Author Archive

Self Publishing on the Ipad

Apple’s distribution system for the Ipad (and Ipod), is a free application called iBooks. Once installed, iBooks allows you to buy, download and store your ebooks. Individual writers are not able to directly upload titles. Instead, Apple has appointed a number of Apple-approved iBookstore aggregators. One of these is Smashwords and uploading your book to their site is simple. Here’s how:

REGISTER: Sign up for a Smashwords account. Choose a ‘member name’ that corresponds with the pen name or publisher name you will be using. Choose this carefully, as you cannot change it later.

FORMAT: Study and implement the Smashwords Style Guide so you can learn how to format your ebook. Your book must be uploaded to Smashwords as a Microsoft Word .doc file.

COVER IMAGE: You will need a quality book cover image (JPEG file), and it must be a vertical rectangle shape and at least 600 pixels tall. The cover cannot be a grey scale image and it cannot contain hyperlinks or website addresses. 

PRICE, ATTACH & UPLOAD: Once you have formatted your book to the Style Guide, click the Publish link at the top of any page. Carefully fill out the required information. Apple prices ebooks in 99 cent increments, so it’s a good idea to do the same.

CONVERSION: After you click the publish button, your browser will pause as it uploads your information to the conversion service. At the end of the conversion you may see messages, suggesting formatting problems. Once your book has been converted you will receive email confirmation.

CHECK FOR INSTRUCTIONS: Check your Dashboard. Under the ‘Premium Status’ column, it should say ‘Pending review’ or ‘Accepted.’ It usually takes a week or less for Smashwords to manually approve your title for the Premium Catalog. If it says ‘Requires Modification,’ click the link for instructions, where you’ll find messages from our reviewers.

UPLOAD NEW VERSION (IF REQUIRED): If you were asked to revise your book, when you’ve finished the revisions return to your Dashboard and click ‘Upload new version.’

VALIDATE YOUR EPUB: Once your ebook conversion completes, it’ll output your book in multiple formats, including EPUB.  Apple requires that your EPUB file pass the EPUBCHECK validator.  Here’s how you can check:  Go to your book page, download the complete EPUB, then upload it to a free validator, such as  Most books pass 100%.  If your book fails, it’s usually caused by easy to fix problems such as poorly formed hyperlinks. Once you’ve fixed your book, return to your Dashboard and click ‘upload new version.’

ASSIGN AN ISBN: Apple requires your book have an ISBN. Go to the ISBN Manager page to assign one to your book. Your ebook ISBN must be different than the print book ISBN..

OPT-IN TO APPLE CATALOG: Go to your Dashboard and click on the Channel Manager link where you must manually opt-in to the Smashwords-Apple distribution channel for each book. You will be asked to carefully review and agree to special terms, required by Apple, in order for them to list your book in the iBookstore.

WAIT: After your book is accepted to the Premium Catalog, and you’ve assigned your ISBN and have opted in to the Apple channel, then you must wait for Smashwords to distribute your book to Apple. It will usually appear in the iPad iBookstore within a day or two of shipping.

PROMOTE YOUR BOOK: Download the free Smashwords Book Marketing Guide for an extensive list of free book marketing ideas.

GET PAID: For all sales, you’ll earn 60% of the retail price. Smashwords pays quarterly on all monies received on your behalf by the end of each quarter.

Tips For Selling Books On The Kindle & Ipad

  • Think about selling from the buyer’s perspective. As the author of an ebook, spend some time figuring out how readers will find out about your book or come across it among the thousands of books in the Apple and Kindle store. Then once they have found it, you must also ensure that they feel compelled enough to want to buy it.
  • Hang out where readers of Kindle and Ipad books hang out. Spend time promoting your book on the internet, where your readers are hanging out. Join reader sites like GoodReads and subscribe to blogs and groups that cater to Kindle owners like KindleBoards, Kindle Forum, Kindlechat, or Kindle Nation Daily. Sign up to these sites and participate in the conversations. Your customized signature, with links back to your author website and or blog, and pictures of your book covers linked to your Amazon product page, act a bit like a business card. The more times a potential reader sees your name and book titles, the more likely they will type those details in when they are looking for new books to download.
  • Your cover design, interior design and formatting are the most crucial elements to success. If you are going to shell out any money this is where to spend it. There are lots of freelancers out there with reasonable rates.
  • Make sure your book is completely ready before you start to promote. Your product description needs to be well-written, your excerpt must be available, and you should have at least 4-5 reviews written by professional reviewers. There are more and more websites, blogs, and enewsletters that are willing to review ebooks. Most professional reviewers will then put their reviews on Amazon.
  • Make your pricing competitive. Go to the specific categories in which your book will show up and look at the prices of your competitors. If you aren’t a big name, $2.99-3.99 is probably the safest price point for genre fiction.
  • Don’t make your big promotional push prematurely. Banners on Kindle sites, promotional packages and paying for ads can cause a temporary bump in sales, but only if everything else is in place.
  • Use Amazon’s browsing capabilities effectively. Make sure your book appears in the right categories on Amazon, so potential readers find what they’re looking for.

Hope all this helps in your quest to sell more books!

Love & Light

The Word Queen xx

You Have The Power To Achieve All Your Writing Dreams!

Last weekend I went to see a Peruvian Shaman who had journeyed to Malaga to give energy cleansings and healing.

Despite the fact that the ritual sounded a little bizarre, I decided to go and check it out.

To begin we were asked to write our intentions on a sheet of paper. We had to make two columns – the things we wanted to attract into our life, and the things we wanted to eliminate.

I found it far easier to list the things I wanted to attract, so I scribbled them down at once. The elimination list, however, proved more difficult. Nevertheless, finally I wrote down three or four, so I folded my paper and handed it in.

The Shaman gave us each a cup of herbal tea to begin the cleansing process. Then, he disappeared inside and one by one we went to see him. Using wooden sticks – or swords in cases involving the attachment of evil spirits – he navigated around our bodies to free any negative energy. And it was quite obvious when this energy had been freed as it left via dramatic orange sparks, visible for all to see.

Immediately after, we took a seashell full of a mysterious brown liquid, and sniffed the contents up our nose. This made many people feel extremely sick, and the intoxicating taste got trapped at the back of our throats making us cough.

But there was more to come.

Next he pulled out a bag of herbs, called Dragonsherb. This herb can only be eaten in ceremony. If it’s ingested outside of ceremony it can be very dangerous indeed, often resulting in heart attacks. He handed me a dose of Dragonsherb and I put some in my mouth and chewed slowly.

Almost instantly I felt incredibly nauseous. It didn’t help that by this time people all around me were throwing up into sick bags. Inevitably I threw up a few minutes later.

To finish the evening we sniffed a white powder up both nostrils to represent the things we wanted to attract into our lives, and the things we wanted to repel. That had everyone sneezing like crazy. Oh, and more sickness too.

At the end of it all, as I sat and analysed the night’s proceedings, I came to a very profound realisation.

I’d just spent €100 to take dubious substances and generally feel pretty dire (not to mention the  hallucinations). Ok, so we made our intentions for the evening, which is a powerful activity in itself. But I suddenly felt a little disillusioned. The only real source of power comes from within. I am responsible for my own power and my own reality (I knew that already), yet I’d just spent the last seven hours giving up my power to a Peruvian Shaman.

Now don’t get me wrong. It’s not that I think he was a fraud. Simply that everything he did that night I could have done myself, but without the nasty side effects.

The moral of this story is that you are the powerhouse in your life. No one else can ever be that for you.

When it comes to your writing, by all means set intentions – to achieve a bestseller, get a glowing review from the New York Times, etc… But for those intentions to come true, it’s YOUR focus that matters…YOUR power, YOUR magnetism, YOUR energy, and YOUR faith – yours, and no one else’s.

Love & Light

The Word Queen xxx

The Power of Focus

Recently I returned from a life changing adventure, which involved camping in the Sawtooth mountain region of Idaho, USA. I’d never been camping before so the experience was entirely new for me, and I had no idea what to expect, apart from the likelihood of feeling dirty for ten days!

And I was right. Even with the occasional solar shower, I still felt icky and yucky. But I found that unless I focused on the grime I seemed to forget all about it.

This theme of focus continued to rear its head throughout my time away. Right from the outset, before I boarded the Virgin Atlantic flight to Chicago, I remember thinking, I’d love to have an amazing seat on the plane with extra legroom, and wider seats. Imagine my delight when a beaming air stewardess approached.

 ”We seem to have made an error and double booked your seat. Would you like to be upgraded to a Premium seat towards the front of the aircraft?”

Now some of you would put that down to ‘coincidence’ but that word no longer exists in my vocabulary. There are no coincidences. Everything that happens is a result of your thinking, and the rapidity of the manifestation is directly related to the energy behind it.

As I slumped into my Premium seat and sipped a glass of complimentary bubbly with my legs stretched out in front of me, I smiled inside and thanked the Universe wholeheartedly for delivering my request.

Throughout the trip more and more incidents of the power of focus materialised. In fact I lost count of how many of my intentions transformed into reality. At one point I even considered changing my name to Harriet Potter because of all the magic which seemed to be unfolding in front of my eyes.

But the biggest example of the power of focus etched into my conscious during the rock climbing activity. I stood at the bottom of the Superslabs with my neck right back as I gazed apprehensively towards the peak.

“You mean we’re climbing right to the top?” I asked our facilitator, gulping.

“Yep,” he replied.

“But I’ve never done any rock climbing before…”

My plea for reassurance was ignored, and before long I found myself hooked onto a rope, and scrambling up the first of the six slabs.

Somewhere around the third slab, as my foot slipped, my legs throbbed, and the palms of my hand began to bleed, I didn’t feel like I could continue climbing. I felt out of control; trapped halfway up a mountain with no apparent escape except to carry on up.

I began to cry, both interally and externally. Perhaps I was after sympathy from my fellow climbers, or maybe I was just downright petrified. But as I sniffled and wiped my eyes, I suddenly remembered that little word – focus! In that moment – like every moment in life – I had a choice. I could either focus on my injuries, the fear, the sense of not being in control, or I could decide to enjoy the experience and focus on reaching the top.

An hour or so later I absorbed the most amazing views and congratulated myself inside for achieving what initially seemed impossible.

So how can you apply this lesson of focus to your writing and your dreams of getting published? It’s simple. Set your intention, focus on it daily in a positive frame of mind (think about landing an amazing publishing deal, holding your book in your hand for the first time, the smell of the pages, the look on a relative’s face when you show them) and above all, take the necessary steps to reach your desired goal.

You can achieve whatever you set your mind to, even if once upon a time it seemed impossible. Or methaphorically speaking, you can climb any mountain. I believe in you…the question is, do you? 

Love & light

The Word Queen xx

Expanding Your Comfort Zone

In life sometimes it’s important to get outside our comfort zone – to do things which we wouldn’t normally do, go places we wouldn’t normally go, and generally experience a different reality than what we are used to.

Taking this advice on board, I’m about to go camping for the first time! The wilderness experience in the beautiful mountains of Idaho lasts not just for a couple of days, or even five days, but 10 days…and there’s no campsite so I’ll have to make do without the luxury of toilets and showers for that time.

There’s white water rafting, rope work, mountain climbing, canoeing and lots of other exercises which I’ve never experienced before either. There’s even bears apparently, but I won’t think about that right now!

In addition to all that I’ve never flown on my own beyond to and fro from the UK, and an odd flight from Malaga to other cities within Spain. Getting from Malaga to Idaho involves three flights, three overnight stays in hotels (I fancied a bit of pre-trip luxury) and a good few mincab or shuttle bus rides.

So you may wonder how I am feeling about this upcoming trip, which is quite a long way outside of my current comfort zone. Well I feel naturally nervous, slightly anxious….but I also feel empowered, excited and as if I’m on the brink of a new beginning. The thought of waking up everyday in nature feels my heart with a warm tingly feeling, as does the idea of getting to know other likeminded souls in such an open setting.

But above all I’m looking forward to the creativeness that will accompany the trip. I’ll be able to sit overlooking a babbling stream with my notepad open, scribbling down whatever comes. I’ll be literally living on the edge of inspiration, just waiting to see what ideas the universe throws my way. What’s even better is that I can record all my experiences and feelings and emotions around the trip, while living it all at the same time.

Like life, when it comes to writing, us authors have a comfort zone too. We tend to stick to writing about what we know; only particular subjects, or certain styles with which we are familiar. Most of us also tend to write at the same place…sitting on a particular chair, or at a certain desk.

But what if we changed all that? What if we woke up one day with the full intention to write, but in a different way? What if, instead of slumping into the usual chair we took ourselves to a quiet beach, or a busy café, and tried to write in that environment instead? What if we took the plunge and began to write the opening chapter of a genre of book we’ve always loved to have the courage to try… My advice to you is to just do it. After all if you keep on doing what you’ve always done then you’ll keep on getting where you’ve always got…So if you want to be a bestselling author, simply look elsewhere, take action, and EXPAND YOUR WORLD!

Love & Light,

The Word Queen xxx

Book Marketing Tips

Below I’ve listed ten vital tips to a successful book publicity campaign…I suggest that you include as many of them as possible into your own marketing plan and that way you’ll sell lots of copies!

1. Take no for an answer. It can be frustrating when certain media bodies aren’t interested in your book, but always thank them for their time and move on. If you try and argue with them you’ll leave a bad impression and your chances of working with them in the future will be slim.

2. Start immediately! A book publicity campaign works best if it’s started six months prior to your books publication date. Begin publicising your story to mainstream and industry media way before your book’s release, and target consumers once it is available to order.

3. Create a press kit. Before you begin promoting your book prepare a press kit, including a cover letter, press release, author bio, Q&A page, sample interview questions, and articles.

4. Know your target audience. Identify exactly who is likely to buy your book. The more focused you are when it comes to marketing your book, the better your results will be. If your book is quite mainstream, begin with a smaller audience and broaden your focus after you’ve saturated the first audience.

5. Ask friends, colleagues, or anyone who likes your book to place reviews on Amazon. Amazon is highly influential and the reviews count for a lot, so encourage anyone who says they enjoyed your book to place a review. If there are a lot of reviews on Amazon (preferably four or five star reviews) other people who are interested in buying your book will be encouraged to order it.

6. Offer sample chapters as free downloads on the website created for your book. Turn a couple of your best chapters into PDF files and let people download them for free. This is the equivalent of letting people browse through your book at a bookstore! Sample chapters ‘tease’ readers into wanting more and that way they will be motivated to buy your book.

7. Review other books in the same field / genre as yours. Review these books on Amazon using your real name, accompanied by ‘author of the book ((title of your book here))’ Aim to review books in the same genre as yours that are higher up the sales rankings, and that way more people will have the chance of finding your book, as when people read your review a percentage of them will click through to your book!

8. Offer some copies of your book as prizes. Local radio shows, magazines, or societies will often be interested in running competitions, and will provide you with valuable publicity if you give them a few books to offer to their audience as prizes.

9. Build your web site address into your book. When writing your book, include as many reasons as possible for readers to visit your web site. Don’t just simply list your web site address in your biography, or on the last page of the book. Present readers with an array of valid reasons to visit your site. You could offer downloadable versions of engagement tools, such as checklists and worksheets. Promise updated content; ideas and topics that occurred to you after you completed your book. If your book is in black and white, but includes photographs or charts, post colour versions of the visuals on your website. Don’t see your website as merely a promotional tool, but as an additional resource alongside your book.

10. Encourage reader comments and questions. Use your website to create an interactive relationship with your readers. Solicit their comments and questions. Perhaps offer a prize for the best question of the month, and answer it on your home page.

Amazon Bestseller Campaign

So, finally your book is written, published and for sale on all the top websites, including As more than 80 per cent of all book sales now occur on Amazon, you’d be better off focusing your marketing efforts on driving potential buyers there. Amazon has a great reputation and what’s more, it’s possible to turn your book into an Amazon bestseller relatively easily – although like anything in life, this does require a dosage of effort! Amazon is much more than just an online store; it is the largest bookseller in the world and undeniably it is the first choice of readers to buy the books. Your book gains enormous visibility by running a determinative Amazon bestseller campaign.

However, you don’t necessarily have to sell a lot of books in order for your book to become an Amazon bestseller. Also, bear in mind that there are many advantages to owning the title of ‘Amazon Bestselling Author.’

The process involves engineering, together with your contacts and Joint Venture (JV) partners, a massive email campaign, along with incentive bonuses if people buy your book from Amazon on a certain day. This will practically ascertain that your book will become an Amazon bestseller in one or more categories over a period of a couple of days, often even hours!

Amazon updates their numbers (or book sales figures) every hour. Yet your book will become a bestseller ‘by rate’ rather than the numbers of copies sold. This means you must sell as many books as you can in the shortest amount of time possible!

Although an Amazon bestseller campaign needs proficient planning and appropriate execution, it is undoubtedly a great way to boost sales, visibility and obviously gain a higher Amazon ranking.

Becoming a Number One Amazon Bestselling Author is extremely advantageous and there are virtually endless benefits. It allows you to:

•    Establish yourself as an expert in your field/niche.
•    Gain exposure for you and your book.
•    Drive a huge amount of traffic to a website or blog which talks about your book, etc…
•    Increase your consultation and coaching charges.
•    Receive offers from different sources of media to invite you for an interview about your book and your services.

Amazon Bestseller Campaign

The basic concept of an Amazon bestseller campaign is to drive people to a special page telling them about your book, and to get them to return to that page to buy your book on the specified day of your launch. The reason why you want them to come back on a specified day is to hike up your Amazon sales rank. Most people will be more than willing to return to your page (as opposed to going directly to Amazon to buy your book) because after they buy it, they’ll be able to claim some fantastic bonus gifts.

These free gifts (often with a combined value of $200 or more) will be offered by a group of Joint Venture Partners (JVP’s) who you have brought together.

Once the necessary steps have been taken and a launch date has been set, you can sit back and watch your book creep up the sales rankings and become an Amazon bestseller!

For information on how I can help you launch an Amazon bestseller campaign for your book email me on

Love & light

The Word Queen xx

Getting Book Reviews

An effective offline method of publicising and advertising your books to sell even more copies, is via book reviews

To have a chance at selling lots of copies of your book on Amazon, you’ll need lots of book reviews.  Bagging lots of book reviews is a vital ingredient of your marketing plan for the following reasons.

1. Book reviews raise awareness about your book. Readers who read book reviews do so because they are interested in buying books. 

2. Book reviews provide information about your book that readers can use to make a decision. 

3.  Book reviews provide immediate access to your book.  Most book review sites raise money through affiliate programs, so most will include an Amazon affiliate link with your review. 

4. Book reviews provide credibility for your book.  Many libraries and bookstores expect to see excerpts of book reviews with media kits to help them determine which books to stock. A well-written, but bad review, will still point out some good things about your book.

5.  Book reviews provide feedback.  While a single review is only one person’s opinion, if the same things pop up in multiple reviews, authors will be made aware of potential problems, which they can take action to rectify. 

Here’s a two-step method that I recommend you follow in order to get book reviews:

1) Find bloggers who are related to your book, or who have reviewed other books in a similar genre, with a Page Rank of three or more. If your main character is a doctor, contact doctor blogs. If your character is a psychic, write to psychic blogs, etc. Page Rank 3 (PR3) is the best ranking to aim for because once a blog hits PR4 they receive a lot of advertising requests. PR3 blogs are more likely to respond with a ‘yes!’

2) To ask for the review firstly tell them who you are and ask if they’d be interested in receiving a free copy of your book. Also mention that if they like it, you’d really appreciate a review on Amazon. Keep it short and to the point.  Perhaps you could also give the reviewer a summary, page count, genre, and the ISBN number of the book.  Provide a link to your website for more information. It’s a good idea to give the message a personal slant, as if you’re writing to a friend rather than a stranger. Also bear in mind that most people prefer to receive a physical book.

Getting book reviews is a numbers game. Big commercial publishers often send out at least five-hundred review copies. Most indie authors can’t afford to send such a vast quantity, but it’s usually pretty affordable to send out ten or twenty copies to targeted blogs, plus email hundreds of other blogs with a digital copy.

At the beginning it’s all about  getting a following. You need reviews and support first then after you have that, you can focus your time and energy on selling your book and making money!

Love & Light

The Word Queen xx

Publishing Your Book On The Kindle

Publishing your book on the Kindle is a must for self published authors, and the benefits are endless. Every month more and more people are buying a Kindle, and hence there are more and more book sales.

For those who don’t already know, the Kindle is a wireless device that makes it easy to purchase and download reading material. It does not have to be connected to a computer in order to connect to the Amazon store. And as it’s so easy, and relatively cheap to buy content, customers just keep on buying their favourite books in electronic format. That’s why you simply must consider publishing your book on the Kindle!

You can publish any book you own the copyright to on the Amazon Kindle platform, but please note that it must be formatted in the correct way…for a Kindle formatting service click here. Once you have the formatted version of your book plus a cover design, here’s a list of steps you can follow to publish your book on the Kindle:

1. Go to Amazon’s Desktop Publishing site. If you have an existing Amazon account, use that to sign in, otherwise, create an account and sign in.  Amazon will have the right to promote your product by ‘making chapters or portions of your titles available to prospective customers without charge.’ This means interested buyers can read a free sample of your work.

2. Choose a payment method to receive the royalties on your book sales, then click ‘Save Entries.’

3. From the Dashboard, click the ‘My Shelf’ tab and then ‘Add New Item.’

4. Once you’re on the book page, fill in the title of your book. Under description, type in your ‘sales pitch’ for the book. Enter your book ‘blurb,’ a paragraph or two which tells readers what your book is about, plus editorial reviews and a brief excerpt.

5. Under Book Contributors, you must enter the name of at least one contributor, usually the author, or, in the case of a compilation work, the editor. You can always add multiple authors/editors later if necessary.

6. Enter the language the book is written in and an ISBN number if you already have one for the ebook. Do not enter the ISBN of the print version of your book. If you don’t have an ISBN for the ebook version, that’s fine as it’s not a requirement.

7. The next section is Publishing Rights. Your choice is between public domain rights and private, copyrighted material. You will usually choose private copyrighted material.

8. Next is the Browse and Search section. Choosing the right categories to list your ebook under will help it to be more easily found by customers. You may choose up to five categories in which to list your book.

9. Under the Search keywords section, you can enter 5-7 keyword phrases that apply to your book.

10. Now you must upload your book. First, you must upload your cover image. The cover image needs to be in JPEG or TIFF format, 72dpi, and a minimum of 500 pixels wide by 1280 pixels high.

11. Select whether or not you want digital rights management (DRM) enabled on your book. DRM is special formatting to make it difficult (though not impossible) to copy your book.

12. Now you will be taken to the Pricing and Publishing page. Here, you must select your Content Rights. If you are publishing a non-public domain title for which you hold the copyright, you most likely have worldwide rights to your title. If it’s a public domain title, or someone else has copyrights over it, you probably have rights only in certain territories.

13. You also need to choose your price and royalty option. If your book is priced in the range from $2.99 to $9.99, you’re eligible for either the 35% or 70% royalty. I would suggest choosing 70%, which means your royalty will be 70% of the selling price less a delivery fee, which is based on the size of your Kindle file. If your book is priced outside of the this range, you must select the 35% option, but there is no delivery charge. To decide how much to charge for your Kindle book look at books similar to your own and price similarly.

14. When you’ve finished setting the price, affirm that you accept the DTP terms and conditions, then click ‘Save and publish.’ Don’t worry, as you can always go back and change things later on!

After submitting your book for review, you’ll return to the main page, and you’ll see your book listed, awaiting review and approval. A new book is usually approved within 24-48 hours, but it can take several days for all the information, especially the description, to show up on your page. Once the ‘Buy’ button appears on the page, however, your book is officially for sale!

Here’s hoping that you make a huge success of publishing your book on the Kindle.

Love & light

The Word Queen xx

Offline Book Marketing Methods

So let’s say you now have your first published book in your hands…and it feels great. All that hard work and effort has paid off and you can finally shout from the rooftop… “I’m a published author!”

Now if you landed a traditional publishing deal with one of the major publishing houses, this step won’t be SO important to you, as someone who has opted to self publish their book. The major publishing houses usually allocate each of their books a fairly large marketing budget, so as an author it’s easy to sit back and let them get on with it. However, there’s no harm in helping to push the sales along by engaging in a little self-promotion via some offlin ebook marketing methods.

If you self-published your book then unfortunately there’s no one else to market your book apart from you. After all, if no one knows that your book exists, apart from a few close friends and relatives, then you don’t have much chance of seeing it on the Times bestsellers list, or on any bestsellers list come to that!

Below is a list of effective oggline book marketing methods…

Teleseminars: A teleseminar is essentially a seminar over the phone using conference line services. It’s a great tool to build an audience quickly and share your message. You can be a guest on other people’s teleseminars or hold your own. There are many free resources available to hold your teleseminars, just do a search on Google to find one that suits you.

Joint Venture Launch: A joint venture launch involves asking potential partners to support you by sharing your information with their audience. Typically you’d select a partner who is well established in your field to gain the advantage of having access to their audience. You can offer your book for sale to your joint venture partner’s audience and sell lots more copies as a result. Maybe at the same time you could place an advert in your book, or on your website, to publicise your joint venture partner.

The Press:

  • Create a Press Release, including tips and how-to’s.
  • Get a Feature Story from the media
  • Write a how-to article and submit to relevant newspapers and magazines

Talk Show Radio and TV: If you manage to get on to TV or the radio, bear in mind that your audience mainly like to hear ‘how-to’ information, not other details about your book.

Local Talks: Sell your printed books at the back of the room. Take a clipboard and capture everyone’s emails at the talk.

I hope these offline book marketing methods work for you…next time I’ll focus on some effective online methods…

Love & Light

The Word Queen xxx

Editing Your Book

The importance of editing your book is paramount to the success of your novel. Too many writers, having got so far along the journey, stumble when it comes to editing their sweated over manuscript. For most people it’s even more difficult to edit than it is to write their book in the first place.

Step One: Get Some Distance

When we’re too close to things we don’t tend to see them clearly, so typos etc are overlooked. That’s why it’s important to get a little distance. After you write a first draft, take a walk to clear your head.

It’s hard to start editing your  book straight away as it’s still too familiar. My advice is to shut your manuscript away in a drawer for five to six weeks. This period of time away from your novel will give you the opportunity to clear your head. The next time you pick it up you’ll see the content of the page far clearer and it will be far easier to edit your book. Better still, give your novel to a trusted friend, as he / she will be reading the paper for the first time with completely fresh eyes.

Step Two: Ask Questions.

Imagine you’re the intended audience reading your book for the first time. The big questions you’ll want to answer are:

  • Does it make sense? Will the reader understand what you’re trying to say?
  • Does it hold your interest from start to finish?
  • Does it include all the information you need?

Step Three: Is Your Writing Lean?

If your writing isn’t lean you’ve got some work to do when editing your book. Here are three ways to get it in shape:

  • Trim long sentences: If any are longer than 25 words, consider turning them into two sentences or removing unnecessary words.
  • Slim down the words: Replace long words and phrases with short ones. Why say “ascertain the location of” when you can just say “find”?

Step Four: Think About Your Grammar

Here are a few major points to consider when you start editing your book:

  • Good writing is error-free. This means perfect spelling and no typos.
  • Check for the correct use of homonyms like to/too/two, their/they’re/there, etc. Spellcheck doesn’t always pick these up.
  • Confirm you’ve spelt all names correctly.
  • Good writing avoids the passive voice. Write Sara threw the ball. Not The ball was thrown by Sara.
  • Check your margins, use of spacing and consistency in style of headings — font, bold or not bold, capitalisation, etc.

Step Five: Read It Again!

After you’ve made your revisions, print your document and read it again.

Editing your book  is a skill that can take years to perfect. But if you follow these recommendations, it’ll result in a far stronger manuscript…

Love & Light

The Word Queen xx

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