Tag Archives: youtube

Starring in Her 1st Professional Interview

Back in January I wrote that someone from Iuniverse contacted me about doing an interview. They said I did a lot of social media work, really worked up the book, and made myself known across different platforms. Well, that’s what us indie’s do, right? Of course I agreed to do the interview. How amazing is that? In the world of indie authors, that’s a pretty stinkin’ big deal.

A month or so later, I did the interview. It was all very nicely done, and the interviewer was a real sweetheart. Once it was wrapped up there was nothing to do but wait. And wait. And wait. Okay, just so you all know–and maybe it’s just me–but when I have to wait for something more than a minute, I assume something is wrong.

OH MY GOD!!! The interview sucked! I sucked! I looked hideous and they just couldn’t put that for people to see. I sounded dumb, or made no sense. They decided nobody wanted to hear my story. The lighting was wrong. Did I have a huge zit on my nose? Did I just mortify them to the point that my interview was laying on some editing room floor?

Eventually, I simply repressed the memory of any interview ever happening. Yet, a piece of my soul was shattered (cue dramatic clutching of the chest). Then, Sunday night, I was searching the pages of Iuniverse to find some info, and when I landed on one page I saw a video clip and thought, “Hmm, that girl looks like me.” The name was wrong (Tonia Ramon), it was close but oh so very not me. I took a closer look and yelped. It was me. What I found was that they didn’t just make one video about using Iuniverse, but turned it into two videos with the other about the importance of editing. Worry? Who me? Pshhhhaw. I knew it would be awesome.

So, please watch my videos; show some love and support, leave a comment on YouTube and let Iuniverse know that I’m kind of a big deal. ūüėÄ Thank you all.

Tania L Ramos, RN and Author with 3 Minutes of Fame

Be Still by Tania L Ramos available on ebooks, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon
Life by Chance coming this holiday season

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Do You Need A Book Trailer?

I post this because I am currently working on a trailer for someone’s book. Yes, I am a jack of all trades. Actually, my son is the brains behind the magic, I just do the grunt work of looking for clips and music.

Is a book trailer important? I blogged on this last year, but things have changed since last year. ¬†Trailers have become a near necessity at this point. When you put out a book there is always a checklist to create and complete: get all my friends & family to purchase a book (check). Put out a press release (check). Email everyone who has ever sent me an email and promote my book (check). Start a Goodreads account (check). Buy marketing material (check). Take a closer look at my budget (check). Create a book trailer….a what?

A book trailer is a commercial for your book and created just like a movie trailer. Some are simple: a picture of the book, a quick synopsis, picture of author, and end. Some are more detailed: pictures scrolling across the screen, overlapping, fading, words, picture of the book and end.  Others are more detailed: video clips, pictures, scrolling words, advertise pic of book and end. And some people shell out thousands to have actual actors and voice overs do scenes from the book.

Why are they important? Because it is a commercial and point of advertising. And once you post it to YouTube, it is there forever, so will be forever advertising.

Do people buy based on a trailer? yep. One woman who was doing research for her trailer watched book trailers for over three hours.  When she was all done, she had a list of ten books to buy based on the trailers alone.  In my own personal experience, I have had a few people contact me based on my video. It works.

Who sees it? Anyone searching for trailers based on your meta tags. ¬†Search, “Be Still trailer Tania” and my video will pop up on YouTube. Use as many relevant meta tags as possible.

How much does it cost? That’s tricky. If you have a basic knowledge of WMM then it can cost you nothing. If you want video clips and pictures then you will pay accordingly. To have one created starts at about $1,000 and can go up to the cost of a small production studio at $25,000. I did mine just under $500, and the one I am working on for a friend will cost about $500 unless she wants more clips.

Can you do it on your own? Yes. Most computers have some form of video editing applications. Play with it.

Does it have to be full of bells and whistles? No. Michelle Proulx had an epiphany one night. ¬†There was a thought in her head about creating a trailer that wasn’t too serious, but got the point across.It was simple, and it works. ¬†Here is what she came up with:¬†

Yes, you can do it all on your own. From simple to elaborate, from cheap to expensive, you should have a book trailer. If you need help, let me know and i’ll give you some detailed pointers, or you can ask my son (the movie wizard) to create one for you. ¬†Here is my trailer for¬†Be Still. ¬†This one cost about $500, and the views continue to go up everyday. Remember, it is eternal advertising. Once you list it, it is there for millions to see.

Advice: Keep it under 1 minute. One poll states most people will skip to the next video after one minute. If you are only using words, keep it moving or add diefferent pictures behind it. ¬† ¬†Don’t add too much crazy scene changes, like using fan out, pan up, pan down, circle in, etc. Fade to black works great.

An Author’s Mind

I spent much of today working on a video shoot with my family. I’ve written about it before, but to recap it is about what goes on in the mind of an author: sleepless nights, stalking by characters, even a late night character exorcism. All the fun stuff we authors endure on a daily basis.

The movie stars my daughter as Evan and my boyfriend as Ben, who are the two main characters in the book I am working on currently. What’s fun is that in today’s video shoot we buried my book, “Be Still,” and went into the story of Ben and Evan, with a fun cameo by Jack who was the hero in Be Still, and by an alien which will be my next book task. So I was able to incorporate some cheesy shameless plugs in there, but it’s my video and I am the director so I call the shots.

Today we turned Jorja (pronounced Georgia), my daughter, into a fairy, complete with fairy make-up and beautiful wings. She had us laughing so hard, and the words, “that’s why people don’t work with kids,” came in from the background. Outside of a few grouchy episodes she was truly a star.

My boyfriend who is playing the part of Ben, had the opportunity to sport his fire gear today. He looked pretty hot. Seriously–it is 101 degrees in the desert and he was sporting full turnouts and helmet…for over an hour. Talk about dedicated to the cause.

My son, the cinematographer, sound effects and special effects guy was his usual teenage attitudey self, because there was some special ops something sniper thingy, modern warfare clan something or other thing going on today and he was missing it. I reminded him that he was my employee–paid in food, electricity, and running water, though I think his main concern is electricity. No electric=no games.

Mom even jumped in on the action when we had to scrap one scene using green screen because the CGI was off, so we improvised to a scene in the kitchen. She was pretty good. I broke character because my daughter had me rolling, but we made it work. Mom has also done all the make-up on Jorja, so she will get double credits at the end. We will be shooting some great night scenes tonight and if there are no special ops missions on X-box then we should have a finished product by next weekend.

Why am I creating this video? I love playing with camera and effects and doing creative stuff like this. Plus, I thought it would be awesome to let the world know what goes on in my mind when I am writing. It’s not all wonderful all the time, especially when I wake up for my 3am pee session and can’t go back to sleep because my characters are haunting me. Is it just me? I really don’t think it is.

Stay tuned for, “An Author’s Mind.” If all goes right there will be an explosion in the end…

____________________________________________________

I am Tania L Ramos, author of When I Thought I Was Tough and Be Still. I am a nurse by day (and sometimes into long hours of the night) and try to write my new book while promoting my other books. Somewhere in there I sleep.

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Iuniverse Comes Through

After several phone calls and speaking to a multitude of people, Iuniverse finally connected me to the right person who did a full investigation of my problem with the book shipment. ¬†In case you don’t know what I am talking about click here for my previous post on Iuniverse Where Art Thou.

The simple catch up is: Iuniverse sent me the wrong order and charged me all wrong.  I was over charged aprox $350 for books I did not ask for and never received books I did ask for, but instead received a bunch of paperback books.  I sent frequent emails in which I was told someone would contact me within 48 hours, but it never happened and follow-up emails were never returned.  I was upset and starting to believe all those rumors going around about this company.  I was devastated in thinking I had been duped.

Two weeks ago I started making phone calls to Iuniverse on my lunch breaks. ¬†I received quite the run around and several, “let me look into this.” But one woman finally called me back and asked what had happened and for the fifth time I gave her my predicament. ¬†She was confused as she went through my purchase history and said it didn’t make much sense. ¬†Again, I heard the words, “Let me look into this and get back to you.”

Sigh. Biting lip. ¬†“Okay.”

Two days later she called and said my purchase order was written as 150 softcover books at 45% discount with 15 softcovers free and 25 hardcovers at 35% discount is what I asked for.  I agreed.  She asked what I actually received and I told her 180 softcover books: 150 at 45% discount and 30 at 35% discount.  She said she would call me back.  Thirty minutes later she called back and said the woman in charge of my purchase screwed up and that when several emails were sent to her and my PSA that the PSA forwarded the emails to a higher up.  My sales rep was summarily removed from her position for retraining but no one thought to fix the problem.

So this new woman who has been looking into it apologized for the inconvenience and said she was working on a solution and would call me back.  An hour later she called back and said she put in a rush order for 25 hardcover books and added another 10 softcover books for my troubles.  The shipping would be free and I would not be asked to pay the difference in the charges for the hardcover (apparently I was billed less for the softcovers originally since softcovers were $17.95 and hardcovers were $27.95) which was a savings of over $100 and Iuniverse had to take the loss in cost and in shipping the new books along with giving me 10 more for free which comes to a total savings of nearly $300.

I have to admit my faith was quickly dwindling and I was set to give a negative blog feedback, but in the right hands this problem was solved and Iuniverse admitted they were in error AND FIXED IT! That was all I wanted after all.  So big thanks to Iuniverse, who has just been sold to Penguin, a subsidiary of Pearse, for coming through. I received my shipment two days ago and it was sent express.

Now to sell all these books!

 

Tania L Ramos is the author of When I Thought I Was Tough and Be Still. She has received to awards for Be Still, published by Iuniverse and available on Barnes & Noble, Amazon, Nook, Kindle, and Ibook.  Currently working on a program to help new authors avoid the Big 3 point of view mistakes editors frown on.

See the author interview here: YouTube

Creative Introversion

I read a great article today on how introverts spend time alone gathering energy to go out in public and how extroverts gather energy from crowds for time they are alone.  If that is the case then I need a lot of alone time.

I am officially on the road to marketing success (I’m being positive here). ¬†All of my ducks are in a row and only need be set out onto a great big pond to float away and spread the word of this, “rising author who will be a household name soon.” I read another article that says it is okay to make profound speculations about ones-self (still feels vain to me) as long as you believe what you write. ¬†I suppose watching a days worth of informercials has proven that theory correct. ¬†I can’t begin to tell you how many, “world’s best stain fighter,” “next big thing,” “best of the best,” tag lines were thrown around. ¬†They are all set in place to get a reader (viewers) attention. ¬†Maybe I will be a household name, I mean I am in my own home…I know, that’s a stretch.

I’ve been searching online for book competitions that I could participate in, but seems many started at the beginning of the year, so I’ve missed that mark. ¬†Not many book shows in my community and too late to grab a booth at our local fair, so I’m left to wonder what else I can do. ¬†Something that feeds my basic nature of introversion? It has to be creative yet catchy…and legal, which is most important.

Today my boyfriend sent me this link on YouTube, please watch it before proceeding with the rest of this blog as you have to see it to know my comment: Commercial For Drama Button

Okay, did that commercial catch your attention? Make you smile? Make you giggle? Make you wonder what the heck was happening? In the end did you say, “Oh! I get it?” ¬†THAT’S WHAT I NEED!!! I need a drama effect to the things I can create at home, and don’t think for one moment I didn’t consider doing a similar thing at our neighboring (big city) shopping center court. ¬†Reenact the dramatic scenes from book? Oh that would be fabulous, but that takes a lot of time and at least three actors willing to VOLUNTEER their time, and someone willing to be hit by a car…at high speed.

I have read tens if not hundreds of websites telling me they know how to make an impact to be seen, but I look at them and wince, not sold on their product. ¬†I keep thinking I can do better. ¬†I am by no means a perfectionist or A-type personality that has to have full control, believe me I would relinquish it gladly if I knew that it would make a stand, but I haven’t found that on any website. ¬†Some sites headlines make great promises but the site does not deliver. ¬†You can’t expect me to purchase your product that will dazzle the literary world when their website looks like a second-rate, chop-and-drop magazine add. ¬†I haven’t been impressed yet, which means I have to find my own creative introversion. ¬†I have to find those tag lines that will catch a reader, and literary world, to have them think, “what happens next? Inquiery minds…”

So, short of reenacting a high speed car crash, a man traveling to a world caught between life and death, an afterlife wife with a deadly secret, and exploding coffins what more is there? That is my plight. ¬†So far I have a blank piece of paper, a cup of iced green tea, B12 5,000units in, and a cat who still smiles when I talk to myself. ¬†I’m set! Time for this introvert to get creative. ¬†Today’s agenda: Send out at least one press release and learn how to create an app for Ipod. Any suggestions? Feel free to send them in and I will post them or their link.

And if you haven’t seen the book trailer for, “Be Still,” please watch it here: YouTube, and then buy the book now available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble online and Kindle. ¬†And, again, send me a picture of you with your book for a chance to win a free, “Be Still,” gift package. ¬†Send emails to author@tanialramos.com. ¬†Any pics sent are subject to be posted on my website or blog. ¬†First picture in wins the gift package.

Writer’s Blues

Every time I turn on my computer I follow the same routine (beware, shameless plugs this way —>), stats on “Be Still,” book trailer, stats at Bookemon for my first book, “When I Thought I Was Tough” which has found its way into the #3 spot for most liked fiction books and #7 for most read fiction book all thanks to you all. ¬†Then I check my email to see if my “live” date has been posted, then I check Twitter to see the news on books, authors, writers, up coming seminars and marketing strategies (great finds on there). ¬†All the while I’m doing this there is a small tab on my home page that mocks me.

I move on to check my personal website TaniaLRamos.com and now I have to check the book website BeStillNovel.com. ¬†Each time I flip between screens that tab on my homepage does its little dance to catch my attention. ¬†I wince and move on. ¬†Time to google search,” marketing cheap,” “marketing on a budget,” “marketing made easy,” “marketing for dummmies,” etc. ¬†And I realize there are a million strategies, but only few that pertain to books, which is quite defeating. ¬†I lower my screen and smile at that little icon on my desktop, “Soon,” I say, knowing that’s not true.

Time to learn what a podcast is and how it will benefit me. ¬†Continue to research video book review services to see if I can match what they offer and what more I can offer to sweeten the deal. ¬†I sigh. ¬†This marketing business is time-consuming, but I’ve made wonderful connections and had a memorable experience just getting to this point. ¬†So, I’m determined to persevere on past my writer’s blues, because for as much time and energy–what little I have left after a 12 hour shift at work–all that goes into my current book waiting to be, “printed-on-demand,” while that little, bashful, waiting its day in the spotlight icon on my desktop for book number three, “A Man’s Worth,” is completely neglected.

A week and a half have passed since I last opened that anxious icon, and when I did, I typed my heart out and felt wonderful. ¬†Three chapters completed in one day. ¬†Then I felt guilty that I wasn’t working on structuring a marketing program for, “Be Still.” ¬†I’m caught between two loves. ¬†They both beckon me, “Tania? We love you. ¬†We need you. ¬†We will die without you.” A love triangle if you will. ¬†Bitter sweet. ¬†And so the writer’s blues continue, as I prepare to shove off to work for 12 hours, come home at 11pm only to sleep and move on again at 7am tomorrow…but Saturday, “Saturday, my sweet books. ¬†Saturday I promise to devote half a day to each book…right after I work on my spring garden some more, clean the room, pay the bills, dye my hair–I’m sorry, Books, I’m a woman and I have needs too–take dogs a bath, wash and vacuum the van, and clean the girl’s room. ¬†Then. ¬†Then I promise I will get to you both. ¬†Until then, I remain your humble marketer with the writer’s blues.”

Provoking the Crazies

My craziness continues. ¬†Not the usual playing therapist to the pets crazy, or warping my kid’s minds crazy, not even spending $200 at Lowe’s to attempt to beautify my yard (yet again) despite eight years of effort kind of crazy. ¬†No. ¬†This crazy is in countless, sleepless, migraine filled hours of learning how to market on a budget. ¬†Seriously, I have had a migraine and/or headache for two weeks now. ¬†Crazy involves spending an hour looking for the reading glasses I only use when I incur a headache after staring at a bright computer screen for hours on end then remember, “Oh yeah. ¬†I’m supposed to wear my lenses to avoid this.” Then incur another battle of headaches adjusting to the glasses so the previous headache will go away. ¬†It’s a vicious cycle and, in the end, I wind up several specific types of headaches (eye strain, stress, and fatigue) which turn into the Perfect Headache Storm of a category 5 and switch directions into a migraine….and don’t get me started on the Imitrex “crazies.” ¬†That kind of crazy is down right spooky.

Oh, I forgot to mention the “watching the stats,” crazies. ¬†That is where I check my phone apps to see how my “When I Thought I Was Tough,” book is doing on Bookemon, how my “Be Still,” book trailer is doing, how my personal website is doing, and what I can do to improve views on all three. ¬†Now, let’s toss the Twitter psychotics into the mix and the, “oh let me check if anyone responded to my blog,” lunacy and stir it all together into the migraine and stats vortex…oops I forgot to import the insanity around creating a website dedicated to my book (like all the marketing sites advise) and the research that goes into deciding what to put on said site, (deep breath) and now following those stats and here I have a loony casserole of numbers, migraines, and…darn it all to H-E-double hockey sticks, I forgot to stir in some certifiable 5150 madness surrounding the nervous tick of checking my email to see if the live date of my book has come through….oooooh and the neurotic ramblings in my head that say, “Are you crazy girl (with attitude)? Nobody is going to buy a book, host an event, or remember your name after yesterday.”

The belly aching ensues. ¬†The room spins. ¬†I have that acidic burn in my throat. ¬†I’m surrounded by numbers, “198 views on youTube, 2302 reads on Bookemon, 798 unique visits to tanialramos.com, 35 followers on Twitter, 5 months ’til Shamless Plug Month in September, $4,000 in debt in publishing efforts, &$#*%! in advertising materials,” and the migraines make my ears ring and eyes try to suck themselves into my head, and…

   HOLD UP!


Wait a minute… I’ve been surrounded by crazy my entire life. ¬†My crazy family whom I love. ¬†My crazy cat who kills baby birds and bring them home to show. ¬†the crazy dog that needs a pet therapy session daily. ¬†My crazy kids, because they think mom is made of money and according to my oldest, “sits on a throne of lies.” ¬†My crazy mom who thinks that after all these years I will sweep under the cabinet and not around it (LOL). ¬†My crazy daughter who laughs when I get pukey faced on the swinging ferris wheel car at Disneyland. ¬†My boyfriend who thinks someday he’ll win that grappling match with me. ¬†My crazy brother who finds hiking five miles with a camel pack on is, “a nice day out.” I’ve been through two divorces, one restraining order dispute, four attorneys in one year, a child custody battle, a CPS interaction gone terribly awry, single motherhood, nursing school (which was an insane 2 years), rain inside my home, an inch of dirt in my pool, dogs tearing out new plants, an ex-husband moving back to California, cats with bipolar and borderline personality disorders, and a bird that, after five years, doesn’t realize he has outlived his one year lifespan. ¬†i’ve survived crazy most my life! Geesh…this is nothing. ¬†besides, so many people are crazy these days, we’ve become the majority!

!!!!!CELEBRATE YOUR CRAZY!!!!!