The sudden spurt of self-publishing options and the number of authors opting for this route has changed the face of publishing. However, for many novices in the field, self publishing can be fraught with pitfalls. How to organize the project is one of the biggest hurdles. What to do first? Hank Quense's brilliant little book How to Manage Your Self-Publishing Project offers a workable plan of action.
This short and simple e-book contains a wealth of information. It represents a unique approach to self-publishing and is based on the author’s lectures and webinars. It uses to flow charts and mind-maps to graphically explain the processes. It is intended to be a self-contained guide on the self-publishing and marketing processes. It won’t exactly tell you how to self-publish or market a book, but it will present the steps you need to take to get your book self-published and how to start marketing it. There are notes associated with the flow charts and the mind-maps to explain the tasks involved in that part of the process. These charts can be considered as elaborate and extensive to-do lists with time frames on when you should be addressing each to-do item.
Self-publishing can be a confusing and expensive project for the novice author. Some authors use the ‘spray and pray’ approach, and end up doing things backward and wondering why such an expensive project did not work. Simplicity and organization is the key to success. Author Hank Quense approaches the task of self publishing in a multifaceted way. It’s not just about writing the book (usually the easy part). The nuts and bolts of ISBN, websites, marketing, budgeting, and additional extras to enhance the book’s appeal are also discussed. The author outlines a practical step-by-step approach, putting each aspect of the book process into its place for both the e-book and the print version. One can hardly go wrong with his clear mind maps and flow charts. It’s a good idea to print them out and pin them up next to your desk. He includes helpful links to areas such as creating press kits, and checking on service providers.
The book emphasizes the changing role of a self-published author: from being a writer, an author now becomes the CEO of his or her business. It is not enough to write a book and hope readers will buy it. It must be polished, produced, marketed, and nurtured after that. Marketing a book is hard work, but a logical approach will add to a book’s potential for success. Hank Quense will show you how in this eminently readable, useful guide. 5 Stars.
Altogether, Hank has over fifty published short stories and a number of non-fiction articles. Hank has initiated a series of lectures and workshops to share his expertise in creating fiction and publishing books. Create A Short Story is a 4-session workshop in which the participants design their own short story. He also gives a two-part seminar on Self-publishing a book and Marketing and Selling the self-published book. Visit Hank's author site or his Amazon page to find out more about his work.
First reviewed for Readers Favorite.
by Fiona Ingram
Friday, June 28, 2013
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
ancient books were written in blood. Most are lost, their Keepers with them.
A curse that befell a people; a Kingdom with no King. Life couldn’t get more
harrowing for the Elfies, a blend of Elves and Fairies. Or for
sixteen-year-old Jules Blaze. Or could it? For Jules, the heir of a Keeper,
no less, suspects his family hides a forgotten secret. It was bad enough that
his people, the Elfies of Reign, triggered a curse Now, Gehzurolle, the evil
lord, and his armies of Scorpents, seem bent on destroying Jules and his
family. Why? When Jules’ family home is ransacked to find his mother’s
Ancient Book and his mother is kidnapped, he realizes the threat is real.
Gehzurolle’s agents hunt for Jules as he journeys into enemy land to find the
truth. Truth that could save him and his family, and possibly even reverse
the age-long curse. Provided Jules realizes who is a friend and who is a foe,
and doesn’t get himself killed first.
Thursday, June 13, 2013
Be afraid, be very afraid of big pharmaceutical organisations. When Montana Bannerman’s Nobel prize-winning father sells his company (including his genetics research and laboratory) to a giant corporation, Bendix Schere, that labels itself as ’caring,’ she and her father think their financial problems are over. All they need to do now is research for cures that will benefit mankind. Right? Wrong. Within a short space of time, a pushy reporter (Zandra Wollerton) working on a wild and seemingly far-fetched story is dead. Too many babies are being born with Cyclops Syndrome. Is thiscoincidence or genetic engineering? Then when more people connected to the company and the investigation start dying—sometimes in front of Monty—she takes fright. Who is behind the world’s most caring company’s hidden agenda? And when Monty narrowly escapes an attempt on her life, she wonders who can she trust? A co-worker? The police? Everyone she speaks to ends up dead!
by Fiona Ingram
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
|Chris P. with training wheels|
Chris P. says on his Facebook page: My name is Chris P. Bacon. I am a pig in a wheelchair. My veterinarian Dr. Len Lucero decided that I needed to be given a second chance. I went home with Dr. Lucero that day, so that I would have a chance at life as a handicapped pig. I live in Florida and love my new life! Watch me grow and take on new obstacles that life has to offer me. Thanks for sharing it with me!
|Chris P. with owner Len Lucero|
Teaching kids compassion is a wonderful start in life. From this beginning, kids learn the best qualities that make them better human beings. Kids will learn about perseverance, overcoming obstacles, and tolerance towards others.
Help Chris P. spread the word by visiting his social media sites and following his trail of good deeds. Please share his antics and share the message.
by Fiona Ingram
Sunday, June 9, 2013
- First, somehow you need to get the eBook to your customers and their money to you. This can entail website hosting, fulfillment, payment processing, shipping, and customer service.
- Second, this method only works if you have the ability to expose your readers to your offering.
Gumroad charges $0.25 per download plus 5 percent of the sale for hosting and selling your file. For example, if you sell a PDF for $3, Gumroad keeps $0.40 ($0.25 + 5 percent of $3) and you'd get $2.60. This is more than you'd get from Kindle Direct Publishing for the same transaction. Gumroad also offers a "$0+" option. This means that people can pay whatever they want to-including nothing.
I used Gumroad to distribute a PDF of What the Plus! Unfortunately, I didn't track results when I varied the price from $2.99 to as low as "pay what you want." Over the course of a month, 26,717 people clicked on the link, and 1,632 people downloaded it.
Most people paid $0, but the donations amounted to $803.23, so the average amount paid was approximately $0.50 per copy. This was four months after the introduction of the book. By that time, I had given away approximately 15,000 copies and sold 15,000 copies.
People cannot pay with PayPal because Gumroad only accepts credit cards. Also, Gumroad asks for a minimal amount of personal information, so it cannot provide information about where your customers live. Someday you may need this information to charge sales tax or value-added tax for digital content.
Gumroad requires a preexisting and loyal audience that will click on a link that you provide. As a first-time author, this may be difficult, but you'll learn how to build your "platform" in the next section of the book, "Entrepreneur." If you can make this work, there are two big benefits: retention of more of the selling price and access to the e-mail addresses of everyone who has bought the file.
E-Junkie is another way to sell your book directly. Unlike Gumroad's per-copy flat fee and percentage, E-Junkie charges according to the number of files and storage space that you use. The number of downloads is unlimited.
A collection of ten files totaling less than fifty megabytes costs $5 per month. Therefore, if you had one book that is less than fifty megabytes (which is a huge size for a book), you'd only pay $5 per month, and you could sell an unlimited number of copies.
Unlike Gumroad, customers can use PayPal, Google Checkout, TrialPay, and Authorize.net but not credit cards. Finally, also unlike Gumroad, E-Junkie can calculate sales tax and VAT charges because it knows where your customers reside.
ClickBank is a third way to sell ebooks directly. You create an account, upload your file, price it, and sell it. There is a $49.95 activation fee to get started. Customers can use credit cards or PayPal.
A key difference between ClickBank and the other two services is ClickBank's affiliate program. The scenario ClickBank paints is that people discover great books in the ClickBank marketplace. Then they join the ClickBank affiliate program, get an affiliate link to their favorite books, and promote the link on their blog and through social media.
The company says that it has 100,000 affiliates in 200 countries. It claims to have paid more than $1.8 billion to affiliates and vendors (the people who upload files) and to process 30,000 transactions per day.
The revenue split with ClickBank is different from the other direct-sales sites. ClickBank operates on a wholesale price/retail price model, which means you set a wholesale price (the price at which ClickBank and other affiliates buy the book from you) and a retail price (the price customers see and pay). Your revenue is the wholesale price, since you are selling to ClickBank, and they are the seller of record to customers.
Ganxy is an interesting start-up in this segment. It enables you create a "showcase" for your eBook and sell it in EPUB, MOBI, and PDF format. Ganxy provides payment functionality, file hosting, and customer service.
Ganxy charges 10 percent of net sales, where net sales is the selling price of the eBook less a payment-processing fee. Think of it as a website like Gumroad, E-Junkie, and ClickBank that is dedicated to selling eBooks.
If you can convince people to buy your book from these services, you can make more money per book. Nathan Barry's App Design Handbook is an example. Barry has a concentrated market of app programmers, and these programmers are willing to pay his book's price of $39.
For these programmers, the book isn't a $2.99 Gothic-romance whim. Designing apps is their livelihood, so a $39 price point for a book that can help them succeed isn't a problem. Barry makes approximately $38.20 per book, so if he sold 2,000 copies, he could buy a Porsche.
On the other hand, online eBook resellers such as Amazon and Apple pay less per copy, but they may sell more copies. Also, direct sales do not count toward sales rankings for bestseller lists, and books on these lists tend to sell more because they are visible.
If your customers are not price sensitive and you have a way to reach them, then selling direct can work. If these conditions do not exist, then it may be better to make less money per copy but sell more copies using online resellers and bookstores.
If you're wondering about using PayPal to sell eBooks, it's not applicable to most self-publishers because this would require creating a website where your readers have an account, and you control access to your eBook's file. Essentially, you'd have to become your own E-Junkie and manage an ecommerce site.
PayPal provides payment collection, and when someone pays, it tells your website to grant access-for example, if someone buys more weapons in an online game. Credit cards such as MasterCard and Visa work in similar ways. However, these companies do not act as your store by hosting your eBook and selling it.
So your customers can pay with PayPal and credit cards, but on Gumroad, E-Junkie, and ClickBank, not directly to you.
This fantastic information comes from Guy Kawasaki, who has written 12 books, 10 of which were
APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur - How to Publish a Book, by Guy Kawasaki and Shawn Welch, is available as an eBook ($9.99) and in paperback ($24.99). Visit
Reprinted from "The Book Marketing Expert newsletter," a free ezine offering book promotion and publicity tips and techniques.
by Fiona Ingram
Saturday, June 8, 2013
Today I welcome author Tanya J. Peterson
to my blog for a Q and A. Last week I reviewed Tanya’s book Leave of Absence. I
found it unusual in subject matter and extremely informative. Leave of Absence deals with
mental disorders and imbalances, some temporary and some long-term. I did a bit
of research and the statistics are scary.
|Author Tanya J. Peterson|
- You are a counselor with an education and background in this kind of work. You deal with facts – so what made you turn to fiction to create a story about mental disorders?
- In my view, the ‘collateral damage’ is often forgotten i.e. the effects on family and friends who find it easier to walk away because they can’t cope with a loved one’s disability. How do you feel a fiction story can help them?
Your observation of “collateral damage” suffered by friends and family of someone experiencing mental illness is very astute. The lifestyle and relationship changes to which William has to adjust are very common. In reading about the experiences of fictional characters (as long as the experiences are realistic and accurate), people can experience a sense of connection. Their hardships can be normalized, giving a feeling that they’re not alone. In seeing that the difficulties are common, they can feel a sense of relief that what they are feeling and experiencing is normal rather than a sign that they’re doing something wrong.
did you come up with the two different characters in Oliver and Penelope?
believe you have been on ‘both sides’ of the couch, and have experienced
some of the anguish of stress. Can you tell us how this helped you in
creating your characters?
- What has been the response of readers to Leave of Absence?
- Where do you hope to take this new venture – are there more books in sight?
- Is there anything you’d like readers of my blog and the book to remember/take away with them?
|Leave of Absence|
Here's wishing you a wonderful journey and great success with your fantastic book Tanya. Thank you for sharing your wisdom and insight with us today.
by Fiona Ingram
Friday, June 7, 2013
It’s hard to make history come alive, but in the capable hands of author Frederick Wulff, the historical character of Alexander McKee, a British Indian agent of the colonial frontier, springs vibrantly from the dusty pages of history books. The author uncovers the tragic realities and the bloody consequences of colonialism and the sad disintegration of the Indian way of life as the white man’s behaviour and lawlessness eroded their culture and their rights. The devastating effects of the rum trade cannot be underestimated. The author also reveals the incredible personal story behind the man who played a seminal role in this compelling and chaotic piece of American history. Born of a Shawnee mother and a British father, choosing sides could not have been easy for McKee in the culture clash between the land-grabbing colonialists, the traders, and the Indians, the original
Frederick Wulff’s account of this remarkable man will keep history buffs captivated. Minutely researched and written with a deep understanding of the era and Alexander McKee, this book is an excellent read. The author has an easy-to-read style that makes the wealth of information easily assimilated. Five Stars. Highly recommended.
by Fiona Ingram
Tuesday, June 4, 2013
Please see our NEW RULES below!Welcome to the 17th Kid Lit Blog Hop. The Kid Lit Blog Hop takes place on the 1st and 3rd Wednesdays of each month. We have managed to create a dynamic and engaged community of children's books bloggers, authors, publishers, and publicists, as well as parents seeking out their next great read. So, you are more than welcome to link in and take some time to make some new friends. Please join me in welcoming a new permanent hostess, Reshama at Stacking Books - a wonderful blog with many recommendations for the best children's books. We are also pleased to have Fiona Ingram, the author of The Secret of the Sacred Scarab (click for my review of this FABULOUS middle grade book) and a blogger as well, joining us this week as co-hostess of the Hop. Welcome Reshama and Fiona! Please be sure to give each of our hostesses a visit to say a quick hello!
Happy Hopping everyone and enjoy the Hop!
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Kid Lit Blog Hop Rules *NEW*:1. *NEW* We ask that you kindly follow your hostesses and co-hostesses. You can follow us any way you choose (Email, GFC, Twitter, Facebook, G+, Pinterest, etc.), but we've added our preferences below. If you could just give us a quick "follow" or "like" that would be much appreciated! Make sure to leave us a message if you are following us (i.e., on Twitter or Facebook or on our websites) and we will be sure to follow you back. Thanks! :-)
* Don't link directly to your blog, it must be a specific post*
* For Authors, we prefer you to link to your blog if you have one *
* Make sure you include an image relevant to the POST (e.g., book cover), not your blog button or photo of yourself.*
* Feel free to link more than one post.*3. *NEW* Please visit AT LEAST the TWO LINKS directly ahead of your own and leave them some love in the form of a comment. We are trying to build a community of bloggers, readers, parents, authors, and others who are as passionate about childrens literature as we are so please CONNECT and follow any or all of the blogs that interest you! 4. If you like, grab the button above and put it somewhere on your blog, preferably the post you're linking up. If you'd prefer, you can just add a text link back to this Hop so that others can find it and check out all these great book links! 5. It would really help us get the word out about the Kid Lit Blog Hop if you would be so kind as to tweet, share, and spread the word about the Hop!
Interested in co-hosting the Kid Lit Blog Hop? Please email renee @ motherdaughterbookreviews (dot) com and put Co-Hosting Blog Hop in the subject line.Happy Hopping!