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North Dakota jokes wouldn't work. Have you ever met someone from North Dakota? Ever? No! North Dakota seems to be a figment of the national imagination.
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You and Janet Reid both, it makes me so sad.
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Jeff, I'm so sorry. I adore Elliot et al. It's sad to lose them. Please tell me you have someone new to introduce me to in short order. Liana
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That's sweet. Congratulations to you both. :o) DH and I are celebrating 7 years next month. He'll be out of state at his brother's wedding and I'll be at home (or in the hospital) on bed rest with Baby #3. Which still beats the heck out of anniversary #5 where he spent the day overseas getting shot at and I spent the day in Texas worrying.
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Jeff- do you remember newspaper layout when you had to print the stories and paste them to the layout sheets? I thought having a computer program where you could do the full layout on the computer was a dream. There are two small local papers here, both weeklies. I read them both, although usually I skip straight to the comics. The hometown paper is very good about putting school pictures on the front page though, so my Eldest likes to look there and see if any of her friends are in the paper. :o)
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You're not missing anything, but some authors are. A first time author with no background who tries to find information on the internet will find all of the scams first. I know I did. It was only accident that brought me to the (now dark) blog of Miss Snark. From there I found my fantastic critique group. And only from there did I learn to untangle the knotted skein of publishing. I'm still learning. The most you can do is actively post on blogs like this and hope young authors will find the good information before they waste time and money on a scam.
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I like the dead pan at the end. All this chaos, the reader knows what's up, but all Elliot does is blink: “Okay, so something’s bothering Sharon...” No kidding!
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Good advice, my friend has a quote along those lines in her e-mail signature: I don't want to be the next JKR. I want to be the first Me. I continue to fail to be impressed by the New York Times' list. There are a couple of genres that seem to sell very well (commercial thriller, romance, and YA urban fantasy) while everything else seems to linger on the fringe.
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Did you say 2010? I have to wait that long? What a tease you are!
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Okay, I read this morning and played with ideas while I was stuck out running errands. Here's my short list: 1) Follow up with what you did with the other two books. They're really fun ideas and you have the added bonus of having an established readership. Tell them there's a new book coming out! 2) Missing person flyers for libraries and bookstores. Post the fact that Sharon is missing and invite people to read the book and find her. If you can swing it, make it possible for people to download the flyer from your website so they can print and post in their hometowns so much the better. 3) Make the virtual tour of blogs like you suggested months ago. And don't limit yourself to crime blogs. It doesn't matter how small the readership is. If five people read the blog and all five buy the book huzzah! 4) Jenny over at Lit Soup (http://litsoup.blogspot.com/) has book blocks where published authors get to advertise to her readership. If it won't violate any contracts you have signed, go for it. 5) Building on the idea of the Missing Person posters consider making a game of it. If you could give hints and part of the story without giving away the ending you could make a blog or website giving hints and small prizes (signed pictures? writing books? pencils?) to people who can guess in the fewest clues where Sharon is. Anyone who misses out on the clues or the storyline has to go buy the book. 6) Expand that further and see if a local radio station will get in on the game. If there are clues tied into major Jersey landmarks you could get away with this. They did it on an Austin radio station last year with a fake bank robbery. People listened just for the updates so there's a lure for the radio station too. 7) Call the local high schools, community colleges, and universities to see if any of there liberal arts departments wants a published author to come in and discuss creative writing, crime fiction, humor, or field questions from the class. Hook readers while they are young. :o) 8) You're in Jersey, so is Ft. Dix. Have you tried calling up the MWR (military welfare and recreation) and seeing if they would host you. If they're already booked look to the FRG's and spouses clubs. Or the National Guard FRG's and spouses clubs. Word of mouth does a lot in the military. use it. 9) Google reading and writing groups in your area and make contact. See if anyone wants to host you for an evening of book talks. Most writers are desperate for any hint or luck that might rub off from a published author, and 99.9% of them read like mad fiends. Not to mention writers tend to be a very supportive bunch, make friends with them and they'll go buy. ... I think that's my whole short list. If I come up with more I'll let you know. :o)
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No sci-fi? Are... are you sure? Maybe you should go watch some more BSG until you get addicted.
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Jeff, I adore your writing, but the funniest novel in history? That is a *huge* goal. Putting you in the pantheon with Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, and Bill Watterson. I'm looking forward to reading this new piece with relish. Go write all ready!
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I have two and five written if you think you could sit through something with sci-fi elements. And now I'm tempted to go write number one just for fun. Visions of plagues and gators dance in my head...
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I scrolled through and I like Michelle's photo the best. There's good contrast and I can read a lot about her personality from the facial expression and clothes. A bland head shot is rarely exciting, and usually looks overdone. The exceptions to the rule are rare, but I do like Terry Pratchett's head shot with his hate and cane. I've seen other author pics where the author isn't facing the camera. Kim Harrison is the prime example there. The first time, fine, a person in a cape walking the woods fit the book. The later books had other pictures and I got tired of not seeing her face.
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And for this reason was the Webcam invented. I can IM a friend from the internet and then chat with her on webcam. Even if she's in Australia having lunch while she folds laundry and I'm stumbling to bed because it's past midnight. It also means grandparents who live on the wrong side of the country (anywhere but here that is) can still see their grandkids once a week.
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As sad as I am to see Janet go, I'm delighted to meet the woman behind the shark smile. Anyone who uses a great white as their profile picture has to be wonderful. Welcome to the Dead Guys! I shall be watching this space with interest...
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Aside from the lack of physical similarities we might have been twins separated at birth! Although I do like yoga and pilates... but that's really stretching, not excercise, right?
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I'm finding the best way to be immune to query shock is to keep busy with someone else. Granted, I'm only sending out short stories at the moment while I polish my current WIP. And short stories don't have the same anxiety level attached as a novel does (at least not for me). But sometimes I'll open a rejection on my e-mail and stare blankly, I sent the piece so long ago (weeks and weeks at least!), and I'm so busy with other things, that I'd forgotten the story entirely. I'm not sure if you can do that with novels, although several people have suggested that when you send off the queries you start working on Great Novel #2. That's one way to be in control of the situation, you aren't putting all your hopes and dreams on one manuscript.
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Hey, I'll give you $20 for cash if you can squeeze and extra person in that Pirus...
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