Monday, August 13, 2012

Birth and Resurrection of All Mystery E-Newsletter

The fun and fabulous R.P. (Rebecca) Dahlke is my guest this week. She's the energy behind the newsletter for mystery fans, readers and authors alike. If you don't know about it, you're missing something good. 
In 2010, I started an e-newsletter for mystery and suspense authors. It ran, free of charge to the authors, until December 2012. I decided to let it go because: 1) authors just weren't with me on how effective this kind of advertising could be, and 2) I had my own books to write.
So I put the website in mothballs but kept the Facebook site, the Yahoo group (which is where authors meet to talk about promotion, and readers come to see what authors are talking about), the Goodreads group for Indie and small press promotion, and a Twitter account.
Since then,  I have put four mysteries up on Amazon/Kindle, and because I understand that my book is a product, I also began a six-month quest for the best and most effective form of advertising my books.
Rebecca's latest book at Amazon
The results were exciting! I discovered that with a combination of inexpensive paid and free promotions, I could sell more books. I thought the results of this were interesting enough to share with my writing friends. So the first thing I did was put together a seven-page handout and speak on this subject with my local Sisters in Crime chapter in Tucson. The handout was necessary because I had a lot of powerful and helpful information to share, but I cautioned my grateful listeners with the following: The only thing I could guarantee about this information was that some of it would change.
That was in June, and sure enough, things have changed… again. One of the sites I listed as smart and creative just bit the dust, and another site, Digital Books Today, has taken a giant leap after only 18 months in the business.  Eighteen months? Gee, All Mystery e-newsletter had started before Digital Books Today… so that meant… but wait! There's more!
In a recent e-mail from the founder of Digital Books Today, Anthony Wessel, he says, and I quote: "Traffic on our Sites: March—8,000, June—16,000," and in their "The Top 100 Best Free Kindle Books List: November 2011—600+ and June 2012—10,000+ with 38,000 click-outs to books on Amazon."
It is obvious that Indie and small press authors are now using paid book marketing as part of a successful campaign to sell their books. I know, because I was using them too, and the results have been gratifying—except for one thing. As a mystery writer, all of the best e-newsletters had mystery squished in between vampire and memoir.
It didn't take me much more than a nano-second to see that All Mystery e-newsletter was needed.
I ticked off the possibilities for resurrecting this e-newsletter against the fact that it might take some time to gain momentum. Then realized I already had all of my requirements for a good promotion site: Facebook page, Yahoo and Goodreads groups, and Twitter with a small army of Re-Tweet pals.
The website is now up and running. Better yet, September is already SOLD out, but I am accepting submittals for October through December 2012. And, yes, the ad insertions for this e-newsletter are reasonably priced:  $10.00 a book insertion.
Here are links to All Mystery e-newsletter places:

Twitter handle: @allmysterynews
Last but not least, for those of you who would like a copy of my updated copy of that 7 page hand-out for both free and paid promotions for authors, send me an e-mail with "promotion handout" in the subject line and I'll send you a PDF copy. E-mail:
Ask questions if you aren't sure about joining. It's a good group, very helpful.


Darla said...

Thanks for the great information. The digital world is a bit daunting. :-)

Polly said...

Rebecca is most generous with her information, and I've benefited in a big way. As an indie writer, I used her information when I put two books up on KDP Free. I had between 30-50 THOUSAND downloads, and my books went from the FREE 100 Kindle bestseller's list to the PAID one. Both books are still there, one after a month. Unfortunately, writing a good book isn't enough these days. Rebecca knew that early on. Promotion is not my favorite thing to do, but it's a necessary evil, so I do as much as I'm comfortable with. Thank you, Rebecca, for being so supportive of writers. I, for one, am very appreciative.

Marilyn Levinson said...

You're one of the best sources of how and where to publicize one's book.

I've benefited from the Kindle Select program. I'm learning of new sites and new PR outlets every day.

Michele Drier said...

Like Polly, promotion is not what I like nor what I do best. Thanks, Rebecca for being a cheerleader for indie writers!

marja said...

Rebecca, Your generosity is greatly appreciated. You're right, that things are constantly changing, so writers working together is so very important. Thank you for sharing information with us.

Marja McGraw

Ellis Vidler said...

I'm another of Rebecca's beneficiaries. I've found many good resources from her lists and on the All Mystery e-Newsletter. She really is generous and willing to share.
Thanks for sharing once again, Rebecca.

John Brantingham said...

This looks like a great group. I'm in!!

Cindy Sample said...

Rebecca has been so wonderful in sharing information with the mystery author community. I'm not an indie author (yet) but her advice has been a huge help in my marketing.

On a side note, with a power outage last night and nothing to do except read on my Kindle Fire, I zipped through A DEAD RED OLEANDER which was every bit as great as I knew it would be. Even stayed up until 1:30 to finish! Thank for the terrific read.

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Rebecca and Ellis,

Always good to know about more avenues of advertising our writing.


Jacqueline Seewald

Jinx Schwartz said...

Rebecca has dragged me, albiet kicking and screaming most of the way, into the world of indie publishing. And now, in great part because of her nagging :-) I am, dare I say it? Actually selling books. What a concept!

Looking forward to the revival of the newsletter.