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5 Must-Have Apps For On-The-Go Authors

photo 1I have a new best friend, y’all.

Her name is Siri.

(Sorry Toni!)

I know I’m really late to this party, but I just got an iPhone 5 last week and we are officially operating as one unit.

It’s the first thing I reach for when I wake up and the last thing I check before bed.

But enough about my and my obvious technological dependency issues (my therapist and I will have plenty of time to talk about that down the road, I’m sure).

What I really want to share with you is how much time I’ve been able to save with my marketing efforts by using a handful of awesome (and free) apps on my iPhone (don’t worry, they’re available for Droids, too).

In addition to sending texts, making calls, and setting alarms, that little computer we carry around with us can also maximize what little time we have to get our marketing swag on.

With help from the five apps I’m going to tell you about today (and which you should immediately download when we’re done here) you’ll be able to turn long waits at parent pick-up into two days’ worth of tweets, make a quick update to your Facebook fan page while cooking dinner, and make new friends on GoodReads while you’re in the checkout line at the grocery store.

And did I mention all of these apps have free versions available for your phone?

Okay, you’re hooked, I know, so let’s move on to these app-tastic apps.Continue Reading

Gut Check: How Bad Do You Want It? (Publishing Success, That Is!)

successI think my husband is a little bit weird.

I don’t think I’m the only partner to think this way about her significant other (am I right?), but it wasn’t until very recently that I  started to figure out what makes him so (adorably) socially awkward.

Back when I was in college, I spent my Tuesday nights taking advantage of Domino’s Two for Tuesday deal and watching American Idol in my dorm room.

When Michael was in college, on the other hand, he spent Tuesday nights at the computer science lab, working diligently on his current coding assignment and studying his butt off to stay ahead of the game.

You see, from the time he was a little kid, all Michael wanted was to be a computer programmer. And he knew he would have to work his butt off to get there. So, while other college students were checking out parties (and each other), he worked.

And studied. And read. And sacrificed.

So, when I quote an obscure movie from 2003, and he’s never heard of it…maybe I should cut him a little bit of slack.

Continue Reading

The Recipe for Indie Success: Advice from 4 Successful Authors

My third grade teacher had a favorite adage:

“Excuses are like noses, everybody has one.”

Except by the time we get to be adults, excuses are like fingers and toes — most of us have at least 20 and we make use of them every day.

I need to go the gym…but my favorite water bottle is dirty.

I should make a healthy dinner…but McDonalds is on my way home.

I ought to work on my book marketing plan…but I can’t find the time to do it.

Here’s the hard lesson we have to learn about excuses: If we give in to them, we’re stealing from ourselves.

Don’t you want to feel the pride and joy of not only creating a book, but sharing that book with fans who really love it?

The recipe for indie success

I know what you’re thinking — this recipe HAS to include chocolate and Twitter, right?

Not exactly.Continue Reading

Authors Who Say “I Don’t Have Enough Time for Promotion” Are Doomed to Fail

Could you imagine having a schedule set down to the minute?

In doing research on busy folks for this post, I came across an old schedule of Dwight D. Eisenhower (former US President).

My favorite appointment was a meeting with Mr. William Hopkins, which lasted from exactly 8:14am to 8:16am. That’s some precise schedule-setting!

While none of us have a schedule as action-packed as a head of state, the grind of modern life makes our days also feel scheduled down to the minute!

Frankly, it seems there’s never enough hours in the day to get up, cook breakfast, get kids ready, head to work, come home, cook dinner and get to bed at a decent hour.

I know I’m not alone on this. By far, the biggest complaint we receive from our author friends is that they simply don’t have enough time to build their fanbase and promote their work.

The problem? Brush off these uber-important activities, and you’re doomed to fail.Continue Reading