200 episodes

Information, inspiration and interviews on writing, self-publishing, book marketing and making a living with your writing.

If you need help with writing your book, or you want to learn how to navigate the new world of publishing and book marketing, then join Joanna Penn and her guests every Monday. Also covers the business of being a writer and how to make money with your books.

The Creative Penn Podcast For Writers Joanna Penn

    • Arts
    • 4.8 • 59 Ratings

Information, inspiration and interviews on writing, self-publishing, book marketing and making a living with your writing.

If you need help with writing your book, or you want to learn how to navigate the new world of publishing and book marketing, then join Joanna Penn and her guests every Monday. Also covers the business of being a writer and how to make money with your books.

    Writing Conflict With Becca Puglisi

    Writing Conflict With Becca Puglisi

    How can you intensify the conflict in your books to hook readers? How can you introduce different types and layers of conflict to improve your story? Becca Puglisi explains why and how to write conflict.







    In the intro, thoughts on the DOJ vs PRH trial [Twitter @JohnHMaher] and Publishers Weekly round-up; my thoughts on subscription models; D2D and Humble Bundle; Apple Books Promotions page; How to Write a Novel is now available in all formats on all stores; My non-fiction books in Italian; Digital nomad [Books and Travel].















    This podcast is sponsored by Kobo Writing Life, which helps authors self-publish and reach readers in global markets through the Kobo eco-system. You can also subscribe to the Kobo Writing Life podcast for interviews with successful indie authors. 















    Becca Puglisi is an international speaker, writing coach and bestselling author of the “Thesaurus Series for Writers,” including the latest volume of The Conflict Thesaurus. Becca also writes YA and historical fiction, and can be found at writershelpingwriters.net, along with her co-author Angela Ackerman.







    You can listen above or on your favorite podcast app or read the notes and links below. Here are the highlights and the full transcript is below. 







    Show Notes







    * What is story conflict and why do we need it?* Examples of different kinds of conflicts, from large to small* How conflict creates reader interest and empathy* The importance of internal conflict as well as external* Mistakes to watch out for when writing conflict* Tips for co-writing a book* Intellectual property licensing and foreign rights







    You can find Becca Puglisi at WritersHelpingWriters.net and on Twitter @beccapuglisi







    The Conflict Thesaurus Vol 2 is out on 6 September 2022.







    Transcript of Interview with Becca Puglisi







    Joanna: Welcome back to the show, Becca.







    Becca: Thank you so much. I'm so glad to be back.







    Joanna: An exciting topic today. Now, you've been on the show twice before, and I will mention those episodes in the introduction. So,

    • 56 min
    Selling Books Direct With Shopify: The Minimum Viable Store

    Selling Books Direct With Shopify: The Minimum Viable Store

    In July 2022, I launched my online shop at www.CreativePennBooks.com. It’s built on Shopify’s eCommerce platform, and in this solo episode, I’ll explain why I built the store, my lessons learned, tips if you want to build your own, and how I intend to expand it over time. 















    This episode is sponsored by my wonderful patrons. If you find the podcast useful, you can support the show at Patreon.com/thecreativepenn and you'll get discounts on my books and products, plus you can ask your questions in my private monthly Q&A.















    Joanna Penn writes non-fiction for authors and is an award-nominated, New York Times and USA Today bestselling thriller author as J.F. Penn. She’s also an award-winning podcaster, creative entrepreneur, and international professional speaker.







    You can listen above or on your favorite podcast app or read the notes and links below. Here are the highlights and the full transcript is below. 







    Show Notes







    * What is selling direct? Why sell direct?* Why I switched from Payhip to Shopify* Why a separate store, www.CreativePennBooks.com instead of WooCommerce within my existing sites?* Why Shopify rather than Kickstarter?* The Minimum Viable Store approach* Software and integrations — what else do you need? * Options for drop-shipping print-on-demand books — Lulu Direct and Bookvault.app and why I made the choice I did * How does the money work? What are the costs? How do I get paid?* What about sales tax / VAT?* How long does the setup take? * What about support issues? How time-consuming is it?* What about marketing? How do you get traffic to your store?* What are my plans for the store?* Are direct sales for you?* Free books if you buy direct — and where to find help if you need it







    You can find my store at www.CreativePennBooks.com and linked in the menu as Shop and also on every book page.















    Imagine this… 







    You write what you want, with no concern about how an algorithm will treat your release.







    You’re in control of the site and your sales pages, with no other ads on your page to distract potential readers.







    You release your books in multiple formats, direct to your readers and listeners. You don’t have to store and ship books since they are printed on demand and sent straight to the buyer. Customer service for ebooks and audiobooks is even taken care of by the wonderful team at Bookfunnel.







    The customer receives a fantastic product and you get money in your bank account within a day or two, or even within the hour. 







    You also get the customer’s name, email, and address as well as details about what they bought and when, so you can foster an ongoing relationship.







    You can expand your store into different kinds of products through other print-on-demand services — merchandise related to your books,

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Selling Books Direct On Shopify With Morgana Best

    Selling Books Direct On Shopify With Morgana Best

    Selling your books direct to readers and listeners can bring you more money, faster, and allow you to control your customer's experience and data. Morgana Best explains why selling direct is so important for an author business, and some of her tips for implementing a Shopify store.







    In the intro, the publishing court case of the DOJ vs PRH and S&S merger [New York Times; Vanity Fair; The Hotsheet]; Publisher Pearson is planning to use NFTs [The Guardian]; More on NFTs and blockchain [Future]; Mark Dawson's Ads for Authors opens this week (affiliate link); my bookbinding project from print on demand to leather-bound original.















    Today's show is sponsored by ProWritingAid, writing and editing software that goes way beyond just grammar and typo checking. With its detailed reports on how to improve your writing, and integration with Scrivener, ProWritingAid will help you improve your book before you send it to an editor, agent or publisher. Check it out for free or get 25% off the premium edition at www.ProWritingAid.com/joanna















    Morgana Best is the ‘USA Today' Bestselling Author of over 50 cozy mysteries. She has been selling direct from her website for many years, and shares all her tips in her new book, Stop Making Others Rich: How Authors Can Make Bank Selling Direct.







    You can listen above or on your favorite podcast app or read the notes and links below. Here are the highlights and the full transcript is below. 







    Show Notes







    * Why sell direct? * The mindset you need to sell direct* Cost of your own store vs cost of selling through the retailers (and of course, you can do both!)* Delivering ebooks, audiobooks, and print-on-demand books when selling direct?* Using customer data in an ethical manner, and how to optimize your store by utilizing data* Don't get overwhelmed. Start with a minimum viable store* Direct book marketing — how to drive traffic to a Shopify store







    You can find Morgana Best at MorganaBest.com and on Twitter @MorganaBest







    Transcript of Interview with Morgana Best







    Joanna: Morgana Best is the ‘USA Today' Bestselling Author of over 50 cozy mysteries. She has been selling direct from her website for many years, and shares all her tips in her new book, Stop Making Others Rich: How Authors Can Make Bank Selling Direct. Welcome, Morgana.

    • 57 min
    Lessons Learned From 3 Years As A Full-Time Author with Sacha Black

    Lessons Learned From 3 Years As A Full-Time Author with Sacha Black

    What do you need to consider if you want to go full time as an author entrepreneur? What challenges might you face in your first few years? Sacha Black shared her lessons learned from 3 years full-time.







    In the intro, PRH and S&S merger heads to trial [Publishers Weekly]; Pilgrimage episodes on my Books and Travel Podcast; plus, Steven Pressfield's new ‘tough love for creatives' book, Put Your Ass Where Your Heart Wants to Be.















    This episode is sponsored by Publisher Rocket, which will help you get your book in front of more Amazon readers so you can spend less time marketing and more time writing. I use Publisher Rocket for researching book titles, categories, and keywords — for new books and for updating my backlist. Check it out at www.PublisherRocket.com















    Sacha Black is an author, rebel podcaster and professional speaker. She writes educational nonfiction books for writers and sapphic books for young adults.







    You can listen above or on your favorite podcast app or read the notes and links below. Here are the highlights and the full transcript is below.







    Show Notes







    * Important things to consider when leaving a day job* Building confidence in the first year of full-time authorship* Multiple streams of income — and when to say ‘no' * Why self-care matters so much * Leaning in to authentic branding* What makes writers good publishers?







    You can find Sacha Black at SachaBlack.co.uk and on Twitter @sacha_black. Her latest book is The Anatomy of a Bestseller.







    Transcript of Interview with Sacha Black







    Joanna: Sacha Black is an author, rebel podcaster and professional speaker. She writes educational nonfiction books for writers and sapphic books for young adults. Welcome back to the show, Sacha.







    Sacha: Thank you for having me. It's always a massive giddy honor, and pleasure to be here. So, thank you.







    Joanna: Oh, well, it's great to talk to you again. You were last on the show in March 2019, talking about writing heroes and villains. And you left your job a couple of months after that.







    Take us back to how you made that decision. What were you doing before? And why did you decide to make the jump?







    Sacha: I think my decision to leave the day job is probably a little bit different to a lot of writers who are very keen on leaving just to purely write books. Whereas I really didn't like my day job, I was very low, and I didn't fit.

    • 56 min
    Blockchain For Copyright And Intellectual Property With Roanie Levy

    Blockchain For Copyright And Intellectual Property With Roanie Levy

    How will blockchain technology change the way creatives register copyright, as well as monetize their work? Roanie Levy explains how blockchain can solve the attribution problem, and how smart contracts will allow new business models with ownership of digital assets in web 3.















    This podcast is sponsored by Written Word Media, which makes book marketing a breeze by offering quick, easy and effective ways for authors to promote their books. You can also subscribe to the Written Word Media email newsletter for book marketing tips.







    This podcast is also sponsored by my wonderful patrons, www.Patreon.com/thecreativepenn















    Roanie Levy is the CEO of Access Copyright, a collective that distributes licensing royalties to creator and publishing affiliates. She also leads Prescient, Access Copyright's creative-focused innovation lab dedicated to exploring the future of rights management and content monetization through blockchain and other technologies.







    You can listen above or on your favorite podcast app or read the notes and links below. Here are the highlights and the full transcript is below. 







    Show Notes







    * What is blockchain technology and how will it change business models for creatives?* Smart contracts related to book sales* Solving the attribution problem for copyright* The differences between Web 1, 2 and 3* How long will it take for the publishing industry to adopt these new technologies — or will new companies start new businesses first?







    You can find Roanie Levy at Imprimo.ca and on LinkedIn / RoanieLevy.







    Transcript of Interview with Roanie Levy







    Joanna: Roanie Levy is the CEO of Access Copyright, a collective that distributes licensing royalties to creator and publishing affiliates. She also leads Prescient, Access Copyright's creative-focused innovation lab dedicated to exploring the future of rights management and content monetization through blockchain and other technologies. Welcome, Roanie.







    Roanie: Thank you very much for inviting me.







    Joanna: I'm excited to talk to you today. So, first up, tell us a bit more about your career.







    How did you become interested in aspects of IP (intellectual property) and copyright?







    Roanie: Well, actually, one of my first jobs, when I became a lawyer, was to work for the Canadian federal government on copyright policy, way back, I guess, the early days of web 1 when we were talking about the internet as the ‘information superhighway.'







    So, that's when I started to get interested about copyright, the impact that it has on the creative sector, and how technology interacts with those copyright concepts.







    Joanna: So, you're actually a copyright lawyer?

    • 45 min
    Writing A Bestseller With A.G. Riddle

    Writing A Bestseller With A.G. Riddle

    How can you lean into your strengths as a writer to find the genre — and the business model — that suits you best? A.G. Riddle talks about his writing process, his publishing choices, and how he's planning to pivot into the next phase of his career.







    In the intro, I talk about my experience at Theakston's Old Peculier Crime Writing festival this week, and how we all have to decide which game we want to play.















    Today's show is sponsored by ProWritingAid, writing and editing software that goes way beyond just grammar and typo checking. With its detailed reports on how to improve your writing and integration with Scrivener, ProWritingAid will help you improve your book before you send it to an editor, agent or publisher. Check it out for free or get 25% off the premium edition at www.ProWritingAid.com/joanna















    A.G. Riddle is the bestselling author of 11 books with over 4 million copies sold and translated into 24 languages. His latest novel is Lost in Time, a time travel thriller.







    You can listen above or on your favorite podcast app or read the notes and links below. Here are the highlights and the full transcript is below.







    Show Notes







    * Reflecting on success — or lack of it — and assessing a career after a decade* Crafting a bestseller* Focusing on your strengths as a writer* Researching a novel, and Gerry's writing process* Why the ‘job' of being an author is different now* Moving from indie to hybrid to traditional publishing — and movie deals* What do you want to control — and what are you willing to let go of to achieve what you want?







    You can find A.G. Riddle at AGRiddle.com and on Twitter @Riddlist







    Transcript of Interview with A.G. Riddle







    Joanna: A.G. Riddle is the bestselling author of 11 books with over 4 million copies sold and translated into 24 languages. His latest novel is Lost in Time, a time travel thriller. Welcome to the show, Gerry.







    Gerry: Thank you for having me.







    Joanna: I'm excited to talk to you.







    Tell us a bit more about you and how you got into writing after quite a different original career.







    Gerry: I'm someone who didn't grow up wanting to be a writer. It's something that is a second career for me that I came to in my late 20s, early 30s. I started an internet company in college, and I did that for 10 years. I really enjoyed it. I like creating software and loved the startup environment.







    I had had some success in my career, but I didn't really feel that I had found that thing that I felt I was really qualified to do and was meant to do with my life. So I was just at this point in my life where I was reflecting to say, ‘When I leave this earth, what do I want to be proud that I've worked on?'







    I think if you get 10 years into a career, you learn a lot about yourself and your own strengths and weaknesses.







    And it's incumbent upon all of us to periodically reflect and say, ‘Why am I not achieving the success I want, or what went well, what didn't?'

    • 55 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
59 Ratings

59 Ratings

ElisaP76 ,

A Must-Follow Podcast for Writers

The Creative Penn podcast has been one of my top three writing podcasts for years. I like how Joanna gives us the skinny on author events and keeps us updated on relevant writing tools and self-publishing news in an engaging way. The interviews are always interesting and informative. Also, Joanna has progressively improved her voice skills and the sound quality is ultra professional, which makes this an easy listen. It's my go-to while preparing supper a lot of evenings, or while out walking or travelling. As I listen, I find myself feeling like part of the writing world, connected and up-to-date. Highly recommend.

Treesmendus.com ,

Repurposing Content with Amy Wood

Perhaps because I am a first time writer, blogger and retired health care professional I related to Amy Woods practical tips in this show. Joanna as usual asked all the right questions and now I have sticky notes above my desk to: provide 10 % excerpts of my book on social (news to me that Amazon allows this!) and share my finest book reviews in new ways. There is so much here for new authors no matter how seasoned in their respective fields. Again you overdeliver for us Joanna. Thank you both for this. Verla Fortier @ TreesMendUs.com and author of Take Back Your Outside Mindset: Live Longer, Prevent Dementia, and Control Your Chronic Illness.

Tikiri-Canuck ,

One of the best in the publishing podcast ever

I’m so glad to have found Joanna Pena’s podcast and listen to it religiously. She doesn’t just talk about the writing, marketing and publishing Ideas that work today as other podcaster do in this field. She’s always looking forward and sharing with us her thoughts on future possibilities and concepts, that we, independent artist, can exploit. This podcast is one of the most valuable ones out there and I cannot recommend it more.

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