Indie Author Weekly Update – September 7, 2018

Indie Author Weekly Update

It’s Friday, which means that it’s time for a new Indie Authors Weekly Update. Be sure to read Mark Dawson’s post on building a successful author career. Anne R. Allen and David Kudler’s posts are also great.

5 Steps to Building a Successful Author Career by Mark Dawson: “I’ll probably say it again before I have finished, but I’d argue that this is the best time in the history of the world to be a writer. I know – pretty grandiose. Let me explain.  When I started writing at the end of the 1990s, if I wanted to get my writing out to readers I only really had one path that was open to me. Once I had finished my manuscript, I would send the first three chapters and a covering letter to one of the dozens of literary agencies that accepted unsolicited submissions.”

9 Pieces of Bad Publishing Advice New Writers Should Ignore by Anne R. Allen: “Social Media is both a boon and a curse to new writers. Online writing groups and forums are an excellent source of insider information on the publishing industry—stuff we once could only find at expensive classes and writers’ conferences. But social media is also a major source of misinformation and dangerously bad advice.”

Retweeting Your Own Tweets Can Boost Your Reach and Engagement from Buffer: “In February 2018, Twitter updated its rules to prohibit sharing tweets that are identical or substantially similar to one another. Before this rule change, re-sharing top tweets (sparingly) was one of our favorite strategies for increasing our Twitter reach and engagement here at Buffer. And while it was a shame to forgo this strategy, we understand the rationale behind the new rules and are fully supportive of them. So, rather than dwelling on what used to work, we started searching for other strategies to try. Here’s one experiment we’ve been working on (and our results in full).”

Amazon Top Reviewer Secrets: The Must-Read Tell-All by Penny Sansevieri: “When you’re pitching Amazon Top Reviewers, have you ever wondered about the things they love, and the things that will absolutely get you shoved to the bottom of their book review consideration pile? We thought so, too, which is why we took some time to interview several of these top book reviewers. Each of them is anonymous in this piece (with the exception of one).”

10 Instagram Tips for Writers from Jane Friedman’s blog and by Annie Sullivan: “So how can writers use Instagram to their benefit? Here are some easy things to keep in mind to find and engage your target readership on Instagram.”

How to Grow Your Email List With Pinterest by Emily Syring: “Do you have an engaged audience on Pinterest? Wondering how to get your Pinterest followers onto your email list? In this article, you’ll discover how to promote your email opt-in via your Pinterest profile, boards, and pins.”

Words Gone Wild: KDP Keywords Revisited from TheBookDesigner.com and by David Kudler: “I’ve talked about keywords before; they’re an essential piece of metadata that determines how easy it is for the right reader to find your book. They are in many ways the key to discoverability. It is best to think of them, not as single words, but as search phrases — that is to say, groups of words that your ideal reader is likely to search for. Put a different way, what question is your ideal reader likely to ask to which your book is the answer?”

Quote of the Week

Patton Oswalt quote

 

 

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Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, and finding new readers. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course.

Practical tips for marketing your books on the social web

Indie Author Weekly Update – March 24, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

Today’s edition of the Indie Author Weekly Update is jam-packed with seven posts across nearly the entire spectrum of information that indie authors need to know.

Don’t miss Joanna Penn’s podcast interview of Mark Dawson or Self-Publishing Relief’s tips on how to make your book stand out on Amazon. There are great tips in these posts.


Indie Author Updates

Everything you need to know about hashtags from Lilach Bullock: “Ever since the first hashtag was used back in 2007 on Twitter, the popularity of hashtags has continuously grown and they have become a huge part of some of the biggest social networks. So in this blog post, I will be covering everything there is to know about hashtags: the do’s and don’t’s, how, where and when to use them, and the top hashtag tools on the market.”

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Books Lingering on Bookshelves? Try These 18 Book Marketing Tips

10-3-16-18-book-marketing-tipsDo you want to sell more books? Every author does. I know that I do.

The truth is, we can never sell enough books, right? It would always be great to be able to sell another 1,000 books, or 100,000 more, or maybe even 250,000 more. Or even 100 more.

Indie writers regularly contact me wanting to know how they can maximize sales of their books. Some of them dream of the day when their writing can support them – a lofty goal.

If you look at the great success stories of today’s indie authors, they support their careers with writing nonfiction or teaching courses. Look at thriller author Joanna Penn as an example. She has sold almost 500,000 books around the world and in five different languages.

She’s also a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author and was voted one of The Guardian UK Top 100 Creative Professionals in 2013. Also, she has a successful podcast, The Creative Penn.

For all her success, her additional endeavors — courses, nonfiction books, speaker fees — also support her business. The same is true for novelists Mark Dawson and Nick Stephenson.

My point is that to make a living on your writing is possible yet a difficult goal to attain.

Some think that social media in and of itself will sell all the books they want to sell. (Mistake.) Others think reading gigs or guest blogging opportunities will do it.

The hard truth is that there isn’t an easy answer. If there were one, I would share it here. Honestly.

And there isn’t a pill that will suddenly make you a capable marketer. The truth? It takes a lot of work to make it in the publishing business.

But, hey, please don’t let me discourage you. That isn’t the point of this post. What I’m trying to say — perhaps not so eloquently as I’d hoped — is that to sell books as an indie author you need a comprehensive plan.

Ready to roll up your sleeves? Keep reading then.

To sell books as an indie author you need a comprehensive planClick To Tweet

So You Want to Be an Indie Author?

Maybe being an indie author is one of the toughest jobs in today’s market, especially if you hope to make it a full-time career. (On the other hand, teaching sounds a lot harder but for the sake of this post, let’s say that being an indie author is the toughest.)

After you undergo the grueling process of writing a book and paying for editors and designers, your have to put on a new hat, that of marketer.

If anyone thinks that writing a book is tough – and a lot of people do – marketing a book is just as hard.

An 18-Point Checklist of Book Marketing Tips

Book marketing requires a multi-prong strategy that consists of the following:

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Weekly Roundup – Social Media Updates for Authors

Weekly Roundup - Social Media Updates for Authors by Frances Caballo

This past week was rich in terms of content on the blogosphere. I hope you enjoy this week’s social media updates for authors. But first, here’s the story about the above image.

Here’s a little-known fact about me: I hike every Saturday morning, even in the rain. It’s a ritual I refuse to relinquish. The woods is where I replenish myself. Recently, I heard indie author Mark Dawson say that all the writers he knew were walkers. Well, count me as a member of that group. This past weekend, I slipped my iPhone into my back pocket and, of course, silenced it. I intended to take pictures of the wildflowers growing in Sugarloaf Ridge State Park. I did take pictures of lupines, paintbrush, and monkeyflower, yet the above tree was my favorite subject. One never knows where the path will lead or where intention may be diverted. But if my experience last weekend can be seen as a metaphor, then it’s this: Don’t be rigid in following a path or pursuing an intention you think is best for you. You’re a writer, an artist. Follow your intuition and you’ll always be on the right course.


Social Media Updates for Authors

The Myth of the Average Reader from Writer Unboxed: “I usually see references to this mythic creature — the average reader — in one of two contexts. First: `I’m going for mass market appeal — I think the average readerwould enjoy my book.’ Second: ‘Well, the average reader obviously doesn’t know what good writing is. Why else would they buy crap like (popular bestseller)?'”

Note: Until this post, I hadn’t heard of anyone discussing psychographics in terms of readership. This is the definition the author offers: “the study of personality, values, opinions, attitudes, interests, and lifestyles.” This was an informative post with a new perspective.

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Authors: You Want Success? Follow Your Passion

 Find your voice - create your path by Frances CaballoI’m writing this after having seen Miles Ahead, written and directed by Don Cheadle, who also starred in it.

The film focused on a set of years when Miles Davis wasn’t recording during the late 1970s. Using flashbacks to earlier times, Cheadle gives us snippets of Miles’ career and how it once flourished. But what we mostly see is the breakdown and its insanity and his path back to resurrection.

Being on top never seemed comfortable for Miles. Yes, there were the record deals and financial deals, but there were also the distractions of drugs, racism, and women. Yeah, being on top as a black man didn’t make him immune to the vagaries of racism.

How does all of this apply to you? I think as indie authors it’s easy to fantasize about what life as a famous author might feel like. We all want to experience it. Don’t you?

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