Get Your Free Ticket To Sell Books With Collabs Summit And Boost Your Book Marketing

Get Your Free Ticket To Sell Books With Collabs Summit And Boost Your Book Marketing

Sell Books With Collabs Book marketing Event

I want this to be the year you fall in love with marketing your book. Effective marketing is hard . . . and bad marketing kills careers and passion, so this isn’t an easy endeavor.

We often think if we ‘show up for the right person with the right message at the right time,’ it’s okay to push our books over and over.

First, you risk annoying whatever audience you have. Every piece of content you put out there is a take; it’s asking people to give you attention in an attention-starved world. Think about it. When you hang out with your friends, you don’t insist that they watch Supernatural every time you see them, even though it’s the best TV show ever! You mention it a couple times and let a year go by before bringing it up again. Hopefully, between those moments, you’re checking in with your friends, thanking them, asking them questions, and recommending other shows. 

Second, when you chronically promote yourself, you burn out. Being an author whose #1 marketing goal is to vie for attention is ironically ineffective. The internet has become a noisy place. ‘Right message, right person, right time’ isn’t enough when 10,000 other authors have zapped your ideal reader’s attention that day.

So here is my suggestion: collaborate with trusted authors in your genre. Great things happen when we become each other’s referral networks:

You’ll show up with fabulous recommendations for your ideal readers, even when it doesn’t help our bottom line, directly speaking, which makes them feel you have their interest at heart.

And while we spotlight other authors to build rapport with our readers, those authors are spotlighting us.

No more chronic self-promotion. No more showing up just for the sake of it because you heard marketing is about making touch points. When done right, your collaborations bring warm leads in for you.

Does this resonate? If so, I’d love to invite you to Sell Books With Collabs, an event where authors will hang out in Zoom together to learn collaboration strategies AND do tons of networking with other collaborative authors. It runs from Jan 24-27, 2023. You can sign up here for FREE through my affiliate link.

Sell Books With Collabs Summit

If you upgrade to the VIP pass, you’ll get invite-only access to ATTEND the event in ZOOM where you’ll meet and bond with your future collab besties and get work done together. On top of that, you’ll get thousands of dollars worth of bonuses specifically made to help you write, publish, and sell more books on launch day and beyond. These bonuses include deep discounts as well as totally gifted software tools, courses, books, services and more.

Here’s why this is such an amazing opportunity. It can feel intimidating to approach industry experts doing incredible things, collaborating, platforming each other, and growing together, almost like they’re in some club. How do you get in the club?

Chances are not great that your dream partners will come knocking on your doorstep, and that’s okay because you can go to them; no one who is ahead of you is better than you. But remember, relationship-builders make and maintain friendships with relationship builders, so show them you are indeed a relationship builder when it comes to marketing your book. When you find your dream partners, think about approaching them in a way that makes them want to engage.

Thank them, introduce them to their dream partners or clients, check in with them, and invite them to speak on your podcast or at your summit. These are all ways to foster friendships with authors who already serve your ideal readers. People are more likely to say, ‘Sure!’ to promoting you when you have a track record of caring about them. The know-like-trust factor applies to colleagues, too,

At Sell Books With Collabs, you’ll learn collaboration strategies and walk away with lifelong partners you can collaborate with right away. The event features a variety of presentations and coworking and networking sessions scheduled between 1:30 and 9 p.m. Eastern each day. Watch the live stream or grab a VIP Pass and enter the Zoom session where you’ll form important partnerships. The speakers are bookselling and collaboration experts who will give short live presentations. Grab a VIP Pass and you’ll get direct access to them to ask your follow-up questions.

Presentation will be spaced out so that, in between, VIP attendees can network in breakout rooms, cowork to music, stretch, and play. All attendees will also have access to a private Facebook group where authors will be partying it up before the event starts and working together to figure out what types of collaborations best serve their readers and brands.

I bought my VIP ticket and hope to see you at Sell Books With Collabs so that this year you can explode your book marketing.

Affiliate links were included in this post, however, I only promote products and events that I recommend.


3 Free Tools For Authorpreneurs: Build Your Indie Author Empire

3 Free Tools For Authorpreneurs: Build Your Indie Author Empire


Many authors think of themselves as artists or creatives, and that’s definitely true, however, they are also entrepreneurs. In the literary world, we call them authorpreneurs. Your book is a product. If you want it to to sell, you need a solid business plan and an effective marketing strategy.

In essence, authorpreneurs are the the president of their own publishing empire. They have to manage multiple projects and deadlines, and often oversee hired help such as freelance editors, proofreaders, graphic designers, website designers, formatters, and virtual assistants. Authorpreneurs handle finances, advertising, public relations, and promotion. They run ad campaigns, send out newsletters, maintain social media accounts, and build a network of bloggers and reviewers. They may have one author brand, such as writing a steamy romance series, or they may write in multiple genres.

Many authorpreneurs have multiple income streams from avenues like audiobook editions, affiliate marketing, coaching, or online courses. These creative entrepreneurs have a lot of responsibility on their plates.

Luckily, I know someone who can teach you the ins and outs of being a successful authorpreneur. Brit Poe of Thriving Scribes has three free resources to get you headed in the right direction, and she also has a series of paid workshops for those who want to go deeper. Brit helps help indie fiction authors combine their creative and CEO sides to build thriving author careers.

Free Resources For Authorpreneurs

Get these freebies from Brit:

Authorpreneur: Activated (Free) A binge-worthy audio series teaching all the secrets behind showing up as the CEO of your author business and #crushingit. You’re going to be diving into five secrets to authorpreneur CEOship. Each day you will receive a short 5-10 minute audio training giving you the knowledge you need to implement. You’ll also get actionable workbooks and daily transcripts.

Authorpreneur Stage Quiz(Free) Take this quiz to find out which authorpreneur stage you are in right now and get immediate access to a custom action plan based on your stage.

Authorpreneur Profit Calculator (Free) Want to know just how many book sales it’ll take to bring a profit into your author business? Let Brit show you.  

Paid Workshops For Authorpreneurs

Brit also has a series of paid workshops called the Authorpreneur Unleashed: Workshop Bundle. These five workshops give you everything you truly need to show up as an authorpreneur CEO.

You can choose to purchase ALL five workshops at a discount or pick and choose the individual workshops you want. Here are the authorpreneur classes you will find on her website.

Unleash Your Bestseller Mindset. What you’ll learn:
Why mindset is important as an authorpreneur
The most common mindset blocks that hold authors back
Developing strong beliefs
Growth mindset vs scarcity mindset and how to make the shift
Overcoming fear in authorship
Tools for uncovering any mindset issues regarding authorship so you get out of your own way

Unleash Your Authorpreneur Vision. What you’ll learn:
How to make your author journey fit your ideal author lifestyle
Developing your ultra-aligned author business plan
Putting in place a business foundation that feels good and supports your journey
How to choose projects that will get your ideal reader’s attention and open doors for all that you desire
What market research is and how to perform it in a way that will lead to more freedom and fulfillment

Unleash Your Indie Author Identity. What you’ll learn:
Understanding the pieces of your online presence and how they play together
Creating your personal author brand
Designing a consistent author brand identity
What are the essential pieces of your author platform
How to create an aligned author platform strategy

Unleash Your Reader Magnetism Strategy. What you’ll learn:
Launching vs evergreen marketing for authors
How to get out of the write, publish, launch cycle
What is a sales funnel and how do you design a funnel for yourself
How to make your author platform work for you
The psychology behind selling, buying, and sales
What kind of content should you create as an author
What actually sells books and what wastes time

Unleash Your CEO Habits. What you’ll learn:
Key habits of high-functioning authorpreneurs (and not-so-high-functioning)
The 3 hats an authorpreneur wears – and the specific tasks each one calls for
How to incorporated CEO dates
Daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly tasks that will set you up for long-term success
How to plan your goals and take action like an authorpreneur CEO
Designing your ideal week in a way that feels good and moves the needle
How to avoid burnout and consistently shatter glass ceilings in your author journey

Want to learn how to be a profitable authorpreneur? Visit the Authorpreneur Unleashed page on Thriving Scribes.

Affiliate links were used in this post, however, I’m only an affiliate for products that I recommend.



Free Time Management For #Writers 5-Day Challenge #Writing

Free Time Management For #Writers 5-Day Challenge #Writing

Could you use some time management tips? Then you’re invited to check out my free 5-day Time Management for Writers challenge. Every day from Thursday, June 17 through Monday, June 21, I’ll be giving my followers a small challenge on Facebook and Instagram. It will be something quick and easy to do.

The challenges will tie into the four pillars of time management that I discuss in my new class, Time Management Blueprint for Writers: Transform Your Life and Finish Your Book. These pillars are: Electronic Clutter, External Clutter, Internal Clutter, and Calendars and Planning.

How to participate: I’ll be posting the challenges in the Shortcuts for Writers Facebook group every morning at 9 a.m. EST. I’ll put it in the Announcements, and you’ll be able to find an identical post on my Instagram account also.

Enter For Prizes!

Prizes include erasable highlighters, retractable ballpoint pens, and planner stickers. To enter each giveaway, you have to comment on the day’s post on Facebook or Instagram. (Or both!)

You’ll get extra entries if you invite friends to the Shortcuts for Writers Facebook group (just make sure you let me know in the comments) or tag friends on Instagram.

If you’d like to take a deep dive into Time Management, then check out my full course, Time Management Blueprint for Writers: Transform Your Life and Finish Your Book.

Free Facebook Ads For Authors Introduction With @MDCooperAuthor

Free Facebook Ads For Authors Introduction With @MDCooperAuthor


facebook ads for authorsHave you been wondering whether it’s worth your time and money to run Facebook ads for your books? My friend Malorie Cooper of The Writing Wives has volunteered to visit my Shortcuts for Writers Facebook group to lead a short introductory workshop. This free event will be held Monday, June 7 at 12 p.m. EST inside the Shortcuts group. A replay will be available, but it you attend live, you can ask questions.

Facebook ads are pivotal for Malorie, a New York Times bestselling author. In fact, it was Facebook ads that finally put her on the map that led her to earning her letters and being able to go full time as an author in 2016. She will show what Facebook ads have done for her career and what they can do for yours with real working examples.

Mal will also talk about her Facebook Ads Beginner Class coming up on June 23 at 6:30 p.m. EST. That more in-depth course is just $35 and will teach you how to set up your business account, how the ad system in Facebook is structured, and how to create ads, duplicate ads, and update ads. She’ll also walk you through how to tell if an ad is working well, and shut down ones that aren’t.

If you’re looking for a Facebook ad mentor for your books, or just want to see what it’s all about, join the Shortcuts for Writers Facebook group and watch for the video on June 7.


How Can Authors Use Military Tropes? Join The Blog Hop @AuthorEncounter)

How Can Authors Use Military Tropes? Join The Blog Hop @AuthorEncounter)

military tropes

I’m participating in a blog hop and scavenger hunt hosted by my friends at The Author Encounter. I love how it’s devoted to military tropes.

Crafting military fiction, whether it’s romance, fantasy, mystery, or any other genre mix, isn’t easy. Each story has unique challenges. However, creating believable, relatable characters, scenes and plot lines is a goal all authors aspire to no matter how they write. That is why so many authors use tropes to get their creative juices flowing in familiar ways to encourage their readers to fall in love with their stories.

What is a trope? Or more specifically what is a military trope? A military trope is a commonplace, recognizable plot element, theme, or visual cue that conveys something about the military.

Tropes can help make an alien situation or fictional scene feel familiar especially for those of us with no military experiences. So, using tropes in the right way can make your reader love your story that much more. Many readers across genres love military elements added to storylines. A great place to find ideas for military tropes is from other authors.

how authors use military tropes

Get inspired by other authors’ use of tropes readers love, such as the veteran finding new adventures, the special forces soldier, the unknowing hero, or teaching kids about the American flag. Whether you use tropes in a Tom Clancy style or old school like our favorite WWII vets: this blog hop will be an advantage.

Military Appreciation Month officially recognized by Congress in May 1999, incorporates many holidays celebrating our women and men in the Armed Forces. Join us for a literary approach to celebrating the soldiers and families that proudly serve and protect our country.

Click the links and match the authors to the tropes to win! 

Here are the rules and prizes!

Free Workshop: How To Promote Your Book With Podcasts With @irenegabelnick

Free Workshop: How To Promote Your Book With Podcasts With @irenegabelnick

Are you an author who could use some publicity for your book? Irene Gabelnick will lead the live workshop, How to Promote Your Book with Podcasts: the Fastest Way to Get Radio and Podcast Interviews, on April 29 at 11 a.m. EST. This special event will be held in my Shortcuts for Writers: Editing Made Simple group on Facebook. Irene will share book marketing secrets for getting free media interviews to promote your book.

Irene GabelnickIrene is the international bestselling author of Podcast Power: The Zipping It Up Guide to Land Podcast and Radio Interviews Fast! This ebook shows you a quick and easy system to land live radio and podcast interviews. It includes email templates to get you booked in the media, build your brand, and get seen. She also works with entrepreneurs, speakers, and coaches, guiding them through the process of writing their book.

If you’d like to attend, be sure to join the Shortcuts for Writers: Editing Made Simple Facebook group. New members are welcome. A replay will be available.

Visit Irene’s website for more information about her books, courses, and services.


This post contains affiliate links.

Free Crime Writers Week For Mystery, Suspense, And Thriller Authors – April 19-23

Free Crime Writers Week For Mystery, Suspense, And Thriller Authors – April 19-23

Please note that this post contains affiliate links. 

tips for crime writers

If you write mystery, suspense, or thrillers (or just love to read them!), then you’ll want to check out ProWritingAid’s free Crime Writer’s Week scheduled for April 19-23. Whether you’re crafting a police procedural, a whodunnit, or a good old-fashioned mystery, you’ll learn how to keep readers turning the pages.

Attend live virtual sessions with bestselling authors, including Karin Slaughter, Lisa Gardner, Ian Rankin, Peter James, Fiona Cummins, and more. You’ll also get insider publishing advice from Katherine Armstrong, the Deputy Publishing Director for Crime Fiction at Simon & Schuster, attend workshops on writing and editing your novel, and learn from real police advisors to help make your book truly authentic. If you’re a crime reader and not a writer, you’ll get an inside look at the behind-the-scenes of the research and writing process.

Monday’s Sessions

The Elements of a Crime Novel: From Planning to Plot
Presenter: Bestselling Author Leigh Russell

Every genre requires a unique approach, and crime writing is no different. In this session, internationally bestselling crime author Leigh Russell will take you through the key elements of the crime writing process.

Crime Writing: Secrets of the Genre
Presenters: Anne Hawley and Rachelle Ramirez of Pages & Platforms

Do you have an idea for a crime novel but don’t yet know how to structure it? Got some bad deeds, clues, and some scenes that don’t really work together or entertain? In this webinar, you’ll learn the crime story essentials.

Tuesday’s Sessions

Crime Scene Management, Police Interviewing, and Covert Tactics
Presenter: Police Advisor Graham Bartlett
Retired detective, bestselling author, and advisor to over 80 crime novelists and TV writers, Graham Bartlett can help your WIP ooze authenticity. Learn how the police use mobile phones, vehicles, CCTV, and social media in their investigations, as well as authentic police interview techniques.

Insider Advice on Getting Published
Presented by: Katherine Armstrong, Deputy Publishing Director, Crime & Thriller Fiction at Simon & Schuster
This session is intended to demystify the publishing process for writers, give advice on how to get published, and answer any questions you might have about traditional publishing.

How to Edit Your Crime Novel with ProWritingAid
Presented by: Hayley Milliman, Head of Education at ProWritingAid
It doesn’t matter how many hours you spent meticulously crafting your crime novel’s plot. If your writing isn’t clear and effective, your readers won’t engage with it. That’s where editing technology can help. In this workshop, we’ll dive into how to use ProWritingAid to make key edits to your crime manuscript.

Wednesday’s Sessions

The History & the Mystery: Selecting and Creating an Authentic Setting for Crime Fiction
Presented by: Fiona Veitch Smith
Author Fiona Veitch Smith will share tips on how to research and build your historical story’s world and the importance of selecting the right investigator within the constraints and possibilities of the period.

Thriller Writer Panel Discussion with Steve Berry, Lisa Gardner, Ian Rankin, and Karin Slaughter
Presented by: International Thriller Writers (ITW)
Author and ITW Executive Director K.J. Howe will be hosting four of their members for a lively discussion around the joys and pains of writing thrillers. Expect great tips and life lessons from these popular writers as they discuss their writing journeys so far.

Common Police Mistakes Made by Crime Writers and How to Avoid Them
Presented by: Police Advisor Graham Bartlett
Graham will be back again to share the most common errors that authors get wrong in their crime novels. Who really runs a homicide investigation? When does a missing person report become a murder enquiry? Find out the answers to these and many more bloopers that could spoil your next bestseller.

Thursday’s Sessions

Debut Dagger Awards Longlist Announcement
Presented by: Crime Writers’ Association
For over two decades, the CWA has been encouraging new writing with its Debut Dagger competition for unpublished writers. The submissions are judged by a panel of top crime editors and agents.

How to Market Your Self-Published Crime Novel
Presented by: Nick Stephenson, Author and Founder of Your First 10k Readers
Marketing your book comes down to mastering three key things: traffic, conversions, and scaling up. With the right systems in place for these three things, you can grow your readership and sales without spending your entire day “worrying about marketing.”

Interview with Author Fiona Cummins

Fiona Cummins is the award-winning author of Rattle, The Collector, and The Neighbour. We’ll be chatting to her about breaking into the world of crime writing, and what it’s like to see her fourth book, When I Was Ten, being adapted for television.

The final day of Crime Writer’s Week is available to ProWritingAid Premium subscribers only. We’ll be hosting an editing deep dive, an interview with bestselling author Peter James, and finishing the week with a police expert Q&A. If you don’t have ProWritingAid Premium yet, don’t worry! Crime Writer’s Week participants will receive an exclusive discount in their confirmation email when they sign up.

Friday’s Sessions

How to Edit Your Crime Novel
Presented by: Hayley Milliman, ProWritingAid’s Head of Education
As nice as it would be, writing your crime novel isn’t over when you type “The End.” In fact, the actual work is just beginning. During the editing process, your novel will go from rough first draft to thrilling final manuscript. In this workshop, Hayley will walk you through the most important edits you should make to ensure your book is publish-ready.

Interview with Author Peter James
Peter James has become synonymous with plot-twisting page-turners. He has won over 40 awards for his work and achieved 17 Sunday Times Bestsellers to date. Learn from the master what it takes to write gripping crime novels that keep readers hooked.

Police Advisor Q&A
Presented by: Police Advisor Graham Bartlett
This is your chance to bring YOUR questions about police work and crime scene investigations to Graham Bartlett, retired detective, bestselling author and advisor to over 80 crime novelists (including Peter James).

Sign up once to get access to every event. You don’t have to attend every event, or attend live—all webinars will be recorded and sent out the following day. So, even if you are not able to make certain dates/times, it’s still worth registering to get the recordings.


Free Time Management For Writers Mini-Boot Camp #10MinuteNovelists #Writelife

Free Time Management For Writers Mini-Boot Camp #10MinuteNovelists #Writelife

time management for writers

Since I’m launching a time management for writers course later this spring, productivity is a topic I’m very interested in. Everyone has different strategies to share and different methods that have worked for them, which is why I’m so excited to have Katharine Grubb of 10 Minute Novelists lead a guest workshop in my Shortcuts for Writers Facebook group.

Katharine will be leading the Time Management Mini-Boot Camp: A Crash Course in How to Organize Your Life For More Time To Write on March 26 at 10 am EST. Make sure to request admission to the Shortcuts for Writers: Editing Made Simple group to attend live as the workshop will stream in the group, not on the event page. A replay will be available.

In this live presentation, Katharine will give you practical tips on how to organize your foundational truth, attitudes, people, time, stuff, tools, margins and fails so that you go through your day with order and determination. Through these simple steps you will gain power to be organized and make more time for the people and passions that you love. Your dreams are worth ten minutes, but the rest of your life is worth so much more.

More About Katharine

finding time to write

Katharine Grubb is a poet, novelist, and former homeschooling mom who likes to bake bread, hike the Massachusetts woods and encourage others. She is the author of several books, including Write A Novel In 10 Minutes A Day and is the founder and CEO of 10 Minute Novelists Facebook community.

Join the Shortcuts for Writers Facebook group here.

Sign Up For Free Fantasy Writer’s Tips – Feb. 22-26

Sign Up For Free Fantasy Writer’s Tips – Feb. 22-26

fantasy writers tips

Do you love writing fantasy books or short stories? Our friends at ProWritingAid have you covered! ProWritingAid’s first ever Fantasy Writer’s Week will be jam-packed with free events for fantasy authors. You’ll get plenty of fantasy writer’s tips and tricks.

With live sessions from bestselling fantasy writers TJ Klune, Angela J. Ford, David Farland and Stephanie BwaBwa, a world-building workshop, and a complete World Anvil software walkthrough, you don’t want to miss this event!

Register for this free event here.

Here’s what to expect:

How To Organize Your Story Ideas And Write A Fantasy Novel

Feb 25 (2 PM ET / 7 PM UK)
Presenter: Bestselling fantasy author, Angela J. Ford
During this workshop, bestselling fantasy author Angela J. Ford will help you dig deep into taking your ideas and turning them into a story readers adore. You’ll learn how to take your ideas and organize them (regardless if you’re a plotter or pantser) before you begin writing.

How to Write Fantasy: The Tricks Of The Genre

Feb 26 (10 PM ET / 3 PM UK)
Presenters: Developmental editors, Anne Hawley and Rachelle Ramirez
Do you want to write a story set in a fantastical world but don’t yet know how to structure it? Got some great world-building and some random scenes that don’t really work together or entertain? You’re in the right place.
In this webinar, you’ll learn the basics of the Fantasy Genre so you can create emotion in your readers and have them recommending your story to others.

Your Fantasy Editing Roadmap

Feb 26 (12 PM ET / 5 PM UK)
Presenter: ProWritingAid’s Head of Learning, Hayley Milliman
As nice as it would be, writing your fantasy novel isn’t over when you type “The End.” In fact, the actual work is just beginning. During the editing process, your novel will go from rough first draft to engaging final manuscript.
In this workshop, Hayley will walk you through the most important edits you should make to your manuscript to ensure it’s publish-ready.

An Interview With Bestselling Fantasy Author, TJ Klune

Feb 26 (2 PM ET / 7 PM UK)
Hosted by ProWritingAid CMO, Lisa Lepki
TJ Klune is the Lambda Literary Award-winning author of The Extraordinaries and the 2020 New York Times #1 bestseller, The House in the Cerulean Sea. We’ll be chatting to him about breaking into the worlds of fantasy and YA fiction, his writing process and why representation is so important in literature.

Sounds like lots of great tips for fantasy writers. Sign up here.

Please note that affiliate links are included in this post.

5 Tips For Writing Children’s Books That Are Timeless #KidLit #MGLit #Writers

5 Tips For Writing Children’s Books That Are Timeless #KidLit #MGLit #Writers

tips for writing kids books

It’s every writer’s dream, isn’t it, to create a timeless classic? To craft a story that appeals to thousands, and continues to bring joy, wonder, and comfort long after we are gone. Books like:

  • Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland
  • Margaret Wise Brown’s Goodnight Moon
  • E.B. White’s Charlotte’s Web 

These books contain magical ingredients that stand the test of time.

What are these ingredients? Several accomplished, award-winning children’s book authors, editors, and publishers shared their thoughts on what makes a children’s book timeless. Their answers are below. My hope is that you glean at least one piece of advice to inspire, improve, or motivate your writing. If you haven’t begun to craft your story, then hopefully one will trigger a brand new story idea for you! But before we dive in:

An incredible bundle of resources and tools to help you create your own timeless children’s book just landedbut it won’t be here for long.

The KidLit Creators Super Stack (a hand curated collection of over $2,200+ worth of premium writing, publishing, marketing, and illustrating resources, training, and tools for just $49) expires Feb. 2.

This collection is packed so full of value, you really do need to see for yourself just how much you are getting (for almost nothing).

And now, what makes a children’s book timeless…


“You need to create a totally immersive experience. It’s the true essence of what makes a story, undiluted by extra characters and subplots. Consider every detail when creating your book, from the tone of the art to the thickness of the paper.”

Award-winning author of children’s books Grumbler, Joyride, and Pling’s Party,  Arielle Haughee is the owner of Orange Blossom Publishing, an editor, speaker, consultant, and Executive Vice President for the Florida Writers Association.

Make sure each element blends together to make the story come alive for children in a magical way. Matching the physical elements of the book to the character and theme of your story creates excellent immersion for the reader. If you ensure everything on the inside and outside of the book is the best quality  and shares a lasting message you will have a timeless children’s book.”


It all comes down to emotional connection. If your book finds a place inside a reader’s heart, it will stay there forever.

Laura Backes is a Random House published author, editor, agent, educator, and the publisher of Children’s Book Insider, Children’s Writing Monthly, and co-founder of She says what makes a book timeless is…

“Emotional connection. Create it with relatable and honestly crafted characters who participate in a story built upon universal emotions of childhood. Combine these with vivid settings, well-flowing dialogue and a warm author voice and you have the recipe for a classic.”


“Write a children’s book with a unique character. This is the key to creating a timeless book. With a great character, it doesn’t matter if you have a common plot because a compelling character will take the reader on a completely unique journey through new eyes. (Think: Harry Potter, The Cat in the Hat, The Little Engine That Could, etc.)”

Author Brooke Van Sickle has won multiple awards for her children’s books including the Moonbeam Children’s Award, the Royal & Purple Dragonfly Awards, and Mom’s Choice for honoring excellence in children’s books.


“In the world of middle grade novels, a timeless story is characterized by connection. If a young reader devours a book while hiding under their covers with a flashlight, a connection has been made. If a young reader gasps, and pauses, and holds the book next to their heart for a moment before continuing, a connection has been made. If a young reader wakes up in the morning, worrying about the main character, a connection has been made.”

Middle Grade publisher and senior editor at Chicken Scratch Books, Kiri Jorgensen, continues, “So how does a writer build that connection? It’s all about the character. Middle grade readers have to relate to the character’s choices, voice, and motive. When they can relate, understand, and appreciate those elements, they’ll dive into completely foreign worlds so they can continue to connect to the character they love.”


“Relatability is another word for the underlying themes that relate to children’s lived experiences and curiosities according to their age level. By unearthing what the real themes below your story are about, you get to see if your story has universal underlying themes that will stand the test of time. Balance emotion and action so it’s not all emotion or all action. Action or movement keeps your story lively to avoid boredom and emotion keeps us engaged on a heart level.

Former literary agent and university professor Mira Reisberg is an award-winning author/illustrator, the acquiring editor and art director at Clearfork Publishing/Spork, and the founder of the Children’s Book Academy, an international children’s book writing and illustrating school.

Now it’s your turn

Which of these 5 timeless methods of storytelling would you like to try? If you love these ideas, but want more detailed help on how to DO everything listed above…

The KidLit Creators is the perfect place to start.

Inside, you’ll find:

😍 Easy to follow, step-by-step ecourses, covering everything you need to know to be able to turn your story idea into a published book agents will be proud to represent (even if you have little to no experience)…

❤️ The secret ingredient required to create children’s picture books that both kids and adults will love (from an award-winning children’s book author)…

👫 Access to professional one-to-one story coaching from a Pushcart Prize nominee to help you get your book started, revised, or pushed through to completion…

And so much more.

Explore everything that’s waiting for you here.

Don’t forget: this offer disappears on Tuesday, February 2nd at 11:59pm EST. 

Please note that this post contains affiliate links, however, I only promote products that I recommend.

12 Free Gifts For Indie Authors Through Jan. 5 #writingcommunity #writinglife

12 Free Gifts For Indie Authors Through Jan. 5 #writingcommunity #writinglife

Christmas goody bags for writers

Are you an author who is ready to keep the holiday cheer going for another twelve days? Then you will absolutely love the 12 Days of Christmas Party sponsored by Thriving Scribes,

2020 has been something else, this year, hasn’t it? And this holiday season, all I want to do is share as much value with you as I possibly can to make the remainder of the year spectacular (and to help kick off 2021 on the right foot!).

A few weeks ago, my friend Brit had a fun idea for Christmas this year. She wanted to throw an online Christmas party of sorts… complete with goody bags full of freebies. I was totally on board!

This is your official invitation to be my +1. Join me at the party and grab your Regular Goody Bag. 🛍️ It’s free and comes with 12 days of FREE product drops of value up to $100. 🎉

You’ll find my Overused Words Cheat Sheet, a handy PDF featuring about 200 of the most commonly overused words that I’ve seen as an editor. It’s a tool normally just available to students enrolled inside my course Book Editing Blueprint: A Step-By-Step Plan To Making Your Novels Publishable. I know some writers who have even hung this handy resource above their desks as they refer to it so often.

While you’re picking up the free gifts, be sure to check out the Premium Goody Bag 🎁 as well. It contains more than $2,000 worth of premium products.

This party ends January 5.

Here’s a sneak peek of what else you could pick up…

  • How To Create Engaging Emails Workshop (free)
  • Triple Your Writing Speed course (premium)
  • Instagram for Authors (free)
  • Indie Publishing Fundamentals course (premium)
  • 12 Step Book Launch Strategy eBook (free)
  • Trello 4 Authors (free)

And more!

Want to join the party and get your hands on one, or both, of these goody bags? Sign up here.


Please note that this post contains affiliate links. If you purchase the premium goody bag through my link, then I will receive a commission.


Last Chance! Get Over $7,000 In Social Media Influencer Tools For $49!

Last Chance! Get Over $7,000 In Social Media Influencer Tools For $49!

social media influencerPlease note that I am an affiliate and receive a commission on sales. However, I wouldn’t recommend it if I didn’t think it was a great deal!

If you’re a published author with several books to promote, an entrepreneur, or a small business owner, you’ll want to explore the Social Media Influencer Super Stack.

Increase your reach, influence, and impact on social media with this hand-curated collection of cutting-edge tools and resources designed by industry insiders. ⁠You’ll learn strategies to master YouTube, LinkedIn, TikTok, Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook Live, Facebook ads, hashtags, and more. You’ll also get trial subscriptions to several products so you can try out the ones that interest you and see if you’d like to make them part of your long-term strategy.

Total Retail Value: $7,253.87.⁠

Yours today for only $49. But hurry! The deal ends Tuesday, Dec. 1!⁠ You can take a walk-through tour of what to expect in the below video, which also reminds you that two other Cyber Monday deals are expiring very soon:

Writer’s Craft Stack 2.0 – Over $3,300 of writing courses and ebooks for $49. Deal ends 12/1
ProWritingAid Sale – 50 percent off lifetime license and 25 percent off annual license for this highly recommended grammar and style checker. Deal ends tonight, Nov. 30. New users who buy through my link can send me their receipt at stacy at for 3 bonuses.

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