Periscope: Another Tool in the Author’s Belt – With Author Carrie Wisehart

IMG_0017The app Periscope came to life about a year ago because the developers wondered what it would be like to see through someone else’s eyes. That’s essentially what Periscope is: your own live video broadcast for anyone to view.

Periscope is a great tool for authors to use – a live video option that welcomes readers and fans into their homes, their lives, and their bubbles. Readers feel like they “know you” because they are in real time with you.

The most popular Periscopes are short videos that lock in on something unique that followers are interesting in seeing. One author I follow reads bedtime stories. Another speaker does Friday Fives – five interesting facts.

So how does Periscope work?

periscopeThe screen on your phone looks like this. When you download the app and open it, it will ask you to enable your camera, your microphone, and your location. You want to do all three.

When you come to the home screen, you’ll see four icons at the bottom.

The television icon is the home screen. It will tell you if anyone you are currently following is LIVE, or if anyone you follow has broadcasted recently.

The world icon is a map or list of the different broadcasting opportunities you can watch or explore.

The people icon is your friends, which you can choose to import from Twitter.

When you open the third icon, you will see this screen. periscope screenThis is where you can control WHO can see your broadcast.

Unless you have followers (you pick these up on Twitter and by asking your social media followers to follow you on Periscope) anyone can tune in to your broadcast if you don’t lock it (the lock icon).

The thought bubble icon allows you to choose if people can chat during your broadcast. If you allow ANYONE to view your broadcast, I would suggest turning chat OFF, because you never know what people might say. But if you have readers following, this is a way you can LIVE chat with them while you broadcast!

Twitter is important, because if you choose the icon, it announces to the world that you are LIVE and broadcasting – and they can tune in.

The most important part of the broadcast is the “What are you seeing now” at the top of the screen. This will capture the attention of people. You need a catchy, unique phrase, possibly with hashtags that will grab people and usher them into your LIVE video experience. The phrase you choose will determine whether or not people tune in and watch your broadcast.

And that is the perfect word to use: EXPERIENCE. People who use Periscope want to experience something unique – it helps them connect with authors they love in a way that is different than recorded video on YouTube. It is real time and live, and you can help readers see your authentic self.

So add Periscope to one of the many tools you can use to launch books, surprise readers, and show them that authors are people, too!


Carrie Wisehart

Carrie is a teacher, author, speaker, bicyclist and joy-chooser who is living the best day ever adventure every single day.

Visit Carrie at her own blog, or check her out on Twitter @WisehartCFC, Instagram @carrielane, or Facebook.

How have you used or seen others use periscope?


About Michelle Lim

Author Michelle Lim is the Brainstorming/Huddle Coach with My Book Therapy Press and the Midwest Zone Director for American Christian Fiction Writers. Michelle’s romantic suspense is represented by Karen Solem of Spencillhill Associates and has gained contest recognition in the Frasier, the Genesis, and the Phoenix Rattler, winning the Genesis in 2015 for her genre. Michelle writes devotionals for The Christian Pulse Online Magazine and Putting On The New. Since her nonfiction book release, Idea Sparking: How To Brainstorm Conflict In Your Novel, through public speaking and online chats Michelle helps writers discover the revolutionary power of brainstorming to bring new life to their stories.

3 thoughts on “Periscope: Another Tool in the Author’s Belt – With Author Carrie Wisehart

  1. Michelle Lim says:

    Thanks, Carrie! I appreciate the help in learning this new technology.

  2. Thanks for having me, Michelle!

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