Short Story Review: Dirk McAwesome and the giant fire breathing space ants

Dirk McAwesome and the giant fire breathing space ants
Dirk McAwesome and the giant fire breathing space ants by Richard Junk
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A funny, lighthearted short scifi adventure that pokes, nay, impales many genre tropes deeply with a wickedly sharp silly stick. Definitely a good read when you need a way to fill twenty minutes with chuckles.

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Genre Writing: How to make your book funnier if you want to (and why funny is important)

Tammy Salyer:

Being funny really is all it’s cracked up to be. These are great tips from author Robert Chazz Chute to make it so much easier than you think it can be.

Originally posted on C h a z z W r i t e s . c o m:

I’m not talking about writing comedy per se. I’m talking about giving a too-serious book some oomph. (Oomph is funny. Ooh-la-la is erotica, and that’s a different post.) It’s not for every author or every book, but if you’re looking for ways to add a lighter touch to your work in progress, consider this:

1. Say what everyone else is thinking but would never say. Explore why you, too, love disco. You have always loved disco and yes, you, like everyone, have had angry sex in the back of a taxi. It made you feel disappointed in yourself and oddly Germanic. But that was this afternoon, so let’s not live in the past and…

2. Punch up, not down. This is why Jon Stewart is funny and Rush Limbaugh isn’t. Rush mocks the poor while Stewart goes after power. Mocking our betters is what betters are for, apparently. Not many of them seem…

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Self-Publishing Paths: Week 6, Marketing & Promotion

Greetings and salutations, Blogoramans! Welcome to the final post in this guest series on self-publishing at mystery author and contracts lawyer Susan Spann’s Spann of Time blog. In this final installment, I offer what words of advice I can about the marketing and promotion side of being a self-published author. I hope you glean some valuable information, and I wish you the utmost success in your writing and publishing endeavors!

You’ve done it. You have achieved a dream—maybe one that was lifelong, or perhaps more spur-of-the-moment, but an achievement to be commended for. Take a minute and think about that. Thousands of people want to write a novel. Of those, only hundreds begin, and of those, fewer still ever get beyond crafting a very long, wordy file that pulses in electronic bits on their computer or fades from ink to obscurity in a notebook. But not you—to paraphrase T. S. Elliot, you have turned blood into ink, and now you are ready to hurl it at the ravenous hordes of voracious and inkthirsty readers. Or, you know, sell it. Continue here.

Full Series Posts:
Week 1: Research. An overview and comparison of the self- vs. traditional-publishing paradigms.

Week 2: Business Plans. What an author needs to know to create and adhere to business plans and deadlines.

Week 3: Distributing Your Novel. The general considerations regarding distribution sites.

Week 4: Creating eBooks. Details to consider in regard to ebook creation, and why and how to do it.

Week 5: Plan ahead to hire an editor, proofreader, and cover designer. At minimum, start looking six months before you plan to publish.

Enjoy what you’ve seen so far? Subscribe by using the “Click to Follow” button or enter your email near the top of the page and never miss a post. If you think others will enjoy this blog too, go ahead and share it using one of the social network share buttons below. Thank you!
All content copyright unless otherwise specified © 2014 by Tammy Salyer, writer. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to use short quotes provided proper attribution is given.

Self-Publishing Paths: Week 5, Editing & Cover Design

G’morning Blogitons! Please join Susan Spann and I on Spann of Time for the continuation of the self-publishing series. This week we look at the second most essential component of publishing a novel, the presentation. This includes editing, proofreading, and cover design. Thanks to all who’ve commented how much you’ve enjoyed this series so far. Next week will be the final post and discusses the juggernaut of marketing. Take care!

Sometimes, most of the time even, new authors are consumed by and utterly immersed in their first few writing projects, often to the point of having absolutely no brain cells left over for any other creative or “businessy” endeavors. I’ve been there; I understand it. Nothing is more exciting to a writer than the story you are bringing to life.

Somewhere along this creative journey, however, new authors generally come to a decision about whether they will publish or simply allow their novel to be extant. It’s a question of public attention and acknowledgment vs. personal satisfaction and self-acknowledgment. (Here’s a little something I wrote on the subject of why we write that talks more about this public vs. personal dialectic). Once an author makes their choice, it’s time to get serious about carving out the time to include all those ancillary steps to the actual writing that will lead to your finished—and publishable, if that’s your goal—novel. Continue here.

Full Series Posts:
Week 1: Research. An overview and comparison of the self- vs. traditional-publishing paradigms.

Week 2: Business Plans. What an author needs to know to create and adhere to business plans and deadlines.

Week 3: Distributing Your Novel. The general considerations regarding distribution sites.

Week 4: Creating eBooks. Details to consider in regard to ebook creation, and why and how to do it.

Week 6: Marketing & Promotion.

Enjoy what you’ve seen so far? Subscribe by using the “Click to Follow” button or enter your email near the top of the page and never miss a post. If you think others will enjoy this blog too, go ahead and share it using one of the social network share buttons below. Thank you!
All content copyright unless otherwise specified © 2014 by Tammy Salyer, writer. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to use short quotes provided proper attribution is given.

Self-Publishing Paths: Week 4, Creating eBooks

G’day Blogolicioussians. Please join me today at mystery author Susan Spann’s blog where the series on self-publishing continues with week 4. This post goes into more detail about things to consider in regard to ebook creation, and why and how to do it. Enjoy!

For someone unfamiliar with HTML or CSS, creating an ebook may seem like black magic. But that doesn’t have to stop you from making ebooks your main self-published medium. Hundreds and hundreds of ebook creators have their shingle up, and a quick web search will find them for you. Better yet, if you’re part of a group of likeminded writers who’ve already gone through the process of having their novels formatted as ebooks, ask them who they used and if they would or wouldn’t recommend this service. Continue here.

Full Series Posts:
Week 1: Research. An overview and comparison of the self- vs. traditional-publishing paradigms.

Week 2: Business Plans. What an author needs to know to create and adhere to business plans and deadlines.

Week 3: Distributing Your Novel. The general considerations regarding distribution sites.

Week 5: Plan ahead to hire an editor, proofreader, and cover designer. At minimum, start looking six months before you plan to publish.

Week 6: Marketing and Promotion.

Enjoy what you’ve seen so far? Subscribe by using the “Click to Follow” button or enter your email near the top of the page and never miss a post. If you think others will enjoy this blog too, go ahead and share it using one of the social network share buttons below. Thank you!
All content copyright unless otherwise specified © 2014 by Tammy Salyer, writer. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to use short quotes provided proper attribution is given.

Self-Publishing Paths: Week 3, Distribution

Hello Blogdrodites! Welcome to the third week of my guest post series on the many considerations of self-publishing. Please join me at (world’s coolest) mystery author Susan Spann’s blog, Spann of Time, to learn about the things to consider when choosing your distribution sites. You may also want to visit this older post of mine that has a more concrete (though dated) look at the many options. Thanks to the many who have stopped by to peruse these posts. I hope you’re enjoying them and getting some good tips. Cheers!

There are two kinds of people in the world (outside of those who write and those who don’t), and they are those who obsess about the details and those who think of details as esoteric thought experiments that have little bearing on the obviously more important process of writing the next novel. But here’s the thing, and it bears repeating once again: Treat your writing like a passion, but treat your novel like a business. In a successful business model, the details are what matter the most. Continue here.

Full Series Posts:
Week 1: Research. An overview and comparison of the self- vs. traditional-publishing paradigms.

Week 2: Business Plans. What an author needs to know to create and adhere to business plans and deadlines.

Week 4: Creating eBooks. Details to consider in regard to ebook creation, and why and how to do it.

Week 5: Plan ahead to hire an editor, proofreader, and cover designer. At minimum, start looking six months before you plan to publish.

Week 6: Marketing and Promotion.

Enjoy what you’ve seen so far? Subscribe by using the “Click to Follow” button or enter your email near the top of the page and never miss a post. If you think others will enjoy this blog too, go ahead and share it using one of the social network share buttons below. Thank you!
All content copyright unless otherwise specified © 2014 by Tammy Salyer, writer. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to use short quotes provided proper attribution is given.

Self-Publishing Paths: Week 2, Business Plans

G’day Bloggorites. Please join me and mystery author Susan Spann at Spann of Time today where I discuss the ins and outs and steps to take for creating a self-published author’s business plan. This post is the second in a series on all of the facets of self-publishing. Visit week 1′s post on research and identifying your goals and intents here. Here’s a short preview:

Being in independently published author is extremely time intensive. Knowing that going in is the first consideration you need to include when evaluating your trajectory and goals. Much as you may outline your novel—with plot arcs, story goals, and finale outcomes—think of your business plan as the outline to your writing career. The following are the three universal steps (as I see them) to accomplish this.

1. Set realistic goals.

The fact is, brand new unknown authors cannot expect to hit the publish button and sell hundreds of books overnight, even if they hire a publicist. The number one way people sell books is through word of mouth, and if your book hasn’t yet been read by anyone, there’s no one to spread the word on how fabulous it is. But that’s okay, as indie fantasy author K. Scott Lewis describes it, becoming a success is a marathon, not a sprint. Continue.

Full Series Posts:
Week 1: Research. An overview and comparison of the self- vs. traditional-publishing paradigms.

Week 3: Distributing Your Novel. The general considerations regarding distribution sites.

Week 4: Creating eBooks. Details to consider in regard to ebook creation, and why and how to do it.

Week 5: Plan ahead to hire an editor, proofreader, and cover designer. At minimum, start looking six months before you plan to publish.

Week 6: Marketing and Promotion.

Enjoy what you’ve seen so far? Subscribe by using the “Click to Follow” button or enter your email near the top of the page, and never miss a post. If you think others will enjoy this blog too, go ahead and share it using one of the social network share buttons below. Thank you!
All content copyright unless otherwise specified © 2014 by Tammy Salyer, writer. All rights reserved. Permission is granted to use short quotes provided proper attribution is given.