There’s one distinct difference between a good author and a great author: a good author knows what their audience wants, but a great author knows what their audience needs. They understand who their audience is, what drives them, and, most importantly, how to sell to them.
Subscribe to Our Blog
After you've spent the time and money to edit, design, and market your book, the thought of selling it at a discounted price may seem counterintuitive. However, offering a discount is an excellent way to expand your reach in the book distribution channels. Discounting your book can help get it picked up by retailers. Here's how.
It’s hard to believe that we are almost through May. It has been quite the start to 2023, and May has proven no different with the many new changes that we have introduced at IngramSpark. In our industry, we often are busy with keeping up with the day to day changes that come along with publishing, but I would like to take a moment to express my gratitude and thanks for the continued support we receive from our IngramSpark authors and publishers. Your use of IngramSpark is instrumental in driving our growth and enabling us to create better opportunities for indies and independently published content around the globe.
Whether you’re excited or not about AI and using it in your author business, it is here to stay. We are in the early days of AI systems like Chat GPT and Jasper.ai and their power and utility will increase. That doesn’t mean you have to use these things as an author, but if you’re looking for some low cost short cuts, especially for research, AI could be your answer.
Library Organization and Purchasing Decisions
America's libraries fall into four basic types: Public, School, Academic and Special (armed forces, government, corporate). Like bookstores, most libraries purchase content from book vendors like Ingram or Baker and Taylor rather than directly from publishers. If your book isn’t in a library vendor catalog, you're already are behind the curve.
Many people still believe they need a literary agent to become an author. They spend months crafting the perfect book proposal and then months searching for an agent. If they are lucky enough to find an agent who wants to work with them, they then can wait six months to a year to hear if any publishers are interested. In all of that time, a book could have been written, edited, designed, and published!
In the past, getting independent booksellers to shelve self-published books was a difficult prospect. Indie booksellers were reluctant to sell self-published books, based on the old bias that self-published meant poor content or poor quality. But that was then and this is now. Not only have self-published authors upped their game when it comes to content, but the quality of self-published books is highly competitive with those of traditionally published books. So just how do you go about selling your book to independent bookstores?
2023 is in full swing and with it comes a whole host of new approaches to book marketing. We’re seeing media outlets revert back to in-person interviews following COVID-19 and indie bookstores taking a turn in the spotlight. A renewed focus on connecting directly with readers has made a huge impact on book sales in the wake of BookTok and influencer marketing. It’s a whole new world and below are 5 marketing trends to help you navigate it:
The publication of your book definitely deserves some celebration. There’s no better way to do that than a book event where you can sign books, meet your readers face-to-face, and take a bunch of photos for your social media.
With the rise of e-readers, ebook retailers, and changing shopping patterns, it’s never been a more advantageous time to share your story in the digital marketplace! There are several prominent self-publishing companies you can choose from when deciding to publish an ebook. While famous names like Kindle Direct Publishing, BookBaby, and Issuu might sound like the way to go, IngramSpark has so much more to offer authors. This includes the convenience of having your print and ebook in one platform, a user-friendly Book-Building Tool, a wide distribution network and easy conversion of print book files to ebook.
To Ebook Or Not To Ebook
Publishing an ebook is a great way to make your work available to a whole new market of readers! You may be wondering if your book will only work as an ebook or if it can be a print book. What type of books should or should not be an ebook? Except for a few niche genres, anything that can be a print book can be an ebook! All different genres and book types, from cookbooks to poetry, memoirs to illustrated children’s books, can all become ebooks accessible on multiple smart devices.
What is Kindle Direct Publishing?
In the world of self-publishing, Kindle Direct Publishing is undoubtedly a well-known name. Kindle Direct Publishing or KDP for short, is Amazon’s platform for self-publishing ebooks, paperback, and hardcover books. When deciding to self-publish your ebook, you probably thought of KDP as the go-to platform. If you have used KDP, then you are aware of the process of creating an account, uploading your book, book cover, and the book’s description to create a book that is ready for sale. It is a fairly straightforward process that has worked for many authors.
Getting your ebook into the world is a smooth process with IngramSpark. Whether you have already published a print book through IngramSpark or are ready to start your self-publishing journey, there are only six steps for your ebook to go from your computer to the rest of the world!
Whether it’s on a small phone screen or a large desktop, your ebook cover needs to grab attention and pique the reader’s interest. While the print cover and ebook cover are usually the same, the design approach is different for each. For the print cover, there are numerous factors to consider, such as paper type and texture, colors, embossed or debossed lettering, the spine, and back cover design. The ebook cover design doesn’t have those concerns but must still communicate effectively and attract the reader.
Who Sells Your Ebook?
There is a great sense of pride in seeing your book for sale at a bookstore. You can touch your book, you can take pictures of it, and persuade your friends to come and see your book in person. It can be an adjustment to feel that same level of excitement when your ebook is for sale on a website. Sending your friends a link is not quite the same as having them stand in front of your book on the shelf. Yet we cannot deny that our society continues to increase its activity and engagement in the digital world. So who are the distributors in this digital world, and how are they going to sell your ebook? IngramSpark is in partnership with over 40 ebook sellers and subscription services. When you create your ebook through IngramSpark those 40-plus distributors can sell your ebook to readers all over the world. There are too many to discuss all of them in one blog, so let’s focus on the top subscription services and the top online stores that will sell your ebook.
Determining the price of your ebook is a similar process to choosing a price for your print book; with a few key differences. Perhaps you have already priced your print book, and it’s currently being sold, or you may be just starting on your self-publishing journey and want to find the right price for your ebook and your print book. Whichever position you’re in, you need to know how to price your book and what strategies align with your goals.
When considering converting your book into an ebook, there are multiple benefits. Readers get instant access to ebooks, and distributors don’t have to bother with supply chain delays. The most rewarding advantage, is that authors can receive higher compensation. Knowing the different ways in which your ebook can be sold is crucial to understanding how this compensation is achieved. We offer three main sales models to maximize your ebook distribution and profits; Retail, Library, and Institutional. We’ll dive into the methods and advantages of each model and learn how we can increase your ebook’s readership and earnings.
Now that everything has turned into 24/7 holiday shopping, you may wonder if it’s too late to get your book onto someone’s "must buy" holiday shopping list. While it’s too late in the season to be thinking of your holiday strategy, there are some great things you can still do to nudge sales in your favor.
Converting to an Ebook
Writing a book is an enormous achievement. It takes time, dedication, and painstaking work.
What is IngramSpark’s Book-Building Tool?
For some authors, the hardest part of writing a book might be the twisted plot or character development. For others, it’s the outline and organization of chapters. It turns out that designing the book can prove an unexpected challenge for many authors. Several aspects must be considered, both technical elements and artistic features, when designing a book. IngramSpark’s FREE Book-Building Tool will guide you through the design process specific to creating an ebook.
The pandemic’s spotlight has begun to slowly fade as other global events take its place as a point of focus. In a recent Ingram-hosted panel discussion “The Health of Today’s Publishing Industry”, we heard from leaders in the industry, bringing their experience and perspectives on the future of publishing.
In my experience, I’ve learned there are many reasons why authors don’t want to be on social media. Some think it’s too complicated, some tell me they’re too old (which always makes me laugh), and some just literally don’t have the time to manage their social channels.
I am the first to admit that writing about controversial topics in children’s books can be a little scary. In 2017, I self-published my first book- - a children’s picture book. Not a happy, fluffy unicorn with rainbows type of book; a book about a very real and serious topic. One of those topics you really don’t want to have with your kids, but you know it’s your responsibility to do so. My book, “Momma, Did You Hear the News?,” helps parents have the difficult conversation known in the African-American community as “the talk.” It helps kids remember what to do if approached by law enforcement.
When you embark on the journey of getting a book published, there’s a lot to consider and one of the things that should be on your priority list is how much you’ll be pricing your book for, which is a crucial piece of your book metadata. The editors of traditional publishing houses must fill out a profit and loss spreadsheet (P&L) before they can even acquire a book, let alone publish a book. The P&L accounts for decisions they’ll need to make in order to turn a profit on the book they hope to add to their list. So one of the best places to start when determining the profit goals of your book publishing endeavors is to seriously consider how you'll be pricing your book.
Some of the best books in the world already exist, pretty much fully formed, inside the author’s head. And there they stay, keeping you up at night while you think of more ways to explain your concept, rewriting it all inside your head. At some point, you realize that it’s been quite a long time and nothing has actually come out. You have so many ideas but you don’t know where to start with writing them all down.
There are millions of books in the world, with more being published and distributed every day. The only way to keep track of them is with unique identifiers, which we call International Standard Book Numbers, or ISBNs. Each format of a book should have its own ISBN—its unique identifier that belongs only to that title and format—so that customers and retailers can place an order for the exact book they want.
When you think of publishing, you may have one format that jumps to the forefront of your mind. Maybe you grew up in libraries and bookstores, so you want a printed book in your hands. Or maybe you grew up with a tablet in hand, so an ebook is your go-to format for reading. Whatever your background, it can be easy to think that publishing in one format is the end-goal of your publishing journey. But honestly, you should seriously consider taking advantage of multiple formats—paperback, hardcover, and ebook.
Writing your book is a phenomenal accomplishment; the rush of typing those last words and putting the finishing touches on it is akin to climbing a mountain and finally reaching the summit. Once you get to the top, you’re hoping you can stop, enjoy the view, and relish in your achievement, and you can—but not for too long. Once you've completed your book, the next leg of the journey begins: marketing it.
Ringing in the New Year feels quite different this year. There seems to be this underlying expectation that come 12:01am on January 1, 2022, the flick of a “magic wand” will wrap up one of the most challenging years in history and put us all back on track toward normalcy once again.
One of the things that stands in the way of most writers' ability to self-publish is book design. Finding and hiring a book cover designer, formatting the interior, uploading your files to IngramSpark—it can all seem a bit daunting. What if we told you IngramSpark now offers a FREE tool to create your own book online? You heard that right—learn more about what you can do with IngramSpark's free Book-Building Tool!
The purpose of book cover design is to draw the attention of your potential readers away from all those other tomes and novellas and sell them on the idea that your page-turner is the next book they need on their nightstand. But what makes a book cover jump off the shelves? Let’s take a look at the anatomy of a book cover and how you can create a cohesive look that appeals to your readers.
Your book has been written, rewritten, beta read, edited and reedited to within an inch of its life. Now it is time to design and layout the interior. One of the first decisions you will be asked to make is the height and width of the book. This is called the trim size. So you go to your bookshelf and pull down your favorite four books and notice that they are all 6x9. There! Decision made! But not so fast.
Even before you are ready to publish your book, you have likely thought about how you want your front cover to look. However, before you can decide on the right book cover design you should have a complete and polished manuscript in front of you. Whether you design the cover and select a binding type yourself or work with a professional, you might want to become familiar with industry standards and guidelines, and take advantage of free tips offered by the experts. After all, the ultimate goal is to get your book into the hands of receptive readers who will be watching and waiting for your next book!
If you’re new to the publishing world, book returns may be a bit of an elusive concept. While print on demand services and digital innovations have helped the book business better predict book demand, returns are still an inevitable part of the bookselling process if you’ve chosen to make your book returnable with IngramSpark. We’re here to help you better understand why book returns occur, and help prepare you on how to handle book returns with IngramSpark.
Many authors write a book based on a subject they like, or perhaps on a unique experience they have had. As a book marketing consultant, a question I frequently hear is, “My book is finished, now what do I do?” Successful book marketing lies in giving prospective readers what they want to read. Figuring that out depends on four pillars: target market, customer needs, integrated marketing, and profitability.
There’s been a lot to distract us this year! If you haven’t started planning your holiday book sales, you’re probably not alone. While there will still be a holiday buying season this year, the 2020 version will look a bit different than those of years past.
‘Tis the season to be jolly... and productive. With the hustle and bustle of the approaching holiday season, it can be easy to push aside your writing productivity as you focus on all the festivities.
Succeeding as an author isn’t just about writing strong books. Sure, that may be the most important factor, but the rise of self-publishing has resulted in authors facing more competition than ever. If you want to stand out in the crowd, you need to make sure that you also write strong marketing copy.
For many years, the discussion around ebooks has been tied to print: which is better, more efficient, more reliable—as if the two options were pit head-to-head on a vs. match. But let's be realistic, both formats are on the same team. Skewed rhetoric has made it seem as if the two compete with each other when in reality, both could be working in tandem to bring your book more exposure. When it comes down to it, authors want their books to be seen by as many potential customers as possible. Offering a print AND ebook version of your books is one way to do that and with IngramSpark's newest updates to ebook distribution, your ebook format is even more visible than ever.
Making a habit of marketing your books is important for all authors and publishers. Some habits are good, leading to long-term success. Others are not so good and can keep you from reaching your goals.
Our world needs memoirs.
It needs individuals who are willing to share the honest reality of who they are and the things they’ve experienced. When someone chooses to read a memoir, it means they’re searching for something. They’re searching for understanding, to gain perspective or insight, and they’re hoping to find something within your story that they can resonate with—perhaps something that gives them hope.
Think about a book you loved. I'll bet my own weight in Harry Potter or Jack Reacher novels that it was a character that earned your love. Maybe several characters. A group of friends. A family. A pair of lovers. A man and his sworn enemy. A boy and a kestrel.
Why do we make such a fuss about dialogue? I’m going to give three reasons, and then share some ways dialogue can take your story to the next level.
Creating an eBook version of your book may seem intuitive to most authors, but not everyone agrees. I get pushback from authors all the time about creating eBook versions because they insist their readers won't gravitate to electronic forms of reading. But are you sure? Let's look at some reasons why adding an ebook can be an excellent addition to your overall catalog and a strategic book marketing decision.
By its very definition, any kind of creative writing is subjective. Yet, there are understood and recognized rules to be followed…and then broken by those writers who have good reasons for doing so. Despite the relative creative license allowed to writers, there are some things that should be avoided in almost all cases. Everyone’s got an opinion on what these are, but here are three simple writing tips, each in different categories.
Writing a book is hard work, but it’s only half the battle. Once your book is finished, you’ll need to promote it through marketing and publicity—and we’re not just talking about book signings and social media! Article writing is a great way to grow your audience and build a community.
In every profession, there are little details that reveal the time, attention, and care you’ve put into your work. For independent authors and small presses, paying attention to these details can make a favorable impression on potential customers, especially those inside the trade—booksellers, librarians, and others who are intimately familiar with book publishing standards.
Want to instantly capture readers? No matter who you are or what genre your book falls into—nothing beats getting engrossed in a book description that leaves a reader wanting more. Short and long book descriptions both serve a purpose—to make you and your book look good. Before you start writing, here are a few things you need to know.
We appreciate you being a contributing member of our IngramSpark community. We are dedicated to offering our authors and publishers a secure and quality self-publishing experience. We are also fully committed to bringing value to the many relationships that are managed through our expanded distribution network of bookstores, libraries, and independent publisher associations. Part of the success of our distribution network that you rely on is directly reflected in gaining and maintaining the trust of our retail partners in the IngramSpark content we provide them.
Successful nonfiction writing calls for more than just conveying information to your reader. Not only do you need to know how to deliver that information, but your writing should also be clear and easy to read. And just because you’re writing nonfiction doesn’t mean you shouldn’t engage your reader with a gripping story and impactful language. These nonfiction writing tips will help you steer clear of some of the most common mistakes made by nonfiction authors, who may think that all they have to do is present the facts.
When some authors begin the writing process, they do so with their target audience in mind and a marketing plan in place. This allows them to focus on creating and promoting the right content in order to build their author platform and sell their books. Even before you begin writing, you should first be aware of what you are trying to accomplish by writing. You should also know what message you are trying to promote, who the message is for, and how the reader will benefit from reading your book. If your goal is to attract as many readers as possible in order to sell your book, here are six tips to help.
Let’s face it. A lot of people decide to write children’s books because they seem easier. I mean, it’s a 32-page book for 5-year-old kids. There are lots of 5-year-olds in the world, how hard could it be right?
The thing is, you don’t realize just how hard it is because when you Google “How to market a book”, you get 2 billion results. The problem is that the majority of the book marketing strategies online focus nearly entirely on the adult market.
It’s not until you become a children’s author that you realize that children’s books are an entirely different beast.
Mark Twain once said, "The time to begin writing an article is when you have finished it to your satisfaction." That may sound like a tall task, but you already know that writing is hard work and the hardest part of the process is the editing. If you want to help yourself get through your revisions faster and with more confidence, follow these essential writing tips when working on your first draft.
Let's face it - many indie authors (which I generally refer to as "independent publishers," albeit smaller ones) will dismiss podcasting out of hand.
Too hard. Too time-consuming. Don't quite get it. Pass.
And that would be a bad idea.
Adding a quote to your book or website has been a popular trend for a while now. It's an excellent way to capture the essence of your writing in a few words and set the tone for what's to come. However, using quotes in your published work can be tricky, and it's best you know the rules beforehand.
In the age of digital media, everybody and their brother has the capability of reading books online and on digital devices. But what if you want your books to exist in the flesh (or, in the print)? If you’re one of the many authors who dreams of holding their book with their own two hands, we’ve got the information you need to succeed. You can create and print a book, then make it available through online retailers such as Amazon, Kobo, B&N, and Apple, as well as local brick-and-mortar bookstores and libraries, by following these general guidelines:
Believe it or not, there is a science behind choosing the best fonts for books. Think about all the places you see type today. Whether it’s a phone, a computer screen, a book, an ad, a magazine or a menu, almost every minute of the day is spent reading something. And—other than the menu at your favorite restaurant perhaps—much thought has gone into which font to use.
Technology has made it easy for authors curious about self-publishing a book. Self-publishing offers a cost-effective way to share your book with the masses and make some money from your writing. Whether you are hoping to self-publish a print book or an electronic version, here are eight tips on how to self-publish a book.
When you decide to self-publish a book, you are signing up for all the duties a traditional publisher would typically take on. That means you not only have to write a great book but you also take on the job of marketing it. Where do you begin? You construct a book marketing strategy and forge ahead step by step! Here are a few key elements for a good book marketing strategy.
Getting your book reviewed is a crucial step in your book marketing strategy. Positive reviews tell readers that your book is worthy of their time, entice your potential audience with plot descriptions, and give you instant credibility. But there’s more to the book review process than simply sending your book off to a reader and waiting for the result. First, you need to ensure that your book is ready for to be reviewed. Second, it’s important to choose the type of review that will best help you achieve your goals. And finally, you need to learn how to use your reviews to your advantage to sell more books.
Before your electronic content can be sold, it must first be uploaded into a portal so that it can be processed and then distributed to online retailers. There are a few rules that must be followed to ensure the successful processing of your content with IngramSpark.
A well-designed book isn't just a collection of text and images; it's a work of art. And illustrations aren't just pictures interspersed throughout text, but crucial elements of decoration and style that bind a book’s theme and purpose. In this article, we ask you to take a moment to immerse yourself in the wonderful world where the illustrative magic begins.
You've worked hard to perfect your poems, and now you're ready to turn your collection into a finished book. Exciting, we know, but can you go it alone, or should you hire a book designer? There are several things to consider when turning your manuscript into a work of art—but don't worry. We’ll go over the eight most critical elements on the road to publishing your poems.
Did you know writing poetry can improve your overall writing skills? Even if you don’t consider yourself a poet, writing poetry challenges your diction; ability to be concise, use of imagery, rhythm and storytelling skills.
When it comes to self–publishing a virtual title, one of the key questions that most authors come across is "how do I price my ebook?" While there's no one right answer to this task, there are a few wrong ones to keep in mind. As silly as it sounds, the goal is to price your ebook like an ebook. What does that mean? Well, for example, $99.99 is probably way more (unless you’re selling a college–textbook) than any potential customer would be willing to pay for an ebook. On the other hand, a virtual price tag of $14.99 can suddenly widen your customer base and potential sales. Long story short, the best way to succeed with your ebook pricing strategy is to think like a reader.
Remember the days of Harry Potter mania? Practically every chain and indie bookstore in several countries had a release party for the latest J.K Rowling tome. Children, teenagers, and even parents clad in cloaks, crooked plastic glasses, and eyeliner lightning bolts waited for hours to get their hands on a copy of the latest book. I was a fixture in these lines, complete in my Hermione costume. We look back at these midnight literary festivities ten years later as a pop-culture touchstone. However, to people in the publishing industry, this is the perfect example of how pre-orders can make your book a success.
You could sell more of your books if you'd answer two questions honestly. First, how often do people think about your book? Second, how often do people think about their own problems? You will probably agree that people think more about how they can solve their own problems, learn something, improve themselves, or be entertained than they do about your book. However, if you can show them how reading your book helps them achieve these things, you are likely to increase your book sales and revenue, so let's cover how to target your book's audience.
Some indie writers use beta readers and colleagues rather than professional editing and proofreading services, because it can be far less expensive to go without formal edits, and many indies—understandably!—would like to ease the costs of professional edits. While starting with beta readers is a fantastic idea, going without professional book editing altogether is a mistake.
Authors and small publishers must have their own mobile-friendly, professional-looking website—it is, by far, the most important element of a book marketing strategy. I've developed over 150 author and publisher websites in the last 20 years, and although a lot has changed when it comes to developing websites, some things remain fundamental. This blog is the complete guide to creating an author website—from domain names and costs all the way down to specific content categories. Read more and learn how to create a professional author website today.
Book metadata and keywords might seem scary, but they’re really only the words and phrases that you use to describe yourself and your book. Your book metadata will consist of basic things such as your title, author name, author bio, book description, publication date, etc. Keywords are one or more words used to indicate the content of your book. Simply put, metadata and keywords are what make your book appear when a reader goes looking for a specific thing online, whether that thing is a book or not.
Congratulations! You’ve lined up an interview with a media outlet. Now you’ll get to share information about you and your brand, connect with new potential readers, broaden your network, and deepen your knowledge of promoting a book.
These days, there’s a good chance you won’t even need to leave the comfort of your own home to do that. But before you get too comfortable, there are a few key things to keep in mind before, during, and after your interview that will ensure a smooth and successful experience.
With so many book marketing strategies available to promote your book, it's easy to get overwhelmed and have difficulty determining what to do and when to do it to give your book the best chance. Marketing a book is a complex part of the overall publishing process and takes proper planning. This book marketing timeline for indie authors is designed for the author who is just about to begin writing, however since all these strategies are important, you can begin to address each one no matter where you are in your publishing process.
You’ve just spent what seems like a huge chunk of your life writing your book, and now, at last, it’s time to hit that publish button . . . but not so fast! Is it really time to publish your book? Just because a book is finished doesn’t mean the timing is right. Your publication date is important. There are certain months that would be perfect for your book and make your pitch to retailers and media outlets easier, and some months you should avoid altogether. Below are some tips to help make sure your book doesn’t launch with bad timing.
Authors can self-publish a book in many ways, from print publishing to digital publishing. No matter the format you choose, providing an ISBN is an important component to publishing your book. Let's talk about all things ISBN!
At IngramSpark, our mission is to support you through your self-publishing journey. Nothing is more inspiring than writers like you sharing your stories—the reason behind your book, your "why." In May 2020, we asked the writing community to share their #WhyIPublish stories, and the response was overwhelming. In today's post, we're sharing some inspiring stories and a breakdown of the data from our #WhyIPublish survey.
Social media is one of the best ways to connect with readers. But, where do you start? In this post, I'll share tips for branding on social media, choosing what social media platforms to use, and following the social media "rule of thirds."
Prepping for your book launch is often shrouded in mystery. Let’s face it, there’s a lot of information out there about how best to do this. I know it’s tempting to give yourself some time to relax after all of your efforts to get the book ready for publication, but when the book is done, the planning starts. Launching your book without a plan is a plan to fail.
Pinterest was once a relatively niche social media platform with only a small marketing and ad presence. That has changed dramatically over the past few years as the platform has grown exponentially and attracted more and more brands for advertising purposes.
When it comes to getting the word out about your book, many authors immediately think of alerting the masses with a press release. A press release—typically a one or two page document offering a summary and highlighting the main themes of your book—is indeed an important element of marketing your book. However, there’s another piece to the promotion puzzle that may be even more important: the book pitch.
Books are definitely judged by their covers. Those with more compelling and impactful covers, quite simply, have a better chance of being purchased and read. Book cover design trends are constantly evolving, and they tend to affect the industry as a whole—but there are some tried and true examples of book cover ideas that can guide authors through the book design process. Let's take a look at some of the top book cover ideas and examples.
Do you think people actually read all the information in your literature, in your press releases, or on your website? Think again. Most people do not read your marketing copy word for word, but quickly scan the page looking for information that is helpful and important to them.
Social media writer's block. It's a thing! You have no problem hammering away at an 80,000-word novel, but when it comes to a 280 character tweet? Forget about it! You end up posting about what you had for dinner or what you did during the day, and nobody seems to be listening... or following. If that sounds like you, then these 13 social media marketing tips are just what you need.
For some writers, building a strong author platform comes naturally, but for others, essential book marketing steps might feel uncomfortable. Here are some tips that will make it easier.
Alright, you did it. The hard part is over. You wrote your book and have it in your hands. You've spent months, possible even years, writing this book. But... have you thought about publishing the audiobook version of it?
If a book’s dedication is the opportunity to blow someone a kiss, a book’s acknowledgment feels more like the sort of welcoming hug one might give someone they care about after a long journey. There’s a distinction between the two. It comes down to breadth. Let's break down how to write book acknowledgments.
It's been over two years since we launched IngramSpark's self-publishing podcast, Go Publish Yourself, and we've been blown away by the positive response from indie publishers! With nearly 200,000 listens in more than 70 countries, the people have spoken—and we look forward to sharing more episodes with you in Season 5. Keep reading as we revisit some of the podcast's most popular episodes and share exciting news about what's to come!
This immortal anthem, written in 1964 by Bob Dylan at the height of the civil rights movement in the U.S., has been dancing in my head lately. However, when I looked up the lyrics, I had forgotten that the second verse specifically calls on writers not to miss this chance. Dylan later said, “This is definitely a song with a purpose…I knew exactly what I wanted to say and who I wanted to say it to.” Even though our current time is more than a half-century later, I think Dylan’s call to writers to lift, inspire, and to tell the human story is even more relevant today.
Marketing. It’s a scary, dark hole that awaits published authors. The process of promoting one’s work can be intimidating and extremely overwhelming. The positive side of marketing is that there are endless ways to market with seemingly infinite possibilities. The dark hole – the challenging part – is not knowing where to begin while trying to figure out which path will be most beneficial for your book.
What I have learned is that there is only one way to know which of the many paths will work for you and which don’t, and that is by jumping in head-first. Before you sign up and pursue every path out there while also potentially emptying your pockets, read further for some helpful advice.
No matter the industry, the tech you use everyday requires regular maintenance. You take your car in every few thousand miles, the office copier gets monthly visits from the service tech, and the software you're using to write your next book gets regular updates from its developer.
But what about your website?
Are you considering publishing your book in hardcover? Or converting your existing hardcover to IngramSpark’s new jacketed case laminate option?
You can write the absolute best book in the world, have top-of-the-line book distribution and quality, but another essential part to being a successful publisher is taking the time to invest in expanding your publishing knowledge and expertise, because, at the end of the day, your book’s success needs your input.
Ah, research. For some authors, it is the bane of their existence, and for others, their bread and butter. Whether or not one takes any particular pleasure in it, research is integral to any writing process.
You’ve officially started the process of self-publishing your book! Congratulations; you have put in a significant amount of time and effort, and now the next step is beginning the process of marketing and publicizing to help let others know about the project you worked so long and hard on. This can seem like an overwhelming task, but you can learn to think like a publicist and incorporate media outreach into your marketing strategy.
I think all people go through important transitional moments in their lives, and if we’re lucky, during those moments we stumble across tools that help us to find and better understand ourselves. When my mom died just before my final year of art school, I walked head-first into one of those major life-altering periods and my sense of self seemed to have been lost somewhere along the way. But there’s an interesting, and slightly magical, thing that happens when we lose a piece of ourselves — it makes room for new discovery. For me that discovery was poetry, specifically in published, physical form.
I first encountered the term ‘beta reader’ while reading Harry Potter fanfiction online. From the author notes, I surmised that beta readers were the first people to read a story, and that they helped to polish them into finished pieces. I assumed that a beta reader was like an editor, but not paid.
I eventually learned that beta readers are not unpaid editors, but serve a key purpose in the writing process nonetheless. In fact, I’d had beta readers before and didn’t even know it!
Ask 100 different people who have self-published how difficult it was, and you will probably get 100 different answers. After all, we are writers. Give us an open-ended question and the probability we give you a longer answer than you wanted is high. But the truth is, the self-publishing journey and the process you take to release day is different for every person.