Category Archives for "Resources for Authors"

Common Mistakes Authors Make – Part 1: Overthinking Content

I get asked a lot of questions about writing and publishing books and there are some frequently asked questions I could list for an hour or so, but I often don’t get asked about the things that authors seem to blindly just plunge into making big mistakes about, so I thought I’d have more fun listing these.   Over the next few week’s I’ll go through them one by one. 

The first one, and by far the biggest one in my view is thinking either too much or not enough about your content.  Often an author will start writing and overthink how much content they have, and how they might fit it all into one book.  The chances of ending up with ‘word salad’ is all too high when you overthink your content.

For example, you may be an expert about leadership.   And maybe you run workshops or offer training about this.  If you’re pretty good at – all the way to being bloody amazing at this topic, then I bet you could fill several books with what you know.   In fact, you could probably fill a whole book with what might really be relegated to FAQs in your mind.   Never mind getting into the nitty gritty – why not write about the surface stuff.   Or, alternatively write about all the misconceptions about your topic.  Maybe for fun, write about the silly side of your topic.    Overall when you start to list all you know about the topic you know most about, or the industry you are most comfortable in, you could easily fill several books.  So go with that from the start.  When you sit and plot out your chapters, sections, and subtitles, stick to what is one general area and relegate all the rest that doesn’t really fit into THIS book into your plans for the next book you’ll write.

Then of course there are the under-thinkers.  The author’s who think that 10000 words and a lot of blank pages is still a decent sized book.   It’s not.  That’s what we around here call a ‘report’ or maybe a ‘book-ette’.   Think about this…  a 45 minute speech might add up to around 5,000 words.   If you know you could easily talk about your favourite subject for at least an hour and a half, that’s maybe 10,000 words.   But seriously, if you know a lot more than that – and you should if it’s your topic of expertise – then a two or three hour effort when speaking should at least equate to 25,000 words.   At 2,000 per chapter (approx 6-8 pages) that’s a lot closer to 100+ pages (allowing for spacing, diagrams, images, book size, and a number of other things.

Don’t get me wrong – I’ve written a couple of books that were only around 50 pages – and they served their purpose well.   But a decent sized book should be a lot bigger than that.

When plotting your content, try to remember this: 

2000 words, divided into 3 is approximately 650-700 words per section.  Aim for 3 – 4 sections per chapter.   Writing 500-700 words per day x 4 days per week is probably manageable if you’re serious about writing a book at all.   That might level out at around an hour (tops) per section – so up to four hours per week.  If you can’t see your way clear to that commitment then halve it and take twice as long to write your book.

Try not to get overwhelmed.    A simple 12 chapter length book is is a good target – you don’t have to write War and Peace – just a good solid, well crafted series of closely linked articles about one aspect of your expertise is ideal.

 

If you’re unaware of just what mistakes to avoid when writing a book -especially your first one – talk to me.   Or join our Thursday mornings online for FREE advice and ideas… 

 

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Spinning Plates

I’ve just been going through all my company’s service options for clients going forward.  I realised that what we do now is SOOOOO (Add another hundred O’s) much more than where we started a few years ago.  Like most of us, we grow, evolve, and there’s lots of zigging and zagging at times too.

A simple publishing service that sat in the middle of traditional and self publishing models, was far from typical of anything else back in 2006, when I ‘accidentally stumbled in’ and started assisting other speakers with their non-fiction books.  So, there was not really anyone else to model on.   Instead we took what we could from the parts that just made sense, tapped into what we could learn from experts in various parts of the industry, and attended a log of conferences.   Some great mentoring along the way also helped a lot.  But fast forward a dozen years, and the entire landscape has changed dramatically.

In 2019, I’m working with clients from as far away as the USA, Dubai, New Zealand, and I’ve just had someone from Dublin contact me for help.  We (a very specialised team and I) also added Amazon Ninja, Social Media Mavens, and Speaker (Topic) Development to our core business last year, and I’m intending to take some of my GOLD Author-ity Author’s books to the international book fairs again this year.

I remember once, working on my business plan – many years ago now – and realising with the help of my coach at the time, that simple things like:

  1. Work on the business – not just in it
  2. Find a niche and develop that
  3. Charge appropriately
  4. Value your relationships and your reputation above all else!

…are all things that I may have understood at a totally ‘junior’ level back then, and hoped that one day they would make more sense.

They sure do now!

You see, I think in all things, we have to grow into who we are, what we can manage, develop our maturity.    We can’t go there till we grow there either.   It’s experience (nearly 70 books and around 100 authors now) and time that does that.

As I looked at the many parts of what I created in my current review and planning documents this last week, I was inspired by some of what I’d achieved so far.  So much so that I did take a wander back through some of my old points of reference from days gone by – yes including the handful of books that are relegated firmly to the back of a dark cupboard and hopefully won’t reemerge again until I’m long gone!

Now – as we face exciting times such as growth, further development, the whole concept of Publishing 3.0, and my personal new focus and desires as a writer, and publishing coach, and speaker,  I’m thrilled by some of the extraordinary people moving into my space, bringing with them whole new levels of expertise and experiences too.  After all, one of the other things I’ve realised is that one person cannot do everything.   It takes a whole village to raise a child and a whole community of special people to bring a book to life and then get leverage on that book and the author’s potential. It’s like having a lot of spinning plates up in the air – someone can get them all spinning, but you have to have them carefully managed and massaged to keep them from slowing too much or worse, dropping and crashing to the ground – taking some of the other’s with them.

Watch this space, it’s going to be a huge year of many exciting things ahead… if you’re keen to know more, please follow us on FB, Linked In, or just get in touch.

PS – Announcements pending early March… you’re going to be blown AWAY! 🙂 

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Writing a Series, and What to Write Next

Are You Writing One Book or Ten?

I don’t know about you, but I constantly have ideas for books and blogs and articles racing through my head.  Yes it gets pretty darned busy in there at times.   So prioritizing the potential output is sometimes the hardest part of the job.   Here’s a few things you might like to know about how to do this, starting with working out what’s up next.

Deciding on a priority for the next book or series.

Working out what to write and in what order is easy if you follow my simple steps.    Start with the idea.   Let’s say you want to write a book about Customer Service.   Let’s break that down into sections – maybe it’s a book about Customer Service in retail.   Then you could extend do one for Service Industries, or one on Trade or Construction Industry, or perhaps just making it the beauty industry.    Suddenly the ideas are rolling faster than the ink in your Parker Rollerball right?

Let’s get a little more technical  

BOOK Genre: Customer Service

Extensions  – Other books in that Genre:  for Retail, Trades, Construction, Financial Services, Hospitality

Break that down further to Books on specific areas of Customer Services:

  • Fashion Retail =Mens/Women/Kids/Outdoors Stores
  • Trades Retail = Paint and decorating/plumbing/appliances/Tiles/Lighting
  • Construction = Builders/Electrical/Landscaping/Plumbing
  • Financial Services = Mortgage brokers/Financial Institutions/Banks
  • Hospitality = Tourism/Travel/Cafes/Restaurants/Bars/Food/Delis

Before you know it you could write either 20 chapters – each on one of the above areas and make your book very generic to cover all those places who use Customer Service, or need to train staff in that area, or ,you could just get really busy and write 10-20 books.   Each for a specific industry and subcategory.   Customer Service for Landscaping Companies – I bet there’s not much in that category, right?

(Actually I did a quick Amazon search and there’s nothing using that particular set of keywords – but many more generic CS titles). 

But which one first?

Easy – start with what you know. Cover the industry or industries you have to do the least amount of research for.   Then as you go, expand from there. If you know Retail, then start with that.  Niche into: Customer Service for Clothing Stores, then expand into customer service for women’s Fashion, and/or Menswear, then sideline that out to Outdoors stores such as NorthFace, Katmandu, or Macpac types.   Tenting, Boating, Fishing, Sports stores are then a natural progression because they still call on your skills writing about clothing. ie – is it the same selling a flotation devise as a shirt?  Maybe – size, fabrics, features like pockets and zips… you get the picture right?

There are all books on retail and all based on Customer Service.   Some of the information may well be the same – you might even be bored to tears by your own subject after the fifth book, but remember, you now have a series.  A series is easier to market than an individual book.

Just grab a look at how Michael Gerber, author of The EMyth did it.   By the way – I got to hang out for some one-on-one time with Mr Gerber back when he was just starting this expanded process of his book series, and wow, one of the smartest men I ever met, and a real gentleman.   He was the first person to explain this concept to me – and I have read several of these books now.  I highly recommend you do the same to further understand this entire principle.

Once you know what kind of series you intend to write, then put some timing and parameters around it.

On the Subject of Titles

You may decide to write your series as a same name series… like the EMyth for Dentists, the EMyth for Optometries, the EMyth for Construction, the EMyth Manager etc.   Or, you may decide to name your books something specifically relevant to each one For example Louise Hay did it  with Trust Life, then You Can Heal Your Life, then Heal Your Body, then the Power; is Within You,  Each of these books is a stand alone, but as a set they still look and read like they belong together.

The concept behind this is simple.  If you are writing about a topic that you deeply care about, then decide first what it is, and what you want people to do when they read your books.  Ideally, you want them to either read more of your books, or book you to speak at an event where you can promote your books.   Either way – a person who already cottoned on to your brilliance in one book or form, is going to be much easier to sell to than someone brand new.  That’s Marketing 101 – and by the way – my own marketing books are part of a series, and there’s more about this concept in my Advertising, Branding, and Marketing 101 book.

Deciding on your titles – well that’s another whole blog topic, but it is also covered in my new online course about producing your Non-Fiction book.  I also cover such topics in my weekly hangout sessions on Thursdays… details for that is here.

 FREE Authority Author Hangout Sessions – Registration 

 

 

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FAQs about Writing and Publishing Non-Fiction Books

I was talking with an old friend this week, who is one of the most knowledgeable retail marketing specialists I know.  He’s written a number of books over the years, but his self publishing skills are by comparison, almost non-existent.    Sometimes life’s like that – we know so much about what we do, but learning new tricks, especially in an industry that is increasingly complex and fraught with pitfalls, is just too hard.  And this is how it is with my friend.  Despite having attended a number of great training events over the last few years, and having had some moderate success with his books, crossing that hurdle of knowing enough to get real traction with his books is just too hard.

We agreed that I’d help him with that.  I’m very excited about doing so – because he’s a great marketing specialist.   And I respect him immensely, so it’s a joy for me to be able to ‘show him a bit of good stuff’ around what I do well.

But this overall got me thinking about some of the most common FAQ’s about writing and publishing non-fiction that I am address with each week.

FAQs Like These:  

  • How long should my book be?
  • How can you be sure of good structure?
  • What should I write in – which program?
  • Is it really necessary to write it all or can I just record it and get it transcribed?
  • I know Amazon is important, but really do I have to be on there?
  • What’s KDP Unlimited?
  • How do I get an Author Page set up properly?
  • Why can’t I get better reviews?
  • How do I get reviews?
  • Why are reviews important?
  • How do I decide which categories are right for my book?
  • Should I use Facebook Ads for promoting my books?
  • What kind of files should I create my ebook in?
  • Should I do a book launch?  What kind?
  • What is Ingram Spark exactly?

Oh – the list is endless… these are just a few things I’m frequently asked about.  

Starting this coming Thursday, 17th January I’m going to start having open hangout sessions in my Authority Author’s Cafe space on Zoom – so you can ask me any of these and get straight answers, easy solutions, and helpful sharing about all these things. Every Thursday morning at 10am.   I’ll be here.

But you gotta Register so I know to expect you.  It won’t matter if there’s one of us, 10, or 100…. let’s just talk publishing ok…

HERE’S THE LINK

Please review it share it, or create a set of questions… decide if you want to attend once or a dozen times…   but don’t hold onto those burning questions any longer… I’m here to help.

 

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Learning New Tricks in 2018

In 2018 I embarked on a significant new journey of up-skilling in the areas of Amazon, Ingram Spark, and the use of KeyWords and Categories for authors.   Because the indie publishing world is constantly changing and growing, it’s been a wild ride that also saw me working one-on-one with a publishing coach of my own, for my own books.   All of this meant that during the course of the last 12 months, I’ve been able to super-charge some of the work I’ve been able to offer as a publishing coach to my clients.

But because this landscape is constantly changing, and because I seem to have more-or-less the same conversations with variations across so many of the authors I work with, I decided that the best use I can put to for much of what I have been learning is to freely and openly share my newly acquired knowledge.   And so I’m happy to announce that going forward, Thursday mornings at 10 am my local time in Brisbane Australia, I’ll be sitting in my online cafe, happy to connect and talk books, publishing, Amazon, IS, Advertising, and some of the fascinating and extraordinary tools I now use in my work.

You will need to register – via this link

Please turn up on time…   Each week will feature different topics, and sometimes I’ll have guests too who have specific expertise of their own.    This will be nothing like a webinar, but mostly like a regular hangout at the local cafe – and as many who wish to join us and pull up a chair can do so.  BYO coffee or tea, and join in the conversation.     These will run for approximately 30 minutes each – longer if the conversation warrants it.    And I’ll not be recording these…  but a brief recap of some of the highlights will be posted and shared with those who have registered.

These sessions will be interactive – so please do ask questions, take notes, engage in the conversation.   And they are FREE.

So – what are you doing Thursday mornings in 2019?

Dixie

 

 

 

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Book Stores and Online Stores – The Difference Down Under

If I had a dollar for every time I was asked one question back in 2010, I’d have retired already. That question was, ‘how do I get my books on Amazon?’

Back then I’d usually answer with, ‘Why Bother?’

The bricks and mortar stores in Australasia were still selling books, albeit, not terribly well. However, many were closing, and most had diversified beyond selling books, and had ‘warehouse sales people’ behind their counters, many of whom were far from passionate about books, and were unable to be of much help if the requested book by a customer ‘wasn’t in stock or on the computer yet’. Add to that, due to the sheer volume of books available, book store owners and managers were simply challenged beyond believe to know what might be worth stocking and what might gather dust and end up heavily discounted a few months later. It was hit and miss to stock shelves, and Indie Authors missed out most of the time, as much due to the quality of their books, but also due to the lack of sales channels that led them easily to get their books noticed by buyers.

Amazon was equally challenging back then, because due to their own internal rules about needing to have enough stock on hand to supply orders quickly, the warehousing of books and distribution channels meant that if you didn’t have some kind of managed warehousing of your books based in the northern hemisphere, you would likely be rejected by Amazon anyway.

Forward to 2017 and all the rules had changed. Now, as we head into 2019, it was easier than ever to upload your books to Create Space, Ingram Sparks, Barnes and Noble, Nook, Kobo, Kindle. E-books can be sold via Kindle within minutes of being uploaded, and Create Space can fill orders within days of your setting up an account.  And a further update – in 2018 Create Space merged with KDP, (Kindle Direct Publishing) to make uploading even easier in many ways.

The quality of print on demand is outstanding, and the need for warehousing hundreds or thousands of copies of your books has gone. No more expensive outlays for authors to stock printed copies, fulfill their own orders by lining up at the post office. The royalties are paid when and as expected, with full reporting functions built into all of the platforms available to sell on.

So, what’s the problem with all that?

Ignorance mostly!

Authors are still struggling to know what to do, how to do it, and the learning curves around uploading can be fraught with deep time-wasting pits of despair. It takes time, and a lot of reading the fine print and understanding the process to do your first upload onto either Create Space or Kindle. Working out how to price your book, determine the best categories and why this is important, and even understanding the special ways that Keywords work for or against your book’s success takes time and knowledge.

Unfortunately, the average newbie author often does not see the value in paying for expert help, despite the fact that they are now saving significant amounts on the production and printing of books. And this is the one thing that needs to change for authors, especially in Non-Fiction genres. Getting armed with the knowledge needed to do this well, is as critical an investment in publishing a book as editing and cover design is.

Being an author is time consuming, often for low returns, and yet is one of the most creatively rewarding things a writer can do. Seeing others benefit from your shared stories, wisdom, experiences is priceless and getting those reviews that mean you know you’ve contributed valuable knowledge to someone anywhere in the world is heart-warming to say the least. Getting those checks from Amazon is also pretty exciting. But if we’re all going to do it well, and ‘ace it on Amazon’ we have to start approaching the technical ends of publishing. That means paying for expertise sometimes, just as you would for social media specialist work, and design skills.

In 2019, I challenge all authors to up-skill – not by diversifying their studies across too many publishing topics, but mastering one or two necessary areas, and sharing that knowledge with others. That will still keep the overall cost of successfully publishing down to an acceptable level for most indie authors – and make it even more viable to pay for the specialist areas you need to dive into occasionally.

So what’s likely to happen to publishing in 2019?

There’s a lot of talk about Publishing 3.0 – the new wave of publishing that will totally and radically affect publishing, and particularly self or indie publishing companies and authors.  Ultimately this will mean authors being able to circumvent even the online publishing options such as Amazon and Ingram Spark to have an even more direct means to market and supply our books to readers.   Stay tuned – as this unfolds I’ll share more about this.   But, the value  issue that we are still entrenched in is the need to have the rankings and marketing tools provided by Amazon and co.

Until we work out how to ace the best seller lists without being part of those lists, we still need to be doing three things supremely well:

  1. Writing and producing extremely good books – not erring on the side of average – ever!
  2. Being well versed in all the many tools and options available to us as indies, and there are so many it’s easy to get lost in these – so the value of publishing coaches is even more valuable than ever.  I am one, but I too engage with the services of one – we all work better with a coach, especially in this fast changing industry.
  3. Thinking of ourselves not just as writers, or authors, or even as thought leaders… but as business owners, with the diversity that goes with the many parts of our businesses that need attending to.   The marketing, the production, the administration, and planning!

And staying abreast of it all – is a full time job!

How are you going to manage as an indie publishing author in the New Year?

 

If you need some help with the writing, marketing, production, or any other parts of the process for writing/production of Non-Fiction books, check out our new online program DIY details, or message about your needs and we can engage with some help for you.   

Starting in January – the last Thursday of ever month will feature the Online Author-ity Cafe sessions where you can find out more about what’s going on in the indie publishing world for Non-Fiction writers.

Details are here: LINK 

 

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Write Your Book in 90 Days – Online Program Launch

Finally, we’re ready to launch the new How to Plan and Write your book in 90 days, using Dixie’s proven formula for authors of Non-Fiction.    This is the program where authors can work through the process I use for one-on-one planning, then writing and developing a manuscript.    Due to demand for my personal time, I just simply can’t clone myself to accommodate the demand for my time do set about last year developing this special program.

Please take  a look at this landing page – where you’ll find information about the contents of this program.

Retailing for three monthly payments of $97.50, it includes a special one-on-one coaching session with Dixie personally, to keep author’s on track.   A one-on-one coaching session is usually $250.00 – that’s a HUGE saving! 

We’ve been testing this program for months now and continually fine tuning the contents and delivery and we’re very confident that the program as a guided DIY option works really well for a fraction of what you’d pay for Dixie to personally work with you on planning, writing, and developing your Non-Fiction book.   There’s also two additional courses in development that will walk participants through the produciton and publishing phases and then the marketing, distribution and promotion phases of becoming an Author-ity Author.

Here’s some early reviews for the program:

This course is absolutely fantastic! I have utilised Dixie’s book coaching services in the past which took me from idea to a published book with excellent results. The 10 week DIY Author-ity Authors Program gives me all the tools and resources I need to take my ebook idea from concept to completion. The best part is, I can work at my own pace, but still have access to Dixie’s expertise whenever I need it. KD Forsman, Freelance Writer writingforcash.com
 
“I was blogged down with too many creative ideas. This made me stop, PLAN and restart with clear focused action. Easy!  Clear direction, planning and accountability – perfect for clearing your writing head-trash!” Sue Lester, Mindset Healer & Coach,

Check out all the details here:

If you have any questions at all about this please contact us - including options for becoming an affiliate and getting paid commission for directing other people to this program.  

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Here's the link again:

 

 

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Video – the Final Frontier of Fear Based Marketing

“Aaaahhhhhh!  No, I dont’ want to do video.  I would not like it here or there… with green eggs and ham… or anywhere else… Sam i Am!” 

That’s the phrase that typically runs through my head when anyone says – You have to start doing video.   I have avoided it like the plague for so long now, but finally, last week, I was told in no uncertain terms that enough was enough – camera shy be buggered, get over yourself and just DO it ok!

Ok, I quietly said in my head, but inside I was quacking!   Oh no – how am I going to get out of it this time?

There was finally no way out!   Why I think of video as fear based marketing has nothing to do with the reality –  sharing information visually with clients is not frightening for them – it’s just that for me, I’m fearful of doing it wrong!  Always.

Along came Grant! 

Grant from Focused Video is a young 30 something year old man who has had a passion for video and directing for years, and after a successful career start workiing in global corporate business, headed home to Queensland and studied towards his passion becoming his life’s work.

And the results of working with someone passionate, young, and enthusaistic is that even the hard stuff becomes easier.   And for me, the camera has always been my nemisis.  Grant made it not so scary.

It still took a couple of hours to shoot enough material for a three minute introduction I’m putting on my new website this week, and I was grateful for my past experience doing some video work, including TV interviews.  The ability to ‘get over myself’ was also enhanced by listening to an Amy Portfield interview the day before where she was talking with a veteran video based marketing specialist who reiterated again and again, that just be yourself, and remember that the audience want’s the information – and to not share that is ultimately selfish.

I finally got it.   

I applied the necessary war paint, memorised the script – which was actually partly a waste of time because we ended up going a lot further than what the script said anyway – and got down to business.

Grant also tried the questions and answers option – so that for a while we grabbed some footage of me just talking about what I do… more naturally and unscripted.  This gave me a chance to find my groove too.

And you know what?  No one died, the house didn’t fall down, and the sun still came up the next day.   I didn’t mess it up – although I did say a few bad words when I fluffed my lines – and we got the job done.

Sometimes it’s doing the hard work and putting our fears aside that enables us to make significant breakthroughs and find our voices.

I learned a couple of big things on Friday.

  1. It really helps to have expert help to get the job done.
  2. Using excellent tools for the job is absolutely necessary.
  3. Practicing, and writing down what you want to say clears the mind.
  4. Sharing your information can help others, so why hold back?
  5. You have to make time to learn and grow in your own business, and that means doing the things you don’t always love to do.

I’m expecting to not look as glamorous as Julia Roberts when I see the video – as much as I’d prefer to look like her.  I’m expecting to see me, and maybe me is the best person to be talking about me after all.

When it comes to promoting your work, your book, your speaking, and your programs, video is undoubtably unbeatable.  We all have to start embracing ALL the ways we can get better at getting ‘out there’.

What’s holding you back from writing that book, making that video, developing that training program?  I bet it’s not as hard as you think it might be, if you have someone to hold your hand through it, the right tools for the job, and an incentive to share your work.

PS – Video will be up next week…

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Author’s Task Lists – Getting Through It All

I love that old saying – how do you eat an elephant… one bite at a time!  But sometimes it just feels endless doesn’t it?  I mean, the very nature of this industry – writing for a living – is one that takes time to develop.  It doesn’t matter how much you think you’ve done, there’s always something more to do.  And so my daily and weekly author task list helps, but it sure is a long list!

A typical week for me looks like:

  • Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – check, post, review, reply and advertising.
  • Canva – keep developing new images for posting with blogs and social media.
  • Amazon – check stats, sales, and moderate anything that needs it in my uploads.
  • AMS – Amazon Advertising, to check, measure, and add campaigns.
  • Blogs – writing, checking, reading.
  • Keywords – adding new ones, checking what’s working and what’s not, and reviewing – constantly reviewing!
  • Mailchimp – newsletters, lists, automation, and reviews of activities.

And that’s before I even start to write! 

Plus there’s reading – the blogs and posts from other authors and those whom I follow to learn from .

Research – sometimes this can be just one more endless task too but so very necessary!

And finally – study time.   I’m currently enrolled in three new courses to ensure that this year I maximise my abilities to build up my career as a full time (well paid) author.

While these things all need time and attention, they all seem to need the same amount of input from me.   If I don’t keep on top of Social Media, I lag behind in sales.  If I skip reading blogs, doing my study program, or even just reading for pleasure (which I try to do for about two hours per week to keep my own writing skills sharp) then I notice I fall behind in sales and development, and of course I can’t afford to stop the actual writing either as I put pressure on myself to produce content.

While it’s a full time job to be a writer, no one ever said that more than half of an author’s time is spent doing everything but actually writing.  But that’s the way of it now.  The Ernest Hemmingway fantasy of sitting over a typewriter Continue reading

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Author Resources You Will Love

One thing that I’ve learned through nearly a decade of working in the book business, is that you can never have too much help to market your work.   So I’m going to share with you some of my favorite author tools – and some of these are recently discovered.

Scrivener:  I can not rave on enough about this program.  I have introduced it to a number of people and they all say the same thing… it makes the planning and writing so easy!  If you do not yet have Scrivener, or are curious about it because you have heard about it being one of the very best tools ‘on the planet’ for authors, then check this out.   You can also enjoy 30 days (not just consecutive calendar days either) for FREE, then it’s only the cost of coffee and cake with a couple of friends to get it after that.  (Use this link to get the free 30 days option… )

And best of all, you can pay just a couple of hundred dollars for one of THE VERY BEST training programs I’ve ever come across to Learn Scrivener FastClick here for details.

First: Booklaunch.io is far and away the VERY best landing page platform imaginable for authors. These make launching a new book so easy, and they look great too.

Second: if you are into technology, or not even hugely so but know it’s a necessary way to bring customers to your door, then you have to spend some time on these platforms:

  • Amazon – create an Amazon Author page – it’s easy, powerful, and you’ll love what you can do with it to help drive book sales and awareness campaigns.
  • Twitter – yes it does work, yes it is worth working hard to get followers, and yes you do need to post regular updates on it.  This is not a passive platform, but when you work it well, it starts to really create buzz around your books.  My Twitter feed is here for my author page.
  • Mobile Apps – I’ve had one of these for my business alter-ego Maria Carlton Marketing Coach for years, and it’s been a great way to ensure I could share information with clients and promote my brand to prospects, but since that was created the technology available to create these apps has become outstanding.  I’ve just discovered COMO and within hours have created an app that features my books, my services, and my links to all other platforms I use for marketing.
  • Amazon Marketing Services:  If you want to really ramp up your Amazon sales and promote free books or special offers, you can’t go past AMS.  It’s easier to use than Facebook Marketing options, and dedicated to book sales.  It’s still relatively new, so lots of beta testing still going on as they refine and improve, but well worth being an early adopter for this.  Here’s the link.

One thing to remember when it comes to marketing tools for authors is that people want to engage with you, and you want to reach out and engage with them.   These tools help you do this easily.   But you have to work on these constantly – just like that great novel you’re working on marketing is a constant work in progress.

And like my old mate Winston Marsh always says – you have to be a better marketer of what you do than a doer of what you do! When it comes to effectively marketing your books – both non-fiction and fiction – you have to build a following.  Branding is critically important and so is having a great marketing strategy that keeps you focused on the best results oriented social media options to suit your product.

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