A Look Back on 2018 and a Glance Ahead

Outskirts Press made huge strides forward in 2018, adding well-thought-out publishing products to help authors get their books to print and up for sale online, and marketing options to launch those books to new heights. But the strenuous efforts of our production and marketing teams in 2018 is just the half of it; thanks to the talents and determination of our authors, our joint efforts paid off in the form of priceless awards and recognitions.

Take a short walk down Memory Lane with us as we revisit all we have achieved. If the things we’ve accomplished together over the past year is any indication of what’s to come, 2019 will truly be amazing!

Outskirts Press Author Awards

Authors, you made us so very proud this year! Here is a sampling of the many highlights over the course of the year, including a terrific showing in awards competitions.

Katherine S. Egan, author of Genetics Isn’t Everything, won a 1st Place EVVY Award in August, which she was able to accept in person at the banquet in Denver, Colorado. She subsequently became one of three finalists in the 2018 Outskirts Press Best Book of the Year Awards.

Jackie Fischer, author of The Lost Branch, won first place (and a new laptop computer) in the Outskirts Press “Show Us Your Love” annual video contest, which celebrates both Valentine’s Day and self-publishing. As she demonstrates in her video, she’s quite adept at rhyme, as well!

The annual Benjamin Franklin Awards are notoriously competitive, so it was no small feat when Dr. Jeanne Blanchet won a Silver Medal Award for Historical Fiction with her novel Man at the Cross Road. Proving herself to be anything but a one-trick pony, she quickly followed that up with an EVVY Award for her follow-up book, Cursed.

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In July, prolific novelist Gabriel F.W. Koch learned that he was once again a finalist in the Colorado Independent Publishers Association EVVY Awards. He walked away with a 2nd Place EVVY Award a couple years ago for his science fiction novel Paradox Effect (not to mention an Outskirts Press Best Book of the Year nomination). This year he picked up an EVVY Merit Award for Emma and the Dragon Tooth Sword. He has published four books thus far with Outskirts Press, including his latest, And Come Day’s End.

Speaking of science fiction, C.R. Norris discovered that she won 1st Place in the Science Fiction category at the EVVY Awards, for her book Wasp on the Wind. The book is the second in her Wasp Chronicles Series. She subsequently was nominated to be one of three finalists in the highly coveted Best Book of the Year Awards.

All those award nominations led us to the 2018 Outskirts Press Best Book of the Year award. This year, the honor, the award and the $1,500 Grand Prize went to T.D. Arkenberg for his biographical take on the events leading up to, and following in the shadows of, September 11. Two Towers is his fourth book but his first memoir.

In October we recognized our 50 bestselling authors for 2018. These high-achieving authors not only produced marvelous literary works but also exhibited the drive required to promote those works to readers!

Kevin Muldowney Aage Nost
Will Kautz Rasha Pecoraro
Michael McNamara Tui Rose
Lisa A. Romano Mohamed Elgendy
Mary Casey Asif Anwar
Vil Mirzayanov Brian Petit
L. Veach Bill McClain
Mike Gillette Tom Bisio
Mirtha Castro Mary Allison
Matthew DiGeronimo Rebecca Janes
Amy Pierotti Halo Lewis
Jane McConnell Jane Ostrow
Jill Jackson Bernard Nebel
Don Petterson Alex Cuoco
Ed Robinson Adrienne Anderson
Scott Imhoff Diana Arcieri
Patrick O’Connor Tiffany Anderson
Joseph Adegboyega-Edun Kathryn M. Mora
Bernard Nebel Jeffrey Howe
Magdaline DeSousa Steve Kelley
Michael Goodroe Hal Perkins
Jokima Hiller Rodney DuBose
Lisa Cicero Amy Meadows
Heidi Herman Paul Kotz
Luis Roman Seth Spreiter

New Publishing and Marketing Products

Our One-Click Publishing for Children’s Books was a hit from the moment we introduced this all-inclusive publishing package. At the very end of 2017, we launched One-Click for Children’s Books (author-provided illustrations) for juvenile book authors who don’t need illustrations, either because they have their own or their book does not call for them. It, too, was an instant hit and has helped another group of authors get published hassle-free.

Outskirts Press is proud to have introduced the Amazon Kindle eBook Box Set, which allows authors of multiple books to bundle their collection to capture additional sales from avid readers. This packaging increases the odds that a reader will buy not just one book but an entire series.

The new Author Book Banner Graphic provides authors with an attractive custom advertising banner to use any way they choose. The graphic is formatted according to the specific requirements and strengths of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or the Google search engine platform.

For authors interested in taking full advantage of the power of the Amazon selling platform, a professional Amazon Author Profile is now an option. This profile page gives readers valuable information about the author and connects them with other books by the author, social media, author blog and more.

Finally, Outskirts Press retooled its Guaranteed Radio Interview option. While authors who purchase this high-profile promotion still receive valuable radio interview guidance and a generous timeslot before a huge radio audience, the new platform and format better targets the audiences an author wants to reach!

Want your book published in 2019? Or do you have a book you would like to be the next big prize-winner? Find out more about publishing, marketing, promoting and submitting your book for awards and reviews.

 

On the 12 Days of Christmas, Outskirts Press Gives to Thee

The 12 Days of Christmas aren’t just about giving and receiving – at least they don’t have to be. The first half of December can also be a good stretch of time to check items off your holiday honey-do list without getting overwhelmed.

Simply break up your holiday tasks into 12 equal parts and tackle one a day. Day 1, shop for Christmas baking supplies. Day 2, make your first dozen cookies. Day 3, sign your greeting cards and Day 4, mail them. Day 5, clean the living room … and so on. Soon enough, you’ll have mailed and baked-up joy to the world and your own corner of it will be in order.

To help you check a few things off your self-publishing to-do’s, Outskirts Press is offering a deal a day—each of which you’ll find far more valuable than the partridge and pear tree of lore. There are a dozen amazing days of saving, so mark your calendar for the days and deals that warm the cockles of your heart—then get them while they last. Here’s what we’re planning:

1. $100 OFF the eBook Bundle – Promo Code: EliteSavings-100
2. Buy 1, Get 1 Author Book Banner Graphic ($100 value!) – Promo Code: Banner-Free
3. 20% OFF Book Video ($80 savings) – Promo Code: Save20-BkVid
4. FREE First Chapter Flipbook ($99 value) when you buy First Chapter Distribution – Promo Code: Free-FCbook
5. 50 FREE Bookmarks ($20 value) when you buy Custom Bookmarks – Promo Code: 50free-Bookmarks
6. FREE NOOK Edition ($249 value) when you buy the iPad Edition – Promo Code: NookFree-iPad
7. FREE Custom Sales Sheet ($149 value) when you buy the Personal Marketing Assistant option – Promo Code: FreeSales-PMA
8. $50 OFF the Amazon Launch Bundle – Promo Code: Save50-AmazonLaunch
9. FREE Google Books Submission Service ($99 value) when you buy the Book Launch Bundle – Promo Code: GetGoogleFree
10. $50 OFF Kindle eBook Edition – Promo Code: Kindle50
11. ONLY $1,000 for the Global Book Tour (save $169) – Promo Code: GoGlobal
12. FREE Author Banner Ad ($149 value) when you buy Author Platform Set-Up Through Social Media – Promo Code: FreeBannerads

 

The savings won’t last long, so mark your marketing calendar and visit our Facebook page for updates on the deal of the day. When your favorite rolls around, get it while it lasts!

When you’re ready to grab the deal of your choice, log into your account and click on the “Marketing Options” icon.

 

Get Professional Writing Help With the Writing Consultation Option!

Every writer needs a jump-start at one time or another. If you’re struggling with certain aspects of your book or you’ve simply run out of steam, the Writing Consultation service from Outskirts Press may be just what you need to fine-tune your writing and get your book back on track. This is your ticket to becoming a published author!

In a Writing Consultation with one of our professional writers, you have a one-on-one brainstorming session to address the writing issues that have slowed your progress…or ground it to a halt. Our consultants are experienced writers with a thorough knowledge of grammar, composition, and other writing building blocks. You’ll also receive valuable advice and a plan of action for moving forward.

For $99 per one-hour block, you can use your Writing Consultation time to:

  • Troubleshoot plot, characters, technique, or execution of your ideas
  • Work through writer’s block
  • Take inventory of usable book materials
  • Organize book ideas into a usable outline
  • Get ideas on how to proceed with a book
  • Gather ideas on how to finish
  • Negotiate tricky passages
  • Ask for general writing advice
  • Get help moving to the next step in writing

Afterward, your writing consultant will provide a follow-up summary of your meeting, along with constructive information you can use to overcome personal writing obstacles and regain your forward momentum.

For more information and help choosing your best self-publishing options, contact an Outskirts Press Publishing Consultant in whatever manner is easiest for you:

 

Why You Should Get on Social Media (and How to Set Up for 10% OFF)

Have you harnessed the massive power of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and other social media sites? If not, you should … pronto!

While these and other online social apps were originally conceived to let people connect with friends, family and business colleagues, there’s also huge potential to reach out to readers. Plus, Outskirts Press is offering 10% OFF Author Platform Set-up Through Social Media for a limited time. This option includes professional profile set-up on all the major social media sites, so you can efficiently reach out to a large audience!

Many, if not most, of the people in your target audience are already active on social media. With the right approach, you can zero in on the readers among them in a way that builds trust and interest. In many cases, successful authors have social media to thank for putting them on the map. They are using these platforms to perform free marketing tasks, such as:

  • To announce a new book release
  • To promote book events and personal appearances
  • To gather reader insights to refine future writing and marketing
  • To run special discounts and social media giveaways

So, why not take advantage of the global nature of the internet? After all, once your social media accounts are established, it takes mere minutes a day to stay engaged with potential readers, build relationships and, ultimately, raise your visibility online.

To get these platforms established and get 10% OFF, simply place the Author Platform Set-up Through Social Media in your shopping cart and enter Promo Code 10Social at checkout.

What are you waiting for? Let’s get social!

 

Peanut by David D. Bernstein

Technology has made it easier than ever to reach wider audiences no matter where they are in the world. All it takes is a little thinking outside the box and you can market a self-published book in creative ways, affordably and impactfully. This is where book tours come in: Tours are a great way to connect with your readers and technology has made them easier and cheaper than ever!

Take note from self-publishing Outskirts Press author, David D. Bernstein, who is taking his latest book, Peanut, on tour — a virtual book tour, that is. He will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead so keep your eyes peeled to learn more about him and his book.


Luckily for us, David was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of Peanut.

OP: Tell us a little bit about Peanut. What is it about?

David: My book looks at three major topics. How divorce affects a young girl named Wendy. What happens when an obsession becomes a part of Wendy’s life and finally how a homeless dog named Peanut helps Wendy overcome her problems and changes her life forever?

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?

David: I wrote this book for three reasons: most important reason was to honor our family dog named Tamber who died on October 22, 2017 she was in our lives for almost 16 years. This was very important for me to do this in her memory. The second reason I wrote this book was to help out children and families who have gone through divorce. It is a topic that is not fully explored or understood in the children book industry so “Peanut” had to be written to fill that gap. The third reason I wrote the book was to get more pets adopted by loving families. There are so many pets that need a new home. I will be trying to work with nonprofit organizations to get the word out to the world.

OP: How did you get your book published?

David: I went on the self-publishing route for this book, I chose Outskirts Press to help me on this project. It is my third book that I have published with them. They are very professional and helpful guides on this journey.

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?

David: I believe the book can interest many people of all ages. This can include dog lovers, children, families that went through divorce. It also can be a great addition to professional offices that work closely with divorce and obsession. Overall this book can be read by many groups of people.

OP: What is special about your book?

David: I think this book is special because it was written from my heart and that is very rarely done these days, where most publishing companies care more about profit then quality. This is a very sad reality that authors have to face these days.

OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?

David: My book is different because it has more than one category it covers. It is not only a great picture book, but it also is a self-help book and much more.

OP: Have you published any other books?

David: Yes, I have three other books: a book of poetry from my high school to college years, a folk tale about how a boy goes into a fantasy world to cope with the death of his mom from cancer, it is called The Enchanted Rope. This book is about to be turned into a modern ballet done by children. My third book is called The Portal and it is a middle grade book about two boys who have to travel 101 years into the future to help alter the present. It is the first book in a trilogy.

OP: Do you plan to publish more?

David: I still have plans to publish my next two books in my trilogy and some more picture books in the near future.

OP: Thanks for your time, David! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

David D. Bernstein is a tennis instructor, psychic reader, and energy healer who has worked with children for many years in different settings. He’s the author of a book of poetry; a children’s book called The Enchanted Rope; and a middle grade novel, The Portal, the first book in the Cort Chronicles Trilogy. He also had several poems published in magazines and anthologies and is the recipient of five Editor Awards. Peanut is his second picture book. David is a proud uncle of two young boys.

For more information or to contact the author, visit https://www.outskirtspress.com/Peanut

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road.” Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

Are you an author looking for help to market your self-published book?

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Amazon Featured Book of the Week

Here’s this week’s Featured Book-of-the-Week available now on Amazon.com!


Notes From the Trenches: A Musician’s Journey Through World War I

by Gary H. Foster

(5 Stars – 10 Customer Reviews)

Price: $29.95

Gary H. Foster’s “Notes From the Trenches: A Musician’s Journey Through World War I.” America found itself drawn into the Great War overseas, and the author’s grandfather, Leo Foster, bugler for the Wisconsin National Guard, was sent to the front lines. Nearly a century later, this book reconstructs Leo’s World War I experience from letters, newspaper clippings, and photographs from Leo’s footlocker. Nothing compares to the immediacy of the war experience in a soldier’s own words. Full of wit, good humor, and honesty, these letters provide a fascinating window into the War to End All Wars.

 Learn More 

 

Please note that product prices and availability are subject to change. Prices and availability were accurate at the time of this posting; however, they may differ from those you see when you visit Amazon.com.© Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Amazon, Amazon.com, the Amazon.com logo, and 1-Click are registered trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Amazon.com, 410 Terry Avenue N., Seattle, WA 98109-5210.

 

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What Does it Take to Market a Memoir, Biography, or Autobiography?

Memoirs are a tricky thing to write, much less market, and their cousins the autobiography and the biography are equally so. When an author draws from real life and the history of a moment in time, it can seem daunting to do the deep research, trap the sands of time on the page, publish a finished book … and then also have to market that book! And given the fact that your book is deeply invested in, the facts, there is a widespread reluctance on the part of memoir, biography, and autobiography authors to pump up the drama in the heightened emotion of the kind of sales copy you’ll find tied to works of both literary and genre fiction. That said, there are some reliable and useful ways to market your work of non-fiction drawn from real life that ought to prove helpful as you set out to start marketing your latest book.

1. Identify your readers and where they “live.” We bring up this point often, as it applies to marketing for so many different genres in so many different ways. When it comes to memoir, biography, and autobiography, we’re talking about a very specific subset of readers. Readers of these branches of non-fiction are not always hugely prolific readers, in that they may not read widely on many topics, but they are incredibly deep readers and will often read more than one book on the same topic, to ensure they have a thorough picture of a time, place, or life. As a result, they’re not necessarily shopping for their books or their ebooks in the same place as everyone else; they’ll be just as likely to turn up online in history forums dedicated to particular time periods or particular military campaigns or particular Napoleonic-era war ships. Don’t be afraid to get hyper-specific in your marketing: identify key bloggers and other authors writing about the same subject, place, or time as you are and reach out to them. History buffs hosting influential profiles on Instagram, YouTube, and podcasts are another great resource to identify and consult about doing a social media or blog tour!

2. Get in touch with your local history buffs. Do not underestimate your own community’s potential hunger and thirst for non-fiction in the memoir, biography, and autobiography subgenres! Memoirs by small-town retired war vets routinely pack out libraries hosting readings and signings, and travelogues and tell-alls too. People are excited to expand their world and taste of other lives, and they haunt libraries, museums, and local businesses looking to connect with those stories. When you start to market your book, make sure you include a book reading or signing at your local public library as one of your first and most highly publicized events, and reach out to local organizations such as the VFW, Elks, Rotary, and Kiwanis clubs as well as your local museums, universities, and archives for partnerships. All of these organizations take an interest in preserving history and in expanding the career prospects of young entrepreneurs. What better way to inspire the next generation than with a book about a well-lived life?

3. Bring it home. That is … don’t be afraid to make this book, and the marketing of this book, personal. After all, the average reader picks up a memoir, biography, or autobiography in the first place because they’re fascinated with the outline of a life–and because that reader wants to fill in some of the blanks! Don’t shy away from making the most of your personal experiences or the personal experiences of the historical figure around which you’re centering the book in your marketing campaign, and make sure to touch upon the perspectives and worldview that have informed your writing; just as you want your book to ring true on fact-checkable details, you also want all of your marketing copy to ring true to your personal voice. Even if you didn’t draw from your own life for the content of your book, there’s room in the margins for your story. Think of Rebecca Skloot, author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks–Skloot herself is present in the text as narrator, and the author doesn’t shy away from including her very hands-on research process as a part of the braided story of the book. That braiding continued in her marketing of the book after its release. You can always share significant places, things, or aspects of your story, and engage your readers with all kinds of digital media (blog posts, pictures, videos, and social media posts) during the marketing process. So, start thinking of what makes your story unique, and think of how you can use that to draw readers in — outside the pages of your book.

No matter what steps you intend take to market your memoir, biography, or autobiography, we’re with you on your journey–and eager to help you travel that path as smoothly and effectively as possible! And if you’re still not sure where to get started in marketing your book, it may be time to lean on an expert. There’s never a better time than now to inquire about the wonderful lineup of marketing options available to you through Outskirts Press; simply visit us online at www.outskirtspress.com, where you’ll find countless further recommendations to suit your marketing needs.

To see our staff picks of amazing memoirs, biographies, or autobiographies from many of our authors, visit our Pinterest page by clicking here.