Another Novel Way to Promote Your Book(s)

Nancy Humphreys’ comment: In my previous post on Authormaps I talked about Julia Shopnick’s’ dynamite seven new ways to promote your book(s) online. Julia now has a new article coming out which she asked me to post on Authormaps. Here is the text for Julia’s newest article for Vol. 37 No. 2 of the IBPA Independent: Julia Schopick March/April 2019 “Facebook Groups; Why You Should Be Using This Promotional Resource” In my May/June 2018 column, “Using Topics in the News to Get Your Important Messages Out” (, I described how John McCain’s July 2017 glioblastoma diagnosis provided me with an opportunity to educate brain tumor patients and their families about innovative treatments their doctors might not know about—treatments that have helped some brain tumor patients live years beyond their doctors’ predictions. I related how I posted an article on my website about four such treatments (“My Husband Outlived His Prognosis by 12 Years. How His Experience Could Help John McCain and Others”) ( and how I appeared on talk shows where I told audiences about these treatments. I then publicized both my article and my appearances in brain tumor Facebook groups. Oh, and I don’t want to forget to mention: Being active in Facebook groups is FUN! You may—like me—discover you’ve made friends and forged professional and personal relationships that greatly enhance your work and your life. I promised to follow that column up with a future column, sharing details about how to participate in Facebook groups so that other authors can successfully get your important messages out to the people you want to reach.  There are three major takeaways when using Facebook groups to promote yourself and your work:  Participating in relevant groups without overt self- promotion, which is often prohibited or frowned upon Promoting a book using Facebook—in this case, my recently published book, The Power of Honest Medicine  Using Facebook groups to obtain vital information How to Participate and Promote in Facebook Groups If you are new to a particular interest group on Facebook, you need to approach it carefully. In my case, since I was relatively new to brain tumor groups, my approach was different than if I had been an active participant for years. It was crucial that I not appear overly aggressive or self-promotional. My first recommendation is to take an educational—rather than self-promotional—approach. In the brain tumor groups, I commented more than I posted, often including...

Novel Ways to Promote Your Book(s)

Are you looking for more ways to promote your book(s)? I highly recommend a series of articles recently written by Julia Schopick especially for book authors. Julia is a back-of-the-book indexing indexing client of mine who wrote a book, Honest Medicine: Effective, Time-Tested, Inexpensive Treatments for Life-Threatening Diseases in 2010. Her book was inspired by earlier twentieth century medical treatments that Julia learned about for over a decade while taking care of her husband’s cancerous brain tumor. Julia is a high-powered person who has been a public relations consultant for over 25 years. After her book came out, Honest Medicine peaked at #49 on Amazon’s site after just one late night talk show interview. When Julia finished Honest Medicine she created a website called Web Based PR offering radio and online promotional coaching on media and the Internet for book authors. Her website offers free tips of using talk radio, blogs and media websites, and Facebook for promoting your book(s). Recently, Julia telephoned to tell me about she was about to publish her newest book,The Power of Honest Medicine: LDN, an Inexpensive Alternative to the Costly, Toxic Medications Doctors Prescribe for Autoimmune and other Diseases. This book just came out in November 2018. During our talk, Julia  mentioned that over the past three years she’d written a series of articles for IBPA, the Independent Book Publishers Association. These seven free articles are very exciting. Julia was especially enthused about her September 2017 article, “Commenting: An Underused Way to Promote Your Books Online”. I particularly liked her advice in these articles about how to use Facebook, and how to prepare a media packet for your book. But all of her articles are dynamite! Whether you are a self-publisher, or published author, you’ll want to read every one of Julia’s seven articles. You can find them here on IBPA’s website. Here are the seven titles in order from earliest to most recent: Julia Schopick, September 2016  Taking to the Waves: Using Radio to Get the Word Out Julia Schopick, March 2017 Using Facebook to Spread Your Book’s Important Message Julia Schopick, July 2017 Using National Months, Weeks, and Days to Promote Your Book Julia Schopick, September 2017 Commenting: An Underused Way to Promote Your Books Online Julia Schopick, December 2017 Good Q&As in Your Media Packet Lead to Better Interviews Julia Schopick, May/June 2018  Using Topics in the News to Get Your Important Messages...

What is Metadata?

Working both as a librarian and as a computer network manager, one of the most annoying things in my job(s) was learning a second vocabulary for computing.

Every field of study has its jargon. So, at the end of this post, I’ll tell you how I think librarians and computer programmers came to use such different words for such similar things. But first, a look at library metadata.

Library science is the study of all existing fields of knowledge. For lack of a word, let’s call that the study of “meta-knowledge”. Metadata is a way of describing the meta-knowledge that librarians work with.

Librarians who create metadata

Catalogers are technical services librarians who work with the print materials, digital files, and media that come into a library. Catalogers create metadata for “documents” provided directly to patrons or for public services librarians to use in answering questions from their library patrons.


Book Discovery at the Library – Part 2

In Part 1 of Book Discovery at the Library we covered some traditional ways that librarians may promote your book(s). In this section we’re going to look at four companies that offer librarians a new way to make the books in their collections more discoverable at the library. For you as an author this is a plus for selling your book – studies show that patrons who find an author’s book in the library often buy other books from that same author. They also recommend authors’ books they like to friends who may buy those book titles to read. Short of appearing as an author on a TV show such as Jon Stewart’s “Daily Show,” getting your book touted by a library is the best word-of-mouth publicity for it! LIBRARY DISCOVERY SERVICES Nowadays, busy librarians can subscribe to book discovery services. Here are four companies that provide discovery services to librarians. These companies sell subscriptions to their online “knowledge bases”  to libraries that can afford them. Here’s a brief synopsis of some of these services. Ebsco Discovery Service (EDS) from EBSCO Information Services EBSCO Information Services is a long-standing supplier of magazine and journal subscriptions to libraries. Now it also offers library patrons access to research databases, ebooks, and digital archival materials. Ebsco’s database has a unified index and can even be integrated with a library’s online catalog (called an OPAC, short for Online Public Access Catalog.) Ebsco Discovery Service (EDS) is particularly useful for college students and you if you are marketing your book to students. Primo from Ex Libris Group Ex Libris Group  is a worldwide supplier of library computer (i.e., “automation”) systems. Among many other things, Primo offers libraries a  Search box for its databases so they can be integrated into web pages, blogs, and social networks used by librarians in order to increase the visibility on the Web of items in a library’s collection. Summon, from Serials Solution (a ProQuest Business)  ProQuest is another library vendor that has been around for a long time. It started with online research-article databases and has expanded to may other technology packages for all kinds of libraries. Among its strengths, Summon stresses its ability to serve patrons with cellphones and other mobile devices. It also claims to be fastest at delivering discoverability. WorldCat Discovery Services, from OCLC You’ve probably heard about WorldCat’s catalog. This is where you can see if a library has bought your book....

Book Discoverability at the Library – Part 1

Book discovery is currently a primo concern at publishing houses and bookstores. Libraries too have been dealing for centuries with the challenge of making print books and ebooks in their collections discoverable. Back in 1876 Charles Ammi Cutter laid down the rules for a “card catalog” with his book, Rules for A Printed Dictionary Catalog. Prior to that invention, there was no universal way for libraries to ensure book discoverability. Some librarians had arranged books by shape; others by spatial co-location; and yet others used various classification schemes of their own making. Card catalogs, along with Cutter’s systematic ways of arranging books by author, title, subject and category (e.g., genre), brought about a major advance in terms of improving book discoverability at the library. Librarians also employ display cases, empty walls, and book stands to make selected books in their collections more visible to people who visit that library. Today I’ll be covering both  traditional ways libraries have made books discoverable and suggest how you may be able to improve the discoverability of your book at the library. In part 2 I’ll introduce  you to several newer library discovery services that you may not have heard of and explain their implications for book-selling. DISPLAYS, HANDOUTS, and NEWSLETTERS Most libraries provide handouts about specific topics in the collections, e.g., mystery books, newly-received books, or current events people might want to learn about. The online web sites of libraries are another place where librarians display what is in their library. Library web site pages are where you’ll find out about ebooks, audiobooks, rare books, and special collections such as local history books or maps. You may even find a display about a library’s cookbook collection, car repair manuals, or other how-to-books.   Publicity at and by libraries is a major reason to make sure your book gets bought and displayed by a library. How do you ensure your book will be discovered at a library? First of all, remember that your cover is you primary sales tool for your book. Make sure you have an interesting, professionally-done cover. If you have a publisher, negotiate to get a attractive cover that will draw attention to your book. If you will use a thumbnail of your cover, make sure the tiny image can be clearly seen. Also, check your print-book or CD-case spine for readability. Remember that many libraries will put a label at the bottom of the spine with the book’s call...

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