Self-promotion is hard… and I really don’t know where to begin.


I hate self-promotion. I must be an idiot to hate it but I do. I think it is like cheering yourself on. It just seems incredibly obnoxious to me. But I selfpublish, there isn’t a publisher going out to convince bookstores to sell my stories. I have to do it all myself. There is only one store for me: the amazon store.


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As a way to have a quick promodevice I signed up all 3 of my stories for KDP Select. This is service by Amazon where you provide your stories exclusively to them. In return they make your stories available to Amazon prime members for “borrowing” and they allow you promodays. These are 5 days every 90 where no one has to pay for your story. Of course this means you don’t get anything in return either. Except for free copies going out into the world.

The big problem is that my stories don’t get reviews. I can’t go to every person who buys my stories and force to review but no one seems to do it. Reviews are essential: they are the driving force behind the sales. People rarely buy books that aren’t rated yet a book has to be sold to be rated.

I wish I could make this post useful to you, the reader, sadly this seems to turn into more of a sob story.  Forgive me. I’ve been considering a system someone suggested me. I’m not sure if it is considered a good idea. A review can come from anyone. People who haven’t “officially” bought the story can post reviews. Now this means I could go out and review each of my stories myself. This would make me look like a huge douchebag. It could also mean I can ask friends to just randomly slap some 5 stars on there. This is not something I want to do, at all. I am however considering getting into contact with reviewers online and trade a free copy of my story for an honest review. I’m not sure if this is the way to go, but I’m not sure what way there is to go either.

The final problem is that I write short stories.  The price listed on amazon is consistently the lowest available. I don’t want to sell these stories for lots of money because they are short. It might make me look like a hack selling stories the size of ten pages when stories ten times as long are sold for similar prices. But short stories is what I do and so it will be that I sell.

My question now is: how do you self-promote?




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~ by Sander on August 29, 2012.

7 Responses to “Self-promotion is hard… and I really don’t know where to begin.”

  1. Put your short stories together into a longer book with a common theme. Do a give away on Good Reads to get reviews posted there. Yes, get your friends to post a review. Use a screen name or make it anonomous so no one knows but you. Review other books that are similar, and recommend that if you like this, you’ll like this other one, too. Sell your stories to a magazine, and put “about the author” at the end.

  2. Hi Sander. Just a note to let you know that you now have one review. I bought “Sophie” and put up a short note on Amazon.

    I want to let you know that I have been amazingly impressed by your values, in particular your discomfort with shameless self-promotion. I have been very disappointed with the barrage of pleading notes from some authors/bloggers whose material I actually value, but to me it’s just over the top.

    I want to encourage you and just letting us know how we can help is great!

  3. Great ideas, Paula. Sander, I am an indie too. I would be happy to read your book and post an honest review on Amazon, Goodreads, and my blog if you would do the same for me.

  4. is your friend 🙂

    It’s a fantastic platform and it’s probably the best supporter out there for self publishing writers.

    • smashwords and amazon Kindle Select don’t allow me to publish on both.

      • Oh?… The exclusivity comes from Amazon I assume? Cause smashwords distributes to multiple stores (last time I did, it included Amazon).

      • Amazon Kindle Select is very strict on not allowing any kind of distribution outside their own. I’m assuming that includes smashwords, a quick google search ddin’t seem to provide answers.

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