Ever Have Your Words Come Back to Haunt You? | The Mindful Writer

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It’s just the tiniest bit disconcerting to run across things I said in an old blog post — a blog that is long dead and gone, BTW — in files I chose to preserve for some odd reason on dates that I’ll never know, except to say that I created them before January 17, 2014, which must’ve been the date I changed computers.

But I found them. And I’m pretty sure I wrote them and posted them on a blog I once had called Writing for Hire.

So here they are in italics. I’ll respond to each of my own points as I go in non-italics! Let’s start with this one:

MacMillan got what it deserved and screwed authors and readers in the bargain [Blogger’s note: This is, apparently, the blog post’s headline.]

And who are you to judge, Missy? 🙂

I gotta tell you that as a mystery author and reader (print and ebook), MacMillan’s response disgusts me. Based on my own experiences selling ebooks (which are now self-published, so fortunately, I get to set the price), first at $1.59, then at $.99 per download, there’s no question going cheaper is better for all concerned. Readers benefit by the cheaper price. Authors and publishers benefit from the greater sales. It actually works.

That’s right, it did. In 2010 and 2011. It actually worked. Until it didn’t.

Ever since I lowered the price of my book, IDENTITY CRISIS, in the Amazon Kindle Store, it’s been selling like hotcakes. Just check out my posts about it on my blog, My Life on the Mid-List http://midlistlife.wordpress.com [Blogger’s note: Another dead blog, BTW. I’ve got five or six of those. Wait — make that seven! Or is it eight?] I think the numbers speak for themselves.

Ahem. There are a few things those numbers don’t tell you. Like how many people bought your book, but didn’t actually read it. Or how everything would change in 2012. Or that you should’ve been creating an email list and sending out a newsletter. I could go on about what those numbers didn’t tell me.

The people at MacMillan (and in the publishing industry, in general) need to wake up and smell the coffee.

Note to self: take your own advice here.

Now, here’s the next one:

How to Fix Publishing

When it comes to fixing broken business models, the question any solid business will ask is “What value do we provide?”

If the publishing business is to survive, it will be because it’s identified the value it provides in a world in which authors can publish their work online themselves.

I think publishers do provide value. They act as quality control providers. They also have the means and contacts to help authors promote their books.

So my suggestion is that publishers seek out good stories and really use the resources you have to help your authors grow a fan base.

And stop thinking about selling books from an antiquated print book perspective.

In response, I’ve written a new version:

How to Fix Indie Publishing

When it comes to fixing broken business models, the question any solid business will ask is “What value do we provide?”

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If the indie publishing business is to survive, it will be because it’s identified the value it provides in a world in which indie authors can publish their work online themselves.

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I think indie publishers do provide value. They act as their own quality control providers, but can look to beta readers, writers groups, and editors for assistance with that. They also have the means and contacts to help other indie authors promote their books.

So my suggestion to indie publishers is to seek out and write good stories and really use the resources you have to help grow your own fan base.

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And stop thinking about selling books from an antiquated perspective.

Originally published at https://debbimackblogs.com on December 17, 2019.

New York Times bestselling author of seven novels, including the Sam McRae Mystery series. Screenwriter, podcaster, and blogger. My website: www.debbimack.com.

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