Showing posts from October, 2019

4 Steps to Evaluating New Marketing Channels for Writing

Write every day means making time to write. That doesn’t mean making time to use marketing channels to sell the book. Herein lies the crux of the author dilemma. How do you spend the minimum amount of time marketing, so that you can instead spend the time writing? Step 1: Define Your Goal and Timing Let’s start with a few assumptions. Every writing journey can have different goals. If your goal is to simply have a book in your hand, then no marketing is necessary. If your goal is to sell it to just one other person, a phone call with your mother should be enough. Goals can include making enough to live off of, building a stream of royalties, getting reviews, identifying popular trends / tropes, building a fan base, etc. Identifying a specific goal helps an author move from “those all sound good” to “I have XYZ figured out, but I still need W”. After you’ve gotten a broad sense of a goal, narrow it down. How much feedback are you looking for and how fast? Are you wantin

The Mix of Joy and Deadlines

I was recently given the reminder that I should only write for fun, never because I think it’s a chore. While that makes sense on the surface, I wanted to take a moment and deconstruct that. I think there is more to this than meets the eye. Deadlines can lead to joy The first component of this is that sometimes having a deadline can eventually lead to joy. Sometimes the hardest part of a project is simply jumping in. Once you are “swimming in the cold water” you get used to it and can even find it fun. However, when you look at the surface and think of the initial impact of the water, it can lead you to avoiding it all together. Life is too short to avoid building things that can lead to joy. Sometimes, having a deadline in that can be frustrating, but can lead to something you get in the rhythm of. Inspiration can be caused by action One thing sometimes leads to another. A spark of inspiration can cause a raging fire to occur. That’s why having a deadline can be

Preparing for Writing

I’ve come to the conclusion that simply writing a bunch is not enough. However, in order to meet the goals that I want to achieve, I must write a lot of words. So there is the potential conflict. I need to write enough good things that people enjoy what I am writing. On the other hand, I need to recharge and seek out cool stuff to write. I think the trick with all of this is that it’s not static. It’s not always a 1-to-1 ratio. Some stories simply require more work than others and that requires more recharging. That’s all well and good, but I don’t know the difficulty of a story until I get into it. A story that could potentially be extremely easy to write might appear tough. On the flip side, an “easy to write” story could quickly become a nightmare if I don’t get a good handle on it from the start. So what are some things that can be done to strike the balance initially? Decide on Method of Recharge Some things help recharge the creative juices more than others. For me,

How I Structure My Newsletter

I recently asked for feedback on what could be improved in my newsletter. I had a bit of a chuckle when I got four responses about frequency and all four were different. One person wanted once per month, another every two weeks, another person was weekly, and finally a person wanted this email twice per week. I have a feeling somewhere in the middle of all that is where I’ll rest the frequency (2-3 times per month). I think that this will ultimately rest with value. Can I bring new and good value every few weeks? I believe so. Twice a week? Nope, unless I decided to shift to releasing serials. What’s more interesting to me is the other feedback I received, both in the reports and in replies. My reports say that offering an “instant win” contest increases the amount of clicks in the email. That’s not a huge surprise. However, it also decreased the amount of unsubscribes (by about 3x), which is a surprise. The amount of opens was about the same as average. The replies rev