Graphic Design. You may not be able to tell a book by its cover, but you probably won’t buy one if its cover doesn’t grab you. Enter book designer extraordinaire Peggy Nehmen of Nehmen-Kodner Graphic Design. Peggy has done five of the books featured on this site and they are all, in my opinion, fabulous. (I especially like the two she designed for Words To Live By: Reflections on the writing life from a 40-year veteran and How to Write a Nonfiction Book: From Concept to Completion in 6 Months.) Check them out her Web site where she and her partner Gary bring books to life with unfailing regularity.
Website Design. If this is your first visit to writeanonfictionbook.com, you may not realize that it has been redesigned and restructured. All I can say about my first site, which I did myself, is don’t do it yourself. Besides incorporating sound marketing principles, this one actually works! Should it stop working or disappear, as my former site did, I’ll know whom to call to fix whatever mess I have made. My Web site guru is Kenya Caldwell of Paper Tigress Design.
Self-publishing Editor. Every author needs an editor. No exceptions. There are various designations of editors. Some come early in the book process; some come toward the end. If you are self-publishing, two you will need (and they may be the same person) are a copy editor and a proofreader. In my case that individual is Katherine Pickett. She is fast, fastidious, and incredibly professional. That’s enough for me!
Organize Your Writing. One of the biggest stumbling blocks for aspiring authors is finding the time to write. Julie Hood, author of The Organized Writer: 30 Days to More Time, More Money and Less Frustration, has a great website and lots of free materials to help writers negotiate this obstacle course. Her free newsletter provides weekly tips, tricks, and resources; and, when you subscribe, you also receive a free eBook, The Sidetracked Writer’s Planner. For more information, contact Julie at Julie@organizedwriter.com.
Publishing. When I decided to put out the fourth edition of How to Write a Nonfiction Book, before I chose a printer, I was so lucky to find Lisa Fox, manager, Publishing Services, at No Waste Publishing, a St. Louis-based “green” printing company that does amazing work. I could write a page about all the help Lisa provided, the glitches her production manager found and fixed, and the beautiful books they produced. But I’ll just give you their website, and you can see for yourself. No Waste Publishing, a subsidiary of Creative Imaging Inc.
Life Coach, Teacher, Author. Want to meet a real, live Web Wonder Woman? Meet Lynne Klippel, author and publisher of a book by that name, life coach, teacher of teleclasses, and champion of women. She’s amazing, and her Web site is worth checking out. Meet Lynne at http://www.lynneklippel.com, and click on topics from stories of success and self-publishing to “Surviving HIS Job Loss.”
Marketing & PR. Do you know the value of adding e-mail to your marketing and PR? Check in with Katey Charles Communications – http://www.kateycharles.com – and find out. Katey helps clients build cost-effective, successful e-relations programs through E-newsletters, education and consulting, newsletter templates, personalized software training and technical support, and flexible pricing packages.
Blogging is big. Everybody’s doing it, but not necessarily correctly or well. If you really want to market your site, your service, or your project, you might need a marketing expert. I would suggest starting with The Marketing Blog (ranked #2 on Google for the keywords, “Marketing Blog”). Its author, Michael Fleischner is considered a marketing expert and has published a new eBook, The Webmasters Book of Secrets.
Marketing on the Web is not for wimps. If you want to see it done with expertise and panache, you need to check out Bobette Kyle’s newest Web site for Your Life Matters. There is so much to see, you may never leave, but if you do, also visit her Web marketing and wedding sites. They are great examples of Web marketing at its best.
Here’s a Website I never would have found if I didn’t haunt article sites that feature other authors. Sandra Beckwith is a former publicist who figured out the only way to get her books properly promoted was to do it herself. Check out www.buildbookbuzz.com to see how she’s done it and what she can do for you. While you’re there, you really should visit her new blog, http://buildbuzz.blogspot.com, and subscribe to her newsletter.
The book is written and now you’re at the hard part — marketing it. Chances are if you’re like many authors, you find this process mysterious. Help is available from a pro — Book Marketing Expert, Penny Sansevieri. Author Marketing Experts is a full-service book marketing, promotion, and publicity company. Check out the great (mini) newsletter at http:www.amarketingexpert.com.
I have a friend in Canada whose name is also Bobbi. We do many of the same things — writing books and teaching, among then — but she is famous in cat circles, which I am not. Barbara Florio Graham (her real name) is an award-winning author and online mentor in a wide variety of areas, including writing, publicity, publishing, copyright, and creativity. Her website, www.SimonTeakettle.com (her cat’s real name), contains free information on all of these topics, as well as a special section for cat lovers.
You never know when or where you’re going to find a fellow author or writing teacher. I found Alice LaPlante through a casual conversation with a doctor. “You two should meet,” he said, and so we did … electronically, of course. Alice’s credentials are very impressive, including teaching at nonfiction writing at Stanford. Her new book is called The Making of a Story.
Yes, I know there are many Web site hosts in cyberspace, but let me tell you about mine. It’s VERIO — http://www.verio.com — and its customer support staff is amazing. They will do headstands to help you; you won’t be on hold until you’re too tired to care; and they seem to have a package for everyone’s needs. I am a fan. Can you tell?
Thinking of starting or reinventing your small business? Get help from SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives). SCORE provides no-cost, confidential business counseling to small businesses, as well as workshops and seminars at low fees. SCORE volunteers are real-world professionals with time-tested knowledge, who donate thousands of hours to help small businesses succeed. Find a chapter in your city at http://www.score.org.
Self-publishing is big and getting bigger all the time. If you have a book on your mind, you should know about PMA, the Independent Book Publishers’ Association at http://www.ibpa-online.org. There are local chapters in many cities. If you can find one near you, go to a meeting. The people are great; the networking is better; and the information you will gain is the best. (In St. Louis, where I live, our chapter is St. Louis Publishers Association (SLPA) – http://www.stlouispublishers.org.