5 Marketing Tips During Book Production

5 Marketing Tips During Book Production

Don’t wait for a physical book to begin marketing. Authors can complete these five things while books are in production.

Facebook Author Page:  Create an author Facebook page that includes a “Shop” feature to capture book sales.

Create Contact Lists:  Create a contact list of schools, libraries, bookstores, gift shops, reviewers, and customers for the upcoming book. Export this list into MailChimp, Constant Contact, or a contact database. Publishers have their mail lists. Authors should have a mail list too.

Create Template Emails: Create a short two paragraph “introduction template” email introducing the author, book, and purpose for book event. Create a “pricing template” email regarding speaker fees. Create a “book reviewer template” email to submit books to reviewers. Create a “author bio” email that includes: author bio, book titles, book covers, and author photo.

Calendar:  Reserve dates of availability for book marketing events. Choose weekends, holidays, or evenings to attend bookstore signings, school events, book festivals, etc. Once the calendar is in place, start booking dates!

Create Blog Posts:  Schedule blog posts about “Beyond the Book” resources: photos, research, interviews, and other content from the book. Schedule blog posts that link to the author’s Facebook page. Release posts every few days over six months to engage new and existing readers. Link all mentions of the book to the Publisher’s website. When the book is available for preorder update the link.

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Mark Wayne Adams Books & Illustrations

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Cashing in on Author Facebook Pages

Cashing in on Author Facebook Pages

“Does Facebook sell books?” No. Authors sell books being social. Social authors with products available to consumers sell books and much more through Facebook. Here are tips to setup a profitable Author Facebook Page.

  • Page Banner:  Create a Facebook banner displaying books in a creative setting.
  • Profile Photo:  Use an eye-catching author image. The best images are author photo, book cover, or logo.
  • Link Social Media:  Link Twitter, Instagram, and other social media accounts to the Facebook Page. This reduces posting time and allows tagging images.
  • Facebook Shop:  Create a Facebook Shop on author pages, linking to the author’s PayPal account. Note: Check PayPal every other day. Currently, there is no alert when an item sells.
  • Tag Products/People:  tag people, tag pages, locations, organizations,  and tag products in posts. Mobile devices limit the amount of tagging. Advanced features like product tagging are available online by “editing posts.” Once a Facebook Shop is created authors can tag previously posted images on their page.
  • Post Content:  “Book Titles!” in quotes and punctuated properly. Authors are writers and must keep posts as professional as possible.

Not all images appear correctly on multiple platforms. Test everything created on multiple devices: phones, tablets, and computers. Visit Mark Wayne Adams Books & Illustrations Facebook Page for a author page example. If this article helped, Like my Facebook Page and Share this article with fellow authors.

Managing Multiple Characters

The Family Tree Novel series is about a family of seven: five children and two parents. Each child has: a way they love, a birth order, a gender, a physical/mental limitation, and an aspiration. The conflict between these varied characters flares by his or her responses to one another.

Driew (the main character) feels unappreciated by his oldest sister, Killiope, for the deeds he does to show her love. She feels Driew’s do-gooder personality keeps him under foot. As the oldest sibling, she is responsible for getting Driew to and from school. Killiope can’t enjoy her teen life or appreciate her brother’s acts of service when responsibility supersedes fun.

Gender is an important factor in character development: Driew responds physically and Killiope verbally to confrontations. Driew attempts to fix problems that Killiope feels only need resolution.

Physical and/or mental limitations and aspirations shape a character’s response. Examples: Driew’s glasses prevent him from seeing the world below his nose; a D+ student will do poorly on tests and have a limited vocabulary compared to an A+ student; a non-swimmer will not aspire to participate in water activities like boating, rafting, or tubing in a river.

Creating a list of character traits for the main characters, is a guide for directing scene outcomes. When writing, first write the full scene. Then reference the characters’ trait list, confirming they aren’t doing any uncharacteristic behavior or making uncharacteristic choices.

Create the same list for everyone as simple as yes/no:

  • Does the character drink milk? John–Yes, Mary–No
  • Does the character have a food allergy? John–Yes, Mary–Yes
  • Does the character express love through quality time? John–Yes, Mary–Yes

Using John and Mary’s answers to the three questions above:

Everyone in the senior class is excited about the ice cream social but John. His peanut allergy prevent him from visiting Pistachio’s Ice Cream Parlor. Mary, who is lactose intolerant, boycotts the ice cream social, having a private picnic for John. Sharing their favorite foods and quality time, an unexpected love interest blossoms.

Each character’s traits and preferences direct the conflict and resolution by his or her food preferences, gender, and love.

Meet Sarah Karam Sproles, author of “Kilpatrick McMurray McFrown”

Sarah Karam Sproles is a former educator, with experience ranging from home schooling to teaching elementary through college-age students in the classroom. Sarah loves encouraging young people to ignore the naysayers and strive for their dreams. She challenges them to seek ways to improve the world around them.

Sarah was inspired to write while exchanging silly stories with students while on lunch duty at her son’s school. When she’s not producing encouraging stories, Sarah enjoys spending time with her family, singing, working with youth, traveling, and organizing everything around her. She’s been told she far outperforms the Energizer Bunny!

Sarah is a proud Okie, living in California with her husband, Alan; her son, Brady; and their incredible Shih-poo (Poodle/Shih Tzu mix), Busterooni the Flying Circus Dog! Sarah is stepmom to Marisa and Alana and has six amazing grandkids. This is Sarah’s first picture book.

Sarah’s website: www.sarahkaramsproles.com
Sarah’s Facebook Page:

kilpatrick-mcmurray-mcfrown-bookcover-3d-rgb-72dpi-www-mwa-companyKilpatrick McMurray McFrown
Written by Sarah Karam Sproles and Illustrated by Mark Wayne Adams
ISBN:  978-1-59616-037-8

Retail Price: Not Yet Released

Staff Book Picks: December

Teddy Tales 3D-book

Written by Karen Spruill and Illustrations by Mark Wayne Adams
ISBN:  978-0-98367-230-2
Paperback Retail Price: $7.99

Teddy Tales, designed as a “therapy dog in a book,” is a collection of stories to be shared with young children and their adults. This rescue puppy’s real-life adventures can assist in processing children’s developmental issues and social challenges, besides teaching elements of pet care. Discussion questions are added to each chapter to facilitate classroom or adult-to-child interaction. Counselors, educators, veterinarians, and family members will value this charming resource.

 

Floppy Book 3D-book
Frozen Floppies
Written by John Hope and Illustrations by Mark Wayne Adams
Hardbound ISBN:  978-159616-018-7
Pages: 32
Retail Price:  $14.95

The Floppies are frozen flopsicles! Fellow Floppies must flex their Floppy brains to rescue their frozen friends. But how can they, with Floppyland borders separating them? Find out how factions of Floppies band together to fight the frost and free the frozen Floppies, in this Royal Palm Literary Award-winning story of friendship.

 

Scribble Dee Sophie 3D-book

Written by Karen Spruill and Illustrations by Mark Wayne Adams
ISBN:  978-0-98367-232-6
Paperback Retail Price: $9.77

What do you do with a girl like Scribble-Dee Sophie? With words and pictures, Scribble-Dee Sophie tells the story of a little artist who seems born with a crayon in her hand. Early readers and parents can follow her fun and mischief from ages 1 to 12. Scribble Stages sidebars gives adult readers developmental material to better understand their own budding artists. Age-appropriate art supply suggestions are sprinkled along the way. Watch as Sophie scribbles her way through life, learning about art manners and dreams for her future.

Beta Readers for Writing Success

Below is the information you requested regarding the importance of Beta Readers:

What are beta readers and why use them?

Beta Readers are non-professional readers who read a prerelease manuscript or sample book to find and improve such items as: grammar, character suggestions, or assist in fact-checking. Beta Readers should not be used as proofreaders or editors.

Who should your beta readers be/how do you select them?

Beta Readers vary depending on genre and reading level and should be selected accordingly. The number of Beta Readers needed varies depending on the length of the manuscript. Here are examples of how they are selected based on genres:

  • Picture Book: children’s public librarian (2–3 readers), certified preschool teachers (2–3 readers), elementary school library media specialist (2–3 readers), and/or a professional illustrator.
  • Juvenile Chapter Book: children’s public librarian (2–3 readers), board certified teacher 3rd–5th grade (2–3 readers), elementary school library media specialist (2–3 readers), and genre interested readers 3rd–5th grade readers (2–3 readers).
  • Young Adult YA: YA public librarian (2–3 readers), board certified teacher 6th–12th grade (2–3 readers), school library media specialist (2–3 readers), and genre interested readers 6th–12th grade readers (2–3 readers).
  • Genre Specific Fiction: public librarian (2–3 readers), residents in the city/region of the story (2–3 readers), and genre interested readers (2–3 readers).
  • Avoid Using Relatives: Relatives as Beta Readers they are not the most objective readers.

How much time should you give your Beta Readers?

Consider the word count of your book. Manuscripts that are 30,000–45,000 words may only require two weeks to read and review. Books over 50,000 words allow  four weeks or more.

What are some ways you can get their feedback?

Be creative but focused. If the reading experience is enjoyable, then participation and feedback happen more quickly.  Here are two favorite examples:

  • Host a Party: Invite the Beta Readers to a comfortable quiet location. For the first hour allow each Beta Reader to 1 to 2 chapters and complete a questionnaire. The next hour is book discussion over pizza, pastries, coffee, etc. Take notes on the beta readers conversation.
  • Invest in ten (10) POD (Print On Demand) Sample Books: Use these to test consumer appeal and get Beta Reader feedback. Mail copies to the beta readers to comment inside the book on cover image, book summary, interior errors, and favorite sections. Use a few samples to get consumer feedback without reading the book.

What types of questions should you ask your beta readers?

Beta Readers‘ time is valuable. Asking specific questions regarding their interest level to character development is important. Not only ask for the negative parts of the book, but also items that are strong. This helps an author build on the weak sections and recognize writing strengths. These are questions to consider:

  • Would they like to receive a complimentary book upon release?
  • Would they like to provide an endorsement quote for this book?
  • Would they like to participate in future beta reads for this book series.
  • Reader Name and Reader Profession/Title: a professor of professional beta reader’s endorsement could boost sales.
  • Address, State, and Zip: is important when mailing a complimentary book or personal thank you.
  • Email Address: is important for contacting the beta reader to read future books in the series.
  • Content: ask that the beta reader please rate each area from 1–10 (10 being excellent). Also ask them to provide any suggestions or accolades regarding each section: Editorial, Design, Front Cover, Back Cover, and Spine.

While Beta Readers are reviewing the manuscript, compare similar books in the manuscript genre using these techniques:

Free Reader Comparison:  Place your book with books of similar content at the public library. Lay three books including yours on a table or face out on a book shelf. Sit far enough away to observe and not look like a stalker. Take notes. Do library patrons overlook, preview, read, or check out your book? Feel honored if your book reach the circulation desk.

Bookstore Comparison:  Visit your local book retailer. Ask for the top three books in your genre. Find a comfortable corner and critique your book. Don’t mark in the bookseller’s books, only your own. Is your writing professional (typos, misspellings, etc.)? Does your layout follow industry standards (margins, text flow, etc.)?  Do your illustrations/photos match or exceed the professionals? Place your book on a bookshelf next to the competitors. Which book is most easily read from twelve feet away? If your book is week in any area, make adjustments now!

Education Considerations:

1.  Readability Score: Use the Readability-Score.com text scoring tool to tell you how easy a piece of text is to read and if it is grade and/or reading level appropriate.

2.  Sight Words:  vocabulary words for age appropriate grade levels

3.  Historical and Scientific Facts:  topics that are specific to readers of a certain age woven within the story line

4.  Nationalities:  character diversity within stories

5.  Human Geography:  the incorporation of financial, environmental, and industrial cause and affect on the success of cultures.

Editing Books:

Fire Up Your Fiction: An Editors Guide to Writing Compelling Fiction, Jodie Renner

Captivate Your Readers: An Editors Guide to Writing Compelling Fiction, Jodie Renner

For more information about Beta Readers visit Gina Edwards’s blog and listen to the Around the Writer’s Table Radio Show Interview with Mark Wayne Adams.

Staff Book Picks: November

POSP 3D-book

Written by Irina Gonikberg Dolinskiy and Illustrations by Mark Wayne Adams
Hardbound ISBN:  978-1-59616-017-0
Pages: 32
Retail Price: $14.95

The parts of speech come magically alive as they participate in a colorful New York City Parade! Each presents and defines itself as it marches down the street and through a child’s imagination.

 

Written by Linda Smigaj and Illustrated by Mark Wayne Adams
ISBN:  978-1-59616-034-7

Paperback Retail Price: $9.99

History with a Twist Makes Learning Fun!

Welcome to the world of Linda Smigaj’s books. Educator and juvenile fiction author Linda Smigaj, aka Professor Fuddy-Duddy, captures the imagination of readers, ages 7–10, through stories of historically accurate events told from a unique perspective. Come travel through early American history with these adventurous flies.

 

Written by Crystal White and Illustrations by Mark Wayne Adams
ISBN: 978-159616-028-6
Pages: 32
Paperback Retail Price: $9.99

Franny Finds a Home! is a beautiful children’s book complete with vibrant illustrations and educational resources for both parents and teachers, not to mention an exciting and heartfelt story.

Franny is a former stray who was relieved to be saved from the streets. But her rescuer, Trishalou, simply can’t keep her. Franny encounters nice workers at the rescue shelter, but she misses her friends. Shy, and not the cutest critter in the place, will Franny ever be chosen for a forever home?

At the end of the story the author (a 20-year reading teacher) has included resources for teaching or review of text features. These activities can be used with any text.

5 FREE Mayflower Classroom Activities

Mayflower-Fly on the Wall Series-3D-book
History with a Twist Makes Learning Fun!

Welcome to the world of Linda Smigaj’s books. Educator and juvenile fiction author Linda Smigaj, aka Professor Fuddy-Duddy, captures the imagination of readers, ages 7–10, through stories of historically accurate events told from a unique perspective. Come travel through early American history with these adventurous flies.

FREE Printable Educational Resources for Mayflower:

Written by Linda Smigaj and Illustrated by Mark Wayne Adams
ISBN:  978-1-59616-034-7

Retail Price: $9.99

Visit Linda Smigaj’s websites at: www.lindasmigajbooks.com or www.flyonthewallseries.com.

Staff Book Picks: October

Written by Jane R. Wood
ISBN: 9780979230462
Paperback Retail Price: $8.99

It seems wherever they go, adventure follows the Johnson family. This time it comes while they tour the historic cities of Savannah and Charleston. In addition to learning about the challenges of the early settlers, the boldness of the greedy pirates, and the determination of feisty women who helped save the heritage of these historic cities, Joey, Bobby and Katy encounter numerous ghost stories. When 10-year-old Bobby finds himself in a dangerous situation on Pawleys Island, South Carolina, he looks to a legendary ghost for help. Young readers won’t know they’re learning history; they’ll only know they’re having fun as they follow these kids on their latest adventure.

 

Written and Illustrated by Mark Wayne Adams
Paperback Novel: ISBN:  978-1-59616-026-9
Pages:  210
Paperback Retail Price: $15.77

There are no chapters in life—only moments. The Family Tree Novel Series is written and illustrated for adventurous readers. Not only can readers explore the content by researching facts and fiction, but also learn a new Australian vocabulary within the story.

For generations, the family tree records words and sing-song that wind deep in its core. Children playing in or around the tree may accidentally sever or uproot disturbing moments hidden in their Outback.

Adopting new words and terms helps better describe your Outback and how you lived it. Family Tree Novel readers are introduced to a variety of Australian, American, and Qweepie vernacular throughout the novel series. Choose to adopt or to adapt these terms in your Outback language using the “Language of the Outback” glossary included.

 

The Childrens Horrible House 3D-book

Written by N. Jane Quackenbush
ISBN: 978-0991104567
Pages: 220
Paperback Retail Price: $11.99

Holly Spinatsch, a curious and rebellious tomboy, was forewarned by her siblings that if she didn’t make her bed, she would be taken away to The Children’s Horrible House…and indeed she was. On her search for kinship in this seemingly haunted jail like mansion, she discovers a mystery lurking and breathing, crying out for discovery. However, when she and her friends attempt to solve the mystery, they are only left with more questions.

 

Auschwitz #34207: The Joe Rubinstein Story

Joe and Irene Rubinstein, and author Nancy Sprowell Geise wearing the gold medals from FAPA book awards.
Joe and Irene Rubinstein, and author Nancy Sprowell Geise wearing the gold medals from FAPA book awards.

As a FAPA Board Member, knowing talented and motivating people is a reward. Nancy Sprowell Geise’s FAPA success story is one I’ll always cherish.

“Entering the FAPA President’s Book Award was one of the best things I could have done for my book Auschwitz #34207: The Joe Rubinstein StoryI highly recommend all authors and publishers in North America submit their books to the FAPA President’s Book Award. I had no idea when I entered the contest how much fun it would be and the honor that would come with winning. I even wore my medals home on the plane!
Even if the book had not been a finalist or a medal winner, going to the 33rd Annual FAPA Conference was so helpful and informative. Not to mention, what a blast I had meeting so many talented, interesting and fun people!”
—Nancy Sprowell Geise
nancy-sprowell-geiseNancy Sprowell Geise | Author • Presenter • Motivational Speaker
Topeka, Kansas
An Amazon #1 Best-Selling Author