This Week in the Blogs, April 12 – 18, 2014

by | Apr 20, 2014

Spring has sprung, and I hope some of the natural beauty of the season is distracting you from the seemingly endless hours we spend staring at screens. Go outside, breath that fresh air, enjoy your family. And this weekend, when you’re looking for a quiet spot and some downtime, check out these articles, you’re sure to find something to help you pass the time.

Kristen Lamb on Kristen Lamb’s Blog
Social Media, Book Signings & Why Neither Directly Impact Overall Sales
“One of my AWESOME on-line pals posted something troublesome on my Facebook page. Apparently there is a recent article in a major writing magazine that declares social media does not sell books and, in a nutshell, isn’t worth the effort. I’ll warn you guys ahead of time that I went hunting for the article—at the last remaining Barnes & Noble within a 25 mile radius of my home—and couldn’t find said article (and have asked Kim to get me the specific issue). But, since this type of commentary is prevalent enough in the blogosphere, I feel I can address the overall thesis accurately enough.”

Derek Murphy on creativINDIE
A sample contract agreement between an author and a book cover designer
“I’m not a fan of contracts (or anything binding, or closing doors, or other A-personality stuff). I avoid extra, non-essential work if I can help it. And since I know I will always over deliver, con?tracts seem like overkill to me. But of course some clients will want them, and there’s no reason not to use one if either party requests it.”

Cate Baum on Self-Publishing Review
Ten things to do to win a writing contest
“With so many entries to judge, what is it about your book that will win you a prize? Cate Baum, co-founder of the SPR Awards spills the beans on the best tips to get that award.”

Michael Hyatt on Michael Hyatt
The Beginner’s Guide to Writing With MultiMarkdown
“As a writer, I have tried just about every word processor ever invented. I started with WordStar, moved on to WordPerfect, then graduated to Microsoft Word. But when I started blogging, everything changed. I ultimately learned HTML, but it is certainly not the most natural way to write. I have used a number of “blog processors,” including BlogJet and then MarsEdit. But in the last few years, I have completely converted over to MultiMarkdown.”

Anne R. Allen on Anne R. Allen’s Blog …WITH RUTH HARRIS
The 10 Commandments of Social Media Etiquette for Writers
“When I wrote a couple of weeks ago about the importance of commenting on blogs to raise your social media profile, I forgot to say one essential thing—probably because I figured it’s something your mom told you—but for those who’ve forgotten, here it is… If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it.”

Blog Notes and a New Award!

Have you been loving the posts by our new lineup of Contributing Writers? I know I have. They are bringing something really valuable, each from their own perspective, to the blog and adding tremendously to the information, advice, and encouragement authors will find here. And from the comments and engagement on many of the posts, it looks like you’ve been enjoying them too.

Observant readers will notice a new badge in the left sidebar. This week I learned that The Book Designer has once again been named one of Writer’s Digest’s 101 Best Websites for Writers.

I’m grateful to the editors and very pleased with the award.

Make sure you check out the whole list, I’m sure you’ll find some valuable sites you didn’t know about.


book design

tbd advanced publishing starter kit


  1. Anne R. Allen

    Thanks much for the shout-out and congrats on the Writers Digest honors. I hear our blog made the WD list, too, but they haven’t notified me or sent the badge. When did you get yours?

    • Joel Friedlander

      Hi Anne, I received an email from them early this week, and the badge artwork followed soon thereafter. I haven’t had a chance to check out the print issue (only available to subscribers online) yet, but I’m going to pick one up today.

  2. Greg Strandberg

    Good job! But I think I can speak for a lot of people when I say I’d rather have you write more.

    • Joel Friedlander

      Greg, thanks for that. This year is going to be a busy one for me, but my “rough drafts” folder is bursting, so I’m sure you’ll see and hear from me more in the months to come.

  3. Alan Drabke

    I wish you would cross post (cross pollenate) more with Aaron Shepard, April Hamilton, and Nathan Bransford.

    • Joel Friedlander

      Thanks for the suggestion, Alan. I’m a long-time follower of all three people, and they are all on my feed reader where we select the articles to link to, along with about 250 other writers. The field has exploded in the last couple of years, and besides finding great content for readers, I particularly like sharing the work of newer authors with something useful to say. But I’ll keep a lookout for great articles from your favorites, too.



  1. A funny thing happened on the way to my book launch… | Nowick Gray - Wild Writings - […] inbox and found an update from a publishing blog I recently subscribed to: Joel Friedlander’s The Book Designer. His…

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *