authors, book marketing, book selling, Ebooks, Indie book publishing, Publishing, self publishing, writing

Free webinar: 7 Secrets of Successful Self Published Authors

Register for the free webinar at the Author Learning Center

On Wednesday, June 6 at 2:30 pm EST, the Author Learning Center is offering a free webinar, 7 Secrets of Successful Self Published Authors. This is a webinar I have presented previously on the Author Learning Center and for Writers Digest. It is the most popular free webinar ever presented on Writer’s Digest in terms of number of people who registered and number who attended.

The material I present is based on my own experience as an author and from the conversations I have had with hundreds of authors. It is intended to help authors better understand their options in today’s publishing world and what they need to do if they are going to succeed if they self publish.  There is also a time for you to ask questions, which I greatly enjoy. The webinar is free so register as soon as you can and feel free to tell others about it.

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authors, book marketing, book selling, Ebooks, helpful hints, Indie book publishing, Publishing, self publishing

The 7 key elements of a great book cover

This iUniverse fiction book has an interesting title and strong cover image.

Do first impressions matter? Of course, they do. For your book, your cover will make the first impression on readers. It is your three-second introduction to the reading public. When readers are browsing the bookstore shelf or the internet,  your book cover needs to grab their attention, but also make a promise as to what readers will find on the pages inside.  So here are seven elements of cover design you should  give thought and attention to as you get ready to publish.

  1. Your title. Place yourself in the reader’s shoes when making your final decision for your book’s title. Will your title make sense to the reader? Is it easy to remember? When choosing your title make sure it conveys your message and fits the design you have in mind. As a writer, try not to get too caught up in creating a clever title, when a straightforward title will do. Creativity can sometimes interfere with clarity.
  2. The subtitle. If needed, elaborate on your book’s subject with a subtitle. A good subtitle provides additional information through a descriptive line which compliments your title. Include any searchable keywords that are not in your title  in your subtitle if appropriate.
  3. Cover design and layout. Your title should be legible at a glance and you should avoid small or faint text as well as busy backgrounds. Select a font or two for your text, staying away from decorative fonts that are hard to read. Choose a strong image that helps people remember your book and integrates with your title. A single image usually impacts more than multiple images. Remember your image should not overwhelm your title, so beware of overpowering your words with pictures. Above all, make sure all text is easy to read.
  4. Back cover or panel copy. This should be a short summary of your book that gives readers a preview or teaser for what to expect when they read it. It should not be about why your wrote the book or a table of contents. It should work like an ad to draw in potential readers.
  5. Endorsements and reviews. Endorsements and reviews help add to the credibility of your book. So if you have endorsements from influential people or reviews, think about including them on your back cover or jacket flap if you have a hard cover edition. If you have an endorsement from a well-known personality you may want to consider putting a mention on your front cover.
  6. The spine. Make it simple, easy to read, and viewable sideways. In most cases, you do not want to include your subtitle due to space limitations.
  7. Your author bio. Briefly state who you are and your most recent accomplishments. Try to keep your author description around three sentences and establish your credentials if you are writing a non-fiction book and your personality if you are writing a fiction book. Readers love to know things about the author. It helps them connect with the book in a different way. Use your author bio to help readers feel like they know something about you.

You have likely spent months and maybe even years working on your manuscript. Make sure you take the time to give your cover the attention it deserves. After all it is the first impression most readers will have of your book.


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authors, book marketing, book selling, helpful hints, Indie book publishing, Publishing, self publishing, Thomas Nelson, writing

5 keys to building your platform from the new book by Michael Hyatt.

Mike Hyatt, chairman of Thomas Nelson publishers,  has been an innovator in the publishing industry his whole career.  He was one of the first CEOs to utilize the power of social media for his company, himself and authors.  From his experience, he has written an amazingly helpful book on how to build your platform.  In the past eight years, he has generated some impressive numbers:

  • 300,000+ unique monthly visitors
  • 123,000+ Twitter followers
  • 92,000+ monthly podcast listeners
  • 70,000+ newsletter subscribers
  • 17,000+ Facebook fans

So his advice is not theory. It is lessons learned from his experience and they are lessons every author can apply. Here’s what Mike  says about this book on his blog .

Listen, in the past eight years, I’ve experienced every setback, mistake, and headache you can imagine while building my own platform. But I’ve also managed to generate:

The point of those numbers is not to brag. The point is to illustrate that I know what works (and what you should avoid). I carefully documented everything I learned in building my platform—successes AND failures.

Platform consists of five sections and sixty, short chapters full of practical steps, real-world examples, and helpful resources. It is not armchair theory. It is not idle speculation. It is full of “news you can use” to help you build your own platform.

I highly recommend it.

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