Published is a book by Chandler Bolt on how to launch your book as a self-published author.
I found it very good and detailed.
- Write on something you’re passionate about
- Have a launch team to help you spread the word and get positive reviews
- Pick a launch strategy and stick to it
Published goes a lot into motivation and I will skip that part.
The author says you should a strong why and a strong motivation to write your book. Something you believe in and/or that matters a lot to you.
He recommends the first draft you just write and write as with a stream of consciousness style.
Title and Cover
People do judge books both by their titles and cover.
I can see it myself and confirm it very well. Just picture this, I write review on this website. There is a dating book for women called Fuck Him, and I only gave Fuck Him 3 stars.
I gave 5 stars to a few other competitors of Fuck Him, like for example The Tao of Dating and The Art of Seduction. However, people kept clicking on Fuck Him affiliate links to a much higher clip than any other review I wrote.
I don’t have any data to back this up, but I believe this is due, in good part, to the catchy title of “Fuck Him”.
Same goes for the cover. People do judge book by their cover.
In his webinar Chandler says that the title of the book should be in the highest part of the cover as people always look up there for the title.
You can add a quick description below or at the bottom.
I used this information to modify my ebooks’ cover.
Chandler Bolt says you should prepare a team to help you in the launch of your book. The team will help you by sharing your book once it’s published, leaving good reviews and potentially recommending it to a friend.
Chandler Bolt is a big proponent of the Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook. Such as: give, give, give and only then ask.
One way to give, he says, is to share the “hero journey”, such as keeping your launch team updated with your journey to becoming a self-published author.
Something that, indeed, might interest people.
Chandler recommends you launch on Tuesday, albeit I don’t remember the exact time :).
He lays out 4 different launch strategies:
- The Free Launch Strategy
This one you start giving away the book for free to get some reviews going and skew the Amazon’s algorithm on your side.
Then you increase it to 0.99 and then you go full price.
Chandler recommends this strategy for most first time self-published authors.
- 0.99 Launch Strategy
Not giving it away for free is best for those who already a bit of a bigger fanbase and for those who are too skittish about giving their work away for free.
- The Traditional Launch Strategy
This is most for people who have already published successful work, and it’s not for 99% of the book’s readers.
- Free Plus Shipping Launch Strategy
This is a strategy for those who use the book to grow their followers and as an upsell for their more expensive courses.
It’s the strategy that Chandler is partially using himself, but it requires an upfront investment and it might not be the best option for first time self-published authors.
Lots of Fluff Marketing
Chandler introduces himself as a 7 times best-seller writer. However I have to wonder what are the standards to define “best seller”.
The story of how he made it himself is actually very interesting, but takes too big of a portion of the book in my opinion.
And the “success stories” to motivate you are also a great tool for selling the course, of course.
Chandler, as he says himself, is a bit of a marketing lover. There is indeed quite some up-sell in Published. But it wasn’t annoying for me, especially when compared to some other authors.
Great Narrating Voice
Chandler Bolt certainly is an outstanding narrator. He is better than many professional book readers I’ve listened to!
I read Published hoping for more design and copy-writing tips for the cover, the name and the subheadings. There weren’t many, but there is otherwise some great information for self-publishers.
I give it 4 stars as am I very strict and I didn’t test the actual information (my products are on this website only).
It’s well written and easy to read (or listen, in my case). If the information works well, and I think it might as well do indeed, I can see how this could be a 5 stars book as it lays out an easy and clear path to become a self-published author.
Eye-Opening on Reviews (in a negative way)
I knew one couldn’t fully trust the reviews on Amazon, but after reading Published that really got me thinking about how deeply one should distrust Amazon reviews.
Especially for the less popular books, I believe it’s wholly possible that a majority of the positive reviews come from family and friends.
For example, I personally consider the most upvoted review to be a fake:
Should You Launch a Book?
Chandler presents writing a book as a great way to reach everyone’s dream these days: passive income.
Personally, I am not sure that writing a book is such a great path to success (well, “no sh*t” to that: there are no quick ways to success).
The risk I see in launching a book is that it requires quite some heavy work from your side with little chance of getting market feedback before the launch date.
And if it tanks, which is of course very possible, you are left with nothing.
Friend Who Died?
A big warning here: I have NO idea whether the story is true or not. My personal feeling though is that I can’t fully trust these stories. It’s almost the exact same story Mark Manson tells in The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck.
As the author of a website on “games people play”, it’s my duty to wonder.