Showing posts with label Dr. Judith Briles. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dr. Judith Briles. Show all posts

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Making Your Book Into a Classic

 A Memoir—and Marketing Technique--to Be Pondered
By Carolyn Howard-Johnson, multi award-winning author of fiction,
poetry, and the HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers
Here is a book that neatly combines my love of memoir and marketing. The dust jacket of this beautifully designed book explains: When God Says No by Judith Briles was first published in 1990, republished in 1994 and again in 1997.  But wait! Here it is again published in 2019 when it “took on a life of its own.” As I read, it became clear that in spite of its many touching memoir moments, it was the journey this book took along with that of the author that caught my attention—something that would illustrate to my readers that a book needn’t die. It can grow. It can become a classic. And that reviews are one of the marketing tools that can best make that happen!
The thing is, it can only happen if the author (or publisher!) knows or has a sense that it can and also knows how to make something so miraculous transpire. In fact, it is the best example I have run across for the authors I have tried to convince about the value of reviews. It illustrates these steps:
1.    Know that these days books needn’t die as they once did when they were given ninety days before bookstores sent them back to publishers to be re-marketed on discount sale tables or shredded!
2.    The author and/or publisher must realize a potential for a new edition or the magic never happens.
3.    Such a realization is more likely to work well if the author has been keeping notes about new events, information, or ideas that affect the content—anything really, from a memoir to a how-to book.
4.    That authors and publishers who keep honing their marketing skills are most like to make this book successful—from the first edition to, well, whatever number the last might be.
Note: The author of this memoir has been sending me copies of her new books for several years, usually with a handwritten note—both a gesture of gratitude and a request for a review or blurb tucked inside the front cover. It’s part of her process and certainly one that should be added to the marketing repertoire of anyone who wants to make a career of writing books!
Those who know my HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers may have guessed that making a book into a classic by using repeated editions and putting reviews at the forefront of their marketing expertise is the reason I wrote How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically: The ins and outs of using free reviews to build and sustain a writing career. One of my favorite sayings is MSNBC’s “The more you know…”  The future of one of your books may depend on just such a notion!

Carolyn Howard-Johnson’s first novel was set in Utah. This is the Place, has won eight awards and, though out of print, the paperback is still available in Amazon’s new and used feature—usually for less than a dollar. That’s another little tips for making a book into a classic. Letting Amazon keep it alive with their New and Used Book feature.  Her book of creative nonfiction Harkening, is a collection of stories most of them set in Utah. Also, out of print, it is also still “alive” and has won three . Her practical and detailed how-to book on promotion, The Frugal Book Promoter is an example of using editions for the same purpose. Published by Modern History Press in its third edition, it was once dubbed a “classic” by The flagship book in the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers, it is available at


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Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Dr. Judith Briles Gives Away Million Dollar Speaking Secrets

Because of ethical conflicts, I rarely review books. Occasionally I make an exception when a book that can help the publishing industry in some way comes along. This is one of those times. As you will see, authors interested in publishing have needed the latest information possible on the best marketing device for success ever for a long time. Ta da! Now comes Dr. Judith Briles’ How to Create a $1,000,000 Speechthe kind of advice that comes from experience!  

TITLE: How to Create a $1,000,000 Speech
AUTHORS: Dr. Judith Briles
PUBLISHER: Mile High Press, LTD.
ISBN:  978-1885331-67-0
293 pages, $25.00
GENRE: Nonfiction
CATEGORY: Speaking/Careers

Reviewed by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, 
author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers

My first serious introduction to self-publishing was at a SPAN conference in Atlanta (Small Publishers of North America); it was there I was introduced to a very fat volume on self-publishing by Marilyn Ross that included the idea that real publishing includes marketing. She also applauded speaking as the best wayto market a book—read that as the most assured path to success.

Since then, I have recommended a couple of super speakers’ books to my clients and in the appendixes of my #HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers and, I’ve pointed to the writing (and speaking) career of the late Dan Poynter as an example of how well speaking benefits a writing career—and vice versa. 

Now, years later, Dr. Judith Briles, adds her How to Create a $,000,000 Speech to the battery of my choice for “Best Books on Speaking.” And trust me, it is not a long list! 

Though the title may seem as if it is promising more than speaking can deliver, it is not. I have seen speaking make many authors a ton of money over the years and build writing careers as it does so. One side-benefit that always appealed to me: Travel.

Have I convinced you of the possibilities? Then the next step is to study up.  And may I suggest you start with Briles’ book? For the fun of it. For the enthusiasm and inspiration between those royal purple covers. And for the all-in-one-place advice you’ll get on the process. 

Patricia Tripp, CSP and Past President of the National Speakers Association, said it perfectly and I can’t beat that: “Learning from Judith Briles could well be your best purchase of the year.” 

It boils down to experience. And, of course, Judith’s near-unique ability to tap that experience and organize it into a book you won’t want to put down or relegate to a bookshelf. Not when you can keep it near your computer to nudge you toward your speaking goal a little each day.


Carolyn Howard-Johnson brings her experience as a publicist, journalist, marketer, and retailer to the advice she gives in her HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers and the many classes she taught for nearly a decade as instructor for UCLA Extension’s world-renown Writers’ Program. The
books in her HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers have won multiple awards. That series includes both the first and second editions of The Frugal Book Promoterand The Frugal Editorwon awards from USA Book News, Readers’ Views Literary Award, the marketing award from Next Generation Indie Books and others including the coveted Irwin award. How To Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethicallyis her newest how-to book and her newest poetry book is Imperfect Echoes.

Howard-Johnson is the recipient of the California Legislature’s Woman of the Year in Arts and Entertainment Award, and her community’s Character and Ethics award for her work promoting tolerance with her writing. She was also named to Pasadena Weekly’s list of “Fourteen San Gabriel Valley women who make life happen” and was given her community’s Diamond Award for Achievement in the Arts. 
The author loves to travel. She has visited nearly ninety countries and has studied writing at Cambridge University in the United Kingdom; Herzen University in St. Petersburg, Russia; and Charles University, Prague, as well as USC, her alma mater. She admits to carrying a pen and journal wherever she goes. Her website

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