Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Book Review: The Art and Business of Writing by Chris Jones

Loved this book. So much helpful advice. Perfect size ... not too long and not too short. It even went beyond where I am in my career right now and took it to business cards (I do have a mommy card with all my businesses on it) and web hosting (I just use free Blogger and have for about 10 years) advice.

Here are some takeaways for me personally, and I have been writing for publication since about 2006 and ebooks since 2009:

  • Check out the Pomodoro timer in your phone's app store. Interesting to see how much work I was actually getting done versus how much time I THOUGHT I was spending working. It was much less, actually. Here's my post about discovering this helpful app!
  • This book made me realize that it would be doable for me to write 500 words per day if I made room in my life for that and did it first, BEFORE sitting down to my proofreading jobs. It's all about priorities.
  • The book is about the Art + Business of writing. To me that's like being good at English + Math, you know? You can't be all about the art of it ... because you also have to worry about record keeping, collections, getting clients, marketing and so much more!
  • Who is my reader? What do I hope they will learn and how will I help them? Like with my cookbooks, that's easy. And same for my book about making money to write for magazines. But my parenting Christmas and Halloweens? Kinda general and might need to be reworked into a more general Holidays book that's more focused on solutions.
  • Am I writing for them or for me? You have to somewhat write for yourself. Like most of my parenting articles were for me and same for the tater tot cookbook and even the magazine one was to compile all my markets but then I wrote all the tips in the beginning for the reader! I put all the tater tot recipes in one place so I would have them. Then I spiced them up and created more and added desserts! This gets me so excited to work on my other 8 projects I want to do, like this one!

What are some helpful things that work for you in your life as a writer?

**There were typos that were distracting to me as a proofreader. If there were only a couple I would not even mention it, but there were many and they were easy-to-catch things like commas for pauses and "your" instead of "you" ... and others. I have to admit I do proofread my own work because I'm a proofreader, but I probably should not be doing that. I recently read something decent with few typos and knew the author did not use a proofreader and she said she used Grammarly. I'm just saying Word and Grammarly are not humans, so spend the money to hire a proofreader for your baby (your book) or someone like me is going to mention it so you fix it. We don't do it to be mean, we do it so you'll make it right and do better on your next book! I promise I am not even trolling for new clients when I point these things out; I am so busy on Fiverr already! I loved this book so much that I am choosing to ignore the typos and give it five stars on Amazon!

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