Fictional languages

Most of us are never going to need this information. But there are But if you need it, you can do without reinventing the wheel.

Here is some useful reading if you find yourself needing to invent a fictional language.

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Using a memoir for the basis of a novel

There is a lot of talk these days about repurposing. Using one piece of writing for several purposes. For example, a blog post, a newspaper article, and a talk for a local group could all be based around the same ideas.

I suppose this idea is just art of the same process. This post covers using memoirs to create a novels.

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Would you like to write fiction?

If you are thinking about writing fiction, but don’t know where to start, now is the time to sign up for a free Open University course, which starts on 25th September 2017.

Start Writing Fiction is led by Derek Neale, an award-winning short story writer and co-author of Writing Fiction.

The course is aimed at anyone aged 16 or over who has an interest in starting to write fiction, and does not require any previous experience.

It is also useful for anyone wanting to improving their fiction writing.

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Some old phrases

We’ve got a collection of well known sayings today:

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Getting pictures in to an ebook

Formatting an ebook can be difficult. Pictures in an ebook can be particularly temperamental.

This post explains how to use Calibre for an ebook with pictures.

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10 Steps to Perfecting Your Writing Style

This post about the laws of flow might help you improve your writing style.

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Using leaflets to publicise your books

Now here is a book marketing idea that hadn’t crossed my mind: using leaflets. Remember to:

  1. Make sure the leaflet will appeal to buyers in your market.
  2. Link the appearance of the leaflet to your book, so you reinforce your brand.
  3. Make the leaflet look as professional as you can.

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How to get your self-published books into book shops

Getting your book into local shops is a good strategy. Here is a post about how to get book shops to take your self published books.

It is a good idea to pay particular attention to the section on how not to do this job. Always remember that you are dealing with another human being. Thinking how you would react in their shoes is a very useful approach.

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Converting a Word document into an ebook

This is a subject that causes trouble all the time. People like to control the way their book looks. Well, that is perfectly reasonable, after all the effort you have put into it. With a hard copy, you can control exactly how the book looks, especially if you have a patient printer working with you.

The key things to remember are:

  • What you see on your screen when you look at your work is not the finished product. It is only part of the process.
  • For an ebook, much of the appearance is controlled by the reader. Their device will adapt to make the book fit the screen, and they will set the font size to make it legible.

Your goal when you have finished in Word is NOT to make it look pretty. It is to make a file that:

  • will work with the printer’s typesetting system, and
  • will work with the software that will make your ebook.

This post explains how to prepare your file to convert to an ebook. If you do not follow this sort of advice, your book will look very odd, with random spaces in it. Following the same routine will also help with preparing a printed book.

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Just des(s)erts

We all know what it means, but a lot of people are unsure about whether to use “just deserts” or “just desserts”.

This is a thorough post about a confusing phrase: just des(s)erts.

And once you know which word you want, then you might hesitate about the spelling. This is easy. The double s in dessert stands for “sweet stuff”, which is always found in a pudding, but is much harder to find in a hot dry place.

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