Tag Archives: ebook publishing

Self-Publishing: My Book Isn’t Selling, Should I Rewrite It?

Self-Publishing: My Book Isn’t Selling, Should I Rewrite It?

Here’s a commonly asked question. An author’s been self-publishing for a year or three, and his earlier books have stopped selling. He’s too involved in his recent releases to promote the older books effectively. He’s not even sure that it would be worthwhile.

In addition at this stage, the author’s reread his early efforts, and winced. He’s a much better writer now.

What to do?

Self-publishing choices: relaunching your back catalogue

Older books do drop off your radar.

If they’re still selling, you wonder whether they’d sell more, if you gave them a little love. On the other hand, a book that’s stopped selling may do better if you took a fresh look at it, because you’re more experienced now.

Self-publishing involves constant decision making.

Your options if you decide to relaunch a book

You’ve got several options.

  • Relaunch with a new cover and blurb, without touching the contents;
  • Rewrite the book, and then relaunch with a new cover and blurb;
  • Treat the book as a completely new title. Rewrite the book completely. Give it a new title.
    Add a sentence under your copyright info. Some thing like: “Previously published as Freddy And The Big Green Creature From Mars, revised and rewritten, with extra chapters.”

You need to take a little care if you’re self-publishing an already-published book as a new title.

Self-publishing a previously published book as a completely new title

Vital: do you have the copyright?

If the title was published by someone else — a traditional publisher, or an online publisher — have the publisher send you a letter stating that you have all rights back in that title.

Assuming that you have all rights in the title, please don’t forget to add the disclosure statement when you publish your “new” book. While it’s unlikely that readers will remember the first version, one or two might.

Most importantly, check where the first version of the book is selling online. If you’re “wide” with the first version — that is, you’re selling on multiple retailers — it’s not a good idea to choose KDP Select for the new title. Amazon requires an exclusive. Withdraw the older version from the other retailers, just to be safe, before you launch the new retitled, and revised version.

Will your republished book sell?

Revamping older titles isn’t a guarantee of more sales. However, I’ve heard enough stories from authors who have tarted up older books and got them selling that it’s worth considering, if you have a back catalogue in your self-publishing venture.

Of course, keep writing new titles too. 🙂

Step By Step To Fiction Which Sells: Plotting And Scene Magic

Step By Step To Fiction Which Sells: Plotting And Scene Magic

eBook: $5.99
Your readers want to enter your novel's world. They want to experience your book -- they want to live your book with your main characters. More info →
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Heart To Heart: Romance Writing For Beginners

Heart To Heart: Romance Writing For Beginners

eBook: $5.99
Author:
Series: Romance Writing, Book 1
Genre: Writing
Tag: writing fiction
Love makes the world go round, and of all the genres in fiction, romance, with its many sub-genres, is the most popular. More info →
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What’s The Best Software To Write A Book?

What’s The Best Software To Write A Book?

For some reason this question’s been coming up frequently: “what software’s the best to write a book?”

The short answer is: whatever you use for your writing sessions now.

Here’s why. Writing a book is challenging, even for people who’ve been at it for years. Learning new software is stressful.

If you want to write a book, keep to your writing routines

You’ll hit “the wall” as anyone does when they write a book. This book crash usually happens around page 100 or Chapter 3. At this stage, you’re looking for reasons to quit.

The book’s crap and you have many, many excuses for not carrying on. The idea’s lousy, you’re too busy, you’ll write next vacation — and so on and so forth.

You don’t need special software to write a book

I adore Scrivener. I’ve been using it for a decade, ever since the beta version. Much as I love it, for the first couple of years I wrote in MS Word, then dragged the docs into Scrivener. Mostly that was because clients and editors wanted Word docs. But also, it was wanting to get stuff done.

You have a writing routine now, even if you’re a relatively new writer. If you tinker with that routine too much, you’ll procrastinate, or worse, you’ll block. Your productivity will go out the window.

Useful software for writing books

After all these years, Scrivener is part of my book-writing routine. My books and writing courses start and end in Scrivener.

I write shorter material like articles and blog posts in Ulysses. Not only is Ulysses a fun writing tool, it also makes it easy to output docs to HTML, PDF, ePub, and DOCX.

Many authors use the Ulysses app (Mac)
Many authors use the Ulysses app (Mac)

I know several authors who write their books in Google Docs. I couldn’t imagine anything more punishing, but kudos to them.

I’ve also heard good things about:

  • yWriter, which looks Scrivener-like;
  • (free) FocusWriter, a cross-platform app which is minimalist. The bare bones interface is meant to remove distractions;
  • (free) LibreOffice, an MS Office alternative;
  • (free) Sigil, open source, cross-platform, and useful only if you’re a little techy. Outputs ePub documents. Inputs can include HTML, and plain text. Creates elegant ebooks. If you’d like to try it, this is the official website.
Step By Step To Fiction Which Sells: Plotting And Scene Magic

Step By Step To Fiction Which Sells: Plotting And Scene Magic

eBook: $5.99
Your readers want to enter your novel's world. They want to experience your book -- they want to live your book with your main characters. More info →
Buy from Barnes and Noble Nook
Buy from Scribd
Buy from Kobo
Buy from Apple iBooks
Buy from Amazon Kindle
The Journaling Habit: Achieve Your Goals And Change Your Life In Just Ten Minutes A Day

The Journaling Habit: Achieve Your Goals And Change Your Life In Just Ten Minutes A Day

eBook: $5.99
Do you love your life? If you don't ADORE your life, you can change it — more easily than you can imagine. More info →
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Need help with your writing? Visit our online store, or check out our ebooks for writers.

You’re An Author: 4 Ways To Get More Out Of Your Book

You’re An Author: 4 Ways To Get More Out Of Your Book

You’ve finished your book. It’s published, and you’re an author. You should be very proud of your achievement. You’re marketing your book, and are making sales, but don’t stop — consider that you can get much more out of your book.

Before we go on, I need to mention that this is where self-publishers are hugely better off than any traditionally published author. Here’s why: when you self-publish, your book whether fiction or nonfiction, is an asset.

You can make much more out of your asset than sales of the book in its current form.

You’re an author: you now have an asset

Everything you write, to which you retain all rights (articles, books, videos, audios, presentations, speeches, blog posts) is an asset. Few authors (me included) make as much of their assets as they could.

Why not? Primarily because they’re busy. They get tunnel vision. They publish their book, and market it diligently. Then they write another book — or maybe not, if the sales of the first book are disappointing.

Here’s where a small knowledge of copyright comes into play. Book publication is just one form of the rights you own in a work that you created. There are many more rights, including:

  • Audio rights;
  • Video rights
  • Movie rights;
  • Serial publication rights;
  • Translation rights…

Basically when you own an asset, you own all the rights, so you can transform the work into anything you choose. You can license these rights to others, or you can use them yourself.

Your rights aren’t limited — you can choose to transform your book into anything you like, and can sell any rights you please, even rights you create specifically for that book. You may license the rights to a character in your novel to a graphic artist so he can create a graphic novel, for example. You own the character, so you get a share of the royalties from the graphic novel.

One of my friends is demon with rights; she’s making money from licensing oddball rights to books she wrote years ago. You can be as creative as you choose when you own an asset.

Let’s look at four ways you can get more out of your book.

1. Blog your book to build your brand and sell more copies

Many authors blog their books as they write them. They post chapters online. Some authors blog their entire book, leaving all the chapters online, before and after they publish, as a form of marketing. Other authors take down the chapters once a book’s published.

Whatever you choose to do, when you blog your book you’ll not only build your brand, you’ll sell more copies.

2. Offer your book in multiple formats for more sales

Many authors are diligent with this. They not only offer an ebook, but they also offer print books — hardcover and paperbacks, as well as audio books.

Offering your book in more formats makes huge sense. When you offer your book as an audio book for example, you’re tapping into a new audience. We’re all busy, and it’s handy to be able to listen to a book in your car. If that book were only available in ebook or paperback format, people who prefer audio books would ignore it.

3. Create a course, or create a series: your book is just an introduction

Let’s say you’ve written a nonfiction book about improving your memory. You can turn that book into an online or offline course.

Perhaps you’ve written a mystery novel. Why not create a series, using the same characters, or the same location?

Look on your asset, your first book, as an introduction. There’s usually a lot more you can do with a book than offer it in multiple formats.

4. (Nonfiction) Become a coach on your book’s topic

You may have noticed something about bestselling nonfiction authors. They hit the bestseller lists, and become speakers. Or they become coaches. People pay fantastic sums to hear an author talk about his topic for a couple of hours. These bestselling authors are paid five and even six figure sums for an appearance.

Other authors coach students in their topic, and they’re fully booked — coaching is another way of using your asset.

As an author, how much money are you leaving on the table?

You’re an author now. So take a few minutes, today, to consider ways in which you can use your asset. You’re sure to come up with several ways to do it. Aim to get as much out of your book as you can.

Map It: For Writing Success — Fiction And Nonfiction Outlines Made Easy

Map It: For Writing Success — Fiction And Nonfiction Outlines Made Easy

eBook: $5.99
I developed the tactics and strategies in this book to help myself. My students have found them essential to producing both fiction and nonfiction almost effortlessly. More info →
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Resources to build your writing career

Get daily writing news and tips on the blog’s Facebook page.

Need help with your writing? Visit our online store, or check out our ebooks for writers.