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Messages - PaulineMRoss

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Finished my novel, now what?
« on: Yesterday at 12:15:51 AM »
So, what should be the best option for me? I know it's subjective. But I have written a character driven, coming of age, travel story. Think Bukowski or Hemingway, literature based on real life. Maybe it's quite niche. And I'm just not sure what to do.

Why not do both? Shop it around to agents or publishers, while also polishing it ready for self-pubbing (external editing, cover art options, etc). You'll find out soon enough if they think it's the sort of thing they'll go for. Either way, you need to build your tribe for this particular book, so that when it does eventually get published, you'll have a ready-made audience. If it's mainly a travelogue, then look for that audience (maybe students who want to backpack through Asia, or ex-students who did or wish they had). But if it's mainly a mystery, that's a big market. Plenty of scope there.

Writers' Cafe / Re: How to add a chapter to scrivener?
« on: Yesterday at 12:02:36 AM »
If you right-click the offending folder, there's a Move option. If you move it to the left, it will un-nest itself and become its own chapter/folder. You can get the same effect by dragging very carefully, watching the exact length of the little blue line that shows where it will drop. But sometimes it's easier to just drop it and then move it where you want. I use the Windows version, so it may be different on a Mac.

By the way, the beauty of Scrivener is that chapters and scenes are whatever you say they are. I use a folder for the whole manuscript and a document for each chapter.

Writers' Cafe / Re: My prawny attempt to hit #1 in my categories
« on: March 22, 2018, 12:01:26 AM »
Good luck with it! It's always useful to see just one site per day for comparison. Congrats on a very well-arranged promo.

I'm seeing this now as well. I wonder if it's because we're all in the UK?

I'm in the UK but I'm still seeing the full also-bought carousel. I do get a second row of sponsored ads, plus a row of also vieweds, a what-do-customers-buy row and two rows of inspired-by recommendations. Buried somewhere in that lot are the actual book details. I'm using a full-screen desktop PC with Firefox.

Four weeks on, and the Bookbub tail just keeps on trucking. Numbers added to the first post, for those who want them.

I had a new release at the start of this week, but even excluding that book, sales of the other books are up this week, and therefore revenue too. Ranks are still solid, and I still have an author rank. Pages read are down slightly, and mailing list signups are also slightly down, but still an astonishing 6 per day. I've now added over 300 people to my mailing list in the last month.

I can't quite believe how well this has gone.  :o

Writers' Cafe / Re: trad publishing called and I picked up the phone
« on: March 21, 2018, 10:46:32 AM »
This sounds like an ideal arrangement, especially since you get to keep audio. Congrats, and thanks for sharing your thinking in such detail - very interesting. Good luck with it!

My understanding was this would only edit the Kindle blurb and not the paperback blurb which is what I am trying to change

Oh, the paperback... yes, do this in Createspace, if that's what you're using. If you're publishing through KDP paperbacks, then change it there.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Currently with Mailchimp - Should I switch?
« on: March 20, 2018, 01:53:56 PM »
I switched from MailChimp to MailerLite because it once took me half a day to work out just what subscribers would see when they went through the signup process. Yes, I found it that impenetrable. MailerLite is a tad flakier than it used to be, but it's cheaper, way easier to use and their customer service is very responsive.

If you have multiple pen names/genres, you can have multiple accounts at ML to keep the subscribers separate (if they're all on one account, it's regarded as one list).

Can't you just edit your blurb through your kdp account instead of author central and then it will roll out to all markets?

Yes, this. And not only will it roll out to all markets, it's the definitive version. If you change the blurb on your author page, then the next time you make any change via the KDP account, even the price, the blurb there will overwrite whatever you put up via your author page. So you might as well change the blurb via KDP in the first place.

The author page is a useful way to make an emergency change, because it updates very quickly, but it's best to make permanent changes through the KDP account.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Double Opt-In: Yes or No?
« on: March 20, 2018, 10:52:43 AM »
I have double opt-in and will always have double opt-in. Single opt-in is just too vulnerable, and if I lose a few signups in the longer process, so be it. Besides, any reader who's signing up will very likely have jumped through these hoops before and knows how it works.

But I do want to make sure that everyone who's managed to get through the trials of signing up actually gets their free books, so I send out a welcome email with the links, and every single email I send to the whole list, I put the freebie links at the bottom. It always astonishes me how many people use those links.

Despite the subject being a non-question (as someone said, there's no 'should' about it), this is an interesting discussion.

I'm strictly of the habit-forming persuasion. I write every single day, if I possibly can, even if it's only a few sentences. I get twitchy if I can't write at all. I also eat the frog, ie I sit down straight after breakfast and start writing. I don't any longer do formal (timed) sprints, which got me writing faster but I don't feel I need them any more. I simply write until I don't know what to write, then I stop, even if it's mid-sentence. I'll go off and do some mindless chore (ironing is good for this purpose) while I mull over the problem, and as soon as I know what to write again, off I go and write it. Lather rinse repeat. Once I get to 2,500 words in the day I begin to feel I've done enough, but if I still have words wanting to be written, I'll carry on. I like for focus, but I don't find it works so well when I'm writing my Regency romances. Don't know why.

All of this gets me 6-8 publishable books a year (I mostly edit as I go).

They asked how they could improve it. I told them it would be impossible to make it worse. No Amazon manager would put up with reports like that. The reporting is completely useless, and AMS is like throwing darts with a blindfold. I said that it was obvious they valued authors so little that they put their worst programmers to work on AMS and the KDP dashboard. I advised them to transfer just one person with experience in designing user interfaces to KDP.

I have a lot of sympathy with this, but I'm not sure that yelling at them is the most effective way to tell them what we want (even supposing the survey doesn't go straight to the cyber-shredder).

I gave them a long list of wishes, grouped by type (reporting options, editing options, billing options...). I'd have used bullet points if I could. If anyone ever reads these responses, I'd hope a neat list gets their attention better than a rant. Although a rant is cathartic, so there's that...  :D

Writers' Cafe / Re: Going wide [UPDATED: FIRST TWO MONTHS]
« on: March 18, 2018, 03:53:03 AM »
I've done this. It works quite well but I found I got quite a few comments along the lines of "Why isn't this available on Amazon?" if I directed an ad to eg Kobo or iBooks.

LOL! You just can't win, can you?

Writers' Cafe / Re: Going wide [UPDATED: FIRST TWO MONTHS]
« on: March 18, 2018, 03:45:39 AM »
I found when I narrowed ads down to a specific platform, like say kobo, the clicks were a lot cheaper. {Snip}

Wow, some good advice there - thanks. I'll give it a go.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Going wide [UPDATED: FIRST TWO MONTHS]
« on: March 18, 2018, 12:40:27 AM »
Maybe trying some ads that target specific platforms. Itís definitely worked for me.

Yes, that's a good idea, although I find FB ads just eat money. I dabbled with FB ads when the first in series went permafree, but they just ate money, so I more or less abandoned it. I'll have another look at it. Thanks.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Going wide [UPDATED: FIRST TWO MONTHS]
« on: March 17, 2018, 04:11:07 PM »
Here's an update on my experiment in going wide. I took my 9-book fantasy series wide in mid-January, so here's how it's gone in the first two months:

The revenue from KU has all but dropped away to nothing now, so daily revenue hit rock bottom levels of around $13 per day in late February, six weeks after going wide (it was $21/day at the previous low point). However, I had an ENT on the permafree first in series on 4th March, and since then sales have picked up noticeably at all retailers, and revenue has inched upwards to $16 per day. Still no Bookbub on this series, sadly.

Sales to date in 2 months: Kobo 7; D2D (Apple/B&N) 12; GooglePlay 0; Amazon: 223 (still around 4/day, as before)

I have promotions coming up in April with RobinReads and BookBarbarian, and I still have two more books to upload wide, after which I shall start another round of Bookbub submissions. One can but hope.

So far, it hasn't been as disastrous as I'd feared, but it hasn't done as well as I'd hoped, either. The permafree first in series is definitely working - I've had several days when I've sold one of every other book in the series to someone who obviously read book 1, and that's lovely to see. Of course, if sales were higher I wouldn't see that at all, so there's that.

I've got the survey email but haven't replied yet. I've been taking notes.  :D Thanks for the ideas, guys!

So I'm unsure now whether it's broken or if this is a feature.

Check the settings. I found mine had the default settings, so you may just need to change it to show zero data.

I have to say, I love having it on my phone, and also being able to go straight to BookReport instead of hopping about first. Great improvement.

Three weeks on, and those grin-inducing numbers are all settling down now. Sales, pages read, revenue and mailing list signups are all well down on last week's numbers. Even so, sales are still 3 times pre-Bookbub levels, pages read 4 times, revenue 3 times and mailing list signups are way, way higher. I estimate that in less than a month, I've made some $6K net profit from this Bookbub, excluding this week's new release, which had record numbers of pre-orders because of BB. Bookbub is definitely the gift that goes on giving.

Full numbers in the first post of this thread, for those interested.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Going Wide - Direct or with an Aggregator?
« on: March 15, 2018, 01:20:08 PM »
Allyson, How do you do a promo on Kobo? I've just uploaded several books there and don't see anything mentioning promos. Thanks.

Not Allyson, but I'll answer anyway. You have to ask for access to the promotions. Email them and ask, and it'll show up as a new tab on the dashboard. Their promos are quite cheap, so worth trying.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Six months to get traction when going wide...
« on: March 15, 2018, 08:43:45 AM »
I thought it was next to impossible to get a BB deal when you're in KU. Anyone achieved this?

Yes, with my Regency romance box set. Ironically, this happened just after I went wide with my fantasy series (which I've still never had a BB for).

Essentially, BB prefer books that are wide, but they do take KU books, just not as often.

Writers' Cafe / Re: Going Wide - Direct or with an Aggregator?
« on: March 15, 2018, 08:37:14 AM »
It's swings and roundabouts.

If you go direct with everyone, you maximise your royalties and also get access to promotions. You also have to remember the various formatting quirks for each retailer, jump through hoops to get a GooglePlay account, have a Mac (or equivalent) to upload to Apple, have to spend hours uploading each book to the whole array of sites, and then have royalty reports coming at you at different times and in different formats.

If you use an aggregator, you only deal with one site, one format, one upload, one royalty report BUT you lose a percentage of every sale to the aggregator.

You can switch from an aggregator to go direct later, if you want, but you lose any reviews (you're essentially republishing). There's no one right answer. Only you can decide how much money you might lose to an aggregator, and how much time you're prepared to sacrifice to go direct.

I had this, too, but when I closed the browser and restarted, everything worked fine, so I assume it was just a glitch?

Point. I just went back into KU, so I guess it took a day to kick in.

Did being wide not work out, Timothy?

Is it just me, or does the calculation of full reads not work at all? All I get is zeros, even when the reads value is much more than 1 full read.

If your books are wide, then the ~Borrows column is perpetually zero, even when there are pages read reported. Because you can't actually have any borrows if you're wide.

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