Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Summertime = Festivaltime

Although it has rained for half the summer here in Atlanta, summer time still means festival season! And if you’re publishing a book, you may be thinking about selling it at a festival, such as the Decatur Book Festival, in Decatur, GA, the largest independent book festival in the country. Festival selling may not be the right strategy for every genre of book, but for some it’s a great fit. Keep in mind, however, that festival goers aren’t there just to buy a book, and usually they don’t even know that your book exists, so it’s up to you to stand out from the crowd ... and I do mean crowd!

Bring more than just your book
Remember the last time you went to a festival for fun. You stopped when something caught your eye, right? That’s your goal when planning your booth or table setup. You want to create a display that will catch the eye of a potential reader (book buyer). Take a theme from your book and extend it. Have a giant poster printed, get someone to dress in a costume, have someone doing the hobby of your main character, use props. Have something, anything other than just sitting the books and some postcards on a table! You may have to check with the festival organizers to get the okay on bringing certain items onto festival grounds.

Do a drawing or giveaway
What better way to attract people to your table than by having a contest or prize drawing? Your giveaway can be something as simple as one free copy of your book. Who doesn’t love the sound of the words “Win” or “Free”? A large event like a festival is a perfect opportunity for you to start building a mailing list, and a great way to do that is with a giveaway. Keep in mind that if you plan to add people to your subscriber list, some contact management programs require subscriber permission (also known as “opt in”). Simply have an entry slip requesting the name and email address of those entering your drawing, and be sure to mention that they will also be added to your electronic mailing list.

Don’t just sit there
The authors we see selling the most books at book festivals are not the ones sitting quietly behind the table. They’re up, moving around, approaching people as they walk by, greeting, talking, smiling, waving, and making a connection. If you’re sitting behind the table, looking shy, staring down, looking at your phone, or you seem uncomfortable, why would someone want to approach the table and look at your book? The worst that can happen is that they might say “No thanks” and keep walking, but at least you’ll have reached out. Hiding behind the table all day is a big a waste of your time, especially if you’ve paid to be part of the festival! Talking to strangers about your book in brief exchanges helps you focus your message. So take advantage of the opportunity to test out your book talk skills. You might also want to take a few minutes to greet other authors who are there.

Trade tips
Find out what other authors have done that works, and what mistakes they’ve made that you can avoid. Events like these can be as much about networking as about selling.

Most importantly, smile
Yes, smile! Have fun, you’ve published your book and you should be proud to show it off to the public. Potential readers/buyers are much more likely to approach an author who’s smiling and having a great time than one who looks unhappy to be there.


Angela DeCaires is the Marketing & Communications Manager for BookLogix Publishing Services. She oversees corporate communications for BookLogix, and also assists BookLogix’s authors in the publishing process. Angela’s background includes experience in public relations, writing, broadcasting and journalism, having held positions in public relations and as a news writer/TV news producer.


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Time Machine

Let's play a little game. Let's pretend there really is such a thing as a time machine. We could go back 12 months ago when you were thinking about writing your book. You were so ready to get started and get it cranked out. You were ready to produce your manuscript so you could soon have a book in your hand. 

Where are you today with that book? Do you have a book in your hand or are you still thinking about writing your book?

Now, fast forward 12 months from now; where will you be? Will you still be wishing and hoping you had a book? Will you still be thinking about starting to write your manuscript and wishing you had that book in your hand?

It is completely up to you what happens between now and the next 12 months. As The Author's Midwife, I suggest that you can write the first draft of your manuscript in 90 days or less. And you really can have your book in your hand within nine to 10 months as an independent published author.

So you decide what's going to happen in your time machine. Will you be back 12 months ago when you were wishing you had your book and you still don't? Or will you be fast forwarded 12 months from now and you actually do have a book that you're proud of, that is leveraging your platform, and that is helping you brand yourself as the expert you know you are?

I suggest you get out of the time machine and just decide to make it happen: write the book! If you need help, get in touch with me. I have really easy programs. You can do our self-study program or we can talk about coaching. If you think you need the accountability, the support, and the instruction from an author's coach, get in touch with me. Our team can help you develop your content, get your book produced, and  further extend that content into other leveraging opportunities for your business.

So enough with the time machine. It's time to get your book done!


Anita Paul, known as The Author's Midwife, coaches aspiring authors to write a phenomenal book and helps current authors use their existing books to leverage their business. She is the author of the-book Write Your Life: Create Your Ideal Life and The Book You've Been Wanting to Write, and is the creator of the Write Your Life program, through which she has created a dynamic system to Write Your Book in 90 Days or Less. She has owned The Write Image for 15 years, and has had her freelance articles featured in over 25 publications in the U.S. and Canada. Anita is also the host of "Book Your Success".
Facebook: Write Your Life Coaching Program
Twitter: @AnitaRPaul

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Don't Let Fear Rob You

Guy Finley, best-selling author and self-realization teacher says, “The only barriers between yourself and a life without limits are the powers you’ve mistakenly given to your doubts and fears.”

Sometimes, it’s not until you read something that you become tuned in to just how much

you let your fears determine your actions, or your inaction in many cases. Once I decided to write a book, I thought just making that decision was enough of an accomplishment to put it aside and wait until the next wave of inspiration hit me. Or was the delay in starting simply due to the fear of what to do next? Or better yet, what if ...?

What if I don't have anything worthy enough for an entire book? What if my writing doesn’t sound interesting or compelling enough to keep the readers’ attention? What if nobody buys my book? And on, and on, and on I went. Now, looking back, I see how I gave that fear enormous power. It sounds silly, but I’m sure this kind of thinking is common. In fact, ever since you made the decision to write your book, you’ve experienced some of the very same thoughts.

Now that you've made the decision to become an author, don't put it off one minute longer. Create a timeline starting with a completion date, and then work backwards to schedule weekly deadlines from there. If you are writing 10 chapters, how many are you committing to write each week to get to your completion date? As with most things, the first step of a project is the hardest. If you break it down into bite size pieces (week by week), the project becomes much more manageable. 

Do you have a writing plan? Getting organized and setting yourself up for success will close the gap between where you are and where you want to be. In this case, that gap is the chasm between wanting to write a book and being an author.

Here are my top 5 resources that fear can rob you of:
1.  Joy/Happiness – Keeping you “locked in your box”
2.  More Income or Revenue – Keeping you from expanding or seeking opportunities around you
3.  Time – Keeping you from not getting assistance or making smart choices
4.  Fulfillment – Keeping you from experiencing success or accomplishment
5.  Healthy Relationships – Keeping you from reaching out and being more open

Once you have a plan in place for completing your book, your next step is to remain focused on your goal and committed to the process of getting there.  

The reason we are all good at something is because whatever that something is, we practice it and do it enough that we become good at it.  Staying organized and focused can help you become good at writing your book. The more you do it, the better you get at it, and the better you get at it, the more you like it. Then it becomes second nature because it is linked with feeling right and feeling good.  

So get on a roll with your writing, and before you know it, you will feel a sense of accomplishment like never before. I promise you!

Wendy Ellin, Founder of Atlanta-based Momentum, is a Workplace Productivity Life Changer & Author of the new book “Enough Is Enough, Get Control of Your Stuff!
Wendy shares her insights into living a productive and organized life with humor, a twist of irreverence and a level of passion that motivates her audience to TAKE ACTION IMMEDIATELY.  Her approach to training is engaging, interactive, and with a “let’s make a difference in your life” attitude.  She talks about real challenges that we all experience on a daily basis, such as excessive clutter, email overload, being on time (or not), reasonable expectations for getting things done, over-committing, and much more.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Never Sell Your Book

Selling stinks! Really. No one wants to be sold to, and no one (at least not people I know) truly enjoys selling, especially authors. Authors are storytellers on a mission, not sales people trying to hit their monthly sales goals and earn a commission. That’s way too much pressure for someone who has poured their heart, soul, blood, sweat, and tears into creating a work of fiction or nonfiction designed to benefit others. Therein lies the secret of how to never sell your book.

Many authors get off track when they think they have to sell their book to potential

buyers/readers. How else are you going to get them to open their wallets, pull out the plastic or the green (the Hamilton, Jackson, Benjamin or other note), and pay you for your
hard work if you don’t sell the book? Rather than approaching this process from a sales perspective, think about it from a service perspective. When you value the content of your well-written, professionally produced book, you will understand the value that it can bring to others (but not everyone), and you’ll approach potential buyers/readers with the attitude that you are sharing your gift with them and serving their needs with this wonderful product: your book.

You wrote your book for yourself, right? Of course you did. But you also want others to get something out of it: inspiration, information, insight, or knowledge. You have woven the benefit of your book so expertly into the prose that some readers might not realize they got it until the very end, and that’s okay. The point is that you’ve inserted nuggets of juiciness for readers to glean. And when you understand the value of those juicy nuggets you know that your book has value far beyond its retail price.

Readers read for enjoyment, relaxation, escape, and entertainment. They also read to receive the very nuggets you have imparted throughout your book; you know, that inspiration, information, insight, and knowledge mentioned above. When you understand the true value of these intangibles, you will realize the gift that your book really is. The words you have penned are provided to help readers in one or a combination of ways:

  • To serve
  • To solve a problem/challenge
  • To add value
  • To help achieve results
That’s it. So when you view your book as a conduit to provide a service to readers, you’ll understand that selling your book is really unnecessary. Instead, you will share the value your book provides and allow potential buyers/readers to determine whether they are ready to receive all that your book offers. Some will, some won’t, so what (as the saying goes). This is not to suggest that exchanging currency for your book is unimportant. Rather, the suggestion is that convincing others to buy your book is futile. Make yourself (the author), your message contained within the book, and the inherent value of your book the focus of your conversations and marketing materials. Do this and watch your book get the attention you know it deserves!

Anita Paul, known as The Author's Midwife, coaches aspiring authors to write a phenomenal book and helps current authors use their existing books to leverage their business. She is the author of the-book Write Your Life: Create Your Ideal Life and The Book You've Been Wanting to Write, and is the creator of the Write Your Life program, through which she has created a dynamic system to Write Your Book in 90 Days or Less. She has owned The Write Image for 15 years, and has had her freelance articles featured in over 25 publications in the U.S. and Canada. Anita is also the host of "Book Your Success".
Facebook: Write Your Life Coaching Program
Twitter: @AnitaRPaul