I am so proud of my author! She'll call herself "technically challenged", but I believe it is the self-doubt and "perfect" worry that gets the better of her. In fact I know that's the only thing holding her back. She created this video below. It's simply an excerpt of her first book with images I provided her.
All she did was play with Windows Movie Maker. That's all. Simple. Beautiful. Easy. Now we have something to show off! Which is exactly what I'm doing!
ACTION ITEM: If you don't have a You tube Book Trailer, try making one in windows Movie Maker. If you have a mac, you know you want another excuse to use those editing features! Go for it!
Each one of your fans is a unicorn.
"The only asset you can build on the Internet is the connection to people." - Seth Godin
He is so right. Without the internet, how could I reach so many people? Newspapers. Snail mail. Phones.
Things become less and more personal without the internet. Less because you can't reach that many people in a private setting immediately. More because you have to write to each individual one at a time or a small group at a time.
Action Item: Use the power of Facebook or email to write to one fan and thank them for following you. Tell them you appreciate their support.
So, do you see anything wrong with this cover? Yes, yes, you can pick on the art all you like. I think it's beautiful. I'm in love with it. But did you notice maybe something a little off? Like, I don't know, the author's name perhaps?
I'm all for calling my author Pa-tricka. It has "trick" in there and that was my favorite $60 I ever spent, but enough about sex.
If the name were on purpose that would be great! But it's not. We didn't catch it until my author was asked about it.
I looked at it. My author approved it. I showed it to the world and nobody said anything.
It gets posted on a site where it gets a lot of exposure and new eyes and voila! Mistake exposed! But I'd rather make mistakes. I'm going to laugh at this--oh hell, I'm laughing now. It will be fixed and I'm glad it's not on Amazon *yet* and I don't have to upload it to a thousand different websites.
And, in case you didn't know...Hers To Command will be available on Amazon June 4th, 2013. This is a great book and I'm proud to be a part of it!
You might think the Action Item might be to double check your work, but it's not. Every author, every book and sometimes even covers that got traditionally published and can't be fix in 24 hours, have mistakes. You will have them. They might even be embarrassing. But that's not the lesson. The point is to realize that mistakes will happen. That 18 editors going over your book will be circumvented by an avid amateur fan. That there is no way in heaven prayers or promises from hell can you make a book completely perfect.
Your Action Item is to live, breath, have courage to make mistakes and then correct them if you can.
The author, S.N.McKibben has an apology HERE ON HER WEBSITE for this particular piece of...literature.
Okay, it's really not that bad. It does contain blood and not so fresh blood. There's a blood-drinking demon, the book is M/F Erotica and we'll stop there.
Here's the lowdown:
Do all blood-suckers prefer to get their blood "fresh"? Or do some like it nasty...
Neush hadn't known she'd be demon bait when she slipped on her jeans this morning. Now, her own family is dragging her, kicking and screaming, to the marble wall and securely fastening her in true medieval sacrifice style. But instead of an animal, Neush knows the man who is demon possessed. She appeals to her friends’ human side for help. Zhiek now has a choice and a passion for blood to slake. But his idea of saving Neush is very...unconventional.
Click the picture for the link to buy it on Kindle.
Adult themes--M/F Erotica
I'm not working today. I'm remembering those who fought and died, fought and became maimed, fought and got forgotten.
I have a 91 year old grandpa, by proxy of my boyfriend, who served in WWI. He still talks about those times and every time I see him I look forward to his diatribes. He's one of those who fought and got forgotten--kinnda. But not really, because his family is there with him.
But there are others who aren't. To those I can only express a feeling of gratefulness and hope they feel it from beyond.
Image created by SNMcKibben
I believe Agents might become Author Advocates.
You know what a publisher does, more or less, but what is an author's advocate?
In a sentence...an author's advocate is someone who will help you reach publication and teach you how to publish yourself by instruction.
You are not alone with an Author's advocate, but you have the freedom of self-publishing. Yes, this is a service and it will cost you in royalties. But in two years time I will expect my authors to either do it themselves or make me do it because I'm convenient. Not because they feel they can't publisher their own work.
I want to know that they don't feel helpless in the game of publishing. In two years, I expect a timid writer to feel confident they can just do it.
Then the author will gain the royalties--all of it.
Someday, I want have a site where my authors upload their books and get a 90% or 95% royalty. I want to use social media and opt in email lists to drive traffic to the site. I want my authors to make the bank.
The site will only be about books and authors swag. Secretly, I want to one day make Amazon say -- oh crap! We have to compete with her! And then I'll probably be crushed or bought, but it's a dream.
Back to an author's advocate. So while I am publishing my author's work, the real goal is to give them the inside look as to how it's done. I'd rather an author say, I can do it, but I'd rather pay Stephanie because she treats me well and she's worth the value I get.
Traditionally published authors have something I don't. I can't make Amazon have a pre-order page of your book. I can't make Amazon DO anything like traditional publishers can. But I can have pre-orders on your site. I can drive traffic there instead of Amazon. I can build an empire with my authors and author advocacy will abound.
Because it's what feels right. It's what feels ethical. Agents will become Author Advocates. The damn publishing contract will be a page long and everyone will listen to the ethical side of business. Okay, I can dream. But not everyone realizes that a contract is only as good as the people who sign it but here at Troll River--we do.
Action Item: Tell me what you think Agents will become in the future. Tell me what you'd like in an Author Advocate.
Photo Credit: Rune T via Compfight cc
Scrivener promises that nothing you write down in it will ever be lost. I was guaranteed that there is no possible way that anything written in Scrivener could ever possibly be deleted, trashed, or gone forever. It's like the internet. Only Scrivener takes downloads directly from your head and into Scrivener. (Yes, dramatization, but don't laugh--I think he's working on it.)
So, I felt safe in knowing that my stories could ever be lost in any capacity.
That only works if you don't purposely delete the story.
You see, I thought that my recent shorts-off story was safe from ever being erased when I saw a "copy" of it in scrivener. To make long story short, if scrivener couldn't ever possibly let you lose anything, I found a way.
I looked in the backup.
I looked in scriveners back-up to the back-up.
And that back-ups back-up.
I looked in my dropbox.
I searched my whole computer.
Please make note: This was not a failing of scrivener. It was my author fail for not being paranoid.
In essence, I felt safe in knowing that scrivener had my back and it does--except against me. I have learned from an experience that could have been worse. Instead of 1/3 of a story lost it could have been all of it, or my whole database. It's not wrong to feel safe, it's not wrong to feel paranoid. I chalk this up to learning about the tools you use before losing something vital.
Get Dropbox or another backup system. If you already have one, make sure it saves everything.
I thought I'd tell you about copyright pages but this post from The LL Book Review is thorough!
If you're looking for everything in a copyright page, go here!
Need to know how to make the © symbol? Click the link above. She gives all the info on whatever machine you use. (PC is holding down the Alt key and type 0169 on your keypad on the right.)
Where does a copyright page go?
What info should a copyright page contain?
What NOT to put on the copyright page?
See that link! It tells you way more than I could!
Action Item: Look over your copyright page. Is it though? Do you want to add something? Check out the LL Book Review link and see if you've got everything you need.
Woe is me! I only have one book!
Down at the bottom of this post you can hear my thoughts in the MP3 file instead of reading them! I absolutely have to give props to Online-Convert.com for charging me nothing to convert my .ga file to an .mp3 file.
So here's what I said, not verbatim but close:
When you, as an author, write a book and market that book, you are not offering a book. You are offering a service--the service of entertainment or knowledge.
Your book is not a product.
Yes, you can hold a book in your hands, you can hold an e-reader in your hands, you can even see the book on your computer. But while your book is tangible, it is not tangible as well.
Because while your words and feelings in the book can be read, it's your thoughts within that book that come out. That is the service that you give to the reader. Your offering that service of knowledge or entertainment. That's not a tangible thing.
You're giving them a service of thought.
So the next time you go to market your book stop thinking about it as a product and start thinking about it as a service. When you think of it like that, my model for writing is the best possible option. While one book can reach thousands of people you still have a consumable service. Write more books! Frick, you're a writer. Write.
Action Item: Write good books. <--- PLURAL on purpose.
Hey look! I talk too! Push the button! Push it! Push!
You Tube! I thought I'd never find you!
Over the weekend, me and my author had a conversation that went much like this:
My Author: Do book trailers help sell books?
Me: (long pause) stoic stare.
My Author: oh, I guess that's a no.
My Author: Okay, skip it then.
BUT WAIT! YOU TUBE! YOU LOVE ME! YOU REALLY LOVE ME!
How do I know You Tube loves me? Because it declared it's love with this article...http://mashable.com/2013/05/15/youtube-tresemme-shoppable-video/
"To shorten the path to purchase and translate video views to sales, today we’re introducing a new channel gadget on YouTube that will enable consumer goods brands to connect consumers directly with retailers throughout the entire YouTube experience. This new channel gadget will enable shoppers to seamlessly move from browsing how-to videos and featured products to finding which retailers carry them, check availability, compare prices and make a purchase, all with fewer clicks than today."
That means Luke's Tale video is not just an all for the fun of it! Imagine clicking the video and buying the book! Awesome! That is more useful than anything! Yes, book trailers have now become a viable funnel!
Action Item: Let's explore this click-able You Tube link thing together!
My efforts are to make this a learning blog where writers can see the flip side of publishing. If you have comments that will improve your experience or have a certain topic you'd like discussed, please contact me through email - HERE.
~ Sincerley, Your Editor
Troll River Publications
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