Tuesday, January 24, 2017

The Importance of Edits #WritersLife #AmWriting

Editing is one of the most important things you can do to make your book a success. Whether you are going with an established publisher or self-publishing, your book is an impression of you that lasts.

I recently bought a self-published book that had so many editing mistakes, including the heroine's name, that I didn't read beyond page fifteen. I can ignore punctuation or small mistakes but some mistakes were so elementary as to show the author didn't read her own story. She made quite the impression on me. While I will never again buy her books, I wish her well in her career and hope she improves.

Publishing your work is a business. As such, readers expect a certain level of professionalism, which means your work must be as free from common spelling errors as possible.

Working with a publisher.

Publishers use professional editors to improve your story. This is not to say that during the editing process you shouldn't reread your book. You may catch spelling mistakes an editor misses. Most every published book will have a mistake. That is forgivable to a reader. Multiple careless mistakes that take away from a story are not.

Don't rely solely on an editor to catch every mistake. Likely it's been a while since you've read the story when you first get back your edits. Use the opportunity to read, line by line and word by word, what is written. Small mistakes involving the use of he/she are quite common. Spell check doesn't catch these but you can.

Don't be afraid to correct an editor if they aren't understanding your use of a word. Their job is to make your book the best it can be, so work with them so that both parties publish a work that reflects the highest degree of perfection achievable.

Self-publishing your work.

I will state right off that I am not a self-published author. That said, I know many successful authors who are traditionally and self-published. In some ways self-publishing takes more work, time and consideration. You own every mistake in the book you release, without exception.

As I said before, readers will forgive small mistakes, but constant, simplistic mistakes make it harder for the reader and thus they will toss aside your story. You've lost an important person, because they now know you for the wrong reasons, and likely will avoid your books in the future. Let's not forget word of mouth, as well, when it comes to readers.

I recommend using an editing service if you intend to self-publish. Make sure to use one with a good reputation so that you get your money's worth. If you can't afford such a service, use your beta readers.

Lastly, print out your story before publishing. Why? You'd be surprised how many mistakes can be found on a printed version of your book that you wouldn't notice on the computer.
 
Final Thoughts

Editing is an essential part of your work and a reflection of your respect for your readers. Don't rush the process just to get your book published. Readers won't thank you for sub-par writing and your reputation is important in this business.

The same care you put into working characters and plot, should also be put into editing. In this sea of tough competition, from the thousands of books released every day, yours can only stand the test of savvy readers through engaging characters and exceptional editing.

Your book will likely contain a mistake or two, noticed once published. Don't stress, it happens to the best of writers. Readers will forgive. Remember though that even bestselling authors are not immune to readers turning their backs for lazy/no editing.

Publish when your work is clean and as error free as possible. It's part of the professionalism of being an author. Take pride and respect your readers. 

Mary

Sunday, January 15, 2017

January has not gone as planned #WritersLife

Maybe it's just me, but as an author I hate when my writing plans go awry. Halfway through the month and I haven't kept up on my blogging goals. Yes, contrary to notice, I intended to blog once a week.

Unfortunately, two illnesses decided to come at me at once, right after the New Year. It's not all bad news, though. I'm now on the mend and foresee that if I make sure to rest, I should get through the rest of the January without any more drama.
I might even manage one more blog before the end of the month. Don't quote me on that. I'm wary of goals at the moment.
 
There is good news. I've actually managed to get three chapters done on Clandestine Engagements, and the story is moving along at a nice clip. I'd love to get it finished soon and republished. I'm now at 34K words and counting. Quite the difference from a story that was first published as a short story of 1K words.

Anyway, I'm going to do a reset starting in February of my blogging goals. It's such a romantic month, how can I miss it.

Keep reading and if you'd like some snippets of my writing, please follow me on Twitter. I love playing hashtag theme games through the week, and usually participate daily.

Happy reading,
Mary

 

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Happy New Year, 2017!



Think of all the possibilities that life holds, and welcome the New Year with an open heart. There will be so many experiences to come. I'm very excited.

What are your 2017 plans?

I'm going to continue writing, of course. I want to get more books out there to my readers, but beyond that, who knows. I want to get healthier, and I have decided to cut down on my sugar intake and eat better. More exercise is also in order to tone and tighten.

I don't know what this year holds for me, but I do know that I don't want to waste or turn away new experiences. I'm looking forward to this year.

Cheers to you, readers. I hope you have a wonderful, prosperous New Year. 

What will 2017 be to you?

Mary

Friday, December 30, 2016

Another Publisher going under

All Romance Ebooks is closing it's door as of December 31st 2016. Here is the link via Romance Writers of America and their take on the situation. Click here. This was an unexpected closing as we haven't heard of any issues with the company that might have indicated trouble.

What does this mean for all the authors out there?

Hard to say considering what ARe is doing as far as getting royalties to authors for this 4th quarter. Is it shady? Not for me to say, but I can tell you that organizations such as RWA don't appear to approve of the way this is all going down.

Is it a sign of better things to come in 2017?

Maybe these companies such as Ellora's Cave and ARe have simply run their course. Their business practices have been exposed. Perhaps going forward into the new year is a matter of authors taking back their rights to their work and becoming independent of publishers all together.
Don't get me wrong. I have publishers and I appreciate what they do for me, but the industry as a whole is changing and changing fast.

If publishers want to stay relevant they may have to reconsider their business design. They may need to offer more to writers. All writers, not just their bestsellers. Higher royalties may need to be paid, and real work might need to be done by publisher to promote their authors and get them honest reviews. Perhaps publishers need to get their author's works back into stores as paperbacks. 

Fact is, Authors are becoming savvy to their own success.

2017 should be an interesting year. I don't know what will happen, but considering how fast the publishing industry moves, there is sure to be more drama and changes. Author are keeping up. It's time for the publishing industry to take notice and get ahead of the curve so they aren't left behind to close up shop.

Mary

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Does anyone else dislike the 'year in review' stuff?

The year in review? No Thanks!

This week there are plenty of television stations that are doing 'The Year in Review' specials. I'm not a fan. While there have been some good things that happened this year for me, such as the release of Sindriel, there is plenty I'm ready to leave behind.

Why do we need to relive the year?

There are ups and downs, conquests and tragedies, and life goes on as it does. I'm entirely ready to move forward without the burden of looking back over the months of 2016. I appreciate that I'll never have another 2016 but even if it had been a great year, I'd still feel like focusing on 2017.

Does anyone else dislike this 'year in review' stuff?
I just don't see the purpose in looking back over the year. I'm probably alone in this feeling but I can't see the reason to relive everything that's occurred.

 After the joys of a wonderful Christmas it's time to focus on what will be a new year, new opportunities, and new life challenges. There's writing to be done, and life to be lived.

I hope to finish and publish another book in 2017. Beyond that I'll see what life has to offer and move forward from there. Does the threat of pain not yet experienced loom ahead? Sure, but that's life. If I fall to that unhappiness, I'll miss the little joys along the way.

It's time to prepare for 2017. I don't know what it'll bring, but I want to keep my heart open to all it has to offer.  With those thoughts in mind; may the New Year be kind, our lives be prosperous and writing be prolific.
Cheers,
Mary Corrales

Saturday, December 24, 2016

MERRY CHRISTMAS


I want to wish all my readers a very Merry Christmas. May it be filled with the magic of the season as befitting such a holy night.

Stay safe, be kind and courteous, and remember that Christmas is about the mercy and love we can all gift to one another.

Love to one and all,
Mary

 


Monday, December 5, 2016

Ever Notice how December is full of #Romance?

The garland is hanging and all around the house is the sparkle and magic of Christmas. I love this season. While the official start of winter is on December 21st, I'm all ready for the cozy joy that is this most festive time of year.

Hot chocolate and a romantic movie are the perfect way to spend the chilly evenings. Surround yourself with presents and wrapping paper and it's a party.

Here's a list of some of my favorite holiday movies:

The Nutcracker (My favorite romantic ballet)

A Christmas Carol (the old ones, not the modern day remakes)

We're No Angels starring Humphrey Bogart

It's a Wonderful Life starring Jimmy Stewart

It Happened on 5th Ave

These are the movies I can watch over and over again and they never get old. I have many on DVD. Let's not forget the classic Christmas cartoons as well. I've already see, Rudolph the red nosed reindeer, and Frosty the Snowman. I missed A Charlie Brown Christmas, but I think it'll be on again.

There can never be too much love when it comes to the Christmas season. While we stress over shopping and presents, it's always nice to remember those we've loved and lost, as well as those we still have with us.

I released my contemporary romance, Bet Your Sweet Aces at Christmas time last year. It's a sassy romantic suspense story. Check it out if you'd like a good novella that demonstrates how true love wins over broken hearts.

Isn't it interesting how many of our favorite stories at this festive time of year have the theme of Love? What's your favorite movie or book for the holidays?

Mary