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Thursday, June 30, 2016

The secret to selling books

Shhh - don't tell anyone. It's just you and me here, right? I'll bet you're like me, teetering on the brink of giving up because nobody's buying your books. I've been like that for most of the year. Maybe even the year before. You know the feeling. You tried every which-way to get your books noticed. Ads with Book Gorilla, had another go at getting BookBub to accept one of your novels, did blog tours, got into NetGalley, did guest posts on friends' blogs. Even had a series book one as a freebie.

All to not much avail. The figures went down and down until they bounced on the bottom. Some stories didn't make sales in months.

Mind you, the perma-free book (The Iron Admiral: Conspiracy) did make a difference. Sales picked up in that series, with quite a few people buying the subsequent books. Nowhere near as many as those who downloaded the free book, but many people don't actually read free books. And while we're on the subject, I've not seen any discernible reaction to my contribution to the wonderful Portals project.

Anyway, as you know, I recently girded my loins and finished a book. Eye of the Mother. That was about a week ago. Sales weren't great. After all, not too many people not on Facebook would even know about it, because I didn't do any of the things mentioned above. But what has happened is that people are buying all my books. Even stories that have sat on the shelf for the better part of a year have a '1' next to their name. Don't get me wrong, I'm not making any best seller lists, but it's a heartening trend.

So it looks to me that if you haven't published anything new for a while, and you're wondering why your sales have tanked - get on with it. Get another book out there. Go on. You can do it.


10 comments:

  1. ad you're seeing movement. Funnily enough, after a month's discount on my book one I'm not seeing much change on book two but all of my shorter works have been selling this month. Shame I only get 35 cents on those but at least they're selling.

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    1. I'm not holding my breath - but it's nice to have a little up-turn on the graph

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  2. First word should be 'glad'. I hate this tablet's keyboard.

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  3. I've heard this advice several times in the past few months, and also that the best promo a new author can do for their books is to write more! I agree that nothing else seems to work as well. There are just so many books out there! So I've got five projects in the works that I want to get out before the end of 2015. We'll see how my plans work out!

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    1. You're doing some time-travelling are you? (Sorry - couldn't help myself) I need to get on with my current WIP.

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    2. Good grief, five?! And lol, just got Greta's time travel comment. I'm so far behind what I planned for this year that I'm only promising my re-release of Gethyon in time to have print for BristolCon in October.

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    3. LOL Either that or I totally missed my deadline. haha

      Yeah, Pippa...five. But only one is a full length novel. But...we'll see how well the "plans" work out.

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  4. Yeah,I agree with you, Greta. Sometimes I think it's the only thing you can do is write the next book. Still, I feel like little Dory in FINDING NEMO. I have to tell myself "Just keep swimming! Just keep swimming!" There's so much pressure to "Promote!" when all I really want to do is write.

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    Replies
    1. And it's very easy to end up doing so much promoting that the writing gets left behind.

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    2. That's right, Pippa. So I've just shrugged and moved on - though I'm doing the SFRB Summer blog hop.

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