The Creative Penn and free advice on how to pursue an author’s career

Stumble around on the Internet enough and sooner or later you’ll stumble into Joanna Penn, her blog The Creative Penn and maybe her free ebook, Author 2.0 Your Blueprint for Writing, Publishing and Marketing Your Book.

I did, and I’m glad. It also leaves me wondering how many other Joanna Penns and Author 2.0 Blueprints are out there. Penn links to a number of other blogs and books, though I haven’t followed any of them yet.

So far, it’s the best overall advice resource I’ve found on-line for unpublished authors. Sure, it’s got a lot of commercial qualities to it — she knows she can make money with this sort of advice, and does — but Penn gives enough good stuff away free to be worth the trip.

You might recall from earlier posts that I’m cheap, so I really dig free.

Penn is an indie writer who has three thrillers, and a number of books about ¬†writing, getting published and pursuing dream careers. Did I mention she’s also a consultant and speaker who came from the business world and apparently is very good at marketing and advice? Handy combination of skills for this sort of thing.

I stumbled first onto The Creative Penn where Penn currently has an interesting post on overcoming the fear of writing very dark prose while worrying that people will judge her personally for it. Her advice: lighten up on yourself. I liked her take so followed her into her Author 2.0 work.

I checked it out. Not much, but some. Goodreads gives it 4 stars and there are some very positive reader reviews there. It’s free, so it seemed like an easy risk to download.

I’ll not review it — I don’t do reviews. But I will say I find it full of information, much of which is new to me, and it seems to be organized fairly well. I read it quickly. I haven’t studied it yet. But the fact that I put the word yet into that sentence probably should tell you what you need to know.

Among the points I liked:

— Her section on the rapidly changing publishing industry, thanks to the rise of e-books and e-publishing, was pretty eye-opening for me. There are a lot of successes out there, and there seem to be some well-documents of people starting on one platform then moving to both.

— Penn’s discussions of Internet home marketing and author brand building seem pretty obvious on first glance, but she makes some interesting points here. Worth paying close attention.

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