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How to spice up your book launch party for free
On July 15, 2019 | 0 Comments

When my novel Chocolate for Two came out, I threw launch parties in New York, where I live, and Silicon Valley, where I grew up. For fun I teamed up with a chocolate company called Mission Blue Confections that was open to clever marketing opportunities. They agreed to provide a small box of chocolates with the purchase of […]

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Marketing tip: Share what you’ve learned
On July 2, 2019 | 0 Comments

When I speak to authors who are struggling to gain traction for their books, I like to ask them what has worked for them, however small the scale. In my experience, most authors have done at least one thing that has led to a few sales. They have also usually tried a few tactics that were a […]

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I could HAVE, not I could OF
On June 10, 2019 | 0 Comments

We learn to speak before we learn to read and write, so sometimes when putting words onto the page it’s easy to confuse those that sound the same (also known as homonyms or homophones). For example: bred and bread plane and plain great and grate led and lead to and two and too there and they’re […]

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“Show” vs. “tell” in dialogue
On May 28, 2019 | 0 Comments

One area where the issue of of “show vs. tell” frequently pops up is when authors use too many adverbs or adjectives to tell readers how a character is feeling instead of using beats to show readers how a characters is feeling.  (Refresher: A beat is a physical action.)  Here are some examples of beats vs. adverbs/adjectives in dialogue. You’re the […]

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What should you include in your author bio?
On May 13, 2019 | 0 Comments

Many debut authors don’t know what to put in their bio. That’s understandable! In fact, I recently met a debut novelist whose bio at the end of her book said this: This is Lucy’s first novel. She lives in San Francisco. When I asked Lucy about it, she laughed and said she knew it wasn’t […]

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When to use THAT and when to use WHICH
On April 29, 2019 | 0 Comments

Do you know the difference between THAT and WHICH? My friend Debbie likes to say this: If it sounds like you could use either, use “that.” For example: *Cooking is an activity that relaxes many people (CORRECT) *Cooking is an activity which relaxes many people (INCORRECT) In the above sentence, to the untrained ear it may […]

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Mix things up to beat writer’s block
On April 15, 2019 | 0 Comments

I hate writer’s block. It’s the worst! As far as I know, there’s no magic formula for curing this unfortunate affliction when it strikes, only various approaches to try until you find something that works for you.  I recently had a conversation with a creative director at an advertising agency about the brainstorming process, which we […]

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When to use a hyphen
On April 1, 2019 | 0 Comments

Are you using hyphens when you shouldn’t be? Hyphens are used to avoid ambiguity when two descriptive words are placed next to each other before a noun. (They are also used for compound words such as dead-end.) For example, take the following sentence: The small business owner got a great loan from the bank.  Is the […]

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Nail that elevator pitch
On March 18, 2019 | 0 Comments

If you’re an aspiring author, get ready to hear the following question approximately 10 billion times: “What’s your book about?” As you already know if you’ve already written a book, pretty much everyone and anyone in your life will ask you that question, from people you know well to people you just met in the […]

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Ask your fans to help spread the word
On March 4, 2019 | 0 Comments

If you’re like most authors, promoting your work doesn’t come naturally to you. The same goes for the vast majority of your readers. They may love your book, but it would never occur to them to actively spread the word about it. And even if they want to help, they probably don’t know how. That’s why marketing […]

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