Publishing Tales: Stories about Literature from across the Web (March 26 – April 2)

Each week, we collect stories about self-publishing and authorship in the digital age. These are some of our favorites. If we’ve missed a good one, leave it in the comments. Or send us a note.

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Indie Authors

  • Self-publishing News: Indie Writers Are Doing It for Themselves!: Self-publishing has become both a viable and satisfying option for authors, and has overcome the stigma of self-published books being poorly written or not good enough for traditional publishing.
  • Podcasting and Indie Authors: Is Podcasting Right for You?: Podcasting can help authors reach new audiences, but it takes money, time and energy to start a successful podcast. Authors need to consider their target audience, the demographics of their current readers, and the podcast goal before they even choose the podcast’s topic.
  • DIY: How to Self-Publish an Audiobook: There are options for self-published authors who want to make audiobooks: Audiobook Creation Exchange, Infinity Publishing, Dog Ear Publishing, BookBaby/CDBaby, eBookIt, or studios. A completed 10-hour audiobook project costs a minimum of $3,000.


  • Get in Good With Goodreads: Goodreads is integral in being a successful author because it helps spread the word about your work, but first you need to learn how to use it . Goodreads can be confusing and overwhelming, but the most important tip is to think about the reader’s perspective when developing and using the site.
  • How to Reach Millennial Readers: Millennials readers can be hard to reach, but some book marketers can work to engage this audience by partnering with social influencers, listening to the audience, and connecting with established communities.
  • It Turns Out, All You Need to do is Write a Great Book: Making your book a success is more than just writing. Authors need to be partners with their agents, editors, publicists, publishers, and everyone else involved in the work for the book’s journey to success.



Digital Platforms

On Writing

  • Elmore Leonard’s Rules for Writers: Writers who want to be invisible in the books they write, so that it’s more of a showing than a telling, need to not use the weather for atmosphere at the book’s beginning. They should also avoid prologues, only use “said” for carrying dialogue, never modify “said” with an adverb, limit exclamation point, and avoid detailed character descriptions.
  • When Dad’s a Writer: Michael Gordon is the literary agent for Noah Gordon, his 88-year-old father. The entire family has worked with Noah Gordon in some part of his book making process.
  • 7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Lisa Freeman: Lisa Freeman has learned to not waste time, be ready to write at any time, don’t depend on praise from others to see your success, avoid burnout, prioritize, prepare for inevitable interruptions, find what helps you to write, and find balance between writing and your life.
  • We Are What We Write?: Publishers have a class system for writers based on the genre the author writes in, not based on how talented the writer is. Some authors have to use pseudonyms in order to break into a new genre.
  • Wielding the pen: US war veterans’ writing programs thrive across country: Words After War and other writing programs work to help veterans articulate their stories in cathartic writing, but civilians are also interested in the stories these men and women tell.

General Bad News