Five websites for the unpublished writers

Five websites for the unpublished writers

The online lives of writers (published or not) is quite hectic, right? While you might feel the need to be everywhere, most of us do not have the time to do that. Some of our favorite guest bloggers posted on their marketing techniques here. But here are a few more websites for the unpublished writers, especially if you are unpublished yet. Shall we talk to Victoria already, shall we?

Say hello to Victoria!

websites for the unpublished writers

Hello, I’m Victoria Jayne, a writer. For the longest time, I couldn’t even identify myself as a writer. I struggled with the title fearing I lacked the clout to call myself such.

I’ve since learned that to call oneself a writer, one must simply write. I do that. I am a writer.

Websites for the unpublished writers

With that sorted, I moved on to another handy dandy self-identifier, author. Ohh, this one is tricky. In my head, this one required a bit more validation than a writer. For me to refer to myself as an author, I decided I needed to get published.

This post is going to focus on some of the tools I used on my journey to calling myself an author. Translation: here are some websites a previously unpublished writer used before publication and will continue to use for future works.

This little gem has a lot to offer unpublished and published authors alike. The main thing I took away from Scribophile was the ability to get feedback on my writing. A writer can sign up for free with Scribophile and get an author page where you fill out all sorts of nifty things about yourself. You gain access to works by other authors both long and short.

Scribophile works on a critique system where you earn “karma” by critiquing other writer’s work. The amount of karma you earn is based on the length of critique and whether or not the work is “spotlighted.” You need five karma (points?) to post your piece. When a work is spotlighted, more karma is awarded. There are several avenues to “spotlight” your work.

I like to think of Scribophile as a way to get honest beta readers. Scribophile also offers a paid version allowing to post an unlimited amount of works, and other things. Scribophile also offers writing contests frequently which can earn you karma or cash! Yes, cash! It also has forums, comments sections on profiles, and a messaging system.

Finding was like finding gold! This website contains the profiles of people in the publishing industry telling the world what they want. It is their manuscript wish list. In their profiles, they talk about what they want right now.

Writers can search by name; they can search by genre; they can search by keyword. As far as I can tell, this resource is free. This is a wonderful resource when you are at the query stage. This leads to my next two suggested websites.

I like lists. I like spreadsheets. And I like to track the crap out of things. That said, query tracker is a way to track publishers and literary agents you think might be interested in representing and/or publishing your work. You can search by genre, company name, agency name, location, and whether or not someone is open to queries.

Each agent gets a snippet of information about how they like to be contacted, and there is a comment section. This was invaluable. I got a peek at what this agent received. I got a glimpse at response times. In the free version, you can sort of gauge response times, or lack of response, by users updated their comments on the agent. In the paid version, you have access to this in graphs. I like graphs.

Additionally, querytracker hosts forums where you can feedback on your opening paragraph, chapter, your title, etc. You can also get some insight as to what it is like to work with some agents or agencies — a wonderful tool.

Social media? Come on Victoria, that’s where I follow celebrity meltdowns and get my sports news. Well, this is where you are going to get your agenting information too. Agents and publishers have a twitter presence.

They often post about what they are looking for using #MSWL (manuscript wishlist, see how that ties in?) and they discuss horror stories. They talk about querying pitfalls and also provide updates as to where they are in their queries. You follow an agent you will get a lot of information about who they are and what they want.

Additionally, Twitter has a very active writer presence. #writingcommunity #amwriting These are other writers sharing their experience and supporting one another. There are also pitch parties. You can use Twitter to pitch agents. Yes, you can get published by reaching out to an agent via a hashtag!

websites for the unpublished writers Pinterest
websites for the unpublished writers PIn me

Also, if you are struggling with getting into the mind of your character, #authorconfession and #writerlywipchat offers daily exercises geared toward putting you in your characters heads. You can connect with your characters by answering questions like “what video games does your main character play?” or “who does your main character have a crush on?” These questions, while the answers may not appear in your story, will help you get a better understanding of your characters as well-rounded people and make them fully dimensional in your writing.


The wealth of information that is Reedsy, I really can’t begin to explore in this post. There just isn’t enough time in the day. As an unpublished writer, what can you get out of reedsy? Resources. You have access to articles about writing, some of which can be emailed directly to you.

You also have a directory of editors, promotion experts, and anything you can think of that will help you get on the road to publishing and if you have already been published. Seriously, this is a one-stop shop where you can get almost everything you need to get published.

Final words

websites for the unpublished writers

So that’s my top five. Those websites for the unpublished writers were a gift from the heavens. I learned a lot along this journey. My debut paranormal romance novel came out on December 4, 2018. It’s been a wild ride where I have learned more than I ever thought possible.

It’s all worth it to hold my first book in my hand. That was something I never thought I’d be able to do. Now, it is done. You can do it too. Happy writing.

Thank you, Victoria!

And I am back to thank Victoria for taking time off her busy schedule to write us a guest post. You can follow and contact her through these links.

Twitter | Blog | Facebook |Instagram | Goodreads | BookBub

If you have something to add to Victoria’s story, drop a comment here or send him a word of thanks on the social media. Both of us would love that.Also, if you are interested in writing a guest post for the independent publishing community, write to me right away. I am still accepting guest post submissions.

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Authors, what are your go to sites for resources, motivation or maybe just networking? What are your fave websites for the unpublished writers? And readers do you even spend time scoring out Social media to read about the writing community? Let us talk.

Five websites for the unpublished writers

Creating An Author Brand – YOU! (The Economical Way!): Indie Guest Post

I have not met any indie author who thinks marketing their books easy, yet. I know marketing the book can daunting and tiring. And any number of articles you read about it is not enough at all. And let us not even talk about the cost constraints. 

That is why we are here with yet another article on marketing for indie authors. And we have Eden talking about branding for an author and creating the brand YOU!

Say hello to Eden!

I’m an indie author, (with a marketing background) and keep finding posts on writer’s forums like ‘so I published my book, but only sold two copies in the last year, I don’t know why I bothered….’

author Brand you

Contrary to some people’s opinion that “when the book is written the work is done”, self-publishing isn’t just about writing, finding a good editor, choosing a publisher, getting an ISBN, formatting the book, designing the cover and choosing your price.  It also needs to about becoming your own agent, marketing department and cheerleeader.  You can throw lots of money at marketing, but that might not help – what are you spending your money on?

This is a step by step guide to getting started, using things that anyone can do, that cost nothing.  Marketing means publicising your name and work, it is everything you do that gets people’s interest.  Which can lead to them buying your work – it’s not selling, which is a different skill, and doesn’t relate to books.

You will need: a calendar, notebook, two pens one colourful, and off we go…


Imagine your ideal reader, now make a note of their gender, age, occupation, relationship status, pets, where they live; When you have a detailed picture then we can work out where to find them.   


Set up a Facebook page with privacy set to friends, people must be your friend to see your content.  Invite people you know, and ask these people to invite their friends – don’t randomly add people you have no connection with, they are unlikely to be your ideal reader.

Use this page to talk positively about your book, your writing process, your inspiration, good books you have read – absolutely no negativity allowed on this page.  If someone is unkind or abusive, block them, don’t get into arguments that make you look unprofessional. 

Remember this isn’t the page to share private photos or air dirty laundry, keep your private life just that.


Join every writer and reader group that you can find on Facebook, this is where you connect, and let likeminded people know that you exist (no bombarding anyone with links or information on the book).


Back to your ideal reader, we know who they are, now we need to think about where will they hang out online, parent groups? Ones about pets, gardening, music, interior design, travel, local history, or issue groups?

Apply to join the groups where your readers are.  If you get accepted introduce yourself with a question to engage interest, ‘Hi, thanks for welcoming me into the group, I am writer what do you do?’ ‘Hi, I love history/travel/music it inspires me to write, what does it inspire you to do?

You get the picture – do not add your book information unless someone asks for it. You are marketing yourself and your work; NOT COLD CALLING (remember those annoying people who used to telephone while you were eating?).


Set up a Twitter account in the same name as your Facebook page follow authors who are in your genre, or people who would be your target readers and make pleasant comments on their posts – don’t mention your book unless asked, just be an interesting person.

On all of the above use the same profile picture, you need to be instantly recognisable.  Make sure you look smiley and approachable – if you write horror or sci-fi you can afford to look serious, but still approachable.  Ladies, no cleavage or poute-y poses please – we know sex sells but we are marketing your book, not your personal wares.

Congratulations you now have a brand – BRAND YOU!

To begin to build on this, you need to be like healthy bowels (nice and regular); mark on your calendar exactly when each week to update your social media.  Give yourself an hour to post and respond to messages.  When complete give yourself a tick with your colourful pen; it is important to notice and record when you are working on your writing career. 

Now you have a cohesive image and a social media following which will be organically growing while you go to the next phase. 

Sixth belief, in yourself and your book.

Have you told everyone you ever met that you wrote a book? Think of this information as a pebble dropped into water making bigger and bigger ripples.  I’m not talking about becoming a bore, but if anyone asks what you’ve been doing lately, tell them you wrote a book.  Your family, friends, work colleagues, neighbours, sports team, hairdresser, dentist, librarian, mechanic, the person on the bus next to you… everyone should know.

People you know are more likely to buy from you just because they know you, they might want to hear what you have to say, or they might not.  It doesn’t matter why they use their money to buy your book, it just matters that they do.


Never forget to ask people who buy your book to leave you a review (give the exact addresses of your FB and Twitter to post their review online).  Suggest they invite other readers they think might like the book to try it – consider how many of the last 10 books you bought came from personal recommendation?

This is one for the calendar, once a month ‘put a message on Facebook tagging anyone who has bought your book’; then do it, and tick with your colourful pen.   


If you have an ISBN and are on Ingram’s then email bookshops, (start in your town, then county and work outwards) introduce yourself and the book.  There are templates online of what you need to include.  If you have physical copies offer a three book discount to buy direct from you.  Any deals or prices must be agreed in writing – so get emailing.

Don’t just drop into shops, it looks unprofessional and is generally a waste of your time and theirs, the person responsible for buying will need to check your book out before they can make a decision.


If a shop wants to stock your book ask to be featured on their social media, and ask to add their links to yours.  When they agree (in writing) post on Facebook and Twitter “Head to BOOKSHOP (link) to get your copy of TITLE” or “Thanks to BOOKSHOP (link) for stocking TITLE”.

Make friends with your booksellers, they can recommend your book, or give you a reading / signing event.  Independents are better than chains, as they have autonomy.


Do all this, and then keep doing it every single month, and then do it all again, and again.  Your name will be out there as a cool writer who behaves with professionalism rather than a nightmare spammer.  Potential customers can look you up, see what you have written….and buy your book.


Please remember why you started writing, if you were thinking you’d written an indie bestseller, and you’d make your millions, I admire your spirit, but you might want to adjust your reality.  Enjoy the process, including the marketing, or why do it?

Thank you, Eden!

And I am back to thank Eden for taking time off her busy schedule to write us a guest post. You can follow and contact Eden through these links.

Twitter | 

If you have something to add to Eden’s story, drop a comment here or send him a word of thanks on the social media. Both of us would love that.Also, if you are interested in writing a guest post for the independent publishing community, write to me right away. I am still accepting guest post submissions.

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Five websites for the unpublished writers

Indie Guest Post: How To Judge A Book By Its Cover -Tips On Cover Design

One of the first things that we all judge upon when we lay our hands on a book, or even before, is its cover. Despite whatever proverbs we may be used to we definitely are cover obsessed and most of us on instagram depend on their beauty. I even posted a bunch of weird book covers for fun a while ago.

As an indie author it is critical to choose the best cover for your book. This we have Rob discussing about this topic with us. 

Say hello to Rob!

Rob Keeley was born in Wirral, Merseyside, UK. Writing his first story aged seven, his first short play aged eleven and first being published at fifteen, he wrote for several magazines before his first book for children, The Alien in the Garage and Other Stories, was published in 2011.

book covers

He has since written two more collections of children’s stories, one of which, The Dinner Club and Other Stories, was longlisted for the International Rubery Book Award. He has now published all five novels in his Spirits series, the first of which, Childish Spirits, gained him a Distinction for his MA in Creative Writing before being longlisted for the Bath Children’s Novel Award and nominated for the People’s Book Prize in 2015.

He has recently studied Screenwriting and Filmmaking, has been a judge for the IGGY and Litro Young Writers’ Prize and is a Patron of the Children’s Media Foundation. His books have been used in schools, libraries and at literary festivals and he is in demand for his author workshops, which one teacher even described as “inspirational”!

Let’s get on with it shall we?

“Never judge a book by its cover”. That has to be up there with “The camera never lies” as one of those old adages that doesn’t really stand up to close scrutiny. Everyone judges a book by its cover, metaphorically and in the literal (and literary) sense.

When readers shop for books, whether in bricks and mortar bookshops or online, the first thing that catches the eye is the front cover. Even if it’s a book or series title they know, they’ll be relying on the cover to entice them, to draw them in, to promise a thrilling reading journey, destination unknown. 

And if you need proof, look at those empty boxes on websites where the cover isn’t available yet or hasn’t yet been uploaded. How bland and uninviting do those book entries look? Which is why it’s so important for every author, and especially the indie author in creative control of their book, to get the cover right.

Working with what we have

It’s not easy, for the indie author. We can be completely on our own, uploading our books directly to the Internet, with only limited numbers of templates or fonts at our disposal. Even those of us who work with a designer or an indie publishing company – and there are some brilliant, talented ones out there – can’t necessarily afford (or access) an illustrator and have to work with what software options are available.

book covers

Of all my books for children, only my picture book My Favourite People has so far had the luxury of an illustrator. My novels and short story collections all made use of stock photos from the Net, which have to be bought and licensed by the author or by the designer acting on their behalf. And finding the right picture to illustrate your work isn’t always easy.

I discovered this with The Dinner Club and Other Stories, when I spent a whole afternoon looking at stock photos of fish and chips, in order to find one that reflected a child’s home dinner with his grandmother. And what did everyone, but everyone (even the judges who longlisted it for an award!) later say to me? It looks like a cookbook! Young readers thought otherwise, however – as will be seen below.

book covers book covers

So we have to work within our budgets, and with whatever we can get. But perhaps this forces us to be all the more creative. It can even feed back into the text of our books. With The (Fairly) Magic Show I changed the card found by a child in the title story from the King of Clubs to the King of Spades, simply because we’d found a brilliant photo of a pile of cards with this on top.

Sometimes a talented designer can change an ordinary stock photo into something magical and memorable. The graveyard of The Spirit of London became this, simply by adding a sunlight effect. On High Spirits, the one that won the award by the way, we changed a stock Grim Reaper hooded spirit into the Doppelganger of the book simply by adding some smoke and a few energy beams to reflect the climax of the novel. 

book covers book covers

The imagination is the only barrier to being creative with what we have. Ask any child who builds entire worlds from building bricks or cardboard boxes. And in my case, they’re my readers.

What does the reader want to see?

With all communication, the fundamental question to ask yourself is: who is my target audience? And going on from that, what do they want to see, read or hear? With my novels and short stories, I always visualise the intelligent 9-12 year old, reading a book at school or home, or having it read to them, wanting to be informed, inspired, but above all, entertained!

And therefore, the cover has to reflect this, being as colourful, exciting and intriguing as possible. It’s not a bad ground rule for novels for adults, either. The image should complement the title and reinforce it, while both perhaps pose questions that the reader will want answered. Anything and everything to make them want to read. 

book covers

Sometimes the meaning of the cover and its image won’t become clear until the book is read – as with the ruined world on the cover of The Sword of the Spirit, or the door on The Alien in the Garage. And an added complication these days is that the cover has to be easily adaptable to different formats – paperback, ebook or audiobook. Childish Spirits, the first Spirits novel, is currently being recorded as an audiobook, which has meant reformatting its cover from portrait to square – the shape traditionally used for CDs.

As we’ve seen, we can start with the everyday and make something extraordinary out of it. Sometimes the reaction from the young reader can surprise even the author. The Dinner Club, following its “cookbook” criticisms, went on to inspire reluctant readers I worked with at one school to create their own Dinner Club, with the help of their teachers, in which they were granted an early lunch, ate fish and chips and discussed books and their writing. A cover image did that. Not even the book – its cover. This shows the importance of getting the cover right and tailoring it to its target audience.

book covers book covers

Children’s authors should also remember that it isn’t necessarily about doing a “wacky” or “kiddie” cover. I’ve had criticisms – from adults, always from adults – that my covers look “too grown up”. Childish Spirits was one such novel, with its spooky abandoned nursery and ghostly portrait, yet in one school workshop a group of children solemnly claimed they could see extra ghosts in the doorway and next to the curtain. (Have a look. Can you?)

None of them seemed to think that this book wasn’t for them. And all of them were engaged and stimulated as readers by what they saw. No one ever said that children’s books were just for children, either. It’s worth remembering that Harry Potter was published with children’s and adult covers – and that it’s adults who are frequently the buyers of children’s literature.

How do we design a good cover?

I’m sure that whole books could be devoted to this alone, but here are a few pointers I’ve picked up along the way:

  • Keep your target audience in mind constantly. What do they want to see – and read?
  • Basic background colour is important. You know your text better than anyone – what “colour” is it? A dark fantasy story could call for black. A light-hearted romance might benefit from white. White can also be sinister – especially if some blood appears. Children are attracted by bright colours. And so on.
  • Choose the best possible image from the best source available on your budget. It should be something that captures the essence of your story and/or characters, perhaps obviously, perhaps less so until the book is read.
  • Choose a font that reflects the style of your story, its title and what your audience wants to see. A computerised, businesslike font might look good on a business studies book but less so on your middle-grade fantasy novel.
  • Lay everything out clearly, attractively and don’t clutter your front cover.
  • If you have review quotes from previous books, or an advance review for this one, try and get at least one quote on the cover, if this can be done comfortably without cluttering. Give the source, and make it clear which book it refers to – e.g. “On High Spirits:”. And of course, make sure you’re authorised to reproduce this material! Check with the reviewer if there’s any doubt. Reviews might show up better on printed covers than electronic-only. And if you can’t fit a review on the printed front cover – there’s always the back!
  • The finished front cover should ideally be adaptable to different formats and media. You might get the chance at paperback, ebook and audiobook – as I now have. A good designer can advise you here.

So, a suitably intriguing and attention-grabbing cover can engage the reader, young or old. It simply has to be right for the story, for the characters, and above all, for your audience. And once you get them past the cover? Then you, as the author, can work your magic.

Thank you, Rob

And I am back to thank him for taking time off his busy schedule to write us a guest post. You can follow and contact Rob through these links. 

Twitter | Blog |

If you have something to add to Rob’s story, drop a comment here or send him a word of thanks on the social media. Both of us would love that.Also, if you are interested in writing a guest post for the independent publishing community, write to me right away. I am still accepting guest post submissions.

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As a reader, what kinda covers put you off a book? As an author, what are the things that you look out when you chose your book cover? Tell us about your experience with choosing your book covers. Let us talk.

Five websites for the unpublished writers

Indie Guest Post: Formatting Your Next Best Seller

It is time for yet another guest post from an indie author already. And the topic that our guest blogger for this week has taken is more practical and hands on than ever before. She is sharing her tips and tricks on formatting your next best selling books.

I have been following Jenn’s blog for a while now and I love commenting on her blog as well. So let me hand it over to her, alright?

Say hello to Jenn!

formatting your book

Jennifer Leigh is a self-published young adult author and blogger. She loves to participate in National Novel Writing Month. Her blog, Bound to Writing, focuses on young adult books and writing. She lives in New Jersey with her fiancé, two guinea pigs, and cat.

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Here is Jenn, y’all!

Hi everyone! My name is Jennifer Leigh and I’m the author of Not Like Everyone Else, a self-published young adult mystery book.

When I first set off to formatting my own print and ebook copies, I found that there was so much information. It was overwhelming.

Then I found what worked out for me. Now, the advice I’m about to give worked for me, but may not work for you. But I do hope you’ll find the system that works for you if this doesn’t.

When I format my books I use Microsoft Word. By far, it has the easiest user interface in creating the files I need for my books. This means that all of my information will be based in Microsoft Word.

Print and Ebook copies have to be formatted differently. Though some things remain the same, it’s the little details that change if the book will keep its format when you hit publish. And you want to make sure the book does look the way you want before releasing it to the public.

Physical Copy Formatting

Indents and Spacing

The first things you’ll want to do is highlight your document by using CTRL+A and setting a first line indent of 0.2” and a 1.5-inch line spacing. This will create uniform indents and spacing throughout your work.

Page Breaks

You’ll also want to create page breaks after the last sentence of your chapter. This will ensure that your chapters will always start on a new page.

Section Breaks

It’s also important that you set section breaks before your story and after. The best place to add in sections breaks is after your title, copyright, and dedication pages. Any pages before and after the final page of your story should have a section break because it will affect the page numbers (see next point).

formatting your book


In a physical copy, you’ll need to add page numbers. Go into the header or footer of your document and select the page numbers that you want for your document. Don’t forget to change the font and font size to match your book’s text. By having the section breaks that we discussed before, your first page should start on the first page of your story and end on the last page.

*Note* Make sure that you check Different Odd/Even Pages to ensure the numbers count consecutively.


You want to make sure your margins are properly formatted so that your text doesn’t get swallowed into the spine of the book. To ensure this doesn’t happen, set your margins to:Top, Bottom, and Outside Margins = 0.75”Inside Margins = 1”You want to also set your margins to Mirror Margins so that every other page has the inside margin.

Check and Order Proof

To ensure your book is properly formatted, check out how the book will print in the print preview. By eyeing the document, you should see any formatting issues. Or, if you’d like to take it one step further, this is the time to order a proof copy of your book, if your publisher allows you to order a proof before publishing.

Ebook Copy Formatting

Now that we’ve looked into how to format a Physical copy, let’s look into how formatting an Ebook is different.

Indents and Spacing

Just like a physical copy, you need to indent and space your text. The first things you’ll want to do it highlight your document by using CTRL+A and setting a first line indent of 0.2” and a 1.5-inch line spacing. This will create uniform indents and spacing throughout your work.

Page Breaks

You’ll also want to create page breaks after the last sentence of your chapter. This will ensure that your chapters will always start on a new page.

Section Breaks

This section becomes very important for Ebooks. If you don’t add in section breaks, the text will most likely all stay on the same page. Make sure that you set section breaks before your story and after. The best place to add in sections breaks is after your title, copyright, and dedication pages. Any pages before and after the final page of your story should have a section break.


The best part of an Ebook is that you don’t need page numbers! Because Ereaders vary in how many pages your book will have, page numbers are unnecessary.

formatting your book


You want to make sure your margins are properly formatted so that your text looks nice on the page. To ensure this will work, set your margins to:All Margins = 0.5”

Table of Contents

The table of contents is an important part of the Ebook. You’ll want to make sure your chapters have headings, which you can set up in the Styles box. Then when you click on References on the main ribbon, you’ll see the Table of Contents creator.

Set it up how you’d like to see your table of contents. Remember, don’t have it show page numbers because every format will be different. You can easily add and subtract the contents by clicked on Add Text and Do Not Show in Table of Contents or Level 1 which would count for a chapter number or title.

*Note* By using the Table of Contents option, it links your chapters so that people can click on them in your ebook.

Check Your Copy & Read on Ereader

To ensure your book is properly formatted, check out how the book will print in the print preview. By eyeing the document, you should see any formatting issues. You can also change your file over to a PDF, MOBI, or PDF file and read on an Ereader or Ereader app to see if you spot any issues.

Ebooks are easier to format because you need to make it versatile for any Ereader to adapt while keeping the integrity of your book.

Final Notes

Make sure your fonts match and your book text is no larger than 12pt. Your chapter headings and title page text can be larger.Always make sure to check your formatting before sending to be published. Formatting doesn’t have to be hard, but it does take a lot of work.

Thank you, Gayathri for having me on your blog today.I hope you all found this post useful and you continue checking this wonderful series Gayathri is offering to indie authors. I wish you all the best in your self-publishing adventures.

Thanks Jenn!

And I am back to thank her for taking time off her busy schedule to write us a guest post. You can follow and contact her through her social accounts. You can read more of her posts on self publishing here.

If you have something to add to Jennifer’s story, drop a comment here or send her a word of thanks on the social media. Both of us would love that.

Also, if you are interested in writing a guest post for the independent publishing community, write to me right away. I am still accepting guest post submissions.

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Five websites for the unpublished writers

Ten ridiculous book titles that make me question my sanity

You remember a while ago we shared a good laugh at some of the weirdest book covers, don’t you? I thought it would be more fun to share a similar post but with a twist. Yes here are a few ridiculous book titles that make me reconsider the amount of time I am spending on the internet.

It is not a big secret that I obsess over books and bookish websites. I guess this is the prize for all that.

Ten book ridiculous book titles

But I am not letting you guys off without sharing these gems with you all. Shall we get started?

Disclaimer: This post is intended for fun and not intended to hurt anyone. If it did, I am sorry and it was purely unintentional.

1)How to Start Your Own Country

Ridiculous book titles

Why are we even fighting when we can all have our own countries?

2) If God Loves Me, Why Can’t I Get My Locker Open?

Ridiculous book titles

RIGHT? I demand an answer.

3) Italian Without Words

Ridiculous book titles

I wonder how that works. If you wanted to learn a bit of Italian (with words though) you might want to read Camilla’s post here.

4) Knitting with Dog Hair: Better a Sweater from a Dog You Know and Love Than from a Sheep You’ll Never Meet

Ridiculous book titles

I cannot fathom why would anyone need this.

5) Toilet Paper Origami: Delight your Guests with Fancy Folds and Simple Surface Embellishments

Ridiculous book titles

There is frugal living. And then, there is THIS.

6) Everything I Know about Women I Learned from My Tractor

Ridiculous book titles

Because how else would you learn?

7) Fancy Coffins to Make Yourself

Ridiculous book titles

Of all the things that you wanna Do-It-Yourself, you would wanna learn this. Of course.

8) Violent Prayer: Engaging Your Emotions Against Evil

Ridiculous book titles

Let us begin our violent prayer for the world peace, shall we?

9) How to Shit in the Woods: An Environmentally Sound Approach to a Lost Art

Ridiculous book titles

Well, you need to learn that somewhere.

10) Zombie Raccoons & Killer Bunnies

Ridiculous book titles

Now I have more things to be scared of in the woods.

Similar humorous book lists that you may enjoy

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Ridiculous book titles

Let us chat:

Do you get fascinated about such ridiculous book titles? Is there a book that you have read in this list? What is the weirdest book title you read? Let us talk.

Five websites for the unpublished writers

Indie Guest Post: Book Blog Tours – What are your options?

If you have been on the book blogging scene for a while, you might already be aware of all the book blog tours that are so successful. You might be or have been part of those tours as well. I do. 

But as an indie author what are the choices you have and how far are they effective as a tool for your book promotion? We have an insider talking about it. 

Say hi to Nicole

blog tours

Nicole writes across the spectrum of sexuality and gender identity. She lives in Melbourne with one of her partners, two cats, a whole lot of books and a bottomless cup of tea.

Co-creator of Queer Writers Chat. Also likes tea, crochet and Gilmore Girls.
Her books are available on: 

Amazon | Smashwords | Netgalley

Let’s get on with it shall we?

So, you’re an author who is just about to release a book and you want to get the word out. If this sounds like you, and you’re unsure about what to do, this post may be for you as blog tours are a very good way of doing this.

I’ve typically been bad about this myself, but talking someone else through it recently made me realise that, even if I haven’t bee motivated to get up and do this myself many times, I know the theory of it, and it’s information that I’m easily able to pass along that might be of help to others.

blog tours

So what is in a blog tour?

Typically a book tour is a handful of tours, somewhere between 7 and maybe a dozen, within a week or fortnight period. The idea is to get your book seen on various different blogs, of course which you also promote.

Your side of things (as an author) would be putting up different information, excerpts, interviews, guest blogs on different topics, in each area so that people have an interest in following the different blog posts which also gets the bloggers exposure. 

blog tours

In that way, it manages to be a good thing for people on both sides of the blog tour. Some people also do promotional images. I’ve included a couple of those in this post as an additional assistance to help with visualising the whole set up.

What do you, as an author, have to provide?

But here’s a question you might be asking yourself: How the heck are you, as the author, supposed to cough up original content for upwards of 7 different blogs from one upcoming book?!

First of all, you probably want to pick a place that offers an exclusive cover reveal. Exclusive, as in, this is the place where people go to get their first glimpse of the front cover of your upcoming book. As in, don’t post it up on Twitter like I know you are wanting to (if you are anything like me), no matter how awesome that artwork is, and how cool that cover artist was to work with. Save it for the start of your blog tour. 

Trust me, all that energy is going to come in handy when it comes to you promoting these blogs and YOUR BOOK. LGBTQReads and Gay YA are both great resources that offer this.

What about book excerpts?

Excerpts from the book are another wonderful thing you can offer to bloggers potentially hosting you. One of these is probably enough, two if you’re going for an extended blog tour. Think of the kind of excerpt you might see as a preview/hook at the end of Book 1 in your favourite series, something that’s going to make readers want to see more.

And author interviews?

Many bloggers will offer to do author interviews. They’ll either ask you a set number of questions or give you a list of questions to choose from. Your job is to find different questions with each blog (if possible) or to bring fresh content to your answers each time. Their job is to find questions that are going to stimulate those kinds of responses. A great example of this kind of interview is Corey’s Book Corner interviewing Cole McCade.

Also character interviews!

Some bloggers will want to do character interviews. This can be an incredibly good alternate option if you feel as though your author interviews are getting a bit repetitive! You choose the character/s from the book from whom you want to answer questions and go from there. I offered one of these interviews with Dahlia and Bianca, out of my novel Changing Loyalties.

Write a few guest posts

Finally, the other very common post featured in a blog tour is the guest post. I do a lot of those on this blog, such as Lynn O’Connacht’s guest post on Demisexuality in Fantasy Worlds, and J. Emery’s guest post on the Connections Between Characters and How They Develop. These give you a lot of scope to write mini essays on any area of your writing process, the reason you wrote the book you’re about to release.

You likely already know some people who would be very happy to host you. Authors, readers and bloggers have a way of moving in very similar circles. A way of getting people to self opt in is putting a post on Twitter, or whatever networking platform you use, asking for people who would be willing to host you. Reach out to people who might have offered before you had a book that you wanted to do a blog tour for.

Thanks Nicole!

And I am back to thank her for taking time off her busy schedule to write us a guest post. You can follow and contact her through these links. 

Twitter | Blog | 

If you have something to add to Nicole’s story, drop a comment here or send her a word of thanks on the social media. Both of us would love that.

Also, if you are interested in writing a guest post for the independent publishing community, write to me right away. I am still accepting guest post submissions.

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Let us chat!

Are you an author who has or is going to promote your book through blog tours? Tell us how are they working for you. If you are blogger who takes part in such blog tours, which option do you prefer? Also share your favorite blog tour providers. Let us talk.