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Archive for March, 2008

Is a Book of Cardboard, Copy Paper and Staples Worth $19.95?

Is it jealousy that makes us emotional at the news of another author being published? Is it so wrong to be envious that it isn’t us instead? I don’t think it’s jealousy if we can admit we’re envious. But, what if we go on to point out it was published by a vanity house? Or, that we read the first page and found noticeable problems? Are we jealous if we point to the errors? Probably.

That anyone can publish a badly written book is one thing, but to put it up on Amazon asking for money makes me slightly angry, It’s like a person cutting to the front of the line; jumping ahead of all the suckers working hard to get it right. It leaves a bad odor on all self-published authors, some of which are very good. One bad apple stinks up the whole barrel and self-publishing keeps its bad reputation a little longer.

I wanted to be able to set some of my short stories together, in between two seven or nine -by -five inch sheets of hard cardboard, disguised by a nice covering of self-stick contact paper. I wanted words across the front that hinted of the stories inside, and a catchy title. I wanted my name at the lower margin, and I wanted my family to love them; to read them. I wanted them to be proud that the stories contained some of my memories of them. Have I asked for too much?

I may never write perfect enough for traditional publication. I may never be chosen from hundreds of other hopeful submissions, and sometimes I feel I know nothing about writing. I’m in a deep, dark valley and wonder if I really want to climb out. It’s comfortable here, and there are no dues to pay.  At this point, crafty cardboard, copy paper, and staples are good enough and they’re cheap.

I wish I were more like some of these self-published writers; blissfully unaware of their errors, inconsistencies and plain ‘bad writing’. I don’t expect perfection from anyone, but I’d be embarrassed to put a price on anything less.

Yeah, I’m just jealous of one more writer who had enough nerve to grab his dream, without slowing for a moment to ask for a good proofread or pay his dues.

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Are you a Real Writer?

I love to write. A few people know I wrote kids-lit for my grand-kids, home made just for them. I write for fun. I have also written some rants, just random thoughts. I write nothing fancy, PC (punctuated correctly), or of novel length. (more…)

You don’t have to get it right the first time!


Do you ever doubt your abilities as a writer? Many of us require constant assurance that our work is good. We need the praise of our families and friends to boost our confidence back up when it slips, and it will slip.

While it is natural and important to value praise, you must develop motivation within yourself and work to build your self-confidence. Remind yourself that you can improve your writing skills, that no one is ‘born’ a good writer. (more…)