Tag Archives: authors

Exposing your work, on #LisaBurtonRadio

Lisa Burton

Hi, all, and welcome to another edition of Lisa Burton Radio. This week is a special edition, because it’s geared to all you authors out there. It might give some good ideas to bloggers who want to host guests too.

Today, I’ve collected a group of power bloggers who host authors on their sites. This gives an author a way to reach a larger audience than they might if they were simply posting about date-night or something. This means when you have a new book to promote, or maybe to give an older title a secondary push.

We’re going to start by addressing the three-hundred-pound gorilla in the room, and I mean that literally. Chris The Storyreading Ape, hosts one of the largest author blogs around. “Did you get my fruit basket, Chris?”

“Yes I did thanks, Lisa – very thoughtful of you to use edible leaves to weave the basket, so I didn’t miss out on my veggies, which help keep me at my physical peak.”

“So Chris, do you have a regular scheduled slot for authors, or do you take them piecemeal? While you’re at it, give our listeners a bit about what it takes to get into the Author’s Hall of Fame, and what benefit that brings.

“I have a prime post slot at 01:00 am, London, UK time, every day, which I use to give priority to author articles, except Mondays (reserved for my weekly Monday Funnies).

“Regards how to get articles onto my blog, see the following link for authors seeking to get into my Authors Hall of Fame: https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/contact-me/if-you-are-not-already-in-my-authors-hall-of-fame/

“For authors already in my HoF, but would like to submit further articles, or run book promos, use this link: https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/contact-me/if-you-are-already-in-my-authors-hall-of-fame/

“The main benefit is getting yourself, as a person, not just an author, in front of my blog followers, but also in front of my other media followers as well, on Twitter, two Facebook Pages, Tumblr blog, LinkedIn, etc, including a my Flipboard Authors Hall of Fame Magazine.

“Some of my other blogger/author friends often reblog author articles, which spreads your fame even further.

“The big plus is, it’s free publicity.”

“That’s a great point, Chris. These promos are all free. My own author operates on a shoestring, and I know others do too. With all the reblogs, social media sharing, and more, you could put your work in front of a hundred-thousand potential readers. Then it’s up to you to sell yourself.

“My next guest is Colleen Chesebro. She is an author and poet herself, and hosts authors on her blog. She also offers up a weekly book review. Colleen, you have a neat way of doing these interviews with your list of questions. Tell us about that, please.”

“Hi, Lisa. I thought long and hard about what I could do to help to promote other authors. Then, it occurred to me how hard it’s been for me to learn the art of writing and publishing. So, I thought the idea of using questions and answers would be the perfect way to learn from other author’s experiences.

“I made a huge list because everyone is different in their style of writing. Also, I didn’t want everyone to choose the same questions. I even added some unusual questions, like: “As a writer, what would you choose as your mascot/avatar/spirit animal?” I was surprised at how many authors have included this question in their interviews.

“The response has been overwhelming, partly because the author has the opportunity to choose what they want to write about. It’s free promotion to share their books, their writing style, and for my readers to learn a few intimate details of the lives of people they know only through blogging and writing.”

“Sounds great! How do authors sign up?”

“The authors can choose from my massive list of questions and by following the instructions HERE. If you’re interested in booking an interview, make sure to read the instructions carefully. My contact information is found in the link.

Conversations with Colleen is a weekly feature held each Wednesday on colleenchesebro.com. I also share these posts on social media. Currently, I’m scheduled through January 2019 and have interview slots available starting in February 2019. If you have a blog, I’m happy to interview you!”

“I’d better have a word with Craig. If he’s going to have a January book release he needs to start contacting you guys.

“All that social media sharing brings me to my next point. Authors tend to get out of the visit what they put in to the visit. I have some who never even show up and comment on the post. I have others who share it everywhere, and even a few that reblog it sporadically for months. I look at the stats, and I know which posts perform better.

“My next guest is Sally Cronin, and she offers several options, including the Cafe and Bookstore. She offers kind of a unique double hit for her guests, fill us all in Sally.”

“Thanks for inviting me along to join these stars of our blogging community Lisa, and I include you very much in that, as your interviews with characters of author’s books, is a creative way to showcase others. We do need to think outside the box when promoting ourselves and others, and the more zany the better. For example, as well as Colleen Chesebro’s Conversations she also entices us in with a Poetry Challenge which is a great way to promote your blog and books. Annette Rochelle Aben who is one of your hosts has a radio podcast – Where the Magic Happens, that both your author and myself have been guests on. The Story Reading Ape was ahead of the game with his Hall of Fame and we consider him the king of this particular jungle.

“You make an excellent point about guests and their level of participation. I often get requests from authors to feature them in the Café and Bookstore, and like you, I spend quite a bit of time putting the post together and promoting it across social media. I do clearly request that the author share across their own networks and also respond individually to those who have taken the time to respond but on a few occasions there is no interaction at all. More than anything the author is not getting the best out of the promotion and is certainly not leaving a good impression with potential readers.”

“Where did you get the idea of the Café and Bookstore which is your primary author promotion and tell us about how you extend the life of the posts?”

“After about two years of blogging, and promoting authors I began to lose track of authors I had showcased, their books and reviews. I put together an alphabetical list of writers and added the Amazon link to buy books, the author’s website, up to seven covers and the most recent review for one of their books. I now have a platform where I can add new authors, keep track of new releases and reviews. In addition I can share the whole bookstore on social media on a regular basis to encourage readers to browse. You can find out how to join the other 150 + authors on the shelves of the bookstore and on the Café and Bookstore page.

“I re-share all posts in my weekly round up on Sundays and this includes the author promotions with a cover and link to their promotion. The round up is one of the busiest posts of the week, and because I post a great deal, many readers pop in on Sunday and visit the posts that they missed. There are thousands of posts published each week, just in the circles we all move within, and it is easy to miss several. I recommend that if anyone posts more than a few times a week that they think about a round up post.”

“Is there anything else you can recommend to authors that will help them promote their work?”

“Despite all the advice out there on book marketing, and about the dangers of over self-promotion, there are still people who bombard us with posts and comments about their own work to the exclusion of others. It simply does not work. You have to remember that the majority of our followers are writers and this means that they are also usually avid readers. They quickly lose interest if the only posts and comments you make are about your books. They won’t buy them, read them or promote them. If you want to build yourself a platform to promote your work, share it with the work of others and see how it flourishes.”

“That’s a good point too, thanks Sally. You can’t post exclusively about your own book. People will turn a deaf ear, and eventually you’ll lose all the followers you worked so hard to gain.

“My next guest offers something very different. Her name is Annette Rochelle Aben, and she offers a podcast. Honestly, Craig just did one of these interviews and said it was a piece of cake. He was worried about saying just the right thing, but it was more like talking with an old friend.

“Annette, tell our listeners how they can take advantage of your podcast and spread the word even further.”

“Reach out, let me know you would like to do a podcast with me and we will send your message out to a world-wide audience.”

“I check Craig’s stats, and I can see how the interviews perform. Do you ever do anything like that?”

“Our tech people give us statistic updates on a monthly basis. Each month those stats increase and for the first ten months of 2018, we had over 5 million hits on the magazine site. This means, over 5 million opportunities for people to hear what you have to say.”

“And how can our listeners contact you?”

“They can contact me through my website, or through the magazine.”

“My next guest is Sue Vincent, whose blog is called the Daily Echo. Sue does something pretty cool in that she also hosts artists and photographers. What this means to an author is her crowd might not be the same crowd you get in other places. Promotion is all about reaching many people, so this can work to your advantage. Welcome, Sue.”

“Hi Lisa, I have to say that this get together is a great idea, although the Small Dog seems to feel that if Apes get fruit baskets, she should have a dog basket. Even the dog runs an open invitation through December for guests to take part in Ani’s Advent calendar. Maybe you could ask Craig if his canine friends would care to come over? The Ape has already agreed to take part.

“I agree with the rest of the party… as a writer, you want to be read, but it’s no good constantly shouting ‘buy my book’…you need to let readers get to know you as a person. Share your passion.  My own blog is eclectic, with most book-related posts on a separate author site. And all the promotion listed here is free and has a potential reach of hundreds of thousands worldwide. While I am happy to host book launches and blog tours, I do keep a daily spot for guest posts, open to writers, artists, musicians and photographers… and bloggers are writers too. Then there is the whole ‘target audience’ thing, and for that I host Living Lore posts with a theme of folklore, myth and legend, and the Elusive Realities spot for true stories of strange personal experiences. Many people have a story to share…and I like sharing.

“I feel I should mention writing challenges too. Colleen runs a weekly poetry challenge, I run a photo prompt every Thursday. We link to every entry, giving extra exposure to writers, I share many of the entries on my blog, and have an open invitation to regulars to come and introduce themselves as my guest. And with all this possible free promo, I seldom have a guest every day! It is easy enough, all I need is a post, links and pics and I’ll do the rest. And neither the Small Dog nor I bite 😉 I am easy to contact through the blog, or by email at findme@scvincent.com.”

“That is a ton of promotional opportunity, Sue. Thanks to you, and all my guests today for participating.

“Looks like it falls to me to wrap it all up. Lisa Burton Radio is here to interview your fictional characters. I rarely interview actual people or – you know, apes. Getting your character on the show is as easy as sending an email to coldhand.boyack@gmail.com.

“Think about all the ways you can expose your work, and none of it costs a dime. They are all unique, and would make a nice blog tour if you plan ahead. My own author has done exactly that several times.

“Since we’re supporting blog hosts today, I’m asking the authors out there to share this post far and wide. Use those sharing buttons, reblog the post. I’ll be adding it to Flipboard, Mix, and several others along with the big social media sites. You might even want to bookmark it for future reference.

“For Lisa Burton Radio, I’m Lisa Burton. Now I’m heading to Amazon to find a doggie basket.”

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Where have all the bloggers gone?

This post is going to ramble here and there. You’ve been warned.

A few years ago, WordPress became the simple way for small businesses to creat a web presence. I get it, they have templates, you can make multiple pages and widgets will help too.

I’m still gathering followers, but they are all small businesses now. I’ve gotten plumbers, clock makers, and lots of travel companies. Some of these folks might be interesting, and they might honestly be interested in my fiction. However, I think they are simply trying to gather followers using the Twitter method. How this helps an Etsy store or travel agency is beyond me.

Where are all the next generation authors? I used to glean a couple of those per week. I’m not really into poetry, but I used to get a few of those per week too. It’s much more likely that I would have something in common with those folks. It could be fiction, or even the self promotion blues, but something.

Is anyone else seeing this happen on your sites?

I also have some who drop off the face of the Earth every year. We’re good friends, everything is cool, and they just disappear. There has been a bit of an increase in that this year. Two of my friends crawled out of the woodwork this week after long absences. Maybe they’ll stay, maybe they won’t, but I wish them all well either way.

In other news, I skipped Lisa Burton Radio this week. Last week was on purpose because of the holidays. I have a half dozen interviews circulating in cyberspace right now, but nobody delivered in time. Oddly enough, I heard from two of them this evening. I’m pretty sure there will be something up next week.

If you are interested in taking part in Lisa Burton Radio, she is about due for more guests. To make this work, there are usually a half dozen in process at any time. Sometimes it just doesn’t work out, like today.

Lisa’s show remains pretty popular, so if you have a pending release or a promotion in the works you might consider making this one of your stops. They usually take a couple of weeks, but can be done in a weekend. Other folks are long term planners and take months.

I also attract a lot of beauty bloggers. This has to be because of Lisa. Honestly, some of them give me ideas for the next piece of Lisa artwork.

Just look at that face. Don’t you want your character on her show?

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Back-To-School Book & Blog Block Party

Today it’s my turn at the Rave Reviews Book Club’s big party. The party runs all through the month of September, and it features some cool prizes. One of the first things I’m supposed to post is whatever today’s prize is. I’ll do that, but first I want to tell you about this great club.

RRBC is made up of authors and readers. We support each other by helping spread the word about each other’s books. I’ve been the beneficiary of this support on several occasions. I was a Push Tuesday recipient. I was promoting Panama at the time, and my Twitter feed blew up before I even got out of bed. I entered a little friendly competition regarding blogging about the club and won that about six months later. My prize was a week long blog tour all set up by folks who know what they are doing. Last week I was selected as Member of the Week. It was good timing with my book release, and I doubt there’s anyone left on social media who hasn’t seen my cool cover.

I’m only giving away one prize today, but I think it’s a good one. I’ve already pre-paid for a one year membership to the Rave Reviews Book Club. I’d like to encourage folks to join, and this is my attempt. If you’re already a member, I’ll extend the winner’s membership for another year. You can check out the club at this link: RRBC. The way to enter is to leave a comment here today. Winners will be posted here tomorrow. I already won a free book, and they notified me by email too.

I’m supposed to tell readers about my wares today. I’ll just say that I write speculative fiction and leave it at that. There’s more info in my sidebar and on the ‘about me’ page. I want to have some fun at this party too. So here we go:

***

Dawn filtered through the trees just east of the writing cabin. I gathered up an armful of stuff from the refrigerator and shoved it into a cooler before dragging it into the paranormal office. Nothing too scary, a few shrunken heads and one old hand of glory.

I made sure the Will O’ the Wisp was safe in its bell jar before yelling up the stairs. “Lisa*, can you throw the Raven of Doubt in here too before we lock the door? I don’t want any of our visitors to walk away with a head full of doubts.”

Lisa and Doubt

“No problem, boss. Then I’ll set up that cask of Dwarven lager for your guests.”

“Oh my God, what are you wearing?”

“You said it was a party.”

“That’s more red carpet than what I had in mind.”

“Fine. I’ll change then. Maybe you prefer overalls and my straw hat.”

“There’s no time. Cars are coming up the driveway right now. Is my tie straight?”

“You look fine. Relax, the cabin’s nice this time of year. I haven’t seen a wolf since the migration last Spring. I even put all your carnivorous plants in the basement. You don’t want one belching in front of your friends.”

“Okay, you tend the bar, and try to stay out of trouble. I’ll mingle and have some fun today.”

“You need it. You’ve been wound up like an eight day clock.”

“What did you say?”

“I said, don’t forget to tell everyone about the free paper dolls at the top of the page.”

Good idea, the ‘Look Free Stuff’ tab. Okay, remember to smile. As my spokes model, we want people to like you.”

“Everyone likes me. It’s you I’m worried about.”

*Lisa Burton is the main character in my first novel. She’s a robot, and serves as my assistant out at the writing cabin these days. She’s also the official spokes model for Entertaining Stories.

***

I hope everyone enjoys my stop on the party tour. Have a beer, look around, click some book covers. Avoid the basement.

My new book, The Experimental Notebook of C. S. Boyack is on pre-order right now from Amazon. This is a book of short stories and micro-fiction. I’m only asking 99¢ and would really appreciate a few more early sales. Amazon will deliver your books tomorrow. (That’s why I picked today as my party stop.)

In October I’m running a blog series I call Macabre Macaroni. This involves me posting a new micro-fiction every week for the month. I’m asking folks to contribute artwork to display with the stories. The theme is Macabre Macaroni. I will include all of your links when I display the art. If I only get one, I’ll display it every week. If I get too many, I may have to do a separate art post to cover them all.

Note for Jason Zandry, kids can send in stuff too. The stories will be more Goosebumps than Stephen King.

Tacky stuff is welcome here too. If you want to send me a macabre picture you made by glueing dried macaroni to a board, I’ll display it. Maybe some of you have mad photoshop skills and can create a dish of maneating macaroni, send it over. Macaroni with tentacles or medical waste would be awesome. I’d love to see what you come up with. Let’s avoid anything that might be adult themed though, please. Artists are welcome to contact me at: Coldhand (dot) Boyack (at) gmail (dot) com.

Ya’ll come back now.

Update: To bring closure to the contest. The winner of the fully paid membership in Rave Reviews Book Club is Ali Isaac. Wonderful addition to our book club.

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