By k | July 21, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

One of my buddies was bemoaning
the lack of reader reviews
on her recent release.
The book is selling very well,
(and is being rated highly)
but there is no feedback.

I told her
“No feedback means you met
the expectations
set by the back cover copy
and the excerpt.”

If a product is exactly
what the buyer expects it to be,
there is no need to review it.

Buyers tend to review products
that either
surpass expectations
or
fall short of expectations.

If your product sucks
great big hairy donkey balls,
you WILL
get reviews,
giant flaming fireball reviews.

No reviews
does NOT equal
a bad product.

By k | July 20, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

When I talk to my author buddies
about hand selling books,
they say that
they couldn’t.
They don’t want to bother anyone.

Bother anyone?

WTF?
If you think so little of your novel,
that you consider
telling another person
about it
as bothering them,
then please
DON’T sell the story.

Chuck Piola
is
dubbed the King of Cold Calls.

Why?

“Chuck was absolutely sure
that he had something of value
to offer his prospects.
As he saw it,
it was a good day
for the prospect
when he came calling.
Because he wanted to
make them some more money,
solve their problems
and
make their lives just a little bit better.”

Believe in the product
you’re selling.

By k | July 19, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Yesterday,
I received a snail mail
from my 11 year old niece.
She’d started a story,
and wanted me to finish it.

Because that’s what I do.
I finish things.

If a story has solid bones,
I finish it.
If a project is valid,
I finish it.

Finishing is rare.
Many, many people start projects.
Starting is interesting,
exciting, fun.
Continuing is hard.
Finishing is harder still.

But finishing is where the payoff is.
Only completed stories
end up on bookstore shelves.
Only completed products
get sold.

Successful people finish.

By k | July 18, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

There is a natural growth cycle
for a reseller.

When resellers are small,
they are more likely to
work with indie manufacturers.
Their volume is small
so managing multiple suppliers
isn’t as much of a burden.

As reseller grow,
they streamline the supply chain.
They work with larger manufacturers,
manufacturers that can supply multiple products.

If the manufacturers want
to continue to supply the reseller
with product,
they have to grow
at the same speed or even faster.

That’s where I am
with one of the big romance eBook resellers.
They’re growing.
I want to stay relevant to them
so I’m in a race to grow as quickly.
I’m advertising.
I’m producing more.
I’m publishing with larger publishers.

If I’m not successful,
I will be forced to go to a smaller reseller,
but if I am successful,
my sales will jump to another level.

Grow with your reseller
or your reseller will outgrow you.

By k | July 17, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

One of my buddies told me yesterday
that she assigns project tasks
when they need completing
because
“People do their best work
at the last minute.”

WTF?

Newsflash, friend.
Professionals ALWAYS
do their best work
but giving them two days
to think about a task
will result in a better thought out product
than giving them a half hour
to think about the task.

When I get a last minute task
and it isn’t a legit emergency,
I either think
‘this person doesn’t care about this task’
or
‘this person is so disorganized,
she’ll probably fuck up
the brilliant work I’m doing for her.’
Neither increases the chances
of me doing my ‘best work.’

Save last minute requests for emergencies.
Give your team mates
as much time as possible
to complete their parts of the project.

By k | July 16, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

An author I know
has never had the same editor
or the same cover artist
for her books.

She complains about this bitterly,
and I roll my eyes.

Why?

Because turnover of partners
is a sign
that you’re difficult.

People tend to avoid conflict,
especially when the conflict
doesn’t benefit them.
Telling you you’re difficult
benefits no one but yourself.
Most people
won’t bother.

Meanwhile, you’re sabotaging your career.
Eventually you’ll run out of new people
to irritate
and you’ll be either isolated
or fired.

If you’re never working with
the same team members,
and you get transferred from person to person,
manager to manager,
you have a problem
and that problem is YOU.

Swallow your pride
and ask someone what the issue is.
And for shit’s sake,
if that someone is honest and tells you,
THANK her.
They’re doing you a favor.

By k | July 15, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

“Nothing in the world
can take the place of Persistence.
Talent will not;
nothing is more common
than unsuccessful men with talent.
Genius will not;
unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
Education will not;
the world is full of educated derelicts.
Persistence and determination alone
are omnipotent.
The slogan ‘Press On’ has solved
and always will solve the problems
of the human race.”

Terry Starbucker recently posted this quote
from Calvin Coolidge
and I thought I’d post it too.

Why?

Because it is the middle of July,
and
the weather is wonderful.
Non-business building friends
are skipping off work
and taking it easy.

I could also
except one of my pen names
is close to breaking out
and what I do
this summer,
this month,
this DAY,
will make a difference
to my long term success.

Persist.
Succeed.

By k | July 14, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

While working the business gig,
I wrote 1,000 words every day.

I then took a vacation
and 2 weeks off of the writing.
I did a few edits
but no fresh writing.

When I returned to writing
and writing full time,
it took a full week
before I was back
to easily writing my 1,000 words a day.

A full week.

I knew how to write.
I had the tools.
I had forgotten how to creative think.

Many companies have
a creative ’season.’
They have a time of year
that they lay out all their
prospective new projects.

If you wait until this time,
expect to take longer
to come up with the brilliant ideas.

I, however, prefer to creative think
every single day.
When I was in new product development,
I’d come up with one new product idea
every day.
It could be a silly idea.
It could be an unpractical idea.
But some of those 365 ideas
were gold.

Creativity is a muscle.
Use it or lose it.

By k | July 13, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Being a romance writer,
one of my biggest concerns
is the trend toward
free content
(whether legit or pirated).

I’m not the only person
with this concern
and many people are working
on solving the problem.

Many of these people
are involved with the biggest industry
on the net.
Yep, the adult entertainment industry.

So I’ve been reading porn,
straight up sex stories
with little plot
and no romance.

I don’t read it for the content
(though that certainly is educational).
I read it for the possible ’solutions.’
I see the embedded links
to naughty ‘hidden’ photos.
I see the attempts at including video.
I see the continuation of the ’scenes’
in print format.
All this would be considered
cutting edge for the romance writing community.

If you’re in entertainment
and you want to remain in entertainment,
you should be familiar
with what is going on
in the adult entertainment industry.

By k | July 12, 2011 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

One of my buddies complains
about her neighborhood being cold and impersonal.
“No one says ‘hi’,” she claims.

So I asked her
“How many people do YOU say ‘hi’ to?”

The answer?
None.

I live in a big city
but my neighborhood is far from cold.
Why?
Because I say ‘hi’ to everyone,
and people, being polite,
say ‘hi’ back.
Coldness banished.

Folks talk about people being selfish.
Christian Lopez is far
from selfish.
He gave a game ball,
worth $250,000,
back to Derek Jeter because
“He deserves this,
he’s worked hard for this …
I’m not the type of person
to take this away from him.”

What do you do
if you want to encourage more
of this unselfish behavior?

You reward it.
You give him season tickets.
You introduce him to his heroes.
You give him media coverage,
so other people can see
that there ARE unselfish people
in the world.

Be the person you want others to be.
Reward the behaviors
you want to see more of.
Create the world you want to live in.