Tools for Tuesday – The Big Idea

I was traveling this weekend, driving to Galveston, Texas to help my older brother celebrate his 40th birthday. Like you probably do, whenever I’m on a road trip, I try to find something good to listen to. So, I dropped by our local library before my trip and found a few audiobooks that sounded interesting. One of which was marketing guru Donny Deutsch’s The Big Idea. No dummy when it comes to brand recognition, Deutsch also hosts the popular The Big Idea TV show on CNBC.

On the show, and in the book, Deutsch gives us lessons in life and in marketing, but he also highlights numerous “case studies” – people who had an idea, a dream, and worked hard to make them become reality. Deutsch’s biggest strength is that he never tires of asking the question “so, how’d you do it?” to entrepreneurs, like the woman who came up with Spanx undergarments, or the lawyer making six figures who quit his job to become a Lego designer. Yeah, Legos, the building blocks kids play with.

I highly recommend The Big Idea, both the show and the book ,as a tool for writers to tap into their “authorpreneurial” side. Perhaps even better than the great information that we as authorpreneurs can take away from reading and watching The Big Idea, is Deutsch’s point that he comes back to over and over and over again….Do what you love and the money will follow. I know that I gave up a career of something that I hated doing 10 hours a day for a smaller paycheck and the chance to do something I love, which is writing. What about you? What will you sacrifice, or what have you sacrificed, for your writing career?   

A little housekeeping note – I will be on vacation starting tomorrow and won’t be back at the keyboard until next Tuesday, July 5th. My best wishes for a safe and happy 4th of July!

*****************************************************************************************

Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author whose latest, award-winning suspense thriller, The Brink, is now available as an eBook for Amazon.com Kindle and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

The Brink is a hell of a read.” – Bestselling author Sandra Brown

“Mark Fadden is a masterful storyteller.” – Writer’s Digest

“Mark Fadden is the next Dan Brown.” – Triple C Ranch Book Club, Southlake, Texas

Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at http://www.markfadden.com

Tools for Tuesday – The FBI gives thriller writers yet another reason to make them the bad guys

As writers, we’re always looking for tools to help us suspend our readers disbelief. We are always searching for cutting edge technologies, clever plans, and yes, even boring things like newly enacted legislation to help make our stories more believable. As a thriller writer who loves a good conspiracy, I often turn to our friends at the government agencies – namely the FBI, CIA, and NSA, to help me out. So, yesterday when I saw the headline  “F.B.I. agents get leeway to push privacy bounds” from a New York Times article, the buzzer went off in my brain.

According to the article, “some of the most notable changes apply to the lowest category of investigations, called an “assessment.” The category, created in December 2008, allows agents to look into people and organizations “proactively” and without firm evidence for suspecting criminal or terrorist activity. Under current rules, agents must open such an inquiry before they can search for information about a person in a commercial or law enforcement database. Under the new rules, agents will be allowed to search such databases without making a record about their decision.”

To me, allowing agents to search databases without making a record of their search would allow a nefarious character to manipulate databases in all kinds of ways, and all behind the scenes. What a great tool a rogue FBI agent in your story could use to cause all kinds of mayhem, wouldn’t you say?   

*********************************************************************************************

Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author whose latest, award-winning suspense thriller, The Brink, is now available as an eBook for Amazon.com Kindle and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

The Brink is a hell of a read.” – Bestselling author Sandra Brown

“Mark Fadden is a masterful storyteller.” – Writer’s Digest

“Mark Fadden is the next Dan Brown.” – Triple C Ranch Book Club, Southlake, Texas

Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at http://www.markfadden.com

Tools for Tuesday – Fun with Zombies

 

Humor. Most of the time, it’s not thought of as a tool. But used correctly, it is one of the most powerful forces in the universe. Humor can help build relationships, mend fences, and make the difference between a blockbuster and a dud.

Want an example? Remember the last few Super Bowls. Which commercials lingered with you the longest or made you buy the product in the ad? Was it the one touting the new features that will make your life better, or the one that showed Betty White playing football? Oh and by the way, that Snickers commercial that featured White was the spark that reignited her career. Oh the power of humor indeed.

And so we come to a most unlikely place to find humor…the US government. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) decided to have a little fun and create a “Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse” blog. Not only does it succeed in its mission to be funny, it also drew huge numbers. The blog usually gets 1 to 3,000 hits a week, this page got 963,000 hits in one week.

So, what about you? How can you use humor to gain more attention to your products? Maybe a funny spoof? A humerous blog post? Video of you streaking a local presidential candidate’s campaign stop where the topic of the speech in limiting citizen’s exposure to the deepening debt crisis? Wouldn’t that be ironical… 

*********************************************************************************************

Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author whose latest, award-winning suspense thriller, The Brink, is now available as an eBook for Amazon.com Kindle and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

The Brink is a hell of a read.” – Bestselling author Sandra Brown

“Mark Fadden is a masterful storyteller.” – Writer’s Digest

“Mark Fadden is the next Dan Brown.” – Triple C Ranch Book Club, Southlake, Texas

Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at http://www.markfadden.com

(Writers’) Tools For Tuesday – Self Publishing for audio books

Due to the overwhelming popularity of “App Wednesday”, “Mystery Monday” a new topic and a new day comes to Mark Fadden’s Blog – “(Writers’) Tools for Tuesday.” It’s all about tools that us writers can use to reach more readers, to make more fans and to kick the most ass we can.

So, the first up is a doozie. Ever wonder why no one is taking the self-publishing revolution to audiobooks? I mean, just like an ebook, it is a digitized platform, right? No publishers, trees, printing presses, or in this case, reel to reel tape or warehousing needed.

Well, it seems, like what happened with Napster and Facebook, someone a lot smarter than us beat us to the punch.  

Audible, one of the leading audiobook retailers, has come up with ACX or “Audiobook creation exchange.” Just like Amazon’s Kindle store and B&N’s PubIt!, they created ACX to give authors another outlet to self publish, and the royalty breakdown is very similar to those other services as well, aka authors get to keep more of the money in their pocket.

One big difference, is that since it’s audio, authors have a choice: choose who narrates their book, or narrate it themselves. Here’s a chance to show the world just how good your Somalian accent really is. 

And, to make sure I show the love to the website where I found out about ACX, its “Smart Bitches, Trashy Books.”  They review romance novels, so if that’s your thing, make sure to check them out.

Self publishing audiobooks, good idea? Bad idea? To the keyboards!

*********************************************************************************************

Mark Fadden is a freelance writer and author. Bestselling author Sandra Brown recently had this to say about Mark’s latest novel, The Brink: “[The Brink] is a hell of a read. The chemistry between [the main characters] Danny and Sydney is terrific. The action sequences were heart-pounding!” Check out The Brink and Mark’s other books at www.markfadden.com.

 The Brink is now available as an eBook for Amazon.com Kindle  and Barnes & Noble nook for only $2.99!

Tools for Tuesday

Welcome to a new segment on Book Marketing Wars: “Tools for Tuesday.” If you’re over 30, your brain may be tingling because it sounds like the familiar “Two for Tuesday” promos that radio DJs did back in the good old days (I’m talking about any year before the century changeover). Of course, some of those same DJs, still rockin’ the same bitchin’ mullets are probably still doing the same Two for Tuesday formats, God bless ‘em.

Anyway, as a former college DJ, I wanted to not only pay homage to those glory days, but also try to introduce tools that I’ve been using with a good amount of success. All of these tools can be found in Guerrilla Marketing for Writers: 100 No-cost, low-cost weapons for selling your work by Jay Conrad Levinson, Rick Frishman, Michael Larsen, and David L. Hancock. It’s an excellent read. I highly recommend you running down to your local bookstore with the gift card you were going to give your Aunt Clarice and using it to buy a copy.

Tool #1 – Think like an entrepreneur. Perhaps the most important part of Guerrila Marketing for Writers is that all the ideas within it are designed to help us think like entrepreneurs. We are not just about writing one book or one non-fiction proposal. Like an entrepreneur that has started up a business, hung out their shingle and now has a store full of products to sell to customers that will hopefully come back for more again and again. As it states in the book on p. 4, “don’t think like a writer that has something to say; think like an author who has a lifetime of books, products and services to sell – an author who knows what it takes to make books sell and will be totally committed to doing it.”

So what are you doing to be an authorpreneur? What would you like to do?

To the keyboards!