I launched Rescue the 2nd book in the Cascade series a few days ago. Just as with the first I learned a lot from writing the second book. The main thing, was that I can write a book fairly quickly. I know there are people that can do 5k+ words per day and knock out a 60k novel in 2 weeks, but I was pretty pleased with 3k words per day (some days getting close to 5k) and a novel in a month. I also feel that my writing style improved in the 2nd book. There’s a lot less he/she said. With who’s talking inferred by the action.
In a lot of ways I enjoyed writing the 2nd book more because this time round because I knew I could write. Writing Survive, I really had no idea how it was going to turn out, I was flailing around in the dark. With Rescue I had more confidence and hopefully that shows in the story and character development.
Over all the months of research I did into self-publishing, time and time again the idea of using one of the promotion services came up. But I needed to see the effect it might have for myself. And boy did it have an effect. This is the Amazon product page looked for Survive this morning when I woke up.
And it was also #4 in Science Fiction & Fantasy. That was for Amazon.com, but the figures were still pretty good for the UK store as well. I also noticed that books that were also in the email out, were the ones that were around me on the Amazon charts. So that’s clear evidence that if you want to stand a chance of having some visibility on Amazon you need to pay for promotion. At least at the start to help launch your books. Hopefully once readers notice you, the book will sustain itself and you won’t have to continuously do promotion. But having said that I won’t be surprised if most authors are actually paying for promotions on a monthly basis. I have no direct evidence to back that claim up, but I suspect that’s the case.
I must admit I was a tad skeptical about paid promotion, but I’ve seen for myself now that it works. The downside to that of course is, that makes everything a “You need money to make money” situation, which is why I stopped making indie games. But at least now I know what the deal is.