September 23, 2021– We’re almost done with our theme this month: continuing education for authors! We’ve covered topics such as how to launch your book, travel writing sub-genres, how to stand out from the crowd, and everything in between. Be sure to subscribe to our blog (on the right-hand side of your screen) so that you never miss a post!
Today we’re talking about 5 free things you can do to continue your education as an author:
- Read books. There are so many books out there on a number of topics! You can find subjects on marketing, social media, how to write for your specific genre, and more. There is an endless array of things that you can study to improve your craft and your business acumen. By using your public library or participating in a book swap/little free library, you can get loads of fabulously free information.
- Library classes. The library is another great resource for classes, workshops, and free seminars! I’ve done free talks on self-publishing, traditional publishing, and marketing for authors over the years and have also attended some classes at the library as a student. Check your local listings to see what’s up and coming, and most libraries offer a course catalogue online. Use the resources available to you and take classes in what you’re interested in!
- Free online seminars. I can’t even begin to tell you how many free online seminars I’ve taken over the years, and some of them have been absolutely vital to my growth as a publisher. Use Google to search free seminars for whatever topic you want to learn about. You’ll be surprised at what you find. Keep in mind that free online seminars are usually tidbits of info presented so that you’ll enroll in their course, but some of that free info is invaluable!
- Blogs. As you know, this blog is free! There are many great blogs that are also free of charge and contain tons of valuable information, tips, tricks, best practices, and insight. Blogs are great because usually they’re written in a conversational, easy-to-understand tone for even the most difficult fields of study.
- Podcasts. Podcasts offer a well of free information that is uniquely portable. You can learn about pretty much anything you want from a podcast, and I especially love them because I pop in my Airpods and go about my day. You can listen to podcasts on the road, while cleaning, while working out, and past episodes are easy to access if you can’t write something down that you want to remember later. Our podcast is available here, and we constantly give away free, valuable information for authors: https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-hfi92-10dfda6
Lack of funds is a weak excuse for not continuing your education; there are free resources available to you; you just have to find them and, most importantly, put them into practice! Happy Learning!
September 22, 2021– I’m writing you from the good ole US of A! We’re road tripping across the country and are having a blast while getting a lot of things accomplished in the book business. Today, as we continue our theme of continuing education for authors, we’re going to talk about Travel writing which I think is a nice edition and on point with what we’re doing now!
Let’s talk about three sug-genres of travel writing that aren’t obvious such as writing about a journey or quest where the character has travelled abroad.
1) Echotourism- Your main character follows in the footsteps of another traveller and visits the places an earlier traveller visited in this subgenre; they echo their journey and try to recreate the path their ancestors/friend/ family member took with a unique experience through their eyes.
2) Expat- Don’t confuse books about passing through a temporary location; this genre is all about the protagonist moving to a different place from their home country. They reveal what it’s like to move/live there and the struggles, triumphs, and even chaos they face. It’s a great idea to blend humour in this genre. Whatever can go wrong should, as long as it’s believable.
3) Mode-In this subgenre, the focus is on the mode of transport such as by foot, boat, kayak, bike, motorcycle, train, plane, etc. Maybe your main character is travelling cross-country as a stowaway on a train or kayaking to a camping site near the foot of a mountain; whatever you choose for them, do your research into the modes of transportation and the physical/emotional toll that each would take on the character, e.g., motorcycle in the rain etc. Think of Daniel Radcliffe’s character in the movie Jungle or Rambo, among hundreds of others.
September 14, 2021-We’re talking about continuing education for authors during September, and today I’ve got some tips to share with you about book launches. Be sure to listen to our podcast on Podbean every Tuesday and Thursday for additional content and tips; the app is always free to download and listen along.
The goal of a book launch is to celebrate the release of your book with your readers, customers, and target audience. You’ve made it, and your book has finally hit the market, but the real work is about to begin!
Your launch sets the tone for your series and will show your readers how awesome/fun/educational your books are. It’s essential to prepare thoroughly! Here are some tips to help with your book launch.
- Choose a date and time asap: Knowing when you’ll launch and working backward is the best way to get organized. You’ll need no more than 2 weeks before the date you’ve chosen to build buzz about your book launch. Anything sooner than that is too soon (and won’t allow people to save the date), and anything longer than that is too much time in between the buzz building and the actual event-this means that most people will have time to forget and book something else that day if you leave too many weeks from announcement to event.
- Over-invite: A huge key to a successful launch is to have as many attendees as possible. According to statistics, a third of those invited will attend. Use your Facebook friend list, social media contacts, and people you know to create your guest list and invite people to your event.
- Create buzz: Social media is an excellent way to create buzz for your book launch. Announce to your family, friends, acquaintances, and target market that you’ve got a brand-new book out and that they have the opportunity to celebrate with you. Direct people to your Facebook business page, where you share information about your series and post lots of photos, blog posts, status updates, and videos well before your official launch date. Let them know when and how they can attend, whether virtually or in person.
- Offer bonuses: Bonuses plain and simple draw people to your table. People love free stuff, whether it’s colouring sheets, word games, activities for kids, or stickers! Offering bonuses shows your customer that you care about them and that you’re invested in connecting with them. People often feel a need to reciprocate when they are given something for free, so this simple act of offering a bonus (without purchase) can have a massive impact on your sales. Plus, if you can draw kids to your table and engage them, chances are the parents will take a closer look at what you’re offering.
- Marketing is Queen: If cash is King, marketing is Queen! Be sure to bring things to hand out to people at your book launches, such as catalogues, business cards, bookmarks, brochures, infographics, and feature sheets. Sometimes people will go home and order your books online if they’re in a rush and just popping into the bookstore for a quick second, or they’ll want to do more research to see if your book is right for their child. Either way, they need to be able to find you and order your books. Your marketing should include where they can purchase your book, your social media, and how to contact you.
A huge pet peeve of mine is barriers to payment. It drives me crazy when vendors at shows only accept cash! The world is almost cashless, and you will miss out on a ton of sales if this is the only form of payment that you accept. Invest in a square reader or other type of payment processor. You’ll be glad you did, and so will your customers!
We’re coming out with new courses all the time, so be sure to stay in the know by hitting the subscribe button on the right-hand side of this page. Check out our courses and classes at http://www.pandamoniumpublishing.com/shop