Another element to being an successful author is to diversify. Write and publish everything out there. And that includes: fiction, non-fiction, articles, short stories, humor, children's books, technical writing, fillers, and etc. We all want to showcase our writing talents, therefore we must produce good quality material from every genre. Let's not limit our writing. Expand.

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Actually, in today's market publishers want to brand you, which means if you want to write more than one genre, you really have to use pseudonyms.
You've hit the nail on the head there.
I was at an interview yesterday and the PR girl ( and I mean girl - she can't have been older than twelve) was talking about me being a 'brand'. I started to feel like soap powder...but I guess if I were the top selling soap powder I'd swallow it.
HB x
Actually, that is rather forward-looking. I had to complain when my last editor managed to put my name in the tiniest possible print and in black against a dark purple background. I put it to her that an author's name is like a brand, and urged her to have a look at the cereal aisle in the grocery store. :)
I certainly hope that my debut makes a big enough impact that my name gets larger on the cover for the next one. Not an ego thing, but just like you say I.J., it becomes the brand. The titles of new Pattersons or Crais or Cobens, don't really matter as much as the giant letters of their name saying this is their new one. For my debut, I think the size of my name is probably the right size for me. However, if you look at it beside Sandra Ruttan's upcoming debut (hope you don't mind me posting it here as an example, Sandra) - you can see how emphasis on the brand name changes things slightly. Sandra's cover puts more emphasis on it being her novel rather than a novel. Of course Sandra has some built-in name recognition with her work on Spinetingler, etc.
Thanks for the mention, Grant, and for the most part I agree with you. Personally, I love your cover and it draws me in, and that's another difference between it and mine. Your cover is telling a story, mine is projecting an element/theme. That's an entirely different cover style. The lettering on my cover is also raised, so it looks good in physical form. Add in a whole new design dilemma - some covers SUCK as gifs like this, and I wonder how much designing with amazon in mind is affecting cover design.

And I'm not sure which has the upper hand. I think these things go through phases.

However, I don't think Spinetingler has anything to do with it, in my case. Generally speaking, publishers seem oblivious to it and my role with it. So I'm not sure I can explain the lettering in my case.
Better be good in one genre than mediocre in many.
I think the key here, George, is your statement to "produce good quality material". If you try to write everything and the kitchen sink, you may not be producing very good quality material. I think I agree with the "specialize" theory, simply because you are able to focus and hone that field to a fine point. I personally would be awful at technical writing.

Hey, isn't nonfiction and articles the same thing?
What about staying with genre but doing different media? For example writng crime for TV? Would that be too divergent?
I've been asked to adapt my novel but I'm wondering if it's that easy...maybe I'm more of a 100,00 words chick.
HB x


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