Article: Focus on Short Fiction #motownwriters


There are many bad reasons to focus on short fiction and one really good one…and both present their own problems. Stick with me as I show you how to adapt your writing to short fiction OR expand your short stories into novels.

Bad Reasons to Write Short Stories

Short stories are great for your career, they say. Start with short fiction, they say, to

  • Build your publication credits
  • Help new audiences find you
  • Let editors know you’re serious
  • Raise your profile by winning contests
  • Keep your novel fans happy in between books

The problem is not everyone loves short stories. I’m talking about readers and writers, here.

Writing short, while undeniably a useful skill, just isn’t something everyone loves. Maybe you’re in that group.

The bigger problem for you is that the mythical ‘they’ who tell you short stories are a great tool in your toolbox aren’t wrong.

But don’t worry, I’m going to explain some of the reasons you find it hard to write short, and I’m going to show you some techniques for stopping your story’s attempt to become an epic 14-part novel series.

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#Learnwithme: How to Focus on one literary 📝project at a time✍🏿 #Motownwriters 📚💜 #writingcommunity

Deciding on the project and 8 tips to help you concentrate and get to THE END

Sunday, May 16th @ Noon –

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Article: This is How You Find Your Readers: Book Marketing in 2021 #motownwriters

If you have designs on publishing and selling a book this year, there’s work to do before, during, and after your book launch. My goal is to help guide you through the process so you can find your readers in 2021.

Thankfully, the American election season is now in the rear-view mirror, but there’s been one more landslide recorded when votes of another kind were tallied.

Every so often, I poll the BookBaby audience by asking this question: What do you want to learn about self publishing?

It’s the fourth time I’ve asked this question in my regular Saturday email. My previous queries have elicited a variety of responses. Some respondents asked for writing tips. Many others asked me to write about self publishing. And I’ve always received a smattering of requests for book marketing tips. Up to now, it’s been a mixed bag without any one area receiving a majority response.

Well, that all changed in my latest request for input. Here’s a representative sampling of the latest responses.

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Article: Step #1 To Finding Your Readers: Make The Best Book You Can #motownwriters

make the best book

Before you embark on a book marketing campaign, you need to make the best book you can. Without professional editing and design, your product won’t rise above the other great books in the marketplace.

Author’s note: This is the first in a regular series of blog posts focused on essential book marketing topics for self-published authors in our months-long campaign, 2021: The Year To Find Your Readers. These posts will cover topics in two categories:

  1. 100 days before publish. Tasks to accomplish while your book is still in production.
  2. 100 days after publish. The latest and greatest book marketing tactics for self-published authors.

My last BookBaby Blog post outlined my plan for devoting time and energy to helping self-published authors find readers. For the next few months, I’m going to share the latest, best, and most-effective marketing ideas we’ve discovered by working with thousands of BookBaby authors. So off we go!

Step #1 To Finding Your Readers | BookBaby Blog

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Article: 13 Book Marketing Ideas to Consider Before you Hit Publish#motownwriters

13 Book Marketing Ideas To Consider Before You Hit Publish

February 9, 2021 by Penny Sansevieri 3 CommentsReading Time: 8 minutes

One of the keys to a successful book marketing campaign (and one of the secrets of how to market a book) is PLANNING. And it doesn’t take a lot of effort, just a bit of time and looking ahead strategically. You poured a lot of effort into getting your book ready, now let’s give it the kind of book launch it deserves!

So, let’s look at a few things you need to do ahead of launch day, to prepare for a successful book launch!

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Article: What Authors Need to Understand about Different Book Publishing Options #motownwriters

As authors, we’re really fortunate when it comes to getting our books out there because we have more book publishing options than ever. That’s the good news. The bad news is, not all of those options are good.

A few years ago, I wrote a post on how the wrong book publishing options (or publisher) can kill your success, but it’s worth revisiting again. Because now, more than ever, there are so many ways for authors to get their books in print.

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What Authors Need to Understand about Different Book Publishing Options

February 16, 2021 by Penny Sansevieri 1 CommentReading Time: 6 minutes

As authors, we’re really fortunate when it comes to getting our books out there because we have more book publishing options than ever. That’s the good news. The bad news is, not all of those options are good.

A few years ago, I wrote a post on how the wrong book publishing options (or publisher) can kill your success, but it’s worth revisiting again. Because now, more than ever, there are so many ways for authors to get their books in print.

The issue is that once you’ve finished your book, you really just want to turn over the actual production of the book to someone else. I get it. I’ve published 18 books and I still know nothing about typesetting a book or the design elements that go into creating a stunning cover. I’d love to just hand that over to someone else.

But the truth is, your choices about *who* you publish with will impact your success – and not always for the best.

Types of Book Publishing Options and Publishers

There are a lot of different “types” of publishers out there, some big (think: Simon & Schuster) and some smaller, or “boutique” as they’re often referred to. Other publishers that are what’s called “hybrid” add another complexity to the mix.

So let’s explore some of these publishers and the options they might present to you and your book. We’ll start with the hybrid model because there’s a lot of confusion there. And with good reason. There’s no hard and fast outline about *what* exactly a hybrid publisher is.

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Blogging Rules For All Authors #motownwriters

Authors, regardless whether you are launching your first book or your 20th, whether you write fiction, poetry, children’s books, or nonfiction, and whether you self-publish or are with a traditional publisher, indie press, or university press, there is one rule you must abide by when it comes to blogging: You need one.

Here are some truths:

·         You need a website.

·         You need to be on social media.

·         You need book reviews.

·         You need third-party validation – the news media, testimonials, or other social media to praise you.

·         You need to blog.

Ok, so now that you uncovered this not-so-huge huge secret, that yes, you need a blog like yesterday, there are six more rules you must abide by when it comes to having a blog:Read more

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10 Writing Tips to Help You Sound More Human #motownwriters

This post is based on episode 52 of the ProBlogger podcast.

As a blogger, you will be judged by everything you say. Of course, unless you’ve just starting out and have never received a comment on your blog, you probably already know this.

But did you know you will also be judged by how you say it? Depending on the words you use you may come across as trustworthy or shifty, stiff or relaxed, friendly or unfriendly, genuine or fake, robotic or human.

And it’s that last one that I’d like to tackle today by giving you some writing tips to help you sound more human. As I’ve said many times, one of your goals as a blogger is to build relationships with your readers. But that’s unlikely to happen (at least not quickly) if everything you writer makes you sound like a robot.

And it’s not just blog posts you need to think about. You also need to sound human in your social media posts, your emails, and even in the microcopy you write your website such as your 404 page.

So here are ten things you can do to sound less like a robot and more like a human being.

Read more:

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#BookPromo Tip of The Day: Connect with readers: Capitalize on Personalized Video to deliver your marketing message #booksellingtechniques #motownwriters #booktips

Properly handled, a personalized video can connect immediately with its intended target—the essential first step for any marketing message.

By the Numbers:
📝📺📕👉🏽According to published reports, more than 90% of online marketers agree that video content is an essential part of the toolkit.
📝📺📕👉🏽According to Statista, 85% of all internet users in the US watch online videos.
📝📺📕👉🏽Adult males watch videos 40% more of the time than females.
📝📺📕👉🏽According to HubSpot, 54% of consumers want to see more video content from a business they support.

Benefits of Personalized Videos:
📷💗📚✅87% of consumers state that personalized video content will impact their opinion.
📷💗📚✅In B2B, personalized videos reduce friction.
📷💗📚✅They also increase the likelihood of conversion.
📷💗📚✅Engaging with your client by offering video content that is relevant will improve ROI.
📷💗📚✅Personalized video content builds trust and leads to engagement and increased sales.
via TheVideoBot

What are you doing to engage and increase your target market? What’s your video plan for next month?

Share a recent video talking to your readers about your book.


Grab Resources now to help you on your writing, publishing and marketing journey 

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Top 10 Things Every Best-Selling Book Must Have via @pamperry #motownwriters

Expert Author Pam Perry

If you talk to any author, they will tell you that writing their book was the easy part – compared to marketing it and getting folks to buy it!

You can go to any bookstore and get a book on how to publish your book or do a Google search on book publishing. (I recommend Dan Poynter’s Self-Publishing Manual – he’s been called the guru of self-publishing). You can even get a good editor to help you with your rough manuscript. If you really don’t want to do that much work and want to get your book out fast, you can go to “iuniverse” or “lulu” and have books produced as you needed. This is called Print-On-Demand (POD) – great for first time authors; they take your word document and turn it into a book. FedExKinkos is even in the book producing game.

The production of a book is now pretty common. That’s why we see so many people doing books.

But are the books selling? After the books are back from the printer/publisher – the real work begins. It’s time to promote and sell your book. You have just opened up a business. Like any new business, you need a business plan plus extensive knowledge of the field you’re in and good advisors. A standard statistic you need to know according to book industry sources: there are over 150,000 new books published every year. And typically we see the same roster of authors on the New York Times Best-Seller’s list.

As a book publicist for over ten years in the Christian literary field, I see what flys and what fizzles. Before you embark on this costly venture (prepare to spend at least $2,500 up to $10,000 for editing, production and promotion), I would like to share with you what I’ve learned on what makes a best-seller:

1. Title – is it griping, interesting? Would one know what it’s about without reading anything else?

2. Cover– people do judge a book by its cover. Make sure it has enough punch to stand out on the shelves among the thousands of other books. Is it clean, neat and crisp – yet interesting? Hire a professional!

3. Endorsements – what others say about you is key. Who these people are is even more important. Pull together the “best words from the best people.” It will pre-sell your book before you even open your mouth.

4. Writer’s credentials – do you have anything else with your byline? Do you blog? Do you have an audience that actually likes what you write?

5. Knowledge of the Market the book will reach – and the author’s reputation in that market. The author must create a market for himself by really addressing the needs of that market, knowing that market and communicating the right message to that market.

6. Timing – in relation to other events going on in the world/society. Are there movies, songs or talk shows that are bringing up the subject you have discussed in your book? Do you read the newspaper regularly and respond with Opinion Editorials when they are discussing “your” platform/topic?

7. Advertising – targeting the right message to the right media at the right time. Consistently!

8. Media coverage – publicity. The frosting on the cake. Getting on radio, TV and in newspapers and magazine and Ezines. Consistently (with advertising too).

9. Distribution – If you want to be a best-seller you must have your book available. Make sure you sign up with a distributor or wholesaler so it is accessible to bookstores. (Amazon is not national distribution… it is a website) Best-sellers are sold in real bookstores and they only order from distributors or wholesales. (See Sally Stuart’s Christian Writers Market Guide for distributors to approach. Note: You must have a press kit and solid marketing plan for them to consider you).

10. Word of Mouth – The best advertising. The more “buzz” you have about your book the better. How do you get people talking about your book? By engaging in their culture and creating messages in their media. Be relentless in your goal to be a “best-seller” – and it will happen if you commit to the publicity process and pray for favor.

Ministry marketing pioneer, Award-winning social media strategist and PR Coach Pam Perry helps African American Christian authors garner publicity and leverage online strategies. As a 20-year PR veteran, she is also the co-author of “Synergy Energy: How to Use the Power of Partnerships to Market Your Book, Grow Your Business and Brand Your Ministry.” She offers help through her private mentorship program at

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Freytag’s Pyramid: The Five-Act Structure Explained #bookmarketing #motownwriters

Freytag's Pyramid: The Five-Act Structure Explained

Freytag’s pyramid is a term that any writer obsessed with story structure will inevitably encounter. Conjuring up notions of dark, ancient tombs, this intimidating-sounding theory is actually very easy to understand. The pyramid, also known as ‘Freytag’s triangle’ or ‘five act structure’, is a straightforward way of organizing narrative.

Read on to discover the five acts that make up Freytag’s pyramid, and pay close attention as we apply each to Arthur Miller’s play Death of a Salesman. You’ll be a Freytag expert in no time. 

What is Freytag’s Pyramid?

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How to Sell Self Published Books Through Your Website #bookmarketing #motownwriters

How to Sell Self Published Books

This post is for every indie author who has ever typed “How to sell self published books” into a Google search bar and hoped that the answer would include “through your website.”

It’s often a goal of a self published or indie author to sell books off of their website. This is harder for traditionally published authors because of agreements between publishers and retailers. But if you’re an indie author, it is a lot easier to push readers to your website instead of Amazon.

Though Amazon is a trusted source for book buying, I know a lot of authors would like to keep a larger percentage of their sales and sell off of their website. So let’s look at ways to do that.

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21 Guaranteed Ways For Successfull Book Marketing #bookmarketing #motownwriters

To be successful at book marketing, you can take many paths. There is no one-size-fits-all approach that works for everyone. The only guarantee of a result comes from doing nothing, as nothing comes from nothing. So, what should someone do?

In a general sense, a marketing plan that leans on more than one area makes sense. Diversify. You may completely ignore some things, go big in one or two areas, and do a minimally mediocre job in a few other areas. Or your formula looks a lot different, but you take the approach that works for you.

There are at least 21 key areas to explore — but if you have other means to sell books and build a brand, go for it! Like a said, everyone should find their way and do what works. But the areas below are popular because many of them are affordable, attainable, and proven to work.

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Why Waiting Too Long to Register Your Copyright Is a Big Mistake #bookmarketing #motownwriters

 by Liani Kotcher | 

Today’s post is by former trial attorney-turned-author Liani Kotcher (@RektokRoss). She offers a free masterclass teaching the five most costly copyright mistakes she encounters (and how to fix them), which runs October 27 through November 3 and is accepting enrollment now.

Under the current Copyright Act of 1976 and its subsequent amendments, your creative works are protected by US copyright law as soon as they are put in a tangible medium, so long as they meet all the other elements required for copyright protection (i.e., they must also be original and must contain at least some level of minimal creativity).

For works created prior to 1978 that fall under older copyright acts there are other requirements like notice and registration, but currently there is nothing else you need to do and no other formalities you must adhere to in order for your post-1978 work to be copyrighted.

However, this does not make registration obsolete. In fact, far from it. Though registration with the Copyright Office is no longer required for protection, there are still a multitude of reasons why registration is important, including:

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