(55 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

I don't usually comment on the forums, but here goes. I see the Shred group as a transition group. Let Newbies get critique, edit their work, develop a thicker skin, then give the shred group a try. I think it might be a nice place for second/third drafts.


(10 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Hi Christine, and welcome to the site. I hope you like it here. You'll find lots of help in all areas. I look forward to reading your work.


(3 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Thanks, JP...now get busy!
Bill, the info is on the way to you!

Thanks so much.~Ann

If you'd like me to promote your book on my blog, please contact me offline at ann.everett@rocketmail.com   I do a feature on Friday's called Five on Friday where you answer five questions (mostly not about writing) so my readers can get to know you better. The blog link is posted to FB, Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, and Goodreads. ~Thanks, Ann

BIG congrats! Now the real work begins. Marketing the darn thing!!

You know my story. First went with a small press, then self-published all of my books except the Kindle Scout winner. I'll be happy to answer any questions.



(24 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

corra wrote:

Thanks Ann and Alan! Ann, what do you blog about? Alan, do you find that you are at a disadvantage since you're not on social media in each of your genres? (I vaguely recall you mentioning recently that you'd started a blog?)

Dill, your feedback wins today's merit badge. http://www.pic4ever.com/images/245.gif

I do a weekly feature on my blog called Five on Friday where I have an author answer 5 questions (they choose from a list) and also promote their book/books on the same blog. If you do decide to blog, the main thing is to be consistant. Just a random post now and then won't do any good. I get more followers on FB, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest through that feature because I share it on all my social media...which brings people to my site. I also post a snarky cartoon/quote once a day on Fb and Twitter...although I've missed about 5 days now because of life getting too busy. Since I've started doing that, in 6 weeks, my Twitter followers doubled.
To get authors to participate, I simply post an invitation on a couple of groups I belong to and here on this site. I can fill every Friday for 6 months within a couple of days!! Authors are always looking for places to promote their books. In return, those authors I feature will invite me to their blogs for a feature of my books! That's why I say it's all about the connections you make. It does take work and time because I have to set the blog up and load the images. But, I put each blog in draft form as soon as I get it, mark it on my calendar that it is in draft, then on the day of the blog, all I have to do is hit publish and then share on social media. It takes me about 45 min. to an hour to set up each blog.



(24 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

I do just about everything other than Instagram. I have an account but have never posted so I don't list it on my website. Yes, it helps to do social media and blog if for no other reason than to get your name out there and make contacts. Many of the authors/readers you develop a cyber relationship with, will be helpful to you in many ways. They'll share info about conferences, specials, references, changes in marketing, etc. They'll also be willing to feature your book/books on their websites at times.
It is a lot of work and time consuming but if you want your books found and promoted, it's necessary. I spend more time marketing (which is what social media really is) than writing. I hate it. Really I do. But to gain any measure of success (barring a one time mention by some famous person or blogger) social media is a must.

Norm d'Plume wrote:

My compulsive disorder would drive me to shoot for 4000. :-)

I never pay attention to the point count. Until this post came up, I don't remember the last time I even glanced at it. I racked that number up the first year I was a member here while reading more than writing. I've gone down a lot in the number of novels I read. And, I've gotten in the habit of reading just a lot of first chapters. Without the pressure of remaining on the top ten reviewer list, I can relax and just read when I feel like it! If Sol ever decides to put that list back in place, I'll be burning the midnight oil again to stay on it!
Now days, I only read about 6-8 novels. But when I started here, I only had one book. Currently, I'm working on my 12th, so I don't have the time to read much anymore.

Congratulations! I didn't read your book, but I do like the cover. Octagon Lab did three mystery covers for me and I was pleased with his work.
Best of luck! I hope you sell a GA-zillion!


(13 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Thanks for the compliment, Dags. I appreciate it.  One book I think every writer should have is  The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer's Guide to Character Expression. Best selling authors, Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi cover everything between Adoration to Worry. They list physical expressions, internal sensations, mental responses, cues of long term and suppressed expressions of each emotion. I use the reference all the time. It isn't just for facial expression but includes the whole body's reaction.

Oh, Sherry. One thing I did notice. You don't have any profile info. It might help if you added a bit about yourself. I know when I read, I like to get an idea about the person. Like where they're from and how long they've been writing or just some silly something that lets me see the type person they are. That's just a suggestion.

Some reviewers only review first chapters. I do that a lot. Mainly because no matter how good the writer, the story might not be a genre I like, so I don't want to commit. I usually tell those authors NOT to read my work because I can't promise to keep reading theirs. Of course, if they do, then I keep reading theirs because guilt gets the best of me! When I first joined the site, back in the dark ages, I read as many as 35 novels at one time. That was before I had any books published. Once you publish, you spend a lot of time marketing, blogging, on social media, doing book events, and in some cases, like mine, speaking.
It seems members just don't have the time they used to have. When I posted a story, I'd start with maybe 20-25 reviews of the first chapter. By chapter 4, that amount would dwindle to maybe 15. Then by chapter 10, I'd have maybe 6-8 regular readers who'd stay with the book until the end. If you get that many, then that's about normal.
For me, it isn't the point incentive. Like so many others who have been members a while, I have more points than I'll ever use. It's simply that new members join all the time and some of us older folks like to help them out by reading their work. It's a time constraint. It isn't anything you are doing wrong.
Heck, if you can get just a few good reviewers, then you're in good shape. In addition to being a member here, I also belong to a local group where I read my work and get critique. I suggest you do that if you have a group in your area.
Also, some of us are slow to read. So you may still get readers who started your story to come back later. Sometimes, like you say, life gets in the way, and we have to neglect the site for a while.
Hang in there. ~Ann


(13 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)


Why can't you just edit the chapter content? Delete the content of chapter 26 and then copy and paste in the correct chapter content. Do the same with the other chapter. No need to worry about the numbers just change the content.


(3 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Thank goodness I never let anyone read the first thing I wrote!! I should probably destroy it before I die so none of my relatives find it!!

Y'all are too funny! In my local critique group, there is a husband/wife writing team and they publish at least two books a year. I tell them all of the time how envious I am they both write! My husband doesn't have a writer's bone in his body. I've often wondered how it would be to write with someone else. One of my favorite authors, Jennifer Cruise writes with Bob Mayer. She writes the "love" part, and he writes the action. I love their books!
However, I doubt I'd be much of a partner. I struggle to get one book a year written!


(23 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

BIG congratulations to all the winners!!


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Give it a few days. My new one took some time before it changed.


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Welcome, Karen.
Ditto to everything Marilyn said!!


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I could almost say Amen to everything Marilyn said. However, I like total silence when I write, and I like to be alone, which is hard since my husband is retired. He does his best to leave me alone, but just knowing any moment he can step to the door to ask me something, keeps me from writing most of the time. Like Marilyn, my characters are always in my head. My bed gets really crowded most nights!! I also like to have a title first and always have except for one book. I had a working title but didn't decide on a final until that book was finished. Even ran a contest to name it. Many times, I'll come up with one scene I intend to put in the book that will include the title, usually in dialogue. Like one of my characters said to the other...Say You'll Never Love Me...that was the title. One said, Tell Me a Secret, something you've never told anyone else...Tell Me a Secret was the title. That title pivotal scene may not occur until late in the book, but it reveals the title. In my latest book, Chirp, that title came from the first scene I wrote in my head, which didn't happen until chapter 16 in the book. Turns out, readers loved the reason behind the title! I was so glad because it is my most favorite scene I've ever written.


(7 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Later today I will review your short story. I agree with Marilyn. You need to post your work so readers can get points for their efforts. Like Marilyn, I have more points than I'll ever use, so I read regardless. But...most members need the points to post their work.

Welcome to the site. I hope you like it here.


(21 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

I especially like After Nightfall. I also like...Comes the Night, Darkness Descends, Poisoned Heart, Heart of Stone, ...titles are hard. Luckily, I usually have a title before I start a story. Usually. With one, I had to have help. Dags, here on the site came up with it. Tied With a Bow and No Place to Go. It's a humorous mystery. So like me,  you may just get a suggestion that will work! Good luck.


(9 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Thanks to all for such kind remarks!
And, BIG Texas thanks to Randy for sharing his book with my readers.

You know I'm in! :+)


(11 replies, posted in TheNextBigWriter Premium)

Thank you! I did that on a whim. When I first started speaking at conferences and workshops, I used to hand out the list of verbs for "said" and attendees just thought that was the greatest thing ever, so I decided to write the book. Believe it or not, it sells copies every single day! (It's a big seller in India) It stayed on the Amazon's best seller list for 8 months without any promotion.  I was shocked. Still am at well it does.
I'm so glad it has helped you. That makes my day!!