Monday, February 18, 2013

Words to Mull On

For life.  For Writing.    For… well, you tell me.

On dealing with authors -  perhaps having a little more compassion?
No one starts out to write an awful book.

The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.
— William James

The greatest power we have to affect our world is always at our fingertips:  our ability to change how we see things…..
—— Ready for Anything book by David Allen

To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end in life.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be kindled.
— Plutarch

For a long time it had seemed to me that life was about to begin—real life.  But there was always some obstacle in the way.  Something to be got through first, some unfinished business, time still to be served, a debt to be paid.  Then life would begin.  At last it dawned on me that these obstacles were my life.
— Father Alfred D’Souza

Finish each day and be done with it.  You have done what you could.  Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can.  Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

Perhaps we would word things differently but each has a voice that can, and will, speak to us.
Just as our stories do when we write them down.
Take from them what you will.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Working with People Selling Books

No, I’m not talking about some guy accosting you in a raincoat with books in a multitude of pockets.
But hey….  No, No, No, that’s not advocated.   Unless it’s your neighborhood bookseller trying to save their business.  And with the sad fact of the pressure on them these days……

This post is about the James River Writers Writing Show at the end of January:
January 31, 2013
Bookstore Battle Plan:  
                                          How to Get Your Writing into Bookstores

The panel consisted of Katarina Spears, Elizabeth Gleichman, and soon to be published Ginny Pye sitting in for Fountain Bookstore owner Kelly Justice who was so sick she couldn’t make it.   [Kelly, hope you get well Soon!]

Katarina Spears manages the gift shops at the Library of Virginia, the Virginia State Capitol, and an international online store.
Elizabeth Gleichman is an Assistant General Manager at Books-A-Million.
And sitting in for Kelly Justice owner of independent bookstore Fountain Bookstore,, was Ginny Pye soon to be published by a small literary press and giving her perspective as an author.
For more detailed information see the JRW website.

And there should be a more detailed posting of the night’s talk on the site, so be sure to check that out.

There was a teaser at the end of the evening of Pet Peeves of Bookstore Owners / Buyers, so hopefully those will be posted there also.  There was some great information given but also a promise of more, so do be sure to check that out.

One of the things mentioned, and those writers that have been writing for awhile will perk up at this -
It was stated that JRW is a great Platform.
So if you’ve been hearing about you Have to Have a great platform, and let’s face it, if you haven’t heard it, you’ve not been working the business end of writing very long.
Then the next thing becomes the catch of as an author you Need a Great Platform, but if you are a nobody how are you going to get one.
Becoming a part of James River Writers can help you with that!
James River Writers is a non-profit that depends on its volunteers, and of course monetary support, so there has to be some way you can help JRW, and in return JRW helps you with knowledge and power on what it is to be a writer, and how to better your writing, and your career path.
So while you are roaming around on the JRW site, and of course, we hope you do, consider clicking and becoming a member.  Or remember to Renew your membership.   So all this knowledge and support can continue.

Now going from the unsponsored message of joining JRW back to the gist of the January Writing Show:

Of course when you bring up anything nowadays, talk will come up at some point about Social Media.  Especially as it pertains to getting word out.  And as authors and writers we are all going to have to do that and deal with that.
It was stated if you do have a book, or when you do, your book should have its own page on Facebook!
Who knew?
I guess it makes sense, I mean your characters and book take on a life and entity on it’s own anyway.   Okay, so perhaps I’m taking that a little far.  *Grin*   But perhaps use it as one of the memory things to remember to create a page for your book.
Wonder if it needs its own Twitter account too?    Too far?  *Grin*

It was mentioned that figuring out the key phrases that get retweeted can help your retweet ratio.  Well, if you include them in your original tweets of course.  

A lot of what was said was commonsense stuff that most mamma’s trained into you from an early age.  Or should have anyway.
Be respectful.   Play nice.   Treat everyone with respect and courtesy.

Treat your bookseller as a professional, I mean they are you know.   Make appointments to approach them to talk about selling your book.

And Don’t think of it as selling your book — or really as you’ve seen people doing, pressuring you to buy, - think of it as making a connection with people.
They might not buy right at that moment, for whatever reason, but that doesn’t mean they won’t buy it later.   And recommend it to all their friends.
You just never know.
Like my own personal tidbit, be careful what you say in Public, you never know who’s at the next table listening.  If it’s complimentary and Good, by all means, go for it.  If it isn’t, first you might want to figure out why it isn’t - you might just find it’s nothing to do with the other person at all, it’s something in you that you have to deal with, that you just don’t recognize and want to deal with.  Yep, you can only change you, you know.  And you remember the first impressions and all that.  Take a long time to change, if ever.

It also seems that giveaways work really well for getting traffic in on your site and buzz about your book.
As well as, whatever you can do to generate interest, flashing lights, rolling trailers, etc….   Uh, maybe not the guy with the trench coat with large pockets.   Just might want to rethink that, all I’m saying.

Oh, and if you have Anyone show up at your book signing, be Grateful!
Don’t grouch and complain.  Also see my rule about talking in public above.
Be grateful and appreciative of what you do have.  If you are at your own book signing that means you’ve made it at least that far.   And there’s a whole lot of us that are out here still working toward that.  So you have much to be thankful for, no matter where you are in your life.   Be Thankful.

*Found in notes -   Educate Yourself about it !

And just found in notes that should be mentioned    -     Educate Yourself!
I would hope you did that with the Writing of your book, you should also do that with the business of Selling your book as well.
Nowadays there's no reason to not be smart about these things.

See what you can find out when you Build Relationships?     With other writers, with readers, with booksellers.....