Best Bloggers Blogging in 2016!

Susan M. Toy is not only an excellent author, but also a stalwart promoter of other self-published authors. Her recommendations for blogs to follow thus carry a great deal of weight with me, as do her Reading Recommendations. Thanks for the great suggestions, Susan!

These past few years (2015 and 2014), I’ve wrapped up twelve months of blogging by listing my favourite bloggers who I have subscribed to and read, and whose blogs I believe would be of inter…

Source: Best Bloggers Blogging in 2016!

Calling All Readers! My gift to you …

Susan M. Toy, author of the humorous and intriguing mystery novel Island in the Clouds, offers here a collection of six short stories for your enjoyment, gratis. Why? Because, as she quotes Seth Godin in this blog post, “There’s always a gift intent on the part of the artist.” (See source in Susan’s post.)

Susan makes every word count, every action meaningful. She’s one of my favourite authors, so I hope you’ll take the opportunity to read these stories and, if you like them, consider buying and reading Island in the Clouds. (Don’t forget to write a review!)

Finally, because I offered to “gift” a Kindle edition of her novel to my first Facebook friend to express a desire to read it after sampling her short stories, Susan has also offered to give a free copy of Island in the Clouds to one lucky reader of her stories in any of the following editions: mobi, ePub or PDF. (Thanks, Susan!)

Books: Publishing, Reading, Writing

I’ve been reading another brilliant book written by the very insightful, Seth Godin. I can’t get enough of this guy and his ideas on how we can work and create and live a life that’s meaningful. This one is titled, Linchpin: Are You Indispensible? and it was published in 2010. I wish I had read it a couple of years ago, but that’s water under the bridge.

I’ll quote from it now, however, to give you an idea as to why I’m writing this blog post at this moment.

“Art is a personal act of courage, something one human does that creates change in another.” p. 70

“The last element that makes it art is that it’s a gift. You cannot create a piece of art merely for money. Doing it as part of commerce so denudes art of wonder that it ceases to be art. There’s always a…

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A Tail (ahem!) Tale of 5 Self-Published Books …

Author Susan M. Toy has won awards for her writing, being a sales representative, and being a publishers’ representative. Her novel Island in the Clouds is definitely a “Connie’s Pick” about which I will be writing, hopefully, in the near future. Suffice it to say, for the time being, that I found it to be an excellent read, in part because it’s so well-written. I found not a single error in the novel. (As a grammar Nazi, that’s a first for me!)

In this blog post, Susan shares her own experience reading five self-published books. What she has to say should be read by every author considering self-publishing. Indeed, you’ll find many great posts on her blog about self-publishing, marketing, good reads, etc. Just yesterday she was announced as a nominee for the “Services to Bloggers Award” in the 2nd Annual Bloggers Bash Awards.(Voting is now open until June 9, 2016!)

I hope you’ll find this piece as useful and informative as I did.

Recently I read 5 self-published eBooks—all good books in their own way—but 4 of these suffered from “problems” that in my estimation could have been easily rectified. As it was, these problems wer…

Source: A Tail (ahem!) Tale of 5 Self-Published Books …

Tips for Creating Your First Freelancer (Writing) Site

An excellent resource for bloggers.

Nicholas C. Rossis

First site guide | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksContinuing my paying-it-forward series of posts, I present to you today another one of my new friends, Duke Vukadinovic.

You may or may not be aware that in my day job, I’m a web developer whose company, Istomedia, has developed over 450 websites and blogs since 1995. This, however, is an expense that many authors would rather not make. And yet, they still need to have an online presence. So, what are they to do?

Duke has come up with a great resource, the First Site Guide. Freelancers – and writers in general – will find there all they need to build their first website on their own, along with helpful tips, how-tos, and loads of free advice.

Take it, Duke!

Tips for Creating Your First Freelancer (Writing) Site

First site guide | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

If you’re a freelancer, you need your own website. It doesn’t have to be great or fancy…

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Less Luggage, More Comfort…

Some excellent words of wisdom about travelling lightly on this journey we call life.

Quote from the article that touched me deeply: “Soul consciousness brings in the realization that no matter what happens by way of temporal loss or gain, success or failure, acclaim or defamation, one can still remain stable and peaceful because ‘I the soul’ cannot lose anything.”

Thank you, Rajagopal, for this thought-provoking post, Less Luggage, More Comfort… on your wonderful WordPress site, GRALEVIEW.

graleview

‘Less luggage, more comfort; make travel a pleasure’, ran the slogan of Indian Railways till the early 1970s, persuading the passenger to travel as lightly as possible. The catchphrase held strong relevance in the context of steam engine-powered trains resembling black monsters belching out thick clouds of smoke, and crude train journeys of that long ago period, when rail was the most viable mode of travel for longer distances, ranging from several hundred to a couple of thousand kilometers involving transits varying from overnight to a few days, when individuals and families journeyed around carrying many large and unwieldy pieces of luggage. It was as if everyone was lugging around micro versions of entire housings, greatly encumbered and severely fatigued by travel weariness at the time of reaching destinations. At destination stations, it was again a melee of hired porters dragging down huge pieces of baggage from rail compartments and…

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Where Can You Find FREE Photos and Illustrations?

There are some great links here to free sources for images and illustrations. I often use absfreepics.com for personalising birthday messages on Facebook, creating memes, etc.

Savvy Writers & e-Books online

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Photographer

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Even though I am an avid photographer, taking often several hundred images a month, from time to time the need for a certain motive arises.  The question was, where can I find inexpensive photographs?  A lot of research brought up a handful of online offers that I like to share with you. Maybe you need a certain image for your website, your blog or your book.  Please see some websites below that provide good deals on royalty-free photographs or even free ones.

But what is the difference between free, royalty-free and rights-managed?

Free images can be downloaded without any rules or agreement and are in the public domain. The creator offers his work public and free, there are no legal rights or restrictions for his or her work and it can be duplicated.  Images which have been copyrighted can still be considered as free when they are explicitly announced by…

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Make a Difference in the Writing Community

This is an excellent post by Tricia Drammeh with advice about how to conduct yourself online as an author.

For those of you who don’t know Tricia, she’s an author, blogger, and unsurpassed bibliophile. In my interactions with her, she’s followed all of her own tips about interacting with others online. Her Webpage is a great resource for authors, so check it out!

Thank you, Tricia, for sharing your wealth of information with the rest of us.

Tricia Drammeh

Most authors at one time or another have dreamed of taking the writing world by storm with a breakout bestselling novel. I’m sure most of us still harbor hope this will happen. Regardless of sales or monetary success, we can still make a difference in the writing community. Whether you’re published or still writing your first novel, you can make a huge impact. Here’s how:

  1. Make connections. I recently read an excellent blog post by Susan Toy that discusses online connections and engagement. When it comes to Twitter and blog followers, some people mistake quantity for quality. Would you rather have 100 followers who regularly visit and comment on your blog, or 1000 followers you never hear from again? A huge number of Twitter followers or Facebook Page likes might look good on paper, but what does it really mean if you aren’t making connections with people? Visit blogs and leave…

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