SFFMP 129: Using Multi-Author Boxed Sets to Hit Bestseller Lists and Jumpstart Your Career with Gwynn White

This week, we chatted with fantasy/steampunk/fairy tale/memoir author Gwynn White, who has used multiauthor boxed sets to jumpstart her fantasy career and to hit the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists.

Here are some details on what we covered:

  • The fact that you can actually sell travel memoirs as an indie author! (This is how Gwynn got her start.)
  • The challenges of selling books that are a mashup of subgenres and weren’t written to market.
  • Using boxed sets for getting your Book 1s in front of a lot of eyeballs.
  • Gwynn’s experience being in two big boxed sets that hit the USA Today and NYT lists and what she learned that she’s now applying to two sets she’s organizing.
  • Getting 20 authors involved and leveraging them for mailing list promotions and other types of marketing.
  • Utilizing pre-orders to help get the necessary numbers to hit the lists.
  • Setting your goals ahead of time: are the bestseller letters the most important thing, or do you want to make money (especially through Kindle Unlimited page reads), or are you most interested in sell-through to other books in your series?
  • Going wide with a boxed set (this is necessary if you want to hit lists) versus launching it into KDP Select/KU.
  • Using Pronoun to get a much longer pre-order period on Amazon (the usual is only 3 months) and also to be able to put huge files (such as you get with 20 novels in one ebook) through at 99 cents (Amazon tends to increase the price to $1.99 with big boxed sets).
  • Also using Pronoun because you can get 70% even on 99-cent novels.

You can visit Gwynn on her website or check out her books on Amazon. Her first fantasy novel is Rebel’s Honor.

Also, if you want to support the two boxed sets she has going now, you can grab 20+ authors for 99 cents in Dominion Rising and Marked by Fate.

Note: In a correction related to last week’s episode, where audiobooks came up, I mentioned that you can have individual titles and one boxed set per series when it comes to audiobooks for those going directly to Audible through ACX. Here’s the link to their FAQ with more information on that: How do I create a bundle version of the audiobooks I have already released?

 

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SFFMP 70: Retold Fairy Tales, Kindle Unlimited, and Finding Less Competitive Categories with K.M. Shea

Fantasy author K.M. Shea talks about how she’s found a lot of success publishing retold fairy tales and is now a full-time author. We covered…

  • The perks of publishing in a category that is underserved by traditional publishing and that isn’t hugely competitive.
  • Why K.M. has everything in KDP Select/Kindle Unlimited now (yes, she’s tried going wide too).
  • Monitoring page reads and payouts in Kindle Unlimited to make sure it’s working for you
  • Pitfalls and things to be careful of when retelling fairy tales.
  • Creating a series even when your books are stand-alone — is there a theme that can pull them all together?
  • Encouraging more reviews for books by offering free extras for all when certain numbers of reviews are reached.
  • Connecting with readers and giving them lots of extras to turn them into ravenous fans who want to see you succeed.
  • Choosing a cover style when you’re in a category where this isn’t a Big 5 presence and examples are all over the place.

If you’ve enjoyed the show, be sure to check out K.M. Shea’s books on Amazon. She recommend starting with The Snow Queen, Book 1.

 

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