But on the bright side, there are many tools and hacks out there to help you speed up your productivity. I’ll get into the writing-specific ones first. Continue reading
If you’re new to freelancing, or considering taking the leap into the freelance world, here are three tips to help you get started. Continue reading
By Megan F.
Working as an indie author can be quite a challenge. You often don’t have the backing of big organizations to keep you on track or to help you out when the going gets rough. Luckily, most everyone today has access to technologies that can easily take the place of those institutions. As the kids say, there’s an app for that.
This applies to writing even in ways you might not have considered. While it may seem counter-intuitive to put helpful apps on your number one distraction device, using your phone/tablet for your writing may actually help you use it more productively. Take a look at these six apps recommended for indie authors to help take your writing to the next level. Continue reading
As an indie authorpreneur, it’s important to stay on top of the latest trends, not only in self-publishing, but in the publishing industry as a whole.
Here are some sites and blogs that I read regularly. Some of them cover the publishing industry, including news, book deals, and job moves. Others give updates on the indie world, such as Amazon algorithm changes or hot book genre trends. And some speculate on the future of publishing, and how digital affects the way books are made and consumer. I’ve found them all useful and often fascinating:
- The Book Designer
- The Bookseller
- Chris McMullen
- The Creative Penn
- Digital Book World
- The Digital Reader
- The Guardian (Self-publishing section)
- Jane Friedman
- Joe Wikert’s Digital Content Strategies
- LibraryJournal Info Docket
- The Passive Voice
- Publisher’s Lunch
- Publisher’s Weekly
- Publishing Perspectives
- Publishing Trendsetter
- The Scholarly Kitchen
I’ve also set up Google alerts for the keywords “book publishing”, “digital publishing”, “ebooks” and “self publishing.” Come to think of it, I should probably add another one for “indie authors.” I get these alerts once a week (I used to get them daily, but found that to be too overwhelming).
As for my list, I get most articles delivered to my inbox, which I scan in the mornings. If something looks particularly interesting, I bookmark it to read more thoroughly later.
This is definitely not a complete list–there are so many helpful sites out there. Where do you go to get your news?
Editor’s note: This post originally appeared February 2016.
By Belle Balace
Looking to build your platform online? Belle Balace from Visme shares tips on growing your brand through social media.
Whether you’re just starting to build your online presence or you just launched your startup and want to share it to the whole world, there’s no better way to achieve this than through social media.
If you have no idea on how to do this or where to start, here’s a great primer Matei Gavril of PRMediaOnline provided – visualized in this handy infographic made with Visme. All the basic and essential things you need to know about growing your brand on social media are right here.
Belle Balace is a Growth Specialist at Visme, an online visual tool where anyone can create engaging presentations, infographics and other visual content in less time.
Because of this, there are tons of resources online that give indie authors advice on how to find reviewers and contact them. Funds for Writers and eNovel Authors at Work gives some tips, such as keeping in mind that not everyone who initially agrees to review your book will do so (possibly due to time constraints or other factors in their life). It’s also important to keep in mind that it takes time to get your book reviewed.
As Jackie Weger at eNovel Authors at Work puts it:
Book reviews are NOT instant. One must wait for the reader to read the dang book. Patience is required. All reviewers have a TBR stack ahead of you. There is a protocol for approaching reviewers. In your email: Greet the reviewer by name. State your name and the name of your book and offer a one line tag. DO NOT send your book cold turkey. ASK FIRST. Or follow the instruction on the blog to submit your book for review.
Another approach is to go the book club circuit route, as talked about on Book Works. This also takes time, since you will need to reach out to small, niche groups. The upside is you’ll probably find a small group of people who not only love reading, but probably like your book (if you find a group who likes your genre).
And then there are paid reviews. This means paying a fee for a professional book reviewer or organization to give an honest review. These services tend to give credibility to a book, but can be expensive (running in the hundreds of dollars). MediaShift has a great Q&A post with Blue Ink Review.
However, sometimes reviews are not always accurate. Christina Larmer on Huffington Post writes how sometimes reviews are incorrect, such as a review of one of her books that talks about missing pages, even though there are no missing pages. Yet, she couldn’t get the review removed, which may be misleading to potential readers. She ends her piece with a request for reviewers to “Keep it real”:
Just be sure to make it honest and believable, and it will not only pass muster with the Powers That Be, you will be doing your fellow readers a good service. Because each genuine review you write gives other potential readers a chance to understand a little about the book and whether it’s worth investing in. Then they can go in, eyes wide open, before they press ‘download’.
What are your experiences with getting book reviews? Please share in the comments!
Editor’s note: This post originally appeared July 2016.
With that in mind, here’s a compilation of tips and tools that can help you with your book promotion efforts. Continue reading
One strategy I’ve written about before is going permafree, meaning you set one book in a series to permanently free, as a way to entice readers to buy the rest of the books in the series.
To add fodder to that idea, M. Louisa Locke writes about how using the permafree strategy freed up more of her time for actually writing (instead of working to constantly promote all her books). And Bacon and Books shares their experience with giving away books for free, at least temporarily.
If you’re looking to promote your book (whether you’re having a sale, offering it for free, or making it permafree), here a few websites you can try:
- BookBub (try out the author profiles)
- Book Talk
- Buck Books
- Ereader News Today
- Indie Book Lounge
- Self-Publishing Review’s 35+ Alternatives to BookBub
Additionally, check out my post, “7 Strategies and 110 Tools to Help Indie Authors Find Readers and Reviewers.”
Editor’s note: This post originally appeared April 2016.
Your opening sentence demonstrated that you don’t know the difference between “number,” which is used to describe things that can be counted, such as fenceposts and birds, and “amount,” which is used to describe something functionally impossible to count, like water or sand. So “a large amount of birds” flapping around the very first line of your book didn’t fill me with a sense of promise for your writing or a lot of respect for your editor. I’ll never know whether you told a good story—what I found in the few pages convinced me you couldn’t write well enough for the quality of the story to make a difference to me.