The Importance Of A Table Of Contents In A Nonfiction Book

Book Table of Contents
Book Table of Contents

There’s nothing more frustrating than scrolling through 100 pages of a book looking for something specific when there is no table of contents (TOC). While most authors treat it as an afterthought, it’s an important part of the package. A table of content displays the big ideas in a non-fictional book and where to find them. If you’re writing a book about `The Devil in the City’, you want the reader to have a quick reference guide of the contents. Obviously, this is a strong selling point so failing to include a table of contents (TOC) will make your book less marketable. Let me walk you through the importance of a table of contents (TOC).

Makes navigation a breeze

Readers need a reference point to locate all the important information. A TOC contains numbers which come in handy when viewing the soft copy of the word document. If your idea has no direction, your message may take a meandering path. It’s worth mentioning that a book without a clearly defined table of contents (TOC) can make the readers get lost along the way.

A detailed TOC is the perfect way of taking the reader where he or she wants to travel. He can focus on the most essential information and skip the most irrelevant. If you have a challenge with the structure, that problem needs to be solved before you work on your table of contents (TOC). Read on and learn more.

The Table of Contents Informs the reader And Tells what the book is about

Without a strong table of contents (TOC), the reader will have a rough time following your story. It’s imperative that you ensure the table of contents (TOC) supports the idea fully and benefits the readers. Not only that, the chapters should be worded in a way that makes the reader feel as if they are in the book itself. A non-fictional book needs a sound structure, so you want a table of contents (TOC) that supports the manuscript. Even better, the straight lines on the table direct the reader’s eyes. He can quickly grasp the idea rather than hunting through the text.

Gives the reader the scope and completeness of the book

A table of contents (TOC) is found on the page before the start of the book. It gives a brief description of the chapters and the page number. If it’s misaligned or misplaced, the entire content won’t function optimally. Note: the list chapters are the backbone of the book’s outline.

Without a clear table of contents (TOC), the reader will put down the non-fictional book – if they pick it up at all. Needless to say, they will give a bad review. It’s important that you create a structure that fleshes out and is unique in its category. If your book is in eBook format, the reader will prefer to have a table of contents (TOC) tied to a chapter.

Allows the reader to repeat the major parts of the book

If you’re downloading eBook on your mobile device, it becomes quite easy to look for what you want – you can read summaries and jump through chapters. More interestingly, you’re redirected to the table of contents (TOC) by tapping the same icon. While all the information on the book may be useful, some parts may be more eye-catching. At some point, a book to be finished because everything cannot be included in the book. When writing the table of content, be sure to nail down the real essence of the book.

Indicates the author’s style

If the table of content is smart and witty, the reader will know the manuscript features creative writing. To ensure you bring a wow factor to your audience, you should add a little originality. More clearly, a nonfictional book requires the writer to think about the reader.

The TOC will allow the reader to skim and understand the message the writer wants to put across. If it resembles a certain style, chances are that the rest of the book features the same writing. Therefore, before you sit down and write imagine it exists on Amazon or in a nearby bookstore.

Final thoughts

Let’s be honest: there is more to a non-fictional book than a catchy cover. The table of contents shows the reader what lies within the book. The table of contents can make the difference between an average and a great book. Without preparation, you’ll not get the results you want. Unlike a glossary or an index, writing a table of content is a piece of cake. It’s all about compiling a list of the parts – sections, chapters, and sub-chapters. Remember, young readers, are always drawn to books that give information about something they’ve always wondered about.

Related References

Selling tips for Amazon Central

Selling On Amazon Central
Selling On Amazon Central

Amazon Central is an interface that allows sellers to market their products and reach out to prospective customers in a way that helps boost sales. There are two versions of this interface; Vendor Central and SellerCentral. If you have a Vendor Central Account, then it means you are either a manufacturer or distributor. Holders of this account simply sell products directly to Amazon. Seller Central Account holders sell products directly to customers who find their way to Amazon, which is why they are considered third-party sellers.  If you are looking to make book sales on Amazon, these programs exist to help you out. Regardless Of whichever course of action you choose to take, here is a look at some Amazon Central tips for 2018;

Understand what kind of seller you are

Amazon will require you to pay a monthly fee for using their services. If you are the kind of seller that is only looking to sell a handful of books (less than 40) a month, then you definitely do not need to pay the$39.99 a month bigger seller is required to pay for the Professional Account. Additionally, you will only need to open more than one account if you are looking to sell products across continents.

Develop a working understanding of Amazon’s search algorithm

Amazon runs the A9 algorithm, and there are conditions you need to meet to maximize the potential of your books to sell. If previous customers loved how you handled their orders, then this algorithm will pick that up from your positive rating and push you upwards. The algorithm will also look at how probable your product is to sell by considering metrics such as your price in relation to the competition’s, your description of the product on sale as well your general rating.

Put up all relevant business information

If you do not qualify who you are on Amazon Central, then you are going to have a hard time proving your credibility. In your account,describe your business by name and location. Be sure to use a real, registered business name and avoid listing a home address. You should also provide contact information to allow buyers and Amazon staff to reach you when they need to. To Keep your account from getting breached by malicious parties, enable two-step verification. Finally, activate several modes of payment to make transitions easier for both yourself and the buyer.

Stick to the rules

There is always the odd seller looking to cut corners and get ahead of others. Doing that on your Amazon account is business suicide because they catch up to you sooner or later. When they do, the penalties are vastly consequential. Just play by the rules, because they are designed to help you. From time to time, Amazon tweaks their policies, so keep yourself updated and take advantage of attractive incentives to boost your sales. There are many thousands of people selling books on Amazon, and if you are to succeed in that cut-throat market, you need to keep trying out new approaches and stay updated about events in the marketplace.

Related References

The value of having an amazon author page

Selling On Amazon
Selling On Amazon

One of the best offers presented by Amazon is the devoted author pages. They offer immense benefits to both the author and customer in a number of ways. The Author central is also absolutely free provided you are listed in Amazon. The author page is one of the best every marketing tools to be availed by Amazon and many authors have realized this. You now have nothing to worry about marketing your books online whether you have a ranking or not.

Why is Amazon Author Central Important?

It gives personal control to an author.  You hold your future right in your hands by having a personal page with Amazon. The implication is that you will control everything clients see whether on your pages or books. There are many unique features to accomplish this, for instance, the book synapsis. From there, you can decide either to limit or expose your book and to what extent. Sounds great!

Amazon author central advertising employs shortage strategies to get readers to purchase books.

This makes most authors think that they are running out of stock. For instance, they may provide a statement such as Only 2 book left…’make your order soon’. The statement is a hoax meant to make more sales.

The page increase search engines

You need to be ahead of the selling game by creating catchy and unique titles for your books. The author page will help you in this provided you have an account with Amazon.

More selection of books

You can add more books as you want while creating new titles. This enables you to swiftly add the books toyour page and make a follow up on the sales

Keeping track of every sale

You can also make a follow up on your sale right from the Author central page. In addition to that, you can track on the exact location or country where sales have been made.

Addressing problems

As time goes by, there are chances of encountering matters such as book listing. The good news is that you can get in touch with Amazon and get your issues addressed. No need for future worries.

The page is author-friendly

As an author, you are likely to receive exemplary customer service. Despite a number of limitations with data,Amazon tries it best to reduce such limitations.

The author central also provides undercutting of Amazon Profits which is a huge advantage to you.

You may be selling a book let’s say at $20 but on one morning wake up to get the same book being sold at $10. That does not imply you will be paid less rather its Amazon giving offers from their profits to sell the books.

Linking with buyers

The Author central page has an option to make live discussions with potential readers. This means you can take advantage and get comments from buyers. Next time you will know what your readers want and improve on that.

Final thought

Amazon’s Author Page plays a key role to improve sales. You would have missed a lifetime opportunity for not using their resources since they are fast to optimize. Irrespective of the number of times you use the page, it’s valuable to have the pages optimized.

Related References

What Are The Most Popular Romance Sub-Genres?

Romance Books
Romance Books

Romance genre books list is very long. If you love romance topics, then you may have noticed several sub-genres. Even the subgenres have several distinct themes. It does not matter how long the list of romance sub-genre books is, they all share something in common. The books have emotionally satisfying ends which leave the readers with great optimism.

The reason why there so are many sub-genres in the romance

The many sub-genres in the romance novels are motivated by the fact that there is a high supply and the demand for the books. The writer’s research on what the readers want and they proceed to write. The publishers publish the books

and eBooks according to the demand. After the books have been written, the publishers classify them to make it easy for eager readers to access them. The high number of sub-genres in the category has both advantages and disadvantages.

How the classification system can become horrible

You may be a lover of romance books with suspense. In such a case, you will search for romance books with suspense, and you will be taken directly to the category where the romance books with suspense are listed. Your search will narrow you to specific few books which you will concentrate to read. The classification will have limited you in such a way you will only focus on the small number of writers who have focused on the romance with suspense while you ignore other writers who are highly talented but they are listed in other sub-genres of romance books.

There are several sub-genres in the romance category. You will have to be a dedicated reader to explore the different sub-genres available so that you can know the best readers whom you can focus on their books. Some of the sub-genres in romance include the following:

Romance books category

Series Titles

The category in romance books under the series titles consist of romance books with less than 200 pages and less than 55,000 words. The books come in clear categories. There are few books published in the various categories on a monthly basis. The books will share themes, but they will slightly differ from each other.

Single-Title Romance

The label is available on many romance eBooks, but it is not yet declared as a category. They consist of long books with 350 to 400 pages. In most cases, they can have words ranging between 100,000 to 110,000. Each of the books is different, and it can be listed on the bookshelves until the bookseller makes a decision to remove it.

Sub-genres:

Some of the sub-genres include the following:

  • Contemporary Romance
  • African –American Romance

Under the sub-genre of contemporary romance you can find the following themes:

  • Action/Adventure
  • Bikers
  • Baby Love
  • Billionaires
  • Cowboys
  • Chick Lit
  • Humorous
  • Love in the Workplace
  • Vacation Love
  • International Lovers
  • Medical
  • Rubenesque (Curvy / Plus Size)
  • Rock n Roll
  • Sports

Themes under Erotica sub-genre

  • African American
  • Fantasy
  • BDSM
  • Historical
  • Humorous
  • Horror
  • Interracial
  • Multiple Partners
  • LGBT
  • Mystery
  • Romantic
  • Paranormal
  • Suspense
  • Sensual
  • Thrillers
  • Victorian
  • Urban
  • Westerns
  • Gay Romance
  • Historical Romance
  • Fantasy Romance
  • Gothic Romance

There are several themes in the historical romance sub-genre, they include the following:

  • 20th Century
  • Gilded Age
  • America
  • Gothic
  • Medieval
  • Highlander
  • Native Americans
  • Pirates
  • Paranormal Historical
  • Regency
  • Scottish
  • Restoration and Enlightenment
  • Suspense and Intrigue
  • Victorian
  • Time-Travel
  • Western and Frontier
  • Viking
  • Holidays

Common themes under the Inspirational Romance sub-genre

  • Amish
  • Historical
  • Contemporary
  • Western & Frontier
  • Mystery & Suspense
  • Lesbian
  • Military Romance
  • New Adult Romance
  • Multicultural Romance

Common themes under Paranormal Romance sub-genre

  • Dragons
  • Ghosts
  • Fantasy
  • Historical
  • Psychics
  • Magic
  • Shapeshifters
  • Thrillers
  • Suspense
  • Vampires
  • Time-Travel
  • Romantic Comedy Regency Romance
  • Romantic Suspense
  • Sports
  • Science Fiction Romance
  • Time-Travel Romance
  • Western Romance
  • Vampires
  • Young Adult Romance

There are some romance sub-genres which are very popular. They are available in different print formats. Based on their popularity, you can get a clue on which is best to get started. Remember you need to locate the most interesting books in both print and eBook formats so that you can stay motivated to read them. The more the books you read, the higher the chances you will locate the best writers.They include the following:

Print format:

  1. Romantic Suspense -53%
  2. Contemporary Romance -41%
  3. Historical Romance -34%
  4. Erotic Romance -33%
  5. New Adult-26%
  6. Paranormal Romance -19%
  7. Young Adult Romance -18%
  8. Christian Romance -17%E-book format:
  9. Romantic Suspense -48%
  10. Contemporary Romance -44%
  11. Erotic Romance -42%
  12. Historical Romance -33%
  13. Paranormal Romance -30%
  14. New Adult -26%
  15. Young Adult Romance -18%
  16. Christian Romance -14%

Top ten popular romance Categories:

  1. Soul Mate/Fate
  2. Friends to Lovers
  3. Second Chance at Love
  4. First Love
  5. Secret Romance
  6. Strong Hero/Heroine
  7. Love Triangle
  8. Reunited Lovers
  9. Sassy Heroine
  10. Sexy millionaire/billionaire

There is a lot of reading materials you can enjoy if you love the romance topics. The books come in both eBooks and print format to choose your preferred format and category. It can be challenging when trying to choose the best book to read. If

you can apply tips such as checking on reviews other readers offer; it will be easy to locate a popular book. Going through the preview can as well give you an overview of what you can expect after reading a given book. You will never run short of options considering there are many books on Amazon which you can read and learn a lot in the field of romance.

Related References

The overlooked marketing value of the Other Works page

The ‘Blank’, ‘Ad card’, or ‘Other Works‘ page is an often-ignored marketing and book sales opportunity.  This is especially true in the eBook area, where most articles on eBook formats don’t even mention them.  For the independent publisher it nearly free advertising.

What is the ‘Other Works‘ page?

The short answer is the ‘Blank’, ‘Ad card’, or ‘Other Works‘ page is in a books front matter, for book sales and marketing, which lists other books titles written by the author, or if the book is part of a series. This is not only your chance to pitch your other works but as the list grows larger, it tells the reader that you are an experienced author.

When should an author take advantage of the ‘Other Works’ page?

You Should add the Other Works page when you are finishing your second book for publication and every book you publish thereafter.

When should the ‘Other Works’ page be updated?

The Other Works page should be updated, by adding the book title of each newly published book.  However, the name of the book in which the page is being included should be omitted because it would be redundant, obvious.

In the case of eBooks, where the manuscript can quickly be edited and republished, the Other Works page of all eBooks should be updated with the titles of new publications as soon as the new publication is published.

Should the ‘Other Works’ be included in eBooks?

Yes; although there are many who will say otherwise.  Why sacrifice the marketing opportunity, when it is so little work to add and main the Other Works page’.  In an eBook, it is likely best positioned, later in the front material somewhere after the Product Description Page.

Related References

Should you have your own writer or book website?

How to Market And Sell Your Books
How to Market And Sell Your Books

Every author, published or unpublished, needs a platform to reach their target audience. An author website is one among the many platforms available today. If you’re looking to pursue a professional, long-time career in writing it’s important, you start building your own space. Your website is the online home and hub for everything you do in real life or on the digital realm.

It is therefore imperative to run a website that will act as your digital footprint, a business card, a valuable networking tool, and space to showcase your writing craft in beautifully penned words. While it won’t, necessarily, be a household hit when starting, your website will eventually gain its organic traction and incremental growth over time.

Why Is Having A Book Website Important

A lot of authors today promote their books on social media or the author platform provided by Amazon. And for a lot of them, this kind of publicity works.

So, is having a book website really that necessary? Yes, it is! Here is why.

Your own book website is not dependent on any other second or third-party decisions. You are the boss, you customize the site how you want, you publish the content you want, and you are in complete control of every aspect of the website.

Publicizing your book on other platforms without your own website is like renting/leasing a house. At the end of it all, the owner has more power and leverage when it comes to decisions. Having your own website, on the other hand, is equal to buying your own property. You are the maker of all decisions.

What Can A Book Website Do for You

The greatest benefit of having a book website is the ability to cross-publicize your content. You can easily promote your content on very many different sites at the same time without having to do so much work. All you need to do is to link every other platform to your book website, and the rest will be achievable by just a click of a button.

How to Market Your Book Through Your Website

Publish your book’s landing page on your site

A landing page is a form on your website that captures the information of visitors in exchange for an offer. A landing page aims to convert visitors into prospective customers. For example, you can put up a few lines of an excerpt of your book then requests visitors to fill out their personal details on the form to read the entire excerpt.

Post blogs about your upcoming book

Keep your fans in the loop about what to expect in your upcoming book. This can be achieved by regularly publishing posts on your website on anything and everything about your upcoming book. This will enable to create a fan base that will be a viable, solid market for your book when you release it.

Create a countdown timer for the book’s release date.

It may look like such a trivial task, but the impact of having a timer on your website is tremendous. A countdown timer will build the anticipation for your book’s release and keep you on your toes to ensure you meet your targets and deadlines. The timer will make it easy for your viable market to plan adequately to purchase your book when released. It also catches the attention of visitors who might have stumbled on your site.

Include sample chapters from your book

This is the perfect way to tease your readers by giving them, a sneak peek of what to expect in your new book. A well-thought-out sample chapter preview will keep them hungry and ready to purchase your book as soon as it is available.

Link to video clips and articles about the book on your website

Whenever anything is written about your upcoming book, or it is featured anywhere, you need to let your readers know. This will attract visitors that can be turned to leads by letting them know what other people are saying about your new book.

Link to other sites

If your publications are available on different websites, you can easily make them accessible to your readers through your website. Just provide the links to other sites on your websites, and your readers will have convenient access to your publications.

Set up Alerts

This ensures that whenever your name and your book show up online, you will be notified. Therefore, if someone gives you good feedback or a stellar review, reach out and thank them and ask them to link back to your book’s website.

How to Make Your Website Work for You

Remember we mentioned cross publicizing your book and how the click of a button can do it? Here a few tips on how to get your website working for you.

Provide an RSS or Atom feed subscribe option

RSS feeds are the simplest way to alert your readers anytime you post some new content on your website. Also, the subscription to your website’s RSS feed lets you know the number of subscribers you have thus providing you with a clear estimate of the viable market your book will have.

Provide an email subscription option

Allowing readers to subscribe to your website via email creates another channel for you to communicate to them through scheduled informational emailing directly. You can always update them on new information about your upcoming book release as well as new blog posts on the website.

 Link to and from your Amazon author central page

On your website, you can provide a link to your Amazon author central page. Similarly, provide a link to your site on your Amazon author central page. This will ensure that you tap on readers from both ends. This will increase your traffic on both platforms and ensure your readers are always in on the loop about you and your books.

Link to and push publish your social media sites

Provide the links of your social media pages such as Facebook and Twitter on your website to allow your readers to follow you on those platforms as well.  Using your site’s ‘Publicize’ features, at least on WordPress’; you can also authorize your website to share your blog posts on your social media platforms to increase your audience reach.

Enable widget features

By enabling site widgets, you can do things like:

  • Connect to Goodreads and display your books from Goodreads
  • Enable social network sharing to allow your readers to easily spread the word
  • Provide Eventbrite to allow self-serve event ticketing

I’m sure there are others, but you get the gest.

The Cost Factor of Your Website

As a writer, keeping an eye on the costs, you incur in your publication journey is very important. How much will it cost you to have your own book website? Zero, absolutely nothing. You can easily create a book website on various platforms for free. And as your traffic and marketing needs increase, then you can upgrade to paid servers such as Bluehost or GoDaddy.

So, what are you waiting for? Get your book website up and running today and let everyone know all about your publications.

Related References

What is a Book Blurb?

Back Cover Book Blurb
Back Cover Book Blurb

In the last decade, self-publishing has grown exponentially with the emergence of platforms such as Amazon Kindle and CreateSpace – that have made publishing a book an easy and accessible process. Numerous independent authors have been able to leverage different marketing techniques to boost their sales and build sustainable self-publishing businesses. A key tool for sales, branding and marketing your book is a book blurb.

What is a book blurb?

A book blurb is a brief description of a book written for promotional purposes. It gives the reader a sense of the content of the book and proposes the value that the reader is likely to derive from reading it.

Imagine your book was a person on a dating website.

The cover page is like the profile picture, and the book blurb is the part of your profile that describes you. Therefore, while a good profile picture will attract a potential suitor, your description is what will motivate them to engage. Consequently, you want your description to stand out and convince. You want the book blurb to make marketing your book a walk in the park.

While the front cover of the book serves the primary purpose of branding, the blurb is like the “pitch” which persuades a potential reader to buy and read your book.

What A Book Blurb Is Not.

The book blurb is neither a detailed summary or outline of your book nor an overly promotional sales pitch. It is also not a detailed review of your book, although you may opt to include a sentence or two summarizing a reader’s review of the book.

Where Is the Book Blurb Positioned?

Traditionally, the blurb was placed on the inside of the back cover. However, as online publishing gained popularity, and people opted for digital books, most writers chose to place the blurb on the back cover to make it easily accessible to the reader.

Components of a book blurb

The content of a book blurb may vary depending on the author’s preference and whether a book is fictional or non-fictional. That said, the most common components of a book blurb include:

  • A summary of the plot (for fiction books).
  • Thesis statement or main ideas presented in the book (for a non-fiction book).
  • A brief introduction of the characters-mainly the antagonist and protagonist (for fiction books, biographies, autobiographies and memoirs).
  • A few quotes picked from the book.
  • A short biography of the author.
  • Praises of the book by other authors.
  • Reader’s reviews.
  • A value proposition to the reader.

You may include some or all these components.

Using the Book Blurb for Sales and Marketing, And Branding

You can use your book blurb for branding, sales and marketing your book across the various platforms. To do so effectively, ensure that it is strong and well written.

As is the case for most online content, most of the readers will not read through your blurb word for word; rather they will scan through it. To improve conversion, make the content easy to scan in the following ways:

  • Begin the first paragraph with an attention-grabbing sentence.
  • Write short, succinct paragraphs (2-3 sentences).
  • Incorporate quotes, e.g., excerpts from the book or what a reviewer said about the book.
  • Incorporates text in different font styles but do not overdo it. For instance, you could bold the value proposition or a subheading, or italicize quoted text.
  • Keep in mind that for a book blurb you have less than 150 words to intrigue and persuade a potential reader into buying.

Online Marketing Strategies Using a Book Blurb

You can display the blurb on:

  • Amazon/CreateSpace book description box: Amazon Kindle and CreateSpace provide a description box that is meant for the author to write a short description of your book. You can use this space to publish your book blurb.
  • On your social media pages. Convert the back page to a JPG or PNG image and upload it on your social media pages. You could also run a promotional campaign for the book whereby you pick a segment of the blurb and paste it on your pages.
  • Your website. When promoting the upcoming launch of the book and throughout its sales promotion phase, ensure to publish the blurb on your website.
  • Marketing email. When sending out your marketing emails to boost sales for the book, you may include the book’s blurb as part the email content to provide a potential reader with the overview of the book and persuade them to buy.

Conclusion

A book blurb is a crucial tool for marketing your book. Its purpose has transitioned from the traditional back cover that provides the reader with an overview of the book, to serve as a powerful sales tool for marketing your book across the various online platforms.

Related references

The Struggles of a Self-Published Author

Royalty Check
Royalty Check

When it comes to writing, many people worry that they are not going to make enough to live on. This is especially true when it comes to self-publishing your book. Now while it is the easier option, there are some things that need to be considered when it comes to self-publishing, and how to make a living while doing it.

Many people swear by traditional publishing, while others claim that self-publishing is better, which path is the best one to take, and what are the pros and cons of each?

Traditional Vs. Self-publishing

The thing about traditional publishing is that it is not all that it is cracked up to be, but neither is self-publishing. With traditional publishing, you are likely to get a few thousand dollars as an upfront payment, and then royalties are not paid out until a year has passed. That is if you are even accepted and if they even offer an upfront payment.

Traditional publishing royalties barely get higher than 10% per book; the publisher gets the other 90%. And even with this, you still have to advertise the book by yourself. However, it does give you book a sense of notoriety. But what about self-publishing?

There are many online self-published books providers, such as on Amazon, or Lulu. While you have full control over your book, this also means that you have to do most of the work, as well. Depending on where you go, you can get 50-90% of the value of the book.

So, knowing this, how much can you get when you self-publish a book?

How much can you Earn as a self-published author?

Self-published books are famous for making very little. While you may have heard of someone’s friend or some random person online who claims to have made millions selling their book online, in reality, you are rarely going to get anything from your book. Less than 2% of self-published writers make $100,000 in a year.

In fact, the average income for a self-published writer is less than $5,000 a year, with at least 20% claiming that they have not earned anything at all. Of course, this depends on what you publish, how often you publish, and how actively and well you market.

One of the things that affect earnings is the genre. With hundreds of thousands of aspiring writers trying to have earnings, there is a lot of competition out there. This is especially true for genres such as fantasy, young adult, and erotica. If you can find a niche, you are more likely to be able to make more money, but as are no guarantees.

For instance, some people can earn a lot, while others do not earn anything at all. But you do need to understand that even though a website says that you may get up to 90% of the royalties, with taxes and vats, etc., you are most likely going to get far less. At least one author has shown that the real numbers for the “70%” that you get from Kindle Direct Publishing are actually more like 41% in profits.

How to make ends meet as a self-publisher?

Now that we know how little that the average self-published author makes, how do we go about making a living as a writer? $5,000 to $8,000 a year is not really going to pay all the bills. So we are going to work on the side to help supplement our book writing endeavors.

This is one thing that a lot of authors do not want to do, as there is a kind of pride in getting all of your money from royalties. Since when writing the book, you also have to focus on many other aspects, such as making a cover and editing it. In fact, if you hire someone else to do this for you, this also lowers the amount of money you have overall, even though it is best to have a book be a more shared process.

Being an author is more like a job in and of itself, as you can easily spend hundreds of hours on writing. Then hundreds more on advertising, editing, book cover creation, etc., etc. Being an author really is hard work. You have to make sure that what you write does not have any plot holes, and appeals to the reader. Otherwise, you may just have a dud on your hands rather than a book that will earn you some extra Galleons.

Most self-published authors have a day job or have some other form of income that helps to pay the bills. Most consider self-publishing as something that they do on the side in order to make some supplemental income. It is considered bad advice by many in the publishing industry to quit your day job and just self-publish full time.

One thing that many writers do on the side is freelance writing. With sites like Fiverr and Upwork and plenty of work to find in places like Problogger, freelancing is becoming far more accessible to the average writer. This is a great way for many authors to be able to continue doing what they love while also making enough to pay the bills and earn a living.

Not all books make the same amount, and although royalties are passive income, some writer will earn a lot more than other writers. So trying to find out how many books you are going to have to write in order to earn a decent living is going to be hard. Although writing books, even self-publishing, can be a great way to earn a side income if you are diligent enough.

The Marketing Value of a Good Book Cover

Front Book Cover
Front Book Cover

An author may invest all the time, effort and fortune for writing, editing and publishing a book, but leaves very little for the cover design forgetting that the cover is the reader’s first impression of the book. For well-known authors, their books may sell themselves since the author has over time established trust in his content on the part of most readers. But for a new writer, you need to create that first impression with your book cover. One of the best gifts to give yourself as an author is a time to find a professional cover designer who understands designs and who can get your story and the message you need to impact on your potential readers. There is a multitude of new books being published and, on the market, today, and this is why one of the most important factors which make a buyer pick a book from the bookshelf should also be considered.

Judging A Book By Its Cover

There has always been widespread of this popular idiom all over the world which reads “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” However, despite how true this might be in the realistic sense, the book industry is an ever-evolving one, and most of the readers now use the cover of a book as a deciding factor whether to buy the book.

First Impressions Matter

In the modern book industry today, first impressions matter, especially in books, where readers seem to have many options, including online ebooks. People have now resorted to the belief that “If you can’t judge a book by its cover, then someone’s not doing their job”. Currently, when people are browsing in a bookstore (either physical or online) and look at the book cover, they take some seconds to decide if it’s appealing. If so, they pick up the book, turn it over and read the back-cover copy. And if they are online (for E-book), they read the book description. But of course, you know what happens when such a book cover doesn’t appeal to them, they either drop or skip the book.

The First Sales Pitch

Therefore, with the growing number of books all over the world today, giving millions of books for readers to choose from, your first “sales pitch” is the quality and visual appeal of your book cover. Interestingly, even the marketers believe a great book cover makes the book easier to sell and that is why most publishers today try to focus more on the quality of book covers.

A Balance of Art and Marketing Knowledge

Readers believe that if authors don’t dedicate time and effort to their book cover, then there will be a doubt as to how much time they have put into the book itself.  So, for a book cover to have good marketing value, it must have a balance of art and marketing knowledge. It should contain a significant central image, and there should also be balancing of colors, font, and space. It must recognize the current trends and should feel fresh and contemporary.

Conclusion

The marketing impact that a good book cover would have on a book’s (whether Printed or eBook) sales cannot be over-emphasized. A compelling book cover will communicate the tone and content of your book and get more readers to buy or download it.  This, in turn, will improve your chances of making good sales for your book and attract more positive reviews and ratings which will send the right message to potential readers.

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