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No matter how much time you spend working and polishing your novel before you publish it, there will be errors. They can range from anything from typos and spelling errors to continuity mistakes or word choice errors. Even in the most polished and reviewed books – including those professionally published by one of the big […]
(reblogged from Nicholas Rossis)
You may remember my recent posts on my experience advertising with Amazon Marketing Services (AMS). It turns out I’m either a slow learner or an incurable optimist since I had another go at it in April. And guess what? This time, it worked!
I followed the same strategy as with my Facebook ads, and only advertised a high-cost title – in this case, my $9.95 bundle of all my works. As you can see above, during the first few days I ran the ad, I had 126 downloads, only 3 of which were of said bundle. Because of the high value of the title, however, that accounted for the majority of my earnings in that period.
The ad cost me some a total of $13.36 and I made $30.53, so it had a pretty decent ROI of over 200%.
The main takeaway, which is worth repeating here: bundle your work and advertise it as a high-cost title. That has been the only way I’ve found so far to make ads work.
Now, if I can only scale these numbers up. Perhaps the following tips by Amazon will help.
★ The miracle of Uvi Poznansky’s writing is her uncanny ability to return to old stories and make them brilliantly fresh. At times startling, as times awe-inspiring, and at al times fine reading, this is a welcome addition to the growing library of one our more important writers. -Grady Harp, Hall of Fame Reviewer
★ What a treat to have the story of David presented in such an intellectually stimulating manner. -Christoph Fischer, Top 500 reviewer.
★ A tale of madmen and kings, youth and old age, prison cells and freedom’s ring. It’s drawn from Biblical history, enjoyed through the eyes of modernity, and it vividly recreates character and place. -Sheila Deeth, Top 1000 Reviewer.
★ Her ability to capture character and emotion is nothing short of literary excellence, and the modern flair really only adds to that, allowing for a more engaging voice and style. -Book Crazy, Top 1000 Reviewer.
Here is the story of David as you have never heard it before: from the king himself, telling the unofficial version, the one he never allowed his court scribes to recount. In his mind, history is written to praise the victorious—but at the last stretch of his illustrious life, he feels an irresistible urge to tell the truth. In the first volume, Rise to Power, David gives you a fascinating account of his early years, culminating with a tribal coronation. Rooted in ancient lore, his is a surprisingly modern memoir.
In an era of cruelty, when destroying the enemy is deemed a sacred directive, the slayer of Goliath finds a way to become larger than life. His search for a path to power leads him in ways that are, at times, scandalous. Notorious for his contradictions, David is seen by others as a gifted court entertainer, a successful captain in Saul’s army, a cunning fugitive, a traitor leading a gang of felons, and a ruthless raider of neighboring towns who leaves no witnesses behind.
How does he see himself, during this first phase of his life? With his hands stained with blood, can he find an inner balance between conflicting drives: his ambition for the crown, his determination to survive the conflict with Saul, and his longing for purity, for a touch of the divine, as expressed so lyrically in his psalms and music?
(reblogged from Nicholas C. Rossis)
For example, why did Honest Fibs hit #40,215 in its first week of launch, after only a couple of dozen sales?
Amazon won’t disclose their proprietary algorithms, but thanks to some clever analysis by indie authors, that formula has been reverse engineered. And once you understand that formula, the quirks of sales rank make much more sense, and you can use them to your advantage.
The basics of Amazon’s sales rank algorithm are surprisingly simple:
There are some caveats, though. For example, as author Carolyn McCray points out, #2 would have you think that a book selling copies worth 128 “points” on Day-1, then never sells another copy, would see the following ranking:
In fact, there are multiple drop-off points, the first being the 24-hour window. After 24 hours your sales numbers are cut in half, but this does not happen daily. As a matter of fact, you are stable for several key periods: a week, a month, 3 months, 6 months, 12 month and 18-months.
That is why most people price too high for too long after a promotion and then suddenly, after a month of steady sales, fall from the sky in flames.
The most severe of these drops is the 30 day one. If you don’t bolster sales and convince the algorithm that you can still sell, you will fall off a rankings and sales cliff after a month.
Other factors include the following:
A book does not exist in a vacuum. As your book rises in sales rank, it will displace other books. As other books rise through the ranks, your book may be pushed downwards.
This counterintuitive feature of the algorithm is responsible for more confusion than any other.
Because the formula weights sales by recency, the effect of a sales spike quickly fades. The algorithm favors steady sales over a dramatic surge.
Consider the two books below (Figure 1). Book A experiences slow, constant growth for the first two weeks. Book B offers a promotion which results in an explosion of sales, but those sales quickly settle back to normal levels once the promotion ends.
At the end of the second week, Book A holds a higher sales rank — and has better visibility — even though Book B sold over three times as many copies.
In the long run, steady, organic growth outperforms sudden bursts of activity.
That is why publishing success is a marathon, not a sprint, so authors should be focused on long-term success.
(reblogged from Legends of Windemere)
This was a tough decision to make and I ended up talking to a few people about this. That got me thinking about advice.
First, I’m going to admit that this is going to be odd. By discussing advice, I’m also going to be giving advice on advice. So this post can easily untie itself and make funny faces when my back is turned. Still, this is something all of us deal in our lives.
One thing I wondered about after making the decision to go perma-free was how to handle questions about the tactic. Something that came to mind was how it was presented to me years ago by other authors. Perma-free was a new rage at the time and many told me it was the only way to go for success. There wasn’t much thought into what I wanted when people made the suggestion with more force than a charging rhino. To make something you worked so hard on a free item is not an easy decision. So what happened is that I railed against the idea until a friend pointed out that I was in a position to use the tactic to create a loss leader. The only thing is that I had to swallow my pride.
That’s a part of giving and taking advice that I think many people overlook. What is a good idea to you is a terrible idea to someone else. Pushing too hard can causes problems for everyone involved. You might never be listened to again by the person you annoyed and they might never change their mind even when it would work for them. Pride, ego, stubbornness, and all those blinding emotions can appear when advice is being given without a thought to the person you’re speaking too. I’m sure many of us have been on both sides of the coin here.
So, what can you do when giving advice?
So, what can you do when getting advice?
Something I always say is what works for one person, won’t work for everyone else. So in regards to me going permanently free with a book, I would say to follow your heart and consider where you are with your writing. I have 8 other volumes of this series, so I can afford to take this risk now. Those who have trilogies could have better luck with bundle deals while those with solitary books could get more from temporarily sales. It’s all about doing what is right for you as an author.
(reblogged from Author Shout)
Have you written a book and don’t know where to publish it or even how to publish it? This guide is for you. In this visual guide on how to publish your book on Amazon through Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP), I will show you all the steps necessary to get your book online and reaching readers worldwide.
Publishing a book is easier than you think. A long time ago writers used to have to rely on getting discovered by publishers, agents, or pitching their book to anyone who they thought would buy it and ultimately know someone who might be able to get it published for you. With advances in technology and the internet, publishing a book is easier than ever, and anyone who has ever written a book can do it with these simple steps I am going to show you in this guide.
Amazon has made it extremely easy for anyone who has written a book to self-publish their book through the Kindle Direct Publishing Platform and and potentially reach a billion readers worldwide. When you publish your book through Kindle Direct Publishing your book becomes available for readers to read on any Kindle device to include a web browser, smartphone, Windows, Mac-based computers, iPad, tablets, and so forth through a Kindle reading app.
Quite simply, Amazon dominates the eBook market and publishing your book through Kindle Direct Publishing will get your book to market and reach many readers worldwide. Publishing your book is virtually pain-free and with this guide we have simplified it even further. Below is the visual, step-by-step guide showing you how to self-publish your book via Kindle Direct Publishing.
If you look at the bottom of Amazon’s Home Page, you will see a link that say Independently Publish With Us. Click on that link to get started and publish your book with Kindle Direct Publishing.
All you have to do is Click Get Started to begin.
Once you get started you will need to either use an existing Amazon account or create a new one. You may also be required to provide some additional information such as banking information. This information will be used to send your royalties earned through book sales.
Once you create your account, you can will be taken to you Kindle Direct Publishing Dashboard. From here you will be able to add your books, access reports, visit the Kindle Direct Publishing Community, enroll in KDP Select, and more.
On this screen you will provide all of the pertinent information about your book to include its name, is it a part of a series, edition number, the publisher, your book description, contributors, and publication date.
(reblog from Chris McMullen)
Note: This is quite a surprise to me; I had no idea this practice even existed. Talk about ‘No Vaseline’, Amazon.- John
If you price your Kindle e-book between $2.99 and $9.99, you’re eligible for the 70% royalty option.
However, Amazon charges a delivery fee of 15 cents per megabyte (Mb) for US sales. (It’s £0.10 per Mb for UK sales. I will focus on US sales in this article.)
The delivery fee is subtracted from the list price before multiplying by 70%.
Example: List price = $2.99, file size = 6 Mb
Delivery fee = $0.15 × 6 = $0.90
Royalty = ($2.99 – $0.90) × 0.70 = $2.09 × 0.70 = $1.46
The only file size that matters is the converted .mobi file size that you see on page 2 of the publishing process at Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). The size of the file that you upload isn’t the number to go by.
The delivery fee is most significant for books that include many pictures.
If you’re planning to set the list price of your Kindle e-book between $2.99 and $9.99, you know that a smaller converted .mobi file size results in a smaller delivery fee.
So it’s intuitive to assume that reducing the file size will lead to a larger royalty.
I had some fun with the math the other day, working through several examples. I observed that in many cases, reducing the file size wouldn’t have a significant impact on the royalty unless the file size was substantially reduced. But there are cases where a change in file size has a greater impact on the royalty.
One factor is that for a very large file size, the 35% royalty rate actually pays a higher royalty. The delivery fee only applies when you select the 70% royalty option.
It also depends on the list price that you set and the converted .mobi file size that you’re starting with (i.e. before you proceed to reduce the file size).
We’ll get to the math in a moment (and some handy tables that will do the math for you).
But there is one more point that you should consider: It may be better to delivery high quality pictures to the customer than to try to reduce the file size. (Besides that, Amazon KDP automatically compresses pictures in the file that you upload.)
So when we look at the math, remember that the quality of the pictures is important, too.
Here is an example, illustrating whether or not it’s worth it to reduce the file size for a particular situation:
Example: List price = $2.99, file size = 12 Mb
Delivery fee = $0.15 × 12 = $1.80
70% Royalty = ($2.99 – $1.80) × 0.70 = $1.19 × 0.70 = $0.83
35% Royalty = $2.99 × 0.35 = $1.05
If you reduce the file size 30%, down to 8.4 Mb:
Delivery fee = $0.15 × 8.4 = $1.26
Royalty = ($2.99 – $1.26) × 0.70 = $1.73 × 0.70 = $1.21
You earn a whopping 16 cents more by reducing the file size 30%. (Ignore the $0.83 since the 35% royalty paid better at the original file size.)
However, if you reduce the file size 50%, down to 6 Mb:
Delivery fee = $0.15 × 6 = $0.90
Royalty = ($2.99 – $0.90) × 0.70 = $2.09 × 0.70 = $1.46
You earn 41 cents more by reducing the file size 50%. It takes a substantial change in file size to significantly improve the royalty in this example.
I had some fun with this and made several tables. The tables do the math for you.