Book Of Days
Jim Rubart

James L. Rubart is the best-selling, and award winning author of ROOMS, BOOK OF DAYS, and THE CHAIR. During the day he runs Barefoot Marketing, helping authors make more coin of the realm. In his free time he dirt bikes, hikes, water skis and take photos. No, he doesn’t sleep much. He lives with his amazing wife and teenage sons in the Pacific Northwest and still thinks he’s young enough to water ski like a madman. More at Or e-mail him at:

Quantum Marketing

Surefire Marketing Method for Selling More Books

Do you feel like everyone has a stellar marketing idea on how you can sell more books? The Internet is rampant with opinions.

Some marketing gurus say Facebook and Twitter are part of the secret formula. Others say blogging consistently is the key. Still others tell you to become the Book Club Queen.

But is there a proven marketing method that will move more copies?


Here are the three steps:

1. Write a great book story
2. Writer another great book story
3. Write yet another great book story
4. Repeat steps through 3

My answer seems flippant, but it’s not meant to be. If 80 percent of a novel’s sales come through word of mouth (and I read a report last month that pegged it at 85 percent), then the only guaranteed way to increase your sales is to write fiction that makes people say to their friends, “You have to read this novel!”

Does that put marketing pros like myself out of business? No, we can still help you with the other 20 percent, but if you want bigger sales numbers, you must write story after story that captures people’s hearts.

Here’s why I said story not book. To me a book has all the grammar right, is formatted correctly, has the right paragraph breaks, chapters end at the right spot, and I like it, I enjoy it, but I don’t rave about it.

Dan Brown is a poor horrible writer. The DaVinci Code is packed with cringe worthy poorest of prose.

John Grisham’s breakout novel The Firm is one of the finest examples flying body parts, including eyes that leap out of characters’ heads and scurry around the room.

But as you know, those books sold. Big. Because of the story.

You’re a writer. You care about craft snafus. Readers don’t. Before you became a writer did you notice gross errors of technique? I didn’t. But I always noticed a story I couldn’t put down.

Let’s Get Practical

Yes, you need a platform. Yes, you need a Website. Yes, you need to start building your tribe before you’re published.

But if the bulk of sales come from word of mouth, then I suggest the bulk of our marketing time be spent on craft (because in the end, your book is essentially a thick brochure that is the most effective marketing piece in selling your next book).

How much of your time should be spent on craft? Eighty percent seems to make sense.

And not just craft. We need to study the stories that hit best-seller lists. What is it about them that captured readers? A universal theme? A compelling protagonist? A triumph over evil?

Take three of your favorite novels and describe in one sentence what made it resonate so deeply in you.

Then see if your story does the same.

As always, if you have a marketing question you’d like me to tackle, send it over. My eyes will race to my marketing books and slide across the pages until I find the answer


The Chair