Thursday, 23 June 2011

Important Message for Australian Authors!

Now you can receive book sales commissions from America for FREE, and deposit them into your bank account in Australia for FREE! Using “BookBaby” and the St George bank.
“BookBaby” will distribute your ebook to Amazon, Apple’s iBookstore, Barnes and Noble and Sony’s eReader, collect your book sales commissions from them and then send you a cheque, without taking any commission for themselves at all. Previously you had to go through PayPal who charge you 3.4%+ for cash transferred. BookBaby will do it for free, and the St George bank doesn’t charge for international cheque deposits. Problem solved (Update - 26th July, 2011 - St George bank are now charging for international cheque deposits, which makes Bookbaby even more attractive!). You will have to supply BookBaby with a US tax exemption form(W-8BEN), but that's not a problem, just google it, print it, fill it in and post it to BookBaby. 
BookBaby does have charges, a one time setup fee of $99, to organize the distribution and much, much more, to all those sellers, and then an annual fee of only $19. 
I have nothing to do with BookBaby, I’m simply considering them for myself, and I’m impressed. They don’t say on their website that they’ll send you a cheque, but I posed my problem to them in an email, and Kristen from BookBaby wrote back and said “Yes we can send you checks.” 
Check them out - http://www.bookbaby.com/
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My Cover Artist

Can’t tell you how excited I am – the artwork for the cover of my first book has finally arrived and I think it’s fantastic!
What a monumental decision it is working out what to do about your cover, especially your first one. I was a virgin. I admit it. I was so nervous about what to expect. But the experience was amazing! I’ll never forget it. The artist couldn’t have been more gentle with me, understanding and patient. He’s a man and I’m a man I know, it’s a bit weird, especially considering that I’ve been married to a lovely woman for the last twenty years. Hang on, I’m getting confused here – what were we talking about? Oh yeah, cover art. The art world is a little whacky, so bear with me. When you’re forking out the big bucks to have someone paint what’s in your head, you need to be able to talk to each other, to understand each other’s feelings. It really is a relationship and my artist, Toby Quarmby, is one of the best around. See for yourself, check out the cover. And no, it’s not a gay thing, Billy is Aboriginal, he’s spent his life in the bush and a loincloth is more than he needs. But he’s gotta find some girls in the city and doing that in a loincloth can only be fun. The series is all about adventures and misadventures, and the cover tells you that immediately. Plus you see guys on covers and they’re all buff, ridiculously muscled and impossibly handsome, how often do you get a chance to put a butt on the cover and get away with it? How controversial! How innocent. How intriguing. The poor kid who’s never even seen a girl before, now has to find some girls in the city while wearing a loincloth! Gotta be fun. What do you think? Does it look fun? Are you intrigued? Would you buy it? Would you buy it for your son or daughter? 
So back to Toby. As you can see, he’s an amazing artist and I want to share him with the world. If you need artwork for your cover, send him an email at - tjquarmby(at)gmail.com.  
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Thursday, 16 June 2011

Editing and Proofreading of Urban Hunters


I gave six editors my first six pages to trial edit, and they all came back with different advice??? I’m surprised by the differences between editors, and the things one editor picks up that others overlook. My advice in selecting an editor is to ask for a trial edit to check them out first. Even if they don’t offer one upfront, which they should, ask for it. My experience is they will jump at the opportunity.
What you’re looking for is a good fit, someone who gets you, your story and the way you write. An American editor suggested using words that were completely foreign to my Australian version of English. It just didn’t fit, didn’t sound right to me and changed the flow of the text. She was right that a different word needed to be used, but I dare say an Aussie would have had a more appropriate suggestion.
You’ve got to understand too that some editors just don’t get what you’ve said, whereas others get it straight away. It will be the same with readers. So do you compromise your writing to try to fit both? Sometimes yes, but more often than not, no! If they read it again after getting to the end of your book, after getting to know your writing style, sense of humour, perspective; they may then get it, some never will. It’s like accents, we often haven’t a clue what someone with a new accent is saying, but after a while, we start to understand, and hopefully, appreciate it.
I resisted the temptation to make suggested changes before sending the first six pages to the next editor, so I could compare them. It worked really well.
I also sent some to proofreaders. The difference between a proofreader and an editor is like chalk and cheese. A proofreader crosses the t’s and dots the i’s, an editor will do that too, but so much more, like picking up on your point of view changes, and pointing out what doesn’t make sense, or could be communicated better, but an editor will miss things a proof reader won’t. So it’s as if you need to get edited first, and then proofread before publication. In other words, ya gotta fork out the bucks for both. If you think self-publishing is going to be an easier or better way to go, think again! It’s incredibly difficult to do well yourself, and bloody expensive to pay for someone else to do what you can’t do yourself. Anyway, more on that later – I’m building up a big rant on that subject...
So did I find an editor out of the trials? No, not even close. However, a lady from my writing group who volunteered to do the pre-edit, edit, is fantastic! So I’ll see if she’s interested in taking on the job professionally. Fingers crossed.  



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Friday, 3 June 2011

Urban Hunters Facebook Book Page

My Facebook Book Page is also now up and running so check it out at the link below, and don't forget to hit the 'Like' button to share it with your friends -


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Gary Taaffe Facebook Author Page

My Facebook Author page is now up and running so check it out at the link below, and don't forget to hit the 'Like' button to share it with your friends - 

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Urban Hunters - the first in the series

Billy’s an Aboriginal boy from the bush who must travel to the city to find girls for his tribe, or face extinction. The problem is, he’s never even seen a girl before. But first he must endure a torturous tribal scarring initiation, his older brothers, and the fight of his life against wildlife. Heart-warming and hilarious, his adventures will have you searching for your own inner strengths.
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