The ASJA Weekly
Jul. 11, 2013

Pitfalls of negotiating your own book contract
By Deborah Niemann
After hearing multiple friends talk about the benefits of having a literary agent when negotiating book contracts and even reading about it in Stephen King's On Writing, I had long said that I would never negotiate a contract on my own. But after receiving enough agent rejection letters to paper my dining room walls, when a small publisher asked me to write a book for them, I decided I could do it myself. Three book contracts later, and more stories from friends, and I am ready to start the process of finding an agent to negotiate my next contract.More

How to make ordinary characters compelling
Writer's Digest
Always keep firmly in mind that people read any novel, no matter the genre, to find out what is going to happen to a fascinating set of characters. And no, throwing something like magic into an otherwise dull-as-dirt character won’t make her fascinating. She needs to be a fascinating person on her own. So how do you do that?More

Judge rules against Apple in ebooks frial
The New York Times
A federal judge found that Apple violated antitrust law in helping raise the retail price of ebooks, saying the company "played a central role in facilitating and executing" a conspiracy with five big publishers. More

Self-publishing your book: Where's the money?
PBS MediaShift
There are many ways to sell your self-published print books and ebooks, and the associated fees and royalties vary wildly. The highest margins come when you sell from your own online store. You can employ an ebook aggregator/distributor, or upload the ebooks yourself to each online retailer. More

How to write sexual tension between your characters
Does your novel lack a spark between your leading characters? Maybe your book needs a little sexual tension. Over at Savvy Authors, romance and erotica novelist Alice Gaines shared some simple techniques for adding sexual tension in your prose. You don't even need to add sex, just sample some of these spicy writing tricks.More

Summer scribes
The Writer
Now that summer is here, I find myself sitting down to write for pleasure far more often than I do in the depths of winter, says Aubrey Everett, Writer managing editor . The combination of abundant daylight hours and traveling to other location creates the ideal environment for writing.More

Self-published children's author shares advice
Author Timothy Cohorst was the first children's book author to crack our Self-Published Bestsellers List this year. Since its publication last year, his Jocomo book has always hovered near the top of the Smashwords charts. We caught up with Cohorst to find out more about his self-publishing career, getting some indie writing advice at the same time. More

Authors on the importance of writing the final chapter first
Writing isn’t necessarily a linear process. History shows that authors frequently composed their novels by writing or conceptualizing the final chapter or sentence first. Today marks the 77th anniversary of the publication of Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell. She famously wrote her best-selling story of the Old South backwards. After the jump, we explore why eight different authors worked from end to start. May they inspire you to consider an alternative approach to your next narrative. More

22 productivity tricks and tools you love
Book Riot
Book Riot recently asked their readers to share their favorite tips and tools for getting things done. Tons of what we can only assume are super-organized, task-master Riot readers chimed in, and five lucky participants won copies of the book. Here are 22 of the best productivity tricks and tools they love. More

How long is a chapter?
David Farland blog
Over the past few years, the standard length of chapters has been shrinking in many genres. If you picked up a novel thirty years ago, twenty manuscript pages seemed to be pretty standard. If you picked up a thriller five years ago, 10 pages would do. Now, for most thrillers and young adult novels, eight pages seems to be more normal. More