Amazon Adds Sub-Categories To Historical & Literary Fiction

There are lots of reasons why self-publishing success stories tend to concentrate around writers of “genre” fiction, but it’s a mistake to assume that success is impossible if you write literary fiction or historical fiction (which tends to get lumped in with literary fiction, even though it’s just another genre… like literary fiction!). The first is demographics: romance and erotica readers were the first to switch to digital, followed by mystery and thriller fans, leading to the success stories of Amanda Hocking, Joe Konrath, and John Locke. I remember SF/F authors complaining (back in 2011) that their readers hadn’t switched to e-books yet, casting jealous eyes at the outsized romance audience. But as readers did move across, we saw people Read More…

Battle of the Distributors: Smashwords vs Draft2Digital

Since I started self-publishing in 2011, Smashwords has been the overwhelming favorite for savvy self-publishers who wanted or needed a distributor to reach non-Amazon e-bookstores. However, a new competitor called Draft2Digital launched a beta version of their service earlier this year and has been gaining popularity. In July, they hit 1,000 users, 10,000 titles, and 1,000,000 books sold. I’ve been getting lots of questions about Draft2Digital, and experimenting with them myself, so I thought it was a good time for a side-by-side comparison as there are distinct pros and cons to each service. But before we get into that, let’s look at the question of whether you need to use a distributor at all. The virtues of going direct In my Read More…

When Visibility Doesn't Lead To Book Sales

Writers are pretty creative about getting exposure for themselves and their books. Self-publishers especially are always experimenting with innovative ways to move the sales needle. Like many of you, I’ve tried a little of everything at this point, and the list of stuff that works is far, far shorter than the list of stuff that doesn’t. But what if I told you that you had a chance for some serious exposure? Imagine appearing on a reality TV show with millions of viewers, week after week. That level of visibility should have some kind of effect, right? YA fantasy writer and King of The Nerds contestant Genevieve Pearson is here to share her story: * * * “Writing is easy. It’s the marketing Read More…