Answering your questions about writing, publishing, and marketing books
By Sarka-Jonae Miller, author of the free book Between Boyfriends
Romance and women's fiction author Julie Farley has joined us today to help define success as an indie author, talk about her recent move to the West Coast, and discuss some upcoming book bundles just in time for summer.
How should small press/independent authors measure their success when the industry standards are set by huge distributors? - Stephanie Yuhas, author of American Goulash
JF: Measuring success in any field can be a difficult and very personal task. In the publishing industry, measures of success can be very clear cut if you aspire to be a bestselling author. But without the backing of a large publisher, it’s often difficult to hit the biggest bestseller lists. An independent author can strive to become a bestseller on one of the many niche or sub category lists within Amazon. It’s easier to make it to the top of a smaller category than a larger or more general one like romance. Developing a following through social media and finding a group of readers who are excited to read your next work is gratifying for an author and can also be a way to feel you are a successful writer. Remember, your words can change someone’s life or brighten their day. Redefine your idea of success and continue to enjoy the journey of writing.
SJ: For an indie author, simply getting consistent sales makes you successful, in my opinion. Some indie authors can make it onto USA Today bestseller lists. It's hard to deny that is a measure of success. But since many authors get so few sales, and often sporadically or only during a paid promotion, if you can get to a point where sales are steady, that's something to be proud of. I'd also say if you can get your mailing list into the thousands, that's a big accomplishment for an indie author and will help you immensely to continue to build a career as you release more books.
SJ: You have not one but two ebook bundles coming out soon. What can you tell us about them as well as some of the benefits of doing an anthology?
JF: Yes, my second and third books in The New Ever After Series will be included in two different reading anthologies that are perfect reads for the beach. Finding Love in All the Right Places will be released on July 25, 2016 and the Summer Bliss Bundle will be released on July 11, 2016. It is so much fun to collaborate with other authors on a project. It’s an opportunity to learn from them and it’s also nice for our readers to be exposed to other books within the same genre that they might not find otherwise. It’s also a great deal for voracious readers!
SJ: How has your recent move to the West Coast impacted your writing?
JF: Well, moving cross country with four kids has cramped my writing style but I’m slowly getting back into the groove. Setting has always been a big part of my books and moving has certainly widened my perspective. I can’t wait to write about living on an island in the Pacific Northwest!
SJ: It wasn't too long ago that you visited San Diego. What was your favorite place and do you have any plans to return?
JF: I loved San Diego! We hiked Torrey Pines and that was breathtaking. My kids loved eating ice cream at Moo Time Creamery on Coronado Island while my husband and I loved Stone Brewery. We will definitely be back to San Diego. There’s so much to do and the weather is absolutely perfect.
SJ: What's your favorite piece of advice you've given or received as an author?
JF: One of my favorite writing teachers had us start each class with the prompt Right Now. For ten minutes we wrote everything that was in our head. It helped us focus and clear our minds for the real work ahead of us.
About Sarka-Jonae Miller
SJ is a local author, publicist, and columnist who writes chick lit and steamy romance based in San Diego and Los Angeles. Her novels include the Between Boyfriends series and the All for You series. The award-winning novel Between Boyfriends is free on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, and Kobo.
Check out her Between Boyfriends blog for book reviews, author interviews, TV episode synopses, and giveaways. SJ also writes health and fitness articles for Align Life and Natural News. Talk to SJ on Twitter @sarkajonae, Facebook, and her website, SarkaJonae.com.