Byline Blog

Byline: The Art of Writing and Business of Publishing

Peter DeHaan

Discussing the art of writing and the business of publishing

Beta Reader Questions That Writers Should Ask

When working with beta readers, it’s important to set expectations with them or the feedback you get may not be helpful. To guide this effort, ask the same beta reader questions of each person. Three Key Beta Reader Questions 1. What parts did you like? Your first question will let you know what parts not … Continue reading Beta Reader Questions That Writers Should Ask

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Tips on Finding an Agent to Represent You

Finding an agent is easy. Just do an online search for “literary agents.” However, getting an agent to agree to represent you is hard, very hard. Unlike hiring an accountant or attorney to represent us where we can vet them and pick the best one to meet our needs, agents vet their clients so they … Continue reading Tips on Finding an Agent to Represent You

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How to Protect Blog Content

A lot of writers wonder if it’s necessary or wise to protect blog content that they post online. What if it is material for other writing projects? Should it be freely accessible online? First, I am not a lawyer, and this is not legal advice. A great resource is Helen Sedwick’s book Self-Publisher’s Legal Handbook. … Continue reading How to Protect Blog Content

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The Benefits of Using ISBNs: Don’t Publish Your Book Without One

Many successful indie authors do not use ISBNs (for their e-books), and they see no reason why they should. The number Amazon provides works just fine from a practical standpoint. Having said that, an ISBN gives your book added credibility and has more universal recognition than an ASIN (Amazon Standard Identification Number) when searching for … Continue reading The Benefits of Using ISBNs: Don’t Publish Your Book Without One

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How to Setup Your Website and Blog

The Technical Aspect of Setting Up Your Website and Blog I’m a big fan of WordPress and so are a lot of other people. Thirty percent of the top million websites worldwide rely on WordPress for their website and blog. I recommend you join them and use WordPress to setup your website. There Are Two … Continue reading How to Setup Your Website and Blog

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How to Discover What to Blog About

To start your own blog, there are two aspects: the technical aspect and the content aspect, what is, what to blog about. Let’s look at the content part of blogging first: Find Your Blog Focus If you write whatever you feel like writing (as I did when I started), you will never find an audience. … Continue reading How to Discover What to Blog About

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Submit Your Post and Article to Blogs

To submit your post to blogs, the first thing to do is see if your target blog runs guest posts. Many do not. They may state this on their site, or you may need to search their archives to find out. Next, as with print, familiarize yourself with the blog. Look at the content they … Continue reading Submit Your Post and Article to Blogs

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Tips for Periodical Submission Success

To submit content to print publications, the first thing is to familiarize yourself with the target publication. Look at the type of content they print, how long each item runs, the style they use, and their tone. To make your periodical submission a success, your goal is to match those characteristics as closely as you … Continue reading Tips for Periodical Submission Success

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More on Blogging Your Book

Is blogging your book a good idea? If you blog your book, why will people buy it? Logic suggests they wouldn’t, but the reality is that most people will. Let me share what I’ve learned from other writers. I’ve yet to talk to anyone who felt their blog posts hurt their book sales. Even when … Continue reading More on Blogging Your Book

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Blogging Your Book for Fiction and Nonfiction Writers

Many people wonder if you can blog your book. This is a common question and answers differ. Here are my blogging tips for blogging your book. Fiction Writers For fiction writers, you can blog about your book’s content: setting, characters, and supporting background, but you can’t dole out your book in blog-sized chunks. Of course, … Continue reading Blogging Your Book for Fiction and Nonfiction Writers

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Writing a Book Versus Blogging

If you want to write a book and blog, what should you do? It’s a book versus blogging debate. Too many writers starting out try to do both and end up doing neither one well. Or they try to write a book before they’re ready. Then they end up with something not suitable for publication, … Continue reading Writing a Book Versus Blogging

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The Successful Author: Discover the Art of Writing and the Business of Publishing

Do you have questions about writing? Publishing? Peter Lyle DeHaan has answers, which he shares in The Successful Author. With over three decades of experience as an author, blogger, freelancer, and publisher, Peter will help you on your writing journey. On this grand adventure: Learn why you shouldn’t call yourself an aspiring writer. Uncover tips … Continue reading The Successful Author: Discover the Art of Writing and the Business of Publishing

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Writing Tips on Formatting Numbers

Do you have questions about formatting numbers? There are two main rules that apply to writing numbers: 1) Write out single-digit numbers (one through nine) and use digits for numbers for 10 and higher, or 2) Write out one hundred and everything less. Use numbers for everything greater than one hundred. Some style guides say … Continue reading Writing Tips on Formatting Numbers

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The Purpose of Blogging: Discover When and Why to Blog

Blogging is important, but what is the purpose of blogging? Blogging serves two purposes. The First Purpose of Blogging: To Write Better First, blogging can help us improve as a writer, train us to meet deadlines, and encourage us to write regularly. Blogging helps us get better as writers—and we all want to do that. … Continue reading The Purpose of Blogging: Discover When and Why to Blog

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What’s the Difference Between a Category and a Tag on Your WordPress Blog?

Part 5 in the continuing series on using WordPress for blogging: a platform-building, book-selling tool. WordPress categories and tags are confusing. They seem to do the same thing and offer similar results. WordPress Category A category is like a file cabinet drawer for your posts where you place related content. Categories are general groupings of … Continue reading What’s the Difference Between a Category and a Tag on Your WordPress Blog?

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What Is Your Twitter Strategy? Discover How to Use Social Media

At one time, publishers would be impressed with your sheer number of Twitter followers (or Facebook likes), but now their focus is more on engagement. What is your Twitter strategy to build your author platform? Are you interacting with your Twitter followers? Do you try to connect with them, and do they appreciate the value … Continue reading What Is Your Twitter Strategy? Discover How to Use Social Media

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Self-Editing Options to Improve Our Writing

Self-editing is hard for most writers, I suspect all writers. We know what we meant to write, so that’s what we tend to see when we try to edit our work. To combat this, try these self-editing options. To find errors, such as typos, missing words, extra words, and confusing phrases, I use text-to-speech software … Continue reading Self-Editing Options to Improve Our Writing

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Finding Balance in Writing and Life

Personally, when it comes to finding balance, it seems something is always slipping, with the areas of writing, work, and life being in a constant state of tension. Yes, there are times where I may go a couple of days keeping everything in balance, but one little bump in the road and the whole thing … Continue reading Finding Balance in Writing and Life

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Finding a Writing Mentor

Many Writers Wish They Had a Mentor The problem is that those who are most qualified to be a mentor are also the busiest, and the people who have time are usually not as experienced. If you find someone who would make a great mentor, just ask them, but leave them room to say, “No,” … Continue reading Finding a Writing Mentor

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Five Things You Can Do With E-Books

There is some writing that we almost never see in printed form, due to its length, content, format, market size, or other factors. When it comes to e-books these are no longer issues. Here are five things we can do with e-books that we seldom see in print. Novellas A novella is a work of … Continue reading Five Things You Can Do With E-Books

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