Is Your Author Bio Compelling Enough? Sell More Books With a Great Bio!

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How To Write A Compelling Author Bio

author-bios

When you wrote your Amazon book page, how much thought did you put into the author bio? Did you quickly throw together some random sentences just so you could finish the page and hit “publish”?

Did you even bother to write an author bio at all?

No one reads the author bio… so it doesn’t really matter, right?

Wrong!

Unless you’re a household name, the author bio matters!

I’m assuming you’re not Grisham, or Godin, or Ferriss, or Fleming (that last one would be particularly difficult to achieve) – which means very few people other than your mom will buy the book purely because you’re the author.

Instead, those who end up on your book page will rely on a few key details to help them determine whether or not to buy it. Those details are: book reviews, book description, and author bio!

(It’s a given that you need a stellar front cover, an attention-grabbing book title, and a sophisticated keyword strategy. But those are the elements that get users to your book page in the first place – not what keeps them there.)

The author bio is where you establish yourself as the kind of person who ought to be read by your target market. It’s where you forge a connection with your potential readers and get them to trust you, believe in you, and want to read what you have to say. If you take the author bio seriously and get it right, you’ll sell more books. *That’s* why the author bio matters.

In This Article, You Will Learn:

  • How to decide which information to include (and what you can leave out) in your author bio
  • The best “tone” and “personality” to use
  • Tips on making sure your author bio is persuasive and engaging
  • How to add the bio to your book listing page
  • An author bio template checklist

First, though, a quick explanation of which author bio we’re talking about. On Amazon, there are two kinds of bio: the generic bio on your “Author Page,” and separate bios for each of your books. The advice in this post is aimed at your bio on your individual book pages (although much of it will still be relevant to your main “Author Page”).

Let’s go!

STEP 1: STRATEGICALLY PREPARE FOR  YOUR AUTHOR BIO

Before you write your masterpiece of an author bio, ask yourself the following questions.

What’s Your Book About?

If your book is a contemporary romance novel with a middle-aged female protagonist, the personality and content of your author bio will be markedly different from if you’re writing about tax-deduction strategies for real estate investors.

While this may seem like the most “obvious” advice ever, you’d be surprised by just how much unnecessary or inappropriate content (in terms of the book’s subject matter) finds its way into the author bio. If your nightmare-inducing horror novel contains a perky and cheerful author description about your love for puppies and former career as a glassblower, it’s just going to confuse readers and lose their connection to your writing.

Who Are You Writing For?

Closely linked to the question above, you need to think about your target reader.

Who did you have in mind when writing the book?

Who do you want to buy and read it?

Will that person be looking for evidence of your credibility in the field and reassurance that you’re an authority on the subject? Or are you hoping to attract people who are drawn to your personality or unique opinions or insights?

Figure it out, then write for that person. Try not to add information to your bio “just in case” a different kind of reader might appreciate it. You’ll end up with a behemoth of a bio that no one reads because it’s simply too daunting.

 

What Tone And Personality Suit The Author Bio?

Again, this ties into the previous questions. If you’ve written a funny fictional story, go with that same humor in your bio. If your book is a spiritual guide to personal growth, some life-affirming positivity wouldn’t go amiss.

You can also use the author bio to guide the reader into understanding what the personality of the book will be like – which is particularly useful when the tone of the book is unusual or surprising compared to the subject matter.

For example, there’s a book called Profit First: A Simple System To Transform Any Business From A Cash-Eating Monster To A Money-Making Machine. If anyone reaches the Amazon page thinking the author will have an overly aggressive or arrogant approach, the bio (a fabulous combination of humor, credentials, and authority on the subject) will set them straight:

“Mike Michalowicz (mi-KAL-o-witz) is the author of Profit First, The Pumpkin Plan and the “entrepreneur’s cult classic” (BusinessWeek), The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur. With a popular, quirky website MikeMichalowicz.com, he is a globally recognized entrepreneurial advocate. Mike is a former small business columnist for the Wall Street Journal, is MSBNC’s business make-over, has built and sold two multi-million dollar companies and currently runs his third.”

STEP 2: HOW TO WRITE AN AUTHOR BIO

While you’re writing, keep asking yourself: Is this relevant to my reader? Will they be interested in the fact that I was born in California or that I was top of my class in Physics once?

And while we’re on this topic… no one cares that you always wanted to be a writer. Well done that you’re living your dream, but seriously: leave it out unless you’re writing a memoir.

This isn’t to say that your bio should be impersonal. On the contrary: it’s your opportunity to connect with readers and make them feel like they know you and *want* to read your work. You just need to make sure the information you include is relevant and will be of genuine interest to them.

Here are some other things to consider while writing:

Go With The Third Person

“About the author” demands the third person. While it may feel a bit weird to write “he” or “she” rather than “I,” there’s one major benefit: it’ll come across as less boastful when you start mentioning all your (relevant) accomplishments and accolades.

That said…

We All Know You Wrote Your Own Author Bio

You can’t go waaay overboard showing off because – even though the author bio is in the third person – every reader will know you wrote it. State your achievements, sure, but don’t become a braggart: try to bring a little humility and modesty to the text.

Keep Your Author Bio Short

Even if you have a ton of biographical information that relates to your book, very few people will be prepared to wade through nine paragraphs of it. The faster they can read about you, the faster they can click the link to buy your book.

The general consensus on word count is aim for 75 words, but definitely don’t go above 150. It takes effort and practice to distill everything into such a short space, but once you’ve nailed it you’ll be able to fit a great deal of personality and information into those words.

Use It Like A Business Card

Give readers a way to interact with you by adding your website or social media info. At the very least, they’ll be able to find out more about you and explore your other works.

STEP 3: ADD THE AUTHOR BIO TO YOUR BOOK PAGE

You can do this in one of two ways:

  • Visit Amazon Author Central, click on your book, and add it in the “About the Author” section OR…
  • If you published a paperback version of your book on CreateSpace, you can enter the bio in the “Author Biography” section for your book. There isn’t an equivalent field in KDP, but when you include this information on CreateSpace, it’ll automatically get included on the Kindle version of your book on Amazon.

USE THESE AUTHOR BIO EXAMPLES AS INSPIRATION

Here are some real-life author bios that combine most or all of the tips above:

Damn Delicious: 100 Super Easy, Super Fast Recipes: “Chungah Rhee is the founder, recipe developer, and photographer of Damn Delicious. What began as a grad school hobby is now a top food blog, with millions of readers coming to her site for easy weeknight recipes and simplified gourmet meals. She lives and continues to cook non-stop in Los Angeles, with her baby corgi, Butters. Visit her at damndelicious.net.” [60 words]

Long Range Shooting Handbook: Complete Beginner’s Guide to Long Range Shooting: “Ryan Cleckner served as a special operations sniper team leader with the U.S. Army’s elite 1st Ranger Bn. on multiple combat deployments. Ryan is a graduate of the premier Special Operations Target Interdiction Course (SOTIC), among other military training courses, and has taught snipers and police sharpshooters from around the world. Ryan has a series of online instructional videos known for their ability to explain complex topics in a simple and digestible way. Ryan is currently a firearms industry professional and an attorney.” [83 words]

Diary of a Farting Creeper: Why Does the Creeper Fart When He Should Explode? (Volume 1): Who is Wimpy Fart? Wimpy Fart loves Minecraft and writes awesome Minecraft books for YOU because you are the best Minecraft fans in the world. You can email Wimpy Fart to tell him about your favorite Minecraft books, or to talk about really loud farts. wimpyfart@gmail.com Oh – Wimpy Fart reads all your awesome Amazon reviews and likes to know what you want to read about in Minecraft books! [68 words]

Forgotten Secrets: Internationally bestselling and award-winning author Robin Perini is devoted to giving her readers fast-paced, high-stakes adventures with a love story sure to melt their hearts. A RITA Award finalist, she sold fourteen titles to publishers in less than two years after winning the prestigious Romance Writers of America Golden Heart Award in 2011. An analyst for an advanced technology corporation, she is also a nationally acclaimed writing instructor and enjoys competitive small-bore rifle silhouette shooting. Robin makes her home in the American Southwest and loves to hear from readers. Visit her website at http://www.robinperini.com. [94 words]

Screen Shot 2017-01-17 at 5.25.27 PMDave Chesson’s Own Blog Bio at Kindlepreneur: (Added by Dave here) I probably don’t have to tell you but I’m pretty much a techy goof ball.  And hopefully, my bio does a great job of conveying it. Using humor and an upbeat manner, I hope I’ve created a dialogue that lets Kindlepreneur readers know exactly who I am as a writer for this site in 34 words. But the inspiration for such a bio came after I read an amazing biography of John Scalzi at the end of his book “Old Man’s War.” It was this biography that drove me to buy John’s next book and follow him on his blog…does that make me a stalker?  John Scalzi, what do you think?

USE THIS AUTHOR BIO TEMPLATE

The information you include in your author bio (and the personality of your text) will depend on a combination of many factors.

There’s no “one size fits all” approach. Having said that, the following checklist provides a structure you may wish to consider. If you browse many of the best author bios, you’ll notice they tend to follow this sequence:

Punchy, impactful intro sentence

Introduce industry/field/authority area

Build credibility without overly bragging

Add a personal touch

Finish on a call to action (check out new book, follow on social media, etc.)

YOU’RE READY!

The steps in this post take you through everything you need to think about and do when it comes to writing your own author description. Refer back to them when you start writing – and you’ll have a persuasive, engaging author bio that wins more fans and sells more books in no time!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: MISH SLADE

Mish Slade, author of the How to Write a Author Bio article

Mish Slade is the founder of copywriting agency Mortified Cow  – which takes a decidedly different view on how businesses should promote themselves. Her latest book is called May I Have Your Attention, Please? Your Guide to Business Writing That Charms, Captivates, and Converts.

If you are curious, here is Mish’s “Bio” from the About page of her website (and yes, it’s funny)…

About Us
We’re Mish and Rob, and we’re on a mission to help businesses discover their greatness and win their 
dream customers. To be honest, we’re only doing it to save our marriage.
Trouble is, looking at bad business copy puts us in such a foul mood we start sniping at each other. One too many lame clichés or labored passages of jargon, and before you know it the dinner’s in the dog and sex is off the menu for the rest of the week.
So we’re working through the problem, one business at a time – it’s our own form of relationship counseling.

Where Does Your Book Belong?

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As authors responsible for our own marketing, we must think beyond the “bookstore” when it comes to placing our books out in the world. Any author, traditional or self-published, can benefit from selling their books in gift and specialty shops…

–Sell gardening books to garden stores and nurseries.

–Cookbooks and food-centric books belong in gourmet food stores and cookware shops.

–Children’s books can be found in kids’ clothing stores and toy stores.

–Travel and adventure books are great for airports

–Health and weight loss books are perfect for hospital stores

–Books with dogs would be popular at pet stores and dog shows

–Stories like Sideways, Bottle Shock, and A Good Year can sell at wineries and wine shops

You get the picture.

We have a friend named Stacy O’Brien who wrote a best-selling book called “Wesley the Owl: The Remarkable Love Story of an Owl and His Girl.” Although it’s published by Simon and Schuster, it was Stacy’s creative marketing efforts that launched the book to best-seller-dom. What did she do? She started calling bird stores and pet stores to place her book in front of the right type of people. But the tipping point came when she contacted a bird watchers convention and said, “Instead of giving away keychains at the door, why not give away my book? They ordered thousands and gave a copy to every bird watcher at the convention. One simple phone call and it changed everything!

We have an author, Thomas Wasper, who wrote a brilliantly quirky, dark comedic, novelty type book with full color illustrations called “A Stitch in Crime: The Poetry of Murder.” He approached Urban Outfitters to place the book at checkout as an impulse buy.

So start thinking outside the box! Where does your book belong?

Written a mystery? What about contacting those who-done-it clubs and mystery dinner theater shows who get audiences involved in solving a crafted murder?

Westerns, sci-fi, fantasy, and romance all have conventions and online hangouts.

There’s a place for every type of reader. And there are readers for every type of book.

Remember, you are not just looking for readers, you are looking for super fans who will help tip your book! So start visiting the places where your readers hang out (online and out in the world). Join the conversations. Don’t talk about your book. Just talk about the genre. “Be interested and interesting!” as my grandmother used to say. Then when they ask what you do, say you are an author. That will get them asking what you have written and what the book’s about. Be brief! Give them your practiced “elevator speech” and then answer any questions they might have. Don’t ramble on about your book. If they show interest, offer to send them a free digital copy.

AND keep at it! Don’t just go once. Be a consistent contributor! Let them get to know you (and love you). YOU are the greatest asset you have when it comes to selling your books. When people know and like an author, the chances of them reading your book, and spreading the word about it, increase exponentially. 

Now go mingle!

Happy Holidays

Gineve

How NOT to Insult the Reader’s Intelligence

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by Kristen Lamb

From: https://warriorwriters.wordpress.com/

ya-reader

I would wager that most of us do not sit up all night thinking of ways to treat our readers like they’re stupid. Yet, it is a common problem, especially with newer writers who are still learning the craft. But all of us can slip into these nasty habits, if we aren’t mindful. It’s as if we get so wrapped up in our story that we mentally stumble in that brief span from synapse to keyboard, and inadvertently end up treating our readers like they need to ride the short bus. So today, I put together a list of bad habits to make it easier for you guys to spot when you are coaching the reader.

Offender #1—Adverb Abuse

One of the reasons I am such a Nazi when it comes to adverbs it that they are notorious culprits for stating the obvious. “She smiled happily.” Um, yeah. “He yelled loudly.” As opposed to yelling softly? To be blunt, most adverbs are superfluous and weaken the writing. Find the strongest verb and then leave it alone.

The ONLY time an adverb is acceptable is when it is there to denote some essence that is not inherent in the verb.

For example: She whispered quietly. Okay, as opposed to whispering loudly?

Quietly is implied in the verb choice. Ah, but what if you want her to whisper conspiratorially? Or whisper sensually? The adverbs conspiratorially or sensually tell us of a very specific type of whisper and are not qualities automatically denoted in the verb.

Offender #2—Qualifiers

It is really unnecessary to qualify. We get it. Using qualifiers is similar to adding in needless adverbs. If we have just written a scene about a heated argument, trust me, our characters don’t need to “slam the door in frustration” (yep…got it) or “scowl with disapproval” (uh-huh) or “cry in bitter disappointment” (gimme a break).

The qualifiers add nothing but a cluster of extra words that bogs down the prose. If someone slams the door right after a heated scene of arguing, the reader gets that the character is angry, frustrated, upset. We don’t need to spell it out.

Like adverbs, it is perfectly okay to use qualifiers, but it’s best to employ them very sparingly (and only ones that are super awesome). Allow your writing to carry the scene. Dialogue and narrative should be enough for the reader to ascertain if a character is angry, hurt, happy, etc. If it isn’t, then forget the qualifiers and work on the strength of the scene.

Offender #3—Punctuation & Font as Props

You are allowed three exclamation points every 50,000 words—just so your editor can cut them and then laugh at you for using exclamation points in the first place. Hey, a little editor humor🙂. 99% of the time exclamation points are not necessary if the prose is strong.

“Get the kids out of the house!” he yelled. (Yep)

I recently read a non-fiction marketing book where the writer used an exclamation point on every single sentence. I felt like I was learning marketing from Billy Mays. At best, the guy was shouting at me for page after page. At worst, he was monotonic, because when we emphasize everything, we emphasize nothing.

Ellipses do not make a scene more dramatic, just…make…the…writing…more…annoying. Ellipses can be used but, again, very sparingly.

Italics used for emphasis is still used in some genres but it is considered “old style” now. Like ellipses, we need to use it sparingly or we run the risk of insulting our reader’s intelligence. If you come to a point where you believe it is absolutely necessary to use italics, I suggest trying to strengthen the scene first.

In fiction, bold font is almost never acceptable. Again, if a passage is well written, the reader will stress the word(s) in his/her head. Trust me. We don’t need to hold our reader’s hand, or brain, or whatever.

Is it ever okay to use bold font? Sure, if you write non-fiction. In non-fiction we are teaching, so certain key words or points need to stand out.

In the world of fiction? No bold font. That is the tool of an amateur.

Offender #4—Telling Instead of Showing

Most of us have been beaten over the head with the saying, “Show. Don’t tell.” There is a good reason for that. Telling is a lazy method of characterization. Most readers are pretty sharp and like figuring things out on their own. Thus, if we spoon-feed information that should be given via the story, we risk turning off the reader.

New writers are almost always guilty of telling instead of showing. Why? Simple. They’re still learning techniques that are going to take time and practice to develop. Yet, all of us, regardless our skill level need to be wary of this narrative crutch. To be blunt, telling is far less taxing on the brain, so our lazy nature will try to take shortcuts if we aren’t careful.

Actions speak louder than words. Yeah, it is easy to just tell the reader our antagonist is a real jerk, but it is better to show our antagonist doing things that make the reader decide this for himself. We accomplish this by creating an antagonist who simply does things jerks do.

Good writers don’t tell readers a character is ticked off. Good writers show she is ticked off. Crossed arms. No eye contact. Clenched jaw. Slamming doors. Remember that over 95% of communication is non-verbal. Use this to your writing advantage. When creating characters, think about what actions will define your character’s nature or mood universally.

For a character’s nature: If you want to create a cad, think what actions cads do that would make everyone in a room label him the same way—checking out every woman who walks by, openly flirting with other women, using breath spray every 5 minutes, telling sexist jokes, etc.

For a character’s mood/mental state: Regardless of culture, we can tell if someone is mad, hurt, sad, or happy by body language. Make a list of all the body language cues for the mood you wish to create. A book on body language can be extremely helpful for the more subtle stuff. For instance, people who lie often rub a body part (wringing hands) or tap. Why? Unless people are sociopathic, it usually causes mental stress to lie, so the rubbing or tapping is a sign of energy displacement. See, these are the sort of details that make good writing into much better writing.

I would also recommend picking up a copy of Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi’s The Emotion Thesaurus. This is a tool every writer needs to have handy.

by Kristen Lamb
A version of this fist appeared on: https://warriorwriters.wordpress.com/

Kristen Lamb is the author of the top resource for author branding in the digital age, Rise of the Machines—Human Authors in a Digital World and the #1 best-selling books We Are Not Alone–The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer , which teach you how to make building your author platform FUN. Build a platform and still have time left to write great books.

10 Simple Things A Writer Can Do To Get Published

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(This is a partial repost from an August 2012 blog post written by author,  editor,  and publisher Cat Spydell)  To follow: CatSpydell.wordpress.com

From the publishers at World Nouveau Inc.:  While this article was originally posted as tips for our own would-be authors, the information can be applied universally to any publishing house. Here are some ideas and tricks to breaking into the publishing industry!

Ten Simple Things a Writer Can Do to Get Published

1. This may seem obvious, but follow the rules! The rules for submitting your query/manuscript are posted on our very detailed website. There is a reason we want a certain subject line in your email and for your Word document to have specific words and abbreviations in it, so we can FIND it again. Many writers name their documents something like “fictionmanuscriptversion1″ and their emails often are labeled “Submission.” Nice knowing you. Make sure your last name and book title are in the email subject line and in your document name. Also, check our webpage to see what genres we are currently accepting. Yes, we published a popular poetry book, but we aren’t taking poetry right now.

2. Use correct spelling in your query letter. Yes, we will notice if you wrote “our” when you meant to write “ours” or if you made other small errors. It is my job to edit! We assume if you can’t get it right in the letter, you will make our jobs harder because your book will need more editing, and that is already a strike against your manuscript before we have even seen it. Read your letter out loud before you send it to us; you’ll catch most errors that way.

3. Read up on cover letter writing. It is a skill that needs to be honed just like writing good fiction is a skill that needs to be honed. A wonderful cover letter speaks volumes for a potential author. Be friendly, keep it brief, tell us your background, describe your book, maybe even tell us how you heard about our company. One page. Two and I worry that your manuscript may be verbose.

4. Find us and introduce yourselves to us. If you hear that we will be speaking at a conference or have a booth at an event like the LA Times Book Festival, by all means come and talk to us. We accepted for publication many manuscripts from authors we met at a recent event. When we connect in person with future authors, we tend to give their books more time in our decision making process.

5. Get serious about being a writer. Don’t act as if this book you want us to publish is a one-off! We get a lot of submissions from “bucket listers” and we prefer polished writers who know their craft. It takes a lot of work to get a book from manuscript format to a quality book on the shelves. Show us how serious you are: Do you have a blog, perhaps one about being a frustrated writer? Do you promote yourself online? Have a marketing plan? Attend writing conferences? Let us know if you have a Twitter account or a Facebook page with friends who support you, or better yet, a self-published book. We look at all of these aspects of a potential author and appreciate veterans who have put in their time to make it in the publishing world.

6. Review before you send. So we agreed to read your manuscript, and…there are twenty “ly” words on the first page. ‘He quickly pushed his hands in his pockets. “Dang,” he whispered quietly, wondering what the lump in the road ahead could possibly be.’ Yes, when I read, I am counting “ly” adverbs. Adverbs in general equal lazy writing. We know you can do better, and expect you to! I won’t go into too much detail here, but quickly pushed could be shoved, whispers are quiet, and could possibly be is just ugly. Don’t get lazy, fry those “ly” words if they add nothing to your sentences. Avoid lazy verbs too: She was going to the store vs. She skipped to the store…much more vibrant. Wake your story up.

7. Watch point of view. I’m reading along and getting to know Henry, your engaging main character, and all of a sudden (notice I didn’t say “suddenly”?) Henry’s wife Madge shows up. The scene continues in Madge’s point of view: Madge looked at Henry’s craggy face and smiled, emotion filling her. But I was just in Henry’s point of view when you wrote Henry spread peanut butter across his bread, ignoring his rumbling stomach. When was the last time I ate? he wondered. So the scene with Madge should continue with Henry in his POV, such as: Henry looked into Madge’s eyes, and he could tell by the twinkle there, she was amused. Stay with one character at a time when it comes to POV.

8. Make your story believable. I am the first one who will call ‘bullshit’ on your story line if it is careening into unbelievable territory. I am one of those people who knows a little about a lot, so when you are trying to convince me a horse would behave this way when it wouldn’t, that tree would thrive there when it won’t, this law would bend in this circumstance but there is no way that is true…research it first so you get your facts straight. I write fantasy novels about things like fairies and time travelers. Those subjects take a lot of research because if I’m going to push the boundaries of reality with my science fiction story line, then everything else, from how the sun shines in October on Hollywood Boulevard to the flora and fauna of King George’s England, had better ring true. Make it real. I’ll go there with you if you do.

9. Don’t hound us. There are two of us making ALL the decisions for our fast-growing company, and we both do or oversee most of the jobs, so it takes time to respond to our own parents, let alone hopeful writers. There are whole months where we don’t even look at submissions and queries because we have events or book publishing deadlines. Once we do get to it, and we decide we want to see your manuscript, and you send it, the process is long. Any book we are considering goes through up to five readers, and sometimes our legal team. I recommend that you send us a query, and then send another one to ten or twenty other publishers. If you haven’t heard a thing from us in four months (rare but we have had some submissions disappear into that murky place where The Other Sock goes missing), send us a follow up email then. Contacting us two weeks after your query arrived makes us think that you’re too impatient to join us on the slow but steady path to publication.

10. Be ready to market. So you did it! We took your book, we are about to publish it next season: and you are doing nothing? Get real! We do a lot for our authors. We send out press releases, give them a launch party/book signing event, work to get titles in eBook format, put books into local libraries, saturate online markets, put books on store shelves, and set up individual book Facebook pages, get reviews, and give each author tons of marketing ideas. And some of our authors listen to the crickets and do nothing to promote themselves after the conclusion of their initial book launch. Be ready to hire a publicist, talk at local schools and bookstores, get yourself radio interviews, get reviews and mentions. Treat the publicizing of your book as a part time job, because it IS a part time job, and you will get paid in royalty checks! To give yourself a boost up in the publishing arena, mention marketing ideas in the cover letter. Learn the ropes. Be savvy.

The publishing world is changing every day, with more small publishers popping up amid the crumbling giant houses of the past. While it is unclear as to what it means for the future of book publishing, it does represent a window of opportunity for the writer who has had no way to “break in” (probably because he or she wasn’t a television personality-turned-author, an alarming trend in my opinion). Study the business, persevere, never give up. Even though Albert Einstein said that the definition of insanity is to do something over and over again and expect different results, we writers know that is not the definition of insanity, but the methodology required to toughen up the skin so we can enter the publishing world and find eventual success.

Six Ways Friends Can Help Promote an Author’s Book

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We caught this info going around Facebook and thought we’d share it:

6 Ways You Can Help Promote an Author Friend’s Book

 

1. Look for their book in stores and if it’s not available, request that they stock it.

A lot of my friends are authors, so I do this for them at Barnes & Noble all the time. I also turn the cover face out on the shelf so it’s easier to see, and when there’s more than one copy, I add one to a display at the end of the shelf, too. If you catch me doing this, I might even smile and tell you, “My friend wrote this book! It’s great!” When the book isn’t in stock, I ask the store to order it.

You can also ask for the book at your local library.

 

2. Share info about their book with appropriate people by forwarding an author’s marketing emails.

Friends can forward an e-mail to people they know who might be interested in a friend’s book. Ask your author friend to compose an e-mail message that describes the book, explaining who will find it interesting, and give a link to an online purchase site.

 

3. Provide information about organizations that might use the author as a speaker.

A complimentary word or two from a friend who is a member of an organization could be all an author needs to be the luncheon speaker at a monthly gathering. Every appearance helps spread the word about a book!

 

4. Share a review online.

Friends can write an honest review on Amazon and other retail sites (Amazon is the most important). It doesn’t have to be lengthy or time consuming.  Even a single line or a few words can be very helpful! An author building a following is said to need 60 to 75 reviews before social credibility is established. So get on Amazon and write; “Great read!” or “Would definitely recommend.” Every review counts no matter how short it is and it’s appreciated more than you know!

 

5. Use Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social networks to share a link to a purchase page.

Friends of authors can write a personal message with the link, such as “Can’t wait to read my friend’s new book about sparking creativity!” or “Nobody writes better cozy mysteries than my friend Sam Cowen – buying his latest book now!”

 

6. Interview your author friend on your blog.

If your blog’s target audience matches your friend’s book or you think your readers may be interested in your friend’s personal story as a writer, email your author friend with a list of questions that he/she can answer by emailing back. Then cut and paste the questions and answers into your blog as an interview with an eye catching title like, “Author Reveals What it Takes to Succeed. Words of Wisdom to Benefit Anyone who has a Dream.”

 

A word from The Muses:

Help your writer friends! Buy their books, promote their books, and give their books as gifts!