I have now had my two books available for Kindle for exactly two weeks. It has been unbelievably exciting to have my books available to such a large audience (getting them to read it is another matter though ;-)).
Here are some observations I have made:
- The feeling I got when I sold my first book was completely unexpected. The unabashed joy was a little disconcerting as I am not normally prone to bouts of giddy excitement, but it was certainly a pleasant feeling.
- Be wary of spending too much time promoting your book and not enough time writing your next project. There are so many ways to promote your book (Twitter, Facebook, a blog, numerous message boards etc.) that one can get lost in trying to promote one's books as often as possible.
Yes, it is important to establish an infrastructure whereby you can communicate with your readers, but this should not come at the expense of your actual writing. We live in an age of instant communication, but it is worth remembering that the best books are timeless. There is a reason that the best Victorian novels have never gone out of print.
Therefore, I would suggest the best form of marketing is to write a really good book. And once you have done that, write another one!
- Beware of trolls on certain message boards. Before jumping in the deep-end on some of the message boards I was recommended to check out, I decided to read some of the threads - and my word did I find some paranoid, rude and extremely hostile people lurking about. Therefore, I may avoid quite a few of the message-boards for now - there are almost as bad as the horrible comments you find under the most popular Youtube videos.
Having said that, there are some very nice people too who are playing a crucial role in spreading the word about books by indie authors. And one particular board, Amazon's own KDP board, is far and away the friendliest message board I have ever frequented. There is a small community of authors there who are all trying to help each other out and are happy to welcome all newcomers.
- My new addiction is checking my sales. Thanks to the wonders of technology, the sales update every hour. Which is terrible for someone who cannot help checking these figures every time he jumps on a computer! I am hoping the novelty of this wears off as it is fast becoming an all-consuming endeavour.
Speaking of sales, I am selling close to two books a day at the moment, which is very cool indeed. However, I have no idea if this is just friends and family picking up my books, so I will have to wait and see if I can sustain, or even increase, this amount of sales.