If you want to be a writer you need to write. To write most of us need to eliminate distractions. In the past I’ve used programs like OmmWriter and ByWord to keep the distractions at bay. Somewhere in the past I forgot that the program I use to actually compile my books also provides a distraction free writing experience. The key is to use the “Compose” view in Scrivener.
Be Like Mike (Hyatt)
My friend Michael Hyatt recently announced he’s using Scrivener as his writing studio.
Attain Distraction Free Writing & Get 20% off Scrivener
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Post 6 of 26 of The Self-Publishing Series
Price…the ultimate question for the author and for some the publisher. Here’s a list of prices and what I believe they say about your digital book.
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You’re selling a very short business book about moving cheese
You have a NYT best selling book
You have a traditional big name publisher
Your book is over 300 pages (or it has a code to an on-line test – i.e. Strengthfinders 2.0)
You were famous before you wrote your book and you may never write another book again
You have a traditional publisher but not necessarily a big name publisher
This isn’t your first book
Your book is over 300 pages long or it’s a business book in it’s first six months of being released
You are selling a very popular form of porn involving a shade of a color
You’ve earned your audience
$7.99 and more…
Post 5 of 26 of The Self-Publishing Series
Reviews are the reader’s emotional reactions
Reviews are a unique currency. As I said yesterday
you can have a great conversation with your readers through their reviews but today I want to look at the power of reviews for potential buyers. Do different reviews have more credibility than others? The image below is a snapshot of my book’s reviews. Which reviews do you want to read? Here’s how I believe most potential buyers navigate the reviews of books and why it matters to you as an author.
Buyers will look at the overall balance of reviews. If there are only five star reviews then the book has no credibility. It needs 80% five star reviews and the remaining 20% will likely be spread out through one through four star reviews. Michael Hyatt’s book Platform is a great example of this. Some people are just NOT going to like your book and others are going to love it. If a book has more of a 50/50 split between five star and the other 50% between one through four stars then buyers are going to run away.
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Post 4 of 26 of The Self-Publishing Series
Ignore the haters
Let’s start with who not to respond to.
“No one who leaves you a one star review does it to make you a better writer.” – Jon Acuff
Don’t respond to people who leave you one star reviews. They’re not rational. They can’t be converted. (Tweet That) If one of your readers wants to respond to them then that’s good television (fun to watch) but you should not interact with them. 99% of your reviews won’t be one star reviews. Respond to the two-five star reviews but ignore the one star reviews.
This guy says I have guts for charging $7.99 for crap. His review received 9 comments.
Every review is an opportunity to have a conversation
Amazon makes it very easy for you to see who left a review of your book and at the time of this post they don’t restrict you from responding in any way. So why do most authors avoid responding to reader reviews? I have no idea. It’s a public page and they’re talking about your work so why not say thanks, ask follow up questions or even be stupid generous in a few cases?
Every review that someone leaves you is a third party endorsement or criticism of your work. Why not show your appreciation for that person? If they praise your work then respond. If they have legitimate criticism about your book then respond accordingly.
How to respond to positive feedback
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I appreciate your review of my book
Post 3 of 26 of The Self-Publishing Series
The days of being teased are over
Do we really want to play the warehouse food sample game? I appreciate that you want to show me a bit of your book but you’re going to give me one chapter? First, it’s not hard to write one good chapter. Second, giving away a chapter of your book is like giving someone one digit of your phone number (Tweet That)
. Is it really your number? Sure. Does it move the relationship forward? Not really. My advice is to be stupid generous and see what happens. We’ll get to that later.
Why your free chapter has absolutely no value
Giving one chapter away has lost its value because of, you guessed it, Amazon.com. I can download a “free sample” of every book in the Kindle library and Amazon doesn’t require me to join your email list. I also get to see the reviews of other people who have already purchased the book to help me decide if I want to download that free sample.
What else you should give your readers
Two things are usually happening in the exchange for the chapter. Most authors, if they’re smart, are using the bait of a free chapter to get your email address. As the book gets closer to release or when the author develops other products related to their book they can communicate with you. The first benefit of the free chapter is creating a relationship. The second goal of giving away the chapter is to sell more books at launch. This is where I think authors miss an opportunity. If authors really want to sell more books at launch they must out give Amazon. They should give away different forms of those chapters (audio specifically) or some of those products they were going to deliver later.
Here’s an example.
Click here to see the example