Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing, and Publishing ~

Tag Archives: blogging

Authorial Decisions ~ WebSite, Social Media, Blogging…?


I haven’t featured Jane Friedman (author, digital media strategist, editor, publisher, professor, speaker) for quite some time… Authors, Websites, Social Media

I’ll be sharing excerpts from two of her articles…

The first one leans toward author websites, the second toward social media…

Jane tends to conflate blogs with websites, which is perfectly understandable; yet, be aware, a blog can be considered “social media”…

And, I must emphasize that no matter how much help any of the excerpts may be, not reading her full articles will be a great loss (especially if you’re a writer…).

So…

The first article is, What’s More Important: Author Websites or Social Media?

Excerpts:

“These days, I get more noticeable results from my website and blogging efforts, email newsletters, and in-person networking than I do from social media. Not that I want to give up social media—quite the contrary—but I could walk away from Facebook and still earn a living. Not so with my website—it’s absolutely fundamental.”

Then, there are these bullet topics, as reasons a website is important (each Ripe with juicy info.…):

* Being more discoverable through search
* Offering the media (and influencers) the official story on you and your work
* Securing high-quality email newsletter subscribers
* Understanding what social media use is effective
* Monetizing the audience you have

Then (especially for those folks who won’t read her full article):

“Thankfully, you don’t (or shouldn’t) have to choose between having an author website or participating on social media. Nurture both. Choose to make your website a proud and strong showcase for your work and what you want to be known for, and don’t expect social media to always be the hub for all your branding or reader discovery. You’ll be stronger if you have a multi-faceted approach, especially if and when social media fails you.”

Article twoSocial Media for Authors: The Toughest Topic to Advise On

Excerpts (again, stressing that there’s much more meat to chew at the full article):

“Of all the topics I teach, social media is the most vexed. Even in a small class of writers, I find varying skill levels and experience, and a mix of attitudes—and these two factors play a strong role in what people need to hear or learn. I believe a successful social media strategy is driven by one’s personality and strengths, as well as the qualities of the work produced—leading to a unique approach for each writer.”

Then, she throws a critical bombshell of Truth:

“Because social media is widely considered essential to book marketing and promotion, yet it’s constantly changing, it’s become a burden and source of anxiety for beginners and advanced authors alike.”

And, the following bullet points (again, each Ripe with juicy info….):

* Your social media following grows mostly when you produce more work.
* Use social media to micro-publish or to share your work.
* People break social media “rules” all the time and succeed.

So, I’ll leave you with Jane’s summation on social media; and, one last time, urge you to read her full articles:

“So what can I possibly say to writers to help them become better at it [social media]? Well, first, don’t take it all so seriously. Look for what you enjoy. Have a spirit of questioning and discovery. Follow a daily routine that works for you. Sustainable and meaningful social media practice isn’t so different from getting your ‘real’ writing done.”

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For All Writers & Publishers (Curious Readers Also Welcome)


No re-blog today…

I found a recent article by Jane Friedman

In case you’re new to this blog, here’s a bit of Jane’s Bio:

“Jane Friedman has 20 years of experience in the publishing industry, with expertise in digital media strategy for authors and publishers. She’s the co-founder and editor of The Hot Sheet, the essential publishing industry newsletter for authors, and is the former publisher of Writer’s Digest. She has been interviewed and featured by NPR, PBS, The Washington Post, the National Press Club and many other outlets.”

The article is called, Book Marketing Resources for Authors: The Best of 2016, and here are the main categories of resources:

Amazon

Facebook

Social media

Copywriting

Blogging

Giveaways, reviews & discounts

Online education

SEO

Learn from successful authors

Marketing ideas and roundups

Marketing tools and resources

At Jane’s site in 2016

I doubt you’ll find as much top-notch info anywhere else…
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To Write Well, One Must Be As Healthy As Possible…


After an operation (was it 3 or 4 years ago?) I got very serious about my health.

Recent events have made me focus on that issue from a new perspective.

I should be back to my normal blogging habits soon, perhaps even tomorrow…

To give this post a bit of substance, I’ll recommend you explore the left side-bar—many resources and gifts await……… :-)
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#TopTags vs #Searching ~ A #Blogging Journey in #Reading, #Writing, and #Publishing


Counting the present post, this blog has 1,385 posts

Top Tags on Blog

Image Courtesy of pedro valdeolmillos ~ http://www.freeimages.com/photographer/pv-29785

You probably couldn’t have missed all the hashtags in the title up there—intended to help the folks on Twitter find this particular post.

Hashtags are one way to find what you’re looking for

When someone finds a blog in the wild, they usually have the most recent post at the top and those preceding it streaming down the page

If they come to a blog through WebSearch, they see the post in the link they clicked on and that’s it

So, let’s assume they like what they read.

How do they further explore the blog they’ve found?

Well, since there are so many different ways bloggers set up their blogs, the first thing most folks do is look for a Search Bar to find topics of interest to them.

This blog has one of those in the upper right, under the Main Menu Tabs

Of course, using the search bar may not find exactly what you’re looking for—most search algorithms, even Google’s, fail, at times,  in varying degrees

So, some bloggers (like this one) use a Tag Cloud (Top Tags Widget) to give the traveller a way of finding collections of posts that have certain core ideas and topics.

These tags are selected for each post by the individual blogger, so they depend for their accuracy on the abilities of the blogger in question to select truly representative words or phrases for the Tags they apply

So, back to the 1,385 posts on this blog and my Top Tags Widget, which is down a bit in the left side-bar.

I must add, since I’ve been very aware lately of folks who use their phone to get here, that the small screen user needs to find their general “Menu” button and look for something like “Request Desktop Site” so they can see the left side-bar…

If you scroll down there, you’ll see that certain words are larger. This means there are more posts with that tag (and, on this blog, letting your cursor hover over the words will show how many posts there are…).

I thought, beyond the possible over-abundance of hashtags in the title—intended to alert folks to the fact that this blog has lots of stuff about #Reading, #Writing, and #Publishing—I’d also put a few of the Top Tag links right here in this post—a mini-guide to what’s here—an author’s selection of “Most Important” topics

Let’s start with a few for Readers:

Reading, Short Stories, Libraries, Literacy

Just those Tag Links will let you read 167 posts

Now, a few for Writers:

Writing Resources, Writing Advice, Creative Writing, Book Promotion

Those links will take you to 194 posts

Now, some for Publishers:

Self-Publishing, Traditional Publishing, Publishers, Indie Publishing

Those links have a total of 202 posts

So, I hope this post has been successful in helping you to navigate the blogging I’ve done in the last 5 years, 1 month, and 26 days  :-)
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If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
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For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

What Are the “Best” WebSites for #Writers?


Regular readers know I have a well-populated Top Tags widget (over 1,000 posts available by keyword-groupings in the left side-bar) and, since I’ve been immersing myself in the Wattpad experience, I’ve learned that, on a phone (which is where the bulk of Wattpad readers do their thing), the left side-bar of this blog is not visible unless you find your general “Menu” and click on something similar to this:  “Request Desktop Site”

One of the tags there (with 54 blog posts hidden behind its link) is Writing Resources <— that’s the link for folks who don’t want to look for the Top Tags Widget :-)

And, even though my picks for “Best” WebSites for writers are scattered all over this blog, the Writing Resources Tag is a good place to start

Also, you may have noticed that, in the title of this post and in the last sentence, I put “Best” in quotes—just my way of indicating that “Best” is a very personal designation and choice (or, Should be...).

Still, I want to share a post from the Site, The Write Life, called, The 100 Best Websites for Writers in 2016.

They organize the 100 into the seven categories of Blogging, Entrepreneurship, Creativity and Craft, Freelancing, Marketing, Publishing, and Writing Communities.

Let me share a telling excerpt from that post, that lets you know how they’re using the word “Best”:

“As writers, we want to keep up with the latest industry news, advice and opportunities, but we don’t have time to sift through everything happening in the online world.”

And, one more excerpt, because of its Twitter-link:

“And, if you’re looking to keep up with these sites on a daily basis, here’s an easy way to do that: we’ve compiled a Twitter list of all the websites in this post. Click Here to subscribe via Twitter.”

Finally, since the reason for those sites being the “Best” for writers includes “advice”, I’ll share the Top Tag link for Writing Advice (which has 64 posts tucked away…).

And, since I’m sharing what I’ve posted here about Writing Advice, I should probably also share what I feel is the most important post I’ve yet written for writers—What About All The Authors Whose Books Don’t Sell Very Many Copies?

That post begins with the words, “An extremely small percentage of writers sells more than 500 copies of a book…”

But, if you’re really strapped for time and want the critical gold nugget of information that makes that post what I consider the most important I’ve ever written, here’s the most significant link from it:

Survivorship bias: why 90% of the advice about writing is bullshit right now
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If you don’t see a way to comment after this post, try up there at the top right…
Read Some Strange Fantasies
Grab A Free Novel…
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For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com