Sunday, December 6, 2015

Your Novel Doesn't Sell? You Can Change That. (Final Installment)

This is the final installment of my little treatise on what a writer can do to power-up one's novel so that it becomes a good seller and an anchor point for your future books.

H) Make sure you have an Author Page on Amazon. They're easy and free to set up once you have a book published. Just Google Amazon Author Pages to find information on how to do it. Readers increasingly go to an author's Author Page to see a list of the author's entire bibliography. The Author Page provides a "big picture" look at any given author.

I) Find every possible opportunity to get yourself and your books (notice the plural) before the reading public. This means giving talks and presentations at libraries, service clubs, schools, book clubs, festivals, street fairs, writers conferences, getting yourself on author panels, participating in every kind of book celebration. Get yourself some book stands, signs, and a table. Seize every opportunity to get in front of people, hold up your books, and say, "Hey, I wrote these books, and I think they're pretty good, and they've got great reviews. I'd love to have you check them out!"

I've written about this before. Click on the "On Writing" label on the right sidebar of this blog and peruse the many blogs I've written about this topic. Also, go to the "Events Schedule" on my website to see the kinds of events I do and have done over the years.

In sum, here is the list of things from this series you can do to make your novel stand out in what has become a ridiculously crowded marketplace:

A) Get multiple critiques of your book from other writers in your genre.

B) Move Life-Or-Death trouble up to the first paragraph, or, better yet, the first sentence of your book.

C) When you've rewritten your book, get it professionally edited.

D) Get a cover designed by a professional book cover designer.

E) Get a dot-com website (not dot-net or dot-biz, etc.) that uses your author name as its domain name.

F) Once your book is published at an affordable price ($4 or less on Kindle), you need to get reviews, especially consumer reviews on Amazon.

G) Continue writing books in the same genre, and, if at all possible, have all of your books be in a series.

H) Make sure you have an Author Page on Amazon.

I) Find every possible opportunity to get yourself and your books (notice the plural) before the reading public.

I believe that if you do these things, you will be well on your way to success. Even more, I believe that if you don't do these things, you may be operating with an insurmountable handicap.

These things are basic and were done by nearly all successful authors when they started out. Yes, this is all work, but none of these things is complicated. And compared to any other work, this is kid stuff, the easiest job in the world. Just by writing a novel, you've already demonstrated that you can take on, and succeed at, a huge challenge. 

As I said in a previous post, the hardest part of being an author is writing a really good novel. But the most important part is getting that book in front of readers. The points in this series belong to both parts.

Good luck!

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