The simultaneous submission issue is different depending on whether it's a short story or a novel. Short stories it's more usual, many magazines don't ask for an exclusive submission and magazines try to get back to submissions in a set time period of 1-2 months. For novels, simultaneous submissions are more problematic for publishers and they take longer to respond if they are accepting unagented material for a whole novel. But there are ways to manage exclusivity periods to keep them down to a couple of months. And there are some people who just do simultaneous submissions and they seldom get caught. With changes in formats and publishing schedules that are going on, procedures may change so it's best to find out what submission requirements a publisher is asking for.
Similar to my post on resources for traditonal publishing (writing and sending query letters) this one focuses on marketing your book once you have a completed project. Some of these focus on self-publsihing, though the technique described can be used by any author. Everyone of these self-published author has sold thosands of books, and therefore you can trust what they are saying. I myself used similar techniques (but before reading these) so it shows that there are some formulas to emulate for success.
- Quit Your Day Job, A Guide for the Self Published Author $5.99 by H.P. Mallory
- How I Sold 1 Million eBooks in 5 Months! $2.99 by John Locke
- Smart Self-Publishing: Becoming an Indie Author $4.95 by Zoe Winters
- Let's Get Digital: How To Self-Publish, And Why You Should $3.99 by David Gaughran
- We Are Not Alone: The Writer's Guide to Social Media $4.99 by Kristen Lamb
- Write It Forward: From Writer to Successful Author $4.99 by Bob Mayer
- Dollars & Sense: The Definitive Guide to Self-publishing Success $2.99 by Carolyn McCray, Amber Scott &
I just got this one from the last Randy Ingermanson news letter.
And it's free!
The Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success by the CEO of Smashwords.
Common sense? It depends...many things seem obvious once something points them out to you...but if you made a list before reaidng the books would you have come up with them on your own? Depends on the person.
There's a big difference between a "hard sell" or even a little "buy my book" and approaching it as, "hey here's something you might be interested in, check it out for yourself." Pointing someone to a sample chapter shows a much different mentality then pointing them to a buy button.
As to agents or trad publishing house "promoting your book" - the agent's tasks is to promote to publishers so there won't be any "external exposure there." The Traditional publishers are marketing toward corporate book buyers to get "distribution" so also not getting to the "end user" (i.e. reader). No matter how you publish it is going to be you, the writer, who builds the connections with the reader base.
Just like so many other areas, consumers want to avoid advertisers, even when they are looking for a product; it makes it hard to sell anything, but especially online.
- How active you are in the community
- How helpful have you been in helping others
- The exact wording of the post
If you just fly-in and fly-out, sure that's not much different but if you are active in the community and people already know that you are part of the group then it works - or at least it has for me. As with everything YMMV.
I didn't see mention of it, but I also didn't have the time to read the entirety of the thread, so I apologize if this has been discussed before.
I think a more interactive approach to marketing is both fun and more interesting to the general populace. Things like contests, or just talking, having fun, Facebook status stuff, etc. People generally enjoy things like this, and while it's a bit more time consuming than just tossing up your website somewhere, or giving out a free book, or whatever, I think it has better overall results.
Results are also probably a bit slower, but I'd say they are longer lasting, too.
As a random example, I'm fairly small time in terms of writing. I don't have a huge presence or anything, but I did decide to hold a contest on my website awhile back. I enjoy playing online games, so I decided I'd give away gift cards for the games I play and mention it on the forums for those games.
This was when I first started my website, so it was really really slow in the beginning. I had 80 and 86 total hits in the first two months. I started the contest at the end of the third month and still managed 554 views(around 300 in one day), and the fourth month skyrocketed at 1,277. After that my total views per month definitely rose, though it's not as high as when I held the contest. Still, I'm seeing about 3x more people per month checking out my site than I first had, so there's definitely something to that.
And it was fun! People enjoyed it. I gave away some decent prizes, though nothing super expensive. No one minded me posting on the forums for those games because I was a player, plus I was offering prizes related to the games in question.
I don't think this is the end-all-be-all promotional/marketing tool, but for me it was a lot of fun and I think everyone who joined in the contest had fun, too.