How to Get the Most from Internet Radio Broadcast Interviews

Susan Violante Managing Editor

Susan Violante
Managing Editor

Often the first idea that comes to mind when considering using interviews to promote our books is the airwaves via talk radio and real-time TV shows. The idea of reaching a large audience and becoming a celebrity by making an appearance for a few minutes is very appealing but It’s also not realistic. The Internet radio, however, offers a different type of exposure. The podcast or video interview stays online indefinitely available to anyone at any time. The audience of the show is the book’s target market, as readers search for a specific topic. These Internet shows often offer longer interviews (some up to 30-60 minutes) for the author to promote their book and website. Below are some ways authors can make the most out of Internet broadcasts:

·         Book different shows that talk about different topics covered in your book, sot that you can reach a wider audience in diverse areas. For example, for my book set up in Europe during WWII I could look for shows highlighting Historical, War, PSTD, Italy, Italian Migration, writing a book about your parents…etc.

·         Send different topic list and sample questions to all shows to make sure you have different interviews and don’t end up with several interviews that all sound the same.

·         Plan sale promotions and events around the interviews - announce the interviews on your website to get more traffic.

·         Make sure you mention your website and book title a few times throughout the interview. Be personable and cordial with host and have sound bites ready to mention that listeners can remember easily after the show is over that will prompt them to visit your site or Google your book.

·         Have an audio commercial of the book ready to offer it to the host and sponsor another show with it.

·         Make sure you link the show on your website, Amazon’s Author Central account, etc.

·         Announce your shows on all the online calendars you can reach as well as your social media sites.

Remember your online interviews will remain available indefinitely so keep mentioning them on your blog and newsletter with the link! For more information on how we help Authors visit www.bookbybookpublicity.com.

 

Special Announcement: New Publicity Opportunity for Picture Book Authors!

Sheri Hoyte Managing Editor

Sheri Hoyte
Managing Editor

Hi All,

We wanted to share our exciting news!- Reader Views Kids and the Barefoot Librarian are collaborating on a new service for picture book authors with a unique opportunity to create a buzz about their books.

Taken from our press release:

Reader Views Kids teams up with the Barefoot Librarian, to create a new opportunity for picture book authors through the Librarian Picture Book Publicity Package.  Featuring an extensive array of publicity services, this new package not only provides picture book authors with an experienced book review from a librarian; it also maximizes exposure on their networks through special social media postings, advertising, and features uniting efforts to create a buzz for both targets: kids and libraries. Reader Views Kids and the Barefoot Librarian are scheduled to roll out this new service on February 4, 2019. The publicity package includes an expert assessment/review of the picture book, online publicity and news spotlights, social media exposure, advertising in an online magazine/book catalog, and an exclusive author interview.

 When interviewed about the new service, Susan Violante, co-Managing Editor of Reader Views said “Reader Views Kids was founded to offer reviews by kids for kids, as they are the real audience for children’s books. But in reality, librarians are also an important target, as they pick the books for their library audience. We decided that it was time to add librarian reviews to our Reader Views Kids menu, so we partnered up with the Barefoot Librarian, who is the perfect fit for our family.” Co-Managing Editor, Sheri Hoyte added, “It’s long overdue that we teamed up with a librarian to help our awesome children authors get their picture books in libraries, making them accessible to all kids. We are so excited to be working with Eve Panzer, the Barefoot Librarian – she brings a special talent to the table.”

Eve Panzer, the owner of the Barefoot Librarian, is thrilled about joining forces with Reader Views Kids. She said, “This is the perfect pairing! Susan and Sheri bring their vast experience of marketing and publicity, as well as a large community of followers to the partnership. I will bring my prospective as a children’s librarian and my networking channels in the library and educational worlds. Our author clients will truly get a unique and powerful package.”

The best features and areas of expertise from both companies were put together to develop an amazing publicity opportunity for independent picture book authors.

About Reader Views Kids:

Reader Views Kids launched at the end of 2007 as part of Reader Views to fill a need of having children’s books reviewed by kids instead of adults. Reader Views Kids consists of a group of kids ranging from 3-18 years of age. The mission of these bookworms is to read and give their honest opinion on age-appropriate books. Recommended guidelines are followed to make sure their reviews cover the book as a product, however, their voices and opinions are honest and genuine. The younger kids do the reviews with help of their parents, the older ones are seasoned readers in their own right and write their own reviews.

About the Barefoot Librarian:

Eve Panzer is the Barefoot Librarian, an experienced school librarian for kindergarten through eighth grade schools with passion for working with educators in their selection of the best of children’s literature. Holding a Masters of Library Science Degree from the University of Texas at Austin, Eve has been a professional in children’s literature since 1999, helping educators to select relevant books that are meaningful to their students.

More information can be found at www.readerviewskids.com and www.barefootlibrarian.com or by contacting Reader Views admin@readerviews.com.  

What is Genre-Blending?

Susan Violante Managing Editor

Susan Violante
Managing Editor

There is no question about it, genre-blending is happening! But what is it? And what does it mean for writers and readers? In the old publishing system before the Internet, categorizing books was the norm. The entire system was based on these categories, and most writers would adhere to the genre. Yet even then, within the last two decades of the 20th Century some works from a few authors did venture into this trend. These books were difficult to categorize, and I can imagine just how many genre-blended manuscripts from new authors were rejected because the industry was not ready for them. I am not sure why the industry is ready for genre-blending now, but I like to think it is thanks to all the Indie work out there. I bet that most readers were as tired as I was of the cookie cutter publishing machine, and craved something different. This craving with the Indie books boom, thanks to the Internet in my opinion, is what made possible the publishing industry fusion revolution we see currently. Below are few things to think about when writing genre-fusion stories:

·         Keeping your plot straight. Sometimes having too much freedom can make it difficult to choose a focal point when writing. I mean, just look at the historical fiction book “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak. This is a historical book narrated by the angel of death (the reaper)…It could easily be considered a fantasy because of this fusion. Yet the main story is about the main character (a little girl who loved books during a time they were banned and burned in Germany). The author found the best balance of fantasy and historical fiction in his book by separating the fantasy element from the main plot when he made the reaper strictly the narrator. I think that finding a balance of genres is what will keep the reader from scattering their attention and losing the main plot. Another example I can think of is the movie, “Cowboys and Aliens.” The western genre was the setting and the plot revolved in sci-fi.

·         Pick one of the blended genres as the main one. Before developing the story, the author needs to choose which one is the main genre and apply it to the plot. This will not only help to keep the story line straight, it can also give a focus point for the promotional efforts. Having a main marketing target and using the other genre fused into it as angles for promoting will also help the promoting team to stay on track with a defined campaign, instead of scattering efforts everywhere without specific direction and goals.

·         Keep it simple. If you are like me, you get a bunch of ideas all at the same time. Because of this my first bullet point plot is really like five stories instead of one. I know this, so I always do a bullet point summary so that I can strip out all the extra stories before I start developing my project. I do this with book-size ideas all the way through this very editorial. Keeping it simple is always a good idea to make sure your message goes through but working with genre-blended stories it becomes even more critical to do this. A plot with too many characters and twists of a WWII-vampire vs zombies who end up being ancient astronauts-and a Nazi zombie falls in love with Churchill’s daughter might be a little too much for readers to follow and enjoy at the same time. So take your time selecting what you want to include in your plot to make sure it is balanced.

In the end, currently a successful book is not about what category or how many categories it’s written in. What matters is that it’s a good story that is well-written. For more information on how we help authors visit www.bookbybookpublicity.com.

 

You Must Read Before You Write…

Susan Violante Managing Editor

Susan Violante
Managing Editor

I began writing for publication during the 1990s, but my love for books began decades before during my childhood. My mom wanted me to develop my Italian so she subscribed me to an Italian comic magazine when I was about ten years old. During my preteen years, she would take me to her friend’s bookstore, the place where my love for books grew, as my reading skills developed. Then when I turned thirteen, I began to write in a journal my grandmother gave to me. It was during those years that I realized how my journal reflected the new words I learned in the books I was reading. My sentences improved, expressing myself became easier and my thoughts and imagination were set free! It was my uncle however, who started me in serious writing. His method was fundamentally based on improving my reading list by including literary wonders from Dante Alighieri and Niccolo Machiavelli, to more contemporary writers like Italian journalist Oriana Fallaci, Giovanni Guareschi, Stephen King, Agatha Christi, Isaac Asimov, Robert Ludlum, etc. By the time I was 18 years old, I was not only an avid reader of most genres, I was already developing my own personal favorites like, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, J.J. Benitez, Hemmingway, Richard Bach and a zillion others! But it wasn’t until I migrated to the US that I discovered an interest in writing for publication.

This little bio on my own evolution from reader to writer is meant to show how the process takes time, but also how big a role reading plays. To be honest, without reading, in my mind there can’t be a real writer. Yes creative writing classes are good to learn the craft and to exercise the mind. But without reading a writer is limiting their potential to the minimum. Here are some points on why this is true:

·         How can we expect to write stories appealing to readers, if we don’t even know what it means to be a reader?

·         In the same way musicians are inspired by the great musicians before them…so are the writers inspired by the great authors who paved the way before us. So without that source of inspiration, knowledge and guidance; how can a writer become a unique author, how can a writer discover their own style, how can an author inspire others through their work?

·         When writing for publication, an author needs to do a lot a research regardless of what genre they’re writing in. But they also need to know what the current marketing trends are and targets for the genre they are writing. How can they know what their audience wants if they aren’t readers of the genre they are writing in?

·         How can a writer learn about pacing, style, character development, setting, plot, etc. without reading?

·         How can a writer be sure their book is well edited without being a reader?

When it comes to reading it doesn’t matter what you read, but when it comes to writing we have to make sure we know what others have done on the topic we wish to write about and learn what works for readers and what doesn’t. This also serves to discover if our topic has been done too much or to figure out if our angle could be a niche. There are an infinite number of reasons why we should read as writers. But if you are still not convinced just ask yourself… why should anyone read your book when you won’t read any ones else’s book?

Navigating the Internet to Find Your Audience

Susan Violante Managing Editor

Susan Violante
Managing Editor

When I freelanced during the 1990s, the Internet was not what it is today, so most of the research for my articles and short stories came from visits to the local libraries, face to face interviews, and the news. Currently, a writer can do most if not all their research from their own office. For the prolific writer this is a game changer - but, using the internet only to research for your writing is not going to help them get their articles, books or blogs to their audience. In order to get your work out to the right audience a lot of thought and research is needed to determine who will be interested in the topics and stories you are working on. Luckily, we can also do that from our office these days! Below are some tips on how to navigate the Internet to find your audience:

·         Brainstorm – This first step is the key. No one knows better than you what your work is about, so it is up to you to find all the possible angles embedded within your topic or story. You can begin with the general genre or topic and break that down to sub-topics, age group, specific interest groups…etc. For example, my first book “Innocent War” is a Historical Fiction book, based on my father’s tapes documenting his childhood, and coming of age memories growing up during WWII in Libya and Sicily. From there I can come up with the following marketing angles: Fiction, Historical Fiction, WWII Stories, Memoirs, WWII Memoirs, Coming of Age, YA, Teen, War, Military, History, Father-Daughter Relationship, PTSD, older people from that era…etc., just to name a few…

·         Niche Marketing Strategizing - This second step is also a must. Once you find angles for your work you can pinpoint marketing targets, and platforms where to promote your work. For example: under “Innocent War”  angles I  can target Military, Italians WWII buffs, Memoirs, YA, Teens, Family, ….etc. I can also market on different platforms such as Veterans Organizations, WWII Museums gift shops, History Magazines and Channels, Libraries and Bookstores in the History department, as well as Memoir department, Historical Fiction department, Teen and YA. As well as High Schools and College Libraries and their History departments, Italian Clubs, Italian Restaurants, Ancestry.com, AARP…etc. All these places can be reached via an email, by commenting on their Blogs, Magazines, and their websites. You can even advertise on these sites for better fees than on printed media.

 ·         Persistence and Follow Up - Once you have found your audience and established contact and relations with different platforms, all you need to do is keep at it. You can create an automatic marketing system through Mail Chimp, Infusionsoft, Constant Contact or any other marketing system that matches your needs and budget. But don’t forget to follow up and keep personal contact with your audience via your blog page or any other types of virtual interactions such as podcast interviews, articles published in e-magazines and other newsletters, or blog tours and social media appearances.

Yes, it takes time but without investing your time and your budget wisely on promotion and marketing, all your writing and publishing effort and investment will be in vain. For more information on how we help Indie Authors visit www.bookbybookpublicity.com.

 

2019 Writing for Publication – Take Charge!

Susan Violante Managing Editor

Susan Violante
Managing Editor

The New Year is always motivating as we focus on finally doing what we couldn’t do. This is true for writers’ publishing projects and dreams. Unfortunately, for many who begin their projects, holding on to the new year enthusiasm loses momentum as their daily lives unravel. But how can we avoid giving up on our publishing goals? By taking charge…one step at a time! Here are some tips on taking charge to reach your publishing goals this year:

·         Take the time to plan and schedule publication. Create a plan and schedule each phase of the process. This will not only help identify all stages necessary for a successful project…it will also allow for better marketing and PR planning by incorporating reviewers, awards, and other necessary timing items and deadlines into the publishing plan.

·         Plan your marketing and schedule so that a buzz is created before the book launch. Many Indie writers overlook this step as they are eager to get their book out. However, I recommend they invest in marketing 6 months before book is launched (after it has been professionally edited) so they can get reviews from big and small reviewers and include some as endorsements on the back cover and praise page.

·         Create and sync a budget for your plan. This will make sure you don’t fall short on the important stages of publishing and marketing. Be mindful of which tasks are better outsourced to professionals and which to take on yourself.

·         Pace yourself and be persistent. Sometimes it is better to be patient and launch the book at the right marketing time than rush to get it out. But it is always a win to be persistent and keep at it through social media, events, promotions…etc.

Taking charge of your dreams and goals is not that difficult if you keep focus on the finish line while advancing step by step. To learn more about how we help Indie Authors visit us at www.bookbybookpublicity.com.

 

Celebrating Another Year of Service to Indie Authors

Susan Violante Managing Editor

Susan Violante
Managing Editor

When I came aboard, Reader Views had four years of helping authors under their belt. Since then, many things have happened – some devastating like the loss of my friend and mentor who founded Reader Views, Irene Watson. Others life-changing and fulfilling, like when I took over Reader Views under Book By Book Publicity. This year, the 13th year of Reader Views (lucky number in Italy), marked for us another level of service as Sheri Hoyte joined me as partner after four years as book reviewer, social media manager and editor.

2018 was a year of growth, realized goals, and changes. Our logs show the total number of books reviewed in the 20K bracket!  As we enter 2019, we are filled with more goals, more plans, new reviewers and renewed passion but always with the same mission of helping Indie Authors get their books out there by reviewing books, building platform foundations and online PR.

It amazes me how far we’ve come from the early days when I took over. It was scary and sad for the circumstances but as time went by I could feel excited about keeping Reader Views afloat and making it grow. Some of the challenges felt overwhelming, like the time we had to take down the site due to a virus attack. Somehow, we made the tragic event work to our advantage and changed the entire system to make it not only safer but also current in design and efficient on the back end, which helped us to keep costs down and thus prices down. Since the scary times through growing pains we have grown to 25 adult reviewers for Reader Views and 20 kids for Reader Views Kids.

We now offer a whole line of Publicity services under the Book By Book Publicity brand from our signature Publicity Packages, Book Video productions, Podcast Service, Press Kits and Press Releases to new services like Book Translations to and from Spanish and Italian, Book Editing in English and Spanish, Manuscript Analysis, Consulting On the Go, and many more. We have converted the librarian catalog to a magazine-catalog hybrid. Click here to check out First Chapter Plus Magazine.  We also have been able to continue the Reader Views Literary Awards with very little fee increases while adding more categories to better fit the different genres of the participants. We have also extended the deadline to December 31st to accommodate books published in December. If you wish to submit your book, click here.

Our plans for 2019 include the launch of our I Have Something to Say Press publishing packages, a collaboration package with a librarian for children books, optimization of our system and social media campaigns for better results, and so many other things…so stay in touch through our newsletter for updates!

We want to thank you, the reader and supporter, for sticking with us, using our services, and telling others about us.  Everything we do is for you! This will be the last editorial for this year as the office will close for the Holidays. Sheri and I will still be processing submissions, checking emails, and reading a lot through the holidays so keep in touch!

Getting Your Promotional Ducks in a Row for 2019

Susan Violante Managing Editor

Susan Violante
Managing Editor

If you are like me, the beginning of the year is filled with enthusiasm and new projects, and that’s great! But is that also great when the project is the publishing of your new book? Maybe not so much...If we begin the planning of our new title at the start of the year then the book will most likely come out towards the second half of the year. That isn’t bad, but planning before the new year begins, the ground work for promoting will be done by the time the book is out. And that is better!

Here are some things authors should figure out before sending the final, professionally edited manuscript to production:

·         ARC Copies Ready for a List of Book Reviewers.  If, in the PR Campaign plans you have included book reviews by Publisher Weekly and other printed media, you have to consider their deadlines for submission which can be anywhere between 6 to 3 months before publication. Having endorsements for the back cover, also takes time. Having these figured out and ready to go at the beginning of the year will make the book promotion more effective.

·         Book Publicity Campaign Plan Worked Out. Before the year starts it is also wise to have a list of events and an online platform worked out, so that you can begin scheduling your book signings, tours and interviews with the venues and media list you put together based on the genre and topic of the book and its audience.

·         A Press Kit and List of local Bookstores and Libraries. Publishing a book and not hitting your local stores and libraries makes no sense. So have everything ready to go and send the kit with an ARC giving them all the information on when it comes out, as well as your contact information. Make sure you have the right person as your point-of-contact before sending the package out. This will make it easy to call for follow-ups later on and to try to get in for a book signing or speaking events.

In short, before the beginning of the year, putting all your ducks in a row can make the difference on PR and sales, as having the extra time ahead of the publication will give authors an edge to create momentum. For more information on how we help authors visit www.bookbybookpublicity.com.