10 Worthy Instagram Tips for Writers
Younger generations (and even some older) are turning to Instagram for its feed of gorgeous images. It’s been this way for some time now, but for the book industry, it's been the last year that Instagram is the platform to be present on. Why? How? Are people really selling their books through Instagram? YES! Yes, they are and it’s easier than it sounds.
Another social media platform might seem taunting or excessive, however, Instagram is known to be one of the easiest social media platforms to engage with your targeted audience! Here are some easy tips to help engage with your targeted audience on Instagram.
1. Post Often
Posting often is a must to keeping a profile fresh. Don’t go weeks or months without posting and try to post everyday if you can. By being an active user, more readers will see you post. Use trial and error to see what times of the day you have the most engagement. If your targeted audience are adults posting at 9 am might not be the best idea because they are likely on their way to work. You need to think as if you were your targeted audience and post accordingly. Another option is to see when authors like you are posting and follow their engagements. This will help you gain a better understanding on what works and doesn’t.
2. Strategically Use Hashtags
Hashtags play a major role in the Instagram world. These “keywords” are what help people who do not follow you see your post. There are millions of hashtags you can add to your post, however, adding more than 30 Instagram will automatically delete your caption so keep it below 30. To find good hashtags you can again, look up authors similar to you and see what they are using or start with the most popular hashtag in the industry, #bookstagram. We recommend adding these at the end of your post and even coming up with your own hashtag as apart of brand building.
3. Remember the 80/20 Rule
The good old marketing rule that says you should only promote your own work 20% of the time and the other 80% should be other good content. This stays the same on Instagram. DO NOT make every post about how someone should by your book. Create good content as far as blog post, release dates of new work, and other things besides a sales post. It is also a great idea to share content from other people you admire that also correlates with your brand.
4. Host Giveaways
Giveaways are a great way to help gain followers while marketing your book all at the same time. Easy giveaway prizes could include a signed copy of book or a combine deal with another author. It is always a good idea to add a more well-known author’s novel into the giveaway as people will know more about their book but will also be exposed to yours. The best way to host a giveaway is to set it up so the entrants have to tag a certain number of friends in the comments section. You can add “bonus” entries by having people share in their Instagram stories or posting a photo by using a special give away hashtag.
Note: There is some official language you need to include in your giveaway, which you can find out about here.
5. Engage! Engage! Engage!
We can’t stress this enough! Have conversations with fan/followers about shared interests. Engage with their post and become a friend among your Instagram “community.”
6. Turn Opportunities Into Post
Turn those day to day events into an Instagram opportunity. If you pick up a new book or get new marketing materials in for your own book SHARE IT!
7. Ask Questions
Asking question in your post is a great way to give your followers an easy way to comment. The more comments and likes you get on a single post, the more likely the Instagram algorithm will push your content into more people’s feeds. Ask what people are currently reading or what they have planned to read? Maybe post a picture of your favorite book and ask for followers to share there’s?
8. Don’t Buy Followers
No matter how tempting it is, don’t do it. Fake accounts won’t be engaging in your content and engagement is more important than the number of followers you have. It takes more time to build an account organically but in the long run it will be worth your time.
9. Sponsor a Post
You can create sponsored ads on Facebook to run on Instagram. Boosting post every once in a while, can be a great way to target your readers.
10. Worthy Pictures
People will keep scrolling if your pictures are blurry, uninteresting or hard to read. Research what other authors are posting and other people are engaging and go from there. Remember… practice makes perfect so if you feel like it’s hard and first do the research and keep practicing.
When did your love affair with good stories begin?
The first time a child picks up her first chapter book to challenge her newly acquired reading skills, and she's caught up in a world she fully understands, the world of IMAGINATION, she falls in love with reading! Within the pages of books, she identifies with characters who are different, gifted, challenged, royalty, or merely undeniably human. She visits exotic far-away places, (some of them real), experiences foreign cultures, is introduced to new ideas and escapes into worlds where problems are solved successfully and magically. A good story can transport you out of your mundane or drama-filled life into improbable, impossible, yet totally believable stories. And yet, finding new books to read can be frustrating. It is discouraging to download or buy a highly recommended book only to be slapped in the face with obscene language, suggestive scenes or violence. And while you love to read, you also desire to nourish your mind with uplifting, inspirational material, but where can you go to find fresh, new books that you can trust?
Thus the 3 Reasons to Read Clean Books from BYCT Bookshop:
1. BYCT Bookshop is filled with books that reflect your standards of decency and your love of good literature.
We will only sell books that have been cleared according to our high standards, so you can rest assured that every book can be trusted to never shock your discerning sense of morality.
2. BYCT Bookshop is fresh and new, but our goal is to fill the bookstore with books by accomplished, known and unknown authors who write edifying stories, or inspirational non-fiction.
Finding new books to read can be frustrating. And while you love to read, you also desire to nourish your mind with uplifting, inspirational material. We can help you find fresh, new books that you can trust.
3. BYCT Bookshop knows when you love to read, your life is filled with good friends, with stay-cation adventures and lasting imaginary memories.
We use good books as escape hatches from our own realities, or as your preferred coping mechanisms for chaotic filled lives. We understand books make you feel smarter, more connected, and more alive.
Good, clean literature means good, clean fun. That's that we offer at BYCT Bookshop!
If you haven't read our newest Young Reader novel you can now! Click here or the image below for more information.
Why Writers Need to Read if They Want to Be Good
There are several times we have received manuscripts that aren’t good enough. Sometimes we wish they would be! They aren’t bad because the story line doesn’t make sense or because we don’t like the character development, but because the manuscript was filled with bad vocabulary, typos and poor grammar. These “bad” manuscripts we receive have so much potential, however, the author simple doesn’t understand the fundamentals of good writing. If these authors would read more their writing would be better.
Now, we aren’t saying that simple writing is bad. We love simple writing. When it is done right. We think writers get confused between simple writing and fluff writing. Your readers are going to know when they are reading fluff. It is easily recognizable.
Writers should also be readers.
Writers should be reading… A lot. Articles. Novels. Magazines. And anything else. Reading is a helpful way to understand the art of language and value the articulation of words. As you read, you should remember ideas and thoughts and implement them into your own writing. Reading someone else’s work will inspire you.
Without reading, as a writer, you will often find yourself at roadblocks. Running out of words and ideas. Being a writer who reads is an important step to becoming the best writer.
How to start reading is easier than you think. Since you will be reading for career experience it is not necessary to read like those who read for pleasure. You don’t always have to finish a book or article. Pick the piece apart and learn new ideas and words. Learn to love reading again to become the writer you know you are.
Exclusive Author Interview- Larry Green's Newest Release The Root Cellar Chronicles
The Root Cellar Chronicles- Exclusive Interview
We've been excited to share this one-on-one interview with you. Comment anymore questions you have for Larry. If you haven't had the chance yet to purchase his amazing novel, click here for pre ordering! Book is released November 15th, 2018
Explain how you came up with the title?
I had originally called the book, which I thought would be a single volume book for my grandkids to read, Willie and the Root Cellar. None of my family seemed to like that title and I was encouraged to make a series out of it so naturally, it became a “chronicles.” It also seemed natural that since the series would take place largely in a root cellar, that the series should be called The Root Cellar Chronicles.
What category or genre did you intend this to be?
I’m a Sci-Fi junky so I would like to think that I have created something in that genre. I wanted to write something that expressed what my reserved, inner self dwells on but my grown-up public self has learned to keep to myself.
What was your purpose in writing this novel?
There were several purposes in my writing this book. First and foremost was my desire to give my grandkids a fun story to read. They were all young readers (pre high school) when I started and I wanted to share some story telling with them. Secondly, When I read something that is written well, I marvel at how much can be conveyed so beautifully by the skillful crafting of words. I want to someday be able to do that and I believe that happens by writing, writing, and writing. Lastly, I enjoy writing.
Something you liked about it
I liked the idea of finding something so completely mind boggling; a complete game changer, tucked away in something as overlooked and marginalized as an old fashioned root cellar. It’s the epitome of an oxymoron.
Something you disliked about it.
In the first volume, I dislike having to lay the foundation for what is happening and for developing the characters, how did they come to be there, etc. Once the story gets going, it gains traction and becomes much more entertaining.
Why did you choose this setting?
I had originally thought I would have Willis discover a discrete cave in the side of the mountain located behind the home his family moved into out in the country. However, the root cellar was closer to the house and wouldn’t require so much time to access plus the logistics of utilities, etc.
Who is your favorite character?
Willis, of course, is my favorite character. He is a cerebral, nerdy, gutsy, cool type of kid that will grow up to someday rule the world. He is quite possibly a young version of Mr. Pugmire; a real deep thinker.
Who is your least favorite character
My least favorite character is Luke. We’ll just leave it at that.
Describe the most significant episode in your book. (most meaningful to you)
The most significant episode in the book for me was when Willis is pushed to his limits as he tries to understand what has happened to him and then tries even harder to explain it to his father. An almost subconscious action turns out to be his only link to sanity which grounds him to the reality of the events that have happened to him.
How did writing it change you, or your views?
Writing has changed me in that it has made me start to think again. I began writing because, of all things, filling out insurance information. Each year, I would have to break down all of my flying hours into categories for the insurance company; type of air craft, multi engine, single engine, day, night, cross country, the number of landings, etc. One year as I was going through my log book to complete this task, I began reading the comments for each flight and remembering all the fun times and people that were part of each flight. I decided to write these stories down so my children and grandchildren could enjoy them as well and maybe even understand me a little bit better. The result was What a Rush, a book that I gave to my children and some of the key players in it. That book made me realize that I enjoyed writing. It also caused my brain to wake up and start working again by remembering the chronology of events and names of people and other details of the flights. Writing continues to change me as I become more aware of others writing and learn the difference between just writing and really good writing.
Have you thought about a Sequel or Prequel?
Originally, I thought this book would just be a single volume project. However, with some encouragement it has turned into a series with several volumes. I think a sequel (or at least additional volumes) would be would be fun to develop since I have already exposed the prequel in the second volume.
The Ideal Kind of Writing
The ideal kind of writing is far and in between.
The type of writing I am referring to won't make you focus on the details that might not add up in real life, but will force you to contemplate every single word. This effortless kind of writing pushes your mind to ponder the depth of each character, the perception of life and find a new meaning to insightful ideas.
The ideal kind of writing is surprising.
It asks you to recognize and then question all senses for the purpose of the narrative. It challenges the mind and kindles the heart. It won't always be rational or traditional, but still it relates to every part of your reality. The ideal kind of writing stays with you.
This type of writing is ideal. Which means it is the most sought after kind.
The ideal kind of writing takes time and most of the time, a lot of hard work. It should also be more work for the reader to absorb and understand. However, it wouldn't be ideal if it wasn't worth it.
You know it's ideal when, you, the reader, have to share it. You’re not only telling your friends about it, but you're giving unsolicited advise to strangers in book stores.
Not all writing can be the ideal.
However, in our opinion, the ideal kind of writing is the only type of writing worth exploring.
What do you think is ideal kind of writing?
Five Reasons to Start Reading Romance
Although romance is an extremely popular genre, romance novels (and the readers who love them) often find themselves to be the target of biased haters who strongly try to convince themselves that they aren’t fans and will never be. Most if the time these typical haters have never turned a single page in a romance novel and wouldn’t know what a Happily Ever After looked like if it smacked them right in the face. If you are one of these people but in reality have a secret desire to get on the romance train then let us help you change your mind with these five reasons. Just maybe, picking up a romance novel could be very worth your while.
1. It reminds you that when you’re in love you feel invincible!
If you’re single, in a long-term relationship, or somewhere in between, the butterfly feeling you get when you’re beginning to think you may have finally found your soulmate is an electrifying experience. However, that only lasts so long and eventually you either go your separate ways, or find yourselves eating leftovers and binge-watching Netflix together in your pajamas. Which is amazing, but it’s not the stuff of jittery hearts. So why wouldn’t you want to get that feeling back again and again—in the form of a book? Why not live vicariously through a character who is having those unique, first feelings of sparks flying as they engage in conversation with someone they find attractive? You can check out our most recent and popular Romance novel here, Building A Life by Lauraine Henderson.
2. Reading romances allows you to create your best version of the characters in your mind
Of course we all enjoy our fair share of romantic movies, but most of the time they leave too little to the imagination. Most likely the actors playing the leads won’t be your knight in shining armor and chances are their romance, no matter how sizzling, will leave you feeling less than satisfied. Why not try diving into a novel, where you can shape the character descriptions for yourself as you read along? Is the hero a tall, dark and handsome southern farmer? Well, maybe he’s also a Chris Hemsworth lookalike with a tractor. The heroine may be a dainty dancer, but maybe she also looks exactly like me, except with longer legs and blonde hair. Novels let you to allow your imagination wander and it’s especially fun to do that when you’re reading romance.
3. Small three words: Happily Ever After
Okay, okay, okay! I get it. Sad stories can be great too. The story where the guy doesn’t get the girl, aliens come to earth or the family dog passes away the same day grandpa did. There is a time and place for all those stories in world of literature. But so are stories where the guy does get the girl, he loves all of her flaws and quirks, even her strong willed best friend approves of him, and he wants to sweep her off her feet and propose on the top of the Empire State Building. Nice work if you can get it in real life, right? And if you can’t, at least you can read about it.
4. Romance within all types of genres
Do you like your romances with an extraterrestrial twist? How about some fantasy flair flair? Or maybe something more historical? Do you like strong cowboys? What about brilliant Wall Street Workers? Are you a mystery person? Sci-Fi? Time travel? Whatever your zest is, believe me, there is a romance novel out there for you. Actually, there are probably more than one, if not dozens.
5. It’s perfectly fine to like Love
You may have already known this, but some of the favorite literature classics are essentially romance novels. They center around strong romantic relationships between the main characters. And great compelling romances lie at the heart of many popular books today, even though they aren’t marketed as romance novels. Most likely, even if you claim you are completely disinterested in all things romantic, you’re already a fan of the essential elements of a romance novel. Why not give yourself consent to explore that interest further? I say love is amazing, and it is a perfect, and an important part of the human experience. There’s no shame in enjoying, exploring, and loving it through reading books.
Do you love romance novels?
Check out all of our romance novels! Click the link to view our selection.
Exclusive Author Interview -Building A Life
Building A Life Interview
If you haven't read the book quite yet we asked that Lauraine to try and not give any spoilers! Read the blurb and give yourself a new insight. Sara Castleton resolved to make better choices now that there was a new life growing inside her. When her husband, Peter, plowed through that stop sign and left this world, he left a mess behind. Picking up the pieces of her shattered life and finishing the house Peter started could be the answer to her future, but she needed help. When Nicholas Bradford was asked to step into Sara’s unfinished house project, he reluctantly agreed. He didn’t always see eye-to-eye with Peter’s friends and business associates, but one look at his pregnant widow and Nick couldn’t say no. Before they know it, they aren’t just building a house, they’re Building a Life. Click here for more information!
If you haven't read Lauraine's other novels you can check them out here. Or click here to check out the rest of our book selection. On last thing... We are still doing our FREE EBOOK give away! Make sure to download the ebook before the giveaway ends. Click here for the FREE EBOOK >>>>>> Download Here
7 Things You Need Before Submitting to a Publisher
We often get submissions from authors that we regretfully decline. Not because the writing is bad or we think it won’t sell, but because authors often submit work before it’s “publisher” ready. How do we know if our work is up to par? Here’s a list of 7 things you should consider before clicking that send button!
Lastly, I want to touch on editing. Sure, the publisher will have an editor for your manuscript. That’s if your manuscript makes it that far. Have someone edit your work before you submit it to a publisher. This editor needs to be more than a “typo expert.” Have someone streamline your books flaws into strengths. Having a polished manuscript will not only cut publishing time but they are the ones that get published.
11 Reasons Why You Should Keep Writing
It’s safe to say there are more writers now than ever before. Why should we write? Why are so many of us pursuing a writing career? Writers are uniquely gifted to help find meaning for themselves and others. This has always been the key goal of storytellers. Every story means something to the person living it, and our job as authors is to tell those universal stories, the stories that tell the story of every person on this earth. Here are 11 Real Reasons You Should Keep Writing.
This infographic is courtesy of Sierra Delarosa of Global English Editing. Visit them online at geediting.com or on Twitter @geediting.
9 Ways to Read Like a Genius: By Ariel Abke
Every once in a while we like to featured blogs we run across. Today that happens to be a blog by Ariel Abke. You can find her original blog here.
9 Ways to Read Like a Genius: By Ariel Abke
I wasn’t expecting it to explode like that.
Have you ever made a goal, then become so absorbed in it that you surpass your goal by miles? That was me and reading.
A year ago I was not a reader, but in January I wrote a post about how awesome reading is for you, and I shared my goal of reading 12 books in 2015. I had a huge to-read list, and jumped right in.
It’s been less than six months, and I’ve already read 17! I’m not stopping at 17, though. I’m going to up my game! I read a lot of books this spring, and I’ve learned that there are certain things I can do to get the most out of each book.
Here are nine ways to read smarter:
What are some smart reading tips you’ve discovered?