Is “Good Writing” Worth the Effort?

Have you ever been surprised to see many 5-star ratings and enthusiastically positive reviews for a book that’s poorly written? Meaning typos, clunky sentences, and weak or repeated words? I’ve seen this often enough to conclude that it’s not explained by authors’ friends doing them favours.

Then I read a post via a link from the blog of the estimable blogger who calls himself Chris the Story Reading Ape. He searches the blogosphere for posts of interest to writers. The one that caught my interest is titled What is “Bad Writing?” (And How Can We Avoid It?)

For a direct link to the post, click HERE.

Janice Hardy’s post prompted the following unvarnished thoughts which I decided to share here. Remember that word as you read: unvarnished. (And maybe a bit snarky.)

The post questions the idea that fiction writers absolutely must produce polished prose if they want their novels to be read and appreciated.

For readers seeking undemanding entertainment, “good writing” (whatever that is) takes a back seat to the combination of good enough writing and a great story that piques curiosity. Quite simply, readers keep reading if a compelling question is posed at the beginning of a story or novel. They really don’t care if there are a few typos, along with “filter” words, words ending in “-ly,” or too many instances of “was.” They may not even care if there’s telling instead of showing, as long as the story being told moves along briskly toward an answer to the burning question. Who is the stalker? What’s in the box? What will X do when Y’s secret is revealed?

Some readers do care about the prose, though. Editors, for example, or readers who are also writers. These people read a lot and pay close attention to what they are reading. They notice sloppy sentences, bad habits, and careless use of language.

Some writers may wish to be strategic with their writing efforts, tailoring them for their intended readers and not bothering with effects those readers don’t appreciate. For self-published authors, that means potential book buyers; for writers seeking traditional publication, it’s agents and editors.

A successful self-published author of genre fiction knows that the most important element to attract readers is the urgent question, irresistible puzzle, or imminent threat. Plot is king. Next in importance is an amiable main character or engaging narrative voice. Less important are detailed descriptions, and possibly unimportant is artful prose, otherwise known as “beautiful writing.”

This author would direct their primary effort to devising irresistible situations and setting them up in the first few pages. After that, it’s a matter of structuring the plot in such a way that the reader is always thinking “What next?” And an ending that elicits a gasp or a sigh pretty much guarantees a five star rating.

The writer who intends to engage in querying traditional publishers must think in terms of creating a saleable written product. That means being aware of both current and recent trends. What might be about to peak, or what’s ready to make a comeback? Or what story elements push the envelope just enough that the gatekeepers will see it as potentially the next big thing?

In theory, the author aspiring to be trad-pubbed doesn’t need to worry much about honing and burnishing their prose, because if a publisher takes on their work, it will be put through the editing mill. What the writer absolutely does need to demonstrate is a willingness to be edited. That’s why a track record of publication in magazines, anthologies, and similar vehicles is advised.

At the same time, the writer’s submission must not irritate the people who read submissions for a living. Consider how many typos these folks see every day, not to mention eye rolls, shrugs, and raven-haired heroines. Clichés, excessive modifiers, typos, and tired tropes are not the best accessories in which to dress one’s original and edgy creation for its trip to the publishers’ gates. Spare and underdone might have a better chance than florid and breathless.

Except in the case of literary fiction, where some form of beautiful writing is definitely required. What that is depends on the tastes of the reader, which is why getting published is a crap shoot. Luck is definitely an element. To help tip the scales, the ambitious writer may find it worthwhile to direct their efforts as much to making personal connections with published authors as to polishing their prose. This is where pursuing an MFA in creative writing may pay off, or at least superior schmoozing skills deployed in carefully chosen workshops, courses, or retreats.

Setting aside all those tedious considerations, what about the personal standards of the indie author? Should we not aspire to produce gripping plots, relatable characters, intriguing settings, and artful prose? Aren’t these all necessary elements of good writing?

Yes, they are. And most authors at least intend to incorporate them all in their works. Exceptions may include successful authors who crank out several books a year to satisfy the many readers for whom they are an auto-buy. Their brand sells enough books that they don’t need to twiddle with every sentence.

To sum up, good writing isn’t always worth the effort, but often enough, it is. The wise writer will recognize those situations and act accordingly.

Fellow writers and authors, do you ever decide that “good enough” is good enough, or do you always strive for perfection in your published works?

On Writing

I went in. The room beyond was large and square and sunken and cool and had the restful atmosphere of a funeral chapel and something of the same smell.”

I don’t know what, if anything, I thought about that last sentence when I first read it many years ago. But when I read it a few days ago, as an author, I was blown away by it. It is an amazing sentence. The author wrote a clunky, awkward, and ugly sentence to describe an unpleasant room using plain, bland, and ordinary adjectives. The structure of the sentence rather than the words convey the image, the meaning. I have to believe that someone could only write a sentence like that if that someone was completely confident in their ability as a writer. If they knew what they were doing. If they didn’t care if anyone else did. Ram you, damn you, they were good even if you, and everyone, thought otherwise. This level of confidence in one’s talent, skill, and vision is what is needed to be a great writer. I think that you have to find that confidence within yourself – or perhaps in a bottle. In any event, you’ll not find the real vein of confidence in critique groups, beta readers, editors, or reviews. It has to have been there before that feedback, and perhaps, persist in spite of that feedback. You have to know you’re good and accept that not everyone will get it. What “they” think doesn’t matter. What you know does. And you do know, and are good. That’s what art is about.

The paragraph goes on:

Tapestry on the blank roughened stucco walls, iron grilles imitating balconies outside high side windows, heavy carved chairs with plush seats and tapestry backs and tarnished gilt tassels hanging down their sides. At the back a stained-glass window about the size of a tennis court. Curtained French doors underneath it. An old musty, fusty, narrow-minded, clean and bitter room. It didn’t look as if anybody ever sat in it or would ever want to. Marble-topped tables with crooked legs, gilt clocks, pieces of small statuary in two colors of marble. A lot of junk that would take a week to dust. A lot of money, and all wasted. Thirty years before, in the wealthy closed-mouthed provincial town of Pasadena then was, it must have seemed like quite a room.”

– The High Window, by Raymond Chandler.

Ram you, damn you, he didn’t even care if all the sentences were even sentences. And trips you up at the end. He was a great writer.

Just say’n.

AI — Should we be worried?

— Mark Paxson

There are corners of the internet abuzz with news of artificial intelligence. The most well known variation is ChatGPT, which will answer just about any question you ask it, including asking it to write a paper or to write a story.

Yesterday, I asked it to write a piece of flash fiction about a unicorn eating a muffin. I then asked it to write a Stephen King style flash fiction about a unicorn eating pizza. Then, I clicked on the “regenerate response” button and it wrote a different version of same.

A few weeks ago, my first Chat GPT experiment asked it to write a paragraph in my style. Instead of writing a paragraph in my style, it wrote a paragraph describing what my style was.

There is apparently evidence that Chat GPT (or its cousins) are being used by students to write papers. A blogger I’ve followed for years and years has written about artificial intelligence (AI) and the benefits it can provide. One example he used was that it could help people write letters. I practically keeled over at this benefit because I still don’t get why things like this are so difficult. And what the world is coming to if people need AI to help them write a letter.

Then I was at a UPS Store yesterday and somebody didn’t quite know how stamps worked and the store employee and I bemoaned the fact that people don’t even know how to address an envelope or … write a letter … these days.

Back to my experiments and what I’ve heard from other people as well. What Chat GPT came up with was so incredibly generic. For instance, the paragraph about my writing style really didn’t say much of anything and I doubt that Chat GPT had any way of knowing what my style really was. It was just some buzz phrases that sounded good.

As for yesterday’s flash fiction experiments, the results were more or less the same. Very generic. Very generic. The piece about a unicorn eating a muffin read like a very simplistic fairy tale. The two versions of a Stephen King story about a unicorn eating pizza weren’t really very Stephen King like. Just a bit darker and ominous.

So … should we be worried? Some of the places where this is a topic of conversation suggest that creative types will no longer be needed. Somebody can just tell Chat GPT or its cousins to write a story and they can read that story any time they want. At some point teachers and professors will no longer be able to tell the difference between a student-written paper and an AI-generated paper.

That may come at some point, but I’m not worried about it happening anytime soon. And I may not worry about it ever really happening on a large scale. What I think AI will always miss is emotion and sarcasm and humor and loss. I may be wrong, but I just don’t see these things being able to generate some basic elements of humanity. Unless and until that happens, AI may be able to engage in some rudimentary communications and other things, but it won’t be able to replace human creativity.

Put another way … AI may be able to perform the basic math type skill of writing a letter or a snappy jingle, but I question whether it will ever be able to produce the calculus-level effort needed to write an authentic story of the human experience. One that leaves the reader feeling something.

Are you worried?

Are you being followed?

Amazon has a tab on your author page that readers can hit to follow their favorite authors to get alerted to new releases. Do you know how many readers are following you? I believe that until recently, this number wasn’t shown to authors. But it is now, if the number is more than 20. To find out if you have any followers, you need to go to your Author Central page. There you can:

Click the “Reports + Marketing” tab

Go to the “Reports” section.

You can then see the number of your followers under “Amazon Followers.”

If you dare.

Blog Repair

by Audrey Driscoll

Ever since we set up the Writers Supporting Writers Blog, there have been a few problems with it. Despite the settings, there was no Reblog button. No one but blog authors could Like posts. Follows didn’t work.

I’ve been fiddling around with the settings, and have finally managed to add the Reblog button. I’ve also seen a few additional Likes on the previous post, so I hope that’s working as well.

As for Follows, does anyone see a Follow button in the lower right corner? Most blogs seem to have these. Has anyone tried to follow this blog without success?

Please test the Like, Follow, or Reblog functions, and let us know what happens via a comment. No, this isn’t a sneaky scheme to attract follows!

WSW Chat: Book Fairs, Writer Conventions, and other Introvert Nightmares

-Berthold Gambrel

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the limits of social media. While it’s an absolutely great way for writers to connect (it’s how I met everyone here, so, I mean, duh) it’s still not a perfect substitute for in-person interaction.

Social media is a fragile thing. Things happen. Technology breaks. Management changes. Connections formed here are frighteningly easy to sever.

And yet… as we discuss in the chat, we writers aren’t exactly keen to go out and <shudder> network. The great paradox: we want to be writers because we are introverts, but to succeed as writers, we need to meet people, build relationships. :/

Who Helps?

Who, if anyone, helps you write and publish your stories?

In my last post I talked about how I didn’t think paid “professionals,” specifically editors, were worth their expense in indie publishing. The logical follow up question is, if not them, who? Who helps writers polish and publish their work? Or can you do it all by yourself?

Like in the previous piece, I’ll focus on the editorial side of indie publishing and ignore things like cover design and marketing. I’ll briefly discuss alpha and beta readers, critique and author groups. But what I, and I suspect other readers of this blog would really want to know, is who do you turn to, personally, for help in writing and publishing your stories? Please share your approach with us so that we can all learn. I certainly don’t profess to be an expert. Onward.

Alpha readers are people who read an unfinished, or unpolished version of the story and provide feedback on their experience. They are usually friends whose opinions the author trusts. Basically they are asked to say what, in their opinion works, what might not, and perhaps suggest ways to proceed. The YA author Alexa Dunn talks about submitting chapters of her work in progress to her alpha readers for feedback. And our own Mark Paxson has mentioned in a recent comment that he has exchanged the first 10 chapters of his WIP with another writer, to get feedback on it and how to proceed.

Critique groups, both in person and online are also a common way to get feedback during the writing process. I know of one self-publishing author who used an online critique group, however, it seems that she has settled on just one critique partner these days. I believe that our own Audrey Driscoll has at one time been a part of an in-person writer’s group that critiqued members’ work. I joined a discord group of mostly aspiring traditional authors with a scattering of published and self-published authors who will post their first chapters, or short stories and query letters for critiques, just to see how it works.

And then there are beta readers. Ideally these are readers who read a polished version of the story with the eyes of a regular reader. They can offer feedback on how a typical reader might find the book. They may suggest parts of the story that need clarification, or areas that are too wordy or unnecessary in their opinion. And they may also serve as proofreaders.

So how do you use these human resources, to help you produce the best story possible?

I’ll begin, just to start the ball rolling. I approach writing as a work of art, of personal expression, not as a commercial product. As with my painting, I want to create something that is as original and personal as I can make it. Though there are many cooperative and ensemble arts and complete originality is very rare, I view writing as a solo performance. Thus, no one sees my stories before I have written the first, second, and final draft, whatever that number turns out to be. In other words, the most polished version of the story I can produce. I write the story I want the way I want it, and assume that there are readers out there, somewhere, with similar tastes. Though please note, I don’t write to make money. If you want to make money, you need to create a commercial product, and you will likely need to write what your extensive market research has revealed about what your large target audience expects in its books.

Having produced my best copy, I then hand it off to my wife to proofread, knowing that, as my wife, she will feel free to criticize me, er, my work. And she does. Thankfully, not a whole lot, and I always find some way to address her concerns. For example she likes happily ever after endings for the romance elements of my stories, while I like to keep them somewhat open – life goes on after my story ends – and they keep open the possibility of a sequel. So my stories often imply an eventual happy resolution of the romance. However, in one case she didn’t think I had made that clear enough. I thought I had, and since I liked my ending, I added an additional scene with the couple after the original final scene with them, that better clarified their commitment to each other. In my most recent published work, she felt that I had ignored the fate of the other characters in the story at the end of it – the narrator should have been more concerned about them. While I didn’t think it was absolutely necessary, I did add a paragraph or two addressing her concern. In short, if she criticizes, I listen and usually find a way to address her concerns. She also finds the first 95% of my typos.

After my wife gets done with her proofreading, I send the story out to my beta readers. I have about half a dozen of them. Most, but not all of them, are readers who have taken me up on my invitation to email the typos they find to me so I can fix them, an invite I include in every ebook. They have stayed on and volunteered to beta/proofread my books before publication. As I have remarked before, their lists of typos rarely overlap by more than a couple of obvious typos. The more eyes on a manuscript, the cleaner it will be. And while I also invite comments and criticisms from them, perhaps because most are readers rather than writers, they rarely do make comments. But rarely is not never, and I consider any comments and suggestions they make just as carefully as I do those from my wife, and generally make changes to reflect their concerns. For example, in my yet to be published novel Berthold Gambrel suggested that I used a tagline a little too often, so I went through the MS either eliminating or altered the line here to there to reduce the number of times it was used. All my helpers, my wife and beta readers are all very helpful, and make my books so much better than if I had to do it all on my own.

So, in summary, while I closely guard my creative process, I also recognize my deficiencies as well, and welcome the help of others.

Now it’s your turn. Who do you turn to for help? I am sure we all have our own methods, and reasons behind them. Please share them in the comments below. Or, if you, like Audrey Driscoll, have posts on your blog about how you write and don’t feel like writing them again, please leave links to those posts in the comments below. While the name of this blog is Writers Supporting Writers, it is also a place where writers can talk about writerly stuff. Let’s do so.

Editors, Who Needs Them?

Indie publishing gurus often advise would-be self-publishing authors to hire professionals – editor(s), proofreaders, cover artists, etc. – to produce their books in order to raise the perceived level of quality of indie published books. They are told that it is “best practice” to do so. I find this advice disingenuous, at best. The people who dispense this advice are certainly aware that for most would-be indie authors seeking advice, taking this advice the author will lose just about every cent they spend on these professionals, with no discernible result. I shall focus my rant on editors, but my points apply to all freelance professionals offering their services to indie authors.

First off, indie publishing is not traditional publishing lite. Mimicking traditional publishing processes is expensive and unnecessary, since traditional and indie publishing serve two distinct markets, each with their own requirements. Traditional publishing serves casual readers, discerning readers, and lovers of physical books who enjoy the popular culture around well known authors. Indie publishing serves avid, story orientated, value conscious readers. Consumers understand that if you pay a tiny fraction of what another similar item costs, you should expect something less. In the case of indie readers this compromise includes reading stories as ephemeral digital files on ebook readers or phones, with perhaps, nondescript style and less polished grammar, compromises they are willing to accept as long as the story itself is compelling. The story is king in indie publishing. And thus whatever value editors bring to a book is greatly devalued in indie publishing.

The role of editors in traditional publishing and indie publishing are significantly different and are likely to produce different results. In traditional publishing, authors are casual labor hired by the editor. The editor is their boss, and while they may only “suggest” changes in an author’s work, the author is wise to comply with the editor’s suggestions or risk being labeled “difficult,” and likely less employable. Unless, of course, they write books that sell. On the other hand, in indie publishing, authors hire editors, making editors the casual laborer. While freelance editors may, or may not be selective about the projects they take on, editors still know that they need to please their boss, the author, or risk being labeled, “difficult,” making it more difficult to land future gigs. Given this dynamics, it is not unreasonable to expect that the results of these two types of editorial processes will differ, with the indie editing process being potentially far less rigorous. In addition, in traditional publishing a number of different types of editors and proofreaders go over the manuscript, so that hiring a single editor is not the complete traditional editing process.

The next thing to realize is that editors are pretty bad at their job, if their job is to help you sell books. Editors, with the input of the marketing department and perhaps the publisher, are the people who buy the books in traditional publishing. The editorial team then goes to work to shape and polish these stories into books that sell. Nevertheless, in the end, only about one book in three turns a profit in traditional publishing. What other business would tolerate a 35% success rate? Given their success rate in traditional publishing, how likely is it that professional editing will have a positive effect on sales when it comes to indie publishing? What is undeniable is that it will have very adverse effects when it comes to making a profit.

Luckily, in indie publishing editors can easily be replaced, since there are many free or inexpensive alternatives. If an author feels the need to get an outside opinion on their work, their manuscripts can be vetted by partners, friends, beta readers, or critique groups for free. In addition, the free version of the app Grammarly will check for both spelling and grammar usage. While I have not used it myself, I understand that over the last dozen years or so, Grammarly’s AI has greatly improved, and that it can be trusted to correct your spelling and polish your grammar, thus doing the job of both editor and proofreader. Plus, you can choose to follow its suggestions or not, without being labeled “difficult.” In short, there is no reason to employ a professional editor to polish your prose.

Lastly, indie publishing is all about freedom. You don’t have to conform to the expectations of editors or the “industry.” You can write the story you want to tell, how you want to tell it. No one – agents, editors, publishers, critics – need to be looking over your shoulder when you write and publish your own book. You can write a product aimed at a specific bestselling market, or you can write a work of art that is a unique personal expression. The choice is yours. This choice should be celebrated and valued.

The bottom line is that indie and traditional publishing are not the same business. The differences need to be recognized and the process of producing a book approached from different angles. Mimicking traditional publishing procedures in indie publishing is both unnecessary and potentially very expensive. And given the realities that most indie published books – like traditional published books – will not turn a profit, it is wise, in my opinion, to increase your chances of turning a profit by minimizing or eliminating production expenses. This includes not only editing but cover art and all the bells and whistles that people are quite willing to sell to indie authors – before the book even has a chance to earn a cent. Perhaps once you have become a best selling indie author you might want to employ professional editors and artists, and such, knowing that the sales of the book will pay for them, and that you have more important things to do, like writing your next novel to get it out the door in three months. But until then, I’d say, produce your own book from chapter one to hitting the publish button.

As always, what do you think? Do you use, or have you used, the services of a professional editor? What has been your experience with editors?

Through Query Hell and Back, on a Lark

As I recorded on this blog some six months ago or so, I decided to submit my most recently completed novel to a publisher during their once every couple of years open window for un-agented authors. With six to nine months to wait for them to get back to me, I decided to query this novel, i.e. send query letters to literary agents to see if they would take it on. I had no real expectations of success in either venture, I did it for the experience of doing it. The last novel I had queried – directly to publishers – was in 1980, so it was sort of a trip down memory lane.

Here is my literary agent report card. I set the bar for passing very low; a response. Professionalism is a two-way street. A response to a business inquiry deserves at least a 10 second response in a timely manner. All an agent needed to do to pass was to hit the return arrow on the query email, cut and paste a canned rejection letter on the reply page and hit send. Since agents can control not only the flow of queries via opening and closing query windows, but the number of clients they take on, there is no excuse for not responding to every query they accept. “Too busy” is not an excuse, for who knows what else they would be “too busy” to do, should they take your work on.

All these are American agents. All represent science fiction. All are open to queries from unpublished authors, and all were open to submissions when I submitted my query. All but one query was sent on or before Oct 1 – i.e. 3+ months or more ago.


Hannah Bowman, Liza Dawson Associates; 4 Weeks – Stacy Testa, Writers House; 9 Weeks – Adam Schear, DeFiore & Co.; 9 Weeks – Jim McCarthy, Dystel, Goderich & Bourret LLC; 12 Weeks – Andrea Somberg, Harvey Klinger Literary Agency; 6 Weeks – Zoe Plant, The Bent Agency; 1 Week – Cameron McClure, Donald Maass Literary Agency; 5 Weeks


Markus Hoffmann, Regal Hoffmann & Associates – Peter Rubie. FinePrint Literary Management – Shannon Snow, Creative Media Agency – Stephen Barbara, Inkwell Management – Joshua A Bilmes, Jabberwocky Literary Agency – Matt Bialer, Sandford & Greenburger – Stacy Testa, Writershouse – Michael Harriot, Folio Literary Management – Suzie Townsend, New Leaf – Lane Heymont, The Tobias Agency – Amanda Rutter*, Azantian Literary Agency – Naomi Davis, Bookends A Literary Agency

So what did I learn from this exercise?

First, and foremost, how happy I am that my creative works are not being held hostage by these people. I can reach a small but appreciative audience all on my own, doing it my way. I knew that already, but it made me appreciate the choice I made eight years ago all the more.

I came to better appreciate what people who view being a writer as a romantic occupation, and want to be a “real” one, have to endure in their pursuit of their dream. Better them than me, but still, they should be treated better than what they are.

The other benefit was a little more speculative. As time went on, I found myself vaguely dissatisfied with some parts of the novel, even after I had sent it off to my beta readers. Since I had the time, I took that time to try to address those nagging doubts by doing some revisions to the novel. I ended up adding over 5,000 words to it in the process. The question I can’t answer is; would I have done that if I hadn’t submitted the novel, or would I have released it with those nagging doubts? By the time I finished writing it, I knew that I would be submitting it. I knew that if, on the off chance, it would be picked up, it would go through several bouts of editing, so that it didn’t have to be perfect. But if this hadn’t been the case, would I have released it as it was in June? Or would I have held off and revised it, as I eventually did?. I can’t say. On one hand, I’m not the most patient of men, but on the other, I did delay the release of one of my early novels because I was dissatisfied with it, so going over it again would not have been out of the question. In any event, I see the advantage of waiting a while before releasing a story, though whether I will or not do so in the future is an open question, one that may never arise again. We’ll see.

At any rate, I have emerged from query hell unscathed and wiser for it. All to the good.

*Just as I pushed publish on this, I received an email from Amanda Rutter saying that she was leaving the business. It is a tough business, for writers and agents alike.

My first report can be found here:

Embracing the Wide Approach

Mark Paxson

I’ve written several times in recent months about my experimenting with “going wide” in my publishing efforts. For those not in the know, this is basically using publishing platforms that distribute your books widely, as opposed to publishing through Amazon’s KDP with its limitations and monopolistic tendencies.

What I believe are the biggest names in publishing wide are Draft2Digital and Smashwords. They are in the process of merging, but it appears that, while merged, they will keep separate features. Most notably, Smashwords has its own store for books published through its service. Draft2Digital does not. But D2D recently offered all of its authors the opportunity to be included in Smashwords’ store.

Another well-known wide publisher is IngramSpark — which is actually the granddaddy of them all. Some of the other publishers basically piggyback onto some of IngramSpark’s services. I did not go with IngramSpark because of customer service issues I had with them. Instead, I opted for D2D. There are some odd quirks about D2D, but I have found the process to publish both ebook and paperback on D2D to be easier than doing so through KDP.

As I’ve written before, I published a novella and short story collection via D2D. Those were published in August – October of last year. According to the stats on D2D, I’ve sold a combined 100 copies of those two books since then. While a lot of those sales are still through Amazon, there have been sales on Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, and a couple of other platforms.

I have no idea how things would have gone if I had limited these books to KDP’s options. Would the few sales I made through other retailers have been made up by pages read through Kindle Unlimited? Are there other ways that Amazon pushes books published through them that we writers don’t see? Ways that they don’t utilize for indie authors brave enough to buck their monopolistic tendencies? I don’t know.

Here’s what I do know though. I like the idea of having my books more widely available and also the idea of it being easier to put my books in local bookstores and libraries if I try to do that — something that is very difficult with the Amazon-only approach. Whether I make more sales this way or not may not be the most important factor.

As a result, I’m in the process of re-publishing my older books on D2D so that they can also be available more widely. I started with my first novel, am in the process of finalizing a short story collection that combines my first two short story collections, and will be wrapping it up with a novel I published in 2021.

Will any of this make a difference? Who knows. But I prefer this approach. So I’m sticking with it. Here’s one reason … Draft2Digital informs its readers of promotions the various retailers are running. You can apply, typically including only one book at time as long as it meets the promo’s requirements, and then … well, that’s the weakness. Some of the retailers don’t bother to let you know if your book is included in the promo and it’s also not entirely clear to me how these promos actually work. But … at least it’s something. Other than Kindle Unlimited, nothing Amazon has offered has done anything for sales for me.

If you have any questions about D2D or going wide, ask away in the comments. I also recommend a Facebook group called Wide for the Win filled with authors who have way more experience with this than I do.

Next up for me … uploading all of my books into Google Play and then trying a few Facebook ads.