Tuesday, January 9, 2018

The Successful Author’s Ten Commandments

What guides human beings in the way they live and approach the world?  The law, ethics, and perhaps religion play a major factor here.  So does the influence of one’s genes, family, friends, job, environment and status – sex, ethnicity, I.Q. wealth, age, and other key demographics.  But what guides the book writer, the modern-day author?

Writers should heed these 10 commandments:

1.      Dedicate yourself to writing books that you believe are needed or wanted, that you feel uniquely positioned to pen, that you wish existed for you to read and enjoy.  Write books that educate, inspire, enlighten, or entertain – add to the world.

2.      Become the best writer you can be.  Keep writing, researching, and dreaming. Learn not only about what you write on, but about the craft of writing.

3.      Seek to live worthwhile experiences that can be used to make you a better, more informed, well-balanced person.

4.      Commit to working with a good editor.  Every writer needs someone else to make them better.

5.      Apply state-of –the-art techniques and technology to serve your readers well.

6.      Devote the proper time, energy, and attitude to marketing and promoting your books.  Don’t just write a book and leave it to fend for itself.

7.      Allow for time to let your imagination flourish.  Doodle with your brain.  Free-write and let the ideas pour out of you, unfiltered.

8.      Stand up for literacy, free speech, and equal access to information.  Fight censorship, book bans, government cuts to the arts, or library closings.

9.      Be as good a reader as you are a writer.  You will learn from fellow writers and in the process you will support them.

10.  Do not write out of ego or as a means to get rich.  It’s fine to profit from your words and you should be proud of the legacy you build, but neither money nor fame should be the chief motivator to writing a book.  Write simply because you want to, because you feel called to do so, because life would seem less meaningful or pleasurable without writing books.

In Memory: Read On, Fred Bass

The man who made The Strand Bookstore what it is today died on January 3, at age 89.

Fred Bass, whose father founded the store in the 1920’s, worked in the store since he was 13.  He moved it from its small Fourth Avenue location its presented location at Broadway and 12 Street in 1957 – over six decades ago.  He took the store of 70,000 titles to one offering 500,000 books by the mind-1960s.  He boasted of shelving 8 miles of books.

Now it offers 2.5 million titles, spanning 18 miles.

It’s one of the premiere bookstores in the world, a leader in used and rare books.

Bass, a Brooklyn College graduate brought his daughter into the family business in 1986.  She’s married to a U.S. Senator from Oregon.

If you want to honor his work, visit the Strand Bookstore.

"Sooner or later the life of our time is summarized in its books.  Our new ideas are expressed there, whatever may be their original sources or the first mediums through which they reached us.  It is books that form the permanent record, and books that furnish the most convenient basis for describing the mind of the world in which we live.  In many ways it is a different mind from that of the world in which our fathers lived, and books at the very least have contributed to the change."

--Malcom Cowley, Books That changed Our Mind

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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs

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