Wednesday, July 21, 2010


As I said in one of my first blogs, if you are serious about writing in any genre, you should join a recognized group to that genre. If you are interested in children's books you have the Society of Children's Books Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI) []; of which I am a member. There are chapters, each one offering different progams. The good thing here is, being a member of the national organization, automatically makes you a member of your local chapter. To find out if and where your local chapter go to the national site mentioned above. SCBWI has a magazine and its web site offers member an opportunity for its members to reach to each other for support and guidance though its discussion groups; its also contain of wealth of information.

I am also a member of the Romance Writer of America national organization [], which allows me to join any of their local chapters. I had a choice between one in NYC and one in Rockland County (Nyack, NY); I chose the one in Nyack, NY; Hudson Valley RWA [] The reason I chose them, is the critique session that is offered at their meetings. (You can go to two meetings, after that you need to be a member of the national organization in order to join this group).

I have, until now, not made any progress with my paranormal romance for the past four months. At the same time, by listening to the critiques of others, I have gain knowledge in how to tweet what I have written in my own manuscript. The great thing about their critiques are done, is that no one there attempts to criticize what you have written, everyone there merely wants to help each other hone their skills as an author. I just took a look at the first few pages of one of my original versions of my manuscript and compare it to what I have today. And I didn't know any better I would say they were written by two different individuals; and I have to thank everyone there in making it happen. If you are truly intested in pursuing written a romance novel, and live in the Hudson Valley area, I invite you to check this group out on their web site.

Now, let me get back to the subject of this blog. In the past few days:

I have re-edited 27 pages out of 256 for my paranormal romance.
Edit/deleted my third manuscript of a children's book.
[My second one is waiting for me to get the funds I would need to move
it forward
Since my YA manuscript does not appear to be going in the direction I would like,
I've decided to scrap it. Since then I have written four pages for the new

Time to get some sustenance so I can return to do some more editing. I also
have to work on my emails, on line group, etc

Sunday, July 18, 2010


With the text of the various postings and emails I plan to do once my book is available again, I am now begining to prepare a listing of various venues where I can do a fundraising book signing at.

Look at what your book is dealing with. Does it deal with any group of people, causes, etc? If it does then start making a list of the charity, contact person, web site, etc.

Since my book deals with the acceptance of people for who they are and not what they are; and also deals pet adoption and animal rescue, I will be concentrating in these areas. And in order to compile this listing I will scouring my emails, newspapers, etc.

The good thing about doing a booksigning for a fundrasing, forgetting about the monetary return for you with increased sales. is the possibility of getting FREE MEDIA ATTENTION about your book. The increase in media attention from one event can easily increase your sales, as well as, opening the door for additional fundraising booksignings.

The first item on my list is for a group in the NYC area which provides a santuary for feral and unadoptable cats, and is looking for funds to finance a revamping of the home used for this purpose. Unless to say, I will not be contacting them until I have the copies I would need in hand.

When deciding what portion of each sale you should give to the organization you doing the booksign for; round off the regular price of the book, divide this price by the sales tax on the book [for example, if the sales tax = 7.5%, book = $11.95; then the pretax price would be $12/1.075 = 11.16], and then consider what you feel would be a fair amount to give as the donation for each copy of your book that got sold. Please keep in mind you also need to be fair to yourself as well, as far as the profit you will now be making on each copy is concern.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


As I wait for my book to move through the various phases of production until I receive a hard copy for my final approval (the previous one being a digital [PDF]copy, I can begin my marketing plan.

The first thing I'm doing is to set up various pre-written items which I feel I would need to use in the future, some of which might be over and over again. While this is going to take some time to complete now, it will save a great deal of more time in the future.

As I'm doing this. I'm surfing the web to find appropriate sites, groups, etc where I can post these items. Again, the time that I'm spending now will save me time in the future. When my book becomes available again, I can "rapid fire" everything out the same day; instead of doing all of the research, writing, posting, etc; instead of doing everything then.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

A Minor Setback

Submitted the third and final set the hard material for my book, text, illustrations [interiot/front cover], and back cover information to CreateSpace. My book now moves to the next step, and it will be about 3-4 days before their design team will begin working with me to begin to "sculp" these sections into the final product. The setback came when I inquired when my book will be available on Amazon; I answer I received advised me that it could take up to eight months. Perhaps, keeping my eyes, toes, and eyes crossed, it will take less.

While I'm waiting for this to occur, I can start setting up the marketing plan for my book.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


After making several setups for the back cover, with a picture of my cat [UNO - the main character of my book] or myself; I made the decision not to have any picture at all. The reason for this decision, it made the cover too busy and I like the simplicity that I already had on the book.

Once I made this decision I began the "defined" submission process that CreateSpace has in place. The great thing is that there is, from my experience a great support mechanism included in the fee which is paid. The extend of the support depends on the package purchased. Since my book had already beed edited prior to beginning published the first time around, I didn't need this service.

On the submission page you start off by submitting the text which I did after one last read through of the manuscript. I then submitted each of the illustrations I have in my book, as a JPEG file. [I'm grateful that my illustrator, Nancy Lepri, who has been very supportive in my having a usable copy of each of the illustration]. To get the required JPEG file I merely scanned the hard copy of each illustration as a picture. To get each illustration properly placed within the text of my book, I had to include their placement within the confines of the text I had already submitted, according to their instructions.

Now comes such things as what I want to be placed on Amazon regarding my book. This is going to get place during the coming week. As they begin their portion of my book's set-up, they will obtain a new ISBN, and insert it on the copyright page, in addition they will be asking me for my preference in fine tuning my book's appearance.

Once the all the portions submission process has been completed, with the assistance of their support team at each step of the process, I will receive a digital copy of my book for approval. Once I approve, I will need to approve a hard copy. Once they receive my approval, it will take about 10 business days to get it on Amazon.

Well, it's Sunday, a day for the major shopping for the week with my wife amongst other things. Then, I'm off to edit another chapter of my paranormal romance, and possibly type 3-4 more pages in the YA manuscript I'm doing.

Monday, July 5, 2010

decisions, Decisions, DECISIONS

Other than doing things with my wife this weekend, I've spent most of the time deciding on what I should do for the new back cover of my book. I've gotten feedback from several people, including my illustrator [Nancy Lepri], and I value all of their input. Some individuals felt I should place my picture next to the small book related bio, others suggested I should place a picture of the one-eyed calico, my wife and I own. [We also own the Maine Coon in my book].

After lots of thought designing and redesigning the back cover of the book, I've come to the decision to leave the back cover in the same manner which existed on the previous back cover. No matter how I placed the picture, combining it with the text, the back cover appeared to be too crowded and distracting to read. The simplified cover of text only makes it easier on the eyes.

Now all I have to is to finalized the back cover text, review the text borders of the book, correct placement of the illustrations. etc. I'm hoping I'll be able to complete everything, including phoning someone where I'm getting the book setup and printed tomorrow. They'll be supplying me with the new ISBN which is one less item I have to worry about. And lastly I've decided to keep the price of the book the same, $6.95.

Well, I'm off to prepare dinner. Nothing special, only some turkey sloppy joes; great tasting but not the same of the ground beef variety

Friday, July 2, 2010


I've allowed myself to have to many distractions from my writing. I've gotten more involved with my union, joining the retirees group and becoming a co-chair of the group, as well as additional activities; activities which my work and schedule had previously prevented me from being involved with.

I've also had to deal with finalizing my pension. I could have easily mailed everything in, but, given the bureaucracy of things being passed from pillar to post before it gets to the individual who actually needs to get it, I decided to hand deliver it and get a dated copy of what I gave.

I'm in the process of setting up definitive schedule of what needs to be done and when I will be doing it. Needless to say, first up on my agenda is the children's book I want to get published again. I am committed in getting this done by the middle of next week. Part of my schedule will be a daily goal of how many pages of the new YA manuscript I'm writing, how many chapters of editing I will be doing on my paranormal romance. One thing I can not forget is allowing for time for "emergencies", R & R, etc. No "emergencies" will allow for greater movement in my goal. I also can not forget about setting up more of my marketing strategy for when my book is available again, and a third children's book manuscript which is now on the back burner and requires almost a total rewrite of the second half.

Well, I'm off to do some editing on my paranormal manuscript and to make my final decision of what I'm going to do with the back cover of my book. So until my next blog, keep plugging away on what you are doing.