How to NaNoWriMo Like a Pro | Books and Beer

nanowrimo-imageNaNoWriMo is right around the corner, and plenty of success stories will be offered up to you in the coming weeks. Us? We’re more concerned that you are successfully published than actually finish this little challenge. Because while cranking out 50K words is an awesome accomplishment, you have more work to do.

And that’s where we can help. On this episode of the Books and Beer Hangout, we’re covering the other things you should be doing while you’re engaged in writing to help make that a reality.

Watch the show for all the tips, but the first one was to use LaunchRock.co. Right now. Do it. If you’re serious, you can’t start building your fan list too soon. And for an awesome example (or shameless plug,) check out BrewDiet.com and sign up! (Did I mention shameless plug?)

And there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Tonight’s choices: Supermonk Belgian IPA from SanTan and a Punkin by Dogfish Head.

The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and is simulcast on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live and to ask your questions during the show. Subscribe to the show with iTunes, any RSS reader, or directly with YouTube and never miss an episode!

Running your own author website | Books and Beer

YourNameReady for your own website, Author? This show wraps up our three part series and is aimed at the author who wants something more than a name plate or a free place to blog. There’s a lot more flexibility when you own your own author site … but there are also a few more headaches.

Specifically, we cover running and hosting your own WordPress powered site, mentioning Page.ly as great hosting company that takes care of much of the heavy lifting for you — for a price.

For authors who are less intrested in blogging, there are places like Squarespace, LightCMS, and Designly (a new one that Evo is using!)

And finally, we cover the easy option: just buying your domain (Hover is a great registrar) and just pointing it to some social property. OK, it’s sort of cheating. But it’s a good place to start.

And there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Tonight’s choices: Dale’s Pale Ale by Oskar Blues, and a Shipyard Pumpkinhead. Tasty!


The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and is simulcast on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live and to ask your questions during the show. Subscribe to the show with iTunes, any RSS reader, or directly with YouTube and never miss an episode!

 

3 Free Blogging Tools for Authors | Books & Beer

wtbBlogger, Tumblr, WordPress… OH MY! We covered the pros and cons of authors using those tools to help establish their online presence.

And… yeah. That’s what we talked about. Not really anything to these show notes other than this. I suppose I could tell you this was part two of a three-part series, and that last time we covered free “nameplate” sites, and that next time we’ll cover self-hosted options. But other than that… yeah.

Oh, right! The beers we drank: Tonight’s choices: Jeff had a rather amazing looking Claymore Scotch Ale from Great Divide, and Evo nestled in with a Crunkle Sam barley wine by Clown Shoes.

The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and is simulcast on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live and to ask your questions during the show. Subscribe to the show with iTunes, any RSS reader, or directly with YouTube and never miss an episode!

3 Easy Author Homebase Options | Books & Beer

homebasePart 1 of a 3 part series on author home pages. On this episode of The Books & Beer Hangout, we cover three free tools authors can use to establish their home base. If you can get past the wonkiness of Google+ and YouTube (that’ll teach us to record on a maintenance night,) you’ll get some good ideas.

First we covered Amazon.com’s Author Central. This is a must have if you’re published on Amazon. Which you should be. No, not a lot you can do with it today, but we fully expect them (Amazon) to do a lot more. And we put our money where our mouths are. Both of us — Jeff and Evo — have our own Author Central pages filled out.

Next is the nameplate site, About.me. Just what it says. Think of it as a more robust business card. Evo filled everything out and went a little crazy. Jeff took a more moderate approach. What works for you? That depends on you.

Finally, we covered Google+. OK, you probably think of it as a social network. But it’s a lot more than that, and we never grow tired of talking about it. Both Evo and Jeff are more active here than the other two. But your mileage may vary. Want better mileage? We can recommend a great book on the topic!

Bonus mentions of gplus.to, some tips to make whatever your home base a good place to visit, and a suggestion to try vizify, like Jeff and Evo have. With mixed results.

And there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Tonight’s choices: Dale’s Pale Ale by Oskar Blues and the Barley Breathing by BooBoo Squad. Tasty!


The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and is simulcast on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live and to ask your questions during the show. Subscribe to the show with iTunes, any RSS reader, or directly with YouTube and never miss an episode!

Running an online writing group | Books & Beer

vwgA few weeks back, we did a show on physical, meat-space writing groups. One of our regular viewers, Laurie Gienapp, took exception to our poo-pooing of virtual groups, and offered to show us the way. So we obliged, and invited her on the show to explain the ins and the outs of online writing groups.

In this 15-minute episode of The Books and Beer Hangout, you’ll hear about what works, what doesn’t, and how you might start or find your own online writing group today!

And there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Tonight’s choices: Deschutes Class of ’88 Imperial Smoked Porter and a Dales Pale Ale by Oskar Blues.

The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and is simulcast on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live and to ask your questions during the show. Subscribe to the show with iTunes, any RSS reader, or directly with YouTube and never miss an episode!

Sharing Quality Content as an Author | Books & Beer

cake-theoryWhen it comes to social content, authors have more choices that being boring or shouting through a megaphone. The good news is that you an author, and creating content should come natural to you. What you need is a recipe, as if you were making a cake. We stretch that metaphor pretty thin on this episode of The Books & Beer Hangout, as we each score our own recent social shares.

Want to play along? Download the free worksheet an score your own Google+ shares or Facebook posts. The same sheets can be easily modified for use on Twitter, YouTube, Tumbler… whatever social platform you’re using to engage with and cultivate an audience.

And there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Tonight’s choices: Coconut Curry Hefeweizen (Lips of Faith) by New Belgium and a Gut Shot Stout by BooBoo Squad. Tasty!

The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and is simulcast on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live and to ask your questions during the show Subscribe to the show with iTunes, any RSS reader, or directly with YouTube and never miss an episode!

Facebook as a book discovery engine? | Books & Beer

facebookIs it sacrilege to talk about Facebook on a show recorded on Google+? Maybe, but it’s an important topic, as Facebook is often cited as a top destination when people are looking for new books. No, not quite in the same ways as they turn to search engines or book retailers, but every bit as important.

In this slighly-longer version of our show, we’ll cover the things you need to know, perhaps convincing you to re-think your approach to this social giant.

And do let us know what you think of the new format. Google+ is now allowing us to take questions without forcing the asker to be on the program. It seemed to work pretty well on our end and we’d love your feedback.

And there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Tonight’s choices: Elysian’s Superfuzz Blood Orange Pale, and a Black Eye IPA from BooBoo Squad. Tasty!

The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and is simulcast on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live and to ask questions we’ll answer the show. If you subscribe to the podcast feed with iTunes, any RSS reader, or directly with YouTube.

Jeff’s Fabulous Path to Publishing | Books & Beer

creatingFBGuess what? Jeff published his first book! Creating Fabulous Facebook Pages – A Modern Indie Author’s Guide is now available! And much as we did a couple of weeks back, we’ll dissect the process he went through so you know what to prepare for.

Jeff is an enabler of authors and creative individuals, and certainly has little aversion to facing any technical challenge. Yet even with that skill and approach, there were challenges. Some came from the visual element, trying to get his book to look — interior formatting — exactly like the two books in the collection that came before. That’s going to be an important consideration for any author, as it’s important to have a consistent look and feel.

And as easy as the uploading-to-a-marketplace process should be, the experience across marketplaces is very different. And in some cases, rather maddening. Remember, these are cloud based systems, and uptime can be an issue. Others seem to compartmentalize steps in bizarre and random ways, increasing the frustration level of indie authors.

That’s unfortunate, as it probably turns many away from the process. Others will throw their hands up in frustration and pay a service to do this for them. And a good number will forget about the other things that need to happen beyond loading to the marketplaces when launching a new book. For Jeff, he had to turn his brain back to fiction. Follow his writing over on Wattpad for now and give him some encouragement.

With three books in the Modern Indie Author’s Guide collection — and one of them available as a free serialized audio book — we’re looking for our next topics. And we’re looking for authors to lend their own voice to the collection. We take no monopoly on good advice, but we do have a nice format and system developed. If writing in the MIAG series sounds like something you’d like to do, drop us a line.

And like every week, there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Jeff celebrated with a Dogfish Head 75 Minute IPA, while Evo took it easy tonight with a Mr. Pineapple by SanTan Brewing.

The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and is simulcast on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live and to join The Books & Beer Hangover right after the show. And you’ll never miss a show if you subscribe to the podcast feed with iTunes, any RSS reader, or directly with YouTube.

Can’t see the video embedded above? Download the video or watch it on YouTube.

Writing groups and their value in 2013 | Books & Beer

writing-groupsWe put Jeff Moriarty in the hot seat, as he tells us about his involvement with a local writing group for almost a decade. Writing groups sometimes get a bad rap, and usually from people who aren’t a part of them. Jeff clears up a few of the misconceptions and makes a rather compelling case on why you might enjoy being a part of one.

Perhaps more importantly, he mentions when Creating Fantastic Facebook Pages will be released, making it the third book in our Modern Indie Author’s Guide collection. While you wait, you can buy Writing Awesome Book Blurbs or Making Killer Google+ Profiles to get in the spirit.

And there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Tonight’s choices: The Gubna Imperial IPA by Oskar Blues and a RuinTen IPA by Stone. A hop-fest, for sure!


The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and on YouTube Live! Add  ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live, and to join The Books & Beer Hangover right after the show to chat with hosts and participants live!

Can’t see the video embedded above? Download the video or watch it on YouTube.

The Perilous Path to Publishing | Books & Beer

pubnadoPublishing an ebook; how hard can it be? Export, upload and you’re done, right? Wrong. In this 15-minute episode of The Books & Beer Hangout, we’ll share what it’s like to hit Publish, even when you know what you’re doing. Here’s what we get into:

  • Writing your book blurb. Yes, you have to do it. And yes, even we hate it. But it’s worth the time.
  • Make a landing page for your book. Ours are complex and add extra value. Yours probably should, too.
  • Sending out free books. It’s a good idea and can help in a variety of ways. But how will you do it, and how will you keep track?
  • How much tracking is too much tracking? And should you use Bit.ly or Google Analytics?
  • How many times will you export your ebook? Hint: more than you think!
  • Where to list, and what to look out for when setting up your own publishing entity. You’d think it’s easy. And for many marketplaces, it is. But Google and Apple have their own quirks.
  • And apropos of nothing, Making Killer Google+ Profiles is out. You should buy a copy!

And there was the obligatory drinking of beers. Tonight’s choices: Bear Republic’s Black Racer IPA and a Stone IPA. Goodness!

The Books & Beer Hangout is broadcast as a Google+ Hangout on Air and on YouTube Live! Add ePublish Unum to your circles on Google+ to watch live, and to join The Books & Beer Hangover right after the show to chat with hosts and participants live!

Can’t see the video embedded above? Download the video or watch it on YouTube.