Welcome to this issue of the Carnival of the Indies blog carnival. This issue is for September, 2015. We welcome your submissions on topics related to writing, self-publishing, book design or marketing books.
A collection of outstanding articles recently posted to blogs, your reading here will be richly rewarded.
See the end of this post for links to submit your blog posts for the next carnival, or for participating Bloggers and Featured Bloggers to grab your sidebar badges. Thanks to everyone who participated.
Mark Coker presents How to Price Ebooks to Free at Amazon without KDP Select Exclusivity posted at Smashwords Blog, saying, “FREE ebooks remain one of the most powerful tactics for building readership and for selling books. Free works especially well for series starters. This post teaches writers how to price their ebooks for free at Amazon without exclusivity. It also explains how authors who avoid KDP Select have greater flexibility to take fuller advantage of free ebooks.”
C. S. Lakin presents How Novelists Can Make Unbelievable Stories Feel Read posted at Live Write Thrive, saying, “Top Hollywood screenwriting consultant Michael Hauge shares an important discussion on what writers need to do to ensure their “unbelievable stories” seem believable to readers. Whether you are writing fantasy or thrillers or any story that has some element of the impossible, you can make readers suspend that disbelief if you just follow these simple rules.”
James Moushon presents Audiobooks Market Study: “Authors, I hear what you’re saying.” posted at eBook Authors Corner, saying, “Today our study’s focus is on audiobooks and the huge reader/listener market that is emerging, how to market to this group, and the problems ahead for indie and middle-tier authors… This post is a summary of answers about audiobooks I have collected from a group of outstanding, award-winning authors interviewed at the HBS Author’s Spotlight. All these authors have experience with audiobooks. tags: Audiobooks, audience, marketing, narration, publishing”
Book Design and Production
Liz Terris presents Classic Book Covers Re-Imagined with Pop Culture Characters posted at Readers+Writers Journal, saying, “Classic Book Covers Go Pop Culture – Illustrator David Hamilton gives classic book covers pop culture makeovers by adding television and movie icons. His updated covers include Turgenev’s “Father and Sons” featuring Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader and Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis” featuring the comic book/movie hero The Fly.”
Carla King presents A Free EIN Simplifies the Business of Self-Publishing posted at BookWorks, saying, “Obtaining an EIN to replace your SSN: One tiny and somewhat boring administrative task. One giant step to doing business as an indie author.”
Jordan Smith presents Does an Author Really Need a Mailing List? posted at Fix My Story, saying, “Here’s why an author should have an e-mail list, plus what to do with it and how to decide what to send in the e-mails.”
Liz Terris presents Authors Respond to Syrian Refugee Crisis posted at Readers+Writers Journal, saying, “Not sure if this quite fits your categories — it’s about authors (some indie, some not) raising money for Syrian refugees. It also includes an offer to any indie authors: donate $50 or more and Readers+Writers Journal will feature your book on our homepage for a month. I’m submitting the post in the hope of getting the word out and raising more money for the cause. Thanks!”
Mark Coker presents How to Publish Ebooks – Slides from a 6-Hour Seminar posted at Smashwords Blog, saying, “Whether you’re completely new to ebook publishing or you’re already an expert indie author looking for some fresh new marketing ideas, this post will help you. This self-contained post includes the PowerPoint slides from a series of four ebook publishing classes presented by Mark Coker at the Pacifiic Northwest Writers conference. 6 hours in classes total. Modules include: An Introduction to Ebook Publishing, Ebook Publishing Best Practices (16 secrets of the bestselling indie authors), How to Hit the Bestseller Lists with eBook Preorders, and How to Sell more eBooks at iBooks, the world’s second largest global seller of ebooks.”
Ron Callari presents Indie Crowdfunding Is Attracting Crowds posted at Bookworks’ Ron Callari Blogs, saying, “Crowdfunding is a phenomenon of the 21st Century. You can search BookWorks.com for a number of blogs on this topic, including one of mine titled, “Crowdfunding, A Viable Option for Self-Publishers” posted back in October 2013.”
Ron Callari presents The New Plagiarism: Protection for Indie Authors posted at Bookworks’ Ron Callari Blogs, saying, “Plagiarism is the unauthorized appropriation of other people’s ideas, processes or text without crediting it with the appropriate attribution. With the advent of self-publishing, plagiarism is on now an upswing in the 21st century, for a number of reasons.”
Marketing and Selling Your Books
Bethany Brown presents Debunking Some (very) Common Book Marketing Misconceptions posted at The Cadence Group
Doris-Maria Heilmann presents Free Checklist for “Passive” Book Marketing posted at SavvyBookWriters.com, saying, “No author wants (and needs) to spend hours and hours every day to promote their books via social media. There are lots of small and (often) quick tasks to show your book to a target audience of potential readers. Best of all: these steps are free and require only a bit research and brainstorming.”
Frances Caballo presents Instagram Tips for Every Author posted at Social Media Just for Writers, saying, “In January of this year, Pew Research Center released a study showing that Instagram was the fourth most used social media network, behind Facebook, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. This post explains how authors can make the most of Instagram to further their brand and reach new readers.”
Gordon Burgett presents With a novel, why not cash in with five more wee books? posted at Empire Building by Writing and Speaking for Writers, Speakers, and Publishers, saying, “If you already wrote a dynamite book and you’re letting others buy and read it, why not pluck the gems from it, repackage them, let that be read again, and bring more readers back to your original blast of genius, the original book?”
Jo Michaels presents Creating Your Own Blog Tour – Step One – Signing up Bloggers posted at Jo Michaels Blog, saying, “If you have the time to run your own blog tour, here are the five steps (with screenshots) to help you set everything up. All series posts are written and include: How to Sign up Bloggers – Creating Promotional Materials and HTML – Finding Reviewers – Creating a Thunderclap Campaign – Throwing a Facebook Launch Party”
Joseph C. Kunz, Jr. presents 5 Steps To Getting A “Big Name” To Write Your Book’s Foreword posted at Kunz On Publishing, saying, “It is very easy to get someone to write your book’s foreword. The difficult part is finding the best person for the job. You need someone with a proven track record, like being published author, or a successful person in their industry, or that has a huge social media following. Plus, they need to understand what a foreword is about, why a book has a foreword, and what role it plays in the success of your book. Here are the basic steps in finding the right person to write your book’s foreword.”
Kate Tilton presents Enter Marketing Mayhem: Marketing Tips for Authors posted at Kate Tilton, Connecting Authors & Readers, saying, “Author and editor Jessica West gives authors the 411 on marketing options to get started with their publishing journey.”
Kimberley Grabas presents The 4-Part System to Define and Attract your Target Audience (Part 2: UNDERSTAND) posted at Your Writer Platform, saying, “The more you know about your readers, the more effective your sales and marketing efforts will be. So, it’s well worth the effort to find out: who they are, what books they buy, and why they buy what they do. And after the work we did in part one of this series, it may seem like the hard part is done. In part 1, we tackled the first step in defining your target audience: identifying who it is you wish to reach or serve. We did some research and asked a whole lot of questions – and I shared ways that you could find the answers to these questions – to create a detailed and specific persona of your ideal reader. However, we’ve only just scratched the surface.”
Miles Anthony Smith presents How to Get 172% ROI & 8,841 eBook Downloads With $85 In 3 HOURS posted at Miles Anthony Smith
Nate Hoffelder presents Oregon Library to Add Local Indie Books to its Catalog posted at The Digital Reader, saying, “The Multnomah County Library is inviting Portland-area authors to submit their books so they can be added to the library’s catalog. An author simply needs to distribute their book through Smashwords to OverDrive, and then fill out a form.”
Sabrina Ricci presents By the Numbers: 189+ Tips and Tricks on How to Write, Edit, Market, and Sell Your Books posted at Digital Pubbing, saying, “So many wonderful authors, publishers, and people just interested in the book industry have written numerous guides, case studies, and resources to help others interested in writing and publishing. Sometimes the best way to share resources is via lists, like my post 7 Strategies and 110 Tools to Help Indie Authors Find Readers and Reviewers. With that in mind, here are links to more than 184 articles full of advice and tips on how to write, edit, market and promote, publish, and sell books. Most of them give a top [insert number here] list, and all of them involve numbers in some way. Enjoy!”
Sarah Bolme presents Sell More Books with Better Descriptions posted at Marketing Christian Books, saying, “Your book’s cover is your number one marketing tool. Your book’s description is your next most important tool in hooking a reader.”
Shelley Hitz presents How to Get Started on Blab – Getting Ready for Your First Blab.im Broadcast posted at Shelley Hitz, saying, “Blab is a live video broadcasting platform where up to four people can be live at one time. It is similar to Google Hangouts, but removes the technical barriers to entry because you can broadcast from your Desktop or your phone. In this blog post I share how Author’s can use Blab and how to get started.”
Tony Riches presents How to build your author platform on Google+ and get over 1,000,000 views posted at The Writing Desk, saying, “This is part of an occasional series of posts on author platform building”
Bryan Collins presents 22 Top Writers On Their Great Writing Challenges (And How They Overcame Their Demons) posted at Become a Writer Today, saying, “In this post, 22 experts explain how they overcame their greatest writing challenges. The focus on this post is on fiction and people like Robert McKee replied. It’s a follow on to a recent guest post I wrote for Boost Blog Traffic, which Joel was featured in.”
Writing Tools and Tips
C.K. MacLeod presents How Not to Miss Your Editor’s Suggestions posted at Tech Tools for Writers, saying, “In a book-length document, it’s possible to miss a suggestion from your editor. This article will tell you how to prevent that from happening.”
Emily Johnson presents Ways to Organize Your Home Writing Cabinet: Cheat Sheet posted at Blog Where Writers Meet — Omnipapers.com, saying, “This article describes ways to organize your workplace for better productivity”
K.M. Weiland presents Protagonist and Main Character— Same Person? The Answer May Transform Your Story! posted at Helping Writers Become Authors, saying, “Make certain you understand the differences between protagonist and main character–and how to leverage them against each other to create an amazing tale.”
Kate Tilton presents Playing Fast and Loose with History: Writing Historical Fiction posted at Kate Tilton, Connecting Authors & Readers, saying, “In most cases, rewriting history is a bad thing; revision is normally done to make bad seem less bad (see recent events for a nice example). But when it comes to writing compelling fiction (that’s meant to be fiction), tinkering with what was can make a story more realistic when a bit o’ fantasy is added in. Author Will Van Stone Jr. explores the use of history with a twist.”
M.C. Simon presents How to become a Ninja Writer by overcoming the Killing Chi posted at Feng Shui For Writers, saying, “To find the harmony in your writing place and to increase your creativity, you -the writer- will need to apply the productivity principles combined with a design and layout that is suitable for the nature of the writing process. And here are the steps in the ancient art of Feng Shui. The writer’s Chi has to find a balance that will influence your creativity each moment. Depending on the field of interest in which you as an author work in, there can be various solutions to control the flowing Chi. It’s not secret, it’s not magic and… all what you have to do is to connect the dots.”
Nate Hoffelder presents Alex Wants to be the Nanny State Editor posted at The Digital Reader, saying, “The best way to avoid insensitive, gender-biased, and exclusive language in your books is to weed it out while you’re writing the first draft, and Alex can help. This new tool identifies polarizing, race related, religion inconsiderate, gender biased, or other unequal phrasing in a work, and it suggests alternatives.”
Robin Storey presents Why Do Writers Love to Write in Coffee Shops? posted at Storey-Lines, saying, “Indie author Robin Storey says that although writers in coffee shops have become a cliche, writing in your favourite cafe can enhance the creative process and increase productivity.”
Well, that wraps up this issue. I hope you enjoy some of the great articles here, and let other people interested in self-publishing know about the Carnival—Use the share buttons to Tweet it, Share it on Facebook, Plus-1 it on Google+, Link to it!
The next issue is October 25, 2015 and the deadline for submissions will be October 15, 2015. Don’t miss it!
Here are all the links you’ll need