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Silver Spring, MD
United States

888-577-9342

Stories To Tell is a full service book publishing company for independent authors. We provide editing, design, publishing, and marketing of fiction and non-fiction. We specialize in sophisticated, unique illustrated book design.

Stories To Tell Books BLOG

You Should Write a Book: Writing for Niche Audiences

Biff Barnes

Have people told you, “You should write a book?” It’s time to start listening to them.

Consultants, public speakers and other professionals have long understood that writing a book both helps establish their credibility as experts and sells well to readers interested in their area of expertise. But you don’t have to be a lawyer, financial advisor, or talking head to write a book targeted to a niche audience.

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IBPA Levels the Playing Field for Independently Published Books

Nancy Barnes

The first step in preparing your independently self-published book to compete with traditionally published books is to make sure that its publication matches their level of professionalism. The Independent Book Publishers Association (of which Stories To Tell is a member) has created a tool, The IBPA Industry Checklist for a Professionally Published Book (DOWNLOAD THE CHECKLIST), to help you do just that.

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Do You Want to Sell Your Genealogy or Family History Book?

Nancy Barnes

Are you trying to figure out how to sell your genealogy or family history book? It’s not just a matter of putting your book up on Amazon. Books of this sort are not generally of mass market interest. They are classic examples of niche books whose market consists of genealogy libraries, professional genealogists, and family researchers interested in the details your book can provide about your lineage. How can you sell books in such a specific and limited market?

Connecting with specialized booksellers can offer a way to reach potential readers. How do you find these genealogy booksellers? Here are some places to look for booksellers who might be interested in your book.

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Steps in Successful Self-Publishing

Biff Barnes

As authors grow close to finishing the writing of their book they are also often anxious to get it into print as soon as they can. The impulse is easily understandable, however rushing to publication can not only result in a book of lesser quality than the author hoped for, it may actually result in higher costs, and cause the process to take longer than it needed to. Successful self-publishing is not a process of doing multiple things simultaneously; it is a process of following a simple plan one step at a time.

 

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Learn How to Be a Profitable Author

Nancy Barnes

Most authors in today’s marketplace don’t know how to write books that will sell, nor do they know how to effectively promote. Profitable Authors Institute was created to change that. We are profitable authors. We want to show you how to be one, too (without wasting time spinning your wheels and still not selling books.)

12 industry professionals, including Stories To Tell founder Nancy Barnes, offer forty-eight video courses online in three tracks:

  • Writing
  • Publishing
  • Book Promotion
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Is This Offer From a New York Publisher a Good Deal? You Be the Judge

Nancy Barnes

An author phoned us recently with good news. We had worked with  him last year to self-publish his book. Now, he was very excited to tell us, a New York publishing house (not one of the big 5, but a New York publisher, nevertheless) had offered him a contract to purchase the rights to his book and publish it. He wanted to know if it was a good deal.

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ProStamm: A Great, Cloud-Based App for Genealogists and Family Historians

Biff Barnes

Every genealogist I know is always looking for a better way to organize family information, photos, documents and stories, and for easy ways to use them to create genealogy presentations.

Today we’re at the National Genealogical Society Conference in Raleigh, North Carolina, where Philipp Mayer of Group National Publishing is launching a new cloud-based product, ProStamm, which does just that.

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What's the Best Way to Write about History?

Biff Barnes

I have recently read two excellent pieces of historical fiction. They raise some interesting questions for those of us want to write about history or family history. The first is Graham Moore’s The Last Days of Night. The second is Pulitzer Prize winner Michael Chabon’s Moonglow.

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What's the Best Way to Design a Family History Book?

Biff Barnes

When you set out to self-publish a family history book you need a variety of skill sets. These skills include research and writing, but there is another there is another type of expertise that many family historians overlook – technological skill. Let's take a look at what it takes to create a beautiful heirloom quality book.
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Save Money as an Indie Self-Publisher

Biff Barnes

Who should publish your book? Every author faces the same choice. Increasingly the choice is between “assisted self-publishing” and becoming an “indie” who truly self-publishes. Before you sign up for an all-inclusive package with a heavily advertised giant like Author House, Xlibris, or Outskirts Press it’s important to understand that when you choose one of them you will pay an inflated price for every book they print for you. Let's see how it works.
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What Makes a Memoir Great?

Biff Barnes

Writing a memoir that connects with an audience is not about telling your story. “Unless you're Bill Clinton or Mick Jagger,” said novelist and memoirist Holly Robinson, in The Huffington Post, “nobody but your best friend cares about your life story (and she might be pretending).” Writing a great memoir depends on telling your story in a way that gives readers an insight into their own lives and the human condition. Great memoir relies on the tools of the story teller and is reflective rather than reportorial.
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Source Notes and References in Your Nonfiction Book

Biff Barnes

Nonfiction, whatever form it may take, is built on a foundation of facts. Whether they present an account of actual events, as in family history or biography, seek to prove the validity of an argument, or demonstrate the correctness of a method of doing something, as in a how-to book, an author’s words are judged by the quality of the facts on which they are based. A nonfiction reader is likely to ask, “What’s the evidence for this?” Generally that evidence is based on documents, research, or accounts written by others and used by the author. So it behooves the nonfiction author to include references to allow the reader to know and evaluate the quality of the sources from which that evidence is drawn. Let's look at how to do it.
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Using Styles to Add Headings and Subheadings in Your Nonfiction Book

Sarah Hoggatt

When you’re writing a non-fiction book, it’s a great idea to include headings and possibly subheadings in your manuscript. Headings and subheadings not only help keep you organized and stay focused in your writing, but it also break up the content into manageable chunks for the reader, provides a visual break on the page, and assists them in locating the content they want to read. These features can be easily added using the Styles feature of your word processing program.
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Building Your Author Platform on Goodreads

Sarah Hoggatt

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a social media website just for book lovers? Wouldn’t it be awesome to have a place where people can recommend your book to their friends and you can post the books you’re reading in order to better connect with your readers? This describes a website called “Goodreads” and I highly recommend you join if you’re an author.
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