A Guest Post by Mike Pettit~
One of the best-kept secrets in the publishing business is how many authors use Amazon to publish their work. The number of published Amazon books is around 3 million plus, but the number of authors is not known. Just using basic math suggests there are 3 million authors assuming one book per author, but many of us have more than one published Amazon book ( I have 28). So, I arbitrarily use the 1 million figure when doing comparisons.
With a million authors fighting for attention, how does one break out of the pack?
It is not good enough to just write a good book and wait to become famous. That doesn’t happen. You must write a good book AND market yourself. New York published authors will tell you that the road to success is through New York. Meaning that one must have an agent and that agent (think sales Rep) will find you a publisher. This is not true. The road through New York is filled with speed bumps, roadblocks, detours, traffic jams, and fatalities. Comparatively, there are as many “New York” failures as there are Indie Author failures. At least an Indie Author get’s her book published, where a “Traditional” author may wait for months or years before they know their books fate. Over ninety percent of self-published Indie Authors fail because they do not know how to Brand and Market themselves and their book(s). An Indie will sell a few books to family and friends and then her writing career is over because she doesn’t know how to take that next step.
A “Traditionally Published” author is at the complete mercy of the Publisher and its stockbrokers. An example; If a publisher wants a Best Seller in the fourth quarter of the fiscal years, who would he publish, Michael Connelly or Jane Doe? DUH!
In the writing and publishing world, Indie Authors are looked down upon as “Not really authors because they are not Traditionally Published.” How insulting. A case in point; I can not be a full member of the prestigious Mystery Writer’s of America because I am not on their ‘Approved Publisher’s list.” I can be an associate member but I can’t vote on Edgar nominees. How ridiculous. I have more books published and make more money a year than 90% of these members and yet I can’t be a full member.
The Industry is changing, The Big Five Publishers are beginning to feel the pinch. They know that they can’t push out a Best Seller Thriller anymore for $25.00 + when the reader can by an Indie Best Seller off of Amazon for a few bucks. To counter this, many of the Traditional Published Authors are converting their books to e-books.
The bottom line is that an Indie Author MUST learn to Brand and Market herself if she wants to become a Best Selling Author.
Get your name and mug out there holding your book every day…. never stop selling, or writing.
~ Mike Pettit