Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Reading Articles on How to Sell Books... or Not.

I just saw a link to another one of those articles 'how to make money self-publishing books' or something.  Supposedly it was advice from 3 authors who are supporting their families on their book sales income. 

I didn't click it.

The last time I read one of those articles, the advice was comprised of things I've already done, things I can't afford, and things I already knew about but am not willing to do.

I'm not talking about unethical things.  Just things like writing to spec (where you write what someone else tells you to write), joining organizations, going to conferences, etc.  Luckily, I've never seen one where the people are advocating unethical things.  I'd totally block anyone who linked to that kind of article.

Anyway, I'm sure there are things I could do to sell more books.  I'm on the 'write more books' plan.  I'm also on the plan where I recognize my books are not for everyone.  (Which is rationalizing, I think, but I'm okay with that.) 

Back when I first published Dying Embers, I did a lot more stuff.  I got active on a couple forums.  I paid for more advertising.  I pimped my book to anyone who would listen and they were all excited for me because it was my first book.  Now?

I stopped going to the forums because the more I got to know the people on them, the less I liked being on them.  Too much in-fighting and snottiness.  It got harder and harder to talk to the people I wanted to reach without getting caught up.  Bleh.

I stopped advertising so much because I don't have the money.

And I stopped pimping my book in public because I noticed somewhere around the 3rd book that the people I was chatting the books up with weren't so excited anymore.  "Oh, you published another book?  :yawn:" or "I haven't had time to read the last two books you published." 

I've heard that having books in a series sells more books.  Umm, yeah.  That hasn't worked for me.  We'll see what publishing the final book in the Once Upon a Djinn series does for sales of all of them.  Fingers crossed and all that. 

I heard that having a newsletter helps.  Umm, about that.  I have like 13 subscribers.  I haven't put out a new newsletter since last year, and no one seems to have noticed.  Probably because everything in a newsletter is also on my blogs and my FB page.  I'll put one out next month to announce the publication of Wish Hits the Fan

I've had giveaways because those are supposed to increase sales.  Nope.  They're also supposed to garner reviews, but out of all the books I've given away to strangers, I got one review.  (I'm not counting friends or regular blog visitors who've won my books.  You guys rock.)

It occurs to me this far through writing this post that it may sound like I'm whining.  I'm not.  I'm just explaining things.  Writing them out so I get the big picture and so anyone new to the biz gets the big picture from my perspective.  Your mileage my vary, of course.  Obviously, since other people are selling books. 

I'm also not depressed about it.  It is what it is.  

And yes, I know other people are in a worse boat than I am.  It's all relative.  This is my journey. 

Today, my journey will have to be about editing and writing.  I gave myself a rather tight deadline on turning WHTF around to JC.  And I still need to finish SU.  And right now the weather is gorgeous so I'm fighting the urge to go fishing. 

What are you up to today?


  1. What you just said. All of it. Go fishing--if you haven't already. It'll help settle your brain. Then come back and work.

    1. I went on Tuesday. Caught a 1 3/4 lb bass. It was yummy. Yesterday was all about the work. And I got it all done. Sleeping Ugly is in the can. Whew. Now I can concentrate on edits for Wish Hits the Fan. =o)

  2. Those articles are obnoxious. :)

    I think you know what to do. My plan is primarily writing more books. I only send a newsletter when I've got a release, but I do find they spike sales. I have newsletter signup links on my website, blog, FB page, in the backs of books, and as a signature on my emails. It just takes time. :)

    1. LOL, yep. Definitely obnoxious.

      Yeah, I do know what to do. And yeah, it takes time. Your plan seems to be working for you. Yay! Keep up the good work!