Read some outstanding Indie book excerpts in the First Annual BestsellerBound Sample Anthology. I’ve read many of these authors and can tell you first hand you’ll find a new novel worth reading. This link sends you to volume 1 and you can navigate to the other two from there.
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It’s difficult to set writing goals for many, just how many words should I try to write in a day? How will this add up to the number of words I will need to sell my novel in my chosen genre? There are many theories on how to choose this number.
When I started writing I read up how others approached writing goals, write 1000 words a day, write 100, or write an entire scene. It seemed that many agreed that you should set a goal of 2000 words a week. That sounded reasonable. It allows you to reach 100,000 words in a year. From that I thought that I would do a 1000 on the weekend—only 500 a day—and 200 at the end of each workday.
Before long I had fallen behind, guilt plagued me and I felt as if I had let myself down. Not to conducive to writing, unless you’re writing about how you can never accomplish anything. No, that still wouldn’t work.
I needed a better way to create some consistency in my writing habits. Another author, I can no longer remember who, said the goal should be small enough so that you can always accomplish it, a paragraph or even a single word.
This method worked for a while as it was easy to meet the demand, but it didn’t hold any measure of quality, simply very low quantity. And honestly, the single word seemed silly and so I never really applied it.
Quality, I decided was the key. With that in mind, I created my own writing goal. Write one quality sentence per day. That’s right, just one. It worked like a charm, I wrote large amounts each time I sat at my modern typewriter, my laptop. So, why did it work for me and why might it work for you?
Forcing yourself to write one thing of quality requires all your best writing skills. What you write must meet your best criteria, it must fit the plot of your story, if dialogue, it must truly reflect the personality of the speaker. And once you’ve written something that fits the story, that improves it in some way, well, it’s very hard to stop. This technique works because it allows you to foster what makes you a great writer in the first place, without placing an unneeded burden upon yourself.
Give it a try, you might find your writing benefits from it. And it’s guilt free!
When I was eighteen, a senior at Mt. Vernon High School, I had an English teacher who clearly hated the very sight of me. Believe me when I say he let me know on numerous occasions that this was the case. I’m not sure why, it might have been the long hair (yes, I once had long hair—no, I did not sport a mullet), it might have been my look of boredom at his monotonous tone, I really can’t say. But he allowed his hatred for me to squash any glimmer of talent I might have shown.
At his bequest, in other words, homework, I wrote a poem about a fledgling bird leaving the nest. I thought it was quite good since my normal poetic take was far darker. Handing back our assignments he smirked at me; at the top of the page was an extraordinarily large, red F. I couldn’t believe it. So, I confronted him—trotting up to his desk I slammed it down and demanded his reasoning. He pointed to a paragraph he had written at the bottom of the page which went something like this, “This work is far too professional for a person like you to have written and therefore it must have been plagiarized.”
I was dumbstruck! Maybe not the first time, certainly not the last, but I was! And I was angry. I told him I could prove it was my work which evoked from him some long forgotten snide remark. I went home and gathered up my rough drafts, of which there were several, and prepared mentally for the next day’s battle. I also spoke with my mother who gladly offered to storm in and give him a good boot in the ass.
The class bell rang, signaling my arrival at the battlefront, and I threw my rough drafts down upon his desk with the vigor of a dueling glove to my enemy’s face. I said nothing. I simply walked to my seat and sat; waiting.
Suddenly, my teacher got up from his desk and walked the long walk to mine, put down my poem and walked away. An A-. Would he give an A- to the professional I had supposedly copied from? Then I read his reason for the minus, “Typing errors marred your paper.” There were three. And they had been fixed by White Out as we were taught to do in the typing class I had taken at the same high school.
I was livid. I brought it up to his desk and looked him square in the eye and said, “You just couldn’t give me an A, could you?”
Nearly thirty years later I find myself writing and wondering where my voice had been; I feel like I had been silenced for so very long. Silenced by one public act of writing, showing my work to my classmates and to my then little world, that was stomped beneath the Jackboot of an uncaring and perhaps jealous educator. No, I don’t believe all educators are angry want-to-be writers. In fact, I’ve been lucky enough to have a few inspiring teachers in history and art for example. But still I wonder, what life might have I led if I had started a writing career as a younger man? What great novel might I have left behind in my silence?
If you love to read Indie books—or are a passionate writer—BestsellerBound.com is a great place to hang out. There are many talented and undiscovered writers lurking about at any given time.
For the writer there’s a great wealth of valuable information on the craft of writing, publishing, and otherwise promoting your books. I’ve personally struck up relationships with the great people who founded it, Darcia Helle, Maria Savva, and Stacy Juba and have found them to be extremely generous of their time to their members.
If you’re not a writer, but love a great read, you can easily find something in almost any genre. Authors are always willing to join in on an interesting conversation, so why not start one? There’s also a monthly book club where you can connect with other readers for some lively conversation.
So, come on by and meet the crowd, we’ll be expecting you.
BestsellerBound, a great place to hang with other authors, has started a forum on Goodreads.
Digger’s Bones is a thrilling adventure and great read. The book was well researched and almost felt as if it were a true story.
The likeable characters combined with an awesome plot make Digger’s Bones one of my favorite reads of the year. I really loved Angie, she’s trustworthy and dependable. The supporting characters were awesome and complimented the main character.
The ending was not a disappointment and the epilogue added the cherry on top.
— Greyz, Clandestine Sanctuary
The Cutting Edge, a wonderful and insightful novel by Indie author Darcia Helle, goes on sale tomorrow (Dec. 19, 2010) for one day for only $.99. All profits will go to charity and in the process you’ll be helping Indie authors everywhere by giving one of our/your own a boost. It’s a worthy cause and a worthwhile read. Besides, what else can you buy for a buck?