The biggest ways I failed as an author trying to make a living from my writing was to depend solely on algorithms and price points to succeed. Not that these things aren’t important, but they have to be balanced with other ways of reaching one’s readership and connecting with them.
My first mistake was not to build a mailing list and send out a regular newsletter. When you develop a mailing list, it is something that you yourself have control over. Depending on how you communicate with your readers, it can be one of your most effective tools for staying in touch with them. It gives you a way of actually connecting with other people who enjoy your work and should be excited when you tell them about your next release or other book-related news.
My second mistake was the way that I was blogging. I failed to provide content for readers. My author blog initially focused on my life as a writer, which was fine for connecting with other writers. And there’s nothing wrong with that either. But unless you provide content that interests readers, why would they want to read your blog?
Finally, I didn’t focus on a particular niche. Finding your niche (and narrowing it down as much as possible) will appeal to your most devoted readership. You can’t be all things to all people. That’s a losing proposition.
In my next post, I’ll go over a list of do’s and don’ts for the mindful author.
PS: If you’re interested in getting to know my work, I’m re-launching the Sam McRae mystery series starting with Book 1, Identity Crisis. Click here for a free copy!
A new, but similar cover is in the works! 🙂