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
    • 4.9 • 124 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 Twists And Marketing As A Traditionally Published Author With Clare Mackintosh

    Writing Twists And Marketing As A Traditionally Published Author With Clare Mackintosh

    How can you write twists that surprise a reader? How can you market your books effectively as a traditionally published author? Clare Mackintosh talks about her creative process, and how she works with her publisher to reach more readers.







    In the intro, Kate Bush is “the world’s biggest independent artist” right now and more on intellectual property rights [Music Business Worldwide]; A long-term view of IP [Kris Rusch]; Rethinking the Writing Business by Kris Rusch; 24 Assets by Daniel Priestley; Cosmopolitan uses AI-generated cover; My interview on AI and writing with Andrew Mayne, and more on AI + the future of creativity.















    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 draft2digital.com/penn















    Clare Mackintosh is the multi-award-winning author of five Sunday Times bestselling novels. Translated into 40 languages, her books have sold more than 2 million copies worldwide and have been New York Times and international bestsellers. Her latest book, The Last Party is the first in a new crime series.







    Show Notes







    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.







    * How being a police detective is like being a writer* The difference between a twist and a reveal, and how Clare plots her novels* Why marketing is important, even for traditionally published authors* Why authors need an email list, regardless of how you choose to publish* Using video in book marketing* How networking has played an important part in Clare's publishing journey







    You can find Clare Mackintosh at ClareMackintosh.com and on Twitter @claremackint0sh







    Transcript of Interview with Clare Mackintosh







    Joanna Penn: Clare Mackintosh is the multi-award-winning author of five Sunday Times bestselling novels. Translated into 40 languages, her books have sold more than 2 million copies worldwide and have been New York Times and international bestsellers. Her latest book, The Last Party is the first in a new crime series....

    • 51 min
    Writing With Artificial Intelligence With Andrew Mayne

    Writing With Artificial Intelligence With Andrew Mayne

    What is GPT-3 and how can writers use it responsibly as part of their creative process? How can we approach AI tools with curiosity, rather than fear? Thriller author Andrew Mayne talks about these aspects and more.







    In the intro, I mention the discussion about whether Google’s language model, LaMDA, could be sentient [The Verge]; and the Alliance of Independent Authors Ethical Usage of AI tools.







    If you'd like to know more about using AI for writing, images, marketing, voice, translation, and more, check out my course, The AI-Assisted Author.















    Andrew Mayne is the multi-award-nominated and internationally best-selling author of thrillers. He's also a magician, a magic consultant, and the author of over 50 books on magic. He invented an underwater stealth suit for shark diving, and he works with OpenAI as a science communicator. He also has books for authors, including, ‘How to Write a Novella in 24 hours,' and a co-hosts the podcast ‘Weird Things.'







    Show notes:







    * How Andrew got into AI and first used a vision model for his shark suit* What is GPT-3 and what is DALL-E? (You can find out more on OpenAI.com* How writers can use GPT-3 as an amplifier, and how to prompt it to get an effective response, as well as the different applications* Approaching AI with an attitude of curiosity, rather than fear* What is ‘AI-assisted' and why we should label AI-generated words and art* Ways to address the lack of diversity and bias in AI models







    You can find Andrew at www.AndrewMayne.com and his blog here which includes articles on using GPT-3. You can find GPT-3 on OpenAI.com. You can also follow Andrew on Twitter @andrewmayne







    There are many tools built on top of GPT-3. Here's my list of AI writing tools. I use and recommend Sudowrite for fiction, in particular.







    Transcript of Interview with Andrew Mayne







    Joanna: Andrew Mayne is the multi-award-nominated and internationally best-selling author of thrillers. He's also a magician, a magic consultant, and author of over 50 books on magic. He invented an underwater stealth suit for shark diving, and he works with OpenAI as a science communicator. He also has books for authors, including, ‘How to Write a Novella in 24 hours,' and a co-hosts the podcast ‘Weird Things.' So, welcome to the show, Andrew.







    Andrew: Hey, thank you for having me.







    Joanna: Oh, you do so many things. But we are actually going to talk about AI today. But I wanted to first ask you:







    With your background in magic, and also creativity, how did you become interested in AI?

    • 41 min
    Selling Books Direct on Shopify with Katie Cross

    Selling Books Direct on Shopify with Katie Cross

    How can you sell books direct to your readers for all formats without dealing with the pain of shipping print books? How can you automate sales with email? How can you earn 80-90% of the sales price and have it go into your bank account in days or even hours, instead of months?







    Katie Cross talks about the benefits of selling direct and practical tips if you want to use Shopify.







    In the intro, Spotify acquires AI voice company, Sonantic [Spotify]; and Return on Investment for Authors [The Indy Author].















    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  















    Katie Cross is the author of over 30 books across fantasy, chick lit, and contemporary romance.







    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? More money, more quickly. Connection with readers and access to customer data* How to sell ebooks, audiobooks and print books direct* Shopify apps, including integration with Lulu for print-on-demand, and Bookfunnel for delivery and customer service* International shipping* Email automation and customer data* What about the tax?* The long game, control over your business, and a mindset shift







    You can find Katie Cross at KatieCrossBooks.com and on Twitter @kcrosswriting







    Thanks also to MorganaBest.com for her help with my Shopify store.







    Transcript of Interview with Katie Cross







    Joanna: Katie Cross is the author of over 30 books across fantasy, chick lit, and contemporary romance. Today we're talking about selling books on Shopify. Welcome, Katie.







    Katie: Thank you so much for having me. I'm super excited about this conversation.







    Joanna: Oh, me too. I will have explained in the introduction that this is something I'm focusing on, but let's start with a high-level question.







    Why did you decide to start focusing on selling direct as a priority rather than an afterthought?







    Katie: I think at first the desire for a little more control over my career is what drove me into the arms of direct sales.







    I got really frustrated with looking at Amazon and trying to do everything I could. I had over 20 books,

    • 1 hr 2 min
    Kickstarter And Multiple Streams Of Non-Fiction Income With Bryan Cohen

    Kickstarter And Multiple Streams Of Non-Fiction Income With Bryan Cohen

    How can you manage a successful Kickstarter campaign without burning out? How can you expand into multiple streams of income? Bryan Cohen talks about crowdfunding, changes in his business model, and more.







    In the intro, 10th year of double-digit audiobook growth [Publishing Perspectives]; Spotify's plans for audiobook expansion [Spotify]; Free webinars for audiobook month [FindawayVoices]; Val Kilmer's AI voice in Top Gun Maverick [Fortune]; Transitions, Endings, and New Beginnings [Ask ALLi]; The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel.















    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. 















    Bryan Cohen is the author of non-fiction and superhero fiction, and the co-host of the ‘Sell More Books Show.' He's also the founder of Best Page Forward, which writes book descriptions for authors, and he teaches authors how to use Amazon ads more effectively.







    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







    * Advantages of Kickstarter — for fans and your bank account* Challenges and lessons learned from Bryan's first Kickstarter — and what he'll do differently next time* Ideas for backer rewards and extras* Timing issues for fulfillment and managing backer expectations* Why indies are moving toward selling direct, before publishing to stores* How Bryan went from books into multiple streams of income* Scaling a business and tips for hiring freelancers* How podcasting plays a part in his business







    You can find links to everything Bryan does at BryanCohen.com and his next Kickstarter campaign at KickYourEmail.com and on Twitter @bryancohenbooks







    Transcript of Interview with Bryan Cohen







    Joanna: Bryan Cohen is the author of non-fiction and superhero fiction, and the co-host of the ‘Sell More Books Show.' He's also the founder of Best Page Forward, which writes book descriptions for authors,

    • 1 hr 5 min
    How To Get Your Self-Published Book Into Libraries With Eric Otis Simmons

    How To Get Your Self-Published Book Into Libraries With Eric Otis Simmons

    How can you make your self-published books available to libraries in every format? How can you pitch librarians so they are interested in ordering your books? Eric Otis Simmons explains how he successfully pitches and sells to libraries throughout the USA.







    In the intro, Books2Read is useful for sharing wide links; Lindsay Buroker gives long term career advice [Twitter thread]; Pics from Rhodes, Instagram @jfpennauthor; Into The Briny Deep, short stories set in the sea with all kinds of monsters, includes my short story, The Dark Queen; Abba Voyage with the augmented reality Abba-tars; Thoughts on visiting the USA again post-pandemic [Books and Travel]















    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.















    Eric Otis Simmons is the author of the memoir, Not Far From The Tree, and books for authors, including Getting Your Book Into Libraries. He's the CEO of ESE, Inc., which builds custom websites, and he's also a speaker on diversity, equity, and inclusion.







    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 authors should consider having their books in libraries* What services can you use to reach libraries with ebook, print, and audio?* How do libraries find books to buy?* How to pitch your book to libraries* Resources available to assist getting your book into libraries







    You can find Eric Simmons at www.eseinc1.com/library-marketing-services and on Twitter @eseinc1







    Transcript of Interview with Eric Simmons







    Joanna Penn: Eric Otis Simmons is the author of the memoir, Not Far From The Tree, and books for authors, including Getting Your Book Into Libraries. He's the CEO of ESE, Inc., which builds custom websites, and he's also a speaker on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Welcome to the show, Eric.







    Eric Simmons: Joanna, thank you so much for having me today.







    Joanna Penn: I'm excited to talk to you about this.







    Before we get into libraries, tell us a bit more about you and how you got into writing.

    • 58 min
    Build Your Email List With Reader Magnets With Tammi Labrecque

    Build Your Email List With Reader Magnets With Tammi Labrecque

    Why do you need an email list when you can just reach readers with social media? How can you use reader magnets to build your email list? Tammi Labrecque gives beginner and advanced tips for book marketing.







    In the intro, The state of the Creator Economy report from ConvertKit; and I use and recommend ConvertKit for my email service provider. Also, check out my Instagram @jfpennauthor for Greece pics.















    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.















    Tammi Labrecque writes urban fantasy, thrillers, and LitRPG under pen names. She's also the author of Newsletter Ninja: How to Become an Author Mailing List Expert, which we discussed a few years ago, back in episode 414. Her latest book is Newsletter Ninja 2: If You Give the Reader a Cookie: Supercharge Your Author Mailing List With the Perfect Reader Magnet, which we are talking about today.







    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 do authors need an email list?* What is a reader magnet and why do authors need one?* On what works well as a reader magnet for non-fiction and fiction* Key elements for a ‘convertible cookie’* Tips for building an email list and finding new readers* Why finding readers in your specific niche or sub-niche matters* Ideas for what to talk to your newsletter subscribers about* Why it’s okay if people unsubscribe from your list







    You can find Tammi Labrecque at NewsletterNinja.net and on Twitter @tammi_ninja







    Transcript of Interview with Tammi Labrecque







    Joanna: Tammi Labrecque writes urban fantasy, thrillers, and LitRPG under pen names. She's also the author of Newsletter Ninja: How to Become an Author Mailing List Expert, which we discussed a few years ago, back in episode 414. Her latest book is Newsletter Ninja 2: If You Give the Reader a Cookie: Supercharge Your Author Mailing List With the Perfect Reader Magnet, which we are talking about today. Welcome back to the show, Tammi.







    Tammi: Hi, it's so good to be back again.







    Joanna: I'm glad to talk about this new topic. But before we get into ‘Reader Magnet,' I just wanted to play devil's advocate and do some email basics because these days we have social media, we have TikTok, we have Amazon ads. We have loads of ways to reach readers.







    Why bother with an email list in the first place? Can't we just use social media?







    Tammi: Well, does every devil need an advocate, Joanna, really? Seriously, though,

    • 52 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
124 Ratings

124 Ratings

NickPuttenham ,

Simply the best

Simply the best podcast for writers out there. Joanna is consistently well informed, analytical and fascinating to listen to. Thank you and keep up the great work!

Mr2lou ,

Loving it

Great tips, some episodes are hit and miss but still nuggets of wisdom throughout

Ângelo Silva ,

Lovely podcast

Thank you for always being joyful, it’s awfully contagious.

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