This morning I am avoiding getting down to the nitty gritty and adding words to my WIPs by rolling through Bloglovin’ and checking out articles. This morning, the Alliance of Independent Authors posted an interview with Marie Force, a success in indie / trade publishing.
It’s a nice interview, and I like reading these because I like seeing how other authors do things, what works for them, see if I’m missing something, see if I’m not doing something I should be doing. The first few lines struck me as THE TRUTH. Want more success? Write more books. Check out the full interview here, but I’ve noted some of the best comments from Marie Force:
I don’t know if I’d call it a secret, per se, but I give ALL the credit for any success I’ve had to my books. I’m very fortunate that readers seem to connect with my books on a very deep level and keep coming back for more of my characters and series.
I spend a lot of time in author forums where other authors talk about the various marketing strategies and promotion opportunities. While those things are important, I’m a big advocate of the books, the books, the BOOKS. They are the key to everything.
The best thing I ever did for my writing career was self-publish for the first time in the fall of 2010. That was a total game-changer, not just for my writing career but for my life in general. I’ve also done really well in traditional publishing, but nothing can compare to the impact that self-publishing has had on my career—and my life.
I love the quote that luck is the convergence of preparation and opportunity. I had been writing for years with limited success by the time digital self-publishing became a viable alternative. I had a lot of unsold books ready to go, and as soon as I could, I began publishing them one right after the other. This gave my career a huge boost that most likely wouldn’t have ever happened without self-publishing.
What’s your top tip for other indie authors?
Write more books. Nothing you do will grow your career or your following the way more books will. If you have time to write or promote but not both, write more. Your books are your greatest promotional tool, and the more of them you have, the better your chances of connecting with readers who will follow you throughout your career.
When I published my first (full length) book, Brunch at Ruby’s, I was left with a feeling of now what? I had a huge presale, and then a good couple of weeks of sales, and then the numbers started to fall and I didn’t know what to do. How was I supposed to keep that momentum? How would I keep people coming back to my page on Amazon|B&N|Smashwords, etc?
I asked a couple of more successful indie authors, what was the secret to high sales? What was the secret to a huge following? What was the secret to getting people to notice you, to keep selling books? The answer?
Backlist. Backlist.Backlist. Write. more. books.
One year later, I have three full length novels and I’ve finally seen the value of having other books to buy. I published A Thin Line on January 31. Throughout the month, not only did I make GREAT sales (and KENP page reads) for that book, but I saw movement on my other titles. ALL MONTH LONG.
So, if you’re just starting out in self publishing and wondering how to stay top of mind with your readers, how to keep people coming back… write. Write your behind off.
And speaking of writing…. I have WIPs to work on!