What’s the best way to capitalize on NetGalley reviews?

If the reviewer has a blog with a nice following or an official title, then adding a blurb and reviewer to your Amazon Author Central page is essential. These reviews can help readers take a chance and make more educated purchases. Authors can always use NetGalley reviews constructively, whether they are positive or negative, and learn from the feedback to better improve their writing going forward.

What format is trending the strongest in 2019? (Audiobooks, ebooks, or print books?)

Definitely audiobooks. That’s not to say that anything is down with print or digital, but audiobooks and their sales are increasing at a higher rate. It’s similar to what we saw when eBooks first became a major factor in the industry, and there’s no need to panic. As I’m sure many experts will agree, audiobooks will eventually find its own place in the marketplace, and all three formats will live happily side-by-side.

If an indie book really started to take off, with signs of becoming a mainstream bestseller, could an indie press like BRW “handle” its journey all the way?

Yes!!! One of the main differences between a big five publisher and Black Rose Writing is that we are print-on-demand. However, as technology has continued to improve, our “speed to market” has also become much faster, and there isn’t any reason we can’t fulfill book orders quickly and easily. Your distribution, along with discount terms and returnable terms, are capable of reaching mass markets across the globe.

How do you approach bookstores, shops, Museums, etc to get them to put your book on their shelves?

Just getting a bookseller to stock your book can be a difficult task for an unknown author. I recommend that you first introduce yourself in person to the store owner, with your book in hand, and talk to them a little bit about why your book is relevant for their store or what kind of traffic/audience you might be able to generate for their store. Setting up a book signing or reading is also essential, and in many cases, the bookseller will stock your book before and after an event has been scheduled.

What are the top five best selling genres?

I’m not sure if this holds true for every publisher, but for Black Rose Writing, based on our authors’ book sales and on researched category competition, I would guess Mystery/Suspense, Thriller, Romance, Literary, and SciFi/Fantasy as the top five, in no particular order. What other genres do you think make the final cut for most read?

Are there podcasts or blogs authors should be aware of that specialize in promoting Indie authors?

In terms of promoting an author, I don’t have any strong recommendations other than just searching online for podcasts or blogs that are specific to your writing genre. As for podcasts that can be extremely helpful for authors learning the industry and marketing strategies, I very much recommend listening to Mark Dawson’s Self Publishing Formula Show, The Book Marketing Show, and The Creative Penn Podcast.

The title of a book is critical. What advice would you give authors for selecting a hit title?

I would first recommend that an author search on Amazon for any titles they may want to use and check on the competition as well as how many times that title has been used in the past. If an author has a title that they are 100% committed to, and there are other books with the same title, then using a subtitle to define your book and separate your book’s genre or target audience can be effective. I’m a huge fan of original titles, even if they are a bit quirky or have a hidden message - something that has some intrigue.

The Author-Publisher Relationship

Black Rose Writing has over 500 authors currently under contract, so it goes without saying that in any business or personal relationship of that magnitude, issues will arise. If we, as a small press or Indie publisher, could achieve a 100% satisfactory rating with each author, we’d be at the pinnacle of the author-publisher relationship with nowhere else to go. Simply perfection.

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The Beast Amid The Beauty: Writing Historical Fiction

Few things can compare to the beauty of a well-written historical novel. However, the process of writing historical fiction is a beast unto itself. It requires you to have not only a fantastic storyline, engaging characters, and a unique plot, but also to put these things within a real, historical timeline. This can be a different challenge than building a world from scratch because the fictional tale must fit into this slot in time, an era gone before us.

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A Writer's Becoming

When I was fifteen, my father diagnosed me as a “jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none.” Although I didn’t enjoy having my mediocrity acknowledged by my paterfamilias, he wasn’t wrong. I can do many things well enough. I was a good enough volleyball player to have articles written about me in the local newspaper, but I did not earn any athletic scholarships. I was a good enough actress to be nominated for a regional theatre competition, but I did not win. I was a good enough pianist to play Bach with abandon in the privacy of my living room, but never in front of an audience. Part of the problem was that I loved sports and theatre and music equally. I refused to sacrifice one passion in pursuit of another. But that was only part of my problem.

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The Complete Guide to Making A Great Author Page With Amazon Author Central

Here it is! The Written Word Media guide to answer all your questions about managing an author page in Amazon Author Central. Your author page can generate sales and help develop your readers into fans. Whether you have no idea what Amazon Author Central is or you are an old-hand working to tweak your page to get the best results, we’ve got you covered. Read the whole post or skip to sections that are relevant to you by using the links below. Now let’s get to it!

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Writer as Editor

As a thriller writer, I get to make up stories and create characters. I tend to put those characters in terrible situations and give them seemingly impossible mysteries to solve, but it’s all in the name of entertaining people.

Much of this happens in my head. Then I sit down to write the first draft.

And, for me, that tends to be the laborious part of writing a novel. I power through it, writing words, sentences, and paragraphs that I know will be deleted later. Writer Rick hates that.

But Editor Rick loves it.

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If I Publish, They Will Come

While emotional release and creative expression are the reasons why I write, I have spent almost two decades seeking validation for my writing through the act of publishing.

Unfortunately (and despite all my knowledge about good mental health) my personal Hell with seeking validation through publication can be summed up in this terrible (anti) mantra that used to constantly float through my mind: If I write something and no one reads it, did I really write it at all?

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The Ultimate Guide to Social Media for Writers 2019

Using social media to get our writing out into the world can be an amazing opportunity.  It helps market our works and hopefully, gain a following that will continue to benefit from our writing.

But it can also be a curse. Because of so many social media platforms, most writers languish in obscurity and end up spending more time marketing their writing than just…writing.

Therefore, I’ve constructed this guide to help authors understand the erratic world of social media for writers and authors. I’ll show some of the better social media platforms for writers, how to best approach them, and which writers are doing it right –so you can see what it looks like when done to a level that will bring real success.

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How to Deal With Self-Doubt

As authors, we’ve all felt it. The awful self-doubt that creeps up and consumes us, threatening to squash both our creativity and our inspiration; two essential requirements of being a modern-day writer.

Without creativity, there is no story, and without a story … well, you know what that means.

When our inspiration suffers, it’s hard to keep moving forward. Giving up seems much easier, and yes, much safer than continuing to put your heart and soul on the chopping block.

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