Baton blog hop for writers

I’m participating in a baton blog hop for writers thanks to my always friend and sometimes colleague, Marcia Layton Turner. (Click on her name to read her blog hop post!)

I’m required to answer specific questions in this post before passing the baton on to others. Here we go!

1. What am I working on?

I’m putting together a new multimedia product for authors that teaches them how to get testimonials — blurbs — for their books. These are the “recommending reading” quotations that you see on back covers, in the first few pages of e-books, alongside the book description on retail sales pages, and on author websites. (They are not reader comments on Amazon.)

The program will have an instructional e-book, an audio interview, samples, templates, and a video. I’m enjoying pulling all of the pieces together, but my favorite part is always the writing.

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?

My writing work is split between newsletters and ghostwriting for corporate clients and the content I produce that helps authors learn how to market their books. I’ll address the latter.

I focus on providing as much specific, how-to information as possible. Most of it comes from my experience and research. Other book marketing coaches with blogs, training programs, and other instructional materials often rely heavily on content from others because they have come into this field from other professions. I’ve been a writer and publicist my entire career, so I have a lot of first-hand experience. And as the industry changes, I go out and get more.

3. Why do I write what I do?

It’s pretty simple: Either  somebody is paying me to do it, or it’s a topic I’m interested in.

4. How does your writing process work?

It depends on the assignment or topic. For my book marketing blog, newsletter, and training programs, I can do a lot of the writing without research because I know the topics already. Sometimes I need to do more research by interviewing others or looking for anecdotes to illustrate my points.

For client assignments, I usually start by doing a very short outline of the piece, then identifying the right sources to interview. I don’t write until all of the research and interviewing is complete. Then I just start typing. If I don’t feel like I have just the right lede, I’ll write the rest of it then come back to the beginning.

Now I’m passing the baton to Meredith Resnick, a therapist turned writer. She’s the author of a must-have book for anyone who evens suspects they’re in a relationship with a narcissist, Narcisissm: Surviving the Self-InvolvedIt’s your turn to run with the baton, Meredith!

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  1. interested to read about your testimonials product, Sandra. I’m one of those who is often asked for such comments (by people in the music industry, usually, rather than writers, though) — there certainly is a wide range of ways people go about this, and I am sure your knowledge and experience on the subject will be helpful to those asking and to those asked.

    1. Thanks, Kerry. Your comments on that topic in the course last month validated my sense that authors need help with this topic.


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