Business, Basic
Business, Basic

Why All the Genres?

I have run into a form of this question several times now since we have opened the site. People understand, of course, why we do all the genres, but they don’t understand why that is a good thing for them, in particular. “I write cozy mystery. Why do I care about a dark fantasy guide?” It’s actually a good question, with two answers. First of all, there is something to be learned from every genre. No matter what genre you write, you can write it better by borrowing aspects of other genres. I write primarily fantasy, but I studied thrillers...

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The Indie Mindset

Let’s talk mindset. Many of you have come out of the Traditional Publishing (TradPub for short) world, either directly, or having been raised and trained to think that way. You see a specific career arc that you need to follow, in order to achieve success. Does this sound familiar? Start in short fiction, honing your craft at 5000-word stories until you think you have the ability to write a pretty good story for one of the periodicals in your genre. Then you start submitting them and to various open anthology calls until you start to achieve some level of success....

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Publishing Your Book

In this Essential, I am going to walk you through the steps of publishing a book. We’re going to do it on Amazon, as it is the biggest platform, but the steps will be essentially the same wherever you choose to put your book out. Before You Begin Before you can publish your book, you’re going to need several things, all of which have an article or essential dedicated to them The Golden Rule The last thing you absolutely have to know before we publish your book is that you do not have to pay to publish your book. Amazon...

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Promotion Basics

I want to start out by saying I don’t believe promotion is more important than writing a good book. Nothing is more important than writing a good book. But if you want to sell that good book, there is nothing more important than promoting it well. The Promotion Box Promotion opportunities exist in a four variable box, as pictured below. There are successful authors who occupy all sections of this box. However, most authors begin in the bottom left corner and move through several stages until they are spending money as well as doing both online and in person activities....

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Launching a Book with Kickstarter

Is Kickstarter right for you and your book? For many independent authors, the answer is a resounding yes. Before we start talking about how to run your Kickstarter campaign, let’s figure out if it’s the right platform for you.  Kickstarter is most useful if you already have some social media reach or an email list. It doesn’t have to be huge, but having a little head start can make a big difference. You can run a successful Kickstarter without a big audience, but it’s a ton of work and for probably  a small reward. You don’t need a huge following...

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What Does ‘Write To Market’ Mean?

You will often hear the phrase “write to market” from independent authors. But what does it really mean? Everyone has different ideas about how exactly to do it, but one thing is clear: writing to market is absolutely essential if you are going to have success publishing your own work.  The Two Pieces Of Writing To Market In order to make money as an independent author, you must sell a significant quantity of books. That means you need two things. A big enough market, meaning enough people who want to read that type of book, and market penetration, meaning that...

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Paths to Success

Before you begin your trek toward self-publishing success, it’s good to know the path you want to take. Even better if you know the path you’re best suited to. Because despite what a lot of people will tell you, there’s more than one way to make it as an indie. The Fast Lane Series and Speed Level of Difficulty:HIGH Chance of Success:HIGH Combines With:EVERYTHING Putting out a lot of books quickly is the simplest and most likely path to success. But it’s certainly not the easiest. The fast lane is for those who want the highest chance of success as...

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Series and Speed: The Keys to Self-Publishing Success

Writing fast, and in a series, offers the best chance of success as a self-published author. It isn’t the only chance—there are other paths—but it is the most reliable. Because if you write fast, and in series, you can make a living without ever having a hit book. A hit book—or at least a moderately popular one—is a requirement for the other paths. And a hit book is far more dependent on luck, and hitting the right mark at the right time, than your skills as a writer. Readership trends are notoriously hard to predict. Even if you write a...

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