Sunday, March 30, 2008

CreateSpace Lowers the Costs of Publishing for Authors

CreateSpace, part of the, Inc., group of companies, has launched the CreateSpace Pro Plan, a new program that provides self-published authors and publishing professionals with access to lower book printing prices and increased royalties on and other channels via the CreateSpace Books on Demand service.

Members who want to self-publish using the CreateSpace Books on Demand service now have two options: they can continue to sign up at no charge using CreateSpace's Standard pricing plan, or they can take advantage of the new Pro Plan pricing model by paying a $50 one-time setup fee per title to gain access to increased royalty payments and deeply discounted print pricing. The program works on a title-by-title basis. Members can upgrade from Standard to Pro Plan at any time, allowing them to test demand for their book with Standard pricing and upgrade to Pro Plan pricing.

With both Standard and Pro Plan, CreateSpace members can distribute both black-and-white- and color-interior books on, their free CreateSpace eStore and their own website. Furthermore, members retain all copyrights to their work, set their own list price and have the option to use their own imprint name and ISBN or be assigned a free CreateSpace ISBN.

To find out more about CreateSpace Pro Plan pricing or to download a free price comparison calculator, go to

RSS to MMS Tool for Mobile RSS Feeds

Skycore LLC, developers of, has launched an RSS to MMS publishing tool for content providers to automatically convert and deliver syndicated RSS feeds directly to mobile subscribers' messaging in-boxes using Cellyspace's MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) technology.

According to the company, auto-conversion of RSS content will make mobile syndication easier and more readily available and by delivering multimedia feeds rather than short, text-only feeds subscribers will be more fully engaged in the content.

Also, with RSS to MMS technology, the feed can be viewed without a subscriber first logging onto a mobile web site or launching a feed reader application. Instead, subscribers are alerted on receipt of the feed and can view it immediately or whenever most convenient since it’s stored in their messaging in-box.

Converted content is presented in a slideshow format including up to eight (8) slides, each with an image, 300 characters of text and an optional URL link for additional content, info or promotions. MMS Feeds can be billed as premium to the end user, or alternatively, standard (non-premium) rated feeds. In addition to content, providers can add third-party advertising or promotions to their feed.

Cellyspace publishing tools are also available for use by content providers to simplify the subscription opt-in process, including an HTML widget and link generator for the provider's web site; a custom keyword for use in their print and broadcast promotions; and a WAP (mobile internet) jump page generator for mobile advertising networks.

For details please visit

Friday, March 28, 2008

Great Catholic Literary Treasures Will Not be Lost

Despite news of financial hardship threatening the existence of some Catholic publishers, R.A.G.E. Media's president, Paul Nowak, is reassuring Catholics that the great literary treasures of their faith will not be lost, even if other publishing companies are forced to shut their doors.

On March 20 John L. Barger, President of Sophia Institute Press, announced that the company was "threatened" by financial hardship and that the publisher was left "with an empty checkbook and overdue bills approaching $50,000."

"If I don't pay this soon, we'll have to cease publishing," warned Barger. "Catholics will no longer have access to the scores of books we've published by St. Francis de Sales, St. Thomas Aquinas," and other Catholic writers.

A similar announcement was made a year earlier, citing a crippling financial situation that prompted the publisher to ask email recipients to each donate a dollar to the company.

Barger's dire forecast of his publishing company's health is indeed troubling, especially considering that after having made similar announcements, another Catholic publisher, TAN Books & Publishers, filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy protection in 2005.

Paul Nowak, president of Catholic publishing company R.A.G.E. Media, sees the hard times experienced by other publishers as a warning, but not an apocalyptic sign.

"I cannot comment on the financials of another company, but Mr. Barger is incorrect on at least one point," said Nowak. "Catholics will always have access to the great Catholic literary treasures such as Aquinas' Summa Theologica and St. Francis de Sales' Introduction to the Devout Life – R.A.G.E. Media has ensured that with the Digital Catholic Library."

Nowak likens the Digital Catholic Library, a single CD-ROM loaded with 35 Catholic texts that users can print at home or read on electronic devices, to Gutenberg's printing press, calling it "the latest revolution in Catholic publishing."

"Just as the printing press made books more accessible to the masses, so will the Digital Catholic Library improve the public's access to great Catholic books – even if established publishing companies don't survive," said Nowak.

"For our other books, we use state-of-the-art printing methods that ensure our financial solvency, so even our new authors will know their book will stay in print," concluded Nowak. "And if need be, we'll purchase the publishing rights from other struggling companies to keep their books in print for future generations."

R.A.G.E. Media's products are available at

Any Child Can Now Become an Author and Create Real Books

Tikatok has launched their new online book community for children at Now, any child, regardless of his/her writing skills, can write, illustrate and print single copies of their own stories and read and share books with other children from around the world. provides a safe, creative environment with a unique, patent pending story guideline system, to unleash the imagination of all children to develop original content for stories, share and communicate books with other children, and print beautiful, professional-quality copies of their stories in hard and soft cover for friends and family.
The company was started by two successful business executives and moms who saw that there were no books available for children that were written by children.

Tikatok has designed and implemented several important features that when combined give children a truly unique experience creating real books.

StorySparks™ Story Builders -- The StorySparks system, invented by Tikatok, gives children the story framework they may need to help create their books. These are optional prompts which allow children to choose characters, such as princesses or aliens, and gives them a loose plotline or framework to help guide the creative writing process. These are not fill in the blanks, but instead are suggestions or even questions, such as "What happens to the princess next?" to help stimulate the child's own imagination and storytelling skills.

Design Studio -- Drawing from its management team's past experience with the MIT Media Lab, Tikatok incorporated intuitive Web-based design tools as part of the site's Studio to help children easily point and click to make the story building process both simple and fun. Children can easily drag and drop text screens, write their ideas, change fonts, colors, and insert and delete pages to develop their books. They can also easily add their own original artwork by drawing their pictures and scanning and uploading them to their stories, or by mailing them into Tikatok.

Print-on-Demand Publishing -- Tikatok recognizes that children are excited to see their stories made into real books and offers a unique service, through partnerships with professional printing companies, to publish and print affordable copies of children's stories in hard or soft copy. Individual books are available for sale at for around $20 and include the author's photo and bio, making it a beautiful gift and keepsake for family and friends.

Online Community and Social Networking -- also provides children with a fun, safe way to communicate and share books with one another as part of the Tikatok community. Using the Friends feature, children can invite other friends through an email link to join the Tikatok network. They can also invite others to read their books and then can join and post their books to Book Clubs on the site and participate in discussion threads with one another.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Xlibris Celebrates The Addition of The Poetry Package with a 50% Off Special

Xlibris has launched a new publishing package designed specifically for works of poetry. The Poetry Publishing Package is available for Black & White books or works of Full-Color and gives poets the complete freedom and control that the nature of poetry requires.

The Xlibris Poetry Publishing Package is a great way for discerning poets to see their work in print. With full control over the text layout, a custom cover design and the option to include a multitude of interior images, the Xlibris Poetry Publishing Package gives writers free creative rein. Full support throughout the entire production process and free consultation with a cover and interior designers means that the work can be created exactly to whatever specifications and artistic design required and can be shared with the world in beautiful bookstore quality paperback format.

With complete distribution, poets who publish this specialty package will have their book available for order at more than 25,000 retail outlets worldwide, on the Internet via,, and more than 200 other major online retailers, and through the Xlibris online bookstore and 24-hour book orders hotline.

The package also includes a handy collection of printed marketing materials and up to 10 paperback copies once the publishing process is completed.

Usually priced at $799, Xlibris is celebrating the launch of this great value package with a special introductory price of $399 until the end of March. This half-price rate is great news for poets everywhere and makes it simple and affordable to realize their publishing dream.

More information about Xlibris' Poetry Publishing Package can be found at The Xlibris Customer Service Hotline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by phone at 1-888-795-4274, or e-mail at

Sunday, March 23, 2008

13th Annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books Set for April 26-27 at UCLA

Readers, writers and book-lovers of all ages will come together Saturday, April 26th and Sunday, April 27th to participate in the highly anticipated 13th annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books on the UCLA campus.

Over 140,000 attendees are expected this year, as the Festival brings together a hip, eclectic and family friendly line-up of talent, story-tellers, celebrities, musical performances and literary giants (full list at For the first time, the Festival of Books will offer "The Comix Strip," an entirely new comic book, graphic novel and Manga-devoted event area, offering attendees access to the genres' exhibitors, retailers and newest issues. Mike Mignola, creator of the Hellboy comic series, and other comics luminaries are slated to participate in special panels, programming and autograph sessions.

For children, families and the young at heart, the Target Children's Stage will feature an array of entertainment and book readings by Julie Andrews; Aly and AJ; Henry Winkler; Cheech Marin; Marlee Matlin and Doug Cooney; Dylan and Cole Sprouse; Ben Barnes, "Prince Caspian" from the upcoming "Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian" movie; musical groups The Doodlebops(TM) and Playhouse Disney's "Johnny and the Sprites," and many more. Other Festival highlights include the prestigious 28th annual Los Angeles Times Book Prize awards ceremony April 25th and five additional outdoor stages featuring a variety of live entertainment throughout the weekend.

The Los Angeles Times Festival of Books -- the nation's largest public literary festival -- was created in 1996 by The Times to promote literacy and to unite those who create books with the people who love to read them. It is presented in association with UCLA.

General event information can be found at or by calling 1-800-LA TIMES, ext. 7BOOK. Admission is free, but tickets are required to attend author/panel discussions and lectures.

Free Web Sites Help Authors Publish, Promote, And Sell Their Books

Author Solutions, Inc. has launched AuthorTree, which offers a free author Web site ( to all authors, regardless of publisher.

AuthorTree author Web sites feature a robust set of tools, including author biographies, detailed book information, book reviews, excerpts, a calendar of author events, ordering capabilities, a link-sharing tool and a blog.

To build your free author Web site, go to

Friday, March 21, 2008

2008 Christianity Today Book Awards

For two decades, the annual Christianity Today Book Awards have recognized outstanding volumes that shed light on people, events, and ideas that shape evangelical life, thought, and mission.

This year, 49 publishers nominated 359 titles published in 2007. Rather than naming one overall winner, CT editors selected the top books in each category, and then panels of judges--one panel per category--voted. In the end, we chose 10 winners and also recognized 11 awards of merit.

An online link to the awards -- including judges' comments and other resources -- is avaulable at

HarperCollins Deploys Web 2.0 Initiatives for Narnia With 'Read It Before You See It' Campaign

Today HarperCollins Children's Books announced the launch of its "Read It Before You See It" global digital campaign for C. S. Lewis' The Chronicles of Narnia. The massive web presence focuses attention on the seven books in the series as a lead in to the Walt Disney Pictures and Walden Media release of 'The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian' film on May 16, 2008.

HarperCollins and online agency Special Ops Media ( are taking Narnia to where the readers live-online, working together to create a viral campaign that takes a 50-year-old classic brand to Web 2.0.

Extensive promotions on Facebook and MySpace, a custom Prince Caspian widget and "Enter to Win" consumer contests are among the Web 2.0 initiatives that will reach new and existing fans of Narnia in surprising interactive ways, presenting an enhanced look at the beloved world that is Narnia.

"Read It Before You See It" dedicated microsite, features a sweepstakes, games, information about the books, author, illustrator and much more.

Free Text Reader for Print Disabled Students and Don Johnston will provide qualified print disabled students with a free text reader to access electronic books from the library.

This technology access partnership will serve an estimated 1-3% of the total K-12 student population, specifically those who receive special education services and qualify under the 1996 Chafee Amendment.

Beginning at the start of the 2008-09 school year, qualified students will have the opportunity to use Don Johnston's Read:OutLoud Edition text reader (Windows Version) to access more than 36,000 books, magazines and newspapers in the library.

The Read:OutLoud Edition text reader offers embedded reading comprehension strategies and instructional supports that align with state educational standards. The text reader software includes audio feedback, electronic highlighting and note-taking features that allow students to effectively capture ideas. A Mac version will follow in 2009.

The goal of this partnership is to help eliminate barriers for print disabled students and provide the tools needed to ensure access to educational texts. offers digital books produced from the National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standard (NIMAS) and delivers them to students in the BRF Braille file format and the Digital Accessible Information System (DAISY) standard for Digital Talking Books. Don Johnston's Read:OutLoud Bookshare Edition text reader gives students better access to books and effective reading instruction through a direct connection to's digital texts.


Saturday, March 15, 2008

Platinum Studios Presents The Comic Book Challenge 2008

Platinum Studios, Inc., an entertainment company that controls an international library of more than 3,800 comic book characters which it adapts, produces and licenses for all forms of media, announced today the launch of The Comic Book Challenge 2008 at The launch of the site will coincide with the release of Jorge Vega's 2007 winning title, Gunplay, at the Wizard World LA convention on March 15, 2008. Submissions for this year's contest officially will open at 12:01am on Thursday, May 1st, 2008 and close at 11:59pm on Saturday, May 31, 2008.

Changes to The Comic Book Challenge submission process are detailed on the contest website, but include the submission of three pages of artwork, instead of only the single page required in previous years. Aspiring comic book creators will have one month to submit their entries at An internal Platinum Studios committee will select the Top 50 entrants, who then will move on to pitch their ideas to a panel of celebrity and entertainment industry judges on July 24th during the 2008 Comic-Con International in San Diego, CA. The finalists chosen by the judging panel will then have their work voted on by fans across the globe, with the winner receiving a multitude of prizes including the coveted publishing deal.

The Comic Book Challenge 2008 winner will receive a publishing deal with Platinum Studios, which will include print, online, and mobile distribution. In addition, the company will help develop the property for film and television. The Comic Book Challenge past winners include DJ Coffman's “Hero By Night,” which sold out through Diamond Comics Distributors during its first print and is now an ongoing series in its second volume, and Jorge Vega's 2007 winning entry, “Gunplay,” which will debut at Wizard World LA this March.

Romance Fiction Igniting Electronic Publishing

Curled up in bed with a good romance book lately? Chances are in the future your "book" will be an electronic reader with a screen and your "romance" may have alternative endings -- or even full-color graphics and music as found in eBooks released by Maryland-based publisher

With the advent of the Sony "Reader Digital Book" and Amazon's "Kindle," readers now have the option of carrying around hundreds of books on a device no larger than a pocket book. And with romance publishers such as Harlequin, Ellora's Cave, and Samhain committed to loading titles on these devices, romance readers will never want for access to stories.

In the case of some of the publishers, such as Samhain and, the transition to the online reader is not a difficult one -- both offer their books almost exclusively electronically. And in the case of MyRomanceStory, illustrated graphic novellas enhance the readers' experience.

"There's something appealing about love scenes presented graphically, yet tastefully," remarks publisher, Patricia White.

Electronic publishers have long suffered from a dearth of big-name romance authors. With the crossover of well-known hard-copy authors, electronic publishers are no longer the stepchildren of the industry. Giant romance- fiction publisher Harlequin recently released erotic short stories exclusively in the eBook format.

"I believe in the ePublishing venue and what many of the publishers in that market are trying to do in the industry," explains bestselling author Lucy Monroe now available in eBooks.

Combining the romance novel with the graphic novel format is the latest intriguing entry into the market. The most prominent publisher in this arena is, a publisher "pushing the boundaries," according to Publishers Weekly.

Harlequin also releases some of its top romance authors in Manga.

"The advent of new technology always comes with some skepticism," says Lori James, CEO of All Romance eBooks. "People say that they enjoy holding a book. But at one point my father couldn't imagine giving up vinyl records in favor of CDs."

According to Media Post, web users spend 47% of their time online on content sites. reported that although eBooks accounted for less than 1% of the $24 billion US book market a year ago, romance fiction publishers are now uploading nearly all their books as soon as they are released. is the premier online romance graphic novel publisher.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

BookExpo America's Author Breakfast and Luncheon Program

BookExpo America (BEA) has announced its line up of authors who will be participating in the popular Author Breakfast and Saturday Luncheon program. BEA's speaker program is a convention highlight and brings attention to new books by accomplished writers from many fields of endeavor.

FRIDAY, May 30, 2008


Presented in cooperation with the Children's Booksellers and Publishers Committee [A cooperative committee of the American Booksellers Association (ABA), Association of Booksellers for Children (ABC), and the Children's Book Council (CBC)] this opening-day breakfast will feature Sherman Alexie, author of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers); Judy Blume, author of Going, Going, Gone! with the Pain and the Great One (Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers); and Neil Gaiman, author of The Graveyard Book (HarperCollins). Eoin Colfer, author of Artemis Fowl: The Time Paradox (Hyperion Books for Children/Disney Book Group) will be the Master of Ceremonies. Introductory Remarks by Jon Scieszka, National Ambassador for Young People's Literature. General Admission: $15. Breakfast Admission: $35.

SATURDAY, May 31, 2008


Saturday morning will feature Magic Johnson, author of Magic Moves: 32 Lessons on How to Be an All-Star in Business (Crown Business), Philippa Gregory, author of The Other Queen (Touchstone/Simon&Schuster), and Andre Dubus III, author of The Garden of Last Days: A Novel (W.W. Norton). Alec Baldwin, author of A Promise To Ourselves: A Journey Through Divorce and Fatherhood (St. Martin's Press) will be the Master of Ceremonies. General Admission: $15. Breakfast Admission: $35.


This year's lunch will, once again, focus on political and social issues and will feature Richard Engel, author of War Journal (Simon&Schuster), Markos Moulitsas Zuniga, author of Taking on the System: Rules for Radical Change in a Digital Era (Celebra), Jon Krakauer, author of The Hero (Doubleday), and Michael Moore, author of an as yet untitled work (Grand Central). Christopher Buckley, author of Supreme Courtship: A Novel (Twelve) will be the Master of Ceremonies. Admission $50.


Come hear Robert Crais, author of an Untitled Elvis Cole Novel (Brilliance Audio), T. Jefferson Parker, author of LA Outlaws (Brilliance Audio), and Michael Connelly, author of The Brass Verdict (Hachette Audio) talk about their recent and upcoming audiobooks and the experience of hearing their works translated into audiobook format. Hosted by the Audio Publishers Association. Admission $20.

SUNDAY, June 1, 2008

8:00AM – 9:30AM SUNDAY BOOK & AUTHOR BREAKFAST (Concourse Hall)

Sunday morning will feature Ted Turner, author (with Bill Burke) of Call Me Ted (Grand Central), Azar Nafisi, author of Things I've Been Silent About: A Memoir of Family (Random House), and Dennis Lehane, author of The Given Day (William Morrow). John Hodgman, author of More Information Than You Require (Dutton) will be the Master of Ceremonies. General Admission: $15. Breakfast Admission: $35.


Sunday, March 9, 2008

Self-Published Author Sees Her Book Come to Life in Lifetime Original Movie

It's every aspiring author's dream to see their work in print, but one creator of, the digital content marketplace, has taken this goal one step further. Creator Mary Herczog not only self-published her young adult novel Figures of Echo using Lulu, but she was able to watch her story come alive as a Lifetime original movie.

As a freelance writer and story analyst from Los Angeles, Herczog's self- publishing experience with Lulu was, quite literally, a dream come true. After dreaming the dual plotlines that would later become the basis for her novel, she wrote these ideas out and only to revisit and complete her story later in life. When Herczog sat down to finish the novel, she was able to write and publish Figures of Echo in just three weeks.

Figures of Echo is the story of an 11-year-old girl who lives with her widower-adopted father above his New York City bar. Echo is pleased when her father begins to date again only to find herself caught in a bind when her biological father wants to become part of her life for the first time.

The film adaptation of her story, Custody, starring Rob Morrow and James Denton of Desperate Housewives, first aired on Lifetime in September 2007 and continues to air due to popular demand. Meanwhile, Figures of Echo was chosen as the Best Teenage Novel in 2007 at the Do It Yourself Book Festival.

In addition to the fast nature of the Lulu publishing process, Herczog also enjoyed the control she had in creating her book. "I had a total say in how my book looked, and the contents and everything else. That kind of autonomy is unheard of in the publishing world," she said.

In her spare time, Herczog writes about food and her worldwide travels despite her 10-year battle with breast cancer. A freelance writer for Frommer's, she has published several travel guides including Frommer's New Orleans and Frommer's Las Vegas. Her travel adventures and other life experiences can be found at is the premier marketplace for digital content on the Internet, with over 320,000 recently published titles, and more than 5,000 new titles added each week, created by people in 80 different countries.


Top 10 Finalists for Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award

Ten finalists have been chosen from a pool of nearly 5,000 qualified writers in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award (ABNA), a contest in search of the next popular novel, sponsored by, Penguin Group (USA), and HP. From now through March 31, the public can go to and vote for their favorite work by reading, rating and reviewing excerpts of the Top 10 finalists' submissions. The winner of the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award will be unveiled in New York City on Monday, April 7, 2008 and will be awarded a publishing contract with Penguin Group (USA).

The Top 10 finalists and the titles of their respective novels, are (in alphabetical order):

-- Bad Things Happen by Harry Dolan, Ypsilanti, MI Mr. Dolan edits an academic journal by day but yearns to publish mysteries like his favorite authors Harlan Coben and Raymond Chandler.

-- The Butterflies of Grand Canyon by Margaret Erhart, Flagstaff, AZ Ms. Erhart teaches creative writing through the poetry of Pablo Neruda to middle schoolers on a Navajo reservation.

-- Casting Off by Nicole Dickson, Greensboro, NC Ms. Dickson completed her manuscript while commuting to and from her job at Macy's.

-- Fresh Kills by Bill Loehfelm, New Orleans, LA Mr. Loehfelm is a retired high school English teacher who currently bartends at night and writes by day.

-- The Hellraiser of the Hollywood Hills: A McAfee Twins Novel by Jennifer Colt, Santa Monica, CA Ms. Colt is a former screenwriter for Miramax.

-- Motherless Children by Randall Luce, Montgomery Village, MD Mr. Luce is a paralegal with an advanced degree in Anthropology, who based his manuscript on the deeply stirring research and interviews he had conducted while writing a thesis on social change in the Deep South.

-- The Prospect of My Arrival by Dwight Okita, Chicago, IL Mr. Okita works as an office manager for a non-profit in Chicago and is a playwright on the side.

-- Ring of Lies by Karen Laugel, Woodbridge, CT Ms. Laugel is a pediatrician who conceived her medical thriller after- hours.

-- The Wet Nurse's Tale by Erica Eisdorfer, Carrboro, NC Ms. Eisdorfer is the longtime manager of a college bookstore in North Carolina, whose historical novel was inspired by her literary heroes Charles Dickens and Jane Austen.

-- Wrecking Civilization Before Lunch by John Ring, Shawnee, KS Mr. Ring is a computer programmer who's been writing on the side for the past 20 years.

The 10 finalists' work represents a diverse range of genres, perspectives, themes and literary styles. Although the 10 writers come from across the country, they all share the common dream of having their manuscript chosen by Amazon customers as the Grand Prize winner on April 7 and having their novel subsequently published by Penguin Group (USA).

The grand prize winner of the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award will receive a publishing contract from Penguin Group (USA), which includes a $25,000 advance. In addition, HP will provide the winning author with an entertainment technology package that will include an HP 50-inch Plasma TV, Digital Entertainment Center, HP Pavilion Notebook, HP LaserJet All-in-One and HP Photosmart Digital camera. All runner-up finalists will be offered a "Total Design Freedom" BookSurge self-publishing package from Amazon worth $2,400.

Book Shows How Experts Can Write Books, Become Thoughtleaders

Experts regarded as top thoughtleaders have all written at least one book -- and while it takes work, it's nowhere near as hard as most people think, says Ken Lizotte, author of the new book, "The Expert's Edge: Become the Go-To Authority People Turn To Every Time" (McGraw Hill).

And you don't even need a publisher anymore.

"Writing a book is the pinnacle of thoughtleading. It separates you from the pack," says Lizotte, who's helped many experts publish books on topics ranging from leadership to investing to personal organization.

-- Write it yourself. "Forget about using a ghostwriter," writes the Concord, Mass.-based Lizotte. That's controversial advice, as it's coming from a successful ghostwriter. Just sit down, write and don't worry, he says. You don't need to be a great writer. Once you've gotten your ideas down on paper, a good editor can convert even a very rough draft into "solid, readable prose."

-- Publish it yourself. If you can find a commercial book publisher to publish your book, you're among the lucky few -- and Lizotte has placed several clients with top publishers. But most experts self-publish their books -- an option that's surprisingly attractive, thanks to new technology. A print-on-demand firm will not only print the book but also design it, register the copyright, place it with online booksellers like, provide royalty payments and arrange for it to be distributed to booksellers. But editing services aren't included, so you'll have to hire an editorial professional to make sure the book is error-free and reads cleanly.

Self-published books can get reviewed by book reviewers and their authors can secure interviews from print journalists and appear on radio and TV programs, Lizotte says. "Oprah won't book you, but you can get on local programs," he says.

Don't expect to make much money from your book directly. While the royalties probably won't amount to much, a book will pay big dividends for your business, practice or career.

"The real value is credibility. Nothing else builds your credibility as a thoughtleader like a book," he says.

More information about "The Expert's Edge" is online at

Self Published Book Achieves Top 1 Percent Sales Rank

A new book, "Artificial Imagination", self published by a previously unknown author, Kalpanik S. achieved top 1% Sales rank on Amazon's Kindle store on February 21, 2008, proving how digital publishing is empowering the talented individual writers to achieve top sales positions. It achieved a sales rank on Kindle was 904 among 107,275 books available in the kindle store.

The book achieved number 1 position under the "Photo Essays" and "Travel (US, west)" categories and number 7 position under "Action and adventure" category on Amazon's kindle book store.

"I am very pleased to see my book reach the top Sales ranks," said author Kalpanik S. "I decided to use self publishing because I wanted to focus my time and energy on writing, not on trying to contact book agents and publishers. Amazon's digital publishing platform Kindle has allowed me to do so".

Kindle is a new reading device developed and sold by with a revolutionary display technology which makes reading a kindle as natural as reading ink on paper. It also uses advanced wireless technology to deliver content to the Kindle users within minutes of selecting them.

The story is written with a very entertaining tone and is infused with splashes of humor, wit and is able to capture the excitement and thrill of author's roller coaster ride through Silicon Valley and Seattle's Hi-Tech world, while also capturing California, Washington and Tennessee natural and scenic beauty using professional grade photographs.

"Under the guise of an AI creative-writing program, Kalpanik S. takes us with him on his journey through time, space and shares his multiple identities: a technology whiz kid, an immigrant, a husband, a father of two lovely daughters, and simply a human being trying to understand his place in the world," said Will Curl, Ph.D., Lecturer in English at University of Wisconsin. "The details of his unique life are rendered beautifully, poetically."

The kindle and the print versions of the book can be purchased at

Author's website:

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Author Captures Realism in New Thriller

Many times, J. C. (John) Hager sat down at his computer after dinner to work on his new novel, Hunter's Choice, intending to write for a few hours. As dawn approached, he would finally pull himself back from the world he had created and wonder where the hours had gone. Thinking back on those long nights that passed so quickly, he says, "The characters and plot in your head just seem to flow out onto the keyboard and the screen. It is magic and, at times, surreal."

Writing had always been one of Hager's life goals, but one that career pressures had kept simmering on the back burner. The idea for a novel rumbled around in his mind for 30 years so, after retiring from IBM, he decided to pursue that goal. A native of Michigan's Upper Peninsula, avid outdoorsman, and experience hunter and skin diver, Hager naturally incorporated those elements into Hunter's Choice, a riveting thriller that catapults the reader from cold north woods to warm Caribbean seas. To ensure realism, he researched such disparate esoterica as how to cut up a plane on an icy lake, operate a 54-foot Hatteras yacht, find and buy mortars, deal with drug dealers, and hide from radar in an open boat. Hager also strove for accurate descriptions of exotic Caribbean locales. He discovered that "researching a book means you have to know ten times more than you write," a revelation that led to deleting scenes and entire chapters, to improve the story's pacing, en route to the final edited manuscript.

Hunter's Choice centers on finding something valuable and wrestling with whether to return it. If it is valuable only through illegal channels, then what? What if returning it gets you in trouble, but going to the law can lose you another treasure -- a woman you love? The protagonist, Matt Hunter, has to deal with killer storms, murderous gangsters, DEA bureaucracy, and his love for this seductive woman, while pitting all his skill and judgment against people who would just as soon see him dead.


Saturday, March 1, 2008

Free Teleseminar: Fast and Furious Book Promotion

Self-publishing expert Philip Davis of will host an upcoming Virtual Book Tour about his new book, "Fast and Furious Book Promotion."

"Fast and Furious Book Promotion" shows authors how to dynamically and successfully promote their books online -- using blogs, articles, press releases, social networking and many other tools. With Daviss fail-safe system, any author can learn how to publish a book and reach ultimate success in promoting their project. Davis takes you through the process of building your book promotion plan, with all the necessary tips and tools authors need today to get the word out about their books.

Participants on this Teleseminar can gain the insight of Daviss expertise in self-publishing and promotion, as he takes your questions on how to publish, promote, and profit from your book in this digital age. Learn how and why online promotion is essential to your books success, as well as the most important promotional activities to help you attain your goal. Find out more about how self-publishing can be an excellent career boost for any writer - a viable medium which allows authors to publish with freedom of choice. Representation by established mainstream publishers is no longer the only path to literary success in todays electronically-driven world.

This Teleseminar kicks off the Virtual Book Tour for "Fast and Furious Book Promotion." Davis will travel the blogosphere answering your questions and giving tips for individual success.

For registration and information on the Teleseminar go to There is no cost for joining this call, but spots are limited.

New Author-Friendly Do-It-Yourself Publishing

What if there was a way for authors to get their books published and easily distributed to readers worldwide? And what if authors were actually in charge of all decisions and received the highest net returns in the do-it-yourself (DIY) publishing industry? Wordclay and BookCrossing have joined forces to make this vision a reality with AuthorCrossing (, where authors come first.

The partnership of Wordclay (, the DIY publishing imprint of Author Solutions, Inc., and BookCrossing ( ), the leader in book social networking, is a natural fit. Nearly 15 percent of the BookCrossing community, which includes more than one million people in some 140 countries, are authors as well as readers. AuthorCrossing offers the resources of both companies to all those authors worldwide.

BookCrossing members and non-members will be able to start their journey at the BookCrossing site located at, which offers a step-by-step process for authors to get their works published. The same location includes features for members and non-members to rate, review, comment on and purchase books, giving these authors an instant online distribution channel and a way to promote their books to a worldwide community of published writers and book lovers.

Beyond creating the book, the partnership also offers distribution services, making books accessible via thousands of retail outlets such as, Barnes & Noble and Borders. Publishing through Wordclay allows authors to have complete control over the content and design of their books. In addition, authors retain all rights to their work, a rarity in the self-publishing world.

AuthorHouse and Partner to Help Writers Publish Their Books

AuthorHouse, which has helped nearly 50,000 authors self- publish their books, has partnered with, the leading social networking community for adults. The partnership was formed to encourage members of the community to publish a book ( at a reasonable price.

"After thousands of manuscripts were submitted for the various writing contests we've held, we knew we had to do something to help these unknown writers in their quest to become published authors," said Tom Gerace, CEO of "We're delighted to provide them with the tools they need to self- publish and promote a book."

AuthorHouse and formed a special Gather Community Press imprint, under which all self-published books through this partnership will be printed. Each participating author will receive one complimentary copy of their work and a total of five copies of their work when a $99 package is purchased. AuthorHouse lets all authors have complete control over the content and look of their book, in addition to allowing them to retain all rights to their work.

"At AuthorHouse, we believe every author should have the ability to put their story into print," said Dave McCauley, AuthorHouse vice president. "Whether they want to publish a nonfiction book on a topic which they're passionate about, a cookbook of family recipes, or a collection of poetry they've written, we give them all of the tools they need to put their work into a professional-looking book that can be promoted and sold."

AuthorHouse and will also assist these unknown authors in the promotion of their books to the Gather community. For each book published through this partnership, will set up an online group - a dedicated Web page with a professional banner advertising the book and information on the title, its author, and reviews, as a way to publicize the book to the community.