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Tumblr 101 for Authors [Guest Post]

The following is a guest post by Adrienne from Design Roast.

tumblrTumblr is a must for any author looking to build a following of readers. It is a platform to promote your writing within a tight-knit community, as well as a place to dynamically tell the world about you and your books through videos, quotes, photos, reblogging, links and just some straightforward text too. The most popular way to share on this site, however, is through the creative use of animated gifs.

What do all of these forms have in common? They’re short, easily digestible content.

Today, a variety of literary figures can be found on Tumblr, including book reviewers, publishers, booksellers and, of course, authors. Tumblr has many opportunities for authors, so keep reading to learn how to get started.

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Making Your Book Attractive for Book Clubs [Guest Post]

Book clubs and independent authors — seems like a match made in heaven, right? But how do you go about connecting with clubs, and what should you take into account before reaching out? Check out the following tips from author Stephen McCutchan, who’s sharing a few things he’s learned about promoting his book with book clubs:

Is Your Book a Good Read for a Group?

Consider the mutual value of having your book selected by a book club for their discussion. First, book clubs always need material that will engage them in a good discussion. Members will be delighted if in addition to a good story, the themes explored in the book can raise interesting questions about the issues we face in life.

After chapter 5 in my novel, A Star and a Tear, for example, I included the following questions:

  • Do you agree with Frank’s analogy that society treats sex offenders the way that the biblical society treated lepers?
  • In what way do people use both sexuality and spirituality in a search for transcendence?

Such lively discussions have the additional effect of deepening relationships between members of the group. For you, of course, a group purchase means more sales and more people reading your book — increasing the possibility that they will also mention it to others outside their group. If the key to marketing success is to create a buzz about your writing, then a book club can help you.Continue Reading

Why Writing is a Business – and How to Win at it [Guest Post]

The following is a guest post by Nick Thacker.

I’ve been writing books for only a couple years – I’m releasing a thriller later this year, and I have a few nonfiction books on writing and self-publishing under my belt.

But I’ve been a “writer” for over seven years. It doesn’t seem like much, but that’s well over a quarter of my life (go ahead and do the math; I’ll wait).

What I’ve learned throughout my career blogging, writing articles, and maintaining content networks for clients and businesses is that writing, whether for personal desire or as a career path, is best handled as if it were a business.

I know, blasphemy, right?

But it’s true: if you approach writing as if it’s a business, you’ll have a much better chance at winning it.Continue Reading

10 Things to Write to Help You Rock Your Book Launch [Guest Post]

The following is a guest post by Dana Sitar.

You’ve written 20,000 to 80,000 words to craft a product that is irresistible to readers, and you’re ready to push your keyboard aside. Launch Week is just around the corner, and you want to focus on tweeting and monitoring your Amazon reviews.

Not so fast!

Unfortunately, that book isn’t going to sell itself. Fortunately, you possess a key skill needed to promote it: writing. You’ll have to create a lot of content to pimp your book throughout Launch Week, so use this checklist to plan ahead and get started early!

Email announcements

Email is one of the best ways to tell your contacts about your new book, but not if you’re generic and impersonal!

  1. Break your contacts into categories by how you know them: friends, family, colleagues, readers, niche acquaintances, etc.
  2. Determine what you want from each group; for example, encourage influencers in your niche to spread the word, but encourage readers to purchase the book.
  3. Craft a template message for each group based on those goals, and personalize it for each person you email. Yeah, really, every. one.Continue Reading

Making Your Launch Day Count [Guest Post]

The following is a guest post by Matthew Turner.

As you read this – assuming you’re reading it the day it goes live – I’m going through a very exciting/terrifying time. Tomorrow is the launch of my debut novel, Beyond Parallel.

What a crazy, chaotic, and wonderful time it is!

You may read this and nod your head, having gone through this process yourself. Then again, maybe you haven’t and you’re curious as to what to expect. Whatever your position, I hope you’ll raise a glass to my novel.

It’s been a heck of a journey.

Making Your Launch Day Count

I’m a marketer by trade so I understand the importance of aligning all of your stars. There’s no right or wrong way to approach a launch, as the personal touch you add is the most vital aspect of all. Continue Reading