3101, 2017

Should You Use Kindle Pre-order?

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You’ve likely heard of Kindle Pre-order as an option for releasing your book early. There are many reasons to take a slower route – more time to find readers, generate anticipation, and line up reviews for launch day. Who wouldn’t want those? But is Kindle Pre-order right for you?

Let’s start with the details.

What is Kindle Pre-order

Kindle Pre-order allows you to make your ebook available for pre-sale on Amazon up to 90 days before the book is released. Amazon generates a pre-order sales page for customers to pre-order your book and receive it on its release day. Customers are charged for the book the day it’s released.

The Advantages of Kindle Pre-order

Because you already have a sales page, you can advertise your book pre-release and send readers to your page instead of […]

2401, 2017

Bearing Witness: The stories we tell

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There are times in our history that are marked in books, noted in lectures, and remembered for generations. These historical markers can be positive or negative, joyous or heart-wrenching, but all signal a time of profound change. Some events have divided our country while others have bound us together in an unshakeable union with a single-minded focus. Many more events are a combination of the two.

History doesn’t happen in a vacuum. While there is often a single event noted as the day which changed the course of history, all were preceded by smaller events. Like a series of breadcrumbs through the forest, these events include stories of mini triumphs or not-so-minor injustices from individuals and groups of people. These stories contain our common humanity, our best ideals and hopes for […]

1701, 2017

Write Children’s Stories for Publication

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Writing children’s stories is imaginative, expressive, and lots of fun. It also requires an understanding of what makes a children’s book successful. With practice, your stories come to life with memorable characters, an engaging story, and age-appropriate design.

Characters

When you write children’s stories, feature a child as the main character who is slightly older than the reader. The child drives the action in the story and solves the problem themselves without the help of an adult or another character. Despite a flaw or desire, they are likable and relatable to children. Of course, not all children’s books include children (or animals) in the story, but when they do, feature them and let them be the hero.

In the series of Clifford books, Clifford’s flaw is his largess. He wants to help, but it […]

1001, 2017

Learn the Craft of Writing

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I admit it. I’m a learning junkie. I love to find out more about so many things it’s hard to narrow my focus. As someone living with a ravenous curiosity, I make it my mission to learn something, anything every day.

In New Year’s Resolutions for Writers, one of the goals for the year is to learn more about the craft of writing. There are lots of ways to do this from quick and free to long-term and costly. You hear me say this a lot, but what you choose depends on your goals. The investment of time and money is dictated by whether you want to make writing a career, if writing is part of growing your business, or if you’re simply passionate about your hobby. If you’re not […]

2012, 2016

How to Create a Speaker One-Sheet

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The beauty of being a writer is the diversity of opportunities it presents. Many writers and authors teach workshops, offer editing services, mentor or coach other writers, meet readers at book signings and book fairs, and speak. If your first reaction to speaking isn’t “YIKES,” you need a speaker one-sheet to attract and convince event organizers to hire you.

A speaker one-sheet is a two-page (one sheet) advertisement of your personality, speaking topics, and benefits to the audience. It’s one of the best marketing assets in your toolbox to get in front of decision makers charged with finding engaging, relevant speakers for their event. Your job is to convince them that you are the one they should, no, NEED to hire.

According to Karen Saunders, a speaker one-sheet should answer these […]

1312, 2016

Writing is a Gift

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You are a gift to the world, my fellow writer. Whether you write fiction or nonfiction, moving testimonials or light-hearted poetry, you’ve brought forth the courage to put your thoughts, dreams, and aspirations on “paper.” The very act of creating something from your mind’s eye is an exemplary act of faith. Kudos to you.

gift of writing

It takes even more courage to share your work. But, that’s where the magic happens. If you dare to share your writing with even one person, you allow your gifts to be opened. There is a bond between writer and reader. You set part of yourself free to enlighten, entertain, amuse, or inspire the reader knowing their world will change, even if just a nudge. They see […]

2911, 2016

Why Aren’t You Published Yet?

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If you aren’t published yet, there are a few things to overcome in order to get it done. Let me first say, you aren’t alone. Here are some obstacles and solutions to problems many writers face.

Knowledge

The most successful writers do a few things over and over again to be the best they can be. They suck up knowledge from all sources and arm themselves with the gifts of the writing world. Here are some things you can do to increase your knowledge about writing and publishing.

Read

Learn the craft of writing from the best in the business. Before you go to bed each night or as soon as you wake up in the morning, absorb some wisdom from writers like Stephen King (On Writing Well), William Zinnser (

1611, 2016

Obstacles to Selling Your Book, Part 2

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In 7 Obstacles to Selling Your Book, we discussed the external factors that inhibit your book sales. In Part 2, we’ll look at how we get in our own way. I encourage you to take notes and write down your thoughts and, if you’re brave, let us know what you discovered.

Don’t believe in your book

Of all of the reasons that your book isn’t selling, one of the biggest reasons for lackluster or no sales at all is you don’t believe your book is worthy of the price tag you put on it. There are a few possibilities as to why you feel this way: you know you didn’t do the work to carefully craft and revise it, you didn’t hire an editor to edit it, you got negative reviews, or […]

811, 2016

7 Obstacles to Selling Your Book

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I’ve yet to talk with an author that says, “My book is selling better than expected and I don’t need to figure out how to sell more.” Most authors express the opposite. “How do I sell more books?”

In talking with authors about their books and their marketing or lack of it, there are similarities that arise that get in the way of improving sales. Many of these issues could have been resolved before the book was written and published and some are post-publication fixes. This isn’t an exhaustive list. Check back next week for part 2 when I discuss the obstacles an author faces personally when selling their book. For now, let’s talk about the 7 obstacles to selling your book.

No market

One reason a book may not sell well is […]

111, 2016

25 Quotes About Writing

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Quotes about writing are always the most popular posts on my social media platforms. Here are 25 of my favorites to inform, motivate, and inspire your writing:

“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” 
― Toni Morrison

“The role of a writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say.” 
― Anaïs Nin

“Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass.” 
― Anton Chekhov

“The scariest moment is always just before you start.” 
― Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

quotes about writing

“Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.” 
― Louis L’Amour

“A writer is someone for whom writing […]