The Holy Grail of publishing: This is for you writers.
You’ve written your novel, stood back and said to yourself. ”That’s good, better than good, it’s brilliant.” My advice, get some unbiased second opinions. I remember doing a critique of an author’s manuscript, it was on a site where authors help authors. The author’s accompanying message said, ‘don’t tell me to change anything, I’m happy with my story, I’m publishing it as is.’ It was a sort of a warning – do not criticise.
I replied, ‘yes the story is fine, but I think you should look at …blah blah blah.’ A diplomatic response.
Guess what? She agreed with me and said she was rewriting those pieces.
The message is;
STEP ONE, write your best work possible, listen to beta readers, add a great cover and use a proofreader. But you knew that, didn’t you?
Indie authors have in the past suffered criticism from the traditional publishers.’ The books are substandard, littered with mistakes.’ Sometimes this criticism has been justified. A poorly written and compiled book damages not only the writer’s reputation but indirectly all Indie writers.
STEP TWO, marketing. Now the situation becomes murky, we are authors, right? Not marketers. This is where we all (myself included), stumble, flounder and often fall off the wagon. We publish on all the e sites, blog, tweet, post on Facebook ‘my new masterpiece has just been released.’ No worries Amazon will sell my book, after all its brilliant. It’s just a matter of time – the cream always rises to the top. Right? Wrong. Amazon is a search engine that just happens to sell books amongst other things. Who is going notice my book amongst the three million plus titles? To get noticed, to sell books we have to delve into the unknown and attempt to master the dreaded marketing hoodoo.
There are numerous books and coaches offering their services, for a price of course. I read all the advice I can lay my hands on. A common theme seems to be to build a fan base of readers, you now have their email contact, you can feed them some scintillating offers to purchase your books. The only problem is enticing a prospective reader to give you their contact. The use of free books as a carrot is very popular. Everyone is doing it – ‘the reader will sample my work and want to buy more. At the very least they will leave a review.’ Read Paul White’s blog on the pitfalls of this approach. It no longer works. It is self-defeating and harms all Indie authors. We all like a bargain – why pay for a book when the eBook sites are littered with freebies.
OR IS IT A LOST CAUSE? Maybe we are doing it all wrong. Nick Stephensen ‘Your first 10,000 readers’ is adamant. Freebies do work IF you do it right. Very few writers are.
WE all enjoy a good read but how do you decide on your next book when the market is flooded with titles? Sorting through a multitude of dare I say sub-standard offerings is a time consuming daunting prospect. The answer is Electric Eclectic. A special site showcasing a select group of authors writing prowess – all are short novelettes in a multitude of different genres. JOB DONE.