On March 25, 2019, I had the pleasure of interviewing debut author Yvette Phillips. Her book is entitled, The Tale of Princess Alicia. It is a delightful children’s book about a little princess who teaches girls to be self-empowered. Mrs. Phillips who is originally from Jamaica moved to the United States in 2000.
Yvette is the proud owner and CEO of her online business PadyMart.com where she sells Trendy Children’s Fashion, Educational Books and More. In addition to operating her own business, Yvette is also a School Teacher where she teaches young children. Mrs. Phillips currently resides in New York with her husband Ivan and son Matthew.
In her interview she shares that her son was her motivation behind writing her book.
To purchase her book click here. A series of matching bookmarks are also available for purchase.
Please Like and Comment. Comment below after watching the interview with your thoughts and opinions about a sweet little princess who is encouraged to problem solve and not wait around for her prince? What are your feelings about diversity in children’s literature? Comment about your experience as an author. Are you a parent or grandparent who has been looking for books with ethnic characters for your child or grandchild? Are you looking for books like this with strong girl leading characters? Let us know in the comments. Share your thoughts on this adorable and self-empowering princess.
On March 18, 2019, I was delighted to interview debut author Mattye Crowley. She is a children’s author of, Sankofa and an accompanying Sankofa workbook. In Ms. Crowley’s Sankofa series she shares African and African American history with young readers and their parents.
In the interview, Mattye shares about the great need for African American children to know their true and full history. In her book she has children join Sankofa on a journey through time to learn African history and facts from the past to the present. This is a wonderful series to educate everyone on African history.Click here to watch the interview. Thank you for watching.
To purchase Sankofa and the accompanying workbookclick here.
Please Like and Comment. Comment below after watching the interview your thoughts and opinions on diversity in children’s literature. Comment as a parent, grandparent, relative or teacher trying to find quality African history literature for the children in your life. Comment about your experience as an author.
Today let’s look at preparing to launch your book. As authors we spend countless hours writing and editing our book to make sure it is just right. Then we worry about our cover. We want our covers to attract as many potential readers as possible, without breaking our bank. If you write children’s book, then you encounter the painstaking process of explaining how you envision your book characters and the detail for every pages background. Now all your hard work and dedication have paid off and you have a book that is almost about to be released. What do you do now? Your next step is to create a buzz before you release the book.
Creating Your Author’s Platform
There is no shortage of competition in today’s book market. As a self-published author exposure through marketing is a key element to your success. I understand this because I am a self-published author in the making. Authors want to have a good online presence. You want to utilize social media to let the world know you are an author, with books of value that they would love to read. Please refer to my blog on Establishing Your Author’s Platform for detailed instructions on how to complete your author’s platform.
60 Days Before the Release Date
Book Release Party
Throw a Book Release Party. Send out e-invitations sixty days before your party. I will definitely have one. I think it is important to have a Book Release Party even if it is a small affair. It is good to reward yourself for all of your hard work. Invite family and friends to your event. Allow them to invite guests as well. I will make a Facebook event page to invite my guests. The event page will help me have an estimated idea of the number of guests who will be attending. I would look at scheduling the Book Release Party a week after your book is released. This give you time to receive your shipment of books. I plan on having my Book Release Party for three hours. This gives people enough time to drop in and buy a book even if they cannot stay. Look at your logistics and choose the best date and time for your Book Release Party.
At my Book Release Party I plan to offer raffles and a contest for a book basket give away. I will serve appetizers and sweets, like chocolate covered strawberries. You should host your Book Release Party in a style that suits you best. Have copies of your book on hand and do an official book signing Make sure to have enough books to sell.
Have someone take pictures that you can later post on your social media outlets. Don’t forget to enjoy yourself. You are celebrating a wonderful milestone in your life!
45 Days Before the Release
Do Author Blog Posts
Bloggers like quality blog posts for their blogs. Reach out on your social media author pages and see if someone is looking to interview authors. This is a great way to get free advertisement for your upcoming or current book. By being on another blog this enables your work to be highlighted to a whole different audience! Even a smaller blog could result in new bloggers to follow you on social media and potentially purchase your book. Make sure the blogger includes in their interview how to follow you on social media and provide a link to purchasing your book if one is available. Some blog interviews will not be posted immediately. Start before your book is released to help build the excitement of your release date.
30 day Before the Release
Have a Countdown to Your Books Release Date
About one month prior to your book release do a countdown on your website. My book is titled; Vicky has a Sleepover, which has not been released yet. Here is an example of a countdown I may do for my release.
Post on my website and my other social media sites that my book is being released in 30 days. In my announcement I could give away a free PDF, in celebration of the release to all current and new subscribers.
I could also offer two free book giveaways. Everyone who is an already a subscriber and anyone who joins the subscriber list up to the release date is put in an automatic drawing to receive a free autographed copy of my book. I choose two winners in this scenario but you can choose any number of books that you think is most effective. You want to create a buzz!
Three Weeks Before the Release
Choose Venues to Host Your Book Signings
Prior to your book release date start thinking about potential venues to host book signings. Think about local bookstores of course. Also look for area book fairs, cultural centers and expos. Some coffee shops host local artists and my host a book signing. If you are a Christian author or your book is about family values maybe some local churches would let you host a book signing there. Look around and see what venues would be idea for you to host your book signings. Make sure to always bring enough books to sell and sign. Ask each potential venue about the average amount of book sold in previousbook signing events. This will help estimate how many books you should bring. After you have your book signing confirmed, make a calendar for your upcoming events. Post your upcoming book signing dates on your website and all of your social media. You want to carry book signings well beyond your release date, to help in getting new exposure to your book.
Post a Question and Answer Review
I plan to post a question and answer review. This will basically be about eight to twelve questions of me answering questions about the book and how I came to write it. This gives potential readers direct information from the author about the book, the story line and intimate details about the author’s feelings and/or connections to the story.
Remind your social media audience about the book giveaway and how to apply to be in the drawing.
Two Weeks Before the Release Date
Announce all of your upcoming book signing dates on your social media accounts and have an area dedicated to this on your website.
Post any authors reviews you have on your website and other social media. By giving away early editions of your book to some book reviewers that are not your personal friends, you may be able to get a few reviews for your book. Share these to show how others enjoyed your work.
Remind your social media audience about the book giveaway and how to apply to be in the drawing.
One Week Before Your Release Date
Post a book release flier on all of your social media daily. I use Canva to make my social media posts. This is a free service with professional results. Every day this week leading up you your book release, you should have a post about your book release. Be sure to include where your book can be purchased. You may offer a discount for a short time when your book is first released. Be sure to inform your social media followers if this is the case.
Post a flier of all upcoming book signing events on all of your social media daily.
Remind your social media audience about the book giveaway daily and how to apply to be in the drawing. Be sure to post this in a separate post to draw more attention to your book release.
Let Everyone Know How to Purchase Your Book
Keep a link on your website page dedicated to your book. Make sure to have information on where and when the book is available for purchase. Also include a link to the direct link to purchase the book if you have one.
Day of the Release
Thank everyone for following your journey to getting your book published! Do the drawing for the book giveaways. Announce the winners of the book giveaways. Let everyone know how to purchase your book.
I hope this blog helped you with timelines and just gave you some great ideas on how to prepare to launch your book.
I am so happy for all of you. Please leave comments to let me know if you have questions, ideas for other ways to promote your book, ideas for pre-launching your book or business related promotion comments.
Today let’s look at establishing an author’s platform. A few days ago I was on a Facebook group for new authors. As I was networking on the page I mentioned I was working on my author’s platform. One of the ladies I was networking with commented she didn’t know what an author’s platform was.
From the information I have gathered from more established author’s, YouTube video’s with traditional and indie published author’s and even articles about being a successful author on the internet, they all agree that….Authors have to market themselves! Unfortunately, even when the author publishes with a publishing company, if they want their book sales to reach a larger market and build a fan base they need to develop an author’s platform.
What is an author’s platform? From what I have gathered in its simplest form, it is the author’s tool belt to increase their visibility with potential readers and followers.
How do you attain an author’s platform? The number one component in increasing a national or even global author’s platform is social media. You want a presence on social media so people interested in what you are writing about can get to know you. This also increases your credibility with your readers and helps them to be informed of when and how they can buy your books and/or other products.
I started with a website from the research I conducted when beginning my author platform. A website is like your central hub for your platform. My website serves for my author’s platform in the following ways.
It includes links to my other social media accounts.
I host my weekly blog on my author’s website.
I collect subscribers to my blog on my website.
I collect email contact information on my website.
I have a comment area where readers can contact me directly on my website.
Next, I added social media accounts to my author’s platform. I was already an active user of Facebook. I made an author’s page on Facebook, and then added my website address to my Facebook page. After that I linked my Facebook page to my website page. Next I joined BookBub. BookBub’s is an online marketing tool that lets authors connect with reportedly millions of potential readers. However, you will not be on the author’s page until you are published. This week I joined Twitter. I had never been on Twitter before but heard it was an excellent way to reach a whole active author community and readers. So far I like it. I have gained 88 followers in three days. This is over triple what I have gained on my website list thus far. I will keep you all posted on how my author platform is going. I would encourage you to explore other social media outlets like Instagram, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Snapchat, Pinterest and YouTube. Whatever social media outlets you choose interact with your followers on a regular and consistent basis. Plus make sure to be consistent with your author’s platform.
How to consistent with your author’s platform? Fine tune your brand. Once your brand is fine-tuned, be sure to apply it to your author’s website and all of your author social media outlets. Make sure your brand colors, profile picture and logo are all the same as your website for each of your author social media outlets. This way your followers will start to recognize your specific branding, making it easier for them to follow you.
When to start? Now! Yes, right now. The sooner you start your author’s platform, the greater following you will have when your book is released.
Celebrating Life: Today I am celebrating that my business cards arrived in the mail yesterday! This is one of many, many steps to growing my author’s platform and business. Don’t forget even when it seems like you have so much to learn and so many steps to take, each lesson and step are leading you to your arrival of being a successful author!
If you would like to hear more about author platforms or have any questions, please leave me a comment below. Also let me know about other topics you would like to know more about. Subscribe so you don’t miss any blogs on my journey to being a published author.