A lot of writers ask fellow WriteOn members for reviews to boost visibility rather than waiting for organic ones. While it’s supposedly true that more reviews mean more visibility, you could be sabotaging your own efforts. When readers see the same names turning up, again and again, it tells them this is a review circle, and the reviews are fake, so they avoid the books of those authors like the plague. .·´¯`(>▂<)´¯`·.
It’s also against Amazon’s rules for friends, colleagues or relatives to review one another’s books.
Amazon gave me quite a bit of grief when I reviewed Mark and Raymond’s books, and for the longest time I couldn’t figure out why they kept deleting my reviews. I discovered later it was because they suspected I knew those writers from the WriteOn community since all three of us were members. And they were right. My gushing reviews were legitimate, but against the rules, so I’m not going to review the work of anyone else I know from WriteOn, Wattpad or elsewhere. And you know what? Those reviews aren’t even necessary.
There’s a better way to boost visibility that’s endorsed by Amazon in their latest KDP newsletter, or maybe it was Author Insights. In any case, Amazon said it themselves, so it’s got to be okay.
To increase visibility, you must write more books.
The more books listed on your Author Central profile, the more visible you become, or so they say. Have you filled out your Author Central profile yet? Did you post a clever bio that tells potential readers what you write and piques their interest in your work? Have you added a blog feed so they can see your entries and follow your blog? You’re allowed more than one, so add this one while you’re thinking of it:
For any WordPress blog, you simply add /feed/rss/ to the end of your blog address. For blogs at other sites, it’s probably different, but it’ll be something like atom/feed or RSS/feed or some variation thereof. Check the FAQs. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
“Okay, so writing more books increases my visibility, but it takes years to write more books! What do I do in the meantime?”
Glad you asked that. Most of you have written short stories, and short stories are books. You offer them separately, CLEARLY MARKED AS SHORT STORIES SO THE READER DOESN’T GET AN UNPLEASANT SURPRISE THINKING IT’S A NOVEL. Seriously, make it clear it’s a short story. The readers talk to one another on Goodreads, LibraryThing, and other reader sites, so don’t ever disappoint them. Bad word of mouth travels faster than good word of mouth. ヽ(ﾟДﾟ)ﾉ
So let me show you what to do, using Soleil Daniels as an example since I know she’s published a short story collection on Amazon. Images From a Wandering Mind is a collection of 15 short stories, so that’s fifteen books she can add to her profile RIGHT NOW, TODAY! And if she adds a paper edition, that’s thirty new books. See how it works? At the moment she’s only got one book listed, so I imagine she’s darn near invisible. She needs to upload each individual story as a separate book for 99¢ each. It’s unlikely any of those books will ever sell because if a reader bought each one separately, it would cost about $15. Why pay that when you can get the whole collection for $2.99? But she’s not trying to sell those books; she’s trying to sell the entire anthology. The collection now looks like a great bargain, eh?
If you haven’t published a collection yourself yet, but you have some individual short stories, you might want to start publishing those now as you write them and then combine them into a collection later, calling it the complete omnibus or something similar, so the reader sees what a good deal it is to buy the whole works. You could even create additional collections based on themes or genres; for instance, put all your romance stories together in one volume and all your fantasy stories into another, etc.
Now, to be honest, I haven’t tried this myself since I only have one short story at the moment, but the rest of you might experiment and tell us whether it actually boosts visibility or not. ヽ(^。^)丿
OMP Admin Note: Akje Majdanek is a writer and OMP Network member. Akje is a guest blogger for the One Million Project website whose creativity is evidenced in her work. Akje’s books–Der Reiter and Adeline–are available on Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Akje_Majdanek/e/B00UZSTW74