The Great Writing Business Challenge – Week 05 Results
Working to get a new book out each week when my head is into the mechanics of my marketing is proving difficult. But – a breakthrough idea woke me up last night…
Published Words Fiction:
– free – Own Site: 0, Medium: 0, Wattpad: 0
– paid – Book Outlets: 8840, Medium: 0
Published Words Non-Fiction:
– free – Own Site: 1088, Else: 0
– paid – Book Outlets: 0, Medium: 0
Books In Progress
- How I Survived My First Year of Fiction Writing
- This Fiction Business – (H. Bedford-Jones re-publish)
- Think and Grow Rich for Authors
- Content Inc for Authors (working title)
Book sales this week:
Draft2Digital – 0, Gumroad – 3, PublishDrive – 21, Amazon – 51, StreetLib –0 = Total Week’s Sales – 75
Lulu sales for December: 106 paperback, 4 ebooks (avg per week – 44.5)
Audio minutes published: 0
Audiobooks In Progress: 4 more (audio ready or in serious planning)
- Make Yourself Great Again
- Count to Four
- Becoming A Writer
- Freedom Is
Published Courses (free – in beta):
New Podcast Episodes:
It was easier last year to simply write flat out and concentrate on building my writing habits. This year, I find it difficult to stay “in the zone” with daily distractions. Somewhat, I employ my old “deadline or else” – which then at least gets the story written, but then leaves me doing clean up in the first day or so of the following week. This week, I caught up.
Yet the problem remains of creating new fiction every week, and still working on the needed backend items, such as improving my courses and quality of mailings, etc.
I did get a set of reader-magnet/opt-in’s for back of book ads, and also landing pages to send people to. Once you get the first one laid out, then the rest build in that model, so it was pretty simple.
While I’ve created landing pages on Mailerlite before, my own site has a decent set of templates, so I’ve used these (against the day I would have to move to another email provider – which I’ve done three times, and experimented with two other “free-to-try” versions.)
Otherwise, my IF/PW giveaways are running, as well as one on StoryOrigin. I’m not working to get into IF’s existing giveaways, so the daily is lower. But I did have IF recommend one of my better-claimed books – a “classic” (read: PD) mystery – and this has netted me several hundred.
I’m watching the unsubscribes – which are higher for this month already, meaning the quality went down. I haven’t inspected to see where those came from – and should.
An Inspired Solution
This woke me up a couple of hours after I went to sleep. So I could note it down and work on it today.
The idea is to bring a pen-name back from his “rehab” and set him to work writing about another author (John Earl Startk – of Ghost Hunter fame) while he’s also helping out around Midwest Journal Press getting my backend cleaned up. (140+ fiction – and hundreds more non-fiction titles that have to be brought up to speed on various points).
The idea here is that he writes a “what I got done this week” letter to the Chief Editor, who in turn changes this into a podcast. The “letters” themselves are over 2500 words long, and have the typical backend reader magnets in the, etc. So the individual fictional pieces themselves become short reads/short stories in a serial format and published to Amazon.
This is simply setting up a rough publishing calendar, laid out according to what a person needs to know. Backwards book publishing, essentially. And can then become a book, audiobook, and a course on its own.
The writing and podcast also test the idea of applying fiction basics to non-fiction. And hones this skill. So the entire idea is fascinating on several levels.
Saunders interviews and compares notes with Stark, then lays out the tools and links in the show notes.
Catching Up is Hard to Do?
As mentioned, I have a ton of books that need to be updated. Most/all don’t have decent reader magnets in them, and I’ve upgraded all my approaches over the last year or two, so the quality of my last books far outstrip my earlier ones. (And I noted that when I had a bulk suspension of my distribution through one aggregator, it was a fair bit of projection on their part – since the huge amount of ebooks they have there are pretty poor covers, titles, descriptions. The problem was the excessive quality scrutiny of Apple and Nook in their distribution – that said aggregator wasn’t filtering for, or effectively notifying their users of.)
Regardless, “hiring R. L. Saunders” is a pretty smart move for an editor. And that “author” can meanwhile get some inspiration from other “author’s” works as he reviews them. Saunders will then be telling how beginning authors can take their baby steps to getting published. All in an entertaining form.
With a smaller “fiction” book to produce each week, even though it means a new podcast to edit/produce, streamlines this production into a usable model. And so I can start working my backlist into shape. This is the point of continuing “Book Universes” for all the fiction books – and moving into some equivalent for the non-fiction books as I can get there.
Meaning: my time has to be carefully invested. So: shorter fiction works, more easily produced, which are themselves non-fiction by design, while using the fiction points of story structure. (Interestingly, Saunders first co-authored work was “JAPE”, a non-fiction/parody work.
To write these will then mean getting these other non-fiction books above worked up. A win-win.
To-Do’s Last Week:
- Podcast for last book. YUP
- Emails out YUP
- Next book out and completely published. YUP
- Approve proofs on Lulu. YUP
- Work out the Book Universes 4-volume encyclopedia. YUP (as revised)
- Time permitting, update proof problems on Lulu. NOPE
- Time permitting, finish up the non-fiction books and syndicate. NOPE
- Time permitting, publish backlogged audio books. NOPE
- Time permitting, Research moving free courses on BAW.thinkific.com over to Rainmaker LMS. NOPE
To-Do’s This Week:
- Emails out (found one that got shanghaied all week, sent out yesterday.)
- New Saunders podcast setup. 1st episode posted.
- That “letter” published as ebook to all outlets.
- Content calendar set up for the next few months.
- Book Universes produced for another fiction work.
- Call with Email Coach – do her homework.
- Take recent book and publish as free on own site, Medium, Wattpad.
- Time permitting, finish up non-fiction books above and syndicate-publish