Showing posts with label Carolyn Howard-Johnson. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Carolyn Howard-Johnson. Show all posts

On Mourning the Loss of Ask Amy for Her Daily Wisdom with My Oatmeal and Coffee Each Morning

 

The Guest Blogger with Typewriter 
She Used  in Early Ann Landers Days

To #WritersontheMove Subscribers and Visitors:

Amy Dickinson just announced that she would be retiring her Ask Amy advice column after several decades of serving readers like me who enjoy learning from others’ mistakes and successes.  Unbeknownst to Amy, we have a history that goes way back and I am pretty sure it is unique after reading her columns (and her predecessor Ann Landers’ columns) for so long.  I hope you will find it interesting and help me help her celebrate doing something new with her writing from her home in New York State.  Here it is just as it appears in the snail mail I sent to her. 

Dear Amy,                                                                            June, 2024



Chapter Twenty-Two
Getting Questions Answered 
à la Ann Landers, Amy, or Eric

 
“There is only one thing better than learning from our own mistakes. It’s learning from the booboos, blunders, and gaffes of others.” ~ CHJ

 

So, dear reader, what if you didn’t get it right the first time! What if you feel frozen or depressed about an aspect of your review process? If you’ve read this book through, you probably suspect I don’t much like being told no or that there is only one right way to do something. It is part of my onward-and-upward-with-no-delays philosophy.

That’s one reason I love Q&A formats; they tend to highlight alternative views and illustrate what destructive thinking consists of. That love comes, in part, from some of my first experiences as a journalist. The editor at my first “real” writing job put me to work making Ann Landers’ columns fit into space allotted on page layouts the advertising and backshop departments had designed for what we then called the “Society” pages. (Advertising is where the money comes from that keeps newspapers’ presses rolling so they get first dibs on the available space on newspaper pages.) Sometimes there was not enough room for all of Ann’s letters so it was my duty to edit, cut, and fix so they fit and were still intelligible.

     In the process, I learned a lot in the letters about life’s little problems including the roadblocks similar to the ones we authors run into with reviews. Q&As are an easy way to identify problems and to make them understandable because they are anecdotal. So, you are going to get a few short Q&As that answer some questions about the review process that keep you awake at night. Sometimes they are questions about specifics, sometimes general. But they are exercises in learning from one another. All are adaptations of actual Q&As à la Ann Landers (or her Ask Amy successor!) that I use in the seminars I teach.  

###



PS: Amy, I am enjoying your reruns this month, too. Though I have to admit I have never seen one of those professed reruns when it was (theoritically) first published. Not once. Over all those decades I have been avidly reading your column.

How can that be? My memory isn’t what it once was, but I’m still not that forgetful and I couldn’t have missed more than a few of your columns while on vacation over the years. Just wondering…

And, please pass along good wishes to Eric, too!


Very best, your faithful reader, 

Success in 2024,
Carolyn Howard-Johnson




Promise yourself better editing of all your work—query letters to books--in 2024 
with the 3rd Edition of my “The Frugal Editor." 
 
NOW IN RELEASE ON AMAZON from
MODERN HISTORY PRESS

ADVANCE PRAISE
“…The Frugal Editor is part reference guide, part do-it-yourself editing manual, part masterclass on the writing and publishing industry…and all with Carolyn’s signature humor and encouraging energy! She is a master at simplifying overwhelming tasks into relevant, can-do information…” -Dallas Woodburn, best-selling author and book coach 

Cover by Doug West
Headshot by Uriah Carr 
Amazon Series Page:
https://tinyurl.com/FrugalSeries
Blog:
http://SharingwithWriters.blogspot.com
Submit to my #SharingwithWriters blog: tinyurl.com/SubmittoMySWWBlog
Twitter: @FrugalBookPromo
Facebook:
http://facebook.com/carolynhowardjohnson
Amazon Profile: http://bit.ly/CarolynsAmznProfile
E-mail: hojonews@aol.com


PS: Learn more about my fiction and poetry at carolynhoward-johnson.com. [Do not use https or http with this. Use it as you see it-- naked. LOL.]




Choose Hyphens for Those Terrible, Awful, Tech Words

 






So What About Choosing Hyphens for Those Terrible, Awful, Tech Words? 

My Editing Story About When to Choose a Hyphen

By Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Author of The Frugal Editor, Third Edition

You know that rule we authors are told to follow assiduously? The one that is supposed to make things easy for formatting or editing a document or book when dictionaries can’t decide which spelling is preferred and the trusted The Chicago Manual of Style doesn’t seem to take a strong stand either? The one that goes something like, “Be sure the choice you make stays the same throughout the book?”

Before I even start, you my reader, should probably know I usually welcome that kind of advice. As the author of multi award-winning The Frugal Editor (now in its 3rd edition!), I like giving advice that costs authors as little out-of-pocket expense and is also frugal with time. After all, it is said, “Time is money.” Thus the general impetus of that book is how-do-the-editing-yourself when you absolutely can’t afford an editor for your work-in-progress or—more often—when it is highly unlikely an author would consider an editor for all the promotional material they must write like media releases, query letters, website copy, etc. Mind you, I don’t suggest they shouldn’t get another pair of eyes on those documents. I’m just saying we all know we probably won’t.

So, this is the story of how my publisher and I (whom I dearly love), didn’t…er, agree. You see he is not only a publisher, he’s a tech guy. And when these doubtful choices come up, he usually just finds out which choice is most often used in recent times. It frugal of time, right? It required just one search. One go-to rule works all the time—make that most of the time. And it seemed like a good enough approach to me when we came up against what to do with ebook/Ebook/eBook/e-book/E-book/e-books. It wasn’t as easy as the Shakespearian idea that might be rephrased as “Ahhhh, to hyphenate, or not to hyphenate!” And the web’s “eBook” preference didn’t cut it. Here’s why:

The felt fine to me. It is short. It clarifies. It looks good. If the tech world likes it, I can learn to like it. So, I’m using my find function to edit all the places I had typed “e-books” so I replace it with our new agreed-upon choice, “eBook.” That’s when I run across a subtitle in my manuscript where the first letter in nouns must be capitalized. Horrors! “EBook?” Really? Two caps? It even looks like a typo to me. I considered changing the title so I didn’t have to use the word, but that didn’t work out too well, either. Nor did breaking the guidelines for caps in titles. 

That was when I started looking for some reasons why just a simple “e-book” would be the best choice simply because it is easy enough to capitalize. And doesn’t it make sense to keep it within the same family as general choices for words like “e-mail” and “e-publishing” already seem to be decided to say nothing of how well English has already adapted pretty well to its capitalization rules. 

And just so you know, Word’s autocorrect gives words like “epublishing” and “ebook” a very angry red squiggle!

And then I received a newsletter from the renowned Jim Cox, chief editor at Midwest Book Review who appeared to be following the same “rule” as my publisher. So, I wrote a note to him and he—also being tolerant of time, money and ease in general—wrote back with: 

 

“Dear Carolyn:

 

“I've been giving the matter further thought and the only conclusion I could come to is that digital publishing is still so new that a consensus as to how our digital books should be referred to (E-Book, Ebook, eBook, ebook, etc.) simply has not been achieved so that any and all of these forms can be used without embarrassment.

 

“Just my two cents worth—"

That seems reasonable to me, so naturally as long as I am the one that bears the title of “editor,” and no one with greater or lesser titles than that in the arena of linguistics or grammar has come up with a better way to honor the much-respected rules for capital letters, I stuck with e-book, ebooks, E-book, and E-books. And I decided to always let my publisher a-la-digital genius have the last word on anything else that has to do with tech! Ahem.

So, where do you stand? Leave a comment. Weigh in. Read my book and see how well it works. Nobody has written any hate-mail to me yet telling me I am wrong. Ha!

About Today’s Writers on the Move Contributor


Carolyn Howard-Johnson is the author of the multi award-winning series of HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers including USA Book News’ winner for The Frugal Book Promoter. An instructor for UCLA Extension's renowned Writers Program for nearly a decade, she believes in entering (and winning!) contests and anthologies as an excellent way to separate our writing from the hundreds of thousands of books that get published each year. Two of her favorite awards are Woman of the Year in Arts and Entertainment given by members of the California Legislature and “Women Who Make Life Happen,” given by the Pasadena Weekly newspaper. She is also an award-winning poet and novelist, and she loves passing along the tricks of the trade she learned from marketing those so-called hard-to-promote genres. Learn more on her website at https://HowToDoItFrugally.com. Let Amazon notify you when she publishes new books (or new editions!) by following her Amazon profile page at https://bit.ly/CarolynsAmznProfile. Her The Frugal Editor is now in its third edition from Modern History Press and sorrowfully ending its official release year. Let it help you edit your 2024 work-in-process and let this be the best year ever for your writing career.

 

Avoiding the Dreaded Adverb in Dialogue and Everywhere Else

 

Let Tom Swift Inform Your Writing 

 

By Carolyn Howard-Johnson 

 

The last in a series of articles celebrating the release of the 3rd edition 
of the multi award-winning The Frugal Editor



Ever heard of Tom Swifties?

 

Maybe you're too young to be familiar with the classic Tom Swift adventures for boys. Or maybe you're a girl who never read a Tom Swift book nor cares to.

 

Tom Swifties are one-line jokes lampooning the style of Victor Appleton, the author of the original Tom Swift books. People started making jokes about his overuse of adverbs and the unnecessary taglines he wrote into his dialogue. Like the Polish jokes, they were so much fun that that a whole series of them became available for pun aficionados (though they deservedly disappeared—mostly—as people started avoiding anything that smacked of cultural bias.)  The author of Appleton’s classics, of course, laughed all the way to the bank and I was never able to determine if he overused them intentionally or if his popularity survived at least in part because they seemed unintentional and that only lent another dimension to their laughability. But that's a lesson for one of my marketing seminars, not this article on writing.

 

Tom Swifties were popular and funny back then. This is now. I haven't dared to go to the new books in the series, but I assume that this outdated writing has been eliminated from them.

 

An example from one of the Swift books will suffice to let you know what to watch for. (Thank you to Roy Peter Clark for this example.)

 

"'Look!' suddenly exclaimed Ned. 'There's the agent now!…I'm going to speak to him!'” impulsively declared Ned.'"

 

Regardless of what you think of Appleton’s style choices, you will want to minimize tags when you write dialogue and adverbs in most everything you write!

 

Even authors who swear that adverbs are always very, very good things to use and are reluctant to give up their clever taglines can see how, well, …awful this is. In fact, I have to reassure clients and students the quotation is real! Some of the writing that comes to the desks of agents and editors looks almost as bad. Here's how you can make sure yours doesn't:

 

1. Use taglines only when one is necessary for the reader to know who is speaking. Learn new dialogue techniques to make that job easier from books like Writing Dialogue by Tom Chiarella and the third edition (only recently released) of my The Frugal Editor.

2. Almost always choose "he said" or "she said" over anything too cute, exuberant, or wordy like "declared" and "exclaimed."

3. Cut the "ly" words ruthlessly, not only in dialogue tags but everywhere.

4. Learn how to make this adverb-cutting exercise improve the images in your prose or poetry using simile or metaphor, also covered in The Frugal Editor. 

 

Until you do a little more research on the adverbs, take Nike's advice and  "Just do it!"

 

---

Carolyn Howard-Johnson, multi award-winning author of The Frugal Book Promoter: How to Do What Your Publisher Won't and The Frugal Editor: Do It Yourself Editing Secrets, both now in their third editions from Modern History Press. The former is the winner of USA Book News "Best Professional Book" award and the Book Publicists of Southern California's coveted Irwin Award. The Frugal Editor is both a USA Book News winner and a Reader Views Literary Award winner and won the Next Generation Marketing and the coveted Irwin awards. Learn more at www.HowToDoItFrugally.com. Thank you, #WritersontheMove, for the opportunity to wind down my marketing plan for the release of new edition of Frugal Editor with this article! Gotta make room for a couple of new books in that series coming in 2024!

 

What Authors Need to Know to Avoid Vital Front Matter Booboos

 


To WritersontheMove Blog Subscribers and Visitors:

2023 has been a celebratory year for the release of the third edition of The Frugal Editorthe winningest book in my #HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers, and I don’t want to let the year pass without sharing part of what my publisher says is approximately 50% new material in this edition.

He also says, “We really overachieved on this book. There's nothing within a mile of it in terms of scope and depth.” One of the reasons for such praise is the inclusion of information on front matter that is as likely to assure a great first impression for a book as a great cover and one that books on editing or publishing rarely cover. So today’s blog post (see below) is what you need to know regardless of the publishing process you have chosen for your book.

The new Frugal Editor also covers the magical properties of back matter including increased readership and book sales but it’s way too long for a blog post. Find the frugal e-copy of the book at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0BTXQL27T/!)


An Excerpt from the Third Edition of The Frugal Editor

What Authors Need to Know to Avoid Vital Front Matter Booboos

By Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning
 HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers

Because I am a book marketer and an English Lit major, I love front matter where I often find unexpected information, but when I am reading for entertainment, I hardly notice it. Readers tend to pay little attention to front matter unless we have a reason to do so but industry gatekeepers are pickier. That includes the professional reviewers both authors and publishers want to impress.

Front matter mistakes or intentional deviation from the norm are not as readily forgiven as those in back matter. The easy way to make sure yours is in the realm of industry standards is to request Gorham Printing’s beautifully organized, free Guidebook: Adventures in Publishing, Explore Book Printing. Though I include a long list of both front and back matter elements later in this chapter, Gorham gives you a basic (safe!) order for frontmatter fundamentals for paper books:

1.     Title Page

2.     Copyright Page (lefthand page)

3.     Dedication

4.     Contents (begins on the righthand page)

5.     List of Figures or Tables. In this book, “The Frugal Editor’s Extras” list in the front matter is a cousin to these lists in an effort to make finding information easier for readers much like table or figure lists do. Use it as an example of a way to deviate with your own idea for “extras”in your book.

6.     Foreword 

7.     Preface

8.     Acknowledgements

9.     Introduction

Note: Gorham’s list doesn’t mention a prologue. I like them when they come just before the first chapter in books of fiction, meaning nothing—absolutely nothing but a chapter title—should intervene!

Gorham’s book is a great tutorial that includes their printing costs for books from hardcover to spiral books (often used for the likes of cookbooks). You’ll find a couple more front matter considerations below.

No matter how you plan to publish, you may think of a good reason to deviate from what appears to be acceptable among publishers. If your research inspires an idea for front or back matter that might benefit readers or help to sell more books, you might negotiate with a traditional publisher to accommodate your idea rather than stick to their company-wide style guidelines. I remember a fine publisher had included a short paragraph highlighting their use of a font style that was especially appropriate for the topic of that specific book on one of its front matter pages. 

If you are self-publishing, know what rules you are breaking. Ask yourself if doing so would be welcomed by your readers and if it might attract the ire of a publishing industry professional. Ask yourself if the pluses outweigh the negatives or if you would feel comfortable saving your creative idea for a time when you are so experienced and established that your idea is likely to be accepted and emulated regardless of how brazen it is.

Of course, you can always choose a few books from your library or browse newly released books from publishers you admire at your favorite bookstore, too. Be sure to look at some of the best known books in the same genre as yours. This little exercise might convince you that your title can accommodate a little daring-do!

Here are some other less frequently used front matter components I promised you including the use of two title pages. What, you never noticed a second title page? They can be handy for keeping a nice, open layout with all the sections that should be on the left page where they belong. They are called the title page and the half-title page. Old-timers call title pages other than the first bastard title pages. In those pre politically-correct days, they were abbreviated versions of the title page that could be torn out before the book was bound. One defense for the keeping the practice is that authors can sign and personalize one page and the book still has one left untouched. Another is that an additional title page can separate the book’s text from long and complex frontmatter. The setup of a book’s frontmatter might be part of your publisher’s style guidelines and be nonnegotiable. If the frontmatter is quite long, there may even be a third title page just before the body of the book begins.

Note: An excellent example of a book that departs from frontmatter standards in ways that benefit both book and reader is Behind the Bears Ears: Exploring the Cultural and Natural Histories of a Sacred Landscape by R. E. Burillo (Torrey House Press, 2020). It includes a map of Bears Ears National Monument (US), an anthropologic timeline, and probably breaks some norms for the length of its introduction. This 407-page book also uses back matter effectively.

 

10.  Warning: Don’t neglect your acknowledgements page. There are ways it can be used effectively for both pre-promotion and general marketing. It is spelled Acknowledgements. With a d, please. Even very good editors can overlook a misspelling of this word, at least in part because they don’t bother to peruse front and back matter. “Foreword” is often misspelled, too. Don’t leave the out! Your spellchecker may not catch it!

MORE ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Carolyn Howard-Johnson started what she considers her “real writing” career when most are thinking of retiring. She brings her experience as publicist, journalist, marketer, editor, retailer, and the author of those books published almost every way possible including traditionally, to the advice she gives in her HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers and the many classes she taught for nearly a decade as instructor for UCLA Extension’s world-renown Writers’ Program. She blogs at https://thenewbookreview.blogspot.com and https://sharingwithwriters.blogspot.com.

Ten Reasons Why You Shouldn't Shortchange Self-Publishing

                      Ten Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Shortchange Self-Publishing 

By Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning 
HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers




I have been Sinatra’s proverbial “prince, pauper” and a number of other things when it comes to publishing—meaning that I have tried publishing every almost every way imaginable and am here to tell you there is no one right way to do it. It can depend on your personality (are you super independent?), your pocketbook, the nature of your title, the time window you have and more. Because the term self-publishing is so often misunderstood, it is important to tell you what true self-publishing is and is not.

1.      It is frugal—or not—depending on the choices you make. It is flexible. You do everything yourself which is very frugal—very nearly free—with everything but you time. Or you hire the skills you know you should (like book cover design) and some skills you don’t want to take on (perhaps like formatting) when your pocketbook allows. And when you chose to ignore those guidelines for skills everyone adamantly recommends you avoid because you are too frugal or just plain stubborn (like editing), you tackle learning as much about it as you possibly can with the vengeance of becoming a professional and plan on doing double duty when it comes to getting help from beta readers as suggested in my The Frugal Editor.

2.      As suggested above (but bears repeating), you can publish with no upfront costs.

3.      You make all the net profit from your book. If you don’t, then it’s not really self-publishing. In fact it may be an indicator that it is vanity publishing which carries problems of its own. (By the way, I don’t like the “vanity” term because it negates the value of creativity of any book.)

4.      That you can’t use your own ISBN number is a myth. You must pay for your ISBN if you want one that carries no hidden code for a press that isn’t your own, but they can come free with some like Amazon and others like the dreaded vanity presses you have probably heard about. Most readers won’t know the difference.

5.      You keep all the rights to your work and, yes, though it isn’t easy, you can change your mind later.

6.      You make all the net profit from your book. If you don’t, then it’s not really self-publishing.

7.      You can (but won’t always!) publish more quickly. There are some very good reasons to want to do this. Your book’s topic may be time sensitive. You are aware that you may not live forever. You may simply have other stories (or books) waiting for their own time in the sun.

8.      You make all the profit net profit from your book. If you don’t, then it’s not really self-publishing. A better net profit is about making earnings for your efforts, but they also give you more room to play with like offering your book at a discount at book fairs and still make a profit for yourself (albeit a smaller one).

9.      Make no mistake, the likelihood of your self-published book of becoming a true bestseller or of seeing it on the shelves of bookstores everywhere is far less than if you snag a huge (read that “Big New York Five” as an example) contract. But if you’re publishing only to get huge sales (or profits), it is a long shot in cany case. Publish—traditionally, self, or somewhere in between—for other good reasons. There are plenty great reasons for each scenario.

10.   If you have another business, you can self-publish a book that will impart your professional credibility to your customers and attract new ones. (To say nothing of producing a little extra income stream).

Note: Your book may lead to other creative income streams like audio books, CDs, toys, and suggest other free promotions for the good of your book or other pursuits.

More About the Author



Carolyn Howard-Johnson started what she considers her “real writing” career when most are thinking of retiring. She brings her experience as publicist, journalist, marketer, editor, retailer, and the author of those books published almost every way possible including traditionally, to the advice she gives in her HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers and the many classes she taught for nearly a decade as instructor for UCLA Extension’s world-renown Writers’ Program including a class on editing for self-publishers. The books in her HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers have won multiple awards. That series includes  The Frugal Book Promoter and The Frugal Editor which won awards from USA Book News, Readers’ Views Literary Award, the marketing award from Next Generation Indie Books and others including the coveted Irwin award. Her self-published How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically launched to rave reviews from Karen Cioffi, writer and publisher.

 

Karen says, “I’m an author, content writer, and online marketing instructor. Reading Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s The Frugal Editor has given me lots and lots of tips and reminders on how to write right, whether I’m writing fiction, nonfiction, blogging, or marketing. It’s a writing tool I’ll refer to over and over again.”

Howard-Johnson is the recipient of the California Legislature’s Woman of the Year in Arts and Entertainment Award, and her community’s Character and Ethics award for her work promoting tolerance with her writing. She was also named to Pasadena Weekly’s list of “Fourteen San Gabriel Valley women who make life happen” and was given her community’s Diamond Award for Achievement in the Arts.

On Breaking Book Formatting and Adverb Rules

Sharing My Daring Departure for My Most Recent Book

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

By Carolyn Howard-Johnson



 

I am sharing an excerpt from the newest edition  of my The Frugal Editor not only to share the content with those who don’t want to read (or use as reference!) a full book on everything from grammar to style choices to front and backmatter possibilities, but also to share with you a departure I tried in that third edition of that book. My publisher and I titled them  “The Frugal Editor’s Extras” to set them apart from regular copy in the book. They include short pieces--everything from little memoir-like experiences that also serve as editing lessons to topics related to something I covered in the book (yes, like adverbs), but deserved a little...mmm...creative attention. Most of them are only one page long. This one is for authors who are adverse to trimming adverbs back as most experienced editors and academia’s MFA programs suggest. This one (the fifth in the book) tells how authors can make adverbs that might best be deleted work to an author’s advantage instead:

 

5. The Frugal Editor’s Extras

 

 


Remember the Reader’s Digest feature “Toward More Picturesque Speech?” [CJ1] Over the decades, this entertaining little piece of Americana caused many writers to fall in love with metaphors. Writers who want to liven up their copy can edit adverbs so they produce those much-loved figures of speech.

Metaphors and their kin, symbols and similes, are wonderful tools for helping writers with the often-heard “Show, don’t tell” mantra, but they can be tricky. I was speaking to the Small Publishers of North America (SPAN) in Atlanta when one of the writers in the audience asked if there was a site that would give him a list of good metaphors to improve  imagery in his writing. I told him that if there was, it would probably be a list of clichés or a list of what would fast become clichés once everyone started using them. That was before I knew this adverb trick which works better—much better—than any list ever could.

It’s a little trick that lets your search for adverbs make a sweet drink out of lemons. That is, they yield an opportunity for you come up with metaphors or similes. They prompt associations that allow you to find and insert flecks of solid gold into your copy. In the example we used earlier in this book, “She ran quickly,” you determine that the adverb is redundant. Running, by its nature, is quick. However, you still want more than quick. Ask yourself, quickly as what? You might come up with a comparison where you must use the words like or as to make the image come alive. If so, you’ve found a simile. But if you come up with a true metaphor—where the comparison of the image is evident without the like or as—you’ve found something better than gold. You’ve found a metaphor.


Note: You can do something similar with clichés by reworking them. Before you jettison something like "He was just small potatoes" from your copy, try substituting words in the offending phrase with something similar. One critique group I lead came up with phrases for small potatoes. Some were better. Some were worse. Some imparted similar meanings and some different: Small fry, excess produce, misshapen fruit, genetically flawed apples, rejected produce, overripe avocadoes, bruised tomatoes. You can see the list could get longer and longer and one of the alternatives might be something that would work lots better than a cliché that might prompt a gatekeeper to wonder about your ability to author a book.

Now, as much as I love well conceived metaphors and similes, I need to add a word of caution. I once saw an advertisement in Writer’s Digest where presumably an editor had red-penciled a metaphor that appeared on an author’s manuscript. It said, “You may want to reconsider this metaphor.” The reason? The metaphor was a stretch. Metaphors should be so integrated into the flow of the copy that the reader hardly notices them (unless they are intentionally used for humor). They should add to your readers’ pleasure or understanding rather than distract them. When writers fall in love with their own image-making skills, they might undermine their number-one goal—that of writing clearly and keeping the reader involved.

One of the advantages of editing adverbs—indeed any kind of systematic editing—is that you’ll begin to write more concise first drafts. The beauty of adverbs is that they can help you do that, but only if you let each one be your mentor—even if it means whacking the ones that don’t work. When you do, the gremlins, evil little guys that make it their business to foil authors’ efforts to produce professional work, might identify you as a proficient writer and move to greener fields.

 

MORE ABOUT TODAY’S #WRITERSONTHEMOVE CONTRIBUTOR



 

Carolyn Howard-Johnson is the author of the multi award-winning series of HowToDoItFrugally books for writers including USA Book News’ winner for The Frugal Book Promoter now in its third edition. An instructor for UCLA Extension's renowned Writers Program for nearly a decade, she believes in entering (and shouting out!) contests and anthologies as an excellent way to separate our writing from the hundreds of thousands of books that get published each year. Two of her favorite awards are Woman of the Year in Arts and Entertainment given by members of the California Legislature and “Women Who Make Life Happen,” given by the Pasadena Weekly newspaper. She is also an award-winning poet and novelist and she loves passing along the tricks of the trade she learned from marketing those so-called hard-to-promote genres. Learn more on her website at https://HowToDoItFrugally.com. Find all of the little “Editor’s Extras” by using the separate contents list in the front matter of her newest entry in her series, The Frugal Editor


Don’t Depend 100% on Your Publisher

By Terry Whalin (@terrywhalin) In 2007, America’s Publicist Rick Frishman invited me to participate on the faculty of MegaBook Marketing Uni...