Friday, December 29, 2017

Making Money From Amazon Affiliate Links


Make money with Amazon Affiliate Program

My most recent commission came from an LCD Writing Tablet Digital Ewriter, earning me $1.07.

It's really quite simple, a visitor clicked on one of the Amazon links from a blog post, which lead them straight to the Amazon sales page for a product I had linked to.  Amazon paid me the commission for anything that visitor purchased within 24 hours.

If you haven't already taken advantage of Amazon's Associate Program to earn commissions from your links you need to get started.

How Does Amazon Associates Work?

After you've signed up to Amazon Associates you're paid 4 to 10 per cent commission from any sales that are referred to by you using your own affiliate links.  Each URL includes a unique tracking code.  The percentage is worked out by the type of product that is purchased and the number of sales you make.

Any product you link to on Amazon you can earn a commission from, including your own book sales.

Sell more than six items through your referral links in one month and your commission increases to 6 percent.  If people buy your books within 24 hours of filling their trolley you get the commission.

There are set rates for certain items:
  • Instant video products: 6percent
  • Grocery products: 4 percent
  • Headphone products: 6 percent
  • Jewelery products 10 percent
  • Game downloads: 10 percent
How much money can I make on Amazon?

This answer varies from blogger to blogger.  Some people make thousands per month, others under a $100.  It all depends on how you use your links.  A lot of writer's use them alongside their book sales from Amazon, and make a nice monthly sum.

Keeping it legal

When you start your blog you become an advertiser so you need to take careful not of the Federal Trade Commission rules.  These include:
  • Place the disclosure as close as possible to the triggering claim.
  • Preferably, design advertisements so that “scrolling” is not necessary in order to find a disclosure.
  • Necessary disclosures should not be relegated to “terms of use” and similar contractual agreements.
A simple disclosure might look something like this:

Disclosure: This website may be compensated for linking to other sites or for sales of products we link to.

Many bloggers choose to disclose at the end of their blog posts, if affiliate links have been used.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

10 Valuable Things Every Writer Needs to Know


The following information is a list of beneficial and valuable advice for anyone wanting to start writing.


1. Take heed the sentimental haze

Don't get caught up in the fluffy words, vowels and sibilants.  But won't withstand the rigours of everyday.

2. Wipe out self-doubt

Nobody likes hearing about self-doubt, people want to feel, hear and taste your words.

3. Always give your readers the truth

Listen to your innter voice and what it tells you, let it flow naturally.

4.  Never take advice

Advice can be really hard to take sometimes.  You'll get all kinds of helpful criticism pointed out to you showing you all of your flaws.  By biting the bullet and accepting their advice you will grow stronger as a writer.

5. Don't be too concerned about your mistakes

You learn from your mistakes, and we all make them.

6.  Recognize your audience

This is often about knowing yourself and your audience.

7. Family and friends not your real audience

You're better off joining a local writer's club than listening to your own family.

8.  Read as much as you can

It doesn't matter what you get your hands on, read it!  By reading things no one else does, you'll discover things no one else has discovered.

9.  Communicate and observe as much as possible

The more you use words in your communication with others the greater your understanding will be.

10.  The big question, why do I want to write?

Yes, why am I writing?  People usually write because they're passionate about something.

Happy writing!

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Monday, December 25, 2017

The Ten Best Self-Publishing Guides


Discover the four best self-publishing guides to take your writing to the next stratosphere:

Successful Self-Publishing: How to self-publish and market your book in ebook and print (Books for Writers) By JoannaPenn

Written by best selling author Joanna Penn, she gives you her best tips in this quick read.  Covering topics such as what you need to know before you self-publish; formatting an eBook; publishing in print, how to market your book and much much more.

The Author Startup: A Radical Approach to Rapidly Writing and Self-Publishing Your Book on Amazon By Ray Brehm

Ray Brehm guides you through the process of creating a viable product for your book and creating a momentum complete with an action plan to get you started.

Write. Publish. Repeat.: The No-Luck-Required Guide to Self-Publishing Success By Sean Platt and Johnny B. Truant

Not your usual dose of friendly advice from best selling authors Johnny B. Truant and Sean Platt, unearth fascinating insights and strategies to self-publishing.

The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published: How to Write It, Sell It, and Market It...Successfully By Arielle Eckstut

Featuring real-life self-publishing stories, as well as sample proposals and query letters find out how you can build your reader following, get your own agent, understand a book contract, cultivate marketing and publicity savvy.

Let's Get Digital: How to Self-Publish and Why You Should By David Gaughran

One of the most comprehensive and up-to-date self-publishing guides on the market today.  Bestselling author David Gaughran's book is jam packed with practical, actionable advice.  Let's Get Digital conveys the very latest and best practises on publishing your work and finding readers.

Write. Publish. Repeat: The No-Luck-Required Guide to Self-Publishing Success By Sean Platt

Written for both experienced and published writers alike Write. Publish. Repeat. Covers the myths and truths about what is means to be an indie author now and in the foreseeable future.  Explaining how to write books your readers will love and will want to return again and again.

14 Steps to Self-Publishing a Book By Mike Kowis, Esq.

Award winning author Mike Kowis took careful notes on each step of writing his first book and turned his book into an edgy guide for all writers alike.

The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing: Everything You Need to Know to Write, Publish, Promote and Sell Your Own Book By Marilyn Ross and Sue Collier

Publishing expert and bestselling authors Marilyn Ross and Sue Collier show you how to make your own success.  From newcomer to published author this expanded and completely revised 5th edition of the "bible" of self-publishing will empower you to publish your own work with minimal work and maximum profits.

Self-Publisher's Legal Handbook: Updated Guide to Protecting Your Rights and Wallet By Helen Sedgwick

Written for authors to stay out of court and at their desks.  The Self-Publisher's Legal Handbook helps writers navigate the legal aspects of writing and independent publishing.

How I Sold 80,000 Books: Book Marketing for Authors By Alinka Rutkowska

Alinka Rutkowska shows you how to sell a truckload of books and more in this comprehensive guide.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Make Your Mark on Social Media Today


Everything You Need to Know About Social Media to Get Started

Social media isn't as complicated as you might think. It's an easy way to reach out to your followers, family and friends.  If you're a beginner it can seem like a really difficult thing to get used to, especially if you're not a regular internet user.

Knowing where to start and which social media platform to use, is the first hurdle.  A lot of this can be trial and error, because you won't feel comfortable with every platform you use.

LinkCollider - Website Ranking Tool Using Social Media
If you're using social media alongside your blog, you may discover some platforms are more suited to your genre.

I'm going to get back to basics and give you four handy pointers to help you start your journey on social media and show you how you can rapidly dominate your platforms:

Four Points to Consider When You Start in Social Media

What do you want from social media?

So what is it you really want to gain from social media?

I would dip my toe in a few different platforms to begin with and see what results you come back with.

Start your profile

After you've chosen your social media platform, you need to create your profiles.

If you have a blog, make sure your logos are carried through all of your platfroms.  This shows clear uniformity and shows that your serious about what you do.

How you present yourself is important, this will be how your followers will see you online.  It will also determine if people want to look into your work further.

What information do you want to give to your followers:

Avatar

Choose a profile picture of yourself or your business.  Don't use a default avatar, these aren't taken very seriously.

Profile Name

The name that your community will know you by.  My Twitter profile is @1976write in relation to my blog.

Profile Details

I like to look at what other people in the same field as me have written.  There's no harm in getting ideas that way.

Website Links

Perfect place to include your website links.  If you use Google+ you can include your Amazon author page and any other useful links you may have.

Be active in your community

Start looking at other people's profiles and discover what they have to offer.

Remember social media is a powerful things these days.

Like most things in life, it takes time to build your community, but the time is outweighed by the benefits of what you gain from the journey.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.



Monday, December 18, 2017

Spelling: Common Words that Sound Identical


In the English language there are many words that mean different things but look the same, this can make writing in English very difficult.  The list below will help you distiguish between the more commonly used words that sound alike.

Except and Accept

Except = preposition meaning all but, other than:
Everyone went to the fame except Kirsty.

Accept = verb meaning to receive or to agree:
He accepted their praise graciously.



Effect and Affect

Effect = noun meaning result or consequence:
Will lack of sleep have an effect on your game?

Affect = verb meaning to influence:
Will lack of sleep affect your game?

Effect = verb meaning to bring about, to accomplish:
Our efforts have effected a major change in college policy.

How to remember difference:

RAVEN

Remember Affect is a Verb and Effect is a Noun.

Advice and Advise

Advice = a noun that means an opinion or recommendation about what could or should be done:
I'd like to ask your advice on this matter

Advise = verb that means recommend, suggest or counsel:
I advise you to be cautious.

Conscience and Conscious

Conscience = noun meaning the sense of obligation to be good:
Peter wouldn't cheat because his conscience wouldn't let him.

Conscious = adjective meaning awake, perceiving:
Despite a blow to the head, the patient remained conscious.

Ideal and Idea

Ideal = noun meaning something or someone that embodies perfection, or an ultimate object or endeavour:
Carrie was the ideal for tutors everywhere.

Idea = noun meaning thought, belief or conception held in the mind or a general notion or conception formed by generalisation:
Harriet had a brilliant idea - She'd go to Writing Lab for help with her papers.

Ideal = adective meaning embodying an ultimate standard of excellence or perfection or the best:
Harry was an ideal student.

Its and It's

Its = possesive adjective (possesive form of the pronoun it):
The crab had an unusual growth on its shell.

It's = contraction for it has or it is (in a verb phrase).:
It's been raining.

When two words are shortened to one pronouns have apostrophes.

Led and Lead

Led = past-tense and past-participle form of the verb to lead meaning guide or direct:
The evidence led the jury to a unaminous decision.

Lead = noun referring to a dense metallic element:
The X-ray technician wore a vest lined with lead.

Their, They're and There

Their = possessive proo=noun:
They got their helmets.

They're = contraction for they are:
They're making lunch.

There = that place:
Over there.

Two, To and Too

Two = Number 2:
There are two of us.

To = preposition, or first part of the infinitive form of the verb.
They went to the lake to swim.

Too = very, also:
I was too tired to continue.  I was hungry too.

Were, Where and We're

Were = past tense form of the verb be:
They were running side by side.

Where = location:
Where are you going?

We're = contraction for we are:
We're glad to help.

You're and Your

You're = contraction for you are:
You're walking around with you're shoes untied.

Your = possessive pronoun:
Your shoe laces are loose.

The I Before E Rule

I before E except after C.
This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.




Friday, December 15, 2017

LinkCollider: How It's Different From Other SEO Tools and Why You Should Use It


If you're new to blogging or may be just want to boost your website traffic.  You might have heard of LinkCollider, its a website ranking tool that will help intensify your website traffic.

Social media is an invaluable tool in the current digital space, because internet marketing has become the primary strategy for many companies and bloggers.  Any company or blog you find online has recognised the significance of having a powerful online presence and that media is everything.

The only website ranking tools to increase traffic to websites, LinkCollider will ensure you have a high ranking on Google.  This ensures your blog or company website will communicate with real people.

LinkCollider - Website Ranking Tool Using Social Media

What Are Website Ranking Tools and What Do They Do?
Thje purpose of website ranking tools such as Google Rank Checker and SEMrush is to rank keywords of websites and measure their position online.  Articles and blog posts should be equipped towards keyword density and increasing traffic to the blog or website.

Why LinkCollider is Different From Other Website Ranking Tools

As already noted above, LinkCollider is the only website ranking tool that uses social media stats in its ranking process.

These are some of the ways LinkCollider will help improve your SEO rankings:
  1. Getting more Facebook likes.
  2. Gaining more Twitter likes and followers.
  3. Getting more Pinterest Pins.
  4. Boosting SEO and website traffic.
  5. Gaining more WordPress, Blogger and Tumblr likes.

Social Media and Search Results

LinkCollider's strategy is both effective and attractive because search engines are now including statistiscs from social media making the process more productive and increasing SEO rankings.  You'll definitely have more leverage over your competitors if you use LinkCollider.

SEO Tools That LinkCollider Uses

  • Keyword Tools
  • Search Engine Submission
  • Article Rewriter and Spinner
  • Link Building and Shortener
  • Sitemap Generator
  • Directory and Bookmark Submission
This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.


Monday, December 11, 2017

How to Make Money with Amazons OneLink on Blogger


If you're looking to maximize your earnings with Amazon I recommend you try Amazon's new onelink and link your Amazon account to links that are country specific.

There have been various shortening services provided by WordPress over the years, but nothing that would really suit a Blogger website owner.  Amazon finally provided its own FREE solution in July 2017 to solve the problem.  Amazon OneLink.

Amazon OneLink, What is it?

In your Amazon Associate dashboard you can link to your different Amazon Associate accounts all over the world, from the UK to Japan, this provides geo-localised redirection from your affiliate website to relevant Amazon product.  Helping all Amazon affiliates to earn more income by converting their website visitors from multiple countries at one time.

With OneLink you can configure all of your new as well as existing Amazon affiliate links.

Setting Up Your Amazon OneLink

Log into your US Amazon associates account

Amazonassociates.com



Link Your Accounts



This will link together all of your Amazon associates accounts, if you only have a US or UK account you can sign up for more.

Adding OneLink to Blogger 

Go to Layout.

Add widget

In HTML add your code from Amazon Associates in your widgets.



Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Publishing a Book: A Quick Examination of Self-Publishing and Publishing


Publishing a book is a must for any aspiring author, having an idea for a fiction or non-fiction book but aren't sure how to put that idea into print can be really difficult if you don't know where to start.

The possibilities and opportunities for writer's to share their thoughts in an Ebook or in paperback form are vast.  Whether you're looking for an agent or editor or just want to self-publish your book, it's all at your fingertips.  You need to decide what works best for you.

What is Traditional Publishing?

Authors are offered a contract by a traditional publishing house, they then take your book and sell it through various booksellers and retailers.  Essentially they buy the rights to publish your book and in turn pay you the royalties from the sales of your book.

Normally most writer's need to find an agent, to find an agent you must pinpoint the right category for your writing.  If you're a non-fiction writer you first need to submit a book proposal along with three sample chapters and a synopsis of each chapter.  A fiction writer must send in a completed manuscript.

After those things have been accomplished you're now required to write a query letter.  You send this letter to potential agents, you must mention in your letter the synopsis of your book, the chapter summary, the market your book is aimed at and a description about yourself.

What is Self-Publishing?

There are various ways to self-publish your book these include: print-on-demand, vanity, subsidy, and self-publishing.

(POD) Print-on-demand - Anyone willing to pay is published.  POD uses up-to-date printing technology to produce books at a cost effective price.  Books are published as individual orders come in.  This means the printer can adjust the book's supply to meet the reader's demand.  You make money from the royalties sold.

Extra costs such as editing, proofreading and marketing are payed for at an additional cost to the writer.  This way of publishing cuts back on space and any unsold copies.

Vanity publisher - Again this kind of publishing is available for anyone willing to pay for their book to be published.  Your books is bound and printed and you receive all the royalties from books sold.

Subsidy publisher - Not unlike the vanity the subsidy publisher contributes towards the editing, distribution, marketing and warehousing.  The publisher owns the book until they are sold and the author starts making royalties.

Self-publishing - The author must produce, market, store, and distribute.

So What's the Difference?

There is no expense to the author with traditional publishing that is all handed by the chosen company.

With self-publishing depending upon the publishing platform you choose you pay for all of the expenses.  The biggest advantage with self-publishing is that you're in the driving seat and you have full control over your book.

What to do next

If your dream is to have your book published, choose vanity publishing.

If you have a book of poetry, memoir or family history you want printing then POD is probably the best fit for your book.

If time isn't a problem then self-publishing is a good route to take, as this can often take up to 18 months to get your books into final production.

In the end its your decision!

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Writing Courses to Help You Become a Better Writer

If you're looking for a change in career and want to make an income online, the following training courses are a great way to develop your writing skills before you take the plunge and start devoting your time and money.

If you want to start making real money you must do something with the knowlege you gain.  Most people become hooked on the inviting "how to" videos that are out there, but rarely take real action from the skills they've learned.  Avoid that mistake and you'll start going places.

Start looking for seminar, online courses, articles and blogs to improve your skills.  If you're feeling a bit unsure, make a plan and take it one step at a time.  If you feel like its working for you, start scaling it up and add additional techniques.


Let's get started, here are some courses to help you become a better writer:

Best 10 Writing Courses For Writers

1. Creative Writing Course - Master Tips for Writing

Enhance your ability to write fiction with this course by Amazon Best Selling Author Jo Wynn.  This course enables you to convey your feelings, thoughts and emotions using the written word as a means of expression.  Learn how professional writers of fiction plan and prepare their writing.

2. Write a Book: Basic Creative Writing Skills for Beginners

Learn how to tell your story and organise your thoughts into a short story, novella or novel.

3. Writing With Impact: Writing That Persuades

Change the way you write forever with clear, concise and addictively engaging prose.  Win people over with the written word with this no-nonsense course brought to you by top copywriter Clare Lynch.

4. Ninja Writing: The Four Levels Of Writing Mastery

Rise to the summit of flawless writing by form editor of The Wall Street Journal Shani Raja.  Ninja Writing will teach you how to embed quality at every layer of your writing - be it blog, article, college essay, cover letter, corporate report or content marketing.

5. Productivity Hacks for Writers (Writing Mastery)

Learn how to maximise productivity, boost creativity and get more done in less time with Productivity Hacks for Writers.

6. Writing That Moves: Write Novels That Keep Pages Turning

If you're new to publishing or having a hard time breaking out this course will help you to write page-turning novels by learning to write compelling plots.  This course will teach you how to write irresistible short hooks for your query letters, as well plot a satisfying story that takes a character from point A to point B while eagerly engaging the reader.

7. The Complete Freelance Writing Course

Learn how to set yourself up as a professional freelance writer with the help of Philippa Davies, a writer with 30 years experience and with a background in psychology.

8. Creative Writing For Beginners

This course is designed to help you write clear prose that flows, giving the reader an enjoyable experience for those avid page turners

9. Writing Tools & Hacks: Copywriting/Blogging/Content Writing

Huffington Post Contributor Tyler Speegle shows you how to save time and boost your writing productivity, write better and more efficiently and generate viral-ready content ideas.

10. Creative Writing - Get Writing, Keep Writing

Writing can be both fun and potentially profitable.  It needn't be intimidating or scary, this course will get you started.  This course will help you become more aware of your writing style and improve your writing skills.

11. Starving to Successful: How to Become a Full-Time Writer

Jeff Goins author of, Real Artists Don't Starve: Timeless Strategies for Thriving in the New Creative Age demystifies the myth that if you're a creative person, including being a writer, that you need to be broke.  In this class he teaches you to how to stop self sabotaging and gets you to break that mental block so you can see yourself as a profitable writer.

12. The Heart and Craft of Writing

Award-winning author, editor and teacher Michelle Tea offers you this class to help you believe in your abilities as a writer, stick to your goal and push through that first draft.  Outlining some of the key tricks to writing a great book and inspire you to produce the vibrant, sparkling and unique work that's inside your head and waiting to come out.

13. Writing a Perfect News Article

Writer, editor and blogger Nadia Eldermerdash goes over the basics of news writing and journalistic conventions.  As well as discussing how these techniques can help you with all kinds of writing work.

14. Writing for Brands: Freelancing in the Age of Content Marketing

Brian Maehl the Talent Development Manager at Contently shows you how to successfully pitch and write for brands as a successful freelance writer.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.


Monday, November 27, 2017

Some Grammar Rules Are Made to Be Broken


Grammar rules don't seem to exist in the age of technology especially when it comes to tweets and conversational writing styles.  Most blogger's focus their writing on grabbing their reader's attention, using more relaxed voice.

Check out these 6 grammar rules when you're writing for the internet.

1. Ending a sentence with a preposition no longer required

This rule dates back to the 18th century when grammarians believed English should bend to the rules of Latin grammar.

2. Starting a sentence with a conjunction is unacceptable

Ignoring this rule can lead to a much better sounding sentence.  And your writing sounding much more down to earth and relateable.

3. Don't use verbing (turning nouns into verbs)

This is an easy rule to break especially if you want to get a message across quickly via email or text.  People love to use it when they're going for a coffee with a friend, phrases such as "when do you want to coffee?".

4. Don't split your infinitives

There are people that think split infinitives such as "you have to really watch him" are incorrect.  But they do come in really handy if you're trying to get a message across.

5. Do I need to use "whom"?

"Whom" does sound pretty stuck-up and pretentious these days.  You don't hear anybody say "whom ya gonna call?" when they talk about the Ghostbusters.  I've only ever heard it used in conjunction with Ernest Hemingway's book "For whom the bell tolls".

These days we like to write in way our readers understand, for others it their own particular writing style and voice.

Read more about grammar and punctuation in my ebook "Grammar and Punctuation: An Indispensable Guide for Writer's".

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Read more about writing: The Benefits of Writing on HubpagesDiscover the Websites that Pay Writer's $50+How to Write About What Your Love and Get PaidA Simple Guide to Writing an Article in 30 mins or Less

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Become an Effective Proofreader with these 5 Courses


If you want to produce good quality writing proofreading is an essential part of that process.  Being able to focus in on surface errors such as misspellings and mistakes in grammar and punctuation are key to the final editing of your work.

Discover 5 of the best proofreading courses online below:

Proofreading Power: Become an Effective Proofreader

Proofreading Power is an exclusive online class that will not only address the basics of proofreading but also provide practical application of the skills with hands-on exercises and quizzes to show you how to produce error-free writing.

How to Find & Correct Writing Errors: The Proofreading Guide

Duncan Koerber a university professor with more than 10 years experience in newspaper and magazine writing and editing shows you how to effectively polish your documents with effective proofreading techniques that will impress readers with pristine prose and design.

Easy Comma Rules

This short and easy course focuses on one area of punctuation and not several areas, which will enable you to concentrate, understand, and remember the rules better.  For those people who want their written communication to be structured and reader-friendly.


Proofreading Your Own Work

Experienced writer, editor and proofreader Heather Saunders will provide hands-on advice on how to go about the proofing process and show you the common errors to look out for.

How to Find and Correct Writing Errors: The Proofreading Guide

Dr Duncan Koerber a full-time assistant professor at Ryerson University Toronto teaches you a comprehensive course on proofreading.  Showing you how to develop the mindset to catch errors, how to examine the most common errors in words, punctuation, and design and format.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Monday, November 20, 2017

A Writer's Guide to the Perfect Work Space


Have you given much thought to the space you write in?

My writing space is pretty simple:
  1. One desk
  2. One Chair
  3. One Computer
I don't have much room to move around in because my writing space is in my bedroom.  But I do have a relatively quiet space in which I work in.  Here is a quick guide to the ultimate home office for writer's:

Be More Ergonomic

This is a great place to start, how you display your computer:
  1. Top of your computer screen should be at eye level, this reduces fatigue.
  2. Your keyboard should be positioned so that your forearms are parallel to the floor.
  3. Your seat should be adjusted so that they're firmly resting on something.
Learn to Love Natural Light

If you're room has a window in it, use it.  The whole idea of working from home is to be free from the cubicle style work space that many people work in.  Make sure your desk is facing a window so you can look at the scenery and take-in the natural light.

Use Additional Lighting

In the dark winter months you'll need a lamp for the darker part of the day.  Try a table lamp with soft lighting and an interesting design, to give your space a personality.

Be Inventive with Storage

If you like to write on notepads then stacking boxes are a great way to store away all those notes you've been making.  Shelves for book storage or book cases.  If you need space for paper why not try a filing cabinet, it doesn't need to be huge just enough for your business needs.

Form a Creative Space

If you have the room why not create a space to let your creative juices really flow.  A simple coffee table, bean bag or chair and a lamp to help your thinking when you have a break.

Go Green

Add plants, because they make people happier, and some plants don't need to be watered that regularly.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Read more: Make Money From Your Blog: Become an Affiliate MarketerCreating and Making Money from a Self-Hosted BlogSelling Digital Product on Your Blog27 Places to Boost Your Blog TrafficHate SEO? A 9 Point Plan to Improve Your Visibility OnlinePromote a Blog a Simple Guide

Friday, November 10, 2017

Why You Should Use a Dictionary and Thesaurus More Often


If you're looking for simple tools to help with your writing, look no further than a dictionary and thesaurus.  The most basic and cheapest of tools each of these books will help improve your grammar and punctuation in no time!

What is a Dictionary

An assembly of words in one or more particular languages.  Listed alphabetically, providing the meanings, definitions etymologies, pronunciations of words.

History of the Dictionary

Much deliberation over the world's first dictionary, some say 2300 BCE in modern Syria, others say 3rd century BCE China.  Best known and used dictionary, Oxford English Dictionary published in full 1884 and then in full after 50 years in 1928.

Word Order and Numbers

Words are listed alphabetically.

With about 500,000 words and more than a half a million technical and scientific terms.

You can also find specialised dictionaries in fields such as business or science.

What is a Thesaurus

Words are grouped together depending upon their similarity or meaning, sometimes synonyms and antonyms.

History of the Thesaurus

The modern thesaurus was developed by Peter Mark Roget first published in 1852.

Word Order and Numbers

Words can be listed alphabetically or conceptually.

The biggest thesaurus holds more than 920,000 words.

Exclusive thesauri have been created for retrieval of information in science systems, for indexing or tagging purposes.

When You Should Use a Dictionary or Thesaurus

You can use a dictionary to look up words you don't understand, or the context to use a word in.  You'll discover details of the meaning, definition, usage and etymology of the word.

A thesaurus will supply you with similar or alternative words (synonyms), along with contrasting words (antonyms).

Prominent Publishers

The most used dictionaries are Oxford English Dictionary, Chambers, Merriam Webster and Collins.

The most well-known thesaurus is Roget, and sometimes Webster.

A Brief History

There is much deliberation as to what form's the basis of the first dictionary.  Archaeologists have found bilingual words lists from the Akkadian Empire located in Modern Syria of 2300 BCE.  Arabic and Chinese dictionaries have also been found.  Robert Cawdrey, a school teacher called a table alphabetical in 1604 but that was thought to not be very accurate.  The most trusted modern English language dictionary was Samuel Johnson's and was around for 150 years up to 1755.  Then came the Oxford English Dictionary.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Read more: [Blog Images] How to Choose the Best Font for Your Business[Blog Images] How to Make Words Look Good[Blog Images] Pairing Your Fonts Like a Pro[Blog Images] Create Pictures with Fresh Fonts

Monday, November 06, 2017

What is DRM? How Does it Work?


File Protection

If you've just started writing and want to start selling your eBooks the question of eBook file protection is something that affects all authors.

What is DRM? 

Digital Rights Management (DRM) is a standardized approach to copyright protection of digital media such as eBooks.  Basically it's a lock that is placed on a digital file which is tied to the person who purchased it.  Often its applied as a wrapper around the eBook file or part of the packaage of the eBook file.  The valid owner can only open the file if their device or software has the correct key.

Purpose of DRM

DRM is setup to prevent any unauthorised redistribution of digtial media and inhibit the methods that consumers can copy any content they've purchased.  DRM was originally established in response to the illegal distribution of digital media through peer-to-peer file exchange programs.  Within each digital download is an embedded code that prevents copying, stipulating a time period the content can be accessed or cap the number of devices the media can be installed on.

DRM Systems Used in the eBook Marketplace

Currently there are three systems being used by the dominant eBook seller's:

Amazon employs its own DRM to Kindle eBooks, this means you can't sell an eBook directly from your own website.

Apple administers its FairPlay DRM to its files bought from the iBookstore, Just like Amazon its only compatible with its own devices and software.

Adobe's system, Adobe Digital Editions Protection Technology (ADEPT), is presently being used by retailers such as Sony, B & N, Kobo, and Overdrive.

Read more about Self-Publishing: [Self-Publishing] Selecting a Book Size[Self-Publishing] Selecting a Font for Your Book[Self-Publishing] The Phenomena of the Blank Page



Wednesday, November 01, 2017

5 Indispensable Tools for Writers


When it comes to writing, its what you write that matters not how you write it.  But for those who think they've found a secret path to some how cheat their way through an article or manuscript, here are some places to start arranging a better writing life.


The Laptop
What you write on matters, and choosing the correct device of choice really matters.  There's no doubt the ultraportable laptop is the preferred weapon of choice for many writer's.

If you want to go small and light The Apple Macbook and Sony Vaio will do the trick nicely, without impacting too much on power and capability.


The Reliable Notepad
The Reporters' notepads are cheap and cheerful, if you're looking for an upgrade look no further than the infamous Moleskine. Okay so it's a bit grandiose for any writer just starting out but still the best buy starting from $10 per notepad.


The Digital Recorder
If you like to say your thoughts out loud, and you're frustrated with uploading your voice on your laptop or through your musc player, the simple digital recorder is essential.  With one-click you can record to your hearts content.

Just make sure your digital recorder has a plug 'n' play connection to your computer.


The Alphasmart Keyboard
Forget about a computer "just write".  The Alphasmart is a keyboard with a built-in LED screen, its basic word processing at its best.  With wireless capability, it can run for 50 days on a single set of batteries.


The Yoropen
Yoropen is designed for comfort when you write, if you're a writer who prefers putting pen to paper.  It helps prevent repetitive strain injury and cramping.

Read More About Writing: What is a Sentence?The Five Elements of a SentenceWhat You Need to Know About Simple, Compound and Complex Sentences20 Rules of Subject and Verb AgreementsCommon Pronoun ErrorsHow Long Should a Sentence Be?

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Monday, October 30, 2017

The Fast Guide to Publishing Your Book with Createspace


When I first started looking into self-publishing my books on paper, I was really intimidated and had no clue about the simple process of adding my PDF files to the CreateSpace dashboard.  I'm going to give you a quick step-by-step guide to uploading your book and cover as well as information I use to format my documents and make a basic manuscript ready to upload.

Formatting Your Document

I did a lot of experimentation and researching before I go my margins and font to where I needed them.

  • Book Type = Non-Fiction 
  • Size = 6" x 9"
  • Document Size = A5
  • Font = Garamond
  • Font size = Book Title 18, Headings 14 Bold, Main body = 12
  • Margins = 2.5 cm
  • Header/Footer = 1.5 cm

Creating Your Paperback Book with CreateSpace

1. Sign up with CreateSpace.

2. Click Add New Title button.  You'll be taken to Start New Project Page.

3. Start Your New Project page, simply fill in the name of your book.  Choose setup method.

Guided: For new publishers to the process.
Expert: A single-page process for publishers already familiar with the process.

4. Click Get Started.

Title Information Page: Simply fill in your:

  • Book Title
  • Subtitle (if you have one)
  • Author name
  • Contributors
  • Series Name
  • Number (if applicable)

If you leave the Publication Date blank the date your book is published on CreateSpace will be filled in, if you published it previously with Kindle or a traditional publisher you can use the original publish date.

5. Click Save and Continue.

ISBN number:  All books require an ISBN number.  You have four options:

  • Free CreateSpace Assigned ISBN
  • Custom ISBN
  • Custom Universal ISBN
  • Provide Your Own ISBN

I used the Free ISBN option.  You can always purchase your own ISBN through a company such as Nielsen or Bowker.

6. Choose then click Continue.

Interior:  Your Choices are:
  • Black & White or colour
  • Paper colour (white or cream)
  • Trim Size is 6" x 9" - trade paperback
7. Uploading Your Book and Cover

I converted my document file to PDF, and did the same thing to my cover image.

Cover Image

With all of my books I went right back to basics and kept my designs and colours very simple.  My thought was that I can improve on the cover later on, plus doing it on a shoestring you need to start somewhere.

CreateSpace offers various services for editing and professional cover design, this services start from about $349.

Once you've uploaded your cover, you can then go into cover creator and edit your image and book cover accordingly. It allows you to add information on the back cover.

8. Finishing Setup:  You can review your formatted document and book cover as you go through each step.

9. Review:  CreateSpace automatically review your work and make sure your book matches up with their standards.  Don't panic if your book isn't up to scratch.  Do your research, if it doesn't meet their standards.  You'll get there eventually.

10. Distribution Channels: Once your book has been accepted you can start setting up the Distribution Channels and pricing.

11. Pricing:  You can use the calculator to determine how much you'll receive in royalties.  It's worth seeing what other authors have done in your chose subject though first.

12. Description:  Add your description to your sales page.  Appoint a BISAC category, set language, country of publication, choose your keywords, check adult content if applicable.

If you feel really unsure, contact the CreateSpace support team.  They'll get back to you pretty quickly and give you the help you need, they're really attentive and want to hear any queries.

Don't be afraid to take the leap and publish your book on paper!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

6 Essential Points for Proofreading


Before you publish any document or publication, proofreading is your best safeguard against typing errors and mistakes made in grammar and punctuation.

Before the document is laid out check for tone, grammar, syntax, usage and style.  Here are some important steps you can use to aid in your proofread:

✢Apply a Checklist

Organize a list of valuable thinks to look out for, for example areas like agreement nouns and verbs and of pronouns, antecedents and number style.

Check for Factual Accuracy

Go over your facts, figures and proper names rigorously.  If you're inserting at the last minute make sure the information is highlighted so that you remember where to put it in your document.

Verbalise Your Document

Errors become more visible when your text is read out loud.

Target One Line at a Time

Use a ruler to cover the text following the line you are proofreading, moving the ruler down as you go.  This helps your eyes to focus on one line of text at a time and stops you from reading too quickly.

Check Format is Correct

If you have specified format to follow, make sure your document complies with the instructions you've been given.  Making sure page numbering, alignment, fonts, sizes and headlines are all within the parameters you've been given.

Repeat Your Proofread

Go over the revisions you've made, go over the document with a fine tooth comb and thoroughness, instead of just a quick spot-check.  You may have missed something.

Read More:
This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.

Monday, October 23, 2017

[Self-Publishing] The Phenomena of the Blank Page


Having blank pages in a book can seem really weird at times, but its not something that we think about that often.  Buy or borrow any hardcover or paperback and you'll stumble across blank pages in the front or back of the book.

Why is this? You might ask.

According to publishers it's to do with signatures, which is just industry spiel for groups of pages that printers cut to assemble a book.  You can have as many as four blank pages.  If the manuscript it 200 pages it may be a perfect fit.  An uneven number like 203 means there's more likely to be pages leftover from the signatures.

Design Observation

Many book designers will offset this expense by playing around with character spacing.  This is called kerning, by simply reducing the space between two specific characters throughout a book, can add up to an entire saved page.

Filling in the space

Many publishers prefer to fill that unused space with checklists of the author's work, portions from other books, illustrations.  Non-fiction publications such as manuals and textbooks may add the phrase "This page is intentionally left blank", to alert the reader that they're not missing any necessary information.

Some author's request blank pages in their books, to keep in line with tradition.

Read more about writing: Publishing a Book: A Quick Examination of Self-Publishing and PublishingWhat is DRM? How Does it Work?The Fast Guide to Publishing Your Book with Createspace[Self-Publishing] Selecting a Font for Your Book[Self-Publishing] Selecting a Book SizeThings to Do Before You Self-Publish Your Ebook.

Friday, October 20, 2017

[Self-Publishing] Selecting a Font for Your Book


Fonts, an important part of publishing any paperback book.  So which fonts should you choose?

When desktop publishing started, way back in the 1980s, computers' were able to graphics that were more accurate, sort of "what you see is what you get" kind of display.  Creating familiar fonts for computer users all over the world.

Times New Roman and Arial are the most popular of these fonts, but they're a bit of a mixed bag for all creators and customers alike.

These fonts have been set to "default", spreading everywhere whether they're appropriate or not.

The Dilemma with Defaults

Times New Roman was designed in 1931 by Stanley Morrison for use in the Times London Newspaper.

Original designed to be read in a newspaper its set width and other internal properties were always determined to be read in the confines of a newspaper, but not in the generous space of a book.

One of the most popular fonts of recent times is Arial, whose origins come from the font Helvetica.  They only typeface to have a movie made about it.  Not intended for readers unused to seeing whole books set in sans serif fonts.

Better Graphics, Better Fonts

Fortunately technology has moved on and become more sophisticated and so has it users.  There has been a massive explosion in new fonts from new designers.

A lot of these fonts are based on the older designs dating back as far as the late 15th century.

This is where the family of "oldstyle" comes from.

Identifying Oldstyle Fonts

Calligraphers and scribes, before the invention of printing, would use these fonts by writing them out by hand.

These "Oldstyle" fonts have the kind of characteristics perfect for book composition.

They can be easily identified by their characteristics:

Tilted axis

Round letters like "O" and "C" have both thicker and thinner strokes.  They a tilted axis, if you drew a line threough them they would be slightly off-center.  Emulating the square-tipped pen the scribes would use.

Moderate stroke variation

No huge variation on the thin and thick strokes, they don't tend to vary that much.  They were also written with square-tipped pens creating a variable stroke with each character.

Rounded or bracketed serifs

Serifs have strokes like the "legs" on an "i" or they make letters look more decorative.  The scribes would leave a tiny flourish after each stroke.  They make words more readable.

Best Fonts For Paperback Books

Garamond

A classic oldstyle font created by Claude Garamond in the 16th century France.  Many other similar typefaces have been created including the popular Sabon.

Caslon

This font derived from William Caslon, one England,s first printers.  A very good choice for book publishers.

Janson Text

Emanating from the Netherlands in the 17th century.

Palatino

The most popular oldstyle font off all time is Palatino.  A hugely over-exposed font, a font used by Mackintosh, back in the day.

Which Font Should I use?

If you have real flair for design then you'll have no problem matching up your font with your book design.

Typesetting with a PC won't give you the sophisticated hyphenation or elegant control over your type.

By choosing the right typeface at the start, you'll create a more readable book and also accomodate book publishing practices.

Read more about writing: Publishing a Book: A Quick Examination of Self-Publishing and PublishingWhat is DRM? How Does it Work?The Fast Guide to Publishing Your Book with Createspace[Self-Publishing] The Phenomena of the Blank Page[Self-Publishing] Selecting a Book SizeThings to Do Before You Self-Publish Your Ebook.

This post contains affiliate links.  This means if you purchase through these links you are supporting 1976write and we thank you for that.