Authors & Speakers Network Blog with Larry James

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Don’t Buy Into the Hype That Self-Published Authors Are Not REAL Authors

Filed under: Guest Author Articles,Self-Publishing — Larry James @ 8:30 am
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Laura Orsini, Guest Author

I just read on another “writing coach’s” Facebook page that “Self-Publishing Will Kill Your Reputation as a Quality Author.” She’s trying to make a clear distinction between self-published authors who use vanity presses and true independently published authors, but all she does is conjure up the same old “self-publishing has a stigma” line from years ago.

selfpub“Self-publishing.” A term often confused, skewed by greedy vanity publishing companies, and a stigma to the entire publishing industry. What do you think when you hear, “I am self-published?”

• That author wasn’t good enough to get a ‘real’ publisher.
• Their book probably wasn’t edited.
• Their cover design is horrible.
• They just wanted a quick fix, an easy road to get their book out.

This is only a smidgen of the stigma true independent publishers have to fight from those in the “self-publishing” industry. The fact is, any company you pay to publish your book, who pays you royalties, or who puts their logo on the back of your book – any company that handles the distribution of your book for you that is not a real book distributor – is not a self-publishing company. They are vanity, plain and simple.

The fact is, the publishing business is changing, and many “BIG NAME” authors are now choosing the self-publishing route.

Just to make sure I wasn’t crazy — and that the many articles I’ve been reading over the last six months to a year support this position, I did a quick Google search for “perspectives on self publishing.” The FIRST article that comes up is about Alissa Valdes-Rodriguez, who walked away from St. Martin’s Press to self-publish. That’s the term they use, “self-publish” – not “independently publish.” Her comments are telling:

Self-publishing, you see, gives me control. And if I’m not in control, God only knows what will happen. My work might end up shelved under “foreign” in my own country again, or the press release might once more call it “spicy” and me “a hot tamale.” I might, again, get booked to read at a store in Arizona, only to have the manager ask me if I speak English – my native and only tongue. Shudder.

And I recently posted an on my Facebook fan page a link to a conversation between authors Barry Eisler and Joe Konrath about this very subject… the primary focus of which is that Eisler walked away from a 6-figure agreement in favor of “self-publishing.”

Here’s the thing: this other coach is not wrong about vanity presses. They’re low-budget, and working with them can give you a black eye in the literary world. But she does all of her readers a grave disservice by dismissing the facts that:

a. The publishing industry is changing – anyone recall a little chain called Borders recently going under?

b. Self-publishing (aka indpendent publishing) does not carry nearly the stigma today that it did 10 or 15 years ago.

c. As many OR MORE opportunities exist for savvy self-publishing authors than for those tied to traditional publishing houses today.

d. High-quality self-published books are being released every day.

This “coach” would have done her readers/clients much more good by discussing the things one needs to do to make sure their self-published book is well received, such as:

samplecovers• Hire the best editor you can afford.
• Hire a professional book designer to create your cover and interior layout.
• Have your book professionally typeset.
• Make sure your book has a table of contents and index, if appropriate.
• Get an ISBN and LCCN.
• Register your book with the US Copyright office.
• Make sure you create a “publishing company” that does not have the author’s name/initials in it.
• Create a logo for said publishing company, and include it on the spine, the back, and the copyright page of the book.

A whole bevvy of new self-publishing authors would likely skip one or more of those steps, and thus run the risk of being decried “not good enough to get a ‘real’ publisher.” Those are the clients I love to work with. In fact, I recently helped two self-published (aka indpendently published) authors complete their books. Can you tell, by looking at the covers at the right?

Whatever you do, ignore the shouts that “self-publishing will kill your reputation as a quality author.”

NOTE: Bill Greaves at Concept West did the covers for both “Find Fulfill Flourish” and “Gabriel’s Angels.”

Larry’s Note: My first book was self-published in 1995. I have self-published 3 others since then. My next step was to find a distributor who would help get my books in the big chain stores. After I had had great success with the first 4 books (about 225,000 sold), a publisher became interested and published my 5th book. That was my strategy all along. 😉

BONUS ARTICLE: How to Distribute Your Self-Published Book Offline

LauraOrsiniCopyright © 2012 – Laura Orsini. Laura Orsini is an editorial, design, and marketing consultant who supports authors, speakers, and coaches who want to change the world. She works primarily with self-publishing authors – and all who have a passion and mission to get their message out into the world – and specializes in teaching them to think like marketers. Visit Laura’s Website, Blog and click “like” on Laura’s Facebook page!

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Authors & Speakers Network Blog

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

commentNOTE: 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, November 21, 2012

Video: The Book Marketing Continuum

Filed under: Author Tips,Guest Author Articles,Video — Larry James @ 8:30 am
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Joel Friedlander, Guest Author

Authors who are new to self-publishing can have a hard time understanding how all the parts of this puzzle fit together:

• Do I need 2 ISBNs?
• Should I print digital or offset?
• Can I publish ebooks and print books at the same time?

Hey, that’s understandable, because book publishing is an industry caught between centuries-old traditions, practices and ways of making books, and the onrush of new technology that’s changing all of that at the exact same time.

So I guess it’s no surprise that book marketing seems to be just another piece you have to “figure out” and then just get it done, another to-do item on the path to publication.

But book marketing means so much more than that. In this 12:52 video, you’ll learn about what I call the book marketing continuum, a kind of amazing loop of success that you can travel with your book throughout its history.

It brings into play social media, book launches, repurposing your content and a whole lot more.

Have a look and let me know what you think.

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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Authors & Speakers Network Blog

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

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Should All Authors Blog?

Rachelle Gardner, Guest Author

A few years ago, the standard wisdom was that authors, both fiction and non-fiction, should have blogs in order to gather an audience and build relationships with readers. Now, not so much. As social media and online marketing have evolved, my thoughts on blogging have changed. I think each author needs to carefully consider whether blogging is an appropriate vehicle for them based on:

whattoblog1. If they can do it well;

2. If they enjoy it; and

3. If their writing career can benefit from it.

If blogging doesn’t suit you, don’t spend too much time trying to make it work.

Why aren’t blogs the appropriate vehicle for all authors?

The proliferation of blogs in the last five years has made it increasingly difficult to stand out in the crowd.
Many authors are blogging faithfully but it doesn’t seem to be increasing readership of their books.
Many authors seem to be blogging to an audience that’s mainly other writers.
Many authors have a hard time figuring out what their blogs should be about (mostly fiction authors).
So, how do you decide if you should have a blog? Here are my thoughts:

Have a blog if:

1. You have something important to say and it seems people want to hear it.

2. You understand that blogging is about offering something of value, NOT about promoting yourself and your books.

3. You enjoy blogging (for the most part, anyway).

4. You find blogging contributes to your creativity and enthusiasm for writing your books, rather than sucking all the energy out of you.

5. You can find the time for blogging without it completely stressing you out.

6. Your books have a highly defined target audience, making it easy to target your blog.

7. Your books are topical (especially non-fiction), so that you have a clear and obvious theme for your blog.

Don’t have a blog if:

1. You keep asking yourself and others, “But what should I blog about?”

2. You only want to blog to promote your books and/or because you think you “have to.”

3. The whole idea stresses you out.

4. You honestly don’t have the time in your schedule to blog regularly.

5. You’ve been blogging for a year or more, and haven’t built up to a traffic level that seems worth it.

Nowadays there are numerous alternatives to blogging when it comes to online networking and promotion.

For example:

E-mail newsletters
Using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc., more effectively
Leveraging all the various ways Goodreads offers for promoting books
Learning how to attract a readership through Pinterest & Instagram
Having an effective LinkedIn profile page
Connecting with readers on Google+

Copyright © 2012 Rachelle Gardner, Literary Agent. Rachelle Gardner is an agent with Books and Such Literary Agency, representing both fiction and non-fiction. She’s looking for mainstream commercial projects for both the Christian and general markets. In non-fiction and memoirs, she looks for authors with established platforms, strong marketing hooks and an understanding of how to use social media. Non-fiction authors must have a book proposal and three sample chapters to be considered. She’s also seeking all kinds of fiction, and authors must have a completed manuscript to be considered.

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Authors & Speakers Network Blog

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

the-archives2Click for Archives! ~ 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

commentNOTE: 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
Follow Larry’s Pinterest page for authors and speakers at: https://www.pinterest.com/larryjames2012/authors-speakers-blog/

Monday, November 5, 2012

Author Central x 2!

Filed under: Author Tips,Guest Author Articles — Larry James @ 8:30 am
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Laura Pepper Wu, Guest Author

Create your Amazon.com Author Page and more. Amazon Author Central is a free tool provided by Amazon to help you promote your books – you can add your bio, claim all of your books so that they’re linked together, add a link to your website, import your blog RSS and Twitter account and more. It’s like a Facebook profile page but on Amazon!

Once all of this is filled out, a link to ‘More About the Author’ will be included on your book pages. This allows readers to find out more about you and your work, and connect with you on social media and on your blog in the future, so it’s definitely worth having.

What many authors don’t know is that you need to create an Author central account for both Amazon.co.UK and the US Amazon. Yup – you have to set up Author Central twice in order to make the most of it. It shouldn’t take long though – just sign up for free accounts using the links below and copy and paste all of the info twice.

Amazon Author Central UK
Amazon Author Central US
Visit the Larry James Author Page on Amazon.com

Copyright 2012 by Laura Pepper Wu. Laura Pepper Wu is an author’s best friend and founder of 30 Day Books – This tip was one of Laura’s Magic Monday Tips!

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Authors & Speakers Network Blog

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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