Questioning Conventional Wisdom Re: Platforms

Hello, dear readers, and welcome back to Nerdy Words. I’ve been seeing a lot – that is, A LOT – of advice to new and aspiring writers urging them to create a “platform” by posting regularly to not just one, but at least three, different forms of social media. The reasoning is by posting content […]

More Bad News for Writers

I ran across this in the New Yorker from George Packer: “Without sufficient advances, many writers will not be able to undertake long, difficult, risky projects. Those who do so anyway will have to expend a lot of effort mastering the art of blowing their own horn. ‘Writing is being outsourced, because the only people […]

Support Your Local Authors!

I am very fortunate in that I live in a very creative community. Fayetteville, Ark., believe it or not, is filled with artists of all kinds, including writers. I’m also fortunate in that I’ve known many incredibly talented writers and been in critique groups with them, which, thanks to their feedback, has made me a […]

Barnes & Noble to Bite the Dust?

This article in Publishers Weekly seems to think so. According to PW, all the signs are there that Barnes & Noble is gearing down for a “crash landing,” and author Jason Illian has plenty of advice for the book behemoth. Unfortunately, it’s all along the lines of what every last-minute restructuring consultant says, essentially: be […]

If I Can’t Be a Good Example…

then let me be a dire warning, or so the saying goes. As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve completed my memoir, Mountain Witch, and gone through two rounds of professional edits. Feeling satisfied that it’s ready, I’ve begun diligently querying agents. I also thought that I could approach authors of similar works about reading and providing […]

Buyer Beware: Is Author Solutions a “Vanity Press”?

According to Publishers Weekly, a number of authors have brought a class-action suit against Author Solutions publishing, claiming that it is engaged in “deceitful, dubious business practices.” The authors claim that Author Solutions “have marketed themselves as an independent publisher with a reputation for outstanding quality and impressive book sales, … Instead, [Author Solutions is] […]

Another News Flash: Writers (Still) Don’t Make Much Money

Salon has a great article by Patrick Wensink bemoaning the vast difference between what being an “Amazon bestseller” ought to be vs. what it actually is. His book is published by a small press, and he made it to Amazon’s bestseller list with “somewhere around 4,000 copies sold.” For that, he earned $12,000. It’s important […]

News Flash: Literary World Ignores Women

A great little article in HuffPo points out something that, for most serious female writers, isn’t exactly news: “publications like the New York Review of Books, the New Yorker, Harper’s, and the London Review of Books published significantly fewer articles by women in 2012.” This was based on a VIDA study, which also concluded that […]