I just provided our content team with a list of the April updates for the Booktango bookstore homepage. Believe it or not, there is not a systematic program that runs to feed this page. Each month I sit down and carefully review our titles to decide which books to feature.
The bookstore has several carousels of books on the homepage including the top ‘featured’ carousel, Books We Love, Noteworthy Titles and the coveted Booktango Feature Title. I thought I’d share a little bit about my process of choosing which books to feature, and give you five tips to help your book get picked in upcoming months!
1.) Make sure your keywords are updated. The very first step in my process is to look for books that are relevant to events of the month or related to the season. For the April featured books I searched for the following keywords: April, Spring, Flower, Gardening, Vacation, Bloom, Autism, Earth, Health, Poetry, Baseball, and Mathematics (and a few more). All of those words have some relevance to April or events going on around this time making them relevant books to feature for the month. Continue reading →
“If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” I can’t tell you how many times my mother uttered those words growing up, and most of the time she was right. We often get some skeptics who check out Booktango and ask the questions: “If it’s free, 100% royalties, and non-exclusive rights, what’s the catch? How do you make money?”
These are legitimate questions from a consumer who is shopping around for a DIY publishing platform. But, there is no catch! Booktango was created from a group of forward thinkers who wanted to provide tools for any author to publish themselves. We wanted a platform that empowered authors to invest as much (or as little) into getting their book available on major online retailers.
I want to take a minute to debunk three of the most popular Booktango myths floating the interwebs and give you honest and direct answers.
Myth #1: If I publish with Booktango, I have to give up the rights to my book. False! Our terms and conditions state we have non-exclusive rights to your book, which means you can publish with us and another publisher at the same time. You can also publish with us and have full rights to cancel your book and take it elsewhere if you receive a traditional publishing contract or other offers for rights to your book. In fact, we would be thrilled if one of our authors got their name and story out there and was subsequently picked up traditionally! Continue reading →
One of the most common questions we receive at Booktango is “How can I earn more?” It is a legitimate question. For many of our authors their book was not just something done on a whim. You invested a great deal of time, effort, editing, re-editing, critiquing, designing and promoting your book. Like any good investor, you want to see a return on your investment! As we near the payout window for our Fourth Quarter royalties and many of you are anxiously checking your sales reports, I thought it would be timely to provide three tips to maximize your earnings. Continue reading →
True story: I am not a writer unless you count my blog posts on Booktango or my occasional lengthy Facebook statuses. However, I do know a lot of writers, and I am lucky enough to get to speak directly to some of our authors. The one thing I hear a lot is that authors write in solitude, alone, in the quiet. Perhaps that is when the best ideas come to them or maybe they are afraid if they share their ideas or stories, someone might steal them. Whatever the reason may be, I’d like to suggest writers look for feedback during their writing and publishing process.
December is often a time of reflection for me and for most people. I spend time thinking about the accomplishments I’ve made over the last year, the opportunities to do better and to set my goals for the coming year.
Coincidentally, this year in addition to reflecting on my personal life and career, I also get to take a look back at Booktango. Booktango officially went live to the world in Beta one year ago. It’s been an exciting year and as we close out 2012 and celebrate our first anniversary, I wanted to take some time to celebrate the last 12 months and look ahead to 2013.
At launch, Booktango had some of the core features you see today such as the online editor, error identification, e-book details collection, retailer selection and submission. We knew we weren’t done, but we were excited to get an initial product out and begin gathering feedback from our authors. We continued to develop and plan new features for roll out during the first few months following launch. Continue reading →
“Art is never finished, only abandoned.” ~ Leonardo da Vinci
Any author knows that a fine piece of art — such as your e-book — occasionally needs some tweaking. Even when you have proofread, edited and put that final shine on your book, you may have some ideas later that would make it even better.
Perhaps you find a few lingering typos that you need to correct; or maybe you decide your cover should “pop” more, and you want to spruce up the image, colors or text fonts.
As technology evolves and the e-book revolution continues to grow, more and more authors have their manuscripts in formats other than the standard Word document. Maybe you had someone professionally create an ePUB file for you. Perhaps you started publishing with one of those other guys but weren’t happy with the way they smashed up your book. Or you might just have mad skills and created an ePUB file all on your own.
It’s human nature. We all have self talk with ourselves on a daily basis: How am I doing? What could I do better? How do I measure up?
We live in a competitive world with constant pressure to do our best. But in order to have a real understanding of where you stand, you need to have the right measuring stick. Measuring the success of your published e-books is no different.
Working with authors and internal customer service departments for over two years now, I know there is one word that can bring anxiety to an author who is trying to measure their book success: royalties. Continue reading →