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Old 09-08-2009, 08:10 PM   #1
Marlinark
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Spreading Books Through The Internet

I just wrote a ebook and am unsuccessfully trying to share it with the world through internet rather than a published book. I have been tracking my progress on Spam site removed by moderator and all I ever get are zeros.

Spreading through the web, is it worth it, if so, how the heck do you do it?

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Old 09-08-2009, 08:23 PM   #2
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Did you write it and then put it on your website and then started in on spreading the word, or did you have someone professional edit it and have it published by an ebook publisher? If the latter then you'd be best off putting out feelers about sending review copies out -- if reviewers like it then they'd mention it on their sites.

There are a LOT of self-published ebooks out there which are really bad, and so most people eschew those. Yours may be one of the exceptions, but it's hard to sort wheat from chaff.

There's the likes of smashwords and whatnot; a number of folks here have their works on Smashwords, and the more people who've read it and liked it then the higher it goes in the popularity ranking, and the wheels turn -- speaks for itself.

I'm sure that the writers here would have lots of helpful information on how to self-promote, and doing things like this helps, although if you'd mentioned the name of your ebook and where to have a look at it that'd have been even better!
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Old 09-08-2009, 08:23 PM   #3
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Marlinark, Where is your eBook located? What is it about? What format is it in? Is it free? I don't know much about marketing. I am sure there is someone here that can help you with that.
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Old 09-08-2009, 08:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marlinark View Post
I just wrote a ebook and am unsuccessfully trying to share it with the world through internet rather than a published book. I have been tracking my progress on this web server monitoring site and all I ever get are zeros.

Spreading through the web, is it worth it, if so, how the heck do you do it?
Hi, welcome!

Step 1: Check out Smashwords and FeedBooks. Probably FeedBooks first if you're not technically-minded, it's easier to wrangle

Step 2: Mention it on MR, in the Writers Corner or the Deals, Freebies and Resources forum.

Step 3: Hang around and get to know some other writers, check out what other people are doing to market their work.

Howzat for a start?
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:05 PM   #5
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Nomesque is right. Smashswords is a great way to go, then Kindle. Mobipocket is now closed to new publishers. Createspace is also pretty easy, and then you'd have a paper back. Another really good, really easy site to navigate is SCRIBD. In fact, you might want to try to upload it there. If you live in the US you can even charge for it, but I don't think you can otherwise.

Good luck!

Michael F Stewart
Author of 24 Bones, a supernatural thriller
Available on Kindle and Multiformat at Fictionwise
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Old 09-10-2009, 09:17 PM   #6
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Marlinark,

Smashwords does have a marketing guide for authors. The bottom line however is similar whether you are selling books or fishing lures. Putting yourself 'on the net' may make you available to the world, but it doesn't do any good if no one visits your web site.

Even, if you put your book on smashwords, the traffic can be somewhat limited. For example, Smashwords claims to have 127 million words published. Using this metric, less than 0.3% of them are advertised on the front page.

Your best hope is that people will love your book and spread the news on their own through word of mouth. However, even for this to work you must get enough initial traffic for word of mouth to spread.

If this is your first book, you might start by seeking advice before you go completely public. Look for sites, including here on Mobileread that try to support new authors and ask for advice and criticism. Then you need to promote your book any way that you can. If its non-fiction, find forums where they talk about your subject and ask them for advice on your book. Go to Vista print where they let you print free business cards. Print up your web site address and a brief description of your book and hand them out to coworkers, colleagues, and friends.

Contact your local newspaper and offer to be a resource if they ever do a story on self-publishing on the internet.

Put up your own web site and consider how it ranks for important search terms on google related to your book. Offer reviews on similar books on your web site as a way to provide value to the public. This will also help improve your search engine rankings. For example, lets say that your book is similar in its genre/audience/plot to Harry Potter. You might create a web page that talks about Other Books you might be interested in if you are a Harry Potter fan. On this page you can talk about good and bad books in the genre, and then put in a plug for your own book. The trick here is to give value to the audience. Don't just make it an advertisement of your book, but make it a thoughtful discussion of other alternatives. You need to do this because you want people to find and link to your page (it'll need to rank well in search engines) so it needs to offer value, not just an advertisement.

It's all about marketing.

Good luck,
MLH
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Old 09-10-2009, 09:36 PM   #7
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p.s. I see that you have a couple of authors who replied here. You can certainly trade reviews and links with them. Of course, they will only want to participate if they are convinced that co-marketing your book will reflect well on them. In order to begin, you need to write a good teaser or intro paragraph.

This paragraph is as important (perhaps more important?) than the initial portion of the book. It explains the plot/content and it shows off your writing ability. It's what you will use to hook people into trading cross-links and visitors into downloading your book. Like so,

Harry Potter had it easy. Even before he knew about Hogwarts, he was the one who killed 'You Know Who'. Me, I was just your average kid -- well sort of. Instead of a living at magic school I lived in an orphanage. I was the new kid, and the laughing stock. School was a bit of struggle. My one secret was Frank, my dragon. Since he was only three inches tall and invisible he wasn't good for much other than getting me in embarrassing situations. Oh yeah, and did I mention that I'm crazy? I keep hearing voices that no one else hears. One of the voices sounds just like our headmistress, and every time she sees me she smiles nicely, but I hear this voice saying, well ... just the most eerie things. It's OK, things always turn out great in the end, don't they?
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Old 09-11-2009, 04:15 AM   #8
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My advice (even though I think the OP is actually a spammer) is forget about marketing and visibility. Forget about 'making it' or 'making money'. Just write, write, write. Enjoy your writing and let that be the reward. If you can pick up some readers along the way, then that's a bonus, but beyond a few people actually reading and maybe a few of those enjoying the work, this writing game is a dead parrot. For all the effort and the dreams and the millions of words we put in, we'd get as much back from fashioning macramé owls for a county fair (probably more relaxing too). None of us are going to make a living doing this writing lark, especially not those who write 'out-of-genre'. There's maybe a five year hole to make some money in the trad publishing industry before it eats itself whole, and even then you'll have to write a best-seller or two (just invent something implausible, write short chapters and remember to check your brain at the door.)

So, relax. Cast the dreams of publication and living the high-life of an author aside. The world just tilted on its axis and nothing is as it was. Write, write, write. But don't expect to be paid, paid, paid or even read, read, read.
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Old 09-11-2009, 10:44 AM   #9
MichaelFStewart
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moejoe View Post
living the high-life of an author aside.
LOLs - the average advance for debut genre fiction at a major publishing house is about $5K - there are exceptions, but clearly you have to be in this for the joy of writing and not the money. This aside, a writer writes, an author is also read. So I can understand the hope for distribution too.
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Old 09-11-2009, 10:48 AM   #10
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LOLs - the average advance for debut genre fiction at a major publishing house is about $5K - there are exceptions, but clearly you have to be in this for the joy of writing and not the money. This aside, a writer writes, an author is also read. So I can understand the hope for distribution too.
$5k if they're lucky and possibly only half that if the publishing houses adopt the 50/50 approach Random House has with advances (50 up front, 50 on publication).

I think the high-flying life I was talking about is the 'media' image of the famous writer who makes millions on best-sellers and owns various homes, some of them on the French Riviera
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Old 09-11-2009, 10:56 AM   #11
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I think the high-flying life I was talking about is the 'media' image of the famous writer who makes millions on best-sellers and owns various homes, some of them on the French Riviera
Ah yes, so you've seen me there, the one wearing the banana hammock and a trophy wife.
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Old 09-11-2009, 10:59 AM   #12
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Ah yes, so you've seen me there, the one wearing the banana hammock and a trophy wife.
Me too, and then I woke up from my daydream and realised I'm in the UK eating Wasabi flavoured Pringles and watching Die Hard...damnit!!!
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Old 09-12-2009, 11:05 AM   #13
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living the high-life of an author aside.
Eating from time to time?



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Old 09-12-2009, 12:45 PM   #14
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All great comments. If I can parrot one, the preparation of any book for publication in any medium is vital. I self publish my own books under my own imprint - Crying Cougar Press. I just uploaded the cover and text of the fourth book in a Y/A fantasy series at Lightning Source. That was the end of an eight month process with professional editors, illustrators, and book designers. It cost around five grand to prepare the book, but it is a masterpiece, just like the big boys put out.

It better be, because I am staring up at the top of a very tall mountain, with thousands of pitfalls along the way, and the quickest way to end that climb is to print or upload a book full of errors. People will not read past one page that contains writing errors, and they will never look at your prose again.

Now go make your book the best it can be - did I just say that? (Dr. Laura???)
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Old 09-12-2009, 01:57 PM   #15
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This person who started this thread is a Spammer, and we don't like Spammers. (I personally don't like dirty underwear, either, that's why I personally don't like Spammers - they remind me of dirty underwear.)

However, the continuing discussion is certainly valid and the responses are interesting. So thank you, Spammer - if you're able to read this - for starting an interesting disscussion.

Don
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