Book Review. The Author Blog: Easy Blogging for Busy Authors by Anne R. Allen

Having been a fan of Anne R. Allen’s blog for some time now, I was very pleased to discover she’d complied a book to assist all author bloggers. I’ll start off by saying that it’s a must read which I highly recommend. But, before my review, here’s some information about it:

Book Description:

An easy-does-it guide to simple, low-tech blogging for authors who want to build a platform, but not let it take over their lives.

An author blog doesn’t have to follow the rules that monetized business blogs do. This book teaches the secrets that made Anne R. Allen a multi-award-winning blogger and one of the top author-bloggers in the industry.

And you’ll learn why having a successful author blog is easier than you think.

Here are some things you’ll learn in this book:

•How an author blog is different—and easier to maintain—than a business blog
•What authors should blog about at different stages of their careers
•Choosing the right blog topics for your genre and audience
•How one type of blogpost can build your platform quickly
•Basic SEO tips that don’t make your eyes glaze over with tech jargon
•How to write headers that will grab the attention of Web surfers
•How to keep your audience by learning the tricks of content writing
•Essential blog and social media etiquette rules
•What happens to your blog when you die?

“Anne writes the essential blog for today’s writers.” Mystery author Carmen Amato.

“I love following the blog of Anne R. Allen…for up-to-date tips and helpful articles for writers on what’s current in the publishing world.” Author D. G. Kaye.

“BRILLIANT! One of the Top 10 Resources for Self-Publishing Authors.” author Mark Tilbury.

“Anne is one of the most successful author-bloggers out there.” Reedsy

“One of the Top 15 Blogs for Indie Authors to Follow…I adore Anne’s blog. Aside from being one smart lady, her mix of sass and education is priceless.” Social media strategist and manager Frances Caballo

“You know what a huge fan I am of Anne R. Allen’s blog…absolutely marvelous.” Romance author Collette Cameron

“I recommend following the publishing blogs of both Jane Friedman and Anne R. Allen…I’ve implemented many of their tips, which have helped boost my SEO.” New York Times bestseller Eileen Goudge in Publisher’s Weekly

The Author Blog: Easy Blogging for Busy Authors by Anne R. Allen on UK Amazon

The Author Blog: Easy Blogging for Busy Authors by Anne R. Allen on US Amazon

 

My Review:

This book is a must-read for all authors who blog. Any author who is trying to balance their blogging with their WIP (work in progress) needs to read Anne’s advice within these pages. How author blogs are different to business blogs and why slow-blogging is actually the best kind for authors, are just a couple of the many topics covered.

I’m already a massive fan of Anne’s blog, and this book is written in the same humourous, yet highly informative style as her blog posts. Sharing her own blogging successes and mistakes, she explains how and why things need to be done in certain ways.  Anne makes the whole blogging process seem accessible to everyone, no matter what you’re working on or your level of technical expertise.

I’ve been blogging for a couple of years now, and there are certainly things I need to improve on, but with the help of this book it seems so much more do-able.

If you’re a fellow author with a blog, then I highly recommend you get yourself a copy of this book, and see where your blog can take you.

 

About Anne:

Anne R. Allen is the author of the Camilla Randall mysteries, three stand-alone comedies, and two nonfiction guides for writers: “HOW TO BE A WRITER IN THE E-AGE” co-authored with Amazon #1 bestselling author, Catherine Ryan Hyde, and THE AUTHOR BLOG: EASY BLOGGING FOR BUSY AUTHORS.

The Camilla Randall mysteries include THE BEST REVENGE, GHOSTWRITERS IN THE SKY, SHERWOOD, LTD. NO PLACE LIKE HOME, SO MUCH FOR BUCKINGHAM, and THE QUEEN OF STAVES. The first three are available as a boxed set. The stand-alones are THE GATSBY GAME, THE LADY OF THE LAKEWOOD DINER, and FOOD OF LOVE.

The three stand-alones are available in one boxed set: BOOMER WOMEN: THREE COMEDIES ABOUT A GENERATION THAT CHANGED THE WORLD. Anne also has a collection of poetry and short fiction titled WHY GRANDMA BOUGHT THAT CAR.

All of her books are currently published by Kotu Beach Press.

Anne’s blog, which she shares with New York Times bestseller Ruth Harris, was named one of the Best 101 Websites for Writers by Writer’s Digest.

Anne is a graduate of Bryn Mawr College and spent twenty-five years in the theater–acting and directing–before taking up fiction writing. She is the former artistic director of the Patio Playhouse in Escondido, CA and now lives on the Central Coast of California.

 

Anne on social media:

Blog: https://annerallen.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/annerallen1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/annerallen

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+AnneRAllen

 

I hope you find both Anne’s blog and book as useful as I have.

As always, thank you for your support.

All the best,

Mark.

 

Book Review of Castles in the Air by Alison Ripley Cubitt and Molly Ripley

CITAAn eight-year-old child witnesses her mother’s secret, and knows that from that moment life will never be the same.

After Molly, her mother, dies. Alison uses her legacy to make a film about Molly’s relationship with a man she had known since she was a teenager. What hold did this man have over her mother? And what other secrets was her mother hiding?

Castles in the Air follows the life of Molly Ripley through the eyes of her daughter Alison. From Molly’s childhood in colonial Hong Kong and Malaya; wartime adventures as a rookie office girl in the far east outpost of Bletchley Park then as a young nurse in the city; tangled romance and marriage… to her challenging middle-age when demons from the past seem set to overwhelm her.

 

Extract:

One reason Don and Cissy had been against sending Molly to school so far away was that they spent their working lives listening to and intercepting messages sent by the Japanese naval fleet. Privy to this classfied information, they were convinced that a war with Japan was inevitable. In December 1941, just as Molly was sitting her School Certificate, the school girls heard some ominous news on the radio:
We were all greatly encouraged when we heard of the arrival of the mighty battleship, Prince of Wales and cruiser Repulse and all thought they would soon ‘sort out’ the Japanese. Then we heard on the news that the Japanese had attacked Pearl Harbour on December 2nd 1941, thus drawing the Americans into the conflict – to be followed by air raids on Singapore. Most of the children not taking School Certificate had been sent back to their homes.
December 2nd was, in fact, the date that Prince of Wales and Repulse arrived at the Singapore Naval Base with great fanfare. The attack on Pearl Harbour took place 7th December, 8th December in Malaya, at the same time as the first Japanese bombing raid on Singapore. It was 4am in Singapore when Don and Ciss were woken by the air raid sirens. Their worst fears had come to pass. Their darling Molly was hundreds of miles away. All they could do was pray she would get home safely, but as a former Royal Marine, Don would have known only too well what perfect cover a remote jungle region could provide for an advancing Japanese land invasion.

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Fiction in Cumbria

After living in Oxfordshire my whole live, Royal Navy service apart, I’m now about to move to Cumbria on the North West coast of England. The change of scene has got me thinking about the fiction that has been, and still is being, created in the area I’m moving to.

cumbria_map

 

One of the most famous authors to have lived in Cumbria was poet William Wordsworth (7 April 1770 – 23 April 1850) .William Wordsworth He was born in a village called Cockermouth and then later lived in Grasmere with his wife and children. His most famous collection of poems (The Prelude) wasn’t published until after his death by his wife, Mary. At the time, very little was thought of these poems, but since then they have been considered some of his best work. Visitors to the area can go to both the house he was born in, and the cottage he lived in as an adult. Continue reading

Pick of the Author Blogs

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This week I’m rounding up the top 10 author blogs that I’m subscribed to and/or read regularly. They all offer a great variety of content whilst letting readers get to know the authors and their books.

Maggie James Fiction2nd captive
This week my author friend Maggie James asks her readers who their favourite fictional psychopath is. Maggie loves writing her bad guys and wants readers opinions on who the best bad guys are and why. She’s going to pick one lucky person to receive a free ebook copy of her current novel, The Second Captive. So, head over to Maggie’s blog and tell her what you think!

 

 

Ancestry Author. In The Blood
Steve Robinson is very pleased to inform his readers that his first two books are about to be translated into Czech after the first one has also been translated into German – congratulations Steve. He also updates his readers on the progress on his 5th book in the Jefferson Tayte series. If you have Steve’s books, who do you imagine Jefferson to look like? Let Steve know, there’s a signed book up for grabs.

 

 

Tales of The NeverwarClaude the dragon
Colin Rutherford is currently working on the third in his series, Tales of The Neverwar. Dragons feature throughout the series and an imaginary one named Claude writes Colin’s blog. Claude discusses Colin’s writing progress and reviews books for him. Claude has a fiery sense of humour and he writes a very entertaining blog.

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