Tuesday, September 25, 2012

James Bond--our leaders or Kim.com?

Some of our politicians must be ruing the day that Kim.com was granted residency. The events of the last few months and the publicity he as managed to garner, much of it at the experience of our leaders leaves me wondering what the hell is going on. I have no idea whether he is guilty of what has obviously got the Americans going and I find myself wondering at the antics of our security forces and leaders.
Will we ever get to the truth? Has Kim.com actually transgressed our laws or international agreements---God alone knows? Is he going to sue our Government (us, as taxpayers)? I am sure of one thing--- he is lapping up the attention and shows obvious signs of enjoying the sorry saga.
I wrote a comment on Face Book yesterday and it attracted an add-on from Kim.com that said something about ‘internet freedom along with his logo. That really pissed me off, because I would like to choose whether or not I support him in any way and at the moment, I just don’t know.
What all this highlights for me is our immigration policies and who is allowed to enter our country using some sort of ‘entrepreneurial qualification.’ Surely our Immigration Department has robust checking mechanisms.
One does wonder though.
The end result of what is increasingly looking like incompetency on the part of politicians and government departments is going to cost us dearly while Kim.com laughs his way back to his ‘property and the bank.’
Maybe there is a sting in the tail for him yet. An angry USA is not a pleasant enemy Mr Kim.com. I hole for your sake that you are able to prove your innocence and worthiness to be considered one of us---- I real KIWI!

The ups, downs and then ups again of self-publishing.

The ups, downs and ups again of self-publishing. www.authorneilcoleman.com  Counsellor/author
One learns a great deal by trying to self-publish a book or two. Finding people to trust is the most important learning curve. Having not done so well with my first effort and previous publisher, I decided to go it alone. After all, I was being charged for every imaginable service, many of which I have learnt to undertake myself. However for those wishing to start out, check out what is available and get good advice (e.g. From NZSA)
Good proofreading is paramount. If one chooses the traditional publishing road, whereby you search for a publishing house to ‘do it all for you,’ then a huge load is removed. No such luck if you do your own thing. Very few self-published authors can afford more than one or possibly two stages of proofreading and editing. It’s expensive, but essential in order to cull the typos and mistakes. I don’t just mean spelling. It is a very bad look to kill off a character and then have them reappear a few chapters later. I did that in an upcoming book and almost considered changing the ‘genre’ of my book to science fantasy!
I have drawn on my failings, mistakes and let-downs in order to move forward. I decided to find an editor (I have two now) and work directly with my printer. I re-launched my website and had a friend of a friend design a new proactive look. Once again, more outlay but hopefully worth it in the long run.
I decided to have more input into the cover designs and found a picture on my old cell phone and then used it for my latest venture. Some of you took place in voting for the best ‘manipulation’ of that picture. My web designer also played a part with his beautiful photography from the top of the Awhitu Peninsula.
My next task was to build up a trusting relationship with my printer. That seems to be working. Gone are the days of---‘show us the colour of your money.’ My printer even sends his bills after I have received my books. Unheard of!
With my previous arrangement I paid out quite a few thousand to get my books ‘out there.’ Trouble was, I never knew where ‘out there’ was and it was only when friends and their kids told me that my books were in various libraries around the country, that I wondered why I had not received any royalties for my efforts. Someone was doing some work on my behalf, but not telling me.
Now I am sending freebies (I always give the Onehunga Library complimentary copies of my new releases) to people who may be of help, including some talk back hosts. One has to draw a line at some stage though, or the bank balance will head south.
The marketing phase is another new challenge. I have had to put aside my ‘natural shyness and unwillingness to put myself forward’ (Stop laughing!) and put up my shield for the inevitable flack that has come my way. A good Merlot helps with that, along with a walk with the little star (Spot, alias Perdy) of my latest book.
OK – I have started again with all of my books. That meant new covers, ISBN numbers and some editing. They are all live on my new website. I have plans to get them all on Kindle, but that is where I need more help. Check out the website for pictures, blogs and a synopsis for each book.
‘Coastal Yarns’---- New version. (9 short stories)
‘Roskill’--------------New version.
‘Talk To Me---------Check out the website!
COMING IN 2013   ‘Sons of Orpheus’---A three part historical saga