Saturday, June 30, 2012

Tutorial Tuesday – Klout?

Let me start off by saying I am not an expert in Klout. In fact, the more I look at it, the more I question its usefulness. That is my personal observation and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of IU Management, if they in fact have one. Anyone feeling differently is welcome to educate me in the comment section below.

This past Saturday, our Jim Devitt wrote an informative post about Klout. If you missed it, you can read it here. Jim did a great job covering the basics, so I’m not going to go over those again. I will give you, however a couple of tips on how to give someone a +K rating, and how to list them as an “influencer.”

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Saturday, June 23, 2012

Personal Appearance Troubleshooter

K. S. Brooks Reading from "Night Undone"
Last week I wrote about begrudingly participating in a public event. If you missed that post, you can read it here. Yes, I was a good girl, telling you all the reasons why you should pony up and “just do it.” Well, this week, I get to tell you how I really feel.

Many things can go wrong at an event. MANY. Unforeseen challenges, faux pas, wardrobe malfunctions and more are all a possibility. It’s best if you’re prepared, of course. Here are some product suggestions which will help you prevent a number of heinous scenarios.

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Saturday, June 16, 2012

Do I Have to?

K. S. Brooks at the PACA Awards
Yes, you do.

We all have to do things we don’t enjoy. Personally, I loathe the thought of personal appearances. I’m quite happy being a curmudgeonly hermit. It’s very safe here in my secret mountain lair. But sometimes an invitation comes my way – and I know I have to say yes.

Public appearances and events really don’t hurt that much. They can be tedious, and usually the amount of time spent in preparation usurps the event itself. So why do them? Well, unless you’re famous – or extremely eccentric – you sort of “have” to.

As a member of any community, artists – writers included – have a responsibility to promote the arts. Decline, and you’ll get a reputation as a snob, even if you’re not. Besides, isn’t a few hours of inconvenience a fair trade for free publicity?
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Saturday, June 9, 2012

Oh, for Tweet’s Sake

So many people complain about Twitter. ”I don’t get it” or “it’s a waste of time” or “why does anyone want to know what I’m doing” or “I don’t see how it can sell books.” Yeah, that was me, too, a while back. Then I decided to grab Twitter by the…eh, well, whatever one would grab it by and use it how I wanted.

Honestly? I get most of my news from Twitter. It’s fast and easy and I can glance down my home page and see headlines on subjects which interest me. Not what Yahoo! or CNN wants me to see – what I want to see. And it’s easy.

I like hearing about hockey, whales, satire, and human rights. I also like to know what book bloggers and reviewers are talking about. So I searched on those topics and picked out a few people to follow. Twitter then gave me suggestions of subject-related people I might like to follow. I checked them out. If they were my style – basically NOT tweeting every thirty seconds, I followed them. Bingo – I’m now following 20 or so people who will keep me updated on topics which interest me. Nice. As they tweet and retweet, I’ll learn about more people I’d like to follow. And so on.

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Saturday, June 2, 2012

Not Enough Homework

I get requests every day from authors – usually via email, asking for advice. How do I market my book? What’s an ISBN number? Is it important to have an eBook as well as a print book? My eyes are starting to roll back into my head.

I don’t mind helping and advising and what have you – but people need to do their homework. I’m not going to handhold if someone isn’t willing to put a little effort into it. This world of instant communication on the internet has made it way too easy for people to rifle off an email and let someone else do the work for them.

Here’s a question back: in the time it took to email me, couldn’t the answer about ISBN numbers for ebooks been just as quickly looked up on the Kindle or Smashwords web site? And here’s the answer: Why, yes, yes it could have. How do I know? Because I just did it back in October.

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