Thursday, December 30, 2010

More Whitney Award Nominations

In the past week, we've had three more books nominated for Whitney Awards! They are:
  • Lucky Change by Susan Law Corpany
  • The Widower's Wife by Prudence Bice
  • The Broken Road by Shannon Guymon
That makes about 15 nominees from Cedar Fort. Way to go everyone!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Whitney Nominations

I received an email this morning notifying me that seven more Cedar Fort books have been nominated for Whitney Awards! The final day to nominate a book is December 31st and can be done so on the
nomination page.
Finalists will be announced on February 1, 2011.
Congratulations to all the nominees!!
  • Rebound by Heather Justesen
  • The Bent Sword by Stephen Gashler
  • The Canticle Kingdom by Michael Young
  • The Peasant Queen by Cheri Chesley
  • The Rogue Shop by Michael Knudsen
  • Meg's Melody by Kaylee Baldwin
  • Growing Up Gracie by Maggie Fechner

Monday, December 13, 2010

Top Ten List

Here's the top ten for the first two weeks of December.

1. Agent Bishop by Mike McPheters
2. The Christmas Stone by Liz Carlston
3. The Fourth Gift by Tucker Davis
4. Cartels and Combinations by Mike McPheters
5. Old Testament Made Easier, Part 2 by David Ridges
6. Old Testament Made Easier, Part 3 by David Ridges
7. The Carpenter's Miracle by Judd Parkin
8. 101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes by Wendy Paul
9. It's Good to Be Alive by Jack Rushton
10. Old Testament Made Easier, Part 1 by David Ridges

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Help Give Someone a Home for Christmas

Being home for the holidays is something Janet and Michael Weaver cherish. That is why the Weaver's are donating half of author royalties from their book, “The Apology,” to The Road Home. The Salt Lake based charity will receive the portion of royalties from book sales from November until Christmas.

“The Apology” is the story of Martha Day, a recent widow, who wants to reconnect with her three children. However, her son, Bill, faces his own struggles; her daughter Nellie has a secret she cannot share; and although her youngest daughter Charlotte lives nearby, she is just too busy with her own life. Taking control of the situation, Martha devises a plan to have her children spend the holidays with her. As each child receives an invitation, they must decide to overlook past grievances and move forward to a better future.

The Weaver's want everyone to have a place to call home this holiday season and are helping in more than one way. As Michael put it, “A book, a painting, or any other artistic endeavor is really a gift to others. Why not make it a financial gift as well.”

The Road Home will be hosting the 16th Annual Holiday Broadcast on December 21st and 22nd and have invited the Weaver's to take part by selling their books at the event. You can find more information about the event at 16th Annual Holiday Broadcast.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Top Ten List

Here's the top ten list through Nov. 30th. Remember, these numbers represent the demand for your book from retailers, not necessarily those that sold through to an end consumer.

1. Agent Bishop by Mike McPheters
2. The Christmas Stone by Liz Carlston
3. The Fourth Gift by Tucker Davis
4. The Old Testament Made Easier Part 2 by David Ridges
5. The Old Testament Made Easier Part 3 by David Ridges
6. It's Good to Be Alive by Jack Rushton
7. The Carpenter's Miracle by Judd Parkin
8. Cartels and Combinations by Mike McPheters
9. 101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes by Wendy Paul
10. 101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone by Wendy Paul

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Mother's Day Pamphlet Contest Results

Dear Authors,

Thank you for participating in our Mother's Day Pamphlet contest. We appreciate your submissions and hope to continue to offer contests like this in the future. The winner will be notified by email from our acquisitions department. If you don't receive an email by 4pm MDT, you are not the winner this time, but please send us more of your work in the future!

Have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Today's commercial, "The Christmas Stone" by Liz Carlston

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone

Enjoy "101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone" by Wendy Paul.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Fourth Gift

Each day this week I'll post one of our commercials currently running on KSL. These titles are sure to be a hit for this holiday season! Today it's "The Fourth Gift" written by Tucker Davis.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Cartels and Combinations Trailer

The author of "Agent Bishop" is back with his newest novel, "Cartels and Combinations." It's a must read!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

PR Tools For You

Hi Everyone,
We've been getting a lot of inquiries from authors who would like to know what they can be doing to help promote their book. On this blog, you'll find several tabs which feature great resources for you to help promote. If you haven't looked at it in a while or at all, take a few minutes and browse through the introduction, your marketing web, first steps and recommended resources.

Since the author is the one who knows their book best, see what you can come up with for a marketing plan. I have been extremely impressed with some of the plans that have been presented to me. Give it a try and let's see what great ideas are out there!

Friday, November 12, 2010

The Jaguar Prophecies

Check out the trailer for one of our newest releases, "The Jaguar Prophecies" by Phyllis Gunderson. Let us know what you think!

Top Ten List

  1. Agent Bishop by Mike McPheters
  2. The Christmas Stone by Liz Carlston
  3. The Old Testament Made Easier, Part 3 by David Ridges
  4. The Old Testament Made Easier, Part 2 by David Ridges
  5. It's Good to Be Alive by Jack Rushton
  6. The Fourth Gift by J. Tucker Davis
  7. The Carpenter's Miracle by Judd Parkins
  8. The Old Testament Made Easier, Part 1 by David Ridges
  9. 101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone by Wendy Paul
  10. The Widower's Wife by Prudence Bice

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Mother's Day Pamphlet Contest

Dear Authors,

You may remember the Christmas pamphlet contest that we held about a year ago. Now we are coming to you with another contest, this time, for Mother’s Day. We want to give one of you the opportunity to publish a short story in a 16-page pamphlet/greeting card form for Mother’s Day 2011. A winner will be announced by November 24, 2010. This contest is open to everyone so feel free to pass this information on to others. Good luck!

Pamphlet Submission Information:

A 16-page pamphlet can range from 1,000-20,000 words. It can be a poem, a short story, or a compilation of short stories. It can be serious or funny, and should appeal to mothers in any stage of motherhood. It should comply with LDS standards as far as content is concerned.

How to enter:

Send in your submissions by 5pm Friday, November 12, 2010, to the submissions email: Write: MOTHER’S DAY CONTEST in the subject line.

Attach a word document to the email. (Please do not include your submission in the body of the email.)

The word document should include your full name, address, phone number, and email address.


The winner of the contest will receive $100 and will be paid a 10% royalty on all gross profits of the pamphlet sales. The pamphlet will be published and released in March 2011.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Amanda Simpson Book Signing

Author Amanda Simpson will be making a stop in Salt Lake City to sign copies of her new cookbook, "Food Porn Daily." Amanda is currently doing a 26-city national tour and will be in Salt Lake Tuesday, November 2nd at The King's English bookstore (1511 S. 1500 E.) from 6-8 pm. The event is free and open to all who would like to attend!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Get Your Name and Your Book Out There

We came across this blog post from the other day and figured it might help some of you who don't have an online presence. It's important to get your name and your book out to the public and using the internet is a huge promotional tool. Check out the great tips in the blog post below.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Signings for Oct. 20th-23rd

Wednesday, October 20th:
10 am - Wendy Paul SLC Costco

Thursday, October 21st:
11 am - Mills Crenshaw Sandy Costco
11 am - Prudence Bice SLC Costco
11 am - Tucker Davis West Bountiful Costco

Friday, October 22nd:
11 am - Tucker Davis Sandy Costco
3 pm - Alicia Buck St. George Costco
4 pm - Shauna Brown Orem Seagull (111 S. State St.)
5:30 pm - Denise Wamsley Logan Hastings

Saturday, October 23rd:
10 am - Liz Carlston Redwood Rd. Seagull
10 am - Shauna Brown University Parkway Seagull (Orem)
11 am - Michael Weaver South Ogden Costco
11 am - Mills Crenshaw SLC Costco
11 am - Prudence Bice West Valley Costco
11 am - Tucker Davis Orem Costco
12 pm - Liz Carlston West Bountiful Costco
1 pm - Sheralyn Pratt Murray Borders
3 pm - Denise Wamsley Harrisville Hastings

Monday, October 18, 2010

Top Ten List

Here's the top ten list for October so far.

1. The Book of Revelation Made Easier
2. Home Cookin'
3. Tiny Talks Vol. 11
4. The Christmas Stone
5. The Widower's Wife
6. It's in the Bag
7. I know the Scriptures are True (CD/Book)
8. Defensive Tactics
9. 101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes
10. New Testament and the Latter-day Saints

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

This weeks signings

We have a bunch of signings this month. Instead of putting the whole month on here (it would fill an entire webpage), I'll be putting weekly schedules up for the remainder of the month.
Please let me know if any of you need anything before the signings.

Thur. Oct. 14th:
Tucker Davis, Murray Costco, 11-4pm
Wendy Paul, Davis Medical Center, 11 am

Fri. Oct. 15th:
Prudence Bice, Lehi Costco, 11-5 pm
Tucker Davis, Orem Costco, 11-4 pm

Sat. Oct. 16th:
Liz Carlston, Seagull Book in Layton, 10 am
Shauna Brown, Seagull Book at South Towne, 10 am
Sheralyn Pratt, Seagull Book in Brickyard, 11 am
Tucker Davis, South Ogden Costco, 11 am
Alicia Buck, Borders on University Ave., 1 pm

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


  1. Food Porn Daily by Amanda Simpson
  2. The Fourth Gift by J. Tucker David
  3. The Christmas Stone by Liz Carlston
  4. The Great Plan of Happiness by David Bowman
  5. 101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone by Wendy Paul
  6. It's in the Bag by Michelle Snow
  7. The Carpenter's Miracle by Judd Parkin
  8. Luck of the Draw by Rachael Renee Anderson
  9. 101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes by Wendy Paul
  10. The Zucchini Houdini by Brenda Stanley
Remember, these numbers represent the demand for your book from retailers last week, not necessarily those that sold through to an end consumer.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Jack Rushton Is Coming to Utah

Cedar Fort is excited to announce that author Jack Rushton will be visiting from California this week to do a book tour in Utah. Jack is the author of, "It's Good to Be Alive: Observations from a Wheelchair."

On August 1, 1989, while enjoying an afternoon with his family in Laguna Beach, California, Rushton bodysurfed a small, seemingly harmless wave toward shore. Unexpectedly, the wave drove him into the sand head first. Since that day, he has been paralyzed from the neck down and ventilator dependent. Rushton's cheerful attitude amidst such a trial has helped others reach beyond themselves and become better people. He inspires others to adjust their attitude about their present situation, whatever it might be.

You can come meet Jack at an event listed below:
Tuesday, September 28th:
6 pm - Signing at Ft. Union Deseret Book (1110 Fort Union Blvd. Midvale, UT 84047)

Wednesday, September 29th:
1-3 pm - University of Utah Rehabilitation Center Visit to spinal cord injury inpatients (50 North Medical Drive, SLC, UT)

Thursday, September 30th:
5 pm - Signing at Murray Barnes & Noble - book talk from 5-5:30 pm, signing 5:30-6:30 pm - (5249 South State Street Murray, UT 84107)

Friday, October 1st:
2-3:30 pm - Signing at the BYU bookstore. (Inside the Wilkinson Student Center)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Awards a plenty

Cedar Fort won a bronze award from the Publishers Association of the West. "The Legend of the Star" by Stacy Gooch-Anderson, won in the Children's/Young Adult Book Illustrated category.

Congratulations to the following:
Editor - Melissa Caldwell
Designer - Angela Olsen
Production Manager - Jennifer Fielding
Artist/Illustrator - Glenn Harmon
Printer/Bindery - Wa Fai Printing

Sheralyn Pratt recently won First Place at the League of Utah Writers' Annual Roundup. Sheralyn is the author of the popular Rhea Jensen series. The third book in the series, "City Limits," will be released in October.

Cindy Beck and Nichole Giles won the League of Utah Writers' Silver Quill Award for their book, "Mormon Mishaps and Mischief." Cindy has also published stories in "My Dad is My Hero" and "Cup of Comfort Book of Christmas Prayer." Nichole also wrote, "The Sharp Edge of the Knife."


If you're an author and have won an award recently, let me know so we can give you the recognition you deserve!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Bloggers love Cedar Fort authors!

Here are a couple reviews that have been featured on blogs recently.

Mariah Featured in New Children's Book
Mariah Carey fan Debbie informs us of the new children's novel entitled Dizzy Fantastic and Her Flying Bicycle that her husband, author Andy Hueller, had recently written and published.

The main character of the story, Debbie Fine, "Chubbie Debbie" to kids at school, discovers she can fly atop her white Thunderstrike bicycle that Debbie knows deep down inside she's "Dizzy Fantastic-Fourth-Grade Superhero." It is a story for anyone who's ever felt alone or misunderstood—or has ever dreamed of unlocking the superhero within. Mariah is mentioned several times and her music plays a key part in the story. Below are some excerpts from the book.

Page 38 ...She reminded Debbie of singers like Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston, whom she liked to listen to on the radio in the kitchen...

Page 75 ...Debbie turned the knob to her favorite station and pushed the On button. Mariah Carey's "Dreamlover" flitted into the room...

Page 129 ... He waved a Mariah Carey CD case near his face so she could see what he had in mind... They didn't talk. They sat together and listened to "I'll Be There," "Hero," and "Make It Happen." The music made Debbie think of Tabby, who looked like a famous singer...

Page 130 ... Mariah Carey sang the chorus, and her backup singers echoed it back. Finally, her brother said, "Maybe girl music isn't so bad."

Dizzy Fantastic and Her Flying Bicycle, for children ages 7 to 12, is available at for $8.99.

Book Review – “It’s in the bag” by Michelle and Trent Snow

"It's In The Bag" by Michelle and Trent Snow is a great book that presents very well another concept of food storage. The premise of this book is that you gather everything you need for either a dinner meal or a breakfast meal and put it in a bag. When she says everything is in the bag she means it; even the cooking water. Some recipes require “pantry items” which she always has on hand such as peanut butter, vinegar or vegetable oil. The bag she uses is a square bottomed plastic gift bag with ¾” handles for carrying. On the outside of the bag, the recipe is slipped inside a plastic CD sleeve or one with a clear window. Next to the sleeve is a ¾” removable color-coded label which is written the expiration date or the date to use the meal in the bag before. She says the reusable bags cost about 18¢ each, and the CD sleeves range from 1¢ to 18¢ each. She also uses snack size and regular size baggies for the ingredients in the bag meals.

She makes several claims in her book, including:
1) You’ll always have meals at your fingertips and each bag meal serves 6-8 people
2) The bag meals save time and money
3) There is shorter prep time for meals – all meals 20 minutes or less and all ingredients are pre-measured
4) Bag meals save space
5) You have security because you know you have meals on hand
6) In times of disaster if you must leave your home, each family member can grab several bags or meals, and you have more substantial food than just a granola bar or crackers.

One of the statements that she makes in her book is this, “Let’s say I have 365 dinner and 365 breakfast bag meals. In hard economic times or during a disaster, I know my family will have at least 2 complete meals a day”. What an awesome thing.

She prefers this way of food storage to just buying lots of food in bulk; this way she already has meals prepared that she knows her family likes. She has storage shelves that measure 16’x4’ and store 422 bag meals.

The only downside I can see with this method is that because you use many canned vegetables and beans as well as fruit in your bags, it might preclude you from using your beans and other food storage items instead of convenience foods but maybe after using the system awhile you can learn to incorporate both. I think it is awesome to know that your meals are ready and all the ingredients for a particular meal are already assembled. No more wondering if you have everything you need to make a specific meal.

Her book contains many of her recipes for both dinner and breakfast. The back section of the book is dedicated to basic canning recipes and instructions, including vegetables, pickles and relishes, fruits, meat, poultry and fish as well as a section on dressings. It also has a sprouting section. It even has instructions on building a chicken coop and raising your own chickens and eggs.

If you think making some dinners in the bag might be something you’d like to try, check out this book either online or at Deseret Book.

I bet that you would find you have some favorite recipes of your own that you could use to make your own dinners.
Here is a recipe from her book:

Coconut Pancakes
Michelle Snow

1 c. water
Resealable bag:
2 c. flour
½ c. granulated sugar
½ t. salt
4 t. baking powder

Resealable bag:
1 c. sweetened coconut flakes

Pantry Items:
1 t. vanilla
1 (13.5 oz.) can coconut milk

In a large bowl stir all ingredients, especially coconut flakes, until batter is smooth. Add coconut. Ladle pancake batter onto a hot oiled griddle. Turn pancakes when bubbles appear and edges are golden.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Top Ten List - Woohoo!!

Sorry it's taken me so long to get this up but here's the top ten list for the month of August (and remember, these numbers represent the demand for your book from retailers last week, not necessarily those that sold through to an end consumer.) I'll start updating the list weekly/bi-weekly.

  1. The Christmas Stone by Liz Carlston
  2. The Carpenter's Miracle by Judd Parkin
  3. 101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone by Wendy Paul
  4. The Fourth Gift by J. Tucker Davis
  5. The Great Plan of Happiness by David Bowman
  6. 65 Signs Talk on CD by David Ridges
  7. 101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes by Wendy Paul
  8. It's Good to Be Alive by Jack Rushton
  9. The Zucchini Houdini by Brenda Stanley
  10. Luck of the Draw by Rachael Renee Anderson

Friday, September 10, 2010

The Future of Reading?

Amazon Kindle, Sony Digital Reader, Barnes and Noble Nook, and Apple iPad are changing the world of reading. Are these E-Readers getting people to read more? Are paperbacks and hardcovers a thing of the past?

My mom bought my dad a Kindle for Christmas last year. He spent all of 10 minutes trying to figure it out and decided that he'd rather pick-up the hard copy of his novel instead.
Like my dad, I like to read before I go to sleep. However, if I look at a computer screen or my Blackberry before I go to bed, I'm wired after just a few minutes. Then it takes me longer to fall asleep and makes me groggy for work the next morning.
My brother on the other hand, loves his Kindle and just got an iPad. He travels a lot for work and takes them on the plane.

So, what are your thoughts on the "Future of Reading?" Here are a couple of articles from the Wall Street Journal and Wired Science to help you make up your mind.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Fun Video

Ok, this video is a few months old but I ran into it on a blog today and it definitely made me smile! Book reviews aren't just written anymore. The power of social media strikes again.
Thanks to

Thursday, August 26, 2010


As many of you know, I've taken over as the PR contact for Cedar Fort. I've been learning the ropes as quick as possible but it may take me some time to get completely up to speed.

I'm excited to work with all of the amazing Cedar Fort authors and I'll start updating this blog regularly (including the top ten!)

If you need to contact me, call the Cedar Fort office or use the Cedar Fort PR email address (801-489-4084;

I look forward to speaking with and meeting all of you!


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Top 10 List--A Whole Lot of Shakin' Going On!

Well, there's some new players on the scene, and they're shaking up the Top 10. For those of you who aren't familiar with Wendy Paul, she's going to want to dominate this list through Christmas, so feel free to compete with her and keep her humble *winks at Wendy*

Without further ado, here they are (and remember, these numbers represent the demand for your book from retailers last week, not necessarily those that sold through to an end consumer):

#1- 101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone, by Wendy Paul
#2- 65 Signs talk on CD, by David J. Ridges
#3- 101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes, by Wendy Paul
#4- It's Good to be Alive, by Jack Rushton
#5- Luck of the Draw, by Rachael Renee Anderson
#6- Shattered Silence, by Melissa Moore & M. Bridget Cook
#7- Zucchini Houdini, by Brenda Stanley
#8- MEG, by Steve Alten
#9- Reluctant Soldier, Reluctant Saint, by Tom Roulstone
#10- Defensive Tactics, by Steve Westover

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Video for YOU!

Debut Author on the Rise

Going to BEA this year gave me the advantage of seeing what books publishers were excited about and how campaigns were being executed. I was able to grab the books that were being "tentpoled," read them, and watch campaigns unfold over the past few months.

The book/author that impressed me the most was was Rebecca Maizel's "Infinite Days," which came out last week. I especially point this author out to you because, though she is published by a large publisher, you'll notice her website it still a personal blog with 197 humble followers. If you do the math on that, you wouldn't think she sold over 1,000 books her first week out, but she did.

I can tell you without a doubt that her ARC campaign didn't hurt. ARC campaigns never hurt when your books is exceptional within its genre, but I predict that this is an author you will hear more and more from as time passes.

Today's assignment, should you choose to accept, is to look over her humble website and tell me why I'm betting on her to rise to the top--and how following her example can help you do the same, even if your personal marketing style is (very) different.

Check out her blog here.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

10 Hints on How to Use Twitter

Ran across this article on 10 Hints for Usuing Twitter. The information presented is fairly common, but this author is doing many things right in this post.

See anything worth emulating?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Worth Checking Out...

First off, the Top 10 sellers this first week of August:

#1- Shattered Silence, by Melissa Moore & M. Bridget Cook
#2- Luck of the Draw, by Rachael Renee Anderson
#3- Zucchini Houdini, by Brenda Stanley
#4- Reluctant Soldier, Reluctant Saint, by Tom Roulstone
#5- Welcome to Stalk Lake City, by Sheralyn Pratt
#6- He Knows You, by Jill Lash
#7- Lipstick Wars, by Christine Thackeray
#8- The Divine Virtues, by Richard Rife
#9- Defensive Tactics, by Steve Westover
#10- Doctrine & Covenants Made Easier #1, by David J. Ridges

Also, author Brenda Stanley (Zucchini Houdini) sent this my way this week, and I think nearly all of you would be interested in checking it out, so I'm posting it here:

I wanted to let you know about our brand-new website, Squeaky Clean
Reads ( It's a website where readers can
rate and review books in the areas of violence, profanity, sexual
content, mature theme, age group, and more! Readers can also leave
"content reviews" which are reviews about any objectionable content that
a book may contain. You can see an example review page here:

Most importantly, though, our site has a "Squeaky Clean Booklist".
Books that are added to this list meet strict content criteria, and are
voted onto the list by readers. These are books that are truly "clean reads".

There are millions of readers searching every day for good, wholesome
literature, and we ahve hundreds of readers coming to our website every
day to get reviews and recommendations for books that they or their
teens should read.

Your book, "Zucchini Houdini", has come to our attention, and were are
interested in your book! Even though your book is a cookbook, we would
love to review it as we feel your book fits wonderfully with our

We just wanted to contact you and let you know that we are always
looking for clean books to give away. If you feel like your book would
be considered a "clean read", and you are ever interested in giving away
a few copies of your book, please feel free to contact us! We will send
you our give-a-way information (we preview every book being considered
for a giveaway, and giveaway books must be approved).

Giveaway books are featured on our homepage, facebook page, blog, Book
Blogs (which is a national organization of book bloggers), and our
bi-monthly newsletter--giving your book as much exposure as possible.
One or two week giveaway books are also permanently added to our website
for review, and are added to our "sponsored books" widget (this widget
is placed on the top 12 performing pages of our website). We have three
giveaway options:

1. 24 hour quickfire giveaway on our Facebook page (1 book minimum)

2. One week publicized giveaway on our Website (2-4 books)

3. Two week publicized giveaway on our Website (5 book minimum)

We hope you will take a few moments to look around our website, and if
you like what you see, we hope to hear from you! We can also send you
our detailed giveaway guidelines if you are interested. Thank you!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

LDSBA This Week and Some Fun Vids

Hi All!

So this week is the LDSBA Convention. It happens each year, the first week of August. My apologies if I am a bit harder to track down for the next couple of days.

To distract you from this fact, I thought I would post some great new videos by Cedar Fort and its authors to inspire you. Have fun!!!

2010 BEA video
101 Gourmet Cookies Photo Shoot
The Bent Sword
Message from Lord Bore
Table for One book trailer
Infertility: Help, Hope and Healing book trailer
Welcome to Stalk Lake City Scavenger Hunt instruction video
It's Good to be Alive clip with Jack Rushton


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

In the business...

They say that 80% of all major business decisions are made over meals--in social situations. Why is that?

Well, my lone opinion is that, at our base, we're all just human. That is what I would like to talk about today: the "human-ness" of our industry. The purpose of this post is education: so new authors can learn from previous authors and avoid similar missteps.

It seems authors, more than any other trade, would have a firm grasp on the fact that everyone around them is human--every person has a backstory and motives, flaws and brilliance. It also seems intuitive that they would understand that people develop impressions and biases, then act on them.

Everyone--managers, customers, sales reps, businesses, fans, bloggers, booksellers, whoever.

As an author wanting to make money off of retailer support and reader fanships, it is important to take a personal inventory of yourself and make sure you're coming across the way you would like to be perceived. My cousin was the Miss Utah traveling companion for the Miss America pageant for several years and now works in the near-opposite arena of women's section of the Salt Lake County jail. She says, "It's not aboout how you look, it's about how people look at you."

People, whether icons of beauty or convicts, aim to be perceived a certain way as they walk through life. Beauties may aim to be adored while convicts aim to be feared. It the difference between paying for a nose job and tattooing hate symbols on your body.

As authors, how do you want to be perceived? And are you making proactive moves to get the looks you want?

The reason I bring this up (with such a long preamble) is that I want to make it perfectly clear that authors are individuals who are seen and remembered. Customers, retailers, and corporations are watching and they may judge you based on a single exposure.

The feedback I get about most of you is phenomenal, with very few calls of complaint. Yay! To keep it that way, I'm going to paraphrase some negative retailer and author comments below to show how authors sabotage themselves and create negative impressions. A negative impression doesn't mean that the author has no more chances at anything and are doomed, doomed, doomed! What it does mean is that what they did will be referenced in future conversations by retailers as a concern that must be addressed.

Here are actual situations with Cedar Fort authors:

Retailer to me: "Don't as me about (author) again. All he did last night was play on his iPhone. He didn't even make eye contact with people as they came by." (Obviously a dramatic case, but in this instance he was at a chain retailer and this person reported this action to all the other regional managers in their weekly meeting. This author has not been scheduled by anyone in the chain since).

Author to me: "At the (store), their positioning is horrible. They had me back in a corner where no one went and said I could move around the store, but I didn't want to leave the area unless someone came. I pulled the manager aside before I left and let him know that it was a horrible place to put authors and I wouldn't come back again unless he put me near the front." (The author has a valid point here. Being in heavy traffic is better. They also pointed out that they were free to move about and even encouraged to introduce themselves. Instead, the author chooses park in the back, get annoyed and then crticize the host. Do you walk into a stranger's house and tell them the furniture is all wrong and you won't come back unless they do X, Y, and Z? Even if you do that in real life, try not to do it as your author persona. You can take notes and asked to be placed somewhere specific on your next visit, but managers--since they are human--usually don't respond well to ultimatums. You need them more than they need you, and they know it.)

Author to me: "I'm really sick of doing signings. It won't matter if I cancel the rest of my signings, right? (Retailer) will forget by the time my next book comes out, so it doesn't really matter if I show or not." (Maybe, maybe not. The truth is that the managers WILL remember that the author ran out of gas. As humans, they may understand that and even sympathize. But they will learn their lesson when scheduling them again. When I reapproach them, they'll likely say, "[Author] is great, but last year they really hit it hard for [dates], then petered out. Let's just schedule them for [shortened schedule]." This is may work out best for both parties, but if the author wants to push for the same schedule as the year before, it's iffy if that they'll get it.)

Author to me: "I need to cancel tomorrow's signing... I've been debating canceling it for about a week, but figured I should wait since it doesn't matter whether you cancel a week in advance or a day in advance." (How far in advance you cancel a signing can make a big difference! As authors, it can be hard to see how your signings are support from behind the scenes, but a lot of stuff happens to make a signing work. In this case, the retailer had printed posters and bag stuffers for the author in days preceding the signing. And since the book was out of stock in the warehouse, the sales rep had put an order to have 50 books printed on demand 3 days before the signing so he could run them over the day of and make the signing happen. NONE of these things would have happened, nor the expenses accrued, if the author had canceled when he/she knew they weren't going to show. People remember things like this. Even if they forgive and understand, they remember--especially when the author does not apologize and makes no indication that they will do anything differently in the future. Remember, we're all just human, and things like that make a difference, even if you think you're absolutely right. Still apologize, thank, and praise efforts. It can go a long way.)

Retailer to me: "(Group of authors) sales were okay on Saturday, but I wish I would have been here. I came in this morning to frantic employees wondering what they did wrong because (author) got mad at them and said they weren't doint their job--that our employees should be walking the store, pointing people to (author) and giving customers handouts." (The retailer's job is to host the signing and provide the books. Everything on top of that is good will and icing. If this author went to another signing where employees wandered the store pointing customers to an author, great! Chances are they really liked that author. The best way to get employees to do the same for you is to create a positive impression with them where they want to point at you. Berating and lecturing is not the key. Ever.)

Last but not least: This is a note from me, based on personal experience and comments from other CFI employees: Please keep emails and other interactions as courteous and respectful as possible. As they say, "You catch more flies with honey than vinegar." So true. Yes, this is a business. Yes, everyone wants to make money. Yes, if you bring in money people will tolerate more foot stomping, but the truth is, the most successful authors are usually the nicest. Everyone is happy to work with them. It's not my place to tell you to be that kind of person since just as many critical and abrasive people make it to the top of their industry. But I can tell you that if you want help getting there, to remember that you are in an industry of people that is fueled by the emotional attachment they have to you or your book. How they feel about those two things is going to shape your word of mouth and the effort individuals put into you. That's just how things are with humans.

And, to bring this full circle, as an author, it's not the way you look, it's the way people look at you that makes the difference.

I'm hoping this is helpful. It was not intended to offend anyone, pick fights, or do anything other than help each of you be as successful as you can be!

And, as author Dixie Owens always says.... the dance goes on!

Go knock 'em dead!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Last Week's Top 10

Speaking of Prudence Bice, I don't think it surpises anyone after last week's blog that she takes our #1 slot for the week. The rest are as follows, though:

#1- The Widower's Wife, by Prudence Bice
#2- City of Angels, by Sheralyn Pratt
#3- Shattered Silence, by Melissa Moore & M. Bridget Cook
#4- Zucchini Houdini, by Brenda Stanley
#5- The Old Testament Made Easier, Pt 3
#6- Becoming Kate, by Dixie Owens
#7- 33 Habits of a Really Good Man, by Yvonne Swinson
#8- The Biblical Roots of Mormonism, by Eric Shuster & Chuck Sale
#9- The Hoarders, by Jean Stringam
#10- The Road Show, by Braden Bell

Great work!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Few Pointers

Many of you know of Mike McPheter's reputation as the CFI Costco king. What you may not know is that there is a queen on the rise: Prudence Bice, author of Cedar Fort's "The Widower's Wife."

These two first-time authors are neck-to-neck in their phenomenal ability to move their books out of Costcos, so I dropped by to see Prudence in action. What was she doing that was so different? What unique technique did she have that allowed her to sell in the triple digits (yes, I said triple) in ONE signing.

The answer turned out to be something very, very simple.

When I first arrived, I expected to see something special luring customers to Prudence, but not really. Just a framed poster of her book, four organized stacks of books and a pen. Prudence sat behind Costco's usual signing table, watching the Thursday afternoon shoppers shuffle by. Since Prudence had never seen me before, I watched her a few times to see how she worked her magic.

Her opening was the same every time:

"Do you like to read?" followed by "Do you like historical romance?" Then she would hand them her book, back side up and let them read the ad copy.

100% of those replying yes to both questions bought the book as she assured them they would love it. Then everyone moved on.

After watching this a few times, I introduced myself and we had a great talk. Then I tried Prudence's approach at my next two signings to see how it played out for me. The first one, it seemed effective. My sales were up a bit from previous signings, which I was happy to attribute to Prudence. The second signing I used the technique at Costco, though, it backfired.

"Do you like to read?"

Arguably, I was in a horrible position in the store (facing the clothes with books behind me), so I think that played into it.

But I thought I would share this with you all. Getting the customer to say "yes" before they pick up your book is good in encouraging them to say "yes" once they have it in their hands.

Handing the book to people ad copy facing up is something you should do at all signings, as I have coached many of you to do. It is the back that let's them know if they're interested even though people just like to look at the front. If you hand a book to people back-side up, they will flip it over and look at the cover. They will not necessarily flip it over to read the back if you hand it to them cover up.

Just a few points to consider.

Happy signings!

Friday, July 16, 2010

This Week's Top 10

Hello All!

There are a lot of busy, busy authors out there. Some say that summer time is a dragging time for the publishing industry, but you all are proving them wrong. Below is the Top 10 books for this week:

#1- Circle of Souls, by Preetham Grandhi
#2- The Hoarders, by Jean Stringam
#3- The Widower's Wife, by Prudence Bice
#4- Old Testament Made Easier V3, by David Ridges
#5- MEG, by Steve Alten
#6- Becoming Kate, by Dixie Owens
#7- City of Angels, by Sheralyn Pratt
#8- The Road Show, by Braden Bell
#9- The Mark, by M.R. Bunderson
#10- Mormons Under the Microscope, by Ed Lauritsen

Great job!!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Top 10, July Signings & DB's Fall Catalog

First off, the wished for Top 10 List. This list compromises the Top 10 bestselling books for the entire month of June and first week of July:

#1- The Widower's Wife, by Prudence Bice
#2- Zucchini Houdini, by Brenda Stanley
#3- City of Angels, by Sheralyn Pratt
#4- Becoming Kate, Dixie Owens
#5- Biblical Roots of Mormonism, by Eric Shuster & Chuck Sale
#6- The Hoarders, by Jean Stringam
#7- Table for One, by Camille Funk
#8- 33 Habits of a Really Good Man, by Yvonne Swinson
#9- Mormons Under the Microsope, by Ed Lauritson
#10- Healing Secrets, Jade Mangus

Congrats to all who made the list, and thank you EVERYONE for your hard work :)

Titles that will be featured in Deseret Book's Fall Catalog are:

It's Good to be Alive
101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone
Home Cookin'

Last, if you could just take a moment to make sure I have all your signings, that would be great! Also, fun news coming up, so be sure to check the blog next week!

1-Jul Thurs Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco
3-Jul Sat Flecks of Gold 1-3 pm BN- LV
7-Jul Wed City of Angels 4-7 pm Costco-Sandy
8-Jul Thurs Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco
8-Jul Thurs Flecks of Gold 4-6 pm Borders-Brea, CA
9-Jul Fri Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco
9-Jul Fri OTME 11-4 pm Costco-SLC
9-Jul Fri Zucchini Houdini 1-3 pm BN- Gateway
9-Jul Fri Flecks of Gold 1-3 pm DB- South Pointe
10-Jul Sat City of Angels 10-2 pm Costco-Sandy
10-Jul Sat Flecks of Gold 1-3 pm Hastings-Ogden
10-Jul Sat Flecks of Gold 4-6 pm BN-Layton
10-Jul Sat Zucchini Houdini 10-12 pm Costco-SLC
10-Jul Sat Zucchini Houdini 1-3 pm DB- Ft union
12-Jul Mon Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco
14-Jul Wed City of Angels 4-7 pm Costco-SLC
15-Jul Thurs Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco-WVC
16-Jul Fri OTME 11-4 pm Costco-Murray
17-Jul Sat Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco- WVC
17-Jul Sat OTME 11-4 pm Costco-Sandy
17-Jul Sat City of Angels 10-2 pm Costco- SLC
17-Jul Sat Infertility 11-1 pm DB- Denver
17-Jul Sat Dragon War relic 1-3 pm DB- Ft union
17-Jul Sat Zucchini Houdini 12-2 pm BN- Id Falls
19-Jul Mon Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco
21-Jul Wed City of Angels 4-7 pm Costco- Lehi
22-Jul Thurs Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco
23-Jul Fri OTME 11-4 pm Costco-Lehi
23-Jul Fri Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco
24-Jul Sat City of Angels 10-2 pm Costco-Murray
25-Jul Sun Becoming Kate 2-4 pm Avid Reader- CA
26-Jul Mon Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco
28-Jul Wed City of Angels 4-7 pm Costco -Orem
29-Jul Thurs 101 Cupcakes 3-5 pm The Brass Plates

Monday, June 28, 2010

Support a CFI Author with a Click!

Duncan Hines is having a contest, and Cedar Fort author, Wendy Paul, wants to win it!

Below, is the link for the Duncan Hines Red Carpet Challenge. Wendy's cupcake is the Boston Cream Pie cupcake and she would LOVE to have your vote.

Happy Monday!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Top 10 Report is Back!!!

Due to popular demand, the Top 10 report is making a comeback. So for those of you who lobbied to bring it back, your voices were heard, and here you are!

Month-to-date, here are the Top 10 selling Cedar Fort titles:

#1-Circle of Souls (mm)
#2-The Hoarders
#3-The Widower's Wife
#5-City of Angels
#6-Mormons under the Microscope
#7-The Mark
#8-The Road Show
#9-Flecks of Gold
#10-100-Day Pantry

Year-to-Date Bestselling Titles are:

#1-Agent Bishop
#2-Mother's Daze
#3-Old Testament Made Easier, Part 2
#4-Old Testament Made Easier, Part 1
#5-Circle of Souls (mm)
#6-Old Testament Made Easier, Part 3
#7-65 Signs of the Times
#9-101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes
#10-Joy in Your Garden

This will be updated weekly, so be sure to check in!!

Monday, June 21, 2010

After 12 Years...

NPR had a great article about one of those bestselling authors you've never heard about. After 12 years of writing books, she still pounds the pavement with signings and visits in an effort to be visible:

Authors who are moving and shaking to stay visible through the end of the month are:

22-Jun Tues OTME 11-4 pm Costco-SLC
24-Jun Thurs Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
24-Jun Thurs City of Angels 4-7 pm Costco- S. Ogden
25-Jun Fri Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco- St G
25-Jun Fri OTME 11-4 pm Costco- Sandy
25-Jun Fri It's in the Bag 4-6 pm Costco-Murray
26-Jun Sat Dragon War Relic 12-2 pm Borders-Provo
26-Jun Sat 101 cupcakes 12-2 pm DB- Sandy
26-Jun Sat Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco-St G
26-Jun Sat OTME 11-4 pm Costco- S Ogd
26-Jun Sat It's in the Bag 1-3 pm BN-Bountiful
26-Jun Sat Becometh as a Child 2-4 pm BN-Layton
29-Jun Tues City of Angels 4-10pm Twilight Mom's-Jordan Landing
29-Jun Tues Unique Stories LDS 11-2 pm Costco-Lehi
30-Jun Wed Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco-Lehi

Also, Lorae Bowden, author of Centsible Meals, is using her trip to Utah to teach two classes at the following locations. Everyone is welcome to come!

-June 29th BYU 199th ward 9th E. 700 N. 7pm
-June 30th Lehi 3rd plus another ward 500 W. 1919 N. 7pm

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Signings the rest of this month

Hi All! These are the signings I have on my radar for the rest of this month.

Any of you I missed?

17-Jun Thurs Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
17-Jun Thurs City of Angels 4-7 pm Costco-Murray
18-Jun Fri It's in the Bag 12-2 pm Costco
18-Jun Fri It's in the Bag 6-8 pm DB-Meridian
18-Jun Fri Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
19-Jun Sat Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
19-Jun Sat Widower's Wife 11-3 pm Costco-St G
19-Jun Sat Flecks of Gold 1-3 pm Borders-Logan
19-Jun Sat 33 Habits 2-4 pm DB- St G
19-Jun Sat Unlocking the Idioms/Numbers 2-4 pm DB- St G
19-Jun Sat It's in the Bag 2-4 pm BN-Grand Teton
19-Jun Sat Joy in Your Garden 2-4 pm King's English
19-Jun Sat It's in the Bag 6-8 pm DB-Rexburg
22-Jun Tues OTME 11-4 pm Costco-SLC
24-Jun Thurs Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
24-Jun Thurs City of Angels 4-7 pm Costco- S. Ogden
25-Jun Fri Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco- St G
25-Jun Fri OTME 11-4 pm Costco- Sandy
25-Jun Fri It's in the Bag 4-6 pm Costco-Murray
26-Jun Sat Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco-St G
26-Jun Sat OTME 11-4 pm Costco- S Ogd
26-Jun Sat It's in the Bag 1-3 pm BN-Bount
26-Jun Sat Becometh as a Child 2-4 pm BN-Layton
29-Jun Tues Unique Stories LDS 11-2 pm Costco-Lehi
30-Jun Wed Widower's Wife 11-5 pm Costco-Lehi

Friday, June 4, 2010

David Ridges Fireside

Hello Authors!

To record David Ridges 65 Signs of the Times fireside, we are looking to book him for a fireside during the month of June. Since this is a commercial venture, David wants to avoid doing it on a Sunday.

I your ward/stake would love to have David come to your area and host his insightful yet entertaining fireside, please contact Sheralyn. Please leave clarifying quiestions in the comment field.


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Survey results are in!!

For those of you who participated in Rebecca Irvine's survey on author royalties, here's the results. While eye opening, I think it is also great evidence as to what makes a successful author.

Write, write, write...

Check our her results here.

Friday, May 28, 2010

A Lesson in Going Viral from High School Students. Also, Palmyra

As of this posting, this video has been up for 4 days. It was created by high School students (which I'm guessing have AWESOME teachers) and posted online. The campaign to watch it has been entirely through email/FB/Twitter, etc.

Also, look at this one, which has been up 6 months.

These are GREAT videos to discuss on so many levels, since the first one has, in a few short days, received more hits than 90% of all book trailers (at least). The second, clearly has had a great viral run :)

Why are people watching these videos (and why will the numbers keep climbing)?

ALSO, anyone going to Palmyra this year with a desire to sign there? This would be specifically for the pageant 7/9-17/10.

Let me know in the comments as well if you are interested in this.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

BYU Alumni Call

This is an all-call for authors who are BYU Alumni. I need to know who you are, so I can let BYU Magazine know you're a published author!

So all authors who are BYU graduates, could you please leave a comment on this thread?

Thank you!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Win or Donate... or BOTH!

Something about Spring just makes us all want to celebrate and have a little fun, and you can see that by checking out blogs.

Are you ready for this?

Nichole Giles and Cindy Beck are giving away a $150 advertising package on their site: The winner will get a full year of great exposure for the product of their choice! This is a fabulous, fabulous prize and I can only cross my fingers and hope that a CFI author will win it :)

On another site, authors are uniting to raise money for flood victims in Nashville. So for those of you who just have money burning through your pockets, or you want a creative way to donate, check out:

And if you feel like answering a bit of trivia, then you can go to my site at Every day until June 7th, there will be a new trivia question and the first one to get it right gets to pick their prize.

The days are getting longer and warmer, so let's all get out there and have some fun!

Monday, May 3, 2010

May Signings!


Hello, All!

These are all the signings I have on my radar for May. Please check the list to see if I have all of your signings. If not, please feel free to post them as a comment or email them to me so I can be sure to have you on the company calendar!

Happy May :)

Date Day Title Time Outlet
1-May Sat Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
1-May Sat Joy in Your Garden 12-2 pm Confetti Books
1-May Sat The Mark 1-3 pm BN-Gateway
3-May Mon Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
3-May Mon Joy in Your Garden 11-3 pm Costco-Murray
4-May Tues OTME 11-4 pm Costco-Lehi
5-May Wed Rebound 11-4 pm Costo-S. Ogden
5-May Wed OTME 11-4 pm Costco-Murray
5-May Wed Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
6-May Thurs Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
6-May Thurs Rebound 11-4 pm Costco-Sandy
7-May Fri Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
7-May Fri 101 Cupcakes 10:30-12 pm CFI warehouse
7-May Fri Joy in Your Garden 6-8 pm BN-South Towne
8-May Sat Flecks of Gold 1-3 pm Little Professor
8-May Sat Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
8-May Sat 101 Cupcakes 1-4 pm BN-Orem
8-May Sat Becometh as a Child 1-3 pm DB-Bountiful
8-May Sat Diet Rebel's Cookbook BN-South Towne
8-May Sat It's in the Bag 3-5 pm DB-Bountiful
8-May Sat 101 Cupcakes 5:30-7:30 pm DB-Bountiful
10-May Mon Joy in Your Garden 11-3 pm Sandy-Costco
10-May Mon Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
11-May Tues Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
13-May Thurs Rebound 11-4 pm Costco-Sandy
14-May Fri Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
14-May Fri Lost Children 6-8 pm BN-Orem LAUNCH!
14-May Fri Joy in Your Garden 11-3 pm Costco-Sandy
15-May Sat Hashbrown Winters 2-5 pm B&N-W. Jordan
15-May Sat Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
15-May Sat Joy in Your Garden 4-7 pm Costco-WVC
15-May Sat The Mark 1-3 pm BN-Bountiful
17-May Mon Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
18-May Tues OTME 11-4 pm Costco-W. Bountiful
19-May Wed Rebound 11-4 pm Costco-Sandy
20-May Thurs Joy in Your Garden 11-3 pm Costco-S. Ogden
20-May Thurs Lost Children 7-9 pm BN-South Towne
21-May Fri Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
21-May Fri Hashbrown Winters BN-Sugarhouse
22-May Sat Wrong Number 12-2 pm Costco-Orem
22-May Sat Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
22-May Sat The Mark 2-4 pm Borders-Murray
22-May Sat Temple Passport 4-6 pm Seagull LAUNCH!
24-May Mon Hashbrown Winters 6-8 pm BN-South Towne
25-May Tues Hashbrown Winters BN- W. Jordan
25-May Tues Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
26-May Wed Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
27-May Thurs Rebound 11-4 pm Costco-Orem
27-May Thurs Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
28-May Fri Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
29-May Sat Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco
31-May Mon Agent Bishop 11-4 pm Costco

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Have you noticed the tabs?

Hi All!

After waiting the past several months for the official author site to pop up on, I thought (duh!) why not just start posting the info for new authors HERE.

Yeah... sometimes I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed. But if you look at the top you'll see tabs now, that display information new authors should find very, very helpful.

Some of it is common sense, other parts can be very illuminating.


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Million-Dollar Challenge

First off, when I say a million dollars, we’re really talking about a million dollars.

When I say “challenge” things start opening up more to interpretation, but this, in a nutshell, is the challenge:

Lyle Mortimer, President and CEO of Cedar Fort, has an author on the table for all Cedar Fort authors: Present a plan that illustrates how for every $2 spent on advertising you can sell one book. If it looks like it might work, CFI will test it out. If it DOES work, CFI will spend a million dollars advertising your book—or until the model is exhausted.

“What does that mean?” you ask. “What approach is CFI looking for? Radio? Print? Online? WHAT?!?!”

That is where things become open to interpretation. Do you think that radio is the right place for your book and can you show why? Do it! If you think billboards, FB ads, newspapers, mailers, or something else works better for you, lay that out!

Show us! If we’re sold, we’ll implement a test campaign to give it a shot. If it hits its target, we’ll start pumping serious money into it.

Hint: Authors who are going to come ahead on this challenge are authors who have tested mini-campaigns of their own, refining buckshot into lasers (for those of you who took my class). It is also important that you can define your audience very specifically and why they will be especially in tune to your marketing plan.

Another hint: don’t present a plan without having a ballpark figure of whether or not the advertising rates for your medium truly reflect reality. Poke around a look up the rates you would likely be paying.

One more hint: There is a 99.9999999999999999999999999999999999999% radio is not the right model for your book. It’s fun to hear a commercial on the radio, but unless you have a model where you would sell more than 5,000 books a week, this likely isn’t worth looking into.

Remember, this is open to all. No book is too big or too small! Nor is any budget too big or too small! Maybe you have a plan that sells 50 books per week by spending $100. Submit it and we'll consider it! If it works, we'll do it all day long :)

When you have a plan, send it my way. I’ll offer feedback or submit it for consideration.

Good luck!!!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Author Question: Listing

From Author: Just wanted you to know that my website is ready to be published and I want to have links to sites that will sell the novel. Borders and Amazon already list it as a presale book. But when I search at Cedar Fort, nothing comes up. Some of my friends and family may want to purchase direct from Cedar Fort - so maybe you can have a "coming soon" or presale access point too.

Answer: This is a great request and one we've been working on getting up on the site for a few months.

Right now the practice is to put the book up for sale on a week before we have the book in warehouse. This is done because currently is not set up to accept pre-orders. This issue is being addressed, and I'll let you know as soon as pre-orders are available at Two other notes to consider:

#1- When you spend $35 on your purchase ships for free!!
#2- If you're looking to have sales show up on a national radar amazon, B&N, Borders and other national retailers are a great place to send sales, since these will be reported to the NY Times.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Bestselling Authors of 2009

Hi All!

Last night I had the honor of announcing the bestselling Cedar Fort titles of 2009, as well as awarding the an award for best marketing by an author.

The awards were as follows:

Bestselling Title of 2009
Shattered Silence, by Melissa G. Moore & M. Bridget Cook

Bestselling Non-Fiction of 2009
Agent Bishop, by Mike McPheters

Bestselling Fiction of 2009
The Adventures of Hashbrown Winters, by Frank Cole

Best Marketing Award of 2009
101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes, by Wendy Paul

Each of these authors receive a $200 gift card to Cedar Fort toward the purchase of the product of their choice.

Additionally, Terri Ferran received a $20 gift card to the Cedar Fort Warehouse for correctly deducing what all our award-winning authors have in common: they are all first-time authors who beat out the veterans!

Congratulations everyone and let's make 2010 even better!!!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Great Tips for Authors!

A panel of seven successful book authors and publishers presented their top tips for wannabe writers at two days of seminars held in conjunction with the Spring Book Show in Atlanta.

The presenters at the March 26-27 Authorship 101 and 201 seminars told the prospective authors about the realities of book publishing. They covered the life cycle of books from conception to writing, editing, and successful marketing through the last retail sales before the book is remaindered or repulped.

Among the top tips of the published professionals to fledgling authors:

· Remember that books are a product with a short shelf life.

· The author must play a major role in marketing the book.

· Prepare to speak in a variety of forums about your book topics.

· Test-market a sample of your book’s content and fix the problems found.

· You should punctuate for power and meaning.

· Remember that rejection letters are not your enemy.

· It’s unlikely that you can successfully, thoroughly, and accurately edit your own writing.

· There are ways you can get through the publisher’s gatekeepers.

· You should appeal to all five of the reader’s senses.

· You should write in the appropriate “voice,” and understand how voice is different from style.

The faculty for the two days of seminars included Peter Bowerman (mastering marketing), Ahmad Meradji (controlling manufacturing costs), David Fulmer (project funding ideas), Angela K. Durden (don’t aggravate your readers - hire an editor), Chris Roerden (secrets of surviving the manuscript submission process), Tony Burton (using conflict to keep readers interested) and Dr. David Ryback (publishing success in six steps).

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Women's Conference Signing Schedule

Congratulations to all the authors chosen to sign at this year's Women's Conference, this April 29th & 30th. The signing schedule is as follows:

On Thursday 4/29

1:30 to 3:30 – Jill Lash
4:00 to 6:00 - Joe Evans
4:00 to 6:00 - Chris & Julia Deaver

On Friday 4/30
11:00 to 1:00 – Jane Still
11:00 to 1:00 - Wendy Paul
11:00 to 1:00 - Kerstin Daynes
1:30 to 3:30 – Terri Ferran
1:30 to 3:30 – Rachelle Christensen

Signings will take place at the BYU Bookstore, and all books provided. It is suggested that you arrive a minimum of 30 minutes before your signing time as parking can less than ideal.

Have a great event!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

ForeWord Magazine Wants Your Trailers

ForeWord Magazine is looking for the best book trailers around, and giving an iPad to the one they like the best. More than that, they're letting the public decide, which means whether your book wins or not, it still might be seen by thousands of people! That, of course, is great exposure for you!

The deadline is May 15th and the contest details are located here:

You can submit your trailer by following this link:

Have fun and best luck to all of you!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Seagull/DB/Costco Reminder

Today's post is dedicated to reminding authors of something that is outlined documents and conversations. And yet, all it takes is one or two authors acting innocently or inquisitively to stoke a fire that makes the subject need to be addressed repeatedly.

That subject is this: DB, Seagull, and Costco want all signing requests from Cedar Fort authors to come from me, and me alone. This means, if you are wanting to sign at a Seagull, Seagull doesn't want you going to or calling the store to request the privilege with the manager. If you want to sign at a Seagull, they want you to contact corporate and get approval before bringing the subject up in the store.

This is true even if you want to hold a great, fun event there that you think the manager should be in on approving. Even in that case, Seagull corporate would like me to ask them if it is okay before the idea is brought to the store.

Additionally, remember that Seagull will only be interested in a signing if your book is featured in their current catalog. Doing this is actually a favor to you, because it means that loyal customers who come in will have already had an exposure to your book.

Similarly, Costco's current business model is to invite strong-selling authors to do signings as they place orders for books. Of course, Cedar Fort encourages them to both carry your book and host you for signings, but both decisions are made on a corporate level, not by store managers. Contacting stores directly to request signings is not appropriate, whether they are carrying your book or not.

The short message here: Do NOT contact a DB or Seagull about a signing unless you've spoken to me about it first. And do not contact Costco at all.

Conversely, B&N, Borders, and other stores are happy to work with you on a store-by-store basis! For those of you who haven't seen it yet, B&N even took the time to make an instructional video for you on what they're looking for from a signing:

Thanks for all your hard work. Learning the ropes in a new industry can take time, but the Cedar Fort team is working hard on your behalf to make each book as successful as possible.

All the best!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Cedar Fort's 2009 Releases

January 2009

Faith Among Shadows
Living For Tomorrow
So, You're a Bishop
Walking Into A Hug
The Mystic Cypher
Previously Engaged
Sacred Hymns of the Book of Mormon
Come, Come Ye Saints


Confessions of a Completely (In)Sane Mother
Life it Tough: I Doubt I'll Make It Out Alive
It's All About Him
A Circle of Souls
Simply Sane
The Faith to Heal and be Healed
Torn Apart
The Divine Principles of Mothering
Wealth Will Follow
Having Hope


But If Not
Deadly Treasure
Keeping Love Alive
Brigham's Boys
That's Faith!
My Fairy Grandmother
Compare Isaiah
Pearls from the Plates
Be Not Afraid


By Love, or By Sea
So, You're a Primary Teacher
Abish, Faith Among the Lamanites
Unlocking the Idioms
Women of Virtue
Catholic Roots, Mormon Harvest
On Your Own
Conceiving in the Heart
Learning to Prosper
Bone Warriors


Pick-Up Games
Losing Weight for Life
Agent in Old Lace
New Frontiers of Dutch Oven Cooking
10 Secrets of a Happy Marriage
Opening the Seventh Seal


A Circle of Souls
Am I Ready to Die?
Altared Plans
Starting with a Quart of Tomatoes
The Adventures of Hashbrown Winters
Experiencing Christ
The Pearl of Great Price, Made Easier


The Sister Pact
Hiking Boots and Gospel Truths
How to Lengthen Your Stride Without Getting a Hernia
Discipline Me Right
To Teach as Jesus Taught
Spice Up Your Life
Achieving Your Life's Mission
Scientific Discoveries that Build Testimonies and Strengthen Faith


Shadows of Eden
Famous Family Nights
Your Endowment
Unlikely Truths of Motherhood
Agent Bishop
Second Chances
Celebrate Dinner
Cyber Safety
101 Gourmet Cupcakes in 10 Minutes


The Legend of the Star
The Apology
Honoring Christmas in My Heart
Santa Maybe
12 Days of Christmas, Encore!
Shattered Silence
The Shell Game
Hannah's Reach
The Modern Magi


Simply Singing Time
I Know My Savior Lives
Tiny Talks
The Old Testament Puzzle Book
The Ball's in Her Court
65 Signs of the Times
Stand as an Example
Nephi in the Promised Land


Ready Resource for Relief Society
How to Survive You Child's Mission
Family Home Evening Adventures
The Dragon War Relic
They Walk with God
Monday Nights in Jerusalem
Isaiah Made Easier
Breakfast in a Cookie Jar


Temple Worship Simplified
Primarily for Cub Scouts
Mormon Mishaps and Mischief
Fearless Dating
Where the Sun Rises
Divinely Designed
Secrets of the Prophets
Centsible Meals

Monday, March 29, 2010

Want to Take Survey?

For those of you who saw Rebecca Irvine's great report in my previous post, she's now doing a study just for you--the authors! Follow this link and do her the favor of taking her survey:

In response, Rebecca will make up another great report that will share great information about LDS authors and the industry in general!

I know I'm looking forward to the results!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


Cedar Fort is happy to announce its CHAPTER ONE CLUB. With so many books and so little time, Cedar Fort would like to help you find the books you’d like to read by delivering chapters to your inbox.

Starting in April, each Friday the Chapter One Club will send out the first chapter of one of our current or upcoming titles. Sure, you can read book reviews online, but nothing tells you if you want to read a book more than reading the first chapter to see if you want to read chapter 2… and 3… and 4, and more!

You are receiving this notice because you subscribe to other notices or services from CFI and we just want you to have the opportunity to receive FREE chapters each Friday.

If you are interested, email spratt (at) cedarfort (dot) com with "CHAPTER ONE" in the subject and “Sign me up!” in the body of the email. That's it! You will be added and begin to receive free weekly chapters of current and upcoming titles!

Note: As an added bonus of joining the Chapter One Club, you are also likely to receive discount coupons and other sweet goodies, so you may want to join just for that!

Happy Spring!

What LDS Authors Should Know!

For those of you who do not follow Rebecca Irvine's blog, you may have missed the report she posted last week. She surveyed over 400 LDS readers to find out their buying habits and interests. I definitely recommend all authors look this over and watch future studies to see how habits and interests evolve.

Additionally, this is a great example of having a blog of value. Generating reports like this is something Rebecca does professionally, and she's sharing the wealth of her skills with anyone willing to click on a button. Go Rebecca!

Monday, March 22, 2010

This Week's Signings

It must be Spring. Not only is Joy Bossi selling stores out of her gardening book, but authors are venturing from their homes and mingling with the public in record numbers. Next week Malcolm Leal will be touring along the Seagull Books along the Wasatch Front. It also may be the reason Rachael Renee Anderson's brightly colored "Divinely Designed" was the bestselling CFI fiction title last week. People are ready for color and life and reading books that encourage them to get out into the world and live a little!

Indeed, it's the perfect time to be active. And if you don't know how to get the ball rolling, go visit one of these authors at their signings and ask them how they get the ball rolling.

Happy Monday!

23-Mar 11-4 pm Mike McPheters Costco
23-Mar 11:30-1 Michael Young UVU Bookstore
24-Mar 11-4 pm Mike McPheters Costco
25-Mar 11-4 pm Mike McPheters Costco
25-Mar 11-2 pm Joy Bossi Costco
26-Mar 11-4 pm Mike McPheters Costco
27-Mar 10-2 pm Mike McPheters St. George Seagull
27-Mar 12-2 pm David Ridges Sp. Fork Seagull
27-Mar 12-2 pm Malcolm Leal American Fork Seagull
27-Mar 10-2 pm Racheal Renee Anderson Sp. Fork Seagull
27-Mar 12-2 pm Diana Webb Murray-B&N
27-Mar 12-2 pm Craig Manning Murray-B&N
27-Mar 12-2 pm Wendy Paul Murray-B&N
27-Mar 12-2 pm Rachael Renee Anderson Spanish Fork-DB
27-Mar 2:30-4:30 Rachelle Christensen Spanish Fork-DB
27-Mar 1-3 pm Frank Cole S. Towne-B&N
27-Mar 12-4 pm Mike McPheters Costco

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Cedar Fort Authors Signing this Weekend!

If you're out and about this weekend and want to run into another author, you'll have plenty of opportunities. Following are a list of Cedar Fort signings taking place this weekend in the Salt Lake Valley.

Have fun!

19-Mar Friday 11-4 pm OTME David Ridges Costco
19-Mar Friday 11-4 pm Agent Bishop Mike McPheters Costco
19-Mar Friday 7-9 pm Hashbrown Winters Frank Cole S. Towne-BN
20-Mar Saturday 11-4 pm Agent Bishop Mike McPheters Costco
20-Mar Saturday 12-2 pm The Mark MR Bunderson University Plaza
20-Mar Saturday 11-4 pm OTME David Ridges Costco
20-Mar Saturday 12-2 pm 101 Cupcakes Wendy Paul Orem-BN
20-Mar Saturday 12-2 pm Centsible Meals Lorae Bowden Orem-BN
20-Mar Saturday 12-2 pm Forgotten Women Diana Webb Orem-BN
20-Mar Saturday 12-2 pm Fearless Mind Craig Manning Orem-BN
20-Mar Saturday 12-2 pm Joy in Your Garden Joy Bossi Murray-BN

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Mario Facione: LIVE this Saturday Night!

For all you who have wanted to hear Mario Facione's fireside, the author of "Mafia to Mormon" will be speaking live this Saturday, the 20th in Murray. A signing will be held earlier that day at the Murray B&N, 12-2:00 pm.

The fireside will begin Saturday night (3/20) at 6:30 pm and last approximately an hour. The address of the church is:

450 East 5600 South
Murray, Utah

Mario is a fascinating speaker with a fascinating story to tell, so come by if you can make it. We will be meeting in the Relief Society Room.

Friday, March 12, 2010


Okay, some of you are just having fun out there. I'm seeing great websites pop up like this one:

Some of you are composing your own soundtrack to your book: (click on "Havoc Stomp")

Giving out mammoth prizes for blog tour reviews:

And more! Remember, there are very few wrong ways to market your book (although wrong ways do exist, don't be fooled), there is only the right way for you! Feel free to try new things, experiment, learn and move forward.

Happy Weekend!!!!!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Illustrators Wanted!

Click on the image below to read the contest details in full size:

Monday, March 8, 2010

This Week's Signings

Hey there! Until I find a public calendar for all of you to have access to, I will post the weekly signings I have on my radar each Monday. If you see I'm missing yours, feel free to get on my radar.

Also, I know several of you are anxiously waiting to have access to the Author login site on There's just a little thing that needs to be done on the IT side and it should be up. I will send out a massive author email when that is ready to roll out.

Penultimately, UVU has started scheduling authors. All authors have been confirmed with by email, but check that blog for dates. As you can see, UVU has decided not to stick to Thursdays, which is just fine :)

Last of all, this week's signings:

3/8- Mike McPheters: St George Costco, 11-4 pm
3/9- David Ridges: Orem Costco, 11-4 pm
3/9- Mormon Mishaps: Santa Quin Library Fund Raiser
3/10- Wendy Paul: Baking Class
3/11- Frank Cole: Channing Hall, South Towne BN 6-8 pm
3/12- Mike McPheters: St George Costco, 11-4 pm
3/12- Frank Cole: UVU Bookstore, 11-1 pm
3/13- Berin Stephens: Provo Deseret Book, 12-2 pm
3/13- Rachelle J Christensen: Orem BN, 12-2 pm
3/13- Michael Young: Orem BN, 12-2 pm
3/13- Frank Richardson: Orem BN, 12-2 pm
3/13- Guy Galli: Murray BN, 12-2 pm
3/13- Kerstin Daynes: Murray BN, 12-2 pm
3/13- Joe Evans: Murray BN, 12-2 pm
3/13- Terri Ferran: Murray BN, 12-2 pm

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Articles... the Other Form of Publishing

With the average attention span approximately the length of a TV commercial, how do you get people to keep seeing you the day after they find out your book has come out?

It's the million-dollar question, right?

Think of all the authors you like to read and all the ways you've looked them up online. What did you want to find when you googled their name? An interview? A site? Reviews? An article? A blog? Images? (Hint: there is no correct answer.)

Now hold on to the answers you thought of and that's your next assignment! And don't think of excuses why you shouldn't do it, because you never know what will stick.

EXAMPLE: This is a multi-million-dollar industry:

And someone out there is cashing in on it by making book-themed lanyards for book-store clerks. I was just in BN where one of the employees was giddily raving about having this particular lanyard:

Now, I'm not saying to go out and make lanyards, but that is just one way this particular author is making herself visible in bookstores. PRETTY SMART.

As mentioned in a previous post, a great way to stay visible and find your audience is to write articles. This allows strangers to find you and get curious. One ad I walked past today asking for content writers is:

Check it out... but only after you plot out the idea you had at the beginning of this post ;)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Uh, it's March...

Anyone else taken unawares?

The sun's out, it's 50 degrees, Spring is in the air, and I'm voting on Christmas books. Weird.

I just want to take a moment here and thank you all for what you do! Publishing is such a strange beast. We never think (before entering the biz) that writing the books is the easy part--it's the getting thousands or millions of strangers to buy it that's the real pickle.

But just for today, March 1st, I'm going to choose to think on only the good this industry has to offer. None of the stress, none of the labor--only the joy of storytelling. The miracle of sharing of information and visions with each other through streams of connected letters and pages. Really, when you think about it, writing is as big of a miracle as telephones--we've just gotten used to it. Maybe it's even more of a miracle since written words can last through the eons of time, whereas a phone call is gone when it is finished.

So, yes, while there are signings to set up, speaking engagements to garner, articles to write, reviews to generate, parties to plan, invitations to send, events to attend, workshops to learn from, connections to be made, reporters to contact, bloggers to follow, videos to script and so much more--for a single moment, just take a deep breath and remember the optimism and vision that started you on this whole journey and the personal legacy your written words leave behind.

And once you remember why you started on this path, feel free to jump back on the 'to do' list that brought you here. Good luck!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Authors on the Move!

So many of you are so active and doing such great things for your books, it's hard to keep up!

Rachelle Christensen is launching a huge book tour for her first novel, "Wrong Number," which many of you are participating in.

Wendy Paul is holding a cookie recipe contest where the winner's recipe will be included in her next cookbook "101 Gourmet Cookies for Everyone" plus she was featured on Blog Talk Radio in an hour interview with Megan Sillito on 2/24.

Mike McPheters continues his avid touring and is currently in St. George, Utah where a fan created this interview post for him.

Malcolm Leal is touring Idaho and Northern Utah, hitting the radio waves, making friends, and creating signings so successful that The Ogden Deseret Book chose "Faith Among Shadows" as their featured title of the week!

Ken Knapton is teaching Cyber Safety classes in his community and showing parents how to keep their children safe from online predators.

So many good things going on! Click on the links above and maybe you'll get an idea of how to make your book more visible!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

BYU Women's Conference

The time has come to see which authors are interested in participating in the BYU Women's Conference this year!

Anyone is free to nominate themselves, with the final decision--of course--being made by BYU.

All authors who are interested, PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT on this post so that anyone who needs to see the list of eager authors can all come to one place and see it!

Happy February and keep up the great work!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Christmas Contest in February!

Calling All Writers!

Are you missing Christmas yet? The potpourri, the lights, the presents?

Okay, maybe not. But if you can believe it, Cedar Fort is already looking forward to next Christmas and what would be the perfect Christmas pamphlet for friends and family to give each other. We know it’s out there—hiding away in someone’s mind or hard drive, so we are presenting you with the:

Cedar Fort One-Week Christmas Pamphlet Contest.


It might be 100 words long, it might be 10,000, but it’s out there just waiting to be shared this upcoming Christmas season.

This isn’t a contest with strict rules, it is a search for a heartwarming story that will help everyone get into the Christmas spirit and remember the real reason for the holiday. Maybe you have it. Maybe you know someone who should be reading this instead of you. Pass it on! This contest is open to all, but it does close on FEBRUARY 19, 2010.

It is a great opportunity for current authors or those trying to break into the publishing industry to get a foot in the door, so don’t delay.

Send your submissions via email to
Subject: Christmas Story Contest
Please include contact information, including name, address, and telephone number.

Looking forward to reading all your stories!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

UVU Wants YOU!

...but only for a couple of hours.

Here's the story: Starting in March, from 11:00-1:00 pm on every Thursday Cedar Fort will be hosting signings at Utah Valley University in their bookstore. This is great way for your book to gain exposure among a college crowd!

The books they are looking for are:

National Fiction/Non-Fiction
Juvenile Fiction (targeting elementary school students)
Children's Picture Books

If your book falls in this category and you live in where you can do a lunch-time signing at UVU, please leave your requested dates for signing in the comments section. In this case, all authors will be considered on a first come, first served basis, with UVU ultimately choosing the authors they fill to be good fits.

So, to repeat, make sure your title fits with those UVU is requesting, find dates that will work for you in the next several months and post them in the comment section. When something is firmly scheduled I will email you in addition to posting your signing in the comment section so other authors can see what days are taken.

Remember, all your signings should be publicized on your personal website so that fans know you'll be there. Also, remember to invite FB friends and others a minimum of 3 times with your status updates or by creating an event.

Are you ready?

On your mark, get set, go!