Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Report on my writing projects

My assorted writing projects fall neatly into a number of sub-groups.

There are the books where marketing material can be posted to one or more Facebook groups. Despite the fact that the percentage of active participants in these groups seems to be well under 5% the sheer size and number of the groups means that book sales of between 5 and 30 copies a month is a perfectly reasonable goal. My astronomy and our grave-hunting books fit into this group.

Then there are the extreme niche books where there isn't a Facebook group when enthusiasts gather to share their hobby. The Biggles Companion (now renamed "The World of Biggles") is my best example of this genre. The only place where the book is marketed is the Amazon site but this seems to have been enough to generate 2 - 5 sales per month for the last few years.

The ghost writer books have been hard for me to promote as ghost writers, almost by definition, don't shout out about the books they have co-authored. The notional authors have been promoting the books to friends, family and specialists in the field and they have fairly consistently achieved 10  to 20 sales per month.

All three of these groups can be regarded as successes but there are a few books I have written where the sales have been minimal. These failures have been books where the target audience has been mainly UK based and the subject matter has been specialised and where there isn't a relevant Facebook group. This "triple whammy" needs to be remembered when planning future publications!


UPDATE - April 14th 2015
This was a well-constructed argument but one with which I tend to disagree.

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Goodbye to the Ragleth Writers

There are only losers when a group self-destructs and I don't suppose I will ever know exactly what motivated two long-standing members to act in the way they did.  

I supported the Ragleth Writers since 2011 because for me the positives always comfortably exceeded the negatives. I think I contributed as much as anybody to the running of the group although it wasn't always easy as I wasn't a member of the inner circle who all tended to see the group rather more as a social gathering than as a writers group.  

With hindsight the existence of this undemocratic core was always going to be problematic. Although the group was "sold" to me as being a collection of equals the resident alpha-female clearly didn't see it that way! Church Stretton is a small community and the group never seemed to have enough members to dilute her negative influence on all those outside her close-knit clique.