Tag: book marketing (page 1 of 4)

My Two Favourite Online Courses For Authors

I love learning. I’ve read tons of books on writing craft and marketing books, as well as taken several online courses. There are many good options out there, but to save on space (lest I overwhelm with too many good options) I’ve narrowed it down to my two absolute favourites.

  1. Learn Scrivener Fast by Joseph Michael

I’d been using Scrivener for about five years, give or take a few months. I loved it from the moment I started just for the way it organized my writing, but I never used it much beyond a word processing tool. Last summer I watched a free online video by Scrivener coach Joseph Michael. I realized there were so many more things Scrivener could do – including formatting everything from epubs to mobi files to paperbacks to plays and more!

But, as a long time Scrivener user, I thought I should be able to figure things out for myself. The software comes with tutorials and there are tons of videos online, so I took those free tidbits from Joseph Michael and continued on my merry Scrivener way.

Things changed drastically when I tried to format a book. About forty hours later, bleary eyed from watching confusing youtube tutorials and upmteen ‘trial and error’ compilations, I gave up. Compiling my files for publication just wasn’t as intuitive as I had thought. In desperation, I signed up for Joseph Michael’s course.

AND IT HAS BEEN THE BEST INVESTMENT I HAVE EVER MADE FOR MY WRITING CAREER!

I’ve managed to format and publish multiple ebooks, paperbacks, and pdfs. I organize my blog posts using Scrivener, and I even do a lot of my outlining using the corkboard function. I can’t imagine writing without it and whenever I run into a snag, all I need to do is go to Joseph Michael’s easy to follow videos and – voila! Problem solved!

If you’re planning to delve into indie publishing, this is the course for you. It is worth every penny hundreds of times over!

  1. Your First 10k Readers by Nick Stephenson

I’m sad to list this course second, because it has also been such a good investment for me. Nick Stephenson has appeared on multiple podcasts with the likes of Joanna Penn, Mark Dawson, Joel Freidlander and others. He talks about ‘lead magnets’, permafree books, automations etc. all with step-by-step videos and very useful cheat sheets and other helpful resources. You can find many similar courses out there on creating ‘systems’ for writing and marketing, (like Shelley Hitz’s ‘Author Audience Academy”) but I happened to come across Nick’s back in the summer of 2015. I took the risk and signed up – my first time actually spending hard earned cash on an online course.

It has been worth the cost ten times over. It’s not that I’m now rolling in cash. Nick cautions students right up front that his system takes work. It is not a get rich quick scheme or a fly-by-the-seat-of your-pants way to fool people into buying your books. What it is, is a really smart and well laid out system for growing your audience while offering value to your readers – all in a step-by-step format that keeps that ‘overwhelmed’ feeling from taking over.

I voraciously listened to the entire course in the first week or two upon receiving it, but there is so much content and so much detail that there is no way I could implement everything at once. Heck, I’m still taking baby steps two years later, but I’ve managed to make some significant inroads. Another wonderful thing about Nick’s course is that he continues to add new content and update old information without adding to the cost. Plus, he’s a very funny guy, so it’s quite entertaining to listen to him teach. You’ll see what I mean if you watch his free training videos. (Excellent, but the entire course is so much more in depth.)

Of course, there are many more valuable resources out there but these are my two all time favourites.

The World’s Worst Marketer? Or Just Busy…

Either I’m the world’s worst marketer, or I have other important things in my life. (I prefer the latter!) What with new babies and a visit from my sister who lives two provinces away, I forgot to mention that…

my two most recent releases are now available in paperback!

Yup, that’s right!

KEEPING UP WITH THE NEIGHBOURS – COMPLETE SERIES 2

and

CONSPIRACY OF BONES:AND THE BEAT GOES ON

can both be purchased as paperbacks at Amazon!

It’s a Wrap! Volume 7 – NEIGHBOURHOOD WRAP hits the virtual shelves!

The last instalment of the NEIGHBOURS Series is out! Here’s the blurb. Look for the complete series in both ebook and paperback – coming soon!

Volume 7 Neighbourhood Wrap- Finale

The Malloys have taken over the neighbourhood! This ‘rough around the edges’ family from Newfoundland are back in the final instalment of “Keeping Up With the Neighbours’. Will Jed be admit he has a drinking problem? Will Reba’s strong will keep her from finding true love? Will Pip return to his philandering ways or has he been bitten one too many times? Has Will given up or can he make peace with his feelings? What about Zeb? Will this ginger giant succumb to love or will he stubbornly stick to his vow as a bachelor? And will Bo ever get over the first real love he’s felt? There are no easy answers as the clan set to work solving their troubles in typical Malloy fashion. In the midst of the surprises, a greater love than any one of them ever expected comes to call: The love that only God can give.

Note to readers: This series, although labelled ‘Christian’, does contain elements that may be troubling to some readers, such as the use of alcohol as well as pre-marital sexual encounters. (The latter take place ‘off camera’.) There is, however, a faith based element throughout with a strong redemptive message at the end of the series.

 

Interview with Zeb Malloy

Here is the sixth and final character interview with the Malloy family, who have taken centre stage in Neighbours Series II – Keeping Up With the Neighbours. Meet Zeb Malloy!

Q: Welcome, Zeb. You’re the last Malloy sibling to be interviewed.

A: Saved the best fer last, eh, b’y?

Q: We’ve had some pretty interesting interviews and your name has come up a few times. 

A: What kind of malarkey have they been feeding you? Can’t believe everything ya hears.

Q: Nothing too bad, don’t worry! Tell us where you fit in to the clan.

A: I’m next in line to Jed, if that’s what you mean. We gots an older sister, too. Fanny, and then a passle more after. Not sure why the folks didn’t just stop after three. Ha! There wasn’t much point since they got perfection the third time around! What? Don’t look so all fire shocked! I’m just joshing with ya. I loves my entire family – the whole lot of ‘em. Wouldn’t trade any one of ‘em for the all the gold in China. Or was that tea?

Q: Since you and Jed are next to one another in age, I’m assuming that you’re pretty close. Have you ever been in a fight?

A: Lard tunderin! That’s a funny one and no mistake. We been fighting since we were in diapers – maybe before. I’ve had more than a few scraps with Jed, that’s for sure. Not sure when he’s gonna learn that he just can’t beat me when it comes to a fight! Mind you, it’s all in fun. Mostly.

Q: So you’re saying you usually win?

A: Course! All joking aside, Jed can hold his own. We just do it for fun. It’s our way. No real harm in it.

Q: Is that why you were both seen sporting black eyes shortly after Christmas?

A: You saw that, did you? He had quite the shiner, that’s for sure. I guess I did, too, but I avoided the mirror.

Q: You were the second one of the family to leave your home province of Newfoundland. Tell us about your decision to do so.

A: Work, plain and simple. Lots of folks left home and moved west when the fisheries went south. Oil patch mostly. That’s what I did. Moved to Fort McMurray almost four years ago now. Some folks call Fort Mac ‘little Newfoundland’ cause there are so many of us there. If everyone moved back home that’s left for the west, we’d double the size of the province, b’y!

Q: You’ve been credited with giving your siblings some interesting nicknames.

A: You mean Pip and Reba. Pip’s real name is Steve, but the story goes I called him Pip-squeak once and it stuck. I don’t remember it exactly, but that’s what I’m told. I call Reba ‘Spitfire’ but that one didn’t catch on as good. I’m the only one to call her that, but she doesn’t seem to mind. I have names for the rest of them, too, but you probably aren’t allowed to print them here.

Q: I hear you’re quite the ladies’ man. Is that true?

A: I like women, if that’s what you mean. I don’t mind admitting it.

Q: And they seem to like you, too, if what I hear is correct. What do you attribute that to?

A: Hm. Not sure, exactly. It’s just the way it is, I guess.

Q: Your brother Pip said it was a gift.

A: About him or me?

Q: He was speaking of himself, but he also mentioned, and I quote, “they flock to him (meaning you) like flies to honey.”

A: Sounds like Pip – the first part, I mean! As far as the rest goes, I’m not keeping tabs or anything like that. I’ve had a lot of women friends, if you know what I mean, and then moved on. I’ve never been one to make promises I can’t keep. ‘Here for a good time, not a long time’ and all that. I make no apologies, though. I am what I am.

Q: What’s your take on love?

A: I just told you.

Q: I don’t think so. I mean real love, as in a committed relationship.

A: I can’t really comment cause I don’t think I’ve ever had the misfortune of falling in love.

Q: Why do you call it a misfortune?

A: I’m not sure I’m the ‘commitment’ kind. Just can’t be bothered getting tied down just yet – although that doesn’t mean it’ll never happen.

Q: But if the right one came along?

A: Stranger things have happened, eh? Not making any promises, though… I mean, the sky could fall, too.

Q; So, for now you are a confirmed bachelor?

A: You got that right, b’y. As confirmed as they come, and then some.

Q: Thanks for joining me. Maybe I’ll interview you again in about a year from now. It’ll be interesting to see where you end up.

A: You know something I don’t?

Q: Stranger things have happened, eh, b’y?

A: Nice try! Although your Newfie accent sucks – just sayin’!

Buy the individual volumes on Amazon or get the complete verion in both ebook and paperback! 

Vol 1 – Neighbourhood Tangle – JED

Vol 2 – Neighbourhood Watch – BO

Vol 3 – Neighbourhood Rebel – REBA

Vol 4 – Neighbourhood Upstart – PIP

Vol 5 – Neighbourhood Freedom – WILL

Vol 6 – Neighbourhood Cupid – ZEB

Vol 7 – Neighbourhood Wrap – FINALE

CHECK OUT THE OTHER INTERVIEWS:

JED, BO, REBA, PIP, WILL

Interview with Will Malloy

Here is the fifth character interview with the Malloy family, who have taken centre stage in Neighbours Series II – Keeping Up With the Neighbours. It’s Will’s turn!

Q: Tell us a bit about your background.

A: Well, I’m from the ‘Rock’ – the province of Newfoundland for those who don’t know. Born and raised. I’m the seventh of nine- five boys and four girls. Folks have big families back home – even the non-Catholics.

Q: What brought you to Alberta? I hear you had a good job that you liked back home in Newfoundland.

A: That’s true. Worked at a regional park for quite a few years. Seasonal. It meant I could spend most of my time outdoors, which is what I like best. It was also ideal cause I got to collect ‘pogey’ in the winters, so I had lots of time for snowboarding and stuff.

Q: What’s ‘pogey’?

A: Oh! That’s EI – Employment Insurance. I thought come-from-aways called it that, too.

Q: Come-from-aways?

A: Folks not from Newfoundland.

Q: I see. So if you liked your job that much, why did you move?

A: I visited my brothers out in Calgary and when I got home I just couldn’t stop thinking about it. I think the grandeur of the Rockies got to me. Not that Newfoundland isn’t beautiful. It’s got some of the best scenery on the continent, in my opinion. Gros Morne National Park is pretty darn spectacular. But I guess I just like adventure and was ready for a change. I’m loving it so far. I think I’ll probably miss the ocean the most, though.

Q: How did your family react to the move?

A: Funny you should ask. Actually, it’s not funny at all. Ma was right upset. She cried when she first found out and wouldn’t talk to me for days. I think it hit her hard on the heels of the others leaving. I was the last of her boys left. Now it’s just my three older sisters and their kids left in Newfoundland. And Pops, of course.

Q: Speaking of adventure, I hear you’re a bit of a daredevil. Is that true?

A: I don’t know about that! I just like to have fun. You know – sports and stuff. And speed. I suppose I’ve done my share of stupid stuff, but if you really want the truth, most of it wasn’t even my fault. Zeb and Jed were always tricking me into trying stunts when I was a kid. They’d say, “Hey, Will. Why not try riding your bike down that hill?” or “Bet you couldn’t hit that ramp at full speed and land it.” I usually fell for it. Got a few broken bones outta the deal. Jed says I have no fear in me – that it got knocked out with one too many spills, but… I just like to have fun.

Q: So you’re the athlete of the family?

A: I suppose you could say that. Dirt-biking, snowboarding – even team sports. I like to be active. I’m not much for sitting around – or reading. Not like Bo!

Q: With such a large family, who would you say are you closest to?

A: Bo, definitely. Me and him were like two peas in a pod growing up. We’re kind of opposite, I suppose, but sometimes that works out.

Q: What do you mean opposite?

A: Like I said, I’m into sports and anything outside; he likes books and thinking. Not that I don’t think, but I mean he thinks things through where I tend to just go ahead and do stuff. Like that. But we are closest in age and spent a lot of time together. Shared a room and got paired up for chores and such. I know I can talk to him about anything and I think he feels the same about me. We’ve got each other’s backs.

Q: Can you give me an example?

A: Well, take my moving west, for instance. I knew it would be hard on Ma. But Bo said I needed to do what was best for me and not worry about trying to please everyone else.

Q: What about any other advice? Anything about the opposite sex?

A: Ha! Zeb’s usually the one to give that kind of advice, although I don’t advise anyone take it!

Q: So you have nothing to tell me about that? I heard you might have met someone.

A: That’s the trouble with having such a large family. Can’t keep a secret no how!

Q: So there is someone?

A: Well… it’s nothing serious. She’s an artist. And her dad is my boss.

Q: Ah… dating the boss’s daughter…

A: Not dating – exactly. We’re just friends.

Q: I’ve heard that before. So does this mean you’ll be staying in Alberta permanently?

A: No! I mean… maybe. Who knows? I’ll see how the summer goes and take it from there.

Q: Thanks for joining us today.

A: No problem – although you were getting right personal with some of them questions, b’y!

Q: Just doing my job.

Buy on amazon:

Vol 1 – Neighbourhood Tangle – JED

Vol 2 – Neighbourhood Watch – BO

Vol 3 – Neighbourhood Rebel – REBA

Vol 4 – Neighbourhood Upstart – PIP

Vol 5 – Neighbourhood Freedom – WILL

Vol 6 – Neighbourhood Cupid – ZEB

Vol 7 – Neighbourhood Wrap – FINALE

CHECK OUT THE OTHER INTERVIEWS:

JED, BO, REBA, PIP, ZEB

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