Tag Archives: The Story Reading Ape

Happy Birthday to The Story Reading Ape!

When I discovered it was Chris Graham’s (aka Chris The Story Reading Ape) Birthday today, a simple greeting from me on Facebook just wouldn’t suffice! I knew I had to make my wishes that much more special, because this isn’t any ordinary Ape, you know! Chris has been a terrific support to me and many other Authors and Bloggers in the Internet-o-shpere, so I wanted to be sure he knew exactly how much I appreciate all that he does.

So I recruited the help of Snowy, one of the gardeners who works for Dennis, to help me make this video for you, Chris (or Mr. Ape, as I like to call you) and am sending Big Birthday Greetings your way and all the best from Bequia for the New Year!

A Bunch of Birthday Bananas from #Bequia!

Also, in lieu of the usual singing of “Happy Birthday to You” I thought you might rather enjoy this little ditty that is more in keeping with my video gift … Enjoy! And do please sing along, Everyone, because I know you all know the words!

Day-O by Harry Belafonte (from Beetlejuice)

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How NOT to get promotion for yourself and your book …

So, you’ve written and published a book. Congratulations! Good for you!

And welcome to the club … I have some sobering news, though. You are not the first, nor will you be the last, to write and publish a book – TODAY! So far this year, 2,396,061 books have been published, worldwide. How do you expect it’s possible for any one book to compete with numbers like that when searching for interested readers, not to mention buyers with money to spend? And how can any one author ever suppose their newly published book is better or more important than those other 2 million+ books, so much better that one author can expect readers, bloggers and reviewers to fall all over themselves in an attempt to help promote and publicize said book?

Many of these delusional, self-centred authors do exist, unfortunately … so many, in fact, that I feel the need, once again, to point out to them that their “activities” on social media and in seeking promotion are definitely not gaining them any champions – certainly not me nor a few other bloggers/reviewers I know. A couple of blogging friends have written about this same topic previously, and I’ve asked them to return now with a few more wise words to add to this blog of mine in the hope that – collectively – we may have some effect at getting through to these authors who continue to behave badly.

Tricia Drammeh, a published author who writes a couple of blogs promoting writing and authors, discusses in a post, The Death of a Book Blog, the problems she’s had to face dealing with difficult authors. (It was through this blog post that I came to “meet” Tricia online when I threw my support behind what she had to say.) Tricia also wished to add to my current post: Bloggers are overwhelmed by the number of requests and demands for reviews and promotional features. It’s impossible for them to feature every author who queries, so many have begun to delete emails from rude authors, or to ignore requests that do not follow their submission guidelines. Your best chance at earning a spot on a blog is to be courteous. Be respectful of the blogger’s time by following their submission guidelines. And, if you are featured, do your part to promote – not just yourself, but other authors featured on the blog. Authors really do need some guidelines, and those who are misbehaving are hurting not only themselves, but the community as a whole.

As well, The Story Reading Ape has recently found it necessary to thump his chest and rant about the problem of authors approaching him for promotion on his blog. Here’s what he has to say: As someone who makes online contact with authors on a daily basis, with the aim of seeing if I can help promote them (and their books) on my Author Promotions Enterprise Blog, there are a few issues that constantly IRK me. To read about these Irks in more detail, go to, Authors, Don’t Be Twits When Tweeting. Basically, it boils down to AUTOMATIC SELF-CENTRED REPLIES! These abominations exist in almost all media like Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Goodreads, Shelfari, Librarything, et al. I rarely find an author who thinks about a follower/friend request for a few moments and asks themselves WHY did this person start Following/Liking/Send me a Friend/Connection Request? A simple matter of looking at the person’s profile (in whatever media they contacted you) BEFORE you return their approach, will enable you to PERSONALISE your response and make them GLAD to have contacted you. Did I just hear you say something like “Bah Humbug – I don’t have time/I’ve got BETTER things to do/What do I care, they’re only a means to boost MY Follower numbers/Book Sales stats/etc.”? NEWSFLASH: You have just LOST yourself a Potential Book Sale/Reader/Fan/Follower/Friend! In my case, you’ve just lost a Ready Made (and FREE) Authors’ Platform with possibly more reach than your own! DON’T EVER FORGET – A Stranger is just a Friend you haven’t met or got to know yet! So GET RID of those ‘easy to set up once’ Automatic Replies and GREET WISELY and PERSONALLY. (Phew! The last thing we want is an irate Ape, so better do as he says, authors!!)

Since so many authors continue to do the same annoying (to us) things in an attempt to promote themselves, I decided they might actually see themselves in this following list, identify, and STOP DOING WHAT THEY’RE DOING!!! Let’s hope they’re all still reading …

How NOT to get promotion for yourself and your book:

1. Believe you’re the only person to have written and published a book. (See explanation above)

2. Publish without professional assistance in editing, cover design and formatting (whether eBook or print).

3. Spam social media about your book. Spam-a-lot, in fact, if you really want to irritate potential readers.

4. Don’t develop a fan base.

5. Don’t take part in any writing/reading communities – other than to exhort them to buy your book.

6. Don’t offer anything of value when engaging in social media. Don’t become engaged in social media at all.

7. Don’t read blogs and don’t comment on blogs.

8. Don’t write your own blog or offer value to the blogging community at large.

9. When seeking promotion and reviews for your book from bloggers, DON’T read their blog first, or engage with the blogger, or show any interest in their work if they themselves have published, or ask how you may help promote their blog, or read their submission instructions, or think that perhaps there are many more-worthy books ahead of yours already being considered for promotion or review. (Because, like, we’re all so impressed with you and your one book that we’ll immediately drop everything in order to help you get the word out about it … Yeah, In your dreams, maybe.)

10. DON’T think the rules pertain to you. (They’re meant for the other 2,396,060 books that have been published this year.)

And, to finish off, if you don’t believe me and the other bloggers, perhaps you’ll listen to Anne Enright …

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