Saturday, April 30, 2011
I post most of the time on things going on in publishing and eBooks. But today I thought I would do a little self promotion. I just released my first YA novel Airel. If you want something different and would like to get in the mind of a high school girl this is the book for you. Now, this might scare some of you away as reading a book from the POV of a teen can be scary. Not to mention two guys wrote it, but that should hook you right there, how did we write this book?
I wrote the book in the first rough draft form and have worked with Chris on editing in the past and we just clicked in our writing styles. He is so talented and has a way of capturing a scene. He was on track to do the edit on this novel and I had a friend tell me we should team up on a book as we both complemented each other. And there you go...
He took the draft and went through it with full control and creative freedom. After he was done I got it back and did the same. We did this a few times and ofter we were happy it went into editing.
Our editor on this is a gal names Sara. She is one of the top editors in the country and I was glad to be even able to work with her. She tore this thing apart and we went back and forth three times in heavy editing. We cut and added, mixed things up and the end result is what you have in front of you.
Some questions people may have:
Why did you have the Kreios part to the book, the different time frames and voice change? I wanted to make the part with Kreios feel and sound different. I would listen to different music on this part and even changed my "Voice" to give it the feel of coming from someone different. These parts were all there in the draft and Chris and I did not write different parts but both worked on it all, the voice change was planned and I hope it gives you a feel of moving into a different mind. This is something we love about this book, the way it moves and changes as you read. You get to grow with the characters.
How did you capture the mind of a teen girl? This was not as hard as it sounds. I grew up and all my best friends were girls. I have always been able to understand or at least know what was going on in their heads. Chris is just a girl so he helped by being himself... lol No, I do read a ton of YA and that helps along with having a great editor who kept us on track. It was so much fun I can't wait to finish the rest of the series.
This is the first novel I have Co-Written and I am super excited to be working with Chris on the rest of the series. Book two, Michael is on its way so have fun reading Airel and if you love it please leave a review on Amazon and B&N. Thanks
Link to Amazon
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
If you are a writer and have been doing it a long time you might remember how writing one book a year was the goal. Publishing took FORRREEEVVVVERRRR, and some crazy writers would publish two or three books in a year.
Two and sometimes four years was expected to get your book in print and all the money it took to advertise, and go on tour and blah... blah... blah...
It was a game of polish, think... think some more and a writers life was filled with days on the beach, or out "Doing Research."
Now the game has changed. eBooks are taking over and the demand for content has never been higher. Readers are eating up books like hungry dogs. Sales are going insane and the chant is, "Where is your next book?"
It is numbers, content and how fast you can get more content out there. This, with trying to put out quality is the new era of writing and publishing. If you have one book you may sell okay, but if you have three or more you stand the chance to really make some money and build a huge fan base.
It is all speed, the eBook is NOW, the reader demands it NOW. You can publish an eBook NOW, and the more you have the more you make. It is an instant world and authors like J.A. Konrath, Amanda Hockings and Vincent Zandri are trying to keep up with the demand.
What should you do? Write faster, no more laying around or drinking coffee to be happy with one book a year. You need to do 2-6 books a year at least. Now, if you keep up with your hungry fans you stand to make a great living. We are no longer in the time of the easy writers life. So, if you have a short story sitting around... Publish it! If you wrote a story in high school... Publish it! Content, content, content! Back list, out of print, old works... anything and everything just get it up and for sale, you never know what book will take off and lead the change for all your other works.
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
I will be the first to say that the Twitter thing is not where I shine. Yet I am learning and can give some pointers as to the use of it for us authors. I used to think Twitter was lame, kind of a side site that was of no use. But after talking to some others that were seeing some good things come of it I decided to take a look. I have been active for the last three months or so and I am seeing a lot of growth.
What is the difference between Facebook and Twitter?
Facebook is like a super high teenager email program. Connect with people and update a status and let people know what you are thinking and doing. A blog is the story, Facebook is the preview and Twitter is the blurb. A quick blast that is there and gone in seconds yet is read and followed.
Over the years Twitter has become a news feed of sorts. People follow news people, restaurants,and other businesses in order to review and plug where they are and what is going on.
If you want to know something quick Twitter is the place to go. I use it on my phone as I can keep updated in seconds with just a glance. I can put people into groups and look at what a group is doing and cut out all the other chatter. An example is I have a group of Authors, one for friends, one for food joints etc... If i want a good place to eat I look at the food feed and see who is running a special or had a good review.
Use Twitter to follow other authors. I do filter out people that may only tweet canned quotes or never add a personal touch. The object is to interact. It is a huge conversation, get in the middle of it.
Warning: Twitter like Facebook can be very High School. clicks of friends that will not let you in and have personal conversations, inside jokes and the like. Just be aware that this goes on.
This is where you post a comment or post. You only get 140 characters including spaces. Tweet about things you want to pass along that are quick. A book signing you are at, or if you ate at a good burger place tell others about it. Be personal and fun, no one wants to follow a depressed bimbo.
This is where you send out a tweet that someone else posted. If you like what they said pass it along to your followers. Try to send along things that you wish to share, or something you want everyone else that follows you to see.
If someone says your name in a tweet you can track it. This is a good thing, means people are talking about you or to you. Be sure to respond and thank them or engage in the conversation. You can mention someone that follows you by typing in the @ symbol before their twitter handle.
DM (Direct Message)
You can like eMail talk direct to someone. You have to follow them and they have to follow you to do this and it makes whatever you are talking about private. The Mention is the same thing but by doing the DM it is not public on your feed for all to see. Be sure to watch the word count and you can DM someone from your phone by just typing the letter D and the twitter handle of whoever you want to message.
Find others that are interested in what you are interested in. Other writers, authors etc... Be focused in who you search for and don't go crazy. try not to follow 1000 people and only have 200 that follow you, as you gain in numbers try to move slow. You can set your account to private if you want to protect your tweets. But otherwise anyone can see what you are talking about and follow you. If you protect you will have to approve who follows you and not just anyone can look at your page. I am on Twitter to reach out so I could care less who sees what i say, the more the better.
There is so much more but this will get you started. Do your research and use it. you may not sell a book but it is a must if you want to get your name out there. Have fun and remember, it is a conversation... talk!
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
So you are on Facebook. I have a love/hate thing going on with good ol FB, but as an author in this new digital age it is a must.
Facebook can be a great tool if used correctly. however if you go into this super crazy site with no plan you will not only fail but may do harm to yourself and others. We are going to look at some simple things you can do to reach readers through FB.
First off, have a plan. Don't just go in and start talking, friending and going crazy. Think of why you are there. Is it to connect with friends or family? Is it to promote your book and yourself? If you are just there for friends I would say to only be friends with out of town friends and family. don't comment on everything and keep it light. More fights and nasty stuff comes out on FB because we feel the need to comment on EVERYTHING!
People are not supposed to know each other this well. We go from seeing someone once a week to seeing what they think about every subject known to man. This can be a shock and make you doubt who they are and what you thought you knew about them. Be smart and don't be a idiot.
Now, most of us authors are on FB to market, meet and reach out to people. We are looking for a way to gain fans and readers. To do this is a MUST if you want to sell books in this day and age. If you think you can be a successful author without being on FB you are wrong.
Here is some ideas to help you use FB in a good way.
first, find other authors that write the same kind of books you write. If you write thrillers find and be friends with thriller writers. Be focused and spend some time every day searching them out and interacting with them. This will help you to grow and other authors will start finding you. DON'T ASK THEM TO READ OR REVIEW YOUR BOOK!
You are there to be a friend, not to mooch.
Next, be a friend to everyone you can, as long as they are not a hooker let them be your friend if they want. the more the better. you can always go back to weed out the lame ones and clean house if you like. But to start you want numbers, readers. What will happen as you meet authors, their readers will find you and want to follow you as you write what they are interested in. This is the goal.
Don't get involved in Drama. I know, this coming from the drama, seeking, king! But I am not perfect, I am working on only getting involved in drama that I can win. eBooks, publishing and the like are all good drama. Get in and get dirty, but personal crap, stay away. Most of the stuff on my FB is not about my family or drama there, business, fun and funny. Be open but don't be to open. I love a good fight, but I choose to fight the Big 6. to fight the old publishing model and things I can change. Just remember to only get messed up on something that will better your readers and others.
Now the hard part. DON'T BEAT UP PEOPLE! What do I mean by this? Don't talk about you book all the time. reviews, blurbs, pictures, blah, blah, blah... I love books and even I roll my eyes if an author only talks about his or her book. Give them a break. They want to know YOU the author, what you do, what you like and how your real life is. Most people will know you wrote a book and if they like YOU they will buy your book. So relax, chill out and talk about your day.
I had one of out authors do this very thing and once they stopped beating up their friends their sales went up. So remember, people buy from people they like. If you are friendly and they like you, they will buy your book.
Post and be active. Don't just sit around or post once a week. You need to be on FB every day. I know, I know...Just do it... comment on others stuff, interact, be a part of the conversation. This is a family of sorts, be an active member.
Now, go out there and make some friends.
Sunday, April 3, 2011
So, you want to tag... or you don't know what a tag is. Why tag? Tag... that is kind of fun to say... ooohhh, a feather.
On Amazon tagging is a way to make one book tagged or related to another book. It is when you see a title and below that book it shows other books people bought as well or recommended. This comes about by someone buying or tagging a different book to your book.
I know I sound like I am a simple minded person but I just want to be clear on what we are talking about.
Now, tagging is powerful, the more tags you have the easier you are to find. You can tag your book to another authors books. You can also tag another author to your book and so on.
The idea is to make the connection. So, if you write thrillers you want to tag your book to another thriller writer, and one who sells well. DO NOT TAG LIKE A CRAZY PERSON! If you tag to 2 or more authors it may dilute and you don't want water down your focus. Try just one or two authors and tag your book to theirs and theirs back too yours.
Yes this is legal.
The other thing is you have to tag your print book and eBook independently. All tags will not carry across from print to E. You will need to tag your Ride-The-Wave author as well print and E.
Amazon also has sites in China, the UK and so on. All these sites are listed at the bottom of the page on Amazon. Just go alllllllllll the way down and click on where you want to go. You will need to tag your books in all these countries as well as they do not carry through.
All the sites will carry your print book but only the US, UK and Canada will have eBooks.
If you can't find where to TAG, just go to your book page and keep going down until you see Customer Tags.
If you still can't find where to tag... not sure what to tell you, find a 12 year old to do it for you.
Oh, and to tag all you do is type in your name on your big author's tag area, use your last name only, first and last and any other variations. On your book you do the same but his or her name, first and last etc... Click ADD and you are good to go. You will need to be logged into your Amazon account to tag, if you don't have an account you can make one. It is free and easy. Just try tagging and if you don't have an account Amazon will let you know and show you how to set up the account.
If you Tag it will help more people see your book by looking at another book. Thus you should sell more books, unless your book is crap, or if you have a bad cover or if you are just weird. Anything to help...