Author Archives: Ben Sobieck

Take Back Your Lunch Hour

In this excerpt from Chapter 4: Writers, Take Back Your Lunch Hour from Áine Greaney’s Writer With a Day Job, you’ll learn:
  • how to make your lunch hour work for you
  • the ...

Writer With a Day Job

In Writer With a Day Job by Áine Greaney

  • Learn how to balance a day job and a writing life
  • Find exercises, inspiration, and techniques you need...

Announcing the Best Agent Blogs of 2011…

Every year, Writer’s Digest puts out its amazing brainbomb of information called “The 101 Best Websites For Writers.” It’s in the May/June 2011 issue this year. (By the way, if you’re not subscribed to WD yet, what are you waiting for? Sign up here.) My contribution to the list of 101...

My E-Book Production Process

Over at Christina Katz’s blog, I offer an inside look at how I produced my e-book, The Future of Publishing. Here’s a snippet: Writing an e-book that is high-enough quality to charge money for is not an easy undertaking. You must have had some concerns at the outset. Would you be...

Your Most Embarrassing Moment As a Writer (Part 2)

If you enjoyed my embarrassing story from last week, here’s another one. I was taking one of my very first trips to New York City, to meet with literary agents, in my early years as an acquisitions editor at F+W Media. One of the meetings involved dinner at an upscale Asian...

Best Tweets for Writers (week ending 4/8/11)

I watch Twitter, so you don’t have to. Visit each Sunday for the week’s best Tweets. If I missed a great Tweet, leave it in the comments. Best of the Best What Grabs Readers versus What Keeps Them @cerebralgrump Thinking of self-e-publishing? 3 questions to ask first@annerallen Elements of a Successful...

Organizing a Writers Workshop: Pre-Publicity (Part 1)

Today’s guest post is by NO RULES regular Susan Cushman, director of the 2011 Memphis Creative Nonfiction Workshop. Pictured above: Three participants at the Yoknapatawpha Summer Writers Workshop in Oxford last June. L to R: Karen Rasberry, Gretchen Hargroder and Oxana Ribacova. — Last November I was one of three co-directors...

What's Your Most Embarrassing Moment As a Writer?

Let’s face it: We all make mistakes. But the best writers learn from them, rise above them and even find ways to transform them into happy accidents. What embarrassing moment have you overcome to become a better writer? Here’s a story about MY most embarrassing moment! Whether your story is funny,...

Registration Time

I can’t believe it, but it’s already time to register for fall classes. And I can’t believe it even more that after this summer, I won’t have anymore classes to register for. This summer, I’m taking my final fiction writing seminar in Florence, and next year it’s just a matter of...

Get Started With Your Own Website or Blog

If you’re serious about your career as an author, you need a website. And the sooner you get one going, the better. Why? The most important reason: There’s a learning curve. You don’t want to be scrambling to put together a site when your book releases, or when you have an...

3 Barriers You Must Eliminate to Maximize E-Book Sales

You have to be where the people are: That’s the first lesson I learned from releasing my e-book. To be sure, it’s something I already knew—but the friction of any purchase is made VERY obvious when readers encounter the following barriers. 3 Barriers You Must Eliminate to Maximize E-Book Sales An...

Future of Publishing Round Up

Okay, this is the last dedicated round-up (at least for a while) on the future of publishing! My interview with Writer Unboxed on the future of publishing My interview with The Writer Mama on the future of publishing Virtual Davis summarizes Web response to my thoughts on the future of publishing...

Best Tweets for Writers (week ending 4/1/11)

I watch Twitter, so you don’t have to. Visit each Sunday for the week’s best Tweets. If I missed a great Tweet, leave it in the comments. First, check out these live, online classes from Writer’s Digest: 5 Essential Components of a Strong Author Website — presented by yours truly, on...

70% of Books Used to Fend Off Zombies

My predictions in The Future of Publishing (which releases today!) leave no stone unturned. For example, here is a graph illustrating what people of the future do with their old books: Would you like more predictions? Check out the 39-page book, just $1.99. You might also like:No Related Posts

The Future of Publishing: Enigma Variations

Today marks the long-anticipated release of The Future of Publishing: Enigma Variations! It is now available as an e-book (PDF only) for $1.99. It’s packed with 39 pages of juicy predictions. To get a taste of what’s in store, read this Q&A I did with Christina Katz on the future of...

Can the Short Story Survive?

Matt Lapata wrestles with declining readership of the short story, and what can be done to keep the genre vibrant, in the latest Glimmer Train Bulletin. Here’s a little bit of what he had to say: If the [short story] is to survive (and I don’t have space to say why...

Stopping the Block

Does writer’s block exist? I tell my students, when they don’t want to do a creative writing assignment and use writer’s block as an excuse, that you can always write something. That even the term “writer’s block” is just a phrase made up by the procrastinators. But that’s my duty as...

How to Get Reviews for Self-Published Books

Today’s guest post is by Joel Friedlander, one of the most informative people I know on the topic of self-publishing a book. Go visit his blog, or follow him on Twitter. — It’s never been a better time to be a self-published author, and there have never been more book reviewers...

How to Start a Professional Newsletter for Free

Last year, I talked about why authors need to start building an e-mail list … NOW. Even though it may sound antiquated in light of other tools available, e-mail is still one of the most effective ways to reach and engage with readers. (One exception: It’s not so great at reaching...

10 Steps to Secure Your WordPress Blog From Hackers

Today’s guest post is from Triona Guidry, a computer consultant and freelance writer in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. Her blog offers tech support for Windows and Mac, security alerts, and advice on blogs and social media. — Writers depend on blogs to promote their work, interact with readers, and attract...

Best Tweets on Break (Enigma!)

Best Tweets is on break this week so that I can focus on The Future of Publishing: Enigma Variations, releasing this Friday, April 1. It’s an e-book exclusive that will be available for $1.99 through Scribd and the Google eBookstore. I’m also preparing to teach an April 7 online class with...

The Discontented Writer

I think it was in high school British Lit class, when I was learning about the Romantic poets—Keats and Shelley and Byron and that whole crew, that I began to develop my belief that writers are fragile, delicate artists—prone to substance abuse and crying jags, passionate, doomed love affairs, more susceptible...

The Future of Self-Publishing

There are many predictions about the future of publishing (I’ll be making my own on April 1), but I haven’t seen many about the future of SELF-publishing. This month at Writer Unboxed, I tackle the issue: The Future of Self-Publishing Services I predict that self-publishing will become essentially “free,” since e-books...