I’m Creating An E-Book Series and I’ll Bring You Along. With Funny Vampires.

29 10 2017


I am launching a three book series in Spring of next year.

The first book has the working title “Lampreyhead”.

You may see short stories with the character Lampreyhead in my Bibliography page, but these books will not have the frantic Animaniacs energy. There would be no way to sustain that pace over three books at 100K words without burning the audience out.

It will be about vampires, and it will be funny, hopefully intelligent, insightful, and yes a tad gruesome. Think “Clive Barker and Christopher Moore, or maybe Neil Gaiman with a Christian fixation”.

If it makes me happy, I will expand the series. I will be self-publishing, because I lack the hide to deal with agency submissions.

As I proceed with the publication process, I’ll update as to what decisions I’ve made.

For the past two years, I’ve been listening to self-publishing podcasts:

“The Science Fiction and Fantasy Marketing Podcast” with Lindsay Buroker

“The Rocking Self-Publishing Podcast” with Simon Whistler

I listened to well over fifty writers give their advice on self-publishing.

What I learned:

Have at least three books in your series ready to launch. Release the books one month at a time, then have your next material in the series ready for Month Four.

Use simple, all-inclusive publishing solutions. Use someone who will format, publish, and distribute. Adjust and optimize to your market as you learn particulars.

In self-publishing, e-books lead print in sales.

Have a mailing list ready at the time of publishing. Use a third-party service to gather new fans.

The cover art should cost as much as the publishing. Use experienced cover artists who have worked in your genre. If you publish print versions, your book title should be readable from ten feet away.

Draft and redraft your blurb. Have others review it. Favor a sympathetic character over action or idea. Use other writers’ as guideposts: “if you like Clive Barker, yet get a laugh out of Christopher Moore…”.

For promotion, use story excerpts over reader reviews.

The number of reviews on Amazon or Goodreads help, but are not essential to good sales.

Provide new material for sale at least once per month per series. Even a short story or excerpts of WIPs will do.

Use pseudonyms only to separate family-friendly material from racier series. Otherwise, pen names multiply promotions needing upkeep with no multiplier in reward.

The effectiveness of an advertising tool can change weekly. An ad tool’s effectiveness varies widely between genres. The only reliable promotional tool at this moment is the mailing list.

On your website, your mailing list prompt should not block the text or stop navigation. I know when a site pops up asking for an email, I get angry and click away from the site. Apparently, I’m not the only one with that reaction. Keep your mailing list prompt to the sidebar.

In your books, place your Acknowledgments and Dedication on the last pages; this makes more space for story text in the Amazon “Free Sample”.

On the last page, place active links to sales pages for previous publications and your mailing list, followed by “Please leave a review at Amazon or Goodreads” with links.

Do not bother with Book Bub until the third book of your series is released, and even then only if sales are noteworthy.

Do not bother advertising on Twitter.

Set sales price at $2.99 unless the book is 100K words or more.

Reduce the price of Book One to .99 when Book Two is released. Do not give away books for free.

Do not hesitate to change your book cover if you think it will increase sales.







Another Writing Blog To Try

7 04 2017

Originally posted on The Maudlin Cabinet: Welcome to the Starving Writers’ Club! WELCOME to our new blog: “The Starving Writers’ Club”! We love this new site! AND we know you will, too! There is a writer in you and we want to help that writer grow. Our Charter: The Starving Writers’ Club is a writerly advice…

via Have You Seen Our Writing Blog? Welcome to “The Starving Writers’ Club”! —

Writers: Austerity Message From Scarfolk

13 01 2017


Writers: Have You Used Scrivener?

12 01 2017

Scrivener is a program designed to help writers organize and draft their projects. It works for screenplays and prose, fiction or non-fiction. At first I had turned my nose up at it. Drafting in Word and Excel worked just fine for me. What I discovered with my current novel is that Scrivener is like having Word documents accessible through an Excel spreadsheet. The program organizes it in several user-friendly methods like a spreadsheet, a flowchart, or a corkboard. The templates prompt for descriptions of characters, culture, and locations. For me, it’s good that it automatically backs up my work every few minutes. It costs a little but I have to admit I’ve saved some aggravation moving scenes around from one chapter to another and by not having to open additional files for backstory.

I’ll keep you posted about Scrivener. So far, it’s been worth the money.

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