About Peter Wietmarschen

Peter, a 2014 graduate of Morehead State University’s Caudill College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music. He strives to express his thoughts and ideas in a creative and professional manner.

Peter is our Vice President of Operations and Marketing and a contributing writer on our site. He enjoys writing blogs which provide helpful information to readers as well as general business practices and more!

Write Night Cincy

Hey there! Peter here.

Over the past few weeks you might have seen us advertising something we are calling Write Night Cincy. But what is Write Night Cincy? Here’s a bit  of a background, what makes Write Night unique, and a bit about where the vision is for Write Night.

What is Write Night?

Write Night Cincy was born from a call we had with our coach.  Around that time Colleen had been talking a lot about the Paint Nights around town. We were also re-arranging our office and she has a few different paintings from those night we were looking to hang up. We just casually brought up those nights and our coach just happened to say, I was wondering if you were going to start something like that for writing. From that moment on, Write Night was born.

Write Night Cincy is more than just an idea and it’s far from done growing. Write Night Cincy is a new and exciting evening filled with friends, drinks, and fun, sprinkled with a little writing. During the evening your host (that’s me for now!) guides you and the group though creating a fun story. Each night we have a different theme, for example this past Write Night’s theme was A New Christmas Story.

While the themes change the core of the evening is the same. There are three parts of each event that we focus on.

  1. Having Fun
  2. Having a relaxed atmosphere with friends, drinks, and food
  3. Writing

Stay in touch with us!

There are some big plans on the horizon for Write Night Cincy.

First off we are working on a new, standalone website where you can see our calendar of events, sign up for an event near you, stay up to date with all things Write Night, and more. In addition to a new website we are creating a complete social media presence for Write Night Cincy (starting with Facebook), coming your way here in the next few weeks.

To stay up to date right while we are working on this site and our Facebook page you can sign up for our newsletter here to be the first to receive all the updates.

Coming Soon!

While we work on those things for the future, we are still staying busy now. We have just finalized our spot for one event in December! Join us for Write Night Cincy: A Y2K New Year’s Eve on December 28 at West Side Brewing. For more info or to reserve your spot go to our store.

Also, we are working on having more events in January, where we will have at least four events throughout the city. If you or someone you know would like to host a private Write Night for you and your friends get in touch with me, I’d love to lead a Write Night for you.

Talk to you all shortly,

Peter

Sharing your story with those who matter

Click the picture above to watch today’s video!
Everything we do we must do with purpose. What is your purpose?
 
The reason Colleen and started in this business was to help people share their story. Each and every one of us has a story to tell. If you are a business owner, a speaker, a coach you have people who want and need to hear your story. We help you share your story with those people.
 
While we work with you to write and publish your book sometimes it takes a little help to really find the story you want to tell. Let’s talk about my story. I’m young, what do I have to offer? Well lots and I have to thank my coach Pat, the wonderful Victoria, and all the Mavericks for helping me discover how I can share my story with the people who matter most!
 
During a segment of the retreat Victoria was speaking about being professional when you dress up for the day, always looking your best, for yourself, your clients, and all the people you run into, you never know who that could be! I hoped up for a short little consultation in front of the group and I showed off my fun socks, I love to wear fun socks!
 
So I got to thinking and I am now posting pictures of my fun socks on Instagram. Along with each picture I also write up a little business tip, a little life lesson, something to do with being a business owner because we all know you never stop being a business owner. Right now I tell my story through socks and Instagram. How do you tell your story? What is your purpose?
 
Also, I would love if you follow me and my socks on Instagram instagram.com/pete.wietmarschen.
 
Talk with you all shortly!
 
Peter Wietmarschen

The Write Academy

Hello everyone!

We’re back. You know the saying, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder?” You must be very fond of us right now! Not really funny, but we’ve been busy working on Your Literary Prose and during the past several months we have been busy launching a new joint venture program to assist writers, authors, and speakers along their journey of publishing their book. Your Literary Prose has teamed up with Joyce Glass, The Write Coach, to bring to you The Write Academy.

What is The Write Academy?

About 15 months ago, Colleen and Joyce met each other through SPEAK, a professional speaking program. After the gals met they decided to connect via internet and learn about each other. After speaking a few times and learning about one another, they clicked and knew each of us could bring different things to the table and something great could come from working together to offer writers. That’s how The Write Academy was formed.

But what is The Write Academy?

The Write Academy is a subscription-based program guiding writers through the entire process of publishing. During the past year Colleen, Joyce, and I put our heads together and used our 25-plus years of business experience working with authors, speakers, writers, and business owners and came up with a way to help people write their book in their own time with the tools to do it correctly with guidance from us. What came out of these many meetings is The Write Academy Success Path. The Success Path divides the process of writing a book into four systems: Clarify, Create, Complete, and Connect. Every step of the publishing process can be placed into one of these four areas.

The Write Academy Has It All 

The Write Academy includes monthly training from the team, your experts. Each month focuses on one area of the Success Path and goes deeper into the steps included in that area. For example, we teach our members how to develop their voice, how to self-edit and the difference between self-editing and professional editing, how you can organize your book and its chapters, and more.

How’s your grammar? Each month we add a Grammar Time lesson. For those who haven’t paid attention to grammar in a few years, this is a refresher in the details we may have forgotten or don’t think about so we shed a little light to help improve writing skills. .  

In addition to our training, members of The Write Academy receive an hour-long call with the whole team.It’s your time! Join our Zoom call and ask questions, share successes and concerns. The Write Academy Team, Peter, Colleen, and Joyce, are experts at what they do; ask away. Our goal is to help you meet your dream of published author.

Looking for a community of like-minded people? In our Facebook community members have the opportunity to share their work with each other, develop relationships, ask questions, and much more. You never know what can happen.

Meet The Team

The Write Academy Team is comprised of Colleen Wietmarschen, Peter Wietmarschen, and Joyce Glass.

Colleen Wietmarschen – Colleen’s business experience spans 21 years (yes, she was only eight years old!). As a Professional Author’s Assistant, she understands all the processes (manuscript creation, publishing, and marketing) needed so you reach your dream of published author! Colleen’s attention to detail shows through her copywriting, copyediting, and proofreading – she believes professional written image represents you, your brand, and your company – and your book is a company!​  Over the past few years Colleen has honed her speaking skills and is now a professional speaker. With her knowledge of business, writing, and more she brings a wide array of experience to her talks.

Joyce Glass –  JoyceThe Write Coachhelps writers and entrepreneurs  use the power of story to market their business. People may not remember what you say, but they will remember your story. Joyce takes her clients through the book writing process from the idea of a writing a book to the finished manuscript.

Some people start multiple books, and never finish due to overwhelm of the process. Joyce loves to help her clients break it down into manageable steps.  She helps you reach the finish line.

Her first published book is iNeed God ~ daily downloads for your heart. The next in the series is iNeed God ~ daily downloads for a Mom’s heart is being released in the Spring 2017, and she is currently working on her first novel as well.

Peter Wietmarschen –  Peter, a 2014 graduate of Morehead State University’s Caudill College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences, earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music with a minor in Psychology. He strives to express his thoughts and ideas in a creative and a professional way.

Peter is the Vice President, Director of Operations at Your Literary Prose and contributing writer for their blog, “On Record.” He enjoys writing blogs which provide helpful information to readers as well as general business practices and more! He comes to us with contemporary ideas, a fantastic work ethic, and tremendous energy. Peter has an open mind. He is exciting to exchange ideas with and have him challenge us!

Where you can The Write Academy: 

For more information on The Write Academy visit our website or if you want to stay up to date with all the latest info sign up for The Write Academy Waitlist where you will also learn about how you can create your writing plan. 

Until next time… 

Peter 

Habits Are Hard to Come By

Over the past couple of weeks I have been thinking about habits, what they are, how they are formed, and how we can use them to our advantage. This is important for writers because writers have to make a habit of writing every day. I know I have not been able to build the habit of writing every day, and I can see an impact not just in the quantity of writing I turn out, but also in the quality of writing. Today I want to take a few minutes to write about how and why the habit of writing is important for all of us, whether you are a writer or a business owner. 

What is a habit? 

If you search habit on Google you will find Merriam-Webster’s definition: “a behavior pattern acquired by frequent repetition or physiological exposure that shows itself in regularity or increase facility of performance.” The Encyclopedia Britannica says “a habit – which can be part of any activity, ranging from eating and sleeping to thinking and reacting – is developed through reinforcement and repetition. These two words, reinforcement and repetition, are key to how habits form and why they stick around.

Reinforcement 

I do not want to dive deep into what psychologists define what reinforcement is but I do want to touch the higher level meaning of the word. Psychologists define reinforcement as a consequence to strengthen (or weaken) a future behavior when the behavior is followed by a specific stimulus.  There are two types of reinforcement – positive and negative. To put it in layman’s term, positive reinforcement is something received when an action is completed and negative reinforcement is something taken away when an action is completed. By recognizing the types of reinforcement we can help ourselves better form our habits.

To help you establish the habit of writing there are some ways you can reinforce your actions. For example, you can use positive reinforcement by allowing yourself to watch an episode of your favorite show on Netflix after you write for 30 minutes. This is something I used in college when practicing for my senior recital. I would walk down the street, practice for a straight hour and when I was finished I watched an episode of New Girl. 

You can see the use of negative reinforcement in action whenever you climb into your car. The little beeping you hear when put your key into the ignition? It turns off (removed) when you click in your seat belt. I’m not suggesting you have a big bell that keeps ringing until you finish your writing but there are things you can do to negatively reinforce your writing habit. Having a deadline to meet can help you negatively reinforce your writing habit. In practice, you can use this to help avoid the unpleasant feeling (or worse yet, loss of revenue) of missing your deadline. The act of finishing your project on time is negatively reinforced because you are removing the negative feeling of missing the deadline because your task was completed early.

It is important to stay consistent with your reinforcement. There is something called a schedule or reinforcement which is how frequently you reinforce your behavior. If you want to learn more about these there are many sites on the internet you can search. Also, you want to be sure you are reinforcing your behavior (writing) within an appropriate time. The reinforcement will have a higher chance of being tied to an action if the reinforcement is seen as close to the action as possible. So if your positive reinforcement for writing an hour is to watch an episode on Netflix be sure to watch that episode as close to the completion of your writing time as possible or you risk having the reinforcement lose its effect.

Repetition

Repetition is the act of repeatedly doing something over and over. Repetition means you spend time writing each and everyday. When you try to create a habit of writing it is important you always write daily, no matter how long it might be. John Grisham, New York Times Best-selling author, recently released eight tips for writers. In the article he says writers should write one page a day, in the same place and at the same time each day. This simple act of repetition will have you form your habit of writing. 

If you struggle with finding a constant time and place to write, schedule out your writing time in advance. Maybe you spend thirty minutes a day writing after you watch the morning news, or maybe you write as you ride the bus into work each day. Look at your calendar and find a time that works best for you and be sure to stick to it. That’s what repetition is all about. 

When you are trying to build your habit of writing make sure you use both reinforcement and repetition. If you are looking for inspiration check out our Facebook Page, M Colleen Wietmarschen, LLC, for a daily writing prompt. 

Three Easy Steps to Set Yourself Up for Success

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Early last week Colleen and I went to Canada for a retreat with our business coach and some of her other coaching clients. During that time, I learned a lot of great things and I want to chronicle for you my three biggest takeaways from our adventure in learning and building relationships:

  1. Listen to everybody.
  2. Be resourceful.
  3. Apply what you know.

Listen to Everybody

You never know what you’ll learn

One of my biggest mistakes has been avoiding certain business leaders just because of their name. To be honest, I was not the most receptive of some of the most well-known business minds when I first started working at Your Literary Prose. I’ve felt many were gimmicks, snake-oil salesman, insincere, just about anything else that could be said of phonies. These thought leaders seemed to just prey on the weak, make them feel insecure, and force them to buy into a program that most people would never use.

I’ve changed my mind. Over the two days we watched a couple of clips from Tony Robbins. Yes, he was one of those fakes to me, but after actually sitting down and watching what he has to say, I can say I’ve learned a few things about business. Tony is not the only person you can learn from though. Be open to others when they speak, learn from them, watch TED talks, listen to radio shows, watch the Sunday morning televangelists. They can all teach you something – if you’re willing to listen.

My first big takeaway:

Open your mind when others are speaking; you’d be surprised at what you learn.

Be Resourceful

It’s not what you have, it’s how you use it

This is the biggest takeaway from watching Tony Robbins; the biggest reason companies have setbacks is not the resources that they have, it’s how the resources are used. Here’s what Tony has to say on the matter (be aware – he does use a few choice words throughout). If you want to accomplish something you need to be resourceful, “if you want to take the island, burn the boats.”

What was great about this trip was the group used their resourcefulness later that evening. We all went to an escape room. If you’ve never been, I highly suggest going with some friends, business colleagues, or family. It’s a team-building adventure. What happens is you are locked in a room full of clues and you have to unlock the door and escape. You have all the resources at your disposal – the key is being resourceful, finding the clues that actually matter and the clues that are red herrings.

My second takeaway:

We all have the tools we need to succeed, what matters is how you use your tools.

Apply what you learn

It doesn’t count if you don’t apply what you learn

How many of you have ever been to a retreat, a seminar, a class and come across something you want to implement in your business or life? I’m sure that’s all of you. But how many of you have ever actually taken the time and energy to implement what you’ve learned? I can imagine that’s only a few of us. I am that person.

Stop wasting time and money not implementing what you’ve learned. If you take a simple economic approach to this, if you spend $500 to attend a one day seminar and you don’t apply anything, you will have a zero dollar return on your investment and on top of that you lose that whole day and time you could be billing your clients. That’s easily a $1,000 day, and most probably a whole lot more.

How do you implement these things? Take notes. I’m sure you already do this. Read your notes at the end of the day and find no more than three things that you can implement. It might only be one simple change, like how we learned a better way to organize our client work on the calendar. Or it might be a huge change that you have to implement in stages; that’s even better!

My last takeaway:

Make a concerted effort to use what you’ve learned.

Conclusion

Keep your mind open and ready to learn

To better yourself and your business you must have the right mindset.

What mindset are you in?

Stay Well,

-Peter

The Three Best Places to Learn Online

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What does your daily schedule look like? I know I have talked about reading, particularly books, but have you set aside time to read other professionals’ blogs, peer-reviewed articles, magazines, or listen to the newest craze – podcasts?  As an avid learner, I love to scope other places so I continue developing personally and professionally.

This week I want to write a quick blog about some of my favorite places to find, read, or listen to articles, podcasts, and more.

My top three places to read/listen:

  1. Medium
  2. Feedly
  3. Stitcher

Medium

Medium is a place writers can publish their blogs. On Medium you can search articles through tags like you would find in blogs published on individual’s personal or business websites.

Why I like Medium

As a reader, you can find articles from multiple authors about one topic. This is great because you can go to one place and learn from multiple people about a particular topic of interest.

What Medium could improve

The articles are not always current as some bloggers use Medium to republish their own blogs after they have already been on their own website. Also, there are an increasingly higher number of clickbait articles coming to the site. It’s more than just a title but also the content in the article is not always the best. So like other websites you need to learn what authors to trust.

Feedly

I’ve written a great blog on feedly before.  Feedly is a place where you can read all of your favorite RSS feeds in one place.

Why I like Feedly

You have probably found a few great websites or authors who you love to read. An RSS feed is a tool that automatically updates with the feed’s newest articles. Here you can gather all of you favorite authors in one place and even organize the feeds into tags.

What could be better?

There are many websites, businesses, or authors that keep an RSS feed. However, not every place has one. Also, there are many RSS feeds  so again finding the ones you gain the most from takes a bit of time.

Stitcher

Stitcher is a site, well technically an app, that plays podcasts.

Why I like Stitcher

There are many podcasts you can listen to. There are some wonderful podcasts that are both professionally created and filled with great information on any and all topics. Also, you can listen to podcasts on your computer or your phone.

What could be better?

The biggest problem I see is sometimes it is hard to find older podcasts as they do not seem to load.

Conclusion

What are some of your favorite places to read or listen? There are plenty out there so let’s hear ’em!

Peter

A Four-Step Plan to Reach My Reading Goal for 2016

book reading

Hey there reader!

We are almost halfway through the year. I’ve been thinking about writing an update on my reading challenge I started this year and what better time than now? But before I talk about myself let’s talk about you for just a bit.

Why read?

Always be learning.

I know some of you have listened to Colleen talk recently, and I want to highlight one of the most important pieces of advice: READ! I know there are many of you out there who read for pleasure or for business, and I know there are just as many of you who don’t. I was reading through some articles on Medium and I came across one I think is worthy of your attention, “Why Successful People Always Stay A Student” by Darius Foroux. In the article, Darius quotes Ralph Waldo Emerson,

“Do you know the secret of the true scholar? In every man there is something wherein I may learn of him; and in that I am his pupil.” 

What does this have to do with reading you might ask? I look at reading as a way to learn from the authors you read, each of whom have a unique perspective. What better way to learn from someone than by reading their own take in their field of expertise. And it’s not just from non-fiction books that we learn. I can tell you from experience there are many things I learn from some of my favorite fiction works. Whether you learn a new word or the importance of love, each book has something different to offer its readers.

Where am I?

An Updated Look At My Reading Challenge.

Here is where I stand.

  • I pledged to read 50 books through the Goodreads 2016 Reading Challenge.
  • I have currently finished 9 books.
  • That puts me 15 books behind schedule according to the challenge tracker.

I will admit I have not be as successful as I had hoped. And yes, being 15 books behind schedule is probably too many to overcome but that won’t stop me from pushing towards my goal. Right now I would like to look at a few different things and try to discover what I did right and what I could do better.

What I’ve Done?

Observations from the journey.

When I started the challenge I told you one of the best ways for me to read more was to cut out some of the Netflix I watch. At first this was easy and I probably spent more time reading than I did watching Netflix. What I have noticed though is as time went past I started going back to Netflix more and more. Now I have to consciously think about and make a concerted effort to sit down and read. This is something I have recognized and as long as I work to correct this I should be able to read more books during the second half of the year.

Another observation I have is some of the books I read are quite long, 700 or more pages. Two of the books I am reading now are over 7oo pages. So even though I have not finished as many books as I have wanted, I’ve read a considerable number of pages, in total. As of publication, I have read just under 3000 pages this year.

One of my biggest struggles is I have not been reading business books much since March. I am always one for a good story and I have found that some non-fiction books are written poorly. One book took me entirely too long to read because I could not move past errors such as formatting problems, typos, and a true lack of any substantial lessons. I know this is something I need to work on and what I have started to do is read business books at the end of the workday. This way I am still in work mode and I can devote more brain power to what I am reading.

As you can tell, I am not changing my schedule to fit more reading into what I am doing. I believe we all have things we have to do: work, friends, family, sleep, etc. What I need to do is more effectively use my free time to accomplish my goals. For me, that means less time on Netflix, less time watching soccer (thank goodness that Copa America is finished and UEFA Euro 2016 is winding down!), and less time on social media.

Moving Forward

Attack Plan and Updated Reading List

I know there is still half to year left to read 41 books and I am going to write out a small attack plan here to help me reach my goal:

  1. Read for 30 minutes at the end of each business day.
  2. Watch less Netflix; I am going to try to do a 1:1 Netflix to reading ratio.
  3. Spend at least the last 30 minutes before I fall asleep reading.
  4. Go outside and read! It’s summer and the sun is out. I’ll use that to my advantage.

Updated book list: (12 Read)

  • The Mysterious Affairs at Styles – Agatha Christie
  • The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Stieg Larsson
  • The Heart Goes Last – Margaret Atwood
  • Ender’s Game – Orson Scott Card
  • The Most Productive People in History: 18 Extraordinarily Prolific Inventors, Artists, and Entrepreneurs, From Archimedes to Elon Musk – Michael Rank
  • Awakening – Jeremy Laszlo
  • Argo: How the CIA and Hollywood Pulled Off the Most Audacious Rescue in History – Antonio J Mendez & Matt Baglio
  • The 5th Wave – Rick Yancey
  • Lights Out: A Cyberattack, A Nation Unprepared, Surviving the Aftermath – Ted Koppel
  • The Girl Who Played With Fire – Stieg Larsson
  • Along Came a Spider – James Patterson
  • Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy –  Martin Lindstrom

Also, I wanted to add my favorite fiction and non-fiction books I’ve read so far this year. There is no real judging categories or scores, just whatever I thought was the best read:

  • Fiction: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Stieg Larsson
  • Non-Fiction: Argo: How the CIA and Hollywood Pulled Off the Most Audacious Rescue in History – Antonio J Mendez, Matt Baglio

I challenge you to go out and start to read more. I’ve taken some steps to push myself towards reading more. What are you going to do to read more?

Stay Well and Read,

Peter

The Easiest Way to Start Your Book Today

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Welcome back readers.

Have you ever thought to yourself, “I want to write a book?” Or, maybe you’ve heard an increasingly large number of entrepreneurs are writing books and you want to jump on the train. Maybe you want to spread your story and expand your audience beyond your current clientele. We’ve heard these types of comments and questions from many people and we are here to help. Over the past month we have put together a guide for authors, speakers, coaches, and businesses owners to start the book they’ve always wanted to write.

Today I’ll break down what we created and why we sectioned it out the way we did. From the first day of writing to finding your readers’ problems to brainstorming ideas for your cover and everything in between, we have you covered.

What we did?

Making it easier to start your book!

“Ten Simple Steps to Discover the Book Inside You” is our way to help people who want to write a book but do not understand where to start. One of the hardest parts of writing a book is starting. Newton’s first law, as stated probably one too many times outside of the field of physics, still holds true – “An object in motion stays in motion, an object at rest stays at rest.”  The aim of our guide is to help writers to just start, to create a certain time to write in a creative place, and to begin planning the entire process of writing, publishing, and marketing their future book.

Each manuscript goes through three main processes, which you have probably heard from us before: writing, publishing, and marketing. We divided our ten days into three, three-day blocks tackling the three tasks in each period block. But, that only adds up to nine days. The last day, and in our opinion the most important day, is the day in which we encourage our writers to take the time to plan out the rest of their book, and to take the next step forward.

If you want to learn a bit more about how to start writing your book, download “Ten Simple Steps to Discover the Book Inside You” today and begin your path to publication. Or, if you know of someone interested in writing a book, please share this post with them. We appreciate it! 

Until next week,

Peter

Ten Simple Steps to Discover the Book Inside You

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Who needs processes?

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A process for you and a process for me.

Have you ever done the same task over and over again? As humans, we are creatures of habit so most of what we do each day is routine; same old, same old. We don’t like to do things differently and it makes sense to do every task the easiest way possible, right?

It makes sense then that what we do in business should be completed in a similar fashion each time and the easiest way possible. This is where processes come into play.

Process? What process?

Merriam-Webster defines process as, “a series of actions that produce something or that lead to a particular result.” For example, you follow a process when you send a newsletter, write a blog, post on social media, call a client, etc. There are many actions business owners take on a daily basis that need to be written into processes. 

Creating processes may not sound like a great use of time, but trust me, it is! Imagine for a second currently you send two newsletter campaigns out each month. Do you put the same content in each newsletter? I bet you don’t, but where does the content come from? Probably your blog or a personal update or curated content from industry leaders.

As entrepreneurs, the goal is to grow your business and as it grows, taking time to do all the things you do now like write your newsletter isn’t the best use of your money or time. So you hire a social media expert or a Virtual Assistant to compile your newsletter. How will they know what to put in your newsletter? Do you expect them to know exactly what you want with zero help? If so, you’re asking for trouble.

Here is where a process comes into play. There are many things to include in a process – what tasks you are going to complete, what tools do you need to complete those tasks, a specific order of events, and a time frame for how long the tasks should take.

Every business has clients, but what do you do when you first start working with a client? Here’s our process for what we do when we talk with a potential client:

  1. Email client a client intake form which includes the following:
    1. Name
    2. Email
    3. Phone number
    4. Business name
    5. Email newsletter subscriber info
  2. Put info into CRM
  3. Add intake form into client folder in Google Drive/computer

Client intake information is a basic process, but processes can (and should) be developed for many tasks, both simple and more complex. I even have a process for when I write blogs!

What processes do you have in place as your business grows and it’s time to bring on a Virtual Assistant, if you have a sudden illness, or accident? Processes can make or break your business. Colleen and I look forward to hearing from you.

Peter Wietmarschen

The Best of Goodreads, or How to Find Your Favorite Book!

Hello there readers!

Last week I published my first blog in a few weeks and I’m back at it again today! Be sure to keep your eye out for my blogs hitting the site once a week, usually on Tuesdays from here on out but maybe some on Thursdays like today.

So yesterday June began! We are almost halfway through the year already, I can’t believe it! But June is the start of the summer and vacations and, for me at least, that means it’s time to read, read, read. What better way to start off the summer than with a blog for readers.

Goodreads

The Basics

I know in the past I have brought up this site called Goodreads but we haven’t had the proper opportunity to really delve into what Goodreads really offers. There are many functions of Goodreads but I want to talk about some of my favorites.

To start, what is Goodreads? Goodreads is a social network for bibliophiles. It’s a virtual bookshelf for readers to showcase what they are reading to friends, family, and any one else who follows them. Goodreads helps you stay in touch with other readers through your books and their’s.

There are many aspects of Goodreads and many of them can seem somewhat confusing. I wish I had the time to really take apart each of these sections because I think they provide incredible tools to readers and authors alike. However, for today’s purposes the two most basic parts of Goodreads are your bookshelves and your basic update.

Goodreads keeps all of your books, whether in print, on your Kindle (which is what I use the majority of the time), your Kindle App, or any book you read on other platforms, on virtual shelves.  There are a few shelves that everyone is set up with from the beginning, Currently Reading, Read, To-Read, and you can add shelves to organize your books in other fashions. I currently use the three main shelves as well as a shelf dedicated to my 2016 reading challenge, which includes all of the books I have completed this year. Maybe you want all your sales books on one shelf or your top 10 favorite books on another, make your shelves personal! And don’t worry, you can have your books on multiple shelves at once.

The other basic aspect of Goodreads is the update. Once you have a book added to your shelves you can update your reading progress to show others how far you have read. You can do this on your Kindle by sharing the update from your current page and Goodreads will automatically update with your progress. If you read print books, keep track of your progress on Goodreads as well, just add a manual update and Goodreads tracks your place.

If you are new to Goodreads these two parts are where I would spend some time becoming familiar with the site. But if you are a regular visitor or an advanced user there are many other aspects of the site that I love.

Virtual Spelunking

Further exploring Goodreads

For those who want some more Goodreads, come and explore with me! I really want to talk about two things I use regularly.

First off, check out their List section. Reader Beware: You can get lost for a long time here. As the name suggests, here you will find lists upon lists upon lists of book. The topics range from :Best Books of the ’90s” to “Books that Grow You” to “Best Business Books” and thousands of others. Why do I sit at the computer and look at these? Mainly because they are lists generated by users who vote on books to climb up or down the list. This is neat because it shows you what books others are reading and what books you might want to read.

One downside to the way that this works is that people have an inherent bias to vote for books that others have voted for in order to be viewed favorably by others. This might hide a few books that are great reads so don’t feel obligated to read what everyone else already has. Do not let that impede your discovery of books though as nearly all of the books I have found on these lists are top-notch books. The biggest thing is that the lists are a tool for you to discover new books to read and you might find a hidden gem you never knew about before!

The other part of Goodreads I like is the recommendations offered by Goodreads. The site takes the books you have read, shown interest in, or rated and it will give you recommendations based on those books. With someone like myself who constantly wants to find a good book to read these recommendations give me another source to add books to my to-read shelf.

Your turn!

What else is there?

I know that there are many other aspects of Goodreads and I highly suggest digging into them especially if you are a reader. From giveaways to the Choice Awards, to discussions, and more, you can find about anything you need to satisfy your need to read. Look forward to some blogs coming out in the future that will look into these other sections.

For those of you who use Goodreads, what are some of your favorite parts? Anything you can’t live without or maybe something that you hate? Let me know!

And if you want to become friends send me a request!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Peter