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The Money’s in the List

$By Joel Friedlander

As authors have flocked to the internet and social media to meet readers, get market insight, create communities of interest and, perhaps, build a robust web asset of their own, many have run into a problem. How will all this activity translate into the income necessary to continue to do all the marketing and branding?

 

After all, most of us aren’t involved in social media, blogging, or other online activities just to change the world, to tell as many people as possible our stories, or to improve people’s lives. These are all noble aims, and many of us hope to accomplish some of them, but there’s that one inconvenient truth: we all need to make a living somehow.

 

There’s a “missing link” in the fan-finding, Facebook-liking, and blog-posting process that so many authors are filling up their time with, and that’s building an email list.

 

A Sad Truth about Author Websites

 

Sadly, if you surf the web looking at author websites, you’ll find that many of them lack this essential function: they have no sign-up place for people to add their names to an email list. Many of these blogs offer an opportunity to sign up for the blog articles, but all that will do in most cases is add you to a subscriber list that will be sent each blog post as it’s published. That’s not the same thing as your own email list, although there are some email providers who can combine the two functions.

 

On other sites you’ll see an “opt-in” box where you can enter your email address and perhaps your first and/or last name, too. In exchange, you’ll be promised a free download, or a free newsletter, or perhaps a free short course in a subject that’s related to what the author is writing about on the blog. This opt-in box is the sign that the blogger is actively building an email list.

 

You might be wondering why this is so important. And it is important. In fact, I consider it the most important website element for any author who intends to make their writing and publishing into a sustainable business.

 

The Purpose of Social Media

 

You might think you don’t need an email list, and I’m not suggesting it’s a good idea for every single author. For instance, if you want to become a novelist but haven’t published anything yet, it might be challenging to build a list particularly if you’re not sure yet what kind of books you want to write.

 

But for the vast majority of authors, an email list is the perfect complement to your other marketing activities, regardless of the publishing path you’ve chosen. Since most of those activities are likely taking place in social media, perhaps we should look at what all those connections are really good for.

 

 

Social media is good for:

  • finding communities of readers
  • engaging with readers and other writers
  • determining how much interest exists for your topic
  • building a community of fans who will support your work
  • keeping up with current developments in your field
  • building “buzz” when you’re launching your book

 

But notice that selling books or other related products and services are not really the best uses of social media. No, it’s really more about being “social,” whatever that means to you.

 

To me, that means meeting people who share my interests, finding out about new products and services, hearing about mass media events, and keeping track of breaking news.

 

The Importance of the Network

 

Once people find out about your content, you have the opportunity to… Continue reading here:  https://forums.createspace.com/en/community/docs/DOC-2231?ref=1466658&utm_id=6182&cp=70170000000c3cP&ls=Email&sls=CSP_Newsletter_Members

The Secret to Writing a Best-selling Novel

I was intrigued by an article in the British publication the Telegraph which seemed quite extraordinary. The piece was entitled, “Scientists Find Secret to Writing a Best-selling Novel.”

For a writer, what could be more arresting than such a headline?

Among other things, the article said: “Computer scientists have developed an algorithm which can predict with 84 percent accuracy whether a book will be a commercial success — and the secret is to avoid clichés and excessive use of verbs.”

Computer scientists at Stony Brook University in New York employed a technique called statistical stylometry to mathematically examine the use of words and grammar in predicting how popular a book would be. While certain elements were analyzed, the scientists acknowledged that a “range of factors” would help determine a book’s success, including “interestingness, novelty, style of writing, and whether or not a storyline is engaging.” They also allowed that another external factor plays a significant role in the success of many books: luck.

Most authors will attest to the last factor.

To arrive at their findings, the group downloaded classics from the Project Gutenberg archive and analyzed the novels’ texts. They compared the algorithm’s predictions to historical information of each work’s success. Everything from science fiction to classic literature and poetry was included. The article discussed several trends found in successful novels, including the number of conjunctions, nouns, adjectives and verbs used by the authors. To find less successful books, the researchers scoured Amazon for books ranking low in sales. Assistant Profession Yejin Choi, one of the paper’s authors said, “To the best of our knowledge, our work is the first that provides quantitative insights into the connection between the writing style and the success of literary works.”

Professor Choi referred to “the secret recipe” of successful novels. He said, “Our work examines 800 books over multiple genres, providing insights into lexical, syntactic and discourse patterns that characterize the writing styles commonly shared in successful literature.”

Keep reading here:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mark-rubinstein/the-secret-to-writing-a-b_1_b_4630781.html

Writing and Publishing My Book: Sources Of Ideas For Writing Your Books

Sources Of Ideas For Writing Your Books

A writing source provides not only inspiration, but also a place from where you can derive knowledge about the topic you are writing about. So, if you are writing about carpentry, it is essential that you learn some basic technical terms associated with carpentry such as hammer, chisel, etc, and their uses. It would definitely help if you have done carpentry work yourself, because that experience will give you a much deeper, personal understanding of your subject.

You might fall short on some ideas while writing, so you will have to research more on those subjects. You can do that by reading magazines or watching videos and CDs. You can also consult an expert carpenter, and he can give you many tips. You could even get tips by searching the Internet, which has now become a sea of information — just be careful about the quality or truthfulness of some of that information.

Since there could be thousands of books already written on carpentry, you need to either present new information in your book, or you can present your information in a different way so as to make your book more interesting than others. Writing a book without a proper source of information could result in a badly written book or faulty data. Either way, the results could be damaging.

Whenever you are searching for a source of information for your book, you should first ensure that you yourself are interested in that subject. Next, you have to ensure that people who read the book would also be interested in it. Also, you will have to write the book in a new, appealing way.

Nowadays, unscrupulous elements in the scientific world are using ‘copy-paste’ methods to pass off important research as their own. Use technical data, combined with your imagination, to present it in an attractive way. So, if you have taken your source from a previous book, you will have to acknowledge that source and also seek permission from that author before writing your book.

Children’s books, especially, require a lot of imagination to be full of attractive photos. The subject matter should be informative and the photos should be relevant. A fictional book is a place where you could let your imagination run wild. But here again, the source of your book and character should be properly researched. Incorporating and acknowledging a source in your book also gives it credibility and respectability, and helps people to know that you know what you are writing about.

So, just as a river requires a source of water, you too will require a rock solid source to ensure that your book turns out to be a bestseller.

About the Author

Victor Epand is an expert consultant about books. When shopping for books, we recommend you shop only at the best bookstores for used books, autographed books, and vedic books.

http://www.usedbooksell.com/

http://www.sellautographedbooks.com/

http://www.vedicbooks.info/

Writing and Publishing a Book – Step # 5

Step #  5 – Design Your Cover and Back-Cover Synopsis

OK…  So by now you have a fully formatted manuscript – WELL DONE!

Now, we have two MAJOR steps…

Writing your back page synopsis and designing your cover.

Back Cover Synopsis

As for the synopsis, this is CRUCIAL as many people will buy (or not buy) based one what you write here…

Here is a basic formula:

  • Who is the protagonist?
  • What’s the problem?
  • What is the protagonist’s goal?
  • How are they going to achieve that goal?
  • What’s in the way?
While this may take you a while, and you will need to fine tune this many, many, many, times until it is succinct and grabs a potential reader’s attention, this step is a MUST to get right!

Cover Artwork

Now (unless you are a graphics whizz) we need to enlist the services of an expert to design your cover – and to publish your book on Amazon.com, we use createspace.com.

If you would like to use our ‘Graphics Whizz’, go to http://writingandpublishingmybook.com/let-us-do-it-for-you/ for more information.

Here is the next step to Create a Cover PDF for your Book

Calculate the spine width of your book

The spine width is based on the number of pages in your book:

For black and white-interior books:
White paper: multiply page count by 0.002252
Cream paper: multiply page count by 0.0025

Example of spine width calculation for a 60-page black and white book printed on white paper: 60 x 0.002252 = 0.135″
For color-interior books:
Multiply page count by 0.002347

Example of spine width calculation for a 60-page color book: 60 x 0.002347 = 0.141″
Set up your document

Your cover must be a single PDF that includes the back cover, spine, and front cover as one image.

You can submit your cover on any size page as long as the printable area is:

Measured exactly to your book’s trim size, spine width, and at least .125″ bleed
Centered horizontally and vertically
Minimum Cover Width: Bleed + Back Cover Trim Size + Spine Width + Front Cover Trim Size + Bleed

Example calculation at 6″ x 9″ cover with 60 B&W pages on white paper: 0.125″ + 6″ + 0.141″ + 6″ + .125″ = 12.391″
Minimum Cover Height: Bleed + Book Height Trim Size + Bleed

Example calculation: 6″ x 9″: 0.125″ + 9″ + .125″ = 9.25″
Get a head start with one of our cover templates:
Our templates make it easier for you to quickly create print-ready files in Adobe Photoshop®, Adobe InDesign®, or any software that will allow you to open a .png or PDF file and save a PDF file. These templates contain the proper dimensions, layout, and bleed for the trim size and page count you select.

Safe Zone

Text and images must be at least .125″ inside the trim lines to ensure that no live elements are cut during the bookmaking process.

Title and Author Name
Your book’s title and the author’s name must appear on the cover exactly as it was entered during the title setup process.

Images
Images may be CMYK or RGB color. All images should be sized at 100%, flattened to one layer and placed in your document at a minimum resolution of 300 DPI.

The spine of your book
Every book will vary slightly when bound. Allow for 0.0625″ variance on either side of the fold lines for your cover. For example, if your spine width is 1″, your text should be no wider than 0.875″. Because of this variance, avoid hard edges or lines that end on the fold line.

For books with a page count of less than 130 pages, we strongly recommend a blank spine. Blank spines are required for books with a page count of fewer than 100 pages.

Barcode
When your files go through the review process, the system will place your ISBN barcode in a 2″ by 1.2″ white box in the lower right-hand corner of your book’s back cover. The standard trim size templates will show you exact barcode placement.

Images or text in the barcode location will be covered when the book is printed. Make sure no important elements appear where the barcode will be placed.

If you choose to provide and place your own barcode, be sure it is a high-resolution image.

Prepare for Printing

The printable area of your document must be the right size, including bleed.
Make sure the printable area is centered within your document.
Make sure all live elements are inside the safe zone.
Export your file as a print-ready PDF. Be sure fonts are embedded.
The maximum accepted file size for your book cover is 40 MB.

Action Items:

BACK-COVER SYNOPSIS:  Write – and rewrite – and rewrite – your back cover synopsis to the point where you are proud of it!

COVER ARTWORK:  This is going to be the thing people see (or don’t see) so it needs to effectively represent you and your work…  Don’t stop until it is just what you want it to be…

Contact me…

If you need more information or would like personal coaching, please feel free to contact me for a no-obligation consultation.

Writing and Publishing a Book – Step # 4

 

Step # 4 – Edit & Format Contents, including Copyright page

CONGRATULATIONS!!!

You now have a first draft on which to work!  Well done!!!  You are further than 98% of ‘wanna-be’ writers.

Now, you need to take every element of self-esteem you have and take a deep breath…

…have you done that?  Seriously?

This is perhaps one of the most challenging this you have ever done…

You are about to send your un-edited baby out in the world – and more than that, you are about to ask the world to tell you everything they can find that’s WRONG with your baby!

…and this is a GOOD thing!  Trust me…

You WANT feedback – positive or negative – you want feedback.

This is the stage where you create a copyright page (for examples, just look at any book in your library shelves) – and apart from the ISBN, you are at the point of creating your copyright page and editing the entire manuscript ready for publication.

…and if you can’t afford (or don’t want) a professional editor, your support team are perhaps your next best go-to people.

FIRST:

Read through your manuscript and correct any glaring errors, typos etc.

SECOND:

Create a copyright page

THIRD:

Format your manuscript to LOOK the way you want it to look.  In other words, if you want the end result to be a 6″ x 9″ book, then

a)  Change your page size in your word processor to be 6×9

b) Make sure the font is one you like and is the size you want

c) Ensure the page breaks are where you want them to be

…etc…

FOURTH:

(if you don’t have a professional editor) Send your manuscript to your three best critics and ask them to review it (and tell them you will love and respect them no matter what they say – and mean it!)

FIFTH:

Take all comments and criticisms on board, and edit your baby to the point where you are exceptionally proud of what you have created.

SIXTH:

Have someone you trust beyond measure to review your final (edited) work and give it the thumbs up – and remember, we are not after ego-boosts here – if they still find issues, you need to decide whether those issues need to be addressed…

SEVENTH:

You now have a finished, formatted manuscript!

…scary, I know!!!  But you DID IT!!!

Action Item:

Have a glass of wine…  You deserve it!

Contact me…

If you need more information or would like personal coaching, please feel free to contact me for a no-obligation consultation.

 

Welcome!

Well, everything needs to start somewhere…

While I’ve been coaching and helping people for about 15 years now to write and publish their books ~ to bring their dreams to life ~ this website is only now getting a life of its own…

I look forward to getting to know you as we go on this journey together…

As my first project for this site, I’ve been asked to create an inspirational journal that I’m calling “365 Days of Inspiration” and I will take you step-by-step in this blog along with me so you can see each element in the process.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out and say hello.

Wishing you a truly magical evening!

Talk soon…

Leigh