Sunday, November 25, 2007

How to Get Experts to Contribute to Your Book


It really is THAT simple.

I could have written that one simple word, "ASK" and called this article complete. Honestly.

Everything else is just "extra."

When Scott Britner needed $10,000 to buy his children digital hearing aids, he asked for help from someone he knew had the answers. When he was told what to do, he did it. He generated the $10,000 starting from scratch in just 45 days.

From nothing to everything he asked for in 45 days. And it all started by just asking.

So why don't we ask...

1.) Many just don't know what to ask for.

By now, you know your book title, the subject for your book and some ideas for the content and sections of your book. You know what to ask for.

Find current experts in this area and ask if you can use their content (an article, teleseminar transcript, etc.) in your book. Be sure to ask if they have an item you can use as a "bonus" when you promote your book. This will come in handy later.

Most will jump at the chance because it's more exposure for them.

2.) As we've grown older, we have been programmed to STOP asking.

Ask and you shall receive.

You've gotten 95% of everything you have (either positive or negative) because at some point, in some way, you asked for it.

Tell yourself that it's ok to ask. It's important to ask. You'll never be successful unless you ask.

Reprogram yourself to be in the habit of asking. It will do incredible things in your life – I promise.

3.) We've received enough rejection, embarrassment and hurt from our early adult years that we now think it's easier to settle for less than deal with the fear that's resulted from these past experiences.

Rejection, embarrassment and hurt are just facts of life. Face it and get over it!

If you ask for what you want, you may get rejected.

If you don't ask for what you want, you're 100% guaranteed to be rejected. Rejected from your dreams because you failed to at least ask.

You'll get a NO from 100% of the people you don't ask. At least if you ask you'll get a few who say YES.

And believe me... you only need a few.

When I went for my $10,000 goal, I asked 50 people to help me. I only received 3 positive responses.

Don't feel sorry for me. I only wanted the people who wanted to be there. And those 3 people helped me generate the $10,000 just 18 days after I received the first response.

So I was rejected 47 times. I achieved my goal and MUCH more with just a few who said YES.

Know what you want. Be clear about your purpose and your goals.

Be passionate about what you are asking for.

Take action even when you're afraid.

Learn from experience so you can continue to become better at asking for what you want.

Be persistent - if you don't get what you want, keep asking until you do.

Ask from your heart. You can have anything you want if you want it desperately enough! If you are passionate enough – others with similar purposes will flock to your side.

Be sure to give something to get something. When you're asking, always be sure to explain what's in it for them, how they benefit and win because they've acted positively on your request.
Remember, even though what you want is about you and your goals, the best way to get others to help is to tell them what's in it for THEM.

New Services Help Self-Publishing Authors Promote and Sell Their Books

AuthorHouse (R) is offering two new services, Media Interview Connection and Book Buyers Preview, to help self-published authors gain more visibility in the media and market.

Once an author enrolls in Media Interview Connection, AuthorHouse registers his or her contact information, area of expertise, and the book title in an expert database searched by 75,000 journalists.

When a journalist seeks an expert in a specific field, information about authors who fall into such a category is displayed. The author is notified by e-mail when a journalist posts a request in his or her expert field, allowing direct communication between authors and journalists.

Book Buyers Preview can also help increase visibility of self-published authors and their books. The “sneak-peek” characteristic of the service allows book buyers, librarians, and researchers across the globe to read a selection from the first chapter of the book. Essentially, when book buyers access their ordering database, the preview appears with the book's ordering information to enhance the purchasing experience.

The preview is available in trade databases, including the Ingram Book Group and Baker and Taylor, the largest book distributor in the world. The Book Buyers Preview will also post the preview on the Barnes and Noble Web site, as well as

Once libraries choose to catalogue a particular book, the preview will be available to library patrons who are searching for reviews. The book preview will also be on EBSCO, the leading service provider of archived print materials and related services for libraries and research organizations.

Website: Launches Amazon Kindle CEO Jeff Bezos has released the Amazon Kindle (named to evoke the crackling ignition of knowledge), an electronic device that he hopes will leapfrog over previous attempts at e-readers and become the turning point in a transformation toward Book 2.0. "This is the most important thing we've ever done," Bezos tells Senior Editor and Columnist Steven Levy, the first journalist to have access to the Kindle, in the current issue of Newsweek. "It's so ambitious to take something as highly evolved as the book and improve on it. And maybe even change the way people read."

Levy writes that Book 2.0 is shorthand for a revolution (already in progress) that will change the way readers read, writers write and publishers publish. Amazon is well placed to move things forward, but it was not something the company took lightly. "If you're going to do something like this, you have to be as good as the book in a lot of respects," Bezos tells Levy. "But we also have to look for things that ordinary books can't do." Features include paperback-size dimensions, being able to change font size into an instant large-type edition, and the ability to hold several shelves' worth of books, plus hundreds more on a memory card and a limitless amount in virtual library stacks maintained by Amazon. And the device is not just for books. Via the Amazon store, you can subscribe to newspapers and magazines.

Levy talks to Bezos about the new device and the impact technology will have on the future of reading in the November 26 cover, "Books Aren't Dead. (They're Just Going Digital.)" (on newsstands Monday, November 19). "Music and video have been digital for a long time, and short-form reading has been digitized, beginning with the early Web. But long-form reading really hasn't," Bezos says. The Kindle represents a milestone in a time of transition, when a challenged publishing industry is competing with television, Guitar Hero and time burned on the Blackberry; literary critics are bemoaning a possible demise of print culture, Levy reports.

Though the Kindle is at heart a reading machine made by a bookseller-and works most impressively when you are buying a book or reading it-it is also something more: a perpetually connected Internet device. A few twitches of the fingers and that zoned-in connection between your mind and an author's machinations can be interrupted-or enhanced-by an avalanche of data. Therein lies the disruptive nature of the Amazon Kindle. It's the first "always-on" book.

Levy also explores what kinds of things will happen when books are persistently connected, and more-evolved successors of the Kindle become commonplace. First of all, it could transform the discovery process for readers. 'The problem with books isn't print or writing," says author Chris Anderson. "It's that not enough people are reading." (A 2004 National Education Association study reported that only 57 percent of adults read a book-any book-in a year. That was down from 61 percent a decade ago.) His hope is that connected books will either link to other books or allow communities of readers to suggest undiscovered gems.

Levy reports that the connectivity also affects the publishing business model, giving some hope to an industry that slogs along with single-digit revenue growth while videogame revenues are skyrocketing. "Stuff doesn't need to go out of print," says Bezos. "It could shorten publishing cycles."

Also part of the cover package, as the first journalist to get his hands on the device, Levy reviews the Amazon Kindle, available Monday, November 19 at

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Pricing Your Nonfiction Book

by Gail Richards

If your book is published by a mainstream publisher, the publisher will have the responsibility to set a price for the book. But if you self-publish, that task is yours.

To price a book correctly to maximize sales, you need to know how other similar types of books are priced, as well as the costs of the book, in order to maximize your profits. Beyond these two factors, you must also factor in the discounts required to sell online and in bookstores.

Here are the steps involved in pricing:

• Seek out competitive titles, and make a list of the title, the page count, and the retail price of the book. Consider a price that makes sense based comparing your book's page count and complexity with the other books in the market.

Here are some typical retail price ranges for soft cover books based on page count:

110-175 pages: $13-$16 176-250 pages: $14-$20 251-325 pages: $15-$22 326-400 pages: $16-$25

• Add up the costs of producing your book, and divide by the quantity to determine the cost per book. You want to be sure you cover your costs adequately, even with the deep discounts you will see explained below.

Typical printing costs for self-published books depend on the quantity printed and are generally between $2 and $5 a book on quantities from 1,000 to 10,000 copies.

Other hard costs include editorial services, book design, illustrations, proofreading, indexing, permissions, bar code, and cover design. Unfortunately, you can't include the expense of your time or marketing costs or the book price would be much higher than the market will bear.

• Consider where and how you will sell the book to determine the discount you will need to offer for retailers and online sales. If you want to sell to bookstores through a distributor, the typical discount from retail price will be 50 percent to even 60 percent. Consider a typical 30 percent discount for sales through

A mainstream publisher will print the price of the book on the back cover, usually on the bottom right corner next to the bar code with the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) number.

If you self-publish and don't plan on selling in bookstores, you may decide not to print the price on the book so you can easily change it if you find your costs are different from what you expected.

Another cost that must be considered here is shipping. Bookstores and will want you to pay to ship books to them. Most of the time, you can bill an individual customer for the price of the book as well as the shipping charges.

You may also want to create a volume discount schedule for books you sell directly to associations, companies, or other large buyers. This might go from 10 percent to a maximum 40 percent discount. Here is a typical discounting schedule:

2-9 books - 10 percent discount off the retail price 10-19 books - 20 percent 20-49 books - 30 percent 50 or more books - 40 percent

About the Author
Gail Richards is founder of a dynamic website connecting aspiring authors with the classes, audio library, tools, information and resources needed to make smart, informed decisions at each step in the nonfiction book publishing journey. Jan King is the founder of a membership organization devoted to supporting and coaching women who become successfully published nonfiction authors.

Publish your book in 10 minutes, free

Top international publishers such as Hay House, Random House India, Hachette Book Publishing India (part of Hachette Livre Group that includes Hodder, Headline, Orion, Little Brown, Octopus), Harper Collins India, along with 12 more publishers and literary agents from around the world are currently seeking talent on

Anybody who has ever tried publishing a book knows how difficult and long the process can be.

Publishers receive on an average about ten unsolicited manuscripts everyday. To find talent, publishers do not have the time to read all the manuscripts or visit the millions of blogs/ websites on the Internet. In effect, most of the unsolicited manuscripts are rejected and an individual’s freedom of expression is curtailed.

What separates is that anybody may publish, read or voice their opinion on a book which can be uploaded in any language in any category from any part of the world. The website is open to publisher/literary agents from around the globe who can find talent by simply filling the sign up form for free.

Stephen King Loves THE MIST - A Film Adaptation of His Novella

At a press conference today for the highly anticipated film THE MIST by Academy Award nominated director Frank Darabont ("The Green Mile," "The Shawshank Redemption"), Stephen King, whose novella the film is based on, gave his blessing of the film adaptation as well as sent out a chilling message to anyone who dares to give away the film's ending.

Stephen King stated, "Frank wrote a new ending that I loved. It is the most shocking ending ever and there should be a law passed stating that anybody who reveals the last 5 minutes of this film should be hung from their neck until dead."

Written and directed by Frank Darabont, THE MIST stars Thomas Jane, Marcia Gay Harden, Andre Braugher, Laurie Holden, Toby Jones, William Sadler, Frances Sternhagen, and Jeffrey DeMunn. Frank Darabont and Liz Glotzer served as producers.

Easier Publishing of Digital Goods at, the online digital goods marketplace, has new features on the file sharing site for easier publishing of digital goods. Now everyone with a good photo, MP3 recording or collection of Christmas poems can upload and start selling files within minutes.

"With more than 9,000 active merchants and 2.5 million downloads a day, has reached a milestone as the download marketplace," says Ralf Schwoebel, founder and CEO of Tradebit, Inc. " was profitable within three months of its 2005 launch and has relaunched five times since then to help our users more easily and quickly participate in file sharing activities."

The file sharing marketplace's new functionality allows anyone to upload and publish any kind of software. After uploading, the site automatically creates video previews, product images and payment buttons for the seller. Payments are processed by Paypal or Clickbank. is host to prominent partners such as, the service company for independent musicians. The site also hosts well-known Hollywood directors who sell their podcasts on the platform.


Saturday, November 17, 2007

Use Google to find Content for your Book

Most people know about as the largest search engine in the world... however, few realize how powerful it is as a research tool.

The key is knowing how to tap into Google's research powers. One of the best ways to find content for your book is by using the search string called "allinurl." (pronounced all-in-u-r-l)

You can go to and type your keyword phrase in after allinurl: – and search its database for sites that have that keyphrase in their URL, either in the domain name or in a file name.

For example, if I was writing a book about Dog Names I could use something like:

allinurl: dog name articles
allinurl: dog name
allinurl: beagle dog names

You should find some excellent content using this method.

Let's check out the real world examples and take a look at what we would find.

#1) allinurl: dog name articles

• "A Dog Name is Something To Be Chosen Carefully"

• "5 tips for finding the right name"

• "Puppy dog name meanings"

Looks like great content for the book. Simply decide which section (from your outline) would be the appropriate section for it to go in.

Note: If you really want to use the content but don't currently have a section devoted to it, you want to consider adding one.

Now for the important question... HOW can you organize your search findings? Glad you asked...
Put the name of your idea and the Outline Section at the top of a piece of paper.

In the section below put...

Name/Title: The name and/or title of the content you've found
Link: URL to the content
Expert (Owner): Who wrote the content
Type: Is the content text, audio, video, etc.

If you have 6 sections to your outline, you should have 6 of these sheets with content information – one for each section.

This way you can quickly see how much content you've accumulated for each section. Once you decide you have enough content in a certain section you can stop searching and move on to the other sections in your outline.

After collecting all the content you want for your product, you have four options.

#1) You can contact the content owner and ask permission to include their content in your product. You can do this whether it's text, audio, video, etc.

The benefit of including other experts' content is that when it comes time to market it you've got ‘built-in' partners to help promote it and you are leveraging other people's credibility as experts in the subject.

#2) You can hire a ghostwriter to write on similar topics to those in your outline. selection.

#3) You could research and write content following the outline yourself.

I've come to realize the power and the effectiveness of using existing content from the experts.

Unless you absolutely have to have the entire product be your words, I'd suggest mixing in expert content with some of your own content. This might be as simple as finding a public domain book on the subjects you outlined and using some of its content as well.

(C) / Click here to learn more about book development.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Harlequin Books Launches Free Love Fridays

Harlequin Enterprises Limited, the world's leading publisher of series romance and women's fiction, has partnered with Motricity's to launch its "Free Love Fridays" promotion.

"Tactically, we want to raise consumer awareness and adoption of the mobile marketing channel," said Aideen O'Leary-Chung, manager of digital commerce for Harlequin Enterprises Limited. "Harlequin is committed to a mobile strategy that makes our stories available to our customers wherever and whenever they want to enjoy our material."

To participate in "Free Love Fridays," a customer buys two Harlequin titles from Motricity’s eReader site and gets the "featured" title at no charge. The promotion runs every Friday in November, ending at midnight.

With almost half a million users and over 17,000 eBooks,, a business unit of Motricity, is one of the world’s largest eBook stores. Motricity delivers more than 600,000 digital media titles and applications direct to consumers for their mobile devices through some of the largest and most popular mobile content storefronts.

Website: /

N.Y. Times #1 Best-Selling Author Forms Best Book Proposals

Barry Fox, Ph.D. has assembled a team of top-notch professional writers to form a new company, Best Book Proposals (, dedicated to the creation of first-class, high-end book proposals that garner top dollar advances from major publishing houses. Fox himself is the co-author of the New York Times #1 bestseller The Arthritis Cure, a book that sold for an amazing $450,000 advance. With 20+ years of experience in the publishing business and some 30 books to his credit, Fox knows how to sell an idea that becomes a top-selling book.

"Most people think publishing a book is all about writing, but in truth it's a lot more about selling," says Fox. "You have to sell your idea to an agent, then to an acquisitions editor, and then to the publisher's PR department. And once the book is finally published, you really go into high gear selling your book and yourself through the media."

"But the book proposal is the most crucial part of all of this selling because that's what starts the ball rolling. You've got to get your foot in the door and generate excitement. And you do this with a compelling, tightly-focused, beautifully organized sales pitch called a book proposal. Our mission at Best Book Proposals is to turn interesting book ideas into irresistible sales pitches that make acquisitions editors sit up and start salivating."

Fox has extensive experience in creating dynamic book proposals, many of which have sold for big advances. His clients, both current and former, include the Vice-President of a Fortune 50 corporation, a big game wild life veterinarian, an internationally-known philosopher, a top fashion model, a refugee from Nazism, a criminal defense attorney, a New Age guru, the butler who was ever-present during Princess Diana's final love affair, and the World Health Organization official who led a worldwide campaign to stamp out a killer disease.

The services offered by Best Book Proposals run the gamut from creating an entire proposal from a single idea, to reshaping and polishing existing proposals, to coaching those who want to write proposals themselves. And once the proposal sells for a hefty advance, the on-staff authors at Best Book Proposals are well-positioned to ghost or co-author the book, if the author so desires.

To contact Best Book Proposals, learn more, or read comments about previous projects from editors at major New York publishing houses, see The authors at Best Book Proposals can also be reached at (818) 713-8689.

Thousands of Customized Surname History Books

BookSurge, part of the, Inc., is collaborating with, the world's largest online family history resource, to make the Our Name in History series, comprised of more than a quarter of a million books, available on The surname book collection was created using historical records dating from the 1600s to provide a blend of interesting facts, statistics and commentary about the history of the most common 279,000 last names in America. Now millions of customers can purchase a keepsake about either their own last name or that of their favorite actor, president or media mogul and have it printed on demand by BookSurge.

"The Our Name in History series leverages's unmatched historical data to chronologically trace a particular last name and tell its story through interesting facts placed in a historical context," said David Symonds, general manager, BookSurge. "These unique books offer hard-to-find historical information on hundreds of thousands of common U.S. surnames and make a great holiday gift for friends and family."

The 279,000 last names represented in the Our Name in History series account for nearly 90 percent of all U.S. households, according to the 2002 U.S. White Pages. To create these books, studied more than five billion names from U.S. Census data, as well as immigration, birth, marriage, death, military and other historical records to detail origin, definition, popularity and other facts unique to each name.


Saturday, November 10, 2007

Add Value to Your Book with a Resource Box

Be sure to add a resource section at the end of your book that contains related products/services to your book's subject. And if possible sign up to be an affiliate of the product/service so you make money when you promote it.

Now, look carefully at the paragraph above. Notice the 'order' in which I wrote the sentences.

1) Find a product or service that compliments your book's subject

2) Become an affiliate (if you can) so you make money when you promote it

I didn't say it the other way around.

Don't just look through affiliate programs and pick the first 5 or so you come to. This will take away value from your book because readers, once they take a look at what may be low quality products, will then be upset with you for recommending them.

Pick quality products and services. Try them out first if you can. Email or talk with the creator of the product/service.

This can add tremendous value to your book. Not just because You are the one providing more valuable help to your reader but also because you are generating some extra income as well.

But the value to your reader HAS TO come first.

Please read that again... the Value to your Reader HAS TO come First.

Give value to your reader and they will in turn give value back to you – in more ways than you can imagine.

Ok, so how do you find these valuable products and services to offer your readers?

Great question!


Go to and search for your subject matter.

If I was going to do a Pet Name book, I would do a search for possibly "Pet Supplies."

Notice the links at the top in a grayish background and the links down the right side of the page.

Product owners (or someone) is paying to display these links. If the person is paying to display the links they've probably got a product/service to promote. And will probably be willing to let you promote it as well.

Just because these links show up – or because they show up at the top – doesn't mean they are 'quality' products/services or the best products/services. It just means someone paid the most to get them there.

Please do your research, just like you did with the content and pick the ones most appropriate and the ones most valuable – to your reader.

Another place you can go is (

More appropriately, go to the ClickBank Marketplace

There you will notice that the products are listed by subject and you can drill down into each subject and find more specific products (all digital products) that you can be an affiliate of and promote.

In each section the products are listed by popularity so the most popular will be listed first. This doesn't mean it's the best product for you – just that at this point in time it is the most popular.

Research the products carefully before choosing.

Lastly, let me tell you about one more place you can look. It's a site called Commission Junction.

This is a great site to find affiliate products you can promote. You can easily sign up for an account and then search their vast supply of products/services based on the subject of your book.

Between these three powerful resources, I'm sure you'll be able to find 5 or so products/services that are high quality and will provide value to your reader.

How many should you choose? I'd at least provide one per each section or chapter you have. That way for each chapter of information you've given your reader a recommended resource for additional assistance.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

How To Get An ISBN In Less Than 24 Hours and Save $200 in the Process is again the best choice I've found because of the low investment and quick turnaround.

If you're going to get your book listed in the major bookstores then you need an ISBN. If you go through the "normal" channels you'll be faced with a $300+ price tag to get the ISBN.

Here's the Official ISBN site however, don't buy from there.

On this site you will find a form that will cost you an investment of around $300 and at least 10-14 days.

Several years ago the only options you had were to go through a traditional publisher or pay this outrageous price to get your ISBN so you can be listed in online and offline bookstores.

Not any more.

Now, using ( you can get an ISBN for as low as $34.95 – and have it within 24 hours: offers the $34.95 option if you just want an ISBN number or for only $149.95 you get...

"Your book is entered into Ingram's database, the largest US book wholesaler. This gets your book into the same wholesale channels as major US publishers and will allow book retailers like Amazon, B&N, and Borders to sell your book. Your title will also be made available in the UK through Bertrams and Gartners, who are wholesalers in the UK market. Your title will be entered into Books In Print, Titles@Ingram, and Neilsons Bookdata (UK) bibliographic databases to facilitate the widest availability around the world."

For about 1/2 the price of an ISBN on you can have your ISBN and Global Distribution of your book set up for you.

Digital Book Publishing Helps Students Become Published Authors

Drew Bryan, a freshman at Spanish River High School in Boca Raton, uses writing as an escape and plans to be a fiction writer. Uzuri Collier, a senior at Glades Central High School, wants to be a nonfiction writer. These young women, along with 37 other students from the School District of Palm Beach County, realized their dreams to become self published authors when they participated in the second annual Océ Future Authors Project summer writing workshop. The book publishing program leverages the output quality and printing efficiency made possible by Océ digital book manufacturing solutions.

To help inspire young writers, Océ North America, a leading provider of digital document management and delivery solutions, created this free program, offered in partnership with the School District of Palm Beach County, Barnes & Noble, Maroone, an AutoNation Company, and other local partners. During the workshop, the students learned about writing, editing, and digital book publishing. Instruction was provided by certified teachers, with additional insight provided by Océ executives and by published authors, James O. Born, Jonathon King, Dr. Brian Latell, and Mark Tomback.

"No Such Thing as Writer's Block: Creative Works by the Next Generation of Authors,", which includes a compilation of the student's writings, was printed and digitally published by Océ North America on the Océ Digital Book Solution, a combination of Océ VarioStream® printers and Océ PRISMA™ workflow software. The book is now on sale at Barnes and Noble book stores throughout Palm Beach County and on

“It was thrilling to see my work in a formal format and on paper,” said Bryan, who was inspired to be a writer in the seventh grade after reading J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter books.

“This was such an eye-opening experience for me,” added Collier. “I especially enjoyed the opportunity to meet so many published authors.”

Océ executives predict that digital book printing and publishing technology like the Océ Digital Book Solution will open up more publishing opportunities for aspiring writers like the students. “Digital printing technology is revolutionizing book publishing and fueling trends like self-publishing in run lengths from one to 10,000. This creates exciting opportunities for new talent — like these young, aspiring authors — to pursue their dreams of getting their works published, while bringing a rich diversity of titles to market for all of us to enjoy. As a leader in providing digital printing solutions for the book industry, Océ is proud to support the Future Authors Project and to help make children's' dreams a reality,” said Océ Senior Director of Marketing Services Sheryl Pattek.

School District of Palm Beach County Board Member Mark Hansen sees this program as a model for successful private/public partnerships. “Thanks to support from companies like Océ, Barnes & Noble, and Maroone, our students participated in what could be a life-changing experience. It's proof of what can be done when the community works together for the good of our students.”

For more information about the Océ Future Authors Project, visit

Dean Koontz’s Black River

Audible, Inc. has made available Dean Koontz's Black River as an audio download from The novella, written by one of America's most popular authors, was originally a short story that appeared in a 1999 issue of Mystery Scene Magazine and was the inspiration for a 2001 TV movie of the same name. Audible is pleased to bring this forgotten short story back to life, as Black River has never previously been released in audio.

"I seldom write novellas, but I had great fun with Black River," said Dean Koontz. "Watching the movie was no fun, but this great audio makes up for that!"

In Black River, sci-fi novelist Bo Aikens leaves Los Angeles for a small, idyllic town where everyone is oddly content and welcoming of strangers. Bo soon finds that things are not as they seem and discovers the secrets behind an invisible force that rules and controls the mysterious town of Black River.

Acclaimed narrator Scott Brick performs the Audible original production of Black River. Brick’s readings are consistently among the most popular downloads at He has brought to life works by authors ranging from Frank Herbert, Tom Clancy, and Nelson DeMille to Stephen Crane, William Faulkner, and Truman Capote.

The audio download of Black River is two hours long and retails for $12.95 at Members of the AudibleListener membership program can purchase the program at a discount.