One of the early terms I learned in the publishing business is ‘bind-up’. It wasn’t the first term I learned. But it came close. It’s not what you might think. I mean, all books are bound, by definition. But ‘bind-up’ has a specific meaning. It refers to collecting several related books under one cover and … More Book bind-ups and how to avoid stepping in them
Branding has always meant the experience people get when they engage with ‘the brand’. You know – if you buy this product, you’ll have a wonderful barbecue experience on the beach with great friends, even though (to me, anyway) this has nothing obvious to do with products such as carbonated cola drinks containing sugar and … More How to get a very strong visual brand for your books
When I was a kid, I was always fascinated by the colour schemes of various public buildings around New Zealand – libraries, rest rooms and such like. They were true late-deco era structures, and often they featured late-modernist style mosaics or murals of soldiers and people from the early 1940s, all in period colouring of … More The art deco war – remembered for today
Over the years I’ve written a fair number of books – over fifty, in fact. Almost all have been published traditionally. And that’s given me an immense back-list. Which, I’m pleased to say, is back. I had to say that, didn’t I. You know – back list… back… But I digress. The hot news is … More A really big piece of hot news. Really. Big.
There’s a new phenomenon out there for writers these days. It hasn’t got a name, but it’s there, and I suspect most of us have encountered it. You write a book. You decide to publish it yourself, spend a lot of money on cover artwork, proof-readers and so forth, and start revving up promotions on … More Why most books don’t sell much on Kindle
One of the big things authors need to think about these days is branding. And no, I don’t mean having some red-hot piece of metal searing the initials of the latest pop sensation de jour into your backside. I mean public image that sells books. What are you known for? Brand’s different from the way … More Why all authors need branding
Do adjectives and adverbs have a place in non-fiction writing? Maybe. Used properly, adjectives and their annoying relations, adverbs, render the mundane into something extraordinary – specifically because, if controlled, they evoke emotions in readers. Control is essential: use the wrong adjectives and you reduce the work to ‘telling’, whereas what you’re trying to do … More Do adjectives and adverbs have a place in non-fiction writing?