Having Trouble Finding Good Books to Read?
When I was writing my debut novel, I looked forward to finishing. Believing the hard part would be completed I was excited to get my book published, then launched. Once that was accomplished I thought the book would be promoted through word of mouth, sales would magically happen, and I could write my second novel.
Eleven months later, I’m still learning about the publishing industry and marketing one’s book.
Why is promoting a novel challenging?
The advent of eReaders upended the traditionally published market.
Traditional publishers lost revenue. The financial impact caused many companies to close, downsize, or merge. Less willing to take risks, publishers now focus on established (fiction) authors and rarely accept a debut novelist.
The industry continues to evolve.
There are numerous avenues for publishing electronically and print hard copies–all offering opportunities that many authors did not previously have through self-publishing and hybrid publishing.
There are 4,500 new books released EVERY DAY.
In my previous blogs, I’d shared that the majority of books never sell more than one hundred copies; recently I read an article revising total copies sold to fifty.
My challenge: how do I differentiate my novel in a saturated marketplace?
I learned that promoting means marketing, which means advertising.
Finding the right media to advertise has been another obstacle. I invested in services and book promotion sites that looked promising, but ended up being a colossal waste of time and money.
The learning experience was disappointing, frustrating, and discouraging.
Recently, I thought about my experience from a reader’s point-of-view. Being an avid book lover, I’m always seeking the next “good book.”
In addition to identifying the best place(s) to advertise my novel, how do readers find books in the genre(s) they enjoy?
There’s got to be easier ways for readers and authors to connect.
Every week I read half a dozen blogs about writing, publishing, and promoting. One blog referenced a technical specialist named Barb Drozdowich. Needing assistance with WordPress and my website, I investigated her services at http://bakerviewconsulting.com. Her tag line: Helping Authors, One at a Time. (Note to writer friends: I highly recommend her.)
At the end of our last session, I shared my frustration about the challenges of promoting. Barb said the best sites for authors to advertise are where readers can subscribe to a newsletter—which is a daily/weekly/monthly email recommending books in the reader’s preferred genres.
She referred me to one of her books, The Author’s Guide to Book Promotion.
I found the book well written, informative, and helpful. Many chapters reference book advertising and promotion sites. However, I thought the following list would be the most informative by identifying sites where readers receive a genre-specific newsletter with promotional information featuring books at a reduced rate.
Searching for good books to read? With Barb’s permission, the following is her list from Chapter 24.
Book Barbarian (for Sci-Fi and Fantasy)
If the list seems overwhelming, I highly recommend BookBub. When you subscribe, BookBub offers multiple genres, and you can select the ones you prefer. Every day I receive an email with recommendations. Frequently the books are best sellers and/or have stellar reviews. Some are free, or they may cost between $.99 and $3.99, max. Occasionally BookBub will include a debut author. Below the recommended list, is a single advertisement, which was purchased by an author to promote their book.
Not included in the list above is Goodreads. If you aren’t familiar with Goodreads, you may want to investigate their site. Owned by Amazon, Goodreads offers a Community tab, where you can join book reading groups by genre, or participate in group discussions. I belong to three reading groups, and recently, I read the thriller’s group selection–Force of Nature–and didn’t want to put it down.
Goodreads has many features—the more you use it, the more you learn.
What about you? Do you have a favorite site that wasn’t included in the list? If you subscribe to a service, what is it and what do you like about it?
Warmest Regards, Michele