Sunday, April 17, 2016

Random Indie Lessons I've learned

When I started this blog I said I'd share my experiences of being an indie author. Today I thought I'd share some of the lessons I've learned in the 28 months I've been in the biz.

In no particular order:

* There are many promotion methods and sites out there. If you research the site and it seems legit, it's worth trying for at least 3 months. If it doesn't increase sales in those 3 months, leave. This is double-true if being on the site is taking up your time. Remember: a time-suck is the enemy of..well, everything.

* If you're going to pay a site to promote you, check out the sales figures for a peer already using them. Only join if you can see it's paid off for someone else and only spend what you can afford to gamble. I call this the Vegas Method.

* Beware the book giveaway. Often this does not increase sales and you will have to pay for the book and shipping. No matter what anyone tells you, free stuff is mostly good for the people GETTING the freebie.

* Try to GET free stuff whenever possible.

* Remember when peers ask you for constructive criticism, ALMOST NO ONE MEANS THIS.

* Pay attention to anyone doing something that is working, and find out why.

* Find out the demographics of your readers. Your audience may not be the gender/age you expected. Appreciate them, whoever they are.

* Test every link you post. Make sure your website is easy to use. Try not to cause cursing.

* Beware posting something or retweeting something that might offend your readers. Why should they give you money if you've offended them?

* Try to learn one new online thing per month. Every five seconds a new thing is being invented and you don't want to be a dinosaur. Look at what happened to them.

* Lastly, learn how to describe yourself and your work in one sentence. If you do it well, other people might just repeat it.

Amie Ryan is the author of Green Shoes Mean I Love You, Starfish On Thursday, and Marilyn: Loved By You. To learn more, visit

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