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Posts from the ‘MARKETING’ Category

Some Semi-Random Observations

The observation-lemur observes.

I had not planned on releasing three very different books in the space of three weeks. In fact, one of them wasn’t supposed to be written at all! But the Evil Muse, and the success of what was supposed to be a set of stand-alone stories was such that I released a short urban-fantasy novel, the tenth Cat Among Dragons book, and the second Shikari book in three weeks.

So, what were the results? 1) A frazzled author. Read more

Where do You Shelve: Amazon Categories

I was poking around a few writers’ blogs that I know of, and found this really useful article about making the best use of categories on Amazon. You can now go up to ten categories, not just multiple key-words.

http://writersinthestormblog.com/2018/05/using-amazon-categories-to-sell-more-books/

Some Interesting Information…

One of the hotly debated topics around the publishing and writing side of the ‘Net is “Just how big is Amazon anyway, and is it a threat or a menace?”  OK, the last only if you are B&N or if you are a TradPub accountant trying to sort out what’s wrong with the bottom line.

Over at The Passive Voice, Felix J. Torres has some really interesting links and numbers. As it turns out, the ‘Zon’s not as big as it seems:

https://www.thepassivevoice.com/the-dominance-of-amazon-needs-to-be-addressed-but-it-is-far-more-attributable-to-natural-circumstances-than-it-is-anybodys-fault/#comment-414693

Food for thought.

An experimental trilogy

At the urging of my wife, whose work is familiar to readers of these pages, I’m trying something new in a couple of weeks.

Last December, I was noodling over an idea for a new military science fiction series to expand my portfolio.  My Maxwell series has reached five books, and has at least as many left to run;  my Laredo War trilogy is overdue for completion of the third and final book (health issues got in the way);  and I have a Western series (currently at two novels, with the third due this year) and a stand-alone fantasy novel as well, with a fantasy trilogy on the table as a more distant project.  I felt the need to add another string to my bow – hence the noodling.

Dorothy challenged me to try something different.

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Opt out of mandatory opt-ins

Many of you are familiar with the CAN-SPAM act, and how it changed things for newsletters with North American subscribers (US & Canadian). Now, there’s a new act that’s affecting all your EU readers, called GDPR. Read more

Trying too hard: How to lose the reader before she opens your book

I am not sure whether this is a rant about one of my personal bêtes noires or good advice about what not to put in a blurb. I guess that will depend on how many people share my jaundiced reactions to the examples.

The particular style of “trying too hard” I’m thinking of today is the supposedly humorous novel whose author beats you over the head with how funny! it all is before you even have a chance to open the book. I assume we’ve all encountered the sort of sad-sack fiction in which the author makes sure you know that a character’s dialogue is hysterically funny by having all the other characters fall over themselves laughing every time Mr. Funny says, “Good morning.” Excellent way to get a book walled before the end of the first chapter.

The recent discussion of Bob Honey reminded me of the many ways in which a writer can make sure I don’t open his book at all. And no, I’m not going to take examples from that book; it’s needlessly cruel, like nuking fish in a barrel. I trawled through Amazon’s blurbs and reviews for Fiction – Humor and found plenty of material.

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Well, that makes sense…

Recently, Nick Cole gave an interview on Geek Gab, touching on his launch strategy with his new series Jason Anspach – Galaxy’s Edge. They’re doing extremely well: Book one, released in June 2017, is still at 3200 in the kindle store, and the latest release (3 weeks ago) is at 787 in the kindle store.

Clearly, these guys are doing awesome! In the interview, they touched on several things that they’ve done to ensure that these books were a success. One really interesting thing was focusing on how to jump genres from their prior books, and getting their books recommended to genre fans in that new genre. Read more