Turansky, a published author who self-pubbed an ebook, shares her
insights with this process.
First, be sure your book is
ready for publication! Some authors jump in with the first book they
have written, and they haven’t put in enough time to learn the skills
needed to craft a well-written novel. Join ACFW; connect with a
critique group; take online classes; write two, three, or four books.
Then when you think you have a well-crafted novel, hire a freelance
editor who will not just proofread but give you guidance for any
changes that need to be made before you publish.
Your cover needs to look
professional and be attractive to readers. Hire a professional graphic
artist rather than doing it yourself or having your neighbor who took
an art class in college do it for you. People do judge a book by its
cover! A poorly designed cover announces the book is self-published and
may turn readers away from buying your book. You also need to write
great descriptions of your story that will grab readers’ attention.
These will be posted at online retail Websites, and that’s all the
reader will know about your story. Study back-cover copy and online
descriptions of other books to learn this skill.
Promotion is vital for any
self-published author. I have some readers who are interested in my
next book, but most know about me and my books because they are in the
Love Inspired book club, or they like Barbour novellas. So building my
individual name/brand as an author is something I am working on.
You have to get the word out in
a lot of creative ways to reach new readers and alert previous readers
that you have a new book available. I’ve created an e-newsletter using
the Mad Mimi Website. I send it out to about 900 subscribers every
other month and whenever I have a new release. (Let me know if you’d
like to see a sample copy for ideas on creating a newsletter.) Mad Mimi
is easy to work with. I also updated my Website with information about
the new book and added easy ordering links. I recruited influencers
through my connections at ACFW and through Facebook friends.
I gave these people a free copy
of my book using a Smashwords coupon. If they like the book, I ask them
to review it, feature it on a blog, tell friends, post on Facebook and
Twitter, and do anything else they can to influence others. I’ve posted
some reviews on my Facebook page and announced the launch in groups I
belong to online. I tried a Facebook advertisement for a few days. I
watched my Website Google analytics (statistics), which showed that the
ad did not seem to help sales much, so I stopped it. I contacted
several bloggers and have scheduled interviews over the next month. I
hope these ideas will spread the word about Surrendered
Making sure your book is ready
for publication and then creating a plan to promote it are key to your
success as a self-published ebook author. I hope these ideas will help
you as you consider publishing your ebook.
Why did you
decide to self-publish an ebook when you are a published author with
many traditionally published books?
The world of publishing is
quickly changing, and I want to ride the
wave of the future! Ebook sales have jumped dramatically in the last
year, and it’s now possible for authors to load their own books at
Amazon and other online ebook distribution companies at no cost. I did
hire a freelance editor, and I paid to have a beautiful cover designed,
but those were the only expenses in
Surrendered Hearts as an
ebook. My husband is skilled with formatting, so he assisted me in that
way. That low cost in creating the book is why I can offer it for $2.99
and actually receive more per book than if it was sold through a
traditional publisher for $5.50. I also hope that makes it easier for
more readers to purchase the book as well.
I wrote Surrendered
Hearts a few years ago as a sequel to my first novel, Along
Came Love. I submitted it to two publishers, but with no
success. Because it is about 60,000 words, it was not long enough to be
considered by most CBA publishers who like novels to be about 80,000.
But I love this story, and I wanted to make it available to my readers.
Every woman wants to know what
makes her truly beautiful, and that is the question my heroine,
Jennifer Evans, must wrestle with as she recovers from being burned in
a fire at her apartment after a gas pipeline explodes. Jennifer was
born into a loving Christian family, but at fifteen, after the death of
her parents in a car accident, she closed her heart to God. Sent to
live with relatives who resented her, Jennifer searched for approval
and acceptance by focusing on perfecting her appearance and excelling
in dance, music, and acting. The spiritual truths her parents taught
her continually tug at her heart, but she cannot reconcile them with
the painful loss of her parents and the explosion and fire that altered
her appearance and sent her fiancé running. So she heads to Vermont to
stay with her brother and try to rebuild her shattered life.
If you enjoy heartwarming
inspirational romance, I hope you check out Surrendered Hearts.
If you don’t own an ereader, you can download a free program from
Amazon so you can read it on your computer. There are a lot of free and
low-cost ebooks available.
Here is the link to Amazon
http://amzn.to/gTuhCq and the link
to Smashwords where you can download
a sample chapter or formats for other ereaders like Nook, Sony Reader,
iPad, etc.: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/51354.
You can sign up to receive my
email newsletter at my website: www.carrieturansky.com.