Marketing to Libraries

Librarian checking out booksWhile many indie authors have mastered online sales, even strong-selling writers tend to see distribution to libraries and bricks-and-mortar stores as difficult to impossible. However, they should consider giving it another go. Industry experts and indie authors who have tried to get wider distribution have recently found surprising success—both in expanded availability and greater awareness of their work, in the library marketplace.

According to the American Library Association (ALA), there are over 9,000 public libraries in the United States alone. Each of these libraries is a potential buyer of your book, and even if they buy only one copy, that’s enough to get the ball rolling and have the word about your book spread. Continue reading

Why You Need a Good Headshot (and how to get one)

Framing a Camera ShotOne of the most important promotional tools for any author is to have a good headshot that they can send to magazines, blogs, conventions and other media. Plus, it is a great piece for your website or blog and helps your audience “connect” with you.

Many people falsely believe that they need to spend a lot of time and money by hiring a professional photographer to take dozens of shots, in different changes of clothing. That’s only true if you’re aspiring to be a model or actor. For you, the aspiring author, head out to the shopping mall. Almost all department stores and even some portrait speciality companies offer professional photography services that are very affordable. Continue reading

Writing Your Author Bio: Things to Think About

woman thinkingI’ve been involved in marketing and public relations for many years now, and I am still amazed at how difficult it is for most professional people to write a brief paragraph or two that describes their business experience. I’ve worked with CEOs and other executives who are incredibly smart and qualified business men and women, but if I ask them for a bio to send out with a press release, I usually get their multi-page resume.

Through my many years of publishing experience at Virtual Tales and Barking Rain Press, I see that this problem is very common—even for professional writers. Writing fiction and writing a professional bio are completely different tasks (or at least, they should be). So I hope that this writer’s workshop on how to write your author bio will be able to help you create your own professional bio, because if you are serious about becoming an author, you need to have one.

So let’s get started! Continue reading

Writer’s Workshop: How to Write Your Author Bio & Get a Headshot

Writer staring at blank paperWhether you are an aspiring or published author, your never-ending magnum opus will be your biography—and you will probably need more than one. Unless you can afford a publicist, you will need to learn how to put your best foot forward on your website, a book jacket, a blog or guest appearance throughout your career. Continue reading

Great WordPress Tool for Authors: ScrapeAzon

If you have good reviews for your books at Amazon, you probably wish there was a way to show them on your WordPress website or blog without having to screen-scrape the copy. And wouldn’t it be great if all the new reviews would show up as well, without the need for you to check over there periodically to copy/paste them back to your website. Wouldn’t it be fabulous if there was a plugin for that? Turns out there is. Continue reading