The minimal viable book experiment (testing the market with short books)

A couple years ago, I told people I planned to write fiction, and give away a bunch of short, free books, to see which performed the best. Now that I’ve actually put some out, though not exactly as intended, I’m able to start seeing some interesting things happen. Firstly, though all are pretty similar, in pretty similar categories, with similar ... Read More »

How to make business cards, bookmarks and other kickass author swag for your writing conference

I’m not a big believer in print marketing materials, nor writing/author conferences (to promote your books) because: It’s a lot of time, money and effort and requires you to manually hand out your materials (and usually to other authors, not readers!) There are much better ways to market books, for much less money. I’ve been to lots of writing conferences ... Read More »

The six types of (failed) writers: which one are you?

I saw this infographic today, made by Alexi Maxim Russell, about the Six Types of Writers. Great, I thought – I like cute and fun online Facebook tests about writers that momentarily distract me from the challenges of writing. I was asked, “Which one are you, so I searched.” Here’s the problem, these aren’t the six types of writers, these ... Read More »

How to use your book’s back matter to MASSIVELY boost your fanbase, get more shares, and explode your platform.

So my books are doing pretty good; I’ve moved Shearwater to permafree and got over 5,000 downloads this month. But that made me realize I was probably missing a MAJOR opportunity to connect with those readers, so I checked my back copy (the material at the end of my book) and found it seriously wanting. I also realized, most of ... Read More »

Imagination as the poetics of cognition (and the genius of solitude)

When I finish my PhD, I’ll finally be able to use my love of research to write about truly interesting things. One my next projects will be “Paid to Create” – which, originally was going to simply be about how to make money with your creativity, kind of a practical manifesto for this blog. However I’m realizing that won’t satisfy ... Read More »

Book cover design is NOT subjective

I see a lot of authors asking for feedback between a few cover design choices. This always has mixed results, since people on Facebook don’t know anything about book cover design, they probably aren’t your target market, they probably aren’t ideal readers of your genre, and they aren’t designers. So what inevitably happens is, authors think, “The results are pretty ... Read More »

Why every author needs a virtual assistant (how to outsource your book marketing)

Recently I wrote a post about how it doesn’t make sense for me to market your books for you (or even hire virtual assistants to help you do it). But that doesn’t mean VA’s aren’t crazy useful, if you hire your own. Authors always complain about book marketing because they just want to focus on their writing; and it’s true, ... Read More »

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