5 Ways Blogging Sells Books (original post by Molly Greene)

To some writers, blogging is cakewalk while others struggle to come up with what to say, how to say it, and how to attract readers. If you need innovative ideas, tips and expert guidance, look no further than Molly Greene’s excellent ebook “Blog It: The author’s guide to a successful online brand“.

Molly Greene is the author of the gripping Gen Delacourt mysteries (Mark of the Loon and Rapunzel), but I initially met her through her awesome blog (www.molly-greene.com) which is a source of inspiration to every blogger and new writer. I’m honored to have Molly’s permission to reblog her recent post 5 Ways Blogging Sells Books. Thanks, Molly!

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5 Ways Blogging Sells Books

Many of you don’t believe it’s true, that blogging can sell books and further your career. And you’re right, in the sense that blog posts should not be used as a direct-sale tactic for most authors. But I’m here to argue that a well-written, consistently updated blog can help novelists make sales.

How? Blogging makes your name, your voice, and your product recognizable, and builds a community that will help support your efforts. In addition, adding content on your blog delights Google, and when Google loves you, the search engine brings visitors to your site so they can see what you have for sale.

There is no doubt in my mind that blogging can be a value-added marketing strategy. True, you have to work at it, and it can take time to build traffic. But when readers start to find you – and they like what they see – you’ll make sales. Here’s what I think blogging can do for an author …

1. Blogging sells “you”
Professional commission-based sales reps who market any product or service know that selling is all about building relationships. The more interesting, engaging, helpful, encouraging, inspiring, and solution-oriented the salesperson, the better their chances of pulling down big commission checks. That’s why the best salespeople understand and nurture these qualities.

It’s similar with authors. Your blog gives you an opportunity to share with real and potential readers. Your blog is your “voice.” Who you are shines through. When people like you, they support you – and one of the ways they do that is by buying your books and spreading the word to other readers.

2. Blogging enhances your writing skills
Over time, once-a-week blogging just hands-down improves a writer’s skill in all areas of the craft, including fiction. And as we all know, the better the quality of our work, the better the word of mouth, the better the reviews, and the better our titles will sell. I published my first novel mid-2012 and didn’t get my second fiction title published until late 2013. What did I notice after two years of blogging? I wrote faster, better, and with more confidence. Better writing = better books = more sales.

Read the entire blog post on Molly Greene’s blog

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Review: Rapunzel by Molly Greene (5/5)

Cambria (Bree) Butler is at a low point in both her personal and professional life. What she least expects though is to find herself at a police station as a suspect in a murder case. Vulnerable and lost, she puts her fragile trust in the hands of her old friend, Genevieve Delacourt, an attorney-turned-detective. Together, Gen and Bree try to unweave a tangled web of lies and deception that will force Bree to get closer than ever to her inner strength–and death.

I needed a break from my emotionally charged, angsty reads so I jumped at the opportunity to review an advance copy of Molly Greene’s new mystery, Rapunzel. I’m familiar with Ms Greene’s writing as a blogger–she runs a great blog on writing and blogging–so I knew that at least her writing would be engaging. It was a whole lot more.

Instead of playing on the trend for instant gratification through a tell-all, adrenaline-inducing plot, the writer weaves an intricate story while giving you the impression that you can just lie back and enjoy a smooth ride. Wrong. “Rapunzel” is an exquisitely detailed puzzle, its pieces expertly hidden in each page of the book. So while you fall effortlessly in love with Gen and Bree, you’ll also be putting your puzzle-solving brain to work, sifting through details and descriptions that might seem they’re there to offer a glimpse into the main characters’ lives, but also serve as leads to solving a murder case. Gen and Bree are the kind of girls you want to be friends with–strong and adventurous with a vulnerable feminine side the reader can totally relate to. Their homes, families and backstory are gradually revealed to the reader in a way that proves that Ms Greene knows the golden rule of her (or any) genre: show them don’t tell them.

If you enjoy mystery stories with strong female leads and solid prose, look no further. This is your next read. As for mine? Mark of the Loon, the first Gen Delacourt mystery.

Get Rapunzel HERE

 

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Review: Broken Pieces by Rachel Thompson (5/5)

I’ve been staring at a blank screen for quite some time. My apprehension has nothing to do with the rating of this book—I’ve already given it 5 stars—it’s just that when a writer decides to bare her soul, reviews seem to me, well, sacrilegious. Therefore, I’m not taking the scenic route, deconstructing, analyzing, regurgitating—I’m just going to use descriptive adjectives: harrowing, heart-wrenching, raw, honest, empowering. But what I personally took from it was a strong sense of optimism. Because when life turns bleak—

Illumination only lasts until darkness decides to fall

—Rachel Thomson just flips the light switch back on.

Setting up an author platform: what I’ve learned so far

Happy new year 2014! New year design template Vector illustrationHappy New Year to all!

It’s time for me to evaluate my baby steps toward building an author platform, and I realize that probably the best decision I made in 2013 was to stop querying agents. “Sour grapes,” you’ll say, but that’s not the case as my query letter wasn’t a failure—it got me two partial requests out of the ten agents I sought out. No, I didn’t manage to get representation, but I found out in the process that I wasn’t very keen to take the back seat and hand over full control of my work to an agent and then a publisher. To be more specific, I didn’t want to see a headless man with a six-pack on the cover of my romance novel (not that I have anything against men with six-packs or covers with naked torsos) or my hearty epilogue chopped because of some imprint’s word-count limitations. But the real reason I don’t regret stopping the pursuit of traditional publishing is the brave new world indie publishing has opened to me.

I have a mere two-month online presence as an aspiring author, but I’m astounded by the possibilities not only for professional but for personal growth as well. I’ve already met wonderful, creative and inspiring people online, and most are truly willing to help a newcomer. I’ve gathered a wealth of valuable information,and now I feel more empowered to face the challenges that putting my work out there entails. I’ve also realized that without a solid platform, the odds of eventually being picked up by an agent are slim (I thought that applied only to non-fiction writers).

So here I am with a brand new blog, about three hundred followers on Twitter and ready to share what I’ve learned so far.  Continue reading “Setting up an author platform: what I’ve learned so far”