Visual Quill Blog

Authors on Social Media

VQ Staff - Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Nearly every business you know has a website and some sort of social media account today - whether it is a Facebook page, a Twitter or Instagram account, and more, there are SO many options available to connect with consumers! In today's world, a business needs to stay relevant and easily accessible to consumers in order for the best chance of earning sales and gaining loyal customers! Now, as an author, your writing is your business - you are an authorpreneur! Not only is it important to write compelling storylines and characters, but marketing your work and yourself to engage readers is important! After all, you do want your work to be read! Lucky for you, it's easier than it ever has been to connect with your readers by utilizing social media! recently wrote a blog with some ideas on How Successful Authors Use Social Media. Here are a few of our favorites:

1. Share a Quote

Posting a quote from your book (either an upcoming release or an older one), can spark excitement and curiosity from fans - both new ones and loyal readers! Don't know which quote to post? Ask your readers! They'll tell you their favorite passages!

2. Answer Fan Questions

Whether you do a Facebook Q&A or answer questions on GoodReads, this is an easy way to let readers read a little more insight into the characters and book, while at the same time engaging with them!

3. Show Off Your Passions

If your fans are interested in your writing, chances are they share your similar hobbies and interests! Share articles, pictures, and videos that interest you and showcase your personality and let your readers get to know you! Learning about the author behind their favorite books is a great way for readers to become more invested in all of your books and future books!

Want to share? Here is a ready-made tweet:

Click to tweet: Why should authors be utilizing social media more? @VisualQuill #authorpreneur #bookmarketing

Self-Publishing Tips From An Author

VQ Staff - Tuesday, May 31, 2016

You know your end goal when you're writing a book - getting it published! However, for first-time authors, navigating the publishing world can be a struggle. In a post from imgur, first-time author Arsalan Ahmed answered user questions about his journey to self-publish his first book. He said that his book took him three months to write and a few weeks to edit, but the rest of the year was focused on figuring out how to self-publish.

One of the #1 questions he was asked was what expenses he encountered in order to sell his book. In his experience, he said, "ISBN: 300 | Front cover: 250 | Sleeve: 149 | editing: 2450. Those are the main expenses. I had a kickstarter so had some print commitments. You will incur additional costs to order your proof and such. Some other costs include getting mobi files made, getting help with uploading stuff to createspace and kdp but I decided to do all that by myself."

With questions wondering if the book turned out like he had imagined, he wrote, "I was pleasantly surprised that I stuck to the themes but shocked at how story elements showed up I hadn't originally thought about.  The editor of course pointed out things which fundamentally forces you to rethink everything you've done. The hardest part is realizing that even though you've told the story a certain way, you have an encyclopedia of knowledge about the universe in your head that never makes it into the book. It is hard for you to separate what you wrote and what is in your head. Editors don't have that luxury and it became important for me to incorporate her changes in, even if I did not like it because she was ultimately right."

When asked for advice on how to self-publish, he said, "Get yourself the free audible subscription trial . download the audio version of A.P.E. by Guy Kawasaki. It was of tremendous help. If you plan on publishing through Amazon, you do not necessarily need ISBN numbers but if you decide to go that route, buy 10. If you are in the US, use Booker ("

For his full question and answer on imgur, click here.

For a look at the author services we offer at Visual Quill, including book trailers, author branding, book covers, and more, visit our website.

Who Said It: Reading Edition

VQ Staff - Monday, May 23, 2016
Match quotes about reading to the author who said it! How many can you get correct?

Hook, Line, and Reader

VQ Staff - Tuesday, May 17, 2016

In a reddit forum asking, "How long do books usually take to hook you?", the answered vastly varied. While some people said they gave up on the book if they weren't hooked in the first chapter, others gave it so much as 150 pages to determine if they would continue reading.

With that, it is concluded that hooking your reader as fast as possible is essential for them continuing to read your work! Here are 4 ways to hook your readers from the get-go:

1. Begin at a pivotal moment

By beginning with a twist or a quick change in direction, the reader will feel more inclined to learn the reason for the change. A surprise in storyline in the first few pages can be interesting - though make sure your pivotal moment makes sense and readers will be able to follow!

2. Introduce an intriguing character

Describing the quirks or the inner-thoughts of a main character or the relationship between two characters can draw readers in. Character details are good, just don't drone on in detail, there will be plenty of time for the character's actions to be explained later in the novel!

3. Open with action

Starting your book right in the middle of a huge moment of the character's life is exciting for the reader! Whether it be a big fight, a critical thirty seconds, or a life-altering decision, the reader will want to know what sparked this change and how it effects the character moving forward in the book!

4. Flash forward

A foreshadowing of events to come later in the book can make the reader keep reading just to see what happens to lead up that plot point. A flash forward of a traumatic or climatic event to come can make the reader want to dig in and figure out the backstory behind it all!


Learn About Your Writing

VQ Staff - Monday, April 25, 2016

Looking to make your writing more concise and engaging? A website called Expresso goes through your text and identifies parts of speech, weak verbs, filler words, extra long and extra short sentences, frequent words, and more! Take a look at how it broke apart one of our past blog posts:

This website goes through your writing and comes back with interesting stats and patterns you may not have noticed about your writing style! Once you're done polishing your writing, let us help you publish it into an e-book, create a cover or book trailer for it, and help you market your work!


Judge A Book By Its Cover

VQ Staff - Saturday, February 27, 2016

The famous quote always says, "Never judge a book by its cover". We came across Judgey, a website that has you judge books by their covers! See if your ratings match up with the actual GoodReads ratings! Click the picture below to try it out.


Speaking of book covers, we're giving away ONE of our PRE-MADE BOOK COVERS! Need an incredible cover for your new book? Don't worry, we've got you COVERED!


24 Days of Book Trailers

VQ Staff - Monday, November 09, 2015

Banned Books Week

VQ Staff - Friday, September 11, 2015