Tag Archives: publishing

In Which David Is Transported….

Dutch Flag

to Holland, and to Poetry-land, wherever that may be!

First, in a very new experience for me, I found that my article on editing, which went a bit viral on Huffington Post, has been translated into Dutch.

Wow.

Go, internet!

Second, in another first, Uvi Poznansky, who wrote the recently-released Stillpoint audiobook A Favorite Son (and whose audiobook for Apart from Love I’ve just finished editing — woohoo!) wrote a… um… poem about me.

Now, my mom’s a poet (and I’ll have more to say on that subject another time), so I’ve shown up in poems before before. Still. None (so far as I know) about me. This was incredibly touching. Here’s the poem, if you’d like to read it:

Ode to the Great Kudler

Seven Deadly Myths and Three Inspired Truths About Book Editing

Reworking, rewriting, removing by mpclemons, used through a Creative Commons license

I originally wrote this as a guest post for Joel Friedlander’s wonderful self-publishing resource site TheBookDesigner.com; it sparked a lot of great conversation and feedback, and it occurred to me that the information might be of interest to a more general readership. If you’ve ever groaned at typos, continuity errors, plot holes or just plain bad writing in a book or blog post, here’s my prescription:

I’ve edited lots of books — children’s books, fantasy, memoirs, self-help, textbooks, and especially books about myths. Myths? I like myths. Heck, I love myths — if we’re talking about myths as “great poems, [that] point infallibly through things and events to the ubiquity of a presence or eternity that is whole and entire in each.”*

If we’re talking about myths in the more negative sense of “untruths,” however, I like them less — especially if they’re myths about my profession and vocation.

Myths and Misinformation about Book Editing

There’s a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding about editors and what they do. Here are seven of those myths that I’d like to clear up:

Myth #1: A good writer doesn’t need an editor.

In these days of self-publication and “service” publishers — who take a percentage of sales for letting the author do all of the work — you hear this a lot. “I’ve slaved over this manuscript for years. I checked it through a hundred times. Microsoft Word’s Spelling and Grammar comes up clean. It’s ready for publication.”

Want an example of a professional book from a world-class author who convinced her publishers to put out the book as-is, without a deep developmental edit (see #3 below)? Look at J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Pretty good book, and it’s sold millions of copies, absolutely — but it’s at least a hundred pages longer than it needs to be. There’s needless repetition, uneven pacing, and side-plots that go nowhere. You’ll notice that the previous and subsequent books in the bestselling series were much shorter and much tighter. Rowling worked more closely with her editors.

Here’s the fact: if you want your book to be strong, clean, professional, and appealing, for it to affect the readers as you want it to affect them, you need to have it professionally edited. There’s never been a text written that didn’t need editing. By the time you’ve spent weeks, months, or years on a project, you can’t see the words any more. You can see the ideas — the concepts, arguments, plot, and characters — but not every word that’s on the page, or that isn’t, or where there are gaping holes in logic or jumps in style. An editor will. It’s what they’re paid to do. Continue reading Seven Deadly Myths and Three Inspired Truths About Book Editing

Kids and teens are reading books — but how do they find them?

The Seven Gods of Luck by David KudlerIn a discussion about children’s ebooks on the LinkedIn group Ebooks, Ebook Readers, Digital Books, and Digital Content, two threads emerged that I thought were very interesting: first of all, children’s and young adult books are selling (up 22% in 2012); second of all, someone raised the question of how to encourage kids themselves to review books.

This second point raised a question for me — how do kids find out about books these days? My memory of how it worked back in the pre-digital age was that I’d notice when a friend was carrying a book whose cover I didn’t recognize. So… how do kids find out about/tell each other about books in the twenty-first century? Though paper-and-ink books are still selling well to kids and teens, ebooks are as well, in which case there aren’t any covers to show. (For many readers, this is a positive — no need to show off those embarrassing bodice-ripper or scantily-clad-sword-maiden covers.)

How do the kids you know find out about books? Word of mouth? On-line forums/social networks? Do you know of any good sites where kids exchange opinions on what they’ve read?

I’m posting a poll on the blog page of my site — so you can comment here, post an answer there — or both!

Lend Me Your Ears: Stillpoint Produces Audiobooks

Confessions of a Sex Maniac
and The Seven Gods of Luck
now available as audiobooks
(Visit Stillpoint’s page on Audible.com or see below for details)

When I started Stillpoint Digital Press, my intention was to focus on the growing field of ebook production and distribution.

A funny thing happened on the way to the iBookstore. Actually, several funny things.

Continue reading Lend Me Your Ears: Stillpoint Produces Audiobooks

Seven Gods of Luck Available Now!

The Seven Gods of Luck – Now Available!

Limited-Time Special Offer:
Print, Ebook and Audiobook for $23.95 $9.99!

Stillpoint Releases Classic Folktale

November 1, 2012 – Stillpoint Digital Press announces the release of the fifteenth anniversary edition of the picturebook retelling of the classic Japanese folktale, The Seven Gods of Luck by David Kudler with illustrations by Linda Finch. Set during O-Shogatsu, the Japanese New Year festival, The Seven Gods of Luck is a magical holiday tale of generosity rewarded.
Continue reading Seven Gods of Luck Available Now!

Last Day of the Kickstarter Drive!

20120531-100302.jpg

Today is the final day to help launch Stillpoint Digital Press’s first original title by contributing to the Kickstarter drive for Sail Away: Journeys of a Merchant Seaman! We’ve already achieved our minimum funding goal thanks to the support of a wonderful group of backers. This guarantees that we’ll be able to get the book completed as envisioned and on schedule. Any additional pledges will ensure that this nautical memoir will reach the audience that it deserves.

If you’ve already pledged, your support is gratefully appreciated! If you’ve been waiting, pledge now and reserve one of the very first copies of the print and/or ebook edition. The link is: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/334886999/sail-away-first-title-in-stillpoint-memory-memoir

Riverrun, to a Monitor Near You — Joyce Manuscripts Now Online

A manuscript page from the "Circe" chapter of Joyce's novel <i>Ulysses</i>
The Irish National Library releases James Joyce's manuscripts online

The Irish National Library has very quietly taken advantage of the entry this year into the public domain of the works of Irish novelist James Joyce by posting its horde of rare Joyce manuscripts on its online archive.

Continue reading Riverrun, to a Monitor Near You — Joyce Manuscripts Now Online