This Week in Self-Publishing: Starting the Next Round of Promos

This Week

Books sold: 7 ebooks, 0 paperbacks

Money earned: $16.56

Money spent: $16 (on a Fussy Librarian promo)

Total

Books sold: 222 ebooks, 134 paperbacks

Money earned (book sales): $1077.31

Money earned (Patreon): $6,909

Money spent: $4,290.85

I’m trying a new way of sharing metrics this week! Hope it makes things a little clearer. I know the “money spent” metric is still a little off, because I forgot to add in bus tickets to the Portland reading and Lyft rides to airports for the Missoula reading. I’m going to go into Mint and get a better “money spent” number for next Friday.


This month, my goal is to set up book promos with four sites: Fussy Librarian, BookSends, Reading Deals, and Manybooks.

Here are the requirements and costs for each:

Fussy Librarian

  • Must have at least 10 Amazon reviews with a 4-star average
  • Must be priced under $5.99 (does not have to be on sale)
  • Costs $16 for a literary fiction book

BookSends

  • Must have at least 5 Amazon reviews “with a high overall average”
  • Must have an attractive cover
  • Must be on sale for less than $3 and at least 50% off full price
  • Cannot previously have been on sale for a lower price
  • Costs $20 for a literary fiction book on sale for $0.99
  • Costs $30 for a literary fiction book on sale at $1.99 (but they don’t always accept $1.99 books and prefer lower sale prices)

Reading Deals

  • Must have at least 5 Amazon reviews with a 4-star average
  • Must have an attractive cover
  • Must be on sale for at least 33% off full price
  • Costs $29

Manybooks

  • Must have at least 10 Amazon reviews with a 4-star average
  • Must have an attractive cover
  • Must be on sale for at least 50% off full price
  • Cannot have been on sale for a lower price in the past three months
  • Costs $29

Since Fussy Librarian doesn’t require a sale price, I can schedule it to stand on its own; then I can run a week-long sale and stack the BookSends/Reading Deals/Manybooks promos one after the other.

You might be asking “what about BookBub? Isn’t it the biggest and best promo site of them all?” Here’s my answer:

BookBub

  • Must be on sale for at least 50% off full price
  • Cannot have been on sale for a lower price in the past 90 days
  • Must pass a selection process that favors books with quality reader reviews (which I have), quality industry reviews (which I have) and recognizable accolades like awards or bestseller status (which I don’t have)
  • Costs $580 for a literary fiction book on sale at $0.99
  • Costs $1,000 for a literary fiction book on sale at $1.99

So… yeah. I know that I can, in theory, get BIG REWARDS from a BookBub promo. But I don’t think I have an accolade that’ll hook ’em, and while I have both $580 and $1,000 I’m not sure I’m ready to invest it yet.

Like, way better to wait until after I get that accolade, right? Because they put all that emphasis on “books that have earned rewards or bestseller status or famous blurbs perform significantly better than books that haven’t?”

Which means my current plan is to save BookBub for next spring after I know whether I’ve won any of the awards to which I’ve applied. It might even be smart to save BookBub until after Volume 2 releases, so readers who love Volume 1 can immediately buy the second one.

I’ll still be able to do the “stacked promo” technique with the other promo sites too, since the “can’t have been on sale in the past three months” limit will have worn off by then.


On the subject of Volume 2: I’m doing Readerfest this weekend, but I’ve blocked off the following three weekends just for revisions. I know it’ll take more than just three weekends to revise and rework Volume 2, but I have a burndown chart of everything that needs to be addressed and I’m going to see how much I can get through in that time.

I can definitely knock out all the piddly stuff; the copyediting and consistency notes I made on my first revision pass-through, the fact-checking, etc. Ideally, by the end of these three weekends, the only major revisions left will be the handful of scenes that need expanding or reworking.

Which will be the hardest part.

Which is why I’ve given myself three months in which to get ’em done.

Part of me is like “you’ll totally be able to finish your revisions by the end of 2016, and even if you don’t, you’ve got January and February as overflow months before you need to do the final proof and send it off for formatting (and then do the final final proofread).”

The other part is like “BUT WHAT IF YOU DON’T AND YOU HAVE TO WRITE ONE OF THOSE POSTS EXPLAINING HOW YOUR BOOK WON’T RELEASE IN MAY 2018 AS PROMISED?”

And, really, I have no idea what will happen. I only have a good guess based on the way I’ve been able to get things done so far.

Also, I really really really really want to revise this book by the end of the year, which is the best kind of motivator. (For me. Your motivational tools may differ. I tend to work the hardest on the things I want the most, which… wow, I feel like I could write a whole post on what that means, and how I’ve constructed my life to make that kind of work possible, and the privilege/discipline/logistics/knowledge of self involved. DO YOU WANT A POST ABOUT KNOWLEDGE OF SELF because I could do that.)

Anyway, that is this week’s update, and I gotta go do the rest of my Friday work for my freelance clients now! As always: ❤️ ❤️ ❤️

 

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