POINTERS ON PUBLISHING: 5 tools everyone in the publishing industry should be using
LIKE ANY tradesman, if you are without your tools, you can’t get to work. The same applies to anyone with a job, business, or even a hobby and even the simple daily task of everyday life – you need your tools. As an author, you, too, need your tools in your author toolbox, and I am going to share five main tools that, in my opinion, are helpful to a newbie as well as an established writer.
1. Wordpress – This is a platform that is used for blogging and for building websites. It is truly user friendly to a newbie and if you are a non-techie, you would love using this. Wordpress.com is free to use and you can have it set up within minutes. For those of you who are just starting to write and who are a bit unsure of whether your material, thoughts, and ideas are worth sharing or would capture an audience, I would strongly suggest starting with this blogging platform and sharing your work. You may just garner comments, likes, and the confidence over time to believe that you do have something that is worth writing about that an audience would be interested in reading and buying.
2. Social Media – Nothing happens these days without social media. If you want to know what’s trending, check out Twitter and Facebook. If you want to join a professional community and interact, join Linkedin and Google Plus. For authors, a place like Goodreads is a great place to start. There are lots of book communities where authors hang out and share, and, by the way, it’s also a good place to get reviews – if you are looking for some.
I found this really cool blog that shares a gallery of 10 social networks for writers. Check it out here: http://mashable.com/ 2012/01/23/social-networkswriters/#W1AXf0410gqi . And, hey, don’t only feel compelled to use the traditional, though popular social media sites. Go over to YouTube and talk about your books on video; have book study groups if you are an established author; or just choose your favourite book and create a discussion. Now, you also have Facebook live. Make use of it!
3. Publishing Sites – Online platforms such as Amazon, Create Space, and Lulu.com are the three main places I would highly recommend to publish your books. You are free to check out others, but I encourage you to read through the terms and conditions and features of the site. Amazon has been really stepping up its game in helping authors get their work noticed, and I am sure most of you are not aware or keeping up with this to increase your sales,especially since Amazon is offering all this to you for free!
Take advantage of authorcentral; KDP; promote events; do a buy one, get one at a discounted price offer and pre orders of books, and much more!
4. Book Launches – Don’t only attend your own book launch. Go to others – whether friend or foe. Learn from it and apply for your next book launch or event. The thing is, if you support someone, you will get support. Don’t be selfish. Open yourself to supporting a fellow author, and that person, or maybe another, will most likely be helpful to you when you really need it.
5. Opt ins – I always recommend this as it is the one sure-fire way to build subscribers and followers to your site, blogs, and work and allow for generation of income. Use this tool to build relationships with your audience and you can be set for a long time. Give them value and keep them interested with great content, offers, and giveaways, and at the right time, you can approach them with offers for sale. They would be kind enough to support you. Not all would, but some will, and that’s a start.
I ‘Pretty peaceful’ taken at Strawberry Fields, Jamaica.
‘Soon to be hot chocolate’.
‘The landing’ downtown, Kingston.