COWBUNGA! Report: Newsletter vs Newsletter

Written By: Jackie Weger - Nov• 18•16
eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow.

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow.

More About Newsletters

Good morning all of you awesome authors.  Are you wondering what the heck Newsletter vs Newsletter means? You know me. I’m gonna tell you.  It’s something specific I discovered by accident. My blog topic was gonna be about my most recent promotion, because we in eNovel often report results. But this happened: I tried out Book Report. Loved it. Subscribed. This is an analytic app that rides on your task bar and once inside Amazon KDP it  tells you how many books were bought and borrowed [KENP] and the $$$ value. Book Report tells me the number of  sales/borrows on a each title every day, or I can also set it to tell me an aggregate. More on that in minute.

Reviews! What fool Expert are you listening to now?

Written By: Jackie Weger - Nov• 10•16

Author Achilles Heel ~ Reviews…Again..

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow.

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow.

Oh, Mercy me…I don’t know where my brain was when I considered it was just indie authors hungering for reviews. Nope. Contracted authors, especially those under contract with small publishers or online publishers are searching for reviews, too.  I’m hearing from them. So called experts and PR folks who want in your wallet and play and prey on the needy author are convincing the authors that reviews sell books.

Count The Roses Final MEDIUM

Released May 26, 2016. 26 Organic Reviews after a small promotion November, 2016. Patience counts.

Is Amazon Really Stupid?

Written By: Jackie Weger - Oct• 17•16
eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow.

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow.

What do you think?

Folks, I am in no way a spokesperson for Amazon. I doubt Amazon even knows I exist outside of books I upload. Amazon previews cover art and text for publication, says yea or nae and Amazon is done with me.

In the past ten days since Amazon posted new review policies authors are in an uproar.  Across the spectrum reader and blogger reviews are being pulled or not allowed. Here’s the skinny: Amazon has a TOS for authors, publishers and reviewers. Yes it does. But few read those things. Amazon explains what no compensation means. Amazon explains what a friend is or is not.

Now I know why

Written By: Jackie Weger - Oct• 12•16

Savvy authors distance themselves from those less savvy

eNovel Authors at Work…A group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. …..ALWAYS FREE…..

Listen up. I was dumb as rock when I entered our digital universe. I signed a seven book contract with an online publisher that was the pits. They did not move sweet romance books. I went to the publisher’s Skype forums and was told SEX SELLS. So? The other authors sneered at me because I wrote sweet romance. I wanted out. Took two years.  A senior editor moved on to open her own business. She was gonna help me to the tune of $1000. Paid her. Later, I learned she had been fired. I won’t go into everything that happened, but I will tell you this: I had the common sense to know I was getting scammed. My bad. I was easy prey. I stopped on a dime and learned this indie publishing business. eNovel Authors At Work is the result of that dime.

Review Mania ll

Written By: Jackie Weger - Oct• 04•16

REVIEW MANIA II

It never stops…

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

Good afternoon. I’m Jackie Weger, Founder of eNovel Authors at Work. It has been a short three years  since I stepped into our indie author universe. The single word that has resonated during these years is Review. Spend ten minutes surfing Facebook and lurking in forums and you will come across a plethora of posts by indie authors begging for book reviews.  Many indie authors want those reviews as affirmation that  he or she can write and tell a story. That is NOT the province of a review. Readers and bloggers share their opinions of books to alert the next reader if that reader might or might not enjoy the book.

MASTERING AMAZON 4th in The Series

Written By: Jackie Weger - Sep• 29•16

#IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS…

genre…We learn that helps us to success as we hone our indie authorship skills.  You can take all sorts of virtual courses, hire as many PR experts as your wallet can handle and not one will tell you the little things that work. Here’s why: They don’t know them. So let’s just look at a couple or three features on Amazon that you can use today to benefit your book. Won’t cost you five cents.

Newsletter Mania~Round Three

Written By: Jackie Weger - Sep• 25•16
eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

A couple of months ago we talked about marketing our books via our newsletter, and more recently, gathering subscribers.

Today, I’m updating because as usual, changes are in the air. Most authors I know love the idea of a newsletter and having a subscriber list in the thousands. I hear you.  But composing a newsletter does not happen by magic. Moreover, building a subscriber list just got more difficult. 90 days ago, we could engage in unlimited cross promotions, the administrator of the promo collected the subscriber email addresses in an excel sheet, sent the list along to all author participants to upload  to MailChimp or Mad Mimi or whomever we had our newsletter service. Those lists are termed third party generated. Mad Mimi tells me it is now disallowing  third party generated subscriber lists.  A subscriber must now opt directly into your newsletter. Don’t take my word for it. Check with your newsletter carrier.

Newsletter Mania~Do You Have One?

Written By: Jackie Weger - Aug• 05•16

Indie authors are in manic mode to gather subscribers and generate newsletters…

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

Click on icon for more on Newsletters

IMO, that is not a bad thing. From the moment  we step into the indie author arena we are told to have a newsletter. Marketing experts and gurus insist that for success a newsletter is the single top-ranked item one needs in an indie marketing toolbox. I’m convinced. But here is what the experts don’t tell you:

  • Divide your subscribers into two or more audiences. The value of this explained below.

The REAL Skinny on Newsletters

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jul• 10•16

Marketing your books via newsletters…How does yours measure up?

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

Indie Author newsletters have suddenly become front and center in our indie universe.  Suggestions about mailing lists have always hovered in the background like white noise:  Authors need a newsletter/mailing list so when we have a new release, we shout it to our followers. Got it. The snag for me is I don’t produce a book a month or even every six months. I generated my first newsletter via Mad Mimi January 2014. I flogged my book and a few colleague’s books. I pump other author titles because I want to give value and keep my subscribers interested between my own releases and promotions. I kept a loose mailing schedule of once a month or once every six weeks. I did not pay much attention to performance, such as open and click through rate. Now I do. What an eye opener.

PROMOTION 101~ NOT JUST FOR NEWBIES

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jun• 27•16

Wanna know the best promotion site of all time?

I’m gonna tell you…right here, right now. It is under your nose: AMAZON.

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

Absolutely, we all hunger for a Bookbub slot. But snagging a Bookbub slot is not a sure thing. I collect more rejections from Bookbub than I once did scouting for an agent or a publisher. No lie. Meanwhile what can you do to get your book visible and make a few sales?

Is Your Amazon KDP Account in Jeopardy?

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jun• 22•16

It could be~if you don’t ask the right questions…

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

Last week was awash in high profile Amazon driven events. First, we saw Nate Hoffelder’s blog on The Digital Reader with the news that Amazon had pulled the Affiliate accounts of Fussy Librarian, eReaderIQ and Pixel of Ink. Fussy is staying on as a book promoter.  Christian Hupfeld who owns eReaderIQ and Bookbasset.com is mulling it over. Pixel of Ink closed shop. Booksends stopped using affiliate links. If you don’t know what an affiliate code is, read about it HERE.  If you are an author with an affiliate account, take note: Affiliate codes may not be used on any product in a mailer~i.e. Your newsletter or any type of email. If you have any question about how to use or NOT use your affiliate links: ASK AMAZON.

FOR INDIE AUTHORS ONLY: HOW SAVVY ARE YOU~REALLY?

Written By: Jackie Weger - Mar• 23•16

WHAT DO YOU KNOW?

marketing-strategy-planI have debated for months whether to blog on this topic or not. I just gave in. Sometimes when I read blogs by marketing

Donna Fasano, USA Today & Amazon bestselling author

Donna Fasano, USA Today & Amazon bestselling author. Click to visit Donna’s author page. She has a magnificent array of romance novels.

Psycho-Dynamic Book Suggestions

Written By: Jackie Weger - Mar• 02•16

Are You Throwing Your Book Under the Bus?

marketing-strategy-planSince the beginning of the year my mailbox has filled with stuff similar to: 100 Best Suggestions to Sell Your Book. 10 Tips for Success. Successful Authors Tell you How They did it–You can, too. Or,  Let us help build your platform. Learn how to engage your readers. Only $299.  Do you read those things? Sure you do. I do, too.  I enjoy reading them. But! I like to know who I’m listening to. So. I Google search the folks who write these things. The blogger/author of 100 Best Suggestions–ain’t.  Uh, oh. Never been published–not legacy nor indie. Doesn’t know the first thing about Amazon’s Terms of Service. Does not know Kindle Unlimited or KENP. Does not know how to upload a book to Smashwords, or ehow to design a promotion and pay for it because the blogger has never engaged in publishing a book. Hasn’t been through an editing process or hired an editor, formatter or cover artist.  And hey! If you write a series, put the first in the series FREE. That is a process.  The unit cannot be in Select and must be formatted and published on at least three or more sales venues. One then asks Amazon to price match. It is not a sure thing, especially in today’s climate. I don’t write series. I don’t know where the blogger cribbed the info in the article. Anyway, I cannot do 100 things. I can do three: Write. Publish. Promote. Not gonna get fancy. I pass.

eBook Promoters ~ The Best & The Worst

Written By: Jackie Weger - Feb• 21•16

eHow to choose a book promoter

You have done everything right for your book. You wrote it, you had it edited and proofed, the cover is sensational. Now you have to sell it, or at the very least, drum up some exposure and get it in front readers.  For exposure, we have discovered and love Amazon Ad campaigns for ebooks.

Here at eNovel Authors at Work we rate promoters.

MASTERING AMAZON ~ 3rd in the SERIES

Written By: Jackie Weger - Feb• 11•16

Amazon is Flat Out on a Roll…

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. …..Always FREE…. Always Author Choice

New updates to Amazon Terms of Service and techie stuff just keeps on coming.  In eNovel Authors at Work we have jumped on Amazon Giveaways to build our follow list. We do this to snag the email Amazon sends out to one’s followers upon a new release. That’s huge. IMO, that Amazon email fits the bill for those of us who are newbies without a huge personal following. Pre-order doesn’t work for those of us still trying to get a foothold and get our books visible among the five million ebooks available to readers.  It’s a short leg up. But every little bit helps.

Mastering Amazon~Gloves Off

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jan• 28•16

Getting to Know Amazon…

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

eNovel Authors at Work~a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. We moan & groan & lick our wounds in private, but we always tell it straight. If something works, we say so. If it doesn’t, we tell you and why. We don’t pretend to know it all–but collectively, we know a lot. We don’t sell a damned thing from this site. Would love to have you follow us on Twitter.

Blogging ~ A Call to Action? Or Not…

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jan• 25•16

Blogging Off-Topic

marketing-strategy-planSince I first stepped into indie authorship, advice has poured into my mailbox that I must blog. And recently suggestions are piling up telling me to blog about anything other than my books.  Blog about cooking or recipes or crystals or knitting… And once foodies, new age aficionados or knitters are following my blog, they might also notice I write romance novels and buy one. HUH?

Not to put too fine a point on it, but those folks who are telling me and you how to generate sales by blogging off-topic are

 Where some author advice belongs

Where some author advice belongs

Amazon’s New Rules for Kindle Authors in February!

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jan• 22•16

Mastering Amazon

Yep! New rules!  For all authors…Beginning February 03, 2016, Amazon will start posting a little message on all Kindle books not up to snuff. Doesn’t matter if the book  is by an indie author, small press, online publisher or boutique publisher. But this will most assuredly affect indie authors the most.  Here is the notice that will show up on your book if errors are discovered or Amazon has received complaints, courtesy of Michael Kozlowski, Good E Reader on January 21, 2016.

Snipit amazon warning

 

Perhaps you overlooked this in Amazon’s Content Guidelines:

The Road to Glory

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jan• 13•16

No matter what anybody tells you, there ain’t a road map to Success…

eNovel Authors at Work...a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

eNovel Authors at Work…a group of indie authors sharing our experiences and ehow. Always FREE

So you read a book or an advert landed in your mailbox that tells you the ten things the most successful authors do. Honey, those authors did not do those ten items overnight. And if the successful author is a man, he ain’t ironing his own shirts, cooking his own dinner, changing diapers or caregiver to his aging parents, one of whom suffers Alzheimer’s. Often as not, he isn’t even typing his own manuscript. Nope, he has paid help–for all of it, and he didn’t make that start up $$$ writing and selling ebooks.

What is the Number One Task Indie Authors Fail To Do?

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jan• 07•16

What is the number one task indie authors fail to do?

We are a week into the New Year and if your mail box is like mine, it is in a frenzy with indie service providers and promoters begging for your $$$. This before we have even earned five cents in 2016. Hand over your money, honey and we’ll show you how to get more readers, more reviews and spy on your competition. None of which will actually sell books.

Here is a list of tasks many indie authors don’t do. Not in any particular order but none is the number one overlooked task.

Book Reviews: The Good ~ The Bad ~ The Ugly

Written By: Jackie Weger - Dec• 12•15
Julie Whiteley

See Julie’s Reviews on Facebook

Julie Whiteley is a highly rated Goodreads and Amazon Reviewer with  one thousand + Reviews posted on Amazon and Goodreads in addition to her blog  cluereview.blogspot.com  She also reviews for NetGalley.  Here’s Julie with part Two of  her series on Book Reviews.

Hello, again, eNovel Authors. Here is part two of What Do Reviewers Want? I mentioned earlier that I’m  a blogger, reader and reviewer. This post concerns issues between authors and reviewers.

Like anything else we do, there is a downside to a good thing. With independent authors having to hit the pavement in order to get their books noticed, reviewers and authors are in direct contact. It can turn ugly.

Dancin’ with the Flim-Flam Man

Written By: Jackie Weger - Nov• 15•15

Dancin’ with the Flim-Flam Man…

marketing-strategy-planNo, that is not the title of a book.  It is the name of a 1967 movie. A flim-flam  is a swindle or con artist trick.  It is designed to cheat people out of $$$. Those kinds of swindles are landing in my mailbox with regularity. I opened an email today from a man I suspect is a catfisher. An ebook catfisher is an indie author who hires workers to write his ehow non-fiction books on food or alcohol addiction, or ehow to learn a language in five days or less. The author will tout he has upwards of 50-100 books in print and ALL ARE BEST SELLERS. See this in the Washington Post: How an Industry of ‘Amazon entrepreneurs’ pulled off the Internet’s craftiest catfishing scheme.

UPDATED! UH OH! Your books Aren’t Selling. NOW WHAT?

Written By: Jackie Weger - Oct• 17•15

Perhaps the following will help…

Nothing but THE FACTS

eNovAaW ~ Nothing but THE FACTS

Since Amazon introduced Kindle Unlimited, a subscription service  for downloading  books onto  eReaders in mid-July 2014, those of us in Amazon Select saw some serious fluctuation in our royalties. My colleagues, who have in the past had successful Kindle Countdown Deals in which they saw 500+ downloads, often saw less than one hundred. Some, less than fifty.  Book sales for those of us  not bestselling authors were down the later part of 2014. Mine were down because I did very little promotion in November and December. I did not have a holiday book. That is not Amazon’s fault.  Still, the sales I did have did not earn 70% because Kindle Unlimited only paid about $1.39 per borrow (December 2014) as opposed to $2.09 for a straight sale on a 2.99 book. Update below about KENP–Amazon’s Pay by Pages Read.

eBook Promoters – The Best & The Worst Part VI

Written By: Jackie Weger - Aug• 31•15

 Snake oil is sold by the gallon in our indie Universe

How much are you buying?

Looks good, sounds good--Bites!

Looks good, sounds good–Bites!

When I started this series, I thought three parts would do it. Now, I know it could go on forever.  We indie authors need book promoters with active subscriber lists and media reach. We need site owners who tell us who they are and are transparent about download numbers. The following is not a new scam, but more of them have been popping up weekly.

eBook Promoters ~ The Best & The Worst Part 4

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jun• 21•15

Putting the spotlight on Goodreads Ads and Amazon.com Campaigns…

 

eNovel Round Logo (2)This is the fourth in a series of articles about ebook promoters and indie author services. Have mercy! It may go on forever because every single day we indie authors are approached by new promoters entering our indie universe and asking for our $$$. In an earlier post, I promised I would share our promotion experiences on Goodreads and Amazon.com. Goodreads leaves me confused.  I love Amazon. Amazon pays my bills.

I offer as a caveat: Indie authors who have mastered Goodreads may have wonderful success promoting with Goodreads. Ten of

eBook Promoters ~ The Best & The Worst Part 3

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jun• 09•15

ePromoter Hype

What to believe…or NOT

eNovel Round Logo (2)This is the third in a series of articles about ebook promoters and indie author services. One of the most difficult tasks we indies face is how to sort the gold from the glitter. Not a day goes by that we don’t get emails telling us what wonderful services the promoter can provide and how that promoter will take our books to glorious heights. Yep. And all we have to do is register and send $$$. I always ask: Who are you? What do you do? How much do you charge? One promoter responded:

eBook Promoters ~ The Best & The Worst Part 2

Written By: Jackie Weger - May• 25•15

What makes a good promotion service?

Here is the answer: Results.

This the second in a series of articles about book promoters and promotion services for indie books.  In eNovel Authors at Work we tell it like it is. marketing-strategy-planIf you see a book promotion or author service on this site–we like it. We know who administers the site, we talk to them and we engage with those owners. We rate our promoters. We have a Preferred list. Some promoters are Above the Fold. They consistently perform. Some are Below the Fold. That does not mean they are second tier. We promote with them when our budgets allow in small promotions and always when we are Shooting the Moon. Some promo sites are super for  books priced FREE. Some are less so for books priced 99¢ in Kindle Countdown deals. When we promote a book priced FREE, we are looking for exposure and volume downloads. When we promote 99¢, we expect a Return on Investment (ROI).

Review Plague ~ A Disease more Viral than Ebola

Written By: Jackie Weger - Nov• 14•14

“If I’m ever short of money, at least I know I can write this badly and still sell books to make extra cash. ” [11 readers agreed].

Jackie Weger

Jackie Weger

Those few word transmit the review plague. Every indie author is at risk of becoming infected and only the wisest avoid becoming a susceptible host. Not a day goes by that a review rant by an indie author somewhere does not land in my mailbox or my Google+ feed. My word! I recently ticked one of  those links and  discovered a 1000 word rant.  The indie author was incensed that a reader posted a one star review. Bless me, but the the blog was smokin’ hot. Moreover, all of the author’s pals were full of empathy and posted their own grievances in no less than 47 comments.  The reader had  posted a mild one star review that said: “The book isn’t what I thought it would be. ”

Five Steps to an ImPerfect Book Blurb

Written By: Admin - Sep• 07•14

How to make certain your book blurb is the worst thing you have ever written.

Subtitled: After all, the last thing you want your blurb to do is represent your best writing.

Sub-subtitled: Jackie and Carolyn go searching Amazon…

blurb

  1. Compose run-on sentences
  2. Misspell words and use bad grammar
  3. Tell instead of show
  4. Confuse the reader
  5. And best of all…
    insert plenty of author intrusion/asides into your book blurb just in case the reader doesn’t get it. Because insulting them really works.