Author Solutions, authors, book marketing, book selling, helpful hints, Indie book publishing, Publishing, self publishing

5 Essential Elements of Social Media to Market Your Book Successfully

Social media plays such a key role for authors today who want to find and connect with an audience for their book. For many, the dizzying world of blogs and tweets and posts leaves them confused and questioning what should they do.

Now there is a helpful book that can simplify and clarify the key elements needed for a social media campaign. Chris Bass, who is the Director of Author Marketing Services at Author Solutions, has worked with hundreds of authors on their social media campaigns. From that experience, he has identified five essential elements every author needs to be aware of as they use social media to market their book.  Here’s excerpt from the book that explains in more detail what was the inspiration for the book and how it might help you.

I have noticed that a lot of authors struggle to make the most of social media. Some authors post a single status update to Facebook saying that their books have been published and leave it at that. Some understand the importance of social media but are overwhelmed by the huge number of options available and don’t know where to begin. Some have never used social media before and aren’t even sure what the term means. Whether you’re a longtime blogger and user of social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter or are just getting started, this book will teach you the five things you should know about social media to help you get the word out about your book.
You can download the book on a Kindle, Kobo, Sony e-reader or iPad for just 99 cents at Booktango  or from all the major  ebook distributors.
Author Solutions, authors, Editing, helpful hints, Indie book publishing, self publishing, writing

How using a “commonplace” book can make you a better writer.

In the weekend edition of the Wall Street Journal, author, Danny Heitman, wrote a helpful article titled. A Personal Trove of Prose.  Heitman is a columnist for the Baton Rouge Advocate, is the author of “A Summer of Birds: John James Audubon at Oakley House.  

In this piece, Heitman suggests there is great value for all writers having a “commonplace” book.  According to Heitman,  a commonplace book is a small journal for recording favorite passages gleaned from personal reading. The idea is that these snippets, transcribed for posterity, might spark some insights for one’s own writing.

Commonplace books answered a practical need in days of old, when writing down a cherished line from a work of prose or poetry was perhaps the easiest way to remember it. The commonplace book derived its name from the ideal of a “common place” where useful ideas or arguments might be gathered.

Technology has changed where this might take place.  Now in place of a physical book, you may capture passages on a laptop or a tablet, but the principle is the same. If you want to be a great writer and improve your craft, read great writers and use them for inspiration. Also, examine closely what is it that captivates you about a particular text. Is it the use of specific words or the way something is described?  Or is it the sentence or paragraph structure that held your attention?

The point is a commonplace book allows you to go-to-school on how to write well, without ever attending a class. Heitman cites a particular writer and text that he wrote in his commonplace book and how it inspired him.

Technology may change where you keep your commonplace book, but it seems most great authors have one.

Some years ago, I fell under the spell of this passage from “Some Notes on River Country,” Eudora Welty’s travelogue about the Natchez Trace: “A place that ever was lived in is like a fire that never goes out. It flares up, it smolders for a time, it is fanned or smothered by circumstance, but its being is intact, forever fluttering within it, the result of some original ignition. Sometimes it gives out glory, sometimes its little light must be sought out to be seen, small and tender as a candle flame, but as certain.”

I plucked the passage from Welty’s essay and placed it in my commonplace book, where it quietly haunted me on repeated readings, forcing me to think about how the history of a place continues to resonate through time. Welty’s words eventually became the prologue for a small book I wrote about a particular stretch of woods where the bird artist John James Audubon spent an eventful summer of his career.

For years, I have followed this practice, but until I read this article, I did not have a name for it. Do you have a commonplace book? If not, I would encourage you to start one.  If you do, perhaps you could share how you have used it by leaving a comment on this blog post.

Author Solutions, authors, book marketing, book selling, book signings, Ebooks, Kindle, Publishing, self publishing

Free e-books. Meet the authors. Online booksigning event. Tuesday, October 9th.

Readers and authors both love book signings.  Readers get free books and get to meet the authors who wrote the books. Authors get to connect with potential readers and put faces and voices to those who are interested in their writing.

But how do you do a book signing with authors from all over the countryi who have an e-book . The answer is the Behind the Story online book signing event. It is free to register and attend and gives readers a chance to meet four different authors via a go-to-webinar environment.  During the 45 to 60 minutes allotted for the event, you will learn:

  • what inspired the authors to write their books
  • what they hope readers will gain by reading the books
  • advice they have for  aspiring authors.

You will also get a chance to ask the authors questions via a chat window through a moderator. Best of all,  after the event, you’ll get an email with four free Bookstubs which allow you to download a free e-book version of each of the books to a Kindle or iPad.

The next online book signing is this Tuesday, October 9th at 5:00 pm EST and you can register here The authors and books are very diverse, but even if you are only interested in one of the titles, I think you will enjoy the experience. Also, feel free to share this opportunity with friends who you think might be interested in any of these titles.

The Medicine Wheel for Step Parents
By Mary Jane Grange, R.N.
With The Medicine Wheel for Step Parents, the author hopes to give some understanding and relief to blended families. Step families have common threads of dysfunction due to issues caused by the power structure changing in a home after a divorce or death in a family. Step parents and step children feel that they must protect their territory, ego, and family with secrets, isolation, intimidation, manipulation, and stonewalling behavior. This book helps you analyze and carry the opposition to your efforts for your blended family.
Vibrational Harmony
By Beverly Nadler
This amazing book leads you out of the old paradigm of The Material Model that makes change so difficult, into the revolutionary new paradigm for the 21st century. VIBRATIONAL HARMONY clarifies the little-understood relationship between what you want, the Universal Laws, your mind, your subconscious programming, and what you actually get. Discover tools and techniques, plus step-by-step processes to release your negative beliefs, and “reprogram” yourself to create and attract more success, health, happiness, peace of mind…whatever YOU want!
Canadian Charter Rights and Freedoms
By Joseph W. Jacob B.A., M.P.A.
Canada currently has the most comprehensive charter of rights and freedoms in the world, and it overrides all other Canadian laws. With this charter, truthful, proven and demonstrable harm must occur before punishment may be legally imposed. This is similar to the charter’s guaranteed right of liberty. A law that has the potential of convicting a person who has not really done anything wrong offends the principles of fundamental justice.
Medical Uses of Marijuana
By Joseph W. Jacob B.A., M.P.A.
Throughout history, more than 150 successful medical uses of marijuana plants have been identified, effectively tested, publicly used, and reliably trusted. In Medical Uses of Marijuana, author Joseph W. Jacob provides an extensive chronological history of marijuana and its medical uses throughout the world in the last 10,000 years. Medical Uses of Marijuana seeks to provide the truth about the loss of the legal use of this beneficial plant.
Author Solutions, authors, book marketing, Indie book publishing, self publishing, writing

The War That Came Home–a self published book that is helping thousands of families deal with the aftermath of war.

One of the things I discovered years ago  is that one of the strongest motivations for publishing a book is because the author believes he or she has something to say that can help others. In most cases, that “something” has been learned from experience. One recent example is the book The War That Came Home written by Andrea Carlile and published by AuthorHouse.

In this very personal account, Andrea shares the struggle she and her husband went through when he returned from the war in Iraq.  The website provides this summary of the book:

The War That Came Home is one spouse’s journey to face the lingering effects of war. She faces many obstacles as the battles escalate throughout this harrowing account, told through her own eyes. She walks an uncertain future, while visiting a colorful past. Through her tale, she represents the battered woman, spouse of the veteran, and wife and mother in marriage. Each is brought to life vividly as she engages in this war that enters her home. Through her discovery, she finds her Heavenly Father and hope to face her own hell. Her story is an example to any who need inspiration to face their own personal battles with the wars faced in life: the battered, the broken, the veteran, and the non-veteran. Take the journey and discover your own feelings of hope and strength.

While this book is a memoir of sorts, it calls attention to PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) which is challenging many families and marriages as our brave men and women return from war.  In fact, the Indianapolis Star recently ran a front page story about this book and the Carliles with the hope that their story will give others hope in the midst of the struggle.

Now I have not read the book, but I wanted to call  attention to the fact that a book like this can help many people and self publishing makes that possible.  I hope if you have overcome an obstacle or struggle, you too will take the time to share your story.  As I say to aspiring authors all the time: Publishing a book isn’t just about book sales, it is an opportunity to impact other people with your writing. The War That Came Home is a great example of that.