Is your author website a commercial website?

 

You write books. You have a website, where you offer those books. You also write blog posts and you consider your website to primarily be an information site. Actually, however, its a commercial site and the reason its a commercial site is because you are selling books on the site. If you sell a single product on your site, you now have a commercial website. The reason I bring this up, is because I think for many authors they don’t necessarily think of themselves as owning a business. They’ve written a book, and that’s what they think it is…a book, but the book is much more than just a book. It’s a product, a commercial good with your name on it.

Recently I was contacted by Getty Images because of a picture I used on one of my websites. You can read the story here. In their letter to me they explained that my site was a commercial website (which is true because its a business), but it got me thinking about my other website and I realized that was a commercial website as well and that the criteria for establishing if something is a commercial website seems to boil down to whether or not you are using the site to sell something (ergo you run a business).

You may not have thought of your website as a commercial site, but its worth considering that even if you don’t other people do, and this consequently effects you in certain ways. You may not be taking full advantage of business deductions related to your site or products. You may also not be accurately reporting information that needs to be reported for the purposes of taxes. It’s important that you recognize what your site is and treat it accordingly, as well as recognize that you don’t just have a commercial website, but also a commercial enterprise, albeit one that may be limited to selling copies of your books.

Another reason you want to be clear about this is because if your site is deemed commercial it can limit what you can use on your site. For example if you are using pictures on a site, but your site is considered commercial you need to be careful about what pictures you use and make sure that if you are using “free” pictures that they are free to use even if you are a commercial site (with proper attribution). That’s just one example of how website being categorized as commercial can effect your choices of what content you are putting on the site. So take a look at your website. Do you want it to just be an information site or do you want to sell your books on it. Know what the distinction is so you can make the appropriate choices.

Vocal Magick The User Friendly Guide to Your Most Adaptable Ritual Tool by Bill Duvendack Now Available!

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Vocal Magick by Bill Duvendack now available!

When you begin to create your reality, it may seem daunting, complex, and/or frustrating, but what if you already have the most effective and powerful tool at your disposal?

Through exercising control over your language and speech, you can create many powerfully profound changes in your consciousness. By understanding how to accomplish these changes, you can put yourself in a position to be more in control of yourself and your life. Being mindful and aware of these and related subjects, allows you to heighten your awareness to discover that language is one of the most powerful tools you have.

Within this book, you will look at applications, universal laws, and address the use of subtleties. This will open the door to profound shifts in not only how you view reality, but also what you can do about it!

How to Use Youtube for Marketing Part 3

Youtube

Once you’ve set up your YouTube channel and learned how to use its features, its time to start actually using it to connect with your audience. The content you create needs to speak to the interests of your audience, while at the same time being concise. Your YouTube channel is a lot like a blog, albeit with a visual format. The following tips can help you make useful videos that grab the attention of your target audience.

1. Be consistent. If you are going to do a channel, shoot and upload a video to YouTube at least once a week. By consistently pushing out videos you’ll grow your subscriber base. The professional channels I’ve observed typically seem to post at least once a week or several times a week, but not much more than that.

2. Keep your videos short. I keep my videos to around 3 or 4 minutes (unless it’s a webinar recording). If your video is longer than that, people will be less likely to watch it. Also you need to make the first 15 seconds count in terms of grabbing people’s interest. Otherwise they’ll move on to another video.

3. Series can be a useful way to generate content. I’ve found that one way to generate content and hook people into watching multiple videos is to break a topic into a series. For example, I’m doing a series on pop culture magic on my YouTube channel. By having such a series I am able to talk about the topic at length, but break it up into little videos that nonetheless grab the interest of my audience, because they are short and focused, but also indicate that more content will be coming.

4. Be animated and relaxed when talking to the camera. People don’t relate well to robotic presentations. Relax and let your passion for your topic show through. Laugh, make gestures and otherwise be yourself, because a lot of what makes a video appealing is the authenticity of the person.

5. Post your videos on various sites. If you want to get more subscribers, you need to share your videos on different social media sites.

6. Reply to comments. Sometimes you’ll get comments. Make sure you reply to them within reason as this helps increase your engagement and gives people more reason to continue watching your videos.

Do you have any additional tips you wish to share? Leave a comment below.

 

A Different City by Tanith Lee now available

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A Different City by Tanith Lee is now available.

Night is falling, and shadows are gathering in crowds across the city, bronze and sable, flickering, or still as stone.

There is always an audience here, for anything – human, beast or object – that comes close to tell its story, or betray its deadly secret…

What now? Heartless unkindness – lust for riches – suppressed hatred and rage honed to a razor–? Or some epic sorrow passed into a silver scream.

Above everything, the drifting and unavoidable webs of the spinning City gods.

So, will you listen in the shadows, or become yourself a story-teller in the bronze half-light?

Or do you have another mission here, in Marcheval?

A new triumphant trio of dark fantasy stories, in the vein of Tanith Lee’s previous imaginary city novels of Paradys and Venus.

How to use Youtube for Marketing part 2

Youtube

In my previous post, I shared some tips on how to set-up and use a YouTube video channel for your marketing. In this post I am going to share some additional tips on how to use YouTube effectively. Just setting up a video channel and shooting videos isn’t enough. There are features that YouTube offers that you can use to turn your channel into a stream of profit as well as enhance the videos you have. These features can help you with your marketing efforts, and help you continue to build your branding presence.

Monetize your videos. YouTube videos can be monetized. You need to have a Google account (such as Gmail) and an Adsense account. When you monetize your videos, advertisements will show on those videos. If people click on those advertisements, you receive income for that click. You can’t click the ads yourself, but monetizing your videos can provide another source of income, and they are for the most relatively non-intrusive.

Annotations are your friends. Another feature I like is the ability to annotate videos. Annotations allows you to add written commentary to your video. I typically use it to direct people to my other videos. The benefit of doing that is that it increases the chance that they’ll watch those other videos. This can be especially useful if you create a series on a specific topic and want people to watch the previous or next videos in the series.

Add your Logo and get subscribers. You can add a logo to your videos (it shows up in the upper right hand of the video). The logo can be a company logo or you can come up with a symbol from one of your books. When people click on the logo, it offers them a way to subscribe to your video channel. You want subscribers, because they see your videos whenever you release them.

Using these features can help you enhance your videos. There are other features you can also explore…so take a bit of time and explore them. Also watch other videos to see what other people are doing. In my next post, I’ll share some additional tips on how to make the most of your YouTube marketing.

How to Use Youtube for your Marketing part 1

Youtube

I recently created two YouTube channels for my respective businesses and as a way to market my books. Much like any other marketing medium YouTube has its dos and don’ts which can help you in your own marketing efforts. I think that much as podcasts and blogs are an essential part of an authors marketing platform, so too is YouTube because it provides another medium of interaction and can be shared across multiple platforms. With all that said, here are some tips that can help you establish your YouTube presence.

1. Get a good quality webcam. You may have a webcam that comes with your computer, but it probably won’t shoot high quality videos. You can pick up better quality webcams at Best Buy or other retail locations (or online) that shoot better quality video. It’s worth it because the quality of video, both in terms of what people see and hear will be determined by the type of webcam you have. I have a logitech 270, which is pretty decent. I’ll eventually upgrade it, but for now it works in terms of the quality I’m looking for.

2. When shooting a video make sure you have good lighting and the right position for your webcam. You want the right lighting so that your face shows up in a consistent well lit manner, while you are shooting your video. You want to pick the right position so that you can get the right angle for the video. Make sure before you shot a video that you double check your appearance so that whatever you are wearing shows up in a complimentary manner.

3. Make your videos into organic conversations. Many people find making videos awkward. You can tell because they launch into long monologues about topics, which end up ultimately boring people watching the video. Keep your videos to 3 minutes or less, because you will typically lose Peoples’ interest if you go beyond that. And make the videos into conversations. You have two ways to do that. You can ask people to ask you questions and then shoot a video answering a question. Alternately you can pick a topic you want to discuss and then break it into chunks that focus on specific aspects of the topic. For example, I recently shot a video defining what pop culture is. My next video will define what pop culture magic and the one after that will explain why people practice pop culture magic. By breaking the topic into chunks, I make it easier to for people to watch the video.

In my next blog post I’ll share some more tips for using YouTube as a way to market your books and your expertise.

Pop Culture Grimoire 2.0 deadline coming up soon!!

 

The deadline for submissions for the Pop Culture Grimoire 2.0 is coming up soon. So far Emily and I have 4 submissions and a couple people who’ve expressed interest. If you have an interesting idea, we need you to submit a first draft by March 15th.

Email for inquiries and submissionsTaylor Ellwood

Megalithica Books, an imprint of Immanion Press (Stafford, U.K./Portland, OR, U.S.A) is seeking submissions for The Pop Culture Grimoire 2.0.

This anthology explores pop culture magic and Paganism in the 21st Century. We invite you to share your pop culture magic practice, pop culture Pagan spirituality, and your experiments, spells, and other workings that have integrated pop culture into your spiritual practice.

Here are some suggested topics to give you an idea of the focus of this anthology:

  • What is pop culture magic?
  • What is pop culture Paganism?
  • Pop culture spells
  • Your experiences with a particular fandom
  • Magic at conventions
  • Cosplay magic
  • Social media magic
  • Blending older mythology with pop culture
  • Your experiences sharing pop culture magic
  • Video Game magic
  • Pop culture music and magic
  • Pop culture art and magic

Rough drafts are due March 15, 2015. These drafts will be edited in a back-and-forth process with the editors. Essays should be 1500-4000 words, although if your work falls outside those limits, do submit it – we can discuss this during the editing process. Drop us an email if you are unsure whether your idea fits into the content. The sooner you start the communication process the better, as after the deadline we won’t be considering additional ideas.

Essay requirements:

  • Citations for all quoted, paraphrased, or otherwise unoriginal material
    • Bibliography of works cited
    • Prefer APA format

Write in your voice! If you’re academically inclined or trained, feel free to be as intelligent and technical as you like. If your work entirely talks in the first person about your own experience, please include this also. There is a wide range of voices, and we are interested in being as inclusive of style as possible.

Accepted contributors will receive a free copy of the anthology when it is published and additional copies sold at 40% off the cover price to contributors. All contributors will be provided with a contract upon final acceptance of their essays, not when they are accepted for editing. If your essay is not accepted for the anthology, we will tell you after the first round of edits.

The anthology will be edited by Taylor Ellwood and Emily Carlin.

Taylor Ellwood is the author of Pop Culture Magick, Magical Identity, and other books on magic. He is also the managing non-fiction editor of Immanion Press. He can be found online at http://www.magicalexperiments.com

Emily Carlin, author of Defense Against The Dark, is a Wellesley grad, lawyer, geek and specialist in Seattle haunted lore.  She presents regularly at PantheaCon, and teaches defensive and shadow magick at
http://www.shadowkrafting.com

Immanion Press is a small independent press based in the United Kingdom. Founded by author Storm Constantine, it expanded into occult nonfiction in 2004 with the publication of Taylor Ellwood’s Pop Culture Magick. Today, Immanion’s nonfiction line, under the Megalithica Books imprint, has a growing reputation for edgy, experimental texts on primarily intermediate and advanced pagan and occult topics. Find out more at http://www.immanion-press.com.