Angela’s Desk

What’s The Secret to Ongoing, Consistent BOOK SALES? by Angela Hoy, WritersWeekly.com & BookLocker.com

What’s The Secret to Ongoing, Consistent BOOK SALES? by Angela Hoy, WritersWeekly.com & BookLocker.com

Many authors want to blame the publisher, the printer, the distributor and even retailers for their lack of book sales and some get offended when I'm honest, and tell them it's their lack of promotional activities that has led to decreased or non-existent book sales. Authors get bored with book promotion. Even one week of lower sales can lead to discouragement, spurring many authors to start a new book (or watch puppy videos on YouTube, or share recipes on Facebook, or binge-watch Netflix) instead of promoting the book they already have up for sale.…

World’s Worst Query Letters and Book Proposals For September, 2016!

World’s Worst Query Letters and Book Proposals For September, 2016!

Oh, yes! We know you’re excited!! Today, we're going to share another installment of our popular column, World’s Worst Book Proposals and Query Letters. Featured below are real quotes from query letters and book proposals submitted to us over the past few weeks.…

CREATESPACE COMPLAINTS – PART IV

CREATESPACE COMPLAINTS – PART IV

CreateSpace is a mess. The process to get the proof is no problem. Everything was going swell until I ordered 50 copies on the 9th of January and chose expedited shipping. They shipped it standard, then it took 5 days to print the book, then another 5 days to get it to USPS. Then it was sent off, only to be delayed another 2 days. Now it's the 20th and I need it for a book signing on the 23rd and there's no way it's getting from Pennsylvania to Lafayette, Louisiana in 2 days. Hopefully your service will be done correctly.…

Topic, Common Themes, and Winners of the WritersWeekly.com Summer, 2016 24-Hour Short Story Contest!

Topic, Common Themes, and Winners of the WritersWeekly.com Summer, 2016 24-Hour Short Story Contest!

For the past six weeks, we’ve spent every spare moment judging the hundreds of entries submitted for the WritersWeekly Summer, 2016 24-Hour Short Story Contest. In case you’re not familiar with our quarterly contest, this is how it works. On the date of the contest, at start-time, we send out the topic for that specific contest to all registered entrants, while also posting it on WritersWeekly.com.…

HELP! MY PUBLISHER IS GOING OUT OF BUSINESS!! How Can I SAVE MY BOOK Without Going Broke?!

HELP! MY PUBLISHER IS GOING OUT OF BUSINESS!! How Can I SAVE MY BOOK Without Going Broke?!

Over the last 2 weeks, we've received reports from authors that another well-known P.O.D. publisher recently kicked the bucket. In their email notice (which used the word "regret," but offered no apologies, nor an explanation), they told authors to pay them ($250 to $300 per author!) if they wanted copies of their production files and an ISBN. That's right. AFTER those authors paid upwards of $1,000, $2,000 or even more to get published, the publisher is trying to drain their wallets further...as they're kicking those authors out the door...…

Want Christmas Sales for Your New Book? Get. Published. NOW!!! It’s Easy! Here’s How! By Angela Hoy

Want Christmas Sales for Your New Book? Get. Published. NOW!!! It’s Easy! Here’s How! By Angela Hoy

When September 1st arrives, I'm sweating and in fast-forward mode. At each of these pivotal moments, I'm reminded that I will be getting little sleep from now until Christmas week. Yes, around 17 weeks of puffy eyes and sore fingertips, but also the excitement and satisfaction of helping so many authors launch their new "babies" into the world! And, I LOVE every minute of it! (Well, except for the sleep-deprivation part...)…

PART II! THINGS GOT NASTY! – Author With Dementia…Or Victim of Daughter’s Deceit?

PART II! THINGS GOT NASTY! – Author With Dementia…Or Victim of Daughter’s Deceit?

...she came out swingin'! She sent me a scathing email, laden with typos (which was odd because she claims to be a "mental health professional" with a PhD), saying that my note to her father forced her to discuss this with her father before she was ready to do so (remember that part for later). She made allegations about her dad being verbally abusive toward his wife. She made some other pretty disturbing accusations about him as well. She said I shouldn't have contacted him without having medical or psychological training (what?!).…

We Just Hired An Ex-cop And Veteran…Who Lives On A Boat – By Angela Hoy

We Just Hired An Ex-cop And Veteran…Who Lives On A Boat – By Angela Hoy

Our one-on-one, owner-to-customer service isn't changing. Richard and I will still have direct contact with our WritersWeekly and BookLocker families. But, we are shifting things around a bit. Richard has always performed the majority of the back-end computer work, which can be taught to someone else. He really wants to get more books on the market under his own name. I haven't released a new book in two years myself and I finally realized that I might never release another one if we didn't hire someone to help with some of my activities. For example...accounting. Like many writers, I DETEST accounting and anything even remotely related to math. (Ug! Why didn't I hire someone to do that years ago?!)…

OUCH! Some So-Called “Authors” Should NOT Be Writing Books! By Angela Hoy

OUCH! Some So-Called “Authors” Should NOT Be Writing Books! By Angela Hoy

If I was truly honest, and told them to give up the craft, or to go to back to school (some of these folks literally need to start all over at the Kindergarten level), I would be harassed for eternity. Most people simply can't accept or comprehend the truth and, no matter how reasonable or gentle your message to them is, they will never believe it and they will hate you for delivering it. They may even try to destroy your reputation online through libelous, anonymous posts.…

World’s Worst Query Letters and Book Proposals For June, 2016!

World’s Worst Query Letters and Book Proposals For June, 2016!

Oh, yes! We know you’re excited!! Today, I’m going to share another installment of our popular column, World’s Worst Book Proposals and Query Letters. Featured below are real quotes from query letters and book proposals submitted to us over the past few weeks.…

Topic, Common Themes, and Winners of the WritersWeekly.com Spring, 2016 24-Hour Short Story Contest! By Angela Hoy

Topic, Common Themes, and Winners of the WritersWeekly.com Spring, 2016 24-Hour Short Story Contest! By Angela Hoy

For the past six weeks, we've spent every spare moment judging the hundreds of entries submitted for the WritersWeekly Spring, 2016 24-Hour Short Story Contest. In case you're not familiar with our quarterly contest, this is how it works. On the date of the contest, at start-time, we send out the topic for that specific contest to all registered entrants, while also posting it on WritersWeekly.com.…

BookBaby’s Unfair Contract Clause! By Angela Hoy

BookBaby’s Unfair Contract Clause! By Angela Hoy

We were recently contacted by an author who was unhappy with BookBaby, and wanted to move his book to BookLocker. But, after sending us his files, and discussing formatting, etc., he asked about how to terminate his contract with BookBaby. I told him to read his BookBaby contract, find the termination clause, and follow the instructions there. He found his contract, read it, and wrote me back, not at all happy with what he discovered...…

22 Signs That So-Called “Publisher” is an AUTHOR MILL! By Angela Hoy

22 Signs That So-Called “Publisher” is an AUTHOR MILL! By Angela Hoy

What is an Author Mill? The term was originally coined by Victoria Strauss of Writer Beware. It described publishers that focus on quantity, not quality. However, she limited the term to describing "publishers" that didn't charge authors up-front fees, but that still published anything and everything, quickly pushing large volumes of sub-standard books onto the market. Unfortunately, many authors later learned that this type of publishing isn't really "free" at all. …

“Special Event Signings” Sell Far More Books Than Bookstore Signings! (Or “Why Should I Order Copies Of My Own Book?”)

“Special Event Signings” Sell Far More Books Than Bookstore Signings! (Or “Why Should I Order Copies Of My Own Book?”)

I received the following question from an author last week: Why would any author buy copies of their book instead of referring people to Amazon or another store? His email went on to say that he knows we don't usually recommend book signings at bookstores and he was curious why an author would need copies for any reason other than a bookstore signing. …

A Funny And FREE Book About The Public Domain!

A Funny And FREE Book About The Public Domain!

I'm absolutely buried after taking four days off to go on a cruise...that ended up having horrid wifi capabilities. Luckily, my friend, attorney Harvey Randall, sent me this goody to share...…

Work for Hire…or Indentured Servitude? By Angela Hoy

Work for Hire…or Indentured Servitude? By Angela Hoy

Picture this. You see an ad from a large publishing house. They're seeking an author for a new book and the ad looks like it was written just for you! You have a good feelin' about this one! You respond to the ad and are thrilled to hear from the project's editor just a few days later. However, before they can discuss the project further, they want you to sign a non-disclosure agreement. Well, you think, okay... …

Marketing Your Book to Conference Attendees (when you’re not even there!)

Marketing Your Book to Conference Attendees (when you’re not even there!)

Have you ever been to a business conference or workshop and received a bag of goodies as you walked in the door? Have you ever won a door prize at one of these conferences or workshops? Wouldn't it be great to be able to market your book to people attending a conference that complements your books topic...even if you're not there? …

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