Ask ALLi June – Your Self-Publishing Questions answered by Joanna Penn and Orna Ross
Each month Joanna and Orna answer Member’s self-publishing questions, and todays discussion touched on a myriad of topics relevant to indie authors. Before they kicked off the Q&A segment, both of our hosts summarised their current areas of focus:
Joanna has had another multi-tasking month. As well as launching her new book “How to Make a Living with your Writing” and managing two audio book releases, she is also editing her next novel “Deviance”.
Things are all-go at ALLi too, and behind the scenes the team are restructuring and reorganising our self-publishing content to make it easier for indie authors to navigate and find what they're looking for.
In publishing news, our intrepid pair, discussed the impact of the recent changes to Kindle Unlimited and KOLL:
Beginning July 1, 2015, we switched from paying Kindle Unlimited (KU) and Kindle Owners' Lending Library (KOLL) royalties based on qualified borrows, to paying based on the number of pages read. We made this switch in response to great feedback we received from authors who asked us to better align payout with the length of books and how much customers read. Under the new payment method, you'll be paid for each page individual customers read of your book, the first time they read it. Source Amazon website
The consensus of opinion is that if you're writing content that your readers enjoy, these Amazon changes won't really impact you much.
In Apple news, iBooks have enabled your ability to set up a holding page for preorders, a year in advance of your book's release. This is especially useful if you're writing a series, and an integral part of your book marketing strategy.
June Ask ALLi Q&A Video via YouTube
June Ask ALLi Q&A Podcast via Soundcloud
Ask ALLi Questions Answered this Month
Here’s the questions posed to Orna and Joanna this month:
Q: I'm toying with the idea of using Facebook ads for 1) collecting email subscribers by offering some free content and 2) promoting my books directly. I've been through Mark Dawson's 3 free videos and probably have enough information to try this .. should I do it?
If you’re already overwhelmed…. take a breath! New opportunities happen on a continuous basis in self-publishing, so take a step back and review your strategy – before diving into the latest hot topic.
Q: Google Play: What is it? Should I put my books in there or not? What royalty revenue could I expect?
Q: Now that I've published my first book, I am getting contacted by book promoters who promise to publicise my book for a fee. How can I tell which are effective and which are not?
Q: After hitting some technical problems loading my books onto Ingram Spark, I missed the promo offer (open to everyone). Can you advise when and if a new offer for Alli members will be launched soon?
Good news from ALLi members, the Ingram Spark promo is still in place, click here to find out more:
Q: When hiring a proofreader is it best to engage them for two sets of proofreads – digital and print or just digital?
Q: As a self-publisher/writer should I purchase my ISBN's directly from Bowker? I see there are other sites offering ISBN's for less money, but are they legitimate?
Q: Are there any book cover designers available who can format a color design for a modest book who do not charge lots of money to do so?
Q: How can I get review copies of my book at a discount?
Q: What publisher would you recommend to do a self-published non-fiction book that has both black and white and color pages?
Orna and Joanna don't always agree about which approach is best for indie authors. In the self-publishing arena there are a slew of options and choices available, and there is often no “right” answer, because the right answer depends on who YOUR intended audience is and what goals YOU have set.
Only you can make the final decision.
But what's important is that you're aware of the alternatives available to you, and that you take the time to weigh up the pros and cons of each of the options.
This is where ALLi shines — we let you know all of the options available to indie authors, so that you can make informed decisions.
Joanna wrapped up this month's Ask ALLi with a call to action to reassess your goals. We're halfway through the year, and it's a good time to look back on the last 6 months at the goals you set at the beginning of the year and check whether they're still valid and relevant.
Take a look at what you've achieved so far in 2015, and reassess what you plan to achieve before Christmas. Every indie author should be doing this, and this reassessment is key to being successful.
What are you committing to achieve before Christmas?
Where can I watch or listen to more Ask ALLi?
- You can catch up on all of our videos on ALLi’s YouTube Channel
- You can listen to all of our podcast recordings at ALLi’s SoundCloud Channel
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