I have been writing about author platforms for the O’Reilly Tools of Change blog recently, and want to make sure that my own blog readers can read them as well. My first post, An Author-Centric Map of Publishing, turns the traditional view of publishing on its head by placing authors at the center, and not big publishers.
Last week I wrote What’s So Bad About “The 10 Awful Truths”? as a way to talk about the realities of non-fiction publishing. If you write any kind of non-fiction, I highly recommend reading this post. As a follow-up, Suzanna Stinnett and I talked more about the good news/bad news for non-fiction authors in this lively little video:
Great Books on Author Platforms and Artisanal Publishing
As self-publishing loses its “vanity” roots, a number of wise voices are encouraging authors to treat their own works with the same level of care and commitment they’d expect to receive from a larger publisher. Among these are Joel Friedlander, whose book A Self Publisher’s Companion: Expert Advice for Authors Who Want to Publish from TheBookDesigner.com has a wealth of practical advice that is both challenging and reassuring to authors and writers. Check out his Self-Publishing Roadmap course, too.
And the new, uh, APE in the room this season is of course Guy Kawasaki and Shawn Welch’s comprehensive book, APE – Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur: How to Publish a Book. They have coined the phrase “artisanal publishing” to encourage authors to go for quality, both in their published works and their online branding. The book is a great example of this, with a consistent message that is also personal and engaging in tone.
Guy and Shawn have followed their own advice on platform building by creating a wonderful community of authors on Google+. It’s a great place to stay connected and keep learning, so if you haven’t already joined, do it now. Nice job, fellas.
Get Help Building Your Platform
Kristin McLean wrote about the importance of having a strong platform before publishing, but most authors I know don’t always follow that advice. Building an author platform is an ongoing process, which means that we regularly need to review and refresh our goals and online presence.
If your platform is due for a tune-up, come to my new, half-day workshop on Feb. 9 in San Francisco. Starting with your core purpose, this intensive will help you clarify your audience and community goals, establish sustainable workflows, and identify the social media outlets that best suit your needs. Everyone attending will receive a free PDF copy of my book on platforms, and a rundown of all the newest ways to build your audience.
If you will be in NYC next month, you’ll want to attend Author (R)evolution Day on Feb. 12. Tell them I sent you buy using this discount code: AFFILIATEAH, and take $350 off the price of your registration!