I was honored with several awards—triple wins—this month for:
Author YOU! Creating and Building Your Author and Book Platforms is the Winner in the Writing & Publishing category of the 2013 National Indie Excellence Awards.
Author YOU! Creating and Building Your Author and Book Platforms is the Winner in the Writing & Publishing category of the 2013 International Book Awards.
Author YOU! Creating and Building Your Author and Book Platforms is the Bronze IPPY Winner in the Writing & Publishing category of the 2013 International Book Publishers Awards.
My amazing team consisted of: Nick Zelinger of NZ Grapics designed the cover and interior; Don Side created the whimsical illustrations; John Maling the editing and Georgann Hall the final cold-eye editing; and the first printing was done by Tom Campbell with King Printing—all Author U members. All shared my vision, I couldn’t have done it without them.
Who’s in Your Village? … Who Are You Going to Thank?
Everyone … That’s Who!
One of the last items on the book publishing “to do” list is to create the Acknowledgement Page … the Thank Yous to the team that assisted you in creating your baby. These are the people who got you here … don’t ignore them. Think in the narrative … let your readers know what your team did to get your book birthed.
An Acknowledgement Page is not a Dedication Page—those are usually short, minimal words and don’t include an entire village. Acknowledgements are different.
Many authors start with their family and friends, and forget the designers, consultants, printers and anyone who was a massive encourage in getting their book done. Don’t.
Let’s start with the obvious:
Family: Parents, kids, siblings, aunts, uncles. Family. They are a tremendous part—from giving you “time away” to create and finish your book—to do errands for you so you …
Twenty plus years ago, one of my author friends coined one of my favorite book titles: Sacred Cows Make the Best Burgers. It’s all about change and slashing through the things that continually hold people and companies back. A few years ago, I ran into Bob Kriegel at a conference we were both speaking at. He was still talking about burgers and he reminded me of a story he told me long ago about surfing and change. As I think about his works, they fit perfectly with today’s author.
Huge “waves of change,” are barreling in from every direction and shaking up the basic foundations of everything we thought we knew and know about publishing. There isn’t a week that goes by that some new tidbit has come to the surface. For some authors, that new tidbit has the capability of capsizing them.
With the “e”volution of the past few years, these publishing change waves will continue to increase and …
Are You the Sardine in the Sea?
Yep, there are millions of books out there … is yours contributing to book pollution … or do you have a unique voice, something new to bring to the party, a twist to something old … in other words, can you break from the pack? Or, will you continue to be a sardine in the vast sea?
And the answer is … yes indeed.
There are a variety of ways to stand out from the crowd. Start with:
1. Decide you want to do it. Good idea … It will take some effort on your side to shine above, to create the hook and twist that allows others to see you in a different way. It doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune in the process … what it does mean is that you have to bring some vision and passion to the process. Tis also a good idea to go with …
Persistence, Perseverance and Passion … That’s the Ticket
Two publishing scenarios …do you choose self-publishing/independent or traditional? … that’s the question.
Here’s an astonishing fact: Three books on the top 10 titles on the Combined Print and E-Book Fiction Best Seller List last fall were self-published: #4 Blind Faith by CJ Lyons, #5 The Mill River Recluse by Darcie Chan, and #6 The Abbey by Chris Culver. All published under the own imprints—all very successful.
Self-publishing is increasing exponentially. It has moved into the ranks of the honorable—authors who felt that … and publishers who believed—that New York was the only true way to publish are quickly becoming the dinosaurs of the literary world.
Publishing your own books isn’t easy. You still have to write a good book and sell it largely on your own. You have to work your tush off … no exceptions. But it’s faster, you have more control over it, and you get a bigger share …
Stop the Book Insanity …
This Blog started with an email from an author–he didn’t want to put a dime into marketing his book–he hadn’t put the first dollar forward yet that I knew of, but he was pulling the plug … and he was working on the second book in the series, paying a very high priced editor to morph some of his book into a “woman’s” version. I was holding a spot for him at the early bird rate for the Author U Extravaganza in Denver because he told me was coming and to reserve one for him–a spot where one of the premier workshops was on the verge of being sold out and there was another month to go for registrations. I wanted to throw up. I could only conclude that his brain had gone to mush.
Authors sometimes don’t want to hear what works in creating a successful book campaign—campaigns that include the creation, the marketing …
The Magic of Perseverance
Sometimes it’s not easy being an author … there’s rejection—sometimes in a cascading abundance; sometimes we authors feel that everything attempted is a massive flop; sometimes we think we should be committed for spending the time and money in creating our books; sometimes we think there’s no freakin way we can sell any; and sometimes we just think …
But then, a nudge comes into play. You love your topic. The cover makes you happy. You remember the unbelievable sense of pride when you held that first book in your hand. A kind word, email, or note comes your way that you’ve made a difference, solved a problem or just provided a new fan with a terrific story.
Authoring … what a journey. Highs and lows. Hopes and fears. Tears and joy. And a journey that requires perseverance. Webster’s defines perseverance as continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition.
Your Book Success Is Up to You … and ONLY You!
This week, I send three emails to three separate authors that I had shepherded and agreed to co-publish their books about the lack of sales. Publishers don’t love the term, “lack of sales.” None of these authors should have got the “Wake up and smell the book roses … possible death toll bell” from me.
I hated writing them … I hated sending them.
And, I had to do it. As the publisher, because it’s business. As The Book Shepherd, because they chose to ignore the hours of brainstorm about strategies to market, position and sell their books. As the publisher, I got the books into national distribution at all major channels—even Barnes and Noble ordered them.
And they failed. Two of them have done zip in marketing support. ZIP. The third did an announcement on her Facebook page and has created a few speaking engagements. Granted, those sold …