Category Archives: Brand You

Some links about book marketing, subscription services, and email/social media etiquette

Book Marketing

This is the Future of Book Marketing

“The Twitter feed isn’t a direct continuation of the novel, necessarily. It’s just a collection of [Loud]’s thoughts as he completes different missions and assignments,” he says. “The first book is an origin story. But now, before the next book comes out, his tweets will let him — and his new role, as you’ll see from the book — stay fresh in readers’ minds.”

Subscription services

Scribd CEO Aims for $1 Billion in Revenue from EBook Subscriptions

Scribd, the digital distribution, document storage and book discovery platform, has announced the launch of its eBook subscription service, which will give users access to an unlimited amount of books for $8.99, including a free one month trial.

Kickstarter No-Go

The Failures of Crowdfunding; No, Kickstarter Cannot Support an Opera Company

Well, you don’t know unless you try, right? (And who knows, now that they’re getting this kind of media exposure, maybe more people will throw money their way at Kickstarter.)(Update: oops! If you go to the Kickstarter page now, a notice reads “Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator 1 day ago.”)

Social Media Etiquette

Basic Social Media Hygiene

Or, a Brand You primer.

57 Ways To Sign Off On An Email
(thanks @markhurst)

According to this article, my sign-offs are all wrong. (Using “Thanks” as a sign-off is a no-no and “Yours” is completely outdated. Back to school for me.)

(On another front, isn’t Forbes use of all initial caps in headlines annoying?)

Banned books, comic books (sort of), branding, and films

Books

One more reason to like social media.

Grassroots response to banning of Invisible Man in Randolph County, North Carolina

7 Reasons Your Favorite Books Were Banned

Ways to Celebrate Banned Books Week

Comic books (sort of)

French Can Now Get Current Events as Digital and Print Comics

Branding (Personal)

Looking around I ran into the Book Whisperer Blog and one of the posts there has to do with what I consider personal branding. It’s a riff on the Kardashians but still I like it. It’s aimed at teachers and school librarians, but, you know, most of it applies to everyone, including you.

Bryan Cranston from the TV series Breaking Bad was profiled in the September 16, 2013 issue of The New Yorker. One paragraph begins: “Cranston says, matter-of-factly, ‘I often find myself in a pickle and having to apologize, because that’s what risk-takers have to do.'” This reminded of a quote that I first saw on a Tom Peters slide: “Don’t ask for permission; beg for forgiveness.” I often wondered who said that first. Turns out it was Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper. Always a good mantra to keep in mind. Of course you have to be prepared for the trouble your actions may cause.

Maine!

Camden International Film Festival begins tomorrow, September 26. Camden, Maine is a beautiful place to visit this time of year. You could see a lot of great films, too.

Facebook page

Miscellaneous

The Scrabble Diet

Scrabble

flickr photo credit: Alex_untitled

Links about books, publishing, marketing, photography, and Brookline, MA

First Jonathan Franzen published an article about Karl Kraus, “an Austrian satirist and a central figure in fin-de-siecle Vienna’s famously rich life of the mind” that veered into an attack on our current lives, technology, Twitter users, and Amazon.com, among other things. Jonathan Franzen: what’s wrong with the modern world

Then Jennifer Weiner, called out as one of those “yakkers and braggers,” responded with: What Jonathan Franzen Misunderstands About Me

And then Porter Anderson weighed in with this summation and compilation of many of the different voices that joined the discussion. Writing on the Ether: What’s Wrong With Franzen

While on the subject of books, this from Publishing Perspectives. Leah Price, professor of English at Harvard University, answers the question, “what is  a book?” What Exactly is a Book, Anyway?
Quote: “This is one reason that UNESCO defined ‘book’ in 1964 as ‘a non-periodical printed publication of at least 49 pages, …made available to the public’… [I guess meaning that a 48-page document cannot be a book.]

But maybe books are just too long:

The big short—why Amazon’s Kindle Singles are the future

But then again, Tom Junod writes an article for Esquire titled: “The Dominance of Looooooong In the Age of Short.” (While theoretically about long-form written pieces, this article seems to be speaking more to our TV- and movie-watching habits.) [Thanks to Dave Pell’s NextDraft newsletter]

And speaking of new ways to tell a story, the New York Times publishes an illustrated article: Tomato Can Blues

Making it easier than ever to grab Tweet-able text from articles. Quote me: How digital publishing is getting straight to the source

Two words to guide you in your Tweeting:
A Super Simple 2-Word Social Media Strategy: Be Useful  [from Inc.com]
[thanks @jimstorer]

And if you should find yourself speechless, head over here: Fill the Silence

Ah, Brookline:
The turkey tenace temporarily at bay, Brookline mobilizes to fight creeping Allstonization

Though my photo here is at odds with the headline above:

Wild turkeys, Brookline, MA

Ah, Brookline (II):
Man Arrested for Using Leaf Blower in Brookline

(Since it’s after September 15, I’m guessing these guys were leaf blowing before 9 a.m. on Yom Kippur. That’s a no-no.)

Lastly, a link to the New York Times photo blog, a series of hometown photos taken by teenagers.

Links about books and marketing and publishing

Some random links about books and business of books and marketing of books. (And don’t forget it’s Talk Like a Pirate Day.)

Hugh Howey comes to Boston. Hugh Howey is a sci-fi writer who is massively popular. I’m not quite sure why. Clearly people like his stories. And he’s one of those self-publishing success stories. His writing style leaves something to be desired. Too many words. Even one of the commenters at Amazon says that Howey’s descriptions of things often go on too long and that reader has gotten in the habit of skipping over those parts. Hmmm. Whatever happened to editors?

Win a Literary Tour trip to NYC, courtesy of Kirkus Reviews. Just for fun. And who knows, you might win a trip to NYC. Even if you win, they don’t have the rights to your image or name to infinity and beyond, which seems to be the case with many of these prize giveaways.

Five Reasons to Use a Facebook Profile (Not a Page) to Build Platform
From Jane Friedman’s excellent writing/publishing website/blog, a guest post by Lisa Hall-Wilson.

On a slightly related front: The Very First Step to Building a Business Around a Lifestyle Hobby (This guy says Facebook first, then a blog.)

My 11 Questions about Publishing E-books on Amazon’s Kindle

How to Host a Virtual Book Tour

Is bad book publicity better than no publicity at all? [Though the article really is about plagiarism…] I include this because the writer mentions Eugene Tobin, president of Hamilton College, who resigned over a convocation speech that contained some plagiarized sections. I graduated from Hamilton College.

Self-Published Title from Jim Carrey Very Telling about the State of Publishing
Jim Carrey has written a children’s book and the author of this article thinks it’s interesting that the self-published aspect is not the story. I think it’s odd that the book has a web page where pages are still under construction.

National Book Awards Long List for Non-Fiction

Collaborate with a Loved One Without Ruining Your Relationship Because I know Tom and David Kelley, who are mentioned, and because I know someone who might be writing a book about staying married while running a business together.

Two books about cities, New York and San Francisco, authored by men who did a lot of discovery by walking. I like the idea of long walks in cities. It is the best way to find things you don’t know about. I haven’t read either one of these books, but they both sound good.

A Walker in the City (An article in the New Yorker)

The New York Nobody Knows

The New York Nobody Knows (book cover)

San Francisco Treats (A book review from the New York Times)

Cool Gray City of Love: 49 Views of San Francisco

CoolGrayCityofLove-cover

Lights, Camera, Action

Or, “Lights, Lights, and Lights.” A two-minute-twenty-second video about advantages of daylight light bulbs when making videos of yourself.

Speaking soon?

Mark Hurst, from "What Matters Now"

Looking through some e-books for some ideas on look and feel, I came across this page in What Matters Now, a pdf compilation of one-page statements from dozens of folks and compiled by Seth Godin and his team. It originally came out in December, 2009 and is available over here. I liked what Mark Hurst had to say about preparing for a talk. Click on the image above to see a readable version of the slide. An excerpt below:

A few weeks before the event, when you start preparing the talk, write out everything you spend your time doing—professional work, side projects at home, everything.

Now pick the one thing you’re most excited about.

Now consider: why is that so important to you?

Design your talk from that point, as if you started by saying, “My name is X, and I’m passionate about XYZ because…”

There’s lots of other good ideas in the 82-page booklet as well.

Speaking of Mark, here’s an interview I conducted with Mark about his book, Bit Literacy, over at tompeters.com in 2007. (That sounds like a lifetime ago…)

Twitter: @markhurst

Speaking to and engaging with

These days, if you’re an author, you’re a speaker. (That notion definitely pertains to business authors and probably most non-fiction authors as well. Fiction authors, well, not yet, though I know a writer of young adult novels who makes most of his income speaking.) And if you’re going to speak, you want to connect; and one real good way of making a connection is to get the audience involved beyond just sitting in their chairs. Here’s a link to Nick Morgan’s podcast about how to engage your audience when you’re giving a talk. And he doesn’t mean Q & A. (As he says, that’s so 20th century.) Well worth listening to. Eight minutes; four ways to get audience to do more than just listen. (Nick is an author, communication theorist, and coach. If you’re going to speak, and I think we’ve already ascertained that you are, you should check out his website: publicwords.com.)

One way to engage your audience not covered by Nick is singing. I recently attended a book reading at the local Brookline Booksmith for Caitlin Shetterly who read from her book Made for You and Me: Going West, Going Broke, Finding Home. After she finished reading, she handed out photocopied lyrics to Woody Guthrie’s “This Land is Your Land,” and asked us all to sing along. She references the song in her book, but the version we sang included a more political verse about private property that did not make it into the popular version that we all know so well from our grade-school days. To sing along with friends, neighbors, and book lovers was really phenomenal—and completely unexpected, thus memorable. How many book readings that you’ve been to have stuck in your mind? Not many, I’d guess. Want to have a memorable speech, talk, book reading? Engage with your audience.

Information from wikipedia about “This Land is Your Land.”