Posts By: tmcgann

Building a website

Building a website is fun, and, believe it or not, relatively easy. I had no experience building a website when I sat down to attempt to do so, NONE, and, yeah, I was nearly run down by a runaway freight train of emotions before I even started. The locomotive pulling that freight train was lack of self confidence, followed by a long string of cars laden with varying degrees of fear, nervousness, doubt, inadequacy – pick a negative emotion, any negative emotion. The caboose took a long time arriving. A bunch of Yahoos were leaning out its windows and over… Read more »

Selecting a Web Hosting Service

Selecting a web hosting service is our next step on the long and winding road to that cloud-floating castle in the sky where “authors” abide. If you Google “web hosting services” you will find a number of sites listing their assessments of the top 10 best web hosting companies. They generally list the same top companies, albeit in different orders. These sites contain reviews of what each web host offers as well as price comparisons. You can also Google “web hosting reviews” for further comparisons. Take your time to review them so you can winnow the top 10 down to your top… Read more »

Domain names – the first step in building websites

The selection of domain names is the first step when building websites. Your domain name is the title that will identify your website. This sounds simple enough and, in most cases, it is, but there are a couple of aspects of this process you should be aware of. Please note the structure of the first sentence of this post. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) recommends that the title of a post and its first sentence use the same words, the same phraseology. This approach helps maximize the probability of search engines such as Google, Internet Explorer, Firefox, et al, of finding your post. I’m still new to learning about SEO,… Read more »

Blog and/or Website

Having been brow-beaten by my massive ego (see previous post) into building a blog and/or website, my next step was to determine whether or not I needed just a blog, or just a website, or both. It turns out that the correct answer, for me, was both, and, much to my happy surprise, I discovered that a website can also function as a blog. Eureka! I was so green early on that I did not even know the difference between a blog and a website. This is what I learned. The term blog is a portmanteau for web and log,… Read more »

My massive ego website

My massive ego, being what he is, demanded that I satisfy his lust for fame by creating a website.  Being shy myself, and not knowing anything about websites, I was reluctant to give in to his unyielding demands.  In fact, I ignored his demands for years, but as time passed he became more and more insistent.  Finally, he would not let me sleep.  My eyes would pop open in the middle of the night, and there he would be, sitting on my chest, staring down at me until I got up. I’ll call him Mot.  That’s French for word and… Read more »

Research, research and more research

Publishing a book? Get ready to immerse yourself in research, research and more research. Unless you are already in the industry, once you decide to become an indie-publisher, the learning curve gets steep, very steep. Prior to the days of print-on-demand (POD), if a writer could not get read by a publishing house, he/she could not get published. And yeah, rejection sucks. Sure, there were the Vanity publishers out there, vultures only too anxious to strip whatever cash we had from the bare bones of our bank accounts, leaving us with a garage or basement full of books that we… Read more »

Rejection sucks

If you’re a writer you’ve been rejected. It comes with the territory. That does not mean that you have to like it, accept it or chalk it up as some kind of (choke) learning experience. Rejection sucks, whether it is your manuscript or a date to the senior prom. It sucks. As writers we can “accept” rejection as a fact of life without “accepting” rejection as screwing down the lids of our coffins. We accept that some ivory-tower-snob, who has never written anything other than a rejection letter, just doesn’t get it, doesn’t understand the art of writing. We don’t… Read more »

Copy editing is essential – Part II

I had heard through the grape vine that copy editing was essential but I knew that my English skills were so good that I didn’t need no stinkin’ copy editor. Well maybe… After all those rewrites, I did recall some errors I had made but had not immediately corrected. I could do another rewrite (groan), or I could test my skills by sending my manuscript out to a copy editor, just to prove how good I really am. I researched copy editing and, invariably, the advice was always the same. Do not think you can copy edit yourself. Do not… Read more »

Copy editing is essential – Part I

Oh, you are so proud of your completed manuscript! You can’t help but sit back and admire all your hard work. Good for you. You deserve it. Enjoy the moment but, and you already know this, you are far from being done. You are somewhere in the middle of the process of becoming an author. You haven’t lost interest in your project have you? I hope not because the next step is editing and it gets yawn-boring. This also means you must send out your baby to have it carved up by a total stranger. Here is a brief summary… Read more »

Writing your manuscript

So you have determined that you are indeed a writer. You just cannot help but write. The next step is to decide what the the subject of your manuscript will be.  After all you are determined to become an author and being an author requires that you get published and get paid. That requires a finished manuscript. “What should I write about?” There is an oft-repeated axiom that states that you should write about what you know. Comments of that nature are a bit simplistic since it is impossible to write about what you do not know. The real answer… Read more »