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Sunday, June 4, 2017

Literary Significance & Success

The Quest for Literary Significance & Success

"Want to be successful, watch what unsuccessful people do and...
Don't Do That!"

I still remember a TV motivational speaker once - while flipping channels - who gave that wise advice, but actually used the words “Rich” & "Poor". Success is measured by other means than temporal wealth, at least by people unscathed by shallowness of heart.

An article, once featured in Forbes by Kathy Caprino | Small Business, has some advice for its readers and much is applicable to Indie and Self publishers HERE

               Now... how will you incorporate this into your writing?

- - - Thoughts - - -

 Spending the required amount of research time (many months to years) investigating the various publication avenues available, including the pros & cons of each, blogging, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, writing circles, etc., are only the beginnings before one's written work is normally ready for publication considerations. The process can be like fishing and at times waiting for a bite can be a long wait. But if you love what you're doing - 'fishing' - then there is no real problem.

Agents and the Big-5:
Research to see if these entities are seriously adding NEW authors, or predominately advancing hard cash to already proven successful authors they have under their belt in order to prod a new safe book ensuring sales. How long will a book that isn’t jumping off of the store bookshelf be on the shelf? And much more...

Do you have a background in computer programming? HTML? If not, you may not be self-sufficient enough to do your own formatting and find it necessary to hire that process out.

Paperbacks:   Can you easily incorporate your text into a template offered by self-publishing agencies (free of charge) and format, edit, edit, edit, and proof that text?

ISBN numbers:
Do you have the means in your country to obtain your own ISBN numbers? Does who owns your book correlate with who owns your ISBN number? Some countries (like the USA - Bowker) charge for the ISBN while other countries offer them free of charge.

Target audience(s)
Do you have a clear focus on who you are writing for? Maybe your target audience is very narrow for one work and very large for another. Maybe your readership overlaps many age groups.

Familiarize yourself with the category of literature you are composing and decide if you will play it safe and up-to-date, or attempt to expand the literary horizon of that particular genre. Being a pioneer can be an exciting experience whether you succeed or fail.
Why write?
Are you writing for commercial success, artistic expression, a project, combinations of these, other reasons? Multiple reasons?

Are you following writing/publishing blogs long term?
A vital tool with your research. Sift through the info to gain core tips you can use and apply to yourself.

Following info on the traditional market?
Watching agents quitting their profession? Major bookstores closing doors? Traditional authors contemplating self-publishing? Statistics?

Book format & layout:
What is your country's standard? Is that standard really what you want, or?

Can you focus on your project(s) and not be distracted by others’ desires for you to help them? Do you have a resource or two to pass on to the folks who nag you for free help?
Remember… Bill Gates - "Never do anything for free."

And there is so much more to consider...

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Janteloven - Law of Jante

Aksel Sandemose

Janteloven - Law of Jante

There are 11 principles or commandments that form the "Jante's Shield" of the Scandinavian people.

In a novel by Aksel Sandemose, he defined 10 different rules in the law, all expressive of variations on a single theme... You are not to think you're anyone special or that you're better than us.

-Sandemose's novel portrays the small Danish town 'Jante' - he settled in Norway in 1930.

The ten rules state:

1.  You are not to think you're anything special.
2.  You are not to think you're as good as us.
3.  You are not to think you're smarter than us.
4.  You are not to convince yourself that you're better than us.
5.  You are not to think you know more than us.
6.  You are not to think you are more important than us.
7.  You are not to think you are good at anything.
8.  You are not to laugh at us.
9.  You are not to think anyone cares about you.
10. You are not to think you can teach us anything.

An eleventh rule recognized in the novel is:

11. You are not to think that there aren't a few things we know about you.


Janteloven lyder slik:

Du skal ikke tro at du er noe.
Du skal ikke tro at du er like så meget som oss.
Du skal ikke tro du er klokere enn oss.
Du skal ikke innbille deg du er bedre enn oss.
Du skal ikke tro du vet mere enn oss.
Du skal ikke tro du er mere enn oss.
Du skal ikke tro at du duger til noe.
Du skal ikke le av oss.
Du skal ikke tro at noen bryr seg om deg.
Du skal ikke tro at du kan lære oss noe.

Senere i boken kommer Sandemose opp med et 11. bud: Du tror kanskje ikke at jeg vet noe om deg?

What do you think of these rules?

Are they conducive to an advancing, progressive society?

Do these rules portray or produce self dignity,
self respect and the desire to excel... or?

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Shakespeare’s World – Free 10 Week Course

Shakespeare and his World

William Shakespeare (1564-1616)

This Free  10 week course begins 20 Match 2017

2016 marked the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare's death, the University of Warwick, together with the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, will explore Shakespeare’s cultural background and influences and why his works have endured.
Shakespearean academic Professor Jonathan Bate will be exploring the acclaimed collections of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, including an in-depth proactive study of eight of Shakespeare's plays.

Short video HERE

This course involves 5 hours per week, but the extras could take you on an endlessly exciting journey with which you'll possible wish would never end.

From the FutureLearn site:

Who is the course for?

This course is aimed at anyone with an interest in Shakespeare; you might be a high school student or a university student, or a regular play-goer who wishes to learn more about Shakespeare. No prior knowledge of Shakespeare life, theatre and world is assumed: that is what you will learn from the course. The only pre-requisite is a willingness to read and watch the plays.