SFFMP 155: What It Takes to Shift from Hobby Writer to Full-Time Author with Ben Hale

This week, we chatted with non-fiction and YA fantasy author Ben Hale. A former business owner, he did a lot of research before jumping into self-publishing his first fantasy novels in 2012. After six months, he was able to go full-time. His recent non-fiction release, co-written with Honorée Corder, talks about the business side of writing and publishing, with tips for taking your career to the next level.

Here are a few of the specifics we talked about:

  • Researching the market and what’s working for successful authors before jumping in to publishing.
  • Why being fluent in a language may not be enough when it comes to translating your own books.
  • The changes to the market that Ben has seen since he first started publishing in 2012.
  • Creating multiple series that interlink and are set in the same world so that readers will naturally want to go from one to the other.
  • Some of the challenges of marketing to young adult readers and why some YA books appeal to adults more than others do.
  • The importance of releasing regularly — Ben tries to put out a new novel every 3 to 4 months.
  • Developing a business mindset as an author.
  • What to look at if you have a number of books out, but they aren’t selling as well as you expected.
  • How far ahead goals or visions should extend.
  • Starting out with the business mindset so that you’re ready for success farther down the road.

Learn more about Ben Hale and grab his starter library at his website, Lumineia. You can also follow him on Facebook and Twitter, and check out the helpful book that he and Honorée Corder wrote, Write Like a Boss.


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