By Natalie Bright

Think of all the ways you can say BUY MY BOOK without typing BUY MY BOOK. Here are a few examples:

ü Are you signed up for my Newsletter? (link to website)
ü Are you following me on Amazon? (link to Amazon Author page)
ü I’ve posted a new picture on Facebook! (link to Author Public Page)
ü Quotes about reading, books, authors, writing. You don’t have to have a link in every post.
ü Quotes from your books with a direct link to your website. Make it easy for Followers to find you and your books.
ü Major brags or awards that can be retweeted over the course of several months at different times, just said in different ways. Remember, it’s estimated that about 10% of your followers are actively online at any one given time.
ü ReTweets from local news items of interest and area businesses.
ü Facts and interesting tidbits about your town or state. If you want to keep a low profile and keep your local area private, tweet about the settings in your books.
ü Add links to your books and generate new followers who are interested in your work.
o Make specific comments about cover art and give kudos to your design team with link to your book.
o Comment about the look or personality of your characters with link to your book.
o Comment about specifics on the covers with link to you book.
o “Cover Reveal” for new books with link to your book.
o Research notes and pictures of research pics with link to your book.
o Comment about events and booksignings as “going to” or “been there” with link to your book.
ü Exchange Pleasantries
o Happy Monday. Have a great week everybody.
o TGIF Have a great weekend.
o Personal glimpses: Baked cookies with granddaughters this weekend. What did you do?
o Comments about meals, dinner parties, and special outings.
o Pay it Forward: Time for coffee and a great book, with link to one of your favorite authors.
o Pic of your patio flowers
o Pic of the view from your office window
o Pic of your pets

Now that you have a list of ideas to work with, make a social media plan and rotate these posts between all of your social media sites. With useful tools like Hootsuite, you can schedule posts in advance. Don’t flood them all with the same stuff. Think about how YOU engage. At lunch, I usually glance at Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. If you do a blanket post to everything at the same time, my feeds are flooded with that same message from you and I’m very annoyed, which means I’ll probably order dessert. It’s your fault.

Hoorary for Us, because now more than ever before, authors can connect directly with readers. It’s a great time to be a writer.

Be nice. Have fun!




By Natalie Bright

Let’s switch hats for a minute and be a reader. Let’s think like a fan of books.

Do you follow your favorite authors on social media? Do you enjoy learning more about them and their books through Instagram or Facebook interactions? Do you appreciate glimpses into their daily lives and their writing process? I follow the people and the topics that are of a personal interest to me.

As Facebook evolves into a “Pay to Play”, I am being gutted with ads. And then there are ads on Twitter too. The good thing is that I’m having ongoing info overloads on topics of my choosing, like bestselling authors, book publishing, genealogists, historians, and parents of teenagers. On a regular basis I receive email notification from Twitter on posts labeled “Popular in Your Network”. This week’s included several tweets from a favorite author which annoyed me greatly. It read: “Make sure to buy my book on Amazon.”

Pushy. Intrusive. Down right rude. I’ve been a life-long reader of this person’s work, and yes, I am well aware that there are books for sale.


Your followers have probably purchased a book or two. Maybe even read it, told a friend, and perhaps posted a review. They know you have books for sale. Or perhaps they haven’t made a purchase yet, and just want to learn more about you. If there’s a connection, they may become interested enough to read your work.

I want to buy YOUR book. I want to discover great stories by new-to-me authors. Perhaps it’s the beautiful cover that entices me, or a brilliant tagline. It’s NOT going to be a pushy, condescending ‘call to act’ that makes me want your book.


If you don’t enjoy social media, do not pretend to be engaged with your fans by posting mundane, meaningless posts because someone told you to. It’s not sincere, you’re only irritating us, and you’re most certainly not attracting new follows, which should be your goal. If a new follower visits your twitter page and your feed is full of self-promotion, they’re not going to follow you. Would you follow you? Either be your true self because you sincerely want to engage with people, or stop it. Don’t post meaningless garbage. Just don’t. If you’re not interested in it, more than likely your fans won’t be either. I’m not naïve enough to think that big name authors do all of their posting, but the savvy ones have assistants who can be authentic and work hard at reflecting the personality of their clients.

Social media is a powerful tool. Marie Force, bestselling Hybrid Author, engages regularly with her fans and recommends that authors spend as much time on Facebook as possible. Nora Roberts is posting this week from Italy, with breathtaking views, delicious food, and tales of her shopping exploits. Eloisa James posts tidbits and pictures from all over Europe on her many travels. Indi author, Joanna Penn, of the Creative Penn, credits her success to Twitter. These are just three examples from a few of my favorite authors who use social media in extraordinary ways. There are many more.

Happy Tweeting!


IF YOU’RE A NOBODY~Now Is the Time to Develop a Social Media Platform


         Now Is the Time to Develop a Social Media Platform

Natalie Bright

Where are you going with your writing? What do you want to achieve in the next year? The next five years?

If you let rejection, lack of cash, family obligations, day job, or whatever excuse distract you from your goals, that’s okay. Writing can be very therapeutic.

However, if you know without a doubt, deep down in your gut, that you will be a successful, published author. You will finish a book and publish it one day through whatever method or opportunity comes your way, then now’s the time to work on your online presence.

This year, one of my goals is to absorb an understanding about social media. Every interview I’ve read and every podcast I’ve listened to has revealed some surprising facts. Authors with sales through the roof have a good grasp on their social media (or in some cases, they hire somebody who does it for them). They set aside time to spend on social media, and they know what works best to reach their target market of readers.

Predictions are that three times as many people will be reading books on their mobile devices in the coming years. It’s been almost a decade since the eBook craze began in the U.S. and then onto England and parts of Europe. Today, the sales for eBooks and iBooks are just beginning to gain world wide appeal.


So where should you be? Twitter? Instagram? Google+? Facebook? Amazon Author Pages? All of the above? Trying to determine this AFTER your book is published is too late. Guess where children’s book authors are finding success in sales and fan interaction? Statistics don’t lie, and several authors swear by Pinterest for selling their indie-published kid lit.

Another indie author swears by Twitter, which generates three times the sales as his other social media posts. Incidentally, I held out from Instagram as long as I could, but now it’s my absolute favorite go to place for following book stores, author news, and the western culture.

One thing about successful authors; they tend to be very statistically and data savvy. Having an understanding of where your sales come from, how each of these sites differ, and what they can do for you as a published author is just good business sense.


I started posting articles on my website about sites, people, and life in general several years ago. One day the comments reached a frenzy. My blog had gone viral! Not.

In reality my site had been hacked with comments relating to Viagra and Rolex. I deleted thousands and thousands of comments, and blocked the comment option. I learned that there was nothing I could do but delete that site and pay for a redesign. She couldn’t cut and paste because of the risk of transferring the spam virus. So to save money, I retyped all of the content from my blog. Thank goodness I wasn’t up against a hard writing deadline.

The next time stats showed hits in the thousands it actually was a blog post that went viral! Lesson learned.

I could go on and on about the weird things relating to my social media experiences, but you get my point. As with any “job” there is a learning curve. If you’re a newbie writer looking up from the trenches, this is the most fun and less stressed place to be. If you mess up or post something stupid, only a few friends will know. You can laugh about it later over marguerites.

I’ve always believed that doing is learning. Learning is doing. So take a leap. You’ll find tons of information out there to get you started. One of my favorite podcasts is thecreativepenn.com with Joanna Penn.

And for info about a freelance career check out makingalivingwriting.com

This is a great time to be a writer!