March 26, 2013

Freelance Writing, Editing, and Formatting

Posted in Freelance Career tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 8:27 am by Christine Rice

Hello, everyone.

I’ve been doing well and have been quite busy with my freelance writing, editing, and formatting career. I recently did some work on my website. I added two new pages (“books” and “testimonials“). I also did some minor adjustments throughout and to the “services” page.

I’ve also been in touch with clients I’ve worked with in the past. It was a pleasure to reconnect with them. I’ve also been doing several book formatting projects and a cover design project, which has been fun. I love working with clients and doing what I love to do – write, edit, and format for others – because I like to help people and I love being involved in the publishing industry. I also love connecting with other writers and authors on Facebook and Twitter.

What have you been up to lately? What goals do you have and what have you accomplished recently? Feel free to include links to your writing, career websites, and social networking pages in the comments below. I look forward to hearing from you.

Have a joyous day!

Christine

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January 7, 2013

Books Update

Posted in Books, Editing, Personal, Publishing, Reading, Self-Publishing, Writing tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 3:20 pm by Christine Rice

Hello everyone,

You’ve probably noticed that I’ve been posting mostly reviews and interviews for the past couple of months. And you are right. Since mid-October I haven’t posted about my books, namely my works-in-progress. Back in early September, I pretty much stopped writing in my works-in-progress due to publishing one of them (Freelance Writing Guide) and having a blog tour. I have no regrets, of course, because I was ecstatic about publishing a book I had been working on for eight months, and the blog tour was an absolutely great experience.

During the blog tour, I got my first client project in which I edited and formatted a novel. In case you didn’t know, I wear a few different hats in the publishing industry, including freelance writing, editing, and formatting in addition to being an author. A part of my freelance writing business is writing book reviews, which I post here for you all. Additionally, many of the books I review are free kindle books, so I hope I have helped you choose some great reads for cheap.

Shortly after my first client, I got another client, and many more, and I’ve been doing client projects ever since. My time is spent on client projects, reading and reviewing, blogging, networking, and also my health. In addition to being a writer, I am a health-conscious person, because I know without my health, I am nothing. So I work on being healthy, and becoming healthier, each day, in addition to my career.

I haven’t resumed working on my works-in-progress, besides updating Freedom from Fat with posts from my health blog, but I am 100% interested in finishing my works-in-progress and plan to do so in the future. I just cannot promise when that will be. Right now my interests lie in my health and growing my freelance business, and since I move through life naturally based on how it flows, I go with the flow.

I am certain that someday I will return to my works-in-progress, because I love writing and publishing books. It makes me so happy to get my thoughts and experiences in a permanent state that can be enjoyed for years to come. For now, I will go with the flow, and I will resume working on my works-in-progress once the flow returns to that part of my life.

I just wanted to reassure you all that I will be publishing the books I was working on, and I will keep posting on this blog.

Thanks for your kindness and support,

Christine

December 23, 2012

Review of “Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success”

Posted in Book Reviews tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 5:28 pm by Christine Rice

Secrets to Ebook Publishing SuccessSecrets to Ebook Publishing Success by Mark Coker is a thorough self-help manual about how to succeed as an ebook author. It is a good book for a soon-to-be-published author, but it is also helpful for an author who has already published a book, or several books for that matter.

This book covers a lot of information, which is pleasing since it is free. You usually can’t go wrong with free, and this book is no exception. It emphasizes the importance of writing a well-written and edited book with a great title and cover design. It talks about the value of connecting well with your readers, distributing your ebook to as many online retailers as you can, giving your book away for free, developing your author platform, maximizing “virality,” and studying bestsellers in your genre. It covers the most popular cycles or trends of ebook sales, how to deal with negative reviews, and how to set an appropriate ebook price. It goes into adequate detail about twenty-eight “secrets” to having a successful ebook; plus, there are additional chapters of other helpful information.

I have published four ebooks myself, and even though I have heard of most of the tips Coker provides – because of my five years of publishing experience – it is a well-written book with lots of insights that would help aspiring authors, new authors, and authors who don’t have much experience with editing, formatting, publishing, marketing, and networking, and anyone who is looking to learn a new tip or two to improve their ebook’s sales.

To get your own free ebook copy of Mark Coker’s Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success, check out the following links at Amazon and Smashwords. Cheers to being a successful author!

October 13, 2012

How You Can Organize and Run Your Own Blog Tour – Part 3

Posted in Blog Tours tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 3:58 pm by Christine Rice

In part 2, I covered email communication with bloggers and how to maintain an effective “contacts” list in your email program. In today’s post, I will discuss: how to schedule blog tour posting dates with bloggers, how to keep track of the blogs and dates for the tour, how to network and market the start of the tour, how to begin the blog tour, and how to promote the blog tour.

The way that I scheduled posting dates for the tour, and had no conflicting dates where two people wanted the same date, was I started slowly by contacting a few bloggers at a time. I started with the bloggers I had contacted first in the very beginning and replied to their last email. (One thing I would have done differently, was to forward emails I sent that were not responded to, to the blogger they were intended for, when I needed to contact the blogger again, so that all emails would have been in one email thread and they could have seen my previous messages.) In the email, I told the blogger the date range of the tour and I let them choose the date they wanted. I received responses the same day, so I emailed a few more. I mostly had one email thread per blogger to keep the exchange organized.

I made a “blog tour list” that had each blogger’s name, blog URL, email address, type of blog post, ebook format they preferred, and the scheduled posting date. I turned the Word document to “landscape” and put one blogger on each line. As I scheduled the posting dates, I typed them on my blog tour list and highlighted them in yellow so that I could easily see what dates were taken.

Around that time, I published my book and sent out the ebook copies to the bloggers. I looked at my blog tour list to see what ebook format each blogger wanted, then I emailed the ebook and cover image to each of them using the email threads I already had going. I waited at least a week before I sent them any more emails, to give them a chance to read my book.

I began receiving interview questions from the bloggers who would be interviewing me on their blog. So I answered the interview questions, and after editing my answers, I emailed it back to them right away. I also wrote my guest posts. During this time (about one week), I did as much writing as I could, because I knew that once the tour started, I would be too busy running and promoting it to do any additional writing. Plus, I didn’t want to save anything for the last minute.

Then one week before the tour started, I began promoting it. I created events on Facebook, Book Blogs, and Goodreads. For the Book Blogs and Goodreads events, I posted a description of the tour and listed all of the blogs’ URLs and posting dates (with live links). For Facebook, I did not list the blogs’ URLs and posting dates in the description of the event; I only posted a compelling description of the tour to get people psyched up for it. I also published a blog post here (on my own blog) with a full description of the blog tour and a list of all of the blogs’ names and URLs. I tweeted about the tour too.

One other thing I did – I asked the leader of my Goodread’s group, “Writers and Readers,” if I could be involved in a Q&A discussion, which is when an author is spotlighted and readers ask them questions. The group leader just happened to be looking for authors for Q&As. So we scheduled my Q&A discussion for the first three days of my tour.

Just before the tour began, I emailed everyone a blog tour banner, which listed all of the blogs’ URLs that were on the tour and had my book cover design as the background. It is a good publicity method. I created the banner myself by uploading my cover design (before I had put the title, the subtitle, and my name on it) onto a PowerPoint slide and added the blog tour information. Not all bloggers are willing to post a banner on their blog, so I did not force them, but I asked them if they would and some did.

The night before the first blogger hosted me, I sent them an email to remind them to post. The email was easy-going, but well-written, and it included the posting date. Here’s an example:

Hi [blogger’s first name],

This is a reminder to post [your review/the interview] tomorrow [month/date]. I look forward to seeing your post!

Christine

(As you can see, it’s a very simple message, used just as a reminder, without sounding pushy.)

When I woke up and went on the computer the next day, I checked my blog tour list for that day’s blog URL. Then I went on the blog to see if the post was up (most of the time it was – thanks bloggers!). I then clicked on the title of the post to display just that one post. If the post had share icons, I shared it on Twitter, Google+, my Facebook page, LinkedIn, and Digg. Otherwise, I copied and pasted the URL on those websites manually. Then I went to my Facebook event page and pasted the URL in a comment, along with a compelling description of the blog post. I then pasted the URL into the “Post Your Blog Updates Here!” forum post in the “Blog Tour” group on Book Blogs. Then I created new blog posts on Book Blogs and the Writer’s Digest Community with the title being the same as the title of the blog post and put in quotation marks; a “teaser” in the body of the new blog post with a direct link to the actual post; and appropriate tags, such as: blog post, book review/author interview, blog tour, Christine Rice, and Freelance Writing Guide (my book for the tour).

After I shared the blogger’s post everywhere possible, I emailed them to thank them for their post and for participating in my blog tour. I told them that I shared their post everywhere so that they will get some extra hits to their blog. Then I put a line through the blogger’s information on my blog tour list to show that the blog post had been successfully published and I finished communication with the blogger.

The rest of the tour consisted of the same: sending “reminder emails” the night before the next blog stop, promoting the blog post, and sending “thank you” emails the day of the post (preferably right after sharing the post). I kept all the emails in my blog tour email folder until the tour was completely over. I still have my blog tour list in case I need the information in the future.

I hope you enjoyed this 3-part series about how to organize and run your own blog tour! I hope you will take the plunge and create your own blog tour. If you do, you will save money that would have been unnecessarily spent on a blog tour company, and you will have a memorable experience. Good luck!

September 4, 2012

What is going on

Posted in Blog Tours, Books, Editing, Writing tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 6:02 pm by Christine Rice

I am very busy with work right now and that makes me really happy. I feel a little taxed from being at the computer all day, but I’m really enjoying the work I’m doing.

The blog tour is going excellently! So far I have been at the “Writers and Readers” group at Goodreads for three days doing a Q&A session, at Literary Lunes Publications for an interview, and at The Writer’s Block for an interview with Vanessa Eccles.

Tomorrow the tour will stop at Teresa Morrow~Author/Writer/Poet for another interview. Don’t worry; there are plenty of reviews of Freelance Writing Guide coming up towards the middle and end of the tour. In fact, on September 7th there will be a review on ShaynaGier.com. Other reviews to come will be on September 8, 9, 10, 14, 15, 17, 18, & 20. There will also be guest posts, book excerpts, author bios, and a surprise – right here – at the end of the tour!

If all goes well for the entire tour, I will write and publish a blog post about how authors can effectively run a blog tour.

I’ve also been doing finishing touches on interview questions and guest posts for the tour. Fortunately, that is all taken care of now.

Actually, I’ve been so busy lately with networking, my blog tour, and writing that I haven’t read from a book in about a week! I miss it and will hopefully be back to it soon.

I hope to begin working on Chronicles of a Troubled Girl again by the end of the month. It pains me, because I am so close to finishing it, but I’m happy Freelance Writing Guide has been published, since I started writing it first.

I have been working on getting word out about my editing services. So if you or anyone you know could use having their writing edited by a professional, I do thorough editing and proofreading on all types of writing for only $1.00 per double-spaced page (250 words). To view my credentials, you can visit my website. I will even edit a sample of your writing for Free, so that you can evaluate the quality of my editing services and can decide if you want me to edit the rest. This is a great deal and you can’t lose! You can contact me through my email: christine_rice@charter.net

Thank you, everyone, for your support – for following this blog and reading my work. If you weren’t here, I’d have no one to write this to, so I am truly grateful. I hope I can extend the same support to you.

July 1, 2012

A Busy Month – June 2012

Posted in Books, Publishing, Writing tagged , , , , , , , , , at 12:04 am by Christine Rice

Since the beginning of the year, June was my busiest month. I went through a couple of months where my activity declined, but now it is in top speed. I’ve been reviewing books and networking a lot, but I’ve also been working on my manuscripts a lot too. And don’t forget about blog posts! This is what I accomplished last month:

  • Published 16 blog posts (between two blogs).
  • Published 10 book reviews.
  • Edited twice for a colleague.
  • Sold some books.
  • Completed the first draft of Freelance Writing Guide.
  • Unburied Freedom from Fat from 2010.
  • Wrote a total of 40,600 words in three manuscripts.

I am doing it all for my readers and for my pure enjoyment of writing. I hope you each find your passion and follow where it leads. Mine leads to happiness :)

June 13, 2012

Review of “Smashwords Book Marketing Guide”

Posted in Book Reviews tagged , , , , at 3:15 pm by Christine Rice

Smashwords Book Marketing Guide by Mark Coker is helpful for authors interested in learning more ways to market their ebooks. The book was written by the owner of Smashwords for Smashwords authors, but most of the tips can be used by any ebook author. The book is designed for authors of all levels of experience and knowledge about book marketing.

The beginning of the book provides knowledge about being a Smashwords author. The topics it covers include: a background on Smashwords, and how Smashwords helps authors and publishers market books. Other information in this section includes: adopting a proactive marketing mindset, building social networks, using hyperlinks, and helping other authors.

Next, which is the majority of the book, is a descriptive list of 30 marketing tips. The tips go from easy and common to challenging and uncommon. For example, the list starts with tips on updating your email signature and posting a notice on your website or blog, and leads to tips on networking and being active in online communities, to writing press releases, as well as uncommon ideas, such as joining HARO (Help-A-Reporter-Online) and using Google Alerts to find where people are talking about topics online that are related to your book. Plus, there are many more.

I recommend Smashwords Book Marketing Guide to Smashwords authors and authors who are in need of some new marketing ideas. I’m sure you will discover at least a few ideas you hadn’t heard of before.

This is a free ebook on Amazon and can be downloaded here. I hope you enjoy it and learn a lot, like I did. Until next time, happy reading!