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  • drdianehamilton 10:55 am on July 3, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Book, Createspace, , ,   

    Self-Publishing with CreateSpace 

    Today’s Ask Dr. Diane:  I am interested in self-publishing a book.  Can you tell me about your experience with self-publishing and things you have done to market your books?

    That is a good question and one that I often receive.  Check out my previous posting:  How to Publish or Self-Publish Your Book.  I used Createspace for self-publishing.  I had a great experience with them. They are affiliated with Amazon.  The site offers different options based on authors’ needs.  Some of those options included:

    • Do-it-yourself tools to design interiors and covers
    • Comprehensive design and editing
    • Expanded distribution options

    I found that the company was very responsive to my questions.  They took my design ideas and gave me a couple of covers to choose from based on my input.

    Createspace is not limited to book publishing. They also work with musicians and filmmakers.

    Once your book is published, and available on Amazon, you will then have the ability to create an Amazon author page.  That author page can incorporate links from your blog. Authors also have the option of making their books available on Amazon’s Europe-based site.

    There are plenty of books that can help increase your sales on Amazon’s site.  One book that I thought was pretty useful was: Aiming at Amazon.

    Related Articles:

     
    • matthew feldman 5:35 pm on July 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply

      Was this a pay for posting? I have seen several paid postings for this and wonder if yours is too? Do you have a policy of telling readers when you pay for post or do you never accept pay for posting?

      • drdianehamilton 5:45 pm on July 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply

        Hi Matthew,

        No I did not receive anything for this. I have never posted anything that I received money for posting.

  • drdianehamilton 8:47 pm on November 19, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Book, , , , , , Marlo Thomas, Mistakes Made, , ,   

    Marlo Thomas Asks What Would You Do Differently – My Answer is Nothing 

    I was just watching a video by Marlo Thomas where she was asking people what they would do differently knowing what they know now.  In my book, How to Reinvent Your Career, I included a chapter about this very subject.  The following is an excerpt from that chapter where I discuss why I don’t think that many things we choose are really mistakes because they have led us to where we need to be now.

    Think about the choices you made when you were young. Would you choose the same things now? Maybe not. Maybe you weren’t ready to take on the things you can now do. I doubt I would have been as good a professor if I hadn’t had the 25-plus years of experience in the working world to help me add to my lectures and discussions. 

    Perhaps that degree you got in Sociology or Education or some other field no longer interests you. Perhaps you need to go back and get more education in a new area of interest. People change and interests change. It’s OK to say that what you were interested in when you were 20 is not the same thing that interests you now.

    One of the reasons we change is through the life lessons we learn. We may take a job that leads to another job that we had no intention of doing in the first place, but makes us much happier than we thought it would. You have to factor life experiences into the equation of what brought you to the place you are right now.

     
  • drdianehamilton 2:52 pm on October 28, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Academic term, Book, College Board, , , , , ,   

    College Costs . . . Good News Bad News 

    [Tuition]

    image via online.wsj.com

    If you are considering going back to college, you may be interested to know that tuition rates are going up.  That is the bad news.  The good news is that the Pell grants are on the rise.  I give a lot of advice about paying for college in my book, The Online Student User’s Manual.  For more information, you can also check out some of my recent articles by clicking here.   

    According to an article in WSJ.com by Stephanie Banchero, “The average price of tuition and fees for in-state students at public four-year institutions is $7,605 this school year, a 7.9% increase over last year. At private nonprofit colleges and universities, the average price is $27,293, a 4.5% rise. Two-year state colleges saw a 6% rise to $2,713.”  To read the entire article, click here.

     
  • drdianehamilton 5:56 pm on October 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Book, , , , , platform, , ,   

    Why I Don’t Shop at Bookstores Any More – Barnes and Noble Needs to Learn a Few Things From Amazon 

    I have always loved to go to bookstores.  I preferred Barnes and Noble but they were all fun to visit.  I love books.  I used to love to go to bookstores so I could browse all of the titles.  I would sit down and page through the ones I was considering purchasing.  I usually would end up buying several books.

    I still buy a ton of books.  Some rooms in my home are packed with different titles.  However, now I almost never buy my books from a traditional bookstore. 

    Why? They don’t offer the kinds of books I can get elsewhere.  I buy most of my books through Amazon now.  I have never been a person to read fiction.  I look at bookstores as a good place for fiction books but if you want to really learn something or have any kind of real selection, they lag way behind in that  department.

    Seth Godin recently announced he will not use a publishing house any more and made a big stir in the publishing industry.   He will be self-publishing now instead of using a traditional publisher. What does  self-publishing have to do with bookstores?  For one thing, the traditional book store doesn’t like to carry the self-published book. 

    I am a big fan of the self-published book.  There are so many good writers out there that have a ton of great information to share that will never get picked up by a major publishing house.  Why  … Because they don’t have a platform.   Publishers want to publish books by authors who have a following through their speaking, their talk shows, etc.  If you aren’t already well-known for something, it is almost impossible to get your work published.  Because of that, a ton of good authors are being turned down and their work is not ending up in bookstores. 

    Where can you find those books?  Places like Amazon carry a lot of them.  Most of my ordering is done through Amazon because of this.  I like to read a lot of “how to” books because I write a lot of “how to” books.  Amazon has an incredible selection of nonfiction books available.

    One book that I read that I found really helpful was written by a man who is probably in his 80’s.  It wasn’t a fancy book and he probably hasn’t got a huge following, but his book was extremely useful and informative.  That is the type of book that appeals to me and it would never be found in a traditional bookstore.

    I think the big bookstores need to make some changes or they are going to have some serious trouble competing.  Now that there are so many Kindle and Ipad devices, the traditional bookstore could offer more choices to their customer.  I envision sitting on one of their soft chairs, picking up an iPad or other reading device that is hooked onto the chair somehow. ..browsing through their selection of ebooks and regular books right there in the store.  If I found a regular book, I liked, I could either buy it there or have it send to my home.  If I found an ebook, I could download it right there. 

    I think a lot of people like the social experience of the bookstore.  By doing business in this way, they could continue to keep the books they have but also have all of the selection that online stores have.

     
  • drdianehamilton 10:45 am on September 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Book, , , , Printing, , , ,   

    E-Books vs. Traditional Books 

     

    Ask Dr. Diane:  Which do you like better .  .  . e-books or traditional books? 

    I am often asked about my preferences for e-books vs. the traditional book for use in the classroom setting.  I teach for many different online universities.  Some of these universities use e-books and others do not.  Initially I was leery about using them because I am a page bender, a highlighter and basic destroyer of books, in order for me to get the most out of them.  Technology has improved though and you can now do more to the e-book to mark things of interest.  Also there is the option of printing out a few pages here and there if you really want a hard copy. 

    When I wrote the book The Online Student’s User Manual, I had no intention of offering it as an e-book.  However, within weeks of its publication, one of the universities where I teach asked for it in that format so that they could make it required reading for all new students. Needless to say, I got over my reluctance quickly and made it available.  I also made it available on Kindle: http://amzn.to/aCvMI1

    Through time and experience using them, I realized that e-books are a great option for many students.  A typical example is the student who attends a regular university and doesn’t want to lug a ton of books all over campus.  However, my students are online students.  Many may tend to have an ease with technology which is why they chose online learning in the first place.  Some of my older students may have more of an issue with it than the younger ones.  However, the portability and ability to read at work online or print things has made them accept the transition and appreciate it more.

     
    • blackwatertown 10:48 am on September 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Good point about students possibly having a different attitude to ebooks. The cost and challenge of storing traditional books are also factors for them to consider.
      But can ebooks allow students to adopt the classic pose of having a plethora of books strewn across a desk, while they collate the best information, cross-checking back and forth?
      http://www.blackwatertown.wordpress.com

      • drdianehamilton 10:55 am on September 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Hi – you do make an interesting point. I have many e-books loaded on my computer where I can open several at a time. If you are talking about using them on a Kindle or like device, that would be more difficult. I know I can open several pages at once with my iPad and click back and forth to them, but I have only found that ability with websites and not within iBooks. Either I haven’t found that ability or it is probably coming soon. It doesn’t take that long to switch around within the books on my iPad but it definitely isn’t the same as having them strewn across a desk! I do agree that the cost is a huge factor for students. E-books have definitely helped reduce costs for them. What I like as an instructor is that they can no longer say that their book hasn’t arrived and they will be late submitting assignments. . .

        • Restaurant coupons orlando 1:24 pm on September 14, 2010 Permalink

          Hi Dr diane hamilton

          Amazon recently announced that its June 2010 Kindle e-book sales nearly doubled its hardcover book sales (180% higher). Many of those e-books were self-published books priced under a dollar; however, data indicates e-books may become the dominant long-form format in not too many years.
          Are low-overhead e-books better for authors or publishers than their print counterparts? This infographic shows the breakdown of where the dollars from e-book and traditional book sales are going……………….

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        • drdianehamilton 1:28 pm on September 14, 2010 Permalink

          Hi – I was surprised at how easy it was to make my book available on Kindle. I think there are a lot of people who are using automated coupons as well. Thanks for the information.

    • RandomizeME 10:15 am on September 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      The downside I see to going all digital as a student is that you can’t sell of your eTextbooks after you’re done with it. There’s no such thing as buying an eBook secondhand also.

      • drdianehamilton 11:47 am on September 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        That is a good point. However, a lot of regular books cost so much and the digital versions can be much cheaper. I remember selling some regular books back and not getting all that much money for them. I’ve not looked into the difference between what was spent initially vs. what you got back on regular books, but the lower initial price for a digital book may make the total price similar.

  • drdianehamilton 10:53 am on September 1, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Book, , , , , , , , , Myeducation.com, , , , ,   

    Taking Your First Online Class? A Professor Shares How to Succeed | My Education Blog 

    Even if you do much of your work online and socialize online, there may be challenges when it comes to online learning. If it’s your first online class, you’re not only facing a learning curve about the subject matter, but what it takes to do your best in an online classroom.

    Dr. Diane Hamilton, author of “The Online Student’s User Manual” who teaches online courses for six universities, shares some of her tips for being a successful online college student.

    Q: What technology skills should students gain before starting an online course?

    A: They have to know how to upload files and how to understand the classroom and how it’s laid out (online). They’re not just opening the door and walking in. Sometimes there’s four of five different areas where they have to look for information (such as homework assignments).

    Q: What can older learners who may not be as tech-savvy do to prepare?

    A: I have a lot of sympathy for the older learner. There are a lot of tutorials online that are free. I have links that I always put in my classrooms, such as how to set up papers, how to set up a PowerPoint. They don’t have a good idea of how to set up documents.

    Q: What are the biggest mistakes online students should avoid?

    A: There’s a lot of buzz terminology that they need to know about so they don’t get into class and become overwhelmed by the terminology (words like “search engine” or “rubric”). Use basic “netiquette,” with the proper way of speaking to one another and being respectful. You can’t type in all caps because that means you’re yelling. Also, texting has been the way people communicate, but this is a formal environment and you need to write in complete sentences. Students are sometimes not using capitalization and they’re doing other things like they’re texting (instead of) being in the formal classroom.

    Q: What’s an online tool for communicating with professors and peers that students should use?

    A: Some of the schools set up a chat room (for the course), which is a really good thing. I also set up my own if the school doesn’t set up one. It’s like standing in the hallway talking. The bachelor students want to talk in the chat rooms, but tend to be more shy in terms of talking to the professor. I will post kind of funny YouTube things to lighten the mood to get people posting and talking to each other and to make me more approachable and make them realize I’m not a scary person. I have a Facebook page for my online students. I also have a blog. I have Twitter. I tell all my students, this is how you reach me on all those different areas.

    Q: How does online learning appeal to different personalities?

    A: I think that a lot of introverts really find online learning appealing for the fact that an introvert tends to think internally before speaking. They can take time to process their information and backspace and retype. With an extrovert, it’s appealing in another way. Sometimes they say, “I wish I hadn’t said that.” They have a chance to delete before posting it.

    -Lori Johnston

    This blog article, was written by Lori Johnston, and can be found by clicking here
     
  • drdianehamilton 10:20 pm on August 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Book, , , , The Online Student User's Manual   

    The Online Student User’s Manual Facebook Page 

    There is now a Facebook page for The Online Student User’s Manual.  For updated information about being an online student, go to: http://bit.ly/bQrm12

     
  • drdianehamilton 10:56 am on July 30, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Book, , , , Free Career Newsletter, , ,   

    Free Help: Job and Career Changers and Seekers 

    To sign up to receive my free newsletter containing helpful information about reinventing your career, including how to deal with change, choosing careers, facing fears, knowing your options and more. . . click here.

    The information in this newsletter includes some excerpts from my book  How to Reinvent Your Career:  Make More Money Doing What You Love that is due to be published this summer.  To get a head start  before the book is even available, sign up for the newsletter today!

     
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