Tag Archives: marketing

The Dog Days of Podcasting: The Value of a Routine

Special thanks to Corbin J Drake for the photo.

Has the 2017 Dog Days of Podcasting challenge become a routine yet? Tee hopes so. See, a routine for a writer is a good thing. Routines help you get things done, and there’s real value in having routines for the day. Does this mean that routines go missed? Well, yeah, that happens. Life is not set in its patterns, and routines are sometimes disrupted. This is why they are so valuable to you as a writer.

Find Tee on Twitter here,
leave a voicemail or questions for the Dog Days of Podcasting at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
I’ll talk about it!
And remember, you can find this show on iTunes or Stitcher!
Subscribe, listen, and review.

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Episode #77: Pip Is Learning New Things

We’ve been busy lately with wrapping up one project and starting a brand new one. However, we are never too busy to learn new things, and Pip is doing that presently with Nick Stephenson and his course, How to Find Your First 10,000 Readers. This may sound like we’re drinking the marketing guru’s Kool-Aid (mmmmm…fruity) but we are asking hard questions. Nick’s got answers.

00:00 —  Introduction

  • All the SEVENS!
  • Shameless plug for Happy Hour from the Tower
  • Sonic Boom is encouraging bad behavior at home.
  • What are we up to?
    • Podcasting for Dummies, the Third Edition
    • Operation: Endgame
  • Listening to Geo again, and still loving that skeptical goofball!
  • Where is Tee going to be ON HIS BIRTHDAY? Well, he’s launching Podcasting for Dummies in Phoenix, Arizona!
  • Jack Mangan needs to get back into podcasting.

04:50 —  Episode #77: Pip Is Learning New Things

  • You can be marketing books for years (like us) and still miss steps.
  • When marketing goes bad…
  • Pip decided to take a deep dive course in marketing with Nick Stephenson of Your First 10,000 Readers
  • Who is Nick Stephenson?
  • Who is endorsing nick? Well, Joanna is, for one…
  • You can see some of these changes happening here.
  • Pip begins to share her newfound knowledge…and channels a Beatnik instead.
  • Your website should be doing this. (I didn’t know that!)
  • Free really isn’t “free” when you look at it.
  • Tee wants to buy Nick a pint based on his sense of humor.
  • Nick practices what he preaches.
  • A look at how to value your work.
  • Pip is learning a HECK of a lot!
  • When covers go bad, it’s EPIC.
  • Authors can really be cheap.
  • With lessons learned and learning from the lessons of others, it’s time to a To-Do List.
  • Launching a book? Tee’s got that covered.

23:45 —  The Loot Crate Lookie-Loo!

  • Who’s opening THE BOOOOOOXXX?!?!?
  • June’s Theme: Alter-Ego (Something Pip and Tee are familiar with.)
    • Tee-shirt: A Classic Transformers shout-out.
    • A Spider-Man Q-fig
    • An Incredible Hulk bowl, perfect for a raging teenage barbarian!
    • A poster book of DC Comics’ New 52 comic book covers
    • Nice Loot Crate pin nod to Spider-Man’s nemesis, the Green Goblin
  • We made a dent in our Geeky Prize Giveaway Stash at AwesomeCon, but we’re filling it up again…

28:52 — Writers Off the Clock

  • It was a VERY special weekend at the Morris household….
    • Introducing our daughter to ALIENS
    • She handled The Matrix really well, but it wasn’t the R rating that bothered us.
    • Do you have to show someone Alien before you introduce them to Aliens?
    • Pip will not be writing freehand anytime soon.
    • There is only ONE — DEFINITIVE — VERSION — of Aliens
    • What the Director’s Cut adds to the Aliens experience.
  • Aliens have inspired successful games. One of them scared Phil Rossi!
  • After 30 years, the movie is still solid. Masterful storytelling in film.
  • Character development in Aliens
  • Even the music plays a part.
  • The writing question: Why do the sequels and prequels fall so short? Where do you go after Aliens?
  • Tee’s one question for Alien: Covenant

43:51 — The Wrap-Up

  • Well, AwesomeCon lived up to the hype!
  • Where are we going to be?
    • 30 June-July 2, BlerDCon in Washington D.C. (Sunday only! BRIGHT AND EARLY!!!)
    • 14-16 July, Motor City Steam Con in Detroit, MI (Break out your PJ’s!)
    • 19-20 August, Mechanicsburg Mystery Weekend in Mechanicsburg, PA (Lots to do during this Mystery conference…)
    • 1-4 September, Escape Velocity in Washington, D.C. (A weekend of hardcore geekery with Nick Kelly!)
    • If you have an event and want The Shared Desk to appear there, here’s where to find us…
      • 703.791.1701
      • pip@pjballantine.com
      • tee@teemorris.com
      • …and social media, of course.
  • Ah, the glamorous life of writers…

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or questions for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
We’ll talk about it!
And remember, you can find the show on iTunes or Stitcher!
Subscribe, listen, and review.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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Episode #31: Reflections and Lessons Learned from a Blog Tour (with Nick & Stacia Kelly)

TSD-back2back_NKSK

What a grand time we had in studio! If you remember from a previous Shared Desk, we enjoyed good panel with Stacia Kelly & Nick Kelly, another husband and wife team in the Science Fiction and Fantasy market. We finally got them over at Imagine That! Studios, enjoyed the last of the gas in the grill, and got them on mic. In this first in-studio appearance (and something tells me, far from the last) we talk about the recent Endless Possibilities Book Tour, lessons learned, and where we are going from here.

00:00 — Introduction

  • We’ve got alcohol introduced into the system which means the drops-in’s are leaning towards the ruder side of things. Even with guests in-studio.
  • Welcome for the first time in-studio our special guests, Nick and Stacia Kelly.
  • Bitching about the winter that shows no signing of ending…
  • Good things about Trinity Episcopal: We meet awesome people!
  • What do you do when you’re about to have a book released?
    • Tee — Goes on a CLEANING BINGE!
    • Pip — Drinks. (But Tee has other opinions as to what she does…)
    • Stacia — When she is nervous, she dances! Then cleans up after herself….
    • Nick — Channels his inner-Jaeger pilot. (He tends to cave to peer pressure from the show host, too.)
  • Go out and get Dawn’s Early Light! NOW!!!
    • A lot is riding on this new book.
    • There’s been a lot of hype around the book.
    • Our blog traffic is up by 300% (Now 400%….)
  • No one touches the bell!
  • A lot has been happening across all our blogs… 

08:47 — Reflections and Lessons Learned from a Blog Tour 

  • Blog Tours
    • What did we learn?
    • How do they happen?
    • How do you organize one?
  • Stacia — “This was my idea.”
    • WbtR wanted to try something new with book promotions!
    • First time with the blog tour — Sixteen participants! (Yikes!)
  • Nick admits there was a learning curve, but there were some challenges ahead.
  • Tee had a problem: The traffic during the blog tour dropped. Oooops…
  • Is there a strategy at composing blogposts?
  • What are tips for participants new to blog touring?
    • A “How to Blog 101” blogpost or “class” for those involved
    • Understanding a commitment level
    • Advantages: a new pool of content for my blog
  • Rules for repurposing blogpost and creating content
    • Nick — Ask yourself “What makes you want to read a blogpost?”
    • Tee — Ask your blog host “What would you like?” and pitch ideas.
    • Pip — On evergreen content
    • Stacia — Change more than 20% of a blogpost before you think it is a repurposed blogpost
    • Nick — On a blogpost’s exclusivity
  • Timing on topics does matter.
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)  — does it really work?
  • What Tee has to deal with on a daily basis…
  • So someone is intimated by Tee? For what exactly?!
  • Oh MySpace’s Tom, where are you now?
  • Tee builds up a joke about DC (Comics) but Nick thinks it’s about (Washington) DC…
  • Another resource for blogposts — Writers…who behave like idiots
  • A tangent on SFWA…
  • Another tangent — albeit a much longer one — on Kickstarter…
  • If you are going to blog about something out there or controversial, own it.   
  • Other bits of advice for writers new to a blog tour
    •  Know the works of the authors
    • Look for a sweet spot for blogpost length

35:30 — Seriously? Seriously.

  • So much stuff to choose from for this week’s section…
  • Pip reads the web, and Nick is happy.
  • A threat that that is creeping up on established authors of the Empire: The Loss of their Cushy Offices in London!
  • Are these writers serious?!
  • Nick and Stacia take the blame for what happening to toad’s professional author.
  • Stacia shares an opinion on those who rely solely on traditional house publishing.
  • Your obligatory Doctor Who reference…
  • What you, as an author, need to do to survive in today’s modern publishing world.
  • Do authors really need a downtown metropolitan office?!
  • Nick Kelly steps up and knocks it out of the park!

46:04 — The Wrap-Up

  • Now THAT’S a segue!!!
  • Pip and Tee have an jam packed week this week between…
  • Later on this Spring…
    • RavenCon, April 25-27
    • A quick cameo from Sonic Boom who wants S’mores and feels the need to plug America’s Funniest Home Videos
    • DemiCon 25, May 1-5
  • What Nick and Stacia have on their plates…
    • Finishing and releasing Gian in time for Earth Day
    • “Catwalk: Jericho” coming
    • Catwalk: Lineage coming this Halloween
  • Remember: Always honor Rule #34!
  • Nick Kelly gushes for a moment about James Langton…while explaining the moment he figured out why Pip and Tee call this podcast The Shared Desk

  50:57 — The Outtake

cover art by J.R. Blackwell 

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

 

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The Shared Desk — Episode #16: Making Tough Choices (with P.J. Schnyder)

 

So it’s been a while since we have sat down and recorded a Shared Desk, but how about this — when we finally got a chance to record a Shared Desk, we did it with the lovely P.J. Schnyder. This episode is about tough choices we make as authors in bringing about the demise of a character. Why do we do this to our creations? Is it for shock value? Is it for impact? And do we really care in the end?

 

00:00 — Introduction

  • A brand new Shared Desk, and this time we brought a friend!
  • Who is P.J. Schnyder?
  • The way to a woman’s heart: Meat and Explosives
  • Letting the drop-in’s fly!
  • And God said “Okay, Tee, enough with the drop-in’s!”

02:46 — Making Tough Choices

  • What happened between Shared Deskepisodes
  • The dangers of drinking with agents, editors, and new friends…
  • Getting complaints — a second one from a book critic — concerning a choice Pip and I made in The Janus Affair…
  • Do we create characters simply to kill them?
  • Evoking the name of Joss and when he kills beloved characters in his works.
  • When do authors cross a line?
    • Did J.K. Rowling go too far (or not far enough) in The Deathly Hollows?
    • Tee’s gripes on Farscape and clever twists on bringing characters back
    • Jumping genres and discussing a gratuitous death (or was it?) on M*A*S*H*
  • We do care about the characters we kill.
  • Do we write for entertainment, or to make an impact?
  • TANGENT: Waxing happily about random drop-in’s for computers and future shows…

20:51 — Writers Off the Clock

  • Sonic Boom is away at summer camp…so we have been indulging…in watching movies…
  • Tee and Pip are talking about John Carter. (P.J. is talking about porn, we think…)
  • A pleasant surprise of John Carter
    • Terrific characters
    • A lot of charm
    • Fantastic visuals
  • Tee, Pip, and P.J. go into Disney’s bungling of John Carter‘s marketing
  • This movie had a lot going for it! (Even the credit sequence was good!)
  • Bringing it back to marketing of books — when it works, when it doesn’t, and when it boggles the mind….
  • What does P.J. do to relax?
  •  How does P.J. manage her time?
  • Shout out to Stella Price!

36:23 — The Wrap-Up

  • Drinks to mix, food to prepare, and stuff to blow up!
  • Time to plug away!
  • And here’s where we drop a little surprise on P.J. Schnyder as we all wait to hear from The Parsec Awards…
  • What’s coming up for us…
    • Pip has Hunter and Fox out and Wrayth coming soon…
    • Pip is aiming to start a new series in November
    • Now that The Janus Affair: A Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novel is out, Tee & Pip work on Dawn’s Early Light
    • Tee is looking up  Tales from the Archives: Volume 2 launches on April 10 with new stories from the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences
  • Upcoming Conventions
  • P.J.’s Upcoming Conventions
  • …and Pip shows up Tee on the Creative Commons tag. Again.
RELATED LINKS
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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The Shared Desk #002: The Writer-Agent Relationship (with Laurie McLean)

Fresh from their WorldCon experience, Tee & Pip bring to The Shared Desk their first interview and introduce a new segment to the show. There is also talk of their next con appearance and what lies ahead for the Fall.

00:00 — Introduction

  • Two episodes and fresh from the land where finding a cab is a Herculean labor…
  • Do you remember the D-Con Roach Motel?
  • A few thoughts on WorldCon in Reno, Nevada.

02:28 — Working with Agents: An Interview with Laurie McLean

  • Introduction of the Agent Savant herself, Laurie McLean
  • What exactly does an agent do?
  • Laurie names off the top of her head the “Six Sisters” of Publishing
  • 06:50 — An idea for an alternate Worldcon
  • The evolution of publishing and where an agent fit in
  • How some agents are reacting to the change in publishing
  • On the adversarial relationships people harbor against agents (Note to J.K. Rowling’s former agentRETIRE!!!)
  • Something to know — all agents are different
  • What happens backstage between agents, editors, and bookstores
  • The challenges an agent has when representing a collaborative writing team
  • What is “hot” in the Science Fiction and Fantasy market
  • 35:26 — A sneak peek at a new segment coming later in the episode…
  • Where to find Laurie online

39:59 — Writing Advice from Crazy Uncle Charlie

  • Introducing a voice of our generation, and the sage advice he wants to bestow to writers everywhere…
  • The question for Crazy Uncle Charlie: How do you know you have found a good literary agent?
  • Crazy Uncle Charlie reveals his foolproof method of researching a literary agent.
  • Another method Crazy Uncle Charlie endorses: Writers Beware ®

42:56 — Wrap-Up

  • Why does the studio smell of cheese?
  • Where you can find us and send questions, comments, and feedback…
  • Feeling the love after two episodes…
  • Where we will be in September: FenCon (September 23-25,2011)
  • With folks like Matt Bowerman and Beth Case helping out the fans, we’re thinking a tweet-up is in order.
  • Anticipation for FenCon — yes, we are stoked!!!
  • Shout out to Hurricane Irene!

Websites We Give a Shout-Out to

Show Photos by J.R. Blackwell
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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Filed under Episodes