Media Resources for Authors

Litigation free photos, online media tools and other goodies for indie authors and DIY traditional authors.

 

Guest Post by S.E. White

This author online thing can be both the highest obstacle in your path and the biggest blessing you will find.

Writing blog posts? Easier than finding beautiful images to grace them with that won’t then get you sued six ways from Sunday.

Getting 80,000 words + down as a book? Seems like a breeze when you compare it to figuring out how to market that sucker with professional looking images and a great cover.

One of the reasons I’m going to try so hard to get traditionally published before considering self-publishing is my lack of confidence in the media area. Computers and I have an uneasy alliance. My go-to tech support method when the computer is being an asshole is to turn it off and make it think about what it’s done for a while. When that doesn’t work, I am lost at sea. I tell you this to make sure you know that if I can use these websites I’m about to list for you, then you know they are user friendly.

In my wanderings around the webnet I have found resources for images, media/marketing, and Ebook covers that look amazing at a reasonable price. I’d like to share them with you here so that you can get your own book out there covered in chrome plating.

Freesource Stock Photo Websites

Some of these are free of copyright and/or are creative commons public domain and require nothing but pointing and clicking. Some of them ask that you give the source credit (i.e. attribution.) ALWAYS double check the fine print before you go downloading all willy-nilly.

For the rest of this post, please visit S.E. White’s blog.

Guest blog by S.E. White. All opinions and recommendations are hers alone and not necessarily those of the LVRW or RWA. If you want to know more about S.E. White, you can find her and her books here

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Writing a Query Letter–Part 2

How to write The Hook in your query letter

Guest Post by S.E. White

On to the next part! Are you having fun yet? For part 1 of the series: Writing the salutation, go here.

I’m not 100% certain where the catchy phrase “the Hook, the Book and the Cook” came from, but it’s a familiar one to people writing query letters. One of the earliest articles I found with this phrase was written by Michael Larson (find it here), so I’ll give tentative credit to him. If you know the origins of this querying advice, please do let me know!

There are different ways to write a query letter, and I’m sure more will be added as Hook, Book, Cook becomes old-school. For now this seems to be the way to go, so it’s the way this series will tell you how to write a query letter.

All queries contain the hook into the story, the basics of the book, and the cook who made it (that’s you.)

Let’s dive into The Hook

Some advice you’ll find online says to start out your query letters with personalized stuff about the agent. “According to your profile/ms wishlist/twitter you’re looking for [books] in [genre]” or “After seeing that you love [this thing] on twitter, I have a story I think you will really enjoy” are two examples of this, although the ways to do it are endless.

For the rest of this article, go to S.E. White’s blog here.

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Who Do You Want to Hang Out With?

Guest Post by Elizabeth Spaur

My first post for the blog was about my first book boyfriend. Ahh, Beric Dane, how I loved him so. As much as I love my book boyfriends, I also love books that are full of secondary characters that make me want to visit the world again, and again.  They are the books that build a community filled with vividly painted families and friends who help the hero and heroine tell their story and entertain the reader along the way. Who hasn’t read Kristen Ashley and wished they could hang out at Fortnum’s and meet the rock chicks? If you’ve read Julia Quinn I bet you wished you could be friends with any one (likely all) of the Bridgertons. Thanks to Carrie Ann Ryan, I wish I could get my next tattoo at Montgomery Ink.  Because of Kathleen Brooks I want to go to Keeneston, Kentucky and hang out with…well everyone.  I think one of the hallmarks of a great romance isn’t just the joy a reader experiences when the hero and heroine get their happily ever after, it’s also leaving the reader with the feeling that they’ve made new friends in that wonderful world and they can’t wait to go back.  I could spend the rest of the day talking about the books that made me wish I could step between the pages and meet all the wonderful, funny, amazing characters inside and hang out with them for a little while.  Who would you visit if you could?

For more about Elizabeth Spaur, her books and her blog, go here.

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Starting the Next Book

Starting the Next Book

guest post by Angela Forister

Writing a book isn’t something you just sit down one day and do. Well, maybe some authors did that, but not me. There was a huge learning curve. First, I had to learn the elements of a good story and how to manipulate them. Then there was character development. It’s unbelievable what goes into that; it’s a lot more than name and eye color. Each character has to have a wound, and motivation, plus a thousand other things. They’re supposed to feel real to the reader, so they have to be well-rounded and, well, real.

Once you have some characters, what do they do? How do they interact? What happens? I really hate this part. For me, figuring out what happens is like pulling teeth. But once it’s done, then you have to have the skill and knowledge translate it all into the written word. Words can be powerful. They can convey enormous emotion and drive compelling stories that you can’t put down. They can also be so incredibly boring that you’d rather go  wash your baseboards.

A writer has to juggle all these things, plus a million more.

Continue reading on Angela’s blog.

 

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Do You Remember Your First Book Boyfriend?

Guest Post by Elizabeth Spaur

This was the very first romance novel I ever read. His name was Beric Dane and he was a commercial pilot. He fell in love with a stewardess named Lyn Maxwell. One day customs found heroine in Lyn’s bags, and she was sent to prison for 3 years. He believed she was guilty, and tried to move on with his life. She thought he framed her, and vowed revenge.  Boy did she get it!

Like most first loves, today, a decade or two (or more) after we parted, I view Beric through the rosy lens of sentiment.  For awhile, no one could compare to him. Sure, there have been others since Beric. But he will always be my first. The first hero that jumped off the page and made me want to be the woman he wanted to be with forever.

I have lost count of the book boyfriends I have found since I read Beric and Lyn’s story. Some I have, admittedly, loved more than Beric. But, Beric Dane will always be my very first book boyfriend, and because he was, he will always have a special place in this reader’s heart.

So, do you remember your fist book boyfriend?

Elizabeth Spaur is the author of Miss Atomic Bomb 1953, a novella in the Decades of Love anthology. You can find out more about her and her books here.

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