10-22-16 is the last of three: Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi) is sponsoring INDIE AUTHOR FRINGE 2016 – for Authors, by Authors

Alliance of Independent Authors has sponsored two INDIE AUTHOR FRINGE 2016 – for Authors, by Authors which occurred on April 15 and May 14. The third and final occurs October 22, 2016

[All Info and logos, below, are from Alli‘s page and emails in March and September from Orna Ross]

Alli logo

Alli is hosting three, one-day, online events, as fringe options to the three main global publishing events of the year: London Book Fair, Book Expo America and Frankfurt Book Fair.

http://selfpublishingadvice.org/indie-author-fringe-fair-2016/

Each Indie Author Fringe event is an FREE ONLINE AUTHOR CONFERENCE, offering expertise and experience from indies and self-publishing services around the globe.​
Register here: https://app.convertkit.com/landing_pages/86364

Third event starts on October 22 at 10 AM Frankfurt Time.

Yes, it’s Indie Author Fringe time again. Our next — third and final — online conference of the year will be on Saturday 22nd October, for the Frankfurt Book Fair.

Its theme is Running an Indie Author Business, and again, we’re lining up a roster of world-class speakers who’ll be sharing their experience and expertise to help you turn your creative endeavors into an enterprise that delivers commercial satisfaction too.

Whether you’re trying to decide if you’re ready to launch your author business or you’re already up and running and need guidance to streamline or improve, our conference will answer all your questions and save you time, money and effort as you go.

Speaker Update

6 weeks to our speakers and their sessions. View the speaker line-up here
http://selfpublishingadvice.org/fbf-indie-author-fringe-2016-speakers/

Launch of the Best Website Competition

The focus of our competition this time is Best Websites for Indie Authors. What website would you recommend as a resource to another indie? A panel of judges will review all entries and the Winner will be recognized and awarded by ALLi. You can submit your own website, or somebody else’s. Please check the submission guidelines.
http://selfpublishingadvice.org/indie-author-fringe-fair-2016/fbf16-website-competition-submission/

Your Free Book

alli-free-book-2016

And, don’t forget to download your free copy of Opening up to Indie Authors. All Fringe delegates receive this free ebook, which tells you how to get your book into book stores, literary festivals, libraries and wherever good books are found. Use this link to get your free ebook: http://dl.bookfunnel.com/4c4f35haln

HOT OFF THE PRESS

In Celebration of Ingram Spark‘s Gold sponsorship at Indie Author Fringe, they are offering the following:
—All setup costs waived on new titles
—Setup your existing paperback titles in hardback for no additional cost
—Visit their sponsor page for more information
—Enter INDIEFRINGE16 as the Promo code when setting up your title.

Ingram Spark‘s Offer: TERMS & CONDITIONS

Offer valid September 8th to November 30th, 2016
Applies to all printing options
Both print and ebook setup fees will be waived

About The Alliance of Independent Authors
(ALLi, pronounced “ally”) is a global, nonprofit association for writers who self-publish. Read about the benefits of becoming an ALLi member.

WHAT TO EXPECT

—24-hours of advice and expertise, conversations and connections.

How Does a Virtual Conference Work?

As each hour ticks by on October 22, we’ll publish a new Session on our Event Home Page.

Our first Indie Author Fringe primarily focused on “How To Create a Better Book,” though we have sessions on selling and marketing in each Conference. Different sessions are aimed at beginner, intermediate and advanced level, so no matter where you are as an indie author, you’ll find something for you.​

Indie Author Fringe FAQ

What is Indie Author Fringe?

Indie Author Fringe (formerly known as IndieReCon) offers FREE ONLINE DAY CONFERENCES for authors interested in self-publishing, alongside three of the biggest publishing fairs.

How many Indie Author Fringe events are you hosting in 2016?

We have held two already and now will be having our third of three online international events in 2016:
Frankfurt Book Fair (19th-23rd October 2016) – Our Indie Author Fringe event will be on October 22nd

London Book Fair (April 12th-14th 2016) – Our Indie Author Fringe event was on April 15th

Book Expo America (May 11th-13th 2016) – Our Indie Author Fringe event was on May 14th

What does Indie Author Fringe Offer?

We offer the best self-publishing advice and education for indie authors across the world — using the global reach of the ALLi</strong> network.

How much does it cost to attend Indie Author Fringe?

We are (and always will be) run by authors for authors, so it’s all free!

What Indie Author topics will your cover?

Over the course of the year, our online conference events will take authors through the entire indie author journey, from writing to promotion and beyond. Each event will offer 24 hours of non-stop advice and inspiration, organized around key self-publishing topics.

Indie Author Day 2016, Coming to a Library Near You

Indie Author Day 2016, Coming to a Library Near You

all below is from BookWorks

“Calling all indie authors! We’re pleased to announce a nationwide event that, literally, has your name written all over it. Indie Author Day 2016 is happening on October 8th and you’re not going to want to miss it!

Emilie Hancock, Content and Media Editor of BiblioLabs/BiblioBoard and their partners Library Journal/Self-e, gives us the scoop on the event, along with ways you can participate and help make it a huge success.

“Take it away, Emilie…”

“As the indie book movement continues to develop, authors are constantly looking for ways to reach new audiences. Through a ton of hard work and a bit of luck, indies have been making their way onto the shelves—and into the hearts—of new readers. Their successes are largely due to strong support systems provided both in their local communities and across a global network. The first annual Indie Author Day, set for October 8th, takes that powerhouse duo and runs with it.

What Is Indie Author Day?
Indie Author Day is a one-day, all-out occasion for local authors, libraries and publishing industry experts to celebrate, educate and collaborate. Libraries across North America will host local events, then come together at 2 PM EST USA for a digital gathering that will offer inspiration, information and advice for authors. It’s a chance for the indie writing community to unite through library systems both physically and digitally, and an opportunity to meet, network, make friends and form business partnerships.

What Kinds of Events Will There Be?
“Besides the aforementioned digital presentation, which will bring together all participating libraries, each library will hold its own local event. These can include, but are not limited to, an author panel featuring traditional, hybrid and self-published authors from the community; presentations from local indie authors about writing, marketing and more; book readings and/or signings from local authors; presentations from local industry leaders; writing workshops and informative presentations and workshops about tools available to the writing community through the library.

Indie Author Day 2016
http://BookWorks.com

Indie Author Day 2016

Why at the Library?
“Libraries are magical places—or, as the American Library Association’s Libraries Transform campaign likes to call them, maker-spaces. As their traditional role transcends being warehouses for books, we see them increasingly becoming havens for creative minds in the community. A plethora of tools and guidance are now available in libraries and beyond, placing libraries in a better position than ever to make a genuine impact in the lives and careers of local writers. As the self-publishing and indie industries grow, writers who may not have been discovered through traditional channels are able to get their voices heard.

Who’s on Board?
“So far, over 200 libraries have registered to be Indie Author Day hosts across the United States and Canada, where several thousand authors are expected to gather. It’s easy for libraries to sign up, and for authors to get their local library on board. In addition, Indie Author Day partners comprise over 20 author and library organizations:

BookWorks – BookBaby – IngramSpark – SELF-e/Library Journal – BookLife – Pressbooks Public – Califa – Rails Libraries – IBPA (Independent Book Publishers Assocation) – IndieReader – Soon to be Famous Illinois Author Project – Bibliolabs – Massachusetts Library System – Where Writers Win – No Shelf Required – Author U – Read Local – Written Word Media – Indies Unlimited – Publishers & Writers of San Diego (PWSD)/Publishers & Writers of Orange County (PWOC)

Next Steps
“The early and general deadlines have already passed, but libraries still have until the final deadline on September 1st to become an Indie Author Day host.

“Authors who want to attend events but don’t see that their library is participating can inform the Indie Author Day team.

“Authors and libraries who already know they’ll be involved can keep up with the latest news on the Indie Author Day website [http://indieauthorday.com/?utm_source=BookWorksBlog&utm_medium=blogPost&utm_campaign=IndieAuthorDay ] and by following or tweeting with the hashtag #AuthorDay16.

GET INVOLVED!
“During the Inaugural Indie Author Day on October 8, 2016, libraries from all across North America will host their own local author events with the support of the Indie Author Day team.

“In addition to these local programs, each library’s indie community will come together for an hour-long digital gathering at 2 PM Eastern USA time featuring Q & A with writers, agents and other industry leaders. Don’t miss out on this fantastic opportunity for libraries and authors to connect on both local and global levels!

“Be sure to keep an eye out for the upcoming announcement about the rock star industry specialists who will be talking about their experiences and giving advice during the digital panel.”

SELF-e_IndieAuthorDay_Logo_White-02-e1462825520372

See more at: https://www.bookworks.com/2016/07/indie-author-day-2016-coming-to-library-near-you/#sthash.qMW1ZQhQ.dpuf

St. Louis Indie Book Fair is TOMORROW! Saturday, May 7, 2016, 10 – 5: FREE!

Come one, come all! St. Louis Indie Book Fair is TOMORROW! Saturday, May 7, 2016, 10 – 5: FREE!

2016 Indie Book Fair logo
image and all organizational work by Mark Pannebecker

All genres, all ages, fiction and nonfiction, books for children, YA and adult readers!

WHERE? St.Louis Public Library, 1301 Olive Street, St. Louis, MO USA 63103

Author readings are all day! Mine, from Volume I of The Spanners Series, This Changes Everything, is at 11:18 AM or thereabouts for about 10 minutes. Also, discounts/authors’ giveaways, autographs, conversations, food, more!

Join me (and ask for a special Spanners Series‘ paperbacks discount when you see me!) and many other authors, including Debbie Manber Kupfer.

ALSO: Please come me and other authors share from our work at the public reading auditorium.
11:18 AM!

Full list of participants here: http://www.markpannebecker.com/#!itinerary/c9um

For more information: http://www.markpannebecker.com/#!st-louis-indie-book-fair/c1pz

#BookMarketing: What I haven’t done and intend to do soon

Thanks to Doris-Maria Heilmann of Savvy Book Writers for her Free Checklist for “Passive” Book Marketing, I now have (and am sharing) a great list and resources within it. Link below.
http://www.savvybookwriters.com/free-checklist-for-passive-book-marketing/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+SavvyBookWriters+%28Savvy+Book+Writers%29

#BookMarketing: What I haven’t done and intend to do soon

Never heard about this!

Bowker’s Worldwide Listing
http://www.bowkerlink.com

Bowker Link logo

“You may know Bowker from ordering your ISBN numbers, but they are also the provider for “Books In Print and Global Books In Print” that contain listings of bibliographical information for international book titles available in the USA or any other part of the world, in bookstores and libraries. Setting up a new book on Bowkerlink is easy and FREE. Read more in this blog post: http://www.savvybookwriters.com/is-your-book-listed-worldwide/

I felt better when I went to the link, above, and read the intro:
“Few authors have ever heard about BowkerLink: a source for publishers and distributors seeking to update or add to title listings, found in ‘Books In Print,’ ‘Global Books In Print,’ and the ‘Publisher Authority Database.’ How can readers, bookstores or librarians in Japan, Australia, UK or Belize find your book and read, buy or lend it?”

Doris-Maria Heilmann provides a step-by-step sequence for putting a book on Bowkerlink right here. Do it and whatever else you have neglected to do to market your book from her great list.

Check out the rest of her site as well, with many archived posts that are still relevant and useful (this one is from 2013)! http://www.savvybookwriters.com

Luckily, I am not new to marketing, so as I ramp up for the release of my third ebook, Volume III, This Is/Is Not the Way I Want Things to Change of The Spanners Series (sci-fi/romance, adults/YA/NA), which goes into pre-orders @ half-price on 11/1/15, $1.99 through 12/7/15, then becomes $3.99 on release day, 12/8/15, with a cover reveal on 10/26/15 on http://www.aleshaescobar.com), I am pleased to discover that I have already accomplished (but need to update) most of what’s on the above list.

logoAuthorsDen

Volume I, This Changes Everything, became permafree when I released Volume II, This Changes My Family and My Life Forever, in the spring of 2014, which is also $3.99.

This-Changes-Everything----web-and-ebooks
All links, reviews, author interviews and updates: http://www.sallyember.com

final cover print

You’re Not Alone: An Indie Authors Anthology in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support Group

You’re Not Alone: An Indie Authors Anthology
in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support Group

is being Released 7/15/15!

[I am promoting this excellent compilation for a great cause. Info below. I’m NOT one of the authors, FYI, just helping out.–Sally Ember, Ed.D. http://www.sallyember.com]

Indie Anthology cover

The following info comes directly from their “Press Pack”:

What is You’re Not Alone?
“An international group of #indie #authors, inspired by the personal grief of one, decided to collaborate in the spring of 2015 in a project to create this multi-genre smorgasbord of original short stories, all with the same potent theme – relationships. Some are heartfelt, some funny, some poignant, and some are just a little bit scary – much like relationships themselves. All are by authors fired by the shared enthusiasm to give something back in aid of Macmillan #Cancer Support. Cancer touches us all. It has in some way affected those who have contributed their time and talent here. This is our way of showing that we care.

“Indie authors carry forward a revolutionary shift in publishing, which allows the author to be creative director in their own work. There are many exceptional, experienced and acclaimed writers who have decided to take this bold step in publishing. In producing this anthology, we have also had the inestimable assistance on board of artists, graphic designers, and bloggers – all of whom have a place in our acknowledgements. You, the discerning reader, are the other vital part of this equation. By buying this book you are supporting the work of indie authors, as well as discovering their worth. You are also supporting the charity to which we have chosen to dedicate our work.”

100% of the royalties earned or accrued in the purchase of this book, in all formats, will go to the Pamela Winton Tribute Fund, which is in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support.

Worldwide Links for You’re Not Alone: An Indie Author Anthology
http://smarturl.it/YoureNotAloneAnth
http://bookshow.me/B00Y5RCOOE
The above links will take readers to the Amazon store in their country of registration from anywhere in the world.

“Artist Christine Southworth’s original sketch interpretation…is quite simply, amazing. So talented.”

TABLE OF CONTENTS

01. A YEAR AFTERWARDS By Lesley Hayes
10. CLOSURE By BL Pride
19. COLIN AND SANDY By Anthony Randall
29. ONE OF THOSE DAYS By Ian D. Moore
37. DOLPHINS DANCE By Mike Billington
51. A SPECIAL EVENING By D. Avraham
59. AT THE HANDS OF THE HEALER By Sallyann Phillips
67. DAD By Kayla Howarth
77. FOREVER YOURS By Christoph Fischer
87. FRUITS By Phyllis Edgerly Ring
91. THE YOGA BOWL By Felipe Adan Lerma
96. LILIES FOR THE MANTEL By Sylva Fae
102. GABRIEL AND THE MINISTER BIRD By Andy Updegrove
108. INSIDE OUT By Penny Luker
116. WITCH’S MARK By Katerina Sestakova Novotna
127. LOVE’S SILENT ACHE By Lisa Shambrook
133. GOALS By Tom Benson
144. IF THE SHOE FITS By Katharine E. Hamilton
154. THE BIRTH By Lucinda E. Clarke
157. LOTTA BLUM By Barbara Doran
163. NEVER TOO OLD By Angela Lockwood
168. OOH AIR MARGRIT By Rebecca Bryn
173. BABES By Max Power
182. LAST GOODBYES… By Paul Ruddock
188. A STITCH IN TIME By S.K. Holmesley
198. DAY LATE, DOLLAR SHORT By Eric Lahti
207. LOVE IN AN ELEVATOR By S. E. Meyer
215. NO LONGER BROKEN By Nico Laeser

Indie anthology working cover

Meet the Indie Authors

All contributing authors were asked: “Why have you given your time and work to this cause”
Below, you will find a list of their individual answers and links to their books or websites, to help you discover more about them and their other works.

IARE collage authors photos and names

Lisa Shambrook: Carmarthenshire, Wales
“My family life has been touched by cancer with two of my children’s grandparents suffering. We’ve seen both those who’ve won and lost the battle, and this is a chance to do something to help.”
http://www.lisashambrook.com
http://www.thelastkrystallos.wordpress.com

Sallyann Phillips: Swansea, Wales
“My dad died of cancer, but his strength and determination amazed me. This is my way of honouring him, and the nurses who helped keep his spirits up.”
http://www.Angelsblood.co.uk

Penny Luker: Cheshire, England
“I wanted to contribute to this anthology because of the dear friends I have lost to cancer and because the Macmillan nurses gave them such help and support.”
http://www.pennyluker.wordpress.com
https://www.facebook.com/pennyluker.writer?

Anthony Randall: Dorset, England
“Both of my Grandmothers died from cancer. My maternal Grandmother spent her last week in a hospice where she received brilliant care, the nurses were formidable. It’s an essential charity that I am more than happy to support in this humble way.”
http://www.amazon.co.uk/English-Sombrero-Nothing-but-run-ebook/dp/B00IHH209W
https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-English-Sombrero/555658614480373

Katharine Hamilton: Texas, Unites States of America
“In memory of my cousin, Melissa. One of the most hilarious, kind-hearted, and genuine women I have ever known. Fifteen years later, I still wish I had taken that crazy car ride around Murfreesboro with you. But thank you for making my awkward, teenage-self feel cool… even if it was in Arkansas.”
http://www.katharinehamilton.com

Christoph Fischer: Carmarthenshire, Wales [He organized the press packet: THANKS, Christoph!]
“I lost both of my parents to cancer and also a few close friends, so I’m naturally committed to the MacMillan cause. I have seen the MacMillan nurses in action and couldn’t be happier to support their marvellous work.”
http://www.christophfischerbooks.com
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Christoph-Fischer/e/B00CLO9VMQ

SK Holmesley: Colorado, United States of America
“I contributed because Ian asked, and it was a way that I could say: ‘Sorry you lost a loved one.’”

Rebecca Bryn: St David’s, Pembrokeshire, Wales
“My mother was a volunteer cancer nurse, and also nursed my father who died from prostate cancer. This is my chance to honour their courage, love and strength.”
http://www.rebeccabrynandsarahstuart-novels.co.uk
http://www.independentauthornetwork.com/rebecca-bryn

D. Avraham: Hebron Hills, Israel
“When I lost my mom, it would have been that much harder if there hadn’t been caring people supporting us at the time. Ian’s project reminded me of need to thank them. I have donated my piece in their honor, a small gesture to say thank you.”
The Shepherd King Chronicles: Foundation Stone (Beith David Publishing, 2010).
Off-Wire (Lulu 2014), and the author/illustrator of the children’s book, Squared (beith David Publishing 2013).

Tom Benson: Scotland
“I lost both my father-in-law and mother-in-law to cancer before I really got to know either of them.”
http://www.tombensonauthor.com/

Ian D. Moore: North Yorkshire, England
“I began and contributed to this anthology to support the work that the Macmillan Nurses do. My father, father-in-law and mother-in-law were all taken by cancer. This is a tribute to them all.”
https://www.iandmoore.com

Andy Updegrove: Marblehead, Massachusetts, United States of America
“I have dedicated this story to the memory of my father, mother and sister, all of whom died from cancer.”
https://updegrove.wordpress.com/

Lesley Hayes: Oxford, Oxfordshire, England
“I’ve been alongside several people affected by cancer. One familiar emotion is powerlessness. Contributing here seems a concrete way of continuing to be alongside, and to show that I care.”
http://www.lesleyhayes.co.uk

Nico Laeser: British Columbia, Canada
“I took a brief hiatus from writing my third novel for the opportunity to work alongside the many incredible authors taking part in this project, and to offer whatever help I could to such a worthy cause. You can find my novels on Amazon by searching ‘Nico Laeser’ or by visiting my author page:”
http://www.amazon.com/Nico-Laeser/e/B00SF3C732

Max Power: Maynooth, Republic of Ireland.
“Having lost my father through cancer, when asked, I had no hesitation in making a contribution through my writing, to this most worthy cause.”
http://www.amazon.com/author/maxpower
http://www.facebook.com/maxpowerbooks

Eric Lahti: New Mexico, United States of America
“I joined the anthology, at the time, because another story was needed. As I started to write, my story became a kind of goodbye to my dad and grandfather who died in 2001 and 2008 respectively.”
Arise: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PX710Y0
Henchmen: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00GRXB5Ik

Phyllis Edgerly Ring: New Hampshire, United States of America
“In memory of my father, I am grateful to contribute to this healing resource of hope and compassion.”
http://phyllisedgerlyring.wordpress.com
http://www.amazon.com/Phyllis-Edgerly-Ring/e/B001RXUFD6

S.E. Meyer: Wisconsin, United States of America
“I made the decision to donate my time to this cause for my brother-in-law, Paul, who just recently fought and won the battle against testicular cancer.”
http://www.facebook.com/semeyerbooks
http://www.amazon.com/S.-E.-Meyer/e/B00CFRHL9Y

Christine Southworth: Lancashire, England
“I am involved in this project as a thank you to those who cared for my husband.”
Twitter: @bearprintstudio

Sylva Fae: Cheshire, England
“Helping with this anthology allows me to show my appreciation for those who cared for my dad.”
Sylvanian Ramblings: http://www.sylvafae.co.uk

Barbara Doran: Munster, Westfalen, Germany
“I submitted my story, Lotta Blum, to this Anthology because it’s for a good cause. Ian D. Moore wrote a moving statement on the wonderful works of the Macmillan cancer nurses in a recent post on an Indie Review Group and I responded. You can find my musings here:”
http://www.eclecticwrite.wordpress.com
http://www.serendipitydoit.wordpress.com

Kayla Howarth: Queensland, Australia
“Knowing it was for a good cause, I decided to try something I’d never done before: write a short story. This experience has been uplifting and therapeutic, and I’m glad I took up the challenge.”
http://www.kaylahowarth.com
https://www.facebook.com/KaylaHowarthTheInstituteSeries

Angela Lockwood: France
“Never too old, has been inspired by my mother, who lost her husband and my father to cancer in 1993. I wanted to add a positive story about life afterwards.”
http://www.cruftslover.adzl.com
http://languageintheblood.blogspot.fr

Katerina Sestakova Novotna: Honolulu, United States of America
“It was just an automatic response to a post that I saw. If my thoughts may support a good cause, it’s a great honor to get involved.”
http://www.amazon.com/Hawaiian-Shrunken-Katerina-Sestakova-Novotna-ebook/dp/B00OYUSO1Y

BL Pride: Slovenia
“After a close encounter with cancer I decided it was time I started pursuing my dreams. Being a part of this project is a tribute to a life-changing experience.”
http://www.blpride.com

Mike Billington: Reus, Spain
“I wrote this story for the anthology because, as a cancer survivor myself, I know first-hand just how important the kind of support MacMillan Cancer Nurses provide is. My hope is that Dolphins Dance reminds readers that life is better when we are connected to other people.”
http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KCABGK
http://www.amazon.com/author/billington

Felipe Adan Lerma: Austin, Texas, United States of America
“The simplest answer is of course because I wanted to share some of what I feel when writing. The question of whether we are ever truly alone sharpened my focus for this story, shifting the action several times. I am very grateful for the impetus to bring my thoughts to expression in this very short work.”
http://www.amazon.com/Felipe-Adan-Lerma/e/B005XCUUK0
http://www.felipeadanlerma.com

Paul Ruddock: London, England
“Having witnessed cancer first-hand I was absolutely delighted to contribute to such a worthwhile project in support of Macmillan Nurses.”
http://www.paulruddockauthor.com
http://www.echoesofthepen.com

Lucinda E. Clarke: Spain
“My father died when I was two years old, from cancer. When I was diagnosed with the same insidious disease in 1999 I was terrified. I have enormous respect and gratitude for the medical team that saved my life and I hope this is a small way of saying thank you.”
http://lucindaeclarke.wordpress.com
http://www.lucindaeclarkeauthor.com

Look who’s featured on 7/6/15 as part of Indie Authors’ Month: Sally Ember, Ed.D.!

Look who’s featured on 7/6/15 as part of Indie Authors’ Month: Sally Ember, Ed.D.!

Visit every day this month and honor Indie Authors! Thanks, Mel Cusick-Jones and Tony Talbot, for organizing and promoting this event and including me!
http://Asidefromwriting.com

iam-2015-topper

Indie Author Month 2015 is finally here! Thirty-one days, thirty-one indie authors for you to meet, sharing the best of what it is to be an indie author from their own experiences…

So, welcome to the first day of our Indie Author Month – now in its fourth year, we’re excited to be hosting more fantastic indie authors during the event, which will run throughout July.

As in previous years, the event aims to bring indie authors into the spotlight, helping them find new readers, as well as letting them share their experiences of writing and publishing as an indie author. There are highs and lows to this creative life and everyone’s experience and approach is slightly different…

This year specifically, we have opened up the event to authors of every genre – variety is the spice of life! The only thing we’ve asked from each of them is to tell us about their experiences as an indie writer…from their personal writing journey, to the things they’ve learned about self-publishing, you’ll find it all here this month.

We hope you’ll keep coming back each day through the event, to meet the authors and chat with them about their writing.

Download and purchase Indie Authors’ books!
Write #comments on our #blogs!
Post #bookreviews and ratings of our books on sale sites, especially Amazon, and on Goodreads, Booklikes, Shelfari, Library Thing, nook, Kobo and iBooks!

All links for FREE downloads and purchase of ebooks in The Spanners Series as well as places to post comments and reviews: http://www.sallyember.com Look right; scroll down.

THANKS!

Part IV: Letter to my Earlier Self about #Blog #Hops and #Virtual #Book #Tours

Part IV: Letter to my Earlier Self about #Blog #Hops and #Virtual #Book #Tours

This is Letter Four of Four of my “open letter to my earlier self” series that first appeared on The Book Cove Reviews, http://www.thebookcove.com/2014/12/author-sally-ember-edd-letter-to-my_15.html, late November – December, 2014.
Letter One appeared on my site, http://www.sallyember.com/blog , on 3/26/15.
Letter One posted on 3/26/15; Letter Two appeared on 4/4/15 and Letter Three on 4/11/15.

blog-hop-for-writers

image from http://phyllisiturner.com

I published my first ebook in December, 2013, and my second in June, 2014. I intend to publish my third in April, 2015. What I wish I had known before my first ebook went into pre-sales in November, 2013, about Virtual Book Tours and Blog Hops and other kinds of “shared” PR continues to grow. I write these Open Letters in order to share my wisdom “backwards” to my earlier self from today’s vantage point.

Dear Sally,

Now that you know you are going to be an indie published author, and you know you’re going to start with only ebooks and then see what happens, your choices about book marketing are more limited than if you were going to have both print and ebooks available or if a major or even minor publisher were backing your books. Mostly, your entire author platform and writing life are going to exist almost exclusively online.

That all means no book signings (you have no books to sign). It also means that you will have few or not any public readings, at least, not yet, since those usually go with book signings. You won’t be paying for much publicity since you have almost no budget for it, so forget print ads, posters, or other signage in the “real” world. Your PR is going to all be virtual.

What does this new type of non-in-person, non-print PR include besides your blog? You will have online “stores,” places that sell your books online, where the cover, blurb and reviews live. You can post your photo and bio there (on some, anyway). You should have author pages and book pages on vendor sites. What else?

Blog Hops and Virtual Book Tours.

Well, no wonder you have no idea what a “Blog Hop” or “Virtual Book Tour” is: You just barely started to blog last August, 2013, and barely know what blogging is. You have recently published your first fiction book while is also your first ebook. It’s hard to be more of a newbie than you are!

When someone invites you to “join” a Blog Hop or be part of a Virtual Book Tour, you don’t know what you’re saying “Yes” or “No” to, do you? How could you?

First of all, go visit/go on a Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour at least once, each. Be a visitor to one or more that have some of the same organizer(s), authors and/or books as the Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour you’re considering as a participant.

Take notes: what do you like/not like? What is confusing/clear? How appealing are the promos, widgets, banners, graphics? Since you are also a reader, consider: would YOU be more or newly interested in these authors/these books because of this Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour?

If the answer is “NO,” stop there. You might want to join a Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour, but not THIS one.

Visit some more until you can say “Yes” to these questions, above.

Now that you know what you like, it’s time to get more educated. There are hundreds of (free or fee-based) webinars, Google+ Hangouts On Air (HOAs), teleseminars, podcasts, blog posts, and, don’t forget: BOOKS and EBOOKS devoted to explaining everything about creating or joining a Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour and all aspects of book marketing.

I won’t even try to recap it all here. Nonfiction can or should be marketed differently than fiction, short fiction differently than long. Target audience for and chosen genre/subgenre of your writing change the PR scene as well. Poetry and memoirs are in their own niches. Etc.

Attend, read, watch. Take more notes.

There was an excellent month-long series of educational events and posts I attended last May, 2014. Well worth it. Thanks, D’vorah Lansky! The Book Marketing Challenge has both free and paid options. Look into them! Email D’Vorah and ask about the next round: support@bookmarketingmadeeasy.com

blog-hop-150x150 BMC 2014

image from http://buildabusinesswithyourbook.com/community-blog-hop/

If you are leaning toward “Yes,” before deciding whether or not to join a particular Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour or to create your own, regardless of how enticing the organizers or instructors make it sound or you found theirs to be, there are some key questions to ask:

  • What are the requirements? Are they easy, moderately easy or arduous to fulfill? If you have to create or acquire a lot of new graphics, redesign or add to your website, write new blurbs or text to fit their guidelines, is it worthwhile? Answer the other questions, below, to determine that.
  • What’s in it for you? Are you allowed to promote/feature your own books, your blog, or just others’ books and blogs?

    Virtual Book Tour

    image from http://acupofteaandabigbook.blogspot.com

  • How much of your precious writing time will be given over to this endeavor?
  • How long does it go on? Does that timeframe work with your schedule (i.e., for visiting others’ sites, cross-promoting, posting widgets/modifying your own site, commenting, etc.)?
  • Can you be ready to submit everything by the deadlines and post on your day as scheduled?
  • How much does it cost to join, e.g., do you have to provide a “Raffle” prize, a “giveaway,” or any other “swag,” discount coupons, gift cards, or what? Is that affordable?

    Vegas Vacation Book Tour

    image from http://www.crystaljordan.com

  • What amount of traffic is likely to be driven to your site from these other sites, i.e., how many followers do they have, what are their ALEXA scores?
  • Are the other Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour participants in the same or similar or at least compatible genres/subgenres with yours?
  • Are the other blogs/sites/books/authors’ brands compatible with yours (NSFW [Not Safe For Work] vs. SFW [Safe For Work], for example)?
  • Is this organized by a paid promoter or someone else with experience organizing a Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour so that there is at least one person who will handle the responsibilities of corralling, collecting, scheduling, managing this event professionally and well?
  • How many other participants’ sites are being visited on the same day as yours? Do that number and variety seem likely to be competitive, supportive, confusing, appropriate?
  • What possible benefits will there be and how likely are they to accrue to YOU?

    monthly book sales

    image from http://www.rtbookreviews.com

  • Having answered all these questions, is this Blog Hop or Virtual Book Tour a worthwhile endeavor?

Bottom line, Sally, is that your writing time MUST be a priority, but you also have to put in time to create relationships in order to find readers, get more visible, be part of an online community with important and meaningful connections, and, oh, yeah, MARKET your books. Be cautious, be discerning, be wise.

I hope you are finding this series of Open Letters helpful to your decision-making and planning for your first and subsequent book launches and ongoing marketing and promotions. I might add to this series as I get even more experienced; we’ll see.

Meanwhile, don’t forget to ENJOY the ride!

Best to you!

Your future Sally