encouragement, Indie Authors, Share the Love Scavenger Hunt

Share the Love for Your Favorite Author

Heather headshotAll month long we’ve been sharing the love of books and our favorite indie authors with our Share the Love Scavenger Hunt. If you’ve been following us on Facebook, you know that the authors are sharing some too and that means FREE books!

Most of us become authors because we have a story to tell. Before we were writers, we were readers, and even now the writers I know are passionate fans.  The discussions and debates over books in a group of writers can get downright…lively. So, if you ask us what we think about a book or an author, we’re happy to tell you! And that is the best thing any reader can do for an author they love – Tell someone!

With that in mind, I thought I would share a few tips on how YOU, dear reader, can share the love with your favorite authors.

Share a Review
This the most powerful way to shout your love from the rooftops and tickle your favorite author’s fancy. A review is a public declaration of your affections. It not only cheers your author on to greater things, it sells books! That’s right – YOU have the power to help your author succeed. In the end all the work we put into our books is still worthless if our readers don’t share their enthusiasm with other readers. We rely on you to tell friends and family and anyone on the street with an iPhone or Kindle that we have a story worth reading. A positive book review is even better because it’s permanent and posted for all to see. Book reviews sell books!

While I was preparing for this post, I hopped over to Amazon to check out the changes they’ve made (They’ve recently nixed “likes” and “tags” which used to be easy ways to help readers find your favorite authors.) I stopped by the Amazon page for A Light In the Darkness and found a new review had been posted. My heart began to race and I nearly squealed with delight (yes, I really do this!) A new review filled with thoughtful opinion and cheerful enthusiasm can carry me afloat for the rest of the day and drives me back into the arms of my worrisome “work in progress” so that I struggle through another round of edits just to satisfy the desires of my readers who leave comments like, “I can’t wait for her next book in this series!!” Want to see more books from your favorite author? Leave a review telling everyone why they should read the author’s book and end it by cheering them on to keep writing. At the very least, maybe your review will help sell a few more books, pay another bill or even fund the next book in the series. Remember, reviews sell books!

Share a Link
Do you follow your favorite authors online? Another simple way to share the love is to join an author’s Facebook page, Twitter following, and blog and then share the links with friends. This is twice as fun when you are a fan of indie authors because most of us have a lot more time on our hands for fan interaction than the big names do. As a matter of fact, even when we don’t have a lot of time, we are likely to respond because most of us opted for indie status in hopes of connecting with our readers in a more personal way than traditional publishing allows. We’re fan girls (or boys) too, for the most part, so we get it. You want to know what’s up with a certain character or when the next book is coming out? Wonder how they were inspired or why the book writing is taking so long? All of that is usually shared in social media if you’re keeping up. So, if you have groupie tendencies, join the fun. Then, share the love by retweeting or sharing links to the posts that fascinate you and might interest your book loving friends. Who knows, you might even become actual friends with your favorite author! Wouldn’t that rock?!

 Share the Love
Now that you know how to share the love with your favorite author, it’s time to get busy! Come back later for today’s Share the Love Scavenger Hunt clue! 

 

Indie Authors

YA Author Club

Sometimes it feels good to be the new girl, especially when you get to hang out with such cool people as The YA Indie Carnival crew. I am thrilled to be apart of this smart and sassy group of writers. If you haven’t yet heard about them, here’s the scoop:

Every Friday, the members of the YA Author Club will discuss and post (on their individual blogs & the central website) topics pertinent to indie authors. This unique twist on a club allows our supporters to get to know us, our books, our opinions of other books, and our experiences with indie publishing.

So, not only will I get to share with you all sorts of fun blog posts about my life as an indie author, I’ll also include the links to my fellow YA Author Club members so that you can see what they had to say about that topic, too. AND you’ll get to meet a lot of fabulous YA authors along the way. Twice a month you’ll see a new author that we’ve interviewed so you can read all about how and why they write and then read an excerpt of their latest work. How cool is that?!

Today we’re all discussing KDP Select, a majorly hot topic in the indie publishing world. For those of you who are not authors, let me first explain a little about KDP and how it works. Kindle Direct Publishing is a branch of Amazon that allows us to upload our manuscripts and sell them to the public as ebooks for Kindle apps and devices around the world. It’s truly amazing and has opened the door for authors everywhere to share their work with the literate masses. This kind of technology is what allows us to call ourselves Indie authors and to hope for some measure of success.

Until recently, many authors were buying into a program offered by Amazon called KDP select which asks the author to list their work only on Amazon for a set amount of time. In exchange, the author could list their work for FREE for a specified number of days in the hopes of gaining a larger audience. This is how many indie authors grew to bestseller status very quickly because those free day downloads still translated as “sales” to Amazon’s computers, thus skyrocketing a few lucky authors to instant stardom (of sorts). In turn, more and more authors began to choose the KDP Select program, hoping for their own success. Over time, KDP Select has altered their program (or more to the point, Amazon has altered the process) so that it is much less lucrative than it first appeared.

So, when a self-published author finally has their completed work in their eager little hands, one of their first decisions is this: Should I list with KDP Select or list my book across multiple sales channels so that readers with Nooks or Kobo, or iTunes can read my book, too?

It’s a tough choice, I won’t lie, and the first of many you’ll have to make as an indie author. I decided to list my books EVERYWHERE. I’m still not quite there (Sony, I’m coming, baby!) but if I had chosen KDP Select, then my first rush of readers wouldn’t have been able to find me on their brand new devices. I wanted everyone who could possibly enjoy my book to have access to it and KDP Select would at best delay that goal. So, for me, I opted out. You can still find all of my work on Amazon Kindle and it often shows up there first before all others, but they can’t have it all to themselves. If that means I give up a few opportunities to share my book for free… Well, that’s okay. I spent seven years and money out of pocket preparing my first two books for the world, so I think asking readers to pay a dollar or three isn’t too bad. If it isn’t worth that to them, then they’ll pass. I’m okay with that. Maybe I’ll catch them next time around.

Now remember, I’m the newcomer here and completely new to the whole game of publishing, so this was just my opinion on KDP Select. If you’re curious how other authors feel, please visit a few of my new friends by clicking on the links below and read their experiences. In the end, I’m sure you’ll have a much better understanding of how it all works and how each of us makes the choice for ourselves. After all, that’s what being an Indie is all about.

THE  YA  AUTHOR  CLUB

1. Laura A. H. Elliott 2. Bryna Butler, author Midnight Guardian series
3. T. R. Graves, Author of The Warrior Series 4. Suzy Turner, author of The Raven Saga
5. Rachel Coles, author of Into The Ruins, geek mom blog 6. K. C. Blake, author of Vampires Rule and Crushed
7. Gwenn Wright, author of Filter 8. Liz Long | Just another writer on the loose.
9. Ella James 10. Maureen Murrish
11. YA Sci Fi Author’s Ramblings 12. A Little Bit of R&R
13. Melissa Pearl 14. Terah Edun – YA Fantasy
15. Heather Sutherlin – YA Fantasy