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Write First, Promote Later

If you haven’t discovered the video interviews by Dan Blank with publishing industry folks at yet; you really should give them a watch. The latest interview is with Bob Mayer. Something Bob said struck a cord with me in particular when it comes to new writers starting out. He recommends that you just write and not try to promote your first few novels. Becoming enamored with your first book is not going to help you as much as writing three or for more books will. First, writing more books will help you learn the craft better. Second, after you have three or four novels out there, it’s easier to become noticed. The key to ebook success appears to be having a back list. And not just a bunch of crap novels, but good, quality stuff for readers to devour.

I agree with him completely. New writers who try and promote the heck out of their only book, may hit it big for a while, but eventually, they will be yesterday’s news and if they don’t have more product for the readers to find, they will soon be forgotten. Pretty sure that’s what happened to my brief success with my first novel. It started to take off and then puttered out after a few months because I had nothing else out there for readers to come back for.

So right now I’m in, “Crank out a novel a year” mode. Specifically, my aim is to finish my first trilogy and then try to promote them. This October my next novel comes out in the Star Trilogy. That will mean that Book One and Book Two will be available for readers to find. This time next year, Book Three will be out. After that third book is out we can start to bundle them too, which is yet another way to make them work for you.


2 thoughts on “Write First, Promote Later”

  1. I was wondering how you were doing with your book. That’s good to hear. Yeah, put more stuff out, if you have it. It can’t hurt. Unless it’s a short story. Make sure you never plan on submitting it to a magazine before you publish it yourself. Because self-publishing, even on the internet, breaks First American Print Rights that magazines purchase. Only put up stories that have been rejected by everyone under the sun. I imagine that applies to poetry too.

  2. Very good point, Ken. I really wish I’d done that when my novel came out. Oddly, though, my novel has enjoyed a surge in sales this year! Hope it continues. That said, I also am working on releasing a few more books this fall fairly close to one another. I think there’s definitely something to be said for having a body of work available versus a single book.

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