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Sample size

Discussion in 'Marketing' started by Benjamin Clayborne, Oct 20, 2011.

  1. One thing I've done with short stories for promotion is write short stories that use the main character. I'm writing a series of books about the same main character - so slipping out a few short stories here and there are good marketing for the books. I even had one accepted to the Twelve Worlds anthology, where it's the first story (and therefore the story people get when they download the ebook sample).
     
  2. Dreamhand

    Dreamhand Troubadour

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    Congratulations, Kevin... that's awesome, man. Can we get a URL reference for the anthology (and/or the publisher)?

    Benjamin... do you have a timeframe for when you want to get the teaser/sample out there? And what about the book itself? We can all mark our Outlook calendars with benchmark dates and then ping you mercilessly for details as they roll around (ain't having writer friends fun?) :D
     
  3. I'm almost half done with the current rewrite pass, although most of it will go faster than the first handful of chapters did. (I got a little brain-stuck on some things.) Chapters 15-22 should all be quick rewrites (no major story/character problems). 23 is boring and needs to be pepped up. I need to expand some things around chapter 29-31 for sure, and as I'm going over 24-28 I'll decide whether there's problems, although I just reread a few of those and there were definitely some places that need improvement.

    Once this pass is done, I'll do ANOTHER pass just to see if I missed anything and decide whether there's any remaining major changes needed, and then a quick polish pass to make sure the language is all good and look for any last-minute nonsense.

    Then I'll be willing to release a sample. I would expect to be done with all these passes probably by the end of the year. I'd be able to do them a lot faster if this was my full-time job... which is the eventual goal. :)
     
  4. Dreamhand

    Dreamhand Troubadour

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    I hear THAT :: fist bump ::

    Sounds like you have your work cut out for you with a solid plan to get it done. Go, Ben... and keep us in the loop.
     
  5. Thanks. I sent you a PM, btw.
     
  6. MichaelSullivan

    MichaelSullivan Maester

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    As some of people here already know my wife is: Robin Sullivan, Marketing Genius (said in my best impersonation of Wyle E. Coyote). With my Theft of Swords release coming out in a few days, she had me whip up a prequel with my main characters Royce and Hadrian. It's now available for free on Amazon (The Viscount and the Witch, and other outlets like Smashwords and ibookStore). The short is both free and requires a short investment of time (10 - 30 minutes by most reading speeds) and now I've had a ton of emails, and have seen reviews where people say... "I've known about your series for a long time but for one reason or another, never got around to reading it. Now that I read the short, I preordered the full set." This has been one of the most effective marketing campaigns she has setup for my series so I highly recommend it to others.
     
  7. The more I think about it, the more I like the idea of writing a (free) short story as a way to get people interested. I'd still want to release the first few chapters of the novel as a sample, but it certainly wouldn't hurt to have multiple avenues. There's probably some people who'd be willing to read a short story but not a sample. *ponders*
     
  8. MichaelSullivan

    MichaelSullivan Maester

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    I think it makes a lot of sense to do both. The nice thing about a short story is it is "complete" and "short" so there is a very low amount of friction to "try". I'm not sure if I mentioned or not but the short has the sample for the first book also included.
     

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