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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Making it Worth your Time, Beginners' Tips and Jan Mashup:

The holidays are over and the diets and work have started up again. Two weeks into the year, and there's a feeling of positivity and optimism in the air already. Hopefully the economy has hit its bottom and is on the upswing. 
Something to note about the hard times we've come through is we writers have hunkered down and put out more product than ever before. I didn't note the tweet, but I read yesterday that there are more books competing for attention in a month presently with digital publishing and ereaders, than there ever were published on paper and competing in a retail year only a generation ago. 

Which means creativity and productivity are the highest ever. 

As is the competition.  

I admit it -- I've been quiet these past two weeks, but I've been reading all my emails and loops, trying to catch up and stay caught up on all the networks I belong to, and I'll be the first to tell you:
It's not easy!

I don't care what your favorite social media guru says, I've tried it and I'm going to give you the unvarnished, plain truth:
It's not easy being  a writer, a marketer, a publisher, a blogger, a cover designer,
a girlfriend/wife/ mom AND hold down a full-time job ...

AND manage to keep the pizza delivery boy from knowing your regular order everytime your name pops up on the online order site! Count yourself lucky if your husband still kisses you goodnight - you're probably up way past his bedtime.

And let's please ignore that funky smell coming from the hamper in the hall (did I mention I have two teen sons?)

Then there's that pesky business of money. The mortgage and credit card and pizza boy won't wait.
You want to make your time well spent and worth something, not to mention fulfill your fantasy of making  rock star status with lines of squealing fangirls lining up to breathe the same air you're breathing and to tell you how they ruined their book with drool and have to buy extra copies....

Our time is not our own. The editor is sending revisions and the email loops demand your attention and that latest  call for submissions from your dream publisher isn't going to write itself.
Maybe you're formatting your manuscript or wrestling with photoshop to get that extra appendage off the cover of your latest menage book...,
And what (or who) possessed you to volunteer for that chapter meeting or writers' conference?
I'm raising my hand here - Guilty!
The pizza boy's at the door, the cat irked on your favorite shoes, the puppy is about to piddle and if you don't leave in the next thirty seconds to get your kid from practice he'll be out there all alone --
Ah! tasty prey for those wicked weres who you THOUGHT were just living  in your head all day!

Yep, it's pretty hard to keep up with all the sites, all the opportunities, and all the news.
Technology is a double edged sword, full of time suckers and frustrations,along with the wealth of opportunities it presents.
And if you're a creative like me, there is a learning curve to tech that takes precious time away from your real work - Writing.

The good news? There are people and tools out there to help you out, and even better, there are tools to optimize your results.
The bad news is, it takes trial and error and time to get those results.

So why should you be listening to me?

Because I am you.
Maybe I'm a few steps ahead of you or a few steps behind in parenting, in life, in my own wip --

But -- I am in step with the publishing/ ebook/ social networking worlds for writers like you and me.

One of the great things about the writers' community online is ... we're all in the same boat together.
 And we all row. 

I'm here to help.
This blog will be my way to share with you a weekly mashup and some practical, do-able tips on how to manage time and media. Got your own to share? Please do!
Some of us are fascinated by criminal mentalities for our romantic suspense, or Norse god mythology for our paranormal romances....
I happen to love social media news and sites and all things techno -geek to make life easier.

If you have tricks and tools that help you beat the monster called Media, feel free to leave them in the comments.

Today is a Beginners' Tip. New to blogs and don't know how or why to comment? Being a newbie is totally okay -- so long as you own up to it.
One building block of Communities is Communication. Go figure. 
So, if you're at a loss for a comment, if you're new or shy, just say something like --
 "Thanks for the great post!"   or ...
"Thanks for sharing... I enjoyed this!" 
Do remember what your mama taught you: if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all. 
                         Building your online presence means your words are YOU. 
Be HONEST, be KIND, and be Warned: if you're sarcastic, people who don't know you will always take that snarky impression away with them. Don't take anything for granted in others' posts -- assume that if they write something that may sound crazy - like they're 'radioactive' - they really are! (Thank you > You Know Who You Are!)
When you're commenting, don't add  your own blog link -- Internet Etiquette calls this SPAM: Self-Promotion on another person's turf, making it all about you, and shows you to be an amateur. Most of us will give you a pass, but best to just ... not.
And lastly, keep your comment on subject. People on Google + will actually block and delete you from their circles there if you can't stay on subject in the comments thread. 
It's just a good way to get the most out of the Commenting Conversation. 

Questions? Feel free to ask and if I don't know the answer, I bet someone else here does!

 Now we all deserve a reward, and then the Social Media Mashup for the Week of Jan 8. 


http://blog.galaxyweblinks.com/2012/01/02/facebook-advertising/things-that-you-may-fail-to-do-in-face-book-marketing-campaign/  Some basic Facebook Page Marketing facts and to do list.

http://socialmediatoday.com/bradfriedman/424216/build-your-social-media-schedule-2012 A daily & weekly schedule for network marketing to make you think about how to manage & structure your time.

http://jamigold.com/2011/10/the-insanity-behind-the-pressure-to-have-numbers/comment-page-1/#comment-7575 Jami Gold's post on the numbers insanity to please the publishers' marketing departments

http://mixergy.com/smith-relationship-marketing-interview/ Long but informative video interview on how to focus your efforts online. There is a choice of Mp3 download also.

Exhaustive list of what a professional SMM does and can do for you. Word of caution - writers are different animals and need a specialized focus to further distill the online deluge of book bloggers and readers' and reviewers' sites down to find their reading target audience. Without that, you can be spending dollars and time going everywhere on the web than where you truly need to be.

http://crimefictioncollective.blogspot.com/  Have B&N Executives Gone Mad? L.J.Sellers discusses the latest news that Barnes & Noble is selling off its Nook and PubIt! arms to save its legs. Much speculation on the future of B&N here, Amazon's looming monopoly, and where writers will be finding readers in the future.

A bientot!

Ready to get your book noticed but you don't know where to promote? Contact me writermason at att net and let's find your target audience and save your writing time! 


  1. Being really new to the craft this is very helpful. Thank you.

  2. It's true that technology is such a blessing - and - a curse.

    But thanks for Mr. Gosling. Mr. Gosling makes everything better. :-)

  3. Mary - Thanks for stopping by. Hope you come back again soon!

    leslie tentler - My computer crashed while I wrote this post. I nearly chewed off every fingernail, but hallelujah! I got it up and running again. Yes, I agree... Mr.Gosling makes it all worthwhile. Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Pam,
    Thanks for the advice. I did click on your links and found the information very helpful.

    Marilyn Baron

  5. Good info, Pamela, and I'll be checking out those links in a bit. I'm a big fan of socialmediaexaminer.com. Are you familiar with them? They're worth checking out if you aren't.

    Oh, and thanks for the Ryan Gosling candy. He's getting better with age, isn't he? Whew! *fanning*

  6. Marilyn, Glad to be of service. I especially liked the news on the B&N selling off Nook & PubIt - more to come from me on that subject.

    Delaney, Yes I am familiar with that site! Just hadn't been there in a bit - thanks for the reminder!
    Yessss... Mr.Gosling reminds me of a naughty boy who's been caught thinking dirty. *snicker* And you have some hotness going on with the men on your covers!

  7. Great post, Pamela. Highly entertaining as well as informative. My tip? I couldn't live without HootSuite and SocialOomph.

    Question: I have left a link to a book in a comment once in a while, when I thought the context of the post warranted it, but not very often. Do you think that's okay? Or should the rule of thumb be "never"?

  8. Hi Linsey,
    Unless the post specifically asked for book links, I would restrain myself, tempted though I may be. Thanks for the tool tips!


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