How to self-publish a book? – by Emmanuel Nataf (Lesson 2) for Highbrow

Welcome back! Today’s lesson is all about writing a great book. It doesn’t have to be the greatest book ever written, but as long as it appeals to a certain audience enough for them to write a good review, or recommend to a friend, you will be well on your way to finding success.

In the self-publishing world, there are anomalies: objectively terrible books which sell plenty of copies simply because the author is a skilled marketer. But who in their right mind sets out to write a bad book? Not you, I’m sure 😉

I won’t bore you with a list of hard-and-fast rules for what constitutes a good book. That being said, I’d love to point out some common habits shared by the most prolific and successful writers:

Read a lot of books
A good book teaches you a lot about writing. Read every book that has enjoyed critical acclaim and popularity in your genre, and try to analyze what makes these books different. Pay attention to things like the story, plot structure, and characterization. Go back to your own draft and see if you can apply your learnings.

Make sure you have a plan
If you’re writing a novel, it’s often a good idea to “plot” your story beforehand. Chart how one event leads to another, which then causes a third thing to happen: you know, the story.

Diving into your first draft without a thoroughly developed structure will make it difficult to keep track of how your story progresses. When you’re dealing with tens of thousands of words, the last thing you want is to get overwhelmed and stop writing!

Know your audience
Are you writing for a young audience? For business professionals? Will they be fans of Dan Brown or Noam Chomsky? Knowing who your book is aimed at will not only help you choose the right tone and content, it will prove invaluable once you kick off your marketing efforts.

Give yourself deadlines
Do not get stuck in an endless loop of incessantly editing a chapter. We’re not saying that you should rush; merely suggesting you give your book the time it deserves by making sure you maintain a steady level of productivity. The National Novel Writing Month, where hundreds of participants write over 50,000 words in one month, is a perfect example of how clear goals and deadlines can do wonders for your writing process.

How to self-publish a book? – by Emmanuel Nataf (Lesson 1) for Highbrow

You’re the boss, and you’re responsible for everything.
So how common is self-publishing? More than you might imagine. In 2016, over 70% of all ebooks launched in the US were self-published. In addition, self-published titles accounted for 42% of Amazon ebook sales.
These statistics strongly suggest two things:
  • A lot of authors are self-publishing.
  • A lot fewer of them are generating sales.
So, how can an emerging independent author ensure their book stands out from the crowd?
Get ready to wear a lot of hats. Let’s talk about the elephant in the room; or the double-edge sword, if you prefer. Self-publishing gives you the power to choose your own path: you aren’t beholden to any publishers or book marketers, only yourself. However with this power also comes responsibility: you will be responsible for doing everything a traditional publisher does for one of their authors.
Once you’ve written your fantastic book, you will slap on your commissioning editor’s hat as you ensure your book is adequately edited and proofread. Once that’s complete, you will pop on your Art Director’s cap and ensure that your book is well-design. And through it all, you will also be turning yourself into a book-marketing machine. Do you have to do this all by yourself? Absolutely not.
Over the course of these lessons, you find out what it takes to successfully self-publish a book. Not only will you get a overarching view of the process, you will learn which parts of self-publishing can be handled inexpensively by the author, and which parts will demand the attention of a professional.
Nobody likes the idea of having to spend more money than they have to. But if you are serious about getting people to read your work, you cannot afford to publish an amateurish product. With that in mind, tomorrow’s lesson will cover the most unavoidable requirement of self-publishing success: writing a great book!

Review – Who We Were

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A late post from late last year. Who We Were has achieved a five-star review by Readers’ Favorite.

Reviewed by Christian Sia for Readers’ Favorite.

“Who We Were by Puiyin Labial is a story about destiny and the incredible truth that people could be bound together by threads that are mysterious and intangible. With an international setting in China and the US, the reader follows the lives of two compelling characters, a young boy and girl who feel a powerful attraction for each other, an affection that is foiled by insane family traditions. They will meet again in high school, this time in the US, and feel irresistibly drawn to each other. But their attraction is hindered once more. As adults, Jace and Melodi meet again, this time each successfully pursuing their professions. Are they bound to be together or are these mere coincidences? They will learn the truth after a painful tragedy. Will they be able to stick together this one last time?

The first thing that grabbed my attention was the reader-friendly writing — simple, crisp, and fluid. From the start, the reader will appreciate the realism that is injected into the writing. The characters are well developed with solid backgrounds. The author did a great job in integrating the backgrounds of the key characters into the narrative, with Melodi excelling as a writer and Jace devoted to his career as a doctor. The story is cleverly plotted, leaving the reader with so much guessing to do. I quickly learned to care about these characters from the very beginning and couldn’t help having the feeling of a strange familiarity with them. Who We Were is a beautiful story that reminds readers that we know more than we are often aware of, and that our connections could go beyond our dreams and expectations. Puiyin Labial weaves strong themes like love, family, and human connections seamlessly into a story that is gripping and real.” 

The Warped Web – Counting down the days

Just less than 3 weeks to go until the release of ‘The Warped Web’ – 22nd August. You can pre-order online or visit the nearest selected bookshops. For UK-based readers/fans, you can pop into any Waterstones, Foyles and Blackwells. https://www.puiyinwlpublishing.com/thewarpedweb

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The Warped Web

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© Vivian Head 2017

https://www.puiyinwlpublishing.com/novels

PUIYIN W.L. PUBLISHING® is very proud and honoured to present ‘The Warped Web’, a thriller by Vivian Head, due out in mid-August. Vivian is no stranger to the publishing industry, and after commissioning so many books for others, it was about time she sat down and wrote one for herself. The thriller is just one of the many books Vivian will be writing, and PUIYIN W.L. PUBLISHING® is so blessed to have her join the ‘family’.

Made in Thailand – An Excerpt

thaiThere was once a beautiful young woman named Mae Nak whose love for her husband, Tid Mak, was undying. One day, while her husband was away at war, she died giving birth to their baby who did not survive either. Due to her undying love for her husband, Mae Nak and the baby returned to the living world as spirits. Everyone in the village has learned of their deaths, but when Mae Nak’s husband returns home from the battlefield he is greeted by his loving wife and their newborn child, unaware that they are spirits. The villagers try to warn him but he doesn’t want to believe them. One night the ghost of Mae Nak is preparing dinner for her husband when she suddenly drops a lime and it falls through a gap in the wooden floorboards. Back in those days, the houses were built a short distance off the ground. Tid Mak watches Mae Nak from the outside of the house as she stretches an elongated, ghostly arm through the long gap to the ground and reaches for the lime. He was aware that no human could reach that far and it was then that he realised the villagers were telling the truth. He runs from the house in terror to a nearby temple to seek refuge where the ghost of Mae Nak is unable to enter. Mae Nak becomes angry and takes out her frustration by terrorising the villagers. There are a few versions of how the story ends. In one, Mae Nak and her baby’s spirit are believed to be confined in a piece of bone from her exhumed forehead and bound into a wristband worn by a monk. In another version, a monk convinces Mae Nak that she will be reunited with her husband in another life at which point Mae Nak, along with the baby, is believed to have voluntarily moved on.

The Positivity Project – Switch your Goals Mindset

Highlighting moments when you rocked the hell out of 2016 instantly lifts your spirits, says hypnotherapist Chloe Brotheridge. Scroll through your photos and choose three in which you felt happy, or proud of yourself. Then, when you think of the year ahead, instead of setting future goals, say or write them in the present tense: “I am getting fitter,” or, “I am working on that promotion.” This sends a powerful, positive message to your subconscious to go forward and make them real. 

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My first book signing.

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My ‘baby’, PUIYIN W.L. PUBLISHING®, finally launched in late 2016. It took me 5 years to build this ‘baby’, and it was all worth it.

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The first novel by PUIYIN W.L. PUBLISHING®.

  1. I am working on the second sequel to Who We Were, which I am so excited about.
  2. I am working on the sequel to Made in Thailand.
  3. I am putting together the ideas and draft for the final piece to Fauna.