Get Published in the KWA Sampler

KWA Board member-at-large Sonny Collins has put together an exciting project exclusively for KWA members together with his publisher, Prairie Moon Publications. You can be published on demand for free, no strings attached. Here’s the scoop straight from Sonny:

For all the members of KWA, I have some exciting news. If you have ever wanted to have something published without any fee or obligation, now is the time. Send one poem or one short story (max. 7,000 words) per member to:

KWA Sampler
Prairie Moon Publications
P.O. Box 236
Hillsboro, KS 67063

Deadline is June 30, 2011

The collection will then be published in book form and ready for purchase some time in November (makes a great Christmas gift). There is no obligation to purchase unless you want to. This is a good way to tell folks you have been published without having to compete against others.

The only guidelines are that the works be original, that you have the rights to them, and that you are a KWA member in good standing at the time of the deadline. So happy writing!

As Always,
Sonny Collins

Finally! Kindle’s software update is almost here!

We have been hearing talk about this new software update that will have real page numbers and a couple other improvements. The update is almost here! The update will be delivered via a Wi-Fi connection in the next few days. Kindle owners should be receiving a notice in their email about what to do.

In case you miss/missed the notice, the instructions are simple. “To receive the update, please turn your wireless on and connect to an available Wi-Fi network. The software update will automatically download in the background and install when your Kindle goes into sleep mode. The update should take less than 10 minutes to complete.”

If you don’t have a Wi-Fi connection available, there are other instructions on how to transfer the update via USB.

Starla Criser

The Agent’s Role in Digital Publishing

The world of publishing continues to evolve, including the world of digital publishing. Is having an agent important? What is an agent’s role in this changing digital world?

The FF&P (Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal) chapter of Romance Writers of America is hosting a Yahoo! email loop workshop on “The Agent’s Role in Digital Publishing” presented by Laurie McLean. For non-members the rate is $20, which is a bargain. The workshop isn’t just for romance writers. It is for all writers of eBooks, POD books and self-publishing.

Literary Agent Laurie McLean  of Larsen Pomada Literay Agents in San Francisco handles genre fiction (romance, fantasy, science fiction, mysteries, horror, ‘new’ westerns, thrillers, suspense) and middle-grade/young-adult children’s books. More information on her preferences for agent queries is included in the information for this workshop, see the link via the workshop’s title.

Passed on by Starla Criser

Amazon/ Kindle playing with authors again

Personally, I have had fairly good success this last year with my books listed at Amazon, especially the Kindle books. But they do like to play around with publishers and consequently authors and how they treat them in regards to royalties.

I was reading a post from OWFI today that went over some of what Amazon does about royalties. They offer publishers two different percentages: 35% and 70%. For a book to qualify for the 70% royalty it must have a minimum price of $2.99.

Amazon has recently joined in on the “lending book” stuff that Barnes and Noble also does. If the book meets the qualifications to receive a 70% royalty, the book is now automatically signed up for Amazon’s Kindle Lending Program. What this means is that a Kindle owner can purchase a copy of the book and then lend the copy to another Kindle owner for a week or so. And that, in turn, means the author and publisher miss out on that additional sale of the book.

A publisher can opt out of being part of the Lending Program, but then the royalty on the book is lowered to 35%.

Just something to think about and check into with your publisher.

Starla Criser

Excited about KWA’s new year

I am very excited about the changes for KWA this year, not that the previous years have been bad. Everything changes over time. Hopefully, the changes help smooth procedures out, help add benefits to members, and help everyone get more comfortable with their fellow authors.

Erin has done a wonderful job creating a new website and blog for KWA. Her time is stretched so thin that we all need to give her a special thank-you. Thank you, Erin!

Please be sure to check back here often for more exciting new things in KWA this year.

Starla Criser, KWA 2011 Secretary

Goodbye to a Longtime Member

Rachel Dayvault, a former KWA board member and author of the novel Toward the Sun-Rising, passed away Jan. 12. You can view her obituary here.

Rachel was a published writer at 16, worked as a travel writer, and contributed over three dozen creative non-fiction stories and essays to area publications. She also wrote humorous verse, one novel, and one compilation.

Wichitan Wins Newbery Medal

Moon Over ManifestI heard the news last night and I still get actual chills whenever I think about it (apart from the single-digit shivers we’re all having this week). Local author Clare Vanderpool has won the John Newbery Medal for children’s literature! Her YA novel, Moon Over Manifest, was published last fall.

This is exciting for me on a couple of levels. First, I’m completely thrilled that Kansas has its first ever Newbery winner. It’s considered the Pulitzer of children’s books. This is huge. Second, Clare is a first-time author. It’s almost unheard-of for a debut novel to win. Last, I have a small personal connection to Clare; she was the youth ministry director for the Wichita diocese when I was in high school and very active in our regional youth group leadership. Between that work and her role as mother of four children, Clare clearly has insight into the thoughts and dreams of young people.

I had a wild thought this morning before I’d had much coffee. College football’s bowl season just ended; Oregon and Auburn fans were crazed with excitement yesterday as their teams fought for the championship. For writers like us, Clare is part of our home team. We cheer, we’re proud, we want to brag a little whenever an author in our midst gets published or honored. So, pump your fist for Clare today and let her achievement serve to pump up your own belief that if she can do it, we can too. Go Team Kansas!

Read the Wichita Eagle’s review of Moon Over Manifest.