The Sell More Books Show: Book Marketing, Digital Publishing and Kind…

An Arts, Books and Business podcast featuring and
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Director of Content Abigail Dunard visited the show this week to talk tips and news with Jim. After thanking their patrons, We Own the Sky, Kick Author Overwhelm to the Curb, and The Newbie's Guide to Sell More Books with Less Marketing, Jim and Abigail discussed tips on major marketing campaigns, six-figure steps, and reader on-boarding. News stories included Amazon's new shipping policy, Hallmark Publishing, David Gaughran's brush with Amazon iron fist, IndiePicks, and a contentious campaign fighting a popular YA book. This week's Question of the Week: Is it fair for readers to leave customer reviews en masse if they haven't yet read the book? How can publishers and retailers avoid situations like this in the future?
Just how big is the ebook marketplace? Listen all the way to our top story to find out the latest estimate. After thanking their patrons, Star Flame, Merkiaari Wars, and Awakened, Jim and Bryan talked tips on engaging with audio, staying sticky in the rankings, and nonfiction book length. News stories included Amazon's six-month KU deal, engaging with your fanbase, newsletter subscribers from giveaways, going fast vs. slow as a writer, and the size of the ebook marketplace. This week's Question of the Week: Do you believe Michael Cader's estimates of the size of the ebook marketplace? Are they too high, too low, or just right, and why?
Could changing how you react to negativity have a positive impact on your business in 2018? In the home stretch to the end of 2017, Jim and Bryan take a moment to thank their patrons: Covermint Design, Plain Talk Book Marketing, and The Efficient Writer. Tips include great advice on how to quit your 9-to-5 to write full-time, selling more books by keeping promises to readers, and how a key in making a living writing is to keep writing the next book. In publishing news, Patreon reverses it’s decision about fee structures, Amazon has released a year-end bestseller compilation list, audiobooks continue as the fastest growing segment in digital publishing, Amazon’s payouts for KU increased again, and authors are experiencing major delays in sales reporting from Amazon. Question of the week: How do you cope with negativity and other things that don't go well in your business? How might you change the way you react going forward in 2018?
What’s been the biggest game changer in publishing since the Kindle was released 10 years ago? Jim and Bryan start out with a thank you to their patrons A Dragon Among Eagles: A Novel of the Roman Empire, Blogging for Authors, and The Ten-Year Turnaround: Transform Your Personal Finances and Achieve Financial Freedom. This week’s tips include how authors can save tons of money by avoiding these unnecessary publishing expenses, making the transition from KU to wide a bit easier, and increasing engagement on Facebook with hints from Andrea Vahl. News includes how Anna Todd is returning to her indie roots with her next series, the latest PEW survey suggests keeping tabs on the reading habits of millennials when publishing, an inspiring interview with Mark Stay and Mark Desvaux about their Bestseller Experiment, speculation on what is triggering recent Amazon rank strips, and the 10th anniversary of the Kindle. Question of the Week: What do you think has been the biggest innovation in publishing since the Kindle device went live in 2007 and why?
Bryan’s back and he’s brought five news stories with him! After thanking their patrons The Final Arrangement, Taking Charge, and Shadow Raiders, Bryan and Jim tackled tips on saying no, saving up for your book, and hiring an assistant. News stories included a bump up for trad pub, more fake books on bestseller lists, ACX in Ireland and Canada, Vellum 2.0, and a six-figure audio contract for an indie. This week’s Question of the Week: How much have you paid for print formatting in the past? Are you willing to fork out $250 one-time to let you format all your future print books?
With one more episode until finishing a full baseball season, Jim and Bryan took on the latest news, tips, and happenings in the indie world. After thanking their patrons The Author’s Guide to Ebook Bundling, More Than Monsters, and What Sells Books, the pair of publishing pundits talked tips on short stories, Amazon Author Central, and writing on planes. News stories included a survey on Chinese readership, 99 Designs moving into book, story rights, breaking the indie rules, and ACX’s crackdown on new international accounts. This week’s Question of the Week: What do you think is a fair price for a custom book cover? What have you spent on covers in the past?
Happy third podcast anniversary to Bryan & Jim! With three years under their belt, they were free to take on tips about book descriptions and author mindset after thanking their patrons Somebody’s Darling, Hitler Out of Time, and Guerrilla Tactics Against Passive Aggression in the Work Place. The top stories included Amazon Books in Chicago, Amazon Author Insights, a peek behind Data Guy’s curtain, indie bookstores as small publishers, and four writers on a train. This week’s Question of the Week: Who would your dream author collaboration be with and where would you go to write?
Is something sinister afoot with the recent ending of Kindle Worlds or simply poor ROI for Amazon? Bryan welcomes his guest cohost Rachael Herron and offers listeners a heck of a summer deal on book Happy Book Reviews from the Author Marketing Club. And Bryan is still running his sale on book descriptions through May 30th. Rachael and Bryan offer up a huge thanks to this week’s Patrons - Angelborn, Dad’s Girls, and Black Shadow Moon. Hot tips of the week include how to get more reviews, why friends are not the best editors, and what to do about online bullies. This week’s top five news stories take us through who needs a morality clause in their contract, how to use social media Stories to your advantage, what are the pros and cons of direct sales, which author is most recently under attack from pirates, and why is Kindle Worlds getting the Deathstar treatment from the Amazon galaxy. Question of the Week: Did Amazon end the Kindle Worlds program because of something major behind the scenes or was it the result of underperformance? What's your reasoning for your choice?
Would you consider working with a coach to improve an aspect of your author career? Jim is excited for his Unskippable booksigning event in Las Vegas. Bryan reminds everyone to check out the new Best Page Forward podcast and fill out the submission form if you want your blurb rewritten during the live show. There are only 41 slots left in the Amazon Ads Made Easy 5-module course—grab yours today and take control of you ads. This week’s Happy Books Review Winner is Mike Stop Continues. Thank you to our featured Patrons: Sanyare: The Last Descendant, Blogging for Authors, and Awakened: Paragons Book One. The Top Tips of the week include how creating work seasons can increase productivity, why both existing fans and new readers are both important to your marketing plan, and how changing up your routine can reignite creativity. We have an Honorable Mention: How one bad Tweet poisoned the whole nest. The 5 News stories that matter most to indies this week include one more BIG reason to resist the urge to reply to bad reviews, Audible is doubling down on their subscription service for Romance, how Victoria Smith found the boost she needed to more than triple her monthly income with the assistance of a coach, why Ellie Masters considers marketing as the key to reaching 5-figure sales, and how books are being stolen from WattPad and appearing for sale on Amazon. Question of the Week: Have you ever used a coach or a mentor to help you get to the next level of your career? If so, did it help? If not, is it something you'd ever consider in the future?
We've reached 500,000 downloads, and we couldn't have done it without you! This week, Jim and Bryan discussed tips on ad copywriting, indie author mistakes, and writing by hand. After thanking their patrons Peaks of Passion, Where the Leaves Wither, and The Last Days Begin, the Walter Cronkites of self-publishing took on the latest news stories, including Australia's trad pub matchmaker site, Smashwords Special Deals, Nook First Look, KU's drop in per page payout, and the Dominion Rising's exclusion from the New York Times Bestseller List. This week's Question of the Week: Why do some authors spend time getting angry about fellow indies attempting to get on bestseller lists when they could instead learn from the marketing successes of box sets like Dominion Rising?
Is this the beginning of the end for CreateSpace? After thanking their patrons, The Busy Busy Author, The Last Verdict, and Slow Burn: Zero Day, Jim and Bryan took on tips about podcasts, BookBub Ads, and social media anxiety. News stories included how to grow your business, outside-the-box marketing, KDP Jumpstart, the closing of CreateSpace's e-store, and seven-figure trad pub deals. This week's Question of the Week: When are you planning to start using KDP Print? What will you miss the most about CreateSpace when it's eventually closed?
Has Data Guy sold out? Bryan and Jim are back for another week of the latest news and tips for authors. After taking a moment to thank their patrons How to Kick Author Overwhelm to the Curb, The Thing Speaks for Itself, and Dark as the Grave, they jump into this weeks tips. Authors can get to know their readers better with some simple tips, boost reader interest by thinking outside the box, and how indie authors can avoid getting booted out of Facebook Groups . News items include how authors should never give up trying to get their rights back, Amazon raising the monthly Prime subscription rate, CreateSpace shutting down some of its divisions, Data Guy launching Bookstat, and the latest Author Earnings report. Question of the Week: Did Data Guy sell out by starting Bookstat?
Bryan and Jim are back with a very news-focused show! After thanking their patrons, Black Shadow Moon, The Tilt, and Twins of Prey, the publishing pundits discussed making big plays, connecting with readers on social media, and how to improve your email engagement. News stories included an idea for improving KDP customer support, lessons Joanna Penn learned in her sixth year in publishing, why trad pub bet big against digital, a new system in erotica characterization, and what we can learn from Chance the Rapper. This week's Question of the Week: At what point should an indie be considered a "sellout?"
What do Adam Croft and Patricia Cornwell have in common? They’re now both with Amazon imprints, which is this week’s top story. After thanking their patrons The Tilt, Twins of Prey, and Carnal, Jim and Bryan tackled tips on forwards, bios, and writing contests. News stories included traditionally published teen authors in India, Hachette’s acquisition of Bookouture, Dean Wesley’s Smith’s proposed change for agents,’s new audio subscription, Amazon’s latest review policy change, and Patricia Cornwell’s new deal with Amazon’s Thomas & Mercer imprint. This week’s Question of the Week: With word spreading that Amazon can get books to #1 with some major launches and better terms for authors, will more big-time trad pub authors join Amazon imprints? Why or why not?
Will younger print readers stick with the medium when they get older or head to ebooks or audiobooks? The dynamic podcasting duo is back for another week of news and tips for authors. After taking a moment to thank their patrons: Triumviratus, Stone Cold, and The Hunted, they share some great tips including why indies should embrace their role as “Youpreneurs”, why writers should never give up on their books, and protecting their KDP by-line. Latest news items include why authors aren’t the only ones hurt by scammers, how the future of the internet rests in the hands of the next billion users, why a serial fiction startup is gaining traction, how shady characters are using CreateSpace to launder money, and why bestselling author Terry Goodkind stirred up a firestorm when he publicly ridiculed his cover art. Question of the Week: When the paperback-reading Snapchat generation gets into their 20s and 30s, will they keep reading paperbacks, move to ebooks, or go straight to audiobooks and why?
If one of your books or series exploded with unimaginable monetary success, would you continue to write in that world or would you pursue other passions? Jim is back from Montana and he and Bryan have a great show for you. Bryan has a limited time sale on Best Page Forward book descriptions over at ! Some of the Sell More Books Summit speakers are announced. Jim is still taking submissions for the Author Accelerate 31 Covers revamp! This week’s Happy Book Reviews winner is JB Wocoski. Bryan thanks our wonderful featured patrons: The Efficient Writer, Taking Charge - Making your Healthcare Appointments Work for You, and Nightblade. Here are the Hot Tips this week: Why you should disregard one-star reviews, how authors can re-title a series without missing a beat, and why it’s important to connect with influencers in a genuine way. We have an Honorable Mention news story that reveals the true nature of Ian Fleming’s indie author roots. You won’t want to miss these Top News Stories including how traditional publishers are experimenting with more aggressive ebook pricing, how Walmart and Kobo are making their move with competitor price matching, author Jacki James shares which strategies helped her get to a four-figure per month income, how two authors turned a zombie snafu into a marketing boon, and which writing strategies helped author Brent Nichols move past his backlist and into profits. Question of the Week: If you had your big-time unicorn success with one of your books or series, would you continue to write in that genre or would you spend time on your other artistic passions as well?
It’s been quite a year, what story is at the top of your list? As 2017 draws to a close, Jim and Bryan take some time to recap some of the ups and downs of 2017 including the top ad platform for authors, the closing of an e-book aggregator and who is stepping in to fill that void, what was the biggest growth sector in publishing, scammers taking over, and why authors complained so much this past year - and what they can do differently in 2018. Question of the Week: What do you think was the biggest story of 2017 and why?
Sci-fi author Michael Cooper joined us today for a longer-than-usual but extremely informative Lab segment. After thanking their patrons, Peak Democracy, The Final Arrangement, and Nightblade, Bryan and Jim tackled tips on pen names, selecting your next story to write, and how to promote your books. News stories included the publishing practices of Marcel Proust, publishers helping hurricane victims, AAP's ebook sales increase, and Bookfunnel's new direct sales integration. This week's Question of the Week: If you don't yet use Facebook Ads, what's the main reason you don't include them as part of your marketing?
If a business sends an email about an ill-conceived program, would you have a chat with them or respond in anger? Getting 2018 started off with a bang, Bryan and Jim thank their wonderful patrons Gone, The Cordova Vector, and Taking Charge: Making Your Healthcare Appointments Work for You. The first tips of the year include how authors can gather more audiobook reviews, how authors can combat common health problems, and how to set writing goals. In news, find out what changed Playster has made to their audiobook service, changes coming to Amazon author portals, how one man transformed from cancer survivor to a bestseller, information on the new tax code, Facebook's revised News Feed algorithm, and what one literary magazine did to upset the indie author community. Question of the Week: If you got an email like the one NY Literary Magazine sent out, would you respond with anger or would you try to make the sender understand the error of their ways?
Do you have a strategy to deal with plagiarism of you books? Bryan is back and recovering from his soccer-related concussion. Jim gives an update on the progress on synthetic audio books. This week’s Happy Book Reviews winner is William Oday. The featured Patrons for this episode include Gone, Inharmonic, and Kept In The Dark. The Hot Tips for you are why dictation could be the productivity tool you need, why you should put your phone in airplane mode when you’re on the ground, and how can help bring order to your online chaos. The five News stories that matter most to the indie community include what you need to know about author blogs, how Kaitlin Bellamy is creating her success one baby step at a time, why creating an ideal reader avatar is critical to your writing, which steps Paul Park took to move his writing into the four-figure lane, and when plagiarism is OK—spoiler alert—never. Question of the Week: If you found out that your books had been plagiarized, what would you do to handle the situation?
If you have a Return on Investment number that you consider “good” - how did you arrive at that figure? Bryan and Jim report on the effects of the Polar Vortex in the Midwest. Bryan gives an encouraging update on the Relentless Authors Advertise podcast and thanks all the listeners who are joining the experiment. This week’s Happy Book Reviews winner is Rebecca Markus. Bryan thanks our Featured Patrons: Awakening Forever, Guardian of the Grail, and The Reluctant Detective. The Hot Tips include the good of reader give-and-take, how to bridge the gap between writing on the side and writing full time, and why focusing on fewer tasks is actually more efficient. Our Honorable Mention story explains why pre-order reviews have disappeared as quickly as they arrived. The Top News stories affecting the indie community this week are the short-lived Barnes and Noble ad experiment, what ill tidings are reported in the 2018 Authors Guild Survey, how Christina DeMara used hashtags to increase book sales, why Wattpad is diving into publishing, and what steps Jen Thorn took to see success with her new pen name in just 30 days. Question of the Week: Do you know how to calculate Return on Investment (ROI)? Even though even 1% ROI is a profit, is there a certain number of ROI you deem to be Good? How did you come upon that number?
Will developmental editing or marketing give you the biggest bang for your buck on book one? Would you publish without an in-depth edit? Bryan and Jim have a great show for you this week! Bryan’s getting ready to take a little time off and Jim will have a special guest host for you next week. Jim notes that his Author Accelerate conferences have revealed that a lot of authors are in the wrong category. Winner of the Happy Book Reviews feature is Chuck Manley. Bryan thanks our featured Patrons: SPA Girls - How to Kick Author Overwhelm in the Butt!, The Thing Speaks for Itself, and Dark as the Grave. This week’s hot Tips include how to manage distractions and write more, what authors think the cost of hiring editors, and why patience is the name of the game with AMS ads. The stories that matter most to indie authors are why Target is redacting certain words in book descriptions, how Instafreebie’s rebrand could help you, how slow and steady release schedules can lead to author success, why ad spend and careful monitoring is critical to success, and which strategies and choices helped Kevin Butman to a successful book launch. Question of the Week: Is it more important to spend money on developmental and copyediting on your first book or to spend it on marketing like book covers? If you had to choose between waiting to publish or going forth without the heavy editing, which would you choose and why?
How secure our your “author” passwords? Bryan & Jim are excited about the ramp up to the Summit and they took a moment to thank their generous patrons - Stalked by Flames, Sell More Books With Less Social Media, and Peaks of Passion: Pleasure Point Series Book One. The guys jumped right into this weeks tips, which include how to keep a long series profitable and when to end it, how to turn bad reviews into learning opportunities, and how to choose the right POV for your marketing copy. This week in news, discover some important things to consider before expanding your business, learn why Publishers Weekly is scrutinizing indie publishers, understand how AI search engines interact with books, listen to Bryan’s tale of getting hacked on Createspace and how to prevent the same thing from happening to you, and delve into one author’s thoughts on the new GDPR policy. Question of the Week: What do you do to secure your passwords for your author business?
Episode 257 - Chirp, Amazon Ads, and the Nebula Controversy What does the new audiobook world look like for you and your titles? Bryan is excited to report on what is happening in the author community right now! Jim discusses the effects of Mercury in retrograde. This week’s Happy Books Review winner is Crissy Moss. Our Featured Patrons: Shadow Raiders, Strings of Subversion, and Fighting to Survive. The Top Tips this week include how advanced reader feedback can improve your standalones, why a reading plan is just as important as a writing plan, and what can go wrong with ghostwriters. We have an Honorable Mention story is the incredible tale of an author who could win $100,000 to ditch her smartphone. The big five news stories that matter most to indie authors include how the Books-a-Million closure will affect indies, why establishment sci-fi authors are attacking 20Booksto50K, which tools are providing Dean M. Cole with the keywords that jumpstarted his earnings, what steps did Kristen Oliphant take to jump from $100 per month of writing income to a steady five-figures, and how Bookbub’s new discount audiobooks will impact the market. Question of the Week: How do you think BookBub's Chirp will change the audiobook landscape over the next 12 months? Do you have any books currently locked up by ACX's 7-year contract?
Here's what you'll learn in Episode 249: - How authors can protect themselves when buying book covers - Why a calendar might be the most important writer’s tool - How using video chat can spark writing creativity - What advantages indie-publishers have over traditional - How an author turned around a dollar a month in sales into a part-time living - What Written Word Media thinks will happen in 2019 - What one author did to hit Trout status and fulfill a writing dream - How the new Amazon ads platform will impact your marketing Question of the Week: What was your first reaction to the new Amazon Advertising dashboard? How has your opinion changed (if at all) since you've had a chance to look around inside?
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Podcast Details

Jul 8th, 2015
Latest Episode
Mar 25th, 2020
Release Period
No. of Episodes
Avg. Episode Length
About 1 hour

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