Author Support Thoughts

On a daily basis, we respond to about 175-250 author support email queries. Yesterday, I took a 36 hour span of incoming author support queries and responded to them myself so I could get a feel for what our author support team does every day.

I was first amazed that I couldn’t go faster than 18-24 email replies per hour… no matter how focused or fast I typed or copy and pasted templated responses…due to the complexity of the decision making process when researching and responding to various issues.

Currently, there are 3 ways that our members can contact us:

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Book Reviews Guideline

Last week, we invited and encouraged Book Review article submissions (Book Review Article Submissions Wanted).

About 9 emails came in asking for clarification as to whether we accept book reviews by the author themselves? After much consideration, here’s our opinion and policy going forward:

  • We will not accept book reviews by the author of the book, themselves.
  • We will not accept book reviews written by 3rd parties and submitted by the author of the book that is being reviewed.

While we know this won’t be a popular decision with the promotional nature of our site, the decision is designed to encourage honest reviews by an objective party. That said, if authors want to send copies of their books to other EzineArticles experts and encourage them to submit book reviews, that’s fine… but the review should be done by a non-blood relative.

  • We will also not accept nasty book reviews that are designed to save a consumer from buying the book or seek to destroy or dilute the credibility of the author of the book. Those are better left for your blog and not in a syndicatable article.
  • We will accept book reviews that mentions a negative or who the book might not be for, provided that’s not the theme of the book review. If you hated the book, we prefer to not see your book review here.
  • Help us out by only reviewing real books or real ebooks. We must be able to find a copy for sale of the book or ebook being reviewed.
  • Sorry, we don’t provide book reviews for your book. Best way to get them if you are an author is to ask your clients or give away copies to influential people and ask for a review.

Web Content Awareness Day

Psssst: Today, February 9th, is Dina Giolitto’s Web Content Awareness Day.

2007 EzineArticles Dev Trip

We just returned from spending 2 days up in Munising, Michigan where our developer team did the “log cabin overnight stay and snowmobile rental” thing for some team building fun.

It snowed about 85% of the time we were up there and the weather was pretty much perfect. If you’ve ever gone snowmobiling (they call it ‘sledding’ or riding ‘snow-machines’ in other parts), you know how much fun it can be to be bundled up in warm clothes, frozen with a smile on your face, exhausted from just trying to hang on and keep up, peaceful serenity from being in the woods/outdoors and happy all at the same time.

…You could tell it was a nerd/geek trip because we had enough wireless technology & computers along with us to solve just about any Internet/web/email problem or settle any debate on the spot… minus the lack of broadband up in the cabin.

Book Review Article Submissions Wanted

As you may be aware, we have a Book-Reviews section under our Shopping & Product Reviews category.

What you might not be aware is that last month, articles in our Book Reviews category received 7 times the amount of traffic per article than articles in the main category of Shopping & Product Reviews and 2 times more than the average of all articles in the same main category.

Therefore, here’s your invitation to submit book review articles this week.

Here are 7 fast tips to help you write a high quality book review:

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101 Great Ways To Improve Your Life

I’ve got a new book out. :-)… Well, actually, I’m just one of the 101 co-author experts in SelfGrowth’s David Riklan’s, “101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life” Volume 3.

It’s a complete compilation of hand-selected articles & insider secrets by dozens of fellow EzineArticles experts and other leading Self Improvement pro’s such as Ken Blanchard, Les Brown, Mark Victor Hansen, Byron Katie and more.

David Riklan also came up with lots of cleverly produced fast-action bonuses from Dr. Wayne Dyer, Jack Canfield, Zig Ziglar, Brian Tracy, Vic Johnson, Dr. Joe Vitale, and more…

Here’s a list of all 101 contributing authors along with a link to their EzineArticles author profile for those who are also members:

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Term Papers and Essays For College

We’re considering a pre-emptive ban on accepting articles from authors who sell TERM PAPERS and ESSAYS for the purposes of helping kids cheat in college.

Here’s our main beef with those types of articles: In the Resource Box links, they include anchored text links that say, “BUY ESSAYS” or “BUY THIS TERM PAPER” or “BUY TERM PAPERS” and this makes it appear that WE, EzineArticles, are selling term papers and essays, which is NOT TRUE.

Today, we’re going to privately invite many of the authors who would be affected by this content-type ban to comment. We’re open to your thoughts on this issue. Is it black and white?

Traffic Spikes Per Niche

I’ve been reviewing January 2007 reports that outline how much traffic each niche category attracts per month.

While the obvious trend showed up that if you have more articles in a category, it will usually mean more traffic per category… but today, I’m going to share with you some of the traffic trends when specific niche categories achieve a breakout traffic spike in terms of 200-1,000% more traffic-per-article than other articles in the same main category.

Consider this information for entertainment purposes only:

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Emotional Attachment to Your Articles

Brrrrrrr, it’s cold as ice today here… I didn’t think you’d believe me, so I snapped a photo from my ride into work today:

-12 degrees F’ (-24.4 C’)… and how appropriate that today I wanted to encourage you to think about your articles in colder ways… Here’s what to do and why:

How to emotionally detach from your article inventory:

Your articles are tools for you. The moment you become emotionally free from them, you’ll have a new perspective that allows you to see them as business tools rather than adjectives that describe your soul.

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Social Bookmarking Status

Jack writes:

It would be nice if ezinearticles could have an easy way for articles to be social bookmarked.

Here’s why we have not implemented a 3rd party social bookmarking system yet:

  • Our members, by their promotionally motivated nature (not all of them, but a minority of members could ruin it for the majority), would abuse the system leading our entire site to become banned by the major social networking partners.
  • We’re not certain that anyone that we bestow a several hundred thousand outbound link favor would return qualified traffic back to us worthy of the link risk & economic value.
  • We don’t own any of the social bookmarking sites nor have we been invested by any of them. What? You didn’t think there was serious social & economic politics behind which social media site links to which site…

Social bookmarking seems like a much more interesting traffic creation vehicle for low traffic websites because they have nothing to lose by creating a few hundred or thousand outbound links to one or more of the social bookmarking sites (stumbleupon, del.icio.us, technorati, digg, furl, rojo, etc).

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