Tag Archives: Publishing

Book Review: On Writing by Stephen King

Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Scribner; 10 Anv edition
ISBN-10: 1439156816
Price: $17.00
Purchase: Amazon | BN

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Description

Part memoir, part master class by one of the bestselling authors of all time, this superb volume is a revealing and practical view of the writer’s craft, comprising the basic tools of the trade every writer must have. King’s advice is grounded in his vivid memories from childhood through his emergence as a writer, from his struggling early career to his widely reported, near-fatal accident in 1999—and how the inextricable link between writing and living spurred his recovery. Brilliantly structured, friendly and inspiring, On Writing will empower and entertain everyone who reads it—fans, writers, and anyone who loves a great story well told.

Review

I’ve had this book on my book shelf for awhile. I was intending to read it, but never got to it until a week ago. Now I could kick myself for not reading it sooner.

In my opinion, On Writing is one of the best books on the craft of writing. Novelist Stephen King gives you the nuts and bolts of what it takes to be a writer.

If I were to sum up the book in a few words, it would be… “Read a lot, Write a lot.”

What I found encouraging (since I don’t have a college degree), is that Stephen King says it is not necessary to attend college to be a writer. He doesn’t deter people from attending college, he just says you don’t need a degree to write books. You just need to read a lot and write a lot. Every day. Without fail.

Writing requires work, discipline and perseverance to succeed. There are no short cuts.

On Writing is a goldmine filled with helpful nuggets. It is the kind of book you want to have in your library to refer to. I highly recommend it.

Stephen King is the author of more than fifty books, all of them worldwide bestsellers. His recent work includes The Bill Hodges Trilogy, Revival, and Doctor Sleep. His novel 11/22/63 was named a top ten book of 2011 by The New York Times Book Review and won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Mystery/Thriller as well as the Best Hardcover Book Award from the International Thriller Writers Association. He is the recipient of the 2003 National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. He lives in Bangor, Maine, with his wife, novelist Tabitha King.

 

 

 

 

 

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An Open Letter To the Industry from Kwame Teague (Author Dutch)

I’m not one to publicly disclose my personal associations. However, I thought it imperative to make an introduction prior to publishing this open letter. I have been in contact with Kwame for quite some time now and we have become close friends. I’ve been able to benefit from his brilliant mind and visionary concepts, especially when it comes to the urban literature industry. I have come to respect him a great deal. I truly believe and am in support with what he is presenting in his open letter. I hope you do too.

 

A Letter to the Industry by Kwame Teague

To my brother and sisters of Urban Lit,

I salute  you, I salute us. Here’s to our tenacity, our drive, our passion, our hunger, our HUSTLE. Together we have taken this street lit to another level. In just over ten years, we’ve created a MULTI MILLION dollar industry… for everyone else, but ourselves.

Take it from someone who was here from the beginning, day one, one of the first born so to speak. Like Hip Hop started in the basement, we started in the trunk, car trunks, selling our joints hand to hand until we created a buzz, and this buzz blew! Before you knew it, everywhere you looked, someone was reading a street joint.

But then the majors heard about us, the big publishing houses, the MAINSTREAM, and they cut checks, big checks, six figure checks, and we thought we had it made, we thought we had arrived.

But there was a catch.

You see, the majors didn’t step in because they were feelin’ our vibe. They saw us as a THREAT. We were upstart independents, making the game bend for us. We had proved we didn’t need them. We had our own publishers, our own distributors, our own blooming industry, and they said, “We have to stop this!

It wasn’t racism, it wasn’t a conspiracy, it was just good ol’ American business. Because those six figure checks weren’t for book deals. No. They were buying our shelf space, our real estate! They signed the best sellers, took the space, then fell back. Genius. Now, of course, we didn’t see it then, some of us still won’t see it now, but just because we can’t see the sun rise over China, doesn’t mean it won’t shine.

We got played.

But, the question is… Where do we go from here?

Now… this part of this letter isn’t for my brothers or sisters of urban lit, it’s for my brothers and sisters of like minds. The Gods and Goddesses who know how to create, and once awakened, we never sleep again. If this is above your head, I still love you, but run along, this is grown folk bizness.

Again, where do we go from here?

I don’t have all the answers, but we do. We need to come together A.S.A.P., combine forces, let go of the petty jealousies and squabbles and figure out how to get the millions back that we created! Because if we don’t, we’re going to die a slow death by a thousand cuts or suffocate because our one market has become a gas chamber. We must come together. The milk industry did it. The movie industry did it. The mainstream publishers did it. Why can’t we?

If you feel like I feel and think like I think, then hit me: Kwame J. Teague #0401897 P.O. Box 600 Nashville, NC 27856 or email me at dutchthegame @ gmail.com. Let’s form a voltran and take back our millions!

I love y’all.

Peace.

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Fakes, Frauds & Opportunists

I haven’t been in the urban genre circle for long. But in my short time, I’ve had certain people tell me to be careful, because not everyone in this business is your friend.

Courtesy of Creative Commons

What’s interesting is that these same people, who I believed had my best interest in mind and had my back, were the very ones who stabbed it.

It is a sad shame when people portray an image of themselves, only to find out they were frauds.

Some people come into your life with an agenda and that is, to use and exploit you. I call them opportunists. They study and watch you from the sidelines, to figure out what you can do to help them. They seek and prey upon good, selfless and giving people.

They will say anything to get you to do what they want, until they’ve exhausted their use of you. As soon as they believe you have nothing left to give or offer them, they no longer have any interest in you. They will act as if you never existed.

They are manipulators, schemers and users who only care about themselves. They are out for themselves and what they can get, even if it’s at your expense. They will use their words masterfully to convince and deceive you with their lies and deception.

They will smile to your face, but speak negatively about you behind your back. Thereby, turning others against you in the process.

This is what I’ve experienced recently, and it was a hard, painful, costly, but valuable lesson for me to learn. One of which opened my eyes to the reality that people aren’t always what they seem, appear or what you would like to believe. They put on a good front and hide behind their mask.

You are probably wondering how I wound up in the urban genre circle? Well, I’ve always enjoyed watching mafia and gangster movies since I was a teenager. I never knew about this genre until about approximately nine months ago. I enjoy the raw, real, grittiness of the writing.

I am not familiar with the streets or the game… this isn’t the world I was raised in or grew up around. I guess because of that, it always intrigued and fascinated me. But never did I fathom that I would fall prey or victim to it in the process of helping others.

What is the solution going forward? I’m not quite sure, but for one, I’m definitely going to be more careful and not be so trusting. Trust and respect is earned, not freely given. But, I am the type of person who genuinely seeks and wants to see the good in people, until they betray me. I’m not interested in being chewed up and spit out by the people in this business. I don’t want to become heartless or ruthless as a result of getting burned by selfish people. All I’m interested in is reading, reviewing books and promoting authors who I believe craft unique plots, interesting characters and, are great writers. That’s it.

All that other “stuff” doesn’t interest me. So I humbly request that those with their personal agendas stay as far away from me as possible, because I’m not in this genre or business to be used, abused or exploited by anyone who wishes to utilize my gifts and talents for their benefit. I’m a professional and I take my work and time seriously.

Have you had a similar experience?  How did you go about handling it?

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Book Review: You Are a Writer

You Are a Writer

By Jeff Goins
Print Length: 77 pages
Publisher: Jeff Goins
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
Published: 1st Edition April 27, 2012
Language: English
ASIN: B007YJEIAS
Price: $4.99 (Kindle)
Purchase: Amazon

Description

You Are a Writer is a book about what it takes to be a writer in the 21st Century.

Author Jeff Goins shares his own story of self-doubt and what it took for him to become a professional. He gives you practical tips for freelancing, how to get published in magazines, and what it takes to build a platform that brings the gatekeepers to you.

This journey of becoming a writer begins with a simple but important belief: You are a writer; you just need to write. Readers will learn the importance of passion and discipline and how to show up every day to do the work.

Here’s what else you will learn:

  • How to stop waiting to be picked and finally choose yourself
  • What it takes to build a platform
  • Why authors need to brand themselves (and how to do it)
  • Tips for freelancing, guest blogging, and getting published in magazines
  • Different ways to network with other writers, artists, and influencers
  • The importance of blogging and social media and how to use it well to get more readers and fans of your writing

You Are a Writer is a book that will help you fall back in love with writing and make the connections you need to build your brand as a writer. It’s about living the dream of a life dedicated to words.

And it all begins with you.

Review

I have had the pleasure of following Jeff Goins’ blog for over several months now.  I was first introduced to his writing through friends on Twitter.  I was completely blown away.  I’m not exaggerating when I tell you that I love every single thing this man writes.

Jeff Goins is an incredibly gifted writer and communicator. He creates what Michael Hyatt calls in his book Platform, a “Wow” experience. Everything Jeff Goins does and writes is remarkable. I have learned so much from him by following his blog and participating in his writing challenges.

One of the things I love most about Jeff Goins is his heart.  He is kind, generous and a servant, which makes him such a great leader.  I am blessed to be a part of his tribe.

You Are a Writer is a brilliant book.  I started to read it and couldn’t put it down. This book goes step by step on how to make “You Are a Writer” a reality in your life. The first step is by confessing, believing, accepting and then acting upon it.

The way I did it was by first looking at myself in the mirror and saying to my reflection, “You Are a Writer”.  I confess I had to say it more than once to let it sink in.  It’s incredible how much resistance I faced with while doing this simple exercise.  Those unrelenting negative voices kept trying to convince me otherwise.

After I did this, I took it a step further by confessing it to the world on Facebook, Twitter and my co-workers.  I was surprised and happy to get a lot positive responses, which was encouraging.

If you ever dreamed of being a writer or if you are one and not really pursuing it, I highly recommend this book.  You Are a Writer will definitely help, inform, inspire and encourage you!

Author

Jeff Goins is a part-time blogger, speaker and author. He works full-time for a nonprofit organization called Adventures in Missions, where he serves as the Communications Director. In his free time, he writes books and shares ideas worth spreading.

Originally from the suburbs of Chicago, Jeff graduated from Illinois College with a double major in Spanish and Religion. There, he spent a semester in Spain, which opened his eyes to different cultures and stretched his worldview.

After a year of travel and long-distance communication, he moved to Tennessee to chase the woman who became his wife. In 2008, he married her.

Since 2006, Jeff has worked out of his home, overseeing marketing, communications, and innovation teams from afar. He is passionate about not only telling great stories, but living them, as well.

His blog, GoinsWriter.com, is one of the fastest-growing blogs on the web and is a well-respected resource for bloggers and writers. In 2011, it won the Top 10 Blogs for Writers award on WritetoDone.com. Each month, he receives over 80,000 visitors to his website.

Jeff’s work has been published online and offline in a variety of publications, including RELEVANT Magazine (which has a circulation of more than 150,000 readers), Copyblogger.com (voted by Ad Age as one of the top marketing blogs online), and ZenHabits.net (one of Time Magazine’s Top 50 Websites for threes years in a row).

Jeff and his wife, Ashley, live just outside of Nashville, TN with their son and dog.

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