7 Author Ideas for an Amazing Live Book Launch

Helpful Tips. Post Quote: “Launching a book is a big deal, especially if you are a new author. And eBooks are the readers’ choice of today, so you must make sure that the launch goes successfully. Hopefully, using these tips will help turn your eBook’s live launch into a huge success!”

Nicholas C. Rossis

Mary Kleim | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksThis is a guest post by Mary Kleim, who works in the digital sphere. She is also a guest blogger who shares her online marketing experience on sites dedicated to creativity, self-development, writing, and digital marketing. Connect with Mary on LinkedIn.

I particularly like how she combines an online launch with a real-world event – something you don’t read about too often.

7 Author Ideas for an Amazing Live Book Launch

Kindle | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksWhen you are about to release your writing into the world, you want to attract as big an audience as you can. But how can one prepare for an eBook launch and turn it into a success? One idea is to combine both a real-world event and an online one by inviting people to a venue such as a library or a bookshop on the day of the launch.

Having a good strategy can help you prepare…

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How the WordPress Blog Subscription Works

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I’ve seen an increase in people who follow this blog outside of the blogosphere (*Waves!*) which basically means they aren’t active on blogs. They aren’t on WordPress, or Blogger or any other blog platform but do follow me through email. For this, I think it’s important to explain some WordPress basics. After all, it wouldn’t be fair not to show everyone around the place. Yes, please have a seat. Coffee?

When you follow someone’s blog, you do this in one of two ways. You either follow them through the Reader—your “Timeline” of sorts where you can read the posts of those you follow when you log in—or you can follow that blog through email. This means you will get an email every time they publish a new blog post. This button is usually located on the blogger’s sidebar (or slide-sidebar) and says, “Click to Follow this Blog and Receive Notifications Via Email”. (For bloggers, you can add this button to your blog by going to WP Dashboard > Appearance > Widget > Follow Button. There are two so make sure it’s the one that says under it “Add an email sign-up form to allow people to follow your blog”. Click and drag to the sidebar.)

The best place for this button is as near to the top of your sidebar as you can get it. I wouldn’t put it at the bottom. If your theme is set up that way (where most of the side-bar elements are at the bottom), I would change the theme. If people are lazy, they may not see your button and therefore you increase the chances of them not following your blog.

Adjusting Your Settings

If you opt to receive notifications of new post by email, it means you will receive an email every time that blogger publishes a new blog post.

Some of us post frequently. We are usually the bloggers who publish on the hour, every hour or every single day. Some may refer to us as “Powerbloggers”, or just those crazy people over there who spend unfathomable time blogging. You know, those people with the audacity to spend more hours blogging than you do at work.

We are also usually the bloggers who are very active and supportive of other blogs with little patience to be told when and when we should not write. Yea yea, “Quality vs. Quantity”. We get it, but we’re still going to blog like crazy. (What of both? Post valuable information often. Yea, I like that).

If you happen to stumble upon one of our blogs, it’s important that you take the time to adjust your settings once you’ve subscribed.

If you don’t want us invading your inbox, you can just adjust your blog settings so that you receive emails whenever you want. In other words, configure your blog’s subscription options.

The easiest way to do this is that when you get an email click on it and at the very bottom of the page, in the footnote area, look for Modify your Notification Settings or it will say “Manage Subscriptions”. Click that.

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A page will come up with a list of all the people you’re following. You will see something that says “Delivery Frequency”. This is the frequency to which you will receive that blogger’s blog post. Immediate means it will be delivered to your inbox immediately, in real time. If this blogger posts a lot you may not want to get their posts immediately. If this is the case, you can change your frequency to daily or weekly and get the posts once a week or once a day instead of every hour.

Blog vs. Email List Subscriptions

Some people use their blog and email list simultaneously. That is, they use their email list to inform readers of new blog posts. When they deliver a new email via their list, you will also get their latest blog posts. However, subscribing to someone’s email list / newsletter and subscribing to their blog are two different things.

When you hit that Subscribe to This Blog button in my slide-side bar, you are opting to receive emails from this blog every time I publish a new post. When you sign up for my email list or newsletter (through the pop up alert or just by clicking on the link), you are opting to receive my email newsletters. These are not blog posts and are not from WordPress. These are emails sent once or more a month to my list of email newsletter subscriptions. Usually, a person’s email list is hosted through one of these:

  • MailChimp (Most popular because the free version lets you send up-to 12, 000 emails to a maximum of 2,000 people a month before an upgrade is needed).

But MailChimp is not the only program for building an email list. There’s also:

  • Campaing Monitor
  • Infusionsoft
  • Sendinblue
  • Active Campaign
  • Zoho Campaigns
  • Pinpointe

And the list goes on and on. The point is that if you’ve subscribed via any of these, you’ve subscribed to that person’s email list, not their blog.

I hope this is helpful to those of you who are new to the blogosphere and that it will be beneficial to your navigation. I do post frequently so if you don’t want me bombarding your email, you can always adjust your settings. This goes also for those of us familiar with WordPress but who do not like getting lots of email notifications of a post from those to which we are subscribed. Lots of bloggers complain about getting lots of emails. This is unnecessary stress considering you don’t have to stay subscribed to that blog nor do you have to receive notifications immediately. You can always just modify your settings.


Yecheilyah Ysrayl is the YA, Historical Fiction author of The Stella Trilogy, Blogger, and Poet. She is currently working on her next book series “The Nora White Story” about a young black woman who dreams of being a writer in The Harlem Renaissance movement and her parent’s struggle to accept their traumatic past in the Jim Crow south. “Renaissance: The Nora White Story (Book One)” is due for release spring, 2017. For updates on this project, sneak peek of chapters, the pending book cover release, and full blurb for this series, be sure to subscribe to Yecheilyah’s email list HERE.

Writing Symbolism

I love incorporating symbolism in my writing. I love it because it digs deeper, past the surface and to the heart of the story. To write subliminally is to operate below the threshold of consciousness; to produce something that is subtle, yet strong enough to influence mental processes or the behavior of an individual.

What is Writing Symbolism?

It is something I’ve discovered that I am not even sure exists in the mainstream sense of things as an official way of writing! Anyway, if it’s not, I’m coining it.

Writing Symbolism is when a message is given to a persons subconscious or spiritual self to influence positive change in their physical self. Not to be confused with metaphysical psychology, this skill allows the writer to open the eyes of the reader in a way that is easier to understand or to digest. It makes readers think and tends to stay with us past the entertainment factor.

The symbolical writer’s goal is to tap into that spiritual consciousness that exists in all of mankind, but that has been lost or hidden in the world we live in. To create sort of a stepping stone to the consumption of greater spiritual awareness.

This kind of writing is most effective for writers who wish to incorporate spiritual concepts in their writing without being preachy.

I caution however that writing subliminally is not easy. If done incorrectly you can easily confuse readers. Let’s look at an example of a subliminal writer who has done it right:

Sue Monk Kidd

The Secret Life of Bees

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What message is behind The Secret Life of Bees?

There are many.

The major theme of this novel is expressed in its title, which comes from a statement made by August:

“Most people don’t have any idea about all the complicated life going on inside a hive. Bees have a secret life we don’t know anything about (148).

Throughout the novel (and movie), the reader (watcher) learns how most people are not what they seem to be on the surface. People’s lives are usually much more complex and complicated than they appear. The bees represent a community of people working together in a society which is represented by the hive and is symbolic of the Boatwright sisters and their community.

Mothers

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Lily is driven by her need to know about her mother so that she may learn more about herself. In seeking her mother, Lily finds mother substitutes. Rosaline, August, and the other women step into Lily’s life and provide the mothering that she needs so desperately.

The Black Madonna/ Virgin Mary demonstrates each woman’s need to be mothered. The women’s devotion to the Mother shows the power and importance of a mother in the life of a woman.

On another level, the Black Madonna / Virgin Mary is also symbolic of The Sacred Dark Feminine, which is highly promoted by the movie. The women do not just rely on the idol for mothering, but they worship her. Queen Latifah, who plays August, also symbolizes The Black Madonna / Sacred Feminine. She is the physical manifestation of her. In one such scene for example (see pic) she raises her arm in a tight fist and mimics the statue of the Black Madonna. The women also depend on her (August), for guidance and motherhood.

Three Holy Women

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The days of the week (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, etc), and the months of the year (January, February, March, etc), from which we are so familiar are actually named after Gods and Goddesses. Thus the purpose of giving the Boatwright sisters names that are months of the year is because the three holy women are symbolic of goddesses. (There is also a Trinity undertone.)

• The Childlike May
• The Sensuous and Artistic June
• The Wise and Kind August

Rosaleen (who is, first, representative of a “Mammy Crone”) elevates and becomes a goddess figure herself at the end of the movie when her name is changed to July.

Race

Men Drinking from Segregated Water Fountains

Of course, we cannot forget the antagonistic issue of race in the 1960’s south that is interwoven into the everyday relations between individuals in this book / movie. The plot demonstrates two encounters between whites and blacks (I really don’t like using these terms. White, Black, and Red are colors, not nations of people. I believe people were separated according to a nation, not a race but I digress) in which the black person is treated unjustly. Rosaleen, for example, is sent to jail for defending herself and Zach goes to jail for not admitting which of his friends broke a bottle on a white man’s nose.

On another level, Lily must personally navigate the delicacy of the racial difference between herself and the African-Americans she comes to love in Tiburon. White people criticize Lily for living with the black women, who treat her better than anyone else ever has. Lily develops romantic feelings for Zach, who tells her that he could get killed for even looking at a white girl. Finally, for the first time, Lily experiences what it is like to be judged based solely on her skin color when June complains to August that she does not want Lily in the house because she is white. I love how Kidd did this, showing the intimacy of Lily’s education on race by literally immersing her into the shoes of the black women she comes to love.

Death Gives Way to Life

Throughout the movie, there is the theme of death giving way to life. It is sometimes good, but it is also sometimes bad. In the very beginning of the movie Lily tells us:

“People who think dying is the worst thing don’t know a thing about life.”

Here, we see how Lily’s life has been profoundly affected by her mother’s death. This statement suggests that living with someone else’s death can be more painful than dying. In this case, Deborah’s death has given way to Lily’s miserable life.

However, death can also be a positive force in the lives of the living that remain. Following May’s death August tells Lily:

“Putting black cloths on the hives is for us. I do it to remind us that life gives way into death, and then death turns around and gives way into life.”

The promotion of death as giving way to life is seen twice (or maybe more) in this movie as a positive force. The first instance is the way that May’s death propels June to marry Neil, thus establishing their new life together. The second time is when Lily finally reconciles with her mother’s death and is set free to truly begin her own life. But on a deeper level, the movie promotes the idea that life can also kill.

May kills herself because life is too much for her to bear. When Deborah learns she is pregnant with Lily she decides to marry T.Ray. Lily’s life leads to Deborah’s symbolic death on the peach farm, where she has a nervous breakdown because she cannot bear to live there. This new life (Lily) also leads to Deborah’s literal death when Lily accidentally drops the gun and Deborah is hit with a bullet.

Symbolic Writing is a challenge, but if done right is a powerful way to reach readers with a message. One thing to remember is that everything, like any good book, must connect. The Secret Life of Bees was well written with symbolism because not only did almost everything represent something deeper the author wanted you to see, but it all connected so it wasn’t just thrown together. From the beginning to the end The Secret Life of Bees is personified.

Even May’s death is representative of the secret life of bees. She is kind, smiling, and joyful. She cooks for everyone and is there for you. Only those who truly know her will know how depressed she really is. Only they will see her secret life with the letters and the wailing wall and upon her death, see that everything is not always as it seems.

In her place is Rosalie, the missing piece. Where there was once May, June, and August. There is now June, July, and August and yet again, death gives way to life.


Yecheilyah Ysrayl is the YA, Historical Fiction author of The Stella Trilogy. She is currently working on her next book series “The Nora White Story” about a young black woman who dreams of being a writer in The Harlem Renaissance movement and her parent’s struggle to accept their traumatic past in the Jim Crow south. “Renaissance: The Nora White Story (Book One)” is due for release spring, 2017. For updates on this project, sneak peek of chapters, the pending book cover release, and full blurb for this series, be sure to subscribe to Yecheilyah’s email list HERE.