Archive for category Marketing
So, I love independent publishing. When it comes to publishing short works, I find it to be ideal. I like anthologies and magazines, and for any writer they certainly have their value. Both are exposure to a wider market and a way to test the mettle of your work. Will someone else find it worthy?
In the 21st Century, that does not have to be the only avenue of an author wanting to get short works into the hands of readers. It is one of the things I love about independent publishing.
That said … I noticed that the last month or so, I have had modest but steady sales. It has been nice to see and has left me wondering how to turn modest and steady into moderate and steady. Marketing and exposure, obviously, but finding the right way to go about that … affordable, of course, to an indie still coming into her own.
Then the last few days happened and anxiety sets in. The problem with being an indie, I don’t have a marketing arm looking at figures and the market and interpreting what they see so that I understand what is happening.
I can only play guessing games.
UK sales had been strong for me the past month or so. I am wondering with the current events on that side of the pond, if that is affecting my sales at all. I hope not. E-books are not very expensive. I think the highest price book that has been going recently is $1.99. If it is recent happenings in the UK driving sales down – I know how tough things are for me if I am not willing to spend a dollar or two on things.
As anxious as I am about sales, I can’t ignore the news that comes across my feed. Things are turbulent and insecure, maybe more than I had realized.
Everything surrounding Brexit is complex and convoluted. It is also heated and I don’t think it is going to be resolved quickly. In discussing it on this side of the pond, we look at geo-political impacts and lessons we can take as an electorate with our own upcoming election. As with the UK, in the US we have a lot of disillusioned voters. Polls may point one way, but in this environment that is no guarantee of outcome.
In all of that, though, I hope that we don’t forget that for all of the politicians, elections, trades, and regulations, that there is a human element to this. People’s lives are being affected by this in ways we cannot even see.
We can only guess at them through a dashboard.
I am going to try an experiment and see if this will work.
(The Silence and Doctor Who are properties of BBC and their respective creators and are no way affiliated with The Writer’s Manifest, Lynn Perretta, or any of her books. Use of this picture is shameful self-promotion by a dedicated Whovian who is desperate to sell her books and should not be taken as an endorsement by the BBC, the creators of Doctor Who, or anyone with any kind of decency. In fact, when they find out I am doing this they will probably be pretty pissed (as in angry not drunk) at me for doing this. Sorry guys. I hope you understand.)
Harbin and Klai are moving from the college dorms into their own downtown office, officially opening their own paranormal investigations office. They have the help of Harbin’s wealthy grandmother and her Society connections, but they come with a price – being the display centerpiece at Society functions.
Still, our investigators cannot pass up the opportunity to get inside Mooreland Hall. The house is famed for hauntings and mysterious disappearances. They cannot take their big equipment, but then again, when the ghosts come to you, who needs clunky machines?
As a freelance writer, I do a lot of work for blogs and websites, helping to add or update content. One of the key things that clients need, and rightfully so, are key words. Key words are an organic way to help ensure your site is found by search engines when users look for things. The idea is to incorporate the search terms that people most commonly use when searching for your product, service, or cause.
For example, if you are an author of paranormal romance books and have a blog about writing, you would want to include in your blog key words based on search terms readers would normally look for. I will admit to being bad about key word usage on my own site. I have plans to get them done. Really, I do.
Good morning fellow readers and writers.
So, if you are self-published, you are always looking for new opportunities to help you get your book out there in a way that is advantageous to you. When you see something offered, it is vital, however, that you check up on them and their claims.
Very important when it comes to this little company: Morgan James Publishing.
Their deal seems appealing on the surface. They appear to be up front about the costs and caveats.
But … “Many major houses require authors to purchase 5,000 copies, or more, of the book upon its release, usually at a 50-60% discount off retail.”
According to traditionally published authors on the forum that questions about MJ Publishing were shared on, this is not the case, especially for fiction. For non-fiction, depending on agreements and needs of mostly the author it would appear, similar things may be added to contracts. So we are talking about something that occurs only by exception – meaning that while technically it is at least a plausible claim, the addition of “most” followed by specific figures makes the claim suspect.
Which makes them suspect.
Also, just in case you do not know about this awesomeness, SFWA has a resource available to everyone, member or not, to help authors look out for this type of thing. Hopefull Morgan James shows up on their list soon. Book mark this, and if you see someone, or get an email, compare them to it first before doing the rest of your research: SFWA’s Writer Beware.
I’ve touch on the importance of reviews and feedback before. I want to come back to this, though, because for independent authors, I cannot stress enough just how big of a deal reviews, feedback, and sharing are.
Independently publishing a book is more than just hitting submit on Amazon or Smashwords and waiting for sales to come in. Thousands of books are self-published every day. Your new release is going to get lost in the shuffle quickly, so as an independent author, you have to not only write the work, possibly edit the work yourself, and submit it to your platform of choice, you also have to promote it and advertise it. You have to see out reviewers.
And sometimes, you have to remind people who have read your book to share their thoughts.
For consumers, the importance of reviews is pretty simple. It tells you what to expect and gives you an idea if what you are about to get is worth while. For example, when my husband bought me Doctor Who DVDs for Christmas, we quickly learned, Christmas Day, that we could not play them on the DVD player because he purchased them through Amazon UK, not Amazon USA. I got online and searched through reviews of different region-less DVD players until I found one that, by the reviews listed, appeared to be what I needed. And when it turned out to be so and to reliably play my DVDs, I was sure to share that feedback as well.
For independent authors, however, reviews are much more.
I received a disturbing email yesterday evening, one that makes me very happy that I have diversified my publishing platforms.
The email – and any other Indie Authors out there probably know exactly what email I am talking about – was from Amazon, asking me to step up and support them in their war against Hatchette.
So, I have added The Shulim Cycle Book of Dahlia to Smashwords with the first chapter of The Shulim Cycle Book of Susan.
I might have mentioned before that this was coming. Well, now it’s done. If you look to the right you will see that I’ve cleaned up my links area a little bit. You will also see links to something called Eduli Springs Book Club for Facebook and G+. No difference between the two locations, just that some people prefer one over the other (like me. I prefer G+). Please feel free to join the group/community on the social network of your choice. As the groups grow, it is going to be my preferred method, outside of this blog, of talking about the books and doing promotion-type things.
If you haven’t read Dahlia, or if you’d like to suggest it to someone, both the Facebook and G+ communities include a Smashwords coupon code to get the book at a discounted price. And I’m pretty much going to do this for each book in The Shulim Cycle. I love my fans that much.
Onto Discussions of E-Book Publishing In General
So, The Shulim Cycle Book of Dahlia is up for free today and tomorrow (8/5 and 8/6) on Amazon..
Why only two days?
Well, this is going to be the last KDP promotion for the novel. By the end of this week, once my current KDP is up, I’ll also be on Smashwords. The reason being, I can manage coupons and what-not better there.
So, if you have not had a chance to grab the book, here’s your chance to get it free.
If you have, please share a review on Amazon.
Well… a few reasons.
It will help other readers determine if they want to buy my book once the free promotion ends. It helps me get feedback for what works and does not in the book, so that I understand what my readers are actually getting out of the book. And finally … because a lot of avenues for promoting e-books want you to already have reviews on Amazon. I have a few great reviews, but I don’t have enough of them. So please, share your thoughts on the book on Amazon. While your at it, be sure to share a few thoughts about other indie-books you’ve read.
Thank you and good reading.
So, for those already following my Facebook Group or who might be interested in doing so, I have put up the first chapter of The Shulim Cycle Book of Susan. If you’re a member, you’re free to download it. If you’re not a member, please consider joining it or the G+ community. Really, which is just a matter of social network preference. I’ll be sharing the same things to both.
Anyway, off to getting the day started. Breakfast, coffee, and more writing. A little gaming too, as I’ll be working on my next post for Ravensveil.
And reading, cause I have reviews to get done for StreetWraith.
Busy, busy little bees.