Creating Memoir Leverage…Another Name for Community and Collaboration…Plus a Contest

by Kendra Bonnett on January 16, 2010

catnav-book-business-active-3Post #18 – Women’s Memoirs, Book Business – Kendra Bonnett and Matilda Butler

Leverage. It’s a miraculous thing. In physics it’s the principle behind one of the simplest machines. But don’t underestimate its power. The ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes declared, “Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.”seesaw with books

That’s leverage as a mechanical advantage, but what about social or business advantage or even memoir leverage? This is about getting ahead (or gaining positional advantage) by working effectively and most often collectively. Let me give you a couple of examples:

Book Signing with Memoir Leverage

Three women have memoirs all coming out around the same time. If each holds a book signing at the local bookstore, she may attract 25 or so people and sell 10 books. But what if they leveraged their contacts and relationships in the community and held a joint book signing? Each woman would attract her 25 people, but there would be a total of 75 people at the event. Now each writer has the opportunity to introduce her work to 50 additional people. That’s leverage.

Online, we create memoir leverage by commenting on one another’s blogs, inviting each other to guest blog on our sites, and listing each other’s blogs on our sites. Together we expand interest in the memoir genre and build greater authority for all memoir sites in the eyes of Google and Technorati. In short, we all win.

In 2010, Matilda and I are doing what we can to offer Women’s Memoirs as force for leverage. Our Twitter lists, Facebook Fan Pages and email lists are available to all memoir writers. We encourage you to talk about your books and writing on our Women’s Memoirs Fan Page. If you want your site or a special message broadcast on Twitter, let us know. We reach almost 5000 people through the various accounts that we manage. Write for our KitchenScraps series, and if you have an idea for a guest blog, please let us know. We’d be happy to work with you and make a place for you on Women’s Memoirs. And don’t forget to nominate blogs for our blogroll.

In an earlier post, I mentioned Story Circle Network as a wonderful (indeed original) site within the memoir community. In fact, many of us are looking forward to our gathering in Austin, February 5 – 7, 2010 at SCN’s Stories from the Heart V Conference. This time I’d like to mention Janet Riehl and her blog Riehlife; she’s another memoirist who is clearly thinking about ways to leverage her writing community—Riehlife Villagers, she calls them. Janet is currently working on a blog-of-the-month series. Be sure to check out what she’s doing.

Gifts for Gab

Matilda and I decided we wanted to do something special to reward people who comment on our posts. We’ve decided to start counting comments every month and giving the person who leaves the most comments a gift.

Alchemy-heart-packagingWe’re kicking this off this month with a gift of our HeartShare ™ tea. HeartShare is green tea pressed into the shape of a heart. This rare tea heart comes from the Yunnan province in China, which is well known for its ancient craft of pressing teas. And just as writing takes time, so too does making these hearts. The finest leaves, grown at 5500 feet above sea level, are picked, steamed and then pressed into forms before the drying process begins.

Here’s what you do to enter: Every comment that you post between today (January 16th) and January 31 will be counted. You are allowed to make multiple, substantive comments on the same post. On February 1, we will tally the number of comments per person, and the prize will be awarded in early that month.

The winner for January will receive six tea hearts carefully tucked into a beautiful gold organdy bag and then gently tied before packing and shipping to you.

Good luck to you all.





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