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My Journey to a Kindle Fiction Empire - 100 Novellas by December

Discussion in 'My Journey Discussions' started by BlogPro, Jul 20, 2016.

  1. BlogPro

    BlogPro Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Hey Guys,

    As most of you are aware, I operate a small but pretty efficient content-team. The sole reason I had put together this team is to produce content for my own sites and set up my Kindle Publishing Empire.

    The Original Goal

    The original goal was to have 50 books online by 31st December 2016. Then spend 2017 promoting the hell out of them.

    As of today, I have 23 books online.

    I made an error in judgement while doing so. I included non-fiction in the mix as well. And since there is a ton of non-fiction information available, I produced 16 non-fiction books with an average word count of 20,000 words book. With the same word count, I produce fiction books mainly in Erotica, Romance, and Thriller Genre.

    The end result is that the 5 books (well 4 actually, the last one is yet to take off) are making more money than the 18 non-fiction books. Non-fiction usually is extremely targeted and requires a very niche specific promotion.

    This has lead me to barely break even with the 5 Fiction publications bearing the weight of the entire set.

    This lead me to Pivot...

    Well not exactly a bit per se, but more like a shift in goals.

    I have decided to segregate my past endeavours. And start afresh!

    This time, the goals are bigger - I have set myself a pretty big challenge and I am confident of reaching my goals in time.

    The new Goal!
    The new goal, when put in one line is, set up a centralized publishing system - a publishing brand - and publish 100 Fiction Novellas by the end of 2016. Not counting the 5 already on there. Also, get 25% of the books on a non-kindle exclusive basis, thereby getting them distributed across various channels.

    The long explanation!

    So essentially, this will be built upon my previous experience as a Kindle Publisher. I have been publishing for a while now and have previously helped a ton of people get up and running on KDP, that is what will be put to use here.

    The original goal is to publish 100 Kinde ebooks under the Fiction Category on KDP.

    Here is the stipulated breakdown (Might change)

    25 - Mystery, Murder & Detective lore along with their Sub-Genres.
    25 - Romance stories along with Sub-Genres.
    25 - Soft Erotica + Romance along with Sub-Genres
    25 - Business Thrillers along with Sub-Genres

    75 of these books will be Kindle exclusives, 25 will be distributed across various channels of which 10 ebooks will be mass-distributed and 15 will be distributed to other major players along with Kindle (Nook, iBooks, Google Play Books etc.).

    All of these 100 books will be published under a specific website/brand as their publisher and will include tons of Author Pen Names.

    The Benchmarks
    -
    Each book will be 20,000+ words
    - Each book will have a fantastic cover
    - Each book will be under a specific brand as their publisher.
    - At least 5 books in each genre will be part of a series - but will be a solo read as well. Either one series of 5 books or 2 trilogies.
    - Each author pen name gets a very real looking profile on the brand site.

    How do I intend to fund it?
    I purposely hired surplus staff for this reason. I run a content production business through BHW and locally and the income through this will be used to fund this venture.

    I intend to offer a Kindle specific service soon and that will be the primary goal to fund this venture. That will also give me the time to meet and network with like-minded entrepreneurs in the KDP business who are looking for someone to produce content for them on a regular basis. This will also enable me to gain more experience and learn on-the-job.

    The Challenges
    Since this is a Fiction only project, the real challenge is coming up with the stories. Fortunately, I have been writing short stories forever and have an eccentric creative site. These leave me capable of drafting outlines pretty well. I also have my writers producing outlines, framing characters and building upon them. So that is taken care of.

    The second important bit is the funding. I have a good amount stashed away that would lead me to complete this project. However, I'd rather have this funded through my original funding idea. Fortunately, people at BHW are loving my content services and so I should be able to stride by pretty well on this.

    When does the first book go up?
    The first 5 books go online on August 12th. Meanwhile, new books are being drafted and commissioned. So from there on, it will be a continuous update right.

    I will have a little less than 4 months to upload 100 books on KDP.

    But given my current output rate, that is about 40% (very broadly) of what my team can produce in that time with a ton of leeway for emergencies.

    I believe that is a comfortable number, allowing me to gain a lot of clients and even some friends in the process.

    Why this thread?
    This thread is primarily in place to keep me sane and motivated. I will be updating this in a very timely manner with every little thing I come across. So expect to see a lot of bumps here.

    Secondly, I would LOVE any and every input from you guys, some of who are obviously way more experienced in KDP than me.

    Thirdly, I'd love to help anyone wanting to start with a KDP journey. Or has already started and has questions.

    The only thing I'd request is that you keep your questions in this thread. PMing me or messaging me on Skype won't be of much help and will not expedite a reply. On the contrary, questions posted in this thread will receive faster replies, not only from me but also from other experienced members.

    The game in afoot...
     
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  2. issorc

    issorc Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    How much do you charge per ebook? Are you going to publish the first book of a series for free that the people that read (and maybe like it) are forced to buy the second book? Whats your marketing strategy in general? :)
    Thanks in advance!
     
  3. BlogPro

    BlogPro Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    You really should base your price on your genre and how it's selling and what the trends are.

    In the earlier days, a 20,000-word book would easily sell for 7.99-9.99 but with publishers getting more and more competitive. 2.99 to 4.99 depending on the quality and readership is a fair price.

    The lower the price, the higher the sales volume. But at the end, it's all gross profit. Hence, that is a very genre-specific term.

    They will be made free momentarily for limited periods. Yes. But not forever.

    Branding author personas, Amazon Advertising, Google Adwords, Blogger outreach and tons of reviews.

    You're welcome!
     
  4. TheUnborn

    TheUnborn Elite Member

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    This must be the most unique journey thread on BHW, will be watching you doing it.Good luck OP
     
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  5. BlogPro

    BlogPro Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Thanks bud. I'll try to keep it interesting.
     
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  6. GringoMonkey

    GringoMonkey Power Member

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    I have probably already done what you are aiming to do, as I have a number of successful fiction series each targeting a specific genre.

    Nothing in digital sales comes close to Amazon. Forget everybody else, it is just not worth the hassle. I easily sell more in 1 day on Amazon than in Nook, iBooks, Google etc added together generate in a month. Amazon simply owns the digital book space, so I don't bother uploading to the others anymore. I don't do free promos or anything like that. I want to get paid for creating a book, not see if I can give it away. The only exception is to build a fan mailing list.

    Unfortunately your a little late to the KDP Select game, last year it was ridiculously easy to make serious money in fiction with KDP Select, Amazon were paying unlimited money for a book to be downloaded. Now they have tightened that up from about April this year. I had scaled my business before that happened, so it is less of an issue for me, but I think it will now be slower for you to achieve what you want than you think.

    If I was you I would also not be so rigid as to 25 books in this genre, 25 in that. Slow down your production, devise series concepts and scale what sells. Why would you bother releasing 5 books at once when you have no idea if the first one will sell? You will find that at first you have to test several series concepts, so spend your initial money on that. Do your keyword / market research. Bin it if it does not sell well and repeat until one does. One will fly, then scale and milk that series for everything it is worth, making sure you constantly have books on the best sellers list.

    The reason the best seller list is important is not only for your income but also that the key to making serious money with fiction is licensing your content out. When you have a string of best sellers and clearly "own" a niche companies will contact you offering you all sorts of licensing deals and then the really big money flows.

    I am happy to see if we can do some sort of JV if you wish, if not good luck on your journey.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2016
  7. dbk03

    dbk03 Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Wow...very detailed plan. you have started the this journey in a very professional way. Now, just make sure you stick to the plan!
     
  8. coitza

    coitza Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Now this is an interesting journey to watch, if not to do it myself at least to see how one man can do all this stuff :) 100 books will require a lot of energy and focus, so good luck with it all, hope it really works out for you ;)
     
  9. Rain2238

    Rain2238 Newbie

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    I'm trying to rule the italian sci-fi market in the same ways, but as others said before me, forget everything not amazon related. You can do it buddy. I love late-hour heroes. If you want to translate your titles and embrace failing (but also without competitors) italian market, whistle by pm. Go and own!

    It will work with a TON of effort.
     
  10. BlogPro

    BlogPro Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    It is so exciting to see someone who has done it all. Thank you so much for taking the time to reply in this thread bud.

    For starters, going non-exclusive with Kindle and making a presence on other web avenues is mainly being done to market the author name to a broad spectrum. Not really expecting any sales out of that. However, a better-aggregated author name shows more presence in the SERPs and everywhere else. I bought a $50 ebook distribution package with one of those vendors and the SERPs are blooming with the author name. The FB page I created for the author is getting organic likes etc.

    As far as rigid genre segregation is concerned, the initial 100 ebook project is not my final goal. This is essentially dipping my toe in the KDP waters. These 100 books will give me a very very fair idea of what is working. A ton of genre research is going to go in coming up with these 100 titles, they are not going to be just "Oh! I just thought of this!"

    Also, I am aware that I am late to the game, but I believe that with the high quality content that I intend to produce, the market should willingly absorb me. If all else fails, I'd still be the sole-owner of 100 Novellas! :)

    There are some great points in here and I am going to be inculcating these moving forward.

    As far as JV is concerned, I'd be willing to do it sometimes later this year.

    That's what I intend to do bud. :)

    Thank you so much man.

    I believe that as individuals, we really underestimate ourselves. With the advent of the internet and the thousands of tools at our disposal, nothing should be out of bounds.

    For instance, I had a small CRM built for my writers that integrates with Copyscape and Textgear. It spits out word counts, repetitions in a nice chart.

    It generates the Flesch Kincaid Reading Ease, Flesch Kincaid Grade Level, and the Gunning Fog Score for the content submitted along with who submitted it.

    This really eases out my workflow.

    This is actually going to be a very important part of my strategy. Getting my titles translated into local languages. Should be excellent to see how this turns out.

    Thank you so much for all the inputs people. This thread already has me pumped.

    As I said... the game is afoot!
     
  11. Jerring

    Jerring Regular Member

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    I love the start of this journey, and I'm sure you will reach your goals. This one I will follow with big interest and of course good luck!
     
  12. SEMWORLD

    SEMWORLD BANNED BANNED

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    I first must say that you are moving in the right direction. I will tell you that in any business, there are some things that you learn while in operation. Now that you know the books that give a higher ROI, then you can go ahead and put focus on them. To me it is the best way you can be able to double your earnings.
     
  13. BlogPro

    BlogPro Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Thanks bud, I intend to.

    That's the thing, I don't know what books are going to work and which are going to tank. That data will be accrued once I start publishing.
     
  14. tokokipiani

    tokokipiani Power Member

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    Good Luck! Interesting journey . Will you submit those books for low prices or will sell for free?
     
  15. reliablecontent

    reliablecontent Registered Member

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    I make about 10K a month in self-publishing. Something that has worked for me is to put EVERYTHING into KU for the first 90 days of publication. That gets you the most bang for your buck. However, make sure to uncheck the box that automatically re-enrolls. When the 90 days are up, I publish wide. When those sales slow down, I take the book down from everywhere and start the process all over again.
     
  16. BlogPro

    BlogPro Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Sell for free? How does that even work?

    Sweet! Dare I ask, how many books you have on there to be able to reach the 10K mark?
     
  17. tokokipiani

    tokokipiani Power Member

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  18. reliablecontent

    reliablecontent Registered Member

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    Well, I started 3 years ago selling short smut and I have about 200 of those (3-5k each)

    Since KU 2.0 last July, I've been focusing on novels. I have 12 novels (40-50k each) that account for 90% of the money
     
  19. BlogPro

    BlogPro Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    That sounds great. Hopefully, with high-quality content, I should be able to rule with this.

    Update # 1

    So I have the drafts ready for the first 3 novellas. We're at an average of 22k words per book.

    I created individual characters for these storybooks.

    Character One -
    An FBI Agent fresh out of his training in Quantico, Virginia

    Character two -
    Former CIA Agent who now runs his private practice solving crimes

    Character Three -
    A female NYPD with a family.

    These are the main narrators of the story and there will be a ton of sub-characters built around these, along with family members, sidekicks and rivals.

    The stories being built around these characters are interesting. And something I would read. And I am a picky reader.

    We have one main plot going for every book, along with an unresolved backburner long-plot that would be carried throughout the series until it culminates.

    Let's see how this turns out.
     
  20. BlogPro

    BlogPro Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Novella 1 -

    Crime Thriller covering the theft of a mysterious antique. The case being assigned to a team comprising a senior agent paired with a recruit from Quantico's latest batch. It's got theft, deceit, murder, mystery, unexplained incidence, love and a secret.

    So far the read has been exquisite. It's almost 36000 words.