Choosing your Editor

The following are questions for you, the author, to ask the freelance editor you are considering approaching. Originally by Jenny, for the website Writers Edit

Pexels-photo-220312 onPixabay
Picture by Pexel, on Pixabay.com

What should I ask a prospective editor?

  1. If they have any qualifications or memberships.
    You might prefer someone with the theoretical grounding of a degree or certificate, or someone who upholds the standards of an editing society.
  2. If they have experience or a portfolio.
    Do you want the seasoned veteran who’s been in the game for twenty plus years, or the enthusiastic novice who’s just starting out?
  3. How and what they charge.
    {For more information, visit http://bit.ly/2IyGJ3n}
  4. What systems they use to edit.
    Are they on a Mac or a PC? Do they prefer MS Word, Adobe Acrobat or InDesign (or hard copy)? Be sure that your systems are compatible.
  5. If they respond quickly to enquiries.
    As we said, editing is all about communication, so make sure they’ll give you the time of day rather than ignore your email for a week.
  6. If they seem honest and respectful.
    You want your editor to be upfront, but not insensitive. There’s a difference between telling someone that their writing needs improvement and telling them it’s garbage.
  7. If they genuinely appreciate the story you have to tell.
    Editors who believe in your writing will be more committed to its success, and will thus be more likely to go the extra mile on your behalf.
  8. If they respect the boundaries between author and editor.
    At the end of the day, it’s your work: will they give you the final word, or will they try to steamroll you, based on what they think is right?
  9. If they know what they’re talking about!
    Do they know what a style guide is? Can they justify their editorial decisions? Or are you the one having to explain the difference between en- and em-dashes?

Trust, by Avery WOODS

cover_Trust Why does society treat you as an outcast when you’re single? Is it not bad enough that I have my two best friends pressuring me to date every chance they get. It’s probably because I still haven’t told them the reason I’ve avoided dating: The fact that I am HIV positive. It’s this dirty little secret I’ve been keeping to myself for the last two years. I’ve tried telling my friends and family numerous times, but something always gets in my way. At least that’s what I tell myself. Don’t worry, I’m ninety percent sure you can find my picture under the word cynical in the dictionary.
Since my ex-boyfriend basically called me a walking disease, I’ve lost a bit of my self confidence you could say. I mean, how am I suppose to tell my friends and family? I guess writing a letter to my parents won’t cut it.
More importantly, how is Travis, the new guy I like going to take the news? He is perfect, and I am far from it. I have to trust him, but trusting someone is easier said than done.
If dealing with HIV wasn’t enough, the bombshell my mom decided to invoke on my sister and I sure takes the cake. At least that’s what I thought, until I attended Lauren’s birthday party. Who knew that would be a night I would never forget.
Who would have thought ripping off a band aid would be the most painful route to take?


Available at…
Roane Publishing;     Amazon;     Amazon UK;
Barnes & Noble;      Kobo;      Smashwords;
iTunes;      Bookstrand


Excerpt:

This isn’t good. She knows, damn it. I can’t even lie to her and tell her I take the medications for a different reason. She knows what the medications are for. I completely forgot I had my medications in my purse when I gave her permission to go into it to grab the tampon. I mean, I wasn’t thinking. I was half asleep. I don’t know what to say. She’s caught me off guard. I stay silent.

“The medications are anti-retroviral medications. They are used to treat HIV.”

Cori gasps, completely shocked. She looks at me, but I turn my head. I can’t look at her. “Do you have HIV?” she asks.

I stand up to clear my plate. I’ve lost my appetite. What am I supposed to say?
“Those aren’t mine.”

Brennley stands up. “Hayden, I saw your name on them.”

I get defensive. This is my worst case scenario. I wanted to be the one to tell them on my own accord, so Brennley finding out this way? It’s awful.
“Maybe I took them out under my name for someone else, did you ever think of that? Maybe someone who’s ashamed of having to go to the pharmacy to buy them, worried they will be judged? Did you ever think of that?” Okay, that was a horrible lie, but I’m feeling cornered.

Brennley blows out a breath, and scratches her head. “No, I didn’t. I wasn’t accusing you of anything. I was just stating what I saw.”

I’m angry, but only because they found out like this. “Well, don’t jump to conclusions.”
I look over at Cori and I can see tears forming in her blue eyes.

“Hayden, just be honest with us. Whose medications are those?”

I squeeze my eyes shut. I will not cry. “No one’s!” I shout.

I look over and see tears now forming in Brennley’s eyes. I can’t do this. There are too many emotions floating throughout this room. I’m sad, hurt, angry, devastated, frustrated, and feeling very, very guilty.

“They aren’t mine,” I sob. My shoulders begin to shake.

Cori comes over and lifts my hands away from my face and wraps me in a hug.
“Hayden, it’s okay if they are yours, just be honest with us. We don’t care if they are yours.”

You know the feeling you get when you are about to cry and someone asks you if you are alright and, it’s them saying that, that makes you ultimately cry? That’s what I’m feeling right now. I release Cori’s grip on me and gently push her away. I turn and walk to the other side of the kitchen. I turn to face them. I wipe the tears that have spilled down my cheeks. I shake out my hands. My heart is hammering in my chest. My chest feels tight, like an elephant is sitting on it. I feel a bit dizzy, like the room is moving and I’m having trouble seeing straight. I take a deep breath until both of them come back into focus.

I decide it’s time for the truth to come out. Although when I tell them I can’t look at them. I’m scared to see their reaction.

“Alright, I give up. Those pills are mine.” I cry. “Because in fact, I am  HIV positive.”

A post on using Brand-names in your writing

This stellar advice can be found at this blog, by Mark Fowler at Blogspot, an attorney in New York City with 29 years of experience working for media companies – book and magazine publishers, newspapers, broadcasters, and online publishers, among others.

A full description of the what and how of dropping names into your writing

Thanks, Mark…

 

eBook Release: Vicki Arnott’s “The Crystal Bluebird”

cover_ARNOTT V_The Crystal Bluebird

While Mary was exploring the old house she and her family had inherited, she discovered a crystal necklace and an old book telling the story of a sad Queen trapped in her castle.

When she and her brother and sister drew pictures on the story map, they never dreamed they would soon be transported into the fantasy world of Brigitha, where their pictures had become real, and were causing problems! They were soon enlisted by a grumpy Queen’s Guardsman who insisted that they must undo the damage they had caused, and help to free the Queen.

This is a story for children aged ten and above. Teenagers and adults who enjoy fantasy adventure will also love this book.

Exclusive Excerpt…

Arthur raised his fist to knock on the door, but just as he did so, it swung open with a crash. Inside the doorway stood a short, plump woman wearing a pair of bright green dungarees over a bold floral print shirt. Her face was round and her cheeks were rosy pink. Her eyes were as bright and green as her dungarees and seemed to shoot sparks at Arthur. On her head a small cap perched precariously on top of a mass of curls which spilled in an orange riot around her face. She stood with her feet apart and her hands on her hips.

“So,” she shot at Arthur. “You’re finally back. Where is it that you’ve been all this time?”

Arthur straightened himself up to his full height, squared his shoulders and replied with quiet dignity. “I’ve been on the queen’s business, as you well know.”

The woman remained standing rigidly in the doorway. “The queen’s business! Sixty years, Arthur. You’ve been gone sixty years! You’re lucky I’m a resourceful woman, with plenty to do with my time, otherwise I might be pretty angry with you right now.” She glared at him fiercely, her right foot tapping.

Arthur cleared his throat.

“Wynda, I know. I’m sorry. I was trapped and there was no way to let you know what had happened. Let’s go inside and I will tell you all about it.” He turned to the children. He gave a slight bow and his voice became formal, “Allow me to introduce you to my wife, Wynda.”

ISBN eBook: ISBN: 9781311312785

Smashwords link
Click Logo to Buy

 


About Vicki Arnott

Born in Foxton, New Zealand, and raised in the Manawatu area,File 19-02-18, 3 30 46 PM
Vicki now lives in a rural community near Rotorua, in the Bay of Plenty, surrounded by views of Mt Tarawera, forest, and farm paddocks.

Vicki writes fantasy adventure and science fiction for early teens and young adults. Her love of writing began at primary school and she has always dreamed of becoming a writer. She got serious about her dream in 2015, when she reduced her hours of work as a school teacher to work on her first novel The Crystal Bluebird, a fantasy adventure for children and adults.

She is currently working on her second novel Children of the White Dragon, a science-fiction adventure, and her third novel, also science-fiction and as yet untitled.

Other genre that interest Vicki are romantic comedy and magical, heart-warming Christmas stories. She’d like to write screenplays in those genre, in addition to science fiction and fantasy.

Vicki’s goals include: get better at writing, continue to write and publish, write screenplays and be involved in the production of movies.

Her interests include walking, ceroc dancing and an occasional game of golf. She also likes painting and drama, and has organised many school productions in addition to her involvement in amateur theatre productions with the Rainbow Entertainers Drama club. She recently realised another dream when she planted her first rose garden.  She spends her spare time watching movies, and steals early-morning hours to read because she is so undisciplined when it comes to books, that once a book is started it doesn’t get put down until it’s finished.

Vicki can be found at this site

 

 

Kathy Sutcliffe Bonanza

At Saturday’s meeting on Rotorua Writers Group, we were graced by our guest author, New Zealnd’s Kathy Sutcliffe. 

She delighted us with her back-story of the origins of her three novels… Write My Face and When Romeo Kissed Mercutio, both published 2012, and Moon Boy published 2017. She read an extract from the latter, which held us engrossed. 

I bought a copy of all three, so you can expect a set of reviews later…

Second Guessing, by Gail W Olmsted

Second Guessing, a contemporary romance by 2018-02-05_Gail Olmsted_Second Guessing
Gail Ward Olmsted,  was released on January 5th to much acclaim.

Second Guessing is the love story of Jill and Ben, who are so wrong for each other that they may actually be right!

 


Jill Griffin & Ben Fein are meant to be together… said no one ever!

Jill has built a successful career writing romantic ballads for many of today’s top performers. Since the tragic end of her marriage a couple years back, the 40-something single mom has all but abandoned hope for a love story of her own.

Ben is a brash, young boy-band singer seeking a solo career who hires Jill to write for him. He’s got a dark secret from his past that he wants to keep hidden.

The attraction between the two is red-hot, and when Ben falls hard for Jill, he doesn’t care who knows it. Jill’s been burned before and wants to take things slow, keeping their relationship out of the glare of the media. After a gossip columnist exposes their affair, she’s forced to decide if she can risk letting go of her past in order to build a life with Ben.

When Ben’s past makes headlines, Jill begins to wonder how well she really knows him. But as Ben climbs to the top of the pop charts, he’s determined to succeed…  at convincing Jill to take a second chance on love.

Published by Roane Publishing, 2017;


About the Author

“Gail is a professor of marketing. She has taught at the college level for twenty years.  A hopeless romantic, she is married to the love of her life. She is a mom to two young adults and two cats and enjoy reading, music and travel.”
(Paraphrased from her website)

Her other books include Guessing at Normal, Driving on the Left, and Jeep Tour, all of which are on sale at Amazon, and via her website’s links.

Mythos – Greek Myths Retold, by Stephen Fry

FRY S_Mythos CoverIn his retelling of the myths of the ancient Greeks, Fry offers his own interpretation, conveyed in his wonderfully cheeky way, while covering in depth and breadth all the myths we’ve heard of–and some I’d not known of.

Starting with the creation of the Gods’ world, our world, and mankind, he puts each stage of the build in its logical place in terms of time and location. All is told in Fry’s inimitable style, bringing the classics to new life:

“Everything around him glinted and glittered, gleamed and glimmered with a gorgeous gaudy golden glow but his heart was as grim and grey as granite.” No prizes for guessing about whom Fry is writing here.

Perhaps if I’d been able to read this a certain number of years ago I may have taken the challenge of university study of the classics. Certainly, anyone purchasing for a senior school or tertiary library should put this into their 2018 budget.

Family trees of the first Orders of the gods are included. Fry’s footnotes include the lexicography of our modern English language derived from the people and places of the gods and their creations.

The book also includes maps, and coloured plate illustrations.

Paperback published by Penguin – Random House, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-718-18874-0

Copies (hard-book, paperback, ebook) and audio CD) can be purchased at

Amazon book store link
Click icon to buy

About the author:

Stephen Fry is an actor, a comedian, a writer, a presenter (quiz master for BBC’s QI) and an activist. His TV shows include QIJeeves and WoosterA Bit of Fry & LaurieMORE.

He can be found on Twitter and at his website

Reviews Coming Soon

I love christmas, if only because people give me books. Or money or vouchers to buy books. So you may expect reviews soon of some or all of these…

“Mythos – The Greek Myths Retold” by Stephen Fry

“The QI Book of the Dead – Lives of the Justly Famous & the Undeservedly Obscure”, by John Lloyd (CBE) & John Mitchinson

“Now We Are Dead”, by Stuart MacBride

“The 45% Hangover, by Stuart MacBride

“Lutapolii” by Virginnia De Parte

“Scavengers” by Sheryl [Surname to come]

A lovely mix!

PSA Regarding Amazon Guidelines for Reviews

Woah! Do people Still not realise this? Here’s a reminder…

Shotgun Logic

Amazon-Logo_Feature

PSA to reviewers and authors/publishers regarding Amazon’s revised review guidelines.

This little bit here is super important to observe:

“Book authors and publishers may continue to provide free or discounted copies of their books to readers, as long as the author or publisher does not require a review in exchange or attempt to influence the review.”

This means that technically speaking, an author/publisher should not require a review in exchange for a book. Instead, offer the book for consideration. In my experience, that is the approach most industry professionals take anyway, so no major change there for most.

More importantly, it means that reviewers need to drop language such as the following from their reviews: “I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.” As far as Amazon is concerned, this means you were paid for a review and they will yank your review. Even more importantly, if they…

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