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Old 12-09-2010, 07:29 PM   #16
mr ploppy
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What if you just release your first book free, and then offer the rest at "regular ebook price" instead?
The trouble with free is a lot of people will download it but never read it. If it costs something, even just a token amount, anyone who gets it will be more likely to read it.

Having said that, nobody in the last 5 years or so has made it onto my regular buying list without me reading something for free.

My strategy will be to give away a short story featuring characters from a longer, paid for story. The thinking being that people are more likelly to fit a short story into their reading schedule, even if it is free.
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Old 12-09-2010, 07:48 PM   #17
caleb72
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Oooh - I hope people do read free offerings.

I was thinking of making a very small attempt at self-publishing with just a short story. I had no intention of charging for it, but I did want people to read it.

Maybe that rule of thumb doesn't apply for short stories though as there isn't much time commitment in reading a short story.

I just thought I could write a few short stories just to see if people like my ideas and my writing style. I've got very intelligent family members who will probably agree to perform editing services for me, so there's no reason not to try.

But I'm not really interested in traditional publishing. Even in the unlikely event that what I wrote became really popular, I think I'd still stick with a more DIY approach - it suits me.

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Old 12-09-2010, 09:02 PM   #18
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My strategy will be to give away a short story featuring characters from a longer, paid for story. The thinking being that people are more likelly to fit a short story into their reading schedule, even if it is free.
Well that strategy wouldn't work for me. I never read short stories ... ever. Some of my favourite authors have volumes of "short stories" that I won't read. Why? I'm not sure ... but I know I'd rather sit down with a 500 page book than a short story any day.
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Old 12-09-2010, 09:33 PM   #19
L.J. Sellers
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VWcherrybomb: Thanks for the support of my work. I appreciate it!

Steve: Amazon won't let independent authors give away free e-books, and I'm not on Smashwords. (My books are everywhere else though.) But I have book giveaways on my blog and website all the time, and I've given away hundreds of books, both print and electronic.

[Promotional link deleted - MODERATOR]

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Old 12-09-2010, 10:12 PM   #20
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Teleread has an article by Mark Coker (Smashwords) wherein he interviews one of his more successful authors (Brian Pratt). I found it interesting how he plowed right on, just because he loved to write.
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Old 12-10-2010, 12:44 AM   #21
Steven Lake
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Heck yeah. I do too. (ie, plow on regardless of what happens with my books) I love writing so much that I did it for 15+ years without getting paid, and would probably still be doing it even if I wasn't published simply because I love to write. It's as one of the members here once said. A good author writes books and makes money. A great author will write books even if he never makes a dime on them because he loves what he does.
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Old 12-10-2010, 12:54 AM   #22
LaFlamme
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Apropos of nothing, L.J., but I really like your covers.




Mark LaFlamme
www.marklaflamme.com

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Old 12-10-2010, 12:58 AM   #23
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There's a real good piece on the potential for profit at E-book Endeavors, a blog I just recently discovered.


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Old 12-10-2010, 06:42 AM   #24
murraypaul
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For a reader's perspective: The last half-dozen books or so that I have bought from Amazon have all been second books in a series where the first was free and listed in the 'Free/Cheap Kindle books' thread here. I think two more where it first book was $1 and in that thread.
For giving away the short story, I can already get a reasonably sized free sample of any book, so I think that is covered, the real struggle is to get your book into my vision at some point, so that I actually look at it.
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Old 12-10-2010, 10:16 AM   #25
Steven Lake
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LaFlamme, if you like her covers, you'll probably like mine as well. Have you had a chance to check them out?
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Old 12-10-2010, 12:12 PM   #26
mr ploppy
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Well that strategy wouldn't work for me. I never read short stories ... ever. Some of my favourite authors have volumes of "short stories" that I won't read. Why? I'm not sure ... but I know I'd rather sit down with a 500 page book than a short story any day.
Fair enough. I tend to have a short story collection on the go at the same time I read a longer book, and it's always easier for me to fit in an extra short story than anything else. What if there was a short story that tied in directly with your 500 page book, would that make any difference? If it was included as a free extra within the book would you read it then?
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Old 12-10-2010, 12:18 PM   #27
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Heck yeah. I do too. (ie, plow on regardless of what happens with my books) I love writing so much that I did it for 15+ years without getting paid, and would probably still be doing it even if I wasn't published simply because I love to write. It's as one of the members here once said. A good author writes books and makes money. A great author will write books even if he never makes a dime on them because he loves what he does.
I think that's the only valid reason to write something. You might get lucky, but if you try to write in order to make money you would just end up writing for the lowest common denominator, or whatever fad happens to be selling right now. Even then you would need to write pretty quickly otherwise the fad would be over by the time your re-tread was finished.
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Old 12-10-2010, 12:26 PM   #28
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Briefly OT:
Most likely as a guard against unscrupulous types disguising spammy or malicious links. Easiest to have a single rule for all, trusted and unknown users alike - no links where you can't see where the link goes, either from the visible link text or by mousing over the link.
I don't use TinyURL here, but as a courtesy, when I use it elsewhere, I use the preview.tinyurl option, that displays the actual URL the user will be taken to.

You don't really need TinyURL here. The board software does a good job of handling long links.
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Old 12-10-2010, 01:40 PM   #29
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Fair enough. I tend to have a short story collection on the go at the same time I read a longer book, and it's always easier for me to fit in an extra short story than anything else. What if there was a short story that tied in directly with your 500 page book, would that make any difference? If it was included as a free extra within the book would you read it then?
If it was directly tied into the 500 page book, I might be inclined. On the other hand, I never read the "preview chapter" at the end of a book [paperback usually ... pre-e-reader days] after the first few times I encountered them ... because when I would find the actual book to which the preview chapter belonged, I tended to think I'd already read it.

I don't seem to recall book titles or covers nearly as well as I recall the actual story line. So ... when I was looking at books to purchase, I would always turn to the first chapter. If while reading the first page the text "rang a bell" ... I would presume that I'd read the book already. This was not always the case, naturally.

If I knew that a given short story pertained directly to the 500 page book, and was not simply a sample chapter ... I might be convinced to read it to get a feel for the story line ... but the problem there is that I'd want to have the 500 page book available at the same time. If I liked the short story, then I'd want to dive into the whole story ... get enveloped by it right away.

HTH

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Old 12-10-2010, 02:09 PM   #30
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My e-books, priced mostly at $2.99, are starting to be profitable for me. Meaning, they pay most of my bills. I offer the first book in my series at $.99 to get readers to try my work. This has been effective for me, because I have five other books, and readers end up buying most or all of them. I love being able to reach a lot of readers with reasonable prices.
L.J.
You should put a link to your books in your sig, not just the covers. I tried to click on them to see what they were about and if I wanted to buy them, and discovered they were just pictures, no links.

-Marcy
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