All posts by Wendy Van Camp

Writer. Artisan Jeweler.

How Authors Can Promote On YouTube & Use Patreon by Adam Mulholland


YouTube offers content creators a way of cross-utilizing mediums to enhance and bridge engagement beyond a book. Authors wanting more presence should leverage this platform to reach a larger audience and potentially earn more revenue. I hear calls for help all the time from bloggers, eBook writers, and even published authors that are trying to get their content out to readers. Today, we are a more fractured society in how we promote and consume everything from an article in the dentist waiting room or the late night YouTube binge on Chromecast.

Content creators are rarely able to switch into promotion or sales when all they know is building engaging content. This is the whole reason marketing companies exist, but the power of the internet has given so many the ability to learn how, and for some, prosper. As an author, you have tremendous power with your brand and if you are a self-publishing author you have even more freedom. YouTube can easily take what you have built and mold it into a sales funnel without striking any deals with a marketing company.

You might think this is a difficult proposition because you write and that’s it. The first steps into building video content and the audience is a camera. You can do everything from a webcam like Blab uses (another serious platform as well), to a GoPro as long as it captures video and hopefully audio. There are endless search results on building your video solution. Once you sort all of the equipment fundamentals out, it’s time for actual production and potentially outsourcing.

Authors can, and do find success by using YouTube. I want to share a few ways on how to do so.

  • Create a YouTube channel and brand it with the same look as other platforms you have pages on so it looks professional.
  • Decide what to share that relates to your stories. Some authors do Q & A’s, give behind the scenes info, or discuss whatever topics that may interest your readers.
  • Fan interaction is great and you could do a Google Hangout, or maybe a weekly video on something you think fans might want to know about. Plan these out ahead of time.
  • Build consistent content that is well edited. You can either learn how to edit, don’t edit, or outsource the editing to a freelancer. Editing is the most difficult part, but is the most important as well.
  • Use YouTube to bring your brand together with the creator of the content your fans enjoy. A quick search brings up results of authors that are already using YouTube to reach fans.
  • Be unique and engage in the comments with people who are interested.

Don’t just cast YouTube to the side because it’s difficult to use. It’s the world’s #2 search engine and your brand will expand by stepping into a new platform. Take the challenge in building video and bridging the conversation with the audience on YouTube.

While I didn’t focus on these areas, it’s important to consider podcasting and blogging as areas to push into if you have the time or desire to do so. Video is not the only path to fans, but it is the most intimate. Let’s transition from using YouTube to combining it with fan-funding. I think these two go very well together and it provides more opportunity.
Patreon for Authors

Crowd-funding is relatively new, but it’s probably one of the hardest things to build into if you have limited time or content to offer. If you can leverage YouTube and build an audience in video and books Patreon is a must for many. It’s a platform that you build a page that introduces who you are and what you do. You ask your fans to support your work by monthly contributions. In return for the support, you offer them special rewards. The concept of Patreon is simple, so I want to leave you with ideas for rewards, and this list is nowhere close to being exhaustive.

  • A private video on YouTube where you discuss behind the scenes info.
  • Merchandise like t-shirts or coffee mugs.
  • A signed copy of your book or a future book.
  • 1-on-1 Skype calls with a fan.
  • Add a fan to your next book as a character.

These five basic things to choose from, and can be unbelievable when it comes to fans wanting special rewards. This is a platform that creators have had massive amounts of success with and it can work for you as well as a side offering in between hidden retreats into a log cabin on the side of a mountain while you pen your next work. Hopefully, this gives you some ideas to chew on as you look for new ways to build your base.


Adam MulhollandI’m Adam Mulholland and I’m a blend of designer, marketer, blogger, and more. My goals are to help others with getting their message out into the wild. I am also a 20-yr veteran of the U.S. Air Force which allowed me to travel the world and learn cultures. I discuss content marketing, design, all the while building online communities, and establishing my new company, Adding Social, LLC. Visit Adam to read new ideas to expand your reach and deepen connections you already have.

No Wasted Ink Writer’s Links

writers-linksSometimes, regular articles about the craft of writing are what it is all about.  This week are all pieces about improving your skills and becoming a better author.

4 Places to Find Your Best Story Conflict

20 misused English words that make smart people look silly

Small is beautiful: from Jane Austen to George RR Martin, the novella is making a come-back

How Solitude Enriches Creative Work

The Truth About “Platform”

Train Your Mind for Writing with Great Books

7 Ways Writers Can Find an Exclusive Voice

A Hobbit’s Guide to Launching Your Book

Why Facebook Is My Dream Publicist

Breaking Grammar Rules in Poetry Writing

No Wasted Ink Writer’s Links

writers-linksThis week, I was intrigued by different facets of writing.  What Native Americans might strive for when becoming authors, women turning the publishing industry on its toes, legends in fantasy, even a little about the history of e-ink and its invention.  I hope  you enjoy the steps of my journey.  Until next time…

Legends and Folktales in Fantasy


4 Ways to Verify Your Story Concept Is Strong Enough

9 Lessons Learned About Writing From Walking 100km In A Weekend

How Electronic Ink Was Invented

Maverick women writers are upending the book industry and selling millions in the process

3 Myths About the MFA in Creative Writing

Want to Get Published? NY Literary Agent’s Tips For Native Authors


Why Most Academics Will Always Be Bad Writers

Author Interview: Che Gilson

Author Che Gilson likes to make the small epic and the epic small.  She is a YA fantasy author from the Pacific Northwest.  Please welcome her on No Wasted Ink.

Che Gilson- Black OpalHello! My name is Che Gilson and I write things and draw things. Some of those things get published which is really, really nice. I also love to draw and paint. I mostly work in watercolor and who knows- perhaps you’ll see my work in the art show of a fantasy convention you go to! I’m also quite the nerd. I love TV, movies, manga, anime, and reading. I collect Asian Ball Jointed Dolls and one of my current goals is buying a smart phone so I can play Pokémon GO… and also so I can get a credit card reader for conventions… but mostly Pokémon…

When and why did you begin writing?

I’ve been creating stories since I was a child. I loved the writing prompts in English class and I loved to read. My original goal was to write and draw my own comics but in art school, I discovered my attention span for comics lasts about 12 pages. I then wrote some graphic novels but unfortunately had difficulty finding an artist to work with consistently. It didn’t help when Tokyopop shut down either. So I began to write more and more prose. It was something I’d done all along, but I finally really decided to work at it because it was the only way I was going to be able to tell MY stories, no artist required.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I’m not sure. I think I felt ‘officially’ like a writer when I wrote Avigon my first graphic novel, illustrated by Jimmie Robinson. I finally had my name on something and that something was in stores. That was the first real success I had getting my words out in more than a zine.

Can you share a little about your current book with us?
Aside from my usual line about Tea Times Three being a book about tea, witches, yummy food, and small towns. I really consider it a book about a town. I made up a fictional Maine town called Midswich. I picked Maine because it’s not a populace state and because I have an obsession with the East Coast even though I’ve only been to New York city once in high school. But the East Coast looks as close to Europe as you can get and originally I had wanted Tea Times Three to be set in England. I made Midswich a tourist town that had designed itself to look like a British village. I got the idea from Solvang, a Swedish styled town in California. There are multiple POV characters, magic, and a hint of romance.

What inspired you to write this book?

FOOD! This book is my ode to all the food I can’t eat anymore because I am allergic to everything! Other ideas went into it as well. I love what I like to call “Eccentric British Village Comedies” though all my examples of this ‘genre’ are American or Canadian. TV shows like Northern Exposure and Corner Gas. Things that revolve around small towns and shenanigans where everyone pretty much knows everyone. I also adore witches. I joke that my default mode is “witch”. And tea which aside from water, is my favorite beverage on earth. It’s pretty much the only thing besides water that I drink. So I put into Tea Times Three all the things I love, food, small town shenanigans, tea and witches.

Originally I had planned Tea Times Three as a comic book set in a little English village and the witches were much younger. I was aiming for a Middle Grade audience of kids 9-12 and maybe some shojo fans. But then Tokyopop folded and I had to re-imagine it as something else entirely. It took several years and some sage advice before the novel version clicked in my head and I started writing it.

Do you have a specific writing style?

I strive for clarity in my writing. I’m not sure that’s a style, but that’s the approach I take. I want the writing to be clear, I want the characters to be interesting, I want to express myself in a way that is easily understood. I hope it’s interesting and I hope people enjoy it and that’s really what I want.

How did you come up with the title of this book?

That was really simple. I used the name of the tea shop the three witches open in the town. Tea Times Three. And if I’m being utterly honest the name of the tea shop is a nod to Charmed the TV show. Piper opens a club named P3 which was a reference to the sister’s “power of three”, and their names which all began with “P”. This is actually the super nerd origin of the title I’ve never told anyone else!

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

One of the major themes in Tea Times Three is tolerance and intolerance. The majority of the town is nervous when witches move in and it takes a few people standing up for them for people to start changing their minds.

Are experiences in this book based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Not especially. Though I put a lot of myself into my books. I tend to give my characters all my worst personality traits and then make them bigger (the traits, not the characters). Or I give them personality traits I WISH I had, like optimism! Though I do know what it’s like to move into a new town and to live in small towns. All the food in Tea Times Three is either based on things I’ve eaten, or things I’ve seen on TV. One of my beta readers pointed out that I had described the flavor of Earl Grey tea wrong and in fact I had never drunk Earl Grey before. So I went to the grocery store and bought some. Turns out I LOVE Earl Grey and it’s become one of my favorite teas. I also rewrote my description of the flavor.

What authors have most influenced your life? What about them do you find inspiring?

In college I took a creative writing class and the teacher kept telling us to read Raymond Carver. So I went to the book store grabbed a collection of Raymond Carver off the shelf, sat down and read. It blew my mind. The diamond clarity of the prose, the sense of so much going unspoken, the stories of small intimate, painful moments, took my breath away. After that I wanted to write like Raymond Carver. I did too, in as much as my smaller talents could manage. but It was another writer friend of mine who took a look at my prose and said “You need to describe things more, what the hell is this?” (I paraphrase). So for love of Raymond Carver I stripped my prose down to the bones, then after talking with that writer friend I started to build it back up again.

If you had to choose, is there a writer would you consider a mentor? Why?

Yes! Suzanne McLeod. She’s a British urban fantasy author and you should go check out the Spellcrackers series! I met her through a Live Journal group for UF authors called Fangs Fur Fey. She posted that she was having trouble with her book and was looking for a cheer partner to swap snippets with. I had been working on Tea Times Three for awhile and was stuck on that manuscript as well. So I replied to her and we began exchanging bits of our books. We still email back and forth and encourage each other to this day! She has provided the most ridiculously good edits on some of my shorter works and has encouraged me to keep writing for years.

Who designed the cover of your book? Why did you select this illustrator?

I designed the book cover for Tea Times Three, and my earlier urban fantasy novella Carmine Rojas: Dog Fight. Though for Tea Times Three I commissioned the hand lettering you see on the cover. The lettering was drawn by Courtney Kilpatrick of Typecast Lettering. I found her on Etsy. I had a very strong vision of the Tea Times Three cover, I even had the clip art picked out years before it was published. I thought I might have to self-publish and I wanted to be ready. Having the title handwritten was inspired by which showcases the covers of literary novels and has an extensive gallery of beautifully designed cover work.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

Don’t give up. But be ready to go with small presses and Indie publishing. Write what you want, what inspires you. If you love it chances are others do too.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

You’ve probably heard this from other authors, but if you like a book leave a review! It doesn’t have to be brilliantly written. A simple “I liked it.” is great. Small press and Indie authors live and die by the kindness of readers.

Tx3 cover flat smallerChe Gilson
Salem Oregon

Tea Times Three

Cover artist:  Courtney Kilpatrick
Publisher: Black Opal Books


No Wasted Ink Writer’s Links

writers-linksThis week on No Wasted Ink, I have several great articles on general writing tips for you.  A reference article about writing wolves.  Also, great comments about creating a body of writing work.  I hope you enjoy them!


Writing Wolves Fairly and Accurately


How to Write Subtext in Dialogue

Tips for introverted children’s book illustrators attending the SCBWI Summer Conference for the first time

Think Long Term. Create A Body Of Work.

How to Write (and Not to Write) an Author Bio

9 grammatical mistakes you need to stop making before I throw live scorpions at you

You Should Read More Romance Novels

Use This Predictive Text Generator To Write The Best Internet Fanfiction