What Goes Into Successful Fiction Books?

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erick mertz, publishing consultant for fiction, portland oregonThe marketplace for fiction has never been more brimming with opportunity. Regardless of what genre you write in, whether that is historical romance or paranormal mystery, now is an exciting time to reach readers all over the world who are looking for your book. While there are more opportunities than ever before, reaching your audiences requires a great deal more in the way of savvy and know-how. That is why working with a publishing consultant for fiction may well be your best tool for success.

Understanding Your Genre

Genre used to be as easy as your local bookstore’s shelves. If you walked into a Barnes & Nobel store (or think of your local seller) on a sunny afternoon, you would find books arranged in easy to understand categories like mystery, literature, fantasy, horror, science fiction and so on.

Sure, there were odd-balls like military and so on, but the shelves were pretty neat.

Well, you can take that bookstore image and blow it up 100 fold.

Those genre categories still exist, but only in a broader umbrella type of form. Amazon offers hundreds (upon hundreds) of categories for fiction books, breaking down each of those large categories into far smaller, micro-niches. 

Take mystery for example. On Amazon there are dozens of sub-categories for mystery, ranging from cozy to hard-boiled to sleuths and detectives. 

While this degree of specialization may seem excessive and unnecessary, it is an important distinction to know because readers know their sub-genres. Mystery fans know exactly what sub-category to shop in for their favorite books, which makes it very important for you to know. The truth of the matter is, you cannot be successful with a fiction book on Amazon without a thorough, inside-out understanding of the expectations within your genre.

Publishing Consultant For Fiction Covers

Having a great book is important to author success. You cannot be successful as an author without strong writing, a good story and interesting characters.

But how are readers going to find you? That’s marketing. Getting the cover right is the first step in successful book marketing.

Whoever said you cannot judge a book by its cover did not sell many books. The most critical element of your book is a strong, genre-appropriate cover. Why is that? Because if your cover sends the wrong signals, or is unprofessional, readers are going to look past your book to ones that fit expectations.

Two things actually happen when you publish a book with the wrong cover.

First off, your book confuses readers and therefore they go elsewhere. Translation: bad sales. The second thing that happens, coming in a little under the surface, is that it leads to bad reviews. Those people who actually did buy your book, who expected one thing and got another, will leave bad reviews. Too many bad reviews don’t just sink books. They sink author careers.

If you’re going to publish a fiction book, take the time and money to get a professional-looking cover. This means hiring a designer, working with them to understand what you need and working with them until you get it. As a publishing consultant for fiction books, I have encountered more than my share of writers whose problems began (and ultimately ended) with getting the right cover.

The Realities Of Working With Amazon

It keeps coming back to Amazon, doesn’t it?

The facts are, as an author, a strong majority of your book sales will come from Amazon. There are a number of other platforms out there (Kobo, Apple, Google to name a few) but if you’re like a majority of authors, all of those platforms combined won’t equal half of what you sell on Amazon.

Because the giant retailer possesses such clout, Amazon also has a lot of rules and features. Options like pre-sales, countdown deals and exclusivity are all issues authors need to weigh carefully. These should not be something that intimidates you though. The benefits of working with Amazon far outweigh the stress of dealing with their many befuddling hoops.

Working within those rules, most authors find that the ability to create their own content, market books in ways that make sense to their platform, developing long-lasting readers from all over the globe are an adequate payoff.

If you would like to read more on the topic of publishing consultant services, check out these additional articles.

How To Publish A Book On Amazon

How To Write A Query Letter

What Is A Query Letter

Ask A Ghostwriter – Help With Self-Publishing

Why Now Is The Righ Time To Write A Christian Book

The Best Self-Publishing Podcasts

Publishing Consultant For Fiction

Is Self-Publishing On A Budget Possible?

What Type Of Editing Do I Need?

Book Layout and Design

Self Edit Your Novel

How To Write Historical Fiction

Free “How To Hire A Ghostwriter” eBook

portland oregon, erick mertz, publishing consultant

I so adamantly believe that knowing how to conduct a ghostwriting interview is a bedrock of success that I wrote a book about it.

While this book doesn’t necessarily cover fiction specifically as this blog does, it does serve as an ideal primer for developing a professional mentality to bring to your writing.

If you would like a complimentary copy of How To Hire A Ghostwriter: Your Guide To Finding The Best Pro For Your Project all you have to do is click and download.

If you have read this book, like it, and found it helpful, please share it with some of your fellow writers and take a moment to review it either on GoodReads or Amazon.

How Do I Contact You As A Publishing Consultant For Fiction?

publishing consultant, erick mertz, portland oregon

If you are serious about hiring a fiction editor or having your book, screenplay or non-fiction story professionally written by a ghostwriter, or you need self-publishing help, please contact me via email, or call.

Every new contact receives a free 30-minute 1:1 consultation about their ghostwriting project or manuscript consultation.

Additionally, I offer all independent and self-publishing authors a 10% discount on my already affordable services.

Erick MertzWhat Goes Into Successful Fiction Books?

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