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April 2015
1

You write with passion. You rewrite with purpose. That is to say, your first draft is spun with reckless abandon. The words click onto the page as fast as you can tap your fingers across the keyboard. They are delivered from a place that is located deep within the right hemisphere of your brain. You write what you see. You don't think about what you write. Rewriting? Not so much.

 

The left hemisphere of your old grey matter gets involved during rewrites and starts to apply logic to the free flow of thought that had created such a beautiful, wandering mess. Your top priority during rewrites is to keep everything that has a purpose in the story. Everything else, no matter how well written, must go.

 

While all the elements of a story are interconnected, as you rewrite, you might want to give each chapter a "Purpose Rating" and grade each element separately on a scale from one to five. Anything that gets less than a three should be cut.

 

Establish your "Purpose Rating" by considering these elements:

 

  • Plot purpose: Does the material move the plot forward or shed light on certain story elements that solidify the foundation of the plot?

  • Character purpose: Does the material give relevant insight into aspects of character? Does it give your character depth that steers away from clichés? Does it provide a compelling piece of character development that is unexpected and new, without being distracting?

  • Setting purpose: Does the material set the proper mood? Does it paint a picture that fits the theme and genre of your story? Does it break the rules without disrupting the story?

  • Dialogue purpose: Is the material necessary? Some dialogue is used as an "exploratory" device. Meaning, when it was first written it may have been connective tissue for an upcoming subplot or character revelation. In a lot of cases, those future elements either never materialize or are eliminated. Be on the lookout for these holes.

  • Subplot Purpose: Is your subplot a minor detour from the story or a complete diversion? If it's too far removed from the plot, it's doing more harm than good.

You will find that rewriting is a much harder process than writing. It should be. You're applying logic to an artistic endeavor. You have to be ruthless in your cuts. Applying a "Purpose Rating" may help you look at your story more objectively.   

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

 

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Two Mistakes Indie Authors Should Avoid

The Purpose of Subplots

7,871 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: authors, writers, setting, writing, characters, drafts, plot, dialogue, rewriting, writing_help, subplot
0

Last year I watched the Oscars with two friends. At some point an award for writing was presented, and while I don't remember who won it, I do remember what he said, because I burst out laughing.

 

He said something along the lines of...writers hate themselves.

 

My two friends looked at me in surprise, so I explained to them that I found the comment hilarious and true. Not that I hate myself all the time or anything, but since I became a published author I've definitely experienced the occasional spell of self-loathing while working on a book. Crippling, almost paralyzing self-doubt taunts me in the form of these kinds of questions: Is this terrible? What if my fans hate this? Where is this story going? What am I doing? What business do I have trying to make a living as a novelist?

 

My friends were shocked to learn this about me. They think my life is perfect. (Ha.) Don't get me wrong. I love being a full-time author, and I'm incredibly proud of what I've accomplished. I'm also well aware that there are a lot of people out there who would cut off a limb to be in my position. However, when I was trying to get my first novel (Perfect on Paper) published, I remember thinking that once published, writing future books would be easy because I would feel like I had made it. Unfortunately, I was dead wrong. Perfect on Paper reached #2 overall on Amazon, and here I am, seven books later, still racked with self-doubt. Maybe it's that sense of insecurity that fuels the creative process and pushes me to tell good stories, but it certainly wasn't something I expected to last this long!

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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Give Author Modeling a Try

How to be a Confident Writer

2,708 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, writing, promotions
2

Here's a small marketing idea that could lead to expanded exposure on a global scale. It's not groundbreaking, but it won't break your budget either. It's a long-haul plan, so don't expect an immediate return on your investment. Think of it as a side project that has the potential to grow your brand in a big way.

 

I live in a community that has a fairly large number of bed-and-breakfasts, small inns not affiliated with national chains, and vacation rental homes. The amount of amenities varies from establishment to establishment, but virtually all of them have a bookshelf filled with books. The titles usually cover a number of different genres and categories to match the variety of tastes of the different guests that stream in and out throughout the year. Why can't some of those books be written by you?

 

These places are either independently owned or run by small rental companies. It would be easy to find contacts and offer to send signed books for them to place in their properties. You would, of course, include a personal note in each copy inviting guests to join you on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. Presumably, these guests could come from all over the globe. This could be a real opportunity to make contacts far and wide.

 

I've stayed in a number of these establishments myself, and even though I have an electronic reading device, I always end up going through the book collections made available to guests looking for a physical book. Who knows? Maybe next time I'm staying at a bed-and-breakfast, I could be reading your book.

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

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Marketing Tip: Set up an Author Page on Amazon

The Brand and the Pseudonym

2,831 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: books, self-publishing, promotion, book_marketing, craft, social_media, author_brand, marketing_ideas, marketing_strategy, book_exposure
0

Welcome to the Weekly News Roundup - a collection of news, advice and opinions from around the virtual globe.

 

Books/Publishing

 

Toni Morrison: Write, Erase, Do It over - The Book Deal

An interview about writing with the legendary author.           

                           

New Trends in Book Marketing: Mobile, Millennials and More - Publishing Perspectives

Is 2015 all about the phablet when it comes to marketing your book?         

 

Film

                                                        

The Complete Mark Duplass Filmmaking Bible on Becoming a Successful Director - No Film School

When it comes to independent film, Mark Duplass is in a league of his own.     

                                          

Five Screenwriting Lessons from Quentin Tarantino - Film Slate Magazine

Tarantino, the master of Macabre Noir, shares his writing secrets. 

                                                                                                                                              

Music

 

Sample-Based Synthesis - Bit by Bit - Audio Fanzine

Converting analog signals to digital.  

  

Twenty-Five Tips from Music Marketing Experts for an Indie Release - Solveig Whittle

Indie artist Solveig Whittle shares the tips she's uncovered from industry experts.   

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Weekly News Roundup- April 17, 2015

Weekly News Roundup- April 10, 2015

2,441 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: authors, marketing, book, music, self-publishing, promotion, indie, movies, writers, publishing, writing, films, promotions, director, musicians, filmmakers
0

The Plot Plight

Posted by CreateSpaceBlogger Apr 22, 2015

My favorite book is an obscure title first released in 1933 called God's Little Acre by Erskine Caldwell. Well, it's obscure now. When it was released, it was actually both a commercial hit and the subject of controversy because it was deemed vulgar by some. By today's standards, it's not nearly as provocative as it was in the 1930s.

 

I write about it today because I can make the argument that the book is without a main plot. The catalyst for the action in the beginning is the patriarch of a deeply impoverished family's obsessive search for gold on his dying farm. It's a fruitless endeavor that ruins the farmland. This search for riches serves as a backdrop to the lives of the family members and the hardships that weave them together. There's an illicit affair that tears the family apart. There's a strike at a nearby cotton mill that ends in tragedy. There's a murder. The book is basically a scrapbook of events that paints the sad portrait of a family plagued by poverty. The futile search for gold is less a plot than it is a shadow cast by the family's endless misfortune.

 

A plot is described as the main event of a book that gives a story meaning. Other events, subplots, give a story depth. My dissection of God's Little Acre has me questioning my sanity. A book, I've been taught, must have a clearly defined plot. I've been encouraged to establish the plot early in a story. And I've been told repeatedly that a book cannot end without some sort of resolution to that plot. Caldwell did none of those things in God's Little Acre, but he managed to write a compelling, truly enriching story. How is that possible?

 

So, here's my question to you, dear writer, what is your philosophy on plot? Where is it established in your story? How clearly defined is it? Can you think of a book that contains a muddled plot, but still manages to deliver a gripping story?

 

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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The Importance of Plot Points

The Purpose of Subplots

2,381 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: books, authors, author, writing, characters, plot, development, craft, writing_tips, plot_point
2

Sometimes when people find out that I'm an author, they ask if I write under my own name or if I use a pseudonym. Given how hard it is to generate awareness about my books using the name I've had my entire life, this question always makes me laugh. However, I do think for some authors a pen name isn't necessarily a bad idea, so I thought it was worth writing a blog post on the subject.

 

If you've already published a book, then you've learned first-hand how much effort goes into promoting it, no matter who your publisher is. And if you've read my blog with any regularity you'll see that many of my suggestions for book marketing involve tapping into personal and professional networks. College alumni magazines and alumni groups, fraternity/sorority connections, business associations, social media accounts - these all offer receptive, credible channels for getting news about your book out to the world. If you try doing that under another name, you're going to run into some obstacles. How would you contact your college alumni magazine, for example? It's certainly doable, but it would take a lot more effort. And what about your author website? Or Facebook fan page? Author headshot? Author bio? Twitter account? Email address? Creating all of that for a fictitious person is possible, but it sounds pretty time-consuming to me.

 

However, I do think using a pen name could be a good idea in the following scenarios:

 

  • You write erotica or a variation of and prefer to keep it on the down low.
  • For whatever reason you don't want anyone in your personal life to know you've written a book - yet, or maybe ever.
  • Your book includes personal experiences too painful or intimate to present as your own (e.g., a memoir).
  • You're well respected in a certain field or industry and prefer to keep your writing life separate.
  • You just want to test the waters without worrying about being embarrassed if your book flops (completely understandable).

 

I'd love to hear from those of you who write under a pen name. Do you agree with me?

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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The Brand and the Pseudonym

An Author by Any Other Name

5,814 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, marketing, writing, promotions, pen_name
1

I had a conversation with an individual organizing a marketing campaign for an upcoming play at a local theater. I've been to more than my fair share of plays. I've seen productions big and small, but I had never been exposed to what it takes to market a play. It was fascinating to hear all the ideas. I, of course, wondered if any of the ideas could be applied to the marketing of a book.

 

Most of what we talked about was venue specific, so it wasn't applicable to an author's needs. But one idea struck me as fairly universal. The theater discussed the possibility of "adopting" a charitable organization. While part of the proceeds from ticket sales would go to the charity, they would also include the charity's information in the program, make a direct pitch to the audience before each performance, and give the organization a prominent presence on the website, Facebook page and newsletter. While the strategy was designed to give the charity exposure, it would inevitably give the theater a brand boost, and it would build positive community equity that could be used to attract corporate sponsors and a wider audience. In essence, both sides win.

 

Authors could use a similar strategy. While the payoff wouldn't be associated with a venue-based event, it could be tied to a time period. For example, you could designate a week to providing exposure for a local or nationwide charity you feel passionately about. A portion of your proceeds that week would be donated to said charity. You would devote a week of blogging, Facebooking, personal videos and so forth to your charity. You could make it an annual or biannual event. You could even volunteer to write a piece for the charity's blog or newsletter.

 

If this is a strategy you wish to pursue, the most important piece of advice I will give you is to choose a charity you feel passionately about. It will make the work and effort you put into the strategy that much more rewarding. If the charity has a tie-in to the story in your book, that is an even bigger plus.

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

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Giving Back: A Cautionary Tale

Form an Author Co-op

2,040 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, marketing, writing, promotions, charity
0

Welcome to the Weekly News Roundup - a collection of news, advice and opinions from around the virtual globe.

 

Books/Publishing

 

How to Build Your Email List with a Free e-course - The Future of Ink

Build your brand by sharing your knowledge.           

                           

So You Think You Finished a Novel - Kameron Hurley

The joys and pains of rewriting.         

 

Film

                                                        

The Five Laws for Hollywood Success - Filmmaking Stuff

Five common sense rules that anyone can follow.     

                                          

Making a Horror Film? These Six Steps Could Make You a Legend - Movie Pilot

An extreme horror fan reveals the secrets of the scary film arts. 

                                                                                                                                              

Music

 

How to Refine Your Singing Style - Easy Ear Training

Your voice is unique, but it still most likely fits into one of five styles.  

 

Listening to Tight Voices? Danger: It Can Tighten Your Own - Judy Rodman

Your voice automatically attempts to mimic what you hear.  

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Weekly News Roundup- April 10, 2015

Weekly News Roundup- April 3, 2015

2,271 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: authors, marketing, music, filmmaking, film, author, self-publishing, promotion, indie, movies, blogging, promotional, films, promotions, book_promotion, musicians, craft, filmmakers, branding, singing, writing_novel, flim, film_tips
2

We all know subplots are basically a device to give your story a word count that will make it a book-worthy document, right? Wrong. Subplots weren't created to fatten up stories to please consumers. At least, they shouldn't be.

 

Here is what subplots can really do for your book:

 

  • Subplots allow you to add depth to your characters. Your plot may revolve around a murder mystery, but a subplot involving a troubled marriage or a struggle with alcoholism gives you the opportunity to dive deeper into a character's life. Your characters have a place in your plot and can even drive the plot. Giving them subplots gives them their own place in the story.

  • Subplots can serve as a thread to tie books in a series together. A subplot that snakes through the background of one book can grow into the main plot for the next book. It gives your story layers that can shift from book to book.

  • Subplots give your story a reality that would otherwise be vacant. Real life is messy. Books are a series of carefully constructed events. Subplots give the illusion of chaos. They make things seem real-world crazy and messy.

I'm not suggesting that you shouldn't use subplots to beef up your book. I am, however, suggesting you don't consider upping your word count as beefing up your book. Readers will see it for what it is: padding. Subplots should be used to give your characters and story depth. That is how you beef up your book.

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Turning Subplots into Plots

The Importance of Plot Points

9,457 Views 2 Comments Permalink Tags: books, writing, characters, craft, writing_style, writing_tips, writing_advice, pace, plot_points, subplot
1

Did you know you probably have an Author Page on Amazon? Amazon creates Author Pages for most authors, but if you haven't claimed your Author Page, you aren't taking full advantage of this option. Setting it up on Amazon's Author Central site is easy, free, and a great way to connect with readers. In addition to information about your book(s), your page can include your photo and bio (where you can include your e-mail address, a link to your Facebook page or website or anything else you want to share with readers), your tweets and blog posts, even video! There's also a "Follow" button under your profile image that allows anyone to connect with you and receive notifications if you write additional books. (In my opinion, that feature alone is worth creating a page.)

 

Your current and future fans can find your Author Page either by typing your name into the search box on Amazon or by clicking on your name on the detail page of your book(s). Once you have an Author Page set up, a hyperlink will automatically appear under your name on the detail page.

 

I regularly get e-mails from authors who say they want to promote their books but don't have the money or the time. This is something you can do without either of those things. It's also an effective stand-in for a website if you don't have one.

 

Okay, time to stop reading and get moving. Set up your Author Page now. I'm not techy at all, and I was able to do it with no problem. So no excuses, chop-chop. I promise you'll be glad you did.

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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The Author Bio is an Important (and Often Overlooked) Marketing Tool

Tips for Engaging Your Readers Online

8,276 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, marketing, promotions, author_central
0

Are you ready for the big screen - err, small screen - tiny, even? The Internet has given rise to storytelling in the form of online video. Some of these stories are doled out over several short videos to form a web series. Independent producers and uber-fans have taken their favorite books and turned them into popular web series. They range from literal adaptations to quirky, re-imagined versions.

 

Beyond giving you a unique take on your indie novel, a web series gives you another avenue for marketing your book and a new pool of fans to join your community. Here are my five rules for creating a web series:

 

  1. Keep it short - Chances are, in the beginning at the very least, your series is going to be a passing object of curiosity. People aren't likely to devote a half hour or even 15 minutes to watch your series. My advice is to keep the run time of each video in your series under five minutes.

  2. Keep it tight - With the innovation of smaller screens on handheld devices, long shots have lost their effectiveness. Details get lost on those itty-bitty screens, especially for someone with aging eyes like mine. Keep your shots as tight as you can while still allowing for the necessary action.

  3. Don't forget the sound - Bad audio on a video production will kill even the greatest cinematography and render your impeccable story unwatchable. Even casting a great actress like Meryl Streep won't save your production if your audio is subpar. Don't skimp on sound equipment. Get the best you can afford.

  4. Lighting - Even the camera on your mobile device is fairly sophisticated and can adapt to various light situations, but that doesn't mean you should take lighting shortcuts. A consistent look to your production is crucial for a web series. A lot of that signature look comes from the lighting. Take your time, and do it right.

  5. Cast - If you can't act, don't cast yourself in the series. Find people in your area who can not only act, but are willing to take direction. This is your series. Take charge.

Web series are becoming more popular every day. Now is the time to evaluate your material and determine if it can be adapted to short, episodic videos.

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

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Social Networking Tour - Facebook

Build Your Brand with Original Content

2,573 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, marketing, writing, promotions, web_series
0

Welcome to the Weekly News Roundup - a collection of news, advice and opinions from around the virtual globe.

 

Books/Publishing

 

Get in Good with Goodreads - Writer's Digest

Veteran author Michael J. Sullivan shares his secrets to Goodreads success.           

                           

Reader Question: Grammar, Second Languages, and Book Soundtracks - All Indie Writers

Poor grammar and typos in your marketing material can cost you readers.         

 

Film

                                                        

Top Five Things I've Discovered about Promoting a Low Budget Children's Film - Projector Films

Be relentless, and be prepared for the long haul.     

                                          

The 11 Principles of Leadership for Filmmakers - Studio Binder

Know thyself, and know thy craft. 

                                                                                                                                              

Music

 

Nine Reasons a Guitar Pickup Sounds the Way It Does - Bobby Owsinski's Big Picture Music Production Blog

What seems simple can actually mean everything when it comes to tone.  

  

How to Use Craigslist to Book Music Gigs - Bob Baker's TheBuzzFactor.com

Can a free site help find paying gigs?  

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Weekly News Roundup- April 3, 2015

Weekly News Roundup- March 27, 2015

2,532 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, marketing, book, music, filmmaking, author, self-publishing, promotion, indie, movies, writing, guitar, promotions, reading, musicians, filmmakers, social_media, music_industry, grammar_tip, grammar_advice, music_gigs, music_shows
1

A gentleman by the name of Matthew Jockers "did some distance similarity metric calculations and machine clustering" to determine how many different kinds of basic plot structures exist in the world of storytelling. 90% of the time when he ran the test, the answer was that there are six different plot structures, and 10% of the time, the answer was seven. Either result suggests that we are all drawing from the same plot designs over and over again.

 

 

These results beg the question: how are we coming up with so many different variations of the same plots? The answer is fairly clear. It's the amount of "you" that goes into the story you're writing. You have a style. You may not even know what your style is, but you do have one. I've suggested before that it's important that you be able to identify what that style is. It will give you more confidence as a writer, and it will give you a less cluttered path to plotting your next story.

 

 

In a monthly workshop I attend, the one question that is asked of every writer after reading their material is "What makes today different than any other day in your story?" The same can be asked when trying to define your style. What makes your story different from the other stories that share the same plot? Is it your choice of character? Is it your choice of narrator? Is it your choice of setting? What constant theme pops up in everything you write and sets you apart? What is the "you" in your writing? 

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

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Authors' Four Structural Essentials for Blogs

To Be a Professional Writer, Make a Professional Impression

3,694 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, books, marketing, selling, book, filmmaking, author, self-publishing, writers, publishing, writing, musicians, filmmakers, social_media, writing_tips
0

One of the questions that authors often ask me is: "What should I blog/tweet about?" The answer depends on a lot of factors, but the most important is the subject matter of your book. While of course you want to promote your work, if that's all you do, it's going to be hard to attract - and keep - followers. Who wants to read endless tweets that constantly shout "Buy my book!"(Am I right?)

 

I recommend providing useful information that's related to the subject matter of your book. For example, if your book is about financial planning, you can share links to interesting articles about financial planning, offer advice about taxes, provide tips for budgeting, etc. If your book is fiction, perhaps tweet or blog about something related to the content, e.g., a specific location, a period of time, a recipe, etc. The key is to provide content that your followers will find useful so they will keep coming back - and perhaps even pass along your content to their own followers/friends.

 

The 80/20 rule usually refers to a situation in which 80 percent of the effects will result from 20 percent of the causes. (For example, it's a rule of thumb in business that 80 percent of a company's sales typically comes from 20 percent of its clients.) In social media, however, it means that 80 percent of the content you share should be informative and 20 percent should be promotional. That way you're able to keep your followers engaged and informed without them feeling constantly bombarded with pitches. If they appreciate all the great content you regularly provide them for free, they're more likely to want to read your book because they will view you as a source of good information. Plus, they may just want to say thank you.

 

-Maria

 

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Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at www.mariamurnane.com.

 

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Social Media Swap

Your Fans are Your Brand

9,447 Views 0 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, writing, social_media
1

Author Hangouts

Posted by CreateSpaceBlogger Apr 6, 2015

Are you about to head off to that dream vacation in Austin? Perhaps you have a family reunion coming up in Seattle or a long weekend trip scheduled at your nearest resort destination. Wherever you're headed for a little R & R, chances are you have connections in that location you hadn't considered. Connections that, if made stronger, can help expand your author brand.

 

I am, of course, referring to the folks in your online social networking circle. I personally know about one percent of my friends and followers on Facebook and Twitter. By personally, I mean I've interacted with them in the real world. The people I have that kind of relationship with are some of my biggest supporters. If I had the opportunity to have face-to-face meetings with the other 99%, just imagine how much stronger the support for my brand would grow.

 

These types of meetings go by different names: Meet-ups, Tweet-ups, Hang-outs, etc. And they're fairly easy to organize. You can set up an event on Facebook and invite those friends you know that live in the area you'll be visiting. There are apps online that will find followers in a certain location to help you organize a Tweet-up. Pick a public spot to have coffee and get to know those folks you've only talked with online. You may even want to bring a few signed copies of your latest book as a thank you for valued members of your community.

 

If you're on your way to enjoy a little vacation time, why not organize an author hangout and get to know the folks in that community?

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

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The Brand and the Pseudonym

 

Looking for Marketing Tips? Here's What's Working for One Indie Author - and What Isn't

4,121 Views 1 Comments Permalink Tags: self_publishing, authors, writing, promotions, branding, social_media
0

Welcome to the Weekly News Roundup - a collection of news, advice and opinions from around the virtual globe.

 

Books/Publishing

 

Seven Tips on Balancing Your Fame and Personal Life - Marketing Tips for Authors

Here?s how to handle the success that is on the horizon.         

                           

Connect with Others to Promote Your Book - Self Publishing Advisor

Expand your community to build your author brand.        

 

Film

                                                        

SXSW: Indie Filmmakers Share Their Secrets for Working with Actors - Indiewire

Do you need to know how to act to be able to work effectively with actors?     

                                          

How to Create a Movie Marketing Plan - Filmmaking Stuff

Don?t just do it, plan and then do it. 

                                                                                                                                              

Music

 

How to Sing in Mixed Voice - How to Improve Singing

How to expand the resonance of your voice.  

  

Building a Fan Base Using YouTube Cards - Hypebot.com

Can a new mobile-friendly interactive feature help you build your brand?  

 

-Richard

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Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

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Just as there are prompts for stories and blog posts, today I'd like to present you with prompts to engage your community. Prompts are simply starting points meant to spark the imagination and move you to act.

 

Here are five community engagement prompts:

 

  1. Pick a community member who participates in your social media circles more than others. Publicly thank them for being such a valued member of your community. Give them the spotlight for contributing and helping you grow your brand.

  2. Ask for help on your next book. I'm not talking about the "spread the word" kind of help. I'm talking about reaching out for help on a particular factual point in your story. Need to know the average tonnage and measurements of an aircraft carrier? Ask your community. Sure it's something you can look up online, but if you do, you're missing out on an opportunity to engage your community.

  3. Create a poll on your blog. Who's favored to win the NCAA tournament? Poll your community. It has nothing to do with your books or your brand, but it's a current event that engrosses the entire country. Most people have an opinion even if they don't follow basketball. The same could be said of many events. Have some fun and start polling your community.

  4. What would the film version of your book look like? Ask your community. Who should play the protagonist? Who should be the villain? Who should direct? Again, it's fun for you and your community.

  5. Give away advance copies of your next book. Hold an easy contest and bask in the joy as you pick the winners.

 

These are your prompts. This is your mission. Engage your community. Make your brand a dynamic experience that is ever-expanding and all-inclusive. Go. Have fun. Engage.

 

-Richard

https://createspacecommunity.s3.amazonaws.com/Resources Contributors/RidleyHeadshot_blog.jpg

Richard Ridley is an award-winning author and paid CreateSpace contributor.

 

 

 

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