Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Blogs That Work - Leo Adam Biga, Cultural Journalist

The best blogs serve a purpose greater than sharing miscellaneous tid bits about the blogger's day - they educate, inform, inspire, humor, enlighten - they share a unique perspective.

Today's Blog That Works spotlight shines on Leo Adam Biga, Omaha's most prolific award-winning cultural journalist. Biga's eclectic body of work spans from Omaha filmmaker Alexander Payne (Sideways; About Schmidt) to fashion and film making to Warren Buffett and just about everything in between. Rather than collect his published pieces in files, unexposed to new readers, Biga collected his published work and archived them on his blog. Why? To gain new readers and showcase his body of work to prospective clients.

Here's what Biga had to say:

"My blog is primarily intended as a showcase of my cultural journalism. I want the visitor to the site to experience it the way they would a gallery featuring my work. This exhibition or sampling quickly reveals my brand -- "I write stories about people, their passions, and their magnificent obsessions" -- as well as the scope of my work within that brand, which is quite broad and eclectic. The home page features 10 of my stories, each in their entirety, and those front page stories, which change every few days or weeks, consistently reflect the wide range of interests, subjects, and themes found on the blog. The blog is set up so that whether the visitor is on the home page or clicks on to any page featuring an individual story the entire inventory or index of stories on the blog is always accessible, organized by tags, categories, et cetera. Visitors can also search the site by using key words.

The blog is not monetized. So why do I repurpose my work in this way? Well, every writer likes to have his or her work read, therefore on one level I do it in order to find a new, perhaps larger audience for the stories. The blog is an excellent way for me to have an expanded Web presence. In addition to it, I have a LinkedIn site, a Google site, and a Facebook site, among others, most of them linked to each other. I also use the blog as a portfolio I refer contacts and prospective clients to."

And Leo tells me showcasing his body of work blog style has allowed those interested in hiring Biga for new writing gigs to get a good feel for his writing. He's received more offers to write than if he hadn't set up the blog as his massive online writing brochure.

Leo goes on to say, "The real satisfaction I suppose comes in having a public gallery of my work, even if it only is a small sampling of it, that I can refer or direct people to or that people can discover all on their own. In fact, it appears as if the vast majority of visitors to my site end up there by virtue of Web searches they do and their finding links to my blog as part of the search results that come up. Because I have so many stories out there on so many different topics my blog shows up as part of an endless variety of searches. It's also kind of fun to have people I wrote about, in some cases years ago, find stories I did about them and contact me, reliving old times or bringing me up to date with what they're doing today. "

Check out Leo's blog. There really is something for every reader.


Monday, March 28, 2011

Building Literary Community with author Timothy Schaffert

I'm willing to bet my morning cup of dark roast you've probably heard a little something about writers like you joining online writing communities and doing everything from sharing their blog posts to getting feedback on their latest query letters to workshopping chapters from a novel they hope to find representation for (no doubt there are groups who will support them/you in this endeavor, too). And it's all very lovely. Ten years ago this large scale opportunity for writers to connect didn't exist. There's no doubt in my mind all this online getting-to-know-you has helped writers conceptualize, craft and sell their work.

And yet, as we shift toward an ever more E-centric (no pun intended, honestly) method of "connecting" via social media and friending, something is missing. That something is real face time with the literary comrades in our own back yard. The opportunity to connect with one author or a roomful over coffee or a glass (or two!) of wine is what the writing life is all about - sharing the collective experience and having a few real laughs out loud.

I asked one of my literary neighbors, Timothy Schaffert, author of The Coffins of Little Hope and founder of (downtown) omaha lit fest, to share with us how he began to shape Omaha's literary community through this annual event.

Here's what Timothy had to say:

"Writing is a famously solitary act - and for many writers (and for the classical "portrait of the writer") solitude is a necessary habit. Whatever our routines, herbal tea at 4 a.m., or a gin martini at happy hour, or midnight bouts of insomnia fueled by nothing but anxious sleeplessness - we tend to summon a creative trance in
hopes of dropping not just from society but from all the trappings of self. Readers thrive on solitude, as well, perhaps even more famously so. (Even the public acts of reading in Andre Kertesz's series of photos "On Reading" depict people untethered from their surroundings by clinging to a book.)

Nonetheless, we still often seek community among the like-minded. It's from this contradictory impulse - gathering to discuss acts of solitude and reflection - that the (downtown) omaha lit fest evolved. Though people often refer to it as The Omaha Literary Festival, I made the name all lowercase and diminutive in an effort to lower expectations. The event is meant as an informal and idiosyncratic opportunity for readers to meet writers and vice versa. And its themes - which have included "Depraved Women Writers," "The Sordid Acts of The Cheap Paperback," and "Plagiarism, Fraud, and Other Literary Inspirations," - tend toward the obscure.

Despite my intentions, attaching the city's name to the project has implied a civic endeavor, and the use of the word "fest" has suggested festivities. And we do what we can - we have an opening night party with wine and nosh, and we partner with arts organizations that focus on disciplines other than literature, in an effort to provoke a general curiosity about contemporary fiction writers, poets, and memoirists, and the writer's life. We have literary inspired art exhibits and
performances in addition to more prosaic presentations on poetry and prose. I feel less like a curator than a nervous host at a party where all the guests may prove "too interesting."

Yet, we endure. I invite you to join us for our seventh annual event (the date is TBA; "like" us on Facebook, please), with a theme focused on "mechanics" - not just the mechanics and techniques of process (to include authors dissecting their own books for "anatomy of the novel" sessions) but the very machinery of production: typewriters, letterpress, bookmaking."

Having attended last year's lit fest, I can tell you Timothy is being modest when he speaks about "enduring." Last year's emphasis on the roots and role of the fairy tale in classic and modern literature was timely and involved two rock star authors within the genre, Kate Bernheimer (editor of My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me) and Melanie Benjamin (Alice I Have Been). Until I stepped out to attend this event, I had seriously questioned if the town I just recently left L.A. for had a literary heart. Schaffert made it clear in all caps that indeed it did.

Your Action: Explore the literary events in or near your city this week. Make it a point to attend at least one and learn from the experience. Meet someone new, connect. No lit events to attend? Attend the next best thing - whatever that is - an art show, a music festival - just GO! You never know where inspiration will come from or who you'll meet. The writing life is about living and creating through experience. Login not required.

Have fun this week, writers! Build your community.


About the Contributor:

Timothy Schaffert is the author of four novels: The Phantom Limbs of the Rollow Sisters (winner of the Nebraska Book Award); The Singing and Dancing Daughters of God (a Barnes and Nobel Discover Great New Writers selection), Devils in the Sugar Shop (a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice), and The Coffins of Little Hope (starred review from Publishers Weekly), all from Unbridled Books. In addition to directing the (downtown) lit fest, he teaches in the English department at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and serves as the director of the Nebraska Summer Writers Conference and Web Editor of Prairie Schooner, a literary journal.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Next on The Lit Coach's Guide

Join me next week in welcoming author of the about to be released novel, Coffins of Little Hope (Unbridled Books, 2011), Timothy Schaffert to TLCG. Timothy will be discussing the hows and whys of (downtown) omaha lit fest and its role in Omaha's literary we wrap up this month's focus, Getting to Know Your Literary Neighbors.

...and by the way, big congratulations to Timothy for the starred review in Publisher's Weekly for Coffins of Little Hope - the novel comes out next month.

Also next week, I'll highlight a new blog for Blogs That Work and answer reader questions with another round of Q&A with The Lit Coach.

Wishing you a fruitful, creative weekend!


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

New Service Packages for Nonfiction Authors

As I mentioned last week, I've come up with a few new service packages for fiction and nonfiction authors. This week, I'd like to share with you the highlighted version of a few of my new packages for nonfiction authors.

Full Length Nonfiction Proposal Read and Critique

Is your book proposal ready to hook an agent or editor? Does it look professional? Is the concept strong? Will the book marketing and book promotion section convince a publishing team to invest in your book?

What I Do: Thoroughly review your nonfiction book proposal and offer detailed editorial critique and suggestions for improvement.

What We Do Together: We'll have one, one-hour phone/skype session to discuss your proposal and my notes/direction as well as any questions you may have.

Nonfiction Author Platform Development Package

Ideally, before you put your message into book format, you've invested real time and energy into building your author platform - all the ways in which you're visible to your audience and all the ways your message is available to them (think newsletters, blogs, social media, articles, columns, book contributions, etc.). However, many nonfiction writers who approach agents with their nonfiction work have yet to develop this piece of their brand.

Whether you choose to publish traditionally or self-publish (E or otherwise), people must know you as an expert in your field. Your platform is how you reach your audience. Agents and publishers won't consider your work if you don't have a platform. Readers won't know how to find your book if you self-publish.

What I Do: Full assessment of your book material and any sample work you've written about your subject matter so far. Review your expertise, education, and experience. Full exploration of your career and publishing goals.

What We Do Together: Develop a strategy for you to begin meeting your career/publishing goals; ensure your method of communication is aligned with your brand; develop a way for you to capitalize on your current experience/education while seeking opportunity to expand in these areas further strengthening your platform and adding value to your brand; perfect your pitch to your target audience, collaborators, potential agents and the publishing world. BONUS: One, one-hour agent readiness counsel session OR publishing options counsel.

I also have two Entrepreneurial Nonfiction Author Packages designed for the entrepreneur who has already built their platform and are ready to expand their brand by publishing traditionally or self-publish. This list of what I do and what the author and I do together is extensive. I invite you to check out these packages on my site,

Please note, if you're writing memoir, the process to develop a platform is a little less intense but important to your overall success, nonetheless.

How can I help you with your nonfiction project? Email me and let's begin the discussion.

Thank you for your readership!


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Write Now! an Interview with Author, Journalist and Pop Culture Maven, Rainbow Rowell

Rainbow Rowell is a solid fixture in Omaha journalism. She is also a blogger, author, busy mother and wife. I was thrilled to read in one of her recent columns that her first novel, Attachments (Dutton, 2011), will be released in April...and is getting great reviews! Bestselling author Jodi Picoult blurbed, "Cracking-laugh-out-loud-dialogue, characters that feel painfully real, and a sweet premise about love in the information age..."

It was only natural I get to know my literary neighbor with possibly one of the coolest names ever. And I'm not disappointed I did. Rowell's grasp on the writing life is solid, especially with what she has to say about the perfect time to write a novel; it should be printed out and taped to your refrigerator, mirror or pinned to your corkboard to reflect on daily. Read on.

Here's my Q&A with Rainbow Rowell:

How has your training and background as a journalist helped your novel writing process?

"It probably helps me in more ways than I even recognize. Definitely, I was already used to deadlines, and once I got going on the novel, I was able to be very disciplined about writing. And working at a newspaper takes the mystery out of writing, in general; it doesn’t feel like tricky magic that only great wizards can do. Writing is just something that you DO. It’s an action.
Also, interviewing so many people over the years taught me to listen to how people talk. That helped with all the dialogue and with trying to create characters with distinct voices."

Did you face any challenges switching from nonfiction to fiction? If so, how did you overcome it?
"I didn’t have a problem with that until I started my second manuscript. (The book after Attachments.) It has some autobiographical elements, and I realized that my 100-percent fictional characters seemed more real than my based-on-actual-people characters. I think it’s because I felt free to do whatever I wanted with the made-up characters, but my journalist brain kicked in whenever I was writing about something real. I felt more allegiance to the truth than the story. (I ended up cutting most of the true stuff. The story has to be king.)"

You’re a mother of two, busy journalist, novelist and now book promoter – how do you manage your time?

"I don’t clean.


When I was writing Attachments, I read an interview with Diana Gabaldon (who writes the Outlander series). She was also a working mom when she started, and she said that she had to give herself permission not to do EVERYTHING. That was such freeing advice for me.

I still get overwhelmed – I especially feel like I don’t make my health a big enough priority, working out, taking the time to eat healthy – but I try to let myself off the hook for the cosmically smaller things. If I go three months without putting my clothes away (thank God my husband does laundry), but I hang out with my kids, write good columns and finish a book – hooray for me!"

About your path to publication story - how did you find your agent and how long did it take to find a home for Attachments?

I finished the book in July 2007 during my maternity leave and started querying agents one by one. I’d bought a book, a guide to the whole process. I queried my first-choice agent first (which I know now is stupid) because I had a good vibe about him. And then I waited (again, stupid).
He did get back to me and asked to see chapters, then he suggested that I cut my novel practically in half. Which I did -- gladly! I was so hungry for feedback. I sent it back to him, then waited and waited and waited …

When he didn’t get back to me, I slowly started querying other agents. I e-mailed him again more than a year later, almost on a whim, when I was ready to give up on the whole process. (Another agent had taken me on, then let me go because we couldn’t agree on a major aspect of the book.) Anyway, he’d never received my edited manuscript.

After that, things happened very quickly. He sold the book in July 2009, about six weeks after we officially started working together. I’m so glad that things happened the way I did, even though I was frustrated for two years … I love my agent. I feel like I ended up in just the right place."

Has any step of the book publishing process surprised you?

"I had no idea how long it would take -- almost two years between selling the manuscript and the book hitting shelves. I also didn’t realize that this was such a tumultuous time for publishing. That had never affected me as a reader. Now I feel like I’m tied to two industries that are in major flux – journalism and publishing."

In one of your recent columns, you’ve lamented the drought of good ROM COMs (romantic comedy). What are your top three faves?

"My favorite romantic comedies are the ones that make you believe that the characters are really falling in love. My top three are When Harry Met Sally, Fifty First Dates and Nick and Nora's Infinite Playlist. I’m re-watching tons of romcoms now and blogging about them on I’ll have to see how those three hold up."

What’s the best advice you can offer writers wanting to break into writing: journalism or fiction?

"Hmmm. Well, neither of those are extremely lucrative career choices right now. I think that journalism is a great place to be if you love journalism; I wouldn’t suggest it as a pathway to getting a novel published. I guess my advice would be: Write. Writing is good practice for writing. And don’t put off your dream project to some distant future when your life is less complicated. Your life will only get more complicated. If you think you might want to write a book someday, decide to do it now."

Very well put, Rainbow! Writers, I want you to print out this interview, cut out Rainbow's bit of advice about writing and then tape or pin it where you will see it often. Reflect on it every day and start writing. It doesn't have to lead you anywhere, but just get in the habit. You'll see with more practice, it'll become easier and you'll find your flow. Nobody runs a marathon without warming up and spending years training on the road. Put one word after the other. Just do it! (thanks, Nike).

And before we wrap up, here's some of my best advice about deciding on an agent submission strategy: Always research the best agents for your type of book and send out carefully tailored queries to at least 10 agents at once, as they would prefer to receive queries. Give them a week or two to consider, then follow-up with a polite email asking if they've had an opportunity to review your query. Some may respond, others won't. See what happens. If still no bites, send off the next round of carefully crafted queries to another round of agents. Do this until you get some bites and for goodness sake, follow-up to confirm receipt of your manuscript. Then follow-up again in about a month to see if they've had an opportunity to review, if you haven't heard from them. Many of you may feel like you're being a nudge, but you're not. If you email a few times in a week? Yes, that's too much. Be respectful of their time but understand your follow-through is what can make your career. It worked for Rainbow, in the end!

So here's the question: How many of you have put your writing on hold? Why? What are you waiting for? Oh, and what is your favorite ROM COM? Mine is without a doubt French Kiss. Discuss.


About the Contributor:

Rainbow Rowell is a columnist for the Omaha World-Herald. When she's not writing, she's reading comic books, planning Disney World trips, and arguing with people about things that don't really matter in the big scheme of things. Attachments is her first novel.

For those in Omaha interested in meeting Rainbow and buying a copy of Attachments, mark your calendar with the following dates:

Book Launch Signing at The Bookworm, Thursday, April 14 · 6:00 p.m

Author Talk at the downtown Omaha Library, Saturday, April 23 · 1:30 p.m

Saturday, March 19, 2011

New Lit Coach Service Packages for Fiction Writers

Hello Writers!

The Lit Coach is quickly approaching it's official first birthday (May 1). To celebrate, I have several things planned, but to start, I've created new service packages for fiction and nonfiction writers on my website. These packages are inspired by the needs and challenges most often presented to me as a publishing and editorial consultant. My special focus on how to craft a whole writer's life - productive time management, guided passion, gaining clarity and confidence, goal mapping and strategy, etc. - will remain the thread that ties each unique writer's Lit Coaching experience together. This is the why, the foundation of what I do.

Here are some highlights of the new packages I've created for fiction writers. You can read about these packages in full on my website.

Save This Novel!

This package is inspired by the writers who've sent me an e-flair half way through their novel when they've headed so far off path, have completely lost their map and control of their travel companions (characters) and don't where to head next.

Plot and character confusion are the result of lack of clarity and we address this issue head on, full force, no holds barred! It's go time!

What I Do: Read the entire work "so far" along with plot outlines and/or character sketches, if available.

What We Do Together: Through 5 intense sessions (to start, you can always add on sessions), we weed through the plot making sure all plot points lead to a compelling climax and resolution. If they don't, we reshape the plot and trim the fat.

Then, we'll take a look at all the characters and their individual purpose. Usually, some character weeding is in order. We'll decide who stays and who goes and thoroughly develop those staying with full character sketches.

On our final session we decide if you're ready for the journey. If you are, I send you merrily on your way with new-found courage, clear direction and fortitude. If you'd like me to stay on as your guide and workshop leader as you craft your chapters, we can do that, too.

Full Length Novel Read and Critique

Whether you decide to submit to literary agents, editors or self-publish, your novel needs to be in the best possible shape to score representation, a book contract or to attract the distracted attention and interest of your book buyer. Agents need something that's ready to sell, editors want perfection and if you want a healthy shelf life, book sales, continued success and positive reviews, your novel must be presented in its most polished form.

What I Do: Read your full length novel, offer a straight-forward critique with notes on editorial direction.

What We Do Together: We will have an opportunity to discuss the notes, editorial direction and your questions via a one-hour phone/skype session. Bonus to this package is one free one-hour session where we discuss your submission or self-publishing strategy, OR query letter crafting direction.

Crafting The Novel Writer's Workshop

These intensive one-on-one writer's workshop sessions teach new writers about the craft of fiction writing alongside the opportunity to workshop their novel chapter by chapter with me.

What I Do: Guide writers through the craft of fiction writing with an eye toward their genre of choice. I also read chapters and offer editorial direction and encouragement as they are ready from my workshop writers.

What We Do Together: Workshop your novel and have fun!

What package is right for you? Email me to schedule a phone session to discuss your project details, challenges and how I can best help you.

As always, writers, thank you for your readership.


Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Lit Coach and Pitch University

I'm happy to announce I've been selected as a regular columnist for Pitch University, a new, valuable resource for writers centered on all things pitching! Lead by the totally lovely authoress and sales guru, Diane Holmes, Pitch University was created to serve as a thorough resource for writers who need help getting around this big, intimidating, daunting idea of crafting "The Big Pitch." Rather, Holmes says, "what we will be doing here at Pitch University is learning how to 'speak our story.'"

My weekly column, "Pitch Perfect Proposal: Crafting Your Nonfiction Book Proposal From Concept to Pitch," will post every Thursday on Pitch U. The column will educate writers on how to craft the perfect book proposal by examining each element of a well crafted book proposal and later, how to pitch your concept to:

* Agents
* Collaborators
* Editors
* Your Audience

I urge you to check out the site - lots of great info for novelists and nonfiction authors!

Other faculty include:

Jennifer Wilkov, Author, Creator and CEO of Your Book is Your Hook
Katharine Sands, Literary Agent with the Sarah Jane Freymann Literary Agency
Michael Larson - Literary Agent with the Elizabeth Pommada Literary Agents
Christine Whitthohn - Literary Agent, Book Cents Literary Agency
...and many more experts in the publishing, marketing and publicity industry.

Thanks for reading. Let me know what you think of the site!


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Call Out For Your Questions!

Time for another round of Q&A with The Lit Coach!

Email me your questions about the writing life, issues related to agents, editors, publishers, events, publicity, blog direction, nonfiction book proposals...just about anything related to the writing life.

Only those who send me ONE question will be answered on the blog. Your deadline is Friday, March 25th. And if you've sent me more than three questions, perhaps you'd like to discuss one-on-one coaching?

Have a great St. Patrick's Day, for those who celebrate or choose to be Irish for a day.

Oh, and P.S., my feed went rogue last night. If some of you recieved a loooong blog post comprised of several blogs today (or lately depending on when you read this), I apologize. I'm not sure what happened, but I'm getting to the bottom of it.

Be well!


Sunday, March 13, 2011

Book Publicity 101 with author, blogger, PR guru Wendy Townley

If you read the publishing trades and latest streaming news from authors, agents, editors, consultants, etc., on twitter you're more than aware that the success of an author's overall career depends largely on the breadth and success of their own book publicity campaign, all of which takes real time, energy, money and some good old stick-to-it-ness. And let's not forget strategy.

More and more authors have chosen the DIY approach to spread their book buzz because publishers are unable to afford fabulous PR pushes for the majority of their authors. And most authors can't afford to mortgage their homes to pay a PR firm for a full court publicity press (yes, this does happen. More often than you think.) So, you have two choices: 1) Start saving some serious money (around $10,000 on the cheap end) to hire a book PR firm who will handle a piece of the pre-pub campaign for you; or 2) grow confident and get completely educated about the book publicity process, develop a strategy, ask all your nearest and dearest (and their nearest and dearest) friends and family to help with various aspects of your campaign and start spreading the word about your book. Now, you'll still have to save money for your own campaign as you'll need a website and other promotional materials (posters, business cards, ad space, pens and other promotional gadgets, for example). The more money you invest in your book publicity, the better, but it is possible to achieve free PR thanks to social media, etc.

As this will be an ongoing discussion here on TLCG, let's start from square one. Let's build you a solid book PR foundation.

I asked author, blogger, radio show and Omaha based PR guru, Wendy Townley, to share with us some basic PR tips to either help get you started on your book PR campaign or to at least give you something to consider as you embark on your literary (and I use that term broadly) career.

Here are Townley's 5 best book PR tips to get you started:

Start the PR process early. Work backward from your publication date, or the day of your first book signing. My first book, Nerdy Thirty, was published in May 2010. By February of that year, my press release was written and emails to radio, TV, and print contacts around the Omaha area were sent. That’s not to say that continual follow up wasn’t necessary; it most certainly was. But giving reporters more time to consider coverage can increase your chances for exposure. Reporters could read through my press release when they had time, and page through the complimentary copy I sent in the mail.

Some say the traditional press release is dead. Write one anyway. True, the press release is morphing into a sticky, social-media heavy animal that may never be faxed again. But that doesn’t dilute the importance or power of a well-written press release. Explain your book, your inspiration for writing it, and offer a brief (one paragraph is more than enough) bio on yourself. Limit your press release to two pages and include website links where appropriate. Include your contact information (name, phone number, email address) at the top of the press release, and be aware that reporters may call you in the evening or on the weekend, depending on their deadline.

Be kind to your media contacts. Email them initially with a brief message (Remember – the earlier, the better), and follow up a few days later with a phone call. Understand that the reporters may not immediately respond, but that should not dampen your spirits. Keep in touch, yet don’t become a nag. Media have the final say on what coverage they will provide your book. The only way to guarantee exposure is to purchase advertising.

Social media is the place to be. Use Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and the other dizzying array of social media networks to build a following. Don’t wait until your book is published to talk about it online. Begin the conversation during the editing phases. Share photos, related articles from the web, even sketches of your cover. The more you disclose about your book, in small, digestible bites, the more excited your audience will become. And share that following with your media contacts, which will add legitimacy to your book and your hopes of press coverage.

Say “thank you” often, t
hen say it again. From media contacts to bookstore owners to venues that host your book signings, thank them with a handwritten note. Although the web is a powerful place, few things match the sentiment of handwritten greeting sent in the mail. It will be the best forty-four cents you will ever spend.

Thanks, Wendy! All great tips. Practice these steps consistently, writers and follow-through. Most opportunities are missed because of lack of follow-through and organization on behalf of the author.

Writers, if you want to read more on the topic, check out these resources:

Guerrilla Publicity check out the resources page

Your Action: Share your story or tips on how you scored some free book publicity here (don't forget to share links to your book site to keep the buzz rolling).

Here's to a productive week!


About the Contributor:

Wendy Townley is the author of Nerdy Thirty , Assistant Director of Media Relations at the University of Nebraska, Omaha and blog host of Do I dare/Disturb the universe?.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Next on The Lit Coach's Guide

Join me Monday for an author branding blogshop with REBEL Interactive, as we continue to discover the great resources in our own backyard.

What is author branding? Very simply put, it's the result of the image you put forth through your writing and your efforts to support and promote your writing (though most of this should be strategized BEFORE you write and promote). Here are a few examples (using TLCG contributors):

Chuck Palahniuk - Unpredictable, shock-inducing, brilliant author of somewhat disturbingly honest bestselling fiction.

Ellen Meister - Bestselling and engaging author of "a smart woman's beach read."

REBEL Interactive is an Omaha based branding, web design and video production company I reached out to to help demystify the process that goes into creating a brand, making it approachable to writers who are currently considering their big picture career as an author.

Why you should care? Publishing has become increasingly DIY. There are more books than ever before being published and more authors taking the lead on their own PR campaigns. Whether you choose to go the traditional route of finding an agent then publisher or go the self-publishing route, not only must your work stand out, YOU must stand out, if you want sales and shelf life. REBEL Interactive will show you how to take the lead in discovering your brand.

Have a great weekend, writers!