Many authors choose a rapid release strategy. Rapid release is a publishing technique that involves releasing new books in short intervals, usually in a series. This way, an author can take advantage of the hype of their recently released book and give readers something to look forward to.
Jewel Allen’s new book Rapid Release: How to Write & Publish Fast for Profit walks you through her experience with rapid releasing. Here are some of the things I’ve learned from this book.
If profit is important to you, then you must choose your genre wisely. Choosing a genre that is currently trending is a good place to start. Remember all the vampire romance authors after Twilight’s success? Guess what they were up to. You can check the best-selling indie books on Amazon to get a sense of what is currently trending.
If you already have a story in mind you can adjust it to the current market trends. Always choose a genre that you’re comfortable with or you may risk losing interest in your own book midway.
As a reader, it’s good to know that an author is committed to their books. What better way to show that, than to have a series out in your name? This way, the success of one title will carry on to the next one..
Besides the appeal to readers, books in a series market each other and work very well with the rapid release technique. You can add a link to your next book’s pre-sale at the end of every book while your readers are yearning for more. Try to aim for a trilogy and see where it goes from there.
You can formulate a series based on overlapping events, a common character, or within the same geographical area. Even if you had not considered it while writing you standalone fiction, you should consider changing up some words or names and combine your books into a series.
Whenever you get an idea for a book or a title, drop what you are doing and write it down immediately. Catchy ideas with snappy titles that can be summed up in one or two paragraphs, are the best. That doesn’t mean your plot should be simple.
Your title should resonate with your readers. For example, Jewel writes clean billionaire romances so her book titles are “Her Billionaire Bodyguard” from which she spun off “Her Billionaire Santa.” Research your book titles and make sure they are not taken or heavily paraphrased by others.
After you have an idea, go straight to writing the blurb. It may seem counter-intuitive but the blurb can help you stick to your idea’s strengths. Keep it next to you while you write your outline and make sure your book stays true to your initial vision. If at any point you decide that you need to change something, edit the blurb first, then continue writing.
The point of writing your blurb first is to filter out incomplete stories in your head. If you don’t do that early on, then you will have trouble half-way through and get frustrated.
Your blurb should stir up the reader’s emotions. This is not the time for weak, half-hearted words.
Imagine a mock-up of your cover in your head as you write the story. Visualize what would capture the essence of your story. Write down what you see, or better yet, try to draw an outline if you can. Then, unless you are an artist yourself, hand it over to a professional. Readers can spot amateur covers form a mile away.
You can also commission your series covers together for a better deal and to keep them consistent. Having a cover for your next book available in advance means you can include it at the end of your book and link to a pre-order product page.
You can add your Kindle e-book as a pre-order on Amazon KDP. Amazon does not offer this option for KDP paperbacks. Your Kindle e-book must have a publication date up to one year later. If you are doing a rapid release, you should aim your next title to come much sooner than a year out.
You can change the attached file until 3 days before publication. Be sure to upload your final manuscript before that deadline. If you end up cancelling your pre-order, Amazon will refund any sales back to the readers and forefeit your right to setup preorder for one year.
There are a few approaches to writing a book every month or every other month.For Jewel, the most effective method is to write in sprints. Writing in sprints means sitting down for a few hours each day and typing away.
Jewel Allen reports that she can write as many as 50,000 words in just 5 days. A very impressive feat, if you ask me. She says that friendly competition has helped her increase her daily word count. There are many Facebook groups where writers encourage each other to write through mini-challenges and by reporting their word counts.
If you are writing to a pre-order publication deadline, remember to leave some time (at least two weeks) for the editor.
Writing in sprints also ensures that the whole storyline stays fresh in your head. This could mean more detail and less overthinking.
Jewel reveals her full daily routine in her book, it’s interesting and worth checking out.
The downside of writing this fast is that you will make many mistakes. Moreover, tunnel vision can lead to a lot of plot holes in your story. A good editor can help you fix this.
A professional editor is worth every penny. Few writers can get away with editing themselves and they too, are biased. Editing also puts an extra load on your shoulders and takes up time you can spend writing your next book.
Think of getting more eyes on your manuscript by recruiting beta readers (excluding your friends and family.) After editing your book, you can start handing out Advance Review Copies (ARCs) to your beta readers to fix any final issues before the big launch. Beta readers may help you fix any embarrassing plot holes that even the best editors can miss while focusing on syntax and grammar.
Newsletters can be a very powerful marketing tool. It can be a little demotivating at first, as you find difficulty getting people to subscribe to your newsletter. Seek out your readers on social media, and offer ARCs of your next manuscript to applicants on relevant Facebook groups. Don’t forget to use your own books to collect emails from readers by including a review magnet.
After you build your email list, you can leverage it by doing newsletter swaps with other authors in your genre. You can find authors that may be interested in this on Facebook groups.
Here are some Facebook groups for writers starting their careers.
Rapid Release can be very effective, but it is certainly not for everyone. Building marketing momentum requires hard work and it most likely suited for full-time writers.
If you are interested in this approach I recommend you buy Rapid Release: How to Write & Publish Fast for Profit by Jewel Allen as we barely scratched the surface in this article.
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