Sunday, February 18, 2018

A Social Media Presence is a MUST for Indie Authors

Introduction:  Listen to the Author Chatter about the need for a Social Media Presence

Having a Social Media presence is a must for indie authors. It is a major part of any author's exposure to readers. Here is what some of our Spotlight Authors have to say.

1.     A Presence is Crucial




Jeanne Bannon @JeanneBannon   
8229 twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

Best-selling Author Jeanne Bannon writes YA, contemporary romance novels, all with a hint of the paranormal.

I’ve had to cultivate my social media presence over several years. It took approximately 7 years to gain a large following on all social media platforms. It’s crucial in order to get the word out about new releases and/or promotions.





2.     Developing a Presence




Luana Ehrlich @luanasbooks   
24800 twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

Author Luana Ehrlich is the author of the Titus Ray Thrillers series.

Social media was an excellent means of getting the word out about the series. I spent several weeks developing my online presence on Twitter, Pinterest, and Google, in addition to my Author pages on Facebook and Amazon. Then, as I began to tweet and post about my book, I gathered followers. I believe these are legitimate means of gaining readers, as long as your response to any contact is a personal one.





3.     It is all about Selling books




Catherine Bybee @catherinebybee   16900 twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

Author Catherine Bybee is a New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestselling Romance Author.

I’m actually heading up a workshop at the Romantic Times Convention this year on this subject. I have always believed that a strong online presence is as important to selling a book and finding readers as writing the book and getting it published.








Helen Hanson @HelenHanson   38600 twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

Best-Selling Author Helen Hanson writes Mystery & Thrillers and Suspense novels. Helen is the author of The Masters CIA Thriller Series and The Cruise FBI Thriller Series.

3 LIES hit the Kindle Top 100 because of my online
presence. But, I’m more comfortable with live humans than I am on social media. In real life I get to gauge expressions, body language, even the timbre of a voice. But I’ve met some fabulous people through the vines.






4.     Value is often indirect




Jade Kerrion @JadeKerrion   
39400 twitter followers - Spotlight Interview

Award-Winning Author Jade Kerrion writes the DOUBLE HELIX series. Also, she writes a great blog featuring authors and writing.

A social media
presence is necessary (which typically includes a website, Twitter, and Facebook). Quantifying the value of social media is much harder. The value is often indirect, and is frequently based on building online relationships as opposed to just blasting out marketing messages.




5.     A Marketing Tool




Caroline Fardig @carolinefardig   3927 twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

B&N Humor Bestseller Author Caroline Fardig writes Mystery, Romance and Chick Lit. She is the author of the Java Jive Mysteries series and the Lizzie Hart Mysteries series.

I think social media plays a critical role in marketing books. My Twitter followers have been great about re-tweeting me and helping me get the word out about my book. I think having a presence on Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads has made a deep impact on my sales.






Paul D. Marks @PaulDMarks   1786 
twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

Awarding-winning Author Paul D. Marks is an Author of noir, mysteries, satire & mainstream fiction.

I think it's more important than ever for a writer to have a good social media presence. Even if one has a major publisher, unless you're a huge name like John Grisham, Michael Connelly or Patricia Cornwell, you end up doing most of your PR yourself. So things like Twitter, Facebook and all the other usual suspects are great ways to get the word out and get word of mouth, which is what really sells books and gets attention for them and the author.



Vickie McKeehan @VickieMcKeehan   7769 twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

Bestselling Author Vickie McKeehan writes romantic suspense.

Social media is a must for marketing, especially if you’re a writer. Having a
presence on Twitter, Facebook, and the Internet in general, is essential for success. But like anything else, social media isn’t the sole relationship builder you need to establish yourself with readers.









Steven Montano @Daezarkian   73700 
twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

Science Fiction & Fantasy Author Steven Montano is the creator of the BLOOD SKIES series.

Social media pretty much is my marketing. I don’t pay for advertising, so I rely on interaction to make people aware of my books. And while I do send out plenty of marketing Tweets, I more try to maintain a
presence on Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads by chatting with people about whatever silliness might come up. 

6.     Social media is an important tool




AD Starrling @ADStarrling   2820 
twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

Author AD Starrling is the award-winning  author of the action thriller series Seventeen.

In this day and age, I believe the three important tools an author needs to establish an internet
presence is a website, a mailing list, and one or more social media profiles. Social media is a fantastic place to connect with other authors, influencers, and fans but it needs to be handled in a strategic and fun way so as not to become an unproductive, frustrating time sink. 




7.     Successful Career


Aleatha Romig @AleathaRomig   15100 twitter followers – Spotlight Interview

New York Times & USA Today Bestseller Author Aleatha Romig is the author of  the Consequences Series.

I feel my social media
presence and relationships have been essential to my writing career and success.








Conclusion:
A social media presence is crucial to an author's success.

By James Moushon @jimhbs



HBS Author's Spotlight http://bit.ly/QVEMix
The blog's purpose is to help authors get exposure in the book publishing industry. He has interviewed and showcased over 900 authors to date.

HBS Mystery Reader's Circle http://bit.ly/19Nfrx8
The HBS Mystery Reader's Circle provides information about the latest novels and what is coming next from a collection of Bestselling and Outstanding Authors in the Mystery, Thrillers, Historical Fiction and Crime genre.

Indie Author's Corner http://bit.ly/TauYkJ
The Corner is a collection of Author advice, ideas, experiences and studies including Marketing, Social Media and other major topics created to help writers in today's ever changing world of book publishing.

Authors: Improve Your Twitter Messaging and Control - http://bit.ly/1FHB1oR
Melissa Foster - Developing Social Media Relationships - http://bit.ly/1qhhR3j
Troy Blackford - Using Social Media to Connect with Readers - http://bit.ly/1on7Nk8
Paul Western-Pittard - Importance of Social Media Relationships - http://bit.ly/1p2ppTE
Laurel A. Rockefeller - Importance of Twitter and Social Media Relationships - http://bit.ly/1B74epm

eBook Marketing: What Goes Around Comes Around

Indie eBook Marketing: When You Get to the Fork in the Road, You Must Take It. - http://bit.ly/10TUstg

Your Book Launch: Marketing Methods and Ideas Used by Outstanding Authors – A Study - http://bit.ly/1luAbo3

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

ONE MILLION Views and COUNTING

As an author advocate and a fellow author, I have reached one of my personal milestones. My blog posts have just reached One Million views. Thank you so much.

I started this journey seven years ago with the primary goal of helping other authors gain exposure in the ever-changing book publishing industry. As the marketing task moved from brick and mortar stores to ebooks and on-line sales, the indie author became an important part of the landscape. But with that, the tasks of the author expanded to include more than writing a good novel. Editing, cover design, publishing, marketing, and exposure became equally important.

eBook Author’s Corner


In 2010, I started my campaign to give a helping hand to new authors. I posted my first articles at the eBook Authors Corner Blog http://bit.ly/TauYkJ.

Here are several of my first posts.

11/12/2010 eBook Author: Wearing Two Hats - http://bit.ly/2zPEjsB

This is the eBook Author’s initial post. I have created this blog to assist eBook authors in writing and developing eBooks. My blog will discuss how the eBook author fits into the evolving eBook Industry and the many opportunities that exist.

11/22/2010 eBook Author: The New Breed of Author - http://bit.ly/2DC1UyT

With the advent of the Kindle and the Nook, the readers of the world are endorsing the eBook in very large numbers. One of the next phases of the industry development will be the transition of the author from the traditional writer to an eBook author. They will write directly to the eBook platform and take advantage of the features and opportunities provided by the eBook experience.

Currently, the industry is in a copy mode, taking a version of the printed document and converting it to an electronic form. To preserve the written work and make books more accessible is a valid endeavor but there must be much more to the eBook industry than to just make a copy of the paper book. The eBook author is the key.

11/30/2010 eBook Authors: You Must RENDER Your eBooks - http://bit.ly/2zSoC3z

Rendered eBooks
The eBook Author has the opportunity to add to the reading experience. The eBook conversion process must be much more than converting a paper book to a digital format. It must take advantage of the power of the electronic reader.

The eBook author is defined as an author who is writing directly to the eBook platform. You can read more about this concept on my blog: 
eBook Author: New Breed of Author.

As an author, you must think about the reader and what he can do with the added features the eBook allows him to use. You must add to your content something of value for your readers.

You should include in-book links to help the reader enjoy the content. The eBook’s advanced features should be exploited. And you should think about the future of the eBook and the software and devices and plan for the changes in your research and writing.

Your eBook must be more than just a copy of a paper book. You must render your eBook to set the content apart from the paper version.

04/05/2011 eBook Authors: The Kids Are Coming - http://bit.ly/2spZ1vZ

One of the great opportunities ahead for ebook authors is the wave of new readers entering the digital book world. These gadget centric-readers are kids and young adults. You know the ones that don’t shy away from a computer screen or the digital world. With their cell phone or iPad in hand, they are going to drive the ebook industry to new heights in the near future.

This wave of new readers is going to create a new wave of authors. These writers are going to write directly to the ebook platform, bypassing the current paper to the digital conversion process. This new author will take advantage of the ebook software; adding links, sound, video, and multimedia.


HBS Author’s Spotlight


Then in 2012, I added HBS Author's Spotlight blog http://bit.ly/QVEMix. I could see the problems authors were having getting in front of the new reading audience. So I started interviewing authors. The posts included a Q/A session, an author picture, contact information and a book list with buy links. My first three interviews were:

9/14/2012 Ron Fritsch - Author Spotlight http://bit.ly/PG0eXt
Today our blog puts the Spotlight on Author Ron Fritsch. He is a self-published Historical Fiction Writer.



Author Genre: prehistoric fiction, historical fiction - LGBTQ fiction

Website: 
Promised Valley
Twitter: 
@RonFritsch
E-Mail: 
ronfritsch@sbcglobal.net
LinkedIn: 
Check Out LinkedIn

9/17/2012 Henry Baum - Author Spotlight http://bit.ly/SPUuZC
Today our blog puts the Spotlight on Author Henry Baum. He is a self-published author, musician, a blogger and a webmaster.


Author Genre: Thrillers & Suspense Author

Author's Blog: 
Self-Publishing Review
Website: 
Henry Baum
E-Mail: 
henrybaum@gmail.com
LinkedIn: 
Check Out LinkedIn

9/24/2012 M.R. Mathias - Author Spotlight http://bit.ly/SqcL4Z
Today our blog puts the Spotlight on Author M.R. Mathias. He is an award-winning self-published Fantasy Writer. He is noted for his epic fantasy novels and his prolific social network marketing activity.



Author Genre: Fantasy - Magic & Wizards

Website: M.R. Mathias Fantasy Author
Author's Blog: 
M. R. Mathias Connection Hub
Twitter: 
@DahgMahn
E-Mail: 
mrmathiasjr@aol.com
Goodreads: 
Check Out Goodreads
Facebook: 
Check Out Facebook

Author's Spotlight Showcases


Early in 2013, I added a new feature to the Spotlight. I started showcasing individual books with author information, books blurbs, covers, excerpts and buy links to help readers get a full snapshot of the novel and a place to buy it. Here are a few posts from the early days.

1/25/2013 Laura DeLuca - The Forgotten Pharaoh is featured in the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase http://bit.ly/1l7sxOb


2/27/2013 Elise Stokes - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase - Cassidy Jones and the Seventh Attendant   http://bit.ly/YEfI3k


3/6/2013 Claude Bouchard - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase: Femme Fatale http://bit.ly/13GyueK


3/10/2013 Jade Kerrion - HBS Author's Spotlight is on EARTH-SIM http://bit.ly/YljtqI


3/21/2013 Catherine Bybee - HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase: Married by Monday http://bit.ly/102udMX



3/28/2013 M. R. Cornelius - HBS Author's Spotlight is on Losing It All http://bit.ly/13BhBCV


5/3/2013 Melissa Foster - Have No Shame is in the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase http://bit.ly/109btL8



5/6/2013 Ellen Mansoor Collier - BATHING BEAUTIES, BOOZE AND BULLETS

5/22/2013 Dave Folsom - Big Sky Dead is featured on the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase

6/1/2013 Katherine Logan - The Ruby Brooch is SHOWCASED on the HBS Author's Spotlight http://bit.ly/18G2Ld2



6/11/2013 Jake Needham - LAUNDRY MAN is featured on the HBS Author's Spotlight SHOWCASE  http://bit.ly/14tCm1f



Author's Spotlight Sets and Bundles


Later on, in 2013, I added book sets and bundles to the Spotlight. Here are a few posts from the early days.

Mystery Reader's Circle - 9 Killer Thrillers is the bundle deal of the day  http://bit.ly/1j1XtvM



Mystery Reader's Circle - Desperate Acts - 7 Bestselling Authors - 7 Thrilling Full-Length Novels http://bit.ly/18vYI1u



Author’s Spotlight features - Holiday Heat  http://bit.ly/Iu1lL5



HBS Author's Spotlight features Working Girls ... Do It For Thrills: 6-Book Bundle http://bit.ly/1gW1xP7



Author's Spotlight Series and Collections


In 2015, I added author collections to the Spotlight. Here are a few posts from the series posts. I am starting to create more of these types of posts.

11/3/2015 M.R. Mathias - Crimzon and Clover Collection is featured in the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase  http://bit.ly/1koXIZr



12/7/2015 Cheryl Bradshaw – Sloane Monroe Series Boxed Set: Books 1-6 featured at the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase  http://bit.ly/1XP5j5Q



11/16/2017 Cathy Perkins – The Holly Price Mystery Series is featured at the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase  http://bit.ly/2zMpisU



12/26/2017 Stacy Eaton – The Celebration Series is featured at the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase
http://bit.ly/2zyi8qx



Author's Spotlight Series and Collections – Charities Support


In 2012, I started to highlight novel collections and anthologies that support charities. My first group was the Indie Chicks. They published Indie Chicks: 25 Women 25 Personal Stories available at Amazon and other retailers. (B0060ZTM62 – 1470023520) I have interviewed and showcased 15 of the authors from this group.



All proceeds from this book will go a charitable organization that fights breast cancer - a disease all too close to home for many of us. Our prayers and best wishes are with those who are struggling with this terrible and devastating disease. All proceeds from the sale of this book will be donated to charitable organizations.

Recently, I added The C.A.M. Charity Anthologies coordinated by M. R. Mathias to the spotlight. The CAM Charity Anthologies are made up of donated short fiction stories. 100% of the profits from the anthology will go to charity.

6/9/2017 M. R. Mathias - The C.A.M. Charity Anthology - Fantasy Fiction Book 1 is featured on the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase  http://bit.ly/2rICrkk



6/10/2017 M. R. Mathias - Horror and Science Fiction Book 1 - The C.A.M. Charity Anthology is featured on the HBS Author's Spotlight Showcase http://bit.ly/2t6gj1b




HBS Mystery Reader's Circle  




August 2013, I added a new blog: HBS Mystery Reader's Circle blog http://bit.ly/19Nfrx8. The Mystery Reader's Circle provides information about the latest Mystery, Thriller and Suspense novels from bestselling and outstanding authors at great prices. Here is a list of the first four Reader's Circle and the authors included in the posts.

Mystery Picks of the Day - August 18, 2013  http://bit.ly/14Y2NN6

Garda - Welcome to the Realm  - Stacy Eaton - @StacySEaton
It's Just a Little Crush - Caroline Fardig - @carolinefardig Widow's Row
Murder Has Consequences - Giacomo Giammatteo - @murdertakestime
Just Add Water - Jinx Schwartz - @jinxschwartz
Scorpion Betrayal  - ANDREW KAPLAN

Mystery Picks of the Day - August 20, 2013  http://bit.ly/17HjlYT

Big Sky Dead - Dave Folsom @davefolsombooks
Gingerbread Man - Maggie Shayne @MaggieShayne
Money Land - R.S. Guthrie @rsguthrie
Out of the Shadow - J. K. Winn  @authorjswinn
The Beekeeper  by Juliet Moore @Juliet_Moore

Mystery Picks of the Day - August 22, 2013  http://bit.ly/16QXeCN

Rogues And Rascals In Goose Pimple Junction - Amy Metz @authoramymetz
Murder Takes The Cake - Gayle Trent @GayleTrent
Triple Threat - Joel Goldman @JoelGoldman1
Wasted Justice - Diane Capri @DianeCapri
Time Killer - Todd M. Thiede @toddthiede

Mystery Picks of the Day - August 26, 2013  http://bit.ly/17gLGVY

THE UMBRELLA MAN - Jake Needham @jakeneedham
Torch Ginger - Toby Neal @tobywneal
Strung Out to Die - Tonya Kappes @tonyakappes11
Bitter End - Christine Kling @christinekling 
Double Blind - Seb Kirby @Seb_Kirby 

Again, thank you for your support.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

A Hot Time in the Desert – the Tucson Festival of Books 2017




It’s that time of the year again. The Tucson Festival of Books in the spring is a special event where readers, onlookers and kids can meet with outstanding authors and have a good time. This was the ninth annual festival with another record attendance for the two day event. This year was warmer than previous years and shady places to stand were at a premium.

Again, I got to see many of my Spotlight authors. This year started off talking with two of my favorites, Rebecca Dahlke @rpdahlke and D.R. Ransdell @dr_ransdell. At the end of the day I met up with J.A. Jance @JAJance who has just released ‘Man Overboard’. Her new release will be showcased on the HBS Author’s Spotlight soon. Judith is a Tucson-based bestselling author and a graduate of the University of Arizona.

This is my fifth Tucson Festival of Books and I had a mission. Again I took off my Mystery writer’s hat. I am here as a Blogger this weekend to find out how my fellow authors are handling direct marketing.

Like previous festivals, my goal is to talk to as many authors as I can, take a lot of pictures and to see how the authors are trying to market their books and themselves.

Author’s Goals

Like I have stated before, when an author attends an event like a book festival, they should have a set of goals before they start, like selling their books at the event AND/OR getting the reader/prospects to look further after they leave. If you sparked their interest, they will check your books out online. They may even tell someone else about meeting you.

A book festival requires a different approach than a regular book signing at a bookstore. This year there was less swag than normal but lots of fun. A lesson learned. Don’t have chocolate candy as a giveaway. Not in the desert anyway.

Observations – Sales Tools

This is what I observed while I made my way through the festival. Let’s start with the sales tools. I picked up a lot of literature and took a lot of pictures. The following is a good list of marketing items to consider for authors attending book events. I like to give credit to the top items in each category of sales item. This year there were so many good items in some of the groups I could not pick the top ones.

Business Cards

The cards ranged from 4-color quality cards with cover pictures to plain Vistaprint cards to none at all. This year the business cards had better contact information, including email addresses. Authors are starting to loosen up on the email info. This year there were many great author business cards. There were two that stood out with color and information.
     Natalie Wright @NatalieWright_ - H.A.L.F.
     D.R. Ransdell @dr_ransdell - Dizzy in Duranbo

Bookmarks

All the bookmarks I reviewed had some way to contact the author. Most of the bookmarks were professionally done with covers, review snips and contact information. My choices were:
     Teresa Burrell @teresaburrell - The Advocates Homicides
     Carly Thomson @CarlyThomson3 - Truth Seekers

Flyers

I saw several flyers on colored stock. This was something that I thought I would see more of. There is so much area (letter size) to get your message across. Besides, the cost factor is a plus. There were fewer flyers this year than in previous years. No picks on this item.

Books Covers

There were lots of books with great covers. The authors were more than willing to sign a purchased copy.

Post cards

Now we are getting into some great stuff. There were fewer post cards this year also. Most of the post cards had copies of the author’s book covers and collections. I did pick two in this category.
     Kathryn Lane - Waking Up In Medellin
     Jim Stevens @JimStevensWritr – The Richard Sherlock Whodunit Comic Mystery Series

Book Displays and Posters

The same great quality was displayed here, with lots of cover blowups. It was hard to pick one here too but this display stood out.
     Bill Markley @BillMarkley - Deadwood Dead Men

Top Author Booth

The booths were organized better this year with the numbering finally making sense. My booth pick had so many outstanding authors (about 15 at one sitting) I couldn’t list them all.

The Dreams Convention booth
Congrats to Kris Tualla @kristualla for putting together such a great group of authors.

Amigos and Ladies of the West booth
And to Doug Hocking @HockingDoug for a unique booth with authors dressed in Western attire to match their genre.

Best Presentation

The best presentation by an author this year was easy to pick. As always most of the authors had their pitch all ready for me. The top pick this year was from one of my Spotlight Authors.  Remember everyone is a prospect even a blogger roaming the festival.
     Kris Tualla @kristualla - Enemies & Traitors

Novelty Items

Not many tote bags this year but other items took their place. Like I have said before, give the festival goers something of value and your swag will not wind up in the trash can. I spent some time talking to the picks in this category,
     T.L. Smith @tlsmithbooks – Business Card with trinket (Shooting Stars and Bad Guys, All in a Day’s Work)
     Cathy McDavid @CathyMcDavid - Envelope opener

Action

Like I have said before, I like confronting authors at the festival. There are a variety of presentations. Some had long pitches, some had none.

A book festival is an on-the-spot sales opportunity. It is a chance to sell yourself to prospects and readers. To me, the most effective pitch was the short, quick one. A long pitch surely loses some sales opportunities. If the pitch is long, it better be interesting.

A few of the authors qualified me. Less than last year. That is a key first step. They offered questions like this. Do you read Mysteries? Do you like Suspense? What type of books do you read?

They should be thinking about the person in front of them and react. Is he a buyer or prospect? Is he a tire-kicker? Is he someone that will promote me and by book, like a blogger?

Some authors jumped right into their sales pitch often wasting their time and mine. They start telling their book’s story before they find out the visitor is not buying or doesn’t read their genre. You just want to hang up but you can’t.

There were a lot of tire kickers according to the authors. These were people who were there for a good time but were not buyers. Lots of kids, which was great. They were there to ‘snag some swag’ as they say.

There were a lot of people and the authors needed to work the prospects. Talk to them. Socialize with everyone. Hand them a copy of a book or literature. Here take a look? You never know.

This Year’s Takeaway Ideas

 Idea 1
Finally, I am starting to see authors offering free or discounted ebooks to readers. This is great time to run a promo during the festival. Give the attendees a shot at it. If they like your work, they will buy your other books. If done properly, giveaways during the event could increase your Amazon rating.

Idea 2
Give your prospect/readers something of value. Something with your book title, your name and web address or twitter tag or email address.

Idea 3
Like last year, name tags/plates are still a problem. The authors did a great job displaying their books. A quick check of their displays, their name was easy to see.

Face time with a prospect is very important. Have a name plate made up and place it on the table in front of you. I wore my name tag: James Moushon - Mystery Writer – Blogger.

Give the attendees more than a name. Readers looking for Mysteries will stop. Others would move on. Qualify. Qualify. Qualify.

Finally, a Great Day in the Sun Comes to an End

Authors need to have a plan to get the most bang for their buck. You need to focus on what sells your books. Presentations. Marketing materials. Good covers. Qualifying prospects. Great copy. Forming Relationships.

Other related posts:

Follow me:


Or visit my blog: The eBook Author Corner
Take a look at my Author’s blog: HBS Author’s Spotlight

Check out the Jonathon Stone Mystery Novels and Collections:
The Cajun Ghost

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Short Story Goals: Why should authors write short stories?



Writing short stories is a great opportunity for authors. But whether you are trying to market your novels, keeping your readers engaged, or improving your writing skills, you need goals in place to get the best return on your time investment.

Why Write Short Stories?

The main reason, I would suspect, for writing short stories is authors ‘LOVE’ to write them. Shorty’s are their style. They get an idea digging in their mind and they grab a pencil and let her fly. Of course, there are many other reasons to jump into the quick read world.

Many authors write short stories to learn the craft and the business. With a small time commitment, authors can learn the editing, publishing and marketing part of the business. This is as important as writing a good short story or novel.

Some authors write short stories to fill the gap between novels. Instead of their readers sitting idle for several months while they are writing and bringing a novel to market, they give them a small taste of their writing by publishing short stories. They use ideas from their scrapbook of notes, expand back stories or polish cut chapters from their novels. The idea is to cut the dead period between novels by writing continuously.

Some novelist use short stories to recharge their batteries, try different genres, introduce secondary characters or introduce new characters to their series.

Writing, writing, and more writing are the goals here.

Help Market Your Novels

In today’s publishing world, name recognition is a major key to success. Authors are increasingly using short stories to gain exposure and a new audience. They keep their writing in front of their readers so when it is time to launch that next novel the audience is all warmed up to buy that new release.

One of the theories of marketing books in the on-line age is to ‘Fill the Pipe’ with their writings. That is, to have as many novels, short stories and novellas in the on-line market place as they can. A great thing about the internet and on-line marketing is your writing will virtually be on sale forever. Cathy Stucker’s blog had a great article on this concept. It is a must read. (See link below.)

Another popular method of marketing short stories is bundling [Anthologies] the short stories with other authors. Collections add a synergy to the short story package with other author’s readers getting a chance to read your works.

Distributing short stories via ebook is the most common practice. But I am seeing authors becoming more inventive by offering their shorty’s from their website, their blog or through social media. A site giveaway not only gets their writing into reader’s hands but it gives their site exposure and gives them the opportunity to capture a reader’s list.

Readers and Audience

Why are readers consuming more short stories? Many readers are going mobile with their iPads and tablets in hand. With that said, readers are increasingly looking for quick reads. Here is what one of my readers said in a review of my short story collection [6-Pack]: Operation Alpha Dog.

“These stories [Operation Alpha Dog] however don't waste any time and jump straight into the action. Some excellent plot ideas that work well in the short space given to them, quite different in locations and style but all very compelling and rewarding reading. So good, I devoured it in one sitting.”

Many younger readers are entering the short story marketplace. If authors can capture their loyalty, they could have a follower for life.

Keeping the audience engaged in their work is a common theme for many author’s short story goals. Finding new readers in this changing industry is the key to a writer’s success.

Could Be Some Challenges

Many authors today are trying to wear two hats; one as a novelist and another as a short story writer. To some this creates a unique challenge.

As I have heard in many of my interviews with authors (over 500) moving from long writes to short ones can be a challenge for them. They get thinking novels and character development and settings and then they turn to short stories and it’s a whole new game. Some authors adapt quickly. Some feel short stories limit their creativity.

You need goals in place to get the best return on your time investment. You must provide substance in your short stories not just a teaser with no body and no conclusion. Remember many times short stories sales are not the motive here.

Why write Short Stories?

Here is a quick list.

1.      You love to write them.
2.      You want to market your novels.
3.      You want to introduce new characters.
4.      You want to engage your readers continuously.

Remember the audience is changing and with that change is opportunity. As an author you need to give short stories a look. It may be what your readers are looking for.

Please share the reasons why you write short stories. Just comment on this post.

Other Reference Links

The eBook Author Corner: Ebook Authors: The Kids Are Coming

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Operation Alpha Dog: A Jonathon Stone Mystery Six-Pack of Short Stories (B0189QRU0O)
Author: James Moushon

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