Category Archive: Have You Read…..

Oct 14

How can Writers use Pinterest

asksusanne.com authors pinterestWays For Writers To Use Pinterest

Pinterest is a bookmarking site that lets you save images, rather than text links.

Find a page (or picture) you like on the web, ‘pin’ it and add one of its images to a visual pinboard

Pinterest is also a social network: find interesting images and links based on what friends with common interests are ‘pinning’

Images on Pinterest automatically link back to the original page where the images was posted (creating the ‘bookmarking’ part).

There are plenty of ways for a writer to use Pinterest such as:

Create an Ideas board

Never again sit down at your desk and think “I don’t know what to write!”.

Browse the web and ‘pin’ pictures that suggest an intriguing starting point (or climax) for a story.

Browse other people’s boards on Pinterest, always thinking about characters, settings and story.

Add all these pictures to one “Writing Prompts” board  and refer to it as often as necessary.

Create a vision board for your characters

What does your heroine look like?
What are the various aspects of your hero’s character?
Where do your characters live?

– Create a vision board for story settings
Houses
Interiors
Exotic locales
Mundane locales

– Create a vision board for your story’s antagonist

Start working on your antagonist. Collect pictures of

People (mean people, nice people, overbearing parents, sweet grandmothers. Antagonists come in all forms)
Expressions of emotion
Places that typify your antagonist or evoke the difficulties your characters get into.

Collect inspirational posters and sayings

Lots of people collect and pin posters of inspirational sayings. You can create your own writing related board.

You can also easily create visual version of favourite quotes that you come across while reading.

Fire up your image software
Create a nice background,
Overlay some text in a nice clean, readable and a large enough size that it’ll catch someone’s eye when they are browsing lots of little thumbnails.
Post to a page on your own website.

When people click on the pin  they will be brought to you site, so make sure there is something good for them to discover on the page as well as the picture!

Build a board full of pictures of Authors that inspire you

Collect pictures of authors: those you love, those you aspire to be like. Look at them for inspiration

Writers you know you must be able to equal,
Writers who are more practiced than you, but who you don’t hold in complete awe,
The Idols of your writing life. You can’t imagine being like them, but reading their work always inspires you.

Collect pictures of beautiful libraries and bookshelves

You’re in this business because you love books and reading, right?. There’s nothing like gazing at a beautiful space filled with books to fill you with dreams of seeing your book among them. Also, these are popular pictures, often ‘repinned’ by avid readers, and isn’t that your target audience?

Collect pictures of authors’ workspaces, for inspiration

There’s  nothing like a little solidarity to make you feel you’re not alone in your writing journey. Why not pin some pictures of other writers’ workspaces? What does your work space look like?

Collect funny comics or pictures to give yourself a break.  There is a lot of humor and comics online aimed at readers and writers and librarians. Pin a few!

Collect beauty

Everything in your pinboards does not have to be connected to writing.

For inspiration – to get you in the creative zone –  collect pictures of things that you consider really beautiful. Art and beauty tend to inspire.

Collect cover art of books similar to your story

It can be easy to lose your way while writing, and lose the ‘tone’ you were striving for. A quick glance at a board full of the covers of books written the style you’re aiming for can get you right back on track. Imagine looking at a screen full of hard sci-fi books versus a screen full of historical romance covers. Instant mood-change!

Create a board for pictures of your work ‘in the wild’

If you have already published work, appeal to your fans for pictures of your work out in the real world. (You can do this through Twitter or Facebook or some other social network if you have a following there).

Collect pictures of your book being read, on shelves, on benches, in boxes arriving from Amazon.

Sharing these pictures  creates ‘social proof’ that other people are reading your work: a powerful marketing tool to encourage readers to try your work.

Create a board about something you really love, whether or not it’s related to writing

Readers like to get to know the authors, to get a look behind the scenes.

Where you write
What your research look like
What is outside your window

Have fun creating your boards and connecting with your audience.

Aug 30

How To Attract Search Engines and Readers

Book authors

You  may be relieved when your books are published. But the next stage  – marketing the book – awaits you.

And by now many authors realize that, for purposes of connecting with prospective readers, they need to be active on social media sites and have their own “home base” book author website.

here is an important piece of information about YOUR book author website:

While your book may be finished, your website should never be “finished.”

Why?    2 Reasons

1. SEO – Search Engine Optimization

You want your website to attract the search engines so that your site has a good possibility of coming up in people’s search results.

Search engines are picky – . they search for fresh content

For example, if your site is three years old and there have been no blog posts, new pages added, or new content, the search engines probably believe that your site is not an active one. And search results do NOT like to include inactive sites.

How do you tell the search engines that your site is indeed alive? You add fresh content as often as possible to demonstrate that all is well.

2.  Attracting readers – those people who appreciate what you write.

Fresh content appeals to the search engines and also appeals to your prospective readers. Particularly as you are a writer (you did write a book, right?), having a blog on your website offers the opportunity to showcase your writing and continually add fresh content.

What you blog about should preferably be somehow connected to your book(s).( In my free report  I share blog ideas) The consistency of your blog post topics is important for readers who have expectations as well as search engines, which also have expectations.

Search engines strive to return the most accurate results when a person searches on a word or expression. When you write your blog posts, share interesting information with your readers while staying on the “spine” of what you write about. It is a good idea to remember that the on-the-spine content you continually provide your prospective readers will also please the search engines.

The last word is to blog often, be consistent..

Share your thoughts on SEO…..

 

Aug 20

6 Steps to get on Amazon #1 Best Seller

Step 1 – Create the book

I’ve found that when I upload files to Kindle, web page filtered or.doc files seem to work the best without messing up the formatting.

OpenOffice (which is 100% free) let’s you save the file as both a .doc file as well as a .pdf. I prefer Microsoft Word 2010 as it creates hyperlinked table of contents automatically and you can just save the file as web page filtered.  Word 2010 also creates a pdf file.

I like to save it in both file formats. The PDF version is so I can give out free copies to people for review and the web page filtered file is the one that I actually use when uploading in Kindle Direct Publishing. (if you need support with this, I can help. Just ask me.)

Step 2 – Get an awesome cover made

If there’s anything that I’ve learned so far when it comes to Kindle books, it’s that covers sell books. (AKA people judge a book by its cover)

You could use an ebook cover generator – software that can create good looking ecovers such as ebook cover creator that has free and paid subscriptions.

Another site where you can have ecovers made  for only $5  is called Fiverr.com.

Step 3 – Create an opt-in page

This step may seem a little bit strange in the context of a book but I’ve found it to be very very important to the marketing process. It will also be a huge asset to you when you go to release a second or third book.

An opt-in page is basically a website online where you can collect the email address of the people that purchased your book. Amazon does not provide book sellers with this information, therefore, you need to ask for it.

On your wordpress site you can easily create an opt-in page or just add a opt-in form to your side bar widget.

On this page you can offer to give a  free bonus such as a  video trailer of your book, an audio recording of one of your chapters, or a pdf of how you get inspired to write your books. You use your bonus  in exchange for an email address.

Also, inside your book, at the beginning and at the end, you  can direct your readers to your website to get your bonus. Direct readers to your opt-in page link and marvel at all the opt-in emails your receive.

Once  you have  their emails on your list you can do several things…

– email that mailing list and ask them to leave a review on Amazon (boosting sales and credibility).

– email that list and inform them of a new book that I release.

– email that list and promote your virtual tour dates

– email that list and share thoughts of this and that letting your subscribers get to know you

It opens up so many opportunities to further push sales of existing and new books.

I highly recommend implementing this strategy in to your book marketing.

Step 4 – Create an account as a Kindle Direct Publisher (KDP for short)

Once you’ve got your book written, your book cover, and your opt-in page, it’s time to create a KDP account and submit your first book to the store.

To do this, we need to create KDP account, which is really as simple as going to http://kdp.amazon.com and signing up…

Once you’ve signed up, you’ll see an area called your Bookshelf…

Go ahead and click on “Add new title” because this is where we’re going to add our latest book…

Step 5 – Adding your book in to Amazon

For the most part, this is pretty straight forward from here on out…
Type in the name of your book.
Write a description that’s going to help sell the book.
In the description, put a lot of benefits as opposed to just describing the book. Try to describe what the reader’s end result from reading the book will be instead of just describing what the books about.
With Amazon, even the simplest of sales copy can be very effective because you are already borrowing on Amazon’s credibility.

Now… For categories, you have the ability to pick 2. So look through the categories that they provide and choose two that best fit your book’s topic. These categories don’t always match the categories that they will actually rank under inside Amazon. It’s a bit strange. Just pick the most relevant.

For “Search Keywords”, type the things that you think others would type to find your book. You can have up to 7 search terms so choose wisely.Those are  terms that, if people searched them, they would probably find your book .

Now you can upload the book cover  and  your book file (in web page filtered format if using word 2010 or if using Open office it will be a .doc format)

Digital Rights Management.you can select “Do not enable digital rights management”… This allows people who buy your book to read it on multiple devices if they choose.

Finally, where it asks if you want to allow lending,you can check yes. When people borrow one of your books you still get a little money for it.

Confirm that you’ve read the terms and conditions and click “Save and Publish”.

Give it 12-24 hours and your book will be live on Amazon!

Step 6 – Create an Author Central Page

With Author Central you can edit your editorial reviews, your books description, your personal profile on Amazon, track book sales, and much much more. This is critical for anyone serious about making Kindle work for them.

After your book is finally live on Amazon, you can go to http://authorcentral.amazon.com/ and create an account.

Once you’re logged in to Author Central, click on the “Books” tab at the top of the screen.

Click the button to “Add More Books”.

Do a search for your book. When you find it, click the button that says “This is my book”.

Your book is now linked to your Author Central account.
Next, click on the “Profile” tab at the top of the screen.

I recommend adding a photo and a biography about yourself. The biography will be added to your actual book sales page and helps people browsing books get to know a little more about you. Most people who sell Kindle books skip this step. It’s just one more thing to make your book page stand out.

Admittedly, marketing Amazon books is not easy. Other than writing the actual book yourself, this will probably be the next hardest part.

Share your experience with Kindle, I would love to hear from you