Let the stories run free.
Service Publishing vs. Vanity Presses: The Prince of Vanity
The boundaries between vanity publishing (aka vanity presses) and self-publishing have been somewhat murky for decades, while POD technology has spurred increasing numbers of authors to self-publish — increasingly, with the help of book production professionals.
We break down the differences between service publishing and vanity publishing, and the red flags that you should be looking out for.
How To Start Writing A Book: 11 Steps
Step 1: Ask Yourself Why.
This might seem like a strange way to start writing a book, but it is really important. Churning out 80,000 words (or more) of a narrative that is compelling, meaningful, and artfully crafted makes the journey to Mordor look like a relaxing nap. Maybe it’s not that bad, but writing a book is quite an endeavour. It will take time, energy, and storytelling genius that you possibly didn’t know you possessed. It will also take obscene quantities of caffeine. So before embarking on this voyage, you should know why you’re writing this book, whether it’s your first or your tenth.
Online distribution across global retailers is not expensive. Yes, you heard us. You shouldn’t be paying an arm and a leg for this. Yet time and again, hybrid and vanity publishers are charging authors a hefty fee to get their title listed in stores like Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
No, no, no. You shouldn’t be paying that much! And more to the point, you shouldn’t have to pay for so many copies of your own book.
HOW TO CREATE GREAT CHARACTERS
People are extremely complex creatures, and the people in your stories need to be complex, too. So that means your characters can’t be cardboard cutout characters; they need to be as real and complex as living, breathing humans.
How does one get over writer’s block? For countless writers, it seems like a fight you can’t win. Like a boss at the end of the last level in a video game, writer’s block is cruelly overpowered and mildly amused by your attempts to kill it.
Four Publishing Options: Which One To Choose?
So you’ve written your book or you’re almost there, but you’re not quite sure which publishing route to take … should you go traditional so you don’t have to make an initial investment? How much would you actually get from book sales? What about a hybrid publisher? They should be the best of both worlds, no?
Well, not really.
At Firewords, we believe that no matter which pathway or publisher you choose, getting published should always be beneficial to you, the author. Any investment you make should give you fair returns and if you feel like someone is taking you for a ride, it’s probably because they are.
We’ve summed up four major Publishing Pathways for you, how they work, and what you stand to gain from each route.
You’ve completed your manuscript. Congratulations!
What are your options? The option that most writers are familiar with is the traditional agent or publisher route. The second is self-publishing—also known as indie publishing—and the third is hybrid publishing, which is a special blend of the traditional publishing and self-publishing models. We think that self-publishing is an excellent choice for writers: this is why.
5 WRITING TIPS TO SAVE TIME AND MONEY
These five writing hacks will save you time and money, as they’ll drastically reduce the amount and complexity of work needed to get your manuscript print-ready.
5 WAYS A PLOT PLAN SUPERCHARGES YOUR STORY
Whether you’re new to writing fiction or you’re a veteran wordslinger, you’ve heard about plot plans. Love ’em or loathe ’em, plot plans will supercharge your story.
These days, my thoughts are constantly on how to release all the stories-in-waiting from the wood between the worlds. Not just my stories: everyone’s stories.
If you are a writer, retrieving stories from the wood between the worlds is a gift and a luxury. Having people read those stories is an even greater luxury. This should not be the case. Not in a time when crowdfunding, print-on-demand distribution and greater numbers of self-published authors are tearing down the barriers imposed by traditional publishing.
I feel very strongly about getting everyone’s stories to readers because I believe in narrative.
Narrative has great potential—and great power. To transform. To shine a light on the dark and terrible corners of ourselves, of the society we live in. Slipping into your favourite narrative at the end of a hard day is a lovely respite. Creating a narrative that people can use as a shelter from their daily lives is a great luxury. It is one of the most peculiar and beautiful gifts that you can offer to a complete stranger: a world they can lose themselves in, if only for a little while.