Surf Report, August 9, 2012

I’ve been barely skimming the net for quite some time. As I was surfing to see what I’d missed over the past year, these were articles and items that caught my attention. I’m sure there are lots more, but this is what I’ve found in the last day or two.

From Slushpile.net

posted March 19, 2012

Lies, Damned Lies, and Publishing

“The modern publishing industry needs the sensational. A book doesn’t pop if it tells a story plain. It pops if there is blood, guts, and glory. If it bleeds it leads, they said in newspapering, and in a market saturated with absolute drivel thanks to million dollar Kardashian contracts, it had better bleed through the cover and onto the carpet.”

The entire post is definitely worth reading. No lie.

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From Nathan Bransford

posted August 1, 2012

We’re Moving From a World of Gatekeepers to a World of Influencers

“It’s not as important to scale the gates as it used to be. Popular books are coming out of nowhere like never before.”

He’s right. And the plethora of new authors/books will drive up the cost of prime advertising space. If you’re self-published or small-press published, you’re going to need a treasure chest full of gold doubloons to compete.

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from Marketing for Romance Writers

Annual Pitch Opportunity Sept 8-9, 2012
“Write Place, Write Time”

“We have an amazing panel of Publishers and Editors ready to give YOU, aspiring authors or seasoned authors, an opportunity to “pitch your dreams” to a listening audience. In the spirit of our MOTTO: Seek, teach, share, learn, succeed – just as we did in our Summer Camp, we have a special “Pitch Camp” ready to help prepare you.”

This is an awesome group for authors, literary marketing/promotional professionals, and publishers on how, when, and where to market your books. Promotional opportunities crop up on a regular basis.

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from Smart Girls Love SciFi and Paranormal Romance

Has the book business really changed and are we helping or stuck in the machine?

“When the role of the internet in our daily lives began to expand exponentially birthing and dragging social media along with it, it gave new marketing tools and new hope to the not-yet-bestselling authors. I don’t have any illusions that a single blog post or tweet can compete with the power of a Kindle book recommendation, but I do believe our voices used in the social media arena have more power than they would have without it.”

Very interesting post and the author asks questions that are worth pondering.

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from Dystel & Goderich Literary Management

The great semicolon debate

“But now that I’m an agent and working on a lot of adult projects, I’m finding that in certain contexts and genres, semicolons not only make sense but fill a vital role. Certainly in nonfiction, I agree with the author that the deft use of a semicolon can suggest a connection that other forms of punctuation—especially my beloved em-dashes—can’t quite pull off.”

Hear, hear! I love semicolons, but had to remove every single one from my stories.  😦  They connect independent clauses better than two stand alone sentences could ever do. Like peanut butter and jelly. I don’t want one peanut butter sandwich and one jelly sandwich then have to take a bite out of each and swirl the two in my mouth to get the perfect flavor. Put them together in one as they were surely meant to be.  😉

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Love these!

from Anna Pereira Designs

Circles of Inspiration™

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from Mashable

posted August 1, 2012

Outlook.com Gets 1 Million Users in First 6 Hours

“One of the first web-based email services, Hotmail has been around since 1996 and was acquired by Microsoft in 1997. In rebranding it as Outlook, Microsoft has integrated social networks and replaced the formerly cluttered interface with a clean layout that’s in line with the design aesthetic of Windows 8.

I love it! I’ve had a hotmail addy for many years and use it to back up almost everything. It’s not an address that I use for every day correspondence because I hated the cluttered appearance and the awkwardness of it. The Outlook Express program that comes with Microsoft Windows has always been my mail program of choice for its user-friendliness. I have several email addys I set up with my ISP and use those for business, friends, and family. I make folders and message rules to automatically route incoming mail to its appropriate folder. The problem with this is, I can’t access this mail when I’m away from my desk. Now with this new Outlook.com, I have the option of using my online mail for more than just a back-up depository and have access to real mail when I’m on the go. 🙂