Showing posts with label Amazon Authors. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Amazon Authors. Show all posts

Sunday, December 5, 2021

How Authors Can Learn to Love Amazon


 I get ideas about stuff to talk about in unexpected places. I assume that is not unique to my writing experience, but today something popped up in Facebook Memories feature I just couldn't resist passing along to my blogger friends. I think the major lesson to me (and from me! Ha!)  is that we can love to hate Amazon and other entities all we want, but it's more useful to our writing careers--both successes and enjoyment of them--if we don't listen to all the rumors of entities in the publishing world and find out for ourselves. In this case it is Amazon, but I constantly run into experiences even after decades of writing experience in several different disciplines (journalism, PR, marketing, blogging, and publishing in a variety of genres, etc.) that nudge me away from all the griping we hear on the web and elsewhere and onto doing what the basics of good marketing departments at great universities tell us to do. That is, make friends, network, and explore new possibilities.

Sooo, I had heard from several fairly reliable sources that Amazon wouldn't remove old editions of a book from their sales pages but decided to try one more time using the email feature at their Author Central to reach someone to ask for help. Here is my experience as posted on Facebook way back then--in probably about 2011.

"I just had the nicest telephone conversation with Amazon's Author Central. I had worked for two years trying to get the old edition of my The Frugal Book Promoter removed from Amazon via e-mail (I thought it would make it easier if they had all the ISBNs, etc in writing! Silly me! And, I admit to hating confrontation and avoiding it like the plague! )

"So the conversation goes like this:

"ME: "I understand I can't have the first edition of my The Frugal Book Promoter removed from Amazon even though it's outdated--by about a decade--but that I can add a new widget to that page to direct my readers to the new one."

"DANA THE WONDERFUL (At Amazon!):  "I'd be happy to do that for you."

"ME: Some chitchat including thank yous as she works. Then some magic words! "Too bad we can't just hide the old edition and get all 128 of the old reviews transferred to the multi award-winning second edition!" (Were "multi award-winning" the magic words?"

"DANA THE WONDERFUL: "Oh, we can do that!" Typing noises. "It may take 72 hours for that to happen but it's done."

"ME: "Really?"

"DANA THE WONDERFUL: "Really."

"ME: Happy Dance. Huge Thank yous.

"Note: It obviously is worth the time waiting for a real person on the Author Connect (Author Central)  hotline!  Wish I had a recording of the conversation for you!"

 
****
Here's a disclaimer.  This is 2021,  NOT 2011. Amazon changes policies all the time as needed (or as they think are needed--I have seen them change back again). So if you are having this particular problem, try my method. But the real point of this post is to try it no matter what it is you want or need. In the past, I have had them...

1. Add several widgets to point to several of my books that were published in later editions.
2. To move reviews from earlier editions to later editions.
3. To remove early editions of e-books, but not paper books. Removing paper books interferes with their second market feature.
4. To fix or update metadata.
5. To get blatantly biases reviews removed. Amazon doesn't like this either and is working mightily to avoid it. There are all kinds of scammy approaches to reviews. In fact, I wrote a big, fat how-to book on reviews that includes a case study of sorts of Amazon vs. Scammy reviews.  We don't like to believe it, but there are actually fellow writers out there with an agenda and somehow believe that dissing their competition's books will be good for their own.  It is the third in my multi award-winning #HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers,  How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically at  https://bit.ly/GreatBkReviews.
6. It seems they have recently changed a wonderful feature they had where #authors and #publishers could add all kinds of helpful information to their buy page--everything from professional reviews to notes from the author. I told you they change all the time, but keep checking. Better still, keep asking. You might even run into my "Dana the Wonderful!"

 
 

More About the Writers on the Move.
Guest Blogger Howard-Johnson is the multi award-wining author of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry. She is also a marketing consultant, editor, and author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers including the multi award-winning The Frugal Book Promoter (http://bit.ly/FrugalBookPromoIII), now offered by Modern History Press in its third edition.

Carolyn's latest is in the #HowToDoItFrugally Series of books for writers is How to Get Great Book Reviews Frugally and Ethically. 

She has two booklets in the #HowToDoItFrugally Series, both in their second editions from Modern History Press. Great Little Last Minute Editing Tips for Writers (http://bit.ly/LastMinuteEditsII) and The Great First Impression Book Proposal (http://bit.ly/BookProposalsII) are career boosters in mini doses and both make ideal thank you gifts for authors.  

Carolyn also has frugal books for retailers including one she encourages authors to read because it helps them convince retailers to host their workshops, presentations, and signings, literally gives authors ideas on how to approach independent retails (including bookstores). It is A Retailer’s Guide to Frugal In-Store Promotions: How To Increase Profits and Spit in the Eyes of Economic Downturns with Thrifty Events and Sales Techniques (http://bit.ly/RetailersGuide). 

Carolyn contributes to this blog regularly and  helps writers extend the exposure of their favorite reviews at TheNewBookReview.blogspot.com. She also blogs at all things editing--grammar, formatting and more--at The Frugal, Smart, and Tuned-In Editor (http://TheFrugalEditor.blogspot.com). Learn more and follow for news on her new releases direct from Amazon: http://bit.ly/CarolynsAmznProfile.




Saturday, November 14, 2020

Goodreads Participation Helps Amazon Best-Selling Authors


Contributed by Carolyn Wilhelm

 Dublin author Clare O'Beara writes award-winning mysteries, quarantine lit, science-fiction, multicultural children's novels, as well as horse books. O'Beara likes to share a slice of her life and inspirations with other writers. As a past show-jumping champion in Ireland, tree surgeon, member of MENSA, World-Con volunteer, and journalism student, she comes by her knowledge with a depth of experience. She is an example of leveraging Goodreads to a writer's advantage. She credits the platform with some of her book success. 

O'Beara suggests getting involved in Goodreads Groups, which should reflect an author's genuine interests, like horses in her case or green (environmental) matters. If an author joins Groups, which are about promoting books, he or she will come across as 'all about me.'

O'Beara also writes a monthly column on Goodreads, such as her post about Ireland's Octocon. First, an author page on Goodreads is required, which has to be completed by the author. So many authors have not completed their free Goodreads author pages. Writers must then select to enter their blog feeds or could write posts on the site. While the post text area is tiny, pulling the corner out will provide a larger space to allow a lengthy article.

Of course, blog posts alone are not enough; O'Beara advises authors to read books, rate, and review them on the site. Reviewing helps other authors as well as potential readers of those books, so the author comes across as the keen book lover they are, and not just about him or herself.

Goodreads offers book lists, as well. Lists may be reviewed by authors who might include one or more of their books. Goodreads won't let you add your own books to any lists, but it's always nice to find someone else has added them. For instance, YA New Releases for October 2020 might grab your attention. Goodreads offers some tips at the top of lists, such as to double-check the book's release dates make sure that they are classified as correctly. If you see a book that doesn't fit that description, you may comment. The Goodreads librarians will check comments from time to time. 


Be sure to check favorite genres from the pop-up menu under your photo to select which to follow. Goodreads will choose for a writer, otherwise, and it might not be correct. If a person has been on Goodreads for a while and not checked on genres, it is a good idea to edit those choices, perhaps. Shelving read books can be individualized by naming shelves according to what an author wants.

Authors without Goodreads author pages are advised to set one up. If you are wondering how here is the information. (https://help.goodreads.com/s/article/How-do-I-start-a-blog-on-my-author-profile-1553870941102) Authors who already have such pages are advised to make use of the opportunity.


Carolyn Wilhelm
is the curriculum writer and sole owner of The Wise Owl Factory site and blog. She has an MS in Gifted Education and an MA in Curriculum and Instruction K-12. As a retired teacher of 28 years, she now makes mostly free educational resources for teachers and parents. Her course about Self-Publishing from the Very, Very Beginning is available on UDEMY.

 

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