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  • Writer's pictureMichael Parker

Understanding why.

When I read interviews or watch podcasts of writers who have successfully self-published, I admit to feeling a little envious of their success, and wonder if I’ll ever be able to achieve the kind of sales figures they enjoy. My wife asked me the other day if I get upset when I see what others have achieved doing what I’m doing, but I told her that it would be pointless getting upset; the fact is these people have worked hard to achieve their success, and that is the limiting factor in my case. I have watched two mega selling authors in the last week: Adam Croft and Hugh Howey. Both these writers knew how to do the hard yards and come up with a solid way to promote their work. I have watched others over the last few months, always looking to see if there was a shortcut maybe that I didn’t know about. But the truth is — its work, work, work.

This brings me to a kind of late, 2017 resolution (procrastination got in the way): to try harder. I paid the royalties into my bank today — those I received as a result of the BookBub advert earlier in the year — and decided I would like to do that each month, and watch them increase; but how? Well, this week, Mark Dawson is releasing his latest advertising course for authors, which includes all the updated stuff on Facebook, Amazon Ads and BookBub. As a student of his, I get all this free, so I’m looking forward to dipping my toe in the water with BookBub advertising (not a ‘Featured Deal’). But I know that simply following what I’m told, without working at it, I’ll be wasting my time. So it’s up to me: must work harder. You will all get to know how I’m doing, but it could be a while before that happens. If I was a racehorse, you wouldn’t put your money on me, so I now have to see if I can’t make this old nag romp home first past the winning post.

I made some progress with my WIP. I’m at the writer’s block stage. This is familiar territory to most writers. I’ll get through it of course, but at the moment I can’t see how. I sent a short extract of the WIP to my subscribers, wondering if I would get a reaction. I did — 21 of them unsubscribed! You’ve got to laugh, haven’t you?

I scrambled through a couple of cross promotions recently and came to the conclusion I’ve been coming to for a long time: they’re not worth it. Others might disagree, but I’ve seen no increase in my daily sales figures to convince me it’s all worth the effort.

Tomorrow I will be on a book stall for a couple of hours at our local British Legion. Some members of our book group (Chindi), will be there at the one day Christmas Market trying to spread some literary cheer in the area. I probably won’t sell any books, but that isn’t always the case. It could turn out entirely different.

And on the subject of trying to spread literary cheer, our book group, Chindi, are running a Christmas promotion on ALL our books in the run up to Christmas. Almost all genres will be on sale through our website at reduced prices. So why not pop along to and have a look at some of our bargains? I might sell some there too. Wish me luck!

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