Sell More Books This Holiday. Here’s How…

Writers write. Readers read. Together they are one.

The holiday season brings many opportunities for authors. Families, co-workers, friends, networkers and even the Grinch shop for the perfect Gifts for book-lovers. From fiction, non fiction, Poetry, Sci-fi and sweet holiday romance for those hallmark enthusiasts who dream not only of movies but to curl up in the warmth of Christmas bliss. Their goal? To get lost in the world of the ideal relationship.

Marketers go crazy to capture the holiday magic for those on the naughty or nice list. So why shouldn’t authors…well author-preneurs participate? It’s become a common trend for non-traditional publishers to want to optimize the sweet fruits of their labor. They want to see their hard work nicely wrapped under the Christmas tree or at minimum, stuffed into Christmas stockings.

So how can authors prepare? I was chatting with a group of self published and traditionally published authors who long to boost their holiday sales. Why have the books gathering dust on Amazon’s platform or even yours? It seems the practice is to write it, publish it, and forget it, with the hopes that writing and publishing the book will attract sales. Not so. It does not work that way. Not for any type of author. The point is, after your book is published… unfortunately that’s when the hard work begins. You have to make the world know that it exists. So here are a few simple tips to help get you started. Don’t be overwhelmed. Choose one, two or a few and prepare for the most wonderful time of the year.

Create That Holiday Plan

  • Create a plan for the holidays. I am a firm believer in the saying if you are not planning you’re just practicing.
  • Evaluate where you are now and where you would like to be at the end of the holiday period. For example, you could include factors like doubling or tripling your year-to-date sales. If you are an experienced author with several books, take a loo at your past holiday sales. Project an increase in sales over past years.
  • Plan to up your Marketing and Promotional strategy. Sometimes just a little effort goes a long way from doing nothing at all.
  • Update your book covers. Make it festive (easier if you’re self-published) but whatever you do, make sure your cover looks professional.

Your Holiday Author Platform

  • Become more visible
  • Get your website holiday ready
  • Update your Amazon Author Central profile
  • Get more amazon reviews
  • Make your book covers more festive
  • Update your book description
  • Update your author bio. It’s a good idea to edit and review often on your amazon page. You would be surprised when you look back you seem to be looking at a stranger who essentially is a person you hardly recognize. Think of this like a resume. Update frequently.
  • Get a professional photo done and spread it across the different media networks

Build That Strategic Audience

  • Set up or expand your mailing list
  • Write blog posts
  • Create a newsletter… if that’s on your agenda
  • Find and connect with your audience. Engage, engage, engage them
  • Offer free holiday shipping

You may also like From Books To Bucks

Get Social

  • Update your Social Media Profile
  • Do a holiday-themed hash tag search
  • Dig a little deep and find out who your followers are
  • Create images of your books in holiday settings on instagram
  • Create your own 12-Days of Christmas

Show. Don’t Tell

  • Increase your book reviews. Aim for 25 which means you have to go after many in order to get this done. You will receive promises but usually only lower percentage will come through
  • Create gift bags and other swags for giveaways
  • Create holiday videos. Already doing that? Do some more
  • Have a series? Make the first book FREE
  • Prep your own 12 Days of Christmas Giveaways

Holiday Party Connect. Collaborate.

  • Collaborate with other authors in Holiday Book Events
  • Participate in Holiday Book Guide
    • Gifts for the Poetry Lover
    • Gifts for the Sci-fi lover
    • Gifts for the child reader enthusiasts
  • Invite your fans to an “ask the author” virtual Holiday party on social media
  • Get involved in local festivities (holiday markets, local fairs etc.)
  • Contact local independent bookstores

Hope these few tips will help get you underway. There are tons more but these few will get you started. Don’t get overwhelmed. Choose one, two or a few and Sell More Books this Holiday!

Cheers!

Goals: Killing Me Softly…

Goals…There’s no telling what you can do when you get inspired by them. There’s no telling what you can do when you believe in them. And there’s no telling what will happen when you act upon them. —Jim Rohn

Over the past few months we had lots of birthdays at the office. So we could all enjoy,  I bought candies! More specifically M&M’s with all the nuts and stuff. Yum! Staff was thrilled. Another liked to chew on pens when thinking. Don’t we all know someone like that? Anyway, I bought a pack of pencils in her favorite style and gave to her as a precursor appetizer to a group lunch. She found it hilarious!

Then as she was about to consume the M&Ms, she cried out omgeeee it has nuts! I’m allergic to nuts! The pencils were a trip but then she exclaimed ‘ you want me to die? I don’t chew on pencils. It has lead!

So though I meant well, those gifts were harmful.  I replied that I love you guys so much I am killing you softly with my love.

Aren’t We Like That With Our Goals?

Often we are like that with our goals. We mean well but the activities we engage in softly jeopardizes our progress …or in some cases, kills it softly. Lets today take the time to look closely. Lets examine our efforts and make sure they are headed in the right direction. Only then will we achieve. Need help? Lets connect.

Cheers!

Travel For Fun! 9 Things To Do To Break Life’s Monotony…

 

This is the beginning of anything you want.

The daily grind. Don’t you just hate it? Day after day you get up, do the same thing over and over, and over again. Alive but never really living. You dream of  lazy days; or those days when you’ll be able to do just what you want to do. Be careful what you wish for though, because that too can become….. exciting? a thrill? mundane?

But if your dreams, hopes and aspirations is to break the montony… then  Go for it!!   Here are 9 Things to do:

Inspired To Change

1. Learn a new language.

2. Learn to play a musical instrument.

3. Travel for fun (not business).

4. Write a book.

5. Reflect on your spirituality.

6. Mentor youths (helps you stay young).

7. Become a trader (for fun). Helps keep your eye on your financial viability.

8. Get involved in your community.

9. Expand your mind, earn a PhD

 

Did any of these spark your interest? Can you add any? Do share. We would love to hear!

Cheers!

 

If We Stay Where We Are…

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If we stay where we are, where we’re stuck, where we’re comfortable and safe, we die there. We become like mushrooms, living in the dark, with poop up to our chins. If you want to know only what you already know, you’re dying. You’re saying: Leave me alone; I don’t mind this little rathole. It’s warm and dry. Really, it’s fine. When nothing new can get in, that’s death. When oxygen can’t find a way in, you die. But new is scary, and new can be disappointing, and confusing – we had this all figured out, and now we don’t. New is life.”  ~ Anne Lamott

Writers Block. Stuck In A Rut. 21 Ways To Overcome…

You can’t think yourself out of a writing block; you have to write yourself out of a thinking block. ~John Rogers

Writers block is a common phenomenon among writers. It’s the condition of being unable to think of what to write or how to proceed with writing. The question was asked and the list was compiled from advice gleaned from a Book Writers’ forum. The ideas are simple and delightfully thought-provoking. Here I share 21 of the more exhilarating.

  1. Embrace it as gestation
  2. Listen to music
  3. Take a break or work on something else
  4. Go back to what inspired you first
  5. Change your scenery.
  6. Go for a walk
  7. Write something personal
  8. Read. Get motivated. Then go back
  9. Put the pen and paper down.
  10. Leave it alone and the ideas will come home
  11. Ask questions of your stories
  12. Try writing something different
  13. Take a shower. Let the water flow and the ideas will come
  14. Free write. Write about your day. Just write
  15. Ask another writer what they are working on. The change of focus will inspire you
  16. People who succeed as writers write
  17. Take a writing course
  18. Be in a group
  19. Write about writer’s block. Something will inspire
  20. Watch a movie
  21. Get physical. Go to the gym. Break a sweat

Did any of the above resonate? Can you add any? Do share! We would love to hear!

Cheers!

 

Rushing To A Place Where You Don’t Want To Be. The Answer Is In The Why…

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I go to seek a Great Perhaps. ~Francois Rabelais

Rushing to a place where you don’t want to be. Why? Why do you do that? Why do you spend your life rushing around? Rushing to work? Rushing home to a place where you do not want to be. Rushing to water a failing relationship with family, friends or foe? Rushing to do what others want you to do?

Then after all the rush…when you finally arrive at your destination, you are miserable. Life seems hard. Unfair.  So many questions. Why do you do it? Is it because you can’t do any better?

The Answer Is In The Why

You rush to the job because you need to pay the  rent-to have shelter. A place to rest. A place where you want to feel the solace of those who care. You need food. Independence. You need to feel worthy. To avoid the shame.  To avoid the dread of what others may think.

Forget Them 

Forget them. Take the steps needed to do you. To go after that dream. Make a plan. Work that plan. Keep it at the forefront of your mind. And when the going gets rough…work it even harder. You will get there… someway, somehow.

Here are a 7 tips to help you when you feel stuck. Need help? Let’s connect.

Cheers!

Top 20 Companies To Work For…

Success is no accident

Years ago I managed the process that led to GlaxoSmithKline capturing the coveted Employer of Choice Award. It was indeed a great place to work. Since then I have always been encouraged by other companies who achieve the same feat and become the envy of many who long for a great place to work…somewhere you can’t wait to jump out of bed in the mornings to get to.

Fortune 100 Best revealed its list of the top 100 Best companies to work for in 2019. Here I share the top 20.

  1. Hilton
  2. Salesforce
  3. Wegmans Food Market Inc
  4. Workday
  5. Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants
  6. Cisco
  7. Edward Jones
  8. Ultimate Software
  9. Texas Health Resources
  10. The Boston Consulting Group Inc
  11. Stryker Corporation
  12. Publix Super Markets Inc
  13. American Express
  14. Quicken Loans
  15. Orrick
  16. Baird
  17. JM Family Enterprises
  18. Kimley-Horn
  19. Camden Property Trust
  20. Cooley LLP

 

Didn’t see your company’s name? Check the list to see where they fall.

Cheers!

 

On The Hunt? 7 Ways To Show Your Talents And Accomplishments…

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Life changes. Careers that once were exciting later becomes a strain or even boring. Sometimes the organization changes or a beloved supervisor leaves and the environment becomes unbearable. Other times you may simply want more…or less as with managers who no longer wish to lead. Newly weds may want to start a family and just want to do enough to get by.

Resume Reveal

Well if you haven’t looked at your resume for a while you’ve got some work to do to capture your the journey your career has been on to start your search. Don’t rush it. Take your time to get it done. You may not get it perfect  immediately, but in time you will.

Here are 7 ways authors Wendy Enelow and Louise Kursmark espoused by SHRM on updating your resume. The tips can be applied to any situation. Read the full article How to Write Powerful and Memorable Resumes

  1. Use a well-branded headline
  2. Share details about the organization you worked for
  3. Emphasize Achievements
  4. Highlight key words
  5. Prepare your resume for applicant tracking system (ATS)
  6. Share what makes you special ( what separates you from others)
  7. Write tight, clean and lean

Need help? Let’s connect

Cheers!

Living Your Life As A Mask…

A new writer shared her Instagram name. It was nowhere close to her real names . I beckoned to her… smile in tow…”you do make it hard, don’t you? In haste she retorted “it’s so my employer can’t find me”.

I smiled.

Our Lives In Compartments

How many of us are like that? We live our lives in compartments trying to separate our true selves from what those around us see publicly.

To Hide To Be

It’s a hard choice but sometimes you have to hide in order “to be“. I pray one day that you will be able to just be. To reveal your true identity and just be the you that you want to be.

Cheers!

The Biggest Challenge Writers Face….

There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.

― Maya Angelou

A public writers forum asked the question “what is the single biggest challenge you as a writer face?” Here I share responses as writers chimed in:

  • Writing everyday
  • Marketing
  • Not enough erasers
  • Find an agent
  • A full-time job that isn’t
  • Learning all the required skills – writing, editing, cover art, publishing, marketing, salesmanship, accounting …
  • Identifying my audience
  • Details
  • Time
  • Reviews
  • Getting books sold
  • Selling myself
  • Lethargy
  • Butt in chair
  • Discipline
  • Marketing costs. Dispite what some may say, it is expensive to self-publish. Editor, copy editor, cover design, copyright, ISBN numbers, authors copies, advertising, website, domain name, contests, give-aways, and on and on it goes
  • Self-Doubt
  • Stay Motivated
  • Writers block

The list goes on. Are you a new or published author? Is anything missing? Do share. We would love to hear.

Need help? Let’s connect.

Cheers!

Love’s Impossiblity…

My story is about love

The impossibility of perfect love

Though I have the perfect love

It’s impossible to hone it

Impossible to prove it

Impossible to feel it

Impossible to find it

Perfect love

My love

My perfect love at Valentine

Dream Journal…

Every dream begins with a dreamer

Little 7 year old Xavier quietly whispered that he captures his dreams in the morning in a journal. Often I encourage individuals to keep a journal to capture thoughts on their dreams and goals. This will help them to work on them to achieve.

Unknown to me he has been listening and took it literally by writing his ‘dreams’ every morning.

Oh how much a little child leads.

 

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