conferences to promote those books. I know whereof I speak. And the way traditional publishing contracts are written today, I will never … Read more

On Publishing, Indie-Publishing and Making a “Name” as a Published Author

Hey Folks, I received a query from a writer who’s interested in a copyedit. He also asked whether I would help him find an agent and a traditional publisher. Uhh, no. After I explained why I thought the agent chase and traditional publishing in general was not a good idea, he wrote in reponse “About publication: I agree with you. However, I want not money but name as a published author, which you know somebody does … Read more

How to Make Enemies and Annoy People

Hi Folks, Way back in October of last year (and originally, probably three or four years before that), I published a post titled “Trust Your Professional.” If you missed it, you can see the original post at The whole point is that getting What You Want is much more important to You than it is to the person or persons from whom you’re trying to get it. This is true in every case. That’s why … Read more

Some Reasons To Avoid Traditional Publishing

Hi Folks, Please Note: This is a guest post by Dean Wesley Smith, who graciously allowed me to cross-post it here. You can find the URL for Dean’s website below and in the Quick Links in the sidebar. This was originally posted on Dean’s site on February 20, 2018. There Are So Many… I mentioned that I had taught at a wonderful writer’s seminar called Superstars. Put on by Kevin Anderson, Rebecca Moesta, Eric Flint, Dave … Read more

My Updated Fiction Length and Price List for 2017/2018

Hi Folks, First, a few explanatory notes — 1. In everything below, I’m talking about indie publishers, like you and me. All signs indicate the traditional publishing model (the agency model) is dead or dying across the board. I’m also talking here about ebooks. If you want to deal with print, see my excerpt from Dean’s post at And remember that DWS’ pricing guidelines are for trade paperback books, not mass-market paperback books. 2. As … Read more

Regarding “Freelance Editors” Who Do More Than Copyedit

Hi Folks, If you are fortunate enough that a professional writer who is much farther down the road happens to offer a critique of your work (most won’t, and I don’t), consider carefully what he or she has to say. Then decide whether to apply it to your own work. Apply it or discard it. Up to you. However, if you receive any free critique of your writing from anyone else, my advice is to nod, … Read more

Update to Brave New World of Publishing

Hi Folks, This morning as I emailed a friend, I had occasion to revisit an old blog post, one I wrote here back in October, 2015. The information in it bears repeating, especially in light of recent posts over at Dean Wesley Smith’s website. I recommend you read my older blog post before continuing with this one, even if you think you remember everything about it. To do so, click Brave New World of Publishing. After … Read more