Generation Butthurt—How Being Constantly Offended (and Offensive) Costs BIG

Everybody play nice, now. Or, how to sell your books

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Kenny Louie. Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Kenny Louie.

Today we are going to dive back into social media because who we are on-line impacts the odds of our success. Whether we like it or not, engaging on social media and cultivating a following is going to massively impact our professional success (or lack thereof).

In sales we had a saying, Fish where the fish are. Well my darlings, the fish are schooling on social media. When we are online we are not only engaging with the readers of today, we are cultivating future readers. This applies as much to the pre-published newbie as it does the internationally best-selling author.

We are wise to remember that we now have entire generations glued to smart phones and LinkedInInstaSnap, and if we don’t learn how to navigate these waters? Bad juju.

This said. Social media is an extraordinarily powerful tool that is too…

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The Single Largest Problem of Most First Time Novels

Sometimes it’s best to follow the rules

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Original image courtesy of flowcomm, via Flickr Commons Original image courtesy of flowcomm, via Flickr Commons

All righty. So we have spent a couple of posts talking about getting our head right when it comes to doing this writing thing. Once we get our heads in the game, then the practical How To advice gets a heck of a lot more mileage. Today we are going to talk about the writing of the actual novel.

When I started out wanting to become a writer years ago, I was so clueless I didn’t even realize I was clueless. I had an overinflated ego from all those years making As in high school then college English. I believed I could write so when it came to reading craft books? I thumbed through them and decided I didn’t want my writing to be “formulaic” *flips hair*.

Trying to take a short cut cost me a lot of time and wasted words…

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FEAR—Is the Mind-Killer in Control of Your Life?

Fear not, and go for it!

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Noemi Galera. Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Noemi Galera.

The single greatest challenge you will face in trying to accomplish anything great is FEAR. FEAR is nothing to be underestimated and we need to learn to manage it if we want to succeed. I remember being a kid and Dune was one of my favorite movies. At the age of ten I memorized Paul Atreides’ mantra:

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”

At the time I just thought it was a seriously cool movie line. It was only when I grew older that I began…

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Selling Books—The Struggle is REAL but Not New & What to DO!

The business end of writing

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Lane Pearman Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Lane Pearman

I know a lot of authors feel overwhelmed in the digital age of publishing and that is perfectly understandable. But today I would like to pan back and maybe offer a refreshed perspective to keep you pressing.

Today we face the challenge of creating a brand. But you might be thinking, “What exactly is a brand?” There is a lot of misinformation floating around so that is a reasonable question to ask.

A brand is the power of a name to drive sales. Our name alone compels action.

No easy task. Overcoming inertia is critical for any author who wants to make a living doing this writing thing. In an age of instant? This is going to take a while, but hopefully I can help 😉 .

But first…

The Struggle is NOT New

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Publishers have always struggled to help authors…

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Is that all there is?

In 1969 a singer named Peggy Lee published a song titled, “Is that all there is?” She sings, “If that’s all there is my friends then let’s keep dancing let’s bring out the booze and have a ball.” Today is the one year anniversary of my husband’s death. and it’s hard for me not to ask myself that same question, i.e. is that all there is?

It also makes me wonder what people of various faiths think when their loved ones die. I know there are faiths that believe people achieve a state of enlightenment after death. There are others that believe in reincarnation. Some believe in reincarnation as another human as in past life regression and others believe in reincarnation as various animal types. hindu-cattleThere are some sects of the Hindu faith that believe people come back as cows and therefore the cattle are worshiped. Then there is Christianity which says that when you die you will come back to life in a glorified body and you will be reunited with others who also believe as Christians believe.

 

Now I am not here to belittle or argue the different types of religious beliefs in the world. I’m only saying that I am personally glad to be Christian because I want to see my husband again and I want to see him in a form that is recognizable to me. Also he had polio, and I want to see him being able to walk and run freely as he never could in this life which is something that Christianity also promises.

I also wonder what atheists think about death. I know they don’t believe in God, but do they believe in an afterlife? I would really appreciate hearing some feedback on this because I’m very curious. I have never studied atheism. I’ve studied a lot of religions but not atheism because it’s not considered a religion. However, when you think about it atheism is really a religion. Religion is simply a type of belief system. An atheist believes there is no God which is a system of belief.

I am also very curious about what atheism and the other religions find or feel is the purpose of their lives here on earth. For an atheist is life simply just existing? And in the other religions what is your purpose of your life as let’s say a Buddhist or Hindu or a Muslim. theravada-buddhism-1788675__480Christianity makes it very clear what our purpose is and that is to love God and to love our neighbor as ourselves. We have very clear directions as to what our purpose is in life, but I am wondering what do the other religions find as their purpose in life, I am including atheists in this as I do believe atheism is a type of religion.

I am also wondering how people of different faiths find comfort when their loved ones passed on. If they know they will never see their loved ones again in a recognizable format where do they find comfort? If any of you out there would like to respond to me I would love to be able to discourse with you on these topics because the one thing I have learned in my studies of religions is that the more that I know about them the more I realize I don’t really know very much.

Dedicated to Jake Segovia – Came to Visit 9/19/1953 – Returned Home -01/05/2016

Pictures courtesy of Pixabay

Author Animal Farm—New York GOOOOD, Self-Pub BAAAAAAD

Bottom line…it’s all a bunch of horse hockey

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Original image via Kabsik Park courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons. Original image via Kabsik Park courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons.

Okay at first I wasn’t going to say anything regarding the latest Let’s Bash Self-Publishing rant over at HuffPo, but (like all “real” writers) I am in the business of serving my audience—YOU—what you want to hear and after about the tenth person who sent me Laurie Gough’s Self-Publishing—An Insult to the Written Word, I figured y’all might want my take 😉 .

For another angle on this controversy, I strongly recommend Fisking the HuffPo’s Snooty Rant About Self-Publishing.

Moving on…

Consider the Source

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First of all, am I the only one to see the laughable hypocrisy of anyone who writes for Huffington Post lecturing anyone about real writing? Huffington Post is a predatory business, a literary parasite that has made hundreds of millions of dollars by paying writers in “exposure dollars.” And, by doing so, has…

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Generation Author Snowflake & The High Cost of Instant

Truth or Dare

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of David Rogers Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of David Rogers

Technology always changes our reality and there are inevitable growing pains that go part and parcel with any innovation. Every meaningful advance always has social consequences.

Always.

From the Gutenberg Press to the Model-T to electric lighting humans have had to adjust, shift and learn to balance great benefits with never before encountered consequences.

With the digital age? Here we go again.

As I’ve mentioned before, as early as 2004 when I was puttering around a site called Gather, I saw what social media was going to evolve into, that we were looking at likely the largest shift in communication since the Gutenberg Press. I knew even then that this was likely going to be the end of publishing as we had known it for well over a hundred years.

But I would be lying if I said I didn’t have…

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