Why Writers and Publishes Need To Create Viral Content and Not Book Trailers

Book trailers, what are they trailing and where are readers meant to encounter? Is there a TV channel, that I don’t get, putting out book trailers between repeats of Q.I? People want interesting content not just to see but also to share. Continue reading

5 Editing Tips for Writers with Dyslexia

Editing is difficult for every writer but having a part of your brain block some mistakes from view, confuse you about systems of grammar or struggle to maintain concentration makes editing even harder for people with learning difficulties. While my editing is not always perfect, I have developed a few techniques to remove many of the mistakes I used to make. Continue reading

Why Titles Still Matter In An Ebook Age

When it comes to ideas, names can be powerful things. As a writer, ideas will pop in to your head and you will move them around but once they have a title they are yours: you owe them something. Yet, with the proliferation of eReaders, titles are seen less by readers. Rather than the constant view of the book cover, readers have their Kindle sitting on the table in front them. However, this distancing of the reader and the title of your novel does not mean you should underestimate it. Continue reading

Why Cherry Blossom Clichés Make Me Want To Scream

It’s cherry blossom season here in Japan and that means one thing: an abundance of clichés. Yes, blogs, newspapers and magazines will try to link the tired idea of cherry blossom being a new beginning, and a sad good bye, to any news story they can. Like all clichés it’s meaning has been anesthetised by overuse. Continue reading

How A Blog Helped Me Realise What I Thought About Suffering and Art

A.L Kennedy has one of the best blogs on writing I have found, and it is sad that she has been unable to write many over the last year. In the blog, she talks about writers who spend more time moping and wallowing than writing. I wish I could send this to myself ten years ago. In my early twenties, I fell into the trap of believing that art came from suffering as opposed to focus and dedication. Continue reading

Why The Pottermore Deal Says More About Facebook Than Amazon

Over the last week, posts about the importance of the Potter/Amazon deal have been dominating every site and newspaper with any interest in publishing. Some think it is important, a few think it isn’t, but what everyone agrees on is that it may or may not affect the publishing industry. During this whole back and forth and constant likening to the Beatles/iTunes deal – which by the way took a lot longer and had far more widespread ramifications – people seem to have all but missed the most important question: why? Continue reading

Why The Bleak Future For Japanese Publishers Could Lead To A Bright One For Japanese Video Games

The industry is refusing to embrace ebooks due to fears of piracy and a lack of a cohesive business model. This situation affects other industries as well with a lack of quality titles, via Sony’s ebook store, hampering Sony’s otherwise fantastic eReaders. For an industry, which publishes an estimated 70,000 books a year, the future looks uncertain. Japanese writers are growing concerned and looking at other media opportunities. The potential exodus of writers could be a blessing for the video games industry, if they act. Continue reading

Why Google’s New Spell Checker Is a Boon for Writers

A few weeks ago, I talked about the need for a new type of grammar checker, and how I hoped Google would attempt to fix a twenty-old problem. Well the time has arrived - kind of. Google has announced it is incorporating its contextual spell checking system in to Google Docs. Until now, Google Docs has been nothing but a quick way for me to view my files online but this might drag me away from my offline word processor. Continue reading

Does Interactive Storytelling Have A Future Or Is It Destined To Be A Niche?

Every few years the words interactive storytelling or interactive movies starts cascading through discussions of narrative. Often the words make me shriek as I remember awful games such as Night Trap but some interesting tools are making it easier for people to create their own interactive stories. Continue reading