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Now that I’ve written a book, I want to scream from the mountain tops how much I truly believe that anyone who has the drive and desire to write a book can find the time to get it done with a little bit of discipline.

It is so easy to buy into the “I just don’t have time” school of thought because honestly, you probably don’t on first look. But when you take a second look at how you spend your “free time” and couple that with a dose of honesty about how much you really want to become an author, I think you’ll see things differently.

So, based on my own experiences…I offer these five tips for anyone who says they don’t have the time to write a book. Keep in mind that I have a full time job, two young children ages 8 and 3, a house that needs lots of cleaning and a husband who needs to see me from time-to-time.

1. Sacrifice something you value and write instead. If you’re serious about this, you may need to give up something you care about. Children and spouses are not an option. But if you watch several shows on television that you feel you can’t live without, try living without them and work on your book during those times instead.

2. Whenever you’re waiting, write. From the doctor’s office to the lobby of your kids’ ballet class we all are faced with waiting periods. The time when there is literally nothing for you to do but wait. Learn to take advantage of this idle time and pull out a notepad or bring your laptop.

3. Don’t tell everyone you’re writing a book. Talk is cheap. Just do it, and tell folks after-the-fact. You are doing this for you, so that makes you the only person who matters. If you’re doing it for accolades and pats on the back, you’ll never get it done.

4. Communicate with as many authors as you can through social media. Follow authors and book marketers on Twitter. Seek out publishers and agents and learn the craft. Find out what’s happening in the industry and learn as much as you can. Follow trends. Join a social networking group for authors or even publishers.

5. Write about your topic on your blog. Blog posts can feed your book. With blogposts you are thinking short and pithy. When you go back to previous posts you will find new ideas for your book. Keep the blog posts coming.

AND HERE’S A BONUS:

6. Stay up late. You can sleep in four-six months. If you absolutely have no time then you have to make it. Give up a few hours of sleep and write. You’ll be surprised at how the creative juices flow after midnight. I wrote from about 10pm-1am for two months straight.

Yes, writing a book takes dedication and for many, sacrifice. I am working hard on my marketing plan and looking for ways to generate buzz . I know it’s going to work because I’m committed. And I think you can make it work as well. So if you’re serious and you really want to write a book, put your money where your mouth is.

You’ll be glad you did.

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It started off with this DM from BryanPerson on November 23rd:
@Bryan: Really enjoying your blog, Angela. Any chance for a phone call this week to say hello and introduce myself?
Me: Yes! Call me at work! 919.821.8545

During this introductory phone call, Bryan and I discussed a myriad of topics. He told me all about LiveWorld and how much he loves his work and also about the social media breakfasts he’s initiated in several states.
Among other things, I told him that I’m writing a book and I’ve been shopping my proposal around in search of agents.  We laughed a bit, shared a few war stories and doled out some mutual admiration. We also spoke of working together some day on an idea that we are certain will materialize.

Well before we hung up, Bryan told me about an agent/publisher he once spoke with about a project that he’s since tabled and promised to search his email archives and send me his name. As promised, he sent me the contact info for Mitchell Levy.

Here’s what happened next:

  • I followed up and sent a query and proposal.
  • Mitchell wanted more and I obliged.
  • He sent an email a few days later asking me to call him.
  • We spoke on the phone.
  • I shared my vision and he liked it. We discussed strategy.
  • We exchanged a few additional emails.
  • He said he wanted to work with me.
  • He sent me a publishing contract.
  • I’m sending it back in a few days.

Yep, I’ll be a published author in 2009. And all because Bryan Person makes a point to reach out to people and introduce himself once he’s established a relationship with them online.

That is the power of a social network!

If you want to follow my journey, please subscribe to this blog and follow @communitygirl on twitter.  I will share a lot about the process and would love to have you along for the ride.

Thanks Bryan!

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This is a personal blog. The opinions expressed here represent my own and not those of my employer. Feel free to challenge me, disagree with me, or tell me I’m completely nuts in the comments section of each blog entry.

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