The Great Writing Business Challenge – Week 2 Results
Starting the New Year by keeping on keeping on. Last year’s work on Fiction is just one avenue of my own content business. This year’s challenge is to make that business more sustainable.
Overall Total: 3951
Published Words Fiction:
– free – Own Site: 9009, Medium: 0, Wattpad: 0
– paid – Book Outlets: 5485, Medium: 0
Published Words Non-Fiction:
– free – Own Site: 2297, 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:
Amazon – 48, Draft2Digital – 6, Gumroad – 4, PublishDrive – 6, StreetLib – 0 = Total Week’s Sales – 64
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
- A World Gone Reverse
Published Courses (free – in beta):
New Podcast Episodes: 1
The breakthrough this week was in hiring a mentor/coach for my emails. I’d put this off, until I realized she was exactly what I needed right now. And this is a definite investment, where I’m investing about 50% of my book income into direct coaching/advice on what to do next. Happy with it so far. A lot of areas to improve on. And she’s giving me homework that is a challenge with everything else.
That explains the lack of DONE comments below.
What I’ve gotten from her so far is that you are in the entertainment business if you’re writing fiction. You are training your list to buy your books. With four pen names and over a hundred short books, I have quite a bit of opportunity for each one.
A major omission is onboarding sequences that turns new subscribers into active list denizens. She said my open rates were quite good, and thought my covers looked good. Said that last a couple of times. She had a hard time believing that my cost of production was $0 (that’s Zero dollars. It doesn’t take into account the print books, but in fiction they almost never sell – except the classics, that sell rarely).
Biggest error has been sending giveaways to the list – which keeps them trained as freebie seekers. I pointed out that I was addicted to Instafreebie/PW (she agrees that re-naming was a mistake in branding). I haven’t explained how being a “Verified Organizer” means you agree to stay in the top 30% of promoters for your giveaways. So you are promoting at least your own giveaways to your list. However, to get the most out of your monthly payments, you have to enter all the giveaways you can, and this also requires that you promote those other giveaways.
Meaning, I’m working for them and neglecting my own subscriber-conversion process. A Verified Organizer only works for a set-up like Books Go Social, who is selling ads to their members in their weekly newsletters – much like BookBub.
I’m only in business for myself. So I really only see giving a single giveaway in each genre to my subscribers each month. This will then allow me to bridge into newsletter swaps, etc. I’ll then concentrate on giving better value as a publisher.
So I activated all the IF giveaways I organized – months early in some cases – and turned off all my alerts to join new ones. Most of my giveaways will wrap up by March, so I’m cutting out that expense by that point. My new giveaways will be through StoryOrigins, which is free for now – and offers more networking opportunities.
I’m working on a “podcast” which will be an audio “letter from an author” that tells about the universes behind each book. This format is still in design, but you can see it at https://livesensical.com/series/book-universes/ This then aligns to working with providing the best quality content to my subscribers-as-readers.
Just saw a series of very short blog articles from Gumroad about improvements they’ve just posted. So I’ll probably build a Gumroad store on this site. Still use the individual buy links, but incorporate their store as a standalone page.
Still needs to be on publishing all my books to Wattpad and Medium, in 2K-word installments, with paid versions linked. And getting the basics in for reader magnets to every book, according to pen name, and even co-authored books.
Simply need to be on Content Inc and the books he recommends – such as Think and Grow Rich, and The 10X Rule. (More the former than the latter – which really just emphasises the goal of building a “Best of Breed” content-business as a goal.)
In addition to the coaching input, I still have to get my backlogged material published. This also means picking up these courses and getting them into shape. My best leverage is to recruit from my readers those who are also interested in learning the process I use to become so prolific as an author. Courses are always the best leverage, and should become my best income source. Right now, I’m going to build this content business based on book publishing. So finding books to publish is the core of that, and leveraging my backlist to accomplish that.
I’m keeping these lists of incomplete books on the weekly reports until I get them all published.
The problem is making time to do these. The short stories only run about a half-hour, so once I do build this up, then these will be fairly simple – about an hour of editing after I get the recording done. I think I need to get my existing audiobooks published first, though. then start in with what I learn from that to start creating weekly audiobook versions of the books I write and publish otherwise.
20 inches of snow in 48 hours. Made it quite difficult to get around. Easy to write and publish, but distracted by what else was happening and “needing to get to.” Resolution came when I kept thinking about how to do things simpler. Found my 4WD pickup was a sufficient snow plow.
Name Change for this Challenge
Somehow continued to be dis-impressed with the name. “Content” was accurate, but a little impersonal. My little add-on refuses to recognize the SEO validity of “Writing Business” even though “writing” and “business” have substantial trends on Google as individual terms. (Meanwhile, I’m most recommended by Google for giveaway books – thanks.) Content first, and the search engines will follow. The sidebar here is that all those “less than 30 seconds” views are primarily bots sent by search engines…
To Do Last Week:
- Emails out. DONE
- New fiction commentary recorded. New podcast template built. YUP
- New Fiction audiobook recorded. NOPE
- New book syndicated to all aggregators and Amazon YUP
- Bundle created on Gumroad NOPE
- Next new fiction book written and run through the above. YUP
- All continuing podcasts rescheduled. I/P
- Review existing IF/PW giveaways and create any needed for 2nd quarter NOPE (See above)
- Two non-fiction books edited and published. NOPE
- Push the Content Inc and TGR book projects ahead. NOPE
To Do This Week:
- Emails out.
- New book (just published today to D2D) syndicated broadly to rest.
- Next new fiction book written and syndicated to all outlets.
- Finish re-scheduling all continuing podcasts.
- Finish and publish the non-fiction works in progress – syndicate everywhere possible.
- Finish homework assignment from my coach.
- Time permitting, publish backlogged audio books
Also published on Medium.