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Showing content with the highest reputation on 11/20/2019 in all areas

  1. 3 points
    A very interesting article from Jane Friedman's blog titled What Makes Readers Give an Unknown Author a Chance
  2. 2 points
    Angela Brown talks about how to do creative worldbuilding. https://mailchi.mp/xmission/5-ways-to-improve-worldbuilding-in-speculative-fiction
  3. 2 points
  4. 2 points
    There are tons of artists that will let you use the art for a cover for a small fee, and their work is amazing.
  5. 2 points
    That's what good editors do. It is a kind of on the job training regarding something you made. And creativity is usually messy. You are painting a picture with words. Sometimes, the best words are not used, or things are out of sequence or a different approach will help make the story "flow" better. My primary job is editor but I am also asked to write. Now most beginning writers make the same mistakes and I see the same mistakes over and over in the manuscripts I've read over the years. So I can see both sides and what we each go through to get better as editors and writers. Sometimes, several small corrections add a lot to the story in terms of readability, other times certain parts need to be heavily rewritten. It's like writing a TV show or movie. As you write more and learn how to fix more and more problem areas that are particular to the way you write before handing in the final draft, you will gain confidence and greater skill.
  6. 2 points
    Ever noticed how regularly food containers change their look? Even store brands update and tweak their colors and design all the time. Buying a food that has a "fresh" or "quality" looking package feels good. We unconsciously assume if they take this kind of care for the box, surely they are watching out for the taste inside just as much. Our covers do the same thing to people. If someone can't be bothered to understand some basic principles of graphic design and genre, or hire someone who does, have they taken the time to understand the basic principles of their writing, or hired an editor? It's actually not an unjust assumption.
  7. 2 points
    Covers sell books. There are people who specialize in cover design. Over the last year or so, I was given two self-published books to review. In one case, someone had taken part of a photo and superimposed it on an image in the background. The lighting was off, among other things. We have an in-house graphic designer who selects a typeface for the cover and an art director who places it, at the right size, on the cover. I won't go into art direction here but speaking generally, before we get a cover from an artist, he sends us four pencil drawings showing different possibilities based on information we provide. The art director selects the best one. Then a color rough based on that drawing is sent in. It is either approved as is or with changes. Then we get the final cover painting. Writers are usually not artists so I'll omit the fine details. Doing a cover correctly based on all of those fine details, does increase the chance that people will pick up the book. Speaking as a reader and an editor, if you don't grab me in the first six pages, I'll put the book back.
  8. 2 points
    Agreed! People do judge books by their cover. The cover draws them in, but I think it's still important to close the deal with a strong blurb, good reviews, and a reasonable price. In fact, if you have a back-list, a making a book free (especially if it's book one in a series) can make a readers' decision much easier.
  9. 1 point
    I feel like my heart is about to burst out tears That were bound up for all these years Emotions put on pause Never able to understand the cause How can such evil exist And continue to persist Against the young, old and helpless Their prey over their victims is relentless A virus that spreads through families and loved ones Victimizing daughters and sons Such a crime against humanity Causing anguish and calamity Getting it out and in the open And having it spoken Takes it out of the dark of night And into his glory and might Offering victory in surrendering an endless fight
  10. 1 point
    Hi im Dan. Im a PK with an interesting history. i won't bore you with the details (unless u want to hear them). BUT all my life i have tried to find a healthy balance between living a godly life and just being human lol hearing all the politics of church and members of church. i lose myself. what does it mean to be a christian if u all know the inner workings being a pastors son? do we as PKs see the bible in a different light since church never really ends for us. We all know there is a Jesus Centered Bible but is there a Bible for PKs? If no one in history has done it. Im going to start the PK Bible Project. if anyone wants to be in on it, Let me Know. Blessings.
  11. 1 point
    Hi. I grow up with a father being a pastor. pk's know that our spiritual Journey is different from people that aren't pk's. is anyone a preachers kid here? i know that i could just buy a wide margined bible and put my own thoughts in but id love to read other PKs thoughts on the Bible scriptures. does anyone here want to take up the challenge of writing an niv pk centered bible? i know what you are going to say: why don't you starting writing one?" i could! but has it been done already?? Thanks
  12. 1 point
    When using the phrase "Count Your Blessings" as a Title, does it have to be in quotes? I was asking , because it actually comes from the song, "Count Your Blessings."
  13. 1 point
    I discovered this amazing Japanese Christian woman recently named Kelly Kozumi Shinozawa, who is a Christian "mangaka" (manga artist), which is actually kind of a rarity, tragically. Her work is amazing, and I totally want her books now!! 😊 I shared this film with Sarah Daffy in the past couple weeks, but I thought I'd share it with the rest of you, too. Something in particular really struck me about Kelly: the way she mentioned how she delivers a prayer to God for guidance before she begins to draw. It caused me to wonder ... just how many of us actually pray over our work, whether it be a novel or a manga drawing or a Christian movie or a song or anything else; are we truly seeking the Master in all things, allowing Him to guide our every step so that He might get the glory? If we do that, than our work will truly mean something and will be a blessing to people, whether just one person or a whole congregation, God will use us and our service to bless someone in this world. Oh, and by the way, the tsunami she mentions was a horrific event that happened in Japan in 2011, the same year as the horrible April 27 tornado incident we were experiencing here in Alabama. If you look up footage of the tsunami on YouTube, you will not believe your eyes; it was so horrific it did not even look real. It was worse than a horror movie; whole towns were completely wiped out.
  14. 1 point
  15. 1 point
    Wait- you can draw a straight line? Darned, you are one up on me!
  16. 1 point
    @robg213, I know you're trying to make some good points here, but could you allow for a little levity in this topic? And yes, I have actually drawn a perfectly straight line... using GIMP. (That was both a joke and an illustration that there are always tools out there to help overcome our shortcomings)
  17. 1 point
  18. 1 point
    True! I was only joking. I am horrible at art and will be using a professional! Seriously, I have a hard enough time matching my clothing. Let's not go crazy with a book! 😳
  19. 1 point
    I am an artist, so I design some of my own covers and really enjoy doing it.
  20. 1 point
    Practice! I love drawing. I couldn't live without drawing.
  21. 1 point
  22. 1 point
    When I wrote a Christmas play several years ago, I wanted to use some modern, yet popular Christmas carols. I wrote the company that created the new hymnals in my church. I received a letter from a different music company. That letter asked questions I couldn't answer and, as I remember, named a price for my use of the Christmas carols. I went with songs that were in public domain. I prefer to take the stance of being safe than being sorry. Take the time and do some research to discover the copyright question. It may keep you from getting into hot water later on.
  23. 1 point
    Even if my wife had changed her mind about wanting a hamburger, she would never ask for the last bite - or any amount of bites after I took my first bite. Neither would I, if the tables were turned. Why? It's simply unsanitary to us. Sharing food like that is, well, gross.
  24. 1 point
  25. 1 point
    Congratulations!!! 🎂🎂🎂🎂😁😁😁
  26. 1 point
  27. 1 point
    Graphic design takes a while to learn but can be self-taught. Genre-specific research can also be done so that an author trying say, murder mystery, will understand the basics. I've found that the desire to write, or draw, is usually inspired by something you saw or read. That desire may start to appear at ages 5-9 and develop further. For some, there are no basic principles to writing. They can write something, post it somewhere and they're done. For others, it means finding teachers/courses and/or good books and actually applying what they tell you. It requires self-discipline and a strong work ethic. The answers are available to anyone who looks around online. I recommend good books. As far as hiring anyone, any amount above say, $20 is a lot of money. I understand that. But at least find out what a book cover designer charges, and find more than one. The same with editors. Writing is the road less traveled compared to an average job, but if you stick to it, you can be rewarded.
  28. 1 point
  29. 1 point
  30. 1 point
    I so resonate with this. Back in 2011, when I was taking a course in children's writing and had paid a year's worth of my expendable income for the privilege, I still had to screw up my courage and be in a healthy place before I could face the letters I got back from my instructor. Now when I edit for others, I warn them to be well rested, get something warm to drink, and get a hug from someone who loves them before opening my notes. And I'm always amazed when my authors are grateful for the way I flay their babies (even though I know how badly they need the help). I don't know that it's ever possible to completely separate ourselves from our words because they *must* come from our heart to be worth writing. And it *is* a critique of our skill and awareness. Of course, when I read over my own first drafts I always have a lot of the same kind of work to do, the difference is I can then switch into my editor's brain and polish it before anyone finds out how messy my creative side is. BTW I can't imagine having to go through the agony of watching a performance tape like athletes have to. But I bet they could take the kind of feedback an editor gives well after they get used to the process of growth.
  31. 1 point
    Based on experience, world-building requires reading. Each author should have some knowledge of what went before. And each author learns as he reads. I think taking a "What if I was there" approach helps. Aside from that, regardless of if you choose fantasy or science-fiction, see if you can dream up some new mythical ideas and characters, and in SF, some new technology based on still speculative actual science concepts. Dark matter and dark energy come to mind. Like developing a muscle, every time you exercise your imagination, the results accumulate. But it does take time and effort. Finally, have fun with it.
  32. 1 point
  33. 1 point
  34. 1 point
    I am glad to hear this. You must have wowed them!
  35. 1 point
    Interesting and useful to remember. Especially for SP authors.
  36. 1 point
    Yes, Z! Thank goodness and I can't wait to read the final submission.
  37. 1 point
  38. 1 point
    Yes, I did! 😊 I was a bundle of nerves that day, trying to muster up a courage I wasn't sure I possessed while at the same time feeling like I was going to fail somewhere. But everything went very smoothly, to my relief! And apparently the editor must've liked the photos and the article I sent in pretty well; it made the front page of the Lifestyles section! 😵😵😵😵😀😀😀😀
  39. 1 point
    Thanks for sharing this and all your comments. I think (and hope) I have the constant “ what would Jesus do and how does God want me to show His love in everything I do ? “ thoughts in my mind - if not always at the front of it ! The Faith and humility of this artist and the simple act of praying over everything she does is truly inspiring. I see it as a privilege in my work ,to be able to help those who cannot communicate , swallow, hear etc and through my voluntary Pastoral Care be a good listener , comfort and possibly cheer those in despair , grieving, depressed , anxious or just need in need of a shoulder to cry on Looking back over my life ( 67 years ) I can see so many instances when God was guiding me and I didn’t realise . So many times I have chosen not to take the right path and yet He is still beside me and is patiently letting me know He hasn’t given up on me and never will . I m starting to waffle now so I’ll shut up !!
  40. 1 point
    By the way, I agree with you. Kelly is awesome.
  41. 1 point
    Erin, didn't you cover a Veteran's Day parade? How did it go?
  42. 1 point
  43. 1 point
    Yeah, I always include God and ask him how he wants it done. After all, he is the one who put the desire in my heart to write, But one morning I knew he was going to write a particular scene for me before the day was over. I could barely contain myself. All I had to do was be his fingers as he spoke the words in my heart. It was just after Adam and Chavvah (Eve) had sinned. I had been praying over the scene for weeks, literally, because I, also, wanted to understand for myself exactly why blood sacrifice was the only thing that could cover sin. I was not disappointed. It was an amazing afternoon.
  44. 1 point
  45. 1 point
    Thank you, Erin, for sharing this with us. I believe watching this has helped me.
  46. 1 point
    Exactly! If I don't go by what the Spirit tells me, I just don't dare write at all.
  47. 1 point
    I always ask the Lord what He wants me to write, to share. Then again, I write devotionals and inspirational stories/parables. If I don't ask what the Lord wants me to share, then someone is not getting the message He knows they need to read.
  48. 1 point
  49. 1 point
    It's fine to have someone you know and trust read your work prior to publication, like a family member. However, their input will be based on whatever knowledge they have. Sure, it will be honest but not professional level. Every writer looking for a professional editor needs to do a reference check. Who do they work for? If independent, can they provide a list of satisfied customers? Before the internet, every single person or company we worked with had to be checked out. There is no quick, easy way. And yes, there are crooks out there who will take your money and change email addresses. So, you have no physical address or phone number, now what? Crooks like the internet. They can be halfway around the world and take your money.
  50. 1 point
    I'm definitely praying for you! So sorry you're going through this.
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