Okay, we are one month into the new year, things are a wee bit unsettled in general thanks to all the big changes both in the United States and abroad, but into all of this, we have to keep our lives together. For me, that means my publishing career.
I took a good look at what I’ve done so far and where I want to be, and honestly, I’m pretty happy with the books I’ve put out, the reader responses I’ve gotten, and what I have planned going forward. That’s a very nice place to be in, but it’s a starting point. A foundation rather than a completion.
The one thing I’m still weak on (I’m sure there are more than one, but the one I’m focusing on) is marketing. I’m playing with a lot of things this year to see if I can improve at getting the word out. Those who read my books seem genuinely entertained, but the big question is how to get more readers to give me a try?
Now, this isn’t a New Year’s Resolution, because I don’t find those useful, but it is a general theme for the year so I keep it in mind. It’s also something with doable action items.
In January, I did a few things toward this aim, mainly targeting the Seeds Among the Stars series because I’m putting the finishing touches on the third book with the hopes of getting it into reader hands early this year.
* The biggest has been a sale on Shafter (Book 1) in all stores for just 99 cents. The hope was to raise the visibility and bring in new readers who want to continue with the series and potentially will explore my other books as well. The sale ends today, though, so if you don’t have a copy, or know someone who might enjoy it, now’s the time to jump.
Results so far have been more visibility on Amazon and more purchases overall of this one title across at least three stores (some I don’t have the reports for yet). I also joined a Kobo promotion to put the book right in front of people’s faces and had my greatest number of sales on that platform for any month so far. I count my first big marketing foray a success.
* I also joined a 30% off discount promotion on Kobo for book 2, which ran for 5 days and didn’t have as much of an effect so not sure on this one.
* I’m currently at The Book Marketing Summit (https://thebookmarketingsummit.com/) hoping to pick up some other ideas to try.
* I’m collecting opinions from my readers regarding the next publication and a possible blog serial (tell me what you think) as well to explore what people are most interested in.
* I’ve included my books in several multi-author events (both past and forthcoming) and will be interviewed on a steampunk blog next month.
* I’ve been invited to be a panelist at BayCon 2017 and have cheerfully accepted.
I’m starting the year at a run, hoping to learn a lot along the way. It’ll be a year of exploration on this front, and I’m counting on my readers to help out with reviews and telling others they think will enjoy my brand of fiction. Should be fun. Exhausting, but fun.
How about you? Do you have a theme for 2017, something you’re exploring, trying to get better at, or wanting to accomplish? Post in the comments and maybe you’ll get some suggestions. If you have any suggestions for me, I’d love to hear them. Not everything is doable, but I can’t figure that out without knowing what’s out there.
Good luck with 2017. May we all survive the turmoil and still manage to do great things.