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Home / Jim Cox Reports / Jim Cox Report: June 2015
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Jim Cox Report: June 2015

Dear Publisher Folk, Friends & Family:

I get miscellaneous emails from time to time informing me of the Midwest Book Review being talked about and popping up in places I've never heard of before. It's as welcome as it is unexpected. Here's an example of what I mean:

Hi James,

The Book Reviewer Yellow Pages is now live. Your website, "The Midwest Book Review" is listed on page 192 and on page 21 as one of the "Top 10 Review Websites" for authors. Your website has held the top spot for several years in a row.

If you would like to run a spotlight on this, or if you want to offer an easy spotlight to your reviewers, I have attached the foreword, which was written by a well-known author, David Wogahn. This works very well as an article and tells a bit of the backstory of the Book Reviewer Yellow Pages. They are also free to use the "Author Etiquette" section in the book (page 17), as a post or article. This teaches authors how to approach book reviewers the RIGHT way. Many authors complain about how difficult it is to get reviewed, but they don't know how to approach reviewers (or they expect the reviewer to actually purchase their book first!). Feel free to adapt either to your needs if you want to use the content.

The ISBN for the print version is 9781937361235

Kindle link:

Link to PDF version:

Our official website:

Thanks again for being a part of this important author's reference. I hope the book sends some publicity your way.


Christy Pinheiro-Silva
Defiant Press

For aspiring authors or novice publishers seeking to build up a list of thematically appropriate reviewers or review resources I can list 3 other excellent web sites:

1. Other Reviewers (Midwest Book Review):

2. The Indie Book Reviewer List:

3. 10 places to find reviewers for your self-published book (Empty Mirror):

Now on to reviews of new and recommended additions to author and publisher instructional reference collections:

The Writing/Publishing Shelf

How to Publish a Bestselling Book
Kim Staflund
Polished Publishing Group
9780986486982, $19.99, 172pp,

Writing professionally is a business. Getting published is a business. Any author who discount this fact are doomed to failure no matter how brilliantly written their book might be. "How to Publish a Bestselling Book" focuses on the business aspects and facets of becoming a published author including the diverse types of publishing and publishers; domestic and foreign copyrights; books sales and marketing; the modern book publishing process; as well as modern book printing and non-printing options. Of special note is the concluding section offering sound and seasoned advice on such issues as when to let a book go; when to write, sell, and get it all done; handling criticism, and more. Enhanced with the inclusion of a four page Bibliography; and a six page Index, "How to Publish a Bestselling Book" is exceptional, practical, detailed, comprehensive, and thoroughly 'user friendly' from beginning to end. If you are an aspiring writer seeking commercial success as a published author, then you need a copy of Kim Staflund's "How to Publish a Bestselling Book".

2015 Writer's Market: Deluxe Edition
Robert Lee Brewer, editor
Writer's Digest Books
c/o F+W Media
10151 Carver Road, Suite 200, Blue Ash, OH 45242
9781599638454, $49.99,

Stated simply, compiled and edited by Robert Lee Brewer, the "2015 Writer's Market" is a key reference and indispensable resource for aspiring authors seeking publication. Updated every year, this is the 15th Annual Edition and features access to an online publisher database. In addition to 7,500+ listings for book publishers, magazines, contests, literary agents, and a one-year subscription to, this edition of the "2015 Writer's Market" features sample query letters and access to the webinar "How to Find More Success Freelancing" from Robert Lee Brewer. Deftly organized articles by experts are arranged in major sections: Finding Work; Managing Work; Promoting Work; Markets; and Resources (comprised of professional organizations and a glossary). A major and highly recommended addition to community and academic library Writing/Publishing reference collections, "2015 Writer's Market" is a 'must have' resource for any career minded writer seeking commercial success.

Book Architecture: How to Plot and Outline Without Using a Formula
Stuart Horwitz
Book Architecture, LLC
One Richmond Square, Suite 112K, Providence, RI 02906
9780986420405, $18.00,

As founder and principal of Book Architecture, Stuart has spent over fifteen years helping writers become authors, signing with top literary agencies, sealing deals with coveted publishing houses, or forging a successful path through indie publishing. Book Architecture's clients have reached the best-seller list in both fiction and non-fiction, and have appeared on Oprah!, The Today Show, The Tonight Show, and in the most prestigious journals in their respective fields. In "Book Architecture: How to Plot and Outline Without Using a Formula", Horwitz draws upon his years of experience and expertise to create a 156 page course of instruction specifically written for the benefit of aspiring authors seeking to avoid cliche formulas and create original work that will succeed in a highly volatile and exceedingly competitive publishing industry. "Book Architecture" should be considered an indispensable instructional reference for aspiring novelists, script writers, and nonfiction authors. Thoroughly 'user friendly' from beginning to end, "Book Architecture" is also very highly recommended for community and academic library Writing/Publishing instructional reference collections. It should be noted that "Book Architecture" is also available in a Kindle edition ($9.99).

Elderwriters: Celebrate Your Life!
Sue Barocas
4900 LaCross Rd.
North Charleston, SC 29406
9781484825648, $14.99, 178pp,

Treasured family stories, fond memories, and personal wisdom are often lost to future generations because we do not routinely compile a written legacy in the form of what author Sue Barocas terms as a 'Personal Legacy Document' (PLD). You don't have to be an experienced writer to create a rich trove of short pieces that reflect your thoughts and feelings about what life has meant to you. "Elderwriters: Celebrate Your Life!" explores a wide range of aspects ranging from anecdotes, epiphanies, paragraphs and poems, to lessons learned, one-liners, lists, essays, letters, and more. These are the means to help you collect your thoughts and celebrate your life. There is nothing in the approach that requires or anticipates writing skills beyond those learned in high school. A guide for creating your own personal legacy document, "Elderwriters: Celebrate Your Life!" is comprised of sequenced chapters designed to take you from the beginning stages of personal legacy writing through the printing and preserving of your document. If you follow the prompts and complete the exercises, by the end of Chapter 13 you will have your own PLD to give to friends and family. Personal legacy writing should be part of everyone's later years and "Elderwriters: Celebrate Your Life!" makes it easy. Also available in a Kindle edition ($6.99), "Elderwriters: Celebrate Your Life!" is extraordinarily 'user friendly' and a highly recommended addition to personal, family, and community library Writing/Publishing instructional reference collections.

Comedy Writing Self-Taught
Gene Perret
Quill Driver Books
2006 South Mary, Fresno, CA 93721
9781610352208 $16.95

Comedy Writing Self-Taught: The Professional Skill-Building Course in Writing Stand-Up, Sketch, and Situation Comedy comes from a three-time Emmy Award winner and author of another comedy writing book, and provides a 'course in a book' as it covers stand-up, sketch, and situation comedy. It shows aspiring comedy writers how they can teach themselves the basics of comedy writing by analyzing their work and using writing exercises, and it covers all the basics of different types of comedy. The result is a 'must' for any comedy writer who wants more of a workbook approach to learning, along with industry specifics.

The ALVA Axiom Anthology of Author Interviews
Roberta M. Roy, editor
ALVA Press, Inc.
216 Hooker Avenue, Poughkeepsie, New York 12603
9781938729263, $7.99,

Compiled and edited by Roberta M. Roy (creative lead and owner operator of ALVA Press Inc at, "The ALVA Axiom Anthology of Author Interviews" features interviews with noteworthy writers and editors discussing their creative roles in publishing and the media. It highlights the differences among their approaches and personalities with the intent to entertain and inform. "The ALVA Axiom Anthology of Author Interviews" provides a very personal look into the world of writing for hard copy publication, the internet, and film. the authors interviewed include Jean Arleen Breed, Catherine Caminero, Chris Campbell, Trish Dalton, Betty Hampel, Kristen Henderson, Stephen Hise, Jim Holmgren, Helmy Parlente Kusuma, M. Edward McNally, Roberta M Roy, Byron Suggs, Carl Waldman, The compilation includes sections titled "Fiction," "Non-Fiction," "Poetry," "Fantasy/Paranormal," "Illustrated Children's Books," and "In the Media". "The ALVA Axiom Anthology of Author Interviews" is as informed and informative as it is thoughtful and thought-provoking as a variety of successful authors provide commentaries that will prove to be applicably useful reading for any and all aspiring writers regardless of the genre or subject matter they are attempting to produce in the highly volatile and intensely competitive world of publishing. An absolute 'must' for beginners, and having a great deal of relevant value for even the more experienced author, "The ALVA Axiom Anthology of Author Interviews" is highly recommended for personal, professional, community, and academic library Writing/Publishing reference collections and supplemental studies reading lists. It should be noted that "The ALVA Axiom Anthology of Author Interviews" is also available in a Kindle edition (9781938729270, $4.99).

Gender Bias in Mystery and Romance Novel Publishing
Anna Faktorovich
Anaphora Literary Press
1803 Treechills Parkway, Stone Mountain, GA 30088
9781511888905, $20.00, 298pp,

Synopsis: "Gender Bias in Mystery and Romance Novel Publishing: Mimicking Masculinity and Femininity" by Anna Faktorovich (Director and Founder of the Anaphora Literary Press) examines gender bias from the perspective of readers, writers and publishers, with a focus on the top two best-selling genres in modern fiction. It is a linguistic, literary stylistic, and structurally formalist analysis of the male and female "sentences" in the genres that have the greatest gender divide: romances and mysteries. The analysis will search for the historical roots that solidified what many think of today as a "natural" division. Virginia Woolf called it the fabricated "feminine sentence," and other linguists have also identified clear sex-preferential differences in Anglo-American, Swedish and French novels. Do female mystery writers adopt a masculine voice when they write mysteries? Are female-penned mysteries structurally or linguistically different from their male competitors', and vice versa among male romance writers? The first part can be used as a textbook for gender stylistics, as it provides an in-depth review of prior research. The second part is an analysis of the results of a survey on readers' perception of gender in passages from literature. The last part is a linguistic and structural analysis of actual statistical differences between the novels in the two genres, considering the impact of the author's gender.

Critique: Informed and informative, thoughtful and thought-provoking, "Gender Bias in Mystery and Romance Novel Publishing" is an inherently fascinating read which is strongly recommended to the attention of literary scholars and romance novel enthusiasts alike. Enhanced with the inclusion of a four page Glossary, a seven page listing of Works Cited, a seven page Index, and an eight page Appendix (Gender and Genre Survey), "Gender Bias in Mystery and Romance Novel Publishing" will prove of considerable interest to authors of romance fiction. "Gender Bias in Mystery and Romance Novel Publishing" is especially and highly recommended for academic library Literary Studies reference collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Gender Bias in Mystery and Romance Novel Publishing" is available in a Kindle edition ($2.99).

The Frugal Editor
Carolyn Howard-Johnson
HowToDoItFrugally Publishing
9781505712117, $17.95, 288pp,

Editing is the process of selecting and preparing written, visual, audible and film media used to convey information. The editing process can involve correction, condensation, organization, and many other modifications performed with an intention of producing a correct, consistent, accurate and complete work. The editing process often begins with the author's idea for the work itself, continuing as a collaboration between the author and the editor as the work is created. As such, editing can involve creative skills, human relations and a precise set of methods. There are various editorial positions in publishing. Typically, one finds editorial assistants reporting to the senior-level editorial staff and directors who report to senior executive editors. Senior executive editors are responsible for developing a product for its final release. The smaller the publication, the more these roles overlap. In the book publishing industry, editors may organize anthologies and other compilations, produce definitive editions of a classic author's works (scholarly editor), and organize and manage contributions to a multi-author book (symposium editor or volume editor). Obtaining manuscripts or recruiting authors is the role of an Acquisitions Editor or a commissioning editor in a publishing house. Finding marketable ideas and presenting them to appropriate authors are the responsibilities of a sponsoring editor. Copy editors correct spelling, grammar and align writings to house style. Changes to the publishing industry since the 1980s have resulted in nearly all copy editing of book manuscripts being outsourced to freelance copy editors. "The Frugal Editor: Do-It-Yourself Editing Secrets for Authors" is a complete course of instruction under one cover. From editing query letters to editing final manuscripts to the editorial chores of marketing, "The Frugal Editor" covers the complete range of editorial tasks and responsibilities -- including common mistakes and errors to avoid. Thoroughly 'user friendly' from beginning to end, "The Frugal Editor" is ideal for the novice author, and would prove to be of immense value as an instructional reference resource for experienced authors, publishers, publicists, and freelance copy editors.

Here is "The Midwest Book Review Postage Stamp Hall Of Fame & Appreciation" roster of well-wishers and supporters. These are the generous folk who decided to say 'thank you' and 'support the cause' that is the Midwest Book Review by donating postage stamps this past month:

John Schmidt
Henry A. Walter
Donna Ball -- "Flash"
Brenda Ortega -- "Fault Lines"
Tessa Dawn -- "Blood Vengeance"
Todd Lentocha -- "Officer Down, Man Up"
Sue Barocas -- "Elderwriters: Celebrate Your Life!"
Michael H. Davison -- "Eshen: An American Colony"
Peter B. Cotton -- "The Tunnel at the End of the Light"
Eldorado Ink
VanitaBooks, LLC
Lauri Bortz -- Abaton Book Company
Allan Westcott Chapman -- AC Writings
Judith Palmateer -- Amber Skye Publishing
David G. Carriere -- The Carriere Company
Smith Publicity Inc.
Elizabeth Waldman Frazier -- Waldmania!
Barbara C. Wall -- The Barrett Company Communications

In lieu of (or in addition to!) postage stamp donations, we also accept PayPal gifts of support to our postage stamp fund for what we try to accomplish in behalf of the small press community. Simply log onto your PayPal account and direct your kindness (in any amount and at your discretion) to the Midwest Book Review at:

SupportMBR [at]

(The @ is replaced by "[at]" in the above email address, in an attempt to avoid email-harvesting spambots.)

If you have postage stamps to donate, or if you have a book you'd like considered for review, then send those postage stamps (always appreciated, never required), or a published copy of that book (no galleys, uncorrected proofs, or Advance Reading Copies), accompanied by a cover letter and some form of publicity release to my attention at the address below.

All of the previous issues of the "Jim Cox Report" are archived on the Midwest Book Review website at If you'd like to receive the "Jim Cox Report" directly (and for free), just send me an email asking to be signed up for it.

So until next time -- goodbye, good luck, and good reading!

Jim Cox
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive, Oregon, WI, 53575

James A. Cox
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive
Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937

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