What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published writer?
1. Determine why you desire to write. After you have completed that task, do an outline of your ideas.
2. Ask for help.
Don’t be overwhelmed by your lack of knowledge about writing or the publishing industry. Select an individual, group or organization with the knowledge or ability to help you succeed.
3. Educate yourself.
Do research to obtain information on how you can best leverage your knowledge and abilities to fulfill your dream of writing. The internet is filled with information of all sorts about writing, publishing and marketing your book.
4. Determine the genre of your book.
5. Benchmark against the best in the area of your writing assignment. Nevertheless, be a trend setter. Do not be afraid to break new ground.
6. Research your publishing options (traditional publishing, assisted self-publishing, do-it-yourself publishing) before making the decision.
7. Remember to budget for editing and promotional activities. Create a marketing plan.
8. Create your author platform (website and social media) to connect with readers.
9.Be enthusiastic about your book. It will help you to move forward when things are not going as planned.
10. Stay away from negative people and those who will talk you out of writing your book.
11. Celebrate the milestones you have achieved during the process of completing your book.
12.Stay expectant. Trust God. He will bring it to pass.
Ready! Set! Go!
I would like to hear from you. What advice would you give?
In late July 2015, I was filled with excitement because “Shades of the Heart” (Book 1 – Encounters of the Heart series) Kindle edition had reached the #1 Spot on Amazon in the category of African American Christian Fiction.
#1 Best Seller!
Sounds great, but nothing beats the look – a pretty orange ribbon below my book. And, to top it all off, digital book sales were good.
Ironically, reaching the #1 spot was not my primary focus.
My main goals were:
1. To increase readership
The underlying theme of “Shades of the Heart” is the healing power of forgiveness. Since I write with a sense of purpose, I wanted to get my book in the hands of as many readers as possible.
2. To generate sales for current and future books
“Shades of the Heart” is Book 1 in the Encounters of the Heart series so I wanted the momentum in sales to carry over from Book 1 to the other books in the series. Book 2 – Mirrored Hearts: Sealed by Fire, will be out early 2016. Although the books are in a series, they are also stand-alone novels.
The truth is that kudos for this success is due in part to my membership in the “See Ya On The Net Promotion Group” which posts marketing and promotion tips, hold webinars, and offer words of encouragement for members.
Here’s the secret:
Using some of the promotional ideas from the “See Ya On The Net Promotion Group” and information gained from my Google research, I developed a two-week promotion plan with both free and paid promotions. In addition, I lowered the price of “Shades of the Heart” from $2.99 to $0.99.
Side note: You would be surprised to know how many people will advertise your book for free. Some I had asked to do it, and some just picked up on the momentum.
What have I learned?
1. A great book needs to be promoted.
2. Books are purchased mainly on Fridays and Saturdays.
3. Readers like $0.99 books
4. Many people will advertise your book if you ask.
5. The sky is the limit
Extra special thanks to everyone who helped to make this happen. The response has been amazing.
For your reading pleasure, “Shades of the Heart” is available as follows:
Thanks in advance for reading “Shades of the Heart”. As you know, the best advertising is “word of mouth” from happy readers. Please don’t forget to leave a review, even a brief one would be greatly appreciated.
“Excellence is not a skill. It is an attitude.” Ralph Marston .
We all love to celebrate victories. It is a signal that someone has hit a special mark, even a milestone. But, what exactly does it take to hit a mark and to hit it with excellence so that you finish gracefully.
For sure, hitting the mark of excellence takes conscious effort. It is easy to exercise little effort that will lead to mediocrity, at best. But, hitting the mark of excellence requires that you go above and beyond the call of duty.
“Excellence is never an accident. It is the result of high intention, sincere effort and intelligent execution.” Aristotle
You are not going to hit the mark by accident.
You are going to hit the mark because you set out with everything in you to hit it. To ensure the highest quality, you must purpose in your heart that you will give only your best to bring your assignment to fruition.
Sometimes, you will have to let go of good things to hit the mark that God has set for you.
For example, when I decided to write my novel, “Unforgettable, My Love Has Come Along,” I had to cut back on my social activities among many other things.
Want to hit the mark of excellence?
Change the way that you run.
There is so much to do in so little time! You just must prioritize, making sure that what you are doing is of value and relevant for the time and season. You want to do your assignment and hit it with the desired mark of excellence that God has placed in you.
God will not give you an assignment that you do not have the ability and capability to complete. When your pursuits become what God has on His agenda for you then He will make provisions for you complete your assignment.
The following tips will help you to pursue your assignment with excellence:
1. Prayerfully take decisive actions. Move it forward, step by step and brick by brick. Remember, you are Victorious By Design.
2. Research! Research! Research your assignment.
3. Benchmark against the best in the area of your assignment.
4. Be a trend setter. Do not be afraid to break new ground.
5. Keep pressing along during the times of failures and hardship.
6. Don’t be overwhelmed by your lack of knowledge about a particular section of your assignment. Ask for help. Select a person or organization who you believe has the knowledge or ability to help you succeed.
7. Stay away from negative people and those who will talk you out of your assignment.
8. Practice temperance, that is, self-control. God will bring it to pass.
9. Keep your blinders on everyday until you see your assignment completed.
10. Put a lid on your mouth. Bring every “crazy” thought under the subjection of the Holy Spirit. Speak life over your assignment. It will come to pass.
11. Celebrate the milestones you have achieved during the process of completing your assignment.
Last but not least, be excellent in whatever God has called you to do. Ask God for strength and determination to complete your assignments with joy and excellence.
Go on! Apply yourself to the plan and complete your assignment. Ready! Set! Go!