DIY (Do It Yourself),  Indie Author Life,  Writing Journey,  Writing World

The DIY Publishing Diary: Volume Seven

Hey, hey! ^_^

A lot of things happened this month! I published a book, I uploaded some videos to YouTube, I got some sleep. 🙂 So, what’s on the topic agenda this week?

Marketing. I know everyone says not to stop marketing book one to work on book two, but I don’t know what to do right now. I guess I need to listen to more marketing stuff on my podcasts, but a lot of the things I read say that all marketing efforts are more effective when you have more than one book out, at least as an indie author. I don’t have a ton of reviews or a publishing house like Harper Collins or Macmillian to give me street cred. Right now though, I feel like the best thing I can do is get more work out and not fall off the internet. And keep reading and learning stuff, of course. ^_^

Giveaways. So, despite people saying that it’s best to do gift cards or a book that isn’t your book, I chose to do a copy of my book. The reasoning behind not doing that is because they say people won’t buy your book if you’re giving it away because they’ll just wait and see if they win it. My reasoning for going against that is that no one knows who I am. Getting visibility is more important. I know how long it takes me to decide to buy a book by someone new, and it helps if I see it a lot. Also, I did a Goodreads giveaway that I ended before my book came out, because of that advice, and I really don’t think it would have mattered if I had the giveaway going on all month. I actually had a giveaway run with a gift card only (this was something that was done for me). So comparing the three giveaways, the gift card seemed to get the least amount of attention. Obviously, I’m not an expert on this, but I don’t think it matters, at least not for a new author. I’m might try a different release day giveaway for my next book and compare first day sales, but I think it’s more fun to give away my book.

Promotion Companies. I know I said I was going to work with a couple of more people before making a decision, but I have a few thoughts on this. Without getting into too much detail, things didn’t go super smooth with the release day. Everything went well enough for the most part, but if I decide to work with someone new in the future, I am going to talk to people who have worked with them first so I know what to expect. I wouldn’t mind if someone emailed me about my experiences, so I’m guessing other people probably wouldn’t mind too much either.

Amazon Ads. This has been more entertaining and interesting than anything else, and again, it probably falls into the kind of advertising that’s more effective if you have more books and reviews. But I learn best by trying, and the cost is too low not to try. I listened to a couple of webinars about it, and they both preferred sponsored product ads to the product display ads, but I’m getting better results on the product display ad. In any case, it’s been fun to play around with. ^_^

Writing News. I was having a super hard time writing most of this month. Reason number one: Regarding “The Puppet Box” – I had to rework things from when I had started working on it in the fall. Instead of deleting my old outline, I wrote notes over it with the assumption that I would throw out anything I didn’t need as I went. Turns out, I had to throw out about 80% of it, which meant there was a lot scrambling and consolidation and deleting and rewriting, but I’m all past that now. Reason number two: I kept worrying if what I’m working on is as good as or better than the previous story, because I don’t want people to read one book and then read another one and be disappointed. On the bright side, I’m assuming that there will be people who will read multiple books by me. On another side, I struggle with every book at some point, so, it’s really nothing new. Thankfully, things are on the upswing now. “The Puppet Box” is a lot weirder than I thought it was going to be, and I’m having fun and falling in love and beating off shiny plot bunnies, because it just never ends, and I love it. #writinglife Right? ^_^

Since I decided being on YouTube was a good idea, here’s a link to this week’s video. 😛

Until next week! ^_^



  • Tonja Drecker

    You definitely keep busy 🙂 I’ve heard various opinions about giveaways and don’t believe one solution is better than another. Amazon adds are entertaining, huh? I’m going to have to take a peek into those (know nothing about them). Have fun this week!

    • Krystal Jane

      They’re definitely entertaining for nerds. ^_^ Seeing which keywords get the most clicks are fun and informative. I want to try all the options and test them out.

  • Jodi

    “On the bright side, I’m assuming that there will be people who will read multiple books by me.” Truth! I don’t tend to read darker supernatural stories, but I will read every novel you put out because I love your writing THAT much, so there’s another compliments of sorts. =) (P.S. I’m about 80% through with No Rest for the Wicked!)

  • Jodi

    Oh, btw, I received this question on Goodreads awhile back, and I copied/pasted my response:

    Jodi, as an author such as yourself or for publishing companies, why are books given away for free on giveaways or read and reviews, when it’s probably guessed or known there will probably be very little in return in the way of honest reviews?

    Wow, what an insightful question.

    To answer this, let me illustrate by using my most recent Goodreads giveaway as an example. I only gave away one book, yet over 1500 people entered. The woman who ultimately won never left a review. So what was in it for me? Well, every time someone enters a giveaway, an update pops up on their newsfeed saying “Jane (or whoever) just entered a giveaway for Chasing Echoes”. That means my book was getting exposure to not only the 1500 people who entered, but all of their friends as well. Also, to enter a Giveaway, Goodreads prompts the participant to add the novel to their “To Read” shelf. It’s not mandatory, but a lot of people do it. My last two giveaways resulted in Chasing Echoes being added to over 1800 shelves. So yes, while I would have loved to have received a review from the winner, the exposure I gained for Chasing Echoes was reward enough, and definitely worth the ten bucks I spent mailing out her prize.

    Long story short–giveaways might not always lead to reviews, but they drum up interest in a book and lead to more exposure. (I guess I could have just said that in the first place, huh?)

  • sandiedocker

    Classic second book syndrome! Have faith in yourself. You know you can do this.
    I would definitely talk to other authors who’ve used services to see what their experiences are. I think most authors are pretty generous sharing their experiences.

  • Unita

    Hey girl! Just checking in to see how it’s going and to send you lots of positive light and to let you know I’ll be finally reading your book. Can’t wait!! Our friend Kae has already started reading it and loves it. Glad you are beginning another one….you go girl!!!

  • Thea Landen

    Like everyone else, I have mixed feelings/have had mixed results with giveaways, and I don’t think there’s a right answer. And once upon a time, I read somewhere that allegedly seven is the magic number – that if you have seven books published, you’ll see a bump in sales across the board whenever you release something new. I forget the reasoning behind that, but hey, it’s a good goal to have, right? (Says she who also needs to get her writing butt in gear.)

    • Krystal Jane

      There doesn’t appear to be a right answer. I think “keep throwing books out there” is good advice. Haha. Seven!! I read a lot of things that say to write a series, and I’m just not getting on that train right now. I have one duology idea and one idea that has companion novels, but I have no confidence in any of them. Haha. YES, butt in chair – that’s the best advice. ^_^

  • tyreanmartinson

    I’ve actually received some good reviews and some good, long-term traction with Goodreads Giveaways of my first book. I think those giveaways have continued to help my sales more than any other giveaway (even of my second and third in the same trilogy). In the long-term, I’ve had some completely unknown to me readers who picked up my book via a giveaway and then who have gone on to read the rest of the series. In that case, the giveaway definitely works best when the series is all out. However, I had a new reader contact me before my second book came out – she requested an interview with me at her blog and I used it as part of my second book blog tour. So … I think you’re on the right track.
    I haven’t used Amazon ads – but I know I need to just try it.
    Happy Writing! I say focus on that, and just keep your online presence alive.

    • Krystal Jane

      Thanks for this! ^_^ Gives me some peace of mind. I’m running a couple of more giveaways on Goodreads between now and the next book coming out. Effectiveness seems to vary greatly by person, but I think the ads are worth playing around with anyway.

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