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Outwit Writer’s Block

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Are you sitting and staring at a blank notebook on your desk?  It’s a common problem among writers.  You’ll find lots of advice on how to outwit the dreaded writer’s block but here’s an idea that may be new to you.  Instead of starting at the beginning of your book start at the end.  Pretend your book is in your publisher’s hand and they are asking you to write the book jacket copy.  You’ll need to write something concise and intriguing to get readers to buy your book.  You might want to do some research first by reading the jacket copy of books in your genre.  Don’t agonize over this exercise… it’s meant only to stimulate you to write a brief outline of your plot.  Once you have this done go back to that blank notebook and use this copy to outline your book.  You’ll find it much easier to get started in outwiting writer’s block.

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Biblio Connection Loves Bibliophiles And… Authors!

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Biblio Connection defines bibliophiles as “collectors, readers, authors and sellers”.  The site was created to bring these people together and there are a number of ways authors can benefit from this wonderful celebration of books.  Authors can find potential readers by talking about their books, post listings and giveaway copies to the Biblio Connection audience.

To learn more about Biblio Connection read this list of available features from their website.

  • Connect – find others with a passion for books
  • Enjoy – join a discussion, take a quiz or get inspired
  • Find – browse the Classified Ads and enhance your book collection
  • List – your book related services in the Service Provider Directory
  • Meet – fellow writers, collectors, sellers, authors and readers
  • Organize – schedule a book collectors/club meeting, a book fair, invite friends
  • Promote – your book and brand through giveaways and article features
  • Sell – your used/collectable books in the Classified Ads
  • Share – tell your stories and share your knowledge
  • Start – a group and discuss your favorite books or collecting experiences
  • Win – free books through our sponsored book giveaways

If you have a written a book, run don’t walk over to Biblio Connection!

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If Your E-Books Aren’t Selling Then Change Them!

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Thanks to a brilliant post on the Warrior Forum we got to thinking about the flexibility we have when publishing e-books for Kindle, Nook, etc.  When you publish an e-book and it isn’t selling you can change the title, cover, description, etc.  If something isn’t working then don’t keep doing it.  That is the definition of insanity.

If you have a published e-book then consider making some changes.  Here is what people on the Warrior Forum recommended changing:

  • Title
  • Cover
  • Author Name
  • Description
  • Keywords
  • Categories
  • Price

If you would like to read the thread yourself visit The Warrior Forum.

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Recommended Book: Book Power: A Platform for Writing, Branding, Positioning & Publishing

Book Power will teach you how to harness the power of Amazon, the greatest retail giant on Amazon so your content will be seen. Use Amazon as a search engine and optimize your book in a way that will drive more leads than pay per click or search engine optimization. Stop wasting money trying to drive traffic and let them do it for you. Understand the power of Amazon’s massive e-commerce empire and use it to drive pre-qualified traffic, bring more dollars to your business and more clients to your door.

You will learn:

  • Why You Want to Publish on CreateSpace AND Kindle
  • The Benefits of Being a Published Author
  • Proper Formatting Techniques
  • Book Cover Design
  • How To Create An Outline
  • Choosing the Right Title
  • The Benefits of Aligning with Experts
  • What a Platform Is – And Why You Need One
  • The Importance of Consistent Branding
  • Secret Strategies for Writing Your Book Description
  • How Amazon Is Primarily A Search Engine
  • How To Put Your Book Into Four Categories for Maximum Exposure
  • What A Sales Funnel Looks Like
  • How To Promote with Book Tours
  • How A Book Helps You Reach More Markets & Drive More Sales
  • Why You Want To Think About A Book Trailer Video
  • Cross Pollinating Your Social Media for Best Results
  • The Importance of Consistent Branding
  • Optimizing Your Author Central Profile
  • The Best Ways To Promote Your Book
  • How To Use A Book To Gain Media Exposure
  • Using Your Book As a Lead Generator
  • Getting It Right The First Time
  • Engineering A Best Seller
  • Using Categories To Your Benefit
  • Keywords, Categories And Book Description SEO
  • How To Create Content Fast
  • The Authors Secret You Did Not Know About
  • Gamifying the Creation of Your Book
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Recommended Book: Money Making Machine

Money Making Machine – How To Publish, Market and Make Money Using Kindle Books is a Kindle book by Anbu Rayappan.  The author wrote this book about his success with Kindle books that he has not even written.  He gives tips on how to outsource books for Kindle in addition to lots of marketing tips.  In 4 QUICK and SIMPLE Steps, he will tell you exactly what you need to do to create and market your book.

Included in this book are tips such as:

  • How to use KDP Select to improve your sales.
  • How to use Google Keyword Tool to effectively market your kindle book
  • how can you convert your passion and expertise into a money-making book
  • how to select a clickable and amazing cover design
  • list of more than 75 power words to create your book description
  • how to effectively use book description to improve seo
  • how to bring your book on to the first page of amazon search result
  • how to choose titles which persuade the customers to click using
  • emotive hidden persuasion technique?
  • How to get your dream cover design from the designer?
  • Where to find excellent cover designs for your book
  • how to use reviews to sell more books?
  • How to make your competitor to sell your book
  • how to get your book appear in “customer who bought…” Section
  • what color should be your cover design?
  • What fonts sell more books?
  • How to get 70% royalty from amazon?
  • What price to choose to maximize your profit?
  • How to sell your book free and still make money?
  • How to get to the top 100 best sellers list?
  • Do you need page break at the end of every page?
  • How to find the right category to sell more copies?
  • An amazing way to figure out the number of copies sold from sales rank.

 

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Timing your book’s launch date for maximum impact

The Book Deal blog has a great post about how to time your book’s launch.  Apparently agents and publishers love books that can be tied into annual events and anniversaries.  It doesn’t take a genius to guess that Christmas is a huge book publishing tie in but there are other lesser known events that writer’s need to know about.  Read the post and make note of the bonus “Tie-ins by the month” at the end.  Do you have an idea for a book that ties in with an annual event?  Use the comment function and let us know!

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How Does A Book Build Your Business?

If you’ve ever wondered whether or not it’s worth your time writing and publishing a book to build your personal brand, you’ll like Mitchell Levy’s “42 Rules for Driving Success with Books”. Read this review with a mind map on Mitchell Levy’s “42 Rules for Driving Success with Books”.

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Want to write a book? It doesn’t have to be like this…

Author Nathan Bransford gives us a wickedly funny take on publishing a book in his post “The Publishing Process in GIF Form“.  Although his take on the usual process is dead on, it doesn’t have to be like this.  If you work with new publishers like 42Rules, you don’t have to go through the traditional process that can take years to get your book to market.

With our proven formula, you can go from having an idea, to having a book on Amazon in less than six months.  The 42Rules program is the only program of its kind to combine the three critical elements required to make a book successful:  Writing, Publishing and Marketing.

If you have a non-fiction book in you, contact with us right away to learn more about our program.  We look forward to working with you.

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Why Self-Published Books Look Self-Published

Joel Friedlander of The Book Designer blog has an insightful and honest article that discusses the inherent flaws a self published book might have if an experienced editor was not used.  Joel was a judge of the annual BAIPA Book Awards and shares some questions posed by an author who received some criticism of her book.  You can read the answers Joel provided but I think the point of the post is that even a self published author needs an experienced editor who understands formatting and publishing conventions.  If you want a book that gets read you need help and there are plenty of experienced independent editors who can help you.

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The Publishing Tide Is Turning

Thanks to Kindle and other e-readers Indie writers are finally getting the attention they deserve.  Hot off the presses the “50 Shades of Grey” self published Kindle bestseller  trilogy is now in paperback at your local Target and Walmart and the movie rights have already been sold.  The blog “Self-Publishing Success Stories” has compiled a list of more than 170 authors who have sold more than 50,000 self-published ebooks to date.  These sales figures are meant to inspire other authors but the real message is that traditional publishing houses have become dinosaurs.  Unable or unwilling to change with the times they are being left behind while self published authors sell more than many best sellers back in the day.  To see who is selling what and how many visit Self-Publishing Success Stories.

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Want to give away Kindle e-books for reviews? Here’s how!

If you need Amazon.com reviews and you want them to come with the “Amazon Verified Purchase” notation then you’ll need to send the review copies via Kindle.  The Selling Books blog offers a description of how to do this AND includes a step-by-step video.  This is great information, for free that you won’t find anywhere else.  Click this link to read more.

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The In’s And Out’s Of A Virtual Book Blog Tour

The Book Deal blog has a great interview with Jackie Morse Kessler, the author of a four-book Young Adulst series with Houghton/Graphia: Hunger, Rage, Loss and the upcoming Breath.  Ms. Kessler just finished a blog book tour and explains how it works and what the benefits are for authors.  To read this insightful post at the Book Deal blog and let us know if you’ve ever participated in a book blog tour.

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Do you know your potential readers?

Your book readers are critical to your success as an author.  So you better know them inside out or you are not going to be successful.  I know this is a bold statement but it’s true!

As a publisher I always ask my potential authors if they know who will buy and read their book.  Almost all of them say “I believe that everyone could enjoy reading my book.”  Wrong!  It would be lovely if everyone would buy and love your book but that doesn’t happen even for a bestselling author.   People have very definitive tastes in book topics and writing styles.  You can’t possibly appeal to all of them and it would be a waste of your time to try target the entire world.

Defining your target reader is the most important thing you can do before creating your marketing plan.  It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about social media , PR or advertising – if you don’t know who your target reader is none of this stuff will be effective.

Do some research by looking at books similar to your own and check out the reviews.  Start by identifying who your readers are by using standard demographics like:

  • Gender
  • Age
  • Marital Status
  • Family Size
  • Location
  • Language Spoken

Once you come up with a profile of a target reader you will be able to use that information to find out where these people hang out and then take the steps to communicate with them.  Without this information you’re really shooting in the dark!

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Writing and Publishing News Blog

Patricia Fry offers a frequently updated blog about publishing and writing that is a great resource for writers of all genres.  You’ll find lots of great tips on how to sell more books. Take a look and let us know what you think!

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Give Your Book It’s Own Facebook Fan Page

No doubt about it… FaceBook is fun. You can find friends from high school, college, old employers… it’s great to see how people are doing.  However, the biggest challenge authors have with FaceBook is where to draw the line between the personal and professional.

Branding yourself as an author versus your personal life can be confusing.  FaceBook can help or hinder you in this area if you don’t use it appropriately.  You can use Facebook Fan Pages to create a separate presence for your book AND to build an audience.

A Fan Page is a page that can be created just for your book.  This was done to allow authors, businesses, bands, non-profits and others to have a place to gather.  Individuals can become “Fans” of your page, which is completely separate from your personal profile.  The benefit for us authors is that you can provide book related content to your fans without them seeing the picture of you sent your grandparents last Christmas.

Now you can begin telling people about your Fan Page and invite them to “become a fan”.  You can advertise within FaceBook and target potential readers.  On your Fan Page, you want to give folks things to do, learn, try all focusing on the topic of your book.  Ask fans to leave comments and respond to comments when you have the time.  You can use Social Oomph or Hootsuite to schedule content updates to your Fan Page for you!  Use your Fan Page like a mini website to promote your book.

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Book Agents Get Their Own Newsletter From Random House

If you are a book agent or publisher you’ll want to register for the brand new newsletter from Random House.  Random House says “Following positive feedback about our Author Newsletter, we are launching our Agent Newsletter edition this month, containing the same behind-the-scenes spotlights and information, and highlighting new features and content added to the Author Portal.”  You can view the first newsletter here.

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What is the future of publishing?

Nick Morgan contributor to Forbes has written an article about the not so fun roller coaster that is the world of publishing.  You can read the entire article here.

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A Simple Tip To Sell More Books

Update your signature line in your business and personal email with your book title (even if the book is not finished). This idea sounds so simple, but I get hundreds of emails every day from authors who don’t add their book t their signature line.  Think about how many emails you send every day.  Your signature line is a valuable piece of email real estate that most people simply overlook.  Yep, it’s simple and easy to do.

Don’t use your book picture in your signature.  In some they come across as attachments and can’t be seen without opening the attachment which most people never do.  Sometimes they show as broken links if someone has the html turned off in their e-mail settings.  Either way, it doesn’t look pretty.

If you haven’t added your book title to your e-mail signature line do it now!

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Build Relationships With Potential Readers By Giving Something Away

A great way to create a relationship and build trust with a potential reader is to give something to them for free.  This could be an excerpt of your book, a free chapter, a tipsheet or checklist from the book, etc.  In return you can ask them to give you their name and e-mail address so you can keep in touch.

Some of you may be unsure about this idea.  You’re thinking “but why give it away when I can charge for it?”  You can’t charge people for stuff if they don’t know you exist.  People aren’t going to do business with someone if they have no idea who you are.

There are two things to remember when you give something away:

1. Make sure it has your name and contact information on it.

2.  Make sure it has a real perceived to your clients.

In order for this strategy to be successful you need to make sure people know about it.  Here are some promotional ideas to try:

1. Issue a press release using a free press release distribution site.

2. Announce it to all your social networks (FaceBook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.).

3. You can put an announcement in your local Chamber of Commerce email distribution.

4. Send an email to all the Associations, Networking Groups, industry groups that you are a part of.

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Amazon Picks the 20 Best Books of 2012 So Far

Amazon.com editors have picked the top 20 best books for 2012 (through June). You can read the list at Amazon.com.  It’s interesting to note that the top ten books on the list are from traditional publishers.  Amazon is also holding a sweepstakes:   “Customers can also enter the Best Books of the Year So Far Sweepstakes on the Amazon.com Books Facebook page through July 23 for a chance to win one of 10 Kindle Fire devices, each accompanied by a $100 Amazon.com Gift Card. There is no purchase necessary to enter. Must be a legal resident of the 50 United States or D.C., 18 or over. Learn more [here] and enter for a chance to win.”

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