Showing posts with label publish. Show all posts
Showing posts with label publish. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 17

Publish Your Own Magazine On Flipboard!

Publish Your Own Magazine On Flipboard!

Create Your Own Magazine And Share It With The World, Or Just Your Friends

This is great! Have you ever wanted to curate your own magazine? Flipboard recently added the tools to enable you to do just that. A.J. Dellinger writes:
You can now take that custom built collection of stories that matter to you and share it with your friends as a digital magazine, essentially making you editor-in-chief of a paper made up of just things that interest you and distributed to an audience of likeminded readers. Creating a magazine is just as easy as the rest of the app, as you simply tap the “+” icon on an article and the option to add it as the page of a custom magazine comes up. You also get to title the personalized publication and set it to public or private. (Hands on: Flipboard 2.0 lets you create and share your own digital magazines)

How To Create Your Own Magazine On Flipboard

The good folks at Flipboard emailed me the following:
Flipboard has recently launched a new self publishing feature called Magazines ....

Magazines can incorporate content from virtually any source, including your website, blog, RSS feed and anything you share on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, SoundCloud, LinkedIn and Tumblr.

You'll need to:

1) Setup an account

2) Go to and install the 'Flip it' bookmarklet. The bookmarklet will allow you to add content to your magazines directly from your web browser.

3) Start browsing the web, and when you find something you want to add to your magazine click the 'Flip it' button. You'll be prompted to login the first time.

4) Click 'Create a magazine', then customize it by adding a name and description, and simply start adding content.

You can also easily create a magazine from within the app.

Once done, check out your magazine on Flipboard, where you'll see your “flipped” items in a print-style layout. You can also tap into any item and promote it to the cover.

You can keep track of your magazine's popularity via it's cover. There you'll see it's number of Readers (Subscribers) and Page Flips.

You'll also get notifications in the app when people like, comment or subscribe to your magazines - so be sure to check.

You can tell people about your magazine by clicking the “share” button on the cover. You'll be able to post a custom link to Facebook and Twitter or have it sent via email.
I set up a magazine to test out Flipboard's new functionality and published some of my most viewed posts to it, along with a scattering of articles from my Twitter feed. It's here: Karen Woodward: The Art of Writing.

What Is Flipboard?

For those of you unfamiliar with Flipboard, it is the Swiss Army Knife of social media aggregators. It is also the Vogue of aggregators since it has a beautiful, magazine-like, interface.

In order to view Flipboard you need to download the app. You can get it here: Flipboard app.

Share Your Magazine!

If you create a Flipboard Magazine, please share the link in the comments. :-)

Other articles you might like:

- 5 Rules For Writing A Murder Mystery: Keeping the Murderer Secret Until The End
- How To Write Episodic/Serialized Fiction, Part 2 of 2
- How To Write Episodic/Serialized Fiction, Part 1 of 2

Photo credit: Karen Woodward: The Art of Writing.

Saturday, April 13

How To Get Honest Book Reviews

How To Get Honest Book Reviews

Book Review Bloggers

Honest reviews are one of the best ways of increasing book sales. I know it's anecdotal, but Amanda Hocking credits reviews left by bloggers as being responsible for much of her early success. She writes:
Book bloggers have saved my life. Book bloggers absolutely without a doubt sell books. I can prove it to you. In May, I sold just over 600 books. In June, I sold over 4,000. In May, I had no reviews. In June, book bloggers started reviewing my books. (Book Bloggers Are People, Too, February 9, 2011)
I think even an honest one-star review is better than no review! That is, as long as it's not a screed against the author admonishing him to never again put pen to paper.

So how does an author go about soliciting honest reviews?

Book Bloggers

Book bloggers read and review books free of charge and will often post their reviews not only on their book blog but on sites like Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

It vastly increases ones chance of receiving a review if one reads and follows each blogger's submission guidelines as carefully as one would those of a publisher or agent.

Keep in mind that many bloggers only accept traditionally published books and, of those who will review indie books, often they will only review certain genres or they will only accept a physical, paper, book.

I look at it this way: if I don't do what a reviewer wants me to do then how can I ask the reviewer to do what I want her to do?

What to send

If a reviewer specifies in their submission guidelines what they'd like you to send then that part's easy, but sometimes they don't. Then what do you send?

Mike Reeves-McMillan suggests the following:
"1. A good brief blurb that piques interest in your book ..."

"2. A synopsis."

"3. An author bio. Try to find something interesting to say about yourself."

"4. Links to where your book is for sale, if it is."
These links will make it easy for the reviewer to find where on the internet to post their review of your book.
"5. More links to you and your book on Goodreads (or Shelfari or LibraryThing if you use them; some reviewers will post there), to your blog, and to your social media. Some reviewers want these."

"6. Your cover art."
"7. An author photo."
"8. An extract from the book."
Mike put all of the above in a press kit and included a link to the kit in the email he sent off to any reviewer who didn't specify what they wanted an author to include in their submission.

I think that's a brilliant idea!

Keep track of your submissions

Mike also recommends starting a spreadsheet--he used Google Docs--so you can track:

- Which book reviewers you submitted to
- When you submitted
- When they responded
- What they said
- If they posted a review

Mike also kept track of:

- Where the review was posted (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads, etc.)
- How many stars the reviewer gave

Once you have this information you can use it when you're getting ready to send out your next book for review.

Mike reports that the number of bloggers who accepted his work for review outnumbered those who didn't by a factor of 2 to 1. That response rate is excellent! He also included a generic letter in his post, one that he sent out if a reviewer didn't request anything specifically.

You can find Mike on the web over at The Gryphon Clerks.

Finding Reviewers: Databases Of Book Blogs

Last year I discovered a couple of databases containing contact information for book bloggers who accept independently published work. These are all honest reviewers who take pride in the fact they write and post their reviews for free.

The Indie Book Blog Database

The Indie Book Blog Database contains information about hundreds of blogs which review indie books completely free of charge.

Jennifer Hampton, the database owner, reminds writers that since these bloggers review books as a hobby, and since they are routinely flooded with review requests, authors must be prepared for a lengthy wait between submission and review.

The Indie View

The Indie View is another database which keeps track of review blogs which will consider indie published books for review.

In order for a reviewer to be included in the database he/she must:

- Actively post reviews
- Not charge for reviews
- Not be affiliated with a publisher

Definitely something to take a look at!

Book Blogs Search Engine

The Book Blog Search Engine allows you to search thousands of book review blogs but be aware that many of these reviews do not accept independently published work.
Question: Have you ever submitted your book to a blogger for review? What was your experience like?

Other articles you might like:

- What Slush Pile Readers Look For In A Story
- Chuck Wendig's Flash Fiction Challenge: Choose Your Opening Line
- Is Writing Rewriting?

Photo credit: "Song (John Keats, 1795-1821)" by jinterwas under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0.