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Want better blog tour results? Go DIY!

Imagine you’re renovating your kitchen.

You have two options — you can hire someone to come in and do it, or you can pick up a sledge hammer and do it yourself.

plan your own blog tour workshopThere are pros and cons to both options, right?

Leave it to the Pros —

  • Pro: If you hire someone, you save yourself time and frustration by letting a professional handle the job.
  • Con: Professionals can be costly — and money is no guarantee you’ll get the end result you desire.

D-I-Y —

  • Con: If you go the DIY route instead, you’ll sacrifice some of your time, sweat, and elbow grease.
  • Pro: But you’ll save money and get exactly the product you want.

The same principles apply to constructing a successful blog tour.

Lots of folks offer blog tour services where they’ll do all the legwork for you in exchange for a fee (which can range from pretty nominal to holy-cow-that’s-a-mortgage-payment territory).

But most of those blog tour services aren’t really customized to your genre and fanbase.

If you’ve thought about creating your own blog tour, but weren’t sure where to begin, let our workshop guide you down the trail from start to finish.


Toni and I combined forces in the Build Your Own Blog Tour Workshop to give you a step-by-step guide that takes you from the initial planning phases to finding the right blogs to making your requests to writing the posts themselves.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the course:

Lesson 1 | Introduction to Blog Tours

  • What is a blog tour?
  • Why does our approach to blog tours give you better results?

Lesson 2 | Finding the Right Blogs & Joining the Community

  • How do you find blogs for your tour stops?
  • What makes some blogs better for tour stops than others?Continue Reading

No Excuses: Start Building Your Mailing List Now!

udemymlI’m about to make a bold statement, because I don’t believe in pulling any punches:

Mailing lists are more effective than Twitter for building your fanbase.

*cue startled gasp*

I’ll even take it a step further: mailing lists are also more effective than Facebook, GoodReads, Pinterest or any other social media site for building your crazy-dedicated fanbase.

Iiiiiii know!

With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that I think every single one of our author friends should have their own mailing list, regardless of whether you write fiction, non-fiction or space kitten sci-fi (that’s totally a thing, right?).

Now, I’ve written about mailing lists quite a few times here on the blog, and, while I’m proud of my posts, writing on the topic has always left me a wee bit frustrated. You see, the whole process of setting up a mailing list the right way, from the best methods of encouraging people to join and choosing the right types of updates to send out is a whoooole lot more involved than I can cover in a single blog post.Continue Reading

1.11 Billion Reasons to Get a Facebook Facelift

Yesterday, we made a pretty big announcement — the first three Weekend Workshops are HERE.

Trapper KeeperGrab your favorite pencil case and snazzy Trapper Keeper, it’s time to go back to school!

Don’t worry — you can stay in your PJ’s, skip the bus, and get your learnin’ on without ever leaving your desk chair.

Plus, *you* will pick the best days and times to step into our virtual classroom.

How is that possible?

Because the interwebs are amazing!

Each of our three workshops (Facebook FaceliftMailing List Magic, and Plan Your Own Blog Tour) consists of six, step-by-step video lessons you can take when it fits in *your* schedule.

Pretty sweet, right?

Even better, these courses are *not* theory-laden snoozefests.

(Come on, you know us better than that!)

Each workshop is a down-and-dirty hands-on experience in building a major piece of your author abode from the ground up, led by your fearless (and fun) instructors — the Duolit team!

So grab your gloves and let’s dig in, starting with the Facebook Facelift Workshop.

udemy title page

Why is Facebook worth your time?

As of May 2013, Facebook has 1.11 billion users.

That’s a lot of people — more than three times the population of the entire United States.

By comparison, Twitter has 500 million users, Google + has 343 million, and Pinterest has 48.7 million.

With such a large, diverse, and active group of users (665 million users log-in on a daily basis)  you are statistically bound to find some interested readers who *will* become your crazy-dedicated fans on Facebook.

But to connect with them you need a *great* Facebook page, a strategy to find new fans, and a plan to post content they will love.

Here’s the course breakdown: I will give you all of the above without sacrificing a huge chunk of your time.Continue Reading

Duolit quits the game. For real.


Today is a HUGE day.

Like, the kind of huge day that necessitates ticker tape parades, marching bands, and fireworks.


Because the first three courses in our Weekend Workshop series (Facebook Facelift, Mailing List Magic, and Plan Your Own Blog Tour)  are officially live on Udemy!

Toni and I are SO excited to share these workshops with you that we decided NOT to do something that’s previously been a big part of our launch plans.

There’s a tried-and-true strategy for selling more of anything.

You create a sense of urgency by telling folks the price on a certain product is about to go up significantly.

It works — we know, we’ve tried it.

But, to be honest, it’s gimmicky at best and a little salesman-sleazy at worst, so…

We decided to quit.

We’re not going to do it.

Because honestly, we’ve poured months of hard work into what we’re about to unveil (our new Weekend Workshop series) and it deserves better than that.

So do you.Continue Reading

What if you couldn’t promote your own book? (please read)

[Update 1/17: We are blown away by the support pouring in for Julie, it’s really incredible. We’ve set up a page for the event with a list of participants — if you’re going to join us, leave a comment and we’ll get you added to the list!]

We have a favor to ask of our amazing Duolit community.

julieIt’s not for us, but for a new friend of Duolit.

Her name is Julie and she wrote a great book in 2009 — an inspirational, brave, honest memoir called the Cell War Notebooks.

We need you to help us promote it.

Because the thing is, Julie can’t promote it herself.

See, the book is actually a compilation of Julie’s blog posts from the last seven months of her life as she battled cervical cancer with hope, bravery, and a great sense of humor.Continue Reading