Women in Publishing Summit https://womeninpublishingsummit.com The Ultimate Place for Women Writers Mon, 21 Sep 2020 21:20:31 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 https://i0.wp.com/womeninpublishingsummit.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/cropped-WIP_submark01-01_preview.jpeg?fit=32%2C32&ssl=1 Women in Publishing Summit https://womeninpublishingsummit.com 32 32 Julie’s story https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/julies-story/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/julies-story/#respond Sat, 19 Sep 2020 19:40:15 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=7146 So many of us write books because we want to have some sort of influence on the world. Even if it’s a fiction book, we write largely because we want to create some sort of reaction… evoke some sort of emotion. Whether it begins strictly for our own needs or not.

Julie was no different. At one time in her career she was a powerful business woman on Wall Street, and she walked away from all of it when she realized she was unfulfilled and unhappy in her life. She spent the next few years building an audience talking about topics like gratitude and finding your true course in life, living in a fulfilled way.

When we started talking about her book, Awaken: 6 Sacred Steps to Remember Who You Are & Why You Are Here, Julie had several moments of absolute fear of releasing her book into the world. She experienced those moments of panic like we all do.

  • Should I launch this book?
  • Maybe I should just do a simple print run for my existing clients?
  • What if no one wants this book?

Julie was afraid that her book would fail… and this is a common fear!

At one point, Julie almost pulled the plug. I encouraged her to continue moving forward.

We came up with a launch strategy that felt good and aligned for her.

Now she had a very engaged and active Facebook group and a significant email list, so we leveraged those to the max.

Julie launched her book and had over 1,000 sales in her first week. It was incredible. Not only that, we chose smart awards programs to enter her book into, and she kept winning awards! She won 1st place in the Foreword Reviews, she was the award winner for Body/Mind/Spirit in the National Indie’s Excellence Award, and several others. (Guess what? Winning in major book awards gets a lot of eyes on your book!)

She sent me this message:

Our sweet book keeps getting more and more recognition! I want to THANK YOU so much for holding the vision of this book when I wanted to run away from it 😉

Part of my role as a coach is to make sure I hold my authors to their vision, even when they doubt themselves. So this note from her really warmed my heart.

The world needed her book.

But without a proper launch strategy and implementation, the results might not have been as powerful.

She has 95 reviews on her book, and all but one of them are genuine and heartfelt 5-stars.

Sometimes when you feel afraid, what you need is someone who knows the right path to hold your hand to get you there.

I’ve been talking a lot over the last few days about the program I am launching, Book Launch in a Box – with live coaching. The cart will be closing in a few days, so if this is a program you might be interested in, I encourage you to join us.

Check it out HERE==> https://writepublishsell.com/book-launch-in-a-box-course/

I’ll be helping you with personalized feedback to create the RIGHT plan, and how to take the steps to ensure when the book launches, you are successful.

It doesn’t matter what genre you write in, it doesn’t matter what size your audience is, it doesn’t matter if your book isn’t written yet. We can still create the RIGHT plan for you.

Take advantage of MY EYES and my team’s support on your book launch strategy and avoid the many pitfalls so many authors face.

You owe it to your readers, but more importantly, you owe it to yourself.

Get the full details here: https://writepublishsell.com/book-launch-in-a-box-course/

Write on and market hard!

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GoodReads… the best secret marketing tool for authors https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/goodreads-marketing-tool-authors/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/goodreads-marketing-tool-authors/#respond Mon, 07 Sep 2020 16:12:02 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=7043 We are PUMPED up right now. We have a children’s book launching September 15th, and based on the engagement the book is getting across Netgalley, Instagram, and GoodReads, we are positioned for an incredible launch.

There is one tool I see authors skip over time and time again, even though it’s FREE and they probably even already use it. What is it? GoodReads! Yes, the same site where you compare notes with your family and friends before you vote on a book club choice has HUGE marketing potential for authors. Think about it: you’re probably a reader with an account on GoodReads. You can probably remember more than a few occasions where you saw that one of your social connections had 4-starred a book, and you went right in and stuck that same book on your “want to read” shelf. Maybe you even headed straight to Amazon to buy it. And in doing so, you spread the word about that book for its author – your interest served to market it for them for free. It’s an excellent way to leverage social connections to reach people already primed to read.

Back in 2017, my phenomenal team member, Nancy, and I went to Book Expo in NYC. We listened to this fascinating presentation about GoodReads. They shared the details of how, because of the activity on GoodReads, the book had THOUSANDS of reviews and a ton of buzz before it even launched. The book hit ALL the big lists at launch, and sold a ton, thanks in no small part to the GoodReads strategy, combined with a solid launch and marketing strategy.


How we use #goodreads to market our #booklaunches. #booklaunch #bookmarketing #amwriting
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We knew it was a powerful tool before that day, but it really gave me a whole new understanding of how much it can move the needle.

WATCH OUR WEBINAR: How to SMASH a Book launch!

I had been using GoodReads as a reader for a long time. I love the fact that it’s a social site dedicated 100% to avid readers. True book fans. Everything that happens on the site is related to books, reading, authors, and writing.

I recently recorded this introduction to GoodReads for authors that you can check out on my YouTube channel.

If your book is available on Amazon Kindle, it’s even MORE key that you get your GoodReads profile up and running.

Why?

Amazon doesn’t let folks leave reviews on their website until after a book has been released, but the BUZZ of readers is such an important part of having a successful launch.

So want to have your book in places where people can leave reviews leading up to the launch.


Want to learn all there is to know about GoodReads?

I have a $37 course that will show you ALL the things!

Get the Course now!

You TOO can have over 50 reviews before you even launch!


Every time we walk a new author through the advanced reader part of our launch process, they get a little nervous. “Won’t it kill all my sales if I give away the book for free?”

Well, the short answer is NO. But even more importantly, I cannot tell you enough how important it is for the success of your book for you to have a LOT of reviews and activity on your book. That will bring in organic new traffic outside of your reach. It also gets the eyes of librarians and book retailers on your book.

Having great reviews to influence potential buyers is so important, and you can’t snooze on it, especially when you’ve planned a marketing strategy all around your launch day.

Back to GoodReads. Another cool thing is that it is integrated into the Kindle interface – so if someone is reading your book on Kindle, the option pops up to add it to your GoodReads shelf and mark it as READING. Every time you do something like this, the notification goes out to all of your friends and followers.

So imagine: you will have some avid readers with LOTS of followers on GoodReads, and their entire network is notified when they start reading your book. Pretty amazing, huh?

You can see the power of those reviews for our upcoming children’s book release, “Rupert’s Snowman.” Even though the book isn’t launching until September 15, Phillipa already has more than 50 people weighing in on her book, endorsing it to their social network. It’s all part of a great launch strategy (you can join her launch team and watch her work, friends – she’s going to have an exciting one!) and it works both because she has a truly fantastic book AND because she’s put in the time to explore and maximize success on GoodReads and other places.

Even more exciting, we just started a giveaway for Rupert’s Snowman yesterday, and over 600 people have already entered!

Holy smokes, this is exciting!

Setting up your GoodReads account as an author is one of the totally free things that you can do today to market your book, so go play around with setting up your author profile. Don’t be shy: ask your network to be sure to follow you as an author there! And if you want more tips and tricks for a successful GoodReads experience, you can grab my quick, powerful GoodReads course — it’s a $37 investment that you’ll see returned with increased book sales and a bigger author platform!


News from around the (Zoom) water cooler…

  • I’m participating in a great promotion for anyone who’s looking for new books about writing – if you want to build your Author Toolkit, head on over and check out the offerings!
  • In our virtual world, how will publishers make sure that authors aren’t being harassed during online events?
  • KatBiggie Press is publishing our FIRST EVER YA book! Check out the cover reveal for K.T. Angleheart’s “The Wise Ones,” coming in October, and look for a free sneak peek soon!
  • Are editors responding to submissions during COVID-19? One of our favorite experts has the answer.

Have fun checking out all the features of GoodReads this week, and let us know how it will fit into YOUR book marketing plan! We’d love to hear about it!

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The Ultimate Fantasy Writer’s Guide https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/ultimate-fantasy-writers-guide/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/ultimate-fantasy-writers-guide/#respond Thu, 03 Sep 2020 16:02:40 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=7019 ed. note: Thank you to Autumn Birt for this guest post! We are so excited about her new program for fantasy writers. Keep reading to learn more about this value-packed program that is a MUST for every fantasy writer,

Back when I first started writing fantasy and decided to give e-publishing a try, back in the early days of eBooks that I fondly refer to the Wild West, there wasn’t much information out to help authors. Now there seems to be too much and most of it contradicts itself!

I’m Autumn Birt, a bestselling and award-winning fantasy author (and past Women in Publishing Summit speaker!). I just released my thirteenth fantasy novel which completes my third series. I’m now a full-time writer traveling around the US with my husband and our Cairn Terrier, Ayashe, living the life of adventure that I love to write about in my epic fantasy stories. Well, minus the magic and dragons … but I’m looking for them! 

Over the years as I learned how to successful write amazing stories, reach more readers, and market, I’ve written hundreds of blog posts offering free writing tips. But secretly, I wanted more.

What I want is to really, REALLY, help other authors. Not just with an occasional tip here and there amid random writing posts that I think, hope, will help you. No. I want to KNOW I impacted not only your writing but your writing career.

I dream big. I know. 😉

Ive been gathering up all the things that have helped me create the awesome author business I have now, all those essential pieces of advice I wish someone had told and given me when I first started out as an indie author. And Ive packaged them into one sweet little bundle that is so full of awesomeness that it makes me as excited as I was the first time I uploaded a book to Amazon (dont tell Born of Water I said that. EVER.).

I know, really, how can anything besides writing be that good?

What if I told you what Ive got coming is 12 seriously AWESOME modules that will teach you to write, edit, and publish your novel to raving fans? These step-by-step modules will help you take the spark of an idea and develop it into an amazing book with in-depth writing lessons that will teach you the pertinent details of just what you need to know to write an amazing book (and none of the extra crap that will only slow you down). AND, if that wasnt sweet enough, it will show you the steps to build a fan base as you write, how to overcome, and totally defeat, writers block, plus the techniques to edit like a pro.


take the spark of an idea & develop it into an amazing #fantasy #book What you need to know to #write an amazing book! #amwriting #ultimatefantasywritersguide #amwritingfantasy
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After that, it REALLY gets good.

That is when you jump into the module on the 5 essential parts of a cover AND how to format both an ebook and a paperback book using the templates the course provides. Did I just say ebook and paperback templates? Yup. They work great too. I just used them on my newest fantasy release (uploaded 2 days ago!). This course even provides an over-my-shoulder screencast video of how to use the templates and upload!

And that isnt the end, oh no!  There are still jam-packed lessons on how to launch a book to fans and reviews, including super-secret swipe files on how to build a launch team. And after all the excitement has worn off, as well as Amazons new release sales bump, how to continue to grow your author brand and expand into long-term marketing strategies.

Like I said,  EVERYTHING you need to build your totally awesome author career. Swipe files to build your mailing list and launch team, awesome downloads, checklists, and cheat sheets to keep you organized, those over-my-shoulder videos to the exact steps you need to take, and then all that fantastic information packed into one single course. And there is even more! There are 3 amazing bonuses.

Ive been dreaming of creating this for nearly two years.

Well more than dreaming. Because, like writing a book, things dont happen, especially BIG and amazing things, if you dont work hard to make them happen.

I CAN. NOT. WAIT. to help you with all those amazing lessons, downloads, swipe files, templates and MORE that are locked inside this amazing Guide, those awesome bonuses… Well, that is why it is called the Ultimate Fantasy Writers Guide!

Autumn is a bestselling author in fantasy, epic fantasy, and war! She is the author of the fast-paced epic fantasy, including the adventure trilogy on elemental magic, the Rise of the Fifth Order. Her newest series is Games of Fire, an epic continuation of the world and characters begun in the Rise of the Fifth Order. Learn more at http://autumnbirt.com
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Good graphics can make or break your book marketing efforts https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/good-graphics-can-make-or-break-your-book-marketing-efforts/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/good-graphics-can-make-or-break-your-book-marketing-efforts/#respond Tue, 18 Aug 2020 16:09:08 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=7009

We all want to have a book that sells off the shelf, right?

These statements probably sound familiar:

  • First impressions are the only impression that matters.
  • Perception is reality.
  • Dress for success!
  • “You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
    This opportunity comes once in a lifetime” – Eminem – Lose Yourself

The fact of the matter is – when you are building an author BRAND, you have a responsibility to put your best foot forward (another one!). As you prepare for launch, or as you continue marketing a book, people want to feel confidant that they are buying a book that is not going to be another crappy book that was self-published. Ouch. Did I say that out loud? I’m sorry friends, but you’ve all seen them. You know immediately, this book was not published by Random House.

Let’s not be THAT book. It’s not hard or expensive to look professional. Trust me. You just have to know what the resources are to help you.​

Real talk: I put on makeup and fuss over my clothes before I host a webinar. I know: feminism! And it doesn’t really matter and all those things. Sure. But in a world when we can’t shake hands and take the measure of each other, looking my best helps me feel more on top of my game. I am able to present myself to my audience and my potential clients — in a way that makes me feel professional.  Because my goal is to be the person who comes to mind when you think of a publishing and book marketing expert. Now, I like to think you’d accept me as a professional, respected author coach, best selling author and publisher if I showed up with bedhead and pajama pants with little pictures of dogs wearing Santa hats…but I don’t want to take the chance.

Your book is no different, friends! You didn’t spend all that time writing it, all that money hiring the best editor, all that creative energy to choose the perfect book cover just to have your marketing look like it’s got pajama pants on.

Moreover, having professional looking marketing that isn’t just attractive but that’s available at the drop of a hat is what can set your book apart. When you’re getting in front of a big name podcast, placing your first ad in a newsletter or amping up your social media game before your book launch, you need graphics that represents the best “you” and the very best of your book.

Graphics can help you create your brand, ensuring potential readers can take one glance and know something great about your book. Our WPS Instagram strategist, Raewyn Sangari agrees: “When marketing your book on social media it is vital to have imagery consistent with your book’s cover and theme. This builds recognition for you as an author and for your upcoming book! Don’t miss an opportunity to build your brand.”

Want to get some GREAT tips on eye-catching graphics to make your book marketing efforts stand above the rest?

Yes, you do! (Trust me, you do!) I’m so excited to welcome Kathleen Sweeney from Book Brush to talk to you all on THURSDAY, August 20, at 1pm EDT. This FREE demo – and yes, we will be sending out a recording if you can’t make it, so no worries! Kathleen is going to really dig into why this part of marketing matters so much. Together we’ll check out how Book Brush makes it easy to create eye-catching graphics for social media, PLUS we’ll see the video effects that are possible. Kathleen will even show us how we could save even MORE money by designing our own book covers using her company’s tool. It really is a fantastic software platform that allows authors to present professional, dynamic marketing worthy of their book. There truly is something for every writer’s toolbox!

Join me for this free live demo by getting registered right here – let’s beautify our books together! No more pajama pants – at least not for our books!


 

Join us for a totally free demo of Book Brush, a software platform that will help you create beautiful, useful marketing graphics for your book, even if you’re a graphic design newbie! Kathleen will walk through the features and offer tips and tricks for becoming an expert user! Sign up to join us on Thursday, August 20, at 1pm EDT – a recording will be sent out when we’re done, but only those who register will receive it! Register here!

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Writing Tip: Word Gathering https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/writing-tip-word-gathering/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/writing-tip-word-gathering/#respond Fri, 10 Jul 2020 17:32:58 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=6981 word gathering

ColorJoy Stock, Christina Jones Photography

The Writer as Word Gatherer

A Guest Post by Renay Intisar Jihad

Teaching students how to write well involved sharing incremental and manageable micro-steps or risk seeing them sink into a vast bin of hopelessness while staring at a blank sheet of paper clutching a sweaty pencil. I had to trick them into thinking writing was fun and easy. The writing process began with a fun and engaging activity – gathering words. Now retired, and a published author, this pre-write method is still a useful tool.

Every piece of writing inhabits a linguistic atmosphere. Knowing the word environment or content-area words associated with a subject keeps me focused on the big idea. Subject-matter triggers help me decide what to include or exclude in the final product. The quality and quantity of my word bank dictates its usefulness. An excellent word environment naturally produces parameters in which to write, edit, and revise a poem, story, or news article. For me, the word bank supports a formidable liaison between content and delivery.

GATHERING WORDS

To prepare for writing Mini Solja Stands on the Shoulders of Giants, I read, skimmed, and scanned black history books to gather words and terms from each decade dating back to 1619. Documentaries, speakers, primary source documents, and museums added to what I already knew about the subject. It was essential to include famous and noteworthy black Americans of distinction. My list of people, places, things, dates, times, and colloquial expressions influenced the outline. Taking stock of the manuscript’s goal through creating a word bank supplied a self-assessment: What did I know, want to know, and learned? What did this subject look like, feel like, sound like, smell like, and taste like? I compared this activity to setting the stage for a play, fertilizing a garden, eating an appetizer before dinner, or warming up before a yoga class. See it this way:

You are creating a reservoir of ideas from an ocean of suggestions related to your subject, theme, title, content-area, or focus. 

THE IMPACT OF WORD GATHERING

Because Mini Solja Stands on the Shoulders of Giants was a poetry book with informational and literary elements, the word environment that I created during this pre-write process came in handy when collaborating with my editor. Every printed word dictated a promise to deliver a message of hope, remembrance, and homage to book lovers reading on multiple grade levels. Achieving suitable readability was an ambitious task. Bottom line, were the words generated from my word bank during the pre-write process dynamic, specific, timely, useful, effective, and historically relevant enough to convey the message I would later generate during the writing process? In this sense, the list was not static. It ebbed and flowed as new information became critical to the final product. I organized my words, knowing that the economy of words and ideas was crucial to the quality of the final product. I often swapped, threw out, re-purposed, recycled, or retired certain words depending on how my project progressed.

In short, spending time creating a word bank saved me time, supplied a world of ideas and possibilities from which to draw on, and served in helping to refine my focus.

 

word gatheringRemember Yesterday’s Giants Cherish Today’s Giants Honor the Giant Within You.  A teenage boy named Mini T. Solja learns an important lesson about his rich heritage from his grandfather. MINI SOLJA STANDS ON THE SHOULDERS OF GIANTS is a lyrical coming-of-age conversation. This poetic snapshot highlights the stellar history of Black Americans and pays homage to our ancestral struggle and triumphs. Enjoy this timely, engaging, and enlightening book. Additional resources include a list of famous Black Americans and a directory of Black museums.

 

 

 

Renay Intisar Jihad was born in New Haven, Connecticut, where exposure to the arts was as natural as breathing. Serving as a literacy coach for eight, of the thirty years in teaching allowed her to support new teachers, write curriculum, and share resources. Scarves and Bandanas and The Day Josef Found His Pride were short-run publications tailored to the needs and interests of her students. Renay is the recipient of the Global Educator of the Year and a Teaching Tolerance Award. After she earned her National Board Certification, the National Alliance of Black School Educators (NABSE) recognized her as one of twenty NBCTs at that time. A Fulbright-Hays scholarship enabled her to travel to Kenya and Tanzania. Other education-related travel opportunities to China, Egypt, Morocco, the Caribbean, and Thailand helped enhance her teaching and writing curriculum. A Michael Jordan Fundamentals grant enabled Mrs. Jihad to produce a book of children’s poems entitled The Many Faces of Poetry. Her sixth-grade students authored original poems, art, and short stories inspired by personal experiences. In the Many Faces of Love, Jihad penned a poem for each of her one-hundred and ten students to honor their unique gifts. Now she contributes to the AF-Am POV (African American Point of View) and the Muslim Journal. Learn more at https://www.renayspace.com/

 

 

 

 

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5 Principles of Clarity in Writing https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/5-principles-of-clarity-in-writing/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/5-principles-of-clarity-in-writing/#comments Thu, 28 May 2020 22:34:23 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=6904 We had another great webinar this week, this time with AJ Ogilvie, of ProWritingAid. AJ and Alexa talked about creating clarity in writing and making your writing reader-centric. You can watch the replay at https://youtu.be/Y0AIq123oRU.  Be sure to read to the bottom of this post to grab the time-sensitive discount from ProWritingAid, especially for WIP readers!

AJ Ogilvie is a professor of business communication at the University of Southern California. He has taught business communication, consulting, writing, and literature courses for over ten years, and has published research on the theories of teaching, learning and communication.

 

In this webinar you will learn:

  • How to craft sentences that produce clarity for readers
  • How to effectively organize information for readers
  • How to create writing that provides a fluid and low-effort reading experience for your audience
  • How to use ProWritingAid towards the goal of clarity in your writing

 

Consider Your WHY

What are you writing? Your genre will determine your goals and answer the WHY of your writing. If you are writing fiction and creative non-fiction, your motivation is to get your readers to FEEL something. If you are writing for business, your motivation is to persuade and inspire action of some sort.

Defining Clarity

AJ described two kinds of clarity:

  • Global
  • Local

Global clarity is the overall organization of your writing that keeps the reader on a clear path from the beginning to the end.

Local clarity is your word choice, composition, and the ability for the reader to keep pace with you as the author.

These two types of clarity work with each other to make up a coherent and easy experience for the reader.

The Five Principles of Clarity

  1. Your subjects and verbs are the big actors and actions of the text.
  2. On a sentence level, the subject and verb go at the beginning of the sentence.
  3. Keep your subject and verb close together.
  4. Keep your text reader-centric by keeping your subjects to a minimum.
  5. Sentences should be linked logically.

In the video, AJ dives deeper into these five principles of clarity in writing. This is a true masterclass in refining your writing at the sentence and word level, a skill that many writers struggle with during the editing process. He also does a live demo of how this process looks in ProWritingAid, so be sure to head over to our webinars page to view the replay.

 

ProWritingAid is offering a 50% discount off a ProWritingAid license. Just go to http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/pwa, navigate to the pricing tab and use code WPS2050. Be sure to enter the code into the coupon code box beneath the pricing tables to update the pricing shown. This coupon code is valid for 48 hours, so jump on it now.

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How to Use Book Clubs to Market Your Book https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/how-to-use-book-clubs-to-market-your-book/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/how-to-use-book-clubs-to-market-your-book/#respond Wed, 27 May 2020 14:36:39 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=6897 This week, author Kasie Whitener joined Alexa for a webinar on marketing with book clubs. If you missed the live webinar, you can watch the replay on our Webinars page.

Dr. Kasie Whitener is a writer, researcher, analyst, educator, and promoter of all things Gen X. She has more than 15 years of experience in business process documentation, re-engineering, and analysis. Kasie specializes in adult learning with experience in onboarding, corporate acquisitions, and software training. As President of Clemson Road Creative, Kasie conducts organizational research, coaches process redesign, and conducts strategic planning and learning initiatives. She earned an undergraduate degree at Clemson University, a master’s at Winthrop University, and her doctorate in Organizational Management at Capella University where she specialized in global leadership. When away from work, Kasie can be found in the pool as a US Masters Swimmer, cheering wildly for her beloved Clemson Tigers and Washington Redskins, beating the pavement as a half-marathoner, or entangled in the fictional worlds she creates where the vampires not only hunt, they also time travel.

 

In this webinar you will learn:

  • How to get into a book club
  • How to get KICKED out of a book club
  • How to sell your books through a book club
  • Tips for virtual book clubs

 

Finding Book Clubs

Kasie was invited by The Pat Conroy Literary Center to deliver her workshop, How To Get Kicked Out Of a Book Club, where she met other book club organizers, and began talking to them about her book, After December. Kasie advises authors to attend similar events, and share your book with book club organizers. Look up literary events in your area, and search the program to see if there will be sessions on book clubs, then attend those sessions!  Don’t be shy about telling people about your book, and ask questions to learn more about how the book club is organized.These questions will help you determine whether your book is a good fit for the book club.

Some questions you should ask are:

  1. What kind of books does this book club read?
  2. How far in advance do they choose their books?
  3. How are the books selected?

Many membership organizations have book clubs, which is a great market to tap. For example, Alexa’s sorority has a book club, and issues a month by month list of titles for local chapters to read. And don’t overlook corporations. Woman on Top, by WPS client Angela Hosking, was recently picked up by Wells Fargo’s employee book club.

Helping Book Clubs Find You

One of the key takeaways from this webinar is making sure people know who you are, and where to find you. This doesn’t require a massive marketing campaign, but simply SHOWING UP. In other words, networking will get you far. Introduce yourself to book club organizers, and make sure you are easy to find. Your website should have everything a book club organizer needs to learn more about your book, and why it would be a good fit for their book club. Kasie often makes herself available to attend the book club meeting, and will give a presentation, so be sure to highlight this option if you are willing to do the same. Readers love the opportunity to chat with authors! Your website can also include snippets of the book, and videos that bring the reader behind the scenes. In the case of After December, Kasie visited the setting of her book, in Virginia, and made a video showing the different real-life locations where the story takes place.

Using Book Clubs To Make Your Next Book Better

Kasie points out that attending the book club allows her to gather reader feedback. She advises authors to take in the feedback, and not get upset by it, since the book has already been published and there’s nothing you can do about it. Responding  negatively to book club feedback is a  Instead, use this information to make your next book better! In the case of After December, Kasie is planning a follow-up book so the feedback from book club members was especially useful. Her forthcoming book, Before Pittsburgh, was largely shaped by reader feedback, according to Kasie.  Pay attention to what book club members liked and didn’t like about your book, and what questions they have about the characters.

 

Head over to our webinars page to view the replay, and register for our upcoming webinars.

 

 

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A Simple Tool for Authors To Stand Out https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/text-marketing/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/text-marketing/#respond Mon, 25 May 2020 12:00:30 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=6881

text marketing

How Authors Can Use Text Marketing

A Guest Post by Megan Starbuck

Do you ever feel like you’re a smidge behind the trends as a writer, and you pay for it in a big way? Like if you’d started a blog sooner, it would have done better? Now it seems like there are too many blogs out there, and not enough people reading them. Maybe by the time you noticed everyone starting a podcast, you felt it had become too saturated as well? Or you finally try TikTok, thinking it will be your big break…only to gain a whopping 9 followers after 3 months?

 

I’m not saying you should give up on those platforms, but I wanted to share something that might give you an edge that keeps you going on those days you feel so far behind everyone else.

 

You probably know several authors with thousands of email subscribers or even thousands of followers on social media. How many do you know who have thousands of subscribers to a text list? I don’t even know many with hundreds on their list. Maybe they have them and just aren’t sharing the numbers, or maybe they aren’t bothering because they don’t feel the need for a text list.

 

But as I’ve seen other businesses and even churches sending mass texts, I knew it was something I wanted to join. The problem was that I assumed it was expensive and a hassle. I’ve already got tons of stuff going for my blog, email list, and social media. Adding one more thing seemed overwhelming. Yet I couldn’t shake the feeling that this was the area where I could  stand out.

 

Still, I didn’t even know it was called text marketing and had no idea what words to even type in Google.

 

Then I signed up for a webinar with Tony Robbins and started receiving texts about it. When I opted out of the texts, it sent me a confirmation that included a link to the text marketing service used. I started my free account immediately and haven’t looked back!

 

Here’s why this tool is so important for authors:

  1. Enough businesses use it that the technology is familiar and well done but not yet saturated. You and your readers are probably on some mass text list, whether from a church or a business providing alerts of discounts. But they aren’t so prevalent that they get lost in the chaos (as many emails do).
  2. It’s similar to emails but with a higher open rate. Marketers always mention that we need an email list in addition to social media because we don’t have control over social. But email is our turf. Plus, people may take a sabbatical from social but not so much from email. The same is true for texts. And texts have an open rate of something like 98%! The highest open rate my weekly emails have gotten in the past 3 months is 37% whereas something around 20% is average for email open rates. So maybe you gain only 23 subscribers in your first couple of months, but you’d have about the same amount of people opening that text as you would have opening an email sent to 100 email subscribers. As with email, you can create different segments for different groups of text subscribers. Much of the other lingo and capabilities are similar. They can work well together. Maybe someone unsubscribes from your email list but continues receiving texts.
  3. It doesn’t have to be another overwhelming task to add to your to-do list. Because texts are so short, they are much faster to create. In fact, I usually schedule 4 or 5 at once which takes 45 minutes tops, whereas I only get 1 or 2 emails typed up per week and can take about an hour each. My texts are a way to connect with my readers regularly without putting in tons of time, and they don’t have to put in tons of time to read it. Learning how to use this tool before other authors will establish you as an authority they turn to once they realize the benefits. You will have answers to their questions and be able to help them because you have the data and experience to do so. You have people you’ve learned from about how to start and grow an email list or social media platform. You will be that voice for others if you learn early on how to use text marketing well.
  4. You can easily promote them in a paperback or at a speaking event. While it’s easy to link to an email list in an ebook, people may not be as likely to type in your web address. Plus, they might get distracted as they do. But with a text list, you can type “Text CLUTTER to 31996” or whatever Textword you choose that’s available (I just used mine as an example), and your readers can simply text that word to be subscribed to receive texts from you. I think that piques curiosity as well because it’s something not many authors are doing yet. It’s also great for speaking events because maybe they don’t have time to wait in line to submit their email address to you, but they will send a quick text. Texts are a great way to build trust and be able to conveniently tell your readers about future books.
  5. People don’t often have multiple cell phone numbers. Yes, they may get a new number, but people often tell me they have multiple email addresses and use one of them to sign up for stuff so that it isn’t going into their primary email. People don’t do that with their phones. You’re usually getting their one and only number that they check nearly every day even if they have a separate work phone.

 

Now you know why you should give this a try, but I’m also going to show you how to set it up well.

  • Pay attention to text marketing that you love and that you don’t enjoy. I do this with email, too. I’ve opted out of a few text lists because it felt like spam. Buy these, join that, remember this. They didn’t talk to me like a friend. I was just a way for them to get their message to one more person. Then I signed up for Heather Parady’s texts. She sent me a short, encouraging message each Monday. There wasn’t a link in every text. So when I started my texts, I knew I wanted to send a quote about simplifying your life each week. People love being inspired. And they love getting texts that don’t require anything of them!

 

  • Connect with readers regularly. Don’t just send a text when your book is released. Provide value week after week. Give them a reason to sign up. I like how detailed this fiction author is about text marketing, but she mentions that she already had 100,000 subscribers. So it doesn’t seem like she really needed the text marketing. She talks about how expensive her texting service was and how hard it was to get subscribers until she made a good offer. I’ll address that below since I use a different provider and offer, but she only sent 4 texts that year. I send 4 a month. I used to think less was more  for my email list, esp since my audience doesn’t like clutter. I found that it actually works far better when I send one email a week that they look forward to and therefore isn’t clutter. It makes them feel like they know me, so they don’t mind when I ask for a favor every once in a while. That’s why I based my texts on the same system.

 

  • Make them want to subscribe. If you don’t think your texts are awesome, you won’t be as excited about promoting them. But when you’re providing value and building something amazing, you’re motivated to continue sharing it and encouraging others to join. I give away the audio version of my book, Packrat to Clutter-Free. It’s relevant to the topic of the texts, and it’s something they can’t even buy at this time. When you send a good text, you can use that content to show others how awesome it is to receive your texts. I promote my texts every week at the bottom of my email by sharing the quote I sent in my text that week. This repurposes my content and allows those outside the US to see the quotes since they can’t sign up for the texts. I also promote my Tuesday Texts on Instagram once a week. I don’t get tons of new subscribers but a couple here and there really adds up when you know they are virtually guaranteed to actually read your message.

 

  • Make it easy to subscribe. Online, I share this link rather than just saying “Text Writing to 31996” because it’s easier to click the link than memorize what number to text it to if they’re on their phone. If they’re on a computer, their phone might be in the other room. Plus, it’s pretty, and it gives me their name, too. At conferences, attendees may have their phone off. So it’s a good idea to have your Textword and number on a bookmark or sticker they can take with them.

 

This is the easy, reliable, affordable system I use. Once I found them, I searched other text marketing providers to compare. It started making me nervous when I saw so many big name companies working with them. I thought it would be too expensive. While the 50 free texts don’t get you very far because you could only send one text to 50 people or two texts to 25 people, the $29 plan gives you 500 texts a month, which rollover. They have simple video tutorials like this one to help you set up a page for people to subscribe. They always respond to my emails when I have a question about how to do something.

If you’re just starting out and don’t have a budget to work with, keep it in mind until you have an income you can draw from to make the payments.

But if this is something you see the value of investing in, definitely check it out here and try the free version to see if you like it. You can use this code, STR1168,  like I did for a discount off the first month of a paid plan.

It may be a slow start, but I still gain 1-3 new subscribers each time I share my text list with people. That may not sound like a lot, but I count each phone number as 4 people on my email list since so many of them don’t actually read my emails. Starting small helps you get the hang of it and see if it’s something you want to continue investing in. I’ve found that my text subscribers really enjoy it, so it’s worth it to me.

I hope you find that learning this fairly new technology early is something you thank yourself for later!

 

M. C. Starbuck is the author of Packrat to Clutter-Free and writes about making room for what matters most at Living Tiny, Dreaming Big. Follow Megan on Instagram and Facebook

 

 

 

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When Should I Get an Editor For My Book? https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/when-should-i-get-an-editor-for-my-book/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/when-should-i-get-an-editor-for-my-book/#respond Thu, 21 May 2020 20:12:02 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=6869 We had a great webinar on  with JoEllen Nordström of FirstEditing, on the right time to find an editor. If you missed the live webinar, you can watch the replay on our Webinars page.

In this webinar you will learn:

  • WHO you can you trust for editing
  • WHAT determines your editing prices
  • WHEN should you approach an editor for services
  • WHERE can you find editing help (for free!)
  • WHY professional editing is necessary (and when it is not)
  • HOW editing helps you reach your goals

 Ten steps to successful editing, according to JoEllen:

  1. Evaluating what your manuscript needs
  2. Getting the best price for qualified editors
  3. Determine where you are in your editing journey
  4. Knowing who to trust with editing
  5. What factors play into the cost of editing
  6. When should you approach an editor?
  7. What kind of services do you need?
  8. Getting help with editing
  9. Getting a professional to help you
  10. How does editing help reach your goals?

JoEllen walked us through these ten steps, and answered some great questions from attendees, so be sure to watch the replay!

How Much Does Editing Cost?

The cost of editing is probably the most frequently asked question from authors. The answer is: it depends. In the webinar, JoEllen goes over the different types of editors and what factors play into the cost of editing. One tip for lowering the cost of editing is to first do a self-edit, with a tool like ProWritingAid. The less work an editor has to do, the lower the cost.

Another strategy for lowering the cost of editing is to use beta readers. Beta readers are not a replacement for editors, but they can be helpful is pointing out egregious errors such as plot holes and repetition. Learn more about beta readers in this WPS blog post.

To get a better understanding of how editors set their prices, refer to this Reedsy article. 

How do I find the right editor for ME?

Another frequently asked question is, how do I find the right editor? The author-editor relationship is more personal than you’d think. JoEllen recommends shopping around to find the editor that will serve your book the best. One tip she shared for finding the right editor is to think about who your favorite writers are? Whose style would you like to emulate? Ask a potential editor if they are familiar with the work of that author.

You’ll also want to take your genre into consideration. Every genre has it’s own conventions, and you’ll want an editor that is familiar with those conventions. Don’t hire an academic editor for your romance novel, for example.

More importantly, you’ll need to determine what stage of editing you are in, which JoEllen covers in the webinar. Different editors fill different needs. A developmental edit is much different from a copy edit, both in purpose and in cost.

Learn more about FirstEditing at firstediting.com, and use coupon code WIP19 to get 19% off services, until May 31st, 2020.

Head over to our webinars page to view the replay, and register for our upcoming webinars.

 

 

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Writing Through Stressful and Anxious Times https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/writing-through-stressful-and-anxious-times/ https://womeninpublishingsummit.com/writing-through-stressful-and-anxious-times/#comments Sun, 19 Apr 2020 14:54:39 +0000 http://womeninpublishingsummit.com/?p=6787 Stress Can Cause Our Creativity to Decline

The last few weeks have been a pretty wild ride. In a time when everyone’s feeling uncertain, it can be hard to sit down and write.

We’re entering another week of the “new normal,” and it’s feeling anything but. I hope you have found some peace and space for yourself during these wild times. I have been enjoying hearing about all the ways this crisis has sparked the imagination of my clients, driving them to finally tell a story that’s sat too long in their hearts or building a new world out of the strangeness of this one.

How Grief and Stress Impact Us

My own author journey was thanks to being thrown into a strange world I’d never imagined – losing a child and having her sister clinging to life in the hospital was never something I’d thought I’d experience until it happened. Writing became my way out of the darkest moments of grief, pain and confusion in the time that came after. I’ve been thinking about that period of my life a lot lately – I’d never imagined any world like this, either. This time reminds me a lot of that time – being stuck in a hospital bed, not allowed to go outside, not knowing HOW LONG this would last or what the outcome would be.

I am sitting with grief and anxiety once again. I bet you have too. Whether you realize it or not, we’re all grieving right now. Grieving what could have been, should have been. Grieving the loss of jobs or freedom or even a trip you’d planned for – for months. And when we grieve, it’s hard to focus and make progress. I decided it’s time to dust off some of my old coping skills and share them with all of you.

Coping Skills for Reducing Stress, Anxiety, and Increasing Productivity

If this is a topic you feel you need some help with as well, or just want some general coping skills for anxiety, I encourage you to watch the replay of a webinar I did recently on this very topic.

Watch here!

 

You can also grab a free copy of Ditch the Fear and Just Write It! now! I talk a LOT about mindset and moving past our fears.

We’d love to hear from you if you have other tips for things that are helping you cope through this time.

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