I think about my plans for the future and how I’m going to grow my little publishing empire a lot. Mostly that’s because I was pushed into the whole full-time indie author thing. I’m not going to put the reasons here, but I strongly recommend that people don’t make the leap at the stage that I did.
In short, I’m going to be following Patty Jansen’s approach. This focuses on a slow and steady growth, while maintaining control. She advocates going wide, but given how well Urban Fantasy does in Kindle Unlimited, I’m reluctant to follow that. Anyway, we’ll see.
In more detail, and thus the longer version:
I already have one complete series (Infernal Hunt), and will soon have three books out in my second series (Ink Born). Together, they give me three entry points into my work:
Infernal Ties – prequel novella.
Infernal Bonds – first full novel.
Stolen Ink – full novel and entry into Ink Born.
That means I have three books that I can advertise on paid promotion websites. Infernal Ties is already out of Kindle Unlimited, so that’s up on Instafreebie and is helping me grow my mailing list.
The rest of the Infernal Hunt books will come out of KU once their time’s up and Infernal Bonds will go up on Instafreebie to give me more options to grow my mailing list.
Mailing list is king. Options are king.
I’m using lots of group promotional pushes on Instafreebie to grow my mailing list, and I’ll continue to do that for as long as it works. I’ve set up an automated string of emails to welcome people to the list, introduce them to who I am, and make them aware of my other books.
I’m also starting a third series this autumn, I’d originally planned on starting it next year, but I need a break. That will give me yet another entry point into my work.
Every one of my books as links to my other books, and a link to my mailing list in the back. The idea is to encourage them to read my backlist and become true fans.
At the moment I’m doing a small paid promotional push on a different book each month. This month I dropped the Infernal Hunt boxset down to 99c. That garnered sales in Infernal Ties and brought in a few sales on Stolen Ink too, I’m assuming that’s because Stolen Ink is prominently in the also-boughts for the boxset.
Patty’s basic core plan, is to keep writing more books and keep making people aware of them. That and grow your mailing list, that’s your most important asset. So that about sums up my plan too.
- Release a new book every three months or thereabouts.
- Start more series all based in the Ink world so that people can be pulled into a fascinating world. Each series will standalone but the nods and such to other series will add a layer of interest for fans.
- Aggressively grow my mailing list using Instafreebie.
- Alternate releases between series so I don’t burn out or let a single series go too long without a new release.
This is not a get rich quick scheme. It’s a longterm plan that will lead to sustainable income. This is scary. I’m already fulltime, I’m already depending on this income to pay my bills. It’s really easy to feel panicky because ohmygods I’ve had two low income days in a row!! What if this is the end!!? And so on. I have to remain level-headed, continue to watch the industry, and make the most of every new opportunity that comes my way. My books have shown great potential. Yes, there are people who’re doing far better, but so what? This is my journey, I’m doing well, and I’ve hit some fantastic milestones this year. That’s the important thing.
In summary, there’s no magic bullet. I’m going to keep writing and learning from past mistakes. I’ll keep growing my mailing list, and keep my eyes front and centre. No suffering from comparisonitis.