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Monthly Archives: April 2019


Selling Yourself, Selling Your Book

Whatever success you have as an author/consultant/speaker will come down to your ability to sell yourself first. The most critical element in your sales efforts will be to convince others to want to do business with you. Sure they need to want what you offer, have an ability to pay for it, and believe you are the expert, but they will buy from whom they know, like, trust, or believe in. So how will you sell yourself?

How Authors Can Market To Libraries Successfully

Many authors are told what to do, but not always shown exactly how to do something when it comes to marketing a book.  So, let’s explore, a little deeper than usual, one aspect of book promotions.  Sit back and listen – then be prepared to execute, step-by-step, as prescribed here:
Today we’re going to look at how you take a guerrilla approach to marketing and promotions.  The key is to think strategically, optimistically, and opportunistically.  Don’t just survey the landscape and comfort yourself with the resolution that there’s not much that you can do.  Don’t approach things as if you await a reason or excuse for a “no.”  Instead, shun out the defeatist mindset and simply approach things with a confident attitude.

A no is a delayed yes.  Keep asking until you hear a yes.

Okay, let’s put this into practical terms.  Let’s say that today you plan to take ownership of the library circuit.  You can speak at libraries, sell books at events, sell books to libraries, and use them to promote your book. At any library that you approach, you should have a list of objectives.

How To Use Your Book Cover To Sell More Books

graphic designer AD Starrling discusses how to make the most of the cover design you’ve worked so hard to get right.

sell with book coverCover attracts, copy sells.

I can’t recall where exactly I first read this eye-opening line but I now live by this motto as both a writer and a designer.

When it comes to selling books, there is no doubt that an eye-catching cover that fits your main genre and targets your ideal reader is an important element to get right.

There are dozens of articles out there by some very big names in our industry about how changing covers changed their sales figures and in some cases, their entire careers.

Our very own Joanna Penn has written a couple of features here and here, and there is this sobering example by H.M. Ward which I always quote as an example of very effective redesign and rebranding.

I also strongly recommend checking out this podcast interview with Stuart Bache on book covers.

So, now that you’ve got a great book cover, what can you do with it besides putting it out there in the world when you launch your book? It turns out you can do a lot, especially to market it. So let’s break this down into three phases:

  1. Prelaunch
  2. Launch
  3. Branding

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Where Writers Get Stuck: Marketing: @allisonmaruska


by Allison Maruska


Now it’s time for the super secret post you’ve all been waiting for. Remember this Twitter poll?

It launched this whole mini-series on where writers get stuck. Be sure to check out planning, drafting, editing and revising, and querying or publishing if those are your personal struggles. While the poll was live, this comment happened:

So, to wrap up this series, let’s talk marketing! Is everyone excited??

I know. I can’t fake it very well. But stick with me. It’ll be worth it.

Marketing is a sticky point because, well, it kinda sucks. And by kinda I mean totally. Especially for us usually-introverted author types, having to talk about something we created and be excited about it isn’t natural at all. My alter-ego on Twitter gets it.

Add to that the reality that book marketing often yields weak results, and it’s easy to get frustrated and bail.


There are ways to make marketing more palatable and effective. We’ll identify the problems and address each one.

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Building an Author Platform Without a Smartphone: by Mallory McDuff @CleaverMagazine

A Craft Essay
by Mallory McDuff

“I hope you’re working on your platform,” wrote my agent last year after I sent a substantive revision of my manuscript. I had previously published three nonfiction books with small presses, but I typically spent more time following other writers on social media than promoting myself. That might not be unusual, but I did have one unique challenge: I needed to build online visibility, but I didn’t have a smartphone—a conscious decision. I wasn’t sure how to boost my social media presence without carrying a screen in my back pocket. But I was determined to try.

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Steps for Putting Together a Great Anthology

Known as “Spunk On A Stick,” L. Diane Wolfe is a member of the National Speakers Association. She conducts seminars on book publishing, promoting, leadership, and goal-setting, and she offers book formatting and author consultation. Wolfe is the senior editor at Dancing Lemur Press, L.L.C. and contributes to the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. For more of Wolfe’s tips, check out her blog

Anthologies are great opportunities for writers, organizations, and publishers. Authors gain exposure and experience, organizations gain awareness and extra funds, and publishers make money and sample new writers. It’s a lot of work but a win for everybody.

What’s the basic process for putting one together? What do publishers and organizations, and even writers, need to know?

Here are the basic steps for an anthology:

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Why You Should Revisit Your Old Content – Regularly

The post Why You Should Revisit Your Old Content – Regularly appeared first on ProBlogger.

This post is based on episode 145 of the ProBlogger podcast.

Is your obsession with new content hurting your blog?

As bloggers, we tend to focus on what we’re creating now rather than what we created months or even years ago.

Of course, it’s important to put time and effort into creating new content for our blogs. And that’s what we do here with both ProBlogger and Digital Photography School. We want to make those posts useful and practical, and to ensure they’re well edited, attractive to the reader, and optimized for search engines.

It’s good that we do all that. And it’s also good that we promote our new content. We share it on social networks, put it in our newsletter, and encourage engagement through comments on the blog and on social media.

But here’s the thing: The week your post goes live is only the beginning of its life online.

Sure, it will get a spike in traffic for a few days after it’s published. But what happens in the months, years, and potentially decades after you hit ‘publish’ can completely dwarf those first few days.

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The Writer’s Guide to Instagram: Tips from Top Bookstagrammers and Authors

The Writer's Guide to Instagram

Instagram is a massive and growing social media platform, and it is full of book lovers. There are many book-focused Instagrams with tens of thousands of followers, whose moderators feature books in appealing images that are widely liked and often reposted. As of this publication, users have posted over 29 million pictures with the hashtag #bookstagram. For many authors, Instagram has become a strong platform to attract new readers and engage with existing fans. However, the image-based social media service remains confusing to others, and many authors don’t even have a profile.

To help demystify Instagram, we asked popular bookstagrammers and authors with large followings to share their tips for creating stronger profiles, taking better pictures, attracting new followers, and getting popular bookstagrammers to feature their books. These strategies can be used by anyone, from beginners to experienced Instagrammers, to help grow, develop, and improve their presence on the platform. We hope this guide will help authors and others in the literary world attract new readers and engage more with their fans on Instagram.

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Book Marketing Tips: How To Grow Your Readership Through Podcasting

Our lives are becoming increasingly impacted by voice and audio technology, something I discuss frequently on The Creative Penn Podcast. Today, author and podcaster, Paul Sating shares why it’s a good idea for authors to podcast, and how it can help with book sales.

It’s difficult to get published but finding a reader base for your books can be even more challenging.

Maybe you’ve leveraged every tactic known to ‘writerhood’; newsletters, blogs, paid ads, and various writer-centric websites aimed at readership.

Even writing nonfiction books isn’t a guaranteed path to market awareness of your brand. The challenge of finding readers, standing out from the crowd, becomes more difficult as the crowd swells.

But what can a writer do? After all, there are only so many avenues available to us. The good news is, publishing is a long road, but it is a road with numerous branches that can help us reach our goal of finding new readers.

One way to create a unique presence is by sharing your voice with the world by starting your own podcast. Now, before you say you couldn’t possibly podcast, allow me to tell you how it’s not as difficult as it may first appear and why you might want to consider getting into this medium.

Reasons to Podcast

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The Author Blog: Easy Blogging for Busy Authors via ‏@annerallen ‏

Get your copy / see more author’s books / check out author’s website

The Author Blog: Easy Blogging for Busy Authors by [Allen, Anne R.]An easy-does-it guide to simple, low-tech blogging for authors who want to build a platform, but not let it take over their lives.

An author blog doesn’t have to follow the rules that monetized business blogs do. This book teaches the secrets that made Anne R. Allen a multi-award-winning blogger and one of the top author-bloggers in the industry.

And you’ll learn why having a successful author blog is easier than you think.

Here are some things you’ll learn in this book:

•How an author blog is different—and easier to maintain—than a business blog
•What authors should blog about at different stages of their careers
•Choosing the right blog topics for your genre and audience
•How one type of blog post can build your platform quickly
•Basic SEO tips that don’t make your eyes glaze over with tech jargon
•How to write headers that will grab the attention of Web surfers
•How to keep your audience by learning the tricks of content writing
•Essential blog and social media etiquette rules
•What happens to your blog when you die?


Get your copy / see more author’s books / check out author’s website

“Anne writes the essential blog for today’s writers.” Mystery author Carmen Amato.

“I love following the blog of Anne R. Allen…for up-to-date tips and helpful articles for writers on what’s current in the publishing world.” Author D. G. Kaye.

“BRILLIANT! One of the Top 10 Resources for Self-Publishing Authors.” author Mark Tilbury.

“Anne is one of the most successful author-bloggers out there.” Reedsy

“One of the Top 15 Blogs for Indie Authors to Follow…I adore Anne’s blog. Aside from being one smart lady, her mix of sass and education is priceless.” Social media strategist and manager Frances Caballo

“You know what a huge fan I am of Anne R. Allen’s blog…absolutely marvelous.” Romance author Collette Cameron

“I recommend following the publishing blogs of both Jane Friedman and Anne R. Allen…I’ve implemented many of their tips, which have helped boost my SEO.” New York Times bestseller Eileen Goudge in Publisher’s Weekly

Get your copy / see more author’s books / check out author’s website