Tip: you don’t need to know your story, or your plot , to start writing. They can develop as you write.
You just need a character, and a situation. For example, Cinderella is a good, sweet and kind girl with nasty relatives, who wants to go to the prince’s ball. Over the centuries, authors have created many variations on the basic story of Cinderella.
(If you’re ever desperate for a story, you can try a variation of the Cinderella tale, or any other tale you choose.)
Wondering how much indie authors make from their ebooks?
Romance author Brenda Hiatt has published another indie author earnings report. Some 227 authors responded to her survey. You couldn’t call it a representative survey of the many thousands of Kindle authors, of course. The number of authors surveyed is too low. And obviously authors had to be aware of the survey, and be willing to share their results, even anonymously.
You want to write short stories, or you’re already writing them. Short fiction is huge fun to write, because by definition, it’s SHORT. You tell your story quickly; there’s no room to waffle on. This can be a challenge, if you’re anything like me. I enjoy waffling on… you can tell, can’t you?
Wants, needs and desires equal conflict, if your story character wants what he wants and is prepared to fight for it. (Passive characters are boring; avoid them.)
What would you fight for? Your life, certainly. Check out Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Our primal needs are physiological — food and water, and after that, we need safety. Our next basic need is the need to love, and the need to belong.
Maslow’s pyramid is useful if you find that you’ve got an idea for a story, but it doesn’t fire your imagination. Look at the three sections of the bottom of the pyramid. Threaten your character with losing his life, his home, or someone he loves, and your story will immediately become more powerful.
Your Kindle short fiction blueprint: a four-week class
Over the past few months, I’ve been tinkering with my Kindle short fiction publishing, and working with several other writers. We’ve developed a blueprint which works across genres. Our new online class gives you that blueprint. You’ll write, and sell, using a plan which works.
What changed? KU. Readers enjoy snackable fiction, as long as it’s free, or close to free. If you can write short stories in popular genres, and enroll them in KDP Select, so that they’re available to KU subscribers, you’ll make sales. Real sales, as well as your share of Amazon’s fund.
Yes, your short story sales are in addition to your share of the KDP Select Global Fund, which is the pot of funds by which Amazon pays you for free reads. Amazon pays you for free reads, as long as a reader reads more than 10% of an ebook. It’s easy for readers to hit the 10% mark in a short story, or novella, even if they don’t finish the ebook.
Emotions arise from our hopes, fears and expectations. They arise from our thinking — from our system of beliefs. Some of our beliefs are conscious. Others are internalized. Internalized beliefs are so much a part of us, that we can’t see them, and therefore we can’t challenge them.
Our unconsciously held beliefs govern our actions. Think about your characters. What unconscious beliefs govern their actions? We’ve talked about character flaws. You can go much deeper into a character when you build his flaw on an unconscious belief. Over the course of your story, that unconscious belief becomes conscious, and your character decides to change.
Discover how you can self-publish both fiction and nonfiction on Amazon, and on the other ebook retailers. Writing ebooks isn’t like writing for print. Your ebooks can be short. Publish regularly, and you’re building your success as a self-publisher.
It’s all about search engine optimization (SEO), and copywriting, when you launch your new blog
It starts and ends with the basics. If you don’t get the basics right, you’re missing out on sales, because your readers won’t find you. Themes and plugins are immaterial. You can change them quickly and easily. What you cannot change, either quickly or easily, is the first impression that you make on Google and on the other search engines.
Nice characters are annoying to readers, who promptly stop reading. So you know that you need to make your perfect characters less perfect, because no one’s perfect.
You love your characters, however, and you don’t want them to look like nasty people. You give them silly little faults, which end up being humblebrags: “Samantha’s new Christian Louboutins hurt her feet, but she wore them anyway.”
You justify this to yourself. Vanity’s a flaw, isn’t it? Yes it is. As long as the character’s vanity has a purpose in your story. If you’re writing Samantha as a ditzy bitch who uses her looks to advance her career, you’re doing well. Kudos.
Readers of fiction read genres, even if they’re totally unaware of what a genre might be. Basically, genre is simply a category. Readers read in a genre because they want entertainment of a specific kind.
E. L. James introduced millions of readers to erotica, for example. Four years ago, with the publication of Fifty Shades of Grey, she made erotica a hot genre. It remains hot today. Thousands of authors are publishing erotica, and making money, thanks to Fifty Shades of Grey.
Years ago I read somewhere that it takes 11 minutes to change a mind-state. That stuck with me. One day, before heading out for my walk, I focused on my mental chatter: I hate exercise, I have so much I should be doing, I don’t have time… kvetch, kevetch… OK: mind-state — resistant and resentful.
I looked at my watch.
11 minutes? Let’s see. Would my mind-state change?