Author: gibsonauthor

7 Tips to Write a Killer Book Presentation

Nicholas C. Rossis

Daniela McVicker | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksThis is a guest post by Daniela McVicker. Daniela is a contributor to Essayguard. She has a master’s degree in English Literature and is truly passionate about learning foreign languages and teaching. Daniela works with the students to help them reveal their writing talent and find their one true calling.

7 Tips to Write a Killer Book Presentation

Sometimes, a book you have written draws enough attention that you are asked to speak about it to an audience. You may be asked to present as a subject expert, talk about your material at a conference or convention, present at a book fair, or give a quick presentation as part of a book signing.

As they say, more people are afraid of public speaking than of death. Which means that most people would prefer being in a casket than giving the obituary.

And now, you’re going to be in…

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Getting Married in the Middle Ages

Nicholas C. Rossis

Whether you’re writing Medieval history fiction or fantasy, you will appreciate this Quora answer by Helena Schrader, who borrowed from an article she wrote for The Medieval Magazine. To this, I have added information by Brent Cooper, taken from medievaltimes.com.

Getting Married in the Middle Ages

First, a caveat: the Middle Ages lasted a thousand years in places as different as Iceland and the Holy Land. So, things differed from place to place and from time to time. After all, did your grandmother get married in a similar way to you?

No matter where and when, though, a general fact about marriage in the Middle Ages is that it was usually an economic affair.

This is not to say that the parties to a medieval marriage inherently lacked affection, passion, or sexual attraction. However, economic considerations played an important role in marriage negotiations and contracts…

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Translating Puns

Nicholas C. Rossis

Pure Bread Cat pun | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

As anyone who’s been following my blog for a while surely knows, I love puns and bad dad jokes (often the same thing). And I often use them in my work, especially in my children’s books. Which becomes rather problematic when translating them into Greek. How can someone translate puns decently?

Rick van Mechelen, aka “that translation student“, recently shared an interesting post on this very subject. He cites Dirk Delabastita 1996 work* to divide puns into four categories of ambiguity. These are homonymy, homophony, homography, and paronymy, each of which is better suited to different forms of communication:

CategoryDefinitionExample
HomonymyA pun where a word with multiple meanings is used to give multiple meanings at once.A hard-boiled egg in the morning is hard to beat.
HomophonyA pun using two words that sound identical, but have different spellings.‘Mine is a long and…

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Book Sales COVID-19 Increase

Nicholas C. Rossis

Since March 2020, PublishDrive has been generating digital book sales reports, compiling hard-to-find data from various outlets, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Play Books, libraries, regional stores, and more. They have now published their stats for April and May, months that saw much of the world’s population in lockdown.

The graph below presents the increase in sales in April (red bar) and May 2020 (blue bar) compared to the same months last year. One notable conclusion is that sales have increased for every single outlet, in some cases as much as almost 300%.

PublishDrive book sales | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

Which genres are doing great?

Not all genres are as successful, though. Specifically, non-fiction, fantasy, science-fiction, and thriller genres are doing great. Surprisingly, perhaps, some popular genres like romance and erotica saw a slight decrease in April (but made it back to the top in May). Here is the complete list:

PublishDrive book genre sales | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

Interestingly, genre popularity differed…

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How Libraries Are Coping with the Pandemic

Nicholas C. Rossis

I recently published a post on how the COVID-19 pandemic seems to be affecting publishing. While that article focused on publishers, we now have some interesting data on how it has affected libraries, thanks to NPR (many thanks to my author friend, Elle Boca, for alerting me to this).

How libraries are dealing with new demand during the pandemic

Across the country, libraries have seen demand skyrocket for their electronic offerings, but librarians say they continue to worry about the digital divide and equality in access — not to mention the complicated questions that must be answered before they can reopen for physical lending.

“Since the library closed on March 16, we’ve had about seven thousand people register for library cards,” says Richard Reyes-Gavilan of the District of Columbia Public Libraries. “We’ve had over 300,000 books borrowed since mid-March, which is astounding considering that our collections are limited.”

Libraries and ebook borrowing during the pandemic | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

By…

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Tinacos – aka water tanks – Mexico

DARLENE JONES

Virtually every building in our area of Mexico has a Tinaco or water tank on the roof. Water is pumped up to the Tinaco and gravity feeds the water to your taps. If you want more than a drizzle in your shower, you add a water pressure tank to the system.

Modern tinacos look like this.

You sometimes see a cement tinaco on the roof of an old building. They can be as much as 100 years old.

I wonder if the modern ones will last as long?

http://www.darlenejonesauthor.com

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Writing Interactive Fiction

Nicholas C. Rossis

Journey under the sea | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksA couple of years ago I wrote about the Choose Your Own Adventure books. In the books—for those not familiar with them—you read until you come to a decision point, which prompts you to flip to another page, backward or forward. They invite you into an exciting, dangerous world where you, the reader, had to make decisions that meant life or death. They were interactive fiction at its finest.

A recent post by Michael La Ronn, posted on Self Publishing Advice, reminded me of this. Michael wanted an interactive reading experience, but with grown-up characters and storytelling. Since he didn’t see a novel like this in the marketplace, he wrote one: How To Be Bad.

In his post, Michael describes what he did differently to overcome the older audiences’ reluctance to try out this genre. For example, he felt that older audiences dislike it because they view it…

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Guest Post: How I Wrote A Novella in a Month as a Stay-At-Home Mom

Nicholas C. Rossis

This is a guest post by Iona Caldwell, druid, mother, author, and wife, who has written the British Occult Fiction, Beneath London’s Fog.

How I Wrote A Novella in a Month as a Stay At Home Mom

Busy | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's book“Mom!!” How many times have you heard this when you try to sit down to write? Isn’t it funny how you ask them if they need anything and they promise up and down they’re good? It happens again: the fighting, fussing and questions wondering why you have to work since they’re out for the summer.

Worry not, parents, this is not a unique thing.

Let’s face it, we love our kids but it’s hard to sit down and write when you have to play referee. I’ve heard stories of parents who had to wait to write their books until their kids grew and left the house.

I have a six and seven-year-old…

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Video Editing Made Easy: Movavi Video Editor

Nicholas C. Rossis

Movavi video editor review | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's bookWith video playing an increasingly important role in book marketing, I recently shared the news about Flexiclip, a free online video editing resource. But Flexiclip is largely clip-based. It’s great when you wish to use their stock videos, but editing your own video can be problematic–especially when working with larger files.

So, what’s the alternative? Sure, you could use Adobe Premiere if you can spare $19.95/month. However, is there a solution which will let you edit your own videos without breaking the bank?

I have been using Movavi’s products for years now. So, when I was asked to review their video editor for my blog, I was more than happy to do so (I don’t review anything I haven’t used myself). Please keep in mind that I’d bought version 16 a couple of years ago, and haven’t upgraded yet, so the screenshots may be a little different from…

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A Free Amazon Keyword Organizer Tool

Nicholas C. Rossis

Amazon keyword organizer | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's bookYou may remember that Amazon has recently adopted a more flexible way of reading keywords. You see, Amazon provides you on their KDP bookshelf with a set of 7 separate keyword boxes, giving some authors the impression that they should enter just one keyword or keyword phrase per box.

However, each box holds 50 characters and the more keywords you can add, the better the chance a customer will find your book when they search. The difficulty is in fitting your keywords efficiently into those boxes (they don’t tell you how many characters are left or even that you have 50 to begin with), not duplicating words across boxes, etc.

Making that easier is where we come in with Hidden Gems Books’ free Amazon Keyword Organizer tool.

Amazon Keyword Organizer

Amazon keyword organizer | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's book Screenshot from the Amazon keyword organizer

Simply enter your keywords or keyword phrases into the box at the top, entering…

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