CNW Bookstore for Writers

Listed here you will find print and electronic titles CNW highly recommends. Some were written by CNW members; but not all. For your convenience, each title is linked to its listing on (if it's available there) and/or other Web sites.

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What to Charge – Second Edition by Laurie Lewis, Outskirts Press Inc.; Paperback, 186 pages, $23.95; Kindle $9.99.
Subtitle: Pricing Strategies for Freelancers and Consultants. Much has changed in the freelance world since the first What to Charge appeared in 2000, reflected in the many updates in this edition. The chapter on negotiating has been expanded. There's a new chapter on frequently asked questions, as well as updated sample fees. Among the samples our members will find particularly useful: Letter of Agreement for Editing a Manuscript, Worksheet for Calculating a Project Fee (this one is for writing a newsletter, but it could be adapted to any kind of project). Chapters also cover methods of pricing, task-based logs, identifying typical fees, preparing to price, contracts and letters of agreement, when you lose a job, end-of-job and year-end analyses, and increasing fees. Update: What to Charge was selected as a Finalist in the Business: Writing & Publishing category of The USA Best Books 2011 Awards, sponsored by USA Book News.

Goodbye Byline, Hello Big Bucks: The Writer's Guide to Making Money Ghostwriting and Coauthoring Books by Kelly James-Enger.
If you write for a living—or to make extra money, have you considered adding ghostwriter/coauthor to your freelancing repertoire? Eighty percent of "big name" books (think Hillary Rodham Clinton, Donald Trump, David Beckham, Clay Aiken) are ghostwritten, and publishers, agents, and corporations hire ghostwriter every day. Professionals like physicians, financial experts, and business owners pay ghostwriters to author books to heighten their visibility, as do everyday people who just dream of getting their books into print. How do you get started in this lucrative field? What sets successful ghostwriters apart from the "wanna-bes"? How do you find clients, negotiate fees, work efficiently, and take advantage of the increasing demand for ghosts? Check out the answers in Goodby Byline, Hello Big Bucks.

Bookkeeping Basics for Freelance Writers by Brigitte Thompson, Crystal Press, In addition to the basics of bookkeeping – tracking income and expenses, it covers the legal and practical aspects of setting up and running an editorial business by viewing the completed recordkeeping forms of a fictitious writing business. Among the topics covered in friendly terms: choosing a business name, accounting methods, business vs. hobby, bartering, possible business deductions, business use of your home, auto and travel deductions, subcontractor vs. employee, how to use the numbers to manage your business, taxes and audits. Chapter 10 includes more than a dozen blank forms you can copy or scan and use for your business. Also of value is a sample freelance writing contract you can present to clients, as well as a sample subcontractor agreement. Scattered throughout are tips for success. Also available at Amazon

The Writer's Digest Guide to Query Letters by Wendy Burt-Thomas, Writer's Digest Books. Along with the basics of why, when, and how to query, this helpful book discusses options for handling clips with e-mail queries, and tracking submissions. Of interest to all are the sample "good" queries and sample "bad" queries, along with editor's comments on what's wrong. Covered: nonfiction book queries and proposals, novel queries and synopses, agent queries, following up, and other correspondence (e.g., turning down an assignment, pulling an article submission). Available at Amazon.

Ready, Aim, Specialize! -- Second Edition by Kelly James-Enger — Sub-title: Create Your Own Writing Specialty and Make More Money. Written by Kelly James-Enger, whose articles have appeared in FWR. Even if you aren't interested in specializing, the two early chapters on The All-Important Query and A Case Study are well worth investing in the book. In her Query chapter, Kelly provides an in-depth treatment of query letters – including from her own experiences, ideas where the query did not work (and why) followed by a revised query that did work (and why). Kelly's Case Study follows one of her early fitness articles, from initial idea through query, follow-up, phone call with editor, research, writing, editor's suggestions, revision, payment, and publication. Kelly also discusses the reasons for specializing and what you need to do so. Specialties covered: Health, Diet/Food, Business/Finance, Technology, Parenting, Travel, Fitness/Sports, Essays/Personal Pieces, Home & Garden, and Profiles/True-Life Features. $16.95; Amazon offers it for $12.71.

The Self-Publishing Manual: How to Write, Print, and Sell Your Own Book, 16th Edition, by Dan Poynter, Para Publishing; (800) PARAPUB; or only $13.57 from Amazon. Considered the bible of self-publishing. Covers publishing options, how to write a salable book, starting your own publishing company, producing your book (designing, printing), announcing your book, setting prices and discounts, promoting your book, marketing, distribution channels, advertising your book, fulfillment (moving your books out the door), coping with being published (what do you do now?). Appendixes include an invaluable "Your Book's Calendar" (to-do checklist) and resources for publishers. If you're considering self-publishing (including print-on-demand or POD), this is a must-have.

1001 Ways to Market Your Books, 6th Edition by John Kremer, Open Horizons; If you have even one published or soon-to-be published book to promote, you need this book on your desk and you need to use it daily … if you want to sell books. Although primarily targeted to book publishers, John includes more than 100 market-ing tips specifically for authors. And remember, if you have a POD book, you are really the publisher as well as the author. Among the topics covered: basic fundamentals of marketing, planning; credit card, fax and phone orders; how to open new markets, market savvy editing, designing your book as a sales aid, publicizing your books, advertising your books, offbeat advertising, how to sell your books via computer, getting distribution, working with bookstores, selling through other retail outlets, selling to schools and libraries, how to sell subsidiary rights, selling your books overseas, special sales, how authors can capitalize on their books.

The Author's Companion: A Self-Guided Course on Book Promotion with Christine Louise Hohlbaum, CD-Rom, 4 audio files plus pdf workbook, 70 pages. In the audio mp3 files, Christine Hohlbaum (author, PR consultant and seminar leader) interviews several best-selling authors on the specifics of how they promoted their books. Topics covered include press releases, press kits, sell sheets, book signings, a book marketing plan, using, e-letters, radio interviews, and more. The pdf course book includes 200+ links to helpful Web sites, as well as worksheets with specific questions and answers to follow. The course book's four parts: Author's Toolbox, Beyond the Book Review, ABC's of Pitching to the Media, Success – What Do I Do When They Say "Yes!"

$IX Figure Freelancing by CNW Member Kelly James-Enger (Random House, 2005). Paperback, $14.95 (only $10.17 at Amazon). Although targeted to the writer thinking about building a six-figure writing business, the samples and examples from Kelly and a number of other highly successful freelancers will be of interest also to the already established writer. While other high-income writing books concentrate on corporate work, this one touches on that, but shows how real writers earn $100,000+ concentrating on magazine and book writing. Chapter topics include: planning and negotiating for more money, designing effective writing templates, getting more out of mate-rial, time management techniques; working with agents, experts, and other writers; and more.

101 Tips on Writing and Selling Your First Novel by Prudy Taylor Board - novelist, FFWA Advisor and successful writing instructor. Includes writing exercises and fill-in blank sections to help you develop characters and plot, plus polish your writing. 101 Tips is both text and workbook, yet fun to read and crammed with practical pointers to help you write and sell your novel. Available from Amazon for $14.95.

The Publishing Game: Find an Agent in 30 Days by Fern Reiss, If you want a blueprint to follow – in addition to the why and how, you will find this book invaluable. No fluff; simply step 1, 2, 3 … plus tips, shortcuts, and what to do, what not to do. Gives you daily assignments, which you can do in the outlined 30 days, or in 30 days spread out over several months. Appendixes include a listing of 300+ agents with addresses, and a sample proposal. Available from Amazon for $19.95

The Publishing Game: Publish a Book in 30 Days by Fern Reiss, Thinking of self-publishing? Even if you're considering one of those online all-done-for-you systems, read this book first to see what they leave out – and what is really involved. Same format as the above "Agent" title in the series, this one will lead you step-by-step through the process with 30 daily to-do lists (set out as 5 each week, over six weeks). Along the way, you'll learn how to keep from making costly mistakes and where not to short-change yourself. Includes a sample budget. Available from Amazon for $13.97

The Publishing Game: Bestseller in 30 Days by Fern Reiss,  If you're really serious about selling your book to readers, here is a plan to follow. Perfect timing if your book is due to arrive from the printer in a couple months. But even if your book is already published, you can still follow many of the steps. And if you have a regular publisher, they will have done a couple of the steps. But as you know, you're going to have to do most of it yourself – regardless of who publishes it. If you do everything, it will likely take you longer than 30 days, but at least this give you 30 stepping-off days to give you a running start. Available from Amazon for $15.96

CNW member Patricia L. Fry offers an e-book for writers — The Successful Writer's Handbook. Covers how to crush writer's block, where to find writing work even during an economic downturn, and how to manage the business of writing. 131 pages; only $9.95. Available at or from Patricia's Web site (you can see her many other print and PDF books there also). The new print version of The Successful Writers Handbook has been revised and expanded into a 180-page book. It's $15.95, and available at and at

FFWA member Christine Adamec's newest book on writing is Writing Freelance.  Includes: Is Writing For You? The Writer's Mindset. Finding Clients for Your Work, Researching, Taking Care of Business, Getting Paid.  Appendix includes Resources, Samples, Worksheets, Checklist for taking on a ghostwriting project. Midwest Book Review gives it a great review; click on Amazon price to read. Retails for $19.95.

Guerilla Marketing for Writers by Jay Conrad Levinson, Rick Frishman & Michael Larsen. Subtitle: 100 Weapons for Selling Your Work. Especially for the book author; offers techniques and strategies for publicizing and selling your book both before it's published and after you have books in hand. Each of the 100 tactics has a cost labeled – most are Free, many are Low-cost, a couple are Expensive, and several say "You get paid!"  Strategies include networking, talking, promotion planning, media interviews, your media kit, alliances, using technology, using the book itself, writing (brochure, e-zines, columns, op-ed pieces, and more), book signings and festivals, free advertising, memberships, your identity, business cards and stationery, branding. Eight appendices cover marketing weapons for fiction and nonfiction listed in order of importance, finding a publicist, sample media kit, publicity kit timeline, top 100 markets in US, how networks can help you, publicity questionnaire, and a presentation evaluation form. Get it from amazon for $10.49.

Five Fast Steps to Better Writing by CNW member Barbara Florio Graham, ISBN 0-920870-03-1; 110 pages; durable cover; $15 (includes p&h).  Mail to: B.F. Graham, 200 Charles St., Gatineau, QC J8P 3X4 CANADA. For professionals, amateurs, students, business. "fast-paced, readable...a treasury of valuable information and good ideas" (Canadian Author & Bookman)  "apt examples, concise wisdom...worth getting" (The Periodical Writers Association of Canada) "no wasted words...the text is informative and rich..." (The Writer's Journal - U.S.)

Five Fast Steps to Low-Cost Publicity by Barbara Florio Graham. 90 pages, letter size, heavy stock covers, spiral binding; ISSN 0-9694093-0-3; $20 (includes p&h). Mail to: B.F. Graham, 200 Charles St., Gatineau, QC J8P 3X4 CANADA.  Note: first class postage from U.S. to Canada is 60 cents. Covers every aspect of promotion and publicity for small business and non-profit organizations; basic information for beginners; reminders for professionals; useful checklists; full-size samples; each page packed with single-spaced guidelines. "The best PR primer we've ever seen...amazingly thorough...We've never met a PR person with a better handle on the industry..." (John Clausen, Editor, Writing for Money) "written in clear, concise language...not only informative but practically indispensable" (Canadian Fund Raiser)

Poor Richard's Web Site (Second Edition) by Peter Kent, 422 pages. $29.95.  $20.97 from Amazon. If you haven't set up a Web site to promote your books and/or your editorial services, you're falling behind the competition. I see more and more editors and businesses who are looking for writers or material, saying to point them to the URLs of your sample works. (Even copy editors can show on their Web sites before and after work they have done.) So where do you go to get started? I highly recommend Poor Richard's Web Site as a first step. This one is for all you non-geeks. You'll find a full index and excerpt on, but here are a few of the topics covered (in language you will understand): Finding a Web Host, Designing Your Web Site, Creating an Effective Web Site, Bringing People to Your Web Site.

The Business of Consulting by Elaine Biech. Hardcover, 246 pages. $45 at Amazon.  One of the ways for successful freelancers to increase their hourly income is to expand into consulting — such as on website content or promotion, general business promotion, newsletters, business communication, and so on. If you're new to the concept, here is an excellent source. Many of the topics can also be applied to freelance writing itself. Covers transition into consulting, pricing, proposals and contracts, cost of doing business, client relationships, marketing, ethics, and more.  Includes a disk of documents (in Word 6.0/95) used as examples in the book. (Note: I was able to open a form in WordPerfect 9.0 with no problem. It was longer than one page, but using the "make it fit" feature resulted in a perfect one-page form matching the one in the book.)

Successful Syndication by Michael Sedge. Softcover, 183 pages. $16.95. Amazon has it for $11.87. The most recent worthwhile book on syndication. This one is timely because it includes information on Internet distribution and promotion. It's targeted to both writers and cartoonists. Among the chapters: Finding an agency, Guidelines of various syndicates, Column syndication, Self-syndication, Submissions, Business end, Using the Internet, International sales. 80 pages of appendix resources.

One Word, Two Words, Hyphenated? by Marie Louise Gilman. Keep this one close to your keyboard — I do. It΄s a quick reference to 14,000 words and phrases. Perfect tool for editors and proofreaders. Special order from Amazon for $12.95.


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