Friday, August 05, 2011

How he sold 1 million ebooks

Today I am re-reading How I Sold 1 Million eBooks in 5 Months! by John Locke. Some of this short book comes across as a salesman's cheerleading, but that's fine with me. He does get down to specifics that seem both possible and sensible, and his book is well worth the $4.99 I forked over. By all means self-publish, he suggests, and decide on your target market before you begin writing (Now he tells me!). Then price your ebook modestly, but at a price where people who don't know you will readily take a chance. His novels are all 99 cents each, which obviously works for him. He claims not to be a great writer, although it's perfectly fine. Writers need for their writing not to "suck" and for their stories to be entertaining; meet those two criteria and follow his marketing advice, and you'll probably sell some books.

There are so many people wanting to make a buck off wannabe authors. The other day I saw an 11-minute video where someone was offering his publication secrets, stuff the big guys supposedly don't want the little guys to know. The video itself offered absolutely nothing of substance, but promoted its $400 package that would tell you everything. When I published with iUniverse, they once tried to sell me a $20,000 publicity package, honest to God. 

You can pay hundreds for email campaigns that blast a message about your book to a half million book buyers, or for advertisements or press releases. As my New Jersey brother would say, fuggedaboutit! Don't waste your time and money. Just buy Locke's book for five bucks. Read it, underline the good stuff, and re-read it. Then go follow his good advice. 


L. Diane Wolfe said...

I posted some of my thoughts about his book on Monday. He really doesn't do anything revolutionary - he just does it smart. And he just does it! Most people make a halfhearted attempt and then quit.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm not self-published, but several people recommended his book and one even passed along a copy for me to read. The Twitter thing seems overwhelming.

KarenG said...

And he will make another million selling copies of this book telling how he did it! Smart guy.

Bob Sanchez said...

I take your point, Karen. Probably not a million, as he prices this book at 4.99 and each of his novels at 0.99. Also, he is aiming at a smaller audience than he is with his fiction.

cindy said...

I'm sold. Just about to publish my own first Kindle novel (I have a non-fic up already)and can use all the help I can get!

J.L. Campbell said...

Thanks for visiting my blog. I've been curious about this book and checked it out on Amazon.

Jeremy Bates said...

ive been meaning to read this but forgot all about it
thanks for reminding me!

"Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do."

-Steve Jobs