Writing

A conference, a contest, and a cry

If you’re looking for a good conference to attend this summer, might I suggest the Nebraska Summer Writers Conference? The Nebraska Summer Writers Conference joins the Prairie Schooner literary journal and the American Life in Poetry series as part of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln creative writing program. The Conference’s registration is open to the public, and includes creative writing workshops and panel discussions.

The weeklong session runs from June 12th-17th and the weekend session is June 11th and 12th. If you sign up now, you can get in on the discount offered on the Poetry and Novel Master Classes.

Remember that I have a contest running. On May 19th, I’m giving away a softcover version of my novel The Brevity of Roses on Goodreads. You can’t win if you don’t enter!

Not that anyone cares, but I cried with James Durbin last night. In case you’re not an American Idol fan, James was a contestant on the show. James pegged himself at the beginning as just a heavy-metal screamer, but somewhere along the line, he revealed he could truly sing with tender emotion. I started rooting for him to make the final three. Alas, he didn’t. I’m sure his career will do fine without an Idol win, but I’ll miss his performances.

Comment, if you care to, otherwise run along and have a good weekend.

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Author, Fiction, My Books, Novel, Publish, Reader, Writing

How self-publishing is like American Idol

I don’t sing, and the only thing I know about music is what I like, but I’ve realized something by watching American Idol. From auditions to finalists, the singers are a lot like self-published authors.

Some authors don’t care much what anyone thinks of their books. They publish just for the fun and thrill of it, like the guy who auditions for Idol in a hula skirt and coconut shell bra. Some publish because they erroneously believe they’re great writers, deluded either by self or family and friends. Those authors would be like the hopefuls who never make it past the audition round. The rest of the authors can write to varying degrees, like the singers who get a ticket to Hollywood.

Just as in traditional publishing, the degree of sales success reached by each of this last group of authors is not easy to predict. Sometimes the story outweighs the skill. Sometimes the author’s personality enhances the sales. Sometimes the author’s connections triumph all. Sometimes the author has a combination of two, three, or all of these factors.

Which author type am I?  I’m not publishing just for the fun and thrill. I work hard to produce the best product I can. And I’m not deluded; I can write. I’ve been judged in critique groups, and my writing has made it through the auditions and earned my place at Hollywood week. Now it’s time for the elimination rounds. My book is about to step out on the big stage. The reading public gets a chance to vote. I hope to be setting on the couch after the results are read.

Going Indie has given me that chance.

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