A Gift for the Writer in Your Life

Are you looking for a great gift for a writer in your life?

Check out the Writer’s Clock. This clock, designed by award-winning author Linda Rohrbough, is sure to delight the writer in your life and keep him or her writing.

Available in three color, this clock only costs $24.95 with free shipping on Linda’s website.


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Amazon Prime(d) for Books

Pay a monthly fee to Netflix and you can watch your choice of movies on your computer or TV via streaming content. Will this service soon be available for ebooks?

It appears that Amazon.com thinks so. Recent news reports that Amazon.com is talking with book publishers about launching a Netflix-like service for digital books. This service would give customers who pay an annual fee access to a library of content.

Speculation has it that books would be added to Amazon’s current Amazon Prime program. This program currently allows customers to pay $79 per year for unlimited two-day shipping and access to a digital library of movies and TV shows.

Of course, publishers participating in such a program would receive some form of compensation from Amazon either in a lump sum payment or on an “as-accessed” per book basis.

Amazon’s idea is not new. There is already at least one company on the Internet already offering a subscription-based service for ebooks. For one low fee, The Reading Site allows subscribers access to a database of millions of titles for the Kindle, the Nook, an iPad, iPhone, or a PC. Unlimited digital access appears to be the wave of the future.

The only unanswered question is: “Will you and your books will be part of such a program?”

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Are You Looking for a Quick Response?

Quick Response Codes (also known as QR codes) are showing up everywhere.

These interesting “bar codes” for smart phones are called “quick response” because they are an immediate call to action for consumers.

If you are not familiar with these codes and what they do, watch this informative video.


I am seeing these codes show up in all sort of interesting places  including on t-shirts and cars.










There are so many interesting and creative ways you can harness QR Codes to promote your books. If you have a unique way you are using QR codes, please share it with me. I would love to hear how you are using this new marketing tool.


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How Do Your Book Sales Stack Up?

According to Nielson BookScan, which tracks about 70 percent of all retail sales of books (including those sold through Amazon.com), the average U.S. nonfiction book is only selling 250 copies per year and only around 3,000 copies over its lifetime.

This little statistic packs both good news and bad news.

The good news is that small publishers only selling around 250 copies of a nonfiction book a year can consider themselves as having average booksales.

Often micro publishers feel discouraged when their books do not sell as well as they expect. Having realistic expections is important when selling books. Unrealistic expectations lead to discouragement.

The second part of this good news is the longevity of nonfiction books. If the average book sales are 250 per year and 3,000 over the life of a nonfiction book, this would imply that the average life of a nonfiction book is around 8 to 10 years. Of course, some books sell more per year and others less per year than the average. Eight years seems like a long time to keep a book selling. However, for authors who consistently write new books, these new books spur the sales of their older books, lengthening the life of each book.

The bad news is that, according to these statistics, it takes time to sell quantities of books. Many new publishers and self-publishers often think that they will sell the vast majority of a new book within the first year of the release of a book. If the book is not selling well in the first year, these publishers become discouraged and give up.

As I have said before, selling books is a marathon, not a sprint. These statistics back up my assertion. It is the long-haul that sells quantities of books.

Are there exceptions to this rule. Of course. There are always exceptions. Yet, the vast majority of book sales fit into the average statistics.

How do your book sales stack up? Are they average, below average, or above average?

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Adopt an Author

The Word on the Street Toronto is a literary festival held this month that showcases Canadian authors and their books.  The festival is sponsored by the non-profit organization with the same name, The Word On The Street.

The sponsor of this book festival runs a great fundraising campaign called “Adopt an Author!”

Here is how it works. For just $100, any interested book lover (a.k.a. person) can adopt one or more of the authors who will be present at the literary festival. For the $100 adoption fee, the adopter will receive:

  • The opportunity to adopt an author of your choice from the provided list of available authors.
  • A signed copy of the author’s book.
  • Recognition for your contribution at the festival. Your name will be announced by the host prior to your author’s reading.
  • Recognition on the festival’s website and e-newsletter.
  • A personalized certificate detailing your adoption.
  • A tax receipt.
  • A chance to be a part of Canada’s largest one-day festival!

I love this idea as long as adopting the author does not mean you have to feed, clothe, or otherwise entertain said author.

On the serious side, I have been trying to figure out how to incorporate this idea into a useful gimmick for small publishers. I have not been able to come up with any good ideas. Your suggestions are welcome.


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