THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE FORMIDABLE


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Today marks the one week anniversary of the release of my first ever book, Tidal Falls.

THE GOOD:

When I began this journey I did it just to see if I could. It was a childhood dream to one day write a book, sell it to Harlequin, <g> and see my name up in lights.

Two out of three ain’t bad. 🙂

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Along the way I’ve met some amazingly kind and generous people, willing to help the new kid on the block figure out the ropes. I can’t tell you how grateful I am, without them I would have stumbled a lot more than I did.

THE BAD:

I wish I would have done more research into Amazon’s algorithms. Before you publish make sure you find out all you can about subject choice and keywords. They’re crucial to your books success.

Amazon has an informational page on this, which I used for my list. However, when I actually started the process and was asked to choose my subjects, virtually none of my choices were available. So I chose the obvious.

Bad move. This puts the book into the broadest categories, which means you virtually disappear into the woodwork.

Thanks to some great advice from a new writer friend, I was able to go back in, change my subjects, and achieve some visibility.

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Make sure you have a social media presence. Yes, this takes time and effort, but in the end it’s invaluable. Everything I’ve read suggests 80% social and 20% selling is the best formula, and I’d have to agree. No one likes something shoved in their faces. So if that’s your only goal for joining Facebook or Twitter, don’t bother. For myself, I like the connections I’ve made with people in the industry. New friends I would probably never met otherwise. I like the sharing of jokes to lighten the day, and the support shown when someone is going through a rough patch. Everyone needs friends, 🙂

THE FORMIDABLE:

Everyone who reads this blog knows I’m a starch defender of Amazon. I love what they’ve done for the consumer, and for the book industry in general. Coming from a small town, without them, and Harlequin’s reader subscription service, I would have missed out on untold amounts of reading pleasure.

Sure we have a library, but for me, I like to take my time with my books, savour them. I love having the world’s largest bookstore at my fingertips. Heaven.

But from a writer’s standpoint, I’ve run into a few issues that I’d like to share.

First off, I found out to my surprise each of Amazon’s global networks work independent of the other. I know, I know, I should have expected this, I just never realised the ramifications.

When publishing you’re encouraged to set up an Author page on Amazon. Okay, make’s sense. Thanks to an easy tutorial, I managed without too many difficulties, though setting up an RSS feed for my blog was a stumbling block for a while. For anyone who doesn’t know, just add feed to the end of your URL. Ex: jbiggarblog.com/feed/

The second stumbling block came when I learned I needed to do this in the other hosting countries as well. Once wasn’t enough. So for France, and Germany I had to stumble through with no idea if I was doing it right or not.

Lastly, and for me most importantly, they don’t even have an author page in Canada. This is my home, where I wish to shine, and I’m instead having the most issues.

Createspace, who did a beautiful job of producing my paperback, 🙂 doesn’t distribute to Canada. This means anyone wishing to purchase a copy of my paperback must order it through Amazon.com and have it delivered to Canada. You can see the problem with this scenario, shipping.

The funny thing about it is, the paperback is available in every other country. The U.K, France, Germany, Australia.

Just not Canada. What’s up with that?

If anyone has some advice on this matter, we’d love to hear from you.

Categories: JBIGGARBLOG, writing tipsTags: , , , , , , , , , ,

11 thoughts on “THE GOOD, THE BAD, AND THE FORMIDABLE

    1. Hi Patti, I write romantic suspense, which is the category I put myself in to begin with. Then, my friend suggested trying military and crime, which helped tremendously. Have you published yet? What is your genre?

      Like

      1. No, I haven’t published yet. My genre is the same as yours. Actually, I’m in KOD LL, too. Yeah, I’m that Patti. 🙂

        You sound disappointed and you shouldn’t be. You’ve accomplished one of your goals. As I understand it, building a fan base for your books takes time. I’m sure Cynthia Eden and other big name authors didn’t have automatic success either. So keep writing, blogging and learning your craft. Success will come. You wait and see.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Thanks Patti, I wondered if it was you, lol. Yeah, in some ways it’s harder than I expected, but in others…what a rush 🙂
        Can’t wait to see your book up in the bright lights, it’s a winner

        Like

      3. Thanks, Jacquie, you’re very kind to say that. If all goes well, my first novel should be published early 2015. I’ll probably experience the same things you are right now. I’m taking notes and learning from your experience. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  1. So dumb that can’t get the paperback of Tidal Falls at Amazon.ca. They need to wake up, we are a large country. Maybe they need to get out the world atlas and take a look.

    Liked by 2 people

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