I’m doing something that can be considered brilliant or insane. I’m putting a title out a month. When I say it out loud and look at my schedule, my goal sounds like the words of a person who should be locked in a padded room.
Trust me I did think this through, sort of, before I set out to tackle this goal. I’ve heard writers say, they put out 6 titles a year, 12 titles a year 24 titles a year. This intrigued me. It also made me think I wasn’t living up to my writing potential. So I thought, why not give it a try. Let’s be real, it never occurred to me to try 24 titles, for me that really would be insane. A dozen however, seem a doable.
Follow my reasoning. I wanted to beef up my book offerings and push myself. The goal seems a little scary, but if it goes as planned, next year I can cut the goal in half. Or I might want to make this my new normal. Check with me at the end of the and we’ll see.
Like any well thought out plan, there are always a few challenges. But that which doesn’t break me, will only make me stronger and a better writer, I hope. In addition to the writing challenge, I’m experimenting with different forms of marketing. Over the past year, I learned that books are like children, each has it’s own personality and needs to be nurtured differently.
FIRST TITLE: January 2016 Title “WHAT MY FRIENDS DON’T KNOWâ€
Challenge One: I planned my January release two days before my vacation. That was insane. I was trying to pack and prep a book at the same time. I’ll never do that again. However, I got the ebook out on January 19th. To ensure I’d make the January date, I set up a pre-order date. That cause more stress than I imagined. Unfortunately, the print version wasn’t ready and it’s been pushed back to March. But I still made my January Title date.
Marketing Strategy: Blog tour, giveaways with GoodReads, TRS [The Romance Studio], Ads on Booktastik, Love Kissed Books and other blogs and Kitty and Elena’s Blab Podcast
Purchase Outlets: Amazon, iBooks, Draft 2 Digital, Smashwords, Kobo and Createspace, my website and OC Book Fair
Formats: eBook and Print
SECOND TITLE: February 2016 Title “LOVE NOTESâ€
Challenge Two: The challenge with my February release was a matter of setup. I wrote a book of love notes, thus the title, “LOVE NOTES.” So far, these thirty-one notes have been the most difficult thing I’ve written. Who would have thought it’s be that difficult to draft a few words of expression…that’s the sub title. Anyway, I didn’t realize that at some point, I accidentally released the book. I found this out when I went to release it on February 28th. However, it had been pulled because I made some changes to the interior file. So I thought I had made it available for release, when in fact it hadn’t been made “available.” A simple few clicks and it was made available as of February 29th. Weird thing though, it was it was published on January 12th. Go figure. In my mind, it’s birthday is February 29, 2016.
Marketing Strategy: Giveaways with GoodReads, TRS [The Romance Studio]. This one is going to be a real learning experience, because it’s print only. However, I’m going to sell it through my other business.
Purchase Outlets: Amazon, Createspace and The Pin kDuchess, my website and OC Book Fair
THIRD TITLE: March 2016 Title “THE GOOD GIRL PART DEUX”
This brings us to Title No. 3, “THE GOOD GIRL PART DEUX”. I wrote this book in about a month. This is the second installment to “THE GOOD GIRL PART ONE”. It’s names Part Deux, because some of the story takes place in Paris. I fondly refer to Part One as my little book that could. This story was part of the “Fling” box set. I’ve talked about this story before. It took me about two weeks to write it. In mind it was going to be a stand alone novella. Instead, the end gave way to a second book. Now I’m wrestling with Part Trois.
Here’s a peak at the cover for THE GOOD GIRL PART DEUX
Marketing Strategy: I don’t know yet.
Purchase Outlets: I’m not sure, because Part One is in KDP Select. I’m not sure if I want to move the series or leave it there. I’ll have a solution by release day.
Formats: eBook and Print
So I invite you to take this journey with me. I’m not foolish enough to ask you to take this challenge with me, because that would be insane.
I mentioned a few months back that I was blessed to receive the holy grail of ads, BOOKBUB.
A little history. My first book GENERATIONAL CURSE was sort of at a stand still in the digital world. Let me rephrase that, because it makes it sound dead. It wasnâ€™t, it just wasnâ€™t getting the attention I wanted. In retrospect, I can understand why that was a good thing.
Let me explain. I only had one book out. If it had hit record breaking numbers, I didnâ€™t have anything else to offer readers. I searched ways to garner some attention. I did a few ads, a blog tour, posted it on various social media outlets, put it on sale for $.99, and saw a slight increase. When I released this book, I put it on Amazon, iBooks, Smashwords, All Romance eBooks, and Barnes and Noble. I saw very little love from everyone accept Amazon. Oh yeah and I did a giveaway at GoodReads with good results.
I canâ€™t remember when, but Kathy Rowland approached me about being in the FLING BOX SET. I jumped at the opportunity. It was a chance to be in a box set and it provided me with a challengeâ€¦write a novella. I had never written a short book and it was something I wanted to try. My next full-length book wasnâ€™t ready and I needed something new to offer the few readers I had. [Thank God for those early subscribers to my email list.]
So, as I mentioned in a previous post, I wrote THE GOOD GIRL Part One in about two weeks. I was torn about were to place this book. Due to the way FLING was set up, I had no choice, but to place it in KDP Select. I was surprised at how well this book was received. It was also a great attention getter. When people saw THE GOOD GIRL, they also saw GENERATIONAL CURSE. I saw a little movement, but THE GOOD GIRL, was doing much better.
I was talking to Kitty Bucholtz about my plight and she suggested I do something I felt was a little drasticâ€¦place it in KDP Select. This scared the crap out of me. I felt I would be losing out on potential sales. Who was I kidding, in the eyes of the other sights, I was dead. So I did it and was shocked it started selling much better. As a new writer, I have to remind myself, large sales take time. I also remind myself, my genre is still new or it hasnâ€™t officially been categorized. So, now I refer to my books as Steamy Christian Fiction or Contemporary Fiction with Faith elements. [Personally, I like Steamy Christian Fiction. Kind of sounds taboo or something your grandmother would cringe if she read. SMILE.]
Now for the meat and potatoes. I wish I could say I discovered some secret formula for getting the ad, but I didnâ€™t. All I did was pray. I donâ€™t mean to come of preachy, but itâ€™s the truth. Thatâ€™s all I did and filled out the application of course. Like a lot of authors, Iâ€™ve been reject a few times from BookBub, so this was a shock and an amazing Christmas gift.
If youâ€™re familiar with KDP Select, you know you have the option of offering you book for free for five days during your 90 days. To be honest, I almost forgot my 90 days were almost up. I quickly set out looking for ads. The other thing is it was around the holidays and letâ€™s be real, no one is really buying books before Christmas. But I had put myself in that situation. I also had wanted to do some kind of giveaway to celebrate the one year anniversary of my first book, GENERATIONAL CURSE.
I booked a GoodReads Giveaway and contacted a couple of sites I had placed ads with and saw good results: Robin Reads and Booktastik. And because the sky is blue, I applied to BookBub.
I immediately heard from Booktastik. [I love working with them. They are very accommodating.] They pretty much asked me what day I wanted and we were set. However, Robin Reads wasnâ€™t able to give me the date I wanted and offered me December 23rd. I felt that wasnâ€™t going to benefit me, so I turned it down.
An advantage to my genre, is I can apply for a few different categories: Contemporary Romance, Womenâ€™s Fiction, Inspiration [which would be a stretch for some people] or African American.
I keep trying to figure out what I did and I remember the previous times I applied it was for Contemporary Fiction and at my bookâ€™s full price. This time, I bit the bullet and decided to offer it for free. I also changed the description and applied to the African American category. I know some people are probably saying I should have done that in the first place. My reasons for not applying to that category are more complicated than I care to go into.
I figured if I was going to give by book away, I wanted to spend as little as possible. The African American category was only $65 for a free download, with a reach of 320,000+, with a total average downloads of 3,950.
A few days after the December meeting, I got an email from BookBub. I was prepared for the news either way, but very hopeful, the result was in my favor. I opened the email and immediately started jumping up and down doing a Thank You God happy dance. I got the ad. I didnâ€™t care what day they gave me, it was BookBub. The holy grail of ads. I knew no matter what, I was going to be expose to a lot of people that had probably never heard of me or my books. By the time the ad, hit, I had three titles. A novella, a novelette and my full-length. I had something to offer readers. My book was going to be featured on December 28, 2015. Cool thing about this date, it was my grandfatherâ€™s birthday. So if he had been alive we could have had a double celebration.
So how did I do? As far as Iâ€™m concerned, I did incredible. Iâ€™m only going to share the numbers for GENERATIONAL CURSE. Here we go:
DAY ONE OF FIVE FREE:
BookBub day, December 28, 2015:
I found the KENP number interesting, because the book was a free download.
This wear the wings or tails begin
DAY ONE OF FIVE FREE:
December 29, 2015:
DAY THREE OF FIVE FREE:
December 30, 2015:
DAY FOUR OF FIVE FREE:
December 31, 2015:
DAY FIVE OF FIVE FREE:
January 1, 2016:
Total Downloads for the five days: 8,734
Total KENP Downloads: 7,449
BookBub suggests that you track your numbers for thirty days to see what the halo affect is. Interesting word, halo. Here it is in a nutshell, I love the halo effect. Not only did the halo sit high, it shined bright.
December 29, 2015 – January 28, 2016
Total KENP Downloads: 41,950
Keep in mind Iâ€™m only talking about GENERATIONAL CURSE. During this time, I had two other books out and one on pre-order. All of which benefited greatly. For some people these are small numbers, but for my first time going out with BookBub, he was a true gentleman. Now I have a gage for the next time I get an ad.
Since the BookBub ad, Iâ€™ve seen steady numbers, so far nothing like what I experienced in the halo. Let me rephrase that, Iâ€™ve had a few of those four figure KENP days and sales are much better.
Sorry this post was a little long. Check in with me next month as I continue on my quest to do 12 Titles in 12 Months.
Fiction for Women Who Love God, Couture and Cute Guys