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The First Line Literary Journal: It all starts the same but.... CHART OF THE DAY: Nobody Wants To Buy Magazines Anymore Magazine newsstand sales plummeted 9% in the second half of the year compared to last year. Certain popular titles like Newsweek, Time, and W took it particularly hard, losing more than 30% of newsstand sales. While these sales aren't make-or-break for magazines, they are profitable, according to the New York Times. This decline in sales explains, in part, why media companies are praying at the altar of the iPad and other tablets. We'll believe it when we see it. Story Questionnaire – The Script Lab 1. Who is your main character? Hero? 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46. 47. 48. 49. 50. 51. 52. 53. 54. 55. 56. 57. 58. 59. 60. 61. 62. 63. 64. 65. 66. 67. 68. 69. 70. 71. 72. 73. 74. 75. 76. 77. 78. 79. 80. 81. 82. 83. 84. 85. 86. 87. 88. 89. 90. 91. 92. 93. 94. 95. 96. 97. 98. 99. 100.

CHART OF THE DAY: Magazines' Winners And Losers In Ad Revenue The magazine industry had a rough year, losing an average of 17.5% of its ad dollars from 2008 to 2009, according to data released by the Magazine Publishers of America. We broke down the chart to the most recognizable names, and reviewed the titles with the best and worst ad revenues. The losers? Shelter titles Architectural Digest, Town & Country, luxury mag Conde Nast Traveler, and Fortune. W, a women's fashion magazine, probably had too much competition from more successful titles like Cosmopolitan. The winners? Writing Tip: Creating a Visual Character Map This is a guest post from Ben Ellis, author of Railroaded. I totally agree with Ben on this and did something similar for Pentecost although I actually used famous people as I was imagining the film version! Morgan Sierra was based on Morena Baccarin (when she was in Firefly, not V) and Jake Timber was always David Boreanz. Whilst going through one of the drafts of my first novel I thought it would be really handy to have a master sheet with photos of characters cribbed from various sources. I then thought this might be an amateurish solution; I couldn’t imagine Orwell cutting out faces in-between coughing fits on Jura. Sometime later I read this article by Gareth L Powell ‘Do you have trouble remembering what your characters look like? If it’s good enough for him, then by ‘eck it’s good enough for me! The image right is the A2 sheet I had stuck up on my wall when doing the 2nd and 3rd drafts. A couple of famous faces! The best places are; Local newspapers – featuring unknown local people.

CHART OF THE DAY: The End Of Newspapers Newspapers had a nice run from the 1970s to the 1990s. Unfortunately, as this chart from the Bureau of Labor Statistics makes clear -- by way of Marketwatch -- it's over. Newspaper employment has utterly collapsed in the last 15 years, with employment numbers now around where they were in the mid-1950s. The good news: It's a great opportunity. The Five Biggest Mistakes Writers Make on Their Websites This is a guest post from Melissa Donovan, founder and editor of Writing Forward, a blog packed with creative writing tips and ideas. As I wander around the web, I come across a lot of writers who spend their days in cubicles, and then fill up their evenings and weekends writing. Some of them are just starting to submit their work. To achieve their dreams, these writers have to successfully market their work and sell their books. The vast majority of these writers are making one big mistake in general: they are not treating their writing like a business. Luckily, the Internet makes running a business a whole lot easier than it used to be. As a writer striving to make a career out of writing, your number one asset is your website. Below are the five most common mistakes that writers make on their websites. 1. In business, an about page is one of the three standard pages every single website should have (the other two are home and contact). 2. 3. 4. 5. Top image: Flickr CC Mouin M

Why Most Authors Should Not Emulate Seth Godin Seth Godin is one of my heroes. I have read nearly all his books. I subscribe to his blog. I am a fan. I also consider him a visionary and a friend. Photo courtesy of © Yesterday, he wrote a very provocative post on why he is “Moving On” from the traditional world of book publishing in order to connect directly with his readers. If you are just getting started with Evernote, I suggest that you buy Brett Kelly’s remarkably practical e-book, Evernote Essentials, Second Edition. For example, Mike Shatzkin said, “There’s only one Seth Godin, but there are other authors who might emulate him.” The short answer is this: While I think this might be the right answer for Seth, I don’t think it is the right answer for most authors. Most authors can’t get directly to their readers. In the final analysis, why does this have to be an either/or decision? Question: What do you think?

How I Created My First E-Book Posted on Jul 9th, 2011 | 75 comments I never thought I’d self publish anything. Truly. I’m a traditionally published girl with eleven books under my author belt. I love my publishers, love what they’ve done. But there came a time when one of my book ideas didn’t fit within their needs. The kernel of the idea to e-publish started when I pioneered my nonfiction and fiction proposal tutorials to help authors with the difficult process of writing a book proposal. After this, I started to entertain the idea of publishing (via e-book readers) The 11 Secrets of Getting Published. Develop an idea, then write it. So there you go! So get writing! If you’ve done this before: What words of wisdom can you offer authors who want to publish an ebook? If you haven’t done this before, what is holding you back? Mary DeMuth is an author and speaker who blogs at

New World of Publishing: Speed Truth: The slow writers in this new world of publishing are going to have trouble. Far more trouble than they had with traditional publishing only. We are in a new golden age of fiction. The first golden age was the pulp age. Okay, say it: I have no fear. Personal Information First I am not a fast typist, which most people think as fast writing. When I say “fast writer” I don’t mean fast typist. I’ll explain how that can be. Now Some Evil Math 250 words is about one manuscript page if you have your margins correct, and font size large enough for an editor to read, and double-spaced your page. Most people’s e-mails to me, and some of the questions in the comments sections are longer than 250 words. 250 Words = 1 Manuscript Page. A standard novel for the sake of this discussion is 90,000 words long. So if a person spent 15 minutes per day and wrote 250 words, that person would finish a novel in one year. That is why I am considered prolific. The Myths of Writing Faster. One book a year.

Superhero Nation: how to write superhero novels, comic books and graphic novels » 16 Ways Fiction is Usually Different than Reality Two psychologists independently argue that romance novels are unrealistic and set their readers up for unhealthy relationships. Take Twilight, for instance. Bella falls for Edward because he’s preposterously good-looking (as she reminds us incessantly), tough (abusively so) and more exciting/unpredictable than the nice guys she knows. If Bella were your friend in real life, you’d probably beg her to stay away from this unhealthy relationship even if Edward weren’t 50+ years older. I think that fiction authors of every sort frequently bend reality to make their stories more entertaining. 1. 2. 3. 4. 4.1. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. WRITER ONE: Terrorists take over Air Force One and it’s up to the President to kill them! 17. 18. 19. ROMANCE 20. 21. 22.