August 26, 2012

Celebrating Independent Bookstores: Schenectady’s Open Door

Like most men, I typically wait until the last minute to purchase birthday and holiday gifts. But when my company, Empire Information Services, Inc.  (today: readMedia, Inc.) was located in Schenectady, NY, I could always find something–whether I needed an anniversary present for my wife or a birthday or holiday present for my kids–at the Open Door Bookstore and Gift Shop. Also, like most men, I’d probably never walk into a gift shop on my own for fear I’d either break something or have to ask what something was, and we men don’t like to ask for directions when we’re lost or what something is that’s prominently displayed in a gift store. Thank goodness shopping for a non-book gift at […]
August 6, 2012

Revising your Novel: When and How

In “7 Steps to a Foolproof Revision,” Don Fry, writing in the September 2012 edition of Writer’s Digest posits “complete your draft, then revise” as step #1. His logic is that if you strive for perfection, you’ll probably never finish your book, or, at least it will take much longer because you’ll be spending so much time re-writing the same sentences over and over again. He recommends “draft the entire piece…and then revise the whole thing, start to finish.” That approach may work well for a short story or non-fiction essay, book review or blog post, but I don’t think many writers will find it works for a novel. For one, most novelists don’t write from start to finish. There […]
July 25, 2012

Giveaways: Past performance . . .

This post is directed at self-published authors in general and in particular people who are at the beginning of their writing careers who are seeking information about the ups and downs of self-publishing. Having self-published my first novels (The Expendable Man, 2011 and Making the Grade, 2012), I’m at the stage where I’m still working on the best way to market those books. One avenue that’s open to self-publishers is giveaways. The idea is that you’ll boost sales and followers by giving away a number of copies of your book because some of those who received the free copy will tell their friends (assuming they like your book) and some of the people who put their name in for the […]