Saturday, 26 January 2013

What motivates you?

As a writer trying to hold down a demanding day job and wife (!!), I often find it hard to find the time and/or energy to sit down and plod away at my fifteen books.

Published author

Publishing my first short story, End of the Road, was highly motivating. I could shout from the rooftops: I'm a published author! Watching it hover around the 800,000 mark on Amazon was less so.

Book 2 in the series is almost ready, and hopefully will be published in the next few months. My plan had always been to reduce the price of book 1 to zero once the second was out there, whilst charging for parts 2 - 5. However, I decided to drop the price to zero last month - just to see what happened.


In January the book shot to #24 in category and 4000-ish overall on A few weeks later the same happened on, with the book hitting #10 in category! (you can just see it in pic on right) Despite the fact that I was not getting any money from these downloads, I was elated!

My book is now averaging 5 downloads per day, has activated the Amazon algorithms so that it appears in the 'people who viewed/bought this book also viewed/bought these...'  Five people a day are downloading a book with my name on it! That, after all, is where every author wants their books to be, isn't it? Out there! If I can collect a few reviews, a few email sign-ups or some new followers of my on-line presence, even better.


This sudden shifting of my first, humble offering has motivated me to get part two out there, as well as my first full-length novel. Having learned as much as I could about epublishing over the last few years, I am fairy confident that I can repeat this 'success' with my other books.

The groundwork has been done, the concrete has set better than I had ever expected and the walls desperately need to go up.

That's truly motivational. Now if I could just gag the wife...

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Why you should be building your on-line presence, even before publishing your books.

To date I have but one, short story published. There are others coming, but it is a slow process. There are many days when I don't have time, or when I feel too tired to write (like today). It is at moments like these that I turn my attention to other matters.

On-line presence.

What's that all about then? Is it just having 8,000+ followers on Twitter and an author's page on Facebook? Well, yes and no. There is no point in having 8,000 followers if you don't do anything with them. I need to interact with them and sell them me - the writer.

Screen shot of discussion thread mentioning Diem Burden

Pen name

Having a unique pen-name helps me enormously. I have set up a weekly, automated Google search. Each week,  a search is carried out on the www for any new mentions of 'Diem Burden.' I then receive an email with details. In one such email I was happy to discover that Diem Burden had been mentioned on a Publishing Discussion Thread as a useful source of 'great publishing tips of self publishing or getting published.' (see picture, above).

No, it hasn't helped sell my book. No, I didn't do it myself! What this person did was to provide my name to other people in a positive, glowing light! My name, my unique name. That's what it is all about, building your name, building your brand.

Brand Diem: helpful, knowledgeable, a person to follow and listen to. A publisher and writer worth mentioning.

What greater reason is there for an author to be building his on-line presence?

(Oh, and thanks, Veritas.)