Welcome to this issue of the Carnival of the Indies blog carnival. This issue is for April, 2014. 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.
Kimberley Grabas presents How To Build A Writer Platform With No Time, No Credentials And No Book posted at Write to Done, saying, “Are you a writer who is overwhelmed by the rapidly changing industry? The more adventurous among you are ready for the challenge of building a writer platform and growing your community – but have absolutely no idea where to start. Some of you find it slightly horrifying that you are required to write and hock your wares, but are prepared to do the work, however distasteful it is. And a few of you are gnashing your teeth, insisting it was much better in the “good ol’ days” when writers were expected to write – and someone else handled the smarmy promotional bits. Looking around, you feel a bit deflated. You see authors with several books out, who have all manner of credentials to their name, and platforms as big as those of a rockstar. How can a newbie writer compete?”
Richard Levesque presents So You Need a Funnel… posted at Richard Levesque, saying, “So what’s a writer to do when he knows he needs a funnel but his products aren’t very funnel friendly? Simple. I made a funnel anyway. Here’s how.”
Shelley HItz presents How to Send a Kindle MOBI Review Copy Directly to a Kindle Device posted at Training Authors, saying, “When you send a Kindle mobi review copy to your book reviewers, it is best if you can send it directly to their Kindle. Yes, you can attach the mobi file to an e-mail and then they can either transfer it to their Kindle via USB or use the Send to Kindle feature. But, the easier you make it for your reviewer, the more likely they will read your book and review it for you. I will show you exactly how to send a mobi review copy to a Kindle device in this tutorial.”
Book Design and Production
Christopher McPherson presents Anatomy of an Award-Winning Book Cover posted at Just Ask Christopher, saying, “Thank you for considering my article!”
Colin Dunbar presents Book Design Examples posted at Format Book In Word, saying, “As I said previously, there are no hard and fast rules when you format your book in Word (or any other layout program). But, as I’m sure you’ll agree (and notice), it does reflect a more professional image when your book is designed and formatted following the time-tested principles that work; there is no need to reinvent the wheel.”
Randy Stapilus presents Word of Mouth and Blurbs for Indie Authors posted at BookWorks
Dave Cornford presents My First Speaking Engagement posted at Dave Cornford – Author
Herzog Brad presents 92 Commentaries on Imagination posted at The Why Not 100, saying, “I’ve had more than 30 books published by “traditional” publishers, but I have embarked on my own publishing venture — Why Not Books — primarily in an effort to avoid being creatively stifled. We named our company after George Bernard Shaw’s call for imagination: “You see things, and you say, ‘Why?’ But I dream things that never were, and I say, ‘Why not?'” And I’m giving a TEDxMonterey talk on April 26 about the generation of creative ideas. So one of my favorite posts of my new Why Not 100 blog — “rankings of all things literary” — is “92 Commentaries on Imagination.””
Ian Martyn presents 5 more reasons writers should blog posted at Ian Martyn – Science Fiction Author, saying, “In Novemeber 2013 I published ‘5 reasons why writers should blog’. Some months later I am even more convinced that it is one of the best things fiction writers can do. I have found many benefits to blogging, as a writer, that I hadn’t anticipated when I started.”
Sabrina Ricci presents Intellectual Property and the Indie Writer posted at Digital Pubbing, saying, “A guest post by Ron Glick, an indie author of 9 comic trivia books and 5 novels, sharing his insights and experiences with intellectual property.”
Marketing and Selling Your Books
Daryl Rothman presents Building a Literary Community: Why and How posted at The Creative Penn
Dina Eisenberg presents What to do with an old ebook? posted at InfoProduct Doctor Blog, saying, “Thanks for the opportunity to join the Carnival. I think readers will appreciate the ideas for leveraging their hard work. Warmly, Dina Eisenberg”
Joseph C. Kunz, Jr. presents Sell Sheets: A Guide For New Self-Publishers posted at Kunz On Publishing, saying, “A sell sheet (sometimes called a “one-sheet” or a “tip-sheet”) is a one-sheet flyer that promotes a book and its author. It is generally single-sided, but can also be double sided. The major point of a sell sheet is to convey your book’s benefits in a short and concise manner on one or two pages of letter-sized paper. A sell sheet is a concise, one-page document, used to help you market your book directly to book buyers. It is not a press release. Use it to sell or promote your book to retailers, wholesalers, and even consumers. You also can include your sell sheet in a media kit so that the editor can have specific details about your book and your marketing plans.”
Kate Tilton presents Five Things You Should Never Do on Twitter posted at Kate Tilton’s Blog, saying, “If you are an indie author chances are you already know how important social media is in marketing. Here are five things to avoid on Twitter so you can be even more successful!”
Sabrina Ricci presents Indie Authors: Offline Marketing Strategies posted at Digital Pubbing, saying, “Although online marketing (emails, social media, etc.) are important and can be an effective way to encourage sales of books, offline marketing can be just as powerful. And passing out tangible goods and interacting face to face can help create more loyal fans and stronger networks.”
Belinda Williams presents Author earnings: an indie author revolution? posted at Belinda Williams Books, saying, “Belinda takes a look at Hugh Howey’s recent Author Earnings 7K report and the implications this has for self-publishers.”
Carla Douglas presents 3 Things Successful Self-Pubs Do Well — Why Not Get Mentored by the Pros? posted at Beyond Paper, saying, “In a recent post on the Smashwords blog, Mark Coker observed that successful self-publishing authors are generously stepping up and showing the next generation the way to success. I couldn’t agree more. In this new series, I’ll be looking at a variety of recent books by some of the pros, and I’ll point out three things they’ve done really well. First up: Joanna Penn’s How to Market a Book.”
Denise Wakeman presents How to Research Keywords to Help you Create the Perfect Book posted at The Future of Ink, saying, “In this article by Penny Sansevieri on The Future of Ink, she goes step by step into detail on how to find the best keywords to help you create a bestselling book. Just about everything we’ll talk about in regards to social media these days comes down to using the right keywords. But the topic of keywords actually goes deeper than that. Keywords affect all areas of promotion: from creating the right copy on your website, to placing ads on Facebook that get attention, to developing an irresistible book idea. But more than that, you want to create a book idea that Amazon will love.”
Nick Daws presents Crowdfunding a Debut Novel: One Writer’s Story posted at Nick Daws’ Writing Blog, saying, “This is a guest post by UK author Pete Oxley. In it Pete explains how he used the crowdfunding website Indiegogo to get funding to publish his debut novel The Infernal Aether.”
Writing Tools and Tips
Amy McElroy presents “The Magic of Expanded Dialogue Tags: Tips to Build Strong Characters and Draw Readers into Your Story” posted at Indie-Visible: Literary Justice for All, saying, “Use these 4 tips on expanded dialogue tags to seamlessly weave setting and plot details while bringing intense characters alive. Avoid the pitfalls of “drama tags” and “floating dialogue,” and allow every dialogue tag to further entrance your reader.”
Belinda Kroll presents Using a (Galaxy Note 8) Tablet to Write a Novel posted at Belinda Kroll, Young Adult Victorian Fiction, saying, “Trying to be a little more mobile with your novel writing? I am too! Here is my method of syncing my mobile writing with my desktop writing in a way that allows me to keep moving forward even while I travel.”
Belinda Williams presents In defence of predictability posted at Belinda Williams Books, saying, “Is predictability always a bad thing? Belinda takes a look at the concept of predictability in the romance and chick-lit genres, and highlights some reasons why it can have a positive impact on these books and for readers in this audience.”
Corina Koch MacLeod presents How to Write a Quality Book Fast posted at Beyond Paper, saying, “There has been a bit of buzz recently about authors who can write a book collaboratively in six weeks or by themselves in nine weeks. How do they do it? These two tips will shed some light on how to write a quality book fast.”
Daryl Rothman presents Sherlock Holmes vs. C Auguste Dupin: 4 Ways to Improve Your Writing posted at HelpingWritersBecomeAuthors.com, saying, “I am grateful the wonderful KM Weiland published my guest-post on a favorite subject of mine: Holmes/Doyle v Dupin/Poe. I hope you enjoy.”
Y. K. Greene presents Scrivener: Series “Bible” posted at Blargle Splect, saying, “This is the first post in a series where I discuss some of the ways to use the Scrivener program for writing series of novels instead of single books. In this post I discuss what a series “bible” is, what to put in it and how to set one up.”
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 May 25, 2014 and the deadline for submissions will be May 15, 2014. Don’t miss it!
Here are all the links you’ll need
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