Wednesday www – SCBWI

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Wednesday www – SCBWI

Wednesdays I like to share websites that I have found beneficial. If you have been following me for a while, these will probably sound familiar. But I must say the ones I repeat, I repeat for a reason.

My first website to share for the year is SCBWI.org.

logo-scbwi

SCBWI stands for The Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and is a world-wide organization and is broken down into different regions. I happen to be in the Southern Breeze Region, which is Alabama, Georgia, and the Florida Panhandle.

SCBWI holds two major conferences a year, and then most regions will host a conference separately. These are amazing opportunities for writers and illustrators. You get to take various workshops or attend different speeches. These can be from other writers/illustrators or agents, editors, and art directors. You get to meet people who will actually GET you! You have the opportunity to present yourself in front of the very people you submit too. You know, to make that personal connection.

You also have an opportunity to volunteer for your region. I volunteer with mine.  😀   Not only is it a great way to pay-it-forward, but the main speakers will see your name and know that you take your job, be it writing or illustrating or both, seriously and are not afraid to go the extra step.

There are dues every year, but I have found that it is well worth it. There is a bi-monthly newsletter, a monthly Insight newsletter, access to The Book, the opportunity to submit to many awards and grants, and much more.

For more information click over to SCBWI.org and check it out. If you are serious about writing or illustrating for children, you won’t regret it!

Until next time…
Happy Writing!
~t

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Marketing Monday – NEW Writing Contest… #FicFest

#FicFest

Marketing Monday –
NEW Writing Contest…
#FicFest

There’s a NEW Writing Contest on the horizon. AND this one is for everyone. When I say everyone, I mean… E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E!

Picture Books… check_mark.svg.med

Mid Grade…        check_mark.svg.med

Young Adult…   check_mark.svg.med

Adult…                check_mark.svg.med

It’s called #FicFest. It’s getting some shout outs across social media.

What is #FicFest?

#FicFest is an online writer’s contest which helps put manuscripts in front of literary agents. This contest, unlike most, is open to manuscripts in ALL genres (including those usually excluded such as Paranormal Romance or Erotica) in the categories of Picture Book, Middle Grade, Young Adult, New Adult, and Adult.

#FicFest mentors are structured into fifteen (15) teams. Each category that I listed has three teams. Each team is comprised of a team leader, and two (2) team members. Once the submissions open, each team will choose three (3) finalist manuscripts and one (1) alternate manuscript to advance to the agent round. This means that an equal number of manuscripts for each category will move to the agent round, guaranteeing that one category does NOT overpower another when it comes time for the agents.

45 manuscripts total move to the agent round, with 15 manuscripts being held as alternates in case one of the main finalists drops out of the contest for any reason. This is one of the things we stress in promoting #FicFest because most contests are overrun with Young Adult. In many contests, they may advance 40 manuscripts to the agent round, but the problem lies in the fact that 30 of that 40 are all Young Adult. That won’t happen with #FicFest.

Nine manuscripts from each category will make their appearance in the agent round. No more, no less. NINE each. Let me stress this one more time. In the agent round, you will have 9 Picture Books, 9 Middle Grade, 9 Young Adult, 9 New Adult, and 9 Adult. Everyone gets a fair chance.

IMPORTANT DATES:

Have I got your attention now???

Tiffany Hoffmann is the brains behind this contest. All I can say is… WOW! She is a great leader and I can’t wait to see the entries.  😀  Did I mention I’m a #FicFest PB Mentor!!!!

Keep a look out on her website  and blog  for updates, the AGENT ANNOUNCEMENT, and so much more!

Here are some SAVE THE DATE dates to be on the look out for:

  • March 20, 2016 @ 12:00 PM EST
    Guidelines & Theme Reveal
    (Host Blog)
  • March 27, 2016 @ 7:00 PM EST
    Meet the Team Leads & Their Members!
    (Team Lead Blogs & Host Blog)
  • April 3, 2016 @ 6:00 PM EST
    Agent List Announced
    (Host Blog)
  • April 17, 2016 @ 7:00 PM EST – 10:00 PM EST
    Q & A with Team Leads & Host
    (Twitter – Using #FicFest)
  • April 24, 2016 @ 12:00 AM EST – April 25, 2016 @ 11:59 PM EST
    SUBMISSION
  • April 26, 2016 – May 3, 2016
    Teams will chose their finalists/alternate
  • May 4, 2016 @ 10:00 AM EST
    Finalists/Alternate Reveal
    (Team Leads Blogs)
  • May 5, 2016 – June 30, 2016
    Revisions
  • July 8, 2016 @ 12:00 AM EST – July 14, 2014 @ 11:59 PM EST
    Agent Round

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
What do you think about #FicFest?
Are YOU planning to enter?
If you are, which category will yours be?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

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Thinking Thursday – Thoughtful Writer Gifts

image

Thoughtful Writers Gifts

Tis the season.

As a writer, we all know we can be quirky. Why not have some writerly gifts under your tree? So if your wondering what to get the writer in your life or might like some ideas for yourself, I have a board in Pinterest that has some great gift ideas.

Writers’ Wish List

::: LEAVE ME A COMMENT :::
What did you like on my board?
Know of any other great gift ideas for writers?

Happy Holidays everyone!

Until next time,

Happy Writing,
~t

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign ups are over here —>
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COVER REVEAL! The Children at the Playground #TCATPG

Blog- Cover Reveal TCatPG

~COVER REVEAL~
of The Children at the Playground
#TCATPG

It’s here! It’s here. I have had so many amazing things going on in the background that I haven’t been able to share. This is one that I’ve been sitting on!!!! The cover reveal of…

THE CHILDREN AT THE PLAYGROUND!

What can you do at the playground?  The Children at the Playground is a fun picture book set to the rhythm of “The Wheels on the Bus.” Perfect for active story times or to read before, after, or during a playground visit.

Dolores Costello did an amazing job on the illustrations and I cannot wait for you all to be able to see it!!!! Thank you bunches, Dolores!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AND NOW, without further ado…

The Children at the Playground

The Children At the Playground

 

Written by: Tracey M. Cox (that’s me!!!)
Illustrated by: Dolores Costello
Published by: Xist Publishing

Thankyou for celebrating with me on this new reveal!

 

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Let me know what you think of the cover!
Would you be interested in doing a review of it?
Stay tune for the BOOK TRAILER!

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

 

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9 Ways to Establish Yourself (Pre-Published)

nine9 Ways for Pre-Published to become Established

A lot of people ask:

“Should I worry about being established before I get published?”

I answer:

“YES!”

WHY? Because you can build an audience and a name for yourself. THEN when you have a book, you will be recognized as someone in the community, and as someone to be trusted and followed.

There are several ways to get yourself established…

  1. Follow blogs and comment
    Find a few blogs that you like (other writers/illustrators/informative/etc). Follow them to keep up what they are sharing. COMMENT on their posts. Let them know what you think about it, give some advice, interact. When you do this, people will start to recognize your name.
  2. Share content of blogs across social media
    When you find a great post, SHARE IT! Bloggers love to know that you appreciate what they are saying. Spreading the word helps recognize you as someone who is willing to share information that you find valuable.
  3. Blog
    Start a blog. Yes, there are tons of blogs out there. You can offer your view on things. While visiting different blogs, you will see what is out there, what is missing, and what niche you may be able to fill.
  4. Join groups and socialize
    There are email groups and groups on facebook, there are forums too, that you can join. There you can ‘meet’ people and become familiarized with the community. Ask questions, give advice, and share in the ups and downs of the industry.
  5. Talk to people on social media
    Mingle with people. Before you know it, you will have friends. I know a few people for over 15 years that I consider friends, but we have never met.
  6. Book review
    During your career, you are bound to read books. You don’t have to have a book review blog. Post a review on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, etc. You will accomplish two things. 1) You are giving the book (and the author/illustrator) praise. 2) You are getting your name out there.
  7. Website
    You KNEW that was coming didn’t you!???! It’s okay to have a webpage (or two pages) when you start out. This give you a ‘store front’ where people can find out about you. Trust me, people look… acquaintances, editors, agents, etc. With your own website, you’ll have control of the information that is out there on you.
  8. Videos
    Videos are watched A LOT! By creating videos you are creating another avenue for people to find you. You don’t have to be in front of the camera. You can do a slide show, animation, interviews, or other things to create content using videos.
  9. Social media
    Explore social media to its fullest. I started out on Facebook, but now I’m comfortable on Twitter, Pinterest, and others. By using them I build up content that is searchable.

As you can see, there are a lot of ways to become established and get your name out there. To begin with, take on one or two. As you get more comfortable with them, add others in. Before you know it, you will be recognized as a member of the community and someone who is established as a writer/illustrator.

One of the benefits of doing the above, is you will begin to fit into the community and find your own niche. This will help build your platform and become a person people recognize and trust.

 

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Let me know what you think.
Are there other things you do pre-published?
What do you think is important?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

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~World Read ALOUD DAY~ March 4th!

litworldWRAD15logo-web

Did you know WORLD READ ALOUD DAY is approaching fast?

Well, it is!
~ March 4, 2015 ~

And I’m participating!

I’m offering 15 minute *FREE* Skype visits that day.

What will I do?

  1. Smile and wave
  2. Read one of my stories
  3. Allow your students to ask questions

What do you need to do?

  1. Contact me! email me at authorvisits@traceymcox.com or leave a comment below
  2. Pick out which  BOOK  you would like me to read
  3. Prepare questions

Check out my EVENTS PAGE on my website to see what times are available. Book your spot N-O-W!!!

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Let me know what you think of this idea.
Are YOU participating in World Read Aloud Day?
How? What are you doing?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign-ups are over here —>
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Thinking Thursday… Getting Established

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Getting Established

Getting established (or re-established) can feel overwhelming. There are so many things we need to do or can do.

  1. Website
  2. Blog
  3. Social Media
  4. Word of Mouth

First thing first though!

Google yourself to see what (or who) is out there.  Check out websites, social media outlets, and blogs to see what is available. You want to become consistent with your name throughout your visual presence if possible. I was very fortunate, I have:

  1. Website
    www.traceymcox.com
  2. Blog
    www.traceymcox.wordpress.com
  3. FaceBook
    (personal) www.facebook.com/traceymcox.1
    (prefessional) www.facebook.com/traceymcox.author
  4. Twitter
    www.twitter.com/traceymcox     or
    @traceymcox
  5. Pinterest
    www.pinterest.com/traceymcox
  6. YouTube
    www.youtube.com/user/traceymcox
  7. Skype
    traceymcox.author

Just to name a few.  As you can see, I was able to keep my name “Tracey M. Cox” in the search.

What if my name isn’t available?

You can do a variation. [Your Name] writes or [Your Name] author/illustrator. Or do the reverse. Maybe you have a pen name or a quirky name you want people to remember you by. Use that.

Be Consistent! Be, Be Consistent!

Not everyone will be coming from your website. You do have all your links on your website, right? Some people will be searching for you from a search engine. Some can be coming from another link, perhaps from someone else’s blog or website. You want them to recognize you!

Not only should you have your listing match, try matching or similar pictures too. This will help visual recognition! I’m more visual than anything. I can remember a face. Names??? Can be sketchy.   😉   That doesn’t mean you can’t change your pictures. Just remember to do it with all of them. Or have a few grouped together and a few others grouped together. You want people to know it is you when they are searching.

Putting your best foot forward

Your website is your face on the internet. You want to be presentable and allow people to get to know you.

Blogging is a great sound board. It allows you to talk about what you are passionate about, what you stand for, what you want in life. It is a great building block of your platform and branding. Remember to bring your message forward. We all have bad days and you can sound off about it too… just try to do it in a constructive way. Remember people will be reading your posts. Hopefully, some will be agents and/or editors that you will want to present a good image to.

Social Media is a handful! (Zoinks! There goes that constructive whining!!!   😉   ) It can be time consuming and overwhelming. I took it a little at a time. I researched each outlet and gave it a whole-hearted try for at least a week solid before I decided on it. Do I like them all??? NO! Do I use them all? NO! There are a few I’m on, barely. There are some I’m learning to like too. Then there are the ones I wish would be better, because I really like using them.

Word of Mouth is probably one of the best! Really. I think it is, because that means someone else thinks enough about you to pass your name on. To me, it’s one of the best compliments one person can give another. “Oh, so-and-so is really good at (blah). You should check them out!” Or there is “Such-and-such has a new book out called (TITLE). Go read it!” When you say good things about people, they notice.   🙂
While on Social Media, I try to keep it a 1:5 ratio, if not more. Which means for every one promotional post, I will post at least five other posts about somebody else or something else.

Be Friendly

One thing I will say is this…

Don’t constantly talk about yourself!

Talk about others… in a good way!!! Lift each other up. Promote someone who does something really well. Reciprocity RoCkS!

So get out there and let people know you, know what you are about, and who else you like.

:::LEAVE ME A COMMENT:::
Let me know what you think about this post.
What are some of the steps you’ve taken to get establish?
What are some ways you would like to learn about?

Until next time…

Happy Writing!
~t

* Don’t miss one post! Email sign-ups are over here —>
** Did you enjoy this post? Feel free to LIKE, SHARE, and COMMENT ON THIS POST.
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tidbits related to the kidlit industry. Click  ~HERE~  to be directed to my
Newsletter sign-up page.
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