Saturday, January 16, 2016

Going to "School" in 2016

Scott D. Parker

I'll admit it was a tough week for me. The death of David Bowie sent me into a particular type of sadness one gets when an inspirational figure from one’s youth passes from this earth. There wasn't a day this week that I didn't experience tears or a quavering voice. I'll get over it, I know, as time takes a cigarette and moves on.

What made this week of mourning challenging was the need to continue work on my current story. It's likely gonna be the first Calvin Carter story I release later this year so there's not hard deadline, but I needed to make progress nonetheless. I made some, but it as much as I'd have preferred. Life goes on. So does work.

Speaking of work, I've also been busy putting final changes in the second Benjamin Wade book. I'll probably have a cover and title reveal in the next week or so.

One aspect of publication is the book description, the sales copy that goes on the back of a book or an Amazon page. I don't know about you but sometimes this can give me trouble. For my Triple Action Western short stories, it's a tad easier. The opening scene is usually enough. Couple that with a $1 price tag and I either get the potential reader or I don't.

A novel has, to my mind, slightly different rules. It's supposed to be longer, but not so long to bore the reader. Weird, huh? I recognize I need some help on that regard so I'm going to school for just sales copy. I purchased Dean Wesley Smith’s HOW TO WRITE FICTION SALES COPY. I started reading it, annotating along the way. My goal is to get better at writing sales copy that entices readers to want to read my stories.

Speaking of Dean Wesley Smith, he’s practically a one-man school. He has lots of resources on his website and decades of experience behind it. I’ve been reading his blog for years.I even ordered one of his lectures.

Improving my skills is one of my two major writing goals in 2016. I realize I can produce new words with relative ease now, so I need to focus more on the business side of the ledger.

I know about Smith’s books and workshops. Are there other resources y'all use to improve y'all's business ecumen?

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