Here are the 10 things I did in 2017 that I feel best helped my career as a professional author…
1. Learned Keynote
When I was teaching (almost a decade ago, now) I used Powerpoint. But let us be clear, it wasn’t easy. It was a bit of a slog. So when faced with the prospect of teaching once more, and putting together a presentation for which I required visuals, I was nervous.
Because the AB uses Keynote, I decided to try that (as then I would have a ready assistant.)
It was GREAT. So intuitive. AB got me get started, which took about 10 minutes. All told I had about 20 minutes worth of questions but otherwise I figured it all out on my own.
I adore this program.
Partly because of this, I’m putting together several more presentations. I’ve been wanting, for a while now, to figure out how to give back to my fellow authors. Presentations seems like the best way and with Keynote I can do them beautifully.
I might even write some non-fiction at some point.
2. Joined Mastermind Groups
I’ve been looking to belong to a group of fellow authors online, so I am not so dependent on conventions for my water cooler moments. Turns out, I really needed more than one group. With RWA forums thrown into the mix, I finally feel like I finally have a great support network. I also feel like I can be helpful and useful to others.
What others think? 7 Benefits of Joining a Mastermind Group
3. Did Multiple Facebook Lives
Possibly the single best thing I did for my own sanity and for outreach to you, my lovely readership, was Facebook Lives (and putting those on YouTube).
I reach so many people without the wear and tear of travel. Now, whenever I have some kind of event locally, I try to also drop a Live video.
What others think? Connecting with Readers on Facebook Live
4. Focused On My Newsletter
I’ve had the Chirrup (my newsletter) for a while but 2017 was the year I really started to weigh it above all others.
- I worked hard to fine tune what worked and what didn’t to entertain my readers.
- I tried to determine when it should go out and how frequently.
- I assessed what people wanted and how to deliver it best without irritation.
- And figured out how to use it for giving away books, goodie boxes, and swag.
What others think? Email Newsletters for Authors: Get Started Guide
5. Learned Where My True Fans Are
I made a concerted effort to discover where my readers lurked online. In other words, where should I spend the bulk of my social media time, so as to free up more wiriting hours?
6. Developed My Copywriting Skills
After reading Brian Meeks book on Amazon ads, I started experimenting with AMS. It’s not been awesome for me, my stuff is just too niche, but it sure has helped me to write better cover copy and develop side skills. Turns out I find marketing blurbs utterly fascinating.
7. Published Audiobooks
Technically speaking my first self-published audiobook was at the very end of 2016, but it didn’t really start to kick in until 2017. It’s a fascinating area of the publishing industry and I am really enjoying being part of it. I like that it is still feels like a new frontier. Unfortunately the process of uploading is not unlike a game of Oregon Trail.
What others think? Publishers See More Good Times Ahead for Audiobooks
8. Established A New Pen Name
I published my first book under G.L. Carriger this year. I’m listing it here as an achievement, because I really feel it was a bug decision to alter my name for this series. Emotionally, as a writer, I feel more expanded. Like I have more possibilities because the pen name allows me to explore areas I didn’t feel the Gail Carriger name could.
This may have just been a mental block on my part, but the very act of knowing I have another name to write under just makes me feel limitless.
9. Revamped My Social Media Behavior
In 2017 I tried to set things up so that going forward I waste as little time as possible on social media. I cleaned up my feeds so they weren’t as noisy, deleting content and unfollowing ruthlessly.
I reexamined how I used and interacted on my Facebook Page, The Parasol Protectorate Facebook Group, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Tumblr, and this blog. I’m now focused on quality over quantity and have established updating protocols for Amazon & BookBub & Goodreads.
10. Wrote Books
I would remiss if I didn’t include actually writing more books as one of the 10 best things I did for my author career in 2017. It serves me well to be reminded, and remind others, that what’s best for a writer is always…
to write more.
Do you want more behind the scenes info? New stuff goes to my Chirrup members first, because I love them bestest. Sign up here.
Coop de Book: Gail’s monthly read along for January 2017 is Angels’ Blood by Nalini Singh.
OUT IN PRINT & DIGITAL & AUDIO!
Romancing the Werewolf ~ A Supernatural Society Novella by Gail Carriger is now available (audio will follow).
Gay reunion romance featuring your favorite reluctant werewolf dandy, the return of a certain quietly efficient Beta, and some unexpected holiday gifts.
- Competence ~ Custard Protocol Book 3
Out July 17, 2018.
Third in the Custard Protocol series featuring Primrose, Rue, and all their crazy friends. Available to preorder in digital & hardcover!
- How to Marry a Werewolf (In 10 Easy Steps) ~ A Claw & Courtship Novella
Coming Spring 2018.
Featuring a certain white wolf we all love to hate (except those of us weirdos who love to love him). Add this book on Goodreads.
GAIL’S DAILY DOSE
Your Moment of Parasol . . .
Your Infusion of Cute . . .
Your Tisane of Smart . . .
Your Writerly Tinctures . . .
The Lit Bitch says of Romancing the Inventor:
“Overall this was a romantic, sweet story that made me excited about new characters (Imogene) and fall in love all over again with old characters …”
“Imogene, the main character of the story is lovely. She’s strong willed, a romantic, and optimistic.”
“I had a lot of fun reading it and enjoyed Imogene as a character very much. Though she wasn’t as confident as some of Carriger’s other lead characters, she was feisty and fought back as best she could in her situation.”
The Hedgehog Librarian says:
“Newer readers will notice the allusions to other characters and stories but these do not distract overall. Overall, this is a charming addition to the canon.”
Quote of the Day:
“Take some books and read; that’s an immense help; and books are always good company if you have the right sort.”
~ Louisa May Alcott