Great Stuff on the Writers’ Blogs, June 25, 2012

No “theme” in today’s best posts but at least I can put them in some sort of logical flow (I think).  Soooo, let’s see…yeah:

  • Let’s start with why each of us writes in the first place, what we’re trying to achieve by doing so. Leslie Leyland Fields (@leslielfields) suggests Creating a Writer’s Manifesto on WordServe Water Cooler. Even if you don’t share her Christian faith, the idea of creating your own manifesto is to give yourself a sense of focus and direction.
  • We’ve all heard–over and over–“build your platform.” But for some of us, especially if we’re not all that technologically inclined, or we pine for the old days when publishers did all the PR for us, we’d rather be attacked by a gang of evil garden gnomes than build a platform, whatever the heck that is. To help us along that path, Chuck Sambuchino (@ChuckSambuchino) offers 5 Encouraging Reasons to Build Your Writer Platform on Writer Unboxed. Maybe at least one will appeal to you.
  • OK, so now you’ve got that manifesto and you’ve agreed to build a platform. But where’s the time to do all that going to come from? More important, where’s the “me time” going to come from–the time you spend doing non-working, family, fun things to recharge the batteries, or keep them charged? Michael Hyatt (@MichaelHyatt) provides a method for How to Create More Margin in Your Life, where “margin” is that recharge time.
  • Let’s jump forward in time a bit. That manuscript you’ve been slaving over for years (or at least months) is now ready–you think–to go out and find its place in the world. But how do you know?  Joel Friedlander (@jfbookman) gives 10 Quick Tips to Get Your Manuscript Ready for Publication on The Book Designer. While the focus of his tips is on preparing to self-publish, at least half of them are good tips for any proofreading, although I will disagree with one: “Get rid of extra paragraph returns.” That extra paragraph return can be a section or scene break, in which case it needs to stay in the manuscript. I offer some techniques for addressing some of his tips in a comment, too.
  • These tips won’t get you all the way to a quality manuscript, however. Clare Langley-Hawthorne wonders about Quality Checks and Balances–especially how to get them–on The Kill Zone, which generates a lively discussion. Agents, she believes, are one source, editors perhaps another, but perhaps not. And who assures “quality” in the indie world? This is very much an open question.
  • As we get to the end of the process of getting a book published, we all hope to have written so well that multiple publishers want to have the chance to publish our book. Rachelle Gardner (@RachelleGardner) describes How We Choose the Best Publisher at her agency. I’d like to think other agencies follow a similar path, but who knows? Anyone?
  • Finally, your book is out. It’s on the shelves and in the e-book stores. Have you made it? Maybe not. Has your title been included in a rap song? Seriously. Robert Bruce (@robertbruce76) has found A Guy Who Raps Book Titles. Seriously.  His name is Destorm Power and you can watch the rap video on Robert’s 101 Books blog. To help you along, DeStorm even shows you the book covers as he comes to them in his lyrics. Two warnings: he does drop the F-bomb (just once), and the last 45 seconds or so of the video are advertising.

That’s all for today.

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