Orna Ross, ALLi director and author of the Go Creative! book series explains why keeping control of creative assets is essential to the indie author’s success in self-publishing.
What does being an indie author mean to you?
- a readership
- an ecosystem of assets that yields a sustainable income
- a body of work that fulfils my creative intentions
Most of us, though, occupy the middle of this bell curve where creative and commercial impact are intertwined.
Ah yes, assets. The fulcrum of our income and influence as creative entrepreneurs.
Why Trade-Published Authors Fail To Earn
There is one core reason why an author who works only with trade publishers is not making money. From a business perspective, it’s a no-brainer;
If you don’t have any control over your metadata, your marketing, your pricing, your distribution network or your rights, you’re not in business as an author. You’re at the mercy of a system in which there are a few winners and a lot of losers.
Why Self-Publishing Authors Fail To Earn
Either our books are not good enough, or our marketing is not good enough, or our business processes are not good enough.
If we keep on writing and publishing, with the intention to succeed and a willingness to learn from failures and mistakes, we will improve. It’s inevitable.
In the same way, creative attention to our author business within an intention to succeed, yields commercial success. Understand how income follows assets, add time and energy, and we will improve commercially. It’s inevitable
But that’s the fifth reason: we don’t understand the value of creative assets, and we do allow doubt and resistance to get in the way.
Creative Success Follows Creative Assets
- Books and other information, inspiration or entertainment products.
- Data about your readers and followers
- The process that produces your products or services and gets them to market
3) Marketing Assets e.g.
- Your author brand that conveys to readers what you stand for
- Your mailing list that connects you to your readers and lets them know about your books
There are many other kinds of assets in a creative business. See the Go Creative! books for more on this.