Write, Edit, Self Publish & Market… And This Is Just The Beginning

Write, Edit, Self Publish, Market… And This Is Just The Beginning

As many of you that have been following me know, I Self Published my first two books last year…

DarkJade - Cover (BlackandPurple) - Winter Lust and WonderThe first being “Winter, Lust, And Wonder”, my Poetry Book.

And my second being “I Died Once”, my Novella.

In addition to making them available on Amazon.Com, both books are also available and a local bookstore near me.

One of the most exciting things I’ve ever experienced as a Writer was when I got my first book in…

There’s nothing like it.

But that is only really the beginning.

As we all know, or many of us in any case, just because your book makes it into a store, does not guarantee that it will be purchased, or even noticed for that matter.

This is especially the case with these first two efforts, mainly because they’re pretty short books, and really basically disappear on the bookshelves in the store.

A Font with SerifsWith my upcoming Fantasy Novel, I’m hoping to penetrate a bit more into the market.

For one, it’s a ‘Fantasy Novel’, as opposed to a Poetry Book (Which is kind of a Specialty Item as far as bookstores are concerned), or my Novella, which is also kind of a specialty item.

After all, it’s only 59 pages.

But Fantasy Novels are a much Larger Genre, and this book is also longer than my Novella, maybe 2 ½ times longer, which isn’t huge… But at least now when I Self Publish it, it will have a Side Panel with the Title on it, so that when it is turned sideways on a shelf (Which will definitely happen), it will still be visible.

And now onto what this Post is actually about, Lol

In an effort to get some of the bookstore readers/customers familiar with my Writing, I’ve decided to give away 30 FREE Copies of my Novella “I Died Once”, as a way to give some local readers a taste of my Writing, so that they might be a bit more open to checking out my Fantasy Novel.

That’s the plan anyway.

But to achieve this, it will take more than giving away 30 of my Novellas at random…

First of all, when I spoke to the bookstore manager about this, to my surprise she was totally open to the idea.

I wasn’t sure if they’d want to be giving away books for free.

Anyway, after telling her my idea, she said she’d keep 6 of my Novella’s on her counter by the register, so people could see them…

Book In StoreWhich in the case of my Novella, I feel can really benefit it… Mainly because I’m really pleased with the Cover.

Being a Filmmaker prior to ever pursuing Writing Books, I consider myself a ‘Visual Artist’… This was further confirmed by many who have read both my Stories, and Poetry… As many have said that they could imagine my Stories being a Film. And offered that my Poetry Creates Vivid Images in their imaginations.

My point being, that being a Visual Artist/Filmmaker has made the Cover of My Books a Major Focus…

And from the feedback I got from the Bookstore Manager, she said that my Novella Cover was better than most ‘Self Published’ Books.

I was very happy to hear this…

I’ve noticed that many Writers don’t seem to focus all that much on the Cover of their Books… And I suspect, due to the relatively accessibility of Self Publishing, many Writers may be so focused on the Content of the Book, that they simply let the Importance of the Cover slip by.

This is a huge Mistake.

First of all, I’m not one to Preach, but I think it’s safe to say, try to have ‘Consitancy’ in all things.

Meaning, if you focus solely on the Content with the mentality of ‘Who Cares What The Cover Looks Like, It’s The Content That Counts’…

I can tell you this… If your Book is Never Picked Up, than you have a Zero Percent of anyone even seeing your Content.

Sounds Obvious… But it warrants saying.

I Died Once CoverHit Hard with your Covers Man… Get them to Open that First Page, and see if your ‘Content’ can get them coming back for more.

But I digress.

The purpose of this Post is, the Bookstore Manager suggested that in addition to giving away FREE Copies of my Novella, that I also include ‘Custom Bookmarks’ which will Market my upcoming Fantasy Novel, “Chess With Agatha”.


I can’t tell you how much I liked this suggestion.

And so I reached out to the Brilliant Photographer that helped me Design the Layout for  “I Died Once”, as well as taking the Photograph for “Chess With Agatha”’s Cover, and helping me design that layout as well.

I asked her if she could help me Design some Bookmarks for “Chess With Agatha”, and she agreed.

So at the moment I’m trying to get together the money to Order the 30 Copies (Which I have gotten that money together), as well as the money to Order the Custom Bookmarks to accompany each Book (Which I still need another $100 for).

I’m also working with another Writer right now, doing some Final Editing, as well as some additional Writing… She’s also doing some Wordsmithing for me, which has helped me with a couple Scenes that I really like, but her Words just sounded better.


Thanks for Reading



9 Responses to “Write, Edit, Self Publish & Market… And This Is Just The Beginning”

  1. You’re right, people don’t capitalize on their covers. And when you self-publish, you have complete freedom over that!

  2. Hi James,
    I must say that I was impressed by the IDO’s cover, as well as by the story of course!
    I haven’t yet worked that much on mine, but I know how important that is. The only issue is having enough money to deal with the cover, the publishing, the books to put in the bookstores… I’m trying to do it by myself and ask the help of some friends but I don’t want to ask too much, y know
    Anyway i love your marketing idea and the bookmarks are genius too!
    I’ll share your post 😉

    • Thanks H

      Yeah, I only needed 4 Copies of My Poetry Book in the Bookstore (Mainly to offer different color selections), and 2 I.D.O. Copies… So all and all, it didn’t cost me much to put them in there.

      I.D.O.’s Cover didn’t cost me anything, I asked the Artist for her Permission, and she was just excited to have a piece of her work Published.

      And as far as layout, my very good friend helps me with that, and at some point I want to start paying her.

      She also took the Photo for CWA.

      I agree that the Bookmark Idea was Brilliant credit goes to the Bookstore Manager for that one

      Thanks for Sharing!


  3. Looks like things are rolling along at a great pace. I’m so happy for you!

    • After a year and a half of pursuing Writing as a Proffession, followed by kinda stepping away the last 3 to 4 months (ok, so I kinda fell in love too, lol), it feels good to continue where I left off.

      And I’m also working with another Writer/Editor whose helping me to improve my upcoming book even more

      Thanks Lorna, going well for you too


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