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The sell sheet is a tool that helps retailers see how your book can help them reach, engage and satisfy their customers.  The sell sheet can help us achieve our goals for sales, reviews and promotion but it is also a powerful tool for working with retailers and buyers. As authors, we are often reluctant to talk up our books, and ourselves. Sell sheets help us get over this discomfort and give retailers what they need to know in order to position your book in their store.  In this episode, publisher Boni Wagner-Stafford and marketing expert Stephanie Feger chat with Ingenium Books authors and answer their questions about sell sheets, and how to use them. Support the show (
It could be said that an author's work is never done—even after the book is written and published. Marketing the book is an ongoing endeavour. On this episode we talk about how mindset can either help or hinder your efforts. Your book marketing mindset can either help you achieve your goals or forever keep you playing small. You choose. Our guest is Yvonne Caputo, author of the memoir/biography Flying With Dad. Support the show (
Accounting for Authors

Accounting for Authors


Money, money, money: it’s always about money. Whether you’re at the beginning of your author journey, in the middle of it or at the other end and you’re selling books like hotcakes, you’ve got to deal with the money. So we are talking money stuff today and thrilled to have with us, Mark Leslie Lefebvre and D.F. Hart – or Deanna Hart. Support the show (
As an author, it doesn’t take very long after you’ve published your book – and sometimes even before you’ve published your book – before you are going to be required to speak in front of an audience. Now that audience may be live, although much less so during the days of COVID. But virtual, it may be with video; it may be audio only; it may be person to person; it may be in a bookstore. Who knows? But public speaking in any of those circumstances is not always something that either comes naturally to authors or can be very – or it can be very uncomfortable. So we’re going to dig into public speaking for authors today with some tips and some personal experiences from somebody who does a lot of public speaking. And that is Marjorie Aunos, the author of the – at the time of this recording – forthcoming book titled “Mom on Wheels” and Yvonne Caputo the author of "Flying With Dad" and the forthcoming second book titled "Dying With Dad" Support the show (
Traditional publishers are all looking for the same thing as they consider which authors and books to take on: a solid manuscript, a unique approach and clear audience, and an author with a platform. As indie authors, the conventional wisdom is that you also want to have an author platform.... the bigger the better. But what if that advice doesn't always hold? That's what we're talking about today with Anne Janzer, author of Get the Word Out. Support the show (
There's a really good reason that traditional and hybrid publishers leave plenty of time between the book being finished and the actual publish date: and that's to give launch marketing and street team efforts sometime to work in your favour. There are all kinds of things you can do, as an author, to give your book the best chance of making a splash in the marketplace on and after publish date. Today we're talking with one author about what she did that worked for her — with respect to her launch team, or her street team. Tanya Hackney is author of Leaving the Safe Harbor: The Risks and Rewards of Raising a Family on a Boat. Support the show (
Writing a book is often a solitary venture. Some might even say it can be lonely. It doesn’t have to be, though. Teaming up with another author can make for a better book. It can even change history: just look at how Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward brought down a president with their coverage of and subsequent book about the Watergate scandal in All the President’s Men. Coauthoring a book involves a different process – and the process is different for different coauthoring teams too. In this Empowered Authors Podcast interview, Tricia Jacobson and Marie Beswick-Arthur share how they did it.Support the show (
Publishing Contracts

Publishing Contracts


If you're an author, or you're working toward becoming an author, you can't get very far down the road before you encounter publishing contracts. Perhaps your eyes glaze over and you just sign what's in front of you, or your anxiety goes through the roof as you try to read and understand the legal language. There are some key concepts it pays to become familiar with, perhaps even comfortable. We're going to talk author and publisher contracts today to take you down this road. Super happy to have Joe Sisto joining us today. Joe is founder of Sisto Entertainment & Business Law Services — a boutique law office that provides legal counsel to media and entertainment industry clients in all aspects of the development, production, financing, licensing and distribution of film, television, book publishing, theatre, music and new media.Support the show (
No doubt you’ve heard, by now, about the legal dispute between Dawn Dorland and Sonya Larson, brought to light by a recent New York Times article titled “Who Is the Bad Art Friend?”, written by Robert Kolker and published in October of 2021 in The New York Times Magazine. This case begs the question: how much can we draw from our own life, and the life of others, before it veers into sticky plagiarism and copyright territory?Another case, this one in London, centres on two cookbooks that have strikingly similar phrasing in describing food traditions, as reported by The Bookseller and The Guardian, among other outlets.Boni and John recently discussed these two cases, and what it means for authors, on The Empowered Author podcast, which you can listen to right here, or keep reading for the highlights and takeaways.Support the show (
When it comes to social media, authors are no different from anyone else: if we want to raise awareness and engage in conversations with new people and new networks, we probably want to be active on social media. But what do you do on social media? What do you say? Do you create posts using a carefully crafted persona? Or you do adhere to a rigorous campaign of authenticity. Like so much in the publishing realm... the answer is that it depends. But there are some recent — and illuminating — cautionary tales. Support the show (
What if there was a way for you to help more readers discover your book? To determine whether your book will help them, whether that's by entertaining them, exposing them to new experiences or ideas, showing them how to do something new, or otherwise to enrich their lives. Wouldn't that be great? Well, there IS just such a way. It isn't necessarily an easy or quick fix, but it is tested, tried, and true. What is it? It's the reader review. And today we're discussing all things reader reviews — how to get them, and then what to do with them once you get them. Joining us today is Roseanne Cheng from Evergreen Authors. Support the show (
Boni and John from Ingenium Books discuss a relatively new trend in publishing: hybrid or partnership publishing. Actually, hybrid publishing has been around for a long time: it's been a model selectively employed by traditional publishers in certain cases. What is it? What are the benefits? Is it right for you? What about industry standards? Support the show (
We are here today to talk about something that might trip one or two authors up every now and again, certainly at the beginning of their journey into being an author and that is point of view or POV. And related to that is the narrator's psychological distance. I am joined by Amy McCracken. And Amy is one of the fabulous people that we have working with us behind the scenes at Ingenium Books. She's an author. She's an author coach. She's an editor, proofreader and typesetter.Support the show (
Let’s debunk some of the most pervasive myths and look at the top ten publishing lies told to indie authors. If you’re a novice to publishing, you’ve probably already come across a ton of conflicting information. A big reason for this is that the publishing landscape has changed immensely in the past decade or two and what was true for an author who published their first book twenty years ago is not necessarily true for a new author today.Support the show (
Book titles. Who hasn't spent hours... days! months! working on just the right book title? What's the purpose of your book title? Why does it matter? What if someone else has published a book with the same or similar title? That's what we're talking about today... with guest Stephanie Feger of emPowerPR, where she helps nonfiction authors with marketing. Support the show (
The intersection of money and authors is littered with confusing road signs and paved with uncertainty. Well beyond "how much can I earn once my book is published' the issue of money and authors is something we must all address and make sure we're in the right lane for where we're headed with each of our books. Today I'm happy to welcome Roseanne Cheng back to the Empowered Author podcast. Roseanne is a former high-school teacher and publishing marketing director, who is now cofounder of a company also named The Evergreen Author. Support the show (
It's a common English idiom and I'm sure you've heard it: You can't judge a book by its cover. This metaphorical phrase means you can't always tell the value of something only by what it looks like on the outside. EXCEPT if we're talking about books.People DO judge a book by its cover all the time. And with good reason. That's what we're digging into today — the all important book cover. Why it's so important, and what goes into design and production of a good one. Who better to talk about this with than someone who is listed as one of the top book cover designers on the wildly popular Kindlepreneur website and in the top ten of She's also the designer of choice for us at Ingenium Books. Jessica Bell does much more than book covers — she's a creative entrepreneur, publisher, musician and more. But we're gonna focus on book covers. Support the show (
It’s every novelist’s greatest fear: pouring their blood, sweat, and tears into writing hundreds of pages only to realize that their story has no sense of urgency, no internal logic, and so back to square one they go for a total rewrite.What's your approach when this happens to you? You might think you have only two choices here: pantsing, which is winging it, or plotting, which is to focus on the external plot. Story coach Lisa Cron has spent her career discovering why these methods don’t work and coming up with a powerful alternative, based on the science behind what our brains are wired to crave in every story we read (and it’s not what you think).Lisa Cron is the author of Wired for Story, Story Genius and most recently, Story or Die: How to Use Brain Science to Engage, Persuade, and Change Minds in Business and in Life. Her video course, Wired for Story: How to Become a Story Genius can be found at, and Writing: The Craft of Story at Her TEDx talk, Wired for Story, opened Furman University’s 2014 TEDx conference. She spent a decade in publishing, and has been a literary agent, television producer, and story analyst for Hollywood studios. She has also served on the faculty of the School of Visual Arts MFA program in visual narrative and, since 2006, has taught in the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program. In her work as a private story coach, Lisa works with writers, nonprofits, educators, and organizations helping them master the unparalleled power of story.Support the show (
You’re likely familiar with the term “safe harbor.” Figuratively, it’s any place or situation that offers refuge or protection. Literally, it’s a harbor where ships can stay safe—whether from a storm, or pirates or during war. What about “Leaving the Safe Harbor?” Why would we DO that??? Our guest today knows a thing or two about leaving the safe harbor. You could say Tanya Hackney wrote the book on it! Actually, she did.Support the show (
Audiobooks have been gaining steadily in popularity, which means every author should be asking themselves: is producing an audiobook right for me? And if the answer is yes, how? Do I narrate myself? Do I set up a home studio? All the considerations are explored in this episode. I have the pleasure now of introducing the better half of Ingenium Books: my co-founder, John Wagner-Stafford. John’s entire professional career has been working with and in audio: first as a professional musician; then as sound engineer and audio producer for music, film, television, and video games; and now he leads all of our work on audiobooks at Ingenium Books. Support the show (
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