March 11, 2022 Free Advice Friday Hot Topics

If you missed Free Advice Friday last week, you can watch the replay on our YouTube channel,

March 11, 2022 Free Advice Friday Hot Topics

If an author accepts a publishing deal, who maintains the copyright? Unless specifically negotiated otherwise (like with a ghost writer), the copyright stays with the author. The publisher gets the rights to distribution and sales. Tip: If you give the copyright away, you should get paid more.

How do you get your book into a military exchange? Military exchanges do accept books, but they have strict rules. Aside from a standard trade discount and returnable options, the military exchange only orders from a wholesaler who has a jobber. (A jobber works for the company and stocks shelves and retrieves the books that don’t sell.)

What is the optimum number of posts for social media? Put out 4 non-promotional posts for every one book or sales post. Keri calls this the 80/20 rule. Posting frequency depends on the platform. FB is geared for once a day. TikTok—one to three times a day. IG two to three times a week. Learn more about posting frequency and the best days of the week to post here:

At 18:39, Keri discusses copyright certificates and the Library of Congress control data numbers. It currently takes about a year for copyright certificates to come through. Keri highly recommends a PCIP (Publisher’s Cataloging-In-Publication) block for indie authors.

How do you get the PCIP?  Keri highly recommends the Donohue Group for this. Authors can submit a form online for any or all formats they intend to publish. You will need a cover, title page, copyright page and marketing copy for the work you would like catalogue. Donohue Group will get you into the OCLC system,, which means if a librarian wants your book, they do not have to catalog it. Instead, they look up your ISBN, click a few buttons and easily add the title to their own catalog and get your book on their shelves.

How do you create the copyright symbol on your computer?

  • Google the copyright symbol and copy and paste it—This is Keri’s wacky method. (Yes, yes… we all laughed.)
  • Windows shortcut: Press down the Alt key and type 0169.
  • Shortcut for Word and Excel: Ctrl+ Alt+C.
  • Shortcut for Mac: hold down the option key and press the “G” key. ©
  • You can type the English letter “c” and surround it in parentheses. (c)= ©

How should you move forward if you’ve pitched an agent and they respond and ask for a word doc but don’t offer to work with you? If one agent shows interest, don’t stop querying. Instead, press in and keep querying until you have a solid agreement. Tip: It’s bad form to keep querying once you have an offer on the table, but you can follow up with any agents you had previously pitched.

How do you change your cover on Good Reads? Only Goodreads librarians have permissions to change a cover once one has been posted. So, what’s an author to do? Keri shares her screen at 31:13 to demonstrate how you can connect with the people that can help.

  1. First, go to Goodreads and log-in to your author account.
  2. Next, go to Community.
  3. Then, go to Groups.
  4. Finally, go to the Goodreads Librarian Group.

You can post a request for the change and a librarian in the group will update it for you. Tip: Be sure to give them the link to the book you want updated as well as the title and ISBN.

Listen at 39:38 to understand why you might be getting a lot of Amazon global star ratings but not written reviews.  It is easy to give a star rating now without the requirement of putting thought into a written review. The star rating still helps push sales via social proof and also helps your algorithms. Yes, we want reviews, but both star ratings and reviews are good.

Marketing Tip: Spring is a big time in publishing! Keep in mind if you have children’s books, Easter is second only to Christmas for children’s book sales. If you write women’s fiction or cozy mysteries your “hot” season is coming up in late May and through the summer.

If you have questions you’d like answered, join us next week, Friday, March 18th at 10am EST to get your questions answered LIVE or e-mail your questions in advance to with “FREE ADVICE FRIDAYS” in the subject line.

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