Thursday, August 30, 2012

GUEST POST & GIVEAWAY: Leslie Deaton

I have once again, had the opportunity to review another book from the very talented author Leslie Deaton. I think that both books I've read from her have been very well written and put together. 
The best part about today, is the fact that I have a fantanstic guest post from the very talented and creative Leslie Deaton for everyone to enjoy. OH... AND... At the end of this post, you'll find that she has been more then generous in letting me GIVEAWAY not 1, but 2 books!! She's so great isn't she?! (AMAZING!!)



A big THANK YOU to Sarita Lopez for welcoming me back to her blog!

This week I met with a friend who is writing his first fantasy novel about an Elven World and found myself giving him mounds of advice. Specifically we talk through the How To’s for Getting Started and my Lessons Learned about Self-Publishing, so I thought I would share those same tips here with all of you.
The first bit of advice I gave him was about doing research on his genre. If you are writing a specific genre, you need to read the genre that you want to write. You should understand what makes the books in that genre successful, who the most popular authors and series are in that genre and why. I read once that 90% of all the manuscripts an agent receives begin with the main character waking up from a dream. Can you imagine how boring books would be if every story started like that? (And yes, his story does…but then again, so did my first manuscript.)
I also encouraged him to write often. He has a young family so carving out time to sit down and write each night isn’t possible. Ideally, he should try to writing every day. The practice of writing will strengthen your syntax, expand your vocabulary, and expand your storyline. If you run into a block on your storyline, then just write something else. Send letters or postcards, volunteer to write for charity, respond to a blog, join a reading forum, just write.
After you get some chapters together, round up some readers. Ask your friends, coworkers, classmates, neighbors, anyone who is willing to read your drafts and give you constructive feedback. You are looking for someone to weigh in on storyline, dialogue, plot, character development, do they love it? Do they hate something (it’s ok, evoking emotion is amazing too). As writers we might want to hide these drafts until they are perfect, but trust me, readers can give you advice that make things so much better.
Ready to publish?  Ok, so you have two choices
The traditional publication process, is just that, a process. It can be amazing, or just plain torturous. Basically here’s how it works. You write your book, revise your book, write a Query Letter, snag an agent (think win the lottery), and then work with a publishing house to publish your book. I worked this process for a while. First you need to write a Query Letter (Agent Kristin Nelson offers great examples) http://www.nelsonagency.com/faq.html ). She most recently published Marie Lu’s series. After you draft your letter, visit Agent Query (http://www.agentquery.com) website to search for an agent. This can be a soul wrenching process, sending out query letters can be exhausting and the sting of rejection is a harsh reality of the business, but this is how the traditional publishing world works.
The other way to go is to Self-Publish. This is the path that many many authors are choosing because of the control the author retains over their revenue. It’s pretty simple too. You write your book, revise your book, write an amazing hook (blurb) then work with a self-publishing site. I like Createspace (https://www.createspace.com/Products/Index.jsp), SmashWords (http://www.smashwords.com ), and Barnes and Nobel (http://pubit.barnesandnoble.com/pubit_app/bn?t=pi_reg_home ). Put up a blog, join a group like Goodreads and network with other writers. Read as much as you can about self-publishing and just do it!
Hope this inspires some of the writers out there to publish your own work!
In the meantime I’m working on the third book in my YA series The Mercer Legacy.
Good luck everyone!

Ok Everyone, you read it!! As far as my giveaway goes, I'm not asking very much: 
1. Leave a comment letting me know what you thought about the guest post. Oh, very important... leave your email so that I know where to get a hold of you.
2. Follow my blog
3. Join Leslie and I on Goodreads.com 

THIS GIVEAWAY WILL BE RUNNING UNTIL:  Sept. 8th

THAT'S IT!! HAVE FUN, GO NUTS!!

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