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Messages - Anne R. Tan

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Writers' Cafe / Re: The Nightmare That Is Pre-order
« on: January 24, 2018, 05:15:45 AM »
Thank you. I just may have to learn how to format.

Vellum. Itís the only way to go. I was in your shoes once that was enough for me to form over the money. I was sweating just reading your story. :)

Writers' Cafe / Re: 2nd Virtual Writers Conference for Jan 2018
« on: January 10, 2018, 09:31:49 PM »
I'm getting a database error when I try to load the conference registration site. I've tried refreshing but it just takes ages trying to load before giving me a 504 gateway timeout. Is anyone else having issues? Other pages are loading for me fine.

I have no problems loading the website and the sign up form.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Merry Christmas to all!
« on: December 25, 2017, 09:52:06 AM »
Merry Christmas everyone!  May we all get many new readers this ebook selling season.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Launching at full price versus launching at 99 cents
« on: December 25, 2017, 09:49:24 AM »
I also launched at full price ($2.99) this year. About 3 to 4 weeks later I raised it to my normal price at $4.99 for a new release. So when I advertise my new release, I let readers know the $2.99 is a temporary discounted price. Like Wayne said, I make less sales and my ranking is in the pits, but I bring home more bacon. And I like bacon...

Writers' Cafe / Re: 2nd Virtual Writers Conference for Jan 2018
« on: December 05, 2017, 06:18:46 AM »
Iím looking for to the conference. Thank you for putting it together

Writers' Cafe / Re: Planning ahead
« on: December 01, 2017, 09:45:48 PM »
Not really. I just release the book when I'm done...whenever that happens.

Hi Ethan,

Email me the links and Iíll send it to my newsletter Thursday/Friday. Good luck!


I learned how to plot a mystery by reading "The Weekend Novelist Writes a Mystery." Though I've been a mystery reader my entire life.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Any Guide to Keeping Publishing Organized?
« on: October 05, 2017, 10:05:13 PM »
I'm about to publish a small book about going wide that has my magic Google Sheet spreadsheet that I use for creating all my web pages and manage my content. It will be free.

(I have it on preorder in order to coordinate release dates. PLEASE don't order it now because it's meant to price-match to free after release)

I am waiting anxiously for your book. :)

Writers' Cafe / Re: Novice-friendly story development software?
« on: September 05, 2017, 08:37:22 AM »
If you have Kindling Unlimited... You can get a free download from Christopher Downing  "Fool Proof Outline"  and it comes with a template for Scrivener it walks you through the complete process

I love this template! Between this and Libby's book, I can put together a complete outline in a couple days

Writers' Cafe / Re: Is this the power of a list?
« on: September 04, 2017, 10:24:01 PM »
Isn't this essentially stealing from non-cheating authors who use KU? And it's been going on consistently since 2014 for this one particular author?

The wide authors feel the lost in visibility too from a free promo using Bookbub and the other ad sites.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Novice-friendly story development software?
« on: September 04, 2017, 10:18:25 PM »
Have you looked into Scrivener templates for the story genre? There are plenty of free templates that can help with your plotting.

I have been involved in an Instafreebie giveaway run by the amazing Anne R. Tan in the past, and found it very productive. However, she has recently switched focus to Book Funnel and I am not quite ready to go there yet.

Then  I noticed that Instafreebie has a new feature where they allow authors to create onsite group giveaways, and I had an idea.

One of my main issues with their program is it does not allow for descriptions of the books, only covers. So I am proposing to run a group promo/giveaway, and to create a companion page with lightbox hover over book descriptions, so we can direct fans to both pages, and test if the descriptions help.

I have created a sample page on my website just so you can see what I'm talking about.

This is a temporary example page. I'll take it down soon. To see the feature hover your mouse over either of the first two images. Not sure if it works on mobil. Haven't tested that yet.

Anyway, if any mystery or thriller authors are interested let me know so I'll know if it's worth moving forward. I am thinking of running the promo beginning in mid November.

Also if anyone has any suggestions, feel free to post.

JD: join us for Sept. I can give you a token so you don't have to sign up for an account or upgrade.

Count me in.

BTW, if you go to your IF Dashboard and then click on your book, it will open a page where, under the book's cover, is a button that says "Book Description".

I added mine this morning and it either hasn't been input yet, or I don't know where to look for it on the IF link.

Thanks for your hard work in putting this together.

Unfortunately, this isn't shown to the readers.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Looking for a Beta reader, paid. $50
« on: August 15, 2017, 04:52:01 PM »
I've used Frost Bite Publishing beta service in the past. They are in your price range.

Writers' Cafe / Re: The Perfect Writing Tool: What are you looking for?
« on: August 03, 2017, 08:04:27 AM »
100% this. You can't swing a dead cat without hitting a feature-rich writing program these days. But there is no good bookkeeping app for authors. I understand there's something on Windows that works pretty well, but that's not much use for Mac users like myself. This is the real gap in self-publishing apps that needs to be filled.

But to play along with the topic of the thread, I'd basically want everything Scrivener has, but with a few additional features:

1. Word count tracker - I don't mean the current session/project target (which is awesome). I mean a way to log sprints. So if I write 2000 from 10-11, I want Scrivener to be able to record that.

2. Plotting tools - Yeah, you can set this up manually or download templates, but I'd like some dedicated plotting tools integrated in a program so I don't have to go online and use StoryPlanner or StoryShop.

3. Full-screen with plotting info - Like others have said, Scrivener's focus mode is pretty awesome. But I never use it, because I want my notecards to be visible. It'd be great if I could maybe move the cursor over to the left or right side of the screen, and a panel would pop out with the notecards listed there.

The Novel Factory has these features. The only reason I don't use it is the page break in the composition mode. I want one long continuous page vs. an actual page.

The July Mystery/Thriller Book Funnel Giveaway generated 33,300 outbound clicks. Woohoo! Excellent job, everyone.

Of the 27 participating authors, 25 authors shared the giveaway to their newsletter and social media. Since the 2 authors didn't respond to my "gentle" reminder, I assumed they are freeloaders.

On average, it seems like 0.5% - 1% of an author's newsletter clicked on the landing page. This interesting data. The authors who participate monthly like me, have lower clicks to the landing page than those who participated less often. Maybe the "wow, free books" are less of a lure. In my case, I had 36% open rate with a 7% click rate, but only 420 readers clicked on the landing page.

The top three authors who generated the most clicks on the landing page are: Cindy Bell (840 clicks), Steven Moore (799), and Danielle Lenee Davis (765).

The top three authors to receive the most clicks to the individual book page are: Cindy Bell, Stephen Moore, and Stacey Alabaster, and Danielle Lenee Davis. However, I don't know how many of these readers are already in their list.

The lowest click to the individual book page is 489 and the highest is in the thousands.

My conversion rate for readers who signed up and downloaded is 47%. And of the 338 people who signed up for the book, 115 of them are already on my list. So when compared to an IF giveaway, I get about ~100-200 less sign-ups in the BF giveaway. However, if these sign-ups end up better quality, then it would be worth it.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Any updated Sendy user thoughts?
« on: July 25, 2017, 09:55:34 PM »
I got Sendy installed and a template set up, but I never used it after the initial test email. I didn't like the interface and the lack of automation. You can probably hack something together for automation. I'm with Mailerlite, and I am grandfathered in under their old pricing structure, so I pay less than $50/month for up to 25k subscribers (not that I have this many yet). I don't think working around Sendy's limitations is the bet use of my limited writing time.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Plotting mystery novels - tips, software?
« on: July 11, 2017, 11:54:55 PM »
"The weekend writer writes a mystery" helped me plot my first mystery. I pretty much follow the same outline process since. I plot the backstory first (victim, who wants to kill him, etc). Then I plot the front story that the reader reads. The clues have to make sense in hindsight when the killer is revealed. Unlike the other genres, mystery readers are actively trying to figure out the killer along with the sleuth. They are looking for a puzzle to solve with a main character that they want to spend a lot of time with (mysteries can run as long as 40+ books). Whether you write a PI mystery or cozy mystery, this applies across the board. Good luck!

Writers' Cafe / Re: Beta Reading Services?
« on: July 11, 2017, 10:18:42 AM »
I've used Frostbite Publishing in the past for betas, but these days I have a beta team from among my readers.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Why I've abandoned Scrivener
« on: June 25, 2017, 11:24:34 AM »
But my master document (and all notes and planning files) are always kept in Scrivener. And after I've drafted or edited a piece of something in Google Docs, I move it to its place in my Scrivener setup. (I highlight my changes in GDocs so I can just copy/paste what was added or changed). Same with edits and feedback, if I choose to accept, I very carefully copy the text over to my Scrivener file ("paste and match style" so it doesn't bring along anything funky).

I love love love the file binder and all the ways you can configure it, the color coding, the icons. I love being able to sort a giant work into all those little pieces.

I also use Scrivener mainly for organization, but use other tools for drafting, outlining, and note making.

We're full! Thanks for your interest. And thanks to all the authors who offered up their tokens so others can participate.


Modified: 6/14/17

I'm taking submissions for a Mystery/Thriller/Suspense Book Funnel Group Promo. The dates are from 7/21-7/31. There will be a total of 20 authors for the final count.


Writers' Cafe / Re: Holy crap, my launch is going well!
« on: June 14, 2017, 08:32:40 AM »
I just bought it. Can't wait to get started.

Also, keep track of how many downloads you get with each site. This will give you stats for the next time you do a free run. I track the date of the promo, cost I paid, and download #. Then I can figure out the cost per download ratio for future reference.

I know people think all exposure is the same but I measure all my marketing based on ROI. If I don't break even on sales with my regular priced books during the promote period, then I look at my cost per download ratio for the sites. Some of the mid-range sites that people regularly use have horrible ROI for my books.

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