A Bad Review–How to Survive

Yesterday, I received a less than stellar review for my book The Whispering House. It was 3 stars, which isn’t a bad review, per se. Having some critical reviews can be helpful to sales. Even if the 4 and 5 star reviews are from readers and not your friends and family, those who’ve never read your books won’t know that and may be suspicious of them. As an author, we know this… logically. However, our emotions flare from the prick of criticism, it stabs at our ego, and our creative side wants to crawl under a rock and disappear. How could anyone possibly not enjoy my book? But it happens. You can’t expect to please everyone. Even Shakespeare had critics. Tolstoy found his writing to be drivel and boring. (I’m not comparing myself to Shakespeare by any means, merely using him as an example.) Sometimes, bad publicity makes a person famous. Perfect examples are Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian. Look how they used bad publicity to launch their careers, although Paris has disappeared from the limelight. Then take the musical Wicked. It received mixed to negative reviews when it first debuted, but something about it captured the hearts of those who went to see it. Ten years later, it continues to draw an audience. So how do you survive the bad review with your ego intact? Assume fetal position, gnash teeth, obsess over that one review, pick it apart line by line anal-yzing every word, commiserate with friends, eat an entire pint of your favorite ice cream… All good options. (Except 3 and 4. Those aren’t helpful.) Seriously, allowing yourself a few moments (hours) to wallow in your feelings is...

Prologue and Epilogue–Round Robin

Round Robin 12-17-16 This month for the Round Robin, we’re opining about prologues and epilogues. Do they have a use? Should they be used? Can you have one without the other? This is an interesting topic. Before I became a publisher and editor, I didn’t really have an opinion on these. I think I was aware of when they worked and when they didn’t, but, beyond that, I didn’t think anything about it. Times have changed. (For the better or worse is up for discussion. grin) Three or four months ago, one of Wild Child’s authors sent in a submission titled A More Perfect Union. Jim is an amazing author. If you haven’t checked out his books, you should. (You can find them here. All of his books are worth reading.) The book had, in my opinion, a prologue that ruined the book because it started at the end of the story. (This is the kind of stuff I’d edit out. As Wild Child is closing down at the end of December, we won’t be releasing this fabulous story, but I’m hoping he releases it–and deletes that prologue before he does. Hint, hint, Jim.) A lot of prologues end up being a device used to either throw in some information from a POV that is different from the main one or from a much earlier time period of the character’s life. Sometimes, this works. Often, it doesn’t. I did this with a short story titled Some Place to Belong that was written for a charity anthology titled Dreams & Desires, vol. 3, released by Freya’s Bower and no longer...

Hunting Monsters by Allen Currier–New Book Release

Today, we are celebration Allen Currier’s first book release Hunting Monsters. It’s a thrilling mystery published by Wild Child Publishing that will keep you on the edge of your seat. Book Information Title: Hunting Monsters Author: Allen Currier Publisher: Wild Child Publishing ISBN: 978-1-61798-189-0–eBook, 978-1-61798-190-6–Paperback Genre: Mystery/Crime/Drama Length: Novel Word Count: 73,097 Page Count: 243 Price: $7.99 Release date: 11-22-19 Book description In a sleepy, little town, a seasoned detective and a killer, the likes of which no one has ever seen, match wits. Detective Steve Belcher has his work cut out for him. But how do you find a killer who leaves no clues? A killer who has the police lost at every turn? How many bodies will stack up until Detective Belcher can find the monster committing these unspeakable crimes? How many monsters will he have to chase down to find the one behind the murders? Can Steve find the monster before the monster finds him? Excerpt Their heads had been severed. The wife’s terrified features, pale and ghoulish, taunted him from the body of her husband. The son-of-a-bitch had switched their heads. Detective Steve Belcher leaned in and examined the crude stitching on the couple’s necks. He rubbed his finger across the stitches, and it slid between the dried scabbed skin and tissue. He jerked back in disgust, and the head fell over, restrained only by the stitching stretched over the loose skin. He reached over and pushed the head back in place. Fear ran through him, and a cold sweat covered his forehead as he imagined the horror they’d faced. Their dried out eyes had already begun to shrivel...

The Demise of a Publisher

This morning, I opened my email to discover an indie publisher is closing their doors. My experience with this publisher has primarily been through an email list, but I have still come to know them and am sad to see them go. As I don’t know if this publisher has announced to their authors yet that they are closing, I’m not going to say which one it is. Their authors will know, and the rest of the world, soon enough. Whenever a publisher folds, I’m saddened for the publisher and the authors. Not to be surprised, from the contact I have had with the owner, they’re closing to prevent the inevitable bankruptcy. Not only are they doing this for themselves, but also the authors. Bankruptcy court is not a friend of authors. Those who have been through it will tell you that. But why was bankruptcy inevitable? To be quite honest, sales for many publishers have been down significantly in the past year. There are a number of contributing factors, including a glut of free books, the new subscription services, piracy, and returns. All of these most likely contributed to their closing. If we want to survive, we have to find new ways to get noticed and to draw readers, paying readers. So, I am going to tell you, friends, if you love to read, here are a few things you can do to support your favorite authors and support their publishers. Buy a book. I am ever puzzled at people who think $5.99 is too much for a full-length novel (whether it is electronic or trade paperback) yet have no problems paying $3.50...