How to find book bloggers
On September 27, 2021 | 0 Comments

Reaching out to book bloggers is a great way to get objective, credible reviews. In addition to posting their reviews on their own websites, many bloggers are also active on social media, which can draw additional eyeballs to your work. (For example, here’s a nice tweet by a blogger promoting her blog, plus thoughts on […]

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SHOW, don’t TELL, in your dialogue
On August 9, 2021 | 0 Comments

I frequently see authors break the show vs. tell rule in dialogue by using words other than “said” or “asked.” This weakens the writing when done too often. For example, here are some examples from a novel I recently read. In this scene, Ben and Lisa are the ONLY characters in the room: “What’s she doing […]

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Prepare for fall with these two marketing ideas
On July 27, 2021 | 0 Comments

I receive a lot of emails from first-time authors, and 99 percent of them are looking for marketing ideas they can implement for zero cost. If you fall into that category, here are two things you can do that require nothing more than your time and energy: Create a list of alumni groups from your […]

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Use Facebook to stay connected to your readers
On June 22, 2021 | 0 Comments

A great way stay connected to your fans is through Facebook. Here’s how I use it: For my author fan page, I share the same things that I do in my newsletter, e.g. event photos, news about upcoming translations of my books, promotions for signed copies, photos of fans holding up my books (which encourages […]

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Fun marketing idea: T-shirts!
On May 10, 2021 | 0 Comments

There was a time when getting T-shirts printed was a costly and time-consuming endeavor, but thanks to the internet that’s no longer the case. So why not make some T-shirts to promote your book? I did this for my Waverly Bryson series, creating shirts in blue and pink with the following quotes from my protagonist: […]

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To maintain focus, revere your writing time
On April 12, 2021 | 0 Comments

I once took a screenwriting class, and in our first session the professor emphasized how important it is to make our writing time “holy.” When he said that, I found myself nodding in agreement. I thought of how easily I get distracted from my own writing because I don’t place enough value on the time […]

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Tricky word pairs
On March 22, 2021 | 0 Comments

Went or gone? Refer or recommend? Here’s a quick refresher on how to use these tricky words correctly. Went vs. Gone WENT and GONE are both forms of the verb TO GO. WENT is used in the past tense (also known as the preterit/preterite tense): I knew I needed to study, but I went to […]

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Marketing tip: Make the most of writing samples
On March 8, 2021 | 0 Comments

Recently a friend asked if I would speak to his brother, Scott, who had written a novel and wasn’t sure what path to publication he should pursue. I agreed and had a brief email chat with Scott to set up a time to meet for coffee. Scott had a link to his website in the […]

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How to build a character arc
On February 22, 2021 | 0 Comments

A character arc is the way a character changes or grows throughout the course of a story. The change can be physical or emotional, and it doesn’t have to be major, but you want your main characters, especially your protagonist, to experience some sort of transformation along their journey. At the beginning of your story, […]

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Shake things up to break writer’s block
On February 8, 2021 | 0 Comments

Writer’s block is the worst. The worst! When it strikes and I find myself sitting at my desk, staring at nothing, I often feel like my white laptop screen is snickering at me and sending me horrible thoughts. You suck, Maria! Who are you to think you can be a writer? Why don’t you just […]

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