Urban Fantasy author and Book Country member Kerry Schafer‘s first book, BETWEEN, was published by Ace Books in 2013. Fans of BETWEEN–including all of us here at Book Country–are super excited about the forthcoming release of Kerry’s next book from Ace in January: WAKEWORLD. (Check out WAKEWORLD’s gorgeous cover and you’ll be rabid to read it, too!)
In the meantime, however, we have more good news to share with you on Kerry’s behalf: On sale today are three e-novellas written by Kerry, an enigmatic new trilogy set in a dark and seductive dreamworld. THE DREAM RUNNER, THE DREAM THIEF, and THE DREAM WARS. The Dream Runner trilogy’s covers will knock your socks off, too!
So what do Kerry’s e-novellas have to do with the release of WAKEWORLD, and what’s the strategy behind the e-novellas’ release today? Read on to find out how Kerry is expanding her audience of readers on both traditional and electronic publishing platforms–we think what’s she’s doing is pretty brilliant!
I’m guessing that your reaction to that word is more likely to be a shudder and a muttered curse than a celebratory hurrah. But the reality is that the minute you either get a publishing contract or decide to go Indie and self publish, everywhere you look you run into one ongoing message: what are you doing to market your book?
The words are written on subway walls and billboards, on Twitter and Facebook, painted on your bedroom walls and the backs of your eyelids. Some days there is even skywriting and you’ve got to hope it’s only a sadistic pilot and not the finger of God writing guilt messages for all the world to see.
Most of us write books because we want to, you know, write books. Not because we want to stand on a virtual street corner hawking our wares. Besides, even if you’re comfortable waving a cardboard sign that proclaims “PLEASE BUY MY BOOK,” it’s almost impossible to decide which street corner to stand on. The internet abounds with conflicting advice: sign up for this website, but not this one, advertise here, go there, do this and this and this and this…
Most of us don’t have that kind of time on our hands. We’ve got kids and pets and jobs to go to. And we need to write. So we pick a couple of marketing ideas (maybe even at random) and throw a little time and energy in that direction, hoping something sticks that will allow our readers to find us.
A few months ago I read something that made a lot of sense and stuck with me. I can’t remember whose advice it was, so I can’t give credit, but it was basically this:
The single most important thing you can do to improve your sales is to have more books out there to sell.
Now that idea made me happy. Writing? I can do that. Hell, that’s what I want to be doing!
But traditional publishing moves at about the speed of an arthritic turtle, and writing another novel, seeking a contract, and waiting for it to be published wasn’t going to help me get more stories out into the world in short order.
So I dropped a line in an email to my very smart agent, Deidre Knight, that said, “Maybe I should write a novella.”
She fired back, “Why don’t you write three? Make it a trilogy.”
I hadn’t ever written a novella before, and hey – new challenges are food for the soul! So I did some brainstorming, was possessed by the idea of a supernatural being who sells dreams to the desperate with a high price tag attached, and I was off and writing.
As for the publishing part, Knight Agency supports their clients who want to self publish by providing editorial direction and distribution. They really paved the way for me as a novice self-publishing author by helping out with editing, formatting, and covers. Once again, this freed up my time for writing.
Will the novellas help sell more copies of my traditionally published books?
That remains to be seen. We’ll be including covers and buy links for The Books of the Between at the back of each novella. For me, though, the venture has already been a total win. I had the great fun of creating a fascinating new world and characters I adore. The process sharpened my writing skills, forcing me to streamline and focus both plot and words to fit within a smaller space. And e-publishing no longer seems quite so daunting and overwhelming as it once did.
In the meantime, I’m having fun and the guilt monsters are at bay. I am marketing. And I’m writing. Speaking of which, I have some words to get down on a brand new project.
Learn more about Kerry Schafer on her website, Facebook page, Book Country profile page, or follow her on Twitter. Check back in with us in January as we celebrate the release of WAKEWORLD, which you can also read & review on Book Country!
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