Author: albertasequeira

I'm an Awareness Coach, author, motivational speaker and instructor. My memoirs are A Spiritual Renewal; A Journey to Medjugorje; lease, God, Not Two; This Killer Called Alcoholism. My Narrative Non-Fiction is What is and isn't Working for the Alcoholic and Addict. A Spiritual Renewal won the Reviewers Choice Award 2008 Semi-Finalist by Reader Views of Austin Texas. Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round was nominated for the Editor's Choice Award for 2009 by Allbook Review of Canada and was nominated for the Dan Poynter's Global eBook Award 2011. Please, God, Not Two was nominated for the Editor's Choice Award for 2010 by Allbook Review of Canada and featured in the December 20, 2010 Publishers Weekly. My new Narrative Non-Fiction, What is and isn't Working for the Alcoholic and Addict: In Their Own Words had been written by 34 addicts from the USA and Canada. It is a testimony on what they believe is not working in their recovery programs. It's a book for all; the substance abusers, doctors, counselor and family members. I speak to the public and private organizations on "The Effect of Alcoholism on the Whole Family" since I lost a husband and daughter from this disease. I'm a co-host to NBTV-95 cable TV show from New Bedford titled "Authors Without Borders Presents." I interview other authors and writers to learn their journey with roadblocks to getting published. I've finished my first book in the trilogy The Rusty Years. Looking for an agent.

Book Awards

book award

Tell people you won a book award

Michaels knows that it’s on her to make sure the book-buying world knows that her books are award-winners. It’s worth the time it takes, too, because an award lends a certain amount of prestige and cache to your book.

How can you follow Michaels’ lead and make the most of the awards your book will receive? Here are 12 ideas.

1. Ask what the contest organizer is doing to promote winners.

There’s no point in duplicating efforts. Many will distribute an announcement press release and feature a list of winners on the competition website, but what else happens – anything? Do they send a personalized press release to your local newspaper?

If they do, you don’t have to. If they don’t, see number 2 below.

2. Send a press release.

Using the organizer’s press release as a starting point, send your own press release to local media outlets, alumni publications, and industry trade magazines (if that’s appropriate). Change the organizer’s headline and first paragraph to focus on your connection to the media outlet (“Local author wins national book award,” “LSU alum wins national book award,” “Industry expert wins national book award”).

3. Update your cover.

For e-books and print on demand, incorporate the award seal into your cover design immediately. If you have printed books in inventory and the organizer sells award stickers, buy a roll.

4. Send an email announcement.

People who know you will want to share your excitement.

Michaels shared the news with her email newsletter subscribers. In addition to announcing your award and its significance, make sure you explain briefly what the book is about and include a link to a purchase page.

5. Share the news on social media.

Your connections will be happy for you. Give them a chance to applaud your accomplishment.

6. Include it in your social media profile.

For example, when Michaels wins an award, she changes her Twitter and Facebook page headers to images that showcase the awards.

7. Use it to get reviews.

When sending out advance review copies for your newest book, mention any awards in your cover note. People are more likely to want to read and review your newest work when they know that previous books were recognized for their quality.

8. Ask the judges for feedback.

Then use it in your marketing materials. Even a short phrase indicating why your book is a winner will go a long way on your book cover, website, online sales pages, and press materials.

9. Include it in your author bio.

You are now “an award-winning author.” Say so in your bio for the book, your website, and social media profiles.

10. Update your book description.

Few things give book buyers confidence like the phrase “award-winning.” Work this into your book’s description everywhere – including your website, retail sales pages, and Goodreads.

11. Announce it on your website.

This good news belongs on your home page and the page that’s dedicated to book information.

12. Incorporate it into marketing materials. 

Michaels added award information to the bookmarks and tent cards she created for book signings. 

Watch out for the scammers

Here’s a word or two of caution about awards, though: Because many authors would like to claim “award-winner” status, you have to be careful that you don’t let scammers take advantage of you.

Some aggressively promoted competitions are nothing more than income generators for organizers. Before entering a contest and paying a fee, check the list of contests and competitions reviewed and rated by the Alliance of Independence Authors.

Visit for more writing information!

A new year

Another year of hopes and dreams of your book coming alive. Is it going to be another year passing with no start? Don’t let fear stop you from writing. Putting yourself under pressure making a date to finish is foolish. Books usually take 2 years.

Make it fun. There is NOTHING right or wrong with how you write. Be yourself. Write what you want about an event, a person, or an experience. Start that first sentence. Forget ALL mistakes in writing or getting dates or events mixed up with time in the manuscript. Computers delete, paste, copy, and select things from the internet with researching.

Don’t bring characters in that will add nothing to the story or readers will be looking for them and getting confused. Start with a dynamite opening. The so called Hook is extremely important. If you don’t get the readers interest to read future, your book will sit.

Most of all, end 2021 saying you finally got your story moving!


Alberta Sequeira, Author, and Motivational Speaker

Alberta became a writer from the tragedy of losing both her husband and adult daughter from alcohol and drug abuse. She speaks per request from businesses, organizations, to the public, and behind closed doors at jails, halfway homes, court-ordered programs and rehabilitation centers.

She has sent her first historical fiction out to publishers. The story is The Rusty Years; The Remembrance of Being Young. The sequel is The Rusty Years; Secrets Revealed. Both are completed. Hopefully, they will get a publisher. If not, by the end of April, you may see it on as self-published books.

Other books? She completing the true story of her father, Brigadier General, Albert L. Gramm, one of the commanding officers of the 26th Yankee Division. He fought during WWII in Metz, Lorraine, and The Battle of the Bulge. Alberta shows him as a military man and a father. She covers other men and women who have fought for our country. After reading this book, you will realize the importance of asking your parents or relatives about their lives before they pass. The book is From War to Flashbacks.

One manuscript is in the hands of a Christian publisher who sell books on Medjugorje. It’s about her ten-day trip to Medjugorje in Bosnia witnessing visionaries who have daily apparitions with our Lady since 1981. The Christian book is A Sample of Heaven; Our Last Call. The six visionaries are receiving ten secrets to be revealed to the world when they all get them. There is only one visionary left to get the last. We are not sure if they are all the same. Our Lady has told them, once the secrets are told to a priest they have already picked, they will be told one by one to the world. After this time, so far after forty-years on Earth, she will not appear again as she has now or in the past. The first secret has been revealed to everyone because of many prayers. The location where she first came to the children, back then they were from 10 years old to sixteen, she will leave a sign. People will see it and not be able to touch it. That’s when even the unbelievers will realize she was here and does exists.

One more in the making is a book, hopefully with humor, on how we all reach the age of seniors without noticing the signs until they are in front of us with our bodies changing. Slowly, we can’t keep up with the things we used to without blinking an eye or having to think about the action. It’s about reality and pocking fun at the youth being taken away. She’s holding back on the title to keep it from being used by others.

Keep up to her site to see when these books get published and are available.


Organizations for Writers

Visit daily Great site for writers

·         Academy of American Poets

·         American Society of Journalism and Authors

·         Association of Authors’ Representatives

·         Association of Writers & Writing Programs

·         Authors Guild

·         Community of Literary Magazines and Presses

·         Lambda Literary

·         National Writers Union  

·         Pen America

·         The Poetry Foundation

10 Books To Put On A Writer’s Bookshelf 

·         Draft No. On the Writing Process ( Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2017) by John McPhee

·         The Elements of Style (Macmillan, 1959) by William Strunk Jr and E.B White

·         The Mindful Writer: Noble Truths of The Writing Life (Wisdom Publications, 2012) by Dinty W. Moore

·         The Way of the Writer: Reflections on the Art and Craft of Storytelling (Scribner, 2016) by Charles Johnson 

·         Writing the Blockbuster Novel (Forge, 2016) by Albert Zuckerman

·         Before and After the Book Deal: A Writers Guide to Finishing, Publishing, Promoting, and Surviving Your First Book (Catapult, 2020) by Courtney Maum

·         The Book Business: What Everyone Needs To Know (Oxford University Press, 2019) by Mike Shatzkin and Robert Paris Riger

·         The Business of Being a Writer (University of Chicago Press, 2018) by Jane Friedman 

·         Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation (Penguin Group, 2010) by Steven Johnson

·         What we talk About When we Talk About Books: The History and Future of Reading (Basic Books, 2019) by Leah Price

12 Book Festivals To Attend

·         AJC Decatur Book Festival in Georgia (

·         Alabama Book Festival in Montgomery (

·         Boston Book Festival (

·         Brooklyn Book Festival (

·         Iowa City Book Festival (

·         Los Angeles Times Festival of Books (

·         Miami Book Fair International (

·         National Book Festival in Washington, D.C (

·         Portland Book Festival in Oregon (

·         Texas Book Festival in Austin (

·         Twin Cities Book Festival (

·         West Virginia Book Festival in Charleston (

8 Podcasts For Writers

·         Between the Covers, hosted by David Naimon

·         Book Fight!, hosted by Mike Ingram and Tom McAllister,

·         Bookworm, hosted by Michael Silverblatt,

·         Fiction/Non/Friction, hosted by V.V Ganeshananthan and Whitney Terrell,

·         Hurry Slowly with host Jocelyn K. Glei,

·         The Creative Shift with Dan Blank,

·         TK podcast with James Scott,

·         WMFA with host Courtney Balestier,

Learn, Grow, Succeed!!

Authors Should Promote The Books Of Others to Help Their Own Book

How Authors Can Increase Their Website Traffic

How Can Authors Market More Efficiently?

Are You A Book Marketing Badass?

The Ultimate 2021 Book Marketing Guide

Authors Need to Know Why They Write Books

Kid’s Corner

Teach them to learn


Advice from a Kid Author: 
How Grown-Ups Can Get Kids Writing



by Jake Marcionette

Jake Marcionette is a typical teenager who loves sports and hanging with his friends. He also happens to be one of the youngest New York Times bestselling authors ever. His book series, Just Jake, is a colorful, diary-style fiction account of the life of Jake Ali Mathews, a not-so-typical sixth grader with a keen sense of humor and a penchant for adventure.

I’ve been asked by the good folks at Brightly to tap out a piece on writing, my process, and tips to help young writers improve their skills, and what follows are my suggestions. Keep in mind that what works for me might not work for you, your kids, or students — BUT without an approach or plan, writing will take a backseat to the multitude of other activities bombarding a young person’s life. And that’s a shame because, as a kid, writing is a muscle that needs to be flexed and developed, as it plays a huge part of our academic future.

Jake Marcionette, author of the Just Jake series
Jake Marcionette at a middle school event

So first things first: Here’s how I prepare to write.

My Process 

If I’m going to write anything (book, poem, short story, essay), I go through my checklist to ensure “OCS” is operational and ready for engagement. That’s Optimal Creative Space, and for me, it’s a critical component of creativity.

Over the years, OCS is what I’ve developed to tell my brain and body it’s time to write. Athletes stretch before practice, singers go through unusual vocal warm-ups, and checking this list gets me in the “writing zone”:

  • Quiet area
  • Logged into classical via iHeartRADIO
  • Bowl of pretzels — unsalted
  • Sparkling water — room temperature
  • Chair recline in locked position
  • Blank Word Doc open
  • Timer set

Without a quiet area, I’m useless. And that might be tough for families in which chaos rules or there exists an annoying sibling (or two). In the past, I’ve used noise-canceling headphones, which work great.

Classical music is my secret weapon. It relaxes me and unlike other music, where I find myself listening to the words, classical music gets me pumped up to write. And it turns out I’m not the only one who finds it stimulating: One study found that students who listened to ten minutes of Mozart before taking SATs scored higher than students who didn’t.

The rest just helps to get me in my happy place. Regarding a timer — I think it is important to place constraints on your writing. Time is precious, so use it wisely. Timers prevent too much daydreaming and force you to get down to business.

Jake Marcionette at a book signing
Jake Marcionette at a book signing

How to Promote Writing 

Yesssss! We all know “reading” is the rock star of literacy. It gets all the attention when you’re young. But writing is equally important and the two go hand-in-glove. Writing needs to be emphasized, but many struggle with how to do that. It does take more effort but it’s not hard.

1. Be a Writing Role Model
Dear parents and teachers … guess what!? You guys are role models. So, set a good example and practice what you preach. You don’t have to pen the next great American novel, but if you demonstrate excitement in what you’ve crafted — a poem, short story, recipe, work memo, PowerPoint presentation, whatever — you signal to an impressionable kid that writing is important.

2. Forget Journals!
No kid wants to keep a “journal.” Trust me! Instead, suggest your future Hemingways start off by jotting down their daily thoughts and observations in a blog! They can name the blogs anything they’d like — “Ryan’s Reflective Ruminations!” or “Mary’s Maniacal Manifesto.” Anything but a journal! There’re tons of free blog platforms out there, so find one and set it up.

3. Add It to Family Time
My dad used to require that my sister and I be prepared to sit down at the dinner table once a week and lead a discussion about a trending news story. And this wasn’t just a requirement for the kids; both of my parents participated equally. Take that one step further and, instead of printing out the headline, have your child or student write a brief summary of the event — in his or her own words (no cut and paste) — to be read aloud at the table. This exercise serves two purposes: It stimulates interpretive writing AND practices public speaking.

4. Make It Competitive
At home or in the classroom, kids love to compete. You want to control the TV Saturday night? Give kids a fun writing prompt and let them have at it. Remember, sometimes it’s good to reward effort, even if it’s not always the best example of creative writing.

5. Call Off the Grammar Police
There’s a reason red pens are being banished from schools. Criticism can sting! And for kids, it can really hurt and paralyze the creative process. The goal is to encourage writing, so even if Johnny has a tough time with basic grammar, let it go and praise the effort. Mechanics, spelling, and subject-verb agreement will come later.

6. Read More
Sheesh! I know, right?! The more you read, the better you write. To that end, the Just Jake series is a great place to start.

Jake Marcionette is a fifteen-year-old author and lives in Jacksonville, Florida, with his family. His first book, Just Jake #1, published in 2014 to great success featuring national and local televsions spots and a spot on the New York Times Middle Grade Bestseller List. He found his agent at the age of twelve by Googling “how to publish a book” and cold-calling agents. His third book in the Just Jake series, Just Jake #3: Camp Wild Survivalpublished in early 2016.

Six Tips for Finding Your Audience

by Rick Lite (@stressfreepub)

When some authors begin the writing process, they do so with their target audience in mind and a marketing plan in place. This allows them to focus on creating and promoting the right content in order to build their author platform and sell their books. Even before you begin writing, you should first be aware of what you are trying to accomplish by writing. You should also know what message you are trying to promote, who the message is for, and how the reader will benefit from reading your book. If your goal is to attract as many readers as possible in order to sell your book, here are six tips to help. Take IngramSpark’s FREE Online Self-Publishing Course on How to Build an Author Platform

1. Who is Your Most Likely Book Audience?

Think about who would be interested in the content of your book. Visualize who they are, and what they look like. Your author brand such as your book cover, writing style, font size, title metadata, and other components will help dictate who your audience is by attracting certain people, so you should use these elements to define who your primary audience will be. When your audience feels as if you are speaking to them, you are more likely to convert them into customers. 

2. Expand Your Target Audience

It’s also important to consider secondary markets. Secondary markets are those that are not the most obvious, but who would also be interested in your book. For example, a children’s book written to help kids manage anger would have a primary audience of children, and a secondary audience of parents, educators, therapists, or others working with children. As tempting as it might be to think the parent would be your primary book audience (children don’t usually buy their own books), avoid overthinking this process and focus in on who will be reading the book.

Try to come up with at least five markets for your book—a primary market and four secondary markets. To help you discover other secondary markets, you can start in reverse with a broad audience and then narrow it down.

3. Identify Books That are Similar to Yours

Take the time to research other books that would be in the same category, genre, or niche. Search for ‘established’ and ‘top-selling’ books within the category and make a list of the titles and authors. Once you recognize who your competition is, it may be easier for you to pinpoint your potential readers because chances are, you share the same target audience.

4. Look at Social Media

Now that you have identified the established and top-selling books within your genre, look at who is following them on social media. Don’t be surprised how much information can be gained by looking at the interactions and posts. Keep an eye out for the demographics, trends, and other habits that might not be obvious, but can provide a tremendous amount of useful information.

Another strategy for social media is to connect with groups and online communities that have shared interests. Run a search on Facebook for groups who are interested in books similar to yours. Look for followers for your book’s genre on Twitter by searching for tweets that contain related hashtags. Carve out some time each day to work on these strategies.

5. Find Other Channels

A few simple Google searches will direct you to online communities, blogs, and networks where your target audience is already engaging in information sharing and promotion activities. Look for blogs that are within your genre. Look at the author websites of the established and top-selling book authors to see what their articles are about and who is commenting. Engage in guest posting and guest hosting activities to gain exposure to other audiences.

6. Ask for Help

If you’re having trouble identifying your target audience, ask other authors or industry professionals for help. Most authors would love to help a fellow author identify their target audiences and share knowledge. Make sure you ‘pay it forward’ when an indie author is looking for guidance from you. This keeps the book industry thriving. 

Once you find your target audience, the focus shifts to building a following. There are a couple of ways to do this. First start with creating and sharing well thought-out content appropriate for your audience. Figure out the right times and platforms to post the content. Use software to automate and track your post schedule. Be generous with your time and thoughtful promoting others. Promote your message and book no more than 20% of the time. The other 80% should consist of promoting others along with tips, quotes, and content relevant to your message.

Once you’re posting consistently, reach out and follow others aligned within your target audience. With more activity on your social media platforms you should have more success with others following you back. Connect with like-minded people and promote each other. Go beyond just following or liking their profiles. Retweet or repost relevant content and connect with their followers as well.

Find groups, organizations, and associations to help you be successful. You never know who will help you reach the next level of success.

Visit: Alberta’s Books at

10 Top book marketing articles from Build Buzz in 2020.

Visit Sandra Beckwith at

1. 2020 literary calendar with 122 occasions for book fans

This month-by-month list of occasions that celebrate all things books during the year we’re leaving behind makes it easy to find opportunities you can work into your book marketing plans. It includes information on how to use the 122 special days and holidays for year-round book marketing.

2. Book cover re-designs: A pro offers 7 before and after examples

This guest post by cover designer Alexander von Ness explains the thought process behind makeovers of seven fiction and nonfiction book covers. Each example includes the original cover and Alexander’s redesigned version, along with a link to a more detailed examination on his site.

3. “I wish I had known that before I self-published.” 25 authors share what they’ve learned

I asked self-published authors, “What do you know now about self-publishing that you wish you had known when you started?” This article showcases their responses on everything from where to learn what you need to know to whether you should publish on Amazon exclusively and the importance of a book marketing plan.

4. TikTok demographics for authors

TikTok was the fastest growing social network in 2019. This 2020 article digs into the video platform’s demographics so you can see if it’s a good fit for your target readers.

5. 3 Amazon secrets every author needs to know

In this guest post, book marketer Rob Eagar explains how to use Amazon’s power to your advantage. He presents three little-known Amazon secrets that can make a big difference, including how to use the platform to build your author email list.

6. The shy author’s guide to book promotion

While some authors embrace book marketing and promotion with enthusiasm, many just wish it would go away. In this article, I detail five “I can’t do this” obstacles I see the most from shy authors. It includes ideas for getting around them.

7. 2021 literary calendar with 137 occasions for book lovers

This December update to the popular 2020 list published last January takes things up a notch with more holidays and a “download and save this calendar” option designed to make it even more useful.

8. Trade book reviews: Behind the scenes with a professional reviewer

Rose Fox, director of BookLife Reviews, Publishers Weekly‘s paid review service for indie authors, explains trade reviews (also known as media and literary reviews) and how to get them. She walks us through exactly what happens on the publication review side. She also explains why getting a book reviewed can take a lot longer than you’d think.

9. How to get awesome book cover blurbs

Many self-published authors refer to their book description as a blurb, but the publishing industry uses that word for pre-publication endorsements and testimonials. This article addresses who to approach for endorsements and presents nine steps for snagging blurbs your mother would be proud of.

10. 4 steps to new book marketing habits

This article breaks down the habit-making recommendations of B.J. Fogg, author of Tiny Habits: The Small Changes that Change Everything. It’s a must-read if you’re serious about improving your life by replacing habits that don’t work for you anymore with those that will do the job.

I was happy to see that three of the top 10 book marketing articles here were written by guest bloggers.

It’s a reminder that guest blogging in reverse — bringing top authorities and experts to your site instead of going to theirs — helps provide your readers with useful content that matters to them.

From Alberta Sequeira

What would you like me to look up for you with writing?