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

    • Books
    • 5.0 • 10 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.

    Building A Creative Business Brand With Pamela Wilson

    Building A Creative Business Brand With Pamela Wilson

    How do you build a creative business that you love — and makes you money? Pamela Wilson talks about her non-fiction business model, how to choose a niche, plus how to pivot your brand over time.



    In the intro, I talk about my pilgrimage walk and how we all need to weigh up risks and reward, especially when the need to fill the creative well becomes overwhelming! You can find the pictures on Instagram @jfpennauthor. I also mention my Courses for Authors, and my latest episode on Books and Travel.



    Pamela Wilson is the author of Master Content Marketing and Master Content Strategy and is an online educator and keynote speaker. Her company, Big Brand System, teaches people how to build online businesses they love, which is particularly important as many people are pivoting after the pandemic.

    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 below.

    Show Notes



    * How images and words form the two halves of content marketing

    * How books lead potential clients into other premium offerings like coaching and courses

    * Tips on choosing a niche to work with and serve — that you enjoy and will also make you money

    * Should you build a personal brand or a business brand?

    * What happens when you want to change the audience you focus on?

    * Tips on rebranding

    * Listening to your gut when it comes to building a creative business



    You can find Pamela Wilson at BigBrandSystem.com/goodies and on Twitter @pamelaiwilson. You can also find her courses at The Content Lab and the Image Lab (affiliate links).



    Transcript of Interview with Pamela Wilson

    Joanna Penn: Pamela Wilson is the author of two books on content marketing, an online educator and keynote speaker. Her company, Big Brand System, teaches people how to build online businesses they love, particularly important as many people are pivoting after the pandemic. Welcome back to the show, Pamela.

    Pamela Wilson: I am so happy to be here and hear your voice and just be here with your community. Thank you for having me back.

    Joanna Penn: It's great to have you back on the show. Previously we have talked about content marketing, both of us are big fans of that. But today we are talking more about this building a business. So set the scene for us.

    Tell us a bit more about what your creative business looks like. What are your multiple streams of income and how do books play a part in that?

    Pamela Wilson: The good news is books play a part in all of it, but my principal streams of income are my two, I call them my lab courses, and they are the Content Lab and the Image lab.

    a href="https://joanna--bigbrandsystem.thrivecart.com/content-lab-discount/5f0de4efc7bce/" target="_blan...

    • 52 min
    Mental Models For Writers And The Empowered Indie Author With Michael LaRonn

    Mental Models For Writers And The Empowered Indie Author With Michael LaRonn

    Writing is absolutely about the practical step of getting words on the page — but your mindset can make the difference between success and failure, as well as how much you enjoy the author journey.

    In this interview, Michael La Ronn outlines mental models for writers, facing our fears to break through to creative success, as well as practical tips about writing on mobile and self-publishing effectively.



    In the intro, insights into subscription models [ALLi blog]; how my process for Tree of Life differed from my other novels, and JD Barker's episode on How to Develop Bestselling Story Ideas; Self-Publishing Online Conference on Tools and Tech for Indie Authors; and my interview about the state of the self-publishing industry on the Story Studio Podcast.



    Today's show is sponsored by Draft2Digital, where you can get free ebook formatting, free distribution to multiple stores, and a host of other benefits. Get your free Author Marketing Guide at www.draft2digital.com/penn



    Michael La Ronn is the author of 45 books, spanning science fiction, fantasy, poetry, and nonfiction. He's a YouTuber, podcaster, and professional speaker, and is also the U.S. ambassador and outreach manager for the Alliance of Independent Authors where he co-hosts a show with Orna Ross on self-publishing advice. His books for authors include Be a Writing Machine, Mental Models for Writers, and 150 Self-Publishing Questions Answered.

    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 below.

    Show Notes



    * Reclaiming writing time by writing on a phone

    * The different mental models that serve writers

    * How to take steps to self-publishing that are empowering

    * How YouTube can work for introverted authors. Check out Michael's channel, Author Level Up. You can also listen to the original interview we did on video marketing for authors here.

    * What the indie author community can do to support authors of color. Watch Michael's powerful video, Some Thoughts on the Color of my Skin

    * What might the future of publishing look like? Michael's 6-year-old daughter uses voice search like a pro.



    You can find Michael La Ronn at AuthorLevelUp.

    • 56 min
    Outlining Your Novel And Filling The Creative Well With K.M. Weiland

    Outlining Your Novel And Filling The Creative Well With K.M. Weiland

    How can you use an outline to improve your book before you start the first draft? How can you use it to play with your creative ideas without feeling hemmed in by the process?

    In this interview, KM Weiland talks about how to outline your novel as well as thoughts on writer's block, filling the creative well, and longevity as a writer and blogger.



    In the intro, 6 Figure Authors on productivity, I'm in editing mode for Tree of Life, and I talk about some lessons learned about writing from my 50K ultramarathon last weekend [pics on Instagram @jfpennauthor].

    Plus, get your NaNoWriMo Storybundle, packed full of books on writing craft, marketing, business, and mindset — for a limited time: www.StoryBundle.com/nano

    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



    K.M. Weiland is the award-winning author of fantasy, medieval epic, historical, and Western adventures. She also writes non-fiction for authors and helps writers become authors on her fantastic vlog. Her books include Creating Character Arcs, Conquering Writer's Block, and Outlining Your Novel.

    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 below.

    Show Notes



    * The importance of refilling the creative well — especially if you are experiencing writer's block

    * Outlining as brainstorming and discovery

    * Tips for how to outline

    * Why you don’t have to choose whether to be a plotter or pantser/ discovery writer

    * Benefits of outlining for discovery writers

    * How outlining can give a writer a simpler, more macro view of a story — and help you write your sales description/back blurb

    * How a clear premise can help you write a book’s description

    * Marketing across diverse genres

    * How blogging and non-fiction writing underpin Katie's business and fuel her fiction career



    You can find K.M. Weiland at HelpingWritersBecomeAuthors.com and on Twitter @KMWeiland

    Header photo by Laura Chouette on Unsplash



    Transcript of Interview with K.M. Weiland

    Joanna: K.M. Weiland is the award-winning author of fantasy, medieval epic, historical, and Western adventures. She also writes non-fiction for authors and helps writers become authors on her fantastic vlog. Her books include Creating Character Arcs, Conquering Writer's Block,

    • 1 hr 8 min
    Starting From Zero And Success With BookBub Ads With David Gaughran

    Starting From Zero And Success With BookBub Ads With David Gaughran

    When you've been self-publishing over a decade, it's easy to see how things have changed for indie authors and where the opportunities lie for publishing and marketing our books. In this wide-ranging interview, David Gaughran discusses the shifts in the industry, starting from zero, book marketing tips, and more.



    In the intro, Audible launches an unlimited audio service [The New Publishing Standard]; why this might impact author income [ALLi]; Spotify's impact on music and artists [Freakonomics]; and my thoughts on what you can do to mitigate any revenue drop from subscription services and make the most of the opportunities they bring. Plus, The importance of 1000 True Fans [ALLi Podcast]; Frankenstein in Bath [Books and Travel]

    Useful stuff: If you're new to self-publishing, you can also check out Mark's 101 Course with everything you need to know about self-publishing. [Ad] If you want to learn more about podcasting, join me at the Virtual Podcast Movement conference. [Ad]

    Today's show is sponsored by IngramSpark, who I use to print and distribute my print-on-demand books to 39,000 retailers including independent bookstores, schools and universities, libraries, and more.

    It's your content – do more with it through IngramSpark.com.



    David Gaughran is the author of non-fiction books for authors and also writes historical adventures as David M Gaughran. He's also an award-winning blogger and campaigner for indie authors against scammers and bad practices in the publishing industry.

    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 below.

    Show Notes



    * How self-publishing has changed in the last decade

    * The importance of knowing what genre you’re writing in

    * How we all start from zero and sometimes do that a number of times, especially when launching a new pen-name (as both David and I have done!)

    * The value of being able to pivot as a self-publisher

    * The importance of feeding Amazon clean data

    * Why BookBub ads work for those who publish wide

    * Why testing ads matters



    You can find David Gaughran at DavidGaughran.com and on Twitter @DavidGaughran



    Transcript of interview with David Gaughran

    Joanna: David Gaughran is the author of historical advent...

    • 1 hr 7 min
    Audiobook Narration, Production And Marketing Tips With Derek Doepker

    Audiobook Narration, Production And Marketing Tips With Derek Doepker

    Audiobooks are one of the fastest-growing segments in publishing and the expansion of podcasts onto every major platform means there are more ways to market to audio-first consumers (which increasingly includes me!)

    In this episode, Derek Doepker gives some tips on why audiobooks are so important as a format, self-narration, working with a narrator, plus, production and marketing ideas.



    In the intro, Amazon Music now includes Podcasts [The Verge] so you can find this show and Books and Travel on your various devices; New audiobook promotion site, AudioThicket launches [Written Word Media]; ALLi has a podcast episode with Amazon representatives about Amazon Advertising [Ask Alli]; Publisher Rocket now includes UK data and German ebook data [Rocket]; Orna Ross and I discuss 1000 True Fans and what it means for authors [Ask ALLi]; Solo Long-Distance Walking with me and Holly Worton.

    Plus, recommended books: The Psychology of Money and my list of money books; Entangled Life by Merlin Sheldrake and the documentary Fantastic Fungi.



    Today's podcast sponsor is Findaway Voices, which gives you access to the world's largest network of audiobook sellers and everything you need to create and sell professional audiobooks. Take back your freedom. Choose your price, choose how you sell, choose how you distribute audio. Check it out at FindawayVoices.com.



    Derek Doepker is the bestselling author of seven nonfiction books on peak performance, habits, fitness, and entrepreneurship. He's also a content marketing and digital marketing consultant.

    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 below.

    Show Notes



    * Using a ‘failed’ book to create a successful one

    * Multiple streams of income as the business model for non-fiction authors

    * Why audiobooks are so valuable, especially for reaching audio-first consumers

    * Tips for recording your own audio and equipment

    * Some of the mindset issues that you might face in self-narration

    * Tips for hiring a narrator

    * Effective ways of marketing audiobooks



    You can find Derek Doepker at DerekDoepker.com and on Twitter @AuthorSecrets. He has also provided extra info for podcast listeners at a href="http://best...

    • 56 min
    Publishing Wide For The Win With Erin Wright

    Publishing Wide For The Win With Erin Wright

    Do you want to make your books available to readers in every format, in every online store and library, in every country? If yes, it's time to go wide for the win! In today's episode with Erin Wright, we discuss what ‘going wide' means, why libraries are so important, and tips for publishing wide wherever you are on the author journey.



    In the introduction, International insights into Amazon's global reach [ALLi blog]; Futures Thinking mini-course [Coursera]; GPT-3 generated and human-edited article [The Guardian]; How to edit writing by a robot [The Guardian]; GPT-3 generated article on productivity reaches the top of Hacker News [The Verge]; Writing with the Machine [Robin Sloan]; GPT-3 as an idea machine [Matt Webb, Interconnected]; Lessons learned from 9 years as a full-time author entrepreneur;



    Today's show is sponsored by Draft2Digital, where you can get free ebook formatting, free distribution to multiple stores, and a host of other benefits. Get your free Author Marketing Guide at www.draft2digital.com/penn



    Erin Wright is the USA Today best-selling author of 14 romance novels and also co-runs the Wide for the Win Facebook group, the largest gathering of authors who publish wide.

    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 below.

    Show Notes



    * What does publishing wide really mean?

    * How going wide includes libraries as well — and we all love libraries!

    * The different readers that Kindle Unlimited and wider stores attract

    * The marketing principles used when publishing wide

    * The benefits of multi-author box sets

    * Wide for the Win Facebook group



    You can find Erin Wright at ErinWright.net.



    Transcript of Interview with Erin Wright

    Joanna: Erin Wright is the USA Today best-selling author of 14 romance novels and also set up the Wide for the Win Facebook group, the largest gathering of authors who publish wide. Welcome, Erin.

    Erin: Hi. Good to be here.

    Joanna: I'm very excited to talk to you today.

    • 1 hr 18 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
10 Ratings

10 Ratings

walkitwrite ,

The perfect mix

An expert at indy publishing and an excellent writer, Joanna Penn is also entertaining, warm and friendly. Her podcast is the highlight of my Mondays

ByDewey ,

The Creative Penn Podcast

The Creative Penn Podcast was my introduction to the world of podcasts, and Joanna the person who resurrected my dreams of living from my writing. I‘ve been listening to this podcast for the last two years and it‘s the highlight of my every Monday. I recommend it if you need a clear-eyed, enthusiastic and generous voice to guide you in your creative journey.

Sandrawati ,

Simply Amazing

Following The Creative Penn now for a while on different channels and can’t express enough, how thankful I am for all the inspiration, excitement and input Joanna is sharing with all her followers.

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