A few years ago I was at a party. This was back in the days when I fire-danced (spun a staff with lighted kevlar ends) for fun and was involved in a small community with similar interests. At the party I girl I knew started talking to me about fire-dancing. She was a little tipsy, and said something like “Yeah ... Read More »
How not to be a hopelessly tragic romantically poor artist (why you should buy art, the value of art and how to sell your art)
Today I got an email message from the site Nurturing Creativity. It’s a beautiful site with a good message, and I support Denise’s main aim of nurturing creative entrepreneurs. But something about this message struck me wrong. Rather than an inspiration to artists, it’s a confirmation of some very bad messages about what art is. It’s rooted in the fundamental ... Read More »
Where to find royalty-free stock images for your book cover (and how to avoid choosing the same one as everybody else).
If you’re indie publishing, you probably can’t afford a photo shoot. Fortunately (or unfortunately), these days major publishing houses can’t either, which means everybody is using stock photography. Stock photos are royalty-free images you pay to download, that you can use for book cover designs or other projects. There are lots of websites, and I’ll walk you through my favorites, ... Read More »
Edit – this is a very old article. A newer one comparing editing prices is “how much does editing cost and are you being ripped off?” Also, I had previously said a bunch of stupid things in this post, which were helpfully pointed out to me – I’ve revised the article and I hope it’s less offensive. An author asked ... Read More »
How much information do you need to collect from visitors/shoppers on your mailing list form – and is it worth losing sales?
So I’ve just bought an information product to (hopefully) help me improve my ebook formatting skills. I’m a pretty liberal online buyer. I’ll buy something pretty quickly if it looks decent, has good reviews, and costs under $100. If it’ll save me 5 hours of work, it’s worth it. But on this particular website, after I clicked the “Buy Now” ... Read More »
New Book Cover Size and Ratio Requirements for Kindle, Barnes and Noble and Smashwords + some free cover templates!
As a book cover designer, many times my clients question me on my choices for the size and height-width ratio of my book covers. And for good reason: there is no industry standard for ebook covers – Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Apple and Smashwords all recommend different things. Many indie authors recommend making a perfect, separate file for each ebook ... Read More »
“Follow your bliss.” That’s the mantra that led me through the first two thirds of my life. It seems unimpeachable. Life is to short too waste time doing something you don’t enjoy, so you need to tune into your passion. Find out what makes you happy, what excites you, and don’t do anything else. Forge your own path! Never give ... Read More »
Zopim. There, I said it. Rather than making you wait till the very end of the post to reveal the powerful secret promised in the headline, I’ve given it to you in the beginning. What is it, you ask? Zopim is a chat-software you can install on your blog or website, and then link up with your regular chat like ... Read More »
I’m pretty good at setting big goals, but tonight I decided I better make a nice “Vision Board.” Basically, it’s a collage of the things you want out of life. The idea is you look at it everyday and “align” yourself with your goals, until they start coming true. Wanting to become a successful author or artist involves a whole ... Read More »
Recently I’ve been subscribing to a lot of email mailing lists. I look at the professional bloggers who seem to have their shit together, and I subscribe. I want to know what they’re doing, how they talk to their readers, and how they represent their brand. I pay attention, because I want to do it better. (P.s. – I still ... Read More »