Wouldn’t it be great if there was a recipe for making a bestselling novel and if all a writer had to do was gather the ingredients and mix them in, and voila!―a bestselling novel is created? The reality is there are combinations of ingredients that can either get your name on a bestseller’s list or fall flatter than an airless cheese soufflé. However, there are some common ingredients that have helped authors achieve bestseller status.
Common Ingredients for a Bestseller:
- 1 cup of well written novel
- 1 cup of professional editing
- 1 cup of professional layout and interior design
- 2 cups of professional book cover, including gripping back cover text
- 1 cup of decent distribution via major online retailers
- 2 cups of book launch, tours and other events, plus advertising
- 3 cups of contests and giveaways by author, publisher or both
- Countless hours of organization and time
- Dash of excitement
Take the well written novel and beat in professional editing until light and readable. Add professional layout and interior design, then stir in professional cover art and back cover text until well combined. Sprinkle in decent distribution until coated and roll mixture out with book launch, tours and events. Top with contests and giveaways, and fold in countless hours of organization and time before adding the finishing touch―a huge dash of excitement. Share with everyone and enjoy!
While the recipe above may seem kind of silly, these ingredients can lead to a bestselling novel. I know because I’ve used them all successfully. My three novels have made bestsellers lists multiple times on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca. Whale Song made both lists in a single day. I’ve also sold over 5000 copies of Whale Song, which in Canada makes it a national bestseller.
So how did I do it? I created an exciting day-long event―a “Bestseller Day”―that had enough goodies to draw people in. It was held on my 44th birthday and I gave away 44 prizes.
There are three main ways to get prizes to offer:
1.) Pay for them (I don’t recommend this.)
2.) Get others to donate them.
3.) Find someone to sponsor the event or the prizes. They pay for something you want to give away and get something in return, whether it’s free advertising, a mention in your next book, or some other benefit.
Becoming a bestselling author takes persistence, creativity and good organization. Follow this recipe for success and you’ll rise like a soufflé. Just don’t forget that last ingredient―excitement!
Cheryl Kaye Tardif is a bestselling Canadian author whose critically acclaimed, award-winning novels are being considered by film producers. She’s appeared on television and radio and in newspapers and magazines. Cheryl has also presented at writers’ conferences in Canada and the US, mainly on topics of marketing and promotion. She’s helped many authors achieve success and does so as a book marketing coach, with Bestseller Days, Virtual Book/Blog Tours and Sponsorships her top 3 most requested topics.
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