Category: fiction

How can I make my self-published memoir a big seller?

It’s doable but very hard. It takes a combination of good things, some not much in your control. A starting definition is required: what is a “big seller”? Almost everybody will agree that if your book has “many, many thousands of sales; royalties in six-plus figures; a book-based movie, and spin-offs of book fame like […]

How to calculate your 2015 monthly Amazon-based royalties

This was a gnarly problem earlier. Whether it was you alone closing your books at the end of the month or you had to calculate royalties for all of the authors in your publishing crew, it was a brainbuster to figure out where or how the Amazon outlets shared the good news. It’s better now. […]

4 proven ways to sell 75%+ of your freelance writing

MAGAZINES and NEWSPAPERS   1. Here is the two-item formula for selling nonfiction copy to magazines and newspapers: (a) You sell more than 75% of your freelance writing by writing only when you have better than a 50% chance of a sale, and (b) You have better than a 50% chance of a sale by […]

Trees and Kids (from Teachers Change Lives 24/7)

[I’m a publisher and I read all the mail that our readers send. Sometimes (not very often) we have a story or a section of a book that brings lots of spontaneous letters of joy and praise from readers. “Trees and Kids” is the hands-down winner. It’s by Jim Burgett in his 2007 book (in […]

Find a new, streamlined website domain among 600 choices!

Trying to find a grabber website domain ending in “.com” that contains less than an arm’s length of letters is a near-fruitless treasure hunt. You probably can’t use “.org” and will anybody come if it ends in “.net”? The hunt is over. Last February, the ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers), an international […]

Where self-publishing and ebooks stand in late 2014

(1) “Ebooks have grown exponentially and reached a healthy balance by 11/14,” says Mark Coker, head of Smashwords in a no-nonsense delivery at BAIPA (Bay Area Independent Publishers Assn) on Nov. 8. Here is a much-abbreviated summary of Mark’s very enjoyable 10-point presentation. When Mark began Smashwords, about it 8 years ago, ebooks accounted for […]

14 key ebook publishing tips

Mark Coker started Smashwords when a quarter of 1% of U.S. books sold were ebooks. Now it’s 35% of the total, and he’s a top spokesman in the field. Last year Smashwords authors sold ebooks worth $30-million at retail. Last Saturday (11/8/14) Coker spoke to BAIPA (Bay Area Independent Publisher Association) in Novato, CA (near […]

Are you selling your ebooks to libraries?

Last week this blog was the core item in my newsletter. I had so much response from it I’m sharing it as a (long) blog too. Two questions: (1) Why would you even care about selling your books to libraries, much less their lower-priced digital versions? (2) And what’s so different about it anyway? Don’t […]

Non-fiction books should shout with benefits and authority

What do you want your book to do? Probably (1) get bought–or at least read; (2) make you money; (3) if self-published, get snagged by a “big house” and do more of [1] and [2]; (4) establish you as an “expert” or “authority” in its topic field; (5) get potential readers to want to know […]

Writers: ideas for creating top-selling nonfiction books

I think of top-selling two ways. The most obvious is to sell more copies of your book than any other book like it in the market. If you sell 10,000 copies of the book, you outsold a person who sold 5,000. Duh. The less obvious way is to measure the effectiveness of your book’s sale. […]