Fun English Language Tongue Twisters For ESL Learners

All languages have silly little irregularities, but English specialises in making pronunciation irregularities a challenge for ESL learners. Try to get your tongue around these examples of English pronunciation. 1. The bandage was wound around the wound. 2. The farm was used to produce produce. 3. The dump was so full it had to refuse …

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Louis – The Life of a Real Spy

As a child and a young teenager he would tell me stories and mysterious tales of far off lands and people. Singing strange songs in mysterious languages. At the time, I had not heard of the word enigma, but now I know my friend Louis was exactly that. Louis never lied to me. Only telling …

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The Two Faces Of Self Publishing

An all too forgotten side of self publishing is the humble book. Yes, that’s it. The thing with a cover and pages. Cast aside by many in the last year or two, the book survives however, and I’m sure that passionate authors still want to see one with their name on the cover. Oddly enough, …

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Authors – How To Promote Yourself

Selling books is hard work and also a very good way to alienate yourself as an author. Social media is full of self published authors trying to ‘flog’ their ebooks and all most of them achieve is to be ignored or unfollowed. In recent weeks I have had quite a few comments and messages asking …

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Does Social Media Sell Books?

After many years of being active on social media, and having accumulated reasonable followings, I’d have to say that the answer to this question is no, not directly. I don’t know how many times a day I see, ‘Check out my book’, ‘You’re invited to an event’, or ‘Download my book for free.’ My reaction …

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The Rush To Publish

While self publishing, especially ebooks, offers writers an incredible opportunity to get their books under reader’s noses, one of the most common mistakes made by those new (and sometimes not so new) to self publishing, is to get caught up in the euphoria of publishing a book, and rushing to hit the publish button. It …

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10 Tips & Tricks To Improve Your Writing

As social networking is predominately text driven, it really is a good idea to make sure your writing is up to an acceptable and readable standard. There’s nothing worse than reading a tweet, Google+ or Facebook entry or blog post that is full of errors. It really gives an impression to the reader that you are a either careless, …

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Are You Sending Your Readers To Sleep?

I started reading a novel recently that I picked by chance, and I have to say that I was left with feeling that a potentially terrific story had been wasted. The first chapter was quite well written with a tempting plot setting and this was what hooked me into selecting this book after reading the …

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The Acquisitive Author

It started quite slowly a couple of years ago, but unfortunately it has now become a pandemic. The insidious contagion? The acquisitive author affliction. Self publishing has given absolutely anyone the right to write, be published and be read. The gatekeepers have been removed and without exaggeration, it has delivered the basic right of freedom …

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Book Marketing Tips For Self Published Authors

Self publishing is not a new phenomenon anymore, and it has now become an integral part of the publishing landscape. However, there is one component that remains a stumbling block. Getting your book to sell. Book marketing is tough, hard work, time consuming and can even be dispiriting. If that’s not enough, it can also …

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Paid Book Promotion – Yes It’s Necessay, But Beware

As many Vandal readers may know, I also run a book promotion website. Whizbuzz has been operating successfully for over three years, and has taken a ‘soft marketing’ approach to both promoting books and authors, as well as itself. During this time, Whizbuzz has attracted a large following and has just recently been launched on …

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How To Use Twitter – Tips and Tricks

Twitter is the strange animal in the world of social media. It operates on such an undefined set of rules that are so vague, it is even unclear if Twitter itself is sure as to how it all works. The best I’ve been able to calculate is that there are no rules at all, until …

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Really Weird Book Titles

Clearly I have nothing better to do today than have a giggle at how easy it is to be really stupid. So join my in a quick giggle-fest of some of the crazy book covers I stumbled on earlier today.  

I Wrote A Book – But It Won’t Sell

Writing a book takes a long time, and for those authors new to self publishing, the next step can be daunting – trying to attract readers willing to pay good money to buy your book. But first they have to find your book. One of the most frequent questions I’m asked by newly self published …

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