August 17

How Authors Can Use Periscope To Sell More Books

periscope for authors

Are you on Periscope yet?

Periscope is Twitter’s real time video broadcasting app. It might not seem like the obvious choice for authors at first glance, but look closer. There are actually lots of ways for an author to grow their audience on the platform. Here is why I love Periscope as a platform for writers who want to grow their audience and sell more books.

Get up close and personal with your readers

If you are trying to connect with your readers via social media, Twitter has been the closest thing to real-time connections up until now. They ask questions, you Tweet back, and then you carry on trying to keep up with the questions in your Twitter feed. It can get confusing since only the reply gets shown in each Tweet, and you can easily miss comments. 

Periscope lets your viewers focus solely on you. They can ask questions in the form of comments, and you can answer them back in real time, almost face to face. It helps your readers to form a connection to you that will encourage them to buy more books and remain faithful fans.

Interact with more people in less time

If you love to do book tours, but don’t have the time or money to travel from city to city, do a virtual book tour from the comfort of your own home. Periscope lets you reach anyone, anywhere, and at any time, so you can share your books at your leisure.

Periscope keeps the videos on the app for 24 hours and then deletes them, but you can save them to your phone and upload them to your website, so your fans can view them later when it’s convenient for them.

Do exclusive readings for your fans

Periscope lets you make public or private broadcasts, so you can choose to broadcast only to your followers, if you like. This allows you to do special readings or question and answer sessions just for your followers and no one else. If you have fans that aren’t following you on Periscope, you can plan a reading, announce it on your other social media platforms, and encourage fans to follow you on Periscope for full access.

Share your writing life with the world

Being an author can be a lonely profession, but thanks to Periscope, you can share your writing life with your fans and they can send you messages about your work. Periscope uses the hashtag #WhereIWrite to allow famous authors to let their followers get a glimpse of their personal writing spaces via video.

It’s not just famous authors who can use the hashtag; independent authors and unknowns can become a part of the larger community of writers using the platform, and grow their own audiences as well. Gain exposure and new fans by showcasing your home, office or favorite writing spot.

For authors, the possibilities are endless when using Periscope to build a brand or loyal following. Whether you write fiction or nonfiction, Periscope could be one of the most powerful tools in your marketing toolbox.

Follow me on Twitter & Periscope! @Jesswoodsusa

I plan on using the platform myself to help gain exposure for my books, how will you use it?

August 6

3 Ways To Write A Book With (Almost) No Effort

3 ways to write a book with almost no effortThose of you who know me well know that I am a firm believer that there are no shortcuts to success. You have to put in the effort to reap the rewards, and writing a book is sometimes challenging, but never impossible. If you have always wanted to write a book, but thought it was too hard to do, here are three ridiculously simple ways to write a book that really eliminate all the excuses you could ever think of for not writing one. You’re welcome.

Use your blog posts

If you are a blogger and you’ve been blogging for any length of time, you probably have plenty of thousands of words worth of blog posts sitting on your blog. If they all share a common theme and are reasonably interesting and well-written, you can compile them all into an ebook. Don’t just copy and paste them, though. Take the time to add information as needed to make the posts flow like a real book, and not just a copy of your blog.

Write a few unique pieces and put those in your book, too. This will entice loyal readers to buy the book, since it has information not listed on your blog.

Use PLR to write a book

If you’re like me, you probably have a huge collection of PLR sitting on your computer, waiting to be used for something glorious. Providing the PLR is good quality, you can use it to make an ebook to sell. This is good if you want to write a non-fiction book, but there are some things you need to be aware of.

Don’t just copy and paste all your PLR into an ebook. That’s lazy, and Amazon won’t like it because it looks like you just plagiarized the crap out of somebody else. Instead, “freshen up” the PLR with your own personality, taking out bits that you don’t really need and adding in your own personal details and touches.

Again, add in extra information wherever you can. You really want to provide your readers with great information, and if you have a good personality, let it shine through. Add insights and observations, and before you know it, you’ll have a full-grown book baby on your hands.

Write it in little bites

Okay, so you have an amazing idea for the best novel in the whole wide world, but there’s no way you can sit down and write it all out. Oh, yes, there is. As I love to tell my kids, you can eat an elephant, as long as you do it one bite at a time.

Can you commit a measly ten minutes every day to writing your book? I’m sure you can. Stay off of Facebook for a little bit, turn off the television, and settle down with your writing implement of choice. Commit yourself to writing for just ten minutes, and write your little heart out.

The key to making this method truly easy is planning ahead, but you can include this in your ten minute chunks. On your first ten minute session, write a very brief, very general synopsis of your basic story. Then, spend a few sessions writing a more detailed outline of what will happen in the story. Get as detailed as you want, because the more detailed, the easier it will be to write your actual book.

I personally keep a notebook with me so I can jot down plot ideas throughout the day, but you might find using index cards just as easy, especially if you aren’t sure what order these plot points are going to fall. In every ten minute session, write a little chunk of your story. Once you have enough chunks, you can piece them together to build your actual book.

One method I like, but haven’t used personally, is the index card method. This really does help you simplify your plot points and put them in a visual order so you can imagine how your final story will come together.

One other mention

I know some people will say “Aha! She forgot to talk about using a ghostwriter!” No, I didn’t forget. Look at the title of this post again. It’s about how to write a book, not how to have one created for you.

I have nothing against using ghostwriters. I am a ghostwriter, so I definitely know how helpful it can be to have someone step in and help you craft your book. But, this post is aimed at those who want to write their own books, so although I mention using a ghostwriter, I think that most of you will feel more fulfilled if you write your book yourself.

So there you have it. Three more reasons why you should go write that book. Let me know when you’ve finished it. Heck, leave a comment below with a link to your book once you’ve gotten it published! And tell me what method you used to write your book, so other people can see how easy it really can be.