What is Vine? Will it help me as an author?

By Lori Culwell

We got a great question recently about the new 6-second video platform that is making the rounds lately, and I thought I would take a moment to address what it is and how it might help you as an author. It’s called “Vine,” and in case you haven’t heard of it,  here’s the deal with: Vine, a new social media application from the Twitter family, allows you to deliver 6-second videos to the masses that, not surprisingly, smoothly integrate with Twitter. But unless you’re going to… Continue Reading


What is With All the Lousy Author Web Sites?

By Lisa Hazen

Every time I find a book I love (or even one that I don’t), the first thing I do is find the author’s site. After spending hours with the book, I often yearn to know more about the author and his or her background, to see what else they may have written. Often, the sites are lacking. And that’s being charitable. I may not be neutral on the subject—I’ve worked in both publishing and web design for more than 15 years. But authors can no… Continue Reading


The “How” of Hugh Howey

By Lori Culwell

Major news sources cover “self publishing success stories” all the time.  Interestingly, all of them tend to leave out the “how” of the story. I’m an author and am interested in all things internet and marketing (and internet marketing), so naturally I am interested in any and all success stories, especially stories that involve self publishing (which of course combines authorship with the internet).   With that in mind, yesterday one of my Facebook friends referred me to a piece that was running on Marketplace.   First,… Continue Reading


Amazon’s Latest Mistake – How to Avoid It

By Katherine

A lot of noise has been made about a recent author/Amazon incident, surrounding Jamie McGuire and her title Beautiful Disaster, including this article in Forbes. If you aren’t familiar with it, the general gist is that Amazon proactively offered refunds on a title purchased six months previously, and also offered an additional sum of money that comprised the difference between the original indie book price and the current big publisher price (the author had been picked up and republished). They then deducted  that amount of… Continue Reading


Back it Up! A Dropbox Review

By Lori Culwell

I know, I’m about to start sounding like I work for the Dropbox Corporation, which I decidedly do not.   Since it is free (at the smaller levels) and awesome, I would like to recommend that you start using it as well.   I like it when technology catches up to a need I actually have, so now I am starting the process of consolidating files from multiple computers/ devices, using Dropbox as my catchall/ backup for everything.  I was resisting this because I knew it was going to… Continue Reading


How to Get More Twitter Followers

By Lori Culwell

There are LOTS of ways to get more Twitter followers these days. Heck, you can even buy them (not that I recommend it)! I think the bigger question is: how do I connect with targeted readers on Twitter? Keywords. This is a term that scares people. Well, man up. It’s simple: what do you write about? What are your interests? Say you’re a nonfiction writer with a passion for vintage birdcages. Boom – two keywords right there: nonfiction and vintage birdcages. Enter those terms in… Continue Reading


Anatomy of a Viral Success: Seth Casteel, Underwater Dog Photography

By Lori Culwell

I know, it totally seems like I harsh on people for not having their sh$t together, so I thought I would take some time to focus on someone who got everything very, very right and is reaping the benefits of that preparation in his career. You probably still don’t know the name “Seth Casteel,” but chances are you’re familiar with his work.   One year ago, his underwater dog photography series went viral, and because he was prepared, this sudden rush of fame and attention… Continue Reading


How I Did It by Brittany Geragotelis

By Lori Culwell

How I Did It, by Brittany Geragotelis Rejection. That was what my writing life was full of for a solid 8 years. So when my big break finally happened, it seemed like it all happened very suddenly. But the reality was that success only came  for me after 17 years of hard work, dedication, perseverance and ego deflation. When I move to NYC in 2001 after graduating from college, I decided to start seriously pursuing my goal of becoming a published author. At the time… Continue Reading


Ten Things To Do Before You Go Viral

By Lori Culwell

I have touched on this on many occasions, but then I got an interesting email the other day from a literary agent (who shall remain nameless), asking me to rank, in order of ROI (that’s “return on investment,” for you non-business types) each of the the following: websites,  Facebook Fan Page, social media, GoodReads, Amazon Author Central.   Of course, the person in this example is a writer,  so the examples are writer-specific, but if you’re a musician, “GoodReads” might be equivalent to “LastFM” or “MySpace”… Continue Reading


My Google Authorship Experience!

By Lori Culwell

This week, I had a totally interesting and informative Google + Hangout with my smart blogger friend Erica, who kicked my ass on the subject of Google Plus, and Google Authorship in general.  It was AWESOME.  I love it when smart people tell me about things I might be missing. Here’s the thing—I have been totally neglecting my Google + profile because I felt like I just didn’t want to take the time, and I didn’t know how much benefit it was really going to… Continue Reading