book promotion, book sales, Google Ads, self-publishing, Uncategorized, Welcome

When Is A Book Not A Hershey’s Bar?

Always, of course. So, why do we market them like Hershey’s bars? Here’s two thoughts on that.

1. Most books, like Hershey’s bars, are not advertised. When did you last see an ad for Hershey’s bars? Hershey does not need to advertise them because they are everywhere candy bars are sold. Like J.K. Rowling’s books are in all the book stores. Yes, her publisher will advertise her new book, but that’s just sensibly putting the cart after the horse. They want fans to know she has a new book.

2. When books are marketed, they are marketed like Hershey’s bars, as if they too, were a commodity and people should buy a package of the same thing and if they like it, come back for more of the same book. Books are not commodities. Each one is unique. So, there are no repeat sales of the same book to the same consumer.

What to do? Consider yourself – yes, you, the author – as the commodity. One thing of which we can be certain is that when a reader is looking for something to read, they usually do not envision a cover or make up a title to look for. They will, however, consider a novel from J.K. Rowling if they have enjoyed reading her.

“Sell yourself first.” That’s what any professional sales manager teaches. Don’t expect a stranger to trust what you sell if they do not trust you. How do you get readers to know you well enough to try your book? One writer here that understands this is Perry Palin. In many ways, he sells books to people who have first come to know him. Another may be Mimi Speike. She plans to initially stir up her market with Guerrilla marketing techniques which may make her infamous.

How do you get yourself known as a writer? Use the Comments section to let us know. We, obviously, need all the ideas that we can get!

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book promotion, Uncategorized, Writers Co-op

The Ramblings of a Grave Robber

Deb Whittam’s latest release.

I have a job. I tell people I assist with relocations. I just don’t tell them how, or where, or what.
My name’s Stacey Dearling and I’m a grave robber.

I rob graves so the guilty can be punished … by heaven or hell. Less
I have a job. I tell people I assist with relocations. I just don’t tell them how, or where, or what.
My name’s Stacey Dearling and I’m a grave robber.

I rob graves so the guilty can be punished … by heaven or hell.

Stacey Dearling has a job and she does it well, but when a series of events takes her beyond what she knows, she realizes that expectations and capabilities are confusing things and she doesn’t like the consequences.

The Ramblings of a Grave Robber – Free on Smashwords

Deb Whittam

Read Deb Whittam’s Smashwords Interview: “Currently we are travelling around Australia in a caravan, so when I am not writing I am exploring. We decided to undertake this trip as we had never really traveled in our own backyard and we have been amazed by the natural wonders we have discovered.”

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book promotion, Uncategorized, Writers Co-op

“Heed the Darkness” by Kim Michelle Ross

My debut novel, Netherrealm Book 1: Heed the Darkness, has been released by Silk Odyssey Press. It’s the first in a Historical/Contemporary/Fantasy trilogy, a twisted tale of reincarnation set amidst history with a large dash of fantasy. There’s, romance, intrigue, sex, war, and murder in 12th century England as well as glimpses of the 21st century.

The story starts on a hot 1133 summer’s day and we meet the main players Bethany de Lise, Elena de la Chatelaine, Gerrat de Ashbore and Alice, a Saxon servant. The three girls go on a strange adventure to a stone circle and on the same day at the exact time Jared Ashbourne visits the same site in 2003. A time slip occurs and connects medieval England to the 21st century. But, as the timelines converge, Bethany de Lise, is psychically linked to her future self as Dayna Barnes, and Jared gets a direct feed to his own past life experiences as Gerrat de Ashbore.

However, an evil presence has been lingering about the girls for many years and it catapults itself from the 12th century and into the modern era.

The medieval story is written in the third person, alternatively narrated through Bethany, Elena, and Gerrat. It tells Bethany and Gerrat’s budding love story as war erupts between King Stephen and Empress Maud and the fracturing of England’s people. And of Elena de la Chatelaine as she descends into madness when a vengeful spirit attaches itself to her and uses Elena’s body for its own murderous vendetta. Also witness the effects of how Bethany and Gerrat’s 21st-century counterparts, Dayna Barnes and Jared Ashbourne, are connected through their dreams and as the past-present timelines continue to randomly collide and mess with their current lives. The subplot explores Robert of Gloucester’s 1135 plot to overthrow King Stephen and Gerrat’s part in it. When the traitorous plan is discovered it forces Gerrat to flee the country and abandon Bethany leaving her vulnerable to the evil spirit’s treacherous plots.

Amazon
Netherrealm Book 1: Heed the Darkness

Author
Kim Michelle Ross

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book promotion, book reviews, Uncategorized

Beast (A Twisted Tale Series)

NEW RELEASE by Lisa Edward
(Beast is the first in a series of fairytale retelling novels.)

Life had always been good to me, and I made sure to keep it that way. My mom had given me the only tool I’d need to succeed—manipulation. Add to that the fact I was beautiful, confident, and rich, and I was on my way to having it all.

My name is Annabelle, and I was the stereotypical head cheerleader, dating the star quarterback. The school was mine, and I couldn’t wait to be crowned prom queen.

One night, my world changed forever. All I believed my future would hold was ripped from my grasp in a ball of flames. I lost my identity, my boyfriend, and my friends. Suddenly, I was the monster nobody wanted around.

A scarf hid my true identity, and I was left staring at the beast in the mirror. My appearance now matched the ugliness I once had inside, but I’d do everything I could to prove I still had some beauty buried deep within.

Sometimes, you have to lose who you are to become who you were meant to be.

Amazon Link

Reviews
Beast was an amazing spin on Beauty and the Beast…I loved the originality to this story as the retelling was creative and clever.” – Amazon reviewer

Beast was a beautiful story…It looked at the importance that inner beauty should have over our physical appearance.” – 2OCC Reviews

Author
Lisa Edward is the author of  the Songbird trilogy, the novel, Broken and the novella, Duty of Care. Lisa also has a story in the anthology, Hook & Ladder 69. The author lives in Melbourne, Australia.

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book promotion, Uncategorized, Writers Co-op

Welcome to The Rabbit Hole!

The Anthology cover has been revealed and here it is.

This cover has been designed to stand out on a screen. It is unlike traditional book covers that are viewed by the light that bounces off of them. This one has been designed as a true electronic cover that is viewed in the glow of light coming through the image. The Rabbit Hole cover will pop out on web pages that list books for sale.

This stand-out image was created by cover artist – and author and musician – Ian C. Bristow. His works can be viewed, read and listened to, here:

https://www.DeviantArt.com/brokeman29
http://IancBristow.com/
https://SoundCloud.com/anristow

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About Writers, book promotion, book sales, publishing, Research, self-publishing, Uncategorized, Writers Co-op

WRITING TRENDS

INDIE AUTHORS
Indie authors will continue to grow ebook share. Traditional publishers will continue to price their ebooks above market and will focus on print and audio sales in 2018. They will also continue to focus on their go-to franchises and signing authors who have a built-in audience (celebrities, politicians, successful indies). Indies will continue to fill the void by publishing high-quality, affordable ebooks and writing to niche audiences (something blockbusters cannot do as they require mass appeal). Bestselling romance author, Rachel Van Dyken says, “2018 is bound to be a year for books and a year for readers! Trends come and go but one thing I see coming back in a huge way is sci-fi and fantasy romance. Contemporary will always do well but I think readers are starting to get overwhelmed with the same old rom com with the similar fonts, colors, and titles. I say bring on the other genres—a great palette cleanser for 2018.” As authors like Rachel continue to stay ahead of the curve by innovating on content and design, and become ever more sophisticated at book publishing, readers will continue to shift ebook market share to indies. [Ricci, Written Word Media]
https://www.writtenwordmedia.com/2018/01/08/publishing-trends-indie-publishing/

SOCIAL MEDIA Relevancy
Social media has become the main source of information for everyone. It is logical that people tend to filter content relevant to them in these platforms and ignore junks. Current authors should learn how to utilize social media smartly to leverage the power of these media. For example, setting up a high profile where their target audience is many to capture majority while they interact with the platforms. For instance, if you are doing public relation for a company, you need to build trust and address customers’ concerns to avoid being flagged as a scam in Facebook, Linkedin and Google Plus among others.
https://www.topteny.com/top-trends-for-writing-in-2018/

SHORTER BOOKS
While longer books will never go away, shorter, focused content or short stories will pave the way for big new sales numbers in 2018. So what’s the average length of a short book or novella? Twenty-seven thousand words (give or take) or fifty pages. Book strategists insist that the reason these books take off is because, in the case of fiction, readers sometimes just like that quick story, with an uncomplicated plot and a quick reward at the end. In the case of non-fiction it’s generally very focused content.
https://www.amarketingexpert.com/18-exciting-book-marketing-predictions-for-2018/

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About Writers, Amazon, book promotion, humor

The Birth of Bill McSciFi (It Involves Porn)

SuccubusFinal(LargeWings)Once upon a time, in a land far far away, it was a dark and stormy night. This is not that story. Nope, this is the story of how I wrote a book, one that I got some people to read, and then used their helpful insights to polish. The experience was fun and enriching. I learned a lot. Mostly I learned how not to blow a hole in the solar system and how there are geneticists today thinking about chimeras.

That last part should scare the hell out of you.

If you want to know more about that just click here to read Eric Klein’s interview of me. Lots of science and some profanity.

Anyway, like I said, I wrote a book. Specifically THE BRITTLE RIDERS. It’s a fun look at human hubris, genetics gone wild, and the death of all things.

And, much to my surprise, I found a publisher, Azoth Khem, who liked it, offered me a contract, and set it on the path for human enjoyment.

Now the fun began.

I had commissioned a cover from Jiba Molei Anderson. It’s the image above and to the left of this article. As you can see it’s a dystopian succubus. As you may not have noticed, it signals that my book is porn.

You didn’t notice that? Well, neither did I, the publisher, or anyone involved, until Amazon flagged it and moved it to the erotic ghetto.

I have nothing against erotica. But if that’s what you’re looking for you were doomed to be disappointed by my book.  And if you were looking for sci fi you weren’t poring through the copious amounts of mommy porn and dino-erotica (yes, that’s a thing) to find it.

Suffice it to say sales sagged.

Then, after almost a year of screaming at clouds, it got moved out of there and into … you know what’s coming, don’t you? …. African Women’s studies.

While I tend to wear black, and do like funk, I am not now, nor have I ever been, an African woman. I’m so pale I’m nearly translucent. Once again, this was a bad fit. And, once again, I wasn’t in the right search categories.

Obviously I didn’t belong there either. Nice people, amazing authors, but not really what I do or am. And I doubt they would want to be associated with my dubious ilk.

After another round of screaming at clouds I finally got moved into the sci-fi dystopian categories.

YAY!

And then my book disappeared. On my Amazon page I was now credited with books on golf, a sport I loathe, tennis, one I know nothing about, and a country song. Oh, and a treatise on the Bible. That last one has since disappeared forever, but for one brief shining moment I looked like an author with wildly different interests and no way to tie them together.

A quick run through their search engine showed there are multiple people named Bill McCormick and Amazon had somehow, despite different account info for each, mixed them up.

This time I wasn’t going to yell at a cloud. I wanted a fucking human I could unleash my wrath on. So I called Amazon, found a human, he turned out to be nice, and we were off to the races.

He quickly understood the problem. So he started ticking off the titles into categories so he could straighten them out online. Bill McSports, Bill McCountry, and so on until he hit Bill McSciFi. The light bulb that went off in my head, when he said it, could have been a beacon in a dust storm.

I had the domain name within a week.

Now, with the books on the correct author pages, and me in the right categories, we were off to the races again …… right?

Wrong.

You see, Azoth Khem doesn’t just publish on Amazon. They deliver to stores, multiple online sites, and so on.  And some of those nice people, finally able to see what I hath wrought, thought the cover was too racy.

So I said FUCK, loudly and often, and got Brhi Peres to do a new cover for me. She’s wonderful to work with and tends to create images without people. Scandalous or otherwise.  Using silhouettes created by Brian “Bigger Lion” Daniels, she designed a pleasant dystopian hellscape that made everyone happy.

YAY!

Yeah, this time it is.

Nearly two years to the day from when it was originally published it is now headed to brick and mortar stores in the U.K., some in the U.S., and being added, internationally, in as many places as they can find to take it.

So there’s hope yet.

Now, if you buy me a drink sometime I’ll tell you the story about how a Russian site snagged a Kindle copy and sold 35,000 copies of it over there before we could stop them.

Yeah, that was entertaining. And, no, we never saw a penny.

Being an author is fun.

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