June 17, 2021-As we continue our theme of author mindset this month, let’s look at the power of yet in this epic YouTube video! https://youtu.be/hiiEeMN7vbQ with Carol Dweck. This will translate to your writing life as an author by reminding yourself through every challenge-not yet!
June 11, 2021-Author Mindset us our theme this month and I certainly hope you’re getting lots of valuable information and putting it into action! I’m going to tell you something that most authors dread…they hate it so much and it scares them to death.
Today we’re talking about the Fear of Selling! This is a HUGE barrier for most authors and takes a toll on their positive outlook and mindset indeed.
When authors think of selling their books they equate the practice with that of a used car salesman; it gives them an icky feeling and most of them don’t realize how much harm this is doing to their book sales, confidence levels, and growth as an author. Plus, used car salesmen trick people, sell them things they don’t need, and are deceptive. Authors are none of those things.
People buy YOU first and then they buy your book. This is the first rule of selling.
So how can authors be more confident when talking about themselves and their work and selling their books? Here are three tips:
1) Focus on your target. Authors struggle with selling and the reason is this: THEY ARE SELLING TO THE WRONG PEOPLE. Instead of focusing on their target customer (specific demo and psychographics and those most likely to buy), they think they should talk to everyone. Not only is this exhausting, but it’s highly ineffective. Don’t offer people your book who aren’t interested or don’t have a need for it! Simple. For example, if you’re selling a children’s picture book at a book signing, you’re not going to approach a teenager and ask them to look at your stuff. They have no need or want for it. This is why it’s ESSENTIAL to define your target so that you don’t waste your time and theirs.
2) Let them decide. It’s not your job to make judgements about your customer and whether they will or won’t buy your books. Your job is to make a connection with the person, educate them about your work, and offer them the opportunity to take your book home.
3) Remember this. Authors have said to me, “I don’t want to bother people with my book, I don’t want to be a pest.” And to them I say, “It’s a shame you have a book you don’t believe in and even worse, that you don’t believe in yourself. There’s a person out there who needs your book and it’s unfair that you’re not willing to share it with them.” This is the reason why you became an author-to tell your story and inspire others to do the same!
Don’t be among 90% of authors who have a fear mindset about selling. Remember that you are enough. If you’re struggling, we can help. Check out our course here: https://pandamoniumpublishing.com/product/course-get-your-book-noticed-and-increase-your-sales/
June 7, 2021– We are talking about Author Mindset all this month and I’m excited to dig into some really cool stuff about the brain, beliefs, and what’s potentially holding you back from living our best author life.
I’ve been so fortunate to have the opportunity to work on some really fabulous projects with incredibly talented authors. The topics that have been presented have been fascinating and one in particular had me flying down the rabbit hole at lightning speed; the subject matter was energy and limiting beliefs.
How you see yourself as an author has a HUGE impact on your success and by believing that you’re less than you are, doesn’t serve you.
Imposter syndrome (feeling like you’re not good enough and an imposter in your field/believing that others see you as incompetent) is common among authors here’s why:
1) Compare-When we start comparing ourselves to other authors, that’s when we give up our power! You are who you are and you write how you write, that is enough!
2) Focus-When we focus on our past failures we tend to feel like imposters. It’s important to forget the past, learn from it and move on. Don’t focus on the things that didn’t work out, focus on your achievements to date and what you hope to achieve in the future.
3) Perfection– If we wait for perfection, we’ll never begin. Your writing doesn’t need to be perfect and guess what? It never will be and neither will you, but who cares? Focus on improvement, not perfection and you’ll never feel like an imposter.
Be your authentic self as an author and don’t worry about how others see you; all that matters is how you see yourself!
May 15, 2021-Since were talking about writing for kids this month, I thought I’d post an interesting link about what a lot of people think of celebrity kid’s books. Turns out I’ve been right all along…kids want chaos, fun, danger, bright colours, and larger than life characters and ideas!
Check out this father’s take on kid lit written by celebrities below:
April 30, 2021-Today we wrap up our theme of Pushing the Envelope in our writing! Thank you to everyone who read our posts and special thanks to my authors for sharing their methods and ideas in how they push the envelope in their own books. Paul Moscarella, author of Machinia, is our guest blogger today.
The writing process for me has always been a peculiar outlet that demands my obedience yet gives no instruction for compliance. This manifestation of my active imagination into words began when I was in grade 4. I had selected a book on the shelf of our art class, The War of the Worlds, because the cover art intrigued me. It was a difficult read, but the tale of the Martian invasion had me riveted. After reading that book, I knew that I wanted to share the things that I imagined into something others could experience. But right away I saw that there was a limit to what I could express, mostly because at age 9 emulating the classic writing style of H.G. Wells was beyond my ability! It was a challenge, but I gave every story I submitted in my English class that extra effort that went well beyond what was required. The endeavour paid off as my submissions were always given praise (and high marks). Those were the exciting days, when what was put to paper rarely saw revision greater than a few erased words. The written word was magic, and my pen was the sorcerer’s wand.
Since that time, the greatest challenge to my writing has been the revision process. Imagination for me has always come easy. Shaping the rough draft into a cohesive well-written form takes continuous effort. Too little self-editing and the rough edges mar the prose. Too much, and the creative inspiration becomes a bland stream of clarified beige. And then, more challenging still, the editor’s feedback! I can get a sentence or paragraph rewritten to the point where I feel it is perfect only to get comments that ask for clarification or a slash through the writing with a simple “No!” So, following the advice I was given numerous times, I’ve learned not to fall in love with sentences, or paragraphs, perhaps even whole pages.
When the first draft of Machinia was completed in 1992, I never dreamed that a novel of over two hundred thousand words would ultimately be subjected to a thirty-year editing cycle. It eventually emerged as a ninety-thousand-word triumph. It taught me that no piece of writing worth reading ever reaches the published page without the struggle and meticulous challenge of revision. In many ways writing is revision, and each reread gives clarity to what we truly wanted to say in the first place. And whether it takes hours, days, or decades, I’ve learned to treat the revision process as if seeing the prose for the first time.*
*author’s note: this submission was subject to several revisions and my wife’s editing notes.
Get your copy of Machinia here: http://www.pandamoniumpublishing.com/shop/Machinia
January 21, 2021-As we enter the final week of our Best Seller Bootcamp, here: https://pandamoniumpublishing.com/product/best-seller-bootcamp-january-4th-31st/ we have a number of things to still cover! As an author with a platform . are you using your social media to connect ideas with readers? Did you know that there is a specific way to do that? With hashtags! Hashtags are still an effective way to get more people to see your posts when using platforms such as Instagram, and using relevant, targeted hashtags is one of the best ways to get discovered by new audiences.
Hashtags # work by organizing and categorizing videos and photos. A post with at least one Instagram hashtag averages 13% more audience engagement than posts without a hashtag. If you add a hashtag to a post on your Instagram account, the post will be visible on the matching hashtag page that acts as a directory of all the photos and videos that were tagged with the same hashtag e.g., #writersofinstagram. Hashtags are most effectively used on Instagram although we do see them on Facebook sometimes, but not as often because people are less likely to read/care about them. Quick tips:
- Use a minimum of 10 hashtags on your post. This will ensure that you cover your bases and include tags that are relevant to the audience you’re trying to reach. Use a mixture of very popular tags and less popular tags to make sure that your post gets traction e.g. #authorsofinstagram (4.7 million posts) and #authorscommunity (156,000 posts). You can use up to 30 hashtags on a regular post and 10 on your Instastory.
- Think outside the (hashtag) box. It’s important to use relevant tags, but most people don’t get overly thoughtful when hashtagging. They use the common, most popular tags, but they’re missing out on a potential segment that could see their post by not being creative. Let’s say that you wrote a science fiction novel, some of the less obvious hashtags could include #manvsmachine, #robothero, #riseofthemachines, #machinesvsman, #newrelease, #dystopianuniverse etc.
- Hashtag in the comments. Don’t put hashtags directly in your post, put them into the comments section of Instagram and be sure to include your company or book hashtag e.g. #pandamoniumpublishinghouse.
There is so much more to talk about when it comes to hashtags and using them most effectively to promote your work and your posts and to connect with your audience, so check out our Best Seller Bootcamp where we dive deeper into this subject: https://pandamoniumpublishing.com/product/best-seller-bootcamp-january-4th-31st/ and more!
January 15, 2021– We are officially half-way through our Best-Seller Bootcamp! Today we’ll be talking about the Publisher vs. Author role when it comes to marketing a best seller. For my self-published friends, guess what? You’re both! You are the Publisher AND Author, so you especially will get a lot from this post. The publishing industry has changed in the fact the publisher is no longer solely responsible for the marketing of your book. The author and publisher together are responsible for collaborative efforts to get the book to the top of the best-seller list! So let’s break it down to see what the expectations are; that way we find clarity, and there are no miscommunications between either party.
Publishers are responsible for:
- Formatting, publishing, editing, and designing your book. We know what’s saleable and we know what the market is looking for in terms of genre, look, voice, and story. We work with teams of people to bring your book to the marketplace and to put it into the hands of readers.
- Marketing materials/digital advertising. Signage, postcards, brochures, business cards, press releases, and displays. We craft the messages and deliver the materials to publicists, the media, book sellers, our social media, and to the public. We create specific, targeted marketing plans for our individual authors and their works and then we execute those plans.
- Book signings/ events. The publisher is responsible for booking events and signings on your behalf. We make sure that you’re in the spaces that you need to be such as book stores, community events, digital events, and special events such as Comicon etc. We pay for you to be there to chat with your readers and sell copies of your books.
- Getting your book into distribution channels. Amazon, Indigo, Barnes and Noble, Booksellers, independent and local bookstores, online stores, and different countries around the world are where we send your books! As publishers, we work hard to ensure that your book gets exposure by being available to readers everywhere and in as many places as possible.
- Digital copies. We ensure that your work is formatted as an e-book so that readers can enjoy it as a digital download. We don’t want any barriers to getting your book to the masses.
- Sales. We are responsible for sales (not solely) and royalty payments to the author. Why in the world would we put in all the work above and behind the scenes if we didn’t care about sales? Publishing is a business!
- Writing and edits. Write a great book, this is just the *beginning*of your job as an author. Once you’ve written the book, the real work begins. The editor will make notes and suggested corrections and you are required to fulfil them.
- Social media. You are responsible for your author platform. You need to be engaging with your audience, you need to be consistently posting your work and behind the scenes stuff that your readers care about. Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Amazon author page etc. are all places to start if you already haven’t. Your author platform should be built BEFORE your book hits the shelves.
- Availability. You need to let your publisher know your schedule so that you can be available for upcoming events including in-person and virtual. Commit to doing your part in making your book as successful as it can be. If you put in the work and do it consistently, your book will be a huge success.
- Code of conduct. You represent your publisher and are a DIRECT representative of the company. We do not tolerate racism, hate speech, inequality, or anything else that is a violation of the way that we interact with our readers and the public. We expect you to treat others the way you want to be treated and to treat them with kindness, respect, and authenticity. Don’t be rude, check your attitude at the door, and realize that you have an opportunity that most people never get.
- Sales. Yep, you read that right. You’re responsible for part of your sales. You are not the only author that the publisher is responsible for, so you had better get to work. If you want that nice, juicy royalty cheque, then take initiative by helping sell your work. You do this by all of the things listed above and by having the right work ethic and attitude. You can tell by your royalty cheque each month how much effort you’re putting in. Don’t like the numbers? Then put the work in and they’ll start to change.
If you’re leaving it up to your publisher to do the work that you need to be doing, you need to re-evaluate your role and contemplate if you should even be writing at all. If you decide that your work ends when you finish writing the book, you will be sadly disappointed. Your publisher has published your book, completed the behind the scenes things such as metadata, marketing, online events, press releases and more, but now the public wants to meet YOU. Have you ever looked at the inside of the book for the publisher name? Probably not. Why? Because we don’t matter, the author matters and the illustrator/graphic designer. The AUTHOR is who people want to meet.
Don’t disappoint your publisher either by doing a half-assed job on your part. Pull your weight, do the things that you’re responsible for because if you don’t, why should we invest SO much time, energy and MONEY into someone who doesn’t care. Plus, if you let us know that you’re not willing to put the work in and do your part, or if you flake out on commitments, or make excuses for not doing your share, we probably (me ESPECIALLY) won’t invest another CENT into publishing your work or any future works. If you’re not committed, why should we be? That’s the hard truth and I’m not the only publisher who abides by this code of conduct. You want to be a professional author? Then act like it. If you show me that you don’t care, I’ll double down. Those are the rules if you want to play on my team. And if you think that’s harsh, find another publisher, because I won’t lower my standards. DO. YOUR. JOB. because I always do mine.
We want you to succeed! We want you to be a best-seller, but if you don’t do your part, it won’t happen. It’s a lot of work, but worth it! Check out our Best-Seller Bootcamp here: https://pandamoniumpublishing.com/product/best-seller-bootcamp-january-4th-31st/
January 15, 2021-Today we have our very own Paul A. Moscarella joining us with a personalized greeting for our Pandamonium Publishing House International Book Club! This month we are reading his debut novel, Machinia. Join us every Friday morning at 11 am on Facebook Live as we chat about his new science fiction book. http://www.pandamoniumpublishing.com/product/machinia
January 1, 2020-Happy New Year, friends! I hope that this year brings your dreams to fruition, much happiness, health, and wealth and that you’re ready to get to work! This month we’ll be doing a Best-Seller Bootcamp which starts on Monday, January 4th right here at http://www.pandamoniumpublishing.com. We’ll be talking about all things best-seller-related including how to use data analysis to improve your marketing efforts, what makes a best-seller, how keywords and categories are used, and the mechanics behind writing a best-seller! We hope that you’ll take this opportunity to invest in yourself with our *additional* Best-Seller Bootcamp course (which complements what we’ll learn here) where you’ll get a ton of bonus info, a downloadable workbook, and access to yours truly as your personal mentor each week of January! Is 2021 the year that you become a best-seller? To enroll in our limited class-size Best Seller Bootcamp click here: Best-Seller Bootcamp January 4th-31st – Pandamonium Publishing House
Here’s to you and reaching your writing goals in 2021 and beyond!
December 23, 2020-During shows and events where we’re selling our books, one of the most common comments we get are, “Your books are so cute/funny/awesomely illustrated, I wish I had kids, but all of mine are grown.” The good news is, you can adopt a ton of kids! Let me explain; even if there are no children in your life, you can make a difference in the lives of many with our Adopt a School program! This is the perfect gift to give the person on your list that has everything! Here’s how it works (Click on the link to order): Adopt a School! Literacy Matters – Pandamonium Publishing House
When you purchase this collection, we’ll send TEN of our children’s book titles to local inner-city schools. We believe that literacy should be a right, not a privilege and that every school library deserves new books that will excite young readers. Please partner with us in this crucial initiative as 12 million Canadians are currently illiterate. This collection is suitable for young readers ages 4-8 depending on the reading level and includes themes such as teamwork, kindness, differences in ability, unconditional love, adventure, and friendship! The children will also receive a handwritten note from one of the authors talking about the importance of books while inviting them to participate in a virtual classroom author visit!
Thank you for your continued support of literacy and Canadian authors, illustrators and artists and for joining us in our mission to ignite a love of reading that will last a lifetime!