Archive for Lynn Serafinn

Crowd funding can often seem to be the solution to financing a book project. But statistics show 90% of all crowd funding campaigns fail. When is the right and wrong time for an author to embark on a crowd funding venture?


Years ago, in the golden days of Hollywood, the story of actress Lana Turner was an urban legend. As the story goes, she got her big break in the film industry by “getting discovered” at age 16, when she was sipping a soda at a drug store. Stories like this, while undoubtedly antiquated in today’s world, have long been the mythology of artists. When I was in the music industry, there was scarcely a musician who didn’t dream of “getting signed” by a big label. We only need to look at shows like The X-Factor to see that the dream of “getting discovered” and being skyrocketed to instant fame is still very much a driving force in the artistic community.

Many authors today continue to have a similar myth playing at the back of their minds. They still dream of landing that big publishing deal, with that big juicy advance. But times have changed. Technology has changed the landscape. Just as the era of home studios and digital downloads “democratised” the music industry, enabling virtually anyone to make an album, the era of digital publishing and print-on-demand has enabled anyone to publish a book. Because of this glut of artists on the market, traditional publishers have more competition. Therefore they’re getting pickier. They don’t want to take risks. If they’re going to shell out their money on an author, it has to be a sure thing. These days, publishers expect authors to be good at marketing and promoting their own books. Let’s face it: while publishing deals do still exist, the “glory days” where the author is developed by a publisher are mostly a thing of the past.

But here’s the Catch-22 situation: authors are “artists”. And artists are notorious for being “starving artists”, meaning they’re not always the best money earners. So how can an author get started in the industry without a little help?

One thing many artists have considered is crowd funding, which has evolved with the dawn of Web 2.0. Crowd funding is where you reach out to the public (over the Internet) for funds for your project. It’s rapidly becoming a serious part of business growth for artists (especially filmmakers, recording artists and authors) as well as social enterprises and non-profits. In other words, it has appeal mainly for what I would call “right brain ventures” as opposed to hard-core businesses.

Some authors have used it to great success. Seth Godin’s 2012 crowd funding campaign for his book The Icarus Deception is probably the most famous example. He aimed to raise $40,000 in an “all or nothing” campaign on Kickstarter. He ended up raising $287,342 instead—more than 7 times his target. This is stuff that urban legends are made of.

BUT (and here’s the big but), statistics show that that 90% of all crowd funding campaigns FAIL. I’ve watched several of these failed campaigns happen before my eyes. And if you listen to what Seth Godin has to say in his video on his Kickstarter page, you can get an idea of why this happens:

“Maybe this hybrid method, maybe this open door where drip, drip, drip over the years you build a tribe. And then you go to the tribe and do what Kickstarter is great at, which is not building the tribe but leveraging the tribe. And then, and only then can you say, ‘OK, here’s this object. Let’s go…'”

And therein lies the key: Crowd funding campaigns are NOT for the beginner.

I know, you might think there’s a great irony in the fact that the new author needs help with funding more than those who are already established. But think about it from the funder’s perspective: If you are a complete unknown, how is your book going to sell? Would you give away your money to a book project for an author that has not yet developed a loyal audience?

While you don’t have to be famous like Seth Godin to run a crowd funding campaign, you DO need to be well connected. I have two current clients who will be running crowd funding campaigns to finance their book projects in 2013. One (whom I won’t announce yet) is a first-time author, but I’m sure she will succeed. Why? Because she’s been building a massive tribe for the past 5 years and the topic of her book is spot-on target for their interests. She’s also a well-known expert on the topic of the book, and a notably successful businesswoman.

The other client is a woman named Erica Tucci. Let me tell you about Erica and why I think her project will also be a success.

In 2011, Erica suffered a profound stroke that stopped her life dead in its tracks. Now as she recovers, she’s writing a book called Radiant Survivor: How to Shine and Thrive through Recovery from Stroke, Cancer, Abuse, Addiction and Other Life-Altering Experiences. She’s nearly done with the first draft. In the book she shares not only her own journey, but stories from several others who have faced their own tragedies and have survived and thrived in spite of the odds. She also offers practical healing advice on how those devastated by illness can find an awakening to an entirely new life. And finally, Erica is also committing a percentage of the proceeds to a stroke rehabilitation centre that she attributes to saving her life. Altogether, the project promises to help and inspire many people.

Still in recovery and not fully able to work or earn money, Erica is planning a crowd funding campaign to subsidize the launch of the book. In truth, it’s really her only option to cover all the expenses entailed in getting her book out: hiring an editor/proofreader, book cover design, interior layout, eBook formatting, printing and, of course, the costs of marketing and launching the book (which our Spirit Authors team is doing for her).

Erica got a lot of ideas about what to do (and what not to do) in “Tip 138” of my book Tweep-e-licious, where I talk about using Twitter to propel a crowd funding campaign. In the book, I discuss in detail the top 5 mistakes most people make (not just authors) when they try to run a crowd funding campaign. Here’s a video of Erica talking about what she picked up from that tip:

If you’re reading this in your Inbox and cannot see the video, you can view it on YouTube HERE.

Erica hasn’t officially launched her crowd funding campaign yet, because she’s taking time to do her due diligence, much as Seth Godin infers above. She’s taking time to build her tribe and create her marketing materials—not for the book, but for the crowd funding campaign itself. I think this preparation, along with the compelling nature of the project itself, will lead to her success in this campaign. If you want to watch Erica’s progress, or help her with this campaign, I whole-heartedly encourage you to connect with her via Twitter at @EricaTucciMuse or on her Facebook page Radiant Survivor

Twitter can be a great component in building your tribe and, when the time is right, running a crowd funding campaign. Tweep-e-licious: 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Marketing Their Business Ethically can help you with both. I hope you’ll check it out at http://tweep-e-licious.com. When you buy the book, you’ll get a link to a free Twitter resource pack with a 90-minute Twitter audio class and links to over 100 useful Twitter resources to help get you on your way.

I also invite you to subscribe to my Tweep-e-licious playlist on YouTube, to see what other Twitter marketing tips readers have shared (drop me a line if you’d like to make a video too!): http://bit.ly/TweepVideos

~ Lynn Serafinn
13 February 2013

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If you’re writing a book and want to grow YOUR tribe, give me a shout via the CONTACT FORM on this site and we can set up a FREE 30 minutes Skype chat to see if I can help in any way.

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LYNN SERAFINN, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach, teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and author of the number one bestseller The 7 Graces of Marketing — How to Heal Humanity and the Planet by Changing the Way We Sell and Tweep-e-licious! 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Market their Business Ethically. She was recently named one of the Top 100 marketing authors on Twitter by Social Media Magazine and was selected as a finalist for the prestigious Brit Writers Awards. Her eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. In her work as a promotional manager she has produced a long list of bestselling mind-body-spirit authors. Lynn is also the Founder of the 7 Graces Project, a budding social enterprise whose aim is to help grow a new generation of passionate entrepreneurs who want to serve both people and planet through innovative, ethical, independent enterprise.

Twitter:
@LynnSerafinn @SpiritAuthors @7GracesMarketng @GardenOfTheSoul

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What holds so many creative individuals back from going public? Author, coach and book marketer Lynn Serafinn reveals the top 5 fears every writer faces when leaping out of the safety zone of anonymity and into the public eye.


I’ve worked professionally with creatives for more than four decades, as a teacher, mentor, coach and consultant. I started as a music teacher when I was only 15 years old and by the time I left the teaching profession in 2007, I was overseeing over 700 music and performing arts students, as well as working as an examiner at several colleges throughout the UK for one of the largest educational awarding bodies in Britain. When I made the switch to working almost exclusively with authors, I found there were many similarities between them and performing artists, especially in the way they worked. No matter what craft they practice, creative individuals love to be unfettered; they thrive upon the adrenaline rush of new ideas. However, this can often be an addiction that can stop them short of bringing a project to completion. Many of them say this is because they “get bored” if a project takes too long. But I think this so-called “boredom” is often (if not usually) based upon various fears they commonly face.

Taking on the prospect of publishing one’s work can sometimes feel like we’re leaping out of the safety of the “small pond” into the unknown, and can be just as fearful as it may seem exciting. Because so many creative individuals suffer a continual (and often unconscious) battle against their fears, I thought it would be a good idea to name the top 5 most common fears I’ve encountered when working with them:

  1. Fear of Commitment
  2. Fear of Quitting
  3. Fear of Incompetence
  4. Fear of Judgement
  5. Fear of Marketing

Fear of Commitment
Many creatives have a million brilliant ideas, but refuse to commit to a specific project and bring it to completion. Creatives are “global thinkers”, and thus many worry that if they commit to one project, it will dampen their spontaneity and stop the flow of creative ideas. This is typical of the creative mind, and unless you know this about yourself, you are likely to give into commit-o-phobia. Succumbing to it can be a recipe for lifelong feelings of failure. I have seen it happen again and again. If you have a fear of commitment, please understand that you will NEVER free up space in your creative mind for MORE projects until you finish a project and get it out of the way. Have a little more faith in your ability to create. You will ALWAYS have more ideas. Trust your creative spirit.

“You will NEVER free up space in your creative mind for MORE projects until you finish a project and get it out of the way.”

Fear of Quitting
Many creatives already have a long track record of not seeing their projects to completion. Being aware of this can cause them to lose faith in themselves, and their greatest fear is that they will spend a lot of time and money on a project only to let themselves down by quitting before it’s done. They may also fear their quitting will cause them to lose the trust of other people permanently. It may seem blatantly obvious, but the only way to overcome this fear is to finish even one small project. Even a small victory will change your beliefs about yourself. Sometimes, hiring a writing coach can be helpful provided you commit yourself to being held accountable by your coach. Get it into your head that your ability to complete your project is entirely in YOUR hands (and mind).

Fear of Incompetence
Let’s say you’ve moved through the other two fears, and now it’s obvious your book WILL be published (including self-published). You’re not necessarily out of the woods because other fears inevitably start to kick in. If the book is a non-fiction book and you have taken a stance on a particular subject, you might be afraid you won’t be able to answer difficult questions in media interviews. You might even be unsure as to whether or not you can stand by your topic fully. If these kinds of fears are controlling you, then it’s time for two things. First, sit down and restate all the reasons why this book “wants” to be written. Why does the world need this book now? What is its purpose beyond your own desire to write it? Get a really strong connection to the “life purpose” of the book. Write this purpose down and pin it over your desk. After you’ve done that, it’s time to sit down and read your book through the eyes of someone who doesn’t know you, and see how well you are communicating your ideas. You might want someone else (not your mother or best friend!) to give you objective feedback. If something is “missing” in what you are saying, ask yourself questions like, “Where am I holding back? What am I leaving out? What am I avoiding in the book?” Then, ask yourself if you could benefit from some 3rd party research resources to back up your ideas. Rework your text until you know it is expressing exactly what you mean. The best way to build competence is to get it clear in YOUR mind first, and then learn how to express it clearly to others. And remember, “competence” doesn’t have to mean “complex”. Think of SIMPLE ways to express your (complex) ideas, and people will more readily understand you.

Fear of Judgement
Fear of Judgement—whether from family and friends or from the general public—is probably the biggest fear every author faces as they get ready to publish. I don’t want to minimise this fear (as it can be crippling if it’s “got” you in its grips) but I do want to make it simple: 1) all fear is in the mind and; 2) fear is a mind-killer (as Frank Herbert said in Dune). Please note: when you write a book, people WILL judge you. It’s going to happen no matter what you do. Some will judge your favourably and others not so favourably. If you don’t allow yourself to enter the arena and be “judged”, not only will your book never get published, but YOU will never grow as an author, or as a human being. And here’s the secret I’ve learned: with every book you write you will encounter new fears of judgement that you may not have known you had. Every time you jump into those fears and allow yourself to be judged, you grow and become more resilient. The only way to deal with fear of judgement is to “feel the fear and do it anyway” (as the late Susan Jeffers said). Move through your fear of judgment by stepping into your own “graciousness” and by learning to love what makes you radically different from everyone else. Once you are willing to be this radically different person, rather than someone who “fits” a particular mould, being judged becomes a fun, amusing and even necessary part of life rather than a terrifying ordeal.

“Fear of Judgement—whether from family and friends or from the general public—is probably the biggest fear every author faces as they get ready to publish.

Fear of Marketing
Now let’s say you’ve moved through all the other fears and your book is going to come out sometime in the near future. You have grappled with the other fears to some degree or another, and have finally accepted that if you want to get their book “out there” you will need to work on a marketing plan for it. But, in my experience, the mere thought of marketing can be the source of some major fears amongst creative individuals. The two most common fears they have about marketing are: 1) That they don’t have a clue where to start and 2) That they’ll look like a sleazy salesperson if they try to market their book.

Not knowing where to start is a common fear, but reading articles on blogs like Spirit Authors is a good way to get started. And please don’t wait until your book is written to start building your marketing platform. If you have no online platform established (social network, mailing list, etc), you should get started building it at least 6 months (hopefully a full year) before your book comes out.

To get you started on your platform building (or to help you grow a platform you’ve already started), I suggest you check out my most recent book Tweep-e-licious! 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Market Their Business Ethically. While the book focuses on Twitter, it goes beyond it, and is a handbook of online marketing strategies that employ a systematic integration between social media, blogging, videos, etc. When you buy the book or Kindle, you can also download a 90-minute Twitter marketing audio class and a 14-page resource pack with links to over 100 Twitter resources. You can find out more about the book and the additional resources at http://tweepelicious.com

If you are one of these creatives or holistic business owners who believes that marketing will make you look “sleazy”, please know that there IS a way to market yourself creatively, in a way that does not betray your values. If anyone is telling you differently, they are probably following what I would call the “old paradigm” of marketing that depends upon fear, scarcity and other persuasive strategies. And as we have been discussing throughout this article, fear can shut down the pathways to creativity and connection. Trust your gut and know that you can create your own paradigm for marketing. To that end, I recommend you check out my book The 7 Graces of Marketing: how to heal humanity and the planet by changing the way we sell¸ as it was originally inspired by people just like you.

Final Thought
The consummate author is not someone who has managed to get rid of fear altogether, but rather someone who has learned how to enjoy the fear, knowing that the ability to face bigger and bigger fears is the true measuring stick for our artistic craft and professional success.

I hope this article has struck a chord in some of you who may have been spinning your wheels in a writing project without being able to pinpoint the reasons. I believe that when we recognise which fears may be holding us back from success—and we know that millions of other creatives battle with exactly the same fears every time they approach a new project—we can begin to shift the stuckness and move into productivity. And the more productive we become, the more confident we become to face the inevitable fears that will pop up as we approach the next project, and the next after that.

~ Lynn Serafinn
5 February 2013

If you liked this article, please SHARE it!
AND please share your thoughts and comments below.

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If you’re getting ready to publish and are ready to feel the fear of jumping out of the fishbowl,  give me a shout via the CONTACT FORM on this site and we can set up a FREE 30 minutes Skype chat to see if I can help in any way.

AND FINALLY, DON’T FORGET to subscribe to the Spirit Authors blog for more tips on writing, publishing, book promotion and new mind-body-spirit book releases.


LYNN SERAFINN, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach, teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and author of the number one bestseller The 7 Graces of Marketing — How to Heal Humanity and the Planet by Changing the Way We Sell and Tweep-e-licious! 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Market their Business Ethically. She was recently named one of the Top 100 marketing authors on Twitter by Social Media Magazine and was selected as a finalist for the prestigious Brit Writers Awards. Her eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. In her work as a promotional manager she has produced a long list of bestselling mind-body-spirit authors. Lynn is also the Founder of the 7 Graces Project, a budding social enterprise whose aim is to help grow a new generation of passionate entrepreneurs who want to serve both people and planet through innovative, ethical, independent enterprise.

Twitter:
@LynnSerafinn @SpiritAuthors @7GracesMarketng @GardenOfTheSoul

Facebook:

LynnSerafinn SpiritAuthors 7GracesOfMarketing 7 Graces Global Garden (group)

 

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What was the real force behind Newton's creative ideas?

What was the real force behind Newton’s creative ideas?
Image from 123RF.com

What is the Creative Process?  Are some people naturally gifted or is creativity accessible to all? Author, coach and marketing consultant Lynn Serafinn of Spirit Authors shares her own understanding, from a metaphysical, scientific and practical perspective.


The great physicist and alchemist Sir Isaac Newton coined what he called the “First Law of Motion”, also known as the “Law of Inertia”. This law states that an object at rest tends to stay at rest, and an object in uniform motion tends to stay in uniform motion unless acted upon by an external force. This “law” is not merely some scientific “rule” but a dynamic principal we can see at play both in the macro- and micro- levels of Reality.

The external “force” of which Newton speaks doesn’t have anything to do with being “forceful” or aggressive. “Force” simply refers to something that has the ability to change or transform something else. Think of it as what they mean in Star Wars when they say “May the Force be with you.” The “Force” is your inner alchemical power that transforms a conscious thought into a tangible manifestation.

On the grand scale, by whatever name you wish to call it, “Force” sets Divine Creation in motion to create the universes, life and all manifestations of the physical and non-physical worlds. On a more personal level, our “Force” is what drives movement, change and creativity throughout our own lives. But the “Force” is not the same as “Will”, but rather something much more intricate and beautiful. In the specific case of writers, all the creative imagination in the world cannot manifest without the “Force”. The key difference between Newton’s law and our situation as creative individuals is that we are not “objects”, but conscious entities. And because we are conscious, if we imagine the energy needed to break our inertia will come from an external force, we might find ourselves waiting a very long time for the “magic bullet” to send us inspiration. We don’t need a magic bullet. We need the “Force”.

In short…

The Force = the Creative Process

 

The Creative Process doesn’t “belong” to us, but rather is the fundamental energy of the Divine Creation. If you ever said, “I’m not creative,” you were wrong. You are part of Creation; therefore the very food of life for you is creativity. It is impossible for you not to contain the seeds of creativity within you. However, if you do not activate that potential creativity through the 3-fold force of the creative process, you may not ever convert that potential energy into something tangible.

What is the Creative Process? My own personal definition of the Creative Process is “the act of bringing into manifestation that which already lies in the Collective Creation”. In other words, all that we seem to create already existed in the great “Cosmic Soup”, and we simply tapped into it and somehow — through words, pictures, music or other media — and made it understandable to others. This is how I have experienced it. I’ve heard other creative artists say much the same.

The Creative Process is comprised of three components:

1. Consciousness (mind)
2. Will (heart or soul)
3. Energy (body)

Body, mind and soul. ALL three are needed to activate the Creative Process. If you don’t tap into all three, you will find it very challenging to sustain movement in your writing project. This is equally so for any creative project, from starting a family to starting a new business.

Let’s look at each of these components in turn and consider how they contribute to your Creative Process. In this article, we’ll look at the first component: consciousness or mind.

Consciousness (Mind)
Consciousness or mind is the place where your ideas are conceived. It is the place where you receive the inspiration from the Universal Creative Principle that exists in all places and at every moment. Think of it like the receiver of a big satellite dish getting signals from outer space. The dish is connected to a data processor where the signals can be organised, and then stored into a hard-drive for future use.

Consciousness or mind is NOT the place where creativity manifests; it is the place where information is received from the Cosmic Soup. As such, we need to be an open channel, ready to receive that information.  Whenever you get an idea “in a flash” or you “see” or “hear” a story, vision, teaching or whatever, that is the moment you are connected to, and receiving from, the Creative Consciousness. People who say they “channel” their work are familiar with this connection. You don’t have to describe your work as being “channelled” if you don’t like this word, but the truth is ALL true creativity comes from finding that connection to the Greater Creative Consciousness and allowing it to fill your mind with ideas, teaching, stories, visions, words, pictures, shapes or whatever it happens to send you.

Some creative artists describe the phenomenon of “writer’s block” as the inability to come up with any ideas. In my opinion, “writer’s block” is simply what we experience when we impose our ego, insecurities, self-judgments and other obstacles, and allow them to get in the way of our natural connection to Greater Creative Consciousness, thus restricting the transmission of ideas from It. When we start to second-guess ourselves and tell ourselves that we are not capable, or that we are in some way inferior to the calling, what we are actually doing is refusing to trust the Greater Creative Consciousness. We refuse to believe it will sustain us, inform us and enlighten us. We refuse to believe it will love us enough to fill in the gaps we might see within ourselves.

Always remember this: The Greater Creative Consciousness does NOT judge you the way you judge yourself. It is 100% impartial to any of your self-perceived flaws or drawbacks. It is sending you creative messages at every moment; if you are not receiving them, it is because you are filtering them out. The reasons why you are filtering them are complex, but in my opinion this filtering is at the core of why human beings suffer. I believe, we can end our own suffering and your karmic cycle in an instant simply by opening our consciousness to receive—without judgement or filters—all that the Greater Creative Consciousness has to give us at any given moment. In fact, once you turn this channel on, you might even need to develop strategies for switching it OFF when you need to focus on the practical side of creation.

“The Greater Creative Consciousness does NOT judge you the way you judge yourself… It is sending you creative messages at every moment; if you are not receiving them, it is because you are filtering them out.”

I hope you found this look at the role of consciousness in the Creative Process to be useful. In Part 2 of this article series, we’ll be looking at the next component of the Creative Process: “Will” (heart or soul).

I’d love to hear your own thoughts, beliefs and experiences with the Creative Process.
Please do share in the comments box below.

Please also join us on the Spirit Authors Page on Facebook and connect with us on Twitter.


If you’d love to have some help to get your creative process flowing again so you can move forward in your writing or marketing journey, give me a shout via the CONTACT FORM on this site and we can set up a FREE 30 minutes Skype chat to see if I can help in any way.

AND DON’T FORGET to subscribe to the Spirit Authors blog for more tips on writing, publishing, book promotion and new mind-body-spirit book releases.


Lynn Serafinn, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach, teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and author of the number one bestseller The 7 Graces of Marketing: How to Heal Humanity and the Planet by Changing the Way We Sell. Her eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. In her work as a promotional manager she has produced a long list of bestselling mind-body-spirit authors. She is the founder of Spirit Authors, a site dedicated to providing information on publishing and book promotioin for and about mind-body-spirit authors, both established and aspiring. Lynn is also the Founder of the 7 Graces Project, a budding social enterprise whose aim is to help grow a new generation of passionate entrepreneurs who want to serve both people and planet through innovative, ethical, independent enterprise.

Twitter:
@LynnSerafinn @SpiritAuthors @7GracesMarketng @GardenOfTheSoul

Facebook:

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Categories : News, Writing & Editing
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Lets' Go! If you want to write a book but just can’t seem to get going, maybe you still need the most important ingredient. Author, coach Lynn Serafinn of Spirit Authors explains (updated version from article orginally published Dec 31, 2009).


Many people dream of writing a book, but far fewer  actually take the steps needed to get started. In my experience, this is largely due to many self-imposed reasons we make up that get in the way.

If you have had a life-long dream of writing a book, and for some reason you never seem to get started, perhaps you have been telling yourself you needed something “more” before you could even think of beginning such a project. You might have told yourself you needed…

  • More training or better language skills
  • More technical understanding of the publishing process
  • More time
  • More self discipline.
  • More connections in the publishing industry
  • More talent
  • More ideas
  • More originality
  • More confidence
  • More… well, you fill in the blanks.

After years of professional experience as a musician, writer, teacher and a coach who works with creative people, there is one thing I have learned: as soon as we humans start to impose such “I-can’t-do-this-until-I-have-more-of-something-or-other” conditions upon our dreams, we completely shut down our natural, creative process. While this is true for all people, it is especially true for the soft, sensitive and highly reflective types of people who write in the mind-body-spirit genre.

Forget for a minute about all the things you might have told yourself in the past. There is really only ONE thing you need in order to write a book, especially a mind-body-spirit book: You need to be able to identify why your book must be written. Only when you have truly identified the greater purpose for your book will you be able to get behind it 100%. A clear purpose will serve you far greater than any other “practical” element you have might imagined you needed. During the publication process of my first book, I myself encountered several roadblocks where I worried I might lose hope, but, time after time, the greater purpose of my book brought me back into balance, got me reconnected, and kept me going to bring it to the level of success I wanted.

“Only when you have truly identified the greater purpose
for your book will you be able to get behind it 100%.”

This is why the very first thing I suggest to aspiring authors who want to write a book is to “identify why your book MUST be written”.

Notice I use the word “must”. I believe, in the greater scheme of the Universe, your book “must” be written. It’s essential you also believe this, and that you know the reason why this is so. I don’t take an intellectual approach to guide you through this discovery, but a true coaching process to help you uncover all the hidden layers of resistance that may be blocking you from fully connecting to the heart and soul of your book project. Even if you are already writing a book, or have written books in the past, this lesson gives you practical tools to explore and discover the essence of the “life purpose” of your book, so you can not only get started, but stick with it even when the going gets rough.

If you’re already writing a book but seem to lose focus, or you really want to write a book but can’t seem to get going, take some time out to reflect upon the greater purpose of your book. To me, this is the most essential ingredient for bringing a book from concept to publication.

If you could use some fresh ideas to help you gain the focus you need, and you’d love to have someone making the journey with you and you progress (as well as help you start early promotion for your book), give me a shout via the CONTACT FORM on this site and we can set up a FREE 30 minutes Skype chat to see if I can help in any way.

Please DO leave your comments below. I LOVE hearing from you!

AND DON’T FORGET to subscribe to the Spirit Authors blog for more tips on writing, publishing, book promotion and new mind-body-spirit book releases.


Lynn Serafinn, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach, teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and author of the number one bestseller The 7 Graces of Marketing: How to Heal Humanity and the Planet by Changing the Way We Sell. Her eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. In her work as a promotional manager she has produced a long list of bestselling mind-body-spirit authors. She is the founder of Spirit Authors, a site dedicated to providing information on publishing and book promotioin for and about mind-body-spirit authors, both established and aspiring. Lynn is also the Founder of the 7 Graces Project, a budding social enterprise whose aim is to help grow a new generation of passionate entrepreneurs who want to serve both people and planet through innovative, ethical, independent enterprise.

Twitter:
@LynnSerafinn @SpiritAuthors @7GracesMarketng @GardenOfTheSoul

Facebook:

LynnSerafinn SpiritAuthors 7GracesOfMarketing 7 Graces Global Garden (group)

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Categories : News, Writing & Editing
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I first shared this story in my newsletter Creative Spirit in June. I thought it deserved to go on the blog as well, in case you missed it. Also, things changed since first publishing this story (you’ll find out in the ‘kicker’ below). Hope this gives you some useful tips on how to invite partners to your next marketing campaign.

Many of you, especially you authors, are probably familiar with the term ‘joint venture partner’ (JVP). My entire business depends upon the support from JVPs, as they are the people who help to promote my clients’ books. JVPs are the life-blood of any online business, and being a JVP can also bring a lot of business back to you. I’ve written articles in the past about the advantages of being a JVP, and how to support your JVPs. But earlier this month, something happened that proved to be a valuable lesson to in how to INVITE people to be your Joint Venture Partner on your online book launch…and how NOT to do it.

It all happened when an author named Diana Young wrote to me back on May 7th of this year (2012). Just so you know, I asked Diana for her permission to share this story with you, and to my surprise, she even told me to use her real name. Diana didn’t know me personally, but she saw my name in connection with another launch. She sent me an email that was nearly 2000 words long, asking me to be a partner on the upcoming launch of her book Financial Fitness for Beginners. While she was very polite, there were many things about the letter that just didn’t ‘work’ for me and I felt were quite ‘schmoozy’ (a word I use to describe most formulaic sales letters). In her opening paragraph I felt really put off when I read the words:

‘I wanted to let you know about another

excellent opportunity that you can benefit from…’

The next 1000+ words of the email described how she wrote the book, the many benefits of the book, and a long list of endorsements. The letter seemed especially long because it was text only, with no images or special formatting to make it easier for my eyes to scan and get to the key points.

Diana had obviously invested a lot of time and thought into this email. But if I’m honest, the letter felt invasive and seemed full of overblown sales clichés. My gut reaction was to send a short reply saying I was too busy at this time to participate (which I was), and put it off my radar.

But then, my inner voice of compassion started speaking to me. The voice said, ‘Maybe you’re reacting too hastily. Maybe this Diana person isn’t a schmoozer at all. Maybe she’s just doesn’t know how to invite people to be partners. Or worse, maybe she’s been taught to do it this way, like so many others have been.’

So, I took a few minutes to read her letter again. This time instead of reacting with my gut, I let my head and heart guide me to see if I could help Diana in some other way. When I did this, I could easily identify the problem with the letter: it lacked the 7 Graces, most specifically the very important Graces of Directness and Invitation. Each of these comprises its own chapter in my book The 7 Graces of Marketing, but in a nutshell:

  • Directness is the Grace of simplicity and getting to the point. It means we avoid using hyped up or flowery language that blurs what we are actually saying, with the intention of impressing or misdirecting others.
  • Invitation is the Grace of courtesy, respect, generosity and engagement. While sales letters are always invasive, they are especially so when sent via email. That’s why it’s very important to remember that when we send an email, it is no different from knocking on the door of someone’s house.

After seeing the key areas I thought could help, here’s what I wrote back to Diana:

Hi there Diana,

Regretfully, I’m not really in a position to commit to any new partnerships or promotions until after the summer is over, as I am focusing 100% on a conference I am organising in London and live stream and will need a long break after that is over!

While I can’t help you on this promotion, as I work as a marketer on collaborative campaigns all the time, can I give you 3 small tips when you “cold call” someone in an email like this?

Tip 1: Never tell people you are giving them an “excellent opportunity that you can benefit from”. It is not wise to try to “sell” your launch to your potential partners. To say it is an “opportunity” is risky, as very often people who approach others for a collaboration are doing to because want to benefit by tapping into their networks, which are often substantially bigger than the network of the person making the proposal. It is much better to approach people humbly, by asking for their help and telling them how you hope to help them back.

Tip 2: Never try to “sell” the book to your potential partners. This is the biggest mistake I see authors do over and over again. If you are writing to someone you don’t know, it’s best to start by “breaking the ice” with a very short and very direct email that says something like:

Hi [name],

I met you through [explain how you met or know about them].

I’m launching a book called [name of your book] on [date of your launch]. I am writing to you today to see if you would be interested and available to be a promotional partner for the launch. This would entail offering a bonus gift and helping me out with promotions through your newsletter, blog and/or social media.

We’re aiming to reach [put a number] of readers through the promotions. The ideal readers for this campaign are [here describe your target audience]. Some of the features we will have on this campaign are [here if you are doing a special event or something unusual for the launch, or you have a high-profile person backing you, mention it here].

May I send you more information about the book and the launch campaign so you can see whether this might be a good match for you?

I look forward to hearing from you,

[signature]

Tip 3: The goal in contacting people should NOT just be to get them to help you with your promotions on this particular book campaign, but to establish an ongoing professional relationship with them. For example, I cannot be your partner this time around, but what about on something in the future? If you come across like you are trying to “sell” me something and that you’ve got a “great opportunity” for me, it is very likely I will switch off and not pay attention to future correspondence. Fortunately, I am dedicated to helping marketers understand that these strategies don’t work, so I thought I’d write to you with tips that (I hope) might get a good response from your future partners.

I hope you don’t take this as a criticism, but rather as some guidance from someone whose entire business is based upon building collaborative relationships. AND I wish you great success in your book launch. Keep me posted on the next project.

Warm wishes,
Lynn Serafinn

I hit “send”, not knowing how Diana would react.

But the very next day on May 8th, I received this email from her:

Hello Lynn.

I can’t thank you enough for your in-depth and thoughtful email regarding my June 12th launch. I will take all your advice to heart and re-write my “sales” email. I did just graduate from a $2,500 course with XXX on how to write these letters [Diana cited another well-known marketing coach, but I don’t think it’s fair to mention their name here], however, since my response has been less than stellar, I will incorporate all your ideas (and send you a copy if you don’t mind).

I’m glad my email prompted a new blog posting for you. If there is anything else I can do to benefit you, please let me know. Thanks again for taking so much time and giving me such expert insight – I can’t tell you how much I truly appreciate that!

Wishing you great success at your London Conference…I looked through your website and it looks excellent.

Cheers and a big “thanks again”!

Diana Young

Well, that was nice.

But THEN, on May 10th, Diana sent me this email…

Hi Lynn,

I know you are busy… I just wanted to touch base with you again to say THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU. I got 6 yes’s yesterday using your advice (and the revamped email I did). I also got two more “maybe’s”.

Thanks for being so generous with your expertise. Can’t tell you how much I appreciate it!

Have a wonder-filled day!

Diana

And THEN…
on May 11th, Diana wrote yet again!

Hi Lynn,

I can’t thank you enough. Now, I’m tempted to go back to the original 200 that I got ZERO response from and say something like…oops…I blew it and then try again with the new email. I am very happy for you to share this story with your readers so that they can avoid the bad results I got. I was following a “formula” that obviously didn’t work for me. I would like you to add this paragraph from me though if that is okay?

“As Lynn has described I am a newbie at launching my book which is on schedule for June 12th. My original JV email was a bust – however, Lynn took the time to respond to me personally and provide me with valuable advice. After I revamped my email, the yes’s started flying in to my inbox. After I thanked Lynn again she asked if she could tell this story without using my name, or details just so she could help her readers avoid the same mistake. Of course, I am so thrilled with the results that Lynn can do as she wishes, however, I asked her to use my name, for the sake of full disclosure, but most importantly, I wanted to publically thank her for being so generous and giving in her advice. We have never met and my JV email to her was my first contact. I was overwhelmed with her help – she is certainly “paying it forward” and I can’t thank her enough. This is all I asked of her to tell my “learning” story, so I could share with her readers how grateful I am that our paths crossed”.

Of course Lynn you don’t “have” to include this thank you…but I think it is important that your readers know how giving you are.

Thanks again.

Di

P. S. I got interrupted while writing this email and I went out for a walk. When I came back in I got two more yes’s!!!!!!!!

(yes, she really did put 8 exclamation points)

And here’s the kicker…

Wait for it…

When Diana’s book came out on June 12th it went ballistic! Not only did she have an amazing array of partners including Peggy McColl and Bob Proctor, but her book SHOT to #1 in more than once category on Amazon and was also extremely high in Amazon’s overall rankings.

What is so inspiring to me about this is that
this is a prime example of the 7 Graces of Marketing IN ACTION.

The 7 Graces are not merely lofty principles, but good, honest guidelines that can start to transform the world of business and marketing and bring us back together as people. I might not be able to be a partner on Diana’s book launch, but I’ve made a new friend.

So, after being so gracious for letting me tell this story, I really do think it’s only fair you take a moment to check out Diana’s book Financial Fitness for Beginners on Amazon:

(Gosh, I guess I ended up helping with promotions after all!)

And if you haven’t yet read The 7 Graces of Marketing, you might want to pick that one up in paperback or Kindle, too. 7 free MP3s await you when you do at: http://the7gracesofmarketing.com/book-launch/pages/launch.php

AND…

Spirit Authors are currently seeking partners for the big book launch of
Financial Alchemy
by the exuberant and totally delightful Morgana Rae!

This book launch is happening on Wednesday January 23rd, 2013. If your audience is aimed at financial wellness, prosperity, Law of Attraction, business mindeset, success, etc., you might be interested in joining us. Morgana has a massive network and she’s soooo hilarious when she’s on the air (I can’t wait until our telesummit). I know it’s going to be an launch that is bubbling with fun and energy.

Partners can offer a bonus gift, be on our Virtual Blog Tour or book Morgana on your radio show or podcast (or a combination of the above). I don’t have the official sign up form for this yet, but if you would like to be on our partner list, drop me a line via the CONTACT FORM on this site and our team will contact you with details very soon.

If you don’t know what you could gain from being on someone else’s book launch, please read my Spirit Authors article 7 Reasons to Partner on Someone Else’s Book Launch NOW.

AND DON’T FORGET to subscribe to the Spirit Authors blog for more tips on writing, publishing, book promotion and new mind-body-spirit book releases.


Lynn Serafinn, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach, teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and author of the number one bestseller The 7 Graces of Marketing: How to Heal Humanity and the Planet by Changing the Way We Sell. Her eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. In her work as a promotional manager she has produced a long list of bestselling mind-body-spirit authors. She is the founder of Spirit Authors, a site dedicated to providing information on publishing and book promotioin for and about mind-body-spirit authors, both established and aspiring. Lynn is also the Founder of the 7 Graces Project, a budding social enterprise whose aim is to help grow a new generation of passionate entrepreneurs who want to serve both people and planet through innovative, ethical, independent enterprise.

Watch for Lynn’s new book Tweep-e-Licious: 160 Twitter Tips and Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs and Changemakers Who Want to Market Their Business Ethically (coming October 2012).

Back when I started Spirit Authors 2 years ago, it was my intentions to create a site that could help mind-body-spirit/self-help authors– both aspiring and extablished–to learn how to establish themselves online, so they could learn how to spread the word about all the great work they do. The 7 Graces of Marketing BOOK COVERIt was my experience that a great many artist, holistic and spiritually-minded people didn’t like to do marketing; and as a result, they stuggled to survive financially. I found it sad to see so many people give up on their dreams, so I wanted to make sure Spirit Authors provided them with lots of (free) resources that could help them.

At the exact same time I was launching Spirit Authors, I began writing a new book of my own, which originally was intended to be a book for all those sensitive souls who didn’t like marketing, but needed to do it. I thought if I could help create a new paradigm for these kinds of people, it might be useful.

But after I started diving deeply into the subject of marketing, I discovered so many revealing (and sometimes shocking) things about its history, intention and practice, and so many serious issues arising from consumer culture, that I knew this book was going to be something altogether different from what I had originally intended.

And now, after 2 years of daily writing, researching and pulling it all together, TODAY–Tuesday December 13th, 2011–is the big Amazon launch for my new book The 7 Graces of Marketing: how to heal humanity and the planet by changing the way we sell. (Click the title to find buy the book and receive some great gifts).

The 7 Graces of Marketing is a bold, holistic and often spiritual examination not merely of the world of advertising, but also of our entire world view. It reveals how our relationships with Self, others, our businesses, our economy and the Earth impact our health, our economy and the delicate ecological balance of our natural world. As much for the conscious consumer as the business owner, this book shows why traditional ways of selling are ultimately doomed to fail, and how both business owners and consumers can begin to heal the world by embracing a new paradigm I call ‘The 7 Graces of Marketing.’

When you buy the book TODAY you can receive the complete set of 7 MP3s (over 10 hours of audio) from last week’s 7 Graces of Marketing Telesummit, with 24 internationally renowned speakers, such as Joe Vitale, Eric Pearl and 22 others, speaking about the ‘7 Deadly Sins’ of marketing and the ‘7 Graces’ of marketing. You’ll also receive dozens of other gifts offered by my friends and colleagues, to express our appreciation for your support.

To buy the book, and claim your MP3s from the 7 Graces Telesummit, and receive a fabulous selection of gifts from my friends and colleauges, here’s all you need to do:

  1. Sometime TODAY, go to http://the7gracesofmarketing.com/book-launch/pages/launch.html. This is the “launch” page.
  2. On that page, you will see links to buy the book on Amazon US, Canada or UK (yes, you may purchase the book from another Amazon site; we just didn’t have room for all the links)
  3. Click a link to buy the book on the Amazon of your choice. You may buy the book in either paperback or Kindle version
  4. After you have purchased the book, Amazon will give you a purchase code. The purchase code is a 17-digit number, and it looks like this: 123-1234567-1234567. Copy this number to your computer clipboard.
  5. Return to the “launch page” and enter your name, email AND your Amazon purchase code in the form.
  6. When you hit the button that says “Yes, Please!” you will be taken immediately to the “bonus” page. This page has all the links to take you to the bonus gifts.
  7. Just click the links of the gifts you would like to download.

That’s all there is to it!

I am extremely passionate about this subject (as you will have heard if you listened to last week’s telesummit), and I am dedicated to getting the dialogue started in the business sector so we can change the way we do marketing, and make a brighter, healthier, happier world for our children and children’s children. I do hope you’ll check out The 7 Graces of Marketing.

Click HERE to get the book, the MP3s and free gifts now

Please PAY NO ATTENTION if Amazon says, “Only 3 left in stock” or “Ships in 1-4 weeks”. We have test ordered the book, and it takes about a 7-10 days to ship, and it is IMPOSSIBLE to “be out of stock” because this is a “print on demand” book, which means the book will be printed and shipped to you whenever you place an order.

If you have any questions or experience any problems, please do not hesitate to contact me via the contact from on this site.

AND, I’d love to hear what you have to say about the book after you have read it, so be sure to subscribe to this blog so you can find your way back here. I’m also starting a 7 Graces of Marketing Community for everyone who has bought the book, and who would like to meet others of like mind who want to bring ethics and values back into our business and marketing. So please do stay in touch.

With gratitude and appreciation,

Lynn Serafinn

Author, coach, author promotions

http://spiritauthors.com

http://spiritauthorscoach.com

http://the7gracesofmarketing.com

Comments (0)

Image from 123RF

Today I received this from one of our Spirit Authors members. It had me in stitches, and I simply had to share it with you. Apparently, it’s all over the web, so I haven’t managed to find who the original author is (the comments below are theirs, not mine), but whoever you are, thank you for the fun today.

AND… if any of you reading this happen to be professional proofreaders, you are most welcome to put your business info in the comments below. I am sure my readers, members and clients will appreciate your help when they get ready to publish their books… I know I will!

Thank you Spirit Authors member Joan Gillman for sharing this.

These are from actual headlines that appeared in the press…

—————————————————————————-

Man Kills Self Before Shooting Wife and Daughter
This one appeared in the SGV Tribune. After a reader called in, it took the editor two or three readings before the he realized that what he was reading was impossible. They put in a correction the next day.

—————————————————————————-

Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
No crap, really? Ya think?
—————————————————————————-

Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
Now that’s taking things a bit far!
———————————————————–

Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
What a guy!
—————————————————————

Miners Refuse to Work after Death
No-good-for-nothing’ lazy so-and-so’s!
——————————————————

Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
See if that works any better than a fair trial!
———————————————————-

War Dims Hope for Peace
I can see where it might have that effect!
—————————————————————-

If Strike Isn’t Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
Ya think?!
———————————————————————–

Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
Who would have thought!
—————————————————————-

Enfield ( London ) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide
They may be on to something!

————————————————————————

Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
You mean there’s something stronger than duct tape?
———————————————————-

Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge
He probably IS the battery charge!
———————————————-

New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group
Weren’t they fat enough?!
———————————————–

Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
That’s what he gets for eating those beans!
————————————————-

Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
Do they taste like chicken?
****************************************

Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half
Chainsaw Massacre all over again!
That’ll teach’m to be dropouts!

**************************************************

Hospitals are Sued by 7 Foot Doctors
Boy, are they tall!
*******************************************
And the winner is….

Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead
Did I read that right?
**************************************************


I just couldn’t help but send this along. Too funny.
Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
No crap, really? Ya think?
—————————————————————————-

Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
Now that’s taking things a bit far!

———————————————————–
Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
What a guy!
—————————————————————

Miners Refuse to Work after Death
No-good-for-nothing’ lazy so-and-so’s!
——————————————————

Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
See if that works any better than a fair trial!
———————————————————-

War Dims Hope for Peace
I can see where it might have that effect!
—————————————————————-

If Strike Isn’t Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
Ya think?!
———————————————————————–

Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
Who would have thought!
—————————————————————-

Enfield ( London ) Couple Slain;PoliceSuspect Homicide
They may be on to something!
————————————————————————

Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
You mean there’s something stronger than duct tape?
———————————————————-

Man Struck By Lightning:Faces Battery Charge
He probably IS the battery charge!
———————————————-

New Study of Obesity Looks for LargerTest Group
Weren’t they fat enough?!
———————————————–

Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
That’s what he gets for eating those beans!
—————- ———————————

Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
Do they taste like chicken?
****************************************

Local High SchoolDropoutsCut in Half
Chainsaw Massacre all over again!

That’ll teach’m to be dropouts!
************************************************** *

Hospitals are Sued by 7 Foot Doctors
Boy, are they tall!
*******************************************

And the winner is….
Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead

Did I read that right?
************************************************** *


About Lynn Serafinn, Creator of Spirit Authors

Lynn Serafinn

Lynn Serafinn is a transformation coach, book promotion coach, radio host and bestselling author of the book The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self.

Her upcoming book, The 7 Graces of Marketing, is coming in June 2011.

She also works as a campaign manager for mind-body-spirit authors and has produced several top-10 book campaigns, including FOUR #1-sellers, in 2010 alone. She created Spirit Authors to offer training, coaching, business-building and inspiration for mind-body-spirit authors, whether established or aspiring. Contact Lynn about YOUR book project at at http://spiritauthors.com/contact.

Be sure to subscribe to this blog for regular book writing and promotion tips (just fill in form at right of your screen).

Sign up for Lynn’s bi-monthly newsletter Creative Spirit (fill in form below) packed with inspirational articles, self-promotion tips, broadcast guide to her radio show, and news about upcoming spiritual author book releases.

Throughout the year, Lynn also hosts large-scale telesummits with world-class speakers on a range of mind-body-spirit topics. Your subscription to Creative Spirit will ensure you’ll be the first to know how to attend these free events.


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Categories : News, Writing & Editing
Comments (10)

Book promotion expert Lynn Serafinn from Spirit Authors shares her tips on what every first-time author should know about royalties, retail price and printing costs before they self-publish a book.


Recently, in one of my LinkedIn Groups, a new author asked, “Does anybody have experience with self-publishing companies and the way they pay royalty fees?” I thought the answer to this question was something many new authors would like to know, so I thought I would share my response with my Spirit Authors readers. Below is a copy of the post I made on December 15th, 2010.

Hi there LinkedIn,

Here’s a breakdown of how most self-publishing royalties work:

By self-publishing companies, I assume you mean “publishers” such as iUniverse (probably the most known, but really only one of many) who set up your book to be distributed via print-on-demand (POD). The company I used for my first book is a small company called Authors Online – http://authorsonline.co.uk. I chose them because they are a small friends-and-family run company who take good care of their clients.

The POD press most often used is a company called Lightning Source. There are 2 major Lightning Source plants (when I last checked), one in Kentucky and one over here in England in Milton Keynes.

These kinds of companies don’t generally get your books into shops, but rather focus on Amazon, B&N, etc. The self-publishing publisher sets up your ISBN and arranges for your book to appear on all these online retailers. But be SURE you read the fine print. I had a scenario not very long ago when one of my clients went with Create Space (Amazon’s own print-on-demand publishing company) and they did NOT place the book on all 6 (now 7) Amazon sites throughout the world, cutting down SIGNIFICANTLY on my client’s sales. So be sure you ask if the company GUARANTEES you will be on all Amazon sites… but (if your book is in English), most especially Amazon US, Canada and UK.

Ok, so here are 7 facts about self-publishing and typical royalty structures:

1) Amazon buys your book for 45% of the retail price. That means, if you book retails for $10, Amazon pays your publisher $4.50 (not you… unless you actually START a publishing company and are selling the books directly to Amazon).

2) From that $4.50, your publisher subtracts their printing costs. Not sure of what they are in the US, but here in the UK, the costs are typically 1p (let’s say 2 cents) per page, plus 70p (let’s say $1.25) for the cover. So a 100 page book would cost $3.25 to print (don’t quote me on the exact figures; these were current as of 18 months ago in the UK. DO ask your publisher these questions).

3) If the book costs $3.25 to print, and you have received $4.50 from Amazon, it means your NET is $1.25.

4) Most self-publishers do a 50/50 split of the net, or in that ball park. That would mean your royalty per book sold is a whopping $0.67. Most payouts are quarterly, starting 4-6 months after publication.

5) Of course, you could also set the retail price higher to ensure you get a higher royalty. The best thing to do is to go online and check out similar books in the same niche, and check out their page count, and see how much their retail price is. Bear in mind, that Amazon will normally sell you book for LESS than retail, but you will still receive 45% of retail unless you tell them you are willing to take less in order to drive up sales (not recommended for first-time author, frankly!).

6) If you go FULLY self-published (i.e., set up your own ISBN, deal with Lightning Press, etc), then your royalty is 45% of retail. Subtract your printing costs from that, and that is your net profit per book. That is what I am doing with my next book.

7) Last option: getting the books printed in bulk (most do this overseas) can drive the cost per book WAY down, but you have a massive front-loaded investment at high risk because the minimum run is usually 1000 books or more to get a good price. PLUS you have the set-up costs, as it is not the same as digital POD. Any time I have seen new authors do this, they end up with a house full of hundreds of unsold books, and feel very discouraged. I don’t recommend it unless you have a solid promotional platform and good distribution set up. ALSO, bear in mind that if you go this route, book distributors tend to take the books on consignment and they don’t pay anything if the books don’t sell. And who do you think is responsible for the marketing? You guessed it – you. Furthermore, they might take 300 books from you when they first come out, but they can RETURN every book that hasn’t sold (or worse–been returned to the retail shops!) after a certain period of time.

BTW, I help self-published mind-body-spirit authors via my site Spirit Authors at http://spiritauthors.com. I’m re-opening Module 3 on self-publishing in February 2011. The course for writing your book (Module 1) and building your online platform (Module 2) are already available. You can take a 7-day test drive of those courses for only $1.

I also do full-service Amazon book launches at http://spiritauthorscoach.com. Drop me a line if you would like to chat.

Warm wishes,

Lynn Serafinn


About Lynn Serafinn, Creator of Spirit Authors

Lynn Serafinn

Lynn Serafinn is a transformation coach, book promotion coach, radio host and bestselling author of the book The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self.

Her upcoming book, The 7 Graces of Marketing, is coming in June 2011.

She also works as a campaign manager for mind-body-spirit authors and has produced several top-10 book campaigns, including FOUR #1-sellers, in 2010 alone. She created Spirit Authors to offer training, coaching, business-building and inspiration for mind-body-spirit authors, whether established or aspiring. Contact Lynn about YOUR book project at at http://spiritauthors.com/contact.

Be sure to subscribe to this blog for regular book writing and promotion tips (just fill in form at right of your screen).

Sign up for Lynn’s bi-monthly newsletter Creative Spirit (fill in form below) packed with inspirational articles, self-promotion tips, broadcast guide to her radio show, and news about upcoming spiritual author book releases.

Throughout the year, Lynn also hosts large-scale telesummits with world-class speakers on a range of mind-body-spirit topics. Your subscription to Creative Spirit will ensure you’ll be the first to know how to attend these free events.


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Finding Your Readers

Lynn Serafinn, promotion manager for #1 seller mind-body-spirit authors, on how to understand your relationship with marketing, identify your target audience and find your potential readers.

Many authors come to me for marketing advice just as their books are getting ready for publication. You will, however, note that I have placed this module BEFORE the module on preparing for publication. That is because, quite frankly, if you do not start your marketing long before your book is even finished being written, then you are apt to have a book come out and be extremely disappointed in the sales results. You might ask, “How can I market a book that isn’t even written yet.” The answer is simple. You aren’t. You are marketing YOU. That is what this lesson is about. It will really get you thinking about your personal relationship with all those wonderful people in the world who will be reading your book in the not-so-distant future. It will give you some strategies to identify them, know them, find them and reach them in an authentic, spirit-based way. If you find yourself resisting any of the material in the lesson (and I have had many a client and colleague for whom some of these ideas pushed them to their “edge”), slow down and take as much time as you need to understand why you are resisting. To understand this resistance fully, we will be exploring what I consider to be the key factors that influence how we approach the subject of self-promotion and online marketing

  1. Our relationship with money/selling
  2. Our relationship with technology
  3. Our relationship with other people
  4. Our relationship with ourselves (and I mean our TRUE Selves)

And after that self-examination, you’ll be ready to embark on a journey exploring how these factors will impact the success of your book, as you take the first step towards building your promotional platform — identifying, finding and reaching your targeted readers.

The above introduction is from Lesson 1 of Spirit Authors Module 2:
Pre-Publication Marketing Musts (aka “100 Days to Build Your Online Promotional Platform).

In that lesson, you will:

  1. Explore your relationship with money, marketing and selling
  2. Learn how to identify your target audience and why this is important
  3. Learn the two key goals of early marketing
  4. Outline the infrastructure you need for finding your audience online
  5. Create a plan for reaching your audience

For more information about the complete 10-week course, which includes audio downloads, full transcripts, weekly workbooks, access to member forum and monthly members-only calls, see http://spiritauthors.com/module-2/mod-2-overview. You can take the course for a 7-day “test drive” for only $1, and get some great free bonus gifts just for checking us out.


About Lynn Serafinn, Creator of Spirit Authors

Lynn Serafinn

Lynn Serafinn is a transformation coach, book promotion coach, radio host and bestselling author of the book The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self. She also works as a campaign manager for mind-body-spirit authors and has produced several top-10 book campaigns, including FOUR #1-sellers, in 2010 alone. She created Spirit Authors to offer training, coaching, business-building and inspiration for mind-body-spirit authors, whether established or aspiring. Contact Lynn about YOUR book project at at http://spiritauthors.com/contact.

Be sure to subscribe to this blog for regular book writing and promotion tips (just fill in form at right of your screen).

Sign up for Lynn’s bi-monthly newsletter Creative Spirit (fill in form below) packed with inspirational articles, self-promotion tips, broadcast guide to her radio show, and news about upcoming spiritual author book releases.

Throughout the year, Lynn also hosts large-scale telesummits with world-class speakers on a range of mind-body-spirit topics. Your subscription to Creative Spirit will ensure you’ll be the first to know how to attend these free events.


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Categories : News, Platform Building
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Book promotion coach and campaign manager Lynn Serafinn reflects on the Law of Attraction when her client, Luis Diaz’s book  Memory in the Cells hits Number 1.

I learn so much every day of my life.

Let me set the context. Just a little over 24 hours ago, my fantastic client (and I really mean that), Luis Angel Diaz, launched his book Memory in the Cells: how to change behavioral patterns and release the pain body. The book, which was originally written in Spanish and has only now been translated into English, is about healing your emotions at the deepest level of your being. I first met Luis on the Ning networks, and have watched his work for the past few years. When he first approached me to be the campaign manager for his book, I knew that he already had cultivated a widespread, loyal audience in the Spanish-speaking world for decades, and that the release of this new translation of Memory in the Cells would be his first real introduction into the English-speaking audience at a global level.

Over the course of the past 5 months or so, I have been working closely with Luis and his team to create a wonderful promotional campaign that would reflect his personality, his values, and the true essence of what he does. That is really the fundamental principle behind all the promotional campaigns I co-create with my authors. My campaigns aren’t really about the book so much as they are about the author (and, yes, we create them together—that is absolutely vital). In this way, the campaign becomes something unique that cannot be duplicated by anyone else. It is my experience that when the heart and soul of the author is fully present within the core of the campaign, the campaign has a special sparkle to it that “magically” makes it work—even if it is a first-time, self-published author.

I call this approach “the path of least resistance to the Self” and it’s my fundamental principle to how I approach life. My core belief is that when we are truly and visibly authentic in the world, then all that is meant to flow into our lives comes to us with ease and grace.

“Ease” doesn’t mean we don’t WORK for it—heck no! Frankly, during these Amazon book launches, I have to block out 3 solid days because there is simply so much to do and so much promo copy to write that I’m pretty much “on call” 24 hours of the day during that time (I didn’t go to bed last night until 5am, and then I got up again at 9am). When I say “ease” I mean that the ideas are flowing, the energy is flowing and you just plain feel fantastic (even if you ARE in serious need of sleeping for about 12 hours straight after the launch is all over!).

Now, a lot of people might say that this sounds like the “Law of Attraction.” But the funny thing is, I never have used that term to describe my approach to life. In fact, I’ve pretty much shunned the term because I found the film version of The Secret to present things in a way I couldn’t really relate to. It all looked too simple—desire, believe, receive. I remember the scene in the film where the girl looks in the shop window at a very expensive necklace and it’s suddenly around her neck—well, I must confess it put me off the whole film because it seemed shallow to me (I do admit I have never read the book; I am told it is much better).

Well, what is so funny (or at least I think it is) is that yesterday I came face-to-face with The Secret, and I’m feeling like it’s a real test of my own power of intention!

Within a few short hours of the release of Memory in the Cells, it SHOT up like  rocket to the #1 place in Canada in three categories including Mental and Spiritual Healing and New Age (which is a massive category, and VERY hard to get to #1). Luis’s book even surpassed authors like Louise Hay and Eckhart Tolle and so many others you would recognise. Moreover, it achieved an astonished rank of 14th of ALL books in Canada. That means, out of something like 2 million titles, his is the 14th bestseller of ALL of them in any category. It’s remarkable to say the least, and I am really feeling pretty pleased with myself today, especially as (as of this writing), the book is STILL holding strong to the #1 place.

Have a look at the illustrious company he is in:

And again #1 in New Age in Canada…

But here’s where The Secret comes in.

The book also got as high as #5 in the UK and a very impressive #3 in the US, and the rankings in the US were just a few books shy of the top 100 of all books, which is, frankly, astronomically good for ANY author, what to speak of a self-published (and first-time in English) author like Luis. But you know how it is… once you have a taste for #1 you want it all. I WANT his book to go to #1 in the US. Like a hawk I’ve been watching the rankings every hour and I see it creeping up 1 notch at a time… holding at #3 for hours and hours and hours…

So then I thought I’d take a look to see what’s sitting in front of him at #2.

Can you guess?

Yup. Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret!

Ironic, isn’t it? It is sitting there like a big giggling challenge for me, seeing if my desire for Luis’ success is powerful enough to “attract” that elusive #1 slot in the United States. It’s asking me, “How much do you really want this?” “How much to you really believe you will receive it?”

Ok, here’s my answer: Totally on both counts.

I REALLY want this for both Luis and myself:

  • For Luis, I believe reaching that pinnacle in his genre would give a real push to his speaking platform in the United States, and worldwide.
  • And for me, well, I just keep aiming to get higher and higher on each campaign I create because every time I push the boundary that much more, it brings in more energy and potential for my future clients and makes my business stronger. It’s also creating more abundance not only in my life, but also in the lives of others, because the more my business grows, the more people I hire to work on campaigns with me!

So right now, I actually have come to a completely different relationship with The Secret and the idea of “Law of Attraction”. I am viewing both as a wonderful opportunity for me to create a solution to my desire for Luis to move into the #1 slot on Amazon US today.

And so I wrote this article.

And seeing “obstacles” as not being obstacles at all, but rather as opportunities for creating new solutions to what we most desire in life is, I suspect, what “The Secret” really is, after all.

So, as I said, I learn so much every day. :-)

Let’s see what happens.

You can find Luis’ wonderful #1-selling book Memory in the Cells at http://memoryinthecells.com. And just to “attract” you to check it out, if you buy the book TODAY, you can receive over 30 free downloadable gifts from an array of international experts in many fields of personal development. I’m also offering my mini eCourse “Making Friends with the Monsters Under Your Bed.” I’ve received well over 100 requests for the download in just the past day. Certainly attracting something!


About Lynn Serafinn, Creator of Spirit Authors

Lynn Serafinn

Lynn Serafinn is a transformation coach, book promotion coach, radio host and bestselling author of the book The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self. She also works as a campaign manager for mind-body-spirit authors and has produced FOUR #1-selling book campaigns, and another #2-selling campaign, in 2010 alone. She created Spirit Authors to offer training, coaching, business-building and inspiration for mind-body-spirit authors, whether established or aspiring. Contact Lynn about YOUR book project at at http://spiritauthors.com/contact.

Be sure to subscribe to this blog for regular book writing and promotion tips (just fill in form at right of your screen).

Sign up for Lynn’s bi-monthly newsletter Creative Spirit (fill in form below) packed with inspirational articles, broadcast guide to her radio show, and news about upcoming spiritual author book releases.

Throughout the year, Lynn also hosts large-scale telesummits with world-class speakers on a range of mind-body-spirit topics. Your subscription to Creative Spirit will ensure you’ll be the first to know how to attend these free events.


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Categories : Books and Authors, News
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word writer on old fashioned typewriterLynn Serafinn shares thoughts on shifting from a being die-hard indie artist to approaching a major publisher.

Some of you who know me and my work might be surprised to find out that it was only a few months ago when I wrote my first full book proposal. It’s true I was a ghost-writer for another author and my work has been (anonymously) published in several books by a prominent New Age publisher. But I never needed to write proposals for those books. And it’s also true I’ve written loads of business and project proposals in my time– especially when I was the head of a college department– so I know what it takes to write a proposal to “land” a contract. But I had never written an actual book proposal for my own writing until this contest.

Why? Because most of my life, I’ve been something of a “die hard indie”. It comes from my background as an independent musician/label owner in the 1990s. Since the 80s, our band had tried to get our recordings heard by major labels, but learned quickly that it was virtually impossible to get a big label to listen to an unsolicited demo. So, we started our own label, and gradually built up a following by getting our titles into major independent distributors in the US and the UK. We reached a level of success when our release entitled the Imagine EP hit #1 on several club charts in 1994.

It was then we had a brief encounter with a major record label-one of the top 3 in the world. The A&R (the person who signs artists to the label) had been given our record as a “buzz” title from the owner of an underground record shop in Boston, and he called us from New York saying he wanted to come down and meet us in Arizona (where we lived at the time), as he was interested in signing us. Had they done so, it would have meant we would have had worldwide distribution, MTV videos and have been sent on tour with some of the biggest names in electronic dance in the world at that time. It was every musician’s dream come true.

Or so we thought.

When we actually met the A&R face-to-face, it became very obvious he had clear intentions of changing our image and sound into something we were not, and we simply didn’t want to become. Our band was an electronic trance group, but he proposed a long list of “improvements” for us, including bringing in big rock drummers and sexy young female vocalists. Being in our late 30s, the A&R more or less said we were “too old” for MTV and we would have to do something to make us “saleable.”

But the truth was, in spite of the A&R thinking we were “too old”, we were actually “too young” as artists to move into the arena of working with a major label. We weren’t used to working to deadlines and were accustomed to having the luxury of taking as long as we wanted to complete projects. We were still finding our “voice” and creating our sound, and bringing in professional producers who would impose their own “spin” on our embryonic sound threatened to stop our creative growth altogether. And from a marketing standpoint, although we had managed to get a #1 club hit, we were still just getting started on building our following and didn’t really know our target audience fully, or how to reach them at a global level. Because we had a very small platform, if the A&R changed our image as he intended, we were likely to lose the audience we already had, and not appeal to the audience to which he would be targeting.

We started to realise we simply weren’t ready for this leap. Believe it or not, I used to wake up at night with panic attacks at the thought of it! After all those years of thinking this was what I wanted, I realised something wasn’t right about it. As a result, our connection to the label just sort of dissolved after a couple of months, and our label continued on with our own independent enterprises.

My experience in the music industry certainly coloured my decision to go self-published when I was getting ready to release my book The Garden of the Soul in 2009. I figured big publishers are probably like big record labels in that you needed to know the right time to approach them. And now that I have been self-published for the past year, and have since created successful marketing campaigns for many other authors, both published and self-published, I do think my reasoning was correct.

In my experience, there are 7 main factors to consider in your decision to approach a publisher:

  1. Discipline. Could you make a commitment to meet writing deadlines if given them? Have you transcended the trap of ONLY being able to write when you are “inspired” or can you sit down and get into the groove when you need to?
  2. Stylistic maturity. Is your writing style “mature” (well past the embryonic stage)? Could others easily talk about your style and your message as compared to other books? Is your style powerful and developed enough that editors would not want to change it significantly?
  3. Emotionally prepared. Are you ready to “show up” as a public image? Are you ready to be seen, and critiqued? Are you ready to speak transparently on a global level? Are you ready to release your vision, unattached to whether people like it or not?
  4. Identity. Do you know who you are as a writer and as a person? Do you have a clear idea of your ‘public image’, i.e, who you are to your readers, fans and audience? Can you stand calmly within the wisdom of your own identity when dealing with a publisher?
  5. Platform. Do you have a well-established platform (i.e., a large fan base of people who know your name and your writing)? This is undoubtedly one of the major factors publishers will consider when you approach them, and something that will make it much less likely for them to try to “reshape” your image.
  6. Marketing. Do you know how to reach your audience? Do you understand principles of marketing? Can you explain how you would market your book to publisher in a way that would make them say, “Hey, this one has some great ideas”?
  7. Time Commitment. Are you ready and able to commit LOTS of time to promoting your book? Is your life free or flexible with regards to family or other work commitments? Could you travel frequently without disrupting the rest of your life?

Speaking for myself, I couldn’t give a 100% “yes” answer to any of these things when I first met the A&R back in 1994. In 2009, when I went to publish The Garden of the Soul, I’d say I had these covered about 75%. But, in my opinion, 75% wasn’t enough for me to approach a publisher at that time. Before I approached a publisher, I wanted to be able to give my full 100%. THEN the time would be right… at least for me.

When I wrote my proposal this year, I felt it to be truly a transformative process. I realised when I was writing it that I had finally reached my “100% Ready” place. I knew who I was. I felt I could write at the drop of a hat. I had a platform. I understood marketing. And most of all, I had already written my book and I completely believed in it.

Being a self-published writer was ABSOLUTELY the best thing for me when I had chosen to do so. The experience helped me develop as a person, as a writer and as a businesswoman. But now I have firmly established my platform, and really know who I am as a writer, I feel confident about making the shift to working with a publisher over the coming year… and at the same time, I also have the confidence that I am able to flourish as a proud indie author, and enjoy the ride on my own as well.

I hope you found these reflections and pointers to be of value in your own journey as an author. Please do leave a comment below to share your own thoughts and experiences.


About Lynn Serafinn, Creator of Spirit Authors

Lynn Serafinn

Lynn Serafinn is a transformation coach, book promotion coach, radio host and
bestselling author of the book The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers
that unearth the Self.
She also works as a campaign manager for mind-body-spirit authors and has produced several #1-selling book campaigns. She is the founder/creator of Spirit Authors, a virtual learning environment and community that offers training, coaching, business-building and inspiration for mind-body-spirit authors, whether established or aspiring. As part of her work with spiritual and self-help authors, she also regularly hosts large-scale online virtual events (usually free of charge) with world-class speakers on a range of mind-body-spirit topics. Subscribe to her Spirit Authors blog at http://spiritauthors.com/category/news/ so you can receive more useful tips and news about upcoming online events. While you are there, do check out the excellent and affordable online courses for authors available. If you are an author seeking 1-to-1 support or campaign managment for your upcoming book launch, you are also invited to request a free consultation by filling in a contact form at http://spiritauthors.com/contact.


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In a previous post, I told you about the Next Top Spirit Author Contest in which I am a contestant. The contest is open to unpublished or self-published authors. Authors did not need to have completed (or even started) their book to enter. I entered my book The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self, which I self-published just a little over a year ago. My hope is to take it to a much wider audience, and also to get some backing for the follow-up I am currently writing, A Practical Guide to the Garden of the Soul, which contains 80 practical lessons for cultivating the four principles in The Garden of the Soul.

Today (Monday May 3rd) marks the final day of Round 1. Since the contest opened to the public vote on March 29th, tens of thousands of people have voted for their favourites amongst more than 3000 entries. Now the field is going to be narrowed down to 250 who will advance to Round 2, based primarily upon their public vote, as well as a small challenge the authors were given to do.

Round 2 will be a bit different because the 250 Round 2 authors will then construct a book proposal for their book, which will go under the scrutiny of Hampton Roads publishers, who are offering the Grand Prize in the contest– a pretty nifty publishing contract. A portion of the points in Round 2 will once again come from the public vote.

So by Tuesday, thousands of authors and authors-to-be, including myself, will find out whether or not we will advance to the next phase of this competition. I can feel the energy getting really “buzzy” amongst the authors these past few days.

Although this is only Round 1, the contest has already been quite a journey. For many, the very act of creating an audio or video “pitch” was a major achievement. For others, it was the challenge of stepping out of their comfort zone to ask people to vote for them. Speaking for myself, if nothing else happens as a result of having entered this competition, I am grateful for two things: 1) being put under a deadline to make a new book trailer (I am SO pleased with how it turned out and it is getting a lot of hits on YouTube) and 2) meeting dozens of great new authors who are now connected with me on Facebook and Twitter. Both of these are great gifts in their own right.

In some ways, Round 1 has been a bit like being in the auditions for the X-Factor (our UK equivalent of “American Idol”). Behind the scenes, we have a “share” page on the contest site that is sort of our equivalent of “The X-Factor House”, where everyone hangs out together and learns the idiosyncrasies of the others. It’s really interesting to watch and interact with all the fascinating personalities there. And just like The X-Factor, while there is a lot of love and connection amongst the contestants, there is also the underlying knowledge that this is, after all, a competition, and people will be voted off, bit by bit. It could happen to any one of us. That’s the nature of any competition, and it is vital for all of us to know how to “be with” the competitive process, without allowing it to affect our sense of Self and inner determination.

When I was a young musician, I took every defeat in competitive scenarios as a blow against my self-worth. Because I grew to fear judgment and rejection, I became afraid to take risks for many years, and thus I limited my creative growth and personal empowerment for a very long time.

But these days I approach such challenges quite differently. I apply my whole self to the task, and allow myself to take the risk of being “rejected”. These days, I feel the most important thing in life is to have the self-knowledge that I did not hold myself back from applying myself fully, and that I did the absolute best I could at that particular moment.

While taking this approach to a competition (and life in general) does not ensure we will “win” a specific reward, I do believe when we are fully ready to step into both the risks and responsibilities involved in the act of succeeding, we will win the award, the title, the prize, the praise, the gift– or the learning– we are meant to receive. If you do not hold yourself back from the Universe, it will hold nothing back from you.

As far as I am concerned, the fact that everyone in the contest has stepped up to the plate and “pitched” their vision to the world makes them all winners, already on the pathway to their own dreams.

I wish all the spiritual authors in the contest the very best of luck.

If you have voted for me already, I’d like to thank you warmly for your support. And if you haven’t had a chance to yet, it would be great if you took a few minutes to do this before the end of the day today (Monday). Here’s how:

  1. Go to http://www.nexttopauthor.com/profile.cfm?aid=2016 and watch my video entry.
  2. Register to vote; they will send you a confirmation email before you actually can vote.
  3. Check your email for the confirmation email, and click on the confirmation link
  4. Go back to http://www.nexttopauthor.com/profile.cfm?aid=2016 and vote for me (you can also vote for other authors by doing a search).

As my thank you gift to everyone who votes for me, you can pick up 4 audiobook excerpts from the book. That’s over 1 hour of fr*ee audio. You’ll see the link to the gift right after you have voted.

If you are on the social networks, it would be great if you clicked the big Twitter or Facebook buttons on my page and shared them with your friends.

Thanks everyone!
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rising starPatrick Ryan’s New Book Number-1 in Spirituality

Recently I’ve been telling you about a new book called Awakened Wisdom: A Guide to Reclaiming Your Brilliance by my friend and colleague Patrick Ryan. Well the book had its official Amazon launch yesterday, and I simply had to write to you to tell you that within the first few hours, Awakened Wisdom became a bestseller in spirituality in both the US and Canada.

Most impressively, the book reached an amazing rank of 29th in overall books, out of many millions, and took the Number-1 slot in Canadian spirituality sales (click to see a screen shot), and the #3 slot in self-help, sharing the very same page on Amazon with top-selling spirituality titles such as Don Miguel Ruiz’s Four Agreements, Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth and Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat Pray Love. At one point, Patrick and Eckhart were dancing back and forth in the top 5 spots on the Canadian list, which is interesting because so many people have compared these two writers even before the book was released.

In the US, where the competition is even steeper, the book reached the Number-2 rank in Kindle spiritual self-help titles, and the paperback was the 18th most popular spiritual title yesterday. I have high hopes that today, that figure will soar up later today, as news of the success of the book starts to spread.

Not too shabby for a first day, don’t you think?

Patrick RyanBorn in the Canadian prairies, and surviving a near-death experience in his youth, Patrick Ryan has been a life-long spiritual seeker. He spent some time as a Buddhist monk in Burma, and has studied the world over with healers, shamans and other indigenous wise people. The culmination of his multifaceted experiences, from the home-spun to the esoteric, is to be found within his unique, and inimitably down-to-earth, system of spiritual development he calls “Awakened Wisdom”, which he has taught in workshops throughout the world for several years. The essence of those teachings, along with practical exercises for cultivating them in your life, may now be found within the pages of his newly bestselling book.

I should also mention that I consider Patrick to be one of my personal mentors. I studied with him for nearly a year on the Co-Active Leadership programme, and I also took his internationally acclaimed Awakened Wisdom course. I can say without any reservation that my life would not be where it is today had our paths not crossed. I was my great delight and pleasure to be able to give something back to him by acting as his campaign manager for this thrilling Amazon book launch.

BOOK: Awakened WisdomThe Awakened Wisdom launch continues today and tomorrow, and in celebration of its official release, Patrick Ryan and a group of his colleauges, including authors, coaches, entrepreneurs and spiritual teachers are giving away over 40 exceptional personal development and spiritual growth gifts when you purchase a copy the book during the launch.

One of these gifts is an unprecedented 2-session “Awakened Wisdom Virtual Experience”, in which author Patrick Ryan will take participants on a journey through the “8 States of an Awakened Life” via webcast in May. This is a rare opportunity to learn directly from a world-renowned spiritual teacher—and now top-selling spirituality author.

I myself am offering four never-before-offered audio meditations from my Garden of the Soul Workshop, on the Four Principles of Give, Receive, Become and Be.

To pick up your copy of the Awakened Wisdom, get all those free gifts, and sign up for this very special event, which is open ONLY to those who purchase the book this week, go to:

http://www.awakenedwisdom.com/Public/Amazon/BookLaunch/index.cfm

Make sure you do this as soon as possible, as the launch ends this Friday, April 23 (extended from April 22). And if you are reading this AFTER that date, you can still find out how to buy the book by clicking the link above.

Thanks for your support in helping this rising new star in the spiritul author universe shine so brightly! I wish ALL of you Spirit Authors reading this a future where YOU are shining even more brightly.

Categories : Books and Authors, News
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Vote for Lynn Serafinn for Next Top Spiritual AuthorPlease check out the video I made as my “pitch” for the “Next Top Spiritual Author” contest. I have entered my book The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self, which as many of you know, is currently self-published.

The grand prize is a book contract from Hampton Roads Publishing, one of the top Body-Mind-Spirit publishers in the world, along with a promotional package worth over $50,000.

There are 3 rounds of voting. The first round starts MONDAY March 29, 2010, and ends April 25, 2010. I could REALLY use your vote to help me advance to Round 2.

Here’s the video podcast I made for my contest entry. I poured my heart and soul into it!

And here’s the same video as it appears on YouTube. I’m putting both versions because sometimes people have trouble viewing certain video formats. If you cannot see EITHER of these videos on your screen (or you wish to see it in a LARGER window), view it on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V8P92UVYwCQ.

If you think The Garden of the Soul deserves to go to a wider audience, please help me by:

1) Watching this video to help you decide whether you think I deserve to win the title Next Top Spiritual Author AND THEN
2) Voting for me at http://tinyurl.com/TopAuthorLynn between March 29 – May 3 (the page will not be live before the 29th).

And there is NO pressure to choose only one author to win this contest! There are hundreds of great authors for you to consider, and you can vote for as many authors as you like (but you can only vote ONCE for each author per round).

I you can help me advance to Round 2 of this exciting competition, I will be EXTREMELY grateful!

My motivation is fuelled by your encouragement and comments. I’d love to hear what you have to say about the video, my book and whatever else, in the comments box below.

Thank you everyone!

Warm wishes,
Lynn Serafinn

P.S.: If YOU are a spiritual author, EVEN IF you are just in the very beginning of wanting to START your book project, YOU should enter this wonderful contest. Unpublished and self-published authors are invited AND they give you lots of help to develop your “pitch” if you don’t know how to do it yourself. Check out the Next Top Spiritual Contest and ENTER NOW at http://www.nexttopauthor.com/index.cfm. It’s going to be a fabulous journey, and I hope will take advantage of it.

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Lynn Serafinn

Question: What DOES a spiritually-minded person who is a social networking mentor, techno-geek, coach, radio host, teacher, distance learning course designer, bestselling mind-body-spirit author with a background in audio and a passion for writing and talking (a lot) do to combine all of her skills, talents and interests in one place?

Hi everyone. Lynn Serafinn here. If you’re reading this Spirit Authors blog (which has not yet officially launched as it’s still in its developmental phase) you probably know me from one of my other “hats”: a transformation coach, radio host or author of the book The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self. Others of you might know me via social networks like Twitter, Facebook, Ning or LinkedIn. Regardless of from where you might know me, today I’d like to share some other sides to me you may or may not know.

I have spent virtually my whole life engaged in a spiritual journey. I write a good deal about that journey in my book The Garden of the Soul. Now in my mid-50s, I have found a truly peaceful place within myself, and I feel I truly know what Spirit is, and have a deep and meaningful relationship with it.

Since my book came out in April 2009 and became an Amazon mind-body-spirit best-seller (after spending countless hours of my time—but virtually no money—on marketing), I have gained a reputation for my creative online promotional skills. These days I coach/mentor many people on how to use social networking and blogging to develop their writing, and to promote and launch their book.

I had always thought of myself as a “transformation coach”, not a “marketing coach”, so I thought this was a bit unusual at first. But very soon I realised it made perfect sense for me to be moving in this direction. You see, my marketing skills are really the end result of having been an electronic dance artist, small record label owner and freelance musician for many years in the past. In fact, I spent the major part of the last 30 years inventing new ways to promote my work and make a living as an indie artist.

All that professional experience helped me develop a creative and natural approach to self-promotion, and nowadays I help my clients do the same, even those who might have had a “fear” of self-promotion in the past. In short, while many artists (especially those who are spiritually focussed) cringe at the very thought of marketing themselves, I view self-promotion as FUN and ultimately a creative enterprise. It’s all in how authentically you present yourself. It took me a while to “get it”, but once I did, it really worked. Now I help others do the same.

Here’s something else most of you probably DON’T know about me: I also have a Masters degree in a really unusual subject: Adult Education and Distance Learning. That means that I have a bunch of experience designing and delivering online courses. I taught music technology for many years, used to be the head of a large college performing arts department and I even won the Microsoft UK Innovative teacher of the year award for my use of technology in education in 2005. Keeping up with modern technology, I am currently taking a certification course in developing membership sites, like Spirit Authors (see my video in previous post where I show what I am using to make this site).

My interests have always been so varied, it has frequently been difficult to connect all the dots and find a way to express all of my passions in one place. So, what DOES a spiritually-minded person who is a social networking mentor, techno-geek, coach, radio host, teacher, distance learning course designer, bestselling mind-body-spirit author with a background in audio and a passion for writing and talking (a lot) do to combine all of her skills, talents and interests in one place?

Well, she creates Spirit Authors  of course! She invents a place where other spiritually-minded authors and related professionals can come together, connect, find support, and learn about writing, online promotion and other things, all through the magic of modern Web 2.0 technology.

For me, creating Spirit Authors means I get to write a lot, talk a lot, teach a lot, coach a lot, meet new people, and get to play with lots of new technological toys. But best of all, all the people who will come to Spirit Authors will be BOTH spiritually-focussed and artistically inclined. It’s just about the most personally fulfilling scenario I could ever imagine. It’s like heaven to me. That’s why I’m using the little fluffy clouds in the banner at the top of the page.

I have never been as motivated and as excited about a new project as I am about Spirit Authors, and I cannot wait to share it with you. Over the coming weeks, I’ll be writing micro-blogs about the Spirit Authors courses, features and, of course, about the exciting Grand Opening that’s coming the week of 22-26 February 2010. I hope you’ll subscribe to the Spirit Authors News Feed by entering your email at the box at the right. That way, you’ll know everything there is to know about Spirit Authors, and get a special VIP invitation to our Grand Opening.

Yours in spirit,
Lynn Serafinn, MAED, CPCC
Creator of Spirit Authors
Spirit Authors site:  www.spiritauthors.com
Spirit Authors on Facebook

Lynn’s web portal: www.lynnserafinn.com

Categories : News
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Dec
18

Using and Integrating Blogs and RSS for Book Promotion

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Lynn Serafinn, promotion manager for #1 seller mind-body-spirit authors, on blogs vs websites for book promotion, setting up feeds and social networks, basics of  leads generation, and online interaction.

To REGISTER for this Module, click HERE.

Module 2: Pre-Publication Marketing Musts

Week 3: Integrating and leveraging blogs and RSS

Subtitle of this newly revamped module: “100 Days to Build Your Online Promotional Platform”

LESSON SUMMARY

Finding Your Readers

When designing a blogsite for your book, it is essential that you are mindful of your target audience, and that you design the blog in such a way as to be attractive to potential readers. This attractiveness must extend into the character of your theme and colour scheme as well as the content of your posts.

Most of all, remember that while the purpose of your book blog is to get people interested in your book, you will not achieve this simply by creating a site that does nothing else but talk about your book. To build your promotional platform, your primary objective in making a blog should be to create an environment where readers can really get to know:

  • Who you are as a person
  • What your message is
  • How you write

AND… if you do it right, your blog will also become a platform where you can get to know your readers too—both collectively and (in some cases) individually.

OBJECTIVES FOR THE WEEK

In this lesson, you will learn:

  1. The importance of having a dedicated book domain
  2. Purpose of a blog as opposed to a website
  3. Considerations for setting up your blog
  4. How to set up your feeds
  5. Integrating your feed to social networks
  6. Installing a sign-up box on your blog
  7. WordPress enhancements: Plugins and Widgets
  8. Building interaction into your blog
  9. How often and what to blog
  10. How to make the most use of your material

Click “Read More” to begin your lesson for the week.

Read More→

Categories : News
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Dec
18

Target audience – knowing, finding and reaching your readers

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Lynn Serafinn, promotion manager for #1 seller mind-body-spirit authors, on how to understand your relationship with marketing, identify your target audience and find your potential readers.

Module 2: Pre-Publication Marketing Musts

Week 1: Your readers: knowing, finding and reaching them

Click to listen to an overview of this week’s lesson:


To REGISTER for this Module, click HERE.

Subtitle of this newly revamped module: “100 Days to Build Your Online Promotional Platform”

LESSON SUMMARY

Finding Your Readers

Many authors come to me for marketing advice just as their books are getting ready for publication. You will, however, note that I have placed this module BEFORE the module on preparing for publication. That is because, quite frankly, if you do not start your marketing long before your book is even finished being written, then you are apt to have a book come out and be extremely disappointed in the sales results. You might ask, “How can I market a book that isn’t even written yet.” The answer is simple. You aren’t. You are marketing YOU. That is what this lesson is about. It will really get you thinking about your personal relationship with all those wonderful people in the world who will be reading your book in the not-so-distant future. It will give you some strategies to identify them, know them, find them and reach them in an authentic, spirit-based way. If you find yourself resisting any of the material in the lesson (and I have had many a client and colleague for whom some of these ideas pushed them to their “edge”), slow down and take as much time as you need to understand why you are resisting. To understand this resistance fully, we will be exploring what I consider to be the key factors that influence how we approach the subject of self-promotion and online marketing

  1. Our relationship with money/selling
  2. Our relationship with technology
  3. Our relationship with other people
  4. Our relationship with ourselves

Get ready for a journey exploring these factors and how they impact the success of your book.

OBJECTIVES FOR THE WEEK:

In this week’s lesson, you will:

  1. Examine your relationship with money and selling
  2. Learn how to identify your target audience and why this is important
  3. Learn the two key goals of early marketing
  4. Outline the infrastructure you need for finding your audience online
  5. Create a plan for reaching your audience

Click “Read More” to begin your lesson for the week.

Read More→

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