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Self Publishing Podcast #29 - Finding the Right Tone for your Writing

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Streamed live on Nov 6, 2012

http://selfpublishingpodcast.com - This is our live-streamed recording session for the Self-Publishing Podcast, episode #29 - Finding the Right Tone for your Writing. Full show notes and the podcast audio recording are at http://selfpublishingpodcast.com/29.

We stream our recording sessions live at roughly at 3pm Eastern time on Tuesdays, but we're hardly professional enough to keep that schedule perfectly. You can subscribe to the Self Publishing Podcast in iTunes and the other big podcast directories. Please leave us a review or a comment in iTunes if you enjoy the show!

***
Lots of fun stuff today, a much of which came at Dave's expense. Poor dave.

We started off by checking the voice mail bag:

Cameron asked about re-setting the world in every book of his series

The question was that in a series of books that don't intersect or need to be read sequentially, should he "re-set" the setting in each book? Our answer was that this can be avoided by not spending a ton of time describing the setting in the first place and instead letting the characters experience the setting as they go through it. (This was something we discussed with Wool author Hugh Howey.)

Alex asked about the nuts and bolts of self-publishing

Alex wanted us to talk about the specific how-to stuff of self-pub... like how exactly to get your book into a Kindle format and onto the Kindle store, how to get a cover, etc. etc. etc. He also asked about costs of all of it. So we did the only logical thing: We procrastinated. Dave says he'll get us a guest soon to go through all of that so that we can just sit back and drink coffee/Diet Coke while someone else explains it. So stay tuned.

Gareth called in more feedback

For the third show in a row, we featured voicemail from Gareth, who this time just had a comment in which he totally copped out of the idea he had for a book, and this after calling in to say that he couldn't think of any ideas. That's bullshit, but Dave did enjoy listening to his voice.

Sean appealed to Z2134 readers to come to their defense

Sean butted in at this point to do some flagrant self-promotion that I (Johnny) of course shat on him a bit for, but in this case he made an appeal for something that you as our faithful SPP listeners can do that will really help this cheery, rainbow-farting host and his black-cloud companion.

Specifically, if you've read Z2134 and liked it, Sean and Dave would love it if you could leave a good review.

They're getting a lot of crap for being too similar to The Hunger Games. C'mon, folks... let's tilt those scales back the other way.

Setting the tone of your writing

We spent the rest of the show talking about how to determine the right "tone" for your writing. So for instance, everything Dave touches writing-wise has the tone of "dark enough to melt your soul," whereas all of the fiction I've published thus far has a very light, humor-meets-serious tone.

We were talking about this mostly around the new young adult project that Sean and I are working on, called Unicorn Western. The concept is bizarre and stupid. Cowboys ride unicorns, The smoke that comes out of the guns is pink. There's magic. But at the same time, after Sean gave me this ridiculous outline and I begin to follow it, I couldn't help but write with a more "straight" mood, like a traditional western.

And that's what we mean by tone. The story is what it is, but how is it HANDLED? What's the mood? One of our challenges with Unicorn Western is to find that mood, but once we hand it back and forth a few times, we'll have it firmly established for the rest of the series.

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