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Website or Blog Issues? Help is on the Way

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Web-Design-Help

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Placing sharing buttons, Social Media following buttons, Google+ batches or new page sections on websites or blogs seem to be daunting tasks for non-techies. Sure, there are forums where many questions might be answered – if one has the time and patience to crawl through hundreds of web pages to find the right answer to their problem. And then to implement it, when a month ago the platform changed its design or code … The advice given at forums is free, but often out-dated. Much faster and more economical is it to get some inexpensive help with the custom-creation of your blog or website at Fiverr.  For just $5 experts can help to solve problems that overwhelm the average computer user.
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We Found the Perfect Help
It started out with my struggle to place buttons for all the page sections of our blog Content-on Demand. For days I searched the internet, trying to find instructions, as the blogging platform we use was not very helpful with instructions, nor are their forums. My basic HTML knowledge didn’t enable me to work on the blogspot platform. And I must admit, I am not very patient, and would rather write ten articles than to deal with one web problem. Well not real problems for a specialist, but for me.
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I turned to Fiverr.com where I found help in the past, for example to have our Facebook account unlocked or to have someone creating us a database. Looking for advice or hands-on work with Blogger (Blogspot) platforms I found an amazing techie who helped me with dozens of issues on the websites and blogs that we run: Denis at http://Fiverr.com/Denis555

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Great Support for Blogger and WordPress

It was amazing how fast and professional Denis helped us to improve the overall design of the websites / blogs and gave me professional advice how we could improve a couple of things on our sites (for example SEO).

Among many other tasks he:

  • set up Follow Buttons
  • repaired broken Sharing Buttons
  • set up the blog archive
  • created the page buttons on blogs\
  • improved and corrected image size
  • helped us to get rid of spam comments
  • corrected the layout of website / blog
  • placed a Google+ batch – which resulted in many more followers since implementing!
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    The list goes on and on… and best of all: each of these tasks were only $5. However, we often add a tip to this amount to show our appreciation for his fast and pleasant service.

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Denis offers a lot more:

  • installing of advanced templates on Blogger and WordPress
  • Creation of logos with graphical design
  • Installing life stream hangout on blogs
  • All kind of HTML / CSS coding and basic Java Script
  • Installing Facebook comments to your blog

You have found something interesting on someone else website and you would like to have that on your blog/website but you don’t know how? Ask him, chances are good he can implement it on your site too.
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The Wall Street Journal wrote:
“Although buyers at Fiverr pay $5, sellers receive less than $4, after PayPal payment-processing and Fiverr fees, which is the primary way the site makes money. PayPal is the payment method and posting or finding a gig is free.”
I am sure you have heard or maybe even used Fiverr already. With several hundred-thousand active listings on the Fiverr site you might find a quick and inexpensive fix for many challenges in self-publishing, website and computer issues and even graphic design jobs. For me, it turned to be a great help for the tiny amount of $5 that I spent on each small gig, ordered at Fiverr. There are thousands of tasks and services offered, referred to as ‘gigs’ and micro-jobs, beginning at a cost of $5 per job – well the customer pays $5 and the person doing the job gets $4, a twenty per cent commission goes to Fiverr.com for offering the platform. If you are satisfied with the service, don’t hesitate to give a tip to the person who did the task, helping you to solve a problem!

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If you would like to get more support in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites – or to learn how you can make yourself a name as an author through content writing: We offer all this and more for only $179 for three months – or less than $2 per day! Learn more about this customized Online Seminar / Consulting for writers: http://www.111Publishing.com/Seminars

Please check out all previous posts of this blog (there are more than 1,100 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and StumpleUpon.
Thanks a lot for following:

@111publishing

http://www.111publishing.com

http://www.e-Book-PR.com/

http://www.international-ebooks.com/

http://bit.ly/VmtVAS 111Publishing @ Google+

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Posted by on August 20, 2014 in Marketing

 

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17 Bestseller Tips – from Trade Publishers

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Bestseller-List

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If you ever see Marketing and Advertising from traditional puplishers, it’s for their Bestseller authors only, such as: Advance Book Reviews, posted on their book’s cover, Book Tours and Signings of celebrity authors, media coverage including reviews, speaking engagements, and placing at major bookstores who report to Bestseller lists.  How can author-publishers use the methods of global trade publishers to promote their self-published books?  You don’t need to travel to the Frankfurt Book Fair in Germany, like Johannes Kepler did in 1620 – yes, self-publishing was en vogue already four hundred years ago!

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7 Million Self-Published Titles:  Stiff Competition
Since 2010 roughly 7 million new self-published books appeared, almost all at online retailer’s websites.  And these titles will be offered for many years to come, as most of them are in digital format. The “gold rush” seems to be over and self-publishing has been dropping almost 50% per year, obviously “separating the wheat from the chaff”.  You’re not a New York Times bestselling author. You don’t have a publicist. And your Amazon sales numbers are awful. Should you quit writing books?  No, absolutely not!

For those of you who want to succeed at self-publishing, use also some traditional marketing methods, create a Business Plan and a Budget, including anywhere from 5-10% for your overall book marketing, including website, paying for IT help, designer, or Google ads.
Traditional publishing uses multiple ways to promote. Self-published authors attempt to market their books to the entire world via Amazon, social media, and their website it seems.  Publishers select books in order to stay in business, and also to determine what the publishing house’s identity is.  Here’s how you can copy traditional ways to market – adjusted to self-publishing.  One step at a time, but continually every day – split in small tasks.
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1. Start Early
Market Research – the very first step to do!  An editor will need to make a case that the book fills a market need. And to do that, the publishing house will look carefully at what’s out there. Has the competition a recent publication in this sub-genre? Does it have similar scope? Is it widely available?

Authors, and especially self-publishing authors need to study their competition carefully too:  Read their books, study book covers, pricing, reviews, and the marketing of competing books. The most powerful and essential steps you can take toward promoting your book begins long before the actual writing of the book. At least two years before the book is published, start building a network of supporters and reviewers.
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2. Print!
Traditional publishers concentrate on print books, which still make up for about 60% of the book market, depending if you look at book sales numbers or revenue per book.  Audio Books: The audio-book market is certainly growing, and Trade Publishers are not only investing in digital (even so it took them a very long time) books, but also in audio-books.

E-book authors might be happy with their sales on Amazon, Apple, Kobo or Barnes & Noble. You might have even turned it into an audio book. But the questions for a “real” book, paper back or hard-cover copy from conservative friends or elderly family members are nagging… And wouldn’t it be nice to walk into a Chapters or Baker & Taylor or one of these rare independent book shops and see your book in the shelf?  You will not earn a fortune, not even a living, but for a couple of months it is a nice pocket change. Only months… yes, because longer than this, barely any book will stay in the book store, unless it really is a bestseller and gets re-printed. If you go the indie route and choose for example the POD services and worldwide distribution through Lightning Source, (provided you have at least 3 books to be considered a small publisher) your book is printed on demand and will never get discarded (good: no-return-policy in POD worldwide distribution). See this article How to Distribute Your Book Worldwide.
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3. Book Sales at many outlets
Imagine you could buy all books from Penguin only in one book chain… Publishers distribute their books to as many outlets as possible, to brick-and-mortar stores, independent book sellers, mass markets, online book sellers, even via Affiliate programs.

Authors: Sell your books, e-books and audio-books not only through Amazon, but as well on Barnes&Noble, Apple and Kobo websites, to have your “eggs in more than one basket”. And don’t forget the potentially huge potential market for hardcover books, selling them to libraries all over the country!  However, there are way more online retailers for e-books and books than just Apple , Sony, Diesel, Kobo or Barnes & Noble.  Sign up with a book distributor / fulfillment company for your print-version of the book. Distributors mostly require just three books to be listed as a publishing business, and if authors have not written three books yet, they can band together with other authors to reach this minimum.  Traditional publishers and the books of their authors can be found on Bowker’s global database of books.  How to get into “Books in Print”, a worldwide database and to register your book for FREE! with Bowker is the topic of another blog posts.

Books available for future publishers:  Aaron Shepard has written two books about the topic of book distribution: POD for Profit and Aiming at Amazon, both contain very detailed information for small publishers. Another great source is Dan Poynter’s Self-Publishing Manual, a classic publishing guide-book.
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4. Sell books to Libraries
All traditional publishers sell their books to libraries.

According to statistics from the American Library Association and the Book Industry Study Group, libraries yearly purchase books for nearly $2 billion. But not only books, also audio-books and other forms of publications. Around 95% from major publishers.  Imagine, you sold your $15 book at a 50% discount to only 10% of these libraries, you will earn more than $75,000. But how can you tap into the lucrative library market?  It is explained in detail, including valuable links of wholesale companies who sell to libraries, on SavvyBookWriters here and here.
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5. Book Shows & Fairs
Representation at the applicable trade shows includes bookseller trade shows like the Bookseller Expo America (BEA) or one of the regional bookseller shows, like the New England Booksellers Association, Book Shows for the Library Association (ALA) and certainly the world’s most important, the Frankfurt Book Fair in Germany every October.

Which Book Fairs or other Literary Events will you attend in the coming months to present your work?  How to organize your participation and how to attract visitors is explained in detail in this blog post, pointing out the do’s and don’ts at book fairs.

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6. Book Signings
An author tour can take various forms. Two weeks of travel, flights from city to city, an author appearance every day, twice a day if possible.  Publishers often make their choice on the basis of three factors:  if the book can sell in quantity in bookstores; if the book can be reviewed in newspapers, not simply journals;  and if the author is presentable.

How you can organize your own book signing is explained in detail, even with a time-table, here on this blog post at SavvyBookWriters.
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7. Book Clubs
Traditional Book Publishers sometimes sponsor book clubs, or invite them to partizipate in a contest, such as the one offered by Random House of Canada “Book Clubs are Beautiful”.  Members suggests four or five books that they must have read and then the voting and lobbying begins until they’ve got their list. member suggests four or five books that they must have read and then the voting and lobbying begins until they’ve got their list.

Authors on the book clubs list have attended a meeting or contacted them by phone or email. Writers can find easily contact addresses of book clubs via Google. Offer them a free copy of your book, just as big publishers do. Don’t overlook virtual book clubs at Goodreads, Wattpad, Bibliophile etc.
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8. Writing Contests
Many published authors compete in writing contests, and publishing houses sometimes organize contests.

How to Get More Readers from an Award:  Publicity around a book award will boost your book sales. Contests are a great way to hone your craft and show the world how much better you are than other writers. Winning a book award for your self-published fiction or nonfiction book is a great way to gain recognition and approval. You will not only see an increase in your book sales – if you market it well – you also can add the award sticker to your cover and mention the achievement on your back cover, in your books’ description, and in all your marketing and promotions – online or offline. 25 Writing Competitions You Should Enter
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9. Content Writing for magazines & newspapers
World-famous bestseller writers from big publishing houses, such as Ernest Hemingway, Margaret Atwood, Tom Chiarella, Gloria Steinem and Stephen King did it: Writing occasionally short stories and magazine articles – before blogs became fashionable.

Your book has been launched months ago or even last year. NOW readers need to see something NEW from you. It doesn’t need to be a whole new book:
The three main assets you have already
– your writing skills
– the content you already penned
– the research you have done for your book(s) can be used to write at least 20 – 30 articles or blog posts – and if regularly posted on Google+ it is raising your Search Engine Ranking on Google tremendously.

More benefits of writing content:
– it is a subtle way to promote your book
– you receive valuable back links to your website or blog
– you will have lots of possibilities to post on Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Facebook.
– include links to your articles in email newsletter (that you hopefully send out regularly to your readers)

Post these articles on your blog or contribute guest blogs to other sites that are focused on the same topics as your book.
Content is used to draw in your ideal readers / reviewers, it will link to your book sales page or your website and it helps a lot to build a platform. Last but not least it gives you a lot of material to post and to tweet. The result: you will increase your exposure, show your writing skills, grow a loyal following and attract reviewers – in one sentence: you will achieve success with your writing – and in many cases, even get paid for it.
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10. Press Kits on your website
Bestseller authors at traditional publisher have the support of the publisher’s in-house (or out-sourced) publicity department. How much publicity support depends on many factors, but there are the basic elements that a publicity department will likely provide:  Book Press Materials.  Near publication date, the book’s publicist will email the electronic version of the press kits to a large number of applicable editors and producers to garner interest in the book. Book Media Follow-Up is the next step. The book publicist will follow up with any media outlet that responds to the mailings or e-mailings, will mail additional copies of the finished book, and will make additional calls or emails to other outlets to remind them the book is in their in-box.

To get the word out about the upcoming book launch, to receive positive articles in newspapers., magazine, book blogs, or to get interviews, writers should professionally deal with anyone who could tout their book – not only national press or TV.  Don’t make these common errors:  Not having a press page on your website for example.  Unfortunately most writers are not aware that journalists, bloggers or radio hosts need a bit more information than what they see on your Amazon page. And they won’t just copy and paste your “about the author” or the description of your book on the sales page. Check out Stephen Kings website, see how he organized his page for the media: http://www.stephenking.com/press.php where journalists can download high-resolution press photos.

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11. Book Reviews in magazines and newspapers
Did you ever wonder why brand new books had already reviews?  New author-publishers can learn a lot in book stores:  Check out how professionally published books look like: Many of these trade books have either on their back cover (paperback) or on their binding flap (hard cover) several snippets of the book reviews, as well as endorsements from bestselling writers or other professionals, that were already written before the book was printed.
Traditional publishers may budget anywhere from fifty to several hundred “free and review” copies. Advance Review Copies (ARC’s) are what they send out half a year before book launch date.

How these pre-editions Galleys) are produced and to whom they should be sent is explained in How to Get Reviews Before Your Books Launch.  Prepare your book review query well in advance and learn what to avoid when pitching to reviewers.  Valuable tips can be found at Prestigious Reviews and How to Get Them.
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12. Radio Interviews
Bestseller authors often appear as guest at TV or radio stations. Publicists for major publishing houses have longstanding contacts to their editors and arrange interviews for bestseller authors.

Authors can go the same route, starting with internet radio stations, such as this one: The Book Report.  Don’t forget when you plan the marketing of your public events, to announce it for free on Google+ and on Goodreads, use their free Event pages.

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13. Speaking Engagements
Keynote Speakers and Motivational Speakers get handsomely paid, often $10.000 to 15,000 for a two-hour speech!  Most celebritiy authors, found as speakers, are writing Non-Fiction books.

Speaker agencies, or organizers of Writers Conferences are the best approach if you want to earn more with speaking engagements than with your book.  If you are really serious about publicly speaking, join first Toastmasters.com and then the Certified Speaking Professional Association where you can get certification in public speaking.

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14. Foreign Rights
Basic subsidiary rights that publishers contract with their authors include translation into foreign languages, foreign rights, and reprint of selections by other publishers, just to name a few. An American publisher may also license a book to a British house for separate English-language publication in the UK and the Commonwealth

Foreign Rights  as well as translations into other languages can be a great way to leverage the value of your manuscript – but don’t expect big numbers right away. Additionally, it will add an international, professional image to you and your books. Revenue will be an advance and approximately 6 – 10% royalty of the retail price, minus percentage for the agent. Try to get the highest advance possible. It’s also a long-term project as it takes around 18 months until the book is translated and finally available online and in bookstores – and another half year for royalties to arrive.
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15. Bookstore Placement
Placement in bookstores, both chain and local (especially bookstores that report numbers to the Bestsellers List)  William Germano explains in his book:
Trade publishers’ marketing departments issue all kinds of catalogues to promote books—ones you see and ones you won’t unless you’re a librarian or a bookseller. The trade catalogue is a publisher’s principal tool for making sales to bookstores.  Publishers with two trade catalogues bring out one per publishing season. The fall season usually begins in September and continues through the winter. The spring season begins in February or March, and continues through the summer. Books to be announced in a catalogue must be securely in place at the publishing house up to a year ahead.

For those of you who want to succeed at self-publishing, use also some traditional marketing methods, create a Business Plan and a Budget, including anywhere from 5-10% for your overall book marketing including your website, paying for IT help, designer, or ads.

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16. Placement of books in big box stores
Wandering into a Walmart or Shoppers Drugmart outlet, you will most likely find close to the entrance / cashier desk the shelves of magazines and books, often from Bestseller authors. Big publishing houses sell tons of books to these big box stores – at steep discounts I must add.

If your books are selling like hot cakes, consider selling in bulk too.  Book wholesalers or websites such as ChainStoreGuide.com and TheSalesmansGuide.com, provide contact information for hundreds of buyers. You could also visit the websites of your most coveted outlets. Target even maintains a “vendor hotline” to answer questions by phone. However, be aware that having at least a dozen books is the minimum before you approach buyers at big box stores. They will not order single titles. If you have a book that should go into a specific department, for instance Sporting Goods, Electronics, Childrens, etc. contact your local store manager and ask who the buyer is for that specific department.

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17. Book Sales Page
Many big publishers and major online retailers sell from their own website print and digital books – and so can you!  How?

Get all the information you need to start selling your books from our former article:  How to Sell Your Books From Your Own Website.
Make at least 30% more on your books. Get your revenue immediately and get to know your readers, a very important point for your future marketing and to keep in contact with your customers.
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Conclusion:
This is just a small selection of the many book marketing activities that authors can copy from major publishers – beside Social Media networking.  “Just Because You Wrote a Book, Readers Won’t Line Up To Buy It!”  Yet, authors who take their publishing endaveor seriously and work as hard on their publishing business as they do on their writing, will always succeed. Read this article regarding the “Book Sales Plateau”.
Find many more detailed tips and links to all aspects of author-publishing and book marketing at SavvyBookWriters, especially how you can act like a professional publisher and take your books to the next level.  Remember that you don’t have to do all of this at once!

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If you would like to get more support in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites – or to learn how you can make yourself a name as an author through content writing: We offer all this and more for only $179 for three months – or less than $2 per day! Learn more about this customized Online Seminar / Consulting for writers: http://www.111Publishing.com/Seminars

Please check out all previous posts of this blog (there are more than 1,100 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and StumpleUpon.
Thanks a lot for following:

@111publishing

http://www.111publishing.com

http://www.e-Book-PR.com/

http://www.international-ebooks.com/

http://bit.ly/VmtVAS 111Publishing @ Google+

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How to Deal With Negative Book Reviews?

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Negative-Book-Reviews

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It happens to EVERY writer and it hurts you to see someone talk like that about your baby, err novel…  At first, you just sit there, stunned. Unable to believe anyone would take such offense. Schock. Anger… Don’t panic. Negative book reviews, especially those that are potentially malicious, are near the top list of nightmare scenarios for every writer. You have been putting your heart and soul into pursuing your passion. So it is understandable when you would like to act first in the face of negativity and have regrets later. Please don’t!  Hold your tongue.

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It makes no difference if you won the Pulitzer Price, or if you teach English in high school classes, or how many books you have sold. Check it out, many negative reviews show up on Bestseller books pages online too! In most cases this reviewer would never tell you the same directly in person. But the anonymity of the internet makes for a different mindset.  Sometimes – or often – the review has nothing to do with the actual book:

  • The reviewer expected a different content
  • The reviewer regrets the purchase
  • The reviewer thinks there is too much violence or sex in the content
  • The reviewer could have a bad day
  • The reviewer could even be a competitor
  • The reviewer is jealous of your success
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How to Deal with Bad Reviews?
It is difficult to be thick-skinned when it comes to someone reading your work. Writers tend to be quite emotional people, that’s what makes them good at what they do, but it also means that they are likely to take a bad review to heart.  Before you plan a strategy for addressing criticism, you need to determine if the review is true. Investigate before taking action. The best way to deal with bad reviews is to ignore them.  If they really hurt, talk with your writer colleagues or friends about it. They can go to your books page and choose the “fair” reviews, and click on: Helpful. This way the helpful reviews climb up to the top and the negative review is not as visible anymore.  Many readers don’t even know how to write a review.  Try to get as many professional reviews as possible, such as Midwest Reviews, Armchair Reviews, ForeWord Reviews, Kirkus Reviews etc. They are trained and know how to write a fair review. Any review, good or bad, is better than no review. Readers who like the genre you write in will give you a better quality review, whether it’s a good review or a so-so review.

Never have any sort of contact with a reviewer. There’s no point in doing so. Everyone has an opinion, and all opinions are valid to the person who has them.
As Stephen King famously wrote: “You can’t please all of the readers all of the time; you can’t please even some of the readers all of the time, but you really ought to try to please at least some of the readers some of the time.”

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Funny, Negative Reviews

Bestseller author Rayne Hall blogged about negative, but funny reviews she received, some are really hilarious. Read her article, sampling some of the stupidities for her highly popular novel Storm Dancer (dark epic fantasy novel).  “This book is too long. I had to spend many hours reading it. I’m busy and have other things to do.”  “The character of Queen Matilda is not believable”. There’s no Queen Matilda in the book.

Digital Book World listed snippets from Bestseller reviews:

“It was one of the most boring and shallow books that I have ever read.” —review of the American classic The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

“Not nearly enough consistency and far to [sic] little plot.”—review of Harry Potter And the Half Blood Prince by J. K. Rowling

“If I were you, I’d peruse it briefly at your neighborhood library before putting hard-earned money out.” —review of children’s classic A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L’Engle

“I find myself saying to myself as I read it ‘bla bla bla’ as that is what the author seems to be saying.” —review of National Book Award Winner Shadow Country by Peter Matthiessen

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If the Review is Factually Incorrect:
If a statement made is untrue (not just an opinion you disagree with), you have the right to ask for the comment to be removed or retracted. You would have to provide conclusive supporting evidence which shows the comment is factually incorrect. If you can’t provide proof, the sad truth is you won’t get anywhere asking for removal.

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You’ve done your best; you can’t change the book, other than a misspelled word or comma in an e-book. Life is too short to worry about what anyone thinks of your work. You shouldn’t be reading your reviews at all. And here are the good news: Consumers are smart enough to sniff out and ignore one odd-ball negative review in a sea of positive ones. Hopefully you worked hard on getting lots of reviews, so that few bad ones diminish in a sea of brilliant reviews. Read a list of bestseller authors that got hundreds of 1-star reviews. And not only bestseller reviews. Almost all books have a huge variety of reviews, from 5-star to 1-star reviews.  Hope that helps. What Else Can You Do to Increase Your Books’ Success is described in this blog post.
What other advice do you have for handling negative book reviews? Let us know in the comments below.

More About How to Get Professional Reviews
http://savvybookwriters.wordpress.com/2014/04/02/prestigious-reviews-and-how-to-get-them/

Huffington Post Collection of Articles Regarding Bad Reviews
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/news/bad-book-reviews/.

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If you would like to get more support in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites – or to learn how you can make yourself a name as an author through content writing: We offer all this and more for only $179 for three months – or less than $2 per day! Learn more about this customized Online Seminar / Consulting for writers: http://www.111Publishing.com/Seminars

Please check out all previous posts of this blog (there are more than 1,100 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and StumpleUpon.
Thanks a lot for following:

@111publishing

http://www.111publishing.com

http://www.e-Book-PR.com/

http://www.international-ebooks.com/

http://bit.ly/VmtVAS 111Publishing @ Google+

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Posted by on August 13, 2014 in Book Reviews

 

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Write to Your Passion – Like Tennessee Williams

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What is Passion?
A great example of a writer who was successful because he wrote with passion and authenticity is Tennessee Williams. It is said that his play, The Glass Menagerie, is somewhat autobiographical. For those familiar with this play, it’s obvious that the playwright had strong feelings about his characters and the society in which they lived. Successful writers will follow Tennessee Williams’ example of identifying what they care about and writing on those subjects. It’s also important to show heartfelt emotion without going into unnecessary detail.

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What is heartfelt emotion, or passion?
A Wikipedia article explains that passion is an intense emotion, such as; enthusiasm, desire, or a positive affinity or love towards a subject. Passion also has a dark side. It can be linked to intense negative emotion, such as hate.
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Why is it Important That Our Writing be Passionate?
We need to write about that which we have strong emotions, positive or negative. Simply put, we need to write about what we care about. Why is this important? Writing is like acting. People can tell if you’re emotionally connected. The most respected actors are the actors who are not “acting” a certain role; they are “being” a certain role. For example, if we see someone like Meryl Streep in a movie, we don’t think that she’s portraying the character in a skilled manner. Instead, we feel that she has actually become the character. She is not divisible from the character. In the same way, writers want their material to flow smoothly. Writers cannot write material that flows smoothly unless they care about the subject of their writing.

  • Suzanne Fetting, Confidence Coach, defines passion as energy in her blog. She says that passion fuels the fires of inspiration and that it motivates us. It’s hard to write about that which doesn’t engage us emotionally. How Do We Find Our Passion.
  • Mary DeMuth, guest blogger on Michael Hyatt’s blog, says that one of the best ways to find our passion is to find where need and joy collide. A good example of this would be a job that contributes to society in a positive manner while it utilizes our unique talents. Another way that she suggests that we find our passion is to ask our friends to identify what is our main personality characteristic. For instance, our friends may define us as “artsy”, “intelligent”, “athletic”, and so on.

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How Do We Balance Our Passion in Our Writing?
It’s important not to be too emotional in our writing. When I was using some of my own life experiences while writing my first book, I spent a lot of time editing them because I was too emotional about those experiences. I edited certain passages fifteen times, and I still found that too much strong emotion came out in my words. In the end, I believe that I made my point clear with less emotion and fewer words. Readers don’t need a lot of details to understand a particular emotion that is being portrayed. In fact, too many details may be distracting. So, we want to keep details to a minimum.
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Traci Lawrence writes about her passion: communication, relationships, the value of individuals and rising above verbal bullying, or trash talk. She lives in the Northern Virginia area of the United States and teaches English, among other subjects. Please find more on her blog, and read her book: Accept No Trash Talk.

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Posted by on August 6, 2014 in Guest Blogs, Writing

 

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The Nirmala Effect by Fiza Pathan

ebooksinternational:

Powerful, Passionate Fiction – and Why Fiza Pathan Wrote it…

Nirmala: The Mud Blossom graphically depicts the travails, discrimination, and abuse faced by female children in India from the cradle to the grave. Not an easy read I thought before starting the book. Despite it is a fictional story, it is a clear indictment of India and the inhuman way women and girls are still being treated today. However the story immediately drew my attention and I finished this gripping, fascinating novel in one reading session over the weekend.
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The Reason for Writing this Story?
I was wondering how Fiza Pathan, a very well educated, and well-off writer, could tell the story of Nirmala the Mud Blossom. After all I knew her for her great non-fiction work CLASSICS: Why We Should Encourage Children To Read Them.  And now a novel that takes place in the slums of Mumbai?
“Rejected and thrown into the dustbin when she was just two days old, the child was rescued and returned to her family by the NGOs. All because this little girl had the misfortune to be born as a female in Mumbai, India …
Nirmala is ill-treated by her mother, always subject to violence at her hands. She is allowed to continue her studies only because she can then coach her younger brothers, as the parents are illiterate. Each beating is accepted with forbearance, as she loves to go to school to get books to read from her library.
Nirmala is forced to stop her studies after the twelfth grade so her parents can save enough money to send the boys to college. She is then married off, but while her married life begins smoothly, it is only the beginning of her next phase of hell. After giving birth to her first child, Nirmala is subjected to harassment, beatings, and forced into doing things contrary to her beliefs and dreams. Her life is shattered.
What will happen to this little mud blossom? Will she fight back or succumb? How can she rid herself of harassment and rise above the stigma she endures?”
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Fiza Pathan Explains in Her Own Words Why She Had to Write Nirmala: The Mud Blossom

Originally posted on insaneowl:

The Nirmala Effect

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000030_00032]

My first novel which has just been released titled ‘Nirmala: The Mud Blossom’ was an accident. I had no intention of writing this story, let alone framing and formatting it into a novella. Yet when I pass the many filthy slums of Mumbai surrounding sky rise buildings and towers…I think to myself that maybe my character Nirmala and I both were accidents. Nirmala, was tossed into a dustbin because she was a girl…I was sent home to my mother’s family because I was a girl. Nirmala and I are two really different people and I can’t understand how I managed to write about her in the first place.

Do I empathize with Nirmala? Maybe…Do I sympathize with Nirmala? Maybe…but one thing is for sure. Nirmala got me thinking about reality, the reality that girls in India are not wanted…Nirmala and I both were not wanted.

Many people…

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Posted by on August 6, 2014 in Author/Writer, Writing

 

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