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Review This

March 22, 2021-Happy Monday, Friends! It’s my most favourite day of the week.  I hope everyone is doing well and enjoying the theme of this month which is answering your most asked questions. If you’d like to send in a question, please email pandapublishing8@gmail.com. Let’s dig in:

Q: “I’ve recently published a book and have gotten a few reviews. A couple were positive, but a few were negative, how do I deal with the negative comments and not let them get under my skin?”

A: This happens to all of us. Writing is an art, and art is subjective. People are entitled to their opinions and unfortunately, they aren’t always nice. Reviews are very important because they not only give us valuable feedback (when looked at constructively), but they help readers find out more about your book. Think of the last time you were purchasing something, did you read the reviews? Probably. And why did you read them? Because you wanted to know what people thought, what their experiences were, and if whatever you were thinking of purchasing was worth the cost. Negative reviews are not something that we should take to heart, but we should learn from them. In this business, you must have a thick skin. That said, are you being objective when you’re reading the negative reviews about your work? Are you stepping back and asking if there could be some truth to what the reviewer is saying? Let’s say that the reviewer gave your book 2 stars because they felt the pace was slow and the characters were underdeveloped, would you be willing to ask yourself if this is something that’s correct and that you could improve upon? Every single negative review I’ve ever had, has always been spot on. But guess what? That helps to improve my writing! I take the negativity and learn from it, I don’t let it get inside of my head, and I understand that everyone is entitled to their opinion. It’s a great opportunity to have someone tell you what they think of your work, and to use that, to produce better work! The thing that drives me crazy is when authors get bad reviews and they say, “That person doesn’t know what they’re talking about, my book is a masterpiece and perfect as is.” This level of arrogance serves no one. I’d much rather have a negative review (which means people are reading my books!) than no reviews at all because that means that my reader cares enough to tell me where I went wrong. It’s when people stop caring that we start to have a problem. Take everything in stride, keep writing, and keep improving!

Check out some of our classes and workshops here: Best-Seller Bootcamp – Pandamonium Publishing House, Children’s Book Writing Master Class – Pandamonium Publishing House, Transitioning from Writer to Author (An Introductory Course) – Pandamonium Publishing House

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Reaching Best Seller Status

January 29, 2021– Thank you to everyone who enrolled in our Best Seller Bootcamp! I had such a fantastic time teaching all of you and I can’t wait to see your books at the top of  the best seller lists!  Thank you for the outstanding reviews and for all the positive texts, emails, and notes. You’ve all been so amazing and I’m so glad that you’ve enjoyed the course. Let’s dig into the final day of Best Seller Bootcamp.

What does it mean for your writing career when you finally reach best-seller status? It means that you get to use that status in your marketing and then perform the entire process all over again to reach best seller status for your next book! You can add it to your writing credits and writing resume, plus the status of best seller can never be taken away from you.

Becoming a best selling author is something that you should be proud of. Take the time to enjoy all of the hard work you’ve put in to reach your goal! But then, get back to work:)

Here are some of the reviews from Our Best Seller Bootcamp students:

“I thoroughly enjoyed the class material and Lacey was one of the best teacher’s I’ve had. I learned more from this one course than I have in any other course I’ve taken to date. A fabulous formula for best seller status.” -Maggie K.

“This course was so much fun! I had a blast and learned a ton. I’m confident that I have the winning recipe to reach best seller status. Five stars, I highly recommend Lacey and her courses! She’s a hoot!”– Joseph R.

“A ton of well thought out information from one of the best.”– Rachael M.

“Listen to Lacey. She knows what she’s talking about! She’s a fantastic teacher, speaker, and educator. The best in the business.”-Stephanie C.

“Best seller bootcamp was awesome! I learned so much and enjoyed how we explored each section in depth. Lacey answered all of my questions in detail and was so fantastic to work with. I would follow her off the edge of a cliff.” -Taryn W.

Thank you so much! It’s so humbling to help others and have them succeed. Wishing each one of you the very best now and always. X LLB  (Join us in February for Taking Risks!)

 

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Reviews (They Matter)

January 20, 2021-All this month we’re dishing out tips during our Best Seller Bootcamp, and today, we’ll be talking about reviews. Let’s find out why they matter, how to get them, and how they contribute to your Best Seller Success!

You know how much I LOVE statistics, so here are a couple that you should know. 1) 84% of people trust online reviews as much as friends. 2) 91% of people regularly read online reviews before making a purchase. Readers trust what others are saying about your book! So, what does this mean for you? It means you need to get as many reviews as possible BEFORE your book hits the marketplace.

Reviews can be done before your book officially launches by getting pre-release copies to reviewers. They receive a free copy of your book in exchange for an honest review and reviewers will disclose this. I am not a fan of paying for reviews and that’s something that we’ve never done at Pandamonium Publishing House. We believe that reviews should be honest, organic, and from real readers.

Reviews give you credibility, plain and simple. They let readers know what others thought of your book, and why they should take a chance on buying themselves a copy!

You can get reviews by doing the following things:

  1. Ask your beta readers to review your book. These are the people who you’ve been asking for feedback during the entire writing process. They will tell you the truth about what works and what doesn’t while you’re working on your drafts and tweaking your manuscript and they’ll also be honest about their reviews.
  2. Give out 10 free pre-release copies in exchange for a review.  You can post this offer on social media, at your book club, your local library, on Goodreads, on your website, press releases, and in your newsletter.

Also, you need to ensure that you’re getting authentic reviews from readers in your genre. Romance readers may not enjoy your supernatural crime thriller or mystery lovers may not enjoy your historical romance novel, so be sure to match the right reader with your book. Remember that reviews matter, but also that art is subjective and not everyone is going to love what you write. That’s ok! If your book is for everyone, it’s for no one.

The entire point of getting reviews is allowing your readers to find out what other readers thought about your book and what they liked about it/didn’t like about it so that they can make an informed decision in purchasing your work.

To dig deeper into this subject, and many others, consider joining our Best Seller Bootcamp here: https://pandamoniumpublishing.com/product/best-seller-bootcamp-january-4th-31st/

 

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STOP DOING THIS

February 26, 2020-We’ve all done it at one time or another, and for some reason, whenever we do it, no matter how many good things are said, we tend to focus on the bad. I’m here to tell you to STOP! Stop Googling yourself. It can be tempting to find out what people think of us and our work, but trust me when I say that no good can come of it. Sure, you may have stellar reviews, lots of likes, and beautiful things said about you, but I think Dita Von Teese said it best, “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there’s still going to be somebody who hates peaches.” People are going to love your book and others will hate it. People will like you and others won’t. It’s all irrelevant at the end of the day, so don’t lend any weight to it.

There seems to be an epidemic of bullying, suicides, and overall meanness on social media. The more connected we become, the more disconnected we really are from each other.  Most things that people say from behind the protection of a screen and keyboard would never be told in person. We should follow the general rule that if you wouldn’t say it to someone’s face, don’t say it to them online. This should be used in conjunction with, if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it. Not everyone needs your opinion. And you certainly don’t need the opinions of others to justify your worth. You are worthy. PERIOD.

Keep writing, ignore the critics, take positive, constructive feedback to make your work better, and enjoy creating art. Do it for yourself, because no one else’s opinion matters.

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The Four Types of Writing Styles…

September 18 , 2019– Did you know that there are four types of writing styles? Every time we (writers) pick up a pen, we’re on a mission! Knowing all four types of writing styles and how to use them is essential for getting your message across to readers.

  1. Narrative– The style that we all know and love! The main purpose of the narrative writing style is to tell a story. Novellas, Short Stories, Biographies, Poetry, and Novels are all good examples of this style. Simply put, narrative writing style answers the question, “Then what happened?”
  2. Expository-This style explains or informs. The opinion of the writer is usually left out of this type of writing and it’s very subject-oriented. Textbooks, How To Instructions, Manuals, and Recipes are all good examples of expository writing.
  3. Persuasive-Persuasion is the main purpose of this style. It always contains the opinions/biases of the author and it’s meant to convince the reader of something.  Advertisements, Opinion Columns, Resume Cover Letters, and Reviews are common persuasive styles.
  4. Descriptive-Descriptive writing focuses on the details of a character, event, or place and it often incorporates the five senses. Good examples of this style are Poetry and Journaling.

So now that you know the four styles of writing, which style do you use most often? I challenge you to step out of your comfort zone and write in a different style this week!
X LLB

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Throwback Book Trailer for Obsessed with Her…

February 22, 2019– I thought it would be fun to post the throwback book trailer for my novel, Obsessed with Her! Have you read it yet? What did you think? It’s in its fifth reprint, and we just can’t seem to keep it in stock. Get your copy today from our online store or at Indigo, Chapters, Coles, Barnes and Noble, and of course, Amazon! The prequel to Obsessed with Her, is titled, Becoming James Cass and will be released in September of this year. Stay tuned for more trailers from Pandamonium Publishing House, coming soon!

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Pitching Your Self-Pub to a Literary Agent…

February 20, 2019– So, you’ve self-published a book, and now you want to pitch your book to a literary agent. This is a tougher road to submission versus the traditional route because publishing is all about sales figures. It can be confusing and frustrating so here’s how to do it right and get your query read!

  1. Sales. Yep, the almighty dollar. Publishing is a business and should be treated as such. How many copies has your book sold? This does NOT include FREE downloads. Please do not query an agent unless you’ve sold 2000-3000 print books or 10,000-20,000 ebooks.  Agents look for books that encompass money and success, you must show that your work is above the millions of other books that are self-published each year and one way to do this is to put your money where your mouth is. Prove that your book is saleable with the cash it’s already raked in.
  2. Media attention. Amazon reviews don’t count so I’ll stop you right there. Query an agent only when your book has received reviews from mainstream media such as newspapers, magazines, and tv shows. The bigger, the better!
  3. Bring on the accolades. Has a high profile author or celebrity said something nice about your book? Has an expert in the field you’ve written about endorsed your work? If not, don’t approach an agent until you’ve got some attention from notable names! A blurb or endorsement from a well-known person is an invaluable marketing tool that will better your chances of an agent wanting to represent you.

Eventually, we will delve into the how-to of getting a literary agent to represent your work, but that’s for another blog post down the road. Start with this and when you fulfill the above requirements, we’ll talk. Happy writing! X LLB

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How to Write a Book Review

February 18, 2019– Today we’re talking about book reviews; wait a second, there is a format for writing a book review? Let’s get real, there are formats for every piece of writing that you could ever think of!

Book reviews offer you a chance to share your perception of a book’s good and bad parts and to share info with other readers that they may find useful. Of course, book reviews also allow others to decide whether they should read the book themselves.

Here are the do’s and don’ts of writing a book review:

  1. Do provide a general overview of the book. Include the author, title, publication info such as the publisher and year of publication, and genre. In a few sentences us a taste of the book and your overall opinion of it.
  2. Do say WHY you liked or disliked the book. Be specific! What did you love about it? What did you hate about it? What could have made it better?
  3. Do take a stand. The whole point of a book review is to make a recommendation to your reader. Remember that it is possible to like and dislike parts of the same book! Don’t be afraid to share your opinion!
  4. Don’t give too much away. If you’re reviewing fiction don’t give away key points of plot or the ending or twists that could ruin it for other readers.
  5. Don’t make your review too long. A paragraph or two will do. Pick the thing that interests you most and the thing that you think will most interest your readers.
  6. Don’t be a jerk. If you didn’t enjoy the book, that’s fine, but don’t be insulting. Let your reader know why you were disappointed in the book while still being calm and unemotional.

So there you have it! I look forward to reading your reviews online for some books I’m thinking of reading!