Sunday, October 6, 2013

Touching Base

Time management – something every great writer and self-publisher has a successful handle on. Me – not so much. In between feeding a family of five (including one cat), umpiring squidlet disputes, laundry, shopping, school holidays and a social life, writing and self-promotion gets kinda lost in the mix.
I haven't touched this blog since my last post 22nd September and for a blogger that is pathetic! It is no wonder that a guest post that my good friend and fellow self-publisher Zee Southcombe shared on my blog brought in three times as many readers than most of mine. She is damn good at what she does and I do not doubt she will be selling books long before she has even published them.

So what have I been doing since last month? Reading. Yep, loads of reading! And not just the good stuff either. To learn my trade, I have been reading what rates as a good book and what doesn't meet the mark. I've been reading heaps of kids books too – some great, some not so great. And I've been reading romance novels and YA/NA too, but discovered that I prefer the 16k novellas – the longer reads keep me up until 2am.

I've actually discovered there is a real market for short stories – or novellas. It seems to be a common marketing tool – write a novella, get readers invested in your characters and their drama, sell it for free or .99 and direct traffic to your next full novel in the series. I've also seen novella writers pop one out each month/couple of months to keep their books in the 'New Release' sections of the online retailers. Dang – if they can write that much each month then good for them. It seems to be a successful marketing tool for some, and for others it is just too much to get done in short space of time.

I've been connecting with many other Amazon children's authors online too. It has been really encouraging that I'm not the only indie author who has seen a major drop in book sales over the last few months. And it isn't just kids books either. It seems to be across the board, worldwide. So I’ve been 'hanging' out with other authors to share advice on how to make things work for us again. I've enjoyed getting to know these amazing people.

And I have been organising a Pamper Me Giveaway for another book promotion business I run. There are some amazing prizes for one lucky Kiwi Mama to win. I've collaborated with a few other businesses this time and can see the value in this already even in our first day running it. I'm hoping to gain more interested in my promotions site and gain a little momentum with that. Its my 'promotions nest egg' for in five years time when EVERYONE AND THEIR DOG are publishing kids ebooks and you wont be able to see mine for the trees. It is working. And I'm enjoying it.

So, six weeks out and we start promotions for our next Self-Publishing Workshop. We will be promoting it here quite a bit so apologies if you get sick of it. :) But it is worth it. We cover the basics of self-publishing, covering everything from using a professional editor to cover art to working with image heavy fixed file ebooks. It will be a fantastic workshop for anyone who would love to learn more about self-publishing from NZ. So if you know anyone who might be interested, please let them know!

Thanks for reading, hope the absence hasn't put you off.

Until next time, keep self-publishing!

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