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Today we talk about writing successful trilogies, and successful settings with award-winning author Jayne Castel. Jayne writes epic Historical and Fantasy Romance. Her vibrant characters, richly researched historical settings and action-packed adventure romance transport readers to forgotten times and imaginary worlds. Jayne is the author of a numb…
 
If you’ve been considering taking the plunge into Amazon’s new serials platform, Kindle Vella (and yes, Wendy asked if they’d named it after her), then this is the episode for you! We talked to Virginia Milner, the principal product manager for Kindle Direct Publishing, and leader of the Kindle Vella project, all about the new platform. She explain…
 
We’re delighted to welcome back Roseanne Cheng of Evergreen Authors to the SPA for this special two-part interview. In this episode we follow on from Roseanne’s approach outlined in EP306 (go listen if you haven’t already!) This is another power-packed show with tips that blew our minds! We cover: Pinterest marketing secrets for authors Why doing L…
 
PART ONE of a two part series Today we welcome Roseanne Cheng of Evergreen Authors to the SPA and we’re going to talk about all about Book Marketing with Joy – especially for the reluctant or overwhelmed author. How do you decide what to do when people tell you to “Do All The Things”?! When the hustle is just too much, Roseanne has guidance for wha…
 
This is our second podcast with Veteran Police Detective Adam Richardson, who spent seventeen years of his almost 25-year law enforcement career as a detective. Today we talk to Adam about the police duty belt (gun belt), and what they carry on it. Adam goes into detail about each item and explains their use and when it would be needed. So strap in…
 
International bestselling author Rachael Herron joins us in the SPA today to talk to us about her writing journey, how she has created a career with multiple genres (including thriller (under R.H. Herron), mainstream fiction, feminist romance, memoir, and nonfiction about writing), how she deals with procrastination and blocks in her writing, and t…
 
Are you bored, or disheartened, with your writing? Many of us hit the wall of blahhsss or burnout. When persevering and grinding through it just doesn’t work, sometimes you really need to shake things up. From writing in a completely different genre, to rekindling your creative spark, we discuss how to cleanse your writing palate. Soon you’ll be mo…
 
Cozy Mysteries are hugely popular with readers and authors alike, and Nancy J. Cohen is with us today to share her fantastic advice for writing the successful cozy. Alongside her fiction, Nancy has also written the acclaimed “how to” for cozies “Writing The Cozy Mystery”, so we’re thrilled she agreed to give us the scoop on all things cozy. We disc…
 
Conventional wisdom says ‘bigger is better’ for books, but is that really true? In this episode, we discuss what different word counts and book sizes mean for successful publishers today, how you can use different sizes to your advantage, and how to find your sweet spot. The Right Size isn’t a black and white thing – in fact, there are 50 shades of…
 
Join Shar, Wendy, Cher and Trudi for the 300th EPISODE of the SPA Girls Podcast! EEEEEEKKKKK!!!!! Can you believe it? It’s been a crazy ride, but we’ve loved every minute of it. 🙂 In this episode we talk about having pride in your work and being proud of everything you’ve achieved, and then how to persevere in the face of all the odds! This is a fu…
 
Get Results Spending $100/month (or less!) Marketing doesn’t have to mean Big Bucks spent on advertising. In fact, some of the best marketing you can do is free or low cost. If you’re just starting out there probably isn’t much left in the budget for paid marketing. We’ve been there! In this episode, we’ve dug deep to find all the tools we used ins…
 
We’ve got a very special treat for you this episode – the incredibly talented and savvy, Ms Lucy Lennox, is in the house! Lucy saw extraordinary success straight out the gate, from when she first published her MM romance, Borrowing Blue, in November 2016. In fact, by her second month of publishing, Lucy was earning five figures per month! Since the…
 
Dive into this amazing episode with six-figure author Fallyn Briggs, where she discusses the hot topic of writing to trend v writing to market! She has spent most of her life within the pages of a book and now she is thrilled to have the opportunity to invite people into the worlds she creates. When Fallyn is not writing sweet romances, she is trav…
 
In this episode of the SPA Girls Podcast we talk about emotional wounds, and why they’re so important in developing your characters, and creating an awesome story! From possible wounds that you could give your characters, to how those wounds will develop the story, and how you can use them to amp up the tension, and create a story that your readers…
 
Celeste Barclay joins us to discuss finding your village and what doing so did for her. Celeste has published an incredible 27 books since 2017, primarily in historical romance. Her popular series includes the medieval The Clan Sinclair novels and The Highland Ladies series which has an impressive 15 individual books and counting. Before becoming a…
 
This episode we’re back “on the couch” with the SPA Girls to discuss tools and resources we’ve used to cope with the ever changing climate of self-publishing, AND those big life events that we all face at times. As always, we share our own experiences and hard-won tips for rolling with the punches and utilizing change as a tool for growth and learn…
 
You’re worth it and your work is worth it. This episode will blow your mind! Renee is passionate about helping authors and creatives get their mindset dialed to SUCCESS. So many nuggets of creativity and business wisdom in this episode, you’ll want to listen more than once. Scroll down for the link to join her private author’s Facebook group. USA T…
 
It’s a heated debate that occurs regularly in the bars and cafes of self-publishing-land – should you go exclusive to Amazon and get the benefits of Kindle Unlimited, or should you go wide, and get the benefits of being able to upload your books on retailers like Kobo, Apple Books and Nook, as well as Amazon? There are arguments both ways, and in t…
 
We absolutely have more than 9 tools we could recommend because we don’t all use the same ones. Listen to find out which ones we can’t do without and who uses the others and why. Cheryl has a few homemade spreadsheets and tables – no surprises there – which she may be inclined to share. 😉 Resources mentioned: Plottr – https://plottr.com PromoRepubl…
 
Getting edits and critiques is part of every author’s career, but sometimes it can feel worse than getting stung by a wasp on your eyeball. Like directly in the middle of your eyeball. By a really big wasp. Where it would really, really hurt. So that’s what we’re talking about this week in the SPA – how our thoughts on critiques have changed over t…
 
Writing bestselling romance with incredible character chemistry is something that NYT Bestseller Annika Martin excels in, and today she joins us in the SPA to give ALL THE TIPS! Annika, who also publishes romantic suspense as Carolyn Crane, has seen incredible success writing two books a year (on average) and publishing wide. This episode, she reve…
 
We have a terrible confession to make. The SPA Girls have no idea what we’re doing when it comes to Instagram (well, Shar does, but the rest of us have no idea) and TikTok. It’s true. Shocking, I know. So we got in an expert. Someone who could tell us everything we ever wanted to know about how to post on social media to engage with readers and dev…
 
Are you one or the other, or something in between? While Trudi is an outright plotter, Cheryl considers herself a hybrid and Wendy is a confirmed pantser. Shar isn’t with us today but we know she’s tried it all! But is this a hard and fast thing? You’ll find out when and how we plot and the struggles involved with pantsing. The differences intrigue…
 
Resistance. Fear. Procrastination. Avoidance. Most of us writers struggle with these challenges at some point in their career (or day!). This episode we cover everything from the struggle to finish a manuscript through to fear of publishing, and everything in between. This blogpost inspired today’s episode : http://positivewriter.com/scared-writer/…
 
Get ready to be inspired! Our guest today, USA Bestseller, Janie Crouch, writes passionate romantic suspense (both traditionally published and self-published) and she’s recently launched her indie Linear Tactical series to six-figure success. Janie is a winner and/or finalist of multiple romance literary awards including the Golden Quill Award for …
 
If you’ve ever considered starting up a Facebook reader group, then you need to listen to this episode. Lucy Score’s group is an example of a well run group that is positive, supportive and fun – everything you want in a reader group. She talks to us about how she set it up, and what makes it so great, as well as why she loves her readers so much. …
 
Success – Lucky or hard work? This episode we’re talking with Kaye Kennedy who had the successful experience we all hope for when we start out. Using her business acumen and spending years studying how to do it right, Kaye managed a million page reads in 6 months and she’s going to tell you how she did it. A CEO by day and a contemporary romance au…
 
Making six figures a year while publishing one book a year, isn’t the usual career path for most indies, but for our guest today, it absolutely is! We are thrilled to welcome Aus-Kiwi, Helen Scheuerer, to the SPA today. Helen is a talented YA Fantasy author who’s taken her traditional publishing education and transferred that to a highly successful…
 
This episode we’re thrilled to welcome Nat Connors, founder of Kindletrends (and fellow New Zealander #gokiwis) to the SPA! Nat has been a self-published fiction author since 2016, and is also a research academic and data scientist. Kindletrends is a weekly data newsletter that tells you all about what’s happening across 12 different genres in the …
 
Trying to figure out how to finish your book? Keep getting distracted or discombobulated? This is the episode for you! We break down the processes we use to plan and schedule a book, from start to finish, including everything from booking a cover designer to working with your editor. We show how easy it is to get your writing done, when you know ex…
 
For many of us, the thought of overcoming the technology barriers to self-publishing can be overwhelming and cause us to delay (or not try) publishing. Many authors have likely heard the talk about the all-important “meta data” and “algorithms” like they’re the bogeymen. Something to be avoided – and best done by someone else! WE GET IT. WE’VE BEEN…
 
It’s super easy to be overwhelmed by all the steps required to self-publish. Whether you’re a traditionally published author looking to self-publish now, or a new author straight out of the blocks, we break down the seven simple steps to self-publishing. Step 1: Write the Book Step 2: Get It Edited Step 3: Get a Cover Step 4: Write A Blurb Step 5: …
 
Today we’re responding to questions from listeners who are just starting their self-publishing journey. From earning expectations to how to learning “All The Things” and being overwhelmed, we’ve got you covered! Some of questions answered: What type of writing SHOULD I focus on? Is genre important for good earnings? Are my expectations realistic? H…
 
Today we’re joined by fellow Kiwi romance author – and one of the SPA Girls’ star pupils from their self-publishing workshops – ALEXA RIVERS. Alexa has written and published nine small town romance to date and has really nailed her plotting process, starting with a character. If you’ve been struggling to find a way to plot and love the idea of star…
 
Are your readers staying for the next book? This week’s podcast is all about read-through – ie what percentage of readers read from the first book in your series to the next, and onwards. Learn all about what it means, why it matters and how to increase your read through in this information-packed episode! We cover: * how to calculate read-through …
 
Inspired by a post from The Greater Good Science Center* at the University of California, Berkeley, today we’re guiding you through five golden questions or guidelines to ask yourself when you’re setting your 2021 writing / author business goals. Be warned – this is a different approach to the usual SMART goal systems, but it really resonated with …
 
Isn’t that what we’re all after? The ONE RIGHT answer to everything – the BEST newsletter strategy, the RIGHT way to sell books, the ONE secret to making ads work? Well, listen up folks because in this episode we’ve got the Magic Wand! Resources mentioned: Bella Andre with the SPA Girls http://www.selfpublishingauthorspodcast.com/spa-girls-podcast-…
 
Ever wondered why on earth you’re spending all this time writing? Ever think to yourself that maybe your writing isn’t that great? Ever think this self publishing lark is just too hard? Yeah, so have we. But this episode is all about how to throw away those dumb old negative thoughts, and learn how to believe in yourself and your writing! We talk t…
 
Celebrating the season with a quick recap of our Words For 2020. Hahahahahaha And then onto Important Burning Questions about our Christmas favorites. Sometimes controversial, always tongue-in-cheek, our “unplugged” conversation will hopefully add some Christmas cheer to your day. click here to watch the live recording Thank you for all your suppor…
 
You’ve had a great idea for a story – now how do you turn it into a workable outline? This is a “live action” recording where the SPA Girls take a “great” idea – an Elf who hates Christmas – into a workable outline! Probably NSFW, you’ll hopefully find this episode informative and a lighthearted break from holiday stress! And don’t forget to visit …
 
What do you do when you’re running out of steam and you’re only in the middle of the book? Or you’re just running out of steam in general? This episode we share our suggestions for getting yourself re-energized and moving again. Some topics we cover: writing sprints writing with others either in person or on zoom/skype sexy times add more conflict …
 
Bonus content is an awesome marketing tool that can be used in a variety of ways – from encouraging people to sign up to newsletters, to convincing them to buy the next book in the series, or thanking superfans for their ongoing support. This week we talk about the ways we’ve used the bonus content we’ve created for our readers, from bonus scenes a…
 
Want to make sure you give your first book the best possible chance of success… and then have readers auto-buying the next in your series? Then this is the podcast for you! This week we give you a checklist of elements for a successful first book in a series, before you even start writing a single word! We talk about everything – including the trop…
 
Why does Amazon choose someone else’s book over yours in a search? How do we make sure we’re using the best keywords for sales? What exactly is a keyword, anyway? We have all these answers and more for you in this info-packed episode! We’re joined again by the awesome and knowledgeable Dave Chesson, Founder and CEO of Publisher Rocket and Kindlepre…
 
Today’s podcast is all about reader groups. Are they worthwhile? How they work and why you would you want one? Wendy has recently started one, and we discuss how that is working for her, and also talk about some more established reader groups the SPA Girls belong to like, Lucy Score, C N Crawford, and Marie Force. Once again an episode chock full o…
 
A good old fashioned craft episode from the SPA Girls this week. Shar, Wendy and Cheryl discuss insider writing secretes from James Scott Bell’s book Fiction Attack! They pull out five important secrets that have most impacted them, and discuss what they mean and how they’ve used them in their writing. From using conflict and suspense, to descripti…
 
In this episode we’re answering listener questions – a couple around the change of life many are experiencing right now. We have a few suggestions that helped us through switching to full time writing and the fickle motivation issue. Then we discuss how to tackle being visible in your local market. If you’ve had to deal with these things or are goi…
 
Ever wondered why your best friend can organize her way out of anything, but you can’t follow the same processes she does? We might just have an answer: Gretchen Rubin has a system that involves what she calls the four tendencies. (Find the free online quiz here to identify your tendency here: https://quiz.gretchenrubin.com/?fbclid=IwAR05fTL0NJEPsC…
 
BONUS – enter before Friday 16 October to win one of three FREE tickets to the Unstoppable Woman virtual summit in November 2020 Here’s how to enter: Post on facebook (make it public – you may need to change settings for the post) and tell us ONE reason why you’d like to attend the summit, then hashtag #unstoppablesummit #spagirlspodcast SIMPLE! >>…
 
This week we have an intriguing chat with author Danielle Annett aka Danielle Romero, who has recently switched genres from Urban Fantasy to Contemporary Romance, with some amazing results. She talks us through the decision to change genres, and what she did to make it a success, including some of the big decisions she had to make, such as whether …
 
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