Saturday, December 29, 2012

Need help with your book? These tips should help!

As an author, you can never stop learning or bettering yourself if you want to succeed. I'm glad I'm inspiring others to write and for those of you struggling, here are some helpful tips that might help. If they did, please leave a comment below.

Create the world first. Who are the bad guys? Who are the good guys? Who's in the middle? Where are they? Where do they need to go? What are their goals/motivations?

Everybody does something for a reason.  By creating the world/environment you are setting the stage for how the actors/heroes/villains act. Then just go with the flow.

The bad guy and good guy must be equally matched or on their way to getting there. They can have different powers that cancel each other out, leaving the hero to use something the bad guy doesn't have (kindness?)

If you have to go one sentence at a time, then go for it. Make it the best sentence possible with the least amount of words. Trust me, this will save you time down the road and it's something all authors must do.

Write for you. Write what makes you happy. Don't write what you think others want to read or what's trending. JK Rowling showed the world a boy wizard, who most never knew. Now there are a ton of boy wizards books.

Make the time to write. You have to force yourself or you will most likely procrastinate.

Enjoy what you're doing. If you're not having fun, trust me the readers will know. If you have to walk away, take a break, go for it. Sometimes if you get stuck somewhere, leaving and doing something else will often reset your brain to flow again.

Hope these tips helped. Have a happy and successful new year! :-)

Steven W.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

One of the greatest feelings...

Is to see people buying your book, almost on a daily basis. Amazon gives you a means to keep track of your sales whenever you want. It's been almost 3 months since I first launched my book Got Ghosts and for some reason people are buying it like crazy, even long after Halloween. I figured once Halloween came and went the sales would plummet. Instead, they are rocketing upwards. To put it into perspective...

I launched my book on Sept 19th, 2012 so there was about 2 weeks left in the month. Amazon gave me a check for $16 bucks for 8 sales.

Readers Note: Amazon pays you 2 months from the end of the month. Since I started late September, my first check for $16 bucks got deposited at the end of November, my October sales ~ I get paid end of Dec, etc. I sell my book at $2.99 ~ Amazon keeps .99 cents for every sale so I make about $2 bucks per sale. (Woo Hoo!)

For all the books I sold in October - Amazon will give me a check for $54 bucks

For all the books I sold in November - Amazon will give me a check for $104 bucks!

See a trend here?

I'm already at $50 bucks on the 15th of December.

I was debating if a book like that would sell and it looks like people like it. One way I can tell is that the Refunds section is left alone (no one asked Amazon for a refund - Yay!) Since I have a bunch of other emails that weren't released, I'm going to put them in a follow up book called Got Ghosts 2 - More stories of real paranormal activity. Since I'm a digital artist and photographer I can design my own book covers so this is going to be the official cover:

Pretty spiffy huh? I'm saving $200 to $500 bucks by doing it myself. However, unless your pretty good like me, a book cover can make or break your sales. For example, I have my second book out - The Journey of Anica Storm and it's not selling like I had hoped. It's either the description or the eBook cover that isn't sealing the deal so I went on and hired someone who has a BA in writing to write up a description for me. That will help. 

I'm also going to go do a specific photo shoot with my best friend so I can make a new cover for my Anica Storm book. The nice thing about eBooks is that you can tweak and change things all you want. So I'm not doing so hot on sales, I'm going to tweak a few things and guess what? If I'm right, I'm going to start noticing results. Right now, I'm at 5 sales for the month of December. So next time we speak, I hope to have some news for you. Until then...

Stay Crunchy, even in milk.

Steven W.