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Messages - thevoiceofone

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1
Writers' Cafe / Re: Are you happy with your audio book(s)
« on: June 14, 2018, 12:06:37 PM »
I'm thinking of taking the plunge into audio with my 50 books, but I'd like to hear from those with experience. What are the problems I might encounter? What you liked and didn't like about the process, if you paid upfront or worked with a split, and what NOT to agree to.

I will very much appreciate your advice.
Marti

I have made great money in the audio market.

One thing i would recommend though. If you have already had out a book for a long time you might not want to do a pay upfront deal unless you can be sure it will do well again in the audio market.

I have had better luck with newly released books ( audio ) than doing my old ones.

2
I haven't posted here in quite awhile, but a lot of you, over the years, have asked for a Mac version of TrackerBox. Now is the time. I've created a Kickstarter project for it, and I really hope enough people want it to make it a reality. I'm tired of telling people that a Mac version doesn't exist.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/markfassett/trackerbox-mac-track-your-book-sales-on-osx

I dont use these services that includes the one others use called BOOKREPORT.

Anywhere i have to hand over my KDP username and password I don't trust.

3
Hey all,

I've been writing non-fiction for a long time. I'm so tired of non-fiction but I'm dedicated to this work because of how important it is to me. But man, it's so hard to find the motivation to get through this before starting something else. I have a guideline about not working on more than one book at once and it means I get them finished, but my last two works have been non-fiction and it's doing my head iiiiinnnn. I just want to pants it in a Universe somewhere else.

What do you do to get through these mind-numbing times?

The last book i finished i absolutely hated but i finished it.

It happens. When you do this for a living. Not every books is enjoyable to write.

There are some that feel like im pulling teeth to finish it and i wonder why i started them. Having said that i will probably sell like hotcakes. The ones i care less about usually do, the ones i agonize over and think are marvellous garner nothing more than the sound of crickets.

4
Writers' Cafe / Re: Complete newbie seeking advice!
« on: June 14, 2018, 12:01:55 PM »
I'm a published children's author (still writing for kids, agent trying her best), but I've written a contemporary romance with a follow-up part-way through. I'm looking for advice on how to launch my first without it sinking like a stone. Thanks :-)

Contemp romance is a tough market. Lots of readers but lots of writers. Rising in the ranks in that market is like trying to swim to the surface of the ocean with ankle weights on. Can it be done? Yes. But its hard.

5
Writers' Cafe / Re: Opinions regarding long (>600 page) novels
« on: June 14, 2018, 12:00:33 PM »
As someone who has recently released a big, fat (612-page) scifi saga (Novum Chronicles) that is actually an omnibus of my 5-book Novum series, I'm curious what you all think of long novels.

Hate them. Too damn long.

I can barely get through 200 pages without quitting a book.

I like my books to be 200 or less. I don't mind 300 but anything over 400 and I don't buy it.

6
Writers' Cafe / Re: New release 1st book series flop = series flop?
« on: June 10, 2018, 09:30:21 AM »
My WIP is intended as a standalone, with no plans for a series. It's a new genre for me, and I'm not going to promote it as 'book 1 in the x series'.

Come to think of it, this is how I've handled each of my five different ongoing series. I do test the market with a first book, but I have very low expectations, and what I'm looking for is ongoing interest, not a given sales figure. I want something that will trickle along for years, not a flash in the pan.

That's often what i do even if it ends up being a series.

I write it so it can standalone.

If it does well, I change it to book 1 and write book 2.

7
Writers' Cafe / Re: New release 1st book series flop = series flop?
« on: June 10, 2018, 09:29:03 AM »
The general rule of thumb most folks will give you is that to sell more of book 1..... published book 2 and 3 within a span of a month apart.

SOMETIMES this works. I say sometimes because it doesn't always work.

Your first book can be total crap ( the cover was wrong for the genre, the blurb turned people off, it was posted in the wrong categories, you didn't hit it with enough advertising etc etc, or the first few chapters didn't grab people ( sample )

You have 3 choices

1. Dump it and move on
2. Stay with it and write 2 and 3 fast and hope to god that it then catches
3. Tweak cover to match others in genre, make sure you are in a not so competitive category, and make sure pricing is good. If you are pricing at $4.99 and most are in at $2.99... and you haven't established yourself and got a fan base. You are stacking the odds against you.

8
Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words a Day Club 2018
« on: June 07, 2018, 02:37:44 PM »
10k. 10 edited. time to pain the house. lol

9
Writers' Cafe / Re: "Verified Purchase" - benefits? pains?
« on: June 07, 2018, 02:36:01 PM »
What makes me laugh is when you get reviewers who call out reviews that don't have verified.

Do they not know that if you don' t have the verified you could have just been a kindle unlimited member

Lol some people make me laugh.

I don't put my stock in verified or non verified. Especially authors who get 50 or more reviews on day one.

10
How to deal with it?

- Good sleep ( Can't overstress this )
- Drink lots of water
- Make sure you're getting enough Iron, B12
- Eat healthy
- Exercise regularly ( walk every day, and hit the gym )
- Set realistic writing goals (Do you really have to do 3,000, 5,000 or 10,000 words a day? Probably not but if its easy then fine )

An additional thing to consider is CBD oil. Though seek out a doctor on this one as it may not be right for you.

That's my interview response. Name withheld. Thanks.


Edited.  PM me if you have any questions.  --Betsy/KB Mod

11
Someone else getting ready to sell us something. Let me guess your course costs $700?

12
Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words a Day Club 2018
« on: June 06, 2018, 11:45:35 AM »
10k, 10k edited.

13
Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words a Day Club 2018
« on: June 04, 2018, 10:02:25 AM »
10k. 10k edited.

14
Writers' Cafe / Re: Ultimate Author Insult!
« on: June 04, 2018, 06:51:50 AM »
To set the scene;
I own and run a small country caravan park in southern New South Wales upon the Edward River. Two men approached me to leave a quantity of goods (provisions),with me while they did some kayaking down the Edward River to arrive at my park in the future. While in the Kiosk at my park, they purchased a copy of my latest novel to read on their journey.
A month later they returned, to tell me how they sat around their camp fire each night taking turns to read my book out aloud to each other. They found it an entertaining read while admitting it was not a literary masterpiece. They then proceeded to inform me that once read, they deigned to throw my book upon the evening fire!!!!!!!!!!!
I understand that space is at a premium while kayaking, but never have I been so insulted. To know that my book, my baby, my heart, my soul and sweat was...burned. I was at a complete loss for words for perhaps the first time in my life. We have no control over our books once they are purchased, but...well I can still think of no words.
Care to share your worst insult?

At least it kept them warm.

Now thats what i call a hot new release.

15
Writers' Cafe / Re: Boasting about sales ( an indie thing?)
« on: June 04, 2018, 06:46:06 AM »
I have only ever seen ONE author do it correctly and that was Chris Fox. He's a nice dude too and I have yet to see him boast. He is honest with his failings too. ( Anyway, when he did it he listed gross amount earned for the year, he then listed a break down of his expenses, and then he showed his NET earnings, and which books worked for him, and how many he has, and mistakes he made, and areas he will improve) I believe it was year end. That kind of information may be very helpful to new folks.

To me that is the way to do it if you are going to reveal numbers.

Many don't and just announce their gross without saying anymore. (not taking into account expenses, net, how many books they have, how many subscribers they have that helped sell those books or large arc team or how long they have been in the game, etc etc.. Yes there are many factors that play into why ONE person can earn X and another can only earn Y doing the exact same marketing)

It can end up being more of a brag or a pitch for their product than a lesson.

16
Writers' Cafe / Re: Bad review: Would you do this?
« on: June 04, 2018, 06:36:27 AM »
I appreciate your reply, but I think your suggestion is too risky. Judging from her other reviews, I could get a volcanic response from her.

Yeah you have to judge it based on their history and tone. Some reviews i don't touch ( about 99%) but the odd idiotic one, i will call out.

17
I sit in my own little corner and write. I try to stay away from all the drama but this is just totally out of control. Makes me sick why indies just can't pub ethically.  :o

https://medium.com/legendary-women/a-couple-new-issues-in-the-indie-book-community-f2cdfc5e830

About time Amazon came down hard on this nonsense.

Seeing 100 reviews appear online on the first day is a joke. We all know they got it for free and feel obliged to give 5 star. ( that to me is not a truthful review) I wonder if any would do that if they had to pay for it?

18
Hi guys,

I'm new to the forum but not new to self publishing. I've had several bestsellers on Amazon and made lots of money from self publishing.

I was curious if anyone has taken an online self publishing course and actually gotten some good results from it?

Did the course help you to sell more books? Or was it a complete waste of time and money?

Or are you the type who would never pay money for a course?

Thanks in advance for all of your answers...

Most courses include MD and NS are good for total newbies to the world of online marketing but most of the information can be found online for free. And it doesn't take days of hard work.

So yes you can learn and improve and shorten the learning curve but dig around and you can find that information for free on youtube and by reading help files on fb and am ads without forking hundreds of dollars. ( Oh and by using the SEARCH feature on this forum )

Having come from the marketing world. I can see the games that these folks play to toy with peoples emotions and fears ( if you don't get this course you will starve, and look at all my great testimonials by people who are making money now, and look at my book report screenshot of me having just made $100,000... )

Do your research. Many testimonials are coming from folks who are no longer selling. Go look at their books and ranking vs listening to some fancy video testimonial. A lot of it is smoke and mirrors. Some are even paid to give testimonials. Some do it for free for kickbacks and entry into a course. Some are legit but they are far and few.

Here's a few tips.

1. Use back and front matter to get signups
2. Give away a few books for free on your site
3. Use advertising services like bookbub, fiverr, robinreads and so on
4. FB is overly saturated now since every one and his uncle chasing the green so use carefully
5. AM ads are getting overly saturated but still work. The help file is so damn simple you could be 6 to understand it.
6. Write in a series ( easier to sell to those you have sold to )
7. After writing and publishing that first book, get going on the next and next. Don't spend weeks and months over analzying. The best marketing is the next book
8. If one genre isn't working, try a new one under a new pen name. ( Just because you didn't hit gold in one doesn't mean you won't in another)
9. If book 1 in a series doesn't take off, write, 2 and 3 then put book 1 (free) If still no luck. You may want to move on ( which you should be doing anyway, see tip #7) or you may want to make sure branding is right
10. Get professional cover. Don't do it yourself. Make sure you have studied your market covers.
11. Know what your readers want in your genre. Read reviews. Find out what they liked or hated. Read the books, find out why X worked.

The rest is just gravy and hot air.

19
Writers' Cafe / Re: Anyone bust into a school library?
« on: June 04, 2018, 06:15:09 AM »
I typically write romance, so this is truly unchartered territory for me. I'm getting ready to release a YA/Middle Grade novel (book one in a trilogy). I know I have to go with expanded distribution for the print book in order to reach libraries, but how does that work with school libraries? The only books I've ever seen come out of a school library are hardcovers. No paperbacks. Have any of you busted into school libraries? If so, how'd you do it? Any thoughts on expanded distribution, in general? Do you think it's worth the bump in price?

Lots of YA/Middle grade tend to sell best through a traditional publisher. There are folks that will argue that's not correct but go find me 5 books that are known around the world in the YA that were indie published. So why is this? Trad can reach a wider audience.

However, don't let that stop you from writing YA/Middle grade.

Though you may want to see if an agent can get you in with scholastic ( they get into schools )

20
Writers' Cafe / Re: Bad review: Would you do this?
« on: June 04, 2018, 06:10:30 AM »
Today one of my books got a bad review that said it had "many grammatical errors." The book was meticulously edited and to my knowledge has no errors. I've always followed what I believe to be good advice on this board and have never responded to a negative review. This case might be different. I clicked on the reviewer's name and looked at her other reviews. Her spelling and errors in grammar are beyond belief, some of them actually funny. Would it be wrong to leave a comment asking her to tell me where the "grammatical errors" are so I can correct them?

First off, there are 3 people that leave these kinds of reviews

1. Legit folks ( But usually they can spell )
2. Trolls (Go look at their review history, they usually have done the same thing to 50 other people. That's their hobby)
3. Jealous authors (Yes, believe me I have figured out that some authors will go to great lengths to damage the careers of others. It's a sad fact but that's life.

Some folks will say don't reply. I say, to hell with that. Reply. I have never run into an issue in over 2 years of replying to reviews. It balances things out. Let them know that you would appreciate their comments if they could actually spell. And that no one else has found any issues.

21
Sometimes I have subscribed to author newsletters to learn about more of their books and on two occasions the first thing they've sent me have been photographs of their kids and information about their husband. Who the hell cares? Unsubscribed straight away.

LOL that's why i find it hilarious when some authors do throwbacks to when they were kids. ( Like seriously, why are you posting photos of you every week when you were 6 years old? I don't want to see that. I can barely stand looking at your face now lol)

22
Many of us write blog posts about writing, our life as writers etc.

How much do you share the downside or let's say (challenges and struggles) with your readers?

I have heard from several authors that said, whatever you do, only put out positive stuff. If you have had a bad month, bad year, bad anything, don't share that. People don't want to know about it, and they certainly don't care. They are there for your books, that's all.

What do you think?

Do you share only positive stuff or do you share your struggles?

23
Writers' Cafe / Re: How do you handle your Goodreads listings?
« on: June 02, 2018, 08:11:32 AM »
I just spent about an hour tidying and updating my books on GoodReads. Jeebers - talk about intricate. But then I got to thinking: how do other authors do this? I've been a Librarian on the site for probably a decade; for me it's relatively easy, although I only just learned today how to update covers correctly. How does everyone else do it? Is Librarian status still fairly easy to get? Do you have a contact who can update and add books for you? Or do you just close your eyes and pretend it's not there?

I dont bother with it anymore. The only reason i was there was to use their promotion thing and they are now charging for that.

I don't go on it searching for books

24
Writers' Cafe / Boasting about sales ( an indie thing?)
« on: June 02, 2018, 08:02:05 AM »
I don't think I have ever seen a traditional author talk about how much they have earned. They just get on with it and do the work, and saying they are an author full-time is enough even if they have a book or course teaching people how to write and publish.

However, there seems to be a growing trend in the indie market (Mostly from those who have something to sell - a course, a book, a membership etc ) to list sales made in a month or a year.

Don't get me wrong. I get they are trying to prove that money can be made as an indie but doing it over and over again? (usually around the time they are about to sell their next product) seems a little bit like someone trying too hard to impress folks or convince the marketplace to invest in their course. When reality is we know there is more to making money in this business than just writing, publishing and marketing. Doing what someone else did doesn't guarantee success. Results will vary. ( yet that part about results will vary somehow gets left out. )

The reason i mention this is because i feel for the folks who aren't making money ( like a guy who recently posted on this forum) and do all manner of things and still get no success. It must be like a kick in the face to them. So is it really necessary? Can't indie's just say... we are making a full-time living vs listing numbers. To me, if you say you earn a full-time living that gives me a clear idea. ( you pay your bills, you live etc. I don't think folks need to know hard numbers ).

Thoughts?

25
Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words a Day Club 2018
« on: May 22, 2018, 03:21:47 PM »
10k. 10k edited.

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