Little Help Please

Hello Everybody,

As you probably know, self-published authors have a huge mountain to climb when it comes to breaking through the barriers setup by mega-publishers wanting to keep us at bay. Their collective attitude boils down to this. If you aren’t a previously published bestseller, don’t call us because we will never call you.

Okay. I’m a big boy in more ways than one and I understand that the game is rigged from the start. But miracles do happen and I refuse to give up on my dream. No, that doesn’t mean being a bestselling author; I don’t need riches or fame. All I need is enough to pay the bills and maybe take the family out once a month to a sit-down dinner.

Still, I refuse to give up but I’m not beyond asking for help. So here it is. I’m creating a video to promote PNTP and the production company wants me to get as many fresh reviews as possible. In the past, I’ve been remiss in asking for reviews because it’s hard for me to do. I don’t know why. I guess it’s just me. So anyway, now I’m asking. If you’ve already read PNTP please go to

https://www.amazon.com/Positives-Negatives-Tricycles-Pancakes-Pollack-ebook/dp/B00MZD3A98?ie=UTF8&keywords=L.%20Davyd%20Pollack&qid=1465056786&ref_=sr_1_4&sr=8-4

and tell me what you think.

If you haven’t read PNTP go to www.LDavydPollack.com . All my eBooks are priced at $1 including PNTP. You simply can’t beat the price. And just to show you that I’m not in it for the money; I’ll be willing to trade a free copy of any eBook for a review. All you have to do is go to my website contact page and ask me for one.

Thanks in advance for all your help,

Davyd

 

 

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Why I’m Glad January is Over

There are more than just one or two reasons why I’m glad January is over, but there is only one I’m willing to talk about today. As a writer of contemporary fiction, I’m always trying to find new and better ways to promote my work. Part of that includes enlisting the help of paid consultants, whose advice (since I paid for it), holds a lot of weight. By the way, so do I: this will be clear in a moment.

One of the things we writers have to do is internet marketing through blog posts. Personally, I like blogging, except when I’m told that I have to do it. Which is also why I like being an indy writer. There’s no publisher, agent, or editor hounding me about deadlines. I write what I want, when I want. It’s great for the creative mind; not so much for the creative wallet.

Anyway, my internet marketing consultant suggested that I write one blog post per week. I countered with one per month citing my full-time job as the excuse for not having time for more. Eventually, we settled on two per month and that really is a reasonable expectation.

As it is, January came and was more than three weeks old with no blog posts by yours truly. My marketing guy noticed the deficiency and in an entirely professional manner, meant only as a well meaning suggestion, sent me an email with ideas for a blog post. He said January is an awareness month and that I should consider this list as possible topics.

 

Weight Loss Awareness Month [1]

National Codependency Awareness Month [2]

National Mentoring Month (United States)

Stalking Awareness Month (United States)[3]

Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month (United States)[4]

Healthy Weight Week (United States)[5]

 

Okay. I get the main idea of an awareness month designation is to bring difficult issues that may go unnoticed into the public eye. But . . . for those of you who have never met me, I’m about 5-7 and 235 lbs. And in case you haven’t already noticed, January, the month after all the gluttonous holidays are over—begins and ends with weight loss.

Bahhhhh – Humbug!

I know that treadmill is under this pile of clothes somewhere.

 

2015 (fall) Meet The Authors Book Fair

So here I am, back after an eight-month hiatus from blogging. Why so long and why am I back now? Well, first and foremost, I have something interesting to talk about. However, it isn’t writer related. Rather, its publisher related and for once, it’s good news. BTW, in case you don’t already know, I’m self-published.

 

That said, here we go. November 21st & 22nd was the weekend of the Fall Meet The Authors Book Fair sponsored by Authors For Authors. You can visit them at www.authorsforauthors.com to find out more about what they do. Anyway, as for the book fair, it was my first time participating in the Fall Extravaganza and I had high hopes for a glorious triumph in sales. There was just one problem . . . it rained on Saturday and then, it rained on Sunday. Yeah, you guessed it. Traffic was slow and just to illustrate how slow, many of my fellow authors wrote off the entry fee and packed up early due to a lack of sales.

 

Fortunately for me, I have some retail experience so I know that sometimes you get sales just because you’re the only one left with something to sell. This was the thought that kept me, along with my outstanding sales crew (Miranda and the kids), going through those long and rainy days.

 

It was a good thing too because at about 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, L. Davyd Pollack sold out. Yes, for the first time ever, I sold out. Yep, did I mention the fact that I sold out? That’s right—I sold out. And . . . yeah, I sold out . . . Okay, Okay, I won’t bore you with any more bragging about how I went to a book fair on Saturday with two big boxes of books and when I left the book fair on Sunday, those big boxes were empty. Why? Because I sold out.

 

But the truth is; I couldn’t have done any of it without the help of everyone who got up from the couch, got in their cars, braved the ugly skies, and came out to the Meet The Authors Book Fair. Even if you didn’t buy a book, I want to thank you. And for those of you who did buy, I sincerely hope you enjoy your new read. You have purchased a small treasure written by an author with a fresh voice, that hasn’t been homogenized into the reprocessed regurgitations of commercial writers with big brand names and little else. Every self-published author has poured their heart and soul into the book you are about to read and all that work was done for free (no million-dollar advances here). So keep an open mind and a forgiving heart when you come across something that isn’t quite right.

 

As for those of you who bought a book from me, I just have two things left to say. Thank you and . . . uh—all sales are final.

 

 

Feverishly at Work

It’s the week before Christmas and I’ve been feverishly at work trying to get the print version of “Positives & Negatives, Tricycles & Pancakes,” ready for publishing. Being new in the business, I thought it would be easy. I assumed, and I think not unreasonably so, that with a fully edited and published eBook, the print book would be a piece of cake. Just upload the file and click print, right? Oh contraire . . .

Maybe it was because I published electronically first, then went to print, or maybe it was just naiveté (probably the later), but print books require a completely different set of formatting techniques to obtain a good, professional looking product. What presents well on a reader looks terrible on a page, and vice-versa. Everything from fonts, to headers, to page numbers, to cover art, even front matter, are all handled differently. And I had to learn it one mistake at a time.

Well. It was a tough row to hoe but at long last, it’s done, and just in time for the holidays. Shooo! The print version of PNTP is finally available so check it out at www.LDavydPollack.com

Happy Holidays.

-Davyd

PNTP print cover

One Space or Two, Too Spacey Today

I’m not sure why this is an issue but I hear other writers ask about it all the time, so here it is again. Should there be one space after a period or two? Ugh . . .

Look, years ago there used to be a thing called a typewriter. It came in two versions, manual or electric. The manual had levered keys that when pressed hard enough, would swing an arm with a letter (lowercase and uppercase) engraved at the end of it. The face of the engraving would strike an ink ribbon and then the paper, leaving a printed letter. Pressing the shift key at the same time as you pressed the letter key, gave you uppercase letters, otherwise you got lowercase. It was always the same font and always the same spacing.

Electric typewriters were a major improvement and gave you soft touch keys with no levered swing arms. There were two options that I know of, print ball or print wheel, depending on the model. The benefit here was that you could change fonts by changing the ball or wheel, but spacing was pretty much fixed.

There’s a common theme here . . . fixed spacing and it’s the reason standard practice at the time was to put two spaces after a period. It not only helped to delineate sentences, it kind of looked better too. By the way, I’d like to point out that this is all information I gleaned from the musings of ancient wordsmiths. I for one, will never admit to having seen such a device in person or god forbid, using one—eh-hem, eh-hem, eh-hem.

Okay, history lesson over. Today we use computers, laser printers, and word-processing programs that offer more fonts and spacing options than we as writers, will ever need. Double-spacing after a period in no longer required because word processors already compensate by automatically adjusting proportions. Throw in some word wrapping and justification, and Bob’s your uncle. I’ve always wanted to use that phrase, hope I did it right. Hey, does anyone out there know what the hell Bob’s your uncle really means, and where it originated?

The long and short of it is this, no double spacing after a period. Period. Don’t believe me? Just pick up a book, look inside, and see for yourself. D’oh!

father, son, physical, disability, cat million, dollar, house, car, bills, moral, dilemma brother, fraternity, college, roommates, teammates, friend women, career, family, power, girlfriend BookCoverImage SJ&M

Indie-Author vs. Vanity Publishing

I’m not a historian and I don’t feel like doing detailed research to back this up, but I think we can all agree that the publishing industry is evolving. It used to be that as a fledgling writer, if you couldn’t get an agent, you couldn’t get a publisher. For decades (maybe even a century), that was how writers got their start. First, they had to be good enough to convince an agent to take them on, and then they had to be good enough for the agent to sell to a publishing house. Of course, if that didn’t happen, it was never the agents fault—poor writer.

If publishers needed a filter, then agents were the first sieve, after that, their internal review committee was the cheesecloth in the colander. If you made it through that straining challenge, you were rewarded with a contract that most likely had no advance, a ten to fifteen percent commission rate, and out of that, you had to give fifteen percent to your agent. And lest you thought you might out smart that agent by renegotiating the fee—guess again. Your check from the publisher didn’t come to you. In fact, it wasn’t even made out to you, it was usually a joint check made out to you and your agent, or just made out to your agent. They took their cut before you saw dollar one.

I think it was sometime in the mid-nineties, computers were commonplace and word processors made everybody an editor (yeah right). Anyway, mom and pop publishing houses were springing up faster than Dell could ship PC’s and printers. Soon, there were thousands of publishing options available to the would-be writer, and as time went on, demand and sophistication increased too. The big publishers had a real problem because while product quality was going up, competition was keeping prices affordable. How affordable? I wonder if anyone has ever surveyed people who say they’ve written a book, and asked them if they still have a garage full of unsold copies. That’s how affordable.

Sure, anybody who wanted to write a book and publish it, could, at their expense, but then what? Yep, the big New York publishers had a problem: it was called change. But they also had a huge safety line—distribution. Maybe it was then that the term vanity publisher was coined and the PR campaign was so expertly employed, that the term took on a negative connotation that still resonates today. It implies that you aren’t good enough for legitimate publishers, so you paid someone to put your words in a book.

In many cases, this was probably true but not all, yet none, at least none that I know of ever broke through. The sad thing is, we as readers are the ones who pay the price; we will never get the chance to read those garage classics, those backyard bestsellers that may have been. Why? Because there were a lack of distribution channels fostered by a negative image that shut the independent author out of the industry.

It was looking pretty bleak until the Literary Gods took pity and sprung forth from the internet, the eBook. Hallelujah. Thank you Amazon. The distribution problem evaporated, but wait, the stigma of being self-published did not.

Well, it took some time but the independent author, the one who never majored in English Literature or went to journalism school, finally has a means to distribute. Sure, there is plenty of vanity publishing going on but that gets weeded out fast, as it should, by the free market. But for those of us who take our craft seriously and put in the time, effort, and money to perfect our work, the independent author has a place to turn, Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP).

Conventional publishers have the same problem they did before, and the PR campaigns are in gear. But the truth is, good writing is good writing, no matter where it’s published, and the truth is out.

I’ve never thought of myself as a Vanity Writer and I’ve never contracted with a Vanity Publisher. Today, my novel is published and I’m the writer/publisher. And you know what—I like it.

father, son, physical, disability, catmillion, dollar, house, car, bills, moral, dilemmabrother, fraternity, college, roommates, teammates, friendwomen, career, family, power, girlfriend