Authors & Speakers Network Blog with Larry James

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Marrying Commerce to Community: The Next Bookselling Revolution

Michael Larsen, Guest Author

“People, companies, and countries that don’t reinvent themselves every three-to-five years will get left behind.” ~ John Chambers, Chairman and CEO, Cisco Systems

At the end of the nineteenth century, there was concern about the future of reading because people were spending so much time riding bicycles. New technology makes people think either/or instead of both/and. Publishing will continue to be a hybrid business, and it will flourish, online and off, as never before, if the publishing community collaborates on thinking outside the big box, and is creative and resourceful in taking advantage of the huge opportunities technology offers.

booksOverlooked in discussions about bookselling is that print books are a unique medium. They can be converted into other forms and media, but they are irreplaceably valuable. Imagine the world without movies and CDs as it was at the beginning of the twentieth century. Then imagine it now without print books. A catastrophe for our personal, professional, and political future. Can you imagine taking an oath on an e-reader?

Mosaic: An Online Bookselling Community

One way to assure the future of print books is to regard them as artifacts of culture, not just commerce. The solution to online bookselling is for the publishing community to create its own Amazon as a non-profit cooperative, formed and administered by American Association of Publishers and the American Booksellers Association with the advice and support of The Author’s Guild, the Association of Authors’ Representatives, and other writing and publishing organizations.

Publishers would upload books into the system, post metadata, change whatever they wish whenever they wish, and fulfill orders. The cloud and the low cost of starting tech companies make this project easier and cheaper to accomplish than ever. Present and former Amazonians would be delighted to help. It could start just by selling books, then add features members want.

A possible name for the organization: Mosaic, because it would be a unified image yet each imprint would be distinct and enrich the whole. The slogan to improve on: “We care about books.” With the support of stakeholders in the industry, Mosaic will be fail-proof and a service to readers everywhere. Making the software available to other countries will make the idea universal.

Indies Unbound: An Offline Bookselling Community

It’s been predicted that Barnes & Noble will not recover from its problems and will suffer the same fate as Borders and the independents the chains destroyed. The creative destruction of four-story bookstores will be the greatest opportunity ever for independent bookselling, if they become community-based nonprofits or co-ops. The ideal size for a bookstore is 3,000-4,000 feet. A growing network of independent booksellers can thrive if they do these four things:

1. Become member-and-community-supported nonprofits like other cultural resources, such as PBS, libraries, museums, symphony orchestras, and dance and opera companies. A customer in Four-Eyed Frog Books in Gualala, California handed owner Joel Crockett a $100 bill as a deposit on future purchases, which inspired him to start a Community Supported Bookstore program. Members buy enough books in advance, perhaps at a discount, to help assure the store’s survival.

If the ABA decides to receive petitions from towns with, for example, a thousand names of people who commit to buying $100 worth of books a year, the ABA can help find someone to run it, help the person to start the store, and have someone available to answer questions. Regional associations and other indies will help.

The publishing community can support the ABA in making the case to the government that booksellers who wish should be nonprofits. The AAP and the ABA can help support new booksellers who want to adopt this model. Towns, local realtors, and independent stores could help provide needed products, services, and space.

books2This could happen with libraries that want to start a store. The ABA can post the demographics required to sustain a store, and send them to librarians, Chambers of Commerce, and regional bookselling organizations asking for potential locations. This idea will lead to the revival of stores forced out of business.

2. Have Espresso Book Machines that enable stores to stock as many books as Amazon as well as printing books for schools and independent publishers. Wouldn’t it be better for stores to stock one copy of twenty titles than twenty copies of one title? I watched Jason Epstein’s excellent Book Business being printed at McNally & Jackson in New York, before being handed the book warm off the press. It took five minutes. Since technology years are like dog years, in five years, it will take one minute. AAP and ABA should collaborate with Xerox on helping to get EBMs into bookstores now and encouraging publishers to make their lists available on EBMs. Color printing and printing in other formats should be integrated into EBMs as soon as the technology makes it possible.

3. Make Bookstores an ever more needed respite for screenagers by being community centers that
respond to their community’s needs and tastes, provide events and classes, serve as a meeting place for reading and writing groups,contribute to community events and causes.

4. Continue to collaborate with other businesses to make customers aware that communities lose a quarter of every dollar spent in chains while indies spend that income in the community. There is a growing interest in locally produced food and independently produced goods. Indies can use signing and all the other ways they communicate with customers to convince locavores to become loca-shoppers.

The America we love will not outlive print books. Technology is transforming the world from a collection of me cultures into a hyper-connected we culture, a global village with a human family united by the same needs and desires. We need books more than ever to help solve the problems our institutions can’t.

Technology is giving us these two gifts for the book community to enlarge the community of the book. If, for the first time, the book community collaborates on marshaling the passion of readers, writers, and professionals, print books will receive the support they need and deserve. Like writing and publishing, bookselling is a labor of love. Wedding community and commerce will create an enduring union that will produce happy readers, publishers, and booksellers.

The blog aspires to help you and me understand writing and publishing. To make the blog as good as I would like it to be, I need your comments, questions, and answers. I hope that you will find it worth sharing with your community of writers.

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Copyright 2012 by Michael Larsen. Michael Larsen is a literary agent and consultant to nonfiction writers. He and his partner Elizabeth Pomada are co-directors of the San Francisco Writers Conference and the San Francisco Writing for Change Conference. He is the author of the new fourth edition of How to Write a Book Proposal and the third edition of How to Get a Literary Agent. Mike is coauthor of the second edition of Guerrilla Marketing for Writers: 100 Weapons for Selling Your Work. www.larsenpomada.com.

(More info: @SFWC – SFWC for Writers! [San Francisco Writers Conference] on Twitter).

Larry James is a professional speaker and the author of three relationship books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” His newest book is “Ten Commitments of Networking.” Larry James also offers “Author & Speaker” coaching. Contact: AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. CelebrateLove@cox.net – More than 110 articles especially for Authors & Speakers at: www.AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.com

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationships” BLOG at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking” BLOG at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Weddings” BLOG at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com

Friday, August 17, 2012

Bookstore Distribution Explained – Video

Filed under: Author Tips,Book Sales,Guest Author Articles,Video — Larry James @ 7:00 am
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Joel Friedlander, Guest Author

It’s been said lots of times: bookstores may be the worst place for a self-publisher to sell books. In this video Joel explains why, including:

• The three key elements that have to line up for you to be successful in bookstore distribution.

• Why print on demand books don’t work for bookstore distribution

• The reason you’ll need to spend thousands of dollars up front and at risk to pursue this distribution channel

• The many players you’ll require to get your book the attention it will need

• How to “work the numbers” to see if your book will succeed in distribution

If you’ve ever thought of selling your books in lots of bookstores, take a few minutes to watch this 8:52 whiteboard video.

JoelFriedlanderCopyright 2012 by Joel Friedlander. Joel Friedlander is a self-published author and book designer who blogs about book design, self-publishing and the indie publishing life at TheBookDesigner.com. He’s also the proprietor of Marin Bookworks, where he helps publishers and authors who decide to publish get to market on time and on budget with books that are both properly constructed and beautiful to read. Follow Joel on Twitter and subscribe to his blog.

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Larry James is a professional speaker and the author of three relationship books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” His newest book is “Ten Commitments of Networking.” Larry James also offers “Author & Speaker” coaching. Contact: AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. CelebrateLove@cox.net – More than 110 articles especially for Authors & Speakers at: www.AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.com

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationships” BLOG at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking” BLOG at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Weddings” BLOG at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com

Thursday, August 9, 2012

How to Manage the Stresses of Being a Professional Speaker

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Managing Stress,Speaker Tips — Larry James @ 7:00 am
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Stan Popovich, Guest Author

Stress and anxiety are very common when you are a professional speaker. As a result, here is a list of techniques that a professional speaker can use to help manage their daily stresses and anxieties.

ProSpeakerSometimes, we get stressed when everything happens all at once. When this happens, a person should take a deep breath and try to find something to do for a few minutes to get their mind off of the problem. A person could take a walk, listen to some music, read the newspaper or do an activity that will give them a fresh perspective on things.

Challenge your negative thinking with positive statements and realistic thinking. When encountering thoughts that make you fearful or depressed, challenge those thoughts by asking yourself questions that will maintain objectivity and common sense.

Click for more info!

Remember that no one can predict the future with one hundred percent certainty. Even if the thing that you feared does happen there are circumstances and factors that you can`t predict which can be used to your advantage. For instance, you are at your place of work and you miss the deadline for a project you have been working on for the last few months.

Everything you feared is coming true. Suddenly, your boss comes to your office and tells you that the deadline is extended and that he forgot to tell you the day before. This unknown factor changes everything.

In dealing with your anxieties as a professional speaker, learn to take it one day at a time. While the consequences of a particular fear may seem real, there are usually other factors that cannot be anticipated and can affect the results of any situation. Get all of the facts of the situation and use them to your advantage. The more control you have over your stresses and anxieties, the better off you will be in the long run.

Take advantage of the help that is available around you. If possible, talk to a professional who can help you manage your fears and anxieties. They will be able to provide you with additional advice and insights on how to deal with your current problem.

By talking to a professional, a person will be helping themselves in the long run because they will become better able to deal with their problems in the future. Managing your fears and anxieties takes practice. The more you practice, the better you will become.

Copyright 2012 by Stan Popovich. Stan is the author of “A Layman’s Guide to Managing Fear Using Psychology, Christianity and Non Resistant Methods” – an easy to read book that presents a general overview of techniques that are effective in managing persistent fears and anxieties. For additional information go to: http://www.managingfear.com/

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Larry James is a professional speaker and the author of three relationship books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” His newest book is “Ten Commitments of Networking.” Larry James also offers “Author & Speaker” coaching. Contact: AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. CelebrateLove@cox.net – More than 110 articles especially for Authors & Speakers at: www.AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.com

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

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Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationships” BLOG at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking” BLOG at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Weddings” BLOG at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Writing: Do You Have a Book in You?

Filed under: Author Tips,Guest Author Articles — Larry James @ 7:00 am
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Dianna Booher, CSP, CPAE, Guest Author

Rarely do I finish a speaking or training engagement that someone doesn’t ask me some version of this question: “What’s involved in writing a book? How hard is it to get published?”

My answer: It depends. Anybody can write a book these days. Almost 3 million titles were published last year alone (includes self-published books). Apple even provides free software (iBook) so you can download a template to publish your own ebook. But if you’re talking about writing a great book, published by a major publisher, well reviewed by objective readers, that sells well, then that’s an altogether different story.

If you’re inclined to try your hand, here are a few lessons I’ve learned after having published 46 of my own:

Click cover – More Info

1. Build your platform. The most difficult thing is not writing your book, but getting attention for your book above the noise. Publishers want to know how you will reach your intended readers. In what circles are you well known? What connections do you have with other high-profile people who might help you get attention for your book? How active are you on social media? In industry associations? In community activities? How large is your mailing list?

2. Study the market. You may have heard the old adage, “Write what you know.” That’s solid advice for novel writing; if you write from personal experience, the emotion will ring true. But in other genres, look to other levers for impetus: What problems need to be solved? What trends do you see on the horizon? What myths need to be exposed? What principles do people need to embrace? Grab an idea that appeals to the masses or that addresses a single issue for a niche market. Either way, study the market for your idea and the books that already compete on the topic.

3. Know your audience. Picture the ideal person to buy your book: age, gender, education, career, family, dreams, goals, fears, problems. Write for that one person.

4. Write a great proposal. There’s no one template for a great proposal any more than there’s one way to make a chocolate cake. But then all chocolate cakes do have a few common ingredients. Likewise, great proposals will overview the concept clearly and crisply, provide a comprehensive marketing plan, and include the author biography. Learn what goes into winning proposals.

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5. Craft a great title. While a mediocre title won’t keep a good book from selling, a great title can sell a mediocre book. My agent once held my proposal on a time-sensitive topic for 12 days before submitting it to publishers because he thought we could come up with a better title than my first attempt. Titles either titillate readers or torpedo your proposal.

6. Follow through on the project. At some point, you do have to sit down and write the book—rather than just talk about it. It always surprises me how often a would-be writer sells an idea to agent or editor and gets a go-ahead and contract, but then never delivers the manuscript. Writing a book proves to be just like any other long-term project; it requires a plan, complete with interim steps and deadlines. Waiting for inspiration is for the mystics among us.

7. Make your writing riveting—or at least readable. Today’s readers have too much competing for their attention to struggle with heavy prose, jargon, convoluted sentences, and grammar glitches. They skim, skip, and click through your pages, wanting to be engaged, informed, persuaded, or amused. If they snooze, you lose.

8. Promote, promote, promote like it all depends on you. Publishers distribute your book so that it’s available in stores and online. They also do a fairly good job of selling sub-rights: audio series, electronic rights, movies, and foreign translations. A few do a good job at marketing and promoting your book. But for the most part, they count on authors to be the chief marketer. So understand and plan for that role from the very beginning, include it in your proposal, think “marketing” as you write your book, and allocate sufficient time in your career game plan.

DiannaBooher Copyright 2012 by Dianna Booher. Reprinted with permission. Dianna Booher works with organizations to increase their effectiveness in communication: oral, written, interpersonal, and cross-functional . She’s the author of 46 books, published in 23 languages, with nearly 4 million copies sold. Her most recent titles are Creating Personal Presence: Look, Talk, Think, and Act Like a Leader (Berrett-Koehler) and Communicate with Confidence—The Revised and Expanded Version (McGraw-Hill). Her previous work has won an American Library Association’s Best Nonfiction of the Year award and another has appeared on Executive Soundview Summaries list of “20 Best Business Books of the Decade.” Good Morning America, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Investor’s Business Daily, Bloomberg, NPR, Forbes, CNN International, The New York Times, Washington Post, Success — all have featured her work on critical communication issues. Dianna has won the highest awards in the speaking industry, having been inducted into the National Speakers Association’s Speaker Hall of Fame. Speaking clients include IBM, ExxonMobil, Microsoft, BP, Chevron, Pepsico, Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, NASA, and the US Navy along with 227 of the Fortune 500. www.booher.com www.booher.com/booherbanter

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Larry James is a professional speaker and the author of three relationship books, “How to Really Love the One You’re With: Affirmative Guidelines for a Healthy Love Relationship,” “LoveNotes for Lovers: Words That Make Music for Two Hearts Dancing” and “Red Hot LoveNotes for Lovers.” His newest book is “Ten Commitments of Networking.” Larry James also offers “Author & Speaker” coaching. Contact: AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. CelebrateLove@cox.net – More than 110 articles especially for Authors & Speakers at: www.AuthorsandSpeakersNetwork.com

Subscribe to Larry’s FREE monthly “LoveNotes for Lovers” eZINE. Contact: CelebrateLove.com, P.O. Box 12695, Scottsdale, AZ 85267-2695. – CelebrateLove.com and CelebrateIntimateWeddings.com

NOTE: All articles and “LoveNotes” listed in this BLOG – written by Larry James – are available for reprint in magazines, periodicals, newsletters, newspapers, eZINEs, on the Internet or on your own Website. Click here for details.

letsbefriends2

Add Larry James as a “friend” to your Facebook page: http://www.Facebook.com/larry.james
Follow Larry’s “once daily” Relationship Tweet at: http://www.Twitter.com/larryjames
Follow Larry’s “Relationships” BLOG at: http://CelebrateLove.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Networking” BLOG at: http://NetworkingHQ.wordpress.com
Follow Larry’s “Weddings” BLOG at: http://CelebrateIntimateWeddings.wordpress.com

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