Articles tagged "learn"

“Rejected?! So What.” – Bestsellers That Almost Didn’t Make It.

Sometimes, as we strive to share our remarkable ideas with the world, we have to deal with criticism and often times, rejection. But that is ok.

Criticism and rejection can be used constructively to help you become a better creator. The key is to understand that everyone is always going to have his or her own opinion. But just because someone disagrees with your outlook or your way of being creative doesn’t make you or them wrong. It is important to stay positive and diligent with your work and to always always try. You owe it to yourself for the hard work you’ve accomplished.

With all that in mind, I thought I would share with you a list of bestselling books that were each highly criticized and rejected many times before they finally made their mark on the world. Some of them will probably surprise you.

Take a look and realize that each of these authors was in the same boat as any new author starting out at one point or another. The difference being they didn’t have a cool tool like Lulu.com at the time to give them complete creative control over their work or the freedom to instantly sell their books all over the globe. These authors stuck to it, and you can too. And Lulu is here to help.

Focus: Author Success Story

At Lulu, we’re all about helping authors find success and providing them with the means to reach more readers all over the globe.  Sometimes success comes in ways they never expect. That was the case for professor William O’Connell, author of the book Homeless in Paradise, Communicating with the Bohemian Venice Beach, CA Subculture.

Actor Russell Brand (of Forgetting Sarah Marshall fame) is using the book for part of an upcoming feature film. O’Connell’s story is such a good one, we just had to share. You can read how this Lulu author went on to full-length feature consultant below.

Feedback: Newsletter Revamp

At Lulu, we realize it’s a two way street – we wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for you. That’s why our main goal is to help you succeed. We want to give you all the tools you need to enable your success. We’re all part of this greater movement – creating published authors from dreamers and enabling them to connect and build relationships in ways that haven’t been possible until recently. You have made this place remarkable, and your voice is invaluable as we continue to grow.

Lately, we’ve been thinking about how we could make the monthly newsletter better, how we can use it to help you reach your goals. What is it that interests you? Do you want to see more Lulu Author success stories? Would you like tips on how to use Twitter and Facebook, advice on how to best market your book, industry news updates? We want give you more of what you need to help you be as successful as you’d like to be.

Tell us what you think in the comments section below. We’d love your feedback to help make the Lulu newsletter better than ever.

Being a Lulu

Lulu’s a place where individuality is “in.” People are celebrated for who they are – even us, the lowly interns. This how-to guide to being a Lulu documents our experiences working here. The philosophies we’ve picked up along the way are some of the same ones that go into Lulu’s approach to our authors:  celebrate people, appreciate them, help them be remarkable. Without further ado, here’s how to fit in with the Lulu crowd.

  1. Develop a shtick. Seriously, everyone at Lulu is a character. For instance: 
    • Bob always wears red socks
    • Manny has an extensive elephant collection
    • Jonathan always tucks his t-shirts into his jeans and somehow pulls it off
  2. Hoard Pirate’s Booty Cheese Puffs from the break room. None of the other chips will fulfill your craving for cheesy goodness. Trust us. We’ve been there.
  3. Don’t drink the coffee labeled “Jet Fuel”- yes, it’s delicious, but you’ll be bouncing in your chair and will not be able to concentrate.
    Continue Reading »

Making Criticism Work For You

If you’re reading this blog, chances are you’re the creative type and maybe even a DIY-er. If I were to guess, I’d have to say you’ve probably written your own book, edited it, and then designed the cover. Pretty impressive, and you definitely get a pat on the back from me. But you may have noticed that it’s really easy to get stuck inside your own head and become blind or even evasive of constructive criticism when you’re doing it all on your own. The key is to not let your work suffer.

Why a Good Author Photo Goes a Long Way

Lulu just got back from Book Expo America in New York last week. While we were there, we had the opportunity to meet thousands of people ranging from industry professionals, to up-and-coming authors, to people that were “just checking things out.” It was fascinating to see the different stages authors were at in their careers and it was great to see so many people at the convention learning how market themselves more effectively.

Many authors came with a sample of their book or had a handout with a little blurb and a photo of themselves. It was interesting to see how different each author’s photo was and how much some stood out in my mind – even after talking with so many people. I realized that many people new to the writing profession might not know how important a good photo of themselves is or how much it can help further their career.

An author should have a good photo on hand because it makes you look more professional. The people at BEA with great photos seemed better composed and more prepared. Isilhouette-question-mark-muck-small understand that many authors have spent so much time working on their book and making it pristine, that when they’re done, the photo can be an after thought. You want to be measured by your skill of the written word and not what you look like. But think about the last time you went to the bookstore. Can you recall picking up a title with a blurry, washed-out photo of the author on the back cover or inside flap? Do you think you’d be as likely to spend your hard-earned cash on a book that had a photo like that on it? In the same way a bad cover can make you second guess the quality of a book, a bad photo can make you rethink the reliability of the author. It helps to think of your book as a business card, and a bad photo is like handing someone a card written in crayon.

Focus: Cookbooks

I am a foodie.  I was raised in the south by a mother and grandmother that loved to cook and I can spot a good restaurant a mile away.  If I know anything, it’s food.  Some say I’m a harsh critic when it comes to any dish, but we all know what a little extra attention and care can do for a recipe.  You have to start somewhere though, and Lulu can help you make a cookbook full of your own favorite dishes or you can check out some of the really great ones we have to offer – from healthy eating to down-home comfort food.

Let’s start with what I know best:  soul-food.

Comfort and Joy

by Callie Works-Leary


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This soft-cover cookbook features large, high-quality color pictures and gives you the know-how to make a quick snack or a five-course meal right in your own kitchen.   This book has the perfect mix of “stick-to-your-rib” delights like “Texas Slow-Cooked BBQ Brisket” as well as fun, light dishes like “Bacon-Wrapped Jalapeno Apricots.”

Comfort and Joy is a collection of recipes for the way that we really cook, eat, and entertain in our rapidly changing times. Most importantly, it is food that is comforting in its simplicity and depth of flavor, but joyous in its creativity and charm.  It is perfect for every-day use or for hosting a party.