Other Posts by C.C. Chapman

Help Us Choose an Authors Photo: Vote for Your Favorite?

You may not know that I’m a bit of a photography junky. It is pretty much a guarantee that anytime you see me, I have a camera of some sort on me and I’m constantly taking pictures of the world around me. My favorite are faces and people in general. If curious you can view my photos on Flickr.

So when Ann and I wanted some photographs of the two of us together I wanted to be sure to choose a photograph that I knew would be able to capture our unique personalities and I knew that my talented friend Derek Wilmot would be perfect for the assignment. He is known around New England as a top notch event and portrait photographer and I’ve been lucky enough to get to know him over the past few years and love his work.

These pictures were taken to use in promotions for our book tour, in newspaper and magazine articles and by you to help spread the word about the book. If you do use them in any way, you must be sure to credit Derek and link to his site at http://www.derekwilmot.com.

As we talk about at length in the book, giving proper credit for any content you use is not only the legally right thing to do, but it is a common courtesy that you should never forget. Thanks for the great photography work as always Derek!

Of course, now the real question remains. Which one is your favorite?

Book Publishing Panel at Blogworld

While attending Blogworld Expo 2010, I took part in a panel discussion titled “The Blogger Killed the Author & The Publisher Hid The Body.”

The session description reads:

In a world of 140s, shrinking screens, and ‘after-the-jump’ readers, how do we make books people want? Are books just ‘content’ in a dead format? Does tweeting, posting, and IM’ing make for better or worse writers? What 5 things should every author being doing to get published? This session is for publishers, and authors who still want to make money on books. It can be done. Come learn how.

In addition to myself, the panel also included other great speakers from both sides of the author and publisher equation including Hadji Williams, Ellen Gerstein, Justin Branch and Susan T Spencer.

The team from Wiley (our publisher) filmed and assembled this highlight reel of what I had to share with the audience and now we can share it with you.

I’m really hoping someone captured the whole panel to share because I think a lot of great resources and information for aspiring authors was shared by all.

Quick’n’Dirty Interview

We just gave our first interview about the book as guest on The Quick’n’Dirty podcast.

It was a blast to do an we hope to do a lot more of them in the coming weeks as we ramp up to and then release the book.

Listen to it online or download the MP3 so that you can take it with you. Either way we hope you enjoy hearing a bit about how the book came to be and the proper way to say the title.

Behind the Grammar

We are both big fans of Grammar Girl and the empire she has built around herself. Truth be told, Ann is a bit of a fan girl, so when she found out that C.C. actually knew Mignon and would be getting on camera with her, you should have seen the flurry of text messages. *grin*

But, we were excited to be part of her Behind the Grammar podcast and to talk a bit our decision to not give away lots of free copies of the book while marketing and what we decided to do instead.

Did we make the right decision? What do you think? We’d love to hear your opinion.

Content Is _____

I have a pretty clear definition of what content is in my head. But, I also know that it is something that is hard to put into words when you need to so I was curious how others might describe it.

While attending Blogworld Expo last week I carried around my video camera asking friends and strangers to complete the sentence “Content is ____”. I had a blast sitting down this morning and pulling out some of the nuggets to share with everyone. It was fascinating how many different directions people went with their answers.

You might see some familiar faces in the video like Scott Monty, Todd Defren, Maggie Fox, Steve Hall, Jenny Cisney, Ewan Spence and Steve Garfield. Thanks to everyone who allowed me to film them. I ended up with so many great answers I couldn’t fit them all into the video.

Now, if I asked YOU the question how would you answer? What is content to you and how do you describe it? In the comments answer the question: Content Is _____

Update 11/19 – Adding links to content that people in the video are creating. If I forget someone, please let me know and I’ll add them.

Zappos is FULL of Content

Everyone out there has heard the Zappos story by now and it is one that we have always loved since they practice what we preach.

Last week, I was in Las Vegas to speak at Blogworld Expo and several of us took a side trip over to Zappos for one of their famous tours. The long and short of it is that it lives up to the hype and I’m so glad that I got to experience it first hand to see that everything you’ve read is 100% true.

I wanted to share some of the simple things related to content that caught my eye while on the tour.

This is the Zappos Blog Bus and the team that manage the Zappos family of blogs sit here. Just like every other employee we encountered, they were overly friendly and having a great time doing what they do. How can you not have fun when your cubicles have been transformed into a VW Bus?

Zappos Tour - Blog Bus

I wish I had a picture of my face as we turned a corner and our guide said “and this is where our Content Team sits.” As you can see they break them out into Coordinators and Detailers and even have a digital picture frame that showcases all kinds of content that they make. Again, it isn’t about having the slickest and prettiest content. It is about having content that matters to you and the company!

Zappos Tour - Content Department

Finally, with every single person that goes through the tour they make sure that you leave feeling like royalty. For the price of a simple point and shoot camera and some props they take a photo of you and post it to the web for everyone to see. This is not only fun, but it is smart because of course everyone is going to go back out and look for their photo and share it with the world just like I’m doing here.

Content is one of those things that must become an integrated part of your company philosophy. It isn’t a short term play. It isn’t a long term project. Rather, it is something that you need to make part of day-to-day business activities because the more you make it part of who you are like Zappos has done, the more successful it will be for you.

Thank you Zappos for being such a great host!

Author Crack Ups

After months locked away in our offices writing the book we finally got out to attend the Inbound Marketing Summit 2010 at Gillette Stadium.

In a moment of stress relieving laughter the very talented Derek Wilmot captured this photo of Ann & C.C.

We thought you’d enjoy it.

Chris Brogan Talks Content

If I didn’t know any better, I would have thought someone slipped a copy of Content Rules to our friend Chris Brogan early based on this video he posted earlier this week.

In the video he is talking about his approach to building new business across his channels and as you watch you’ll notice that a variety of content is at the core of his ecosystem. He discusses his use of his newsletter, webinars and a mix of free and paid content to attract new customers.

Of course, as much as I loved this video, it reminds me of the old Disney animator videos. I kept waiting for him to flip the page back and forth with a dollar sign or something.

Way to go Chris and thanks for confirming what we are trying to tell people.

Page Proofs Are In

Yesterday started out just like any other day.

I woke up, helped get the kids ready for school and sat on the couch to enjoy some coffee while watching CNN Morning and The Today Show. Once both kids were on the bus, I went to my office and began the work day.

When Roxie (my trusty lab sidekick) started barking, I knew someone was at the door. She loves to announce to the whole house whenever a package is being delivered or a rabbit runs across the front yard. I answered the door and Mr. UPS handed me a package from Wiley. When I opened it up this is what I found.

Page Proofs for Content Rules

If you haven’t written a book before, this is a copy of the page proofs for Content Rules. It is the first time I’ve seen a printed copy of the entire book, as it is currently set up to go to the presses. The reality of this is amazing. To see an actual page count, the copyright notices and the US Library of Congress numbers all in print. This book is really happening.

Someone commented that I look like a child on Christmas morning and to be honest that is a bit how it felt. While the rubber bands might not be multi-colored wrapping paper, as I carefully took them off it did feel like opening the coolest present in the world.

I’ve now got to go through this and correct any final things that need to be changed. After I’m done it will go over to Ann and then back to the publishers so that you all can get your copies on time for the November 30th release date.

We’re getting very excited about this book and would love your help in making it a success. Here are some things you can do to help.

  • Pre-order a copy today from your book seller of choice.
  • Go into your local Barnes & Noble, Borders, Book A Million or other local bookstore and ask them if they will be stocking the book and encourage them to do so.
  • Help us come to your town by finding a sponsor to bring our Book Tour to where you live.
  • Encourage businesses you know to bulk order copies to give to their staff as a holiday gift.
  • Tell others about the book and your excitement for it.

I’ve got to go find a red pen to go through this stack of paper I now have on my desk taunting me. While I’ll never be a happy editor, I can’t wait to dive into this task!

Thank you to everyone for the continuous support and encouragement along the way. Ann and I both greatly appreciate it more than we can ever fully express.

Curry Lunch Inspired Video Update

Can you believe that September is already here? Where did the summer go? We spent most of ours with our computers putting the final touches on the book and we wanted to update everyone on the status of the book with this video update.

After a nice curry lunch we found a bench in the shade and recorded this for you.

Thanks again to David Meerman Scott, author of the hit new book Marketing Lessons from the Grateful Dead (and several other awesome books), for taking time out of his busy schedule to have lunch with us and talk about marketing for the book.

As we mention in the video, we are putting the final touches on ideas for how to schedule a book tour and yes we would love to come to your town, but we have to figure out how to make that happen. Details will be coming soon.

Until then please pre-order a copy from your preferred online bookstore and we’ll be back shortly with more great content.