...nothing here is promised, not one day... Lin-Manuel Miranda

How To Be A Author
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I know I was going to follow up last blog entry with a nice blog on nurses (and I shall), this came up over the last few days and I decided that since a) I'm feeling WAY snarkier than I am nice this morning and b) I don't have time to write that other one yet (I'm off for some lovely tests on my hip and spine, big fuckin whoop), I thought i'd post this. Mind you, most of these are based on actual real things, although I don't think any two came from the same experience, if that makes sense. I asked me bandmates for others (that's yet another post, but the band is Sad Anoraks and it's Cornelia Read, Louise Ure, Sharon "Shaz" Wheeler and me) and we are reviewers and writers. We're sorta like the Rock Bottom Remainders without the instruments, venues or fame. So without further ado,

Advice on How to be a Author

DO argue with reviewers who dislike something you did. Point out that everyone ELSE thought it was great.

DO tell a reviewer who's given you less than a 5 star review that clearly s/he doesn't understand you but that, of course, "you are entitled to your opinion", while making it clear, of course, that s/he is so NOT entitled to any such opinion.

DO join every list you can, especially DorothyL and post the very first day about how excited you are to be among all these other authors to share tips.

DO create an email sig that will go out with every email you send, especially to lists. Make sure it is seven lines long and cites praise, no matter how obscure, for your book

DO create a website that claims that you are "an Edgar finalist" because you, or your publisher sent in your book for Edgar consideration. DO NOT pay any attention to the fact that just about every mystery written is submitted for an Edgar.

DO remind people, at least once a week, when it's nomination time for awards, that your work was published within the calendar year that nominations are being accepted for. DO be sure that if it's a short story, you offer to make it available by download or on your website. DO add that info to your sig if necessary.

DO, if you are doing your own publicity, send out copies of your ARC or book to reviewers with no accompanying letter, especially if you don't know them. DO not waste your time explaining why you thought they'd be interested in your work, why you chose them or anything like that. (this one's really minor, I know, but....)

DO assume that reviewers will drop everything, including other reviewing work, to read your work and because you were so nice and sent them a copy that reviewers WILL OF COURSE write a positive review and publish or post it right away.

(and a close corollary) DO assume that when you send readers a copy of your book, say in a drawing, or contest, that they are obligated to thank you publicly and to post a positive review on DorothyL or Amazon, at the very least, or elsewhere.

DO assume that every fan/reader/reviewer who greets you, recognizes your name and/or talks to you - on line, or at a convention - has read your work because they seem to know who you are. And that they liked it. After all, why ELSE would they remember your name?

DO get angry if a reviewer who previously liked your books doesn't like your new one, or reviews one of your books negatively when s/he's liked all your work until then. It doesn't matter how nicely they say it, or if they say "I'm going to keep reading this author because I like his work; this one just didn't work for me". Make sure they never see one of your ARCs again and don't ever talk to them again.

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