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Showing posts from February, 2013

Is Amazon Getting into the Author Marketing Business?

I just received an email and a survey from Amazon's KDP program asking me a number of questions.

Every single question was geared toward determining what I have done to market my books. From writing on this blog to hiring the lovely Consetta Parker, they wanted to know everything.

What was the hardest thing about marketing? What was the most expensive? What was the easiest? What was I doing currently?

Then, they started asking questions about how much money I was spending on such efforts.

The email stated thusly:
As part of Kindle Direct Publishing’s ongoing effort to provide you with better services and support, we would like your feedback. Please help us by taking this short online survey which asks about your opinions and experiences with book marketing and more. I think it's a prudent move for Amazon to get into book marketing, but they don't need to do a whole lot for it. All they'd need to do is hire a few readers to elevate the good stuff on the site and review i…

Writer's Rules Revisited #14

I've been catching up ever since I got back from SheVaCon, where I had a great time talking about writing. It made me realize very much that no matter how many answers I had to offer others for their writing, I would never be 100% sure of those answers in my own writing. I don't think any of us can be. We're all searching for that extra help or bit of guidance that will put our stories over the top, but we're too close to them and so we have to rely equally on our knowledge of the craft and the opinions of those we trust.

But that's neither here nor there, I suppose.

Also, for those interested, there's a new interview with me about Operation: Montauk at Indie Author Land. 

And for you Star Wars fans, be sure to check me out on the Full of Sith podcast which seems to be taking on a life of its own that I can't explain.

For those new around these parts, a brief explanation is in order. A long time ago I posted a list of rules and guidelines I've been collecti…

ShevaCon - Panel Schedule

I'm heading out tonight for SheVaCon, which starts tomorrow in Roanoke, Virginia. I'm excited to meet people, sell and sign some books, and hang out with two of my favorite pals, Janine Spendlove and Aaron Allston.

I wanted to leave my schedule with you in case you could make it. This is a great convention with lots of great seminars to be had.
Feb 8

E-publishing how does it work - Bryan Young, Anne B Walsh, Elaine Corvidae
1:00pm-1:50pm Harrison/Tyler Room   Intro to graphic novel writing - Bryan Young, Elaine Corvidae
3:00pm-3:50pm Bent Mountain Room  Feb 9  How to Kill your Character - Robert West, Betty Cross, Leona Wisoker, Janine Spendlove, Gail Martin, Bryan Young, Aaron Allston, Heather E Hutsell
12:00pm-12:50pm Washington Lecture Hall   Beating Writer’s Block - Paul Dellinger, Leona Wisoker, Janine Spendlove, Betty Cross, Bryan Young, Mark Rainey, Jim Bernheimer, Heather E Hutsell
2:00pm-2:50pm Harrison/Tyler Room   Evolution of Weapons in Sci-Fi  - Janine Spendlove, Bryan …

Of Trademarks and Space Marines

What do you think of when you hear the term "Space Marine"? For many, it conjures images of Heinlein's Starship Troopers. For others, it's the tough hombres of the Colonial Marines in the Alien franchise. For a certain sort of gaming nerd the image conjures one of a tabletop miniature in a war game published by Games Workshop.

It's a term that's been part of science fiction for decades, but one greedy corporation is now making a grab to associate it with their use and their use alone, and siccing lawyers on anyone else who wants to use it.

The site I edit, Big Shiny Robot, brought this to my attention and it should be terrifying for writers of all stripes, but particularly indies.

Games Workshop, the company behind the Warhammer 40k game, has started asserting that ANY use of the term Space Marine infringes on their trademark and intellectual property. Recently, they went after the author MCA Hogarth and forcibly removed a self-published title on Amazon from …

Writer's Rules Revisited #13

It's been a while since we've done one of these. Aside from being busy with revisions and work and new writing, things have been hectic.

I've got a couple of other posts to point you to in case you're interested. The first is a small talk about writing I had with comics legend Walt Simonson. His take on fairy and folk tales really opened my eyes about some things and reinforced others. The other thing you might be interested in checking out is my series on Gamemastering on Big Shiny Robot! Gamemastering and storytelling are sister endeavors and there are some things I've elaborated on there that would definitely spark some creative juices for writing, though I understand if it's not for everyone.

For those new around these parts, a brief explanation is in order. A long time ago I posted a list of rules and guidelines I've been collecting in my notebook over the years as a writer. I put together the list on the blog and it was fairly popular. (You can read th…