Just over two years ago I published my first e-book, “Coffee Time Tales” (http://amzn.to/16z6R9y ). It was a bit of a joke, a bit of fun, just throwing together some old short stories into a single volume and knocking up a cover pic. There was no marketing plan, just telling people I knew online about it, and doing the obligatory free five day giveaway.
Yesterday I found the blog post where I discussed the publishing of the book. A friend asked how it had gone in the comments section, and I replied that I was pleased with the modest 150 downloads.
Not so long ago I re-worked “Troubled Souls” (http://amzn.to/17RZzOH), to tie in with the newly-released “Eddie and the Kingdom” ( http://amzn.to/18mSF2w) . I blogged about the re-release, went on Twitter, alerted people to the upcoming giveaway and haunted several publicity blogs, logging in to them to post details of the launch. I actually worked quite hard. Just quite hard, not actually hard.
“Troubled Souls” just about topped fifty downloads. Worldwide.
I know I’m not good at pushing my books. I know I don’t do all the right things, because this is a fun venture and I just can’t take it seriously – I get paid for my playwriting and reviewing – but I think this story does illustrate how saturated the e-book market has become. My book of drivel could garner 150 downloads with no effort two years ago. Now a book I worked on promoting sinks almost without trace (It did get a couple of great reviews, thank you!)
You don’t just need a great book, a great plot, proper formatting and an eye-catching and professional cover. You need determination, marketing, planning and the will to be in it for the long haul.