As Part of our “Get Your Life Guide” We interviewed Amanda Smith, Talent Developer to Authors Everywhere and did we mention she’s the President of The Washington, DC Chapter of Women In Media. Amanda shares some real tangible insights for getting your book done this year!
Amanda currently serves as the Community Manager for Learning & Development at the Association for Talent Development (ATD) in Alexandria, VA. Working with authors- aspiring and seasoned, she brings a diverse and unique perspective on delivering career development programs for professionals across multiple industries.
In the summer of 2014, the AWM Board elected Amanda as president and spokesperson for the Alliance for Women in Media – National Capital Area Chapter (AWM-NCAC), based in Washington, D.C. and surrounding areas. She is also President & Founder of Ink Business Solutions, providing top-quality services in career coaching and other professional development services.
IN HER OWN WORDS….
I’m a talent resource curator, which means I develop and seek career advancement content for professionals across multiple industries and professional levels. One major form of content that I develop are books- print and digital. My company, ATD is also a book publishing company and I work to recruit authors within the talent development field to assist those folks who are seeking to develop skills for the next level of their profession. I primarily work with authors who are trainers, instructional designers and career coaches, and my job is to find those subject matter experts who could author books on various topics for career enhancement.
@KizzySmith1 • awmncac.org
Favorite Places In The City: Diner en Blanc, Aditi Indian Restaurant, Electric 5k Run, Busboys & Poets, Toastmasters of DC, Playtime Is Over Conference, Donovan House, U.S. Botanical Gardens.
Required Reading For Aspiring Authors? “Everybody Writes” by Ann Handley and “Author Your Success” by Ray Brehm. I found both of these books to be very motivating and encourages you to use your own unique talents to keep the authenticity to you work while introducing new ideas for content use.
Can you share any trends you see in the industry that writers and authors should know about Or that may affect authors. Yes, there are a few key technological advances that have great effects on the publishing industry. Microlearning, Gamification and Social Learning are at its’ highest peaks with the way people are acquiring information. With the evolution of the digital boom, readers are becoming more accustomed to getting their information faster and condensed, and in a community-driven environment where they can share their findings. However, with these developments, there is still a significant population of readers who still prefer print or more traditional formats. I encourage authors to be flexible and recognize that a great deal of these technological advancements are not going anywhere anytime soon and its’ up to us as writers to embrace and in some circumstances, incorporate these communication formats in how we write, market and publish our content.
Tech Tools For Authors? I like to use Evernote to jot down random thoughts or ideas that I have when I’m on the go. I also love what I call, “old faithful,” our friend, the Merriam-Webster Dictionary to assist with word choices. What Services do you recommend for Authors? I recommend that authors find a good editor and if possible, someone who can endorse your work. I’ve found great assistance using the editing firm, “Editing for Authors.” If you are looking to self-publish, visit www.lulu.com, which is a site where you can create publish and sell your book all in one. It’s always good to shop around, however. Every book and author is unique, and comes with a specific set of goals and requirements.
Do you have any Editor Recommendations for Aspiring Authors? “Editing for Authors” is a good one, however, many big editing companies can come with a steep price. Laurie Rosin, Kristen Corrects and the Creative Penn are also highly recommended.
What Else should authors be doing? I highly recommend finding the writing communities in your area for meet-ups. Partnering with other writers could expand your publishing knowledge to new heights and offer opportunities for an exchange of ideas amongst other writers who may share your same challenges. Also, check out your local book store or communication school, which often times host programs and other social events for the writing community in your region.
What Groups do you recommend for aspiring authors? “The Writing Center” is a good one. I also recommend checking out writing Meet-ups or groups on various social media channels that cater to your writing objectives.
We hope you found this Author Guide Useful! By all means, please let us know what your biggest takeaway was!