Monthly Archives: September 2018

7 Tips to Help You Write a Book FAST!

What’s the best way to write a book FAST? Should you schedule a chunk of time each day and “force” it out, or is it best to work only when the mood hits? These are common questions that many authors face at the prospect of writing a new book—especially when it comes to “rapid release” publishing. But what if I told you it’s possible to write an ebook in only three weeks?

Write a Book FAST!

Write a Book FAST!

Write a Book FAST With These 7 Tips

The truth is, starting is the easy part. The first few pages and ideas can seem to flow out of your mind faster than your hands can type. This is the most enjoyable stage because it stems from impulsive inspiration, meaning that you’re creating only when the mood hits. Unfortunately, if that mood doesn’t hit on a regular basis, writer’s block can set in.

Creativity is similar to muscularity in that it will begin to atrophy with a lack of regular stimulation. Just as even the finest athletes have those days when they must dig a bit deeper to find the will to carry on, all writers will have the same experience. I’ve found the following tactics effective in getting myself to keep writing on a consistent basis (and QUICKLY!), and I believe they can work for anyone.

Tip 1: Break It Down per Hour

If you already have a full-time job, that means you’ve probably only got two or three hours of writing time available per day during the weekdays; but if you truly want to write a book FAST, then you’ll take at least another six hours per day on the weekends. Over a short three-week period, that will give you 81 writing hours in total.

3 hours X 5 days X 3 weeks = 45 weekday hours
6 hours X 2 days X 3 weeks = 36 weekend hours
45 + 36 = 81 writing hours

Now break it down by hour. How many words can you write in one hour? 100 words per hour will result in an 8,100-word mini ebook at the end of three weeks. 300 words per hour will result in a 24,300-word ebook. 500 words per hour will result in a 40,500-word ebook at the end of three weeks. I don’t want you to get too hung up on the word count because quality is more important to your readers than quantity is. (My mini ebooks, which are equivalent to one chapter of a standard book, are typically from 5,000 to 8,000 words in length whereas my standard, full-length paperback books are generally 40,000+ words in length.)

This simple mathematical exercise has been added here only to demonstrate what you can accomplish in a three-week period. When you break it down like this for yourself, it suddenly appears more achievable, doesn’t it? And when your goal appears more achievable to you, you’ll be more apt to stick with it and see it through to the end.

Tip 2: Schedule Your Time Wisely

Once you’ve planned how many hours per day/week you will commit to writing your ebook, you should actually schedule those hours. Mark them in your calendar just as you would any other important appointment such as client meetings, dental/medical visits, or extra curricular activities.

By scheduling regular writing intervals in this way, you will move past that fleeting, impulsive inspiration toward a more lasting, thoughtful inspiration and finish your book in record speed. Sometimes, when settling down to write, you might have no idea what you’re going to say—and that’s okay. It might take half an hour to get that first awkward sentence out and “unlock the floodgates” of creativity; but most authors are pleasantly surprised with how much they have at the end of each session. It’s because the intention to create is the very thing that attracts the creation. That’s the power of deliberate, thoughtful inspiration.

“Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”
~Louis L’Amour

Tip 3: Just Write for Now; Don’t Edit

Here’s another great tip: resist the urge to edit yourself over and over again while you’re writing each day. In fact, don’t edit yourself at all. Your sole purpose, during these three weeks, is to get your ebook written and designed. Period. So, that’s all you should be doing. The editing process will happen after you’re done writing, so you don’t have to worry about it until then.

Creating a truly professional-quality book—including non-fiction how-to books of any kind—is a team effort. The writing portion is typically done within the solitude of one’s imagination and writing room. And then there is the “polishing” portion of the process, which is equally important to your success and requires an outside team of professionals for best results. So, do your part now, and let them do theirs later. You’ll end up with a better book in the end if you do.

Tip 4: Read Regularly

The writers who spend even as little as half an hour per day reading another person’s work often find that they are more creative during their own writing sessions. It doesn’t even have to be another book or anything related to your topic matter at all; it can be an online article, magazine, newspaper, or blog. Sometimes, the least likely source can inspire the greatest creativity. The most important point here is to keep yourself open and aware of the infinite pool of ideas all around you. Whatever it takes to get that first sentence out, do it. From there, thoughtful inspiration can—and will—take care of the rest. It always does.

Tip 5: Ask Yourself These Six Questions

If you’re still having difficulty getting started with a particular chapter after trying all the tips mentioned earlier, then here’s another great idea generator. Write these six questions down underneath that chapter title: Who? What? Why? When? Where? How? Now begin answering each of them for yourself in relation to the topic matter at hand. That should get your creative juices flowing if all else has failed on a particular day.

Tip 6: Reward Yourself Along the Way

It’s important to reward yourself throughout this process because writing a book is an accomplishment all in itself. It deserves your recognition!

What sort of reward will provide you with the greatest sense of motivation to continue forward with your goals? A ticket to a sporting event, concert, or movie at the end of one full week of writing? A particular food item after a certain number of words is written? A visit to the local market or leisure centre? Or, maybe your idea of a treat is a new pair of shoes once you’ve completed the whole book.

Whatever it is, treat yourself. Reward yourself along the way. This is a great way to keep yourself on track and motivated.

Tip 7: One Particularly Helpful Writing Tip

I’ll start by including one of my absolutely favourite quotes about writing by Gary Provost from his book titled 100 Ways to Improve Your Writing: Proven Professional Techniques for Writing with Style and Power (Mentor Series) (a book I highly recommend you read if you’re serious about writing):

This sentence has five words. Here are five more words. Five-word sentences are fine. But several together become monotonous. Listen to what is happening. The writing is getting boring. The sound of it drones. It’s like a stuck record. The ear demands some variety.

Now listen. I vary the sentence length, and I create music. Music. The writing sings. It has a pleasant rhythm, a lilt, a harmony. I use short sentences. And I use sentences of medium length. And sometimes, when I am certain the reader is rested, I will engage him with a sentence of considerable length, a sentence that burns with energy and builds with all the impetus of a crescendo, the roll of the drums, the crash of the cymbals—sounds that say listen to this, it is important.

It’s beautiful, isn’t it? It’s like music, as he says. This is the kind of writing that will keep an audience engaged. It not only sings to them; but, with the right combination of vivid adjectives and visceral verbs, it can create such authentic, powerful imagery inside their minds that it keeps them turning the pages for more. That’s really what you’re after whether you’re writing fiction or non-fiction. Don’t you think? Try to make your book as “musical” as possible for best results. Motivate your readers to stay with you by relaying stories, examples, and/or descriptions throughout your book that will appeal to their emotions just as music does, and you’ll surely keep them engaged.

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



10 Author Blog Post Ideas

10 Author Blog Post Ideas

10 Author Blog Post Ideas

You’ve heard me recommend blogging many times in the past. Writing regular blog posts, at least three times per week, is a great way for you to increase your online exposure. These 10 author blog post ideas will inspire you to write lots!

But before we get started, there are two important things for you to do. First, research and find 156 keywords (52 weeks per year, three posts per week) related to your genre/topic matter. (You’re going to create your blog post titles with those keywords in them.) Second, download the free Yoast SEO Plugin to your WordPress blog to ensure all 156 of those posts will be SEO-friendly. That way, Google’s search engine spiders will easily find and index your posts for you. This will ensure your desired reader base finds them, too.

5 Author Blog Post Ideas About You and Your Books

My first poem in the Western Producer

My first poem in the Western Producer

 1. It’s fairly easy to write about yourself and what inspired you to start writing at all. Make some of your 156 posts about you. Let your readers get to know you better. Maybe that will include sharing a copy of the very first story or poem you ever wrote. For example, here’s my first poem in the Western Producer. I wrote it when I was 11 years old; it was published a few months later, just after I turned 12. My brother found it for me in the newspaper archives years later and it put a huge smile on my face to read it once again as an adult.

 2. Include excerpts from your upcoming books to create a buzz around them before they’re officially published. You’ve probably noticed I include plenty of book excerpts in the Coming Soon to PPG! category of this blog. If you’re publishing a new book at least every four to six weeks like I do, this will take care of eight or nine of your blog posts for the year.

 3.  What inspires you? Share the occasional inspirational quote and talk about why it speaks to your heart.

 4. What is your creative process? Are you a plotter or a pantser? Share your writing tips and strategies with your readers. Invite them to share theirs in the comments section below.

 5. Do you ever attend any writer’s retreats or conferences in your area? Post about your experiences, the people you’ve met, and the impact they’ve had on you and your writing.

5 Author Blog Post Ideas About Other People or Places

 6. Highlight other authors within your genre whose books inspired you in some way. Review their books on your blog and include the Amazon affiliate links to those books within each blog post. If people purchase one of their books along with one of yours, that could help your Amazon ranking through association. (Remember to tie as many of your chosen keywords into these post titles as possible. This way, Google will index your posts for those keywords.)

 7. Did you hire any illustrators, graphic designers, or other professionals to help you produce a quality book? Why not dedicate some of your posts to writing biographies about them and their important contributions? Better yet, ask them to guest post on your blog.

 8. Read the industry news and post your opinions about hot topics on your blog. What pleases you about these current events? What displeases you? Why? Open up a discussion and invite your subscribers to post their own comments below.

 9. What geographic regions do your characters work or live in (for fiction or poetry), or what region are you currently writing in/about (for non-fiction)? Some of your posts can be geography lessons about these particular locations. Be sure to include pictures or videos for extra impact.

 10. Search Quora for industry-related questions. Answer those questions for people on your own blog.

10 Author Blog Post Ideas

When you mix your keywords in with those 10 author blog post ideas, you can see what a great idea-generator it is. The topic possibilities are endless!

Related post by Jane Friedman: What Should Authors Blog About?

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



Why You Need to Become a T-Shaped Marketer

There is more to promoting a new book nowadays than setting up bookstore signings, going on media tours, and sharing positive book reviews with others via social media. There are millions of books being published worldwide every year. To make any real headway in this crowded space, you need to be Internet savvy to a degree. You need to become a T-shaped marketer.

What is a T-Shaped Marketer?

T-Shaped Marketer

T-Shaped Marketer

Rand Fishkin provided this clear description of T-shaped marketing on his blog along with a helpful graphic:

T-Shaped basically refers to having a light level of knowledge in a broad array of skills, and deep knowledge/ability in a single one (or a few).

In other words, your deep knowledge/ability—the stem of the T—is the content you’ve written about in your books. The flat, horizontal part at the top represents the various creative and analytical skills you can learn to best utilize the Internet in selling those books. A shortlist of the top T-shaped skills you can easily learn is below. Combined (and used consistently), these activities will help you sell more books over time.

T-Shaped Marketer: Guest Blogging and Content Syndication

T-Shaped Marketer GB AND CS

T-Shaped Marketer GB AND CS

Blogging, in general, is so important for authors. It can help you develop and maintain a healthy online presence which is crucial to your commercial success.

Blog entries improve your search engine ranking depending on one of the major criteria that search engines are looking for: quantity of posts. Guest blogging will improve your ranking through two other criteria the search engines are looking for: backlinks and traffic.

Content syndication is similar to guest blogging in how it improves your ranking. But it involves sharing already-posted content with other publications in an SEO-friendly way. You’ll learn more about that in this book.

T-Shaped Marketer: HTML Coding for Beginners

T-Shaped Marketer HTML

T-Shaped Marketer HTML

There are various reasons why it’s important to have a basic understanding of HTML coding. This knowledge can come in very handy with regard to protecting and improving your website’s SEO. In that case, you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the purpose of these two HTML elements in particular: rel=canonical tags and meta noindex tags.

Another time when even a basic understanding of HTML comes in really handy is when converting a manuscript into an .EPUB ebook. There are times when you’re going to have to edit certain aspects of the file that didn’t transfer properly from one program to the next, and that will require you to manipulate the HTML coding within the file.

T-Shaped Marketer: Mobile Marketing

T-Shaped Marketer MOBILE

T-Shaped Marketer MOBILE

You want all your potential customers to have a positive experience when they visit your website. Some of them will be searching for you through a Wi-Fi or 3G/4G connection on handheld devices. Others will find you through a hardwired Internet connection on a desktop computer. A mobile-friendly website is one that automatically adapts to be easily viewed on all these devices.

In this book, you’ll learn how to test your own website to see if it’s mobile-friendly. If it’s not, Google will give you the reasons why so you can correct it with the help of your website service provider. Make sure you correct it. Because having a mobile-friendly website is another easy way to improve your SEO.

T-Shaped Marketer: Pay-per-click (PPC) Advertising

T-Shaped Marketer PPC

T-Shaped Marketer PPC

You can earn a larger readership organically by investing your time in activities such as effective social media marketing, blogging, content syndication, SEO-friendly HTML coding, mobile-friendly website improvements, and self-designed/self-published ebooks and promotional videos. Or, you can invest your money to buy that readership with email and/or text message marketing campaigns, paid book reviews, and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. When you spend your time, it will take longer to see results. When you spend your money, you can make things happen more quickly … that is, if you’re doing things right. Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can be used to sell more books. It can also be used to earn incremental writing income on the side.

T-Shaped Marketer: Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

T-Shaped Marketer SEO

T-Shaped Marketer SEO

Google wants to keep its user base happy through these three important search quality factors: expertise, authority, trust (EAT). You prove your expertise online by publishing helpful digital content regularly. Your authority is eventually proven by the number of book reviews, backlinks, and social media followers, likes, and shares that you accumulate over time due to these publishing activities.

In a search engine’s eyes, if your books have more legitimate reviews than other authors’ books within the same genre, your social media sites have more followers, and each of your webpages (e.g., each individual post on your blog, each individual book on Amazon or Kobo, et cetera) have more click-throughs, then you must have more authority than the other authors have. As a result, you’ll rank higher than they do. It’s as simple as that, and it’s all based on algorithms. But expertise and authority are not enough. In fact, trust is an increasingly strong ranking factor for search engines. How to earn trust is discussed in this book.

T-Shaped Marketer: Video Marketing

T-Shaped Marketer VIDEO

T-Shaped Marketer VIDEO

Did you know that Google owns YouTube? That’s the primary reason why you will want to use video marketing to sell your books; statistics show video content can improve your website’s SEO tremendously, and a strong SEO will help you sell more books over time. In this T-Shaped ebook, we’ll review the different types of videos you can produce—everything from professional book trailers to your very own homemade creations—and the valuable lessons I’ve learned about each type through trial and error over the past nine years.

In the end, you’ll come to see that this type of T-shaped marketing is not only effective; it’s actually a lot easier and more affordable for indie authors to get started (and continue with) than you may think. This book closes with three easy video marketing ideas for indie authors—even those of you who are naturally camera-shy.

T-Shaped Marketer: Social Marketing

T-Shaped Marketer SOCIAL

T-Shaped Marketer SOCIAL

Last but not least, I’ll be publishing the final T-shaped installment of this series in November of 2018. Watch for it in a couple of weeks from now. In this book, we’ll be taking a look at the various social media platforms that can help you sell books in much more detail.

I’ll discuss the usual sites I have in the past: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube. I’ll also be adding some new ones to the mix. Watch for it!

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



Guest Bloggers Wanted

Guest bloggers wanted for the PPG Publisher’s Blog! If you have truly helpful advice to share with aspiring and established authors, we’ll consider it. Here are our guidelines.

Guest Bloggers Wanted

Guest Bloggers Wanted

Guest Bloggers Wanted to Inspire Budding Authors

There is already plenty of guidance out there (and on this blog) that warns authors about the possible difficulties they may experience during their book publishing journeys. This type of advice has value, for sure. But your guest post should be inspirational rather than cautionary.

Do you have a success story of your own to share? If you landed on a bestseller list, which one was it? Did you sell more copies of your book than expected? Did you receive some great book reviews from your fans? How did you do it? Share your inspirational advice with others so they can learn how to achieve the same. Show them the wonderful possibilities that will help them keep themselves inspired.

Guest Bloggers Wanted to Educate Indie Authors

Some authors prefer to start with self-publishing and build a solid fan base before approaching trade publishers to take on their books. This way, they’re more likely to sign a traditional publishing deal.

Others prefer to remain independent. Once they see how much success they can have on their own, why share their profits by handing over the reins to someone else?

What tips do you have for these indie authors? Where can they find the best book cover design templates for free? How can they convert their manuscripts into .EPUB and .MOBI ebook files for publishing on Kobo and Amazon? Do you have any helpful book printing tips for paperbacks or hardcovers?

What advice do you have that will make life easier for indie authors everywhere? Share it here so you can help them to self-publish more easily.

Guest Bloggers Wanted to Share Writing Tips

The purpose of this blog is to provide free tips that help aspiring and established authors with every aspect of the book publishing process from conception to publication. Writing. Graphic design. Editing. Proofreading. Indexing. Publishing. Printing. Sales. Marketing.

Since I’m a TESOL-certified sales coach for authors, my blog already contains lots of post-publication content regarding book sales and marketing. More pre-publication advice, specifically tailored toward helping writers complete their manuscripts, is also very welcome here. (Click here to view examples of past writing-related posts.)

How Do You Submit Your Original Content for Consideration?

If you have a guest post that meets all our criteria, please contact us here to tell us more about it. If we like the idea, we’ll ask you to email it to us in Microsoft Word format.

To keep the flow of information open and easy for everyone involved, there aren’t any hard and fast deadlines to meet nor specific word counts that must be met. We ask only that your guest post contains more than 300 words. And it must be original content that has never been posted online anywhere else.

Please provide an author photo along with your post. To ensure all guest bloggers receive as much value from this experience as our subscribers do, you are free to promote your own books/websites/projects here. Place links and information of this variety within an author bio at the bottom of your post.

Can You Re-post This Content Elsewhere Online?

You will remain the copyright owner of your guest post on the PPG Publisher’s Blog. However, to protect the SEO of both this blog and your content, please refrain from reposting it anywhere else within 60 days of it being posted here. If/when you do share it elsewhere, you must attribute the original source by including the following message at the top or bottom of your re-post:

This post first appeared on the PPG Publisher’s Blog:
insert direct link to the original post here. It has been republished here with permission.

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



Foreign Language Translation: Sell the Rights or Do It Yourself?

Foreign Language Translation

Foreign Language Translation

Foreign language translation can help you extend a book’s fan base around the world. All the extra editions of that one book can also improve your SEO. How? Well, we know Google’s and Amazon’s algorithms both reward new content, right? Publishing the same book several times, in several different languages, is an easy way to post “new” content back to back without actually having to write new content.

But how do you get your book translated into other languages? And where would you publish these additional books? Here are two options for you to consider.

Hire a Foreign Rights Agent to Help You

Similar to how a literary agent works, a foreign rights agent is a type of broker within the traditional publishing sector. Literary agents are hired to help you sell your unpublished manuscript to a local trade publisher. Foreign rights agents are hired to help you sell the language translation rights of your published book to foreign publishers.

The business of foreign language translation can seem complicated to independent authors. This is where foreign rights agents can come in really handy. Because they know the business and types of buyers all around the world. They can also read (and write) a proper subsidiary rights contract to protect your interests in these dealings.

Alas, when you hire any kind of middleman to help you publish a book, you can also expect to share your profits. The agent will usually take 20% of the initial lump sum fee paid for the foreign language translation rights. Then the foreign publisher will only pay you a small royalty on whatever profits they earn from selling the translated title.

Translate and Republish Your Book Yourself

You can cut out the middlemen altogether, if you choose. Rather than hiring agents to find other publishers who will pay for the translation of your book, you can do it all yourself. You can hire a professional translation service and pay to have your book translated into as many languages as you want to. Then you can republish the new books yourself on Amazon, Kobo, or through Ingram Content Group. This way, much like self-publishing the original book, you will keep all your rights for every edition all over the world.

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



3D Book Cover Template: Book Series Promotion

3D Book Cover Template

3D Book Cover Template

Looking for a great 3D book cover template to help you promote your next book series? I know a great tool you can use for free.

3D Book Cover Template: Boxshot Online

When it comes to pre-promoting your book series online, it’s always nice to create 3D cover images (like the ones shown above) for your blog and/or social media sites. These stand out more than the flat images that are created by other template builders.

I used a free tool called Boxshot Online to create my 3D covers. It’s a pretty simple and user-friendly site.

Create a 3D Cover Image in Minutes

Boxshot can help you create a 3D image of your book within minutes. All you have to do is upload your front cover from Canva into the front cover spot of the template. If you want your 3D image to have a spine just like hardcover/paperback books have, then you will need to create one and upload it into the spot where it asks for a spine. You can leave the back cover portion blank, as no one will see it on your image anyway.

Create a Book Spine With Ease

I created pretend spines for my ebooks using Microsoft Word. First, I inserted my cover image into a blank Word page. Then I created a vertical text box beside it that matched its height dimensions. I typed my book title and name into that vertical text box. Then I took a screen shot of the whole image using the “ctrl” and “prt sc” keys on my PC keyboard.

From there, I opened up Paint (a standard photo program on all PC computers). I clicked on the “ctrl” and “v” keys on my keyboard simultaneously to paste that screen shot into the Paint program. I then cropped out the spine and saved it as a .JPG file, called “spine file,” separate from the cover image file. Done. Easy. Simple. (The beauty of this is that you’ll barely be able to see the spine in your 3D image. You can get away with using a low-resolution screen shot image in this instance.)

A Versatile Tool for Creating 3D Cover Images

Next, upload both your front cover and spine images into the Boxshot template. Now you can play around with various options such as yaw, pitch, contrast, and shadow. You can even move the book image itself so that less or more of the spine is showing. It’s a versatile tool, and it’s free of charge to use.

The only portion of this process that will cost you anything is when it comes time to download your 3D images. I paid $10 USD for a 24-hour licence to manipulate and download as many different marketing images as I wanted to for all four of my ebook covers at the same time. “Bada bing, bada boom. Done!”

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



Why is Self-publishing a Good Idea?

Why is Self-publishing a Good Idea?

Why is Self-publishing a Good Idea?

Why is self-publishing a good idea? Because it not only helps you learn about the industry firsthand. It can also get you signed by trade publishers more quickly.

Anyone who has sent a manuscript to a trade publisher for consideration can relate to the sting of rejection. Usually, that rejection happens multiple times over the course of several months or years. It can make you question your own worth as a writer and make you wonder if you have what it takes to succeed. An avid reader and aspiring author named Amanda Hocking was going through that exact thing back in 2009.

She was increasingly frustrated because her personal goal was to publish her first book by age 26 (the same age her idol Stephen King was first published), and time was running out. In a state of desperation to meet her goal and earn some extra cash, Amanda turned to self-publishing. A short two years later, she found herself being interviewed by The Guardian about her new millionaire status. She had also signed a $2.1 million publishing deal with two of the trade publishers who had previously rejected her. Why? Because they finally saw her potential through the eyes of her growing readership.

Sometimes It’s The Other Way Around

Mark Dawson, by contrast, was first trade published. But when he saw how few copies his publisher sold of his fictional novel, he switched to self-publishing. He learned how to run his own author business with impressive success. When word went around that Amazon had paid him $450,000 in royalties in one year, Forbes magazine published an in-depth interview with him. He openly shared his publishing strategies with Forbes readers that day, and he continues to inspire other authors through his website and books.

Granted, these are two grandiose examples of self-publishing success. Not everyone who self-publishes will earn a six- or seven-figure income as quickly as these two authors did, if ever. But more and more authors are getting there over time. That’s a fact. It’s possible for you if you follow the same process these authors are following. Do the work. Learn the industry. Build your own readership. In the end, you may decide to remain a self-publisher like Mark Dawson did. Or you may agree to sign with a trade publisher like Amanda Hocking did.

The best way to learn what’s possible is to jump in and get to work like these two (and many other independent authors) have done. Don’t waste anymore precious time waiting for a trade publisher to tell you whether you’re good enough or not. Self-publish your work and let your audience tell you. Their opinions are worth more than any other’s, after all.

Bonus video from Sarra Cannon: How I Sold Over Half A Million Books Self-Publishing

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



How to Publish a Book in Canada for Free

How to Publish a Book in Canada for Free 01

How to Publish a Book in Canada for Free 01

If you’re reading this page, it’s because you’re wondering how to publish a book in Canada for free. There are two valid options for you to choose from. One of them is completely free while the other is almost completely free—your only necessary cost being copy editing.

In 2013, I released How to Publish a Book in Canada … and Sell Enough Copies to Make a Profit!. It compared the pros and cons of traditional (trade) publishing, self-publishing, and supported self-publishing. If you click on the title link above, you can “sneak a peek” inside the book to read those comparisons for free.

The information is still valid when it comes to paperbacks and hardcovers. To properly produce these types of books, you’ll require an experienced team of professionals: editor, graphic designer, proofreader, and indexer. A reputable book distributor, such as Ingram Content Group, will also be necessary to get your book into the “brick and mortar” bookstores. Alas, all these professional services cost money. So, the only way to publish “traditional bookstore books” in a way that will be free to you is through traditional (trade) publishing methods.

How to Publish a Book in Canada for Free … Almost

How to Publish a Book in Canada for Free 02

How to Publish a Book in Canada for Free 02

There is another way to publish a book in Canada almost completely free of charge. If you’re fine with self-publishing ebooks and selling them online exclusively, then you’re in luck. In fact, many of today’s independent (“indie”) authors are enjoying massive success with ebooks. Some of them are being signed by trade publishers due to their self-publishing success, while others are choosing to remain indie.

So long as you have your ebook copy edited by an experienced editor, you can produce a decent result on your own. For starters, ebook covers are less involved than physical book covers. You don’t have to worry about the back cover or spine—only the front cover. There are many free templates available online to help you create an attractive front cover. There are also free tools out there to help you convert your Microsoft Word manuscript into ebook format for publishing on Amazon and/or Kobo. The capabilities of both these ecommerce sites have come a long way since I wrote my other book in 2013. I publish ebooks to both of them regularly now.

How Are Today’s Indie Authors Succeeding Online?

If you’re like most writers, you don’t want to have to sell your books after you write them. You just want to move onto writing the next book. Am I right? Well, here’s some great news for you: writing is selling in the online world. The best way to sell books today is to utilize the power of search engines. Feed them new content on a consistent basis, and they’ll feed you more traffic.

This is what today’s indie authors are doing to succeed online: How to Build a Loyal Readership So Your Self-Published Books Get Picked Up by Literary Agents and Trade Publishers. The step-by-step instructions are all here including hyperlinks to all the free tools you’ll need for each step. There is also helpful advice contained within on how and where to find an affordable copy editor.

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



What Does it Mean to Monetize Your Blog?

When authors think about ways they can earn money from their writing, most think in terms of royalties from book sales. But you can also monetize your blog. The larger your blog’s subscriber list grows, the more this will work to your advantage,

What Does it Mean to Monetize Your Blog?

Monetize Your Blog

Monetize Your Blog

When you “monetize your blog,” you are converting it into a source of income. Passive income. It works much the same way as book royalties do. You only have to write a book once. If people are still buying that book years after you first published it, those royalties are money earned without any additional effort on your part. Your blog posts can generate cash flow for years to come, too. It all depends on how you set up your blog.

If you are new to blogging and have only written a few posts up to now, there is one thing you can do immediately to monetize your blog. If you’ve been blogging for quite a while now, and you already have a pretty solid subscriber base, there are additional things you can do.

Set up an Affiliate Account Through Amazon Associates

In my opinion, the best affiliate marketing program for blogs is Amazon Associates. Why? In a word: choices. Through this program, you can sell everything and anything Amazon has to offer through your blog—not only books. You do this by creating personalized HTML links to the Amazon products of your choice through your Amazon Associates account. Then you post those links into the background coding of your website.

Look at this blog for examples; all the book covers you see here are affiliate links. Amazon pays me an affiliate commission for each sale it makes through these links.

Set Up a Google AdSense Account

Once you’ve been blogging for a while and have daily traffic visiting your blog, you can apply for a Google AdSense account. What is that? Well, you have probably heard of pay-per-click (PPC) advertising before. PPC is a “pay as you go” Internet advertising model people use to direct traffic to their websites. Advertisers pay only when their ads are clicked. For the campaigns that are run through Google Ads, PPC ads can show up in a number of places online—not only on the search engine itself. In fact, those ads can even show up on your blog through the Google AdSense program.

It takes a couple weeks from the time you submit your website to Google AdSense for consideration to the time they approve it. Once approved, Google will send you a unique HTML code. You can add it to any one or more pages of your website. PPC ads will then appear in those places that match best with the keywords and topic matter of your page. Any time someone visits your page and clicks on any of those PPC ads, you will earn a portion of Google’s PPC profits from it. This is an easy way for you to earn some extra passive income from your blog.

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.



Looking for a Unique Writer’s Retreat in Alberta?

Writer's Retreat in Alberta

Writer’s Retreat in Alberta

Are you looking for a unique writer’s retreat in Alberta? I found the perfect one this week, practically right in my own back yard. It has spawned a new category on this blog aptly titled “Writer’s Retreats” that I plan to add new posts to as often as humanly possible. This is my inaugural post on the topic.

What Made Me Go Looking for a Writer’s Retreat in Alberta?

I founded Polished Publishing Group (PPG) and the PPG Publisher’s Blog almost nine years ago. It will be nine years in November 2018. My dream, from the very start, was to successfully operate this business in a virtual office environment so I could freely travel, write, and work with anyone, anywhere in the world, at any given time. In 2016, I enjoyed a six-month working vacation in Southeast Asia while I continued publishing books for authors back home. The experience proved to me that an online business is viable anywhere in the world where there is an internet connection. But I still had a ways to go in terms of my company’s self-sustainability. I had to return home to my external work and continue building it on the side.

Rockyview Hotel and Texas Gate Bar

Rockyview Hotel and Texas Gate Bar

Luckily, the “work” required to build a sustainable online publishing/blogging business is writing. Along with travelling, writing is my absolute favourite pastime, so this journey continues to be an enjoyable one … and I’m well on my way now, as you know from recent posts. If you want a snapshot of my dream life, all you need to imagine is someone travelling to beautiful locales surrounded by inspirational scenery and containing a living space with all the creature comforts of my cherished writing room back home.

One day, not long ago, I asked myself, “What are you waiting for, Kim? You don’t have to travel overseas again to experience this. You can enjoy a writer’s retreat in Alberta right now. Just look around you. You’ll find it.” And find it, I did!

Rockyview Hotel in Cochrane, Alberta, Canada

Comfy Writing Chair Rockyview Hotel

Comfy Writing Chair Rockyview Hotel

I absolutely love the short drive from NW Calgary to Cochrane on Highway 1A (Bow Valley Trail). It doesn’t matter what season it is, I’m always taken aback by the beauty of this small town nestled deep in the valley, at the bottom of the hill. On a clear day, you can see the majestic Canadian Rockies only 45 minutes to the west and watch the trains as they snake through the valley en route to the mountains. That always gets my creative juices flowing. And tucked right in the middle of Cochrane’s historic downtown is a writer’s perfect haven: the old Rockyview Hotel.

What makes this hotel (and this town, in general) the perfect writer’s retreat? For me, it is the cozy, old-fashioned decor and private rooms along with the kind of peace and quiet you can only find in a small town. When I’m writing, I don’t need to be surrounded by other people. I just need a comfortable chair (or bed) to relax in, a cup of coffee at my side, and my laptop in my lap. That said, an all-day breakfast menu and other home-made comfort foods at the restaurant downstairs is an added bonus.

A Conversation Piece: The Golden Ceiling

The Golden Ceiling

The Golden Ceiling

When you need a break or change in scenery for a little while, you can go for a walk along the picturesque Cochrane streets or relax in the chairs on the hotel’s veranda. I also enjoyed sitting in the window seat of the restaurant and people watching outside while I enjoyed my breakfast. And the golden ceiling in that restaurant is quite the sight to see along with the old wood stove and walls full of pictures from the early 1900s. It really does take you back in time.

In the evening, you can enjoy a beverage at the Texas Gate saloon at the back of the establishment. This has been a popular haunt for locals since the building was first established. And it still has the same old-fashioned decor as the restaurant and hotel does. What a beautiful, historical building in every way. It was such a nice break for me from my usual writing space at home. That definitely helped refresh my enthusiasm along with my creativity. It was the mini-vacation I needed—my dream life realized in a wonderful writer’s retreat in Alberta, right in my own back yard. I feel refreshed once again.

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As a user of this website, you are authorized only to view, copy, print, and distribute the documents on this website so long as: one (1) the document is used for informational purposes only; and two (2) any copy of the document (or portion thereof) includes the following copyright notice: Copyright © 2018 Polished Publishing Group (PPG). All rights reserved.