Book Title: How to Make a Living As A Writer
Author: James Scott Bell
Price as of this post: $3.99 Kindle or $11.11 Paperback
Length: 256 Pages
Publication Date: October 2014
Rating: 4.5 out of 5.00
Summary: This is a great book with tons of resources on how to make a reasonable living as a writer. It does not promise a get rich quick scheme or other unreasonable methods such as writing a book a week.
Pros: This book is very thorough in the topics it covers for writers. James Scott Bell talks about traditional versus self-publishing as well as using a hybrid of the two. The entire book is stuffed full of great websites and resources for writers. I really love the LOCK system. I can’t tell you what it is without giving away Mr. Bell’s secrets, but trust me, you’ll love it! He gives sample writing and business plan information as well as even talking about making money from short stories and novellas.
Cons: There are a couple of places where Mr. Bell gets what I would call a little ‘preachy’. He goes on for a bit about exercising and eating well as well as balancing time with your family and writing. I get it, but what if you can’t exercise, already eat well, or don’t have a family? Thanks for rubbing it in! I agree with what he says, but I just think it was out of place for this book. There were a handful of typos, but nothing that is a show stopper. He also is pretty negative about social media, saying we create fake lives by posting pictures of us only happy on Facebook or other social media outlets. I found that to be pretty pessimistic, but maybe that’s just me.
One big con for me was that a lot of the suggestions for making your work successful included suggestions for tools that are quite pricey. For example, Mr. Bell suggests using a professional editor, cover artist, graphic designer, and layout specialist to make sure your book looks and feels the best it can be. I agree that would be great to do, but those experts cost several hundred dollars apiece. So the average writer just starting out and working a day job will not be able to afford those things. Practical tips on how to self-edit are included, but ideas on making the best cover you can yourself or additional resources for doing those things yourself would have been appreciated.
Reader Warnings: No vulgar language or content not safe for younger readers.
Conclusion: I really liked this book and would recommend it to my writer friends. I’m recommending it to you, my readers, so that is saying something! I really love the ideas, and advice James Scott Bell gives in this book and the resources are priceless. Check it out and let me know what you think.