Want to Make a $100k as an Author?
8 Things Every Author Should Know
Last year Written Word Media conducted an extensive author survey to discover the strategies and tactics of successful authors. They focused on emerging authors and financially successful authors, isolating what the financially successful authors do differently than the emerging authors. This year WWM tweaked the survey to reflect changes in the publishing industry.
Last year WWM looked at authors earning over $5,000 per month vs. lower earning authors. This year, they compared authors making over $100,000 in a single year vs. authors who earn less than $500 / month from book sales. Approximately 11% authors surveyed fell into the 100K bucket. Click here to read how these top authors make a living as full-time writers.
Thomas Nelson Launches New Imprint
HarperCollins Christian Gives Independent Christian Retailers a Boost
To support the successful health and growth of independent brick-and-mortar retailers in the Christian industry, HarperCollins Christian Publishing (HCCP) and The Parable Group have deepened their relationship in recent months giving retailers an added boost. Not only is HarperCollins Christian Publishing supporting nearly 90% of The Parable Group Summer Catalog (which celebrates “independents” and shopping local), HCCP also provided postage for stores to mail deeper into their customer list. All participating stores increased their catalog distribution, and 10 stores added the summer promotion due to HCCP’s generosity. Read more.
Digital Book World Reports an Increase in Audiobook Sales
“Twenty-four percent of Americans have completed at least one audiobook in the last year, a 22 percent increase over the prior year.”
There has been a jump in smartphone listening, up to 29 percent in 2017, as opposed to 22 percent in 2015.
Fifty-six percent of survey respondents said that when they listen to audiobooks, they’re not doing anything else, “just listening.” This finding seems to contradict not only the common assumption that audio fans listen while doing other things (driving, working out, dog walking), but also the APA’s own survey result in which 78 percent of respondents said they enjoy listening to audiobooks “because you can do other things while listening.”
When it comes to those who do multitask while listening to audiobooks, “A majority of audiobook listening is done at home (57 percent), with the car as the second most frequently cited location (32 percent).”
This year’s survey for the first time asked about voice-enabled devices such as Amazon’s Echo with the Alexa software and Google Home. Nineteen percent said they’d listened to an audiobook with one of these devices.
The report also cites podcasts’ popularity as a “gateway” to audiobook listenership.
Does Amazon Have a Fake Book Problem?
Indie author David Gaughran shares the latest analysis and effort to address bad actors in the Amazon system.
“Free promotions are one of the perks of going exclusive with Amazon, and an incredibly powerful marketing tool. Free runs can provide significant exposure, which leads to a bump in Kindle Unlimited page reads a few days later. They can also be useful by boosting sell through in a series, or by generating mailing list sign-ups for future launches. As such, authors invest significant resources in free runs, and those places in the Top 20 are high-visibility spots – i.e. incredibly valuable real estate.
“But ebook thieves make a stolen book free for a few days, and then use a variety of banned methods to generate a huge and immediate surge in downloads – generally suspected to be bots or clickfarms or dummy accounts, or some combination thereof. These fake (stolen) ebooks then suddenly jump into the Top 20 of the free charts, displacing authors who have gone to considerable effort to put together an advertising campaign for their work.”
Mary Keeley Leaves Books & Such Literary Management
Books & Such Literary Management announced Mary Keeley’s departure from publishing early today, June 5, 2017. Keeley has been a part of the publishing industry for nineteen years. She began at Tyndale House Publishers where she worked for eight years, first as a product manager, then as an administrator, and finally as an acquisitions editor for nonfiction. Read more.
AWSA Announces Golden Scroll Award Finalists
AWSA (Advanced Writers and Speakers Association) announced their finalists for the 2017 Golden Scroll Awards for Publisher, Editor and Fiction Editor of the Year. The winners will be announced at the 2017 Golden Scroll Awards Banquet to be held Tuesday, June 27th from 11:00 to 2:00 p.m. at the Hilton Netherland Plaza Hotel in Cincinnati in conjunction with Unite the CBA Christian International Retail Show.
The Fiction Editor of the Year finalists are Ann Tatlock of Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas (Heritage Beacon), Lisa McCaskill of Pelican Book Group (White Rose), and Katie Morford of Silver Fern Creative Services, LLC.
Non-Fiction Editor of the Year finalists are Hope Lyda of Harvest House Publishers, Steve Barclift of Kregel Publications and Deb Haggerty of Elk Lake Publishing.
Honored for outstanding ministry partnerships with their authors, the Golden Scroll Publisher of the Year finalists are Kregel Publications, Leafwood Publishers and Moody Publishers.
Amazon Will Be the Fifth Largest Bookstore Chain
A combination of bookstore attrition and its own startup efforts will make Amazon Books the fifth largest general bookstore chain in the U.S. based on the number of outlets. Amazon Books has opened seven outlets with confirmed plans to open six more before the end of the year. Amazon Books’ growth comes amidst the steady decline in the number of bookstore chains. In 1991, there were 11 chains that had 13 or more outlets, with total outlets topping 3,000. In 2017, the top five chains had 1,076 outlets. Since 2011 store outlets have fallen by 32%. Read more.
- Decline of music recording industry revenue per year for past 16 years: 4%
- Growth of music recording industry revenue in 2016: 11%
- Percentage of revenue from subscriptions and streaming in 2016: 50%+
How authors can best work with independent bookstores. A panel at BEA offered advice for both traditionally published and self-published authors. Read in Shelf Awareness.
Top book marketing takeaways from Book Expo. The folks at BookBub attended BookExpo and have summarized key findings helpful to authors. Read at their blog.
Why books are rejected for a BookBub featured deal. A couple of the reasons include poor cover and lack of wide distribution or availability. Other reasons include:
- “We look at pricing history for the past 90 days, try raising that title’s price and resubmit in three months.”
- “If multiple reviews mention typos, grammatical errors, that the book feels incomplete, or that the story ends in a huge unresolved cliffhanger, that will negatively impact a book’s chance of being selected.”
- “The book doesn’t have enough reviews on retailer sites to make them competitive in their categories, nor do they have blurbs from publications or comparable authors. This will make a book less appealing to our readers, which means the submission is less likely to be accepted by the editors.”
- Also: BookBub now offers pre-order alerts. You can now pay BookBub to send a dedicated email to all of your BookBub followers. Only open right now to US authors with at least 1,000 followers. Learn more here.