Tag Archives: readers

Self-Publishing: 3 Easy Tips To Write a Book AND Publish It Fast

Self-Publishing: 3 Easy Tips To Write a Book AND Publish It Fast

How long does it take to write a book and publish it? If you asked that question a few years ago, the answer would have been two years, or longer. Nowadays, you could conceivably write and self-publish a book within 24 hours.

Write a book, and publish it yourself

Publishing isn’t a race, but self-publishing has come a long way. One author, Brenna Aubrey, recently turned down a six-figure, three-book deal from a New York print publishing house. She decided to self-publish. Why? Because not only does self-publishing give her control over her books, she’ll make more money.

She says that the non-compete clause was a major factor in her decision to self-publish:

For those not up on the lingo of publishing. A non-complete clause prevents an author from publishing with another house or even self-publishing while under contract with the house in question in the same genre or under the same name.

When you self-publish you’re free of restrictions.

However, before you concern yourself with any form of publishing, you have to write your book.

Many authors, whether they’re new, or are already established, stumble through the writing and publishing processes. It takes them much longer to publish than it could, because they haven’t mapped out a process.

Let’s look at a simple three-step process anyone can use.

1. Describe Your Audience, and Write a Brief Description of Your Book

Your first step is to describe your audience: your readers. You need to know your readers, whether you’re writing fiction, or nonfiction.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What magazines does my ideal reader read?
  • What TV shows does he/ she love?
  • Does he/ she have children?

You may be wildly off when you describe your ideal reader. You may be thinking of someone who reads Reader’s Digest, listens to NPR, and has three children. After your book’s published, you discover your typical reader is a 16 year old male. It doesn’t matter.

Next, describe your book, in a paragraph – five sentences or less. Your short description keeps you on track while you’re writing. Your book description tells you where you’re headed with your book.

2. Outlining: Take Time to Plan, it Makes Writing Fast and Easy

Hate outlining? That’s fine. Create a mind map, or a simple list of what your book will contain. If you’re writing a novel, list ten scenes: the opening and closing scene, and eight others.

Writers often complain that they can’t outline. They think in terms of high school outlines. Your book outline isn’t anything like an outline you created in school. It’s just a tool to kickstart your thinking.

Go to Amazon, and look at the tables of contents of books which are similar to yours. If you’re writing a novel, count the chapters of similar novels on Amazon.

Your book description tells you where you’re going. Your outline is the tentative route which will take you there. I’ve been writing books for many years: outlines help. Look on your outline as a guarantee that you’ll complete your book.

Your completed book will be nothing like your outline. Feel free to change it at will.

Outline done? Start writing. Create a schedule, and stick to it.

3. Create Your Ebook’s Cover, Write the Meta Data, and hit Publish

You book may take just a week to complete, or it may take months. Either way, now’s the time to create an “ecover”, an Amazon catalog and cover image. Amazon has a useful Cover Creator, with gallery images, or you can use your own image.

Write the meta data for your book: its description and keywords. Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing Help system gives you information on how to do this.

Once you’ve completed your book, and have revised it, you’re ready to publish. Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) accepts books in MS Word DOC and DOCX formats, as well as in HTML, and in PDF too.

If you’ve always wanted to write a book, or tried, and got stuck, use these easy tips. Publishing your book can be as easy as one, two, three. Get started today.

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Master Fiction Writing: Craft A Novel in 31 Days

Master Fiction Writing: Craft A Novel in 31 Days

Series: Selling Writer Strategies, Book 4
Genre: Writing
Tag: writing fiction

You want to write a novel. Perhaps you can't get started. Or maybe you got started, and then you stopped.You need a plan, broken down into easy steps. This program began as a 30-day challenge which I organized for readers in 2010. Hundreds of writers joined the challenge and completed it. They wrote novels.

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Kindle Author: Improve Your Ideas And Sell More Ebooks

Kindle Author: Improve Your Ideas And Sell More Ebooks

You’ve published an ebook, or perhaps more than one. Congratulations: you’re a Kindle author. I work with many authors and they all want one thing: more sales. We all want guaranteed bestsellers. But it’s impossible to guarantee a bestselling book, sadly.

That said, you can make it more likely that your ebooks will sell more copies, and with very little extra effort. Here’s how I know this. I work with authors every day. They make avoidable errors. Once they correct those errors, their ebooks start selling well.

Often not as well as they’d hoped, and for a simple reason: they haven’t baked-in sales potential. An author writes the book he wants to write, and gives little thought to his readers.

Make the decision: correct your authors’ tunnel vision

All authors have tunnel vision. I do, you do. It means that we’re focused on the writing. Readers don’t care about that. They want what they want — entertainment if you’ve written fiction, and useful, practical information if you’re writing nonfiction.

Long before you start writing, think about readers. What appeals to them? In this article, we’re discussing fiction, but you can use the same process for nonfiction too.

Start at the level of ideas.

Ideas sell, so before you start writing, focus on your ideas

I’m fond of saying that authors can write what they want. That’s true. You can write whatever you like. However, you also need to know what’s selling. Not so that you can slavishly go and clone the latest bestseller… although that does work for many writers.

The best reason to see what’s selling is so that you can work out why it’s selling. Here are the current bestsellers on Amazon.

I like to look at the top bestselling books at least once a month.

Check out the titles. Read the book descriptions, and the reviews. Make notes if you like, or don’t make any. The point of the exercise is that you’re starting to pay attention to what sells.

It’s surprising how many authors (both new, and veteran) focus solely on themselves. However, even if you want to get published the traditional way, the first thing an editor or agent will ask you is: “what’s this book like?”

You’d better be able to answer:

  • “It’s Harry Potter for adults”; or
  • “It’s a modern version of Pride and Prejudice”; or
  • “It’s for women interested in online dating”.

When someone asks you “what’s this book like?”, they’ll usually be able to work out who the book’s targeted at. If they can’t, that’s the next question: “who’s this book for?”

An editor or agent asks these kinds of questions, because they know that no one’s going to read your ebook, and then decide what it’s like, and who it’s for. You need to know that. Moreover, you can train yourself to think in these terms. If you can do that, you’ll write salable books.

You can train yourself to improve your ideas

When you start paying attention to what’s selling, you’ll start thinking in terms of salability, and you’ll have taken a huge step forward in your self-publishing career.

As we’ve said: you’re not trying to copy bestsellers, or clone them, or anything else. You’re trying to gauge the pulse of readers all over the world. Way back in the 1980s, I read a lot of gothic romances. Publishers are putting those books into the Kindle store these days. I’ve downloaded a few, and now dislike the way they were written.

That’s natural. Times change. What appealed to readers 40 years ago doesn’t appeal now.

When you train yourself to improve your ideas, your subconscious mind gets in on the act. It will start feeding you ideas, based on your own experiences, which will be in the spirit of what readers love today.

Start paying attention to what’s selling.

Make lists of ideas of ebooks you could write.

If an idea appeals, ask yourself: “what’s this book like?” and “who’s this book for?”.

If you can do that, you may not write an ebook which hits the top 100 bestsellers, but you will be a Kindle author who sells more ebooks.

Nonfiction Ebooks Goldmine: Write and Sell Nonfiction Ebooks In 24 Hours Or Less

Nonfiction Ebooks Goldmine: Write and Sell Nonfiction Ebooks In 24 Hours Or Less

Series: Selling Writer Strategies, Book 5
Genre: Writing

You're a writer. You need to make money from your words. What if you could create AND sell a nonfiction book in just a day?

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Buy from Scribd
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Buy from Barnes and Noble Nook
Buy from Apple Books
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Heart To Heart: Romance Writing For Beginners

Heart To Heart: Romance Writing For Beginners

eBook: $5.99
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.

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Buy from Kobo
Buy from Barnes and Noble Nook
Buy from Apple Books
Buy from Amazon Kindle

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Ebook Pricing: 3 Tips For Today

Ebook Pricing: 3 Tips For Today

Writing ebooks? If you’re a new author, you’re concerned about ebook pricing.

Established authors, who’ve built up a catalogue of titles, tend not to worry about pricing individual ebooks. They’re focused on extending their reach, and on pricing their ebook series, so that they can tempt new readers into giving their ebooks a try.

One of my students told me: “I price everything at $2.99. Short story, novel, nonfiction ebook… I don’t care. Everything’s priced the same, and I enroll everything in Select for Kindle Unlimited.” It works for him, now that Kindle Unlimited pays you according to pages read.

My own pricing system is much the same. I don’t price everything at $2.99. I price short stories at 99 cents because they’re loss leaders for series, but I vary the prices on other titles. I’m guided by what other authors in a genre are charging, but I’ll also test prices with ebooks which are selling well.

If you increase the price of an ebook, you may make more money at a certain price point, even if you sell fewer ebooks.

As my friend does, I enroll everything in Kindle Unlimited (KU).

WrittenWord Media offers an excellent article on pricing ebooks:

“An author who wants to maximize a financial return on their marketing dollars will use a different pricing strategy than an author who wants to acquire the most new readers. Both goals are undoubtedly part of your marketing plan. Which strategy you deploy depends on which goal applies to the specific title you’re promoting.”

Four tips for ebook pricing today

Most authors want to make money from their ebooks, and they want to increase their readership too. It’s possible to do both.

Let’s look at some ebook pricing tips.

1. Avoid “free” for standalone ebooks, and short series

Free, or low priced ebooks, don’t always convert to sales, or to increasing your readership.

Readers can get all the free titles they want to download in most genres, so “free” has gone from a useful marketing tool, to a tool you need to handle carefully.

Keep in mind too, that Kindle Unlimited allows a subscriber to read as many ebooks as he likes for free. Not all ebooks are in KU, of course, and many of Amazon’s country sites don’t offer KU.

2. If you’re pricing above or below other indie authors in a category, have a reason

Let’s say that other authors in your genre are charging 99 cents for ebooks which are part of a series, and you want to charge $2.99 for each episode of your ten-episode series. Could that work for you?

It’s impossible to say. Try it, and see. That’s always what I suggest when authors ask about pricing — try it, and see.

Keep careful notes of your experiments.

3. Choose an ebook price quickly, change it slowly

You can change the price of an ebook; no price is set in stone. However, ebooks take time to find their level.

Let’s say that you’re selling a standalone novel. You published it a couple of months ago. Sales are slow. You decide to lower the price… should you?

If you’re hoping that changing the price will suddenly turn your sleeper into a hot title, pricing it lower may have little effect. Who knows why a title doesn’t sell? You feel it’s your best work, and are disappointed. You want to do something, anything, to kick this title along. So you lower the price.

It may work. On the other hand, your sleeper title may suddenly take off. A year after publication, it suddenly starts selling. That happened to one of my sleepers. I have no idea why. The title wasn’t in a popular genre, either.

4. Advertise titles which are selling well

Sell what’s selling. If a title sells well, consider turning it into a series — if it works, it works. You can also give titles which sell a push with advertising.

If a title isn’t selling, you may kickstart it with advertising, but on the other hand, you may not. Avoid spending big on titles which don’t sell. You may be tossing good money after bad.

Ebook Dominance: sell more copies of your ebooks, every day

Ebook Dominance: Market and SELL Your Ebooks In Just 15 Minutes A Day

Discover the marketing secrets of bestselling authors — you can market in minutes, from the comfort of your sofa…

How would you feel if your sales doubled, then tripled — and then YOU hit the Kindle hot sellers’ lists?

Ebook Dominance helps you to turbocharge your marketing, and sell more ebooks today.

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