All Posts by Erin K Casey

How Much Should I Pay for a Ghostwriter?

A motivational speaker / business coach recently sent me a great question about ghostwriting. Because there are so many variables (and more than a few scams out there), I wanted to share the question and my response with you, too.

Question

What are upsides & downsides to getting book done with a ghostwriter? [I’m] Getting bids from ghostwriters offering to write 20,000- to 30,000-word books using my speaking and coaching recordings at a cost of $250-$400.

Answer

Ghostwriting is an excellent option for people who simply don’t have time to write or who have a story to tell but don’t have the skill or language background to do it well. That’s the upside.

The downside is that it isn’t inexpensive.

A fee of $250-400 is exceptionally low—barely covering the cost of transcription—even for a short book. That might equate to around $8-15/hour if the writer could knock out 2,000 words an hour. As a professional, would you work for that rate?  Continue reading

Want to publish a book? Do this first.

When most people think about publishing a book, they think about getting an agent, or submitting a proposal, or figuring out self-publishing (or what’s also known as indie-publishing). But before you get there, in fact to HELP you get there, you have to get great at sharing your message.

It may sound silly, or too simple, but to succeed with publishing you have to actually share your message. And that can be scary!

I remember the first paying article I ever turned in to an editor. It was actually on paper, and as I handed it over to the editor, my hands were shaking so badly that the paper rattled. The article wasn’t personal; it was an assigned piece. I don’t remember the topic, but I do remember the feeling of being vulnerable and putting my words and myself out there for someone else to edit, critique and comment on. Continue reading

Finding Your Blogging Voice

Aaron Hogan holding his first copy of Shattering the Perfect Teacher Myth. An awesome moment for any author!

Blogging is one of those things that most authors, coaches and speakers know we “should” be doing. It helps us test our ideas. It allows us to gauge audience interest. It provides an opportunity to reflect on our experiences and explore new concepts. And it’s a practice that I have yet to master. That’s why I love to hear from people who are doing it well. Aaron Hogan included some great insights on the why and how of blogging in his new book, Shattering the Perfect Teacher Mythand he graciously offered to share some of his thoughts on blogging here. He speaks from an educator’s viewpoint, but I believe his message is applicable to any field. If you’ve been thinking about blogging or about blogging more consistently, Aaron’s advice will help you find your voice, figure out what to write about, and fit it into your busy schedule.

Finding Your Blogging Voice

Everyone has experiences that are worth sharing. That includes you. (Yes, even with the excuses that just ran through your head.)

But it’s not enough to simply have some experiences that are worth sharing. Thomas Paine said, “I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection.” Make no mistake–blogging, or any other form of sharing your learning, is an act of bravery. I love that Paine isn’t saying that it’s brave because there’s a big audience waiting or because of what others might think. I think his claim recognizes how hard it is to thoughtfully reflect on our own experiences. What he’s talking about is disruptive. 

Make no mistake--blogging, or any other form of sharing your learning, is an act of bravery. ~ @Aaron_Hogan Click To Tweet

It’s courageous. It’s risky, yet rewarding. Yet it’s surprisingly simple for you to pull off as a blogger.

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Get Scrappy with Your Book Promotion

I loved watching my friend Terri Sjodin on Today this morning promoting Scrappy: A Little Book About Choosing to Play Big. As I watched, I noticed a few things she did extremely well. Here are a four quick nuggets from her interview that may help you promote your book:

  1. She never says “buy my book!” (There’s no better way to turn off listeners and ensure you won’t be invited back.)
  2. Instead, she appeals to the audience’s need to connect with interviewers by offering valuable advice. When you do an interview about your book, the interviewer and audience don’t really want to know about you or your book. They want to know how you and your book can help them. They’re asking WIIFM (what’s in it for me). That’s what the conversation needs to be about.
  3. She drops the name of her book into the conversation naturally–smart and Scrappy!
  4. Her book came out in August 2016 and she’s still promoting it! SUPER Smart. The message: Keep sharing your message–and then share it again and again!

 

Too Much Is Not Enough

If you have an entrepreneurial spirit, chances are you like change. You like to shake things up. You don’t like to do the same thing over and over and over again. You like variety! And you hate feeling stuck.

Those are all excellent traits, but they come with a downside. How do I know? Because I have experienced both the upside and the downside of moving on.

Moving forward in your business can take you to great places. But moving on too quickly may mean that you never really get your message into the hearts and minds of the people you serve. And when it comes to marketing your book, moving on too quickly may mean that you are unintentionally sabotaging your book’s success.

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Author Q&A with Jen Forsthoff

I love all my authors. Truly.  I love that they are brave and generous enough to share their wisdom, experience, passion, knowledge, hopes, and imagination with the world. And each time a client becomes a brand-new author, I feel a little like a proud momma at graduation.

Jen Forsthoff makes me especially proud. Aside from being a joy to work with, Jen’s desire to help others is evident in every chapter of her new book, Chosen for Charlie. So imagine my delight when I received a text with a picture of her and sweet little Charlie holding the first copy of their book. Continue reading

Do I Have Anything New to Say?

What can I say that’s new or different from anything that’s already out there?

I hear this question weekly from people who want to write a book and share their stories. They worry that, with all the books, all the blog posts, and all the magazine articles that have already been written, their messages will sound like everyone else’s. Continue reading

Tips for Successful Writing Teams

Writing is very often a solitary task. We think and write in solitude. We rethink and revise the confines of the booth at the local coffee shop or home office. Alone.

That aloneness allows for productivity, banging out words and clarifying thoughts as they turn into words on the screen. But working with others is a unique experience that may help you become an even better writer. Continue reading

How to Choose a Title for Your Book

Books are judged by their covers. Authors know that. It’s why self-published authors spend weeks or even months—getting their covers just right. A traditionally published author doesn’t always have the freedom to choose and nitpick every detail of his or her cover, but the publishing house’s design and marketing teams likely spend even more time creating a cover that will sell. Colors, images, and font choices are all important, but a great cover begins with a great title. In fact, your book’s title may be even more important than the design you choose for your cover.
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