Jul 19, 2012

Make Paperbacks Part of Your Sales Plan

For my first self-published novel, Counter Currents, I decided to include a paperback version as well as an ebook. I used CreateSpace with excellent results. Some of the pros, such as John Locke (author of How I Sold 1 Million eBooks in 5 Months), advise us not to bother—it's not worth it, they say. Respectfully, they're wrong for two reasons.

It is worth it emotionally. While I am an ebook fan, I still enjoy the tangible and tactile reality of a printed book. I feel proud when I see mine in a reader's hands or on a store shelf.

It is worth it economically. I have not sold millions like Mr. Locke. (I am close to the statistical average I wrote about in my last post.) However, over 70% of novel's sales so far have been in paperback; the rest are Kindle or ePub format. Of the confirmed paperback sales (not including books on consignment), over 80% were purchased through independent bookstores. The remainder were bought online. I have sold almost as many paperback copies as ebook copies on Amazon.

Once again, I urge indie writers to create relationships with neighborhood bookstores. Get your paperbacks in a few retail outlets within driving distance and then promote locally. Participate in author events at those stores. You will be glad you did.

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