#AUTHORS, WHAT’S YOUR ONLINE REPUTATION AND DO YOU EVEN CARE? #RRBC #RWISA

Reputation is everything

…and if it isn’t to you, then Houston, we have a problem.  Your reputation – is it reputable or is it dishonorable?  Well, so that you have a clear understanding of what a reputation is, let me give you a little refresher on the word.

The estimation in which a person or thing is held, especially by the community or the general public;  the way in which people think of someone or something.

As an author, regardless of what others think or how I am perceived, my reputation is of extreme importance to me.  I have worked hard to build my name and standing in the literary community, therefore, I guard it, and the perception of it, with great care.

Because we interact with our peers and our “communities” without the comfort of solidarity, yet, in an anonymous world behind keyboards, there are those that feel these situations offer a green light to behave poorly and recklessly.

We’re all familiar with online “trolls,” aren’t we?  The ones who go around the web wreaking havoc on everyone’s lives and enjoying every moment of it?  These people tend to hide behind fictitious names so that no one knows who they are, and their steps can’t be easily traced.  After the demise of those fake identities, they simply create new ones to continue along their senseless paths of destruction.  (Wait – let’s not focus on these trolls too much, as I have not the time or the energy to spend on them, even in my writing.  So, moving right along …).  And then, there are those who cause similar chaos online under their real names or Pen names…they just don’t care what others think about their poor behavior, and truth be told, these are the ones I worry about most. The fact that they DON’T CARE ABOUT THEIR REPUTATION OR HOW THEY ARE PERCEIVED, is a very scary thing.  Trust me when I say that if they don’t care about their own, they will lose no sleep over trying to destroy or taint yours.

You see, when I hear someone say that they are an Author, I tend to hold them to a certain level of esteem, and I’ll admit, I also expect a certain amount of professionalism and decorum from Authors.  Why?  Because although change is good, there are some things (in my mind) that should never change.

I remember as a child, dreaming and wishing that I could one day meet my favorite Author (Louisa May Alcott), but deep down, knowing that would never be possible.  Not because she died in the 1800’s, but, when I was but a young lass, Authors just weren’t so “accessible,” and there was this mystery surrounding them.  (And in my opinion, a little mystery always makes life more interesting – wouldn’t you agree?)  We didn’t have the luxury of interacting with them on Facebook and Twitter the way it’s done now, and you know, that wasn’t such a bad thing.  The way they carried and conducted themselves, it was clear the Authors of old cared about their reputations and how they were perceived.  (Kind of reminds you of the Authors on the current RWISA roster, as well as those members of RRBC who also greatly value their professional reputations in this literary arena.)

Today, we have many who display attitudes of nonchalance of decent behavior all over social media.  This is evident when you see the kinds of conversations they carry on on Twitter, the types of images and videos they choose to share on Facebook, and lastly, the behavior they choose to exhibit publicly, period.  Sadly, I’m not only referencing the younger generation. I’ve seen the most unprofessional behavior recently from those who are in grandparent and great-grandparent seasons, that have shown me exactly the behavior TO NOT EXHIBIT when I’m in that same season of life.  I’ve witnessed with my own eyes, two adult women (Authors) in knock-down-drag-out cat fights (aka … war of words) on social media, and as an adult, a mom of daughters, and a professional Author … I was embarrassed for them.  Never in a million years, would I behave in such a manner!

In my embarrassment for these adults, I wondered, Do they not care that others are watching them?  Watching this?  Who would want to run out and purchase their books after witnessing such disgraceful behavior?  I surely wouldn’t.  I imagined seeing the both of them (in the real world) standing outside of a bar, brawling, pulling each other’s hair.  I experienced such embarrassment for them, just watching this play out online – because clearly, they weren’t embarrassed at all.

Engaging in this type of back and forth war-of-words publicly, seals the deal on your online reputation.  People who were friendly with you before, start to become quiet in your midst.  You’re now noticing the ones who once called you “friend,” are now moving away from your inner circle.   Still confused as to why?  People who hold themselves in high esteem, are smart enough to know that you can quickly be tagged as “the company you keep,” and I’ve never once heard that reference used in a good way. These people, professionals who care about their reputations, do not want to be aligned with amateurs who are clearly not in their league, nor are they on the same level.  I personally, tend to quickly move away from people who display such volatile and indecent behavior, as you just never know what they’ll do next.   When it’s displayed once, once is enough for me.  {Note to readers:  I’m the lady who believes what people show me … not so much what they tell me}.

As I wrap things up here, my advice to you is this: Think before you speak and think even harder before you act, lest you do or say something which you might regret later.  If, in the past, you have found yourself guilty of any form of public juvenile behavior, you can still turn things around, if you work hard enough.  Your online reputation is and should be, just as important as your reputation in the real world.  Let what yours say about you, be a true reflection of who you are and how you want to be perceived and received.  And, when others are behaving at a level that you would never stoop to, please, decline their invitation to that party.  There are some who have nothing better to do but spend their time “attempting” to bring others down and ruin lives, and that’s because their lives are so sad, they can’t stand the thought of others living in happy-land.  (FYI, Nonnie is the Mayor of Happy-land – just in case anyone wants to move closer to me … LOL)

What does your online reputation say about you? Is it reputable or is it deplorable?  What do you think others are saying about you, based on this kind of reputation?  We’d love to hear from you via the comments below.

Thanks for stopping by!

Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt.

~Anonymous

JOIN US at …

RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB

Building Your #Author Platform #RRBC #RWISA

We are 18 days away from our 5th Annual Writers’ Conference & Book Expo and if you haven’t registered to take part in any of the planned book promotions, sessions, games, etc. for this event, you are really doing yourself a grand disservice.

We have 23 sessions being presented in this year’s conference and you still have time to register for them.

Today, I’m giving you a FREE sample of the quality of the sessions and information that will be presented at this year’s #WC&BE20.  This session is in blog form format and I hope that the information contained within proves to be super-beneficial to you and your writing career!

BUILDING YOUR AUTHOR PLATFORM

Nonnie Jules, Presenter

NJ Logo1 (1)

As writers, we blog about many different things. We blog about our family and friends, how much we do (or don’t) exercise, politics, and even the food we eat. But, unless you’re a family therapist, a fitness guru, a politician or a foodie, none of these are your platforms UNLESS they are all you speak about, the majority of the time.

Many writers pop onto the scene and want the world to know them as being “good at everything,” and although there is a strong possibility they are, readers don’t care to know this. Readers want to believe that they are reading material from EXPERTS, and although we’d love to be, we can’t be EXPERTS at everything. So, that is when you need to establish your author platform.

I actually have two main platforms:  CHILDREN & SUPPORT (although I must admit, that I’m pretty good at writing about a multitude of things). If you were to mention my name to any number of people and ask: “What is her platform?” they would probably respond with “Parenting and children, but she’s always trying to teach the importance of support, as well.”  Now, although they might name one as my main platform, notice how the other is also tied into their response.   WHY? Because these two areas are what I write about, talk about and live the most.  (I should also add Living Decently to my platform, as that is an issue that I tend to lend a ton of focus to, as well).

I am known as THE GOOD MOMMIES’ Mommy.  Its typical for me to stand in line at the market and a parent or someone who recognizes me, walks over and asks:  “Aren’t you the good mommies’ mommy?” My first book, THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE TO RAISING (ALMOST) PERFECT DAUGHTERS, placed me in that position online.  What everyone may not know is, I am also that mommy in the real world. Raising great kids is typically ALL that I talk about;  it is what I am passionate about, it is what I live and breathe, and so, it is my main platform.  Of course, there are other things I tend to go on and on about, but not as much as this!

Now established, I am consulted by parents, print media outlets, parenting bloggers, and other organizations who recognize me as an “expert” in my field, and wish to use my advice for articles, interviews, and speaking engagements.  Parenting organizations in schools use my parenting guide as a fundraiser in their communities, and humbly, when I speak on the subject, many ears listen.

It’s an art to be able to write well under more than one genre, but first, become known for that one area that solidifies your place in our writing culture, so that readers are easily able to recognize and identify with you.  You’re not being put into a hole or a box, you are just carving out that special place, where your name recognition keeps your foot in the door for a wider range of opportunities.

Here are just a few tips to get you started on the road to building your author platform:

  1.  Pick a subject and become knowledgeable on the topic;
  2. Blog on your subject matter and build a following.  If your content is interesting, it will keep them coming back for more and they’ll also begin spreading the word of your blog to others;
  3. On social media, ensure that you use the appropriately dedicated hashtags for your main area of interest.  I tend to use #Parenting, #Kids, #Children in all of my tweets related to the subject of parenting.  For my blog posts on #support, that is the hashtag that I use. This draws those searching for information on these topics, to my info-filled tweets;
  4. Network with other entities, agencies, and bloggers, etc. in your field, so that you are able to offer guest contributions to their successful websites, blogs, and periodicals.  It’s OK to ask if you may contribute via guest articles and blog posts;
  5. Register and reach out to organizations in your area of interest so that they know who you are, and will keep you in mind when they need authors to speak at their engagements;
  6. Never turn down any media invitations, whether they are in print, radio or television;
  7. Join organizations in the area of your platform focus.  You will learn more from those who are traveling the same road as you are;
  8. Lastly, spend time sharing interesting material on your platform, via your social media forums.  This will increase your following, as well as pique the interest of those who find your social media content worth reading.  They’ll want more and will begin seeking out other areas of your writing, such as your books, blogs, etc.  They will also begin to associate you with that particular field.

If you’re not already, I’d like for you to follow me at WATCH NONNIE WRITE as I will continue to offer more tips to help you begin establishing and building a strong author platform.  What is it that you’re most passionate about? What is the one thing you’re actually KNOWN for? That could very easily serve as the medium you need, to establish your credibility with your new-found platform.

Thanks for spending this time with us.  If you have any further questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly at nonniejules@gmail.com.

***

SESSION ACCOMPANIMENT
(Here is a list of 7 questions you should ask yourself, to ensure that you are serious about building your author platform).

  •  What am I good at or what am I most interested in?
  • Am I passionate about this field or subject matter?
  • Am I willing to work hard to increase my knowledge of this subject matter?
  • Am I willing to further my education on the subject at an institution of higher learning?
  • Do I feel comfortable speaking intelligently on this subject matter to individuals and organizations, if asked?
  • Am I willing to spend the time building a blog which is focused on my platform?  This would include posting scheduled content, as well as growing my followers;
  • Am I willing to go beyond social media contact to reach out to those in my field who might be able to help grow awareness of my platform?  This means, am I willing to actually pick up the phone and make direct contact?

This is the quality of information you’ll find at our upcoming WC&BE.  Information that will help you to grow in your writing and the marketing of your books and blogs, etc.

Have you registered for the 2020 5th Annual RRBC WRITERS’ CONFERENCE & BOOK EXPO yet?

Have you JOINED RRBC?

Let us know your thoughts on this content and thanks for dropping by!  Please share and LIKE the page before leaving!

Pearls of #Literature on #Marketing, #Blogging, #Community & #Support, Pt. 7 #RRBC #RWISA

During our 4th Annual Writers’ Conference & Book Expo, I was scheduled to present a session on my “15 Pearls” of Literature on Marketing, Blogging, Community, and Support.  As it has worked out in the past (but won’t be the case anymore), I wasn’t able to get this session up in time but did get it done eventually – just not published.  Those who registered for that session will be getting 3 new sessions FREE during our upcoming 2020 WC&BE! 

This session on my “PEARLS…” will be shared here for all our members, in hopes that it will help in our quest to become more successful and better at marketing our work as we make connections that will benefit us professionally as well as personally.  These will be posted under our posting schedule of Mondays each week, in separate parts.

Welcome to Part 7!

TROLLING FOR TROUBLE

We should all know by now that the old adage, “Misery loves company” is true. Ever heard the term “troll” used online?  This term is often used to refer to those “haters” over in places like Goodreads-land (or those coming from other forums who continuously “troll” the RRBC site).  Now, I know some of you love Goodreads and that’s fine, but I tend to choose not to get too taken with people and places that are filled with ugly and negativity. It seems Goodreads was created specifically for these reasons.

Online, the term “troll” is used for those individuals who go around spreading negativity simply for sport.  They might give you a low review on Amazon just because … for no specific reason (or Goodreads, if your book is listed there).  They may not have even read your book, but in Goodreads-land especially, that’s OK – and from my experience with the forum, it’s also encouraged.  They do it just because they can.  With no one policing behavior in a forum, what is going to stop negative behavior from running rampant?  This is what goes on in that forum and others like it.

Today, we’re turning the table on “trolls,” or as I like to refer to them, trouble makers.

These people peruse sites looking for anything they can find wrong with someone’s book. If they don’t like the title, the cover, the author’s name … whatever it is they have decided to zoom in on, they find something to spark an ugly discussion about it. And, even if there is nothing wrong, let me tell you…they will create something. I call this trolling for trouble. There’s always a ring-leader who gets the other “trolls” all riled up and standing behind them in army-like fashion, until, that is, the one who the ringleader is attacking, stands up against them – then the ringleader somehow finds their way to the very back of the little “troll” army line. 

Even though these cowards (trolls”) are hiding behind their keyboards feeling tough, they feel defenseless when strong, intelligent words are thrown in their direction. You see, intelligence of any kind frightens them, as they are accustomed to using words that are used by people with very limited vocabularies. I don’t need to spell those words out for you … we all know the kinds of words I’m referring to. These “trolls” seek out books with sterling 5-star reviews and intentionally leave poor reviews just to put a dent in the author’s rating. (And by the way, I’m not referring to those of you who put a dent in a sterling 5-star undeserved track record when you leave an honest review. In those times, you’re doing a great service to your fellow readers and I applaud you for being brave enough to do so.)  What I’m referring to is what the “trolls” go around doing with negative intentions.  And how sick is that behavior?

I’m encouraging you to stand up to these bullies (“trolls”) and let them know that they are trolling for trouble in the wrong place. Let them also know that you will not be intimidated by their ugliness or the vulgarity of their very limited vocabularies. Show them that you will not back down from their little army of “troll” followers and that you will stand tall and strong until they go away.

We can’t please everyone all the time, but, we can surely keep these little troubled “trolls” on the run!

~ Nonnie Jules

***

Before you leave, would you mind hitting the LIKE button above, leaving a comment and sharing the page onto social media?  Thanks in advance!

Looking to belong to an awesome community of support where HONESTY and DECENCY in all things are strongly encouraged and highly valued?  Then, JOIN the Rave Reviews Book Club where you’ll never feel alone on your writing journey, the place always feels like home and your professional reputation doesn’t decline by association!

Pearls of #Literature on #Marketing, #Blogging, #Community & #Support, Pt. 6 #RRBC #RWISA

During our 4th Annual Writers’ Conference & Book Expo, I was scheduled to present a session on my “15 Pearls” of Literature on Marketing, Blogging, Community, and Support.  As it has worked out in the past (but won’t be the case anymore), I wasn’t able to get this session up in time but did get it done eventually – just not published.  Those who registered for that session will be getting 3 new sessions FREE during our upcoming 2020 WC&BE! 

This session on my “PEARLS…” will be shared here for all our members, in hopes that it will help in our quest to become more successful and better at marketing our work as we make connections that will benefit us professionally as well as personally.  These will be posted under our posting schedule of Mondays & Thursdays each week, in separate parts.

Welcome to Part 6!

ARE YOU PLAYING BY THE RULES OF PUBLISHING?

So, how did you fare in English 101? Did you get that evasive “A” that every overachiever chases or did you get that devilish “D” that scares most of us horribly? Well, fortunately, I am a self-proclaimed English major so we know what I was after.  I love English – I love words, and the dictionary is a book that I grew up reading as if it was my favorite novel. That being said, there is that part of English where (in my old age) I sometimes get stuck.

I admit to being a little too friendly with commas. I love commas! That’s obvious in my over-use of them sometimes. (Not very often, but, I willfully admit to having my moments).  Now, in defense of my use of commas, they keep us from running red lights, bumping head-first into each other, and, they tend to save lives – reading lives, that is, as they give us a chance to pause and breathe during those stories written by long-winded writers.  I won’t call your names, you know who you are.

When I ask are you playing by the rules of publishing, I’m referring to more than just your punctuation usage, though;  the rules of publishing go far beyond that. I mean, there are unwritten laws that, if broken, could send you spiraling straight into writers’ hell. (Yes, that’s a real place because I READ it somewhere.)

Do you write in 1st, 2nd or 3rd person consistently through-out one story, or, do you mix it up? Do you like to NOT use that comma in a salutation, such as “Hi, Harry?”  You know, there are people who are sticklers for things like that.  

But, there are those of us who go too far in breaking the rules of publishing and if you don’t know who you are, I’m pointing at you.  When you make huge mistakes and then say, “I did that intentionally,” or, “I like the way that looks,” you might be in trouble; not with the industry, but you’re making trouble for yourself. Let’s face it, some of those rules we can get away with breaking, but, others are a no-no and a definite book-kill.

Take the time to learn that which is most important in this industry, and sometimes what’s most important isn’t written in a manual – it’s listening to others and taking their good advice without defending your broken rules. Trust me, if those broken rules don’t bring you down, this industry surely will!

What rules do you tend to break in your writing?

~Nonnie Jules

***

Before you leave, would you mind hitting the LIKE button above, leaving a comment and sharing the page onto social media?  Thanks in advance!

Looking to belong to an awesome community of support?  Then JOIN the Rave Reviews Book Club where you’ll never feel alone on your writing journey and the place always feels like home!

 

The #RRBC #Community Shows Up! That’s What We Do! #AloneTogether

For those of you who missed out on attending today’s RATERS NOT HATERS Show, you missed a treat on so many levels.

This month’s show was held in our Zoom studio and the sense of community felt throughout the entire segment was so powerful.  As one of our members in attendance put it, “It felt just like a real book club setting.”  19 of us sat in a virtual room and did what we all love to do – we talked books!  And, with the author present, that made it even better!

The Coronavirus pandemic has us all locked away from the world – some of us more so than others (because some of us are actually obeying the laws of human decency and staying home so that we don’t hurt ourselves or anyone else around us).  But, as goes the commercials we’ve all been seeing on television since this crisis began, we’re not alone, we’re #AloneTogether.

This segment of RATERS NOT HATERS made us all feel powerfully alone together – face to face, with some of us connected via only our voices, but yet, the collectiveness of community resounded loudly.

RRBC is unlike any other organization around.  We’re not here to just park our books in the catalog and take support without ever giving it.  No, that’s not why I created this amazing organization.  We’re here to help push and propel each other to the highest of heights, and we can’t do that if we’re not showing up.  We can’t do that by sitting on the sidelines – taking and taking and taking, without ever giving.  And how do we give here at RRBC?  We show up for each other!

This is a special THANK YOU, first, to our co-hosts who made the show amazing (JOY NWOSU LO-BAMIJOKO & SHIRLEY HARRIS-SLAUGHTER);  secondly,  for those members from around the globe who set their alarms to get up early and join us (Wendy Scott and Robbie Cheadle), we’re so appreciative of you for that, by the way; and last but certainly not least, to those who just couldn’t wait to get into the studio with us today (Karl Morgan, Bette Stevens, Yvette Calleiro, Maura Beth Brennan, Rox Burkey, Jan Sikes, Flossie Benton-Rogers, Wanda Fischer & Linda Mims), I offer a heartfelt hug of gratitude to each of you!

These members took the time to help make the RATERS NOT HATERS show an awesome event!  Since it was the first time these co-hosts broadcast live via our Zoom studio, these members made that experience extra, extra special and memorable for them.

Now, sometimes it just pays to show up.  Not just because you know there will be a giveaway, but, because a supportive spirit is truly part of your spirit. 

During the month of May, we have 9 hot seats to fill between the RRBC & RWISA houses (BOOKS OF THE MONTH, “SPOTLIGHT” AUTHOR, MEMBER OF THE MONTH, RWISA “RISING” WRITER, #PUSHTUESDAY, guest interview on EYES ON THE BOOK, and let’s not forget to mention the many areas that will be profiled in the May issue of THE PIPELINE MAGAZINE)  and every single one of these members who “showed up” will have a hot seat.

But wait, I’m not finished.  Two of these lucky members will also receive an Amazon gift card (courtesy of Joy).

There are major changes coming to RRBC & RWISA as early as May 1st but the one thing that will never change here is our theme:  Those members who are the most SUPPORTIVE here, are the members who are the most SUPPORTED here!

They say to win you gotta play, but, today, you didn’t have to play at all – all you had to do was simply SHOW UP!

Thank you and CONGRATS to those who did!

***

If you joined us today in our Zoom studio, what was your experience?  

Pearls of #Literature on #Marketing, #Blogging, #Community, #Support, Pt. 3 #RRBC

During our 4th Annual Writers’ Conference & Book Expo, I was scheduled to present a session on my “15 Pearls” of Literature on Marketing, Blogging, Community, and Support.  As it has worked out in the past (but won’t be the case anymore), I wasn’t able to get this session up in time but did get it done eventually – just not published.  Those who registered for that session will be getting 3 new sessions FREE during our upcoming 2020 WC&BE! 

This session on my “PEARLS…” will be shared here for all our members, in hopes that it will help in our quest to become more successful and better at marketing our work as we make connections that will benefit us professionally as well as personally.  These will be posted under our posting schedule of Mondays & Thursdays each week, in separate parts.  

Welcome to Part 3!

IN WRITING, WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA IS REALLY FOR

I came on the social media scene over 9 years ago, and although many tried to tag me as a “newbie,” I quickly shed that tag after two months of being online. Back then, many would ask how I managed to learn as much as I did about social media (namely Twitter) as quickly as I did. Well, I’m not one to sit around on my laurels waiting for anything, so I jumped right in and learned all that I could … as fast as I could.

I noticed a lot of people on Twitter (as I still do) offering what they brand as support by tweeting or RTing things that matter not to anyone. I notice RTs of food (you know, what someone had for lunch), I notice RTs of funnies (on some days these do come in handy,  but mind you, I said some days … we can do without your funny emojis filling up our timeline every minute on the minute), and, I see full-blown conversations about absolutely nothing taking place on Twitter. You know, aside from allotting only 140 characters per tweet, I’m told Mr. Tweet-Man is still today, sitting, watching and waiting for you to tweet more tweets than he has allotted you for the day. Once you’ve broken his rule, he calls the tweet-cops on you! And what do they do? You guessed it – they arrest you and put you in Twitter-Jail! Now, Mr. Tweet-Man’s policy on how long you have to stay in Twitter-Jail is something I know nothing about.

In writing, social media is for a certain purpose … and that is to get the word out about your writing, whether on your blog site or via the books you’ve written.  And, although bonds are formed and friendships are made while on social media, it still remains a marketing tool for us, and we must never allow the personal part of it to interfere with our real reasons for being there.  I am on social media for ONE reason and ONE reason only … and that is to Profile, Promote and Propel my books and my writing, while also doing the same for my fellow authors. Because I’m a serious writer, I cannot afford to log onto Twitter for daily socializing.  I get on there, I do what I need to do, and then I get back to writing, which bears repeating, is the reason I’m on social media in the first place.

Now, don’t get me wrong … I’m not saying that you should not socialize on social media;  what I am sharing is that there is a way to spend time on social media, getting to know those you support and the ones who support you, while ensuring that the time you’re spending on Twitter, Facebook, etc. is not wasted time. Remember, we can’t get that time back and we are working hard to become bestsellers here, right?

If by chance there is the occasional second where someone has engaged me in a not-so-work-related tweet-chat, I utilize that time to the max.  90% of the time I tend to always include some type of marketing bit, even in those personal tweets … either at the beginning or at the end of the chat.  Here’s an example of one such tweet: “@sharrislaughter Thx 4 the plug. How’s ur day going? #DaydreamsDaughter… amazon.com/dp/B00GLM2VVM.” Notice how even in the midst of a quick personal chat, I have injected the title and purchase link to my book.

Even though the person you are tweeting may not click the link, imagine how many times that tweet will travel around the world and somebody who you might not ever have the chance to make direct contact with, just might see it, and click it.  I call that “not wasting a tweet!” You should look at it the same way and follow my lead.  You never know who might happen to notice that tweet, click on the link and then purchase your book or become a follower of your blog.

Social media is about support. We get on there, we engage and we garner support for our work, as others are doing the same for theirs. If it is your goal to be a true supporter of others, take the time to RT something of substance for your tweet-colleagues. Don’t RT the first random thing you see on their timeline.  When I see a RT of, say for instance a BlogTalkRadio interview that is clearly marked with a date and time in the distant past, my blood begins to boil.  That says to me the person behind the RT is not someone who even knows what they are sending out into the world because they didn’t take the time to read the tweet.  If they had, surely they wouldn’t have retweeted it, right?  They could be retweeting child pornography for all they know;  they saw “a” tweet, and hit their RT button without even reading the tweet first. 

If you want to at least give the illusion that you are being supportive, take the time to find a tweet that will do the person you are RTing, the most good – one in which their work is being promoted. It’s not a hard thing to do at all, and I assure you, they will greatly appreciate you for going that extra mile for them.

If you don’t want to just give the illusion that you’re supportive, step up your game and do more than just RT someone.  When you happen upon their tweet of substance, actually take a moment and click the link to see what it’s all about.  If they are sharing their blog post, read it and then leave an engaging comment, LIKE the post, FOLLOW their blog, and then share the post onto your social media forums before leaving.  They’ll probably be so appreciative of you that they’ll take the time to seek you out and support you in the same manner. 

If someone is sharing their book link to Amazon, B&N or some other online retailer, click the link and support by picking up a copy of their book, whether by purchasing it or snagging it as a FREE copy.  Whatever you do, do it better than the person who is only giving the illusion of being a real supporter.  There are too many of those common folks on social media merely hitting a RT or share button – that’s all they’ll ever do and as my mom used to say, “that’s all they’re good for.”  Just as you want to be known as a social media substance supporter, those are also the kinds of supporters you want backing you.

Always utilize every marketing tool that you have at your disposal to promote your work – don’t allow one second of it to go to waste. We don’t know when Mr. Tweet-Man is going to change his mind and maybe decide to start charging us a hefty fee to use his service, or when he might decide to retire and just shut it down for good. Let’s make the best of social media while we can and wherever we can. 

**I’ve mainly used Twitter here as my example but know that there are many other social media forums for you to promote your work via, while also engaging in building those relationships online that will benefit you well into the future.  Best of luck!**

What kind of social media supporter are you?  Leave us a comment down below – we’d love to know!

By the way, I’m looking for some really good books to read while on my upcoming two-week reading vacation.  If you have a book that you’d like for me to dig into, leave the title and your author name down below, and I’ll be purchasing and reading it soon!  

If you’re also feeling that generous, drop by the RRBC catalog and check out some of our awesome member-reads there!  They’d love your support!

~Nonnie Jules

***

Looking for a supportive community to belong to?  RRBC is the best around!  Join Us and you’ll see!

Pearls of #Literature on #Marketing, #Blogging, #Community, #Support, Pt. 1 #RRBC #RWISA #RRBC_Community

During our 4th Annual Writers’ Conference & Book Expo, I was scheduled to present a session on my “15 Pearls” of Literature on Marketing, Blogging, Community, and Support.  As it has worked out in the past (but won’t be the case anymore), I wasn’t able to get this session up in time but did get it done eventually – just not published.  Those who registered for that session will be getting 3 new sessions FREE during our upcoming WC&BE in August! 

This session on my “PEARLS…” will be shared here for all our members, in hopes that it will help in our quest to become successful in these areas.  These will be posted under our posting schedule of Mondays & Thursdays each week, in separate parts.  

Often times we think that to become a successful author, all we need to do is publish a book, but, that is so far from the truth.  To be successful in this business, you must learn and master the tricks of the trade in the marketing arena, blogging arena, support arena, and you must be aligned with, and have a strong sense of community – self, and others.

All of the pearls that I will be sharing are integral to our success.  I believe so strongly in these pearls, that I’m happy to share them with you!

Welcome to Part 1!

ALIGN YOURSELF WITH LIKE-MINDED PEOPLE
When you became an author, did you imagine that you would have everything in common with all the other folks who wore the same title? Did you think it would be easy simply because you were in the company (virtually, so to speak) of other writers?
When I became a published author, I was initially met with more resistance than offers to connect or offers of assistance.  These people were clearly only out for their own best interests and had absolutely no desire to help a newbie author who was just getting started in this business.

Then, I met a friend, and as we connected, we not only felt that we were walking the same road, experiencing the same challenges and successes equally, but it became apparent to us that we were also headed in the very same direction. She and I began referring to each other as “SUCCESS PARTNERS.” We emailed each other daily our top 5 things that we needed to get done that day, and we encouraged each other to stay the course of our goals.  It was clear early on that we were of like-mind. We were two moms, both published authors, who battled daily the challenges of our personal lives as well as the struggles of getting our books marketed and sold. I understood her highs and lows and she understood mine.

It’s so important to align yourself with people you have shared values with and those who share your ideals on success and support, you know…the ones who are going to lift you up and not try to tear you down. The ones that you’re able to call on, lean on and garner support from when you need it most, are the kinds of individuals you want to be aligned with and always in the company of.

There are tons of communities all around the world and thanks to the World Wide Web, we’re all just a keystroke away.  Just make sure that you are aligned with the ones that feel like the right fit for you and what you are trying to accomplish.  Just because they appear to be “sweet” via their tweets, doesn’t mean they are, so be careful, and just as is true in the real world, choose your friends carefully and wisely – we are always judged by the company we keep … even online.

Are you aligning yourself with like-minded individuals online and off?  Have you found a community that builds you up?  We’d love to hear about it!

~Nonnie

Better Late Than Not At All… #RRBC #RWISA #History

There are 29 days in February this year and on day 22, I am just posting recognition of BLACK HISTORY MONTH.   I’m going to share someone who inspires me greatly.

HARRIET TUBMAN

Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Rossc. March 1822[1] – March 10, 1913) was an American abolitionist and political activist. Born into slavery, Tubman escaped and subsequently made some 13 missions to rescue approximately 70 enslaved people, including family and friends,[2] using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. During the American Civil War, she served as an armed scout and spy for the Union Army. In her later years, Tubman was an activist in the struggle for women’s suffrage.

Born a slave in Dorchester County, Maryland, Tubman was beaten and whipped by her various masters as a child. Early in life, she suffered a traumatic head wound when an irate slave owner threw a heavy metal weight intending to hit another slave, but hitting her instead. The injury caused dizziness, pain, and spells of hypersomnia, which occurred throughout her life. After her injury, Tubman began experiencing strange visions and vivid dreams, which she ascribed to premonitions from God. These experiences, combined with her Methodist upbringing, led her to become devoutly religious.

In 1849, Tubman escaped to Philadelphia, then immediately returned to Maryland to rescue her family. Slowly, one group at a time, she brought relatives with her out of the state, and eventually guided dozens of other slaves to freedom. Traveling by night and in extreme secrecy, Tubman (or “Moses“, as she was called) “never lost a passenger”.[3] After the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 was passed, she helped guide fugitives farther north into British North America (Canada), and helped newly freed slaves find work. Tubman met John Brown in 1858, and helped him plan and recruit supporters for his 1859 raid on Harpers Ferry.

When the Civil War began, Tubman worked for the Union Army, first as a cook and nurse, and then as an armed scout and spy. The first woman to lead an armed expedition in the war, she guided the raid at Combahee Ferry, which liberated more than 700 slaves. After the war, she retired to the family home on property she had purchased in 1859 in Auburn, New York, where she cared for her aging parents. She was active in the women’s suffrage movement until illness overtook her, and she had to be admitted to a home for elderly African Americans that she had helped to establish years earlier. After her death in 1913, she became an icon of courage and freedom.

~ Source: Wikipedia

Two nights ago my husband and I watched the movie HARRIET on cable TV.  If I had to rate the movie, I would give it 4-stars as it had less of what I was expecting for a movie depicted in the 1800s.  As an example, a slave woman was yelling out and calling her Massa (yes, I’m here to educate today, my Darlings – it was not Master) the devil and evil.  He blew her off with a wave of his hand, so we know this was not a correct depiction of what would have really happened back then.

What truly moved me was the strength of HARRIET – this is why I have chosen to post this piece about her – for those of you who think you know, but have never really bothered to dig deeper into this heroine they called MOSES.

Finally, I’m leaving you with the trailer to the movie which includes the movie’s theme song, STAND UP.  Now, I’m just seeing this, but I was disappointed to find that actress and singer, Cynthia Erivo performed this song at the 2020 Oscars and she was so elegant doing so. (Yes, I went back and googled the performance).

Black, White, Yellow, Brown or Blue, please take a moment to view this trailer in its entirety.  It moved me to tears.

 “You don’t have to be oppressed to disagree with the oppressor. Change only comes when we all take a stand.” ~ Nonnie Jules

What do you think?  Encouraged to see the movie now or, learn a bit more about HARRIET?  Have you seen the movie?  If so, what did you think about it?

Thanks for dropping by!

WHAT DOES ACTIVE SUPPORT LOOK LIKE TO YOU? #RRBC #RRBC_COMMUNITY #RWISA

Blue Marketing Strategies Blog Banner

“When you are down, look up at me.  My extended hand is your rope.” 

~Nonnie Jules

***

When I created the RAVE REVIEWS BOOK CLUB it was out of a need to offer something that I noticed missing from this virtual world that we all so boldly live in.  I came onto this scene in 2012 and I remember asking for “help.”  Help to host my tours, help to create my book cover, help to help me grow…oh, yes, I asked for help and I got minimal.  But, what I did get an abundance of was “No” – the sense that I had not been around long enough to ask or even expect someone who had been on social media longer than I, to help me.  A fellow author actually popped in my DM one day to say to me, “You’re a newbie.  You’ve not been around long enough to ask us to help you.  You’ve got to pay your dues.”  My dues?  Had I unknowingly joined a club that I didn’t want to be in, especially if this was their way of thinking?  I was merely asking for help to host my first blog tour.  The audacity of me!

I soon learned that there were many like her.  This crab mentality of keeping others down or the thinking that if you get ahead, I’m left behind, permeated my virtual airwaves and yet, fueled a fire inside of me that to this day, has not been extinguished.  Unfortunately for some, I was never taught the word “NO” or maybe I was but I wasn’t paying attention – the one lesson I chose to ignore.  Nevertheless, accepting NO when I want YES is not in my DNA… it is not the blood running thru my veins.  Her assuming that she would deter me, only propelled me into something bigger.  I may have been a newbie then, but, very quickly, Nonnie Jules was a (virtual) household name.

It was the end of 2013 when the idea of this awesome book club came to mind and I sought out those wonderful people I had met on Twitter to join me.  By now, you know all their names and I proudly share that most of them are still just as awesome today in the way they support others, as they were back then.

Aside from instilling that only honest reviews were to come from the RRBC camp, one of the core purposes of this club has always been to show our fellow members a level of support unheard of in this industry.  Our mentality is the more we give, the more we’ll receive, and what we put in, is what we’ll get back tenfold.  For those members who have followed this pattern of thinking, this has been and still is the case today, and those members feel an overwhelming sense of support and community never before felt anywhere else!

But, no matter how much we say it, how many places we put it in print or even how loudly we scream it, there are still those on our roster who park their books in our catalog and disappear, or, who remain on our roster and do absolutely nothing for anyone else.  It’s easy to know who these people are…all you have to do is follow the breadcrumb trails that lead to their social media feeds.  If every tweet is all about them and their book(s), their mindset is not staid on the RRBC model of support.

So, as a member of RRBC, what does support and active membership look like to you? 

In answer to this question, I have a very clear picture of what I know support and active membership to be within RRBC and here it all is…

Support and active membership looks like a twitter feed filled to the brim or even overflowing with tweets of support for the work of others.  Retweets are OK, but, it sure is nice to know that you went the extra mile and sent out an actual tweet in favor of someone else;

Support and active membership looks like a Facebook share which sparks a discussion around someone else’s work instead of your own;

Support and active membership looks like you showing up to support a fellow author’s blog tour and purchasing their book after visiting one of the stops;

Support and active membership looks like reading the books of your fellow authors and then posting reviews in a timely fashion.  We all have busy lives, but, I know for a fact that we make time for those things deemed most important to us;

Support and active membership looks like sharing the club and its value to others, encouraging them to JOIN US.  The more awesome members we have on our roster, the more support we can give to one another;

Support and active membership looks like you showing up to a book club discussion to support those members of the club whose books have been selected as a BOOK OF THE MONTH and staying to participate in the discussion (whether there’s a giveaway at the end or not).  When your book finds its way to that hot seat, won’t you expect the same kind of support?

Support and active membership looks like you following each leg of the club’s “SPOTLIGHT” Author tours and reading each blog post and leaving a comment at each stop;

Support and active membership looks like you taking the time to participate in the #PeanutGallery of one, some or even all of our RAVE WAVES shows each month.  We host 5 per month;

Support and active membership looks like you participating in some of our CLUB EVENTS, if not always, at least some of the time. Those of you who can never make it to support in the #PeanutGalleries because you’re “working,” etc., yet, you take off work to be interviewed, we’ve got our eyes on you;

Support and active membership looks like you taking part in our CLUB PROGRAMS.  Not because they’ll benefit you and your books, but because they just might help someone else, while also benefiting you and your books;

Support and active membership looks like syncing your personal calendar with all of the events that are on our CALENDAR OF EVENTS so you’ll know when something is happening inside of our club so that you’re able to prepare to participate;

Support and active membership looks like you chipping in to volunteer and help out around the club.  We have lots going on and its all to benefit our members, but we have only a few hands on deck to get it all done;

Support and active membership looks like you signing on to become a member of our uber-supportive TWEET SUPPORT TEAM.  It only takes about 15 minutes out of your life, two days per week.  We know that you gladly accept this support so how about spending some time on the other end of that, giving a little in return?

Support and active membership looks like you registering to become a “SPOTLIGHT” Author Blog Tour Host.  This introduces your blog to a host of new visitors and followers while you’re supporting a fellow member;

Support and active membership looks like familiarizing yourself with our FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS and CODE OF CONDUCT to ensure that you are following the club’s rules and not harming your fellow members;

Support and active membership looks like you ensuring that your membership is always in a COMPLIANT status.  Taking the time to ensure that you are purchasing, reading and reviewing at a minimum at least 4 books per year, is such an easy thing to do.  Ensuring that your books remain in the catalog due to your COMPLIANT membership status is imperative to your success as an author;

Support and active membership looks like you engaging with your fellow members around RRBC, getting to know them better and allowing them to get to know you better.  We’re a fickle bunch here – we don’t usually support you if we don’t know who you are and we know who ALL our supportive and active members are.

You see, when you are supporting your peers, they along with so many others are supporting you.  You are but one person trying to spread the word of your written work, but imagine what kind of exposure you’re getting when the masses stand behind you with their support.

So, in a nutshell, that IS what support and active membership looks like here at RRBC.  Where do you fall on the spectrum of support and active membership?  Are you giving more than you’re taking or is it the other way around?  Be honest.  It’s what we do best here at RRBC.

~Nonnie Jules

***

Thanks for dropping in!  We’d love to hear your thoughts on today’s post, so please don’t leave without sharing a comment with us, as well as hitting the LIKE button below.

{If you are an RRBC member and would like to guest post on our site with a writing-related post that our readers might benefit from, please CONTACT US and let us know.  Our blogging schedule allows for posts on Mondays and Thursdays each week.}

Not a member of RRBC?  JOIN US!