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You are invited to post your book links, blurbs, snippets on WWBB's Facebook page. Follow me on Twitter and use @louise_wise for a retweet.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Literary Wealth

an article by 
Lauren Carr

It is a pleasure for me to write today’s guest blog post about my new baby: Literary Wealth

The path to my blog Literary Wealth has been an interesting journey of discovery for me as an independent author.

Literary Wealth is not my first blog. Told that, as an author, I needed to blog, I tried quite a few, always to stop after a few months with only a couple of followers. So, I hung it up and decided I would do what I was good at, writing my books, working with other authors through my company Acorn Book Services, and guest blogging at other sites. That I was good at and readers liked my articles at other sites.

While working with other new authors, the same dilemma kept coming up: Marketing is harder than writing the book. How do you get the word out to readers about exceptional authors who can’t afford to spend thousands of months on publicists or have big New York contracts? Sure, there are loads of blogs out there, but most of them are other authors devoted to a readership of writers.

Independent Authors need blogs geared toward the readers looking for those undiscovered gems in the literary world.

So, I decided to try my hand at blogging again and so far, it is succeeding.

At Literary Wealth, readers can find treasures of any genre: Fantastic, literary gems that are independent, self-published, or published by a small press.

Now don’t go making assumptions. Just because these book don’t have the backing of big-New York publishers, that does not mean they are second rate. The books and authors featured here have been selected because our reviewers believe they are gems that they need to share with you–other readers.

Spotlighted authors have the choice of writing a guest blog, or completing an interview, or we can send their book out for a review. They also have the opportunity of doing a book giveaway.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

So you’re an author. What next?

My Kingdom for a Platform
article by
Liz Schulte

So you’re an author. What next? The general consensus is you need a platform. But what on earth is a platform, and how do you create/maintain one.

A platform is more than collecting as many nameless faceless followers as possible and trying to shove your book down their throats. Despite what my mother thinks, my book isn't for everyone, no book is. The idea is to build a network of people who hold the same interests and reading tastes as you and then to get to know them. This is an excellent thought, but how does one do this?

Social networks, book festivals, conferences, blog hops, and pretty much anything you think of that allows you to connect with readers. But before I get into specific social networks this is how you determine your reach and the areas you will want to build on your platform. 

  • How many people are on your email list or subscribe to your blog? 
  • How many followers do you have on twitter? 
  • How many Facebook friends or fans do you have? 
  • How much monthly traffic do you get?

Pay close attention to this last bullet point. You can have tons of followers and friends, but if they aren't checking out your stuff and participating then they really don't count. You need people who are actually interested in you and what you do. So that begs the question, what do we have to do to interest them? Twitter is sort of like speed dating. You get 140 characters to find, talk to, and connect with complete strangers. While blindly following (something I am so guilty of) will get you followers it doesn't get you connections. Those you have to forge on your own by participating. Talk to people. Respond to their tweets and tweet interesting or discussion provoking thoughts rather than buy my book links. 

Facebook is a little easier to get to know people. There is more information and an easier forum for a relaxed conversation. However, how many of us really talk a lot to the people we don't already know well? Especially with fan pages it is important to interact and once again to post interesting and entertaining posts. Even your biggest fan doesn’t just want to hear about your book all the time. Let people see who you are and the loyalty will come.Goodreads is definitely a source I think I under use. The groups would be a great way to meet people who are into your genre and talk to them (not sell your book to them). I also under use Google +. Mostly because between writing, editing, blogging, Facebook, and Twitter, I don’t have a lot of time left for other networks. It is more important at the start to limit the number of networks you are on so you can do them right than it is to be everywhere. 

Now that you have made some connections and you are building a fan 

base, how do you keep them interested? This is where the content comes in. There seem to be two types of strategies people have taken.

The first is the author persona-centric platform. This is the idea that you should use your blog/web site/social media persona etc. to talk about your book, your writing, and things that have to do with you book.

The second is the human-centric platform. This is the idea that the reader wants to get to know the person behind the book. They want to feel like you could be their bff and hear about your daily life and struggles.

I don't love either of these strategies. First off, no one will keep coming back to your blog to have your books shoved at them constantly. That is no fun. Second, no one wants to hear about what you had for breakfast, lunch, and dinner unless they are a stalker. I think the middle ground has to be the key here. You have to talk about your book, but not too much. You also have to talk about your life, but not too much. It is our job to find a middle ground that will be interesting and engaging. Is this an easy task? Absolutely not. But the easy things in life are rarely the ones worth working for. 

Monday, 23 July 2012

Blogs, websites, Facebook pages and anything else that you can't do without as an author

That's what's in store for August, folks! I've invited authors and bloggers to introduce their favourite website (or blog or FB page or Twitter hashtag...)

Maybe you, yes you reading this, have a blog or website or... and wants to spread the word?

Do ya? Do ya really?

Of course you do. Don't be shy.

See the 'contact me' button up the top on the left? Click it and tell me all about your blog or website or...

I really, really wanna know.

So does everyone else.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Author in the chair - Serena Fairfax

Where the Bulbul Sings
Serena Fairfax

Buy NOW!
In this atmospheric, passionate and poignant account of a clash of cultures, caste and creed, divided family loyalties, wealthy heartthrobs and the power of love, the story is told through three women whose lives entwine.

Hermie - a headstrong and bewitching Anglo-Indian - turns her back on the Anglo-Indian community and reinvents herself only to find that a dark secret threatens to send her life spiralling out of control and cost her everything.

Sharp-witted Edith, exiled in India from her native Germany by Nazi persecution, faces stark choices in a future very different from that she envisaged.

Enchanting Kay, separated by more than a generation from Hermie and Edith, is haunted by a family mystery and risks her prospects in London to pursue a quest for roots in India where fate hurtles her in an unexpected direction. Can they confront the storms or are their dreams destined to shatter?

 website         blog

Author in the chair - Serena Fairfax

What inspired you to write WHERE THE BULBUL SINGS?

Saturday, 14 July 2012

The devil that is social media

You are my favourite waste of time. Yes, YOU, my cyber friends.

How many of you are logging on today with the idea to write? How many have checked and rechecked their emails, had a look on Twitter or posted something banal on Facebook and then waited for replies?

Hands up! Who’s guilty of procrastination?

What time was it when you sat down to write? Ten minutes ago? Thirty? An hour? Be honest now. Time has an annoying way of being there one moment, and vanishing the next so I wouldn’t be surprised if you said longer than even an hour!

Chick Lit
Latest release - June 2012
So why do we procrastinate? What’s so scary about opening the document of our novel and cracking on? It doesn’t necessarily mean your novel is rubbish, it’s just that deep down we know how much work there is involved in putting it all together.

Readers won’t know how much like a jigsaw typescripts are. Bits of scenes here, characterisation there, author notes, bits highlighted, bits underlined. It’s enough to make the water in your eyes dry up! Eeek!

So what can we do about it? It’s easy really. Unconnect from your server and don’t reconnect until your novel’s (at least) 20,000 words further in. Easier said than done though. That urge to check into Twitter, just for five minutes, won’t go away. And once you do “check in” that five minutes has soon turned to twenty!

I mean, look at me, I’m writing this rather than continuing with my novel! Somehow, writing an article on procrastination is easier than opening my book. Why? I’m in love with the idea for my book, my character is feisty, the setting brilliant and the plot is dynamite!  So what’s stopping me?


I’m stopping me.

There is nothing wrong with my typescript, and I expect it’s the same with yours.  I just LOVE social media so much it’s become an interference. I love the prettiness of Pinterest, the family that is Facebook, the links I can collect on Twitter and the opportunity of sharing  posts and articles on Triberr.

When I’m not part of it I feel I’m missing something.

Here are my three tips that I plan to use:

  1. Make ‘playtimes’ on the Internet a reward for writing 10K or more words.
  2. Get into a routine; write in the evenings (or mornings, afternoons, whatever suits best) and make this an absolute writing time. Not playtime (or marketing or whatever it’s called!). Writing is just that – writing.
  3. If rewards don’t work, I will try a punishment! If I don’t manage my quota for the week then there WON’T be a special treat at the end of the week.
Chick Lit
Louise Wise is the author of Eden, A Proper Charlie and her newest release The Fall of the Misanthrope: I bitch, therefore I am. She has also written a non-fiction book based on articles from this blog: So You Want an Author Platform?


Sunday, 8 July 2012

In the spotlight of ... Vivian Mayne

The Curse of Fin Milton

Set in modern day London and Cornwall, England, this enchanting ghost story follows the quest of a young man who carries a curse that condemns him to a life without the woman he cares for most in the world. His quest to lift the curse threatens the lives of all those he cares for.

A supernatural romance

The couple first meet as children, but were predestined to suffer a supernatural romance as a consequence of a curse cast in days gone by. 

Aided by a beautiful and dangerous ally who herself has mystic gifts he has to ward off paranormal forces as he seeks to unshackle the restraints of the curse. The two lovers are constantly at the mercy of a ruthless family whose interests would be threatened if the the curse were lifted.

A spooky ghost story

Vivian Mayne takes paranormal romance into the midst of life as we know it today. The result, a spine-tingling, spooky ghost story that makes you question what lies behind every door. A love story very much for our times. First of the series. 

Links and Contacts

An interview with Vivian Mayne coming soon...

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Social Media - What’s Your Flavor?

Buy Now!

Jean Mckie-Sutton

Social Media has proven to be an effective and useful way to meet people who share your interests, develop relationships with potential customers and ultimately increase book sales. The pool of social media options has expanded rapidly during the past few years. Some have become household names, like Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin. Less talked about, but still extremely viable networks, are Google+, MySpace and Pinterest. Then there are those whose names sound more like childhood board games than social media options - Tagged, Orkut, Badoo, Ning, Triberr and more.

Facebook is still my favorite. It provides a versatility that is still unrivaled, especially with the addition of its Fan Page. The Fan Page provides free links for your website and blog, thus providing traffic to your sites which can potentially lead to increased sales. The Applications on the Fan Page further enhance the site’s usefulness and practicality. An application for reviews -my personal favorite - allows readers to star your book and share comments. An events Application lets fans know when you are making appearances, interviews, etc., and a video Application allows you to upload YouTube videos.

While not my all time favorite, LinkedIn still impresses me with its span of reach. This site is unique for its access to groups. Authors, publishers, agents and readers can join groups who comprise their primary audience or share common interests. A group can contain anywhere from a handful to over 100,000 members. The key here is to join the larger groups, so that each time a member comments, or provides a tip or a link, the member profile visits increase exponentially and web traffic surges.

Twitter is the social networking site I am most fond of. Twitter is short and sweet - think instant messaging. Automation is its most effective feature. You can pre-set tweets to go to your Facebook Fan Page and LinkedIn - an asset when you’re pressed for time. If developing followers presents a challenge, try typing a keyword that has something to do with what your book is about. For instance, if you type in science fiction you will have access to hundreds of contacts. Select those you’d like to follow, and some will undoubtedly follow you back.

While Pinterest is quickly gaining popularity, this is the social media network I understand the least. The site describes Pinterest as a ‘virtual pinboard’, and on the home page are photos of pineapples, an outdoor pallet table, Iguazu Falls, frosted cupcakes and other oddities. I’m not sure how this relates to networking or book marketing, but since Pinterest is my next social media hurdle, I guess I’ll find out soon enough. 

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Dr. Donna Lee and her favourite waste of time ...

As I started to think about my favorite websites to visit, I was stuck. I never realized that I have been taking it for granted the wealth of information now available to society due to the internet. I am 41 years old. Yes, I can tell people that I was an adult before the internet was invented and easily accessible to everyone. 

The internet has become this wonderful place of information available twenty four hours a day. I feel fortunate to be able to do so much research at home. I teach wellness care to health care professionals’ part time. It is important to have access to medical data bases 24 hours a day.  

I can stay in my pyjamas and access a wealth of information about health, seminars and various topics without ever leaving my home. I feel blessed that I can work in the middle of the night if I am unable to sleep. Time is never wasted. 

Yes, we do have a lot of technology available to us and we have to learn how to turn it off sometimes and tune into our environment. We see people everywhere who can’t stop talking on their cell phones. Our present day lifestyle has caused us to be comfortable with have so much easy access to people and information. Everyone has a website. I can Google any topic and find a seminar relating to that topic.

It is so hard to decide which website is my favorite to visit. I visit so many quite often. I have narrowed it down to Amazon as my favorite site. I love Amazon because of the fact that I can buy just about everything I need. A lot of the individual sites that I like do have a store on Amazon. I am able to have my payment information in one place instead of posting my personal information on several sites which increases the risk of my personal information being hacked.

I love Amazon the most because it has made it possible for so many people to not only buy goods but also has allowed the same access for an individual to sell products to the masses. I personally know of several people who have made a wonderful income from selling products on Amazon. 

Amazon has helped many people to stay financially afloat in hard economic times. Many people have learned how to work for themselves and have found great reward in self-employment because of Amazon.

Amazon is a blessing to authors. Especially indie authors. I feel blessed that I can self-publish a book and be able to have a market like Amazon that reaches the masses in several countries.

Many indie authors are making a living selling their books which is a dream come true. So many authors have tried to go the traditional publishing route only to be rejected over and over. Some authors have done so well on Amazon, which has made publishing companies take a second look at their work and they have been offered book deals with large sign on bonus. Amazon has leveled the writing field for both traditional published and indie authors.

If I had to pick a second website I would pick Facebook because it has allowed me to find old friends and to stay in touch with my family. Let’s face it that it is impossible to have time to call everyone and have an individual conversation which each person that we care about.
Link to Tour on Main Site 

Another great thing about Facebook is that individuals and companies can have a business page which increases the opportunity to reach more people around the world. I have benefitted from having a Facebook page. It has routed people back to my website www.drdonnalee.com. More people have been visiting my website and reading my blogs.

I love blogging about personal and spiritual growth issues. I enjoy writing about the topics that affect us on a daily basis. I blog about every issue from relationships to boundaries. Facebook has expanded my business and my exposure to people who did not know that I existed.

When I think of my favorite websites, I think about the site has more than one benefit for people who use it. Amazon and Facebook have done so much for so many people in so many ways. I feel grateful to live in a time that has allowed me to live a convenient life. 

The Spirituality Trap - Dr. Donna Lee

The search for happiness and peace leads us down many paths. 

Often the path of spirituality is taken in order to seek healing and the ability to find relief from our problems. The key is to remain true to ourselves and to never lose compassion for our self and others.

Happiness is not achieved by denial of emotional pain but through finding balance with the good and the bad that comes with our life's journey. 

Sunday, 1 July 2012

July's discussions will be...

social media

June over already? You sure? Crikey, I blinked and missed it, I reckon!

OK folks, the theme for July is social media.

Social media is important for writers, but what’s your favourite?  Is it Twitter that floats your boat? If it is, how on earth do you reach out to people when you need followers? What about LinkedIn, has anyone fallen in love with that seemingly lost tool? Is it lost?

Google Plus+ is new and seems a mix of Twitter and FB, and what of Facebook itself? It’s full of people’s photos of their kids, isn’t it? Have you tried Triberr? My Space? DevianArt? Live Journal, Tagged, Orkut, Badoo, Ning… just how many are there? 

What about Pinterest? Pinning pictures to virtual boards? What's the point of that? 

Just how do you juggle your time connecting and building the author platform?

These are just some of the questions we will be talking about. I have a few spare slots because of authors dropping out so if anyone wants to get in on the discussion...? Well, email me and let's talk!

Among the social media chats I'd like to introduce you to a new paranormal author Fiona Mayne who will be spotlighting her new book - The Curse of Fin Milton - - A Spooky Ghost Story and Supernatural Romance. Sounds good, right? And I'll be interviewing Serena Fairfax about her novel Where the Bulbul Sings and finding out about her writing routine.

See you then!