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SPF-093: From Teacher to Writer in One Year – with Cecelia Mecca



Medieval romance author Cecelia Mecca started out thinking she’d traditionally publish her books. A chat with an indie author at an RWA conference changed Cedelia’s mind and a year later she’s a full-time author, working at home and in full command of her author career.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Picking up a manuscript after 20 years and starting again
  • Learning about independent publishing – and changing directions
  • Genre research and writing in a small genre niche
  • Strategies for building a new author business
  • Thoughts around the pros and cons of free as a marketing strategy
  • The importance of finding the right editor

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Ads for Authors Course – INFO/PURCHASE link

Nov 21, 2017: Free Webinar with Mark about Advertising Strategies REGISTER HERE

Self Publishing Formula Patreon page

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SPF-092: Building a Career in Fantasy – with Michelle Madow


This week’s highlights include:

  • Doing the math and making the transition from traditionally published author to indie
  • Focusing on the genre you love to read
  • Do blog tours work any longer?
  • Outlining in order to write faster
  • Using LeadGen ads to grow Michelle’s mailing list and business
  • Classic marketing copy that still works

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Ads for Authors Course – INFO/PURCHASE link

Vellum for ebook and print formatting

Self Publishing Formula Patreon page

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SPF-091: Why I Turned Down Seven Figures to Self Publish – with Hugh Howey


This week’s highlights include:

  • Hugh’s beginnings as a writer
  • The search for a publisher … and then a change of heart
  • Re-acquiring rights
  • The increasing empowerment of creative people
  • Negotiating a print-only deal

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Selfpublishingformula.com/ads17 Get on the waitlist for the next enrollment window for the Ads for Authors course

Bella Andre episode of the SPF Podcast

Author Earnings Hugh’s project with Data Guy

Data Guy’s episode of the SPF Podcast

Conrad literary festival, Poland

Self Publishing Formula Patreon page

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SPF-090: Using BookBub CPM Ads for Profit – with Adam Croft


This Week's Giveaway

Adam Croft’s BookBub CTM Ads Tip Sheet

Download

This week’s highlights include:

  • The basics on how BookBub ads work and how to split targeting
  • Getting on the wait list to use BookBub ads
  • Differences from the Facebook and AMS ads platforms
  • The superior reporting of BookBub ads
  • Using BookBub ads for picking up sales at vendors other than Amazon

Resources mentioned in this episode:

FREE PDF: Adam created a free PDF about BookBub Ads for SPF listeners

BOOKBUB WAITLIST: Use the form at the bottom of this article to get on the waitlist to be a BookBub advertiser

 

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SPF-089: Masterclass: The Value of a Sale – with Mark Dawson


This week’s highlights include:

• Using Facebook Messenger to boost launch sales
• On the excellent response rate of Messenger
• Calculating ROI for ads based on sell-through rates, rather than just sales of one book
• Different ways to calculate read-through
• Why it makes sense to run ad campaigns at a loss because of read-through
• Ways to promote and encourage read-through
• On the new and updated modules for the Ads for Authors course

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Authors on a train

Facebook Messenger for Business

Help! My Facebook Ads Suck (book)

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SPF-088: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Revision Process – with Joan Dempsey


This week’s highlights include:

  • The misconception that the first draft is the finished book
  • The overwhelm that can occur when revising a novel, and how to tackle that
  • Breaking the revision process into smaller chunks to deal with overwhelm
  • On Joan’s online courses about revision and their flexibility for different types of writers
  • Tips for establishing distance from your manuscript in order to revise like an editor
  • Tips for overcoming “My writing is rubbish” syndrome

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Joan’s Website

Joan’s novel: This is How It Begins

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SPF-086: How to Administer your Advance Readers – with Chris Leippi, Booksprout


This week’s highlights include:

  • The challenges Chris faced when sending ARCs to his readers
  • How Booksprout addresses those challenges
  • Why having advanced readers matters
  • Price points for new authors and also those with larger review teams
  • How Booksprout reduces follow-up time for authors
  • Discoverability for readers on Booksprout
  • The leap in ARC review response Chris has seen since using Booksprout himself

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Booksprout

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SPF-085: Shaking Up the Audiobook Market – with Kevin Tumlinson


Kevin Tumlinson from Draft2Digital reveals the company’s exciting new plans for indie authors wanting to make the most of the audiobook market.

This week’s highlights include:

  • Changes to the tools available for indie authors at Draft2Digital
  • The new partnership between Findaway Voices and D2D
  • Details on the expanding world of audiobooks available to authors
  • Removing the limits on pricing and book length that have been in place
  • Why audiobooks are an important part of an indie author’s library

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Draft2Digital (https://www.draft2digital.com/)
SPF Patreon (https://www.patreon.com/SPFPodcast)

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SPF-084: When Your First Novel Goes Global – with Felicia Yap


Felicia Yap talks at length about how she achieved global success with her first novel – and how she’s dealt with the repercussions.

Highlights of this week’s episode:

  • Felicia’s unique and intriguing premise for her new thriller, Yesterday
  • Working out story ideas on the dance floor
  • Felicia’s very flexible approach to her writing routine
  • Applying to the Faber School
  • Finding an agent and working with editors
  • Applying creativity and a strong work ethic to the submission process

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SPF-080: How to Sell Your Foreign Rights – with Orna Ross

The paradigm shifts in publishing have opened doors for authors. And sometimes caused challenges for those authors who have lost rights to a trad publisher and now want them back. Orna Ross, Founder and Director of the Alliance of Independent Authors, talks to James about these issues, how authors can approach getting lost rights back, what it takes to sell rights in foreign territories, and what to be aware of when doing so.

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SPF-053 The Book Launch Process – with Mark Dawson

Getting ready to launch a self-published book? You’ll definitely want to listen to this Book Launch edition of the podcast. Last week saw Mark release John Milton’s latest adventure, ‘Blackout’. It turned out to be his most successful book launch ever. Find out how Mark fine-tuned his book launch process and secured 10,000 sales for ‘Blackout’ in its first week on the market.

The story of a book launch
Mark explains the importance of feedback using advance reader teams and describes what kinds of ads and book pricing worked for him. He also details how he had to face up and deal with some unforeseen problems. These ‘facepalm’ moments will help others learn from Mark’s experience.

The best places to advertise during your book launch
Mark has three favorite advertising platforms. Tune in to find out what they are and how he uses them during his book launch to exponentially grow his audience. Learn how he used his lists to gain visibility and increase sales.

The best form of marketing – Write another book!
Want to increase your visibility and increase your book sales? Listen to this episode to find out how writing another book can be your best marketing tool! Along with lots of other great marketing advice, Mark talks about how your new book can generate more sales for the books you already have out in the market.

Outline of This Episode

  • [0:17] Welcome to the podcast!
  • [2:12] Intro to this episode about Mark Dawson’s most successful book launch ever.
  • [5:04] Mark shares the process of his book launch.
  • [14:19] What about pre-orders and ranking?
  • [17:16] Ways to get responses from more of your audience.
  • [21:07] The best places to advertise your book launch.
  • [26:57] Book launch mistakes to avoid.
  • [31:56] Increasing visibility.
  • [35:39] The best form of marketing – write another book!
  • [36:46] Mark’s publication plans. Congrats to Adam Croft, alumni.
  • [39:03] Final comments — looking to the future of the podcast.

Resources & Links Mentioned In This Episode

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SPF-025: Interview with the biggest selling KDP author of all time – WIth Barbara Freethy

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Self-Publishing is what we’re all about here at SPF.

And that’s because it often makes more sense than traditional publishing. In fact, self-publishing is very much a response to the limitations of traditional publishing. Today’s guest, Barbara Freethy, was already an established traditionally published author when she dipped her toe into the self publishing waters by independently releasing some of her backlist. The success she found motivated her to go full steam ahead as an indie. You’ll hear Barbara’s story and her tips for success in this episode.

 

The less control you have over something the less opportunity you have to fix it.
Barbara is the highest selling self published author ever. What she’s come to believe after seeing both sides of the coin is that the less control an author has over their publication process, the less opportunity they have to fix it. For her, self-publishing provided the opportunity to avoid the problems that were out of her hands as a traditionally published author. Now she enjoys the freedom and increased income of being an indie. Find out how Barbara systematizes her publication process in this episode.

 

You never really know where your readers are.
Barbara doesn’t assume anything about where she will find her readers or how they will want to consume her content. She’s makes her work as widely available as possible and ensures that her readers can get her books however they prefer. You’ll hear many more of Barbara’s insights from a career that spans both traditional and self publishing.

 

The more you’re involved in your own e-publishing career, the better you will do.
There are many services and contractors out there who can help indies accomplish the tasks that need to be undertaken to get their books published and promoted. Barbara has come to believe that the more she is involved in the various aspects of her publishing career, the more success is going to come her way. That’s because nobody cares more about her books and how well they succeed than she does. And the more she understands about every aspect of the process the better she can guide those she does bring alongside to help her with the business. Tune in to find out how Barbara suggests you go about learning the various skills needed to self publish successfully.

 

Fear is the biggest problem for writers.
Though she’s been tremendously successful Barbara believes that every writer – even the Stephen Kings of the world – still have a certain amount of fear that accompanies them as they pursue writing and publication. Will the readers enjoy the book? Will it be good enough to attract an audience? Will she be able to maintain her pace to continue producing books for her fans? These fears have to be faced and dealt with repeatedly and in today’s episode she chats about her approach to killing the fear and how those pursuing a career in self-publishing can do the same.

 

Outline of this great episode

  • [0:23] Introduction to this episode.
  • [1:20] Mark’s recent BookBub promotion.
  • [4:08] Mark’s experience with BookBub Ads.
  • [5:11] Introduction of this episode’s guest: Barbara Freethy.
  • [6:36] Barbara’s experience with traditional publishing and the transition to Indie Publishing.
  • [8:02] The rocky road Barbara experience in traditional publishing.
  • [13:08] The difference in income between traditional publishing and Indie publishing.
  • [16:45] How Barbara discovered she enjoyed the entrepreneur side of Indie publishing.
  • [19:21] How Barbara began getting her email list established.
  • [23:56] The way Barbara approaches giveaways for promotional purposes.
  • [27:05] How learning the business side of self publishing makes you a better writer.
  • [28:58] The team Barbara has to help with her business.
  • [30:53] The reader relationships Barbara builds to foster her audience.
  • [35:20] How Barbara’s relationship with fans has impacted her writing.
  • [39:26] Barbara’s approach to writing productivity.
  • [42:07] Not a lot of advanced planning for her stories.
  • [43:38] Barbara’s advice to new authors.

Resources & Links mentioned in this episode

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SPF-020: A Technology Partner to Help Build your Online Course – with Ankur Nagpal of Teachable

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When you’re able to get your non-fiction book or area of knowledge put into an online course you’ll have plenty of options when it comes to organizing that course for online consumption. And when you do, it’s important that you find a platform that serves you as a partner, not just in a business relationship. Today’s episode of The Self Publishing Formula podcast is a conversation James had with Ankur Nagpal, founder of the online course platform Teachable. The two of them chat about the way Teachable came to be, what makes the platform unique from other online course platforms and how their view of partnership with their instructors makes all the difference. You’ll love the insights you’ll hear in this week’s episode.

The Teachable online learning platform came about almost by accident.

Ankur had created his own online courses and was hosting them on Udemy but was having some issues with the way that platform worked. First off, he didn’t like that he had no access at all to the students who took his course. In that way he wasn’t really building an asset he could use into the future, only dealing with one-off interactions. In his desire to find a new platform that would work in a more cooperative way with instructors he wound up creating his own app. That was the beginnings of Teachable and the start of a successful online learning platform.

The first step to a successful online course: Find the audience.

No matter the idea you have for an online course in terms of subject matter, it’s not a good idea to spend a lot of time creating it only to discover that nobody wants to buy it. Instead you need to find out if there is a real audience that wants to learn the subject you want to teach. Given the reach of the internet that’s no longer a difficult thing to do. In this episode you’re going to hear some great advice about ways you can verify the need for a course before you begin creating it.

Why online courses are not yet in need of professional production.

In the overall lifespan of the internet Ankur believes that online courses are still relatively new. The public is yet to develop expectations of online courses that are on par with television or movie studio productions. That’s a great thing for content creators who are low budget, small business owners because all kinds of simple approaches to instruction can still make the grade: screen capture software – slide decks with voice over – standing at a whiteboard drawing doodles – all of these and more are not only acceptable but very popular ways for instructors to create and disseminate the information they have to share. In this episode you’ll get some ideas about how you could use your computer and smartphone to create your first online course.

Creating a course on Teachable is not the last step – the Teachable team continues to help you.

Ankur and the team at Teachable are committed to building the best technology in existence to fuel online learning. As a result, they’ve committed that they will not get into the business of selling information themselves. Instead they want to provide the training, ongoing tips, and useful instruction for free to those who use their platform. They see it as a primary and powerful way they are able to be true partners with those who use their platform – which only serves to make everyone involved more successful. You can get a free trial of the Teachable platform by listening to this episode, so make sure you take the time to listen and get in on this great deal.

Outline of this great episode

  • [0:24] James’ introduction to this episode and the track record of the show thus far.
  • [3:18] The reason for today’s episode emphasis on nonfiction writing.
  • [4:00] Introduction of today’s guest, Ankur Nagpal.
  • [6:30] When Ankur got into online courses and how it happened.
  • [8:30] Ankur’s experience in software engineering and how he hired developers.
  • [11:43] The Self Publishing Formula’s team experience with Teachable.com & what Ankur sees working in the realm of online courses.
  • [14:25] How Teachable helps authors build an audience without worrying about the tech.
  • [18:10] The most common type of teaching videos and other options you can use.
  • [22:30] What limitations might exist when it comes to online learning?
  • [26:00] A free offer from Teachable and how the platform has come to be.
  • [28:07] How Teachable compares to Udemy.
  • [29:00] How anyone should start building an audience.
  • [31:35] How the Teachable team helps its instructors with ongoing training.
  • [34:31] The growth of online courses in the future and the Teachable path ahead.
  • [36:48] Free resources for SPF listeners from Teachable.com.
  • [40:14] The end of the nonfiction mini-series and Mark’s experience with nonfiction.
  • 42:50] Preview of next week’s episode on the topic of publicity.

Resources & Links mentioned in this episode

www.Teachable.com/SPF

www.Udemy.com

Join the Facebook Community by emailing support(AT)SelfPublishingFormula.com

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SPF-014: Promoting with Bookbub – With Katie Donelan

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It’s difficult to talk about marketing for self publishing and indie authors without the name of Bookbub coming into the conversation. That’s because Bookbub is a very effective and powerful platform for getting indie authors notices in the very niches their readers love. On this episode of the Self Publishing Formula James and Mark host Katie Donelan, the first non-founder employee of Bookbub, to chat about how Bookbub works, why it’s so powerful, and how self published authors can use the platform to promote their own work.

How does the Bookbub promotion platform work?

Bookbub has been around since 2012 and has build a very powerful platform for promoting self published books to the specific niches of readers who are interested in their genre. Its main approach hinges on an email they send out to readers who have opted-in to their list. Authors are able to submit their books for consideration and the Bookbub team makes the decision about whether to include the author’s book or not. Since Bookbub gets so many submissions, there is a very careful selection process and not all submissions are accepted. You can find out how Katie suggests you go about applying to get your work included in the Bookbub newsletter.

The Bookbub approach focuses on quality and data, with an editorial twist.

Katie shares how Bookbub uses the data regarding authors and their past successes as well as a group of editors who evaluate submitted books with a human touch to make sure that there is a proper assessment of each submission.

Coming soon: The Bookbub ad platform.

For a while now the Bookbub team has been running a beta program of their new ad platform where authors can purchase ads to promote their books within the Bookbub newsletter. They can do so without the editorial hoops to jump through and with the ability for their ads to appear to their specific audience. It’s a masterful move by the Bookbub team and Mark has actually been trying it out. On this episode you’re going to be able to hear how the ad platform has been going for Mark and why he’s convinced it’s going to be a great tool for authors of any stripe and skill level.

What can you do if your submission to Bookbub has never been approved?

Many authors have submitted to be included in the Bookbub newsletter but have never been accepted for inclusion. Why? It has to do with the genre your book is in and whether there is a high demand for books in that niche. It also has to do with the historical success of books within that genre as well as the success of the author in past book sales. There’s also the issue of quality and the view Bookbub has of taking care of its reader audience by only promoting books that meet their quality standards. So what should you do if you’ve never been accepted by Bookbub? You can find out on this episode.

Outline of this great episode

  • [0:33] Why James and Mark are incredibly excited about this episode.
  • [1:55] The conversation with Katie Donelan of Bookbub.
  • [2:56] What IS Bookbub and why is it so important in book marketing?
  • [5:40] Why Mark believes Bookbub is a huge benefit to authors.
  • [7:50] Why books don’t get approved to be on the Bookbub platform?
  • [10:25] The things Bookbub looks for in addition to its basic criteria.
  • [13:15] Which is more important to Bookbub, data or editorial assessment?
  • [14:25] Who are the Bookbub editors and how are they chosen?
  • [15:40] How Bookbub adds new categories to their newsletters.
  • [18:00] How Bookbub attracts readers to new categories.
  • [19:32] In the early days, how did Bookbub build their email list and how is it done now?
  • [22:06] How often does Bookbub cull or clean its email lists?
  • [23:10] Would Bookbub consider new releases for authors who have past track records?
  • [24:56] Bookbub ads and how they benefit authors.
  • [28:50] Mark’s recent experience with Bookbub ads.
  • [32:34] Details of how the Bookbub ads are working compared to the newsletter.
  • [34:30] No editorial aspect of the Bookbub ad platform, but the same ability for authors to hit their target readers.
  • [36:20] How you can get into Bookbub ads.
  • [39:07] What are the main differences in Bookbub options based on location?
  • [41:50] 2D or 3D images?
  • [42:29] How to keep momentum going after a Bookbub campaign is over.
  • [44:55] 99 cents or free – which is best in the Bookbub view?
  • [46:42] Future plans for Bookbub: French language or audiobooks?
  • [47:58] Which genres are most problematic and most successful?
  • [49:34] Anything different about how traditional publishing and self publishing are handled?
  • [51:00] What companies are Bookbub’s main competitors?
  • [54:00] Is there any danger of Bookbub being sold within the next 5 years?
  • [55:20] The reason Bookbub is focused primarily on readers – and why it’s important.
  • [56:44] What should a person do if they’ve never been accepted for Bookbub?

Resources & Links mentioned in this episode

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SPF-010: From Indie Publishing to 7 Figure Book Deal, with Bella Andre

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Today’s guest is one of the most prolific and hardworking Indie authors out there. All it takes is a glance at Bella Andre’s catalogue to realize that this woman knows how to do what it takes to get books written! Success has come with over 50 bestsellers to her credit, and, during this chat, you’re going to hear Bella’s thoughts about how self-publishing has changed over the years of her career, how and when Indie authors need to put on the blinders, learning to work in your own cycles, and the details of how she got her seven figure print-only publishing deal. 

As an Indie author you’ve got to learn when it’s time to put on the blinders.

If you know you’re supposed to be a writer and are doing the work, you’re going to have plenty of feedback and pushback regarding all kinds of things. People will criticize your work, tell you that you’re a bad author – the list goes on. It’s during those times that you can’t let yourself get focused on the negative things coming your way. Bella calls it “putting on the blinders” to keep yourself on track in your writing career. During this conversation she shares some of the things she’s had to overcome and how she did it by employing her own set of blinders. It’s encouraging and helpful stuff for any indie author.

Don’t get stuck believing that you have to write in the same pattern as someone else.

Bella has learned over the years of being a self published author that she has to be true to the way that SHE works and not try to follow some predefined or suggested writing formula. Even within the way she works she’s found that the routine changes from time to time. For her it’s a case of knowing herself and doing what best facilitates success for herself from day to day. James and Mark quiz Bella on how she goes about determining those cycles for herself and ask what she’d recommend to authors who are struggling to get into their own routine. You’ll love her responses.

The most consistently beneficial practice in Bella’s career.

From an author as successful and prolific as Bella you might think that the most beneficial things in her career are things you typically hear: writing a set number of words every day, doing the work, focusing on technique and skill development, killing her darlings. But she’s got a very different answer to the question that she shares on this episode – and it doesn’t have to do with the act of writing at all.

Outline of this episode

  • [0:20] Today’s introduction to the guest, Bella Andre.
  • [1:14] Busy recording videos for Youtube advertising.
  • [4:30] Things that have changed in self publishing over the course of Bella’s career.
  • [7:47] Why you’ve got to put on the blinders as an Indie author.
  • [8:34] Bella’s “normal” daily routine and learning to work in her own cycles.
  • [13:36] Is it common for Bella to work on more than one book at once?
  • [15:25] Bella’s writing is all done in MS Word – for a reason.
  • [16:28] One thing that’s been the most consistently beneficial to Bella.
  • [19:03] Looking forward to a publishing deal and how it came about.
  • [24:57] The disadvantage Indie authors are at in print publishing negotiations.
  • [26:30] Advice for newer authors.
  • [30:03] Why Bella does most of her stuff herself, with the help of contractors.   

Resources & Links mentioned in this episode

Bella’s website: http://bellaandre.com/

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SPF-008: Live from the London Book Fair 2016, Part 2 – With Mark Dawson and James Blatch

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In the second part of our London Book Fair special, Mark and James get to talk to key providers in the digital publishing space such as Draft2Digital, Reedsy and Byte the Book as well as indie publishing guru and author Joanna Penn. And in additional interviews you can hear how four young authors are progressing their dream of becoming full-time self published writers. It’s another podcast packed with ideas, tips and inspiration for authors everywhere!

Show Notes

  • What an aggregator is and how they work to get books into stores authors might otherwise not be able to reach.
  • The growth of Draft 2 Digital and the advantages of using them to distribute books.
  • Tips from Dan at Draft 2 Digital for selling more books.
  • What Reedsy does for authors and how it is different from marketplaces like Fiverr and People Per Hour.
  • On networking and why it matters.
  • How Byte the Book connects authors with agents and publishers, educates both authors and publishers about technology, and connects authors with those in other industries who might use their content.
  • Joanna Penn on the global reach for books, the state of the indie nation and predictions for the future when the outsiders become the mainstream.
  • Why an author’s personal definition of success is so important.
  • Guest spots from a couple of independent authors, including an ex-CID Detective.

You can win a scholarship to Mark Dawson’s acclaimed premium course “Facebook Ads for Authors” by spreading the word about this podcast.

Visit selfpublishingformula.com/contest to enter.

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SPF-007: Live from the London Book Fair 2016, Part 1 – With Mark Dawson and James Blatch

The SPF Team hit the London Book Fair earlier this week and managed to catch up with a wide variety of Self Pub folk – from bestsellers Mel Sherratt and Rachel Abbott, exciting up and coming authors, (including a Hollywood screenwriter), as well as indie publishers, bloggers and key figures in the digital publishing world. In the first of two special LBF episodes, expect innumerable insider author tips and the lowdown on the current state of play in the pioneering world of self publishing.

Show Notes

  • Why self-published authors go to London Book Fair (LBF).
  • How Rachel Abbott sold two million books.
  • The boost Mel Sherratt got when she had more books to sell.
  • The focus successful authors place on marketing and why each author should define their own idea of success.
  • On experimenting with marketing if it’s not working, and why building a mailing list matters. “The most important readers are the ones you’ve already got.”
  • Kobo’s strategy for supporting indie authors, and desire to collaborate with indie authors.
  • Advice for new authors from Mark Lefebvre of Kobo on writing your next book, thinking globally, and pricing strategies.
  • The Pigeon Hole and the serialization of novels.
  • Podcaster Ani Alexander on getting books written and publishing advice for new authors.
  • Screenwriter and TV & Film Producer Paul Pender on the attraction of self-publishing.

You can win a scholarship to Mark Dawson’s acclaimed premium course “Facebook Ads for Authors” by spreading the word about this podcast.

Visit selfpublishingformula.com/contest to enter.

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SPF-006: Best selling Indie Author Interview – With Russell Blake

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Russell Blake is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of some 30 – count ‘em! – much loved books and has been featured in the likes of the Wall Street Journal and The Chicago Tribune. He’s become a hugely respected figure in indie publishing circles and together with Mark and James, happily discusses, amongst other things, why marketing a book is quite a different process to writing one, the whole Kindle Unlimited thing and how to be an exceptional author (i.e. one that makes a living from writing).

James: You can win a scholarship to Mark Dawson’s acclaimed premium course “Facebook Ads for Authors” by spreading the word about this podcast.

Visit selfpublishingformula.com/contest to enter.

Hello and welcome to podcast #6 from The Self-Publishing Formula.

Female: Two writers: one just starting out; the other a best-seller. Join James Blatch and Mark Dawson and their amazing guests as they discuss how you can make a living telling stories. There’s never been a better time to be a writer.

Show Notes

  • What a new author should focus on.
  • On marketing books and how that skill set is very different from writing them.
  • What being the exception to the rule in self-publishing means.
  • The perma-free strategy and whether Russell is a believer.
  • Russell’s thoughts on Kindle Unlimited.
  • On selling in online retail stores other than Amazon.
  • Kindle Worlds fan fiction and what it’s like to read stories by other writers set in Russell’s world.
  • Marketing a book that’s in a different genre than your readers / newsletter subscribers are used to, including pricing strategies.
  • Questions from listeners, including what Russell’s experience working with Clive Cussler was like.
  • Comparisons between the music business and the traditional publishing business.

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SPF-004: Masterclass – Five Must Do Actions for New Authors – With Mark Dawson

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If you’re thinking of kicking off a career as an indie author, or have already started down that road, listening to Podcast number 4 might save you a lot of time, money and effort as you move forward. Mark and James focus on key elements that are worth getting right at the start of your adventure. Mailing lists, websites, social media presence, company set-up, copyright and using pro services are just some of the topics covered.

Show Notes

  • Action #1: Build your mailing list. What services to use to do this, Advanced Reader Teams.
  • Action #2: Have a website. Your space on the internet, affiliate income, tracking the effectiveness of marketing strategies.
  • Action #3: Social media presence. Focusing on one or two platforms, the ease of setting up a Facebook profile and page and why they matter.
  • Action #4: Setting up a limited company for your author income. Assume you’re going to be successful, the life of your copyrighted books.
  • Action #5: Be professional. Hiring editors, proofreaders, cover designers. The pace of change and not getting caught up in fads.

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