Monday, July 24, 2017

The secret to becoming a bestselling author

Years ago, when I was about to publish my first book on Amazon, I was chatting with an online friend of mine who had self-published about a dozen books. She had some success with it, so I asked her if she had any tricks or tips for me for selling books. This was her response:

"No tricks. Just writing lots of good books with great covers & blurbs."

I accepted the answer without further question. Clearly, she just published and was lucky enough to have sales. No tricks, right?

Except a couple of months later, I looked her up on Amazon again. And she had published a new short book called, I kid you not:

How to Sell Books on Amazon

And while I didn't purchase it, I read the sample in order to verify the book wasn't "Write good books" typed over and over and over.

Why are self-published authors so reluctant to divulge their "secrets"? Or do they actually have secrets? I have had a little bit of success with self-publishing and I don't think I have secrets. I run ads. I price books competitively. I discount books for sales. I make the first book of a series free. Those are my "secrets."

Saturday, July 22, 2017

The Best Man: Finally here!

The Best Man is finally finished and available as an ebook only:


Kirby Matthews is sick of being single.

She’s sick of being the only single girl in a group of married couples. She’s sick of people patting her hand at weddings and assuring her that “you’ll be next.” She’s sick of having to stand up and catch that stupid bouquet. So when Kirby’s long distance boyfriend Ted pops the question, her answer is an eager “YES.”

Then Kirby meets Ted’s best man, John.

John is obnoxious, he’s opinionated, and he uses his disability as an excuse to keep everyone at arm’s length. But as the wedding planning proceeds, Kirby gets to know John better and realizes she’s never met any guy she’s connected with more—not in her entire life.

What do you do about your wedding when you’re falling in love with the best man?

Buy it now!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

10 Writing tips

1. Read as much as you can.  When you have a free moment, you should read.  When you're eating dinner, you should read.  When you're on the toilet, obviously you should read (because if you play with your phone, it could fall in the bowl).  When you're asleep, you should put a book on your face to read by osmosis. 

2. Always carry around a little notebook to write down ideas, and also to pretend to be a detective if the opportunity arises. 

3. Listen to constructive criticism of your peers.  Unless it's really stupid.

4. Don't use too many exclamation points!  Seriously!  Not every sentence needs them!  Use! Them! Sparingly!

5. Write what you know.  Especially if you're a space captain who fights zombies for a living and bangs beautiful aliens in your free time.

6. Don't write stuff that's boring.  Write interesting stuff.  Duh.

7. Make sure to write every day.  Except holidays.  And obviously not weekends.  Or that day that comes between Tuesday and Thursday. And nobody can write on Mondays, for God's sake.

8. It's been said that anyone can write a book.  But actually, I don't think that's true.  After all, a rat can't write a book.  A pig can't write a book.  A beetle can't write a book.  They don't even have opposable thumbs!  So I suppose you can modify that to say that any human can write a book.  But that's not true either.  A newborn baby can't write a book.  Hell, I don't think any baby could write a book.  I'm beginning to feel like whoever said that anyone can write a book just didn't think the statement through very well.

9. Don't let anyone see what you've written until it's finished.  Also, for the love of God, don't let anyone see your Internet browser history.  Especially your parents.  #life lesson

10. A good adage for a writer to follow is "show don't tell."  It's also a good adage for a stripper to follow.
 

Friday, June 16, 2017

Asking a Friend to Review Your Book (A Play)

Act I

Friend: "I really enjoyed your book!"

Author: "Thanks! Would you mind leaving me a review on Amazon? It would help me out a lot."

Friend: "Of course!!!! I'd be happy to. I'm really busy now but I'll get to it in the next couple of weeks."

Act II (Two weeks later)

Author: "Um. I know you're really busy, but you mentioned you'd leave a review on my book. If you could just leave a quick review, that would be awesome."

Friend: "Oh right! Sorry, I totally forgot! I'm really busy but I'll get to it in the next few days for sure."

Author: "You don't have to write anything much. Just like a sentence or two, tops."

Friend: "I promise I'll do it."

Act III (Two weeks later)

[Author is browsing on Facebook and sees 10,000 posts from Friend.]

[Author hovers on post from Friend on Facebook: "So bored today. Nothing to do."]

[Author lets out sigh.]

Act IV (two weeks later)

Author: "Hey, just wondering if you had a chance to write that review.....?"

Friend: [never writes back again]