By Joel Friedlander
Welcome to this issue of the Carnival of the Indies blog carnival. This issue is for September, 2020. 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.
C. S. LAKIN presents How to Market a Book: 15 Book Marketing Stategies posted at The Self-Publisher, saying, “You write books because you love to write, right? But without following through with marketing, selling, and advertising, your book won’t be discovered. You may be saying, “I’m no good at marketing or sales. I’m a writer! I don’t know how to market a book.” I hear you. But the reality is, no matter how good your book may be, you’ll never achieve your goals unless you take these all-important next steps seriously. The good news is, marketing doesn’t have to be as scary as you might imagine.”
Nate Hoffelder presents Authors & Zoom posted at Anne R Allen’s blog, saying, “Do you need to get better at online events? Here are a bunch of tips I learned!”
Belinda Griffin presents 5 Things To Do Once Your Book Is On Amazon posted at SmartAuthorsLab.
Book Design and Production
Glenna Collett presents Design a workbook posted at Book Design Made Simple, saying, “Workbooks and coloring books are still in vogue, and they can be a great way to reach an audience. In this article we help you find the right trim size, colors, cover design, typefaces, and printer. We even show you how to construct those triple write-on lines for kids.”
Helen Vdovychenko presents How to Design a Book Cover: The Only Guide You Need posted at MiblArt blog.
Nate Hoffelder presents Four Ways to Screw Up Your Book Cover posted at Create If Writing, saying, “The first (and a lot of time only) place readers will see your book cover is on a screen. You need to make sure your cover looks good there, and here are four questions you should ask.”
Lisa Poisso presents Productivity for Fiction Writers: September 2020 posted at Clarity, saying, “Even if the story you’re working on today never gets published, in light of all the little pleasures and hobbies that people indulge in that make life worth living, isn’t this creative effort one of the brightest points in your life?”
Lois Hoffman presents Why Self-Publishers Should Copyright Their Work posted at The Happy Self-Publisher, saying, “Fellow writers, there’s never been a better time or greater need to take control of your own creative and professional life. There is a sentiment running through modern life that all information should be free. This really broke into the mainstream collective consciousness in the later 1990s when the creation of Napster allowed users to digitize their CDs and vinyl albums, and share those files at will. The result was the near-total annihilation of the recorded music industry. Now musicians who used to be able to sell records — and earn a lot of revenue doing it — have had to rely on live performance revenue to make a living. There is an important lesson here for other creatives.”
Sarah Bolme presents Does Your Book Title Grab People’s Attention? posted at Marketing Christian Books, saying, “Your book title is extremely important. In fact, studies show that your book’s title is the first thing people consider when learning about your book.”
Terry Whalin presents The Challenge for Every Learner posted at The Writing Life, saying, “Editor and author Terry Whalin knows “knowledge of power” and he explains in this article it only becomes power if the learning moves into action.”
Marketing and Selling Your Books
Cate Baum presents How To Get An Agent For My Book – Part One: The Submission Letter posted at SPR, saying, “Part One of a series with Two and Three linked.”
Cate Baum presents How To Rank Higher on Amazon Without Selling Books posted at SPR.
Frances Caballo presents 5 Basic Rules of Social Media posted at Social Media Just for Writers, saying, “At its essence, social media is social. So, to use social media and not allocate time to engage with readers and colleagues, well, it’s antithetical to the very premise of social media. Take Twitter, for example. It began as a texting platform. Sure, it’s matured, evolved, and changed. You can include images and video now, and you can even advertise. But at its essence, it’s still a medium for conveying messages. This premise is true with other social media platforms as well.”
Frances Caballo presents Not Sure What to Tweet? Check Out These 55 Examples posted at Social Media Just for Writers, saying, “Not sure what to tweet? In this post, Frances Caballo has 55 suggestions that will attract more readers to your Twitter account and grow your followers.”
Jay Artale presents How I got my Books to #1 and #2 on Amazon posted at Birds of a Feather Press, saying, “Could tweaking your Amazon categories and keywords propel you to the #1 spot in a niche category—even though you’ve had minimal book sales? Jay experimented with the KDP metadata on two of her nonfiction books, and created this case study to illustrate the impact.”
Lisa Tener presents Good News About Reading: Here’s the Data posted at Lisa Tener’s Writing and Publishing Blog, saying, “This post includes an infographic on what readers are buying by generation/age.”
Nate Hoffelder presents How to Safely Choose Colors for An Author Website posted at Nate Hoffelder, saying, “The colors you use on your author website are just as important as on your book cover. They tell the visitor what genre you write in and convey other useful info. This is something that even experienced graphic designers can get wrong, but if you take care you can avoid their mistakes.”
Pauline Wiles presents How to Choose a Website Builder posted at Pauline Wiles Websites, saying, “As an Indie Author, you’re well aware you need an attractive, functional website. Whether you’re starting from scratch, or want to explore easier technology for your site, you now have lots of choices for a no-code website platform. I recently tested a dozen of them, and was surprised and dismayed by some of their limitations. Here’s what to watch out for, and how to evaluate quickly which tool might be best for your Indie Author website.”
Robin Phillips presents Minimum list price for Kindle books posted at Author Help, saying, “I recently organised a multi-author sale. I got an unpleasant surprise on the eve of the sale, when I went to reduce the price of one of my ebooks to $0.99. Amazon wouldn’t let me reduce the price to less than $1.99.”
Sabrina Ricci presents Guest Post: Lean Book Publishing: How to Drastically Increase Success Rates by Publishing Books the Lean Way posted at Digital Pubbing, saying, “The success of a book is really a matter of whether readers will love it or not!”
Sarah Bolme presents 4 Lessons from a Book Purchase posted at Marketing Christian Books, saying, “This summer, I was introduced to an author and his book on spiritual discernment through an article in an online news outlet. The article featured the author and the topic of the book caught my attention.”
Susan Stitt presents ’30 Days with King David on Leadership’ Can’t wait for the book? Well, here’s the movie! posted at Front Edge Publishing Blog, saying, “Video sells books. In this week’s blog post, marketing director Susan Stitt shares how she designs and produces short videos to introduce our new books to the marketplace using video creation software from Lumen5. Susan shares her hints for making a video efficiently and one that will sell your books for you.”
Writing Tools and Tips
Alexa Whitewolf presents Make the Most out of Your Writing Time with Planning (Not Plotting!) posted at The Writing Society, saying, “Planning isn’t just about knowing your plot, it’s also about making an active commitment to your writing and book marketing. In this post, Alexa shares some great tips to help you manage every step of the writing and publishing process.”
C. S. LAKIN presents Becoming a Sensitive, Responsible Fiction Writer posted at Live Write Thrive, saying, “If you’re a fiction writer, you create characters. Hopefully believable ones. Characters your readers love and hate. Characters that pop off the page and take readers on an exciting journey. Regardless of whether you write lighthearted comedy, serious relational dramas, complicated romance, or adventurous fantasy, more than mere authenticity is needed—if you want to be a sensitive, responsible writer. What is involved in being a sensitive, responsible writer? Sensitive how? Responsible how? For writers who care about equity, racial justice, and e pluribus unum, it requires a self-check.”
Kristina Adams presents 5 Common Plot Problems (and How to Fix Them) posted at The Writing Society, saying, “It’s easy to get stuck on your plot, but it’s often because of one of these five reasons.”
Zara Altair presents How to Make Dialogue Come Alive posted at Write Time, saying, “Dialogue comes alive when you start with each character’s agenda in the scene. Then follow their emotional changes from the beginning of the scene to the end to create conflict and keep readers wondering what will happen next.”
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, Link to it!
The next issue is October 30, 2020 and the deadline for submissions will be October 15, 2020. Don’t miss it!
Here are all the links you’ll need