So you want to write a best-selling novel for the Kindle (and CreateSpace). Well you’ve come to the right place.
Here at this site we’re going to be giving lots of advice. To start off with, we recommend that you get a copy of How to write an Amazon fiction book that SELLS, by David Kessler. It is almost certainly the best book on the subject, jam-packed with useful information and examples from successful books. Unlike those paper-thin books that tell you a bit about SELLING your book but nothing about how to write a book that sells – they always say “for that I refer you to…” – this book actually shows you how it’s done!
Most of the so-called “how to write for the Kindle” books teach you nothing about the creative process. The one thing you want to know, they don’t tell you – usually because their authors don’t know. Instead, they offer you useless strategies for getting a few extra reviews, etc.
To give you a glimpse of what this book has to offer, here’s an extract:
Let’s take another passage from Michael Ridpath’s Trading Reality.
They were arrayed along the other side of the boardroom table, four Japanese in a row. Dark blue or grey suits, white shirts, wild swirling ties. The ties had intricate patterns of leaves, peacocks, bright suns. The effect was spoilt by the fact that all four were wearing them. Conformity in rebellion.
Note the factual part first: the position of the Japanese, their suits and shirts and “swirling ties”. Then the statement about the effect being spoilt because they were all wearing the same tie. Then, finally the first person author’s interpretation: “Conformity in rebellion.” Note also how the author splits the interpretation into two phases. First he hints at it with the words “the effect was spoilt by…” At that point we have a sense of what he means, but not a firm conviction. Only then does he underscore it with a more explicit statement: “Conformity in rebellion.”
It would not have been nearly as good if he had said: “The effect of rebellion was spoilt by the conformity of each wearing the same tie.” It would have conveyed the same information, but it would not have created the same effect. By telling it in this way he shows how the author-character himself took in this information in quick but separate stages of realization. The character is seeing these men — whose decisions will be important to him — and assessing them. It is a tribute to the writer’s skill that he chose his words so precisely and carefully to get this subtle effect just right.
We can see another example of this approach in Scott Turow’s Pleading Guilty.
He’s a sizable man, Martin, a wrestler at the U three decades ago, a middleweight with a chest broad as the map of America. He has a dark, shrewd face, a little like those Mongol warriors of Genghis Khan’s, and the venerable look of somebody who’s mixed it up with life. He is, no question, the best lawyer I know.
Here we see facts and opinions cleverly blended together. There’s the adjective “sizable”, the reference to his background “a wrestler” which conveys a combative spirit. Then, when we get onto his face, we find two adjectives strung together: “dark” and “shrewd”. The first is objective, the second subjective. Then an opinion that enhances the fighting spirit image that the author is trying to convey: “Mongol warriors”. Followed by another fact-opinion construct that shifts the emphasis from combat to maturity and, by implication, the wisdom that goes with it: “the venerable look of somebody who’s mixed it up with life.” At the end of all that we get the summation of the parts, telling us what these fragments of fact and opinion add up to: “the best lawyer I know.”
If he had said “the best lawyer in the world,” the build-up would not have been enough to convince the reader, because it did not contain sufficient raw data and indeed was at least 50% opinion. But as the final statement describes him as “the best lawyer I know” it works perfectly. The conclusion is itself that wonderful objective message in subjective wrapping that I was extolling earlier.
There is even a Goodreads giveaway of the paperback – but you’ll have to be quick.