DD is 4 years old!

Debatably Dateable is 4 years old! My oh my, how big she’s grown! I can’t believe this blog is 4 years old today! 

If I’m honest, I did not put much effort into my blog this year. I go through waves of inspiration and droughts, and I’ve had an extremely long drought this year. Fall 2019 I was doing great with my queue and I think that honestly held me through. When the summer started I did start to work on new content. But I haven’t really been active on here and the stats really show from July 2019 5,003 to this July (just last month). 

6,000 !

I am proud that DD has over 6,000 followers, I appreciate every single one of you for taking the time to read the thoughts and feelings I share. I hope my honesty has helped some of you feel connected to something outside of yourself. I’m also proud to stay that I’ve posted 700 articles/poems over these 4 years and I’ve loved exploring so many topics with all of you!

 

She’s helped me launch 3 poetry collections now and I’m so thankful to have WordPress as a platform to share my work with all of you!

Purchase any of my books on amazon here!

The choice to self publish

The dream for me had always been to be picked up by a big publishing company in the future of my writing career. I knew that would not happen right away and self publishing some books would almost be like building up a resume. I could grow my own fan base, I would be showing that I’m not just a one hit wonder, and I would show that I have the passion and commitment to continue on for many more years. 

 

There’s definitely stress and frustration that comes with putting a book together but I do love having control over every decision and making my collection EXACTLY how I want it. As I’ve never been traditionally published, I don’t know when the hand off happens exactly. But I’m sure there’s Cover Designers and Illustrators that can give your collection a complete makeover – a makeover you may not want. You can be included in the conversation but how could you disagree with the professionals if you didn’t like the design?

 

A big plus of signing with a traditional company is the marketing resources that can be dedicated to getting your book to consumers’ hands. When you self publish all the marketing and promoting falls on you. The thing is I’ve seen some collections that were published by traditional companies but barely have 50 reviews on Amazon. I know reviews don’t equal sales but one of the big 5 publishing houses should have enough resources to ensure their books are being promoted well. 

 

Traditional publishing companies have been in the industry for a long time, they have a lot of connections, and they know all the ins and outs to get your book in front of the right people. But will they use that knowledge on you, that’s no guarantee as this recent thread on Twitter speaks to. 

 

After publishing my first two collections, I’ve learned I want control of all creative decisions and I want as much promotional help as possible, it seems there are plenty of examples in the industry that traditional companies don’t help me with either of those things. 

 

Being picked up by a publishing company could be the greatest thing to ever happen to your writing career. It could be the greatest to happen to mine as well, I’m just saying that I no longer feel that hungry desire to chase after one of the big 5 houses. I’m happy self publishing. It’s difficult at some points and I know traditional would have it’s own difficulties as well. Self publishing has been making steady strides in this industry for years and I am here for it’s next step.

 

Debatably Dateable is 3 years old!

I’m so excited to celebrate another anniversary with Debatably Dateable! She’s quickly closing in on 5k followers and is consistently setting new records for monthly views this summer, so I couldn’t be prouder! Over the past 3 years, I’ve been able to produce about 500 posts and 2 poetry collections.

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Ddateable has been a great launching pad for my sophomore poetry collection Where I Ache and I thank you guys so much for all that support!!

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Where I Ache on Amazon and Goodreads

 

DD has expanded with dating advice, poet interviews, and writing and publication tips. My favorite article from the past 12 months is You Shouldn’t have to Love Yourself First because of all the discussion it fostered in the comments! My favorite poem would be Moving On and Moving Out, it’s an older piece but I enjoy how it’s held through time.

I’m exciting to explore more topics in the relationship and dating world as well as write and publish more poetry! I hope to continue to reach new audiences with my blog and my books! I’ll be updating you all on the progress of my third collection over this next year so make sure to always check in!

 

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How to schedule a blog tour

Scheduling a blog book tour is pretty tough, it requires a lot of coordination and management. You have to find bloggers that are interested in hosting a blog tour, see which of those are available during the timeframe you want and who will even respond to you, and then you have to communicate about the content of the posting.

Before I get into it, I would really really want to thank those that did host me for a blog tour!! It was amazing seeing it all come together!

 

So first, I would search for blogs that are doing tours for your niche. I searched through the WordPress Reader since that’s my hosting site but if you use another platform you might use google or your hosting’s reader feed.

I knew I wanted to do interviews for my blog tour so that’s what I looked for specifically but I think it’s also common just to have the tour host review your new book. Once I found a site I would search their page for any submission guidelines or policies to make sure I wasn’t rudely bulldozing my way through. If that all checked out then I would email them, letting them know I saw their post that I liked, a little blurb about my book, and the timeframe I’m hoping for.

There’s a lot of different ways you can schedule your blog tour. I’ve seen a tour for 15 consecutive days in a row and I decided to go with once a week but starting 6 weeks out from the release date. So there’s a wide range of how many stops to do, how many weeks to do, and the decision to have them all at once or spread out.

I would say I emailed about 20-25 bloggers about hosting me for a blog tour. I got 7 for Yes and that was more than enough for me and what I wanted to do. I knew I wanted to do interviews and I knew that would require me to do a good chunk of work and writing so I contacted bloggers all the way back in February for a May dated tour.

 

To me, there was no need to badger anyone until it got closer to when the tour would be starting. But then that also left no time to recoup if anything was going wrong. Plus, I had done my side of the work for all of them. On my side of things, it all seemed like it would be working out. It wasn’t till a few days would go by after I sent in my responses that I didn’t hear anything.  

As April came around and one of my bloggers wasn’t responding in emails I checked out the site and saw there hadn’t been a new posting since January. It’s instances like that were the tour can just fall apart on you. I was able to get 2 more bloggers interested in hosting me after my release date.  

Overall, I have to admit that the blog tour was not a success for my initial plan. My goal was to have 7 spots completed by my release date, the result was 3. But out of the 9 Yes, 6 have come together overall so I have about 67% success rate in the end, which for a first time blog tour is actually very good. And I must say, having tour dates after the release was really helpful and kept my book relevant even a month after launch.

This post isn’t meant to complain but to show that even with the best effort, planning a book blog tour is difficult and is not guaranteed to come out the way you planned. My suggestion is to contact as many people as possible with the understanding that some will fall through.

 

Would You like to be Interviewed about your Poetry?

Just 4 more spots left in my 2019 Poet Interview Series!

 

As a poet trying to find exposure myself, I’d like to offer other poets an opportunity and my support through this series. It’s been such a success so far and now we’re coming to the tail end of the year (wow that’s insane!)

I’d like to ask questions specific to your collection so sending an ARC, PDF, or instagram account of your poetry would be extra fun! I will ask you 4 questions and you are able to ask (and answer) 2 questions of your own incase I’ve missed a topic you wish to tell readers about.

If you are or know a poet that would like to interview, please contact me!

Twitter / Instagram / Contact Page

Email: ddateable@gmail.com

2019 Goal Check In

I wrote some goals for 2019 back in December and I wanted to check now that we’re at the half way mark for the year (whhhhatttt?!?!?!?)

 

Goals for the first six months of 2019

Goals have to be measurable in order to know if you’ve reached them or not. Although I’m not happy to focus so heavily on numbers, it is an easy way to measure a goal. My goal is to increase my audience and have a successful poetry career. These numbers will help me keep track of those goals.

 

The Blog

Work on writing a media kit

Contact companies for sponsorship (and actually get one!)

Gain another 1,000 followers

 

Update: I’ve looked into some samples of media kits but I still don’t think my stats would stand out enough for it to make sense to create one just yet.

I’ve joined some other affiliation programs that I’ve been working on instead of doing any sponsored posts yet. There are some programs that have tougher qualifications so I still need to work on my stats. I am making a small bit of money from google Adsense so it’s great to see me recovering some of my self hosting spendings.

Debatably Dateable has gained over 1,770 followers since December and I couldn’t be happier! I love love love watching this blog grow! I hope to get another thousand in these next 6 months!

 

Cracked Open

Between GoodReads and Amazon, have 20 reviews

Get 25 more books sold

 

The Update: I have 18 reviews so I can’t be too upset there but I did not even get close to selling 25 more books so that stings a little. I don’t see these numbers getting much higher as the year goes on. I’m not sure how to help boost sales as the book continues to age.

 

Social Media

Twitter – gain 2,000 followers

Instagram– gain 1,000 followers

 

The Update: For Twitter I only gained 1,270 so far but feel free to come check out what I talk about there! Oddly enough, for Instagram I’ve gained over 2,125 followers so it looks like I got my goals switched around! I hope to get to the 2k+ on Twitter in the Fall.

 

Next Poetry Collection – Where I Ache!

I want to add 50 exclusive poems to my next collection before I work on publishing it

Have 10 reviews before release date

Sell twice as many as Cracked Open (over the course of the year)

 

The Update: I have 55 exclusive poems! I am absolutely ecstatic about that! Cracked Open had 20 illustrations and Where I Ache has somewhere around 35 so I’m also pumped about that!

Where I Ache was only released 2 weeks ago and there’s already 14 reviews on Goodreads so I’m very happy about that! Definitely check them out!

I’m only 2 weeks in of course but I’m already even with Cracked Open’s first month of book sales so that’s a good start for me!

 

 

Because I don’t want to solely focus on numbers, here are some

 

Non numerical goals:

Connect with new readers who resonate with my poetry.

Have my poetry help someone through a difficult time.

Have a company see value in my writing.

Keep a healthy number of articles in queue.

 

The Update: I’ve definitely found new readers and also fellow poets through my Poet Interview Series! I’ve been so lucky to connect with new readers who were interested in reviewing Where I Ache and many have said the sensitive topics covered in the collection have helped them remember they are not alone.

I haven’t really pursued this one aside from submitting Where I Ache to one of the major publishing companies. I’m not sure that I will do much for the rest of the year for this.

I have over 30 posts in queue for the past several months and it is amazinggggg! (knock on wood)

 

Thanks for checking in with me! I can’t wait to see where I end up this coming December! How are your blog goals coming along?

2018 recap and 2019 goals

I cannot believe another year has passed!? What’s the deal with time passing faster as you get older? 2018 has been a really eventful year for me in the writing world! Debatably Dateable went self hosted in April, my debut poetry collection Cracked Open was also released in April!

Goals for the first six months of 2019

Goals have to be measurable in order to know if you’ve reached them or not. Although I’m not happy to focus so heavily on numbers, it is an easy way to measure a goal. My goal is to increase my audience and have a successful poetry career. These numbers will help me keep track of those goals.

 

The Blog

Work on writing a media kit

Contact companies for sponsorship (and actually get one!)

Gain another 1,000 followers

 

Cracked Open

Between GoodReads and Amazon, have 20 reviews

Get 25 more books sold

 

Social Media

Twitter – gain 2,000 followers

Instagram– gain 1,000 followers 

 

Next Poetry Collection

I want to add 50 exclusive poems to my next collection before I work on publishing it

Have 10 reviews before release date

Sell twice as many as Cracked Open (over the course of the year)

 

Because I don’t want to solely focus on numbers, here are some

 

Non numerical goals:

Connect with new readers who resonate with my poetry.

Have my poetry help someone through a difficult time.

Have a company see value in my writing.

Keep a healthy number of articles in queue.

 

End of the Year Goals

I hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving in the US! 2018 has just a little over a month left! I can’t believe it’s nearly the start of a new year already! My blog has taken a back seat in my life lately but I want to set some goals to make sure I stay motivated in these final weeks of 2018. Here are some of my goals.

 

Blog/Writing specific:

  1. End the year strong by not having an empty queue or falling behind on my publishing schedule.

     2. Have the final monthly advice column installment completed and in queue.

     3. Have leads for next year’s special installment series (excited to share with you guys       what it is!!!).

     4. Continue the uphill rise in monthly blog views.

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     5. 150 more followers for each of Twitter , blog, and Instagram

6. Produce new content on Instagram (realllllly slacked on this the past few months)

7. Enter editing stage of my next poetry collection (SOOOO EXCITED to tell you all more about it soon!)

8. Promote Cracked Open more and in new places (also really slacked here :/ )

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Personal:

Decide if I’m going back to school or not.

Figure out next job for the new year.

Execute next year’s living plans.

 

 

What are your goals before 2018 ends? Write some in the comments!

 

The Things I’ll do Differently when Promoting my Second Poetry Collection

I am thrilled to have a published poetry book out there! My own self doubt has gotten in the way of my creative passions for too long so I have no regrets to reach for my dreams. I was, of course, so eager to publish and not lose my confidence that I didn’t utilize every opportunity I had. Here are areas for improvement:

 

Growing my audience

My biggest mistake was switching to self hosting so close to my release date. I didn’t realize my viewership numbers would fall so drastically and that really affected the audience I could reach for my book launch. I should have waited until my numbers grew again instead of rushing right along. I’ve set goals for growing my blog followers as well as social media that I have to reach before releasing my next book.

 

Establishing a Fan Base

I have also set goals for my current collection that I want to meet before my sophomore collection. I understand the ease of pushing a follow button or liking a tweet, but that does not easily convert to the number of sales. By the fourth month after I published Cracked Open, I didn’t have a single sale. I don’t want that to be the case for this next book.

 

Creating Buzz/ Chatter

I started promoting my book and creating buzz a month before it’s release. Although i don’t think I need to push to more weeks, I was unaware of the role of ARC (Advance Reader Copies) that could be sent to reviewers/fans before a launch. With the support of their audience, I’ve grown my reach immensely. There is a lot of research to how influential reviews are for potential buyers and any author/poet/business person is a fool to not capitalize on it.

 

Try Various Channels for Marketing

Social Media is easy and free to promote your work but as I’ve mentioned likes and follows don’t translate into book sales. Don’t hesitate to try flyers or leaving business cards wherever you travel and visit. Many bloggers are familiar with email campaigns and even capitalize on blogger events to connect and network.

 

Cracked Open- Poems by Megan O Keeffe

Reblog from Don Jimmy Reviews ! And Twitter link Thank you so much for the support!!!

 

 

Today I am delighted to bring you some excerpts from “Cracked Open” a collection of poems by Megan O’ Keeffe. Have a gander below. Megan can normally be found on twitter @DDateable or on her website debatablydateable.com/

About the author

Author Image

Up and coming Poet, Megan OKeeffe has been writing poetry for the last decade and has made the leap to publish her first collection. The love and support Meg received from her blog Debatably Dateable encouraged her to make this next step in her writing career. When she’s not writing, Meg is binging Brooklyn 99 or walking her dog Maverick. You may spot her touring the newest spot on Long Island with her sisters and boyfriends.

 

 

About the book

Cracked Open is a down to earth and vulnerable journey following the human heart as it searches for love. This collection cracks the reader’s chest wide open and nourishes the heart it touches. Rising author Megan O’Keeffe offers a raw and open narrative to pull you into every poem and emotion. Divided into five chapters, this debut book also features twenty never before seen poems as well as fresh illustrations to create a complete experience for its audience.

The Extracts

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Like what you see?

Order it now – Amazon UK