Welcome

densewords is what I call my literary and language services. I'm Harry Dewulf, a freelance editor and writer. I specialize in story editing (literary / content editing) for indie writers who are publishing their work electronically for reading devices like Amazon's Kindle and Barnes & Noble's Nook.

2014-07-09

Fixed Price Content Edit AND Royalty Split

From July 2014, my minimum price for a full content edit has crept up just a little, from 0.0115 EUR per word to 0.0121, or approx. 660 USD for 40k words (~0.0165 USD per word).

In addition, I am formally adding a new service and a new payment arrangement:

One Shot Read and Comment

This is a content edit, where I read and analyse your manuscript and focus my analysis on a few critical factors. More details on my website. This is offered at a fixed rate of 0.005 USD per word.

Payment by Royalty Split

Subject to my accepting your manuscript, I am offering four of these per year, and the next one available will be Q4 2014. The split is an "earn out + bonus" arrangement. On seeing your manuscript, I will set a fee for my edit. Once your book is launched, royalties are split 50/50 until my fee is paid, then 10% (the 'bonus') until the first anniversary of the book launch. If my fee is not paid by the first anniversary, then I will write it off. In other words, you have nothing further to pay. To be absolutely explicit: if the book sells zero copies in the first year, you don't pay me anything, ever for that book.

This arrangement is intended both to encourage new writers to take a more businesslike approach to selling their books, and to defray the costs of free edits, which I want to be able to continue to give. As such it isn't really suitable for authors who are already making a steady income - you will probably lose out.

2014-07-07

How to keep your gun in hand

Consider the following:

Flint stood, gun in hand, at the door.

What you get from this is that Flint is in a state of readiness. What's going on syntactically is that he is performing the action of "standing, gun in hand".

Now this:

Flint stood at the door with his gun in his hand.

Somehow this suggests a hint of trepidation on the part of Flint. As if he's about to defend, rather than attack. Syntactically, 'his gun in his hand' is an ablative complement introduced by 'with'.

Finally:

Flint had his gun in hand when he stood at the door.

There's nothing grammatically wrong with this, but I suspect this is a failed attempt to reproduce the syntax of 'gun in hand' of the first example. Because it doesn't mean what the author wanted it to mean. "To have something in hand" is an expression meaning that it is taken care of, under control, or in the course of being done:

Preparations for Flint's surprise birthday party were well in hand when I arrived. We were concerned that the children would give away the surprise but Molly kept them in hand. Needless to say, Flint got the wrong idea, and as his surprise turned to alarm, the situation rapidly got out of hand.

"Out of hand" is the opposite of "in hand".

Misuse of "in hand" is getting out of hand. Rather like the whole "look at/look to" confusion, this isn't the grey area you might think it is. We often need to differentiate between "in hand" and "in his hand"; we often need to differentiate between "look at" and "look to".  Useful differentiations like this are what tend to armour usage against evolution.

2014-06-10

Ornain Writers Retreat and Seminar - in the French countryside

Ornain Writers' Retreat & Seminar
in the French countryside
September 6th - 13th/20th, 2014
Rural Lorraine, an area steeped in gastronomy, history and more gastronomy.
Hosted by Harry Dewulf, Literary Editor www.densewordsblog.com
Make your book as good as it can be
And….
Get your book in front of readers who will love it. 
Inside the cover      - coherence: How to prepare, analyse and enhance the creative process.
Towards the cover            - coherence: leverage the meaning and purpose of genre
Outside the cover   - coherence: understand who your audience is and how to reach them.
We begin with structured seminars on key areas of writing to raise awareness of your writing technique and style.
This is complemented by a discussion of how genre (and category) should be understood, not only to best encourage the right readers to start reading, but also provide them with a story that will satisfy their desires. This is the continuum between creativity and marketing.
Once, your chance of success depended upon the whim of agents and publishers who thought (sometimes rightly) that they knew what the public wanted. All this has changed. In this seminar you will learn what is essential, what is helpful and what to avoid, where to properly invest time and money marketing your book.
 
Workshop your own work
Submit a work in progress no less than 3 weeks before the seminar. A short story 5k to 15k words long would be ideal, or an extract from any work in progress. Harry will carry out an analysis before the seminar which can be used for discussion or workshopping during the retreat, either in groups or one-to-one.
The Work
Each day there will either be a morning seminar or a late afternoon workshop or both. After lunch there will be a long break for writing, exploring or whatever free expression takes your fancy. Evening activities will include language and word games, and the best way to improve the quality of your stories: Live Storytelling - with the possibility of an audience.
Retreat
Time will be set aside for free creation and recreation. Creative stimulus comes from a simple change of scenery, sensory stimulation from the French tradition of hospitality and gastronomy. Relaxation is essential in the creative process.
Optional Extension
Seminars and workshops held on week one, with option to stay for a second week. During the second week, Harry will be available for consultation, workshops or open discussions, on a less formal basis (at no extra cost!).
Hospitality
Lorraine is famous for its small scale local produce, traiteurs (cured meat), confiseurs (conserves), patissiers (cakes), brasseurs (beer) and viticulteurs (wine). The price includes 3 meals a day (wine included with the evening meal).
Meals will include samples of local production, and there will be a tasting of local and regional wines (which you can also order and have shipped home).
During the seminar, you will be the only residents of the Auberge du Père Louis, a small, family-run hotel, café and restaurant, and the management are easy-going and flexible. The restaurant is busy at mealtimes, with an atmosphere that is typically French: characteristically animated without being noisy or intrusive.
We will have exclusive use of the salon area with club armchairs and couches ideal for less formal, evening activities; the spacious dining area will be used for workshops in the afternoon, and each room has a table suitable for writing.
About your host
After studying theatre, literature and information theory, Harry Dewulf found his calling as literary editor to professional, semi-professional and amateur writers.
The service he provides is far more than correction. His specialty is guidance in story development, specialist advice and assistance, as well as deciding what to include and how to narrate it. Using structured lessons and exercises, Harry teaches techniques designed to raise the writer's awareness of his craft.
Additionally, he discovered that most writers have no idea how the new literary system operates and set out to discover why some of the most excellent books were not receiving recognition in the marketplace.
As a specialist providing services to writers in a market that is changing faster than ever, Harry is an industry insider in an industry of outsiders. The new marketplace of e-publishing is still evolving very rapidly. Working closely with writers on their marketing and book launches, he keeps up to date with the means and methods that are successful in giving your book the best chance of reaching its readers.
Harry's blog goes into detail in all areas of writing and publishing: www.densewordsblog.com
For any additional practical info like booking and fees, email me.