9 Mistakes of the Newbie Author

(Nobody wants to be a numpty!)

Diving into the treacherous self-publishing waters without a marketing strategy is setting yourself up for a watery death.

You either flounder about in the shallows at number one million, five hundred thousand and twenty-seven in the Amazon rankings.
Or if you momentarily make it to deeper water where the big name whales frolic – you become a target of circling publishing company sharks who smell the blood in the water.

Here are 9 Newbie Mistakes…

…and how to avoid them…

  1. Writing a book before researching your market

    Researching means asking lots of hard questions and looking under lots of hard places.
    Questions like: What else is out there? How popular is it?
    And like: How can I do a better/different/unique job?
    You need to get clear on these before going anywhere near a keyboard.

  2. Editing while writing

    You write a few sentences. You look them over.
    They suck.
    You rewrite them. Better, but something still needs to change.
    you add a comma, detract a semi-colon, and multiply by a thesaurus.
    It still sucks, but now its time for a cuppa.
    Maybe if you look at it with caffeine refreshed eyes…
    You begin the process again.
    This can be repeated for days, weeks or months…
    Soon you start thinking you should start a new book.
    Or give up the whole writing malarkey.
    Here’s the secret…
    You need to allow yourself to write a truly shitty first draft.
    Editing while you write kills your creativity.
    The two halves of your brain are at war with each other.
    There is only one solution… write now, edit later.
    Much later.
    Let your muse run free through the pages in all her grammatically incorrect glory.

  3. Starting a 2nd book before finishing the fist
    The old drawer full of unfinished manuscripts.
    More of a bloated hard drive than a drawer.
    The difference between a published author and a dreamer is …
    Discipline.
    The discipline to finish even when you are so sick of the sight of it that you would rather gargle Vegemite than drag yourself back to the computer
    You need to go at it again.
    And again.
    And again.
    And don’t stop until you hit publish
    Or die

    Whichever comes first.
  4. Not having a launch plan

    Throwing a book up on Amazon and hoping for the best is like throwing paint at a canvas and hoping to become the next Jason Pollock.
    A work of art takes strategy, even if it looks like its all happy accident.
    A plan means using the Amazon algorithm to your advantage.
    A plan means lining up some promotions on launch day
    A plan means having enough inbuilt marketing to help your book get seen
    Give your book a fighting chance.
    It may be the next Blue Poles, but at least you’ll have more to show for your efforts than paint stained hands.

  5. Not paying for a cover

    The temptation to whip up your own natty design is real – we have all been there.
    You think you will save money and time by doing it this way.
    You won’t.
    It depends what your objective is for your book.
    If it’s just to gift to friends and family then it doesn’t really matter.. they will love it no matter what!
    You’ve got a split second to help an Amazon browser decide to click or keep scrolling.
    A cover that looks ‘home-made’ screams poor quality, and with millions of books competing with yours for the sale, first impressions count.

  6. Not paying enough for a cover

    There are covers, and there are covers.
    You can get one done on fiverr for 5 bucks.
    Problem is it will look like you paid five bucks for it.
    And what does that say about the contents?
    Professional book designer charge a hefty fee because there is an art to making a cover sing.
    And trust me, you want your cover to be able to hold a tune.
    Your audience will judge you and your book by its cover…
    Don’t ever doubt that…

  7. Not getting your book formatted

    Kindle, paperback. iPad, smartphone, e-reader…
    Who knows how readers will be consuming your book.
    Every device will show your words differently.
    A well formatted book will slide seamlessly from one device to another without tripping or hiccoughing as it goes.
    A poorly formatted book screams amateur all the way to the ‘don’t buy’ button.

  8. Not writing a converting description

    You need to nail this… because in the book world your description is your sales page
    You have to take off the authorly kid-gloves and put on the marketer boxing-gloves.
    This is not the time to hide your light under a bushel.
    You need to dazzle them with your book’s brilliance, sing, shout, and yodel your book’s praises.
    Be clear on the problem your book solves.
    Be clear on who it solves it for.
    And show them exactly how you plan to do it in the pages of your book.
    That is the purpose of your description.
    By the time they’re done reading it they are convinced this book will save their marriage, their money and possibly the planet.

  9. Listening to the voices in your head

    Doubt. We all have it.
    The bravest authors are the ones that are able to look fear in the face and keep going.
    To feel the cold sweat of ‘what if I flop?’ running down their spine.
    To wake in the dead of night with a spine tingling thought of ‘What did I write?”
    These become familiar feelings for the published author.
    They won’t go; and you don’t want them to…
    They are the litmus test that confirms you are on to something.
    If you aren’t shitting yourself…
    If you aren’t second guessing your words…
    If you aren’t wondering who you will offend…
    Then something is wrong.
    Embrace the fear: it proves you have something worth saying
    And in the end that is all that matters.

    To Sum up…
    Research before your begin
    Have a strategy for writing
    Be disciplined in your approach
    Plan your launch
    Invest in the ares that matter
    Have something of value to say
    Believe in yourself and your project no matter what

    ***

Kylie is an amazon number one bestseller, healer and author whisperer.
She murmurs sweet something’s into the ears of entrepreneurs who long to hatch their business building book
s & soar above the Amazon.com canopy.
Click the pic to find out more