15 July, 2013

The most important factor in becoming a successful author

By |2023-06-09T11:27:42-07:00July 15, 2013|Publishing, Resources, Writing|Comments Off on The most important factor in becoming a successful author

Simply getting started might be the most important factor in becoming a great author. I list it as a good second.

The numbers of people who dream about becoming an author but actually never do anything to make that dream come true is probably in the millions. So, I don’t want to neglect the point that to succeed you must first start, but that’s not what’s going to set you apart from the hundreds of thousands of people who do actually set pen to paper and write a few chapters.

The number one factor in becoming successful in writing is persistence.

The best talent in the world is of little value if one doesn’t use it.

The best teachers and instructors in the world can do little for someone who throws down the pen or the tablet and gives up when the going gets tough.

Persistence is a virtue that gets little limelight in most […]

14 July, 2013

5 ways to publicize your book that take 5 minutes or less

By |2023-06-09T11:27:45-07:00July 14, 2013|Marketing, Resources, Social Media|Comments Off on 5 ways to publicize your book that take 5 minutes or less

Publicity does not have to be big to make an impact on book sales. Something as simple as leaving a comment on a blog post with a link back to your book can be the start of a publicity campaign.

Here are 5 simple ways that you can publicize your book in less than five minutes.

1. Create an email signature that promotes your book. It can be as easy as writing the title of your book with a link to Amazon or your website. You can add a simple statement such as, “Read my new book.”

2. Write a quick comment to a blog post with a link back to a page on your website about your book. If your comment is interesting enough for people to want to know who you are, they will click through and find out about your book(s).

3. Send a fun note about your book to family […]

13 July, 2013

How to market your memoir

By |2023-06-09T11:27:51-07:00July 13, 2013|Marketing, Resources, Social Media, Writing|Comments Off on How to market your memoir

Marketing a memoir is quite different from marketing fiction or even most nonfiction books.

With a memoir, you will need a platform built around you or the topic that you write your memoir about. It’s all about you. Your reader must fall in love with you. Not the character in a novel or a unique business idea in your self-help book, but lovable, likeable, plain old you.

It is imperative that you are accessible to your reader. Since the power of a memoir is that you are giving an inside look at the inner workings of your life, you must put yourself in the public eye enough that they will want to know more.

Blogging is easily the memoir writer’s best platform tool. With a blog, you build the bridge between your daily writing and your life story. As your posts reveal what is happening with you today you automatically encourage interest about […]

13 July, 2013

42 types of memoir writing

By |2023-06-09T11:27:56-07:00July 13, 2013|Resources, Writing|Comments Off on 42 types of memoir writing

A good beginning exercise for writing your memoir is to read the memoirs of others.

Bestselling memoirs might be the place to start for excellence in writing and understanding the different processes. You may be surprised at how differently they can be written and still grab and hold your attention.

Look at some of the less popular memoirs to give you an idea of what doesn’t work. What makes the difference between selling ten copies and ten thousand? It is just as powerful to find out what you don’t like in a memoir as to what you do.

If you have an ebook reader you can often download a chapter or sample of different memoirs to make the search short and affordable.

Finally, check out the memoirs in the area that your story will most likely fit. By reading memoirs in your own genre you can check out if is a popular niche. Going […]

28 June, 2013

Rewriting your book after the first draft

By |2023-06-09T11:28:04-07:00June 28, 2013|Resources, Writing|Comments Off on Rewriting your book after the first draft

Once you have a first draft of your book, it’s time to rewrite it.

Plan to rewrite at least four times before submitting your book to an editor.

The first rewrite will be the deepest and cruelest but also the most necessary one. This is called a structural rewrite. Look at the big picture of the book and ask some serious questions:

What scenes are to stay and which ones are to be deleted?

Are the characters staying true to form throughout the story?

Are they believable, likable, and lovable?

Do the good people have any weaknesses and do the downright nasty, bad folks have any redeemable features?

Does the book flow well? Does it get bogged down in description or in dialogue?

Does the tension build too fast? Too slow?

Are the characters described in one massive word dump or are they gradually introduced through scenes, actions, conversations, and body language?

Step away from your book as the author […]

27 June, 2013

Do you need an editor?

By |2023-06-09T11:28:07-07:00June 27, 2013|Publishing, Resources, Writing|Comments Off on Do you need an editor?

The biggest trap that most self-published authors fall into is believing there book is good enough if they write it once, have a few friends check it over and send it out.

The truth is that writers do not see their own mistakes.

It’s like looking in a mirror and thinking that the one-dimensional reflection is how we really look to other people.

Besides seeing ourselves in only one dimension we unconsciously put on a good face before that bit of glass. A pleasant expression. A smile. Do we see the frown, snarl, or grimace we make when someone cuts in front of us?

As a writer, you know what you want to say. That knowledge can get in the way of sharing what we want to say completely.

Remember the old kid’s game of Pass the Secret? You tell the person next to you a sentence about something. She repeats it to the next […]

24 June, 2013

How to create a basic plot for your novel

By |2023-06-09T11:28:10-07:00June 24, 2013|Resources, Writing|Comments Off on How to create a basic plot for your novel

Writing a plot for your story is like planning a road trip.

You start at point A and you map out how to get to point B.

A plot is not the story. It is the highway that must be traveled to get to the end. The story is how the character goes down that highway to get to the destination.

When writing your plot you must first decide what the ending is going to be. Then you work backwards, charting each point to reach the end. Every step should build to the final climax but have conflict that must be worked through to move the story along.

To make your plot more interesting than “got in car, drove to store, got bread,” you build in points of conflict that must be overcome. In a novel, there is usually one major plot line of conflict and a series of subplots.

The main conflicts basically fall […]

22 June, 2013

The super, simple secret to getting more exposure for your book

By |2023-06-09T11:28:16-07:00June 22, 2013|Marketing, Resources, Social Media|Comments Off on The super, simple secret to getting more exposure for your book

The super, simple secret to getting more exposure for your book…


Here it is in a nutshell:

Comment on blogs in your niche.

You see, the way to build a new audience for your book is to go where that audience is already congregating and enter into the conversation.

Ask yourself these two simple questions.

  1. Who do you want to know you?
  2. Who do you want to follow you?

Now look around for blogs with those types of avid followers. Start commenting on their blog posts. When possible, try to comment as soon as the post goes live so that your comments are at the top of the list to get greater exposure.

Make sure your comment adds some spark and sparkle to the conversation. Don’t steal the light of the blogger with your own amazing story but rather highlight what they have said and offer positive feedback with sincerity.

Here are 3 powerful reasons to leave […]

21 June, 2013

Which came first: The audience or the book?

By |2023-06-09T11:28:54-07:00June 21, 2013|Marketing, Publishing, Resources|Comments Off on Which came first: The audience or the book?

Last time I revealed what to me was the most significant lesson learned during my last thirteen years running Wheatmark: that publishing success requires actively building an audience. A natural question many authors have about this is: Should I start building an audience for my book before or after I write it?

Ideally you’d write your book and build your audience simultaneously, so that your audience-building activities could inform the content of your book, and you could use your writing as a resource for your audience-building activities. But the deeper answer is: It doesn’t matter, because you’re going to have to do both to achieve publishing success, and you have to start somewhere! Let me illustrate this with two very different publishing success stories:

1. Start with an audience, then write a book: Just over a year ago, when Mark Baker published The Game Changer: A Simple System for […]

17 June, 2013

An Amazing Resource: Picmonkey

By |2023-06-09T11:29:07-07:00June 17, 2013|Resources, Social Media|Comments Off on An Amazing Resource: Picmonkey

A robust image and photo editor that can do everything can be overwhelming, especially when you’re staring at a blank canvass trying to figure out what kind of banner image would go well with your Facebook author page.

On the other hand, applications that focus on a single aspect of design, like PicMonkey, can inspire you and save you a lot of time in such situations.

PicMonkey is a free online photo editing service that lets you create stunning photo collages on the fly. Visit Picmonkey and start creating your collage, which then you can share on Facebook, Pinterest, or print it on any marketing piece.

As an example, we quickly put together these two collages using PicMonkey: one from our book covers, the other from stock photography.


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