Category Archives: Writers Corner

For writers mostly …

The Secret to a Writing Income: Stop Bullshitting Yourself about Your Art

Profanity Ahead WarningI wrote a long, gentle, touchy-feely introduction to this like five times, trying to be nice and ease into what I wanted to say. The more gentle I tried to be, the longer it got before I said anything. So, I deleted all that, and this is all the intro you get:

If you want to be a writer, and you want to make a living with your art instead of doing some shit job that you hate and that has a boss lording over you and an administration telling you what to do while they take all the credit (and money) and you get all the blame … then you need to stop bullshitting yourself. Continue reading The Secret to a Writing Income: Stop Bullshitting Yourself about Your Art

7 Tips for Writing and Publishing Your Book – Practical Stuff I Learned over My First 7 Novels

7 TipsYou don’t have to look very hard to find a zillion articles and blog posts and newsletters and books and YouTube videos filled with all kinds of advice on writing: how to do it; when to do it; why it matters; “art for art’s sake” or “pander to the audience and get paid”; etc.

The problem with that kind of advice is that here is no “right” answer for everyone, so, in the greater scheme of things, nobody has a clue. I mean, all of that is good to read and understand, but in the end, there are too damn many variables. If the big publishing houses that have been selling books for decades, even centuries, can’t repeat their successes with any regularity, then there is no “advice” that means much in any universal sort of way, at least not in terms of guaranteeing the success of a book.

However, there are some things that can work for everyone, or almost everyone. And that’s what I have here. Everything on my list is stuff you can actually, physically do, that will actually help you. None of what follows is subjective. Everything below is totally, 100% in your control. It’s like, if this was an article about cars and driving, it would be more of a “how to change your spark plugs” kind of thing than a “how to win the Daytona 500” thing. Continue reading 7 Tips for Writing and Publishing Your Book – Practical Stuff I Learned over My First 7 Novels

How to Get a CALL-TO-ACTION Button on Your Facebook Posts

Okay, a lot of new stuff has happened on Facebook in recent months, but I think one of the coolest ones is the ability for pages to now put “Call to Action” buttons on your posts. And I’m talking about your regular old posts not just ad posts. To me, that’s an amazing new development.

For anyone who might not be familiar with the term “call to action,” here’s a quick definition. “Call to Action” or CTA is a marketing and advertising term that refers to the thing, the action, that you want your prospective customer to do. You see them all the time:

  • Buy Now
  • Click Here
  • Call Today
  • Clip the Coupon and Mail It In

All of those are calls to action. The value of having one is based on a simple and extremely well researched idea that has proven that you need to tell people what you want them to do. It might seem obvious to you that if you are writing a post about your new novel or your new widget or whatever else, then, I mean, duh, obviously you want people to go buy it right? Well, maybe. But marketers don’t believe in taking chances, so everyone whose ever done any marketing seriously understands the value of having some kind of call to action. So, there you have it.

Anyway, call to actions on Facebook have sort of been this weird thing. They want to sell ads to people, but they had rules about not having calls to action in ad text. Uhhh, okay. But whatever. But now you can do that for your ads via using the buttons they’ve made. And more importantly, at least to me, you can also do it for regular posts. Here’s an example from one I just did:

Sign Up Button on Post

Continue reading How to Get a CALL-TO-ACTION Button on Your Facebook Posts

Facebook Pages for Authors and Books: The Funnel Is Your Friend

Introduction
1 - Facebook Works for WritersI see lots of conversations on writers’ websites and forums about whether or not Facebook is a good place for writers to connect with readers. Many writers just ask if it’s any good for “marketing” or “generating sales.” There are many opinions on that, and many reasons why there are many opinions, which could be an article all by itself, so I won’t go into that. I’ll just say that I am an advocate for writers using Facebook.

Authors who approach their page as a way to connect with readers will do better than people who think of it solely as a means of getting book sales. This is something I’ve seen said a zillion times before, and yet people still struggle with making Facebook work. I think the reason for that is that in most articles I’ve read, most videos and webinars I’ve watched, that idea is tossed out as either a given or as a obligatory thing they say right before heading into their list of the “Hot Five New Facebook Techniques to Make You Rich.” Continue reading Facebook Pages for Authors and Books: The Funnel Is Your Friend