A Few Moments with Talpa the Book Mole.

See full issue for 2017 01-30

Hello everyone, it’s Talpa again. It’s been a busy week. And by “busy” I mean I barely made it outside and away from this computer. Who are we kidding? It’s just too cold to go outside. So, I’ve been sitting here, sipping my coffee and reading the finalists for Underground Book Reviews Novel of the Year.

I naturally thought the folks at UBR would ask me to help judge the competition, but they couldn’t overlook one little technicality - I’ve never actually written a book. I think being a book mole uniquely qualifies me to judge anything bookish, but they think differently. I’ll console myself by digging into the seriously good titles in this year’s competition. If you haven’t voted, get off your duff and go to Facebook now and choose your fav.

Other than reading obsessively, I’ve been keeping my promise and surfing the internet so you don’t have to. Here are a few blogs and articles, plucked fresh from this week’s interwebs, and brought to you by Yours Truly, Underground Book Review’s official spokes model. You can thank me later.

Authors make mistakes. So do book moles. Sometimes a girl types “their” instead of “there”, or “you’re” instead of “your.” Try typing on a keyboard (or holding a wine glass for that matter) with nails that evolution crafted for digging tunnels. But who’s keeping track, eh? (Lots of you, apparently.) Lucy Adams knows all about the mistakes you authors make, and she’s made a list. If that list isn’t enough, here’s a list by Gloria Kopp at Kobo about proofreading mistakes editors often make, which blows my mind considering how much some of them charge.

Authors need to promote themselves. (duh). But how? One way is to submit your books to Underground Book Reviews. In fact, our Pitch Perfect Pick contest allows authors to pit their marketing machines against one another each week in a battle of marketing machines. How does an author get started building a promotion machine? Lee Gimenez at Book Marketing Tools has ten good ideas.

“Don’t quit.” How many times have we heard that one? I hear it all the time. “Talpa, don’t quit being so awesome!” Unfortunately, I know you authors often hear people tell you to quit writing and give up on your dreams. That sucks and makes Talpa very sad. UBR reviewer Chantelle Atkins says don’t quit, and one day you’ll prove your naysayers wrong. Oh, and speaking of not quitting, author Ellis Shuman thinks writing is an endurance sport. Judging by how much time you writers endure in front of your computers, I would say he’s right.

Speaking of quitting, I have to quit writing now. I was told to keep it under 500 words. These people are obsessive with their word counts. As for all of you authors, keep writing. And if you can’t write, edit. And if you can’t edit, market. And never, ever quit reading!

Ta Ta for now!


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