Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Guest Post - Discover ThirdScribe by Rob McClellan

A reader pointed me in the direction of ThirdScribe (thanks Frenchie!), there's a few places for authors and readers to connect and this is a new site to help facilitate thios. I checked it out and took the plunge, but I'll let the founder of the site tell you why you should too in his own words. If you do join, whether as a reader or as an author then feel free to drop me a friend request.

Thank you for hosting me on your blog, Michael. It's a great pleasure to be on The Cult of Me. But, even more important, is that you are enjoying ThirdScribe and using it to grow your audience and connect with fans of your work. And that really is what ThirdScribe is about -- bringing readers and writers closer together.

What is ThirdScribe?

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ThirdScribe is a turnkey web platform for authors -- more than a social network, website template, plugin, or custom post type. It is a complete service that provides authors with everything they need to not only better connect with their existing readers, but find new ones as well. Authors can have a website, book listing, forums for their books, ratings, reviews, an eNewsletter service, and a dedicated social network. Even better, everything is linked together, so information flows freely from one aspect to the next. And, since we know some authors already have services they prefer, nearly everything in ThirdScribe is made to interact with other vendors and platforms. We tried to make it as powerful, and as flexible, as possible to meet every author's needs.

Why We Made It

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ThirdScribe grew out of frustration, actually, which I guess a lot of businesses do. I wasn't thrilled with the social interaction of GoodReads, and I didn't feel that comfortable discussing books in detail on Facebook. Plus, Facebook leaves authors kind of exposed -- separating personal and professional in a site where everything is all wrapped together can be tough. I wanted a place where readers and authors could be free to communicate, books would be the showpiece, and that everything would be easy to find. I couldn't really find that anywhere, so I set about making it. But, we didn't want to just make a GR or Facebook clone. It had to provide real value, beyond just social interaction. In talking with authors, it seemed their biggest challenge, what they most needed help with, was marketing their books. I had been reading the Cluetrain Manifesto and Doc Searle's The Intention Economy and was really struck by the notion of markets as conversations. I decided that ThirdScribe wouldn't be driven by advertising, but would instead focus on engagement. At ThirdScribe, we want readers and authors to talk, to genuinely connect, online. I believe that by really put our effort into that concept, everyone - readers, authors, and publishers - would benefit. My partners and I call it "social commerce." ThirdScribe is a place where the best way for authors to market their books is to actually engage with their fans. The system is designed to reward engagement, something we've found to be much more effective -- not to mention enjoyable! - than advertising and robo-tweets. And, while it's still pretty early, engagement is definitely working. The authors that respond to comments and participate in forums are selling books. And the readers seem much happier and more fulfilled by the honest and open discussions. It's been a win-win so far.

How It Works

First Week ThirdScribe provides a wide array of conversation tools -- forums, blogs, social feed, newsletters -- to best enable readers and authors to communicate how they prefer. Members can post links, make comments, add pictures or videos, sync their RSS feed or Facebook account, write reviews, participate in forums, and more. Want to talk about a specific book? Head over to its own book page. Much more than a simple listing, ThirdScribe Book Pages are an entity in themselves, complete with their own forum, social stream, event calendar, purchase links, and review system. It even includes the reviews from GoodReads and Amazon. The result is that it's very easy to have a conversation, and if someone wants to buy a book it's right there. Not in an intrusive way, but in an organic way. If you like talking with the author, the reviews look good, and you want to buy the book, the purchase links are right there. If not, enjoy the conversation, stay connected, and maybe a book down the line will be more to your liking. No pressure.

Come and See Us

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ThirdScribe and the ThirdScribe Author Sites were built from the beginning to work just as well on mobile as they do on larger screens, so whether you want to access us from your laptop, your tablet, or your phone, it should be a very positive experience -- so swing on by. You don't need to be a member to see what's happening around the site, but you do need to join to participate. Membership is free, so no worries. An Author Website and access to all of the author tools is a premium service, but very affordable. So, if you're an Author looking for an easy to use, complete platform for your social marketing, give us a look. And if you're a Reader who's looking for a more intimate book experience than you're finding elsewhere, come and join us -- we'd love to have you.


  1. Excellent service. Thanks for sharing the information. I'm a little hesitant to jump into a new site after trying to get something going on Goodreads, but there's never such a thing as too many options.

    1. I know what you mean, although it didn't take long for me to set up my four books and the optional email alerts means that I can keep up to date easily.