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Subscribe to the Carolyn HowardJohnson Newsletter. Enter your name and email below and click "sign me up!"
Carolyn HowardJohnson, click here to update your pages on AuthorsDen.

"Sharing with Writers" is from the desks of Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author THE FRUGAL BOOK PROMOTER (USA Book News' "Best Professional Book 2004" and an Irwin Award winner) and THE FRUGAL EDITOR, winner of USA Book News Best Book award and Reader Views Literary Award, and her writing friends. Writing friends. That's YOU.

It is a place where you'll find writing and promotion tips and where you can share your own writing sucesses with other writers.
Newsletter Dated: 9/28/2007 7:10:43 PM

Subject: [Sharing with Writers] The Ethics and Practicalities of Recalling a Review and Free Speech

Sept. 28, 2007
Sharing with Writers
A newsletter that is also a community. Share your ideas. Learn from theirs!

From the Desks of
Carolyn Howard-Johnson
And Authors' Coalition Friends

"Sharing with Writers" is the official newsletter of Authors' Coalition,

an organization of writers who help writers.

To read this letter in plain vanilla text, scroll down. To read this newsletter with a bit more pizzazz (not much, though!) at Authors Den go to:


Note from Carolyn:

Dear Authors' Coalition Members and SWW Subscribers;

Monday is jitters day. Monday is my big release date for The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success. It, unlike The Frugal Book Promoter, is traditionally published in a relatively small run (but still scary!). As with publishing of any kind, things haven't always gone smoothly.

Amazon started shipping it early; not a bad thing. That means I got a great rating. It was in the top ten of its category -- editing -- before it was even released. Not bad. The trouble is, I'm worried it won't show well for its big opener. Did all of you beautiful souls who were going to order it already do so? If you didn't, I hope you will now.

Then there's the bookstore thing. We've had some distributor problems. So I'm really, really nervous, and I don't know how to counteract that other than to just keep promoting.

All I can say is, I'm glad I have other things (like this newsletter) to keep my mind off of the whole thing! So how does the song go? "I'll get by with a little love from my friends." It's a good sanity-saving sentiment.

Happy, happy writing and promoting and, yes, EDITING, too.
Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Websites: and
or Amazon-direct for The Frugal Editor:
Blogs: A blog focused on book fairs at and another blog that is about writing and reading at and

PS: This newsletter is a tad early this week. I have to load my old Volvo wagon with over 300,000 miles on it for a trek across town to the West Hollywood Book Fair this weekend. Wish me luck.

Please pass this letter on to others. Unlike many others, I do not mind if you use only portions of it as long as you credit the writers and include this subscribe information. "To subscribe to 'Sharing with Writers' send an e-mail to with 'subscribe' in the subject line."

In the World of Publishing

Sent to SWW by Nancy Mills, founder of TheSpritiedWoman, Makes Self-publishing Easier--and More Frugal

CreateSpace, part of the group of companies, launched an online Books on Demand service. CreateSpace does not charge setup fees for books, audio CDs, and DVDs. Authors simply offer their works to customers on,, and through their own eStore on Amazon that they can customize to fit their needs. It is not necessary to deal with inventory, setup fees, or minimum
orders. You must only purchase and approve a proof copy of your book, CD, and/or DVD before your published work will be produced on an on-demand basis.

See for
more information.
New members will help Authors' Coalition serve all its members better! Ask your writing friends to join at Paid members get a favorite review posted, consideration for an interview or review in Yarnspinners and Wordweavers and ditto for The Fiction Flyer and Betty Dobson's Inkspotter. Membership is reasonable, too.
Tell friends to visit our blog. There they'll learn how to spark generally insipid book fairs by using value-added promotions.

Thank Yous

(There are leads here, just as you'll find in all the most innocent-looking areas of this newsletter. You never know when you'll find a name or a site that will help you network or write better!)

To Billie A. Williams, author and listmom for, for posting a thoughtful, full-of-information review of The Frugal Editor on Amazon. You'll find it here complete with book publishing figures: . While you're there, please vote for it as helpful, because you are sure to find that it is. (-:

No part of this newsletter is paid advertising. If you would like to advertise to subscribers, display ads are available at at less per year than most sites charge for a single month (see the advertising tab at the top of the page). Authors' Coalition is also accepting ads.

Our Publishing World

ABA Urges Support
This comes from the American Book Association newsletter on an issue that affects writers:
Patriot Act Reform Bill Introduced -- ABA Urges Support
On Tuesday, September 25, the sponsors of the Campaign for Reader Privacy -- the American Booksellers Association, the American Library Association, the Association of American Publishers, and PEN American Center -- lauded the introduction in the U.S. Senate of the National Security Letter Reform Act of 2007, a bipartisan bill to safeguard citizens' privacy. The legislation would amend the Patriot Act to curb the FBI's misuse of National Security Letters and establish an individualized standard of suspicion for Section 215 orders. ABA is urging booksellers to contact their senators to ask them to support the bill.

If you enjoy "Sharing with Writers" please nominate it for Writer's Digest's 101 Best Newsletters for Writers. We aren't big, we aren't old. So it would take a huge outpouring from subscribers to make a dent. Send an e-mail to with subject line, "101 Best Newsletters for Authors" and let them know what this newsletter does for you!

Tip: Karen DeGroot Carter, author of One Sister's Song, sends along this URL for a blog:
She suggests we look at the "September 20 post titled Random Acts of Unkindness (subtitle: happen but I'm getting better at dealing with them) by Ello, a writer, professor, and lawyer based in D.C. He talks about legal issues that will interest bloggers."

Time is short! Watch for the third annual All Tips Edition of Sharing with Writers coming next week. Send your favorite tip for inclusion to: with "SWW TIP" in the subject line.


Win $100 and a Radio Show Guest Spot

Be the Star You Are! 501 c3 charity announces its 4th annual essay contest to promote literacy and positive messages.
Fee: $10 donation per entry

Dates: October 18-December 27, 2007

1st Prize - $100 plus guest appearance on the nationally syndicated radio program, Be the Star You Are! (Total value, $700) Additionally, your story will be published in our StarSearcher Express newsletter and at . Other Prizes to be announced.

Runner-ups –Published in our StarSearcher’s Express newsletter and noted on web site

Choose from the three topics
1. What is the importance to living Green? Describe how you are helping preserve Mother Earth for the coming generations.
2. How can we improve literacy and decrease illiteracy? Write about your efforts to inspire reading.
3. Who is your hero and why he/she is a role model to you? Illustrate the importance of mentoring through walking the talk.

All submissions must be received by Be the Star You Are! by midnight December 27, 2007.
For more information, please visit:
UCLA Extension Writers' Program Launches New Site to Accommodate Learning, Both On Campus and Online

Linda Venis, director of UCLA's Writers' Program announced that the new Writers’ Program website just went live! It is You'll find all the educational needs you'll need for learning more about your writing career. I'm proud of my instructor's page there, too.

Subscribers who have websites or newsletters of their own may be interested in the Free Articles 4 Readers and Writers on my site, I try to add new articles to it each week. If you don't see what you need for your blog, or newsletter, just ask.

Author Successes

(If you read about others' successes you'll not only be inspired, you'll glean resources for future successes of your own. You are invited to send me news about your successes. Please use "AUTHOR SUCCESSES" as a subject lines.)

Connie Gotsch, , author of Snap Me a Future and Mouth Full of Shell is also a radio host. She just took home a second place award from the National Federation of Press Women for programming for KSJE FM radio (
Pat McGrath Avery and Joyce Faulkner, editors of Salute!, a newsletter for and about veterans and friends of veterans, is the recipient of the Military Writers of America (MWSA) 2007 Special Recognition Award for Best Military Internet Newsletter. The publication features articles, poetry, essays and photos of history, veteran experiences and veteran events. The newsletter is sponsored by Red Engine Press/ RRP Consulting. To subscribe, send an email to with "Add to Salute" in the subject line.

Fun and F r * *: If you purchased The
Frugal Book Promoter in the past, I'd love for you to review it on Amazon or Make it simple; just tell what part of it you found most valuable. If you do, send me the review link (URL) and I will send you an excerpt from The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success that is now available for pre-order on Amazon. The excerpt includes some of the sidebars from the book that may help you with some tricky grammar. As a thank you, of course., the Frugal Book

Carolyn's Appearances and Teaching:

Carolyn will moderate a panel titled "Reach for Your Dream: Prepare for Publication the Professional Way" at the West Hollywood Book Fair on September 30. Circle your calendars. From 1:00-1:45 pm. It's f r ^ ^. Even those who are old hands at publishing will learn something new, I promise!
West Hollywood Park
647 N San Vicente Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Learn more at
Authors Coalition and Red Engine Press Booth at the West Hollywood Fair is at Booth 51-52F. Please come between 10 am and

West Hollywood Park
647 N San Vicente Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069

Authors' Coalition members will be signing their books. They include:

Walter Brasch, 10 am
Janet Goliger and Jay Bern 11 am
Christine Alexanians, and Sona Ovasapyan, noon
Kevin Gerard and Michael Wallach, 1 pm
Margaret Danielak and Nancy Rosen, 2 pm
Erica Stux and Carol J. Amato, 3 pm
Leora Krygier, 4 pm to 6 pm
Carolyn Howard-Johnson signing from 10 am to 1 pm, 2:30 pm to 6 pm

A map is available at
Carolyn will speak at the fourth Annual Pen to Paper Literary Symposium October 6, 2007. The conference, spearheaded by Valerie Coleman will be at the Dayton Urban League at 907 West Fifth Street Dayton, Ohio 45402. It will include tracks for music and screenwriting, in addition to writing and publishing books. It's not too late to register. (
Carolyn Howard-Johnson will a guest on Calling All Authors Radio Show Tuesday, October 9, 2007 on at 5PM Eastern, 4PM Central and 2PM Pacific time. Hosted by Valerie Connelly who plans to discuss my teaching, my books, my marketing including the horrors, successes and plain old chutzpah of a tekky-challenged writer building a website from scratch. For more information contact
Carolyn Howard-Johnson will speak at the Southern Festival of Books: A Celebration of the Written Word (October 12-14) in Nashville, TN. She will speak on "Realize Your Dream: From Query Letter to Bestseller--Frugally!"
from 2-3pm Saturday, Oct. 13 in room 31 of the Legislative Plaza and sign her books from 3 to 3:30 pm at the Signing Colonnade. You'll find more information on this fair and others you might participate in at Click on the Resources for Writers page and scroll down. For more on this specific fair, go to
The f r ^ ^ Muse Online Writers' Conference, sponsored by Lea Schizas and Carolyn Howard-Johnson, is accepting registration. More than 1,000 attended last year. Learn more about this year's conference, October 8 to 14. .Our program is ready for you to check out at
To see the final list of presenters go to:
Carolyn Howard-Johnson will be Valerie Connelly's guest on her Webinar Dec. 5th, 2007. The two will talk book promotion ad infinitum. There will be a printable agenda and follow-along materials prior to the event as well as a downloadable PDF of the Web screen shots and an MP3 recording of the Webinar available to registered attendees. There is a charge. Space is limited. Please register before Dec. 4. For more information or to register contact Valerie at
Carolyn Howard-Johnson talks to Valerie Connelly's radio audience on "Editing as Branding: Spelling success from queries to your book's manuscript." Circle your calendar on Wednesday December 12th at 8PM Eastern, 7PM Central, 5PM Pacific time. A downloadable MP3 recording of the Webinar will be available to registered attendees after the event. Sign up by Dec. 11th. Space is limited. Contact Valerie at or Nightengale Press,

Sign up to receive a copy of my Sharing with Writers blog in your e-mail box. It is a focused blog on all things related to writing and publishing from scolding Oprah to free speech. Go to Sign up in the left hand column. Find related resources by scrolling to the bottom of the blog.

Carolyn's Appearances and Teaching for 2008:

Carolyn will speak on Jan 2, 2008, at Ridge Writers, the East Sierra Branch of the California Writers Club founded more than 100 years go by Jack London and friends in the Bay area. The provide f r ^ ^ programs for writers at High Desert Haven in Ridgecrest. Learn more at
Carolyn Howard-Johnson will be Valerie Connelly's guest on her Teleseminar March 19th, 2008 at 8PM Eastern, 7PM Central, and 5 PM Pacific Time. The subject is: "It's Your Call: Frugal Book Promotion with Carolyn Howard-Johnson." A downloadable MP3 recording of the Teleseminar is available to registered attendees after the event. Please sign up by March 18th. Space is limited. Let Valerie tell you more about it:
Carolyn Howard-Johnson will be sharing with the nation's humor writers again in April 3-5 of 2008 at Dayton University's Erma Bombeck Writers' Workshop. I'll speak twice at the Kennedy Union on campus. Registration opens Sept. 10, 2007. Find some of the nation's best speakers here:
Carolyn will teach a new seminar on the UCLA campus on March 22, 2008, room 1323 Public Service Building. It's called The Business of Writing: Carve Your Career with Great Queries and Covers. Here's the class description: "You've written your story, your poem, your book. What now? You've tackled your craft like a professional but when it comes to introducing yourself to the decision makers—the marketing and editing part of your work—you may show a lack of expertise with seemingly innocuous departures from accepted procedures. Like using a cover letter when you need a query. In this one-day seminar, the students will use basics taught in the class to critique drafts of letters they have brought with them. In the process you'll get grammar, punctuation, and even computer editing tricks you may apply to your other writing as well as your queries. You'll receive a handout of the does and don'ts for approaching gatekeepers straight from the mouths of agents who contributed ideas on the subject for the instructor's book on editing and samples of letters that have produced results. Participants will not only walk away with two letters they can be proud to send out, but also have a low-cost plan for using them effectively in a variety of ways." So, are you all planning to come to spend a weekend in the sunshine in LA and make it a business expense? (-:
Carolyn Howard-Johnson will appear on Write On Four Corners with host Connie Gotsch on KSJE FM Public Radio from San Juan College. Access the broadcast at: 10:30 am Wed. 2:30 pm Fri. Mountain Time. Click on the website to listen live in your appropriate time zone. Connie is the author of the mystery suspense novel Snap Me a Future as well as host of Roving with the Arts on KSJE and regular contributor to The Four Corners Free Press

Carolyn's new blog for the participants in Authors' Coalition-sponsored booth is designed to help all authors learn to make often hum-drum book fair booths into sizzling successes. Visit at Leave comments, of course.

TIP: Karen DeGroot Carter, author of One Sister's Song, suggests this site for nice bookplates and some other things. She says, "They have a sweet collection of kids’ designs." I purchase Mrs. Grossman's stickers/labels from craft and/or stationery stores for sending signatures for books. They have some laser-cut things that are nice. I do mention this in The Frugal Book Promoter and also mention how to buy some things wholesale (like your gifts for editors) if you buy in bulk.

A general marketing rule is that a product must be seen seven times before it is purchased. That is just as true for books (because they are products, like it or not!). Let people see that book cover image! So, you are invited to advertise as a site sponsor at for a year at the same price many sites frequented by readers and writers charge for a month. Yep, the frugal way! Click on the Advertising tab at the top of the page or contact me personally at

Q&A A La Ann Landers

Requesting a Review Be Removed

Dear Carolyn: I am seeking some guidance ... or a sanity check, or both. In this morning's mail I received an inquiry from an author who wants us to delete our book review, because s/he didn't like what we said. The author acknowledged that everyone may not like the book, but wants us to remove our comments anyway. We don't get many of these, but it is one of those things that seems to stay with you through your morning coffee. Is such a request appropriate for an author?

Terry Doherty
President, The Reading Tub, Inc. (

From CHJ: It is not only inappropriate but violates the concept of free speech that all writers should support. The only time a request like this would be on target is if a reviewer was vitriolic. Even then, an author should understand that the reviewer has the right to say what he or she wants.

Let's look at this from your standpoint as a review site and one that supports literacy, and writers (and that support, of course, extends to your reviewers). You want to be fair to your reader and that means you want to provide unbiased reviews. You want to support your reviewer, too. Still you might ask yourself if it is worth denying this author's request.
This isn't legal advice but the author probably couldn't win but she could sue (people can sue for anything).She could also cause trouble for you by posting negative comments around. The choice is yours. To remove the review or not and should depend on your convictions and what you are willing to do for them.

This is what I would do strictly from a PR point of view: I would not apologize. You have nothing to apologize for. I would tell her, "The Reading Tub makes every effort to be fair to its audience, its review staff and to the authors of the books we choose to review. Reviews are meant to give the reading public a reviewer's unbiased opinion and share that same opinion, as a critique, with the author who may or may not choose to benefit from it. In any case, we will remove your review as you request."

I'm sure you can reword this to suit you, if you should decide to go with general public relations practices, not the ethics of journalism approach. The above quotation is the PR me speaking, the business woman who would prefer not to get in a fistfight. Not the other me -- that evangelist free speech advocate I hope you have all come to love. (-:(-:

Hope this gives you some food to go with your coffee. (-:

Note to Authors: I'm going to be tough here. If you're not prepared to hear anything critical about your book, don't submit it for review. Choose other ways to get exposure for it. Request a review be removed only if it is venomous or inaccurate. If you whine about a modest criticism or a three star rating, you only show yourself unprofessional. A better tack is to try to learn something from the criticism and to try to get more positive reviews or other promotion (interviews anyone?) out there to counteract it. And you certainly don't have to let people know about a review you're not crazy about, now do you.
========================================================Available: Audios from Audio Divas on many aspects of building a writing career are published by Double Dragon Press. Here is the page where you'll find the full list ( including one on "Do It Yourself Indexing." The first audio, "Promoting Easy and Cheap!" is a F R ^ ^ sample you can download. Each comes with a resource guide. Here is an example of a guide for the audio-lesson Your Divas did on "Contests":

TIP: Use your local Craig list to get info out about your f r ^ ^ events. It isn't hit or miss like trying to get feature stories in the media; Craigslist can be your backup promotion calendar.

Authors' Coalition members! For credibility, use the AC logo on your promotional materials. Ask for it by sending an e-mail to or download it with a click from the AC site
Be sure to link it to the AC site, too! You know you want it on your website!

Editing/Writing Tip: You've heard me say to be careful how you use your adverbs. One of the ways to use them effectively is to use them to change the meaning of the verb. In Writers' Journal ( Roy Peter Clark gives this example: In his book Palm Sunday, Kurt Vonnegut writes, "I thank you for your sweetly faked attention." Peters notes "' . . . sweetly' adjusts the meaning of 'faked.'" And so he declares it as a "good adverb."

Authors' Coalition: No Hum-Drum Book Fair Promotion Allowed is a new blog where you can follow watch how Authors' Coalition members make book fairs successful with cross-promotion, value-added promotions and a good assessment process. Find it at Leave your best book fair ideas there for others to see under the beige "comments" links.

Tip: How many Authors' Coalition members check out their editions of Yarnspinners and Wordweavers newsletter, edited by Joyce Faulkner? She uses the full color book covers of members in it profusely. This week covers of books by Leora Skolkin Smith, Kevin Gerard, Nadine Laman, and lots more appear. If you aren't receiving your Y&W newsletter, subscribe by sending a "SUBSCRIBE" message to Then send Joyce your book cover at the same address with "ADD to Y&W" in the subject line and tell her you're an AC member. If you're not a paid member of Authors' Coalition, it's only $20. a year. Lots of perks go with it. Go to

"AC is the current that powers your writing career."
Carolyn Howard-Johnson, Authors' Coalition Founder

From Elizabeth Lucas-Taylor

(Elizabeth contributes at least one valuable paying resource per SWW issue--either a great place to sell material or find writing craft or promotional idea--and sometimes throws in a resource for you.)

Publishing Leads

Free Spirit Books publishes high-quality nonfiction books and learning materials for children and teens, parents, educators, counselors, and others who live and work with young people
Lark Books publishes books about crafts and leisure activities
Neal Schuman Publishers publishes books of interest to teachers and librarians
Peach Tree Publishers publishes children's picture and illustrated chapter books, young adult books, education, parenting, self-help, and health books, travel and recreational guides about the southeast, nature and outdoors titles, general gift books, and cookbooks and gardening books with a southern orientation.
Find Elizabeth at or her new blog at or at MySpace
where you will find a writers' community.

Reciprocal Links: Many subscribers are in a position to cross-promote. Let me know if you would like to trade some recommendation or promotion for any of my books -- the HowToDoItFrugally Series to my chapbook of poetry -- for a place on my Resources for Writers or Resources for Readers pages on

Tip: Send out your media releases on Wednesday to hit the desks of editors on Thursday, often their slowest day but not always. Avoid Mondays. Having said that, fine-tune your releases and phone calls because newspapers work in a different time schedule than magazines and magazines different from evening news TV producers. Always ask if it's a convenient time to talk.

I use Vista Print for lots of my promotional materials. Be aware that shipping prices may fluctuate, depending on the deal of the moment. Even at that, the prices generally are good, the products they offer excellent quality and they do short runs. (I don't advise long runs on promotion material because your needs can change very quickly.) Please use this link:

Web Advice from Expert Marshall Turner
Web Analysis Package
So now you’ve activated your site feature to collect web statistics. Most hosting accounts will include a simple and easy to use package such as Webilizer through which you can view your statistics. If you want to dig deeper, you will need a more capable analysis package. Some of these are web based and some can reside on your PC. If you plan on doing the analysis yourself, Google for “web log analysis” to get more information on your options. One of my favorite software packages is Sawmill (saws up logs, get it?) at However, you will need your logs in order to use this package. Some hosting accounts can be set up to automatically email your logs on a periodic or size basis.
Learn more about at or contact Marshall at

======================================================== The New Book Review is a service of this newsletter and Authors' Coalition. It allows authors to get more exposure from their favorite review and reviewers a chance to have more readers see their reviews--with links, of course. Please check the guidelines on the blog site at This has been popular so please allow some time before your review will be posted. =======================================================

E-Tips for E-Promotion
Whether your webmaster is someone else or your own little self, he or she should be linking pages within your own site. As an example, if your Awards page lists an award you got for teaching, then a link to the page you have for teaching should take visitors there for more information.
This is a regular Sharing with Writers feature by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of USA Book News' Best Professional Book THE FRUGAL BOOK PROMOTER: HOW TO DO WHAT YOUR PUBLISHER WON'T and the soon-to-be released THE FRUGAL EDITOR: PUT YOUR BEST BOOK FORWARD TO AVOID HUMILIATION AND ENSURE SUCCESS. (E-tips for E-promotion was originally a regular feature of

" , by Carolyn Howard--Johnson [is] a top website for writers . . . I'd say my ROI is over 1,000%. The advice is particularly strong in addressing the new author where they are in learning the publishing/selling process. Very practical. The site is excellent." ~ Hill Kemp, author of Capitol Offense,, and contributor to Secrets, Fact or Fiction? I, ISBN 0-9737282-5-6 and Secrets, Fact or Fiction? II, ISBN 1-59594-062-6, LOC 2006904627,

Wordstuff ™

Something to Make Writers Smile
(Every year the Washington Post conducts a neologism contest. These are the winners, one at a time. You might have some favorite neologisms metaphors or similes that make you smile. If so, please contribute.)

"Glibido: All talk and no action"

Essential Book and Record Keeping:

This letter is an entity of Authors' Coalition

Edited and distributed by Carolyn Howard-Johnson,

author of This Is the Place, Harkening: A Collection of Stories Remembered, Tracings, and the How To Do It Frugally Series of books for writers,

This is a place to share with others and learn from others.

Though I do attempt to verify information used within this newsletter's pages, Sharing with Writers does not guarantee entities or information. Subscribers should research resources

To submit information articles, tips or other information e-mail Carolyn at Please put "Submission: Sharing with Writers" in the subject line.

If you do not care to receive this letter, send an e-mail to with "Unsubscribe in the subject line, but please, please don't tell me you've given up writing or promoting!

To subscribe to Sharing with Writers send an e-mail with "Subscribe" in the subject line to:

Please pass this newsletter on to friends or e-groups. It needn't be pasted in its complete form, but please credit this newsletter, Authors' Coalition and the individual contributors with anything you snip and paste.

Order the Frugal Book Promoter: How to Do What Your Publisher Won't
at stores like UCLA, Dayton University and San Diego State University's bookstores. Order it as an e-book at

or paperback at Amazon where it is discounted:

Tracings, a chapbook of poetry, published by Finishing Line Press may be ordered at

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