Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Writing Articles as a Key Marketing Tool

I just read a great article on how to write articles to sell your services. But the idea works as well for books as services. Sell your expertise; sell your book. To read the article, go here:

Enjoy. Happy holidays.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Pitching from a Publicist's Perspective

Have you ever wondered what publicists do to market books? How they approach the media?

Pam Lontos is head of PR/PR,, a public relations firm with a staff of six that represents authors and speakers. Pam is a professional speaker with an extensive background in the radio and TV industry, where she rose to Vice President of Sales for Disney’s Shamrock Broadcasting.

I asked Pam to share her expertise as a publicist.

PR/PR via Pam Lontos

First and foremost is the importance of pitching a story – not the book. “The story idea is what they want,” she stresses. This is a mistake that authors and even publicists make. When her firm tried to pitch a book on teaching children the value of money, it fell on deaf ears. So before the holidays, the company pitched a story on spoiling children at Christmas and it was carried on CNN, and the book held up for viewers to see. “If they like the story, then they will read your credentials and then your book,” she says. “Their concern is how to get higher ratings, or readers, or subscribers. They don’t care about your book. They care about what advice you can give to their audience or readers. Think about what’s in it for them, not you.”

PR/PR works mainly with non-fiction authors and speakers. However, fiction is accepted if the author writes on a related topic – which they place in numerous publications - and is willing to be interviewed. When the American Bar Association published its first novel in 120 years – which involved drug trafficking - it was accepted because the author was a lawyer who was able to write articles and be interviewed on drugs in the workplace.

About 40% of their clients are self-published authors. Turned away are authors with books that may not interest the media. “That’s why you call for a free consultation,” she says. “I don’t want to take on clients I don’t feel I can help.”

One cookbook author who wrote about traditional American cooking is among its greatest successes. “Everytime we send something out on her, the phones start ringing,” says Pam, who admits to initial misgivings. “A lot of people with cookbooks don’t pitch them,” she surmises, or “they probably pitch the cookbook and not the story.” One story was “what foods to eat on Valentine’s Day.”

According to Pam, one reason her firm is successful is that it “gives the media what they want. We have reporters tell us that not only do we have good clients, but we never send stuff that doesn’t match.”

New clients are asked to send books and tapes and fill in 20 topics in which they are expert. “Once we have all that information, we start pitching the media,” says Pam. Sometimes a client signs up just in time. This occurred when Entrepreneur Magazine called the firm asking for a financial planner to interview and one called up. A match was made. “He had been a client for one minute,” says Pam.

In another case of successful matchmaking, when Pam read that the phone lines were jammed at American Idol causing some viewers to view the voting unfair, she called a client who installs phone systems at businesses to ask if he could speak on phone lines jamming. “That’s how we got him into USA Today.”

Asked what sets PR/PR apart from other firms, Pam says: “We are proactive. We really enjoy getting people into national magazines.” That’s one reason it doesn’t do author tours. Who needs the hassle of traveling, when one can do radio interviews from the comfort of home, she figures. “If we can get one article in 20 magazines and newspapers like Cosmo, The New York Times and Entrepreneur, they don’t have to go anywhere.”

-- by Francine Silverman

Friday, December 09, 2005

My Personal Invitation: National Publicity Summit

Want to be interviewed on top TV shows like 48 Hours, The View, Montel, Fox News, and Good Morning America?

Would you like to get written-up in major national publications like Newsweek, Health, Redbook, Time, Family Circle, O Magazine, Alternative Medicine, INC., Parents, or New York Times?

Today I'm writing today about a unique chance to get more publicity in America's biggest media outlets by attending Steve Harrison's National Publicity Summit, January 25th to 28th in New York City, a unique conference where you'll get to personally meet top journalists and producers and pitch your story to them, one-on-one and face-to-face.

For a complete info packet on attending, go here now: National Publicity Summit.

All the above media were represented at the last Summit and most will return, along with journalists and producers from other top national TV shows and big-time print media.

Having a face-to-face meeting with an editor or producer dramatically increases the chances they'll write about you -- or put you on their show.

When you grab your info packet, you'll see some of the results previous Summit attendees have gotten including how:

* Steve Shapiro was the subject of a big story in the November issue of O Magazine -- all thanks to meeting the writer at the Summit last year!

* Lauri Loewenberg appeared on both ABC's The View and Good Morning America!

* Jim Vonmier got on CBS Evening News and Early Show as a result of the training and contacts he got at the Summit.

* Barry Spilchuk was interviewed on Fox News Channel within just five hours of meeting the producer at the Summit!

* Sandy Clemmons got written-up in Health Magazine, Money Magazine, and TV Guide -- all from meeting journalists face-to-face at the Summit. Even better, since attending the Summit, her royalty checks have gone up over 700%!

In order to ensure everyone gets enough one-on-one time with each producer or journalist, only 100 people are allowed to attend this one-of-a-kind event.

As of today there are only 39 spots still open, so if you want to attend, go here now: National Publicity Summit.

I look forward to seeing you in New York and helping you get the major national publicity you deserve.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Cha-Ching Marketing

In a recent article, I saw the phrase Cha-ching! Marketing, and I thought what a great phrase. It's the perfect term to use when talking about marketing to SELL rather than marketing for image or whatever else.

If you want to make money selling your books, you have to get involved with Cha-ching Marketing. If you published your book for any other reason, you can go ahead and do image marketing or so-so marketing or plain boring marketing. But, if you need to make money, you have to do Cha-ching Marketing.

So many of you send out whimpy news releases and pay for other people to market your book in a dozen different little ways — when what you should be doing is targeting your potential readers and partners with an all-out effort. Cha-ching!

Don't waste your time on the little stuff. Focus on the stuff that will actually result in sales, real sales, big sales, something worth your time and effort. That's Cha-ching Marketing.

Get off your rear ends. Sing your own praises. Make friends. Create enduring relationships. And sell your books.

Cha-ching! Cha-ching! Cha-ching!

Friday, December 02, 2005

Guadalajara Book Fair

The world's largest Hispanic literary event is happening now: The Guadalajara Book Fair in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Last year, US publishers realized an estimated $350 million in Spanish langage book sales, driven in part by the growing Hispanic population in the US.

What is more important nowadays, however, is the potential for book sales in the Latin American market -- a $17 trillion market.

For more information, see the web site at

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

How to Keep Your Website Running Smoothly and Profitably

If you missed the Paul Hartunian, Pamela Yellen, Bob Serling, and Steve MacLellan teleconference How to Keep Your Website Running Smoothly and Profitably on Wednesday, you missed a dazzler. But you can hear a replay of the call at:

Monday, November 28, 2005

Paul Myers's Toolbox

My friend Paul Myers is giving away an 18-page report of great resources for small businesses. I think you'll like the report. It's easy to get. Just go here: Paul's ToolBox.

Paul is also giving away this handy -- and very simple to use -- tool that makes it very easy to create a redirect page. It's even easier than doing it yourself in HTML. Very simple. It's what I used to create this redirect page: It's a small program and, again, very easy to use. But I would guess that it only works with IBM-PC compatibles and not Macs.

Have fun with it.

Whoops. I forgot to tell you what a redirect page is and why you might want to use it. Here goes: A redirect page is a simple HTML page that you put on your web site that automatically sends the user to another web page (generally a page on another web site). Here are three reasons why you might want to use a redirect page:

1. To send users to a web site with a very long URL. For example, instead of sending people to ThisIsNotARealPage/00045xx/useless.html, you could send them to Shorter, simpler, and cleaner. Especially useful for inserting into newsletters or blogs like this where you otherwise have to break the URL into two lines (like I did here).

2. To send users to an affiliate link. Let's say that you don't want to reveal to other people what your affiliate link is, or even that the page you are sending them to is an affiliate page (where you make money if people buy the product you are recommending), then you can send people to a page on your web site that automatically forwards them to the affiliate page. This technique is used by a lot of affiliate program participants because affiliate links can be very long.

3. It allows you to have more links showing links to your web site rather than other web sites. This might help your web site in search engine rankings.

If you like the information and tools that Paul Myers provides, buy him a beer at Now, this page is a clever idea. I may have to set up such a page for myself.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Newspaper Book Review Editors

Question: Is the list of newspaper book reviewers posted on your site ( recent? It seems like a very small list, compared to the number of newspapers out there.

John's Answer: I note in the newspaper listings when I updated each listing (see the dates in parentheses). The list is small (only 65 newspapers), but it does include most of the major newspapers that actually do their own book reviews.

There are certainly many other newspapers, but if you want to get noticed in them, you'll probably have to reach their special interest editors (sports, food, business, religion, or whatever fits your book).

The reality is that, for most books, newspaper reviews have little impact. You will get the most impact from reviews, interviews, or notices in magazines.

The time when you most want to appear in a newspaper is when you are doing a bookstore appearance or other speaking engagement in the local area. Then you want the interview to occur before or on the day of your appearance.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Distributor Discounts

Question: I'm interested in working with a distributor but I want to make sure what the discounts mean. For example, you say "Discount: 25% of net sales for mid-sized publishers." If my book retails for $10.00, does that mean they will pay me $2.50 per book or $7.50 per book? Any help would be appreciated.

I already sell a lot of books through Ingrams and B & T and I give them a 55% discount so I'm trying to compare the two.

John's Answer: If your book sells for $10.00, then they will pay you 75% of the price they sell the book for (they keep the other 25%). For example, if they sell your $10.00 book to a bookstore at 40% discount, the bookstore would pay them $6.00. You would get 75% of that $6.00, or $4.50. The distributor gets the other $1.50 (25%).

If they sell your $10.00 book to Ingram or B&T (wholesaler accounts they would take over), then they would receive $4.50 (if they sell at 55% discount to these wholesalers). You would receive 75% or $3.37 of that amount. The distributor would keep the other $1.13.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

The Write-Brain Workbook

Writers Alert:

If you ever trouble coming up with ideas for your books, short stories, novels, poems, articles, etc., then you need to check out Bonnie Newbauer's new book, The Write-Brain Workbook, just published by Writer's Digest Books.

It provides a colorful exercise to do every day to help spark your creativity and exercise your writing prowess. Check it out at I think you'll enjoy it. I have.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Becoming an Editor or Author

Question: I am an English major and was interested in becoming a full-time author and editor. Do you have any suggestions as to how I get started or what books I should read?

Answer: The books you should read would be different depending on whether you wanted to be an author or an editor. Some would be the same: The classics, good novels, Walden, Leaves of Grass, Ulysses, Mark Twain, Hemingway, Faulkner, etc.

To become an editor (again, what kind?), but I presume you want to acquire and edit great books (not copy edit or proofread). If so, you should work at a publisher as an intern, or after graduating, as a secretary, packer and shipper, whatever, just get in the door. Then show them what you can do as a reader and editor.

As for being an author, there are three rules for a professional author:

1. Never write anything until you've sold it.

2. Always sell things more than once.

3. Write every day.

Pretty simple, but the effectiveness of those three points is in the details.

Also, make friends with other authors, especially professionals. Befriend them.

There is so much more that I could say, but then it'd become a book -- one that I have no intention of writing. At least not now when I am still working on completing the 6th edition of 1001 Ways to Market Your Books.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Public Speaking for Authors

Public Speaking: What Are We Afraid of? by Francine Silverman

Why is public speaking so stressful for most of us? We’ve all heard that the fear of speaking is greater than the fear of death. As Jerry Seinfeld quipped, “That means most people at a funeral would rather be in the coffin than giving the eulogy.”

As authors, we need to speak. It’s one of the best ways to sell our books. When you speak, they think you know. You’re viewed as the authority, the teacher, the expert. As Dr. Morton Orman states in his article, How to Conquer Public Speaking Fear, if you give an audience something of value they will consider you a success. He goes on to say that people remember few of the facts speakers convey and that it’s best to stick with two or three main points.

I recently served on a two-person panel at the Learning Annex in New York City. There were about 60 people in the audience and the subject was nearest and dearest to my heart – how to promote your book. I was prepared and yet a bit nervous. I truly didn’t know how I was received until the end, when students came up to both of us, thanking us for giving them good information. One even said my talk energized her!!

Why are we afraid to speak? Does it hark back to high school when we were ridiculed? Do we worry that we’re not as smart as others or will be embarrassed by the attention?

Hildy Gottlieb began to relax when she began teaching. She realized that as a public speaker she had been too worried about herself rather than focusing thoughts on her audience. “When I was afraid to do public speaking, the fear was all about ME,” she said. “What if I choke, what if I mess up, what if I don’t remember. Me me me.”

But as she began concentrating on the content and the audience, the better she felt. “That’s what teachers do: They know they have a lesson to give their students, and they know that if the students don’t get it from them, they likely won’t get it at all. They aren’t there for themselves; they are there for their students. They are there out of love of the subject they want to convey.

“Teachers refer often to their notes; they don’t perform. Teachers make certain the group understands one concept before moving on to the next one. They ask for feedback as they’re going along. Teachers answer questions to be sure the group is following the subject matter. So go ahead - become a teacher.”

If you view a speech as a performance, you’re in trouble. This is anxiety provoking since you have to guess the kind of performance the audience wants. It’s much more comfortable to view your talk as a communication encounter and share your ideas with the audience.

I have read two suggestions for preparing a speech that are worth a try:

Use a mirror. Then say the speech, looking to the mirror. This helps with concentration and if you use notes it allows you to practice eye contact with the audience.

Stand in the corner. The sound reflects back to you, and you can get a good idea how you sound when you speak.

About 85% of the population experiences stage fright when they give a speech, but 90% of nervousness doesn’t show. If you're still not convinced that there is nothing to fear, read the articles on the Internet about the fear of public speaking. You’ll realize one thing for sure – you’ve got lots of company!!

Francine Silverman is editor/publisher of Book Promotion Newsletter, a biweekly ezine for authors of all genres, and author of Book Marketing from A-Z, a compilation of the marketing strategies of 325 authors. Visit and click Ask the Experts for answers to your book marketing questions.

Friday, November 18, 2005 Makes the News

My web site,, made the web news today. Even Google picked up the news.

What did I do? Not much. Just added another useful web site to my Top 101 Book Marketing sites.

Here's the news:

The Freelance Writing Organization International ( now has the distinction of being named on's Best Book Marketing Sites of the Year List (

Giving awards. Highlighting good web sites. Creating halls of fame. These are just a few of the things any web site can and should do if it wants to attract attention and visitors. These are some of the best ways to create link exchanges with other relevant web sites.

We offer the Independent Publishers Hall of Fame, the Self-Publishers Hall of Fame, and the Independent Book Publishers Best-selling Books Hall of Fame as well as our Top 101 web sites for book marketing, book printing, editorial and design, etc. Check them out at

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Coffee Sleeve Advertising

If you have a book that might appeal to coffee drinkers, you might think about advertising on coffee sleeves. One company that offers such advertising is BriteVision Media. If you'd like to know more about their services, call 877-479-7777 or check out their web site at

* They circulate 200 million coffee sleeves every year via 6,000 coffeehouses nationwide.

* Customers spent 49.2 minutes on average with their coffee cup.

* Heat activated color changing ink allows for special effects.

* Can be combined with coupon sampling, in-store signage, or other events.

As you might have noted above, I think this advertising opportunity is marginal at best for most books. That's why I put two "mights" in the first sentence. But I still like the idea for the right book.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Phone Service Returns: Hip, Hip, Hurrah!

Well, I'm finally back online after a long wait to have my phone/DSL situation fixed. Ten days without phone service is intolerable when you are running a business. And most of that time without email as well.

My advice: Never switch phone service providers when you are making a move. You are then at the mercy of your previous phone service provider, who can hold up transferring your line for days, if not weeks. That's what Iowa Telecom did to me. They'll have all sorts of technical reasons why they can't move faster. And, the deal is, if you have phone service with them, that is normally sufficient until the other service picks up. BUT, when you move like I did, I no longer had Iowa Telecom and could not hook up with my new provider until Iowa Telecom did their thing.

So I learned a lesson. Only switch telecom providers when you are in a stable situation. Don't switch during a move unless, of course, you are moving to a new city and will be getting new phone numbers anyway. Since I needed to retain my current numbers (they are listed everywhere on my web site, in my books, etc.), I was at the mercy of Iowa Telecom.

My phone number is now active at 641-472-6130.

In one way, of course, it's been nice not having lots of phone calls to answer and/or return. But it also means lost business, unhappy customers, etc.

This has been one of the toughest moves I've made. I'm still waiting for complete electric service. I need more outlets in my office before I can go back to multitasking at high efficiency.

The good thing is that now we live in a smoke-free area where the neighbors are not burning wood and smoking us out of our home. The dogs love the fresh air as much as Gail and I do.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Toll-Free Phone Numbers: Still Needed?

As part of our moving into a new home, I've been making all the utility phone calls. In the process of changing phone service, I decided to cancel our toll-free phone service.

It just didn't make sense to me to continue the toll-free service when such a large percentage of our orders is coming via email and our web site.

Plus, with so many people now using cell phones, long distance charges have little impact on people choosing to make an order via regular phone lines.

I think toll-free numbers have seen their prime and will only decrease in impact and utility in the coming years. That doesn't mean they will go away, but many smaller businesses will choose to do without.

Toll-free numbers still make sense for catalogers, Fortune 500 consumer marketers, some information services, and business-to-business marketers (for example, publishers selling to and servicing book wholesalers and individual bookstores).

But our toll-free number was no longer generating enough orders to justify its cost. The cost of the toll-free number wasn't a lot, but the cost of handling phone orders versus web orders is significant.

Now I've just got to make sure that I haven't mentioned the toll-free number in the new edition of 1001 Ways as well as deleting all reference to it on my web site. That might take a few weeks to clean the site of every mention since I can't use search and replace to change every mention on more than 200 pages.

You, too, should reconsider whether or not you should continue offering toll-free service (if you do offer it now) or adding it (if you don't offer it now).

That's my key tip this week: Reconsider the expense of a toll-free number. My recommendation: Drop the service if you now offer it primarily for the convenience of a few consumers. On the other hand, keep it if your main customers are retail outlets.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Making the Most of Blurbs and Endorsements

Marketing with Fran by Francine Silverman

There are varying opinions on the value of blurbs on book covers. The detractors claim that endorsers will often provide blurbs without reading the book or as a favor to others. Joseph Finder, an author and blogger, believes people are persuaded by blurbs; it’s only writers who are cynical of author endorsements. Web: Blurbs.

There are various uses to blurbs. I use a review quote in my release to small publishers: “While Silverman’s book is geared towards individual authors and their book promotion efforts, I think small publishers would also be well-advised to read it,” says Bernadette Geyer, one of 30 reviewers to give the book a glowing review.

For Principled Profit: Marketing That Puts People First, Shel Horowitz took the endorsements from book marketing gurus to create a composite headline in his release: “Principled Profit is HOT, Say Canfield, Levinson, and Others.” Then he listed all the endorsers with links to their blurbs. More details at:

Peter Bowerman feels that Bob Bly’s blurb on The Well-Fed Writer helped sales tremendously. When he self-published it in 2000, Peter was a first-time writer and having praise from perhaps the most recognized expert in Peter’s industry (copywriting) helped assure potential readers that Peter knew his stuff. On his second book, The Well-Fed Writer: Back for Seconds, Bly’s quote is on the front cover. In fact, the first four pages of his latest book are filled with blurbs). Details at:

How to get endorsements? Ask. People are flattered by the inquiry. Or use your connections. Kathi Kamen Goldmark is a former media escort and founder of an all-author rock band with Amy Tan, Dave Barry, and Stephen King. So when it came time for endorsements for And My Shoes Keep Walking Back to You, she was able to “get some impressive endorsements from well-known authors.” Chronicle Books “ran with the ball” by running a full-page ad for the book in the New York Times Book Review. Details at: And My Shoes.

Shoshanna Katzman also snagged a celebrity endorsement through connections. An acupuncturist, herbalist and Tai Chi and Qigong professional, Shoshanna’s first book, Feeling Light: The Holistic Solution to Permanent Weight Loss and Wellness, was endorsed by Courtney Cox, the star of “Friends.” Shoshanna had made contact through her co-author, an old friend of the show’s clothes designer. Shoshanna sent Courtney a galley of the book and Courtney faxed back the endorsement. This was when “Friends” was still new to TV, and Shoshanna never quite realized how incredible it was to receive this celebrity endorsement. Details at: qigong4everyone.

Your endorsers don’t have to be celebrities. Writers in your own genre are often more valuable. When William R. Benedetto wrote Sailing Into the Abyss: A True Story of Extreme Heroism on the High Seas, he garnered 12 pre-pub endorsements from two bestselling authors, high-ranking USCG and USN officers, and members of the Merchant Marine. How? “Through somebody who knew somebody who knew somebody.” Details at William Benedetto.

Finally, always thank the endorser. As Joe Finder relates, an almost-bestselling author had begged him for a quote, so he read the book. Though lukewarm about it, he managed to “scrape together some nice, honest thing to say.” But, bemoans Joe, “the writer didn’t even thank me – not a note, not a book, nothing. Pissed me off.”

A few weeks later, Joe noticed a blurb on that book by a friend. When asked why he’d contributed the blurb, the friend replied: “A favor to their mutual agent. And you know, that bastard writer never even thanked me.”

-- Francine Silverman is editor/publisher of Book Promotion Newsletter, a biweekly ezine for authors of all genres, and author of Book Marketing from A-Z, a compilation of the best marketing strategies of 325 authors from all over the English-speaking world. Visit

Monday, October 17, 2005

More on Children's Books

Question: I think I have a rather good idea why I wouldn't self-publish children's books, but I'm curious as to your reasoning for suggesting she go with a traditional publisher.

Answer: The basic reason, especially for someone who is coming at the field from an amateur author viewpoint, is very simple: Publishing children's books is much more costly that publishing other books. It is almost impossible to sell children's books through bookstores unless they are printed in full color. The cost of artwork, design and preparation, separations, and color printing puts self-publishing out of the range of most children's authors.

I look at it at a very basic level: Can a children's book author who has no experience in art or printing get a return on his or her investment? The answer is almost always NO. Besides the education and investment of time/money in art, design, and printing, there are also the costs of promotion. Few children's book authors I know are ready to make that kind of investment in time or money.

There are certainly some people who I would recommend self-publish a children's book, but not many. It's a very tough market, especially given the high cost of the first print run.

There have been a number of self-publishers who have been very successful at publishing children's books, so I can't rule it out. But for most people, it's just not a practical way to go unless they have the time and money to burn. And I do mean burn. Like up in smoke in probably 8 out of 10 cases.

-- John Kremer, author, John Kremer's Self-Publishing Hall of Fame. Check out the web site today: Self-Publishing Hall of Fame. Read the book at your leisure. Note: The book offers much more detailed and useful self-publishing and book marketing information while the web site primarily features a listing of most of the people in the hall of fame.

The POD book is a great deal at only $20.00 postpaid during October and November. The eBook version is an even greater deal at only $10.00 until Halloween. Again, no charge for shipping. Order at Hall of Fame Books.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Children's Book Publishers

Question: I worked with children for 7 years where I told them stories to entertain them. After I told them all the stories I knew, I started to imagine new stories and tell them. The kids loved them and I got the idea to write them down. My question is: How could I publish them?

Answer: You should not try to publish them yourself. Instead, sell them to a good children's book publisher. I list many such publishers at: Children's Book Publishers.

Before submitting your stories to a publisher, be sure to go to a good local bookstore and see which children's publishers are publishing stories like the ones you've been creating. Those are the publishers you want to approach. When you submit your story (send one at a time) to a publisher, tell them why you are sending your story to them. Why? Because they've published books similar to the story you are telling.

-- John Kremer, author, 1001 Ways to Market Your Books

Friday, October 14, 2005

$50 Discount on eBook Pro

Do you need a new source of revenue for your publishing company? How would you like to learn how to create instant Ebooks that will enable you to promote and sell your book all over the Internet?

I've just finished reviewing a brand-new software that regular people like you have already used to create automated Internet businesses that are generating $151,000... $360,000... $1.2 million per year... often working less than 10 hours per week.

The software I'm talking about actually gives you the ability to start 10... 50... 100 original mini Internet businesses selling something 1,000s of people already want.

I can't give away all the details in this e-mail; there's too much to share.

So visit eBook Pro to get all the details.

But please note, the $50.00 discount and the $1,085.92 worth of free bonuses will only be available to the first 250 people who check out this new system, so I'd advise you to move quickly!

By the way, you can also learn a few key promotion secrets on this page... Like an easy way to generate over $7,000,000... And two other promotion techniques that have been worth thousands of dollars in sales.

This page also features three case studies of people making $151,000 to $1.2 million per year using these techniques. To read their stories, visit: eBook Pro.

I've toned down the promotional language, LARGE CAPS, and exclamation points of this note to let you know that there is something seriously useful here for those of you who can figure out how to incorporate it into your book marketing plans.

-- John Kremer

Thursday, October 13, 2005

First Time Novelists: How to Get Attention

I just read a great post on the Media Bistro blog about how one first-time novelist sold her book. I think she offers good advice, especially her first point:
I submitted my short story "Adults At Home" to twenty-eight literary journals before it was accepted by the Indiana Review. I couldn't believe what happened next. Three agents contacted me -- proving the fact that agents actively seek clients, and they really do read literary journals. I had only just started writing TWINS, but I responded to the agents' queries, thanking them for their interest. Over the course of the next two years, one persistent young agent (Alex Glass of Trident Media Group) stayed in regular contact with me. When I finished TWINS, I sent the manuscript directly to him.

I know too many talented writers who don't submit their work. This drives me crazy. It's a simple fact: you can't get published if you don't put yourself out into the world. Buy manila envelopes, print labels, make copies, get busy. Amazing things can happen as a result.

To read her entire post, check out: Media Bistro.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

John Kremer Apologizes: A Rant of Sorts

My apologies to anyone who has placed book or data file orders during the past two months. I know some of you don't appreciate excuses, and I really don't have any. Even with all that has been going on, I should have been able to maintain the sending out of orders on time. But I haven't. For that, I apologize.

Two major personal things have been occupying a lot of my time.

First, I was diagnosed with Type II diabetes two months ago. For those of you in a high risk category as I was (family history, overweight, too many late night snacks), I encourage you to check your blood sugar levels regularly. You can buy an inexpensive kit at any drugstore. I may do a blog on all the things I've learned about diabetes since being diagnosed. While diabetes can be controlled, it's not something you want to have. Trust me on this. Out of control blood sugar affects every system of the body — and, in at least two instances, knocked me out of working order for half a day each when I ended up with too low blood sugar.

Second, my wife and I have been seeking and (we hope) finding a new home because we are being smoked out of our current house by neighbors on both sides who insist on burning wood fires. Now, they insist that they are being environmentally conscious by using a renewable resource, but they are not.

If everyone in our neighborhood burned wood, the air outside would be nauseous. That's why most cities ban wood stoves. Wood burning, for those of you who are naive, is incredibly toxic, certainly more toxic than second-hand cigarette smoke. Amazingly, the people who designed wood stoves and chimneys created a wonderful ecological nightmare: They designed the systems to take the smoke away from the offender and deposit it next door. A neat trick. We've tried to seal up our house to keep the smoke out of our house, but it seeps in everywhere. With my wife's chemical sensitivity, she can't sleep at night because of the smoke and often has to leave our home to get fresh air out in the country.

We'd move out to the country, but the farmers in this neck of the woods spray all sorts of chemicals on their fields — all of which migrate to people living next door.
Some day, I hope, people will actually learn how their actions affect others. Right now, everyone is in denial. The farmers insist that using chemicals is the only way to make a living (they are being sold a bill of goods by the seed manufacturers and chemical companies). My neighbors insist on burning wood. Etc. Eyes closed. Denial full bore. And yet both of my neighbors are ardent Democrats and environmentalists. They know how the smoke affects us. We've tried to work with them. No sale. They want to burn. By the way, wood smoke contributes heavily to air pollution, atmospheric warming, and deforestation.

So, we're moving to a new home, but that's taking up a lot of my time. Doing due diligence, inspections, etc. Plus, now packing, etc.

Sorry for the rant, but I really don't understand people who know they are hurting their neighbors but will not do anything to change. It makes me sad. Our new neighbors don't burn, and don't plan to burn anytime soon.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Do You Know How to Write?

Do you agree with the following quote? Please add comments to this post.

"The reason why so few good books are written is that so few people who can write know anything." -- Walter Bagehot, economist and journalist

Personally, I think anyone who knows how to write well will always write something interesting, something worth reading.

I think the reason so few good books are written is that so many good books never get the notice they should. The good books are being written, but so many have not yet reached their audience.

There are clearly a lot of bad books being written, more now than ever, especially with the growth of self-publishing and POD printing where many books get published without any editing or selection. That doesn't make self-publishing or POD printing bad. But it does mean that anyone, no matter how bad a writer or how lacking in anything to say, can still get a book published.

Of course, it also means that some great stuff gets written and published that never would have reached the light of day. So I'll take all the bad stuff as long as the good stuff gets through.

My job is to help the good stuff get through.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

The Biggest Mistake in Writing News Releases

In the last issue of his Million Dollar Publicity Strategies newsletter, my good friend Paul Hartunian wrote about a press release he received. Here is the lesson he teaches. It is something many of you need to read more than once. I know, because I still see so many of you making this same mistake over and over again.

Their press release started with the words:

"SoBiz! Network's slogan, 'Get business, not just business cards!' sums up their networking philosophy. The organization, founded in 2003, is an extremely productive and high energy networking organization."

Now, what's my first publicity lesson to you?

If you said, "Nobody gives a rat's rear end about SoBiz Network," you win a gold star. You've been reading my lessons over the past months and years.

The release goes on to yap about how wonderful SoBiz is. And more yap, and more yap and more yap.

Then they make a sales pitch to join their network marketing company.

How many times have I taught you that no one - absolutely no one - cares about you. People only care about what you can do for them.

The #1 mistake people make when they write press releases is that they fill the release with information about themselves, their business, their product, etc.

I've said it over and over again in these lessons - absolutely no one cares about you, your product, your business, or whatever.

No one.

Even your mother lies to you.

Did you understand his message? It's really very simple: No one cares about your book, your publishing company, or you. What they want to know is very simple: What's in it for me?

Even those of us who are unselfish, caring, and giving people -- even we still want to know what benefits you have to offer to us. You can tell me everything you can think of about your product, but if you never tell me how I can use it to make my life better, or save money, or lose weight, or take better care of my family, well, then your product means nothing to me. I don't need it. I don't want it. I couldn't care less.

The sad thing is that your book might be just what I'm looking for, something I really need, but if your news release is focused solely on the book, I will never hear about it.

Make me care. Tell me why I should be interested. Move me to act. Break my heart. And heal it again.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Comments: Anonymous Spam

Update: A reader of this blog has told me that I can avoid the comment spam by enabling a BlogSpot feature called word verification which I have now done. So now legitimate readers should be able to comment without any problem -- even anonymously -- since some of you like that feature.

Please note that this blog has been getting a lot of automatic comments spam so I had to change the setting for comments from anonymous to registered user. I hope this stops the automatic comments spam.

Up until now, I've been deleting the spam, but it takes a lot of work to monitor this spam -- which always links to other sites, mostly undesirable ones. I don't want any blog users to be exposed to this spam.

I also changed the settings so new posts could not accept comments. If you would like to comment, please email comments to me and I will post them. If you want to remain anonymous, you can send the post via one of the anonymous services or a temporary address.

I really hate to do this but I don't want you or others to be exposed to web sites from people who operate in this absolutely unnetworthy way. If I can figure out another way to do it, I will.

SPAN Book Marketing Conference: See You There!

I hope you can be with me, Rick Frishman, Marilyn Ross, Penny Sansevieri, and many other good people when we speak at the upcoming SPAN Marketing Conference and Trade Show, October 21-23, in Denver, Colorado. To learn more about the conference go to

Here's part of their promotional brochure on the conference:

Publishing is a journey and all publishers want theirs to be perfect. Publishers have an opportunity to improve their chances for a smooth trip by attending SPAN’s 10th Annual Marketing Conference and Trade Show. Held at the Denver Marriott South, October 21-23, publishers will learn how to sell more books, make greater profits, and increase their professional standing.

Please come if you can. I'd love to meet you there.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Some Really Good Additions to Make Your Web Site Great

How would you like an instant Internet business? How about 10 for a fraction of the price of just one of them? Even if you don't care about having an Internet business, these ebooks and web site software enhancements will make your web site really work!


Well, if you act quickly, then you're in luck.

This is your chance to snatch up the Full Master Resale Rights to 10 incredible products. I love this product. I bought in to it on Friday and the stuff included is just too useful to ignore.

You'll get the full source code to eBooks, software, and multi-media products that have never sold before. You'll own them. So you can do just about anything you like with them. And they're all 100% original, fresh and good products.

You also get the following for each of your 10 new products:

* Complete source code and/or source files,
* Exclusive Master Resale Rights,
* Full web site templates with custom header, footer & background graphics,
* Multiple software box and e-Book cover graphics, and
* Web site sales letters.

This package has a value of many thousands of dollars but for the next few days you get to pick it up for a lot less.

Best Regards,
John Kremer

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Promote Your Book: Do It Every Day

If you want to sell more books, there is one basic principle that is essential: Do something every day for every book you love. Call someone. Write a letter. Create Internet links. Update your web site. Write a related blog. Give a talk. Dance a jig.

Okay, maybe the last action won't do much for your book, but it will help you get into action. So, perhaps start by dancing a jig. Then do three to five things every day to market your book. Be consistent. Don't take a day off. If you make three contacts a day, real living breathing contacts, you'll make more than a 1,000 contacts in a year. If you sell your books to those contacts, if your pitch is right and strong, you will get noticed. You will sell books.

The mistake most authors and publishers make is that they spend two to six weeks marketing a book and then wait to see what happens. Well, I can tell you what will happen. Not much. Not if you don't continue taking action every day.

Do it today. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Friday, September 30, 2005

Book Publicity Notes from Irwin Zucker

The following are a few pieces of advice from my friend, book publicist Irwin Zucker:

“Radio is a very good medium for steady, progressive publicity. But for massive exposure, nothing beats a national TV show like Oprah's. We all want that and other hot TV shows. Good local TV shows are needed as well and the news segments of TV stations mean a lot to gain sales.”

What then is the value of radio? “Radio is very, very important because you get more time with this medium and you can rise to the occasion with your viewpoints. Interviews in daily papers are also essential as well as book reviews. I think a good balance of radio, TV and print can generate sales on a book that really has it between the covers.”

The caveat is: “You can't make a lousy book a bestseller no matter how intensive the PR might be. In the end the public tells us whether a book is good or not--based on sales. That’s the reality. You’ve got to have the product to win this type of ballgame.”

For information on Irwin's services, contact him at Promotions in Motion: 323-461-3921.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Media Love People Stories

Just a tidbit of advice from a senior producer at the Entertainment Tonight TV show:

“Show us how your item works. Show us where our viewers can get it. If it’s a book, a show or a drug — put it up there. Also, show us real people — not just product. We have an enormous appetite for people over product.”

All TV programs have an enormous appetite for people over product. In fact, all media have such an appetite. Give them people. Give them stories they can use. Focus on benefits to people not features of a product.

Entertainment Tonight, Sharlette Hambrick, Senior Producer, Paramount Pictures TV, 5670 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles CA 90036; 213-954-2597; Fax: 213-954-2661. Web:

Excerpted from Bulldog Reporter's Journalists Speak Out on PR ezine. Web:

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Promoting Your Books: Just Do It

I don't have much to say today, but I do know that one of the most important things about marketing books is very simple. You have to act. You can't sit on your butt and expect people to come to you. You have to create the word of mouth by doing publicity, giving talks, creating links on the Internet, creating relationships everywhere, and more. Then, and only then, will people come to you to buy your book.

Just do it! A great slogan for a shoe company. Practical advice for any book author or publisher.

Do it today.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Books for Donation . . . Korea

A recent email that might interest some of you:

"My name is Kenneth Harley and I am an American teaching English at Hwawon Middle School in Seoul, South Korea. We are currently working on an English Literacy book drive campaign to acquire books (from children to adult levels) to be a regional resource for educators and librarians in an area where the average student or parent cannot afford to buy English books or English literacy materials."

For more information please see our website:

Send your book donations to my attention at Hwawon Middle School. Here is my address:
Kenneth Harley, English Department
Hwawon Middle School
San 144-4, Hwagok 7 dong, Gangseo-gu
Seoul, Korea

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Book Gifting in Your Book Marketing Campaign

A Guest Article

Who really knows who coined the term gifting and what does it really matter? What I can tell you is this action of gifting books is transforming the literary world as we know it.

Authors are normally writers and not always experienced marketers. And yet, if the author is a true giver, that author is a marketer.

Eight years ago, I published my first children’s book. With love, passion and joy in my heart, I gave books to children and parents all over the country. I saw them beam with energy from this transaction of a true gift. There was nothing behind this except that I wanted to give my gift to them and the world. Many people told me they have never met an author before, let alone be given an autographed book by one.

What book gifting has taught me is that the world responds to sincere generosity and a heart with good intentions. From the day I gifted my first children’s book in 1996 until now, The I AM Foundation has gifted and distributed over 275,000 books and products to the world. This is proof enough for me that the magic of marketing and book gifting go hand in hand.

What better way to spread the news of your book than with someone who has first read it, and is so excited about it they tell everyone they know?

The idea of book gifting is not new. James Redfield, who wrote The Celestine Prophecy, drove around the country giving books to people he talked with, bookstores, and everyone he deemed it was appropriate for. The result was a book deal with Time Warner whose sales people watched in awe as these books flew off the shelves.

My gift to you today is this idea: take ten percent of your print run and donate these copies to people and organizations that will benefit from your book. Think about taking your overruns, remainders and misprints and having them serve you as marketing pieces to your target markets.

If you need help, The I AM Foundation exists to serve you in this area. We gift books to the world. I invite you to watch the magic behind a book gifting campaign. The publisher of Nonviolent Communication (Puddle Dancer Press) watched their title go from being ranked #3000 on Amazon to #300 within six months of working with The I Am Foundation.

Whether you would like a partnership with us or otherwise, please see the value in how gifting your title will help you overall. I stand by eager and optimistically waiting to hear your results.

— Steve Viglione is the author of three children’s books and products with over 100,000 copies in print. He is the founder and CEO of The I AM Foundation, a 501c3 educational non-profit whose mission is gifting educational books and music to children and adults worldwide. Please visit I Am Foundation, email him at, or call him at 619-296-2400.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Book Titles: The World's Worst

In their book The World's Worst, Les Krantz and Sue Sveum noted the following book titles. They seem to be real titles. features all of these very odd books. Do titles help sell books? Yes, they do. Did these titles help to sell the books? I really don't know. But I do know that I would have taken the books off the book shelf if I had seen them when I was browsing in a bookstore. What would you have done?

Entertaining with Insects: The Original Guide to Insect Cookery

New Guinea Tapeworms and Jewish Grandmothers

Do It Yourself Brain Surgery and Other Home Skills

Proceedings of the Second International Workshop on Nude Mice

The two covers that are available on are rather horrible covers. Don't copy them. Don't even think about copying them. I'm just showing them so you know the books are real. The covers are terrible.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Book Marketing: Distributor Discounts

Question: Thank you for the fabulous online resources, such as your Top Independent Book Distributors page. I have a question related to some of the data on that page. You use the term discount. I am not clear on how it is being used. For example, you say that one distributor has a "25% to 30% of net sales" discount. Does this mean the publisher receives that amount (25 to 30% of list price)?

John's Answer: Many people get confused by discounts. Let's use an example of a book priced to sell for $10.00 in a bookstore.

List price: $10
Net price (sales): $5 (that's probably a good average for distributors since they sell many books to wholesalers and bookstore chains).
Their 25 to 30% discount comes out of the net price of $5.00.
So the distributor ends up with $1.25 (25% of $5.00)
And you the publisher end up with $3.75.

The numbers would be a bit different at 30% of net:
Distributor gets $1.50.
Publisher gets $3.50.

So, on a book selling for $10, the publisher ends up with about $3.50 or $3.75 when using a distributor. Given a print cost of $1 or a bit more (if the book is priced correctly), the publisher ends up with about $2.50 for profit and other expenses (advertising, office, design, etc.).

Given those kinds of numbers, you can see how you'd like to be able to price the book higher, get the cost of printing down lower, and/or sell more books direct to consumers via through bookstores (and distributors).

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Make Money with Google

I've been reading Eric Giguere's new book Make Easy Money with Google. It's a great how-to book, step by step, on how to use Google to make more money via your web site. If you'd like to read a sample chapter from his book, go to: Make Easy Money with Google.

That chapter is free for you to read. You have nothing to lose. And lots to gain.

And if you like the sample chapter, you can buy the book at

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Create Better Online Testimonials

Would you like to increase the believability and effectiveness of your online testimonnials? Here are a few tips from Martin Boyd, editor of HBT News, a biweekly newsletter about online home businesses.

1. Ask people who give you testimonials if they can send you a photo to put up with their testimonial.

2. Feature a scan of their actual signature.

3. Record their testimonial and feature it in an online audio. You can tape their testimonial by phone or in person.

4. If they send you a postcard or hand-written letter testimonial, scan in the postcard or letter and post that on your web site.

5. Ask people who send you testimonials to send you a short profile as well to give them a human face.

6. Videotape the testimonial if you meet them in person.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Book Marketing by Telling Stories

Here’s some copy from the Territory Ahead catalog that sells their crisscross cord shirt. It combines a great description with a user’s story, imagination, romance, and humor. A nice combination for any sales copy. Can you do the same for your news releases — in as few words?

If you’re shy, this isn’t the shirt for you. The fabric — a richly colored, cross-hatched cotton corduroy — is so supremely soft and texturey it has a tendency to attract unsolicited attention from complete strangers.

In fact, when our Director of Human Resources wore it on a recent trip to Denver, an otherwise well-mannered young woman with a French accent had to be gently dissuaded from stroking his sleeve long enough for him to board his plane home. The aforementioned gentleman, who is not shy, has requested we carry it in additional colors next season.

Now, why is it that so many authors and publishers require two pages or more for their news releases when the Territory Ahead can sell a shirt in only four sentences?

Not only did the copywriters describe the shirt in good enough detail for you to picture it, but they set a qualifier: If you're shy, this isn't the shirt for you. And then they told a short story — in two sentences! — that closed the deal. What man wouldn't want a young woman with a French accent to stroke his arm? And have to be pulled off him so he could make a plane? I know I'd want at least five of those shirts, in a rainbow of colors. I'd wear them just around the house so my wife wouldn't get jealous.

It still amazes me how many authors have no idea how to sell their books with words. So many don't know how to tell a succinct story that hones in on the benefit to the reader.

Your assignment for today: Read that Territory Ahead shirt description at least ten times. No, let's make it even more involving. I want you to copy that description by hand (remember pens and pencils?) ten times. If you no longer have any pens or pencils, you can write it on the blackboard. Just ten times.

That's not much. My teachers used to make me write things 50 times or more whenever I was bad. And you've been bad. So get to work.

Why write it by hand? Because it involves more of you in reading and writing the description again and again. By writing it, you incorporate the ideas and storytelling skill into your very bones. That's good.

If you'd like to get some bonus points, read the description aloud to at least five friends. Or strangers. On the bus ride home from work. Or stand up during lunch at a busy restaurant and do a dramatic reading. Call your mother and read it to her. You will be amazed how much you'd learn by doing this little exercise.

It's your choice: Do this homework exercise and sell more books, or continue to write long boring news releases and sell no books.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Beyond the Bestseller: Finding Literary Gems

"We all know that variety is the spice of life," says Don Linn, whose eclectic, fast-growing Consortium Book Distribution company distributes books for almost 100 independent publishers, many of them award-winning. "It's also the spice of reading. And if you never look further than the stack of new releases on the strategically placed table near the entrance to the megabookstore--well, you're missing out on some great, thought-provoking literature."

It's ironic that this problem--call it literary complacency--even exists. After all, people who love to read are, by nature, dissatisfied with being force-fed the fruit of popular culture in any of its forms. But Linn says it's perfectly understandable. When you live in a world characterized by too much information and too little time, it's just easier to reach for what's helpfully placed in front of you by big publishers and the media.

Linn wants to jolt us out of our mindless acceptance of the blandly familiar. He hopes to spark a grassroots revival aimed at getting book lovers to look beyond the mainstream titles and seek out the rich bounty of brilliant non-traditional offerings that flow from the presses of independent publishers.

To that end, he offers the following tips for bibliophiles who want to break out of their reading rut.

· Visit an indie bookstore. Admittedly, this may be easier said than done, what with so many independents closing down. But they do still exist, and even if you have to drive an hour or so, they are worth the journey. "Devote an afternoon to it," urges Linn. "Make it a fun road trip. Spend a couple of hours browsing. There's something you get from independent bookstores--the slightly dusty fragrance, the glorious clutter, the thrill of finding something completely unexpected--that simply can't be replicated by a national chain. Plus, the mom & pops need your business, so do your duty as a conscientious reader."

· Conduct a treasure hunt in Barnes & Noble or Borders. Sometimes you just crave wide aisles, stacks of bestsellers, and the hint of cappuccino wafting through the air. No need to feel guilty, says Linn. The big national chains do carry independent titles. It's just a matter of seeking them out. "Don't get stuck at the end-of-aisle displays. Get inside and comb the darkest reaches of the shelves," he advises. "Look for titles you've never seen reviewed and unfamiliar publisher names. Most clerks in these stores are voracious readers, so ask one to recommend a book he or she loves that no one ever buys."

· Meander through the wilds of the Internet. The virtual world is dazzlingly unlimited by physical constraints like shelf space and square footage. That means that if a book exists at all, someone in cyberspace is selling it, discussing it on message boards, or writing about it on blogs. That means access to a trove of non-traditional titles is merely a mouseclick away. "Consortium's website,, is a great place to go exploring," says Linn. "Besides making it easy to search--by title, category, or publisher--we feature a different book on our home page every week. But I recommend free-association surfing, just stopping in at book blogs, poetry sites, literary e-zines, and online booksellers. Go where the spirit moves you and have fun."

· Start an indie book discussion group. This is a great way to socialize with other book lovers, and, simultaneously, to spread the word about worthy non-bestsellers. The concept is simple: the group meets once or twice a month to discuss a book that's been recommended by a member. (These meetings can be face-to-face gatherings or virtual chats. No matter.) The only rule? The assigned books must be non-mainstream works written by less well-known authors and published by independent presses. "These meetings provide an impetus to explore regularly the vast world of underexposed books," says Linn. "And it's a great way to share your discoveries with others. If you've never been part of a reading group, you'll find it's a refreshing and mentally stimulating experience."

· Test the waters with the every-other-book rule. Don't worry. There is no need to go cold-turkey on your bestseller habit. Simply alternate your reading list: for every mainstream book you read, commit to reading one non-mainstream book. This is a good way to enjoy the best of both worlds. "Some people are a little bit scared to venture outside the familiar, mass-media-approved reading world," says Linn. "They figure bestsellers are bestsellers for a reason. And you know, there's nothing wrong with mashed potatoes, but you don't want them for every meal. Sometimes you need some spicy Thai noodles, too. Once you see the richness of what's out there just under the radar, you might find that the bestseller table no longer holds as much appeal for you."

"There is such a deep well of raw, undiscovered literary talent out there that even if you read non-stop, 24/7, for the rest of your life, you'd barely scratch the surface," says Linn. "It's mind-boggling, truly. When you make it a priority to seek out independent books, you're certain to be amazed at the compelling, exciting, brilliant material you'll find. All it takes is a little effort and a little open-mindedness to see that there are a lot of writers out there with a lot to say. They just need someone who's willing to listen."

Consortium Book Sales & Distribution is the exclusive distributor for nearly 100 independent publishers from the United States, Canada, Europe, India, and Australia. Books are currently distributed in the United States and Canada. In addition to sales and distribution services, Consortium provides marketing, promotional, and product development support.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Becoming a Columnist Is Easier Than Ever

Marketing with Fran column by Francine Silverman

Before the Internet, columns were largely the purview of newspapers and news magazines. Anyone who yearned to be a columnist had to send clips to syndicates and the competition was fierce. Today, there are websites that are actually seeking columnists.

Okay, so there’s generally no pay, but what better way to gain recognition? I got my column by emailing John Kremer. He was familiar with my newsletter and had a copy of my book so my credentials were already spoken for.

Here are some examples of how other authors became columnists:

Guidebook writer Tim Leffel, author of The World’s Cheapest Destinations (Booklocker, 2002), had written a few articles for Transitions Abroad magazine. So when his book was released and he got the editor to write an advance review and cover blurb, Tim “pitched him an article related to the theme of the book. Since he liked it and also liked what I had done previously he asked if I’d like to be a regular columnist. Doesn’t pay much, but a great pipeline to the people I’m trying to reach.” Web:

Meta Newell West is author of The Kirby House Cookbook (Kirby House Publishing, 2001), containing more than 200 recipes in use at the historic Kirby House restaurant in Abilene, Kansas. The book includes the history of the building from 1885 to the present day and offers a glimpse of life and dining during the Victorian era. “The Kirby House Cookbook was my first published book,” says Meta. “I now write a monthly column in my local paper and give those articles with recipes to the Historical Society – they are reprinted and sold in booklet form as a money maker for the historical society.” Web:

Patricia Paris is a columnist and author from Tennessee who delivers her unique, tongue-in-cheek style of writing in her newspaper column, currently running in six newspapers: The Tylertime Times (MS), Bristol Bugle (IN), The Knoxville Independent (TN), The Seymour Herald (RN), Smoky Mountain Herald (TN), and The Post (AL), as well as online newspapers:, North Texas e-News, and The articles are reprinted weekly on three online magazines:, and ZIK Magazine.

The column, Patricia’s Porch Talk, covers many topics. “Sometimes I talk about a memory, or perhaps a holiday,” Patricia explains. “Sometimes the topic covers a current issue and for this I have visitors to my porch, Aunt Mildred and Sam.” (These two are semi-real explains Patricia, but the column reflects her elderly aunt’s “true, peppery personality and is a way of keeping her strong forever.” Sam is a compilation of all the Sams in her family).

It all started when one of the newspapers, which had done a favorable review of Patricia’s second novel, The Spiritual Side of Sarah (1st World Library, 2003), talked with her about doing a column. “They had space opening up due to a retiring columnist,” she recalls. “We talked about doing an everyday life-southern style column and the idea appealed to me. Then I contacted several other newspapers who had done favorable book reviews and two of them agreed to take the column also. So Patricia’s Porch Talk started out in three newspapers strong.”

Patricia is also author of Connections (1st Books Library, 2003), a poignant novel about relationships and memories of being raised alone by an emotionally disturbed mother, laced with humor and heartwarming chuckles, all woven into a fictional storyline. Web:

Susie Hawes, a dark-fantasy/horror author who actively promotes on the Internet, has a column at EpicSFF called Spook Central. “I got the column by getting to know the site,” she says. “Then when they posted that they were looking for a column writer, I applied. They knew me and had seen my posts in other forums so they went for it.” Susie is author of Eva's Son (Ore Mountain Publishing House, 2005). Web:

Kathi Kamen Goldmark has a column with Sam Barry called The Author Enablers in BookPage, a print publication that I found in the library ( In 1992, Kathi founded the Rock Bottom Remainders, an all-author band. Mid-Life Confidential (Plume Books 1995), edited by Dave Marsh, is about the band.

“We've had our BookPage column for six months and it's great fun to do,” she says. “We have good publishing connections and some name recognition because of my novel and the Rock Bottom Remainders. Even so, we knocked on a few doors and got a lot of 'love it but we have no space and no budget'-type answer before connecting with BookPage.” Kathi is author of the novel, And My Shoes Keep Walking Back To You (Chronicle Books, 2002). Web:

Aaron Lazar says that most of his networking connections “have come from befriending authors (editors) in a natural, genuine fashion and keeping them abreast of my activities via emails.” Among his e-friends is Bob Burdick at “Bob offered up his Library, where authors could submit samples of their work for inclusion,” says Aaron. “I sent him a chapter of Double Forte.” While browsing the site, Aaron noticed that Bob had just published a mystery novel and Aaron was hooked after reading the first chapter. “I ordered it, loved it and reviewed it.”

This began a “nice correspondence with Bob, discussing his book and mine,” recalls Aaron. “He invited me to write a feature, A Writer's Life, for the June issue [of Burdick's newsletter]. After that was written, he asked me to be a regular columnist for the newsletter.” Web:

By keying in “How to Become a Columnist” at Google, I found several sites looking for columnists. Among them are (topics needed are wedding preparation, event planning, entertaining, food/recipes, health/nutrition, gardening, senior issues, Virginia destinations, education, music, and outdoors). Send sample column along with your name, address and phone number to

Another is, which claims to be the “world’s largest platform dedicated to the Textile/Apparel/Fashion industry,” attracting more than 390,000 visitors from the industry. Fill out the form on site.

Finally, visit if you have fresh business perspectives, or can offer views on trend-spotting, family issues and solutions, lifestyles, or balancing work and leisure. Write to

The list goes on and on. Good luck!

Francine Silverman is editor/publisher of Book Promotion Newsletter, a bi-weekly ezine for authors of all genres, and author of Book Marketing from A-Z (Infinity Publishing, 2005), a compilation of the best marketing strategies of 325 authors from all over the English-speaking world. Please visit

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Getting More Reviews on

Note from Nathan Schock:

"I came across your blog and enjoyed what I read. I thought you might be interested in a recent post on my blog: It discusses a book author contacting me to post an Amazon review, simply because I had previously done reviews on Amazon."

In his post, he writes about receiving an email from Jerry Weissman, author of In the Line of Fire: How to Handle Tough Questions...When It Counts, where Jerry offered to send him a review copy of his book because Nathan was a volunteer book reviewer. Nathan wrote:

"My first thought is that this is an extremely effective promotional technique. Although nothing in either the email or the package sought to influence my review, the fact that he's mailing these for free to Amazon reviewers can't hurt the reviewer's perception of the author. If you send it to enough, odds are such that more of your reviews will be positive than negative. In fact, most of Weissman's reviews at Amazon are five out of five stars, so it appears to be working."

Here is an author who is reaching a significant audience simply by asking people to accept a free copy of his book for possible review.

As Nathan points out in his post: "Although a review in the New York Times, may be read by millions, it won't be staring in the face of someone contemplating an online purchase. Be honest. Have you ever purchased a book on Amazon without reading at least one review?"

Have you sent an email to some of the active book reviewers on who have reviewed books similar to yours? If not, you should. It's one of the most effective ways you can use to sell more books.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Blogging and Book Reviews

Here's a note I received from Mike Vogel, author of Isn't That Bigamy. For more information about his book, see:

"If you can get one blogger with a readership of 50 to mention your book and another blogger with a readership of 500 links to that story, you just marketed to 550 people. Now, if any of those 550 link to it, you can have exponential growth in awareness."

Within the blogging community, it is common to cite other blogs. If you get mentioned in one blog, there's a good chance other blogs will notice and link to that post. As more blogs post to each other, you reach a larger and larger audience. Zoom. You get noticed.

Blogs might well become one of the key book reviewing and publicity media. Indeed, they have already created many sales for some books, especially the off-beat novel and the unusual nonfiction book that can inspire specific fan intest.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Telling Lies

Something to think about . . . Because it's true . . .

If you tell lies about a product, you will be found out. — David Ogilvy, advertising executive

Saturday, September 03, 2005

How to Change the World

Here's a great quote from Hugh Elliott, blogger at Standing Room Only:

Miracles: You do not have to look for them. They are there, 24/7, beaming like radio waves all around you. Put up the antenna, turn up the volume - snap... crackle... this just in, every person you talk to is a chance to change the world. — Hugh Elliott, blogger, Standing Room Only

Remember that when you need to make that one more phone call, or write that one more email, or make one more effort to send out a news release or book proposal. Every person you talk to is a chance to change the world. What are you waiting for?

Friday, September 02, 2005

Spam Is a Big Deal

The following post is excerpted from Paul Myer's Talkbiz News ezine. To subscribe to his newsletter, go to


A recent case resulted in a spammer getting nine years in jail for various felonious activities that were part of his spamming operation. A gentleman [cough] on one of the boards asked the question: "Is it just me, or is the war on spam getting a little ridiculous and out of hand?"

He seems to think that 9 years for fraud is too much. After all, it's just email, right? Can you believe there are people out there with enough brains to type whole sentences, with verbs and nouns and everything, who still don't get it?

For those of you who might feel tempted to ask the same question, here's what I had to say to him:

It's just you. You're not paying attention.

If someone were to do to any other medium what spammers have done to email, they'd be jailed much more quickly.

--> Try tying up the phone lines of every single person in the world with a listed number, and then flooding the system with guesses to get to the unlisted ones.

--> Leave long messages, so that people can't get voicemail from folks they want to hear from.

--> Build an autodialing set-up so powerful that it overwhelms the global phone system. Autodial emergency service numbers, government and business offices, hospitals, airports, cell phones...

--> Get every telephone in the world ringing all day, every day, non-stop.

--> Oh yeah... Then develop hacks that get innocent people's telephones to do your autodialing for you. (Probably 25% to 50% of the subscribers to this newsletter are sending spam right now and don't know it. A lot of it p**n spam.)

--> When someone answers, pitch them on fake jewelry, patent medicines and illegally delivered prescriptions. Trick them with con games to get their banking and credit information so you can steal their identities.

--> Or just breathe heavy. To 100 million people. At once.

See if you don't get tossed in prison.

Spammers cost the global economy billions of dollars annually in direct monetary costs. There's no way to estimate the cost in terms of damaged or destroyed data resulting from the viruses/trojans they plant on people's systems. And the cost in plain old human time lost forever.

I have an acquaintance who runs a small midwestern ISP. He has over 100X the machine power in place that's needed to deliver all of his customers' legitimate email. It's not enough. He's currently planning to go to 500X the necessary capacity. A large part of that is needed to handle filtering. If he doesn't stop the majority of the spam, his customers will go somewhere else, thinking they're going to get less spam. They won't, unless they're also willing to accept a lot of legitimate email getting dumped by the filters. He estimates that when the necessary hardware required hits 1000X legit needs, it will no longer be POSSIBLE for him to offer email. It's already losing him money.

The estimates of the cost of keeping up with spam (just on the ISPs' part) range between $2 and $5 per customer, per month. There are at least 600 million people online globally. Say it's $3/month, and that's $1.8 BILLION dollars that ISPs spend every month just trying to reduce the flow.

Yeah. Throw them in jail, and lose the key.

And while we're at it, let's boot every ... person ... who says spam isn't that big a deal off the net. You're dangerous to the rest of us.

The problem is much bigger than that description, but it makes the point. Next time someone says something stupid like, "Spam is no big deal," and you don't want to waste a lot of time arguing with them, send them a copy of that.

Then suggest that they go back to the prescribed dosage.


John's Comments: It still boggles my mind that the software and hardware people who make so much money because of the Internet haven't figured out a way to abolish spam. There certainly are some workable solutions, but any filtering system still filters out wanted mail along with the spam. No system is perfect.

I certainly don't know what to do about the spam problem because I'm not a software programmer and I don't understand all the details on how email works. But I do know that spam hurts me in two ways:

1. It costs me time to filter out spam email and to go through the automatically filtered email that might contain important communications I want. I currently have three filtering systems for incoming spam, and I still get 20 to 30 spam messages a day, many of them obvious spam. If I were writing the filtering software, I would catch more of that obvious spam.

2. It costs me readers. I know that my Book Marketing Tip of the Week, which has 8,000 subscribers, doesn't get through to all of them. That means that people who really want my tips and resource listings don't always get them. That's one reason I've put more attention on this blog where people can come to visit when they get time -- and nothing filters out my messages. But this solution has a great flaw: It relies on users to actively seek out my blog (even with RSS, blog readers still have to take an active step to read my new blog posts).

If you're not always getting my email tip of the week, be sure to put my email ( on your white list, acceptable list, approved list, or whatever it's called in your email program or spam scanning service.


Thursday, September 01, 2005

Blog for Relief Day

If you are motivated to donate to the millions of victims of Hurricane Katrina, check out That's the home page for Blog for Relief Day (09/01/05). That page features 82 charities you can contact for donations and offers of help.

The devastation has to be the most widespread and tragic of any natural disaster that has ever occurred in the United States. Please help.

Some Favorite Quotes

Great hearts steadily send forth the secret forces that incessantly draw great events. — Ralph Waldo Emerson, essayist

You are never given a dream without also being given the power to make it true. — Richard Bach, author

Follow your bliss. Go with the thing that really talks to you. — Joseph Campbell, mythologist

People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. — Maya Angelou, poet

One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words. —Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, essayist

If everyone lived with a sense of wonder, their lives would be filled with joy. — Doug Henning, magician

The smallest fact is a window through which we can see the infinite. — Aldous Huxley, novelist

Dance as if no one were watching. Sing as if no one were listening. And live every day as if it were your last. — Irish proverb

Whatever God may lead us to do, He will always give us the power to do. — Christian Larson, author

If I had to choose, I would rather have birds than airplanes. — Charles Lindbergh, aviator

How does one become a butterfly? You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar. — Trina Paulus

Comment on John Johnson Post

For those of you who read my post on John Johnson, here is another blog commenting on that post: Yarshar Books. In this post, Rabbi Aaron Levine, author of the forthcoming Moral Issues of the Marketplace in Jewish Law, makes some interesting comments.

Here is the link to my original post: John Johnson post.

Also check out John Johnson's Self-Publishing Hall of Fame entry:

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Hurricane Katrina's Effect on Booksellers & Publishers

I was just reading an email note from Pat Sabiston, executive director of the Publishers Association of the South. While I'd been hearing a few notes about Katrina, I hadn't begun to understand the impact it was having.

Rob Schauffler of Forest Sales & Distributing was still in the New Orleans area with a car that would not start. He and his wife were going to hide out in their attic from the armed gangs roaming the area. That's scary.

Several bookstores will have no inventory other than soaked and muddy volumes.

It could take two years or more for New Orleans to recover from the devastation of the flood. A million people are refugees. Many may no longer have houses they can come home to. Basic services will takes months or more to restore.

If you'd like to donate, contribute to your local or national Red Cross (800-HELP-NOW) or Salvation Army (800-SAL-ARMY). They can pass the money and help on to those who need it.

A number of publishers and other members of the publishing community have offered use of their offices or second homes to Southeast publishers who need a temporary place to operate their business. National Book Network has also offered to handle distribution or fulfillment for companies that need help.

If you'd like to offer any additional help, contact Pat Sabiston via email at

Thursday, August 25, 2005

How to Know If a Book Is Good

Sometimes when you get so many books to read, look at, review, or provide testimonials for, you might have to follow the simple method used by the great Polish anthropologist Bronislaw Malinowski to decide which books are worthy of your attention.

Because he did not have time to read every new book in his field, Malinowski would take each new book he received, open it immediately to the index, and check to see if his name was cited there (and how often). The more Malinowski, the more compelling the book would be. No Malinowski, and he doubted whether the subject of the book was anthropology at all.

I have used this same method when I receive new books on publishing, self-publishing, and book marketing. If my name is not cited in these books--and often, they can't be worth much. If my 1001 Ways to Market Your Books is not mentioned, they are hardly worth the effort to crack the spine. My thinking is very simple: If they do not cite me or my book, they do not know much about the field of publishing and marketing.

You should use the same criteria when reviewing books in your own special field. If they don't cite you, ask them why. And they better have a good reason.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

America's Most Literate Cities

Jack Miller, chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, has conducted a study of America's Most Literate Cities for 2003 and 2004 (rated according to five criteria: education, publications, newspapers, libraries, and booksellers). The top two cities for both years have been Minneapolis, Minnesota and Seattle, Washington.

3. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
4. Madison, Wisconsin
5. Cincinnati, Ohio
6. Washington, DC
7. Denver, Colorado
8. Boston, Massachusetts
9. Portland, Oregon
10. San Francisco, California

Below are the top 10 cities for bookstores:

1. San Francisco, California
2. Cincinnati, Ohio
3. Seattle, Washington
4. Madison, Wisconsin
5. Atlanta, Georgia
5. Minneapolis, Minnesota
7. Louisville, Kentucky
7. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
7. St. Louis, Missouri
10. Scottsdale, Arizona

Given this information, you'll have some idea which cities are most open to new authors and new publishers. If you live in any of these cities, you have a much greater opportunity to promote your books than authors who live in small towns like Fairfield, Iowa. Go for it!

Sunday, August 21, 2005

Display at the Southeast Booksellers Association

Florida Publishers Association is offering a display of books, catalogs and other products at the September 17-18 Southeast Booksellers Association (SEBA) Trade show in Winston-Salem, NC. To receive a PDF of display details, simply email Betsy Wright-Lampe at and ask for a reply with the SEBA PDF.

For those who are not interested in displaying but would like author/title information disseminated at the show, FPA is offering listings in its Southeast Authors List, a hardcopy flyer that will be both handed out and placed in attendee packets at SEBA. It includes the author’s name, location, discussion topics, most current book title/ISBN, geographic availability, date availability, and contact details. Authors are listed alphabetically by last name. Cost for a listing is only $10. For information on how to submit a listing, email Betsy Wright-Lampe at for the Southeast Authors List PDF.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Express Yourself Authors Conference

The Express Yourself…™ Authors’ Conference, September 30 – October 2, 2005, at the Sheraton Park Ridge in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, is "unlike any other conference because our entire focus is on helping authors to become more successful in selling their books." At this annual event writers, authors, presenters, editors, agents, and leading publishing experts – including Penny Sansevieri, Dan Poynter, John Kremer, Brian Jud, and Melanie Rigney – share ideas and exchange information throughout the weekend in seminar presentations, panel discussions, shared meals, and one-on-one consultations. Registration is $639.00, including lodging and all meals. For complete information, visit:

Friday, August 19, 2005

First Book Summit: Coming in September

The first Book Summit will be held on September 29, 2005, at the Sheraton Park Ridge, Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. The summit brings together industry visionaries for a round table discussion about the future of publishing as influenced by the dynamics of changing roles. Author-originated publishing is empowering authors with more control over their books. Printers are becoming distributors. Publishers are becoming retailers. Bookstores are becoming publishers. Niche retailers are becoming booksellers. The market is increasing with more titles being published but generating less revenue. The expanding roles have the ability to put fair profits back into publishing. The registration fee for an industry seat is $395. Publishing professionals are welcome in the gallery of this historic event for a $95 advance registration or $125 at the door. More info:

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Bestseller Ghost Writer for Hire

Here's a new service I'm now offering: Helping potential authors to write book proposals for best-selling books. Lots of additional services. All detailed at my new web site:

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Book Promotion Web Site for Authors

Reader's Suggested Web Site: "A service that you should add to your site that has worked very well for me is -- This site provides a network of sites that charge a resonable bundled fee with 100% money back if they don't deliver. I've had 4 authors use them and all 4 were very, very happy. I thing AC should charge more for what they offer but in talking with one of the owners they said it's against what they are about. They don't gouge. You should really push this company."

Well, so here I do. Check them out. It seems like a reasonable program.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Biology of Belief

Excerpted from the Southern Review of Books, a monthly ezine edited by Lee Xavier and published by Anvil Publishers.
Wonder if can be of any use to small publishers? Wonder no more. Take the case of cellular biologist Bruce Lipton, whose story was told recently by Elizabeth Gillespie of the Associated Press. One by one, the big houses in New York looked at the manuscript for his Biology of Belief: Unleashing the Power of Consciousness, Matter and Miracles, but eventually said no. “I wasted a whole year with them,” Lipton told her. Then he signed on with an independent press that relies heavily on Since then, he and his publisher say, more than 42,000 copies have sold in six months...
Today, when I checked, the book was rated at #83 on -- and without an bestseller campaign of any kind.

If you'd like your story featured in the Southern Review of Books, email the editor-in-chief Lee Xavier at

Monday, August 15, 2005

Speak Up to Sell Books

Wall Street Journal recently contrasted two new fiction releases: The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova and The Traveler by John Twelve Hawks.

According to the Journal, the reasons for the great success of The Historian vs. the more modest success of The Traveler were, as follows:
  • Kostova's excellence at public speaking (Twelve Hawks, on the other hand, refused to be interviewed or tour)

  • Her January prepublication tour

  • Her publication tour

  • Her ability to connect with booksellers, especially independents

  • The fact that a tale about vampires is generally more appealing than a science fiction novel.
If you get out and speak — and make friends by creating relationships — then you will be successful as a novelist. Anything less simply won't create the magic word-of-mouth for your novel.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Motivational Speakers and Authors

Marketing with Fran:
Motivational Speakers and Authors – The Secret to Their Success

“Whatever your mind can conceive and believe it can achieve.” -- Napoleon Hill (1883-1970)

“You become what you think about.” -- Earl Nightingale (1921-1989)

“Fear of failure becomes fear of success for those who never try anything new.” -- Wayne Dyer

“You can have everything in life that you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.” -- Zig Ziglar

The four most prominent motivational speaker-authors share five similarities that help account for their success:

(1) Childhoods laden with hardships
(2) Insatiable curiosity about human potential
(3) Desire to help others
(4) Backgrounds in careers that required speaking and outgoing personalities, i.e, sales, broadcasting or journalism.
(5) Persistence, persistence

Napoleon Hill was born into poverty in rural Virginia and his mother died when he was 10. Earl Nightingale also grew up poor, in Long Beach, California during the Depression, and his father left the family when he was 12. Wayne Dyer spent the first decade of his life in foster homes and orphanages. Zig Ziglar was born in rural Alabama during the Depression and his father died when he was still a boy.

From an early age, Napoleon Hill tried to find the answer to how people from meager backgrounds with no discernible advantages manage to reach tremendous heights in life. Striving to overcome a handicap of birth of ignorance and superstition, he studied the greats–Emerson, Paine, Edison, Darwin, Lincoln, Ford, Carnegie and his namesake, Napoleon–and tried to reshape his own character by emulating them. As a mountain reporter working his way through law school, Hill had an assignment to write a series of success stories of famous men and interviewed Andrew Carnegie. The steel magnate then commissioned the young reporter to interview more than 500 millionaires to find a success formula that could be used by the average person. It took Hill over 20 years to produce his ground-breaking book, Think and Grow Rich, in 1937.

In the book, Hill tells a story that illustrates his philosophy that “whatever your mind can conceive and believe it can achieve.” A man named Barnes was bent on partnering with Thomas Edison. One day Barnes showed up at Edison's door and Edison thought he looked like a tramp. But impressed with the determination on his face, Edison offered Barnes a job in his office at a nominal wage. It was not exactly the golden horseshoe, but when the opportunity did present itself, it turned out differently than Barnes expected. Edison had invented a dictating machine that left his salesmen unenthused. Barnes knew he could sell it so Edison gave him a contract to market the machine all over the nation. Barnes made a pile of money and proved that he could really “think and grow rich.”

Like his idol, Napoleon Hill, Earl Nightingale was hungry for knowledge. As a young boy he would frequent the Long Beach Public Library in California, searching for the answer to a question similar to Hills’s: “How can a person, starting from scratch, who has no particular advantage in the world, reach the goals that he feels are important to him, and, by so doing, make a major contribution to others?”

As a member of the Marine Corps, Nightingale volunteered to work at a local radio station as an announcer. Years later, he would become host of his own daily commentary program and for three decades was heard on more than 1,000 radio stations across the U.S., Canada, and 10 foreign countries. When he was 29, he read Think and Grow Rich and its message, “We become what we think about,” would become his credo. As owner of an insurance company, Nightingale spent time motivating his sales force to greater accomplishments. His sales manager begged him to put his inspirational words on record. The result, entitled The Strangest Secret, reveals the answer to the question that had inspired him as a youth. The recording was also the first spoken word message to win a Gold Record by selling over a million copies.

Zig Ziglar grew up with insecurities and small expectations. As a salesman, he had little confidence until a sales exec told him that if he would only recognize his ability he’d become a great one. Ziglar went on to become a star salesman and many of his books focus on improving the self-esteem of sales people around the world.

Dr. Wayne W. Dyer, author of 20 self-help books, is the only author in the self-improvement section of Barnes & Noble on 82nd Street and Broadway, to have a shelf embossed with his name. Affectionately known by fans as the father of motivation, Dyer began his career as an educator and eventually earned a doctorate in counseling psychotherapy.

He too borrowed from Napoleon Hill, especially the philosophy that we become what we think about. One principle he lives by is to focus on what you want and refuse to let anyone stand your way. He uses the example of the Wright Brothers. “I don’t think Orville and Wilbur said to each other, 'This thing is heavier than air, so how will it get off the ground?'”

How can we emulate these four masters of self-improvement? While we have no control over our birthright, we can expand our curiosity, help others to achieve their dreams, and always keep our eye on the ball.

Francine Silverman is editor/publisher of Book Promotion Newsletter, a bi-weekly ezine for authors of all genres, and author of Book Marketing from A-Z (Infinity Publishing 2005), a compilation of the best marketing strategies of 325 authors from all over the English-speaking world. Visit Book Promotion Newsletter and click “Ask the Experts” for answers to your book marketing questions.
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