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The Writer's Mailbag: Installment Seventeen

Updated on October 20, 2014

Here We Go Again

Installment Seventeen is about to begin. Buckle up and prepare for a ride through the House of Questions and Answers.

You ask, I answer, and if I don’t know the answer, I’ll cry Uncle and wait for one of my followers to spurt out the correct answer. Teamwork, baby, ya gotta love it!

If you have a question then leave it in the comment section below, or you can also leave it on my website at www.williamdhollandauthor.com.

Shall we begin?

Source

ILLUSTRATIONS

From Ann: I have a question for you. What do you think about illustrations within adult fiction, either drawings or photos?

Great question from my friend from across the pond. What do I think of illustrations in fiction? I think they are distracting and I don’t like them. Considering the fact that I have probably read a thousand novels or more, and might have seen illustrations five times, it would appear a great many writers agree with me.

Having said that, I can see using them if they are part of the plot. Say a detective finds a drawing that is a vital clue to the case; in that situation, I can see illustrating that drawing…but….I still think it is lazy writing to do so.

Notice that Ann said adult fiction when asking her question. I don’t know at what age we put aside our need for pictures and illustrations, but I suspect it is in the 16-18 year range. After that, we really shouldn’t need illustrations in our fiction….but….I have read fantasies where illustrations were, not only used, but needed.

How’s that for a wishy-washy answer?

Making It All Work in Publishing

From manatita: Here is my question: Can you make this Publishing business work? What can of genre are you trying to attract and can you deal well with the marketing aspects?

There is so much contained in this question that I don’t know where to start.

There are far too many successful writers for me to say anything other than of course you can make this publishing business work. Heck, there are thousands of writers who are making a great income writing ebooks, let alone the thousands who make great money through traditional publishing. Of course one can make it work…but….

And there is always a but…you have to work at it. Manatita mentioned marketing, and there is the bugaboo that stumps so many writers. You could self-publish the greatest book ever written, but if you aren’t prepared to do the marketing side of this business, that book will die in obscurity.

As for what genre, I’m all over the place. My first novel was a fantasy. The second novel was mainstream fiction. The one I’m working on currently is a psychological thriller. Your guess is as good as mine where I go from here.

Is this a good cover?
Is this a good cover? | Source

COVERS

From Bill: I'm still "in the dark" about what constitutes a "good cover" - everyone, including me, says you "have to have one!" I only know one when I see one… I can't describe what it is. Are you willing to try?

This is a great question. Truly! Can you describe what makes a great book cover?

Ask one-hundred people and you’ll most likely these two answers will be near the top of the polling list:

  • The cover must be visually appealing to attract buyers
  • The cover must portray, in some way, the general theme of the book.

Both are valid responses and I have no argument against either of them….but…

I just love tossing in that “but.”

I have seen book covers that were genius and really didn’t do either of those two things. I recently saw the book cover for “Crime and Punishment,” a classic if there ever was one, and it was in black and white with no artwork at all….and yet it captured my attention immediately because of its stark quality.

Having said all that, if I were designing a cover for my books, I would lean toward the second suggestion, that they portray the general theme of the book. Interestingly, the cover of my last novel, Resurrecting Tobias, did not turn out as I had originally planned. I went in one direction, then changed my mind when a friend of mine, Alexandra Lucas, designed a different cover for it. She was right, I was wrong, and I’m quite happy with the end result.

Content Mills

From Elise: What are your thoughts about writing for content mills? I had one place offer me five dollars for a 500 word article with research. I just don’t think it is worth my time.

Well, Elise, I don’t think it is, either, but I don’t know how badly you need that five bucks, and that’s what it all boils down to when discussing content mills. What is your time worth, and how badly do you need the money?

I don’t like content mills if all they are paying is five bucks per article. Some, however, pay much better for experienced writers, and in that case, I say go for it.

My biggest problem with content mills is that, in many instances, they drive down the pay scale for all writers, and I’ll always be against that. We are craftsmen, and as such our talents are worth good pay, especially if we have skills…but we will never see the pay we deserve if there are writers out there satisfied with five bucks. A content mill that is paying a writer five dollars for an article is charging the customer at least thirty dollars for the same article. I’d rather go get my own customers and make the thirty rather than a percentage of the thirty.

Take a new path
Take a new path | Source

New Approaches

From Bob: How do you find a new angle for a topic that has been written about by thousands? How can you be unique writing about something that has been beaten to death online?

This is really what it all boils down to with online writing, isn’t it? Finding a new, unique angle to an old topic….and it is not easy. Let me teach by example, but the final answer to this question is that you have to expand your imagination a bit.

Let’s say I’m a travel writer, and I want to write a series of articles about exotic places around the world. Been there, done that, and written the ebook….how many travel writers are there out there? I would venture to guess the number is in the hundreds of thousands. So how do you spin it so it is uniquely yours?

Just off the top of my head, I would think of something that is a popular online search, like how to save money. I would then combine that search with my travel articles, so I would write “How to Save Money Travelling in France,” and “How to Save Money Travelling in Wales.” Now I’ve combined two search engine favorites into one series of articles, thus increasing my search engine visibility AND giving myself a unique niche to work in….and unique is what makes money in the writing game. Magazine editors love fresh approaches, so go fresh or go home.

More Next Week

I’ll keep writing if you keep asking. That’s how it works, and it’s working quite well so far.

Thanks to all who asked questions this week. I’ll see all of you next Monday with another installment of this series. Until then, enjoy the hell out of writing, and be proud of what you do.

2014 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

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    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 2 years ago from Arizona

      I feel like writing a book after I read your Hubs. I was talking about you last night to my husband and telling him.......curious? What a really fine writer you are especially in comparison to all that is out here...

    • Janine Huldie profile image

      Janine Huldie 2 years ago from New York, New York

      I always appreciate your advice and again thank you so much Bill for answering all our questions always! Happy Monday to you :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Awww, Carol, thank you for the positive reinforcement this morning. That really does mean a great deal to me. Thank you my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Janine. I really do enjoy this series. It's no work at all. Happy Monday to you dear lady.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 2 years ago from New York

      I know I enjoy the hell out of this series. So many great questions and of course many great answers. It is obvious people want you to put your "but" in since it leads to the truth!

      Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mary, my spreading but is at least good for something. LOL Thank you dear friend and Happy Monday to you.

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 2 years ago from Deep South, USA

      This is another good Q&A installment, Bill, with a noteworthy mix of topics.

      May I toss in my two-cents' worth regarding book covers from my perspective as a reader and buyer of books? When I browse for books online, in a store or the public library, I'm first drawn to a book by its cover. An eye-catching cover leads me to read the blurb, and that is where I make my decision. If the short description of the content (usually on the flyleaf or back of the cover) piques my interest, I'll choose the book. The cover provides the all-important first impression, and the blurb either reinforces or refutes my interest.

      One of the best aspects of self-publishing, in my estimation, is the control it gives the author over the cover that will be the book's 'first impression' face to the world. I think this is especially important when the cover art is meant to illustrate the theme. I've read too many traditionally-published books with covers that looked as though the artist or photographer knew nothing whatsoever about the plot, characters or setting. As a reader, it irritates me if the main character--described by the author as a heavy-set middle-aged man with red hair and a calico beard--is portrayed on the cover as young, slender, brown-haired and clean-shaven, or a setting looks entirely different from its depiction within the narrative. Does this irritate anyone else...or is it just one of my personal quirks?

      At any rate, the self-publishing author can ensure the cover accurately illustrates whatever feature of the theme is selected to attract readers' interest with that all-important first impression.

      Happy Monday!

      Jaye

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      All great points, Jaye, and you can add your two-cents worth here any old time you like...and I happen to agree with you, which makes your opinion quite valuable. LOL

      Thank you my friend. I'm already thinking about a cover for my next novel. Talk about the cart before the horse. :)

      bill

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      Suzette Walker 2 years ago from Taos, NM

      Another interesting and stellar hub, Bill. I always enjoy reading your opinion and take on these questions. This is such food for thought.

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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      I love the idea of combining two popular searches to come up with a unique angle. I recently read a blog post by Sohie Lizard giving the same advice. She illustrated how she came up with five different approaches to the same topic, giving her five articles to pitch at once. I'll have to dig that post up and re-read it.

      Great questions this week!

    • profile image

      DJ Anderson 2 years ago

      "Mailbag Monday!" Great advice as always, Bill.

      'Life' had demanded my full attention for the last two weeks.

      I simply must get back to the story line.

      My best to you, this Monday!

      DJ.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 2 years ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      Yes, Bill. It's working quite well so far. I know what's coming Monday mornings, and I look forward to it.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Suzette. Quite a coincidence, because I love giving my opinion. LOL

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sha, her advice is great, and quite a few writers would do well to follow that. Thanks for mentioning that, and of course, for being here.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DJ, tell life to hit the road. Your book needs you...hell, I need you. :)

      Happy Monday dear friend

      bill

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bill, I love the fact that people associate this article with Mondays...very cool my friend. Thank you!

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      D. Shaw 2 years ago from Austin, Texas

      This was my first time reading your article Q and A session. You're so knowledgeable about writing and everything. Please keep doing what you do.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 2 years ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      I loved all your comments. Today it is indeed very difficult to even sell an ebook, let alone a printed copy. Our own authors do very little about marketing. I've started a blog titled: http://cuisine-for-the-mind.com/ with the idea that authors would be willing to write an appropriate paragraph that is witty and catchy. Then I will add the text under some of the subheadings and add their links to their books and I thought of creating projects ( to do with food) with their cover designs on Zazzle , since we own the copyright on them. Then I add these images next to the text to give it a Menu feel.

      Something different. What do you think. I'm trying to think out of the box here.

    • profile image

      Greg Boudonck 2 years ago

      Yea Bill, I was too lazy to sign in. I opened my email and found your post and had to read it. Again, great advice. I love it...Keep them coming.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Metroid...as long as there are questions then I'll keep doing this.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Nadine, I'm all for anything out of the box. I think if one is to make it in this new world, then unique has to be the catchphrase one should seek. Great concept and I wish you luck with it.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Hey Greg, good to see you my friend. Thanks for the visit...you are always welcome in my neighborhood.

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      Melissa Propp 2 years ago from Minnesota

      It's Monday and I've read my weekly installment--all is right with the world! These were some really good questions. Thank you for the well-thought answers. Happy Monday!

    • mathira profile image

      mathira 2 years ago from chennai

      Yet another useful installment, billy. But I have a long way to go before I can use your suggestions. But I was fascinated by the answer you gave about the cover of the book. It is a future plan for me. Let us see!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Happy Monday, Melissa! It wouldn't be Monday without a visit from you. Thank you my friend.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Let us see indeed, Mathira, and it may not be as far in the future as you think. Best wishes my friend, and thank you.

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      Lori Colbo 2 years ago from Pacific Northwest

      I love the cover for your novel Resurrecting Tobias.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      Thanks, bill, for answering my question. I thought the same and I wasn't surprised by your answer, just reassured! For me, the illustrations impose upon the imagination, given your exceptions. A writer should be able to paint the picture with words and we interpret those words in our own individual ways. I don't think they should need to use a picture as back-up.

      It's like a book that's been made into a film; I insist on reading the book before watching the film as I then have my own interpretation of the story before someone else imposes theirs. I can then decide how good the film is!

      Each Monday we receive great advice from you to all writers. That's why I share all of these. I hope you have a wonderful week, bill.

      Ann

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      Maria Jordan 2 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      Happy Monday, Bill...love your teaching attitude that if one person has a question, more of us may as well...cool series, just like you.

      Have a lovely week. Love, Maria

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      Eric Dierker 2 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Classic: Get Fresh or Go Home

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you, Lori. I think Alex did a great job with it.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, you stated it perfectly. If the writer is any good at all, he/she doesn't need pictures. Words paint pictures...period!

      I always feel better when you agree with me. :)

      Happy Monday my friend, and have a marvelous week.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Maria! I have some pretty cool followers and friends...and that, of course, includes you.

      love,

      bill

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Eric, you can quote me on that...in fact, please do. :) Thanks my friend; have a great week.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      Of course I agree with you, always! :))

      Ann

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

      Great installment my friend now about the cover isn't it true that you shouldn't judge a book by its cover or should you?

    • mdscoggins profile image

      Michelle Scoggins 2 years ago from Fresno, CA

      Hey Bill, great beginning to my week. Love how you mention "go fresh or go home" which leads me to believe that I can do this. Certainly it all starts with an open mind and passion. I am learning so much, keep it up and thank you.

    • tobusiness profile image

      Jo Alexis-Hagues 2 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

      My, how the weeks fly...and here you are again with more interesting Q&A. About book covers, I love the design used for Resurrecting Tobias, and I agree, the book cover should, to some extent, give the reader a taste of what to expect. However, Frank does have a point. Another interesting read, always useful. My best to you.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Ann! :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ahh, Frank, the eternal question. :) Thanks buddy.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Michelle! I'm glad you liked that phrase...I just get tired of reading the same regurgitated stuff from writers. Find a new angle and fame and fortune await. :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jo, I guess the bottom line is there are no set rules in this business. There always seems to be an exception to any rule we state...keeps us on our toes for sure.

      Thank you as always my friend, and blessings this week

      bill

    • Sparklea profile image

      Sparklea 2 years ago from Upstate New York

      Greetings Billy Buc, and I am dropping everything to comment on this ever great hub, as usual. You are doing such a wonderful thing with your installments, answering questions, and this one is no different.

      I truly have been ruminating on your advice about different angles and hooks on topics that have been written about thousands of times.

      I SO agree that book covers are vital. I LIVE at Barnes & Noble and I check out books ALL the time. I usually read the introduction or the first sentences of Chapter 1...if interesting, I take the book to the Café and start reading. Many times I have said, "I am buying this book!" Other times I put it back. You have advised in the past about how it takes only a few seconds to grab a reader.

      I DO have one question...and since I am behind in some of your 'installments' I apologize in advance if this question has already been asked...here it is:

      When approaching a book publisher with a query regarding your completed manuscript, is it permissible OR tacky to include a list of your current writing credits? Do they want to see if you have published in the past? Are they interested in a short bio? (such as being a member of writing organization...stuff like that). I have a list of my writing credits on file... No rush with an answer. Just wondering.

      Also, in the future I still plan to ask for your services regarding my book.

      My daughter is really on my case to finish this book...and I am planning to totally clear my calendar after the holidays. I have already cancelled doctor appointments that I feel are not necessary...no more 'appointments' unless very important. God bless, Sparklea

    • profile image

      sheilamyers 2 years ago

      Great advice. I'd like to add to your answer about book covers. I know my aren't as creative as some I've seen, but there's a huge mistake some independent authors make - in my opinion - and that's using graphics programs to design a picture of people and objects that comes out looking like a screenshot from a computer game. That only works if the plot of the story has something to do with computer games; otherwise, it doesn't look very professional. Again, that's just my opinion.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 2 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Your encouragement would make anyone want to write a book. You are so helpful. Thank you for all you do. HP is lucky to have you...

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lea, welcome my friend. Thanks for sharing your buying habits when you purchase a book. I think you are in line with how most of us approach a purchase. Too bad writers don't remember this when they start their books.

      I'll answer your question in next week's installment...it's a good one.

      And I'm pulling for you to finish that book of yours. I have no doubt it will be high-quality my friend.

      Thank you!

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Sheila, I I always appreciate your opinion. I know what you are talking about and I agree with you. Thanks for sharing that.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ruby, I feel the same way about the HP community. I'm a lucky man.

      Thank you!

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 2 years ago from london

      Thanks Bill.

      Great answers. A big one marketing, yes. Requires lots of work. Best wishes to you and Bev.

    • Barbara Kay profile image

      Barbara Kay Badder 2 years ago from USA

      Thanks for the good advice.

    • Ann1Az2 profile image

      Ann1Az2 2 years ago from Orange, Texas

      When you were asked about illustrations, the first author that came to my mind was Michael Creighton. He was a master at it because he used them to make his story believable - they were always mathematical and scientific, such as tables or diagrams. You had no idea (or at least I didn't) how to interpret them, but they looked official. I would say at least in his case, they were necessary to make the plot more realistic. Of course, he was a master at making the unreal seem very real. We lost a great writer when we lost him, by the way.

      Another good job on answering questions, Bill! You're batting 1000!

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      William Leverne Smith 2 years ago from Hollister, MO

      Thanks for using my question, and providing a useful reply… and generating nice additional comments. That is what we love about the Mailbag series. Keep up the great work!! ;-)

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      Bill De Giulio 2 years ago from Massachusetts

      Another great installment Bill. And you even gave me another idea for a future hub, "How to save money when traveling in France or Italy or wherever". Thank you. I have a lot of work to do over the next few months.

      Please keep this series going, it is clearly loved by all. Have a great week.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you manatita! Always nice to have you stop by my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      And I thank you, Barbara Kay!

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you, Ann, and that's a great example of illustrations being used to great effect. Yes indeed, he was a good writer.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I'm glad you found it useful, Bill, and thanks for the question.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bill, that's great. I love sharing ideas and seeing someone benefit from them. I'm looking forward to your new series my friend.

    • Rhonda Lytle profile image

      Rhonda Lytle 2 years ago from Deep in the heart of Dixie

      Useful information as always. I love these installments and always learn something from each. Keep them coming, please.

    • Iris Draak profile image

      Cristen Iris 2 years ago from Boise, Idaho

      Great as always, Bill. The book cover design one was particularly interesting to me this time. Here's a question for you. You are everywhere (OK, that's a statement but bear with me). You're often the first to post a comment when I publish a new article. When I log onto Facebook, there you are posting regularly. You're very social, and your connections are impressive (and genuine). What advice do you have for those of us who are trying to branch out and connect with other writers as well as promote ourselves. There are only so many hours in a day. What are the best ways to increase our readership and find other writers with similar vibes? How much time per day would you recommend budgeting for these social media type activities?

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Rhonda. I'll do that my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      iris, that's a tough one, especially the last part of your question, because not everyone has the time I have to devote to this. I'll answer the rest of your question in next week's mailbag....most of my social connections started very early on, and I think one of the reasons why I have the following that I have is because there is nothing phony about me. I always try to be helpful, I'm always positive in my remarks...people just feel like they are connecting with a real person. Anyway, I'll go into more depth on Monday. Thanks for a great question and for being here.

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      Amelia Griggs 2 years ago

      As always, great advice and very helpful information, billybuc!

      P.S. Check bottom of your profile, I think you meant to write "I love Hubpages" LOL

      I love Hubpages, too!

    • Besarien profile image

      Besarien 2 years ago

      Great Q and A! Honestly, I pay more attention to titles than to book covers. I used to read a lot of sci-fi and fantasy as a kid, The covers never matched the story. I do agree with you completely about inside illustrations. I use my head for that. An artist's depiction is just an interruption. Even when there are photos, I generally skip them until I finish the book. Unless something described, like a family tree or a complicated device, is so puzzling that I need a visual.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

      Hi Postal Bill ... you are certainly getting a lot of mail and still providing great answers to questions posed to you! I am with you on the illustrations (other than required here on HP), for if we need illustrations, then what are our words for ... our words should paint the images before our eyes as we read!

      Hugs and blessings always

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks easylearningweb...that will teach me to edit it late at night. LOL

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Hi Besarien, and thanks for stopping by. You mentioned a family tree, and it seems to me that Michener used it quite successfully in several of his books, but he is the only writer I can think of right now who has pulled that feat off.

      Anyway, welcome again, and thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I really do believe, that, Faith. We have all the tools we need to paint a beautiful picture...if we are willing to work at it. :) Big "if."

      Thank you as always my friend, and blessings coming at you

      bill

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      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      You're creating a big collection of useful advice with this series, Bill. Thank you.

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      Dora Isaac Weithers 2 years ago from The Caribbean

      Good answers to good questions, and meanwhile we learn some things we need to know. Excellent service!

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you for being here, Alicia.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I'm glad to hear that, Dora. Thank you!

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 2 years ago from Scotland

      Useful as it consistently has been right through the series, and the questions are still rolling in and will keep doing so. We are an inquisitive lot! :)

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Anna, I would be shocked if writers were not inquisitive. I think creative people want to know about things around them...or maybe I'm just full of it. LOL

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      Dianna Mendez 2 years ago

      I recently read a novel by one of our pastors titled "The River" and found the cover to be unique. It was made to look like a journal and the texture was a thicker type of paper. It connected the reader to the story so well. Great tips, Bill. Keep the information coming!

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 2 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Interesting I have a few books online and going well. Your hubs are very helpful to all writers.

    • billybuc profile image
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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for sharing that, Dianna! There is no doubt that a great cover is a huge advantage.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      DDE, I am glad your books are doing well. Keep up the good work, and thank you.

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      Joanna McKenna 2 years ago from Central Oklahoma

      Bill, what can I say about this series I haven't said already? So I'll ask a question instead that doesn't have to wait till next Monday's installment.

      Where did you get your computer desk? I need to downsize my own desk, but stores in my town only offer monsters fit for a CEO's corner office or ones only a tad bigger than a TV tray. As Little Red Riding Hood would say, yours is "just right". ;D

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jama, I was living in a furnished rental at the time, and I don't know where the landlord got that desk, although I suspect it came from IKEA...but don't hold me to that guess.

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      Victor W. Kwok 2 years ago from Hawaii

      Another awesome hub with awesome advice, Bill!

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you vkwok. It's always a pleasure having you stop by.

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      Gypsy Rose Lee 2 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Another inspirational hub. Always after your wonderful advice and information I have the urge to write and never stop. I also get so inspired by different ideas that I get all discombobulated. Here is a question with explanation - I started writing about certain places on my free blog in WordPress. One thing led to another and people liked it that I gathered information from the net and put it all together for them to have an idea about a certain place. I always add references and usually Google images. Questions is What do you think about writing about different places in the world in this way? I have not traveled the world and right now I'm writing about certain European cities going country by country. Sure would appreciate your opinion. My blog http://yamarella.wordpress.com Thank you and passing this on.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks for a great question, Rasma. The mailbag is full this Monday, but I'll tackle your question in the next installment. My quick answer is I like the idea, as long as there is a new twist to it. :)

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      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      How amazing is it when every one of the suggested reads is actually your own hubs? What a cool advantage of a series like this.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Flourish, I agree with you. I really stumbled onto something great here. Thanks for being here.

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      toknowinfo 2 years ago

      Bill, The service you do for writers is invaluable. Thanks for this hub and each and everyone you write.

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Toknowinfo, it really is my pleasure, but thank you very much.

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      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Excellent material. There is so much to earn, but with as seasoned writer as yourself, it gets a little easier. Thanks again, Billy!

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      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Deb, I think we can now call you a seasoned writer, and a very good one. Thank you!

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