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Does seminars and writing groups help promote new writers?

Aug. 19th, 2008 | 11:07 am

   I've seen hundreds of groups on the internet created specifically for first time writers, but are they more of a support base? And as for the seminars that I've seen...are they really helpful? I'm just curious as to what other first time writers think about those specific programs. Feel free to send your comments!!!

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Are there any minority horror novelists?

Aug. 7th, 2008 | 07:49 am

   Since I was young, I've always been a fan of horror novels and movies. It wasn't until I got older that I realized there were hardly (if any) minority novelists that wrote any horror novels! Of course, there was Koji Suzuki (the Japanese novelist who wrote the book that inspired "The Ring"), and Takashi Shimizu (The writer of Ju-on "The Grudge"), but seeing as I don't speak Japanese, I would probably had never known them if it wasn't for the movies that were re-made here in America. Then there is Robert Rodriguez and James Bond III, but the few horror stories that they wrote were written as screen plays. Minus a few that I may have missed, that's pretty much it. Is there some type of taboo amongst the minority horror writers, or is it that they are not looked at by the major publishers as serious horror writers? What do you think?

Send me your feedback so we can discuss your opinions!!!

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Will the economy affect first time writers?

Aug. 6th, 2008 | 12:50 pm

   With the economy the way that it is, I'm sure it can get very difficult to self publish and edit your books. Not to mention the rise in gas prices, which definitely has me second guessing if I should go out to events to try and sell my books! It may not even be worth the effort unless you live close to the event or function that you would set up. I mean, let's say you have to drive for forty-five minutes to an hour just to attend a function. You end up selling five of your books for ten dollars apiece. If your lucky, you would have only pocketed twenty or twenty-five dollars because of the amount of gas that you had to spend to get there! That's just one example to explain why I personally think that there is a definite ripple effect with the economy concerning authors...especially independent authors!

What do you think about it? Feel free to respond and give me your comment and opinions to this...

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What are your influences?

Aug. 5th, 2008 | 01:18 pm

   Question: What was it that influenced you (writers) to decide to sit down and write a story for the first time? Was it past experiences that you thought would be good reading for the masses? Was it heartbreak and pain that you could only let out in the form of a book? Could it have been the happiness and joy that you wanted to express to the world? I would just like to know what it was (or is) that brings out the spark in us writers! Personally, it was experiences and conversations that I had with people that I had met throughout my life. Some were terrible tales of drugs, sex, and violence...while others were beautiful tales of falling in love, over coming seemingly impossible circumstances, and becoming spiritually enlightened.
   In each of my  three books (I'm still working on the third!), I realized that I had put all of those scenario's into one pot and brewed them into one story, but how did it work for you? I'm asking because your answer may be an inspiration to other would-be writers. Also, it's just good to hear the point of views of other writers concerning their inspirations!

If you have a story about what inspired you to write, please let us know! Send a comment!!!

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Are there any tricks or loop holes for getting published?

Aug. 4th, 2008 | 12:33 pm

   Hello again! This is yet another "quickie" question that I'm putting out there for struggling writers. Are there any successfully published authors out there that can give some advise for faster or better ways to get recognized by a major publishing company? I mean, there has to be some type of 'trick' to the trade that someone out there can bless us with!
If so, send me your comments! Thanks

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Hiring an agent: An easy process?

Jul. 31st, 2008 | 11:57 am

   I've made myself dizzy trying to figure out this whole agent thing! It's not an easy job to do a background check on the agents history. Some will accept you, but put you on the back burner for who knows how long. Others are fairly new and are still learning the process, which means the back burner for you once again. From my research on the subject, finding a good agent is just has difficult as finding a publisher to accept your manuscript!
   There are countless agents out there, so how do you find the right one for you? Is it through trial and error, luck, or by way of who you know?
   My ears are open to anyone out there that can give me some sort of an idea or feedback. If so, please do not hesitate to comment on the matter!

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Jul. 31st, 2008 | 08:31 am

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Editing: the other necessary frustration!

Jul. 30th, 2008 | 05:13 pm

   Do the authors out there remember the feeling of relief and satisfaction that you experienced when you were finished with your first novel? I know I do...and man, was it exhilarating! Unfortunately, the exhilaration was short lived after I found out the hard way that my literary work had only just begun! The first person that I called was my cousin Melvin Claxton, a Pulitzer Prize winning journalists, to let him know that I had accomplished writing my first novel and was ready to send it out to get published. The first thing the came out of his mouth was, "Congratulations! Who did you get to edit it for you?"
   The question threw me in a loop, because as far as I knew, publishers edit the book for you if it's good enough to sell! I told him after a short pause that I edited the book myself. After about forty-five seconds of pure laughter coming from the other end of the line, he straightened up and explained to me briefly (but in-depth) on the importance of having a skilled editor to do the editing if I wanted my book taken seriously (not to mention the improbability of getting picked up without an agent!). By the time he was finished with me, I was completely disheartened! I had no idea of how difficult it would be to get noticed in the literary world!
   After a few days, I snapped out of it and decided to look up some editors to get a round-a-bout pricing for publishing. Keep in mind that I literally live check to check, and in no way was I expecting the quotes that I was running into! The cheapest price that I had come across was $996.00...a price that I had NO means of even coming close to...even to this day! I went right back into that original disheartening slump. Months later, I was talking to a close friend of mine who told me about an old college friend who would, out of a favor to her, do it for three to five hundred dollars. I was sold! Honestly, I considered myself lucky for getting edited at such a low price, but what about the writers out there who can't get a break like that? I'm sure there are struggling writers out there who may have even given up on writing because of the ridiculous expenses that it takes to have a completed work!
   Any ideas or solutions for the writers out there whose funds are low, and are contemplating on giving up? Maybe there's some editors out there with a little heart and understanding for what we go through and are willing to work out some reasonable deals.

If so, let me know so I can contribute and help get the word out. As usual, if you have any comments, don't hesitate to send them!!!

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Are Autobiographies therapeutic?

Jul. 29th, 2008 | 10:45 am

   We've all experienced things in our lives at some point to where you say to yourself, "Man! I should write a book about this!!!" I know I have, but I wouldn't dare follow through with least not right now! All jokes aside, I'm sure that working on that type of project is very therapeutic for most authors. Comedian Dave Chapelle once said on the fist season of his show that it has to be hard NOT to exaggerate things if your writing a book about yourself, and that statement is probably true! I've considered writing about how I'm coping with the death of my mother, but therapeutic or not, I'm just not ready. Maybe I should start with my own personal a diary of sorts, and see how I feel in the process. I wonder if that's what other authors did before they actually sat down and prepared an entire book. Airing out your past (or present) has had some diverse effects on people I'm sure...some good, some bad, but I wonder if the process helped emotionally. The whole process of thinking back, or looking for old belongings to help you remember, kind of like reverse psychometry to bring you back in time as if you are actually there again. Is there any authors out there that can help bring some light to this question?
If so, I would love to hear your comments!

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First time writer's...what's your genre?

Jul. 28th, 2008 | 11:48 am

   This is going to be another short one, ladies and gentlemen...but I'm just curious as to how first time writers decide on a genre to write about. Do you already have in your mind what particular subject matter that you would like to write about, and if so, do you plan on staying pertinent to that one? My first book was crime/drama based, but my second was more on the lines of pure drama. Is it me, or are there other first time writers out there that truly feels they can write a successful book, no matter what the genre is? I don't mean to come off as being arrogant or anything, but that's really how I feel! And for those who stay strictly on a particular genre, is it done by design, or is it that you just start writing and what comes out is yet another book based on that genre?
   I'm very curious as to how my fellow first time writers feel, if you are a first time writer, I would love to hear your feedback!

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