If you want a crash course on book publishing, set aside some time this weekend to watch the replays of four free webinars that will teach you way more than what most authors know about book marketing, distribution, publicity, sales and many other topics related to publishing.
I’m one of the Chicks at Sea, five publishing experts who will be hosting “Create the Ultimate Bestseller at Sea,” a Caribbean cruise Jan. 18-23 for authors and publishers. We offered the free webinars to whet your appetite for the cruise and demonstrate how much we know about our topic.
I’m amazed at how much I’ve learned in only four weeks from the other experts!
Book shepherd Judith Briles, book distributor Amy Collins, and social media and branding expert Georgia McCabe presented along with me. Our tips apply to self-published authors as well as those who have big publishers. We discussed print books and ebooks. We offered options for those who want to do some publishing tasks themselves, or outsource to the pros.
I’ve excerpted several jewels and gems from each webinar below. Click on the title that interests you and register to listen to the entire replay at your choice of times and dates. When you’re done, think about what you can learn by spending five days with us, at sea, on a working vacation.
- Many authors make a fatal error and embrace the “Rush to Publish” syndrome. They sign up for expensive programs that promise shortcuts. The result is often sloppy books that look amateurish.
- Your book cover must be done professionally. Too many self-published authors rely on “my cousin who really likes to draw” or “my neighbor who is a professional photographer” for this all-important task. Expect to spend at least $500 on a cover. We also tell you exactly how much you can expect to spend for other publishing services.
- Authors whose books aren’t selling six months after they’ve launched sometimes give up and abandon their marketing so they can start writing their second book. You must ALWAYS be marketing, even a year or two after your book has been published. In our four webinars, we suggested many ways to pump new life into an old title.
- You should know the target market for your book so well that you’d be able to write a page in your ideal reader’s journal. Too many authors write books for the masses or fail to identify exactlywhom they are writing for.
- This phrase should set off your B.S. detector: “If you sign with us, a senior editor with our affiliate New York publisher will look at your book.” The scam artists say this. What they don’t tell you is that their “New York publisher” has a post office box in New York but the company is elsewhere.
- Another B.S. phrase: “We can get you top media coverage.” No they can’t. When I worked as a newspaper editor, I couldn’t even promise my reporters that the stories I assigned them would be printed.
- You do not need several thousand copies of your book printed. Any “publisher” who tells you this is lying.
- Some of the predators call them themselves “publishers” but they’re really companies that will print your book for a hefty fee. We know editors who have been fleeced and whose books were so inferior that they literally fell apart because the spine was weak or the glue was cheap.
- What information do many authors fail to include at their websites? The price of the book! And sometimes even a link to where people can buy it.
- Is starting a podcast worth an author’s trouble? Absolutely! A podcast can help you reach new audiences that might not otherwise discover you. We give you tips galore on how to get started.
- How does a self-published author know how to price a print book or an ebook? By doing research and finding out the prices on your competitors’ books. We give you tips on how to search, and where.
- “I heard Amazon is doing a huge sweep through its store and removing self-published ebooks about erotica, and even some about romance. Is this true?” Unfortunately, yes. So are other book sellers. Judith Briles tells you exactly what to do to avoid being part of the sweep.
- Self-published authors, finally, are on equal footing with authors who have big New York publishers and have gained a new respect within the publishing industry. That’s because they’ve taken the time to learn about publishing. These four webinars will make you very smart, very quickly.
- Hashtags are the new search tool. Learn how to use them when sharing information about your book.
- Create a Google+ profile and get active on that site. Your involvement is part of what Google factors into its algorithm,the formula that determines where you show up in search results.
- Libraries offer opportunities galore for authors to SELL more books. The number of library patrons is skyrocketing due mostly to the bad economy, and some patrons use libraries to find out about new authors before they invest in their books.
- You no longer have to grovel at the feet of traditional media to ensure adequate publicity for your book. YOU are the media! I explain many ways you can create your own media outlets and promote your book far and wide.
If you like those tips, you’ll love all four webinars.
Important Note: The deadline for signing up for the cruise is fast approaching. If you’re on the fence about whether to come, you can call me at 262-284-7451, or Judith Briles at 303-885-2207. All the details are on the PublishingatSea.com site.
You can spend 5 days at sea with 5 book book experts, pick our brains, bounce ideas off of us, learn which vendors we recommend, know how much you can expect to spend to publish your book, and return with everything you need to lay the groundwork for a bestseller.