And the Winners Are…

It’s that time of the year again! Can’t believe how fast time went by! Maybe it is because of all the awesome books we were reading…Winners, congratulations! It was a hard decision in many cases; in all honesty, the competition was fierce. I was humbled and amazed with the quality of books, as I saw the stigma of the Independent Authors vanish almost in its entirety this year. I am truly honored to have read and judged your work…to me all participants are winners. Yet only few could be selected and thus we placed the finalists…the winners are here, and their books are available. So readers click here to check out the winners!

Award Winners, this is the time to take your book for a ride online! Make sure you voice out your winnings everywhere. You can order stickers by clicking here, and check out our promotional services - click here to check out all the options! Thank you to all of you and all participants for honoring us with your books!

2016-17 Literary Awards Announcement – And the Finalists Are…

It has been by far the largest awards contest in our history. But what it is truly awesome was the great quality of the majority of the participating books. Unfortunately, judges must select only a few, and this year it’s proving to be a very difficult task! So we wish all the finalists good luck, knowing that in our hearts and minds you all are winners, as this year’s competition was truly fierce. For those participants that didn’t make the finals, know that most of you didn’t make it by a very small margin. So be proud of your book (as we are of you!), and keep reading our newsletter for tips on how to get your book out there. Check out the list of finalists here.

Finalists, as you wait for the winners' announcement, there are few things you can do to get ready and make the most of your winning status!

·         Those of you that have printed books, check out the link included in your finalist notice to order stickers for your books covers, as these bulk order prices only happen once a year. Please note that there is a deadline for ordering and orders won’t go in until then, so plan accordingly.

·         Once the finalists’ placements are announced, we will be producing certificates, to be emailed along with a digital copy of the sticker seal. This is the time to begin to contact your publishers to find out what you need to do to add the seal to your digital front covers everywhere online.

·         Plan your strategy for spreading the news about your accomplishment! Announcements to the media can be made through press releases and their launch can be coordinated with a social media campaign. Check out our PR Writing, PR Distribution, and Social Media Blitz services!

·         Literary Awards give credibility to your title, which means the author did things right! Make the most of your writing expert status and give book interviews, publish articles, and share your knowledge with upcoming new authors. Giving back is the best way to promote your work!

Being an award winner is what all authors shoot for, but for those who did not make the finalists list know this; competition is fierce, and this year was really close. Be proud of being a participant as you did something the majority of people do not. You not only wrote and published a book; you also had three lines of judges examine it! Use quotes of your review and share the knowledge you acquired during the process to make the most of the experience and keep writing! For more on how we can help authors please visit www.readerviews.com.

Keeping Your Writer Sensitivity In Check Can Help You Promote Your Book!

We all know that writers are somewhat eccentric and lack many times, a social filter–me included! This is no surprise if we take into account the amount of time writers spend inside their heads and in front of their computers; isolated within their own little worlds. This ability of living in their heads can be very useful when focusing on creating and writing their stories, but it can be a heavy rock weighing down the promotion of their book as well! In today’s competitive market, balancing the ‘hermit’ and the ‘eccentric’ side with the ‘promoter’ and ‘people friendly’ side within is not only wise, it is crucial for a successful campaign. Below are some tips on developing the ‘Promoting Author Self.’

·         Work on promoting while writing. Scheduling social time during the writing phase will not only help with creating a platform for the upcoming book, it can also serve as practice with social skills so that once the book is out, the author feels comfortable pitching while socializing.

·         Diversify your social life. Most of us tend to move within one circle of friends or likeminded people, yet expect a broad audience to read our books! But for this to be fair, the author must put his or her interest on the audience as well. By being open to getting to know a diverse audience, the author opens up the door for his work as well.

·         Balance the writing time and community time. Scheduling and structuring the days to be able to accomplish writing and promoting does not mean to create a strict schedule. On the contrary it means to juggle both to make the most of time. If it is writing time but writer’s block pays the writer a visit, why not go out instead and use the time to connect with people! A calendar is there as a guide, but it must be flexible in order to work.

In the end, being a writer should mean a lifestyle where a person exteriorizes the world within instead of a person isolating themselves for months, only to torture themselves on exhausting and awkward promotional campaigns. For more information on how we can help authors, please visit www.readerviews.com.

Writing Interesting and Fun Memoirs

Since the first humans began communicating with each other, the need to share our lives through story telling has been strong in every one of us. We started sharing highlights of our day through verbal storytelling around a fire, and as we evolved our words we put them into print, first through symbols, then through the written word. Communicating with each other has developed into a complex way of sharing a lot more than our daily stories, but the pull to share our lives and leave our legacy to those who come after us is still so strong in our hearts that most people will try to preserve and pass down their accounts one way or another. Whether we choose scrapbooks, journals, videos or audio recordings, putting together a lifetime happens because we want someone else to listen, or see it and learn from our own experiences. This is not an easy task. Not only is sometimes difficult to relive certain moments in our lives, to put it together for an audience can be overwhelming as we not only have to determine what to share, we also must figure out how to share it so that others will be interested enough to listen. Below are some tips on how to win the interest of our audience to make sure our message is heard.

·         First we must think of the big message we want to make sure gets through. Whether we realize it or not, there is always a big life lesson learned in the stories we accumulate from our lives. A memoir without a message relevant to the reader has no purpose or reading value for them.

·         Once we know what we wish to communicate, it is time to think of all the main experiences we lived which took us to that big aha! moment. This will give us a guide that will help us create a storyline that flows and moves forward.

·         Organize all of the chosen events chronologically. This doesn’t mean that you have to deliver the story in that way. This will only help you to visualize the storyline.

·         Take a recreational creative writing class at your local continuing education center. It will not only teach a couple of tools to make your memoirs entertaining and fun to read, it will also connect you with other people interested in writing, which can become part of a critique group when you finish your first draft.

·         Finally, relax and try to picture your life as a movie. Imagine the dialogue between characters. Pretend it is all fiction in your head. Start by visualizing each event separately and write it down. It doesn’t matter if you do it in a notebook by hand or you use a computer. Just get it out of your head and into writing form. As you write, remember to note the surroundings, smells, feelings. Including sensory information is what will take the reader into the setting and the story.

 Writing a memoir can be a lot of work, but it also can be fun. It shouldn’t be rushed, it should be enjoyed! For more information about how Reader Views can help visit www.readerviews.com.

Getting Close to the Awards Finalists Announcement!

The last few weeks at Reader Views have been busy to say the least! As we receive the last batches of first-line judge’s scores and reviews, there are many things the 2016-2017 participants should be considering:

·         For winners and finalists–it is a given that winning an honorable status will provide a strong promotional tool. But a tool is only good if put to use! This is why having a plan is imperative, and all participants should be thinking, even before the announcement, about what comes next.

·         For the participants that do not make the finals, making the most of the awards also requires a plan. Not receiving an awards seal doesn’t mean authors can’t use a quote from the awards judge to promote their book!

·         The award seal and review are both tools, and the Awards name is what gives the tools credibility. But, it is up to the authors to find creative ways of using these tools when promoting their books.

For more information on how we can help Authors visit us at www.readerviews.com.

Create Community and Support Your Books

By now most, if not all, authors know they need to create a platform even before they become published if they want to sell their books, articles, or any writing at all. But not many have heard of creating a community around them to support their writing. Currently, the publishing Industry is not only flooded with books of all formats, it is also becoming congested with all kinds of platforms. Many of those focus on readers, book promotion, and Indie publishing services. This makes it very difficult for new authors to navigate and decide which services they need, and where to get them. But, it also creates a diversity of vendors for the author that might not be beneficial at all. Yes, sometimes things go wrong with a vendor and a new one must be found, but not creating a stable community around them can, in the long run get an author stuck in internet limbo. Below, are some tips on how forging a sense of community can benefit the relationship of Author–Vendor–Audience:

•    Having a support community generates an environment of collaboration between the author and vendor. This not only creates loyalty between them, it also provides costs breaks, infinite resources, and even promoting help within the vendors’ platforms.
•    Vendors not only know many readers, they are also readers!
•    An author community can not only help expand their platform quicker through the credibility of a community; through the long term relationships it provides friends, and collaborators who want to see the author succeed, instead of just seeing an author as someone who provides business.

Having a supportive community of collaborators allows authors to rely on them and spend more time producing new books, as well as touring their current ones. For more information on how our community can help authors visit us at www.readerviews.com.

 

What Readers Can Expect from Authors in 2017

As the audience becomes more tech savvy, and discover the benefits of carrying books in a tablet and purchasing them without having to leave the comfort of their homes, preference patterns will definitely be in a continuous evolving state. Readers will no longer settle for what is available; they will determine what will be available. So, what can they expect from the publishing industry this year? Here are some of my own thoughts based on what I have seen over the past year:

·         As the driving force of the publishing industry, readers will be able to claim their place and be aware of the trends that they will be establishing. No longer will they be expecting the book seller to serve a menu for them to choose from. They will be requesting what they want to the bookseller as informed consumers. Because of the newfound awareness of their influence, booksellers will not be able to limit what they sell based on who pays more for their shelves. They will also create shelves for what their audience requests the most, whether digital, by order or Indie books in stock.

·         Readers will take initiative to connect with their authors more and more, whether famous, or unknown locals, and sponsor opportunities for them via blogs, book clubs, and social media.

·         Authors will listen to readers, as reviews keep weighing in on their books. Because of that, Indies will improve their product, finally erasing the bad rap Indie book quality received in their beginnings. 

By now everyone, authors and readers alike, are used to a live, forever evolving publishing industry, instead of the static dinosaur that used to rule. The beauty of this is that now writers will have to be creative, not only when writing their book, but also on how they will present their story and market it in order to be noticed. I believe that readers will become the authors’ muse, to help improve in their craft and product quality, while letting an infinite amount of stories inspire them and help them grow. To learn more on how we can help readers find awesome books visit www.readerviews.com.

2017 Marketing Tips for Indie Authors

I recently read a few articles on the internet with 2017 trend predictions in the publishing industry. Some said eBook sales would be predominant this year, others spoke about the growth of Indie publishing and overload of the market. In all honesty, these predictions aren’t anything new. Since digital technology ventured into the publishing industry, we have seen the number of eBooks and Indie publishers grow. Yet, printed books and magazines are still around! In my opinion, I think the trend will be that of just giving the audience more choices, not just on topics and stories available to readers, but also on formatting preferences. Having said that, as formatting choices and authors multiply for readers, marketing strategies and marketers offering services for authors are also on the rise; this can be confusing making it very difficult for Indies to figure out. Below are some tips on how to navigate all the marketing choices out there to decide a strategy.

·         Do not focus in the differences of today vs. yesterday. Before, we had the basic paperback and hardcover. Now there are audio books, epub, mobi, pdf, and many other digital formats on top of the printed books. Yet, they are just formats, which mean that you will make your book available to all preferences readers might have…that’s all. What this really means is that the marketing strategy will have to be expanded to include the different options the author’s audience might prefer.

·         Do your homework on marketing services and companies. Authors many times just delegate the marketing before learning the basics, and this is a mistake. No one is as interested as the author is in selling their book, so why delegate the promotion and marketing to someone else? It is imperative that whoever markets the book is on the same page with the author and publishing company. Marketing is based on teamwork, and the author should be involved, as he is the one who determined the audience he wrote the book for.

·         In an era of infinite possibilities and choices for the audience, target marketing is a must, but this does not mean that all other markets should be ignored!

An authors’ job used to be to write, and the traditional publishers would market and sell their book. But, make no mistake they were also promoters as they also sold themselves during book signings and other events and appearances. The difference today is that the events now happen on the internet also, and as an Indie author, they decide how their book will be promoted. For more information on how we can help Authors visit us at www.readerviews.com.