Photo by Patrick on Unsplash

Yesterday I helped an author who was stuck

Not with his writing, but with publishing his book.

He’d gone on a vacation road trip with iPad only, because ‘it can do everything.’

Only he found that it can’t.

At least not easily.

And not always correctly when it comes to what Amazon needs.

Swiss Army Knives are great

Yes, they’re handy in a pinch. And while they do some things great, other things are emergency only.

A professional might have a multitool handy, but they still pull out the right tool when it’s time to get serious.

I think the authors who write in the spirit of the serial that are popular today will have the best chance.

I'm already seeing authors planning to break up their novels-in-progress to try this, but that's not likely what Vella readers will want to read.

So many authors engaging in wishful thinking or using authors like Dickens as examples of serializing successfully. Ok...

Have you got the Skype Sweats? Are you cringing at the thought of yet another virtual writing conference over video?

julia m cameron at pexels

Video chats have been a blessing the last year or so, but I’m sure you’ve also noticed how much you also fricken’ HATE them.

And way more than you should, because, hey, it’s just a video chat.

I’ve been video chatting daily for over ten years

My wife and I have been using Zoom, Skype, and other video messaging apps, for well over ten years now.

In fact, the first few years of our relationship were very long-distance, via Skype.

You think your Zoom meetings are long? Sometimes we’d turn on Skype and leave it on all day long.

Because we were so familiar, it’s no surprise that we also started coaching people long-distance using these tools, so we’ve had a long time to get used to it.

Over time we figured out…

Nice tutorial!

KDP has gotten a lot easier, so now that you've mastered Medium, it might be time to try Amazon.

I suggest you try Draft2Digital's free services to start. It's free to convert your book from Word to Kindle (and all the other ebook platforms) in their dashboard. Once you've uploaded and converted you can see if it looks good enough to publish on Kindle, etc.

I suggest uploading the D2D epub file to KDP yourself, but if you want to publish everywhere, you can use D2D for the rest. They just take a small percentage of each sale.

Please reach out if you need more specifics. I've done dozens of books through KDP and D2D!


and the quarantine it rode in on

By Edwin Austin Abbey — Metropolitan Museum of Art

Knowing that William Shakespeare wrote King Lear during his own quarantine can leave a modern-day author feeling… inadequate.

This is a slightly edited email in response to a fellow author who was going through some stuff.

Re: Are you feeling the pressure, too?

Hey, thanks for writing. And solidarity.

While I never expected to have a King Lear on my hands, I also didn’t expect to feel so un-creative. AND more panicked to work on things that bring in money right now vs my novels, which might never… you know.

One thing that helped me was finding a wider range of authors to hang with. i.e., not just those who are just like me.

I joined some groups for my genre, where I found a…

I'm always surprised when authors in Amazon's KDP assume they can't have their print books anywhere else. Great reminder!

It’s the final days, and we don’t even know we’re going to miss it

Photo by Eugene from Pexels

In ‘07 I still had TV.

No, I’m not one of those “I don’t have a TV” people.

I do have a TV, but like many people in 2021, I don’t have TV service.

In 2007 I was already lamenting the upcoming death of the shared experience that theaters and TV enabled and that DVDs and Tivo threatened to squash.

Remember Tivo?

It let you pause TV so you could pee. It also let you record shows like a digital VCR so you could watch them whenever you wanted instead of watching live.

Tivo was the beginning of the end of the TV shared experience.


Yes, we can learn from the daily grind, even when we’d much rather forget

Photo by Bich Tran from Pexels

I’ve worked with a lot of authors. I’d have worked with even more if all of them showed up for our appointments. 😏

I know, everyone misses calls at some point, including me.

Stuff happens, but it’s surprising how often someone misses our call and says “I forgot” and does nothing about it.

Turns out most of them didn’t have it on their calendars.

Turns out a lot of authors don’t even use calendars.

Pride and Principle

For many, it’s a matter of pride or a matter of principle because “calendars are for day jobs.”

Yes, that’s an actual quote from an author who had missed two appointments with me and later missed a group collaboration call. …

Or shared.

Photo by George Becker from Pexels

Five content lessons from curating over 2,000 news items for the Sell More Books Show podcast

I’ve been collecting and curating news and tips for Bryan Cohen, H. Claire Taylor, and Jim Kukral’s Sell More Books Show podcast for over a year.

Other authors send me a lot of leads. Leads I can rarely use.

I end up finding a lot of the content myself, because the tips and news people send me are often wrong, misleading, or too hard to translate into short and sweet snippets that can be read ‘on air.’

Whether you want your blog post, podcast, or video shared with the show OR just want other authors and readers to share it…

Roland Denzel

Former fat guy turned nutritionist, author, health and writing coach. Be a healthy and more productive author at

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