February 5th, 2013 | Add a Comment
BIO: Lisa Morgan started riding horses when she was in the third grade. She competed on the Hunter Jumper circuit, and eventually became a riding instructor. She has three kids, but only one has inherited her love of horses. Through their own experiences with horses, Lisa came up with the Horse Club. She hopes you continue to enjoy the Horse Club series.
My book falls under the genre of children’s horse books but also under children’s books for women/girls, and social situations. I think it helps to find a niche and try to rank high in the search engines on Amazon under that niche. Amazon actually started advertising for me under Hot New Releases in each of those genres. That was free advertising for me.
I think the disadvantages of self-publishing are: not seeing your book in the check-out line at Kroger, and not selling to millions of people. But the advantages of self-publishing are: You have the capability to reach millions on the Internet.You are also your own boss, which can be good or bad, depending how disciplined you are. I love having the ability to design any cover I want, to publish my book according to my own schedule depending of life circumstances, to work from home, and to write whatever I wish–even if it’s not mainstream enough. I’ve never been mainstream myself, so I enjoy writing unique books.
The learning curve is steep but I formatted my own books. I started with Amazon, which I found easier than Barnes and Noble. Then I went to Smashwords and had them format the rest. I believe getting your book out there to as many different places is best. I tried KDP select and had success, but I can’t say I noticed a huge benefit from placing my book free. When formatting my book for Amazon, I use Mobipocket Creator and love it. When I uploaded the file, I did have a problem with my chapter headings being off center, and a few other tiny things. Because I’m anal retentive, that bothered me and I had to fix it. I googled HTML and learned the proper tags to fix the problems. Also, please remember, you have the power to see your books in print if you use createspace.com. The book quality is fantastic. Again, the formatting is a learning curve but for me it was well worth it.
I never tried to get my series traditionally published. I have another series, women’s fiction, that I’m still trying to go that route with. My dream is to be both self-published and traditionally published, that way I have the best of both worlds.
The five things I would do to start marketing your book is to create a social media presence under your author name and perhaps your real name. I uploaded my book without a website because time was of the essence with Christmas around the corner. But constructing a website will be the next thing I do after the holidays are over. I did, however, market my book with facebook and twitter. I post on my personal account and my author account and look for any excuse to post something daily. I find you can get away with more marketing on twitter because the action is faster than facebook. Also, if you use twitter, use hashtags that pertain to your genre, such as #horses. I would either create your own blog or start blogging on other peoples’ blogs, but I haven’t done that much. I spend most of my time writing the next book. Then, last but not least, I get the word out there in the community. I have kids in school and I’m entrenched in the horse world. I know a lot of people who would be interested in reading my genre. I believe these marketing tips helped make my book a success. The rest is a mystery.
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