How were your Holidays? Mine were not at all like previous years. Two in my family had Covid-19, thereby necessitating we zoom them while opening gifts and eating our Christmas dinner without parts of our family. Many items ordered did not arrive in time for giving—and selection in most stores was poor. Even Amazon delivered in two or three days, instead of their usual overnight.
The best thing about the Holidays, this year, is that 2020 would soon be gone, and with the vaccines, we hope to see the end of Covid-19, job losses, businesses closing, staying home, virtual learning, and more, allowing us to look forward to a NEW DAWN AND 2021.
What is your next step? Is it Editing, finding an Agent, or a Publishing House?
Do use a professional Editing person or company. Writer’s Digest offers a second Draft Service, you may consider. After reading your first ten pages, they will suggest how to improve your manuscript, to make it saleable, at an affordable price.
Next:… HOW TO SEARCH FOR, AND FIND THE RIGHT AGENT.
We all need some time to spend in the sun—to renew our bodies, improve our mental health and find the lost spring in our footsteps. These past months have taken its’ toll on all of us. Some of us are still not working. Some of us are returning to a changed normal, and there are those who lost faith and need to be inspired again.
There are still unwritten pages of your life to be lived and memories to make and share with those you love. So,get up and go rescue yourself from these last months and even though you have travelled through life’s uncertain road this year, try to think of the good times, the friends you can help, who are grieving, or lost their jobs, and lend a helping hand to those who need a lift-up.
Be grateful to the angels who came to our rescue and worked tirelessly throughout this Pandemic—saving so many lives because they cared.
We are a country of believers, who will go on with our wonderful memories with spirits lifted and a renewed determination to live life to its fullest.
After proofreading, and finalizing all editing changes, your novel is now ready for publication. Give it one final review and the next step is COPYRIGHT. Why?…For protection of your literary work.
It’s a little Intimidating, but not as difficult as you may think. Most of you have noticed the copyright statement on all books you read. Your book or essays, or blogs, should be protected from plagiarism also.
BE ADVISED:The U.S. Copyright Office buildings are closed to the public until further notice. Assistance by phone and email, as well as online services, are still available.
Do not be discouraged. You can still file application for Copyright, by mail or online. BELOW IS HOW:
1.Go to www.copyright.gov/registration –..2. create a username and password. 3. Search for Form CO. 4. fill out ,pay, and submit either online, or by mailing the completed application to:
U.S. COPYRIGHT OFFICE,
101 INDEPENDENCE AVE.S.E.
WASHINGTON, D.C 20559-6000
The fee online is $35. And for paper mailing $45.00. Be prepared to wait a little longer than usual due to pandemic.
Haven’t found a publishing house. You can still copyright. Hint: Be certain your publisher allows you to keep all rights to your work.
Print: Copyright information on the first white page of your book. Sample listing: (copyright-date, (your name ) and pseudonym,) if you use one. All questions, are answered via e-mail.
Why use a Tagline for your latest Novel? Because it gives your reader more information about you and about your book. It is different from the short synopsis you place on the back cover. The tagline is a great way to hook the interest of readers who have little time, and the online surfers, who usually allow ten seconds to read it, become interested and buy it. Authors use Taglines for their books—Advertisers use Taglines for marketing products, and Movies have had Taglines since the early 1900’s.
These marketing slogans have proven their worth by lasting
years and years, without change. Here are
a few advertising Taglines still in use:
“KFC’s “Finger Lickin’ Good”, Wheaties, “Breakfast of Champions, and the
one for the Army: “Be all you can be”.
The first movie released with a tagline was
a Poster designed by Jules Cheret, a Frenchman, promoting a short film in
1890. In 1895, they depicted an actual Train
Scene from the film “Arrival of a train”.
In 1910, the studios produced their own, with special border art,
titles, Studio logos, and “slogans” or Taglines. Did you know the Number One Tagline from all
Movies is 1979’s “ALIEN”—“In space, no one can hear you scream.”
To continue,—you need a Tagline for your novel. Let us assume your novel
is a love story. Here are a few thoughts that will make a tagline effective.
is the conflict or basis of the story (love or career)—what is the meaning of
your story (can she do both?)—Emphasize an important quality of your character
(Determined, stubborn)—Highlight something distinctive about the novel (does
love win?)—Inspire the reader’s curiosity, by not telling all, but just enough
to interest them—the genre of the novel? (Romance, Young Adult).
Start each word with the same letter: Example, Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered.
Rhyming: Love came to her in a dream…but was it all a scheme? The tagline tells you it is a love story, with a mysterious character, and it may not turn out well.
Try a short, dynamic tagline like: “Love hurts.” Sometimes the shorter the tagline, the more interest
in your book, and the urge to buy it.
quote something in the novel, maybe what your character says, use it as a Tagline.
Your fans will recognize it and the result will be an increased enthusiasm for
Because of the
importance of your Tagline, you may want to enlist the help of someone.
whatever you do, keep trying new combinations until the right one is found.
No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader― Robert Frost
DOES THE FIRST LINE OF YOUR STORY POP?
Do you want the opening line of your novel to stimulate the reader to continue? If the first sentence of your novel is boring, then the reader will put the book down, never to return.
So, put away the proverb. Erase it from your mind, because First Impressions do count, when writing.
There are many great works of literature that offer a peek into the story with their opening sentence. One you will surely know is a classic novel, written in 1859, that is still being read and discussed by university lecturers: A TALE OF TWO CITIES by Charles Dickens.
“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”
To this day, it is quoted over and over; remembered by all because it told you just enough to peak your curiosity. Your first sentence should suggest something about your story, be it character driven or driven by the plot?
If it is character driven, a wonderful example is LORD JIM, By Joseph Conrad, which was published as a serial between 1899 and 1900.
“He was an inch, perhaps two, under six feet, powerfully built, and he advanced straight at you with a slight stoop of the shoulders, head forward, and a fixed from-under stare which made you think of a charging bull.”
The first sentence could be an introduction to the plot of the book like 1984, written by George Orwell, and published in 1949:
“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.”
Many novelists begin their story without putting down the first sentence. Knowing how important that first sentence is causes many to think and re-think before taking action. Sometimes, getting into the story, leaning more about your characters or where the plot is taking you, may alleviate any discomfort and allow you to return to the beginning, to put that first sentence down.